Prolific Living http://www.prolificliving.com Smart Habits for Rich Living Sat, 22 Nov 2014 23:21:42 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0.1 Smart Habits for Rich Living Prolific Living no Smart Habits for Rich Living Prolific Living http://www.prolificliving.com/wp-content/plugins/powerpress/rss_default.jpg http://www.prolificliving.com The Easiest Cure to Stop Arguing with Your Significant Other http://www.prolificliving.com/how-to-stop-arguing/ http://www.prolificliving.com/how-to-stop-arguing/#comments Thu, 20 Nov 2014 15:07:32 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=41118 Why some couples never argue while the rest of us … well … do? Some couples never ever argue. Some couples are in-tuned to each other’s temperaments At All Times. They escape the usual disagreements and misunderstandings that plague the rest of us. They float in a space of complete zen and bliss. They are […]

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Why some couples never argue while the rest of us … well … do?

Some couples never ever argue.

Some couples are in-tuned to each other’s temperaments At All Times. They escape the usual disagreements and misunderstandings that plague the rest of us. They float in a space of complete zen and bliss.

couple-field-wide

They are patient with each other even as their emotions fluctuate or as their opinions clash.

They are kind and collected even as they move on wildly different planes of opinion and thought. They listen to one another with their whole hearts and they never, ever raise their voices.

They are not a fairy tale couple – they do exist – even though they perfectly match the Prince and Princess profiles of a Disney movie.

Reminder: You can still grab The Positive Affirmations for Life program with more than 4 hours of audio affirmations for 7 life situations that impact your happiness and success the most.

Is it good to never argue? The old me used to think that couples who never argue are not really communicating or opening up to each other. And once in a while, a perfectly calm relationship may be due to lack of real communication, but after paying a lot more attention, I believe the opposite is true:

Peaceful relationships are the result of true communication, true listening, and true love that rises above all else between two people.

But how on earth do you actually do it?

How do two unique people, each equipped with their own authentic personality, preferences, opinions, and likes & dislikes go through a lifetime commitment such as marriage without arguing some of the time and without at least some of it being downright desperate and heart-wrenching?

How is it even possible to create and maintain a strong healthy long-term relationship without hitting those bumps?

Well, it is possible and not just for the Disney couple either. The distinction is this: You will hit bumps. You will have disagreements. You will have differences of opinion, thought and approach. But you can do it all WITHOUT arguing.

After years of being a victim of my own self-inflicted endless debates and painful fights, after trying several approaches to having “healthy rational discussions” – none of which worked for me by the way – I discovered a ridiculously simple solution to a peaceful argument-free relationships that has finally freed me from my own prison.

Are you going to stay in your own prison or free yourself?

Do you want to free yourself from the prison of unhappiness and desperation brought on by arguments, provided you have a good partner and a good thing going together? Because no mistake about it: It IS a prison that YOU create yourself. And it takes a conscious choice to step out of it.

Now if you are in an abusive or wrong relationship, then you need to end it fast and recover from the experience. This post does not apply to you.

The good news? No matter who you are, you can learn how to stop arguing with your sweetie. If I’ve done it, there’s hope for the most hopeless out there, trust me.

Imagine for a moment what it would feel like to never argue, never have to raise your voice and defend yourself, never have to scream why you are right and never blame the other person.

Imagine if you could get rid of all the toxic, cancerous, humiliating feelings that follow an argument and embrace healthy, peaceful loving conversations even if you disagree with one another.

Imagine if you did all this not by submitting to the other person nor by giving up, but rather by maintaining your position, by communicating your authentic thoughts and by feeling heard, validated and understood every single time.

So decide right now to free yourself from the prison, so I can proceed to tell you just HOW!

The slight problem with being both lovable and stubborn

sadwoman-unhappy

For the first time in 12 years of my marriage, I feel certain in my heart that this peaceful loving atmosphere that my discovery has created is here to stay. The joy is palpable.

You see, I’ve not exactly been the most easy person to get along with.

I’ve always been opinionated (on just about everything), strong-willed, stubborn beyond hope, determined, and adamant about my way of doing things. I was impossible to deal with when I was younger. Over the years, I’ve mellowed and learned to see the wisdom of an outside perspective – specifically my husband – and come to even love it but still, even that doesn’t melt away the possibility of arguments just yet.

Complication factor: Did I mention that my hubby and I became full-time entrepreneurs after we escaped the corporate life – which I show YOU how to do in Smart Exit Blueprint course – and that we live together, work together on our businesses, travel together and play together? It gets interesting but the goal of a relationship is not to be interesting. The goal is to be peaceful, loving, joyful and happy. If that sounds like a corny cliche, I frankly don’t give a damn, because I want it and the truth is, I want it more than I want to be right.

Have you noticed how the desire to be right often ruins all hope for peace and serenity? And who cares anyway if you are right 100% of the time in your arguments when in the end, you have done nothing but made yourself completely miserable?

For me, it’s never been easy to let things be just as they are. It’s never been easy to let something go without beating it to death or proving myself right or proving him wrong. Even though, I feel endless love for my husband, I’ve always struggled with this letting go and letting be.

So naturally, it attracted countless arguments into our marriage for over a decade …. until recently.

Recently, I hit a very – read VERY – low point, and in that moment, I saw all the answers to my flawed approach and exactly what I need to do to heal our relationship and to be happy together forever – exactly as the song goes.

Ever since that point, it has been easy as a summer breeze to maintain peace – sweet loving peace – with my husband and it doesn’t matter if all is peachy or if we have strongly divergent opinions on a topic, the peace remains as we work through the issues.

Want to Create an Argument-Free Relationship for Life? Here’s How.

If you really – I mean really! – want a peaceful, loving, joyful and happy relationship as a couple, if you want to learn how to stop arguing for good, then the first step is to admit this desire loud and clear to yourself and to your significant other. That’s the easy step.

The next step is the game changer and the cure to ending arguments: You have got to KILL OFF your ego.

That’s it. That’s the big cure that works every single time. You cannot take your giant ego into a peaceful loving relationship. It Simply Doesn’t Work.

Either the ego goes or any chance of happy peaceful loving relationship goes. The choice, sweet darling, is yours and yours alone.

The sooner you get this, the quicker your glorious life will begin to unfold before you. And you want that, don’t you? Don’t You? I know you do …

happycoupleus

Your ego wants the opposite of what makes you happy.

Here’s everything that is wrong with your ego and everything that begins to happen when you KILL OFF your ego in your relationship and tune into your heart and soul:

1. Your ego wants to be right. You want to be happy.

2. Your ego wants to blame someone. You want to get rid of blame and replace it with compassion.

3. Your ego wants to “show the other person”. You want to show the other person love and kindness.

4. Your ego wants to make you feel more important in a relationship. You want to make the other person feel important.

5. Your ego wants to make you stand on a podium and preach. You want to sit at a table next to your significant other.

6. Your ego wants loud justification. You want peace (aff), love and serenity.

7. Your ego mocks happiness as a “fluffy” pursuit. You take your happiness and that of your significant other pretty darn seriously.

8. Your ego does not care about your heart. You want to follow and listen to your heart.

9. Your ego wants to rule the relationship. You want to be an equal partner in the relationship.

10. Your ego cares only about yourself. You care about the other person as much as about yourself.

11. Your ego wants to be right. You want to be happy. (Yes I do realize I am repeating this last line from the first line but it’s that important to remember!!!)

So next time you feel your muscles tensing up, your beautiful smile fading away, and your anger resurfacing, remember that it’s not the real you because you are a perfectly lovable and loving soul, it is your ego that has come back to ruin the peace. The only question is this; Are you going to let it?

Get Confident in 21 Easy Steps


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5 Things You Must Know If You Want to Live a Happy Life Now http://www.prolificliving.com/live-a-happy-life-now/ http://www.prolificliving.com/live-a-happy-life-now/#comments Mon, 10 Nov 2014 13:40:04 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=41049 We are too complex, too smart, and too analytical for our own good. We make life way too difficult, we kill our bliss and joy too often, and we sabotage perfect opportunities too frequently. No wonder that for most of us, happiness is a phenomena, rather than a daily achievable reality, an easy state of […]

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Sufi-sayingWe are too complex, too smart, and too analytical for our own good. We make life way too difficult, we kill our bliss and joy too often, and we sabotage perfect opportunities too frequently.

No wonder that for most of us, happiness is a phenomena, rather than a daily achievable reality, an easy state of being.

No wonder we feel confused, inadequate, and morose on perfectly sunny days and find “problems” when we hardly have any real problems.

No wonder inner peace is a state of being we associate with monk buddhists or enlightened yogis, rather than ordinary human beings such as you and me.

Reminder: You can still grab The Positive Affirmations for Life program with more than 4 hours of audio affirmations for 7 life situations that impact your happiness and success the most.

But just because this is the norm in our society today does not mean it has to be that way.

Happiness is easy. Happiness is the opposite of complex, the opposite of logic, the opposite of analysis, the opposite of planning and achieving.

Happiness just is. You can refuse and resist happiness all day long, just as you can refuse and resist medication for your illness. Doing so does not make happiness itself any less effective, powerful or accessible than your much needed medication. It is YOU that gets in the way.

Oh my reader reader, and lest you assume I walk around with a big grin on my face every day and night, let me just say that happiness has always been hard for me.

Yet I know that happiness eludes me because I resist and complicate it. So I’ve decide to stop the mood swings between happiness and misery, and really examine the state of happiness and how to bask in it.

Here’s what I found that definitely works every single time if you want to know how to live a happy life. In fact, you might even find it surprising as I did. And a friendly alert: these discoveries will make you feel uncomfortable, icky and embarrassed at first. But it’s totally worth it.

If You Want a Happy Life, It Starts With …

1- If you want a happy life, it starts with your words.

You can’t be happy with yourself when you have just uttered unkind words to either a loved one or  a stranger. You can’t be happy if you’ve conjured up awful mean thoughts to someone who cut you off in the grocery queue or at the library.

You can’t force happiness into a guilty conscience.

The only way to win this battle is to slow down and take stock of why exactly you rush to judge, to feel bad, or to declare a sour mood on a perfectly sunny day.

Why do you feel that you should have a say as to how things were supposed to go in the first place?

Is it really true that the way you want something to turn out is always the best way for them to turn out?

Or is there perhaps a bigger mystery at work here that even you and I may not comprehend?

What to do instead: Chew your words and run them through 3 gates in your mind before you say anything. Start right now. The first gate asks if the words are kind. The second gate asks if the words are necessary. And the last gate asks if the words are true. If all your answer are a yes, then say the words. If one answer is a no, then hold your tongue.

happiness-pursuit

2- If you want a happy life, it starts with your character.

You can’t be happy if you are judging the circumstances in your life constantly instead of accepting them. Accepting does not mean that you don’t care, or that you are uninterested in improving it. Don’t confuse the two.

Accepting means that you are clear about what’s real, what’s happening – instead of arguing with reality. When you come to grips with what is, you can then decide if you want to go along with it or if you want to create a new circumstance in your life.

What to do instead: When you catch yourself judging and analyzing everything – why your ride is late, why your boss skipped you for the promotion, why your parents lied to you about Santa, whatever it may be, quickly pause and find one reason why the way things turned out is marvelous, terrific, and just plain perfect. Write that reason down. Remind yourself about it next time you jump to judgements and worst case scenarios about life’s little hiccups.

3- If you want a happy life, it starts with your beliefs.

What you believe, you manifest. What you believe comes to be. If you believe yourself to have power and will, you shall have it. If you believe yourself worthy of achieving your dreams and then go work for them, you will achieve them.

Likewise, if you think yourself unworthy of a home, good health, lots of money or happy relationships, you will then manifest poverty, illness and cancerous relationships in your life.

What to do instead: If your belief system is the foundation for the kind of life you want to build, why not make it a good one? Did you know that you can choose your beliefs and – here’s the really good news – you can discard the beliefs that are not true. Use Byron Katie’s amazing questions in The Work and create a new belief system, then watch it create a new life for you.

4- If you want a happy life, it starts with your humility.

You can’t be happy if you are full of expectations. What your husband or wife must do to live up to your expectation. What your children and pets should do to fulfill your expectations. What your company and boss and management should do to satisfy your expectations.

Ask yourself: Why should anyone live up to you and your big list of expectations? Your expectations are ego-driven and your ego will lead you astray in life. Watch out!

Nobody owes you anything and when you make them feel obligated by listing all your grand expectations – not to mention a list of past disappointments as a result of them not meeting those expectations in the past, you are only creating a web of unhappiness, a perpetuation of disappointment in your life.

You can never have inner peace as long as you are living in your cloud of expectations. So stop expecting and embrace humility.

What to do instead: First, drop all your expectations, past or present, personal or professional and when you do, feel the heavy weight lift off your back. Stand up tall and confident. Then start entering into agreements. Get yourself and the other person to agree to something that works for both of you. Get them to give you their word and you give them theirs.

No more superiority of expectation from you imposed to them. Instead, two intelligent people enter into a mutually beneficial agreement, and that is the most effective way to get what you want in life and thus be happy.

5- If you want a happy life, it starts with your reality.

And you can’t be happy if you are getting mad at every little or not-so-little thing that happens to you or for you.

Getting worked up sucks out the life force and the beautiful energy that you could put to use to a much better, calmer, happier state of being.

And there is no doubt about the regrets that always follow when you lose your temper, but even if you know it not to be good for you, you do it.

You continue to self-sabotage the good life you have because you confuse actual reality with the way you think that they ought to be.

What to do instead: You can argue with reality until you are blue in the face but in the end, you’ll lose. So skip the argument and start winning from the start. Take a deep breath and go for a walk when you feel your temper rising. Remind yourself to stay in your own business and not another person’s when you feel like meddling, and use positive affirmations to shine a light on this beautiful reality that is YOUR LIFE.

PositiveAffirmationfL_glogoThe only question I have for you is: Do you want to know how to live a happy life? Do you really want to be happy? Or do you have more important, more urgent, more serious matters to tend to while happiness awaits?

Get Confident in 21 Easy Steps


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Lost and Confused? 48 Questions to Ask Yourself to Get Clear Now http://www.prolificliving.com/life-questions-to-ask/ http://www.prolificliving.com/life-questions-to-ask/#comments Mon, 03 Nov 2014 14:18:07 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=40996 Are you asking yourself the right questions as you go through life? Years ago, I was sitting in a coffee shop in a city I don’t even remember, minding my own business, looking as preoccupied as ever, when the man and woman at the next table started having a heated discussion … and interrupting my […]

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railway-trees

Are you asking yourself the right questions as you go through life?

Years ago, I was sitting in a coffee shop in a city I don’t even remember, minding my own business, looking as preoccupied as ever, when the man and woman at the next table started having a heated discussion … and interrupting my perfect little zen space.

I was just about to get up and move to a quieter corner of the shop when I heard the woman say: “What’s worse – Failing or never trying, never knowing?”

Wow. What a powerful question. It brought me out of my own world and into reality like a bucket of ice water!

I remember that I had already stood up from my chair by the time she uttered the question but I kept standing there, frozen. It felt awkward but I really, really, wanted to hear the rest of that conversation.

The Power of Asking Yourself the Right Question

Questions carry power. Asking yourself the right question can literally awaken a voice inside you that can start the process of changing your life. This is a fact, not an exaggeration. The day that I asked myself this question was the beginning of my life-changing decision to quit my cushy corporate job:

Why not me? Why can’t I start my own business, quit my job and change my life?

So if you are feeling lost and confused, if you have lost your way temporarily, if you can’t get a good grip on life, relax. Be gentle with yourself. You are doing your best and you will find your way again by asking the right powerful questions.

Here’s 48 life questions to ask yourself – not all at once – to get clear again.

These questions have no right or wrong answer. Ask them over and over and listen. Just listen to yourself. Let your inner voice bring you clarity, peace of mind, and open you to the path of discovery. Discovery of who you are, what you truly want in life and why you are here.

Reminder: You can still get The Positive Affirmations for Life program at the Introductory Price: 4+ hours of audio affirmations for 7 life situations that create the most happiness and success.

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48 Questions to Ask Yourself to Get Clear about Your Life

1. How can I bring more joy and happiness into my life today?
2. What is the story I am telling myself about me?
3. What expectation do I have of [my spouse, partner, lover] and why?
4. What is in the way of my happiness today?
5. How can I love myself more today?
6. What can I be grateful for right now?
7. What is the price I am willing to pay for giving up my dream?
8. What is the price I am willing to pay for realizing my dream?
9. How can I live the highest, truest expression of myself every day?
10. What can I do to be of service to humanity every day?
11. Does my career align to my core values?
12. Does what I do in my job make a positive difference in the world?
13. How can I be a better person today?
14. What act of kindness can I show a stranger today?
15. How can I simplify my life?
16. What do I hold on to that I would be better off letting go?
17. What gets in my way of feeling joy and peace?
18. Do I stay in my business or meddle in the business of others?
19. How do I feel about my work?
20. How doI feel about my relationships?
21. How do I feel about myself?
22. What is my spiritual practice?
23. How do I stay grounded and confident, regardless of circumstance?
24. How can I nurture my body better?
25. Do I pay attention to my life?
26. Do I hear my inner voice and listen to my intuition?
27. Do I act in a way that makes me proud?
28. Do I like the person I am?
29. How can I create my dream future by taking the right steps today?
30. How do I take excellent care of my body?
31. Do I treat myself and others with respect?
32. Do I tolerate anything that hurts, abuses, or sabotages me in any form?
33. Do I live in the present moment?
34. Do I give my loved ones the true love and attention they deserve?
35. Do I ask for what I need?
36. What do I do – consciously or sub-consciously – that sabotages my ultimate success?
37. What is my life’s purpose here?
38. How do I create a legacy of my life’s work?
39. Do I bring positive energy into people’s lives?
40. What part of myself do I want to improve the most?
41. Do I do something that is fun and play every day?
42. Do I ask for help without feeling guilty?
43. Do I feel that I am good enough in every way?
44. What is my deep desire and drive in life?
45. How do I live with more intention in my actions?
46. Who can I forgive today?
47. Who can I thank today?
48. Who can I learn from today?

Got a few minutes to spare? Start asking away.

Take 10 minutes or an hour – whatever you feel is right for you – to ask yourself a powerful question every day. You can ask more than one, or you can ponder the same question. You can write down your answer, type it away on your favorite digital device or just walk with it, sit with it and be with it.

Just remember to stay with the same question until the answer comes to you from within.

You will find true success and happiness if you have only one goal, there really is only one, and that is this: to fulfill the highest most truthful expression of yourself as a human being. ~Oprah Winfrey

Your turn: Do you have a question that brings you out of confusion and into clarity when life gets tough? Share it in the comments below, and do share this post with a friend who needs the love and guidance.

Get Confident in 21 Easy Steps


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Why Indecision is Killing Your Business Dreams and How to Stop It Now http://www.prolificliving.com/how-to-stop-indecision/ http://www.prolificliving.com/how-to-stop-indecision/#comments Wed, 29 Oct 2014 17:32:26 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=40929 Don’t be too smart for your own good! You want to make an impact on the world. You want to start a business. You want to be part of a cause, a mission, something much larger than yourself. You are hungry for it, you’ve been thinking about it nonstop, and you can’t relax until you […]

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walking-in-paris

Don’t be too smart for your own good!

You want to make an impact on the world. You want to start a business. You want to be part of a cause, a mission, something much larger than yourself. You are hungry for it, you’ve been thinking about it nonstop, and you can’t relax until you figure it out.

Also, you secretly know you’re the exception to the rule. Most others are happy to just exist, but you want to live an extraordinary life.

Achieving this could be the greatest decision of your life, and it could fill the gaping hole of what’s been missing. You can’t wait to get started, to get going, to make progress …

You’re even already thinking of yourself as a budding entrepreneur.

That’s when the monster shows up again. It blocks your way and kills your enthusiasm in under 5 minutes. It persists like a bad rash and it fogs up your beautiful mission and your amazing cause quicker than a blink of an eye.

You fight it, you resist the temptation to fall for it, you’re all determined to defeat it this time. Nothing dares get in your way. This is your dream we are talking about right?

Until the monster wins again.

You resign quietly and take the usual escape route. Dejection and frustration show up right away to keep you company.

The monster of course is idea overwhelm and the escape is indecision.

The risk of a wrong decision is preferable to the terror of indecision. ~Maimonides

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I have met hundreds – yes, hundreds – of entrepreneurs, creative souls, writers, bloggers, business owners since I started down this path of doing my own thing, and every single one of them could relate to idea overwhelm.

Idea overwhelm is both a gift and a curse, and if you’re going to be a freethinker, a true entrepreneur, a creative business mind, you’ll have to learn how to deal with it well.

A little-known fact: There is no such thing as the right or wrong idea in entrepreneurship.

This search for perfection is killing your dream.

Are you a victim of idea overwhelm and not know it?

Idea overwhelm is when you get too smart for your own good – yes, there is such a thing.

You think of everything you could be doing, every problem you could be solving, and every type of business you could be starting.

You want to get involved in one too many causes, start one too many projects, write one too many things, and learn way too much stuff at the same time – and you know this, but we need to hear what we already know more than what we don’t know – you get confused, overwhelmed, and then, very little actually gets done.

Indecision is when idea overwhelm gets to be too much. At first, when lots of ideas come to you, it’s a good thing, even a great thing, but sooner or later you have got to commit to one.

When you fail to do that, you continue to get distracted, and if the pattern continues – more new fresh ideas come to you, more distracted you get at the prospect of pursuing them – the harder it gets to commit to anything at all.

So your mind becomes less capable of making a decision, for fear of losing out on something better by committing to any one thing. So you stay in limbo, and that’s called indecision.

Indecision is an escape from the responsibility of making a decision. It is also the quickest way to KILL your entrepreneurial dreams.

Indecision is still a decision to do nothing – and ‘nothing’ will never lead you to what you want.

There is no one single RIGHT decision when it comes to pursuing your dreams, starting a business and making an impact on the world.

Sure, there are times when a right or wrong decision is more clear in life:

The right decision when you are in an abusive relationship: Leave. Now.

The right decision when you see a child being bullied: Intervene to stop it.

The right decision when you’re drunk and need to get home: Walk or get a cab.

But there is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ between all your wonderful ideas when you are an entrepreneur. You are charting your own path and tapping into your creative genius and some decisions may be better than others, and you’ll only know for a fact that after you’ve taken action.

Action speaks loudest and teaches the best lessons for the entrepreneur than all the research data in the world.

You want to know the short answer on how to stop indecision? Take Action already!

I can accept failure, everyone fails at something. But I can’t accept not trying. ~Michael Jordan

3 Non-Negotiable Truths of Successful Entrepreneurs

Do you know the 3 non-negotiable truths all successful entrepreneurs live by?

Truth #1. Successful entrepreneurs start one thing at a time and finish it. Completion is crucial.

They may start many things, but success only comes by finishing and seeing something through to the very end, that’s the only way to create success. Half-finished books or projects or products don’t exactly lead to success.

Truth #2. Successful entrepreneurs make loads of stupid awful costly ridiculous mistakes, but indecision is not one of them.

Have you met a successful entrepreneur you admire who felt wishy-washy about what to do next? Sooner or later, action becomes the ultimate driver if you want that success.

Consistent, daily action towards a singular goal. Without action, you don’t find out how things turn out. Indecision is the opposite of action.

You cannot predict how a product or a service or even a piece of art is going to turn out until you do it. First-hand action beats all prediction and research.

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Truth #3. Successful entrepreneurs see everything as a test and don’t let either failure or success get to them too much.

You can’t afford to get too attached to any one idea, brilliant as it may be. You are here to chart your own path, and to find out what’s the best way to hone in on your best big idea. You must take risks, be detached from failure, and don’t let success get to your head.

If you get too attached to any one idea, you won’t be able to see clearly and your emotions take over business decisions.

So you won’t be able to know when to abandon ship and when push further. Practice a healthy level of detachment and never call your ideas or projects your “baby”.

Want to up your game to stay focused and get stuff done in your business?

Why do it all alone? I invite you to join my amazing dynamite community of inspired motivated and heart-centered entrepreneurs to regain your laser sharp focus, to stay accountable to yourself and others, and to complete your projects instead of flailing about wondering what to do next.

You already know you’re smart, talented, gifted, and totally capable of achieving success and designing your freedom lifestyle. Now, learn the framework and the blueprint that makes your ambitious business dreams possible.

Make a regret-free decision ONLY if you’re serious about taking action and creating massive results and join us for version 2.0 of Smart Exit Blueprint.

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How to Show Empathy: 4 Habits of Highly Empathic People http://www.prolificliving.com/how-to-show-empathy/ http://www.prolificliving.com/how-to-show-empathy/#comments Thu, 02 Oct 2014 16:53:38 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=40861 I cried when I heard the news about Robin Williams. Not once, not twice, but many many times. I was so sad at the loss his family and friends would feel, so sad for the rest of us to not be able to experience his genius again on the stage or on the big screen. […]

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I cried when I heard the news about Robin Williams.

robin-williamsNot once, not twice, but many many times. I was so sad at the loss his family and friends would feel, so sad for the rest of us to not be able to experience his genius again on the stage or on the big screen. Robin Williams is no more. I didn’t like that one bit. Such tragic awful news.

Then a few days later, I was angry at Robin. Furious! Outraged! I would have conversations with him in my mind, screaming “How Could You Do This?”, “What were you thinking?”, “Are you out of your mind?” and “Well, are you happy now? Did you get what you wanted?”

I couldn’t stop thinking how selfish he was to end his own life without being considerate of others! How madly irresponsible! Because suicide is selfish. Suicide is inconsiderate. Suicide is the easy way out. Or so I thought.

Then – and I don’t know what prompted me to feel this way -I just got deeply curious. Sure, to me, it’s insanity to give up this life and I say that only from my point of view – even though I’ve experienced hardship, war, bombings in Iran, brushes with poverty, living in a terrorist country, immigrating to America with no money, culture shock, sickness in my family, and a lot more but never, ever have I contemplated that no life is better than life.

Because there is always, ALWAYS, always a reason to have hope.

But that was me and my limited singular point of view. If I wanted to understand Robin Williams, I had to leave my own thinking behind.

So I did. I set aside all my preconceived notions of suicide and felt a space open for thinking clearly, for listening, for learning, for imagining the pain and suffering of someone else from their point of view not my own.

Because you know what? The truth is, I don’t know anything about suicide. I don’t know states of a mind that would attempt, think about or go through with such an act. I do not know anyone who has experienced it in a loved one.

So I let go of all judgements and then – and only then- was I able to see clearly.

Reminder: You can still get The Positive Affirmations for Life program at the Introductory Price: 4+ hours of audio affirmations for 7 life situations on happiness and success.

On suicide, hope and learning empathy

I began to picture Robin months, weeks, days, and especially hours prior to his suicide. What was going through his mind? What was so dark and so evil that was worth giving up his beautiful life, his beautiful family, his large circle of friends, his success, his genius, and his comedy for?

What demons were ruling his decisions and actions and most importantly, what was it like to live with those demons day in and day out for only God knows how long?

What stories could he be telling himself that made everything in life seem so desperate? What voices were talking to him that made him feel so isolated, so alone, so powerless?

And then I tried to imagine what that all must’ve felt like. Imagine having a thought that is so dark, so awful, that you decide to kill yourself so that you can be free from it but then also end your life over it?

What made him succumb to this awful burden and lose all hope of making a comeback?

Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. ~Leo Buscaglia

Imagine a state of mind where you are a slave to an internal demon, and you completely forget that you control your actions, not your deranged thoughts. Imagine forgetting your power to act, to heal from wounds no matter how deep, to recover, to overcome difficulties, and hold on to faith and love and friendship and life.

Then I imagined what Robin’s final hours were like. What exactly did he do when he woke up that morning? Did he know he would die today?

Did he shower? Look at himself in the mirror and if so, what did he see? Did he eat? Did he look at his family album? Did he talk to himself? Was he scared? Did he cry or shout? Did he laugh at the madness of the world? Did he look forward to death, to being free of suffering through non-existence? Did he believe in God or heaven?

And my body shivered as I felt less than a tiny fraction – a drop in the ocean of pain and suffering that Robin must have been feeling and how enormously difficult everything must have been for him.

Now that is feeling empathy. Earlier, when I was wallowing in my own sadness and anger, I was being selfish, self-centered, and judgmental without very little actual knowledge.

Having empathy is not the same as endorsing or approving of someone’s actions. This does not mean I now endorse the act of suicide. Heavens NO! Robin needed desperate help and it is extremely unfortunate that he did not get it. But in all its irony, according to Robin himself in his role as a father in “The World’s Greatest Dad”, where his son accidentally commits suicide:

Suicide is a PERMANENT solution to a TEMPORARY problem. ~Robin Williams in World’s Greatest Dad

Your problems are temporary. Suicide isn’t.

4 habits of highly empathic people that you can start doing right now

Empathic people live fuller and richer lives but how do you develop empathy?

Empathy is a skill just like any other and you can learn it and get good at it. I have outlined 4 ways you can start becoming more empathic but be forewarned: This is going to push you way out of your comfort zone. So start small, and do only one of these at a time and see how you feel.

When you can connect on a deeper level to another human being through empathy, you can be of higher service, you can help with your talents and skills and gifts in ways you wouldn’t be able to do on superficial levels alone.

empathy-people

Here are four ways you can start becoming more empathic starting today:

1. Be fully present in every interaction and conversation

Total presence is the greatest gift you can give anyone, and the hardest skill you can develop. Being present means setting aside the noise and chatter in your mind as well as physically in your environment. It means facing the person speaking to you, hearing them – not the next thought in your own head as to what you will say. It means responding with your body – your eyes, your energy, your gestures, your presence. It means doing nothing else except being fully present.

Do this in the very next conversation with anyone you are having, including a family member or partner.

2. Come from a place of genuine curiosity

Practice genuine curiosity next time you connect with another person. Let’s say you meet a new person today and want to connect with them. Instead of just exchanging a few pleasantries about the weather, food or work, ask them about their big challenge in life right now? What do they struggle with? What’s it like to struggle with that or have that problem? Listen. Get curious. Ask them to tell you more.

You’re not there to solve their problem or to even give them advice. You’re there to be a curious engaged active listener. You are enabling them to be HEARD, perhaps you are the only one that is doing that for them. Practice this with at least one stranger and one close friend or family. Then how this act of engaging deeper with another makes YOU feel. Let how you feel guide you deeper into empathy for others.

3. Challenge your own opinions and judgements

Take the opposite side of the argument than you normally would and defend that position. Your beliefs and values drive your decisions in life. So what if you challenged them for a change?

This does not mean you’re tricking yourself to get on the opposing political campaign or take on a new religion or join a cult – no. It simply means you question your beliefs and see matters from the other point of view.

Here’s my vulnerable personal example: I used to believe that suicide is purely selfish and short-sighted. Now that I have questioned my belief, and felt true empathy for Robin Williams, I believe that suicide is a cry for help, an act of utter desperation, and that we need to be more aware mental illness and how to encourage those who suffer from it to get help.

4. Use the right language in a conversation

Listening deeply and completely is a wonderful skill to start with but so is knowing what to say – or not say – in response. Here are some phrases I find useful and genuine when someone – a friend or a client – is confiding in me. “I can’t imagine what that’s like. Please tell me more.” or “I’d love to help you. What would help you in this situation?” or “I hear you and can’t imagine what that’s like but can I just remind you that you are powerful and will get through this?”.

Stay clear of judging, deciding, pointing out flaws, and jumping to solving a problem. Practice the right words, the right phrases, and only say them if they come naturally to you.

If you forget everything else, remember what the Dalai Lama said about love: What is Love? Love is the lack of judgement. And that is the deepest and highest form of empathy.

Get Confident in 21 Easy Steps


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Want to Be Happy? 5 Powerful Ways Meditation Can Make It Happen http://www.prolificliving.com/meditation-more-happiness/ http://www.prolificliving.com/meditation-more-happiness/#comments Thu, 25 Sep 2014 02:28:08 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=40813 The power of the quiet mind, and how to get it. What if you could enhance and improve your life not by another new technique or tips you get from the media or books or online personal development blogs (including this one!) but rather by awakening a true power within you? What if you learned […]

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stillness-meditation

The power of the quiet mind, and how to get it.

What if you could enhance and improve your life not by another new technique or tips you get from the media or books or online personal development blogs (including this one!) but rather by awakening a true power within you?

What if you learned to quiet your mind before you began your day every morning?

What would that do to your happiness and inner peace (aff)? How would that impact your dreams, your goals, your whole life?

If we truly understood and believed in the power of a quiet mind, we would never allow the commotion of the outside world muddy our pure thoughts.

If we could only grasp the power of stillness in our mental capacity, we’d go through great measures to achieve it every single day and at every single task.

But it takes conscious effort and heaps of patience to move in the direction of stillness and solitude and we human beings lean into chaos, noise and distraction more often than we’d like to admit.

And let’s face it,  we don’t exactly live in a Buddhist temple, tucked away far from civilization and surrounded by the quiet of Mother Nature, so that we can actively focus on quieting the noise. We live in busy homes and we lead busy lives. We are convinced that we don’t have “time” for stillness and solitude, but I beg to differ with you (and my former self!).

Reminder: You can still get The Positive Affirmations for Life program at the Introductory Price: 4+ hours of audio affirmations for 7 life situations on happiness and success.

buddhist-monastery

I was in a hurry all my life, even as a child.  A few years ago, I began to see the real irony: the times that I’d been in most hurry were times that I fell seriously behind, my corporate career the prime example of this one.

I let the important things slide thinking that they are going to take up time that I don’t have, but the funny thing about time is that it does not work as linearly as you may think.

Today, I want to tell you how meditation improves your life. Here’s an irony you can get behind: You slow down precisely so that you can move faster with true momentum.

Go in and in. Be the space between two cells, the vast resounding silence in which spirit dwells. Be sugar dissolving on the tongue of life. ~Dana Faulds

Don’t just take my word for it, look at history and our role models, our powerful figures, and esteemed leaders and you’ll find that the common theme in their lives is having (nearly) mastered the control over their thoughts – and thus their lives – by quieting their mind.

In A Manifesto for Meditation, I go into a lot more depth on the subject. I hardly have enough time to share with you the true powers of meditation and yoga in a few paragraphs. Many dedicate entire lifetimes and are still not finished exploring and learning from it years later.

Suffice it to say that the benefits of meditation are real, proven, and almost immediate. The only question is if you choose to reap the benefits by partaking in the act!

Meditation and yoga generally go together like hugs and kisses, but they certainly can exist on their own, as can hugs and kisses. You do not have to do one to enjoy the other. Some yoga practitioners never meditate and many meditate alone without the accompaniment of yoga.

A little-known fact: Yoga was originally born so that it could get the body ready for long periods of meditation.

So find which one speaks to you the most using these tips: Meditation may be more accessible to you if you’re a calm and introspective person, whereas yoga – especially power yoga, vinyasa yoga or Ashtanga yoga – will suit you best if you have a fiery energy and need more physical grounding.

If you had to choose between yoga and meditation for quicker results, choose meditation and let us focus on that now.

last-leaf

5 Powerful Ways Meditation Makes You Happier. Guaranteed.

If you’re too busy to sit still for 10 minutes, you need to sit still for an hour. ~Zen proverb

Here’s the top 5 compelling reasons why meditation can increase your happiness:

1. Meditation makes you aware of yourself beyond anything else.

Meditation makes you aware of your posture, your breathing, your gestures, your body movements, your energy, and your overall presence. This awareness alone makes you show up more confident and happier. And confidence is a contagious and attractive quality to wake up to daily.

2. Meditation brings you in-tune with the vibe you are giving the outside world.

Meditation makes you pay more attention to your surroundings and be totally present. You then easily pick up on the reaction of people around you, and as you tune into their energies, you show more empathy and compassion towards them. Giving and being of service to others increases your own happiness.

3. Meditation helps you collect your thoughts and think clearly.

Meditation reminds you that you don’t need to be in a rush all day long, you can pause, you can be silent, you can think and hear your thoughts, and you get a lot of clarity from slowing down. Meditation also makes you pay attention to your breath, sending more oxygen to your brain and centering your whole body and mind as a result.

4. Meditation enables you to channel your emotions with grace and control.

Meditation helps you show enthusiasm and exuberance without being overly silly. It helps you be more certain and more assertive in your message. It helps you smooth out the edges, if you will, just as you would do if you are cleaning up audio waveforms and removing the peaks and valleys (now if that’s not a geeky way of describing this benefit, I don’t know what is. Forgive the engineer in me!).

5. Meditation makes you grounded and connected to yourself and others.

Meditation helps you focus your attention on what is really important and let the unimportant stuff go and in the process. For instance, you focus more on relationships, and less on the minutia of life the longer you meditate. Happier relationships are the key to more happiness!

A total beginner’s guide to simple self-guided meditation

buddha-sleepingSo how do you get started if you’re a brand new beginner?

The simplest answer is that you simply start! Really, I’m not being clever. You have everything you need to start right now.

Quick start to meditating right now: Right where you are, sit up straight, relax your body, put your hands in your lap or on your thighs. Your eyes can be open or closed, both have unique benefits. Then take 2 deep inhale breaths on a slow count of one to five. Hold the breath for 3 seconds. Then release using the same count on a slow exhale. Repeat five times. This should take you no more than 3-4 minutes.

After you do the above for a week or two, extend it to where you take 10 deep breaths and work up to 8 to 10 minutes of silence .
Before you know it, it has become the most brilliant yet quietest habit of your life.

The most common question about meditation is this: What do you exactly do while “mediating”?

The short answer is that you do nothing. The long answer is also that you do nothing!

If we are not fully ourselves, truly in the present moment, we miss everything. ~Thich Nhat Hanh

And for us human beings, living in this modern age, doing nothing is harder than doing just about anything else.

Just to clarify, doing nothing does not mean lounging on the couch, watching your kids, walking the dog, or washing the dishes or even – especially – thinking.

Doing nothing is the process of sitting very quietly and acknowledging and releasing the noise and the chatter, the thoughts and the worries, the distractions and the cries for your attention.

This is a practice that you can start right now. This is a practice that will take you a lifetime to perfect. This is a practice that starts giving back in abundance almost immediately. This is a practice worth pursuing and building.

So starting right now, sit up straight in a comfortable chair, breathe in confidence and love, breathe out tension and anxiety. Feel yourself moving closer to the inner space of your mind, the place where creativity, genius and intellect reside.

Begin to hear yourself, truly hear yourself – maybe for the first time. Begin to create space to grow, to dream, to be, to move past your blocks and your excuses and to a place where anything is possible.

Now that’s the kind of happiness you can’t describe. So get in position and feel the increase in your happiness: Meditate. Affirm. Shine!

Can’t wait to get grounded? Download my FREE morning affirmation audio now!

Want more happiness and peace right now? Ready to begin tuning in to what matters? Itching to see what all this fuss is all about? (Oh just you wait – it’s the greatest discovery you’ll ever make!)

Then get your 12-minute FREE affirmation audio download here and listen to it first thing in the morning to create the calm, the peace, the sense of self-worth, self-confidence, and joy in your life with me as your guide.

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Top 202 Inspirational and Motivational Quotes on Life http://www.prolificliving.com/inspirational-motivational-quotes-on-life/ http://www.prolificliving.com/inspirational-motivational-quotes-on-life/#comments Mon, 01 Sep 2014 13:59:53 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=40703 I’ve loved and collected quotations since I bought my first journal at age 12 many moons ago. You see, before the internet, we had books and libraries, paper and pens but we still loved quotations – or quotes for short. They were just harder to assimilate and enjoy! Now inspirational quotes are ubiquitous, in fact […]

The post Top 202 Inspirational and Motivational Quotes on Life appeared first on Prolific Living.

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Dalai-LamaI’ve loved and collected quotations since I bought my first journal at age 12 many moons ago. You see, before the internet, we had books and libraries, paper and pens but we still loved quotations – or quotes for short. They were just harder to assimilate and enjoy!

Now inspirational quotes are ubiquitous, in fact so much that you may have become blind to them. Don’t. They still work even if you feel hopeless and desperate.

You just need to find your favorites. Here are my favorite 202 inspirational and motivational quotes on life for happiness, inner peace, and success.

Read these quotes to find what speaks to you, share this post if you like it, save it to your Pocket for future reference, and most of all, stay inspired. Life is short. You live just this once. Make it count!

Reminder: You can still grab The Positive Affirmations for Life program with more than 4 hours of audio affirmations for 7 life situations that impact your happiness and success the most.

Note: The selections from the same author are grouped together.

Top 202 Inspirational and Motivational Quotes on Life:

  1. Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. ~Dalai Lama
  2. What is love? Love is the absence of judgement. ~Dalai Lama
  3. My religion is kindness. ~Dalai Lama
  4. Student says: “I’m very discouraged. What should I do?” Master says: “Encourage others.” ~ Zen Proverb
  5. Let go or be dragged. ~Zen Proverb
  6. You will get all that you want in life if you help enough other people get what they want. ~ Zig Ziglar
  7. Failure is an event, not a person. ~Zig Ziglar
  8. People often say motivation doesn’t last. Neither does bathing—that’s why we recommend it daily. ~Zig Ziglar
  9. inspirational and motivational quotes on life

  10. It is an undoubted truth, that the less one has to do, the less time one finds to do it in. ~Earl of Chesterfield
  11. We must all suffer one of two things: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret and disappointment. ~ Jim Rohn
  12. And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. ~Anaïs Nin
  13. We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are. ~Anaïs Nin
  14. The role of a writer is not to say what we can all say, but what we are unable to say. ~Anaïs Nin
  15. You cannot save people. You can only love them. ~Anaïs Nin
  16. Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage. ~Anais Nin
  17. Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow. It empties today of its strength. Corrie ten Boom
  18. Everyone is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Always be kind. ~Unknown
  19. Don’t bring negative to my door. ~Maya Angelou
  20. When people show you who they are, believe them. ~Maya Angelou
  21. There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you. ~Maya Angelou
  22. We do the best we can with what we have and when we know better, we do better. ~Maya Angelou
  23. I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.― Maya Angelou
  24. Don’t be reckless with other people’s hearts. Don’t put up with people who are reckless with yours. ~Mary Schmich
  25. Nothing ever gets easier. You just get stronger. ~Unknown
  26. You can’t see the full picture when you are in the frame. ~Les Brown
  27. I will allow life’s changes to make me better, not bitter. ~Unknown
  28. Wanting to be someone you’re not is the waste of the person you are. ~Kurt Cobain
  29. I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet. ~Gandhi
  30. Nobody can hurt me without my permission. ~Gandhi
  31. You must be the change you wish to see in this world. ~Gandhi
  32. inspirational and motivational quotes on life

  33. First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win. ~Gandhi
  34. In a gentle way you can shake the world. ~Gandhi
  35. The truth will set you free but first, it’ll piss you off. ~Gloria Steinem
  36. If you want to be happy, be. ~Kozma Prutkov
  37. What if I fall. But my darling, what if you fly? ~Unknown
  38. You are confined only by the walls you build yourself. ~Unknown
  39. Nothing ever goes away until it has taught us what we need to know. ~Pema Chödrön
  40. It is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness. ~Chinese Proverb
  41. You will never reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog that barks. ~Winston Churchill
  42. I gave up complaining and gained a whole new life. ~Unknown
  43. You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean. If a few drops of ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.
  44. The problem with the world is that we draw our family circle too close. ~Mother Teresa
  45. I have found the paradox that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt. Only love. ~Mother Teresa
  46. You don’t get a good life or a bad life. You get a life. Good or bad is up to you. ~Unknown
  47. Everything I thought I was being rejected for something good, I was being redirected to something better. ~
  48. It is our choices that show what we truly are far more than our ability. ~J.K. Rowling
  49. It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all, in which case you have failed by default. ~J.K. Rowling
  50. It matters not what someone is born but what they grow to be. ~J.K. Rowling
  51. Forgiveness means letting go of the hope for a better past. ~Unknown
  52. inspirational and motivational quotes on life

  53. The lust for comfort kills the passions of the soul. ~Khalil Gibran
  54. But let there be spaces in your togetherness, and let the winds of the heavens dance between you. Love one another but make not a bond of love: let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls. ~Khalil Gibran
  55. One day you will ask me which is more important? My life or yours? I will say mine and you will walk away not knowing that you are my life. ~Khalil Gibran
  56. And forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair. ~Khalil Gibran
  57. When you love you should not think you can direct the course of love, for love, if it finds you worthy, directs your course. ~Khalil Gibran
  58. Love is what we were born with. Fear is what we learned here. ~Marianne Williamson
  59. If you’re too busy to sit still for 10 minutes, you need to sit still for an hour. ~Zen proverb
  60. I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free. ~Michelangelo
  61. It takes courage to grow up and turn out to be who you really are. ~E.E. Cummings
  62. Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will. ~Unknown
  63. “It’s impossible.” said Pride. “It’s risky.” said Experience. “It’s pointless.” said Reason. “Give it a try!” whispered the Heart.
  64. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us. ~J.R.R. Tolkien
  65. All that is gold does not glitter, Not all those who wander are lost; The old that is strong does not wither, Deep roots are not reached by the frost. ~J.R.R Tolkien
  66. Even the smallest person can change the course of the future. ~J.R.R Tolkien
  67. Two things define you: Your patience when you have nothing and your attitude when you have everything. ~Unknown
  68. As is a tale, so is life. Not how long it is but how good it is that matters. ~Seneca
  69. To thine own self, be true. ~Shakespeare
  70. We cannot start over but we can begin now and make a new ending. ~Zig Ziglar
  71. What you allow is what will continue. ~Unknown
  72. If you don’t like where you are, move. ~Unknown
  73. The wound is where the light enters you. ~Rumi
  74. inspirational and motivational quotes on life

  75. Raise your words, not your voice. It is rain that grow flowers, not thunder. ~Rumi
  76. On this path, let the heart be your guide. For the body is resistant and full of fear. ~Rumi
  77. Do not be satisfied with the stories that have gone before you. Unfold your own path. ~Rumi
  78. What you seek is seeking you. ~Rumi
  79. Your task is not to seek for love but to seek and find all the barriers you have built against it. ~Rumi
  80. If you are irritated by every rub, how will you ever be polished? ~Rumi
  81. The entrance door to the sanctuary is inside you. ~Rumi
  82. Whatever you lost through fate, be certain that it saved you from pain. ~Rumi
  83. You discover you have wings when you open a book. ~Unknown
  84. When you’re happy, don’t promise. When you’re angry, don’t answer. When you’re upset, don’t decide. ~Persian proverb
  85. No matter how far you have gone on the wrong road, turn back. ~Unknown
  86. Do or do not. There is no try. ~Yoda
  87. Faith is to believe what you do not see; the reward of this faith is to see what you believe. ~St. Augustine
  88. Your job is not to judge. Your job is not to figure out if someone deserves something. Your job is to lift the fallen, to restore the broken and to heal the hurting. ~Unknown
  89. You must find a place inside yourself where nothing is impossible. ~Deepak Chopra
  90. Don’t let a bad day make you think that you have a bad life. ~Unknown
  91. I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it. – Picasso
  92. Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live. – Jim Rohn
  93. We do not remember days. We remember moments. – Unknown
  94. Speak the truth even if your voice shakes – Unknown
  95. In the end, these things matter most: How well did you love? How fully did you live? How deeply did you let go? ~Gautama Buddha
  96. The only thing worth writing about is the human heart in conflict with itself. ~William Faulkner
  97. Forgive yourself for what you didn’t know until you learned it. ~Zig Ziglar
  98. Nothing haunts us like the things we don’t say. ~Mitch Albom
  99. The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places. ~Ernest Hemingway
  100. There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed. ~ Ernest Hemingway
  101. Spring has passed. Summer has gone. Winter is here…and the song I meant to sing remains unsung … for I have spent my days stringing and unstringing my instrument. ~Rabindranath Tagore
  102. If we leave our smells behind when we leave a room, surely something of our soul must remain when we leave this life. ~George R.R. Martin
  103. I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear. ~Martin Luther King, Jr.
  104. Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter. ~Martin Luther King, Jr.
  105. Darkness cannot drive out darkness. Only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate. Only love can do that. ~Martin Luther King, Jr.
  106. In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies but the silence of our friends. ~Martin Luther King, Jr.
  107. Keep your face always toward the sunshine, and shadows will fall behind you. ~Walt Whitman
  108. inspirational and motivational quotes on life

  109. Ever since happiness heard your name, it’s been running through the streets trying to find you. ~Hafiz
  110. Run my dear from anything that may not strengthen your precious budding wings. ~Hafiz
  111. I wish I could show you when you are lonely or in darkness, the Astonishing Light of your own being. ~ Hafiz
  112. In every end, there is also a beginning. ~Libba Bray
  113. Being listened to is so much like being loved that most people can’t tell the difference. ~Unknown
  114. What you do speaks so loudly that I cannot hear what you say. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
  115. There is only one success: to be able to spend your life in your own way. ~Christopher Morley
  116. The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is that little extra. ~Jimmy Johnson
  117. Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear. ~George Addair
  118. To avoid criticism, do nothing, say nothing, be nothing. ~Elbert Hubbard
  119. The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me. ~Ayn Rand
  120. The best way to predict the future is to create it. ~Peter Drucker
  121. When it’s time to die, let us not discover that we have never lived. ~Henry David Thoreau
  122. Good is the enemy of great. And that’s one of the key reasons why we have so little that becomes great. ~Jim Collins
  123. If you don’t design your own life plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much. ~ Jim Rohn
  124. You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a stick. ~Jack London
  125. The certainty that life cannot be long, and the probability that it will be much shorter than nature allows, ought to awaken every man to the active prosecution of whatever he is desirous to perform. ~Samuel Jackson
  126. Alexander Pope once wrote that the theater aspires to wake the soul by gentle strokes of art – to raise the genius and to mend the heart. ~Kelsey Grammar as Dr. Frasier Crane, TV show
  127. When one door closes, another opens but there’s often a long hallway in between. ~Ric Jarowinspirational and motivational quotes on life
  128. It’s difficult to pursue a dream. It’s a tragedy not to. ~Oprah
  129. Talent is God-given, be humble. Fame is man-given, be grateful. Conceit is self-given, be careful. ~Oprah
  130. Surround yourself only with people who are going to lift you higher. ~Oprah
  131. You can have it all. Just not all at once. ~Oprah
  132. Always give without remembering. Always receiving without forgetting. ~Oprah
  133. Professor Johnston often said that if you didn’t know history, you didn’t know anything. You were a leaf that didn’t know it was part of a tree. ~Michael Crichton
  134. There were never any good old days. They are today, they are tomorrow. It’s a stupid thing we say, cursing tomorrow in sorrow. ~Gogol Bordell
  135. Transformation is an endless process meant to be lived. It cannot be captured or possessed; you can only participate in it. ~ Baron Baptiste
  136. Nothing is as fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task. -William James
  137. You go faster the slower you go and the longer the slow the smoother the strokes. ~Unknown
  138. It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for, and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing. ~Oriah
  139. Better that the whole world should turn against you… than you should consent to turn against what is true within you. ~ Guy Finley
  140. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking that you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason to not follow your heart. ~Steve Jobs
  141. If we have been pleased with life, then we should not be displeased with death since it comes from the hand of the same master. ~Michelangelo
  142. Once in a while it really hits people that they don’t have to experience the world in the way they have been told to. ~Alan Keightle
  143. You look at someone long enough, you discover their humanity. ~Jack Nicholson
  144. You’re only given a little spark of madness, you mustn’t lose it. ~Robin Williams
  145. If you realized how powerful your thoughts are, you would never think a negative thought. ~Peace Pilgrim
  146. inspirational and motivational quotes on life

  147. I used to think the worst thing in life is to end up all alone. It isn’t. the worst thing in life is to end up with people who make you feel all alone. ~Robin Williams
  148. Writing is a lonely job. Having someone who believes in you makes a lot of difference. They don’t have to make speeches. Just believing is usually enough. ~Stephen King
  149. Now comes the big question: What are you going to write about? And the equally big answer: Anything you damn well want. Anything at all …. as long as you tell the truth. ~Stephen King
  150. Do you need someone to make you a paper badge with the word WRITER on it before you can believe you are one? God I hope not. ~Stephen King
  151. You must not come lightly to the blank page. ~Stephen King
  152. If you don’t have the time to read, you don’t have the time or the tools to write. ~Stephen King
  153. Anyone who thought high school was the best time of their life is totally fucked up. ~Stephen King
  154. Talent is cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work. ~Stephen King
  155. Be strong when you are weak, brave when you are scared and humble when you are victorious. ~Unknown
  156. For 37 years I’ve practiced 14 hours a day, and now they call me a genius. ~Pablo de Sarasate
  157. It always seems impossible until it’s done. ~Nelson Mandela
  158. Resentment is like drinking poison and then hoping it will kill your enemies. ~Nelson Mandela
  159. I’m not dismissing the value of higher education; I’m simply saying it comes at the expense of experience. ~Steve Jobs
  160. You’ve been criticising yourself for years and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens. ~Louise L. Hay
  161. If I want to be accepted as I am, then I need to be willing to accept others as they are. ~Louise L. Hay
  162. A strong positive self-image is the possible preparation for success in life. ~Dr. Joyce Brothers
  163. As I walked out the door toward my freedom, I knew that if I did not leave all the anger, hatred and bitterness behind, that I would still be in PRISON. ~ NelsonMandela
  164. People are not lazy. They simply have impotent goals – that is, goals that do not inspire them. ~Tony Robbins
  165. Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler. ~Albert Einstein
  166. The only reason for time is so that everything doesn’t happen at once. ~Albert Einstein
  167. Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts. ~Albert Einstein
  168. Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid. ~Albert Einstein
  169. Anger is never without reason but seldom with a good one. ~Benjamin Franklin
  170. A slip of the foot you may soon recover, but a slip of the tongue you may never get over. ~Benjamin Franklin
  171. Remember not only to say the right thing in the right place, but far more difficult still, to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment. ~Benjamin Franklin
  172. A house is not a home unless it contains food and fire for the mind as well as the body. ~ Benjamin Franklin
  173. If you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember anything. ~Mark Twain
  174. It is never too late to be what you might have been. ~George Eliot
  175. It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends. ~J.K. Rowling
  176. Do not pity the dead, Harry. Pity the living, and, above all those who live without love. ~J.K. Rowling,
  177. A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one. ~George R.R. Martin
  178. Never forget what you are, for surely the world will not. Make it your strength. Then it can never be your weakness. Armour yourself in it, and it will never be used to hurt you. ~George R.R. Martin
  179. Ten years from now, no one is going to care how quickly the books came out. The only thing that will matter, the only thing anyone will remember, is how good they were. That’s my main concern, and always will be. ~George R. R. Martin
  180. They can keep their heaven. When I die, I’d sooner go to Middle Earth. ~George R.R. Martin
  181. The great thing about reading is that it broadens your life. ~George R.R. Martin
  182. We all need to be mocked from time to time, lest we take ourselves too seriously. ~ George R.R. Martin
  183. Do what you can, with what you have, where you are. ~Theodore Roosevelt
  184. inspirational and motivational quotes on life

  185. Life is simple. Everything happens for you, not to you. Everything happens at exactly the right moment, neither too soon nor too late. You don’t have to like it… it’s just easier if you do. ~Byron Katie
  186. Don’t believe everything you think. ~Byron Katie
  187. You’re either attaching to your thoughts or inquiring. There is no other choice. ~Byron Katie
  188. When you judge another, you do not define them, you define yourself. ~Wayne W. Dyer
  189. You are not stuck where you are unless you decide to be. ~Wayne W. Dyer
  190. Heaven on Earth is a choice you must make, not a place you must find. ~Wayne W. Dyer
  191. When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us. ~Helen Keller
  192. You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me. ~C.S. Lewis
  193. Some day you will be old enough to start reading fairy tales again. ~ C.S. Lewis
  194. Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself. ~George Bernard Shaw
  195. Folks are usually about as happy as they make their minds up to be. ~Abraham Lincoln
  196. Every act of creation is first of all an act of destruction. ~Pablo Picasso
  197. The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls. ~Pablo Picasso
  198. Everything you can imagine is real. ~Pablo Picasso
  199. How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world. ~Anne Frank
  200. In spite of everything, I still believe that people are really good at heart. ~Anne Frank
  201. Do your practice and all is coming. ~Pattabhi Jois
  202. Education is an admirable thing, but it is well to remember from time to time that nothing that is worth knowing can be taught. – Oscar Wilde
  203. To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all. ~Oscar Wilde
  204. Everything is possible. The impossible just takes longer. ~Dan Brown
  205. And at the end of the day, your feet should be dirty, your hair messy and your eyes sparkling. ~Shanti
  206. What Is Love? I have met in the streets a very poor young man who was in love. His hat was old, his coat worn, the water passed through his shoes and the stars through his soul. ~Victor Hugo
  207. To love or have loved, that is enough. Ask nothing further. There is no other pearl to be found in the dark folds of life. ~Victor Hugo
  208. The two most important days of your life are the day you were born and the day you find out why. ~Mark Twain
  209. Life becomes easier when you learn to accept an apology you never got. ~Robert Brault

Your turn: What’s your favorite inspirational quote on life?

Wooh! That’s a long list. It took me days to pull this together for us so I sincerely hope that you enjoyed it and feel more inspired and motivated about life. Now over to you. What’s your most favorite inspirational and motivational quote on life? Share it in the comments below! And don’t leave before grabbing your 21-step confidence building series below:

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8 Ways Perfectionism is Ruining Your Life (And How to Cure It) http://www.prolificliving.com/perfectionism-ruining-your-life/ http://www.prolificliving.com/perfectionism-ruining-your-life/#comments Mon, 18 Aug 2014 21:15:24 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=40614 Perfection is a trap. Is it holding you hostage too? Perfection is the state of being perfect, and this state does not exist. (You knew that, right? Apparently, some of us perfectionists were left off the memo!) Perfection is a moving target, forever deluding those of us silly enough to chase it. You can’t ever catch it, […]

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birdcage silhouette

Perfection is a trap. Is it holding you hostage too?

Perfection is the state of being perfect, and this state does not exist. (You knew that, right? Apparently, some of us perfectionists were left off the memo!)

Perfection is a moving target, forever deluding those of us silly enough to chase it. You can’t ever catch it, my dear, much like chasing a rainbow, or your shadow, or a fleeting thought.

It is impossible to capture the state of perfection – or perfectionism – and to be one with it.

So if you seek and praise perfectionism, it is ruining your life. Quietly and slowly but surely doing a number on it.

How do you tell if you are a perfectionist?

Easy. You are more obsessed with making something “better” than you are with looking at what you have and seeing it for all the good that it is. Your laser sharp focus is on the minuscule details of what’s not “right”, what’s “not working” and you focus all your attention and energy on those tiny details, whilst opportunity and happiness come and go, unbeknownst to you for you are far too busy with the pursuit of perfectionism.

illusion-perfection

It’s not your fault. They romanticized perfection!

As children, we grow up to desire it and associate it with something good and worthy of pursuit because grown-ups, teachers, parents, guardians, leaders all seem so fascinated by it, and as a society, we praise it, we use the words perfect, perfection, and perfectionist in a positive admiring tone.

Some of us grow out of it, and grow wiser as we grow older. If you escaped perfectionism, stay that way. You’re in the minority. Most of us learned to love the endless pursuit perfection in every aspect of our lives and what’s worse. We’re proud of it too.

Why? I believe we do it for two reasons. Or two assumptions rather, because they’re both false.

Assumption #1: We seek and praise perfection out of utter ignorance.

We don’t know the damage of perfectionism far outweighs any benefits we can hope to get out of it.

We think only of how nice, how wonderful, how worthy of celebration it would be if our bodies, our children, our careers, our relationships and our homes were perfect. Oh So Perfect!

Most of us don’t even know what this state of perfection looks like. We know only what it does not or should not look like, so we focus on that.

Here’s a sample inner dialogue inside the mind of a woman obsessed with achieving perfection for her body:

I’m not perfect. Frankly, I couldn’t describe perfect if my life depended on it but that’s not the point. I know this much:

I should be thinner.
I should be taller.
I should be more fair.
I should be less round.
I should eat less.
I should exercise more.
I should wake up earlier.
I should work harder.
I should do more yoga.
I should take up running.
I should, I should, I should …

If this inner dialogue sounds familiar, know this for now: You ARE perfect just as you are, but you can still get better for reasons that are important to you. Know those reasons first! Know yourself first.

Reminder: You can still grab The Positive Affirmations for Life program with more than 4 hours of audio affirmations for 7 life situations that impact your happiness and success the most.

Assumption #2: We seek and praise perfection out of confusion.

We confuse perfection with the state of quality. Your stuff is either perfect or poor quality. The “right” choice between those two flawed options is obvious. Is it not?

You choose perfection. Who wants poor quality in anything in life?

But perfection is far from high quality and in fact, the pursuit of perfection can lower the quality of your work and your results.

Perfectionism means it drives you nuts to see a little hair out of place, a little dust on your table, a little digital smudge on your picture, a little food on your child’s clothes, a little something that then takes away the entire focus on what’s right and what’s good and puts all attention on the minuscule details that nobody but you cares about.

Perfection means you simply cannot be content with what is.

Whereas high quality means you have done a good job, you have served the higher purpose, you have been useful and helpful and resourceful, you have put in your best efforts, and you have met the bar and even exceeded it without obsessing about small tiny details.

Seek High Quality. Not perfection.

8 ways perfectionism is ruining your life (most likely without your consent!)

With every act of perfectionism you commit, you’re slowly killing your opportunities, your chances for success and advancement, your possibilities for happiness. And no, I am not exaggerating.

That’s right. Perfection is ruining your life.

Start by learning these 8 ways perfectionism is ruining your life without your knowledge and consent.

1. You never get started.

The “someday” syndrome plagues perfectionists. You think too much about your dream – your dream book, your dream house, your dream car or family or dog – so much that you never quite get started. You never take that first step because what if it’s not the perfect first step?

You sit on these dreams and ideas for months and years, letting fear of imperfection decide the course of your life. Whatever it is, start it today and if it’s awful, I promise, you can just as easily quit!

2. You’re not able to mark anything complete.

Sure you may turn in your work and publish your blog post and send that assignment off to your teacher, but you never release it from your windmills of your mind. You never quite mark it complete and done and over with. You go back to it and think up ways you could improve it or even re-do the whole thing.

You carry these what-if thoughts with you and as the accomplishments of your life pile up, instead of celebrating, you carry only the question of what you could have done better.

wire-mandala-perfect

3. You never ship it.

As Seth Godin teaches us, you have got to ship it – the product, the book, the assignment. Countless books end up in half-written manuscripts collecting dust, instead of on book shelves, spreading ideas. Thousands of businesses never take off because the owners are afraid of failure.

This applies to careerists and entrepreneurs alike. If you set out to do a piece of work, you have two choices: You can choose to ‘perfect’ it to the end of time and therefore robbing your clients and customers from the help and joy and relief it can bring them. Or you can ship it when it meets high standards of quality sans the obsession over details.

4. You ruin your creativity and curiosity.

Sure, perfection is a great reason to be efficient and get things done and move forward on a task, and constantly refine it to make it better, but in that rigorous process, you kill your creative genius and your curiosity juices. What if you allowed in a little spontaneity instead? Tried a new way?

My husband likes to take a new route home every time we go out. It drives me and his mother crazy. It makes him giddy and curious. I’ve learned to love it. What if you take a new route next time you have to write a book or create a product or give a speech?

What if you let go of perfectionism and tap into your curiosity and creative genius?

5. You limit your opportunities. Severely.

This one I believe wholeheartedly because it has happened to me. My obsession with small details has made me blind to huge opportunities in front of me. When you’re not seeing the big picture, you lose focus on what matters. Small details can be important, yes, but focus only on the ones that matter.

Most perfectionist tendencies are around the small stuff that only we notice, and yet they take up time and energy and in the process, we lose out on bigger opportunities. If you’re taking 10 years to write your first book only to discover that you were really meant to write your next book, well, is that time well spent? You be the judge.

6. You are not fun to be around.

Let’s face it. Nobody likes to be around people who are obsessed with the idea of making something perfect. It may be fun to watch a master perfecting his art, but it’s not fun to be your co-worker waiting on your stuff, or your boss or your spouse or friend when you are chasing the illusion of perfection in whatever areas of your life it may be.

You are too serious, too detached, and too involved and your loved ones cannot relate or understand. So you create unnecessary distance.

Perfection takes you out of the present moment and steals your time. Make sure you give it full consent to do that.

7. You never experience the joy of accomplishment.

One of the highest rewards of doing our work and going through our lives is that we feel the sense of completion, the joy of accomplishing something – anything. And we can celebrate and bask in the feeling.

When you are a perfectionist, you sabotage your feelings of accomplishment with worry and second-guessing and passing judgement on what you have done especially if you are not happy with the results.

Ask yourself then what’s the point? If you cannot enjoy the fruits of your labor, then why do it? When you withhold this joy, it kills your enthusiasm for next opportunities awaiting you and the cycle repeats.

8. You’re never happy. Or at peace

You’re constantly second and third guessing everything from your appearance to your choice of words, from your cooking and art to your coding and scripting, from your writing to your exercise routine, you are never ever completely happy with yourself. Or your level of skills and talents just as they are.

You never experience joy and happiness in the moment. You sabotage yourself with the pursuit of perfectionism and it’s impossible to be happy and at peace for any length of time when you are so far removed from what really matters.

Good news: Perfection plagues smart people. And smart people solve their problems.

Funny how perfection plagues some super smart people out there. Scientists. Doctors. Post-doctorates. Best-selling authors. Venture capitalists. Accomplished tech geeks. Don’t ask me how I know! Let’s just focus on you.

Chances are you are smart and a go-getter. Now that you know perfectionism is damaging your chances for happiness and success and even ruining your life if you continue to ignore it, take a stand. Make a decision to do something about it.

This is self-abuse and self-sabotage, and smart people like you and I take action to reverse and eventually stop bad behavior. It’s not our challenge that define us, but our actions. Let our actions speak then.

I’ve been plagued with perfectionism a lot in my life. I joke that I am a recovering perfectionist, and one person especially gets it. My great friend and scientist and writer, Jen Gresham is a master overachiever and intimately familiar with the downsides of perfectionism. You’ve got to watch this video below she created on the cure of perfectionism:

A few months ago, she developed a course for overachievers and perfectionists and while I haven’t taken this course, I know Jen and the high quality of her work and her first hand experience with perfectionism. She can help you find a cure to this dis-ease and experience true success in your life. Check out her course, The Overachiever’s Guide to Success!

FYI: I’m not affiliated with this product and receive nothing if you sign up for it except the gratification that you, my dear reader, are doing something for yourself to cure this dis-ease that is perfectionism and I applaud you for it.

Get Confident in 21 Easy Steps


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How to Get to Know Yourself in 5 Fool-Proof Steps http://www.prolificliving.com/the-greatest-discovery-of-all-getting-to-know-yourself/ http://www.prolificliving.com/the-greatest-discovery-of-all-getting-to-know-yourself/#comments Wed, 13 Aug 2014 14:35:04 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=20562 Living a lie comes out sooner or later. The day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. ~Anais Nin When I read this quote first, I felt something tighten in my heart. I was still at my corporate job, living in total […]

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Knowing yourself

Living a lie comes out sooner or later.

The day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. ~Anais Nin

When I read this quote first, I felt something tighten in my heart.

I was still at my corporate job, living in total conflict with my core values, and still denying the reality of the situation. It took a simple phrase to snap me out of my coma and help me see how I had created my own agony: By denying who I am.

And for what? So I could go on being someone else to impress people I don’t care about for reasons that don’t matter? It isn’t worth living a lie and being untrue to who you are, no matter how crazy, how eccentric, how uncommon, how different you may be.

You are who you are. The earlier in life you accept this and get on with it, the easier and sweeter you shall live out your days.

Let’s start embracing it instead of hiding it under the covers.

As for me, when the lie became so blatantly obvious, I accepted who I am, quit my cushy job, started my online business, created my dream lifestyle and have never looked back.

A secret I didn’t even know: You won’t miss the lie you are living, because living true to yourself is the real paradise.

This kickstarted the beginning of a self-discovery journey that I share with you here: How to get to know yourself and how to have the courage to live life as exactly who you were meant to be, being true to your core values, and coming to peace with it all.

How well do you know yourself? Ready to find out?

Reminder: You can still grab The Positive Affirmations for Life program with more than 4 hours of audio affirmations for 7 life situations that impact your happiness and success the most.

You can be different from the rest of the world and still be fabulous — in fact, you’re fabulous because of it, not despite it.

Different means good. So if you are different, you, my dear, are good.

The idea is to understand what makes you different, and as you do that, you get to know yourself better.

It’s perfectly fine to explore what your heart wants. It’s completely alright to tune out the rest of the world so you can build a connection with your soul. It’s remarkably uncommon, but it’s fine and it’s alright, so do it. You won’t regret getting to know the person who lives inside yuo.

The most beautiful thing you will ever witness in your life is when you begin to unfold into the person you were meant to be from your very beginning.

It’s not about your favorite color or school subject. We’re talking big stuff.

Knowing yourself is beyond figuring out your favorite color or your favorite subject in school or your favorite music album. We are no longer in high school — thank heavens – where being “yourself” meant mimicking everyone else, acting stupid in the collective and defying rules, and feeling insecure all day long while doing it!

Knowing yourself is the process of understanding you – the human being – on deeper levels than the surface. It is an unpredictable road that you must bewilling to explore. It brings you face-to-face with your deep self-doubts and insecurities. It makes you take a serious look at the way you are living your life and put it to question.

The whole thing can suck for a little while but then it gets better, and like anything else, a little hard work at the start pays dividends in abundance for the rest of your life.

Knowing yourself means respecting your values in life, your beliefs, your personality, your priorities, your moods, your habits, your magnificent body, and your relationships.

Knowing yourself means understanding your strengths and weaknesses, your passions and fears, your desires and dreams. It means being aware of your eccentricities and idiosyncrasies, your likes and dislikes, and your tolerances and limitations.

Knowing yourself means knowing your purpose in life. Or coming really darn close to finding it out!

You’re not born knowing yourself. Get over it.

You do not get to know yourself simply by growing up and growing old. Knowing yourself is a conscious effort; you do it with intention and purpose.

Not knowing yourself becomes obvious sooner or later. A quiet frustration lives in your heart when you do not know yourself. You may choose to live with it and ignore it – or you may choose to start getting to know yourself.

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How to Get to Know Yourself in 5 Fool-Proof Steps:

1. Get to Know Your Personality

Understanding your own personality is the first key. You have the collective opinion of others which is one aspect.

You also have your own database of information about what your personality is really like, and who you are in your private moments as well as in your public ones.

The idea is to get to know your personality inside out, to know what you are and what you are not like. Understand what makes you react a certain way in life’s myriad of situations. Ask yourself “Why did I do that?” and answer it.

Who are you behind your name? What are your characteristic traits? Who are you among friends? What about strangers? What persona do you portray to the outside world?

What are you really like on a good day as well as a bad day, in face of a challenge or a great reward? How do you react to the world around you?

2. Get to Know Your Core Values

Your core values are the morale codes and the principles you hold near and dear to your heart. When I work with my clients, one of the first things I ask prior to our coaching sessions is a list of their top eight core values.

You probably have more than eight values, but the top eight play the big roles in decision-making, influencing, persuading, conflict-resolution, communication, and living your day-to-day life.

In your work, in your home, in all aspects of your life, which values can you never compromise? Those are your core values.

Is it honesty, integrity, security or flexibility? Is it dedication to others, wisdom and learning, financial comfort or fun? Do you value loyalty above excellence, responsibility above ambition, or innovation above improvement?

3. Get to Know Your Body

Youth is such foolishness. In my 20s, I used to think I know my body. I was but a child. The more I learn about my body, the more mysterious it becomes and the more I push my body, the more it surprises and delights and amazes me. Yours can too.

How well do you know your body, your breathing, your abilities, your limits of balance and flexibility?

Have you ever said “my body can’t do this” and that “my body type won’t do that” without even trying a physical challenge? Before you close the door to wonderful possibilities, take another look. Take the time to become truly intimate with the loveliest temple on earth, your own body.

Shakespeare-true-self

4. Get to Know your Dreams

Your dreams and hopes create the pathway into your future. They help you build the life you can be proud of living.

Your dreams matter. Your dreams are important. Your dreams are worth going after. Don’t believe anything less.

And start getting to know your dreams well. Get to know the details and the specifics.

If you want to become a musician, ask yourself: What instrument do you want to play? What level of proficiency do you want to learn? How big a part of your life would it be? And on and on until you know everything about your dream.

Make your dreams part of your daily pursuits. Take them seriously. Work at them. Glorify them instead of hiding them and being ashamed of them.

5. Get to Know your Likes and Dislikes

What do you like and just as important, what do you dislike? Simple, innocent question but knowing this about yourself gives you a lot of confidence into who you are. A lot of people go through life liking what’s popular and disliking what’s not “cool”. Don’t do that.

Take the time to define your likes and dislikes, and don’t put it up for a vote among family and friends. You decide.

Defining your own likes and especially dislikes takes guts. It maybe impolite to dislike attending yet another baby shower or spending 3 hours with extended relatives, but look at the alternative. If you keep doing frustrates you and neglect what brings you joy, you give up part of who you are. It’s the least likely path to any happiness whatsoever.

Stay true to your likes and dislikes. Nobody has to like them but you!

Getting to know yourself allows you to tap into the well of happiness beyond your imagination. Bliss even on cloudy days.

If you need a hand, I’ve recorded these 300 positive affirmations on simple audio tracks on 7 situations of life that impact life and happiness the most. Take a listen! Stop waiting. Start now to get to know yourself better today.

Get Confident in 21 Easy Steps


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How to Heal Negativity with the Power of Positive Affirmations http://www.prolificliving.com/power-of-positive-affirmations/ http://www.prolificliving.com/power-of-positive-affirmations/#comments Tue, 05 Aug 2014 18:23:59 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=40398 A morning in the life of a positive mind The birds are singing a sweet melody. The air is crisp, feeling like a gentle lover’s kiss on my cheek, and the taste of a new fresh morning is delicious. Is this morning different? Or am I different? Most likely explanation is I am different. Mornings […]

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A morning in the life of a positive mind

The birds are singing a sweet melody. The air is crisp, feeling like a gentle lover’s kiss on my cheek, and the taste of a new fresh morning is delicious. Is this morning different? Or am I different?

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Most likely explanation is I am different. Mornings have always been lovely – I can see that now, thanks to the power of positive affirmations.

I used to be so engrossed in my loud worries and wound up in high stress that I forgot how to listen to or feel or taste a new day of life.

Do you know the feeling, being “too busy” to even feel the sensations in your own body, much less those around you?

But I used to build up a lot of problems that didn’t even exist. I used to make up a lot of stories in my head that weren’t true.

It wasn’t until I started working with clients and students that I saw what I was doing.

You can’t be a role model to others while you’re still repeating negative patterns of thought and behavior. You have to fix yourself first!

When you see someone else behaving negatively, it’s a turn-off. When you hear someone else complain incessantly and be ungrateful, it’s disgusting. Why not apply the rules to you?

Why do you spot negativity so easily in others but not in yourself?

After all, the only person you can change is YOU! Changing anyone else is your own made-up delusion.

You can’t change your spouse, your child, your mother, your brother, your father, your client, your boss, your neighbor, your teacher, your [insert anyone in your life].

But you may decide to die trying. It won’t work but go right ahead if you insist.

Unless of course, you want a path of happiness in your life. And inner peace. And calm mind. And happy heart. And focused productivity. And wealth and abundance. And constant joy and laughter in your daily life.

Then keep reading!

Affirmations_truth

Have you approved of yourself lately?

Or are you so busy criticizing yourself that you can’t find “anything” to approve of?

That’s because your negative thoughts have taken up all the space in your mind, leaving so little for positive, affirmative thoughts and beliefs.

After I started using positive affirmations, I was able to hear not just the sounds of nature again, but my own true inner voice, the one that approved of who I am, the one that loved me and felt I was important.

FACT: Your negative thoughts are not who you are. Your negative thoughts are not the truth.

So while you have a choice, why not believe the stories of a positive mind?

The question I get from skeptics right around this moment “So why not believe in fairy dust and unicorns and magic while you’re at it?”

Very cute, right? Except a positive mind and a happy heart are not delusions. You are not denying reality by choosing positive over negative. Reality just is. You are just enabling yourself to live your best life with a healthy attitude and nurturing mindset, and opening the pathways in your brain for envisioning your goals easier.

It’s very simple: You can’t live a positive happy life with a negative mind.

So if you want to be happy, if you want to free yourself of a trapped life, if you are sick of living with scarcity and never having enough – enough love, enough happiness, enough money, enough good relationships – then isn’t it worth your time and effort to try a positive mind?

You’ve lived your whole life with negativity and it’s served you how? Not very well.

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Retrain your thinking to work for you – not against you

The exposure level to positive affirmations is directly related to the level of success you have with them. So the higher your exposure, the more your success.

If you are exposing yourself to positive affirmations once a week or once a month, you will barely -if at all – notice the results.

Why?
Because your brain does not receive nearly enough momentum to shift direction.

Imagine having to move a rock. You’re not going to give it a gentle nudge and expect magic, are you?

You have to apply enough force to move it away from its resting and then enough momentum to keep it going in the direction you desire.

Same with your negative thinking. You have to apply enough persistent exposure to positive affirmations to get results.

The power is not in the numbers alone but in the frequency. So when you do something every single day, you will get results. Good, consistent and growing results.

That’s why I recommend 12 minutes of audio affirmations per day to start shifting yourself out of negative thoughts as you slowly move first toward a neutral state and then towards positive thoughts. Over time, you will increase your positive thoughts and reduce negative thoughts, and your default mode will become positive.

How does the power of positive affirmations heal real life problems?

If your mind is churning negative upon negative thoughts, you are not solving a single problem. You are creating a hundred more problems that were not there in the first place.

Your mind needs to be in a state of relaxation and harmony in order to think clearly and to support you in the direction of life you’re going.

You get into a state of calm and relaxation by using positive thoughts.

Positive affirmations – when used the right way – are the ultimate easiest, fastest and most efficient way to generate those positive thoughts.

Still with me?

See, your thinking creates your reality and it affects your life in every single way.

Unhappy in your relationships?

Frustrated with your career?

Upset with your children?

Disgusted with your body?

Insecure in your finances?

It’s because you are making up stories, blaming others, looking at the problem through dirty lenses, and denying your own power to take control of your life.

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You have personal power to make it happen. The question is …

You have personal power that can turn your life around right now or keep you stuck in your rut.

The question is: What will do you about it?

You either choose to use it or throw it away unopened.

So the way to heal is from the inside out. If you get this concept, you will have everything you want in life.

But that’s a big leap of faith, so start small and prove yourself right.

First, fix your thinking one thought at a time. Do it with me in just 12 minutes a day.

I’ve just released an audio affirmation program that is based on a system I used to heal myself of negative thoughts and to create success and abundance in my life.

I have a bigger vision for you than you have for yourself right now and here it goes: You’re totally deserving of the calm mind and the happy heart that you envy in others. You Are Deserving of it.

So grab The Positive Affirmations for Life program with more than 4 hours of guided audio affirmation tracks for 7 life situations that impact your happiness and success the most. You can work the power of positive affirmation with me into your own life in just 12 minutes a day. Play any of the 21 unique tracks only once a day and lift yourself out of negativity.

Click here to grab your copy of The Positive Affirmations for Life program

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7 Things Successful People Do to Build Lasting Relationships http://www.prolificliving.com/why-relationships-matter/ http://www.prolificliving.com/why-relationships-matter/#comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 03:17:03 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=18270 The single pattern that emerged among successful people is … How much do relationships matter to you? We are talking all types of relationships, personal and business relationships. Do you see your relationships directly affecting your life’s success or happiness or do you see them as a separate entity on their own, as a perk […]

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people-relationships

The single pattern that emerged among successful people is …

How much do relationships matter to you? We are talking all types of relationships, personal and business relationships.

Do you see your relationships directly affecting your life’s success or happiness or do you see them as a separate entity on their own, as a perk (or pest!) of life without serving a larger purpose?

Don’t worry. There is no right or wrong answer, and certainly no grading here. But there is a better way to live your life if you want to emulate successful people and what they always do in relationships.

Ever since I started this blog a few years ago, I’ve been studying successful people, people who are living life on their terms, achieving great meaningful goals, and appearing as wonderful human beings with many gifts and talents to this world.

Reminder: You can still grab The Positive Affirmations for Life program with more than 4 hours of audio affirmations for 7 life situations that impact your happiness and success the most, including the expanded relationships tracks.

It turns out that you can be a success no matter where you come from, what family or country you are born into, and what schooling (or lack thereof) you achieved. You can also be success doing just about any kind of work, in any field and industry, and under any economic or social conditions. And you can live out your success in many different colors and sounds.

But a single pattern kept emerging after studying dozens and dozens of successful people: The importance of their relationships – both personal and business – in their success.

The higher the success level of the person, the higher the importance of each relationship in his or her life, and the more time and energy went into the relationships.

The question is why are relationships so important to success

Why are relationships at the heart of successful people? Aren’t successful people busy enough as it is? And would they not want to relax and roll around in the lap of luxury when they are not working?

What we do know is that successful people are not big into wasting their time or squandering their wealth. They are smart, intelligent, and vigilant people who want to create even more success and happiness in their lives.

It turns out that among things successful people do, building relationships ranks high as a top use of their time and energy.

Now these are not just any relationships, but relationships that promote their state of wealth and health, success and happiness, self-development and personal growth, to name a few incentives.

Successful people want to create more success and thus, they hang out with people who push them to higher levels.

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I was very happy when I discovered this, because I Love Building Relationships. Now I had to focus on building lasting relationships with the right people.

7 things successful people do to build lasting relationships

So what are the 7 things that successful people always do to build lasting relationships? Note the use of the word “lasting”, and this makes sense, because successful people are too busy and too smart to waste their time so they focus on cultivating the types of relations that can stand the test of time, so that both parties can reap the benefits and the rewards.

1. State the objective of the relationship early on

This may sound business-like and serious, but in fact, it is such a relief to be able to build a relationship where you know the overall incentive behind it. Maybe you want to learn from each other.

Maybe you hope to do business together someday.

Maybe you want to be challenged or motivated.

Maybe you want to learn the business success lessons of one another.

Successful people are not shy to state the objective of the relationships that they plan to make lasting and neither should we!

Stating the reasons why you want to have a relationship is far better than not stating them at all or pretending they are something else altogether.

2. Communicate openly and clearly and listen intently

Listening and communicating well are the top traits of all successful people in general, but these elements come to play when you watch them in their relationships. They listen intently. They are present when they are with the other person. They are not too busy to listen and too quick to move on to the next thing.

Successful people also communicate openly, even if it means they need to ask for something or say no about something.

Open communication and intent listening are the foundations of lasting relationships.

3. Never wait until they need something to build a relationship

Successful people don’t “save” your relationship building energy — because they know that the energy does not run out. It grows by use, it expands and they use it well in building lots of relationships. They build these relationships well in advance of ever needing them.

So their motive is never colored by their own selfish desires to get “something out of the relationship” but rather, they go into each relationship with mutual benefits to both parties, and build lots of relationships.

Then when the time comes that they may have need of their relationship, they’ve already filled the trust fund and can “borrow” so to speak.

Don’t wait!” is the ultimate word of caution concerning relationships, and certainly don’t wait until you need a favor.

It’s like signing up for insurance after you lose your precious stone only to turn around and file a claim. Insurance companies, much as I dislike them, are not stupid and neither are people. You may very well get away with it — the favor, the insurance, or both — but know this, with this approach, you have not built a relationship, you have made a transaction.

4. Give generously at the start of a relationship. Give more throughout

Successful people don’t keep tabs on what’s in it for them and what favors they can collect on later, and this is especially true at the beginning of a relationship. Giving and giving a lot is the theme they use if they are building a lasting relationship.

This isn’t about advocating a selfless behavior — compassion and giving yes but selflessness, no – which means there is reward for the self when you give of yourself to others in a relationship first.

Giving means offering, as little or as much as you can, of your time, knowledge, expertise, energy, power or position in life, and watching it come back to you ten fold. Giving can be rewarding in itself. I know that in my mastermind group, I get more reward in giving to my team members than I do in receiving feedback for my own challenges from them. Funny how much you get by giving so focus on giving.

5. Speak up if something is not going well

I look back at so many friendships that went sour in my past, and it always comes down to nobody ever speaking up when things weren’t going well. We are afraid of saying anything and hurting someone’s feelings. Successful people don’t suffer from this.

When something is not going well in their relationships, successful people just speak up.

They speak up with integrity, with compassion and with kindness, but they still speak up and they do this early on so that the problems don’t fester. They do this not to make a fuss or complain, but to make the relationship better, stronger, and more mutually beneficial.

This is one of the more challenging things to do in a relationship so start on a smaller scale. This also tests your communication and listening skills, which is the second tip above. If you can get used to doing this well, you will have more rewarding lasting relationships in your life.

6. Fiercely support and protect their relationships

You know how you guard your jewelry? Well, successful people guard their relationships that well. They are protective of the people who have entrusted them with this lasting connection and they are careful how they leverage these relationships.

Basically, they don’t take their relationships lightly. Rather, they treat them like gold, like fortune, and that’s what lasting relationships can do for you in life.

Successful people always speak highly of the people in their relationships, they watch out for them, they guard their reputation, and they represent them to others as they’d want to be represented themselves.

They are simply protective and supportive as a big brother or sister would be to a younger sibling, and in turn, they get the same treatment from the people in those relationships. Everyone wins!

7. Work hard to mend, repair and strengthen a damaged relationship

Sometimes things happen, even to successful people. A miscommunication gets out. A ball gets dropped. A promise gets broken. And the relationship suffers a little.

Successful people are quick to bring focus and attention and care to a damaged relationship. They are not too proud to apologize and to offer to mend their ways. They are not too proud to work hard at regaining trust and rebuilding strength. They know that relationships are a long-term investment and an enabler for their aspirations and desires. They work hard at making things work again in their relationships, and hence make it even stronger than before.

So next time something goes awry in your relationship, think of it as an opportunity to get even closer and build even a stronger more authentic relationship.

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How to put the lessons from successful people into practice now

Remember, lasting relationships can strengthen your sense of purpose and happiness in life. Nurturing, strong, reliable and true relationships in life can be the difference between your own success – and lack of success. Plus, when you win, you get to celebrate within those wonderful relationships.

The instant joys of connecting with another human being aside, relationships empower you to achieve the unthinkable and the unimaginable. They push you higher and closer into the person you were meant to be, and when you are in the right relationship, others may have an even higher vision of life for you than you have for yourself. That level of faith and belief in your abilities can be huge help in achieving your dreams.

So focus on any of these 7 things successful people do to build lasting relationships, and implement only one at a time. Focus on your current relationships and apply these concepts in a measured way, and see if you notice a difference in the quality of your own relationships. I’m willing to bet that you will!

So build new relationships, renew old relationships and copy successful people to create your own lasting relationships.

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Reminder: Grab The Positive Affirmations for Life program with more than 4 hours of audio affirmations on 7 life situations, including expanded tracks on building healthy relationships.

Oh and listen, if you’ve never put much stock into your relationships, don’t fret. You can start right now to improve the state of your current relationships and learn how to build the right new relationships. It is never too late to create positive change in your life.

How connected are you to your world and your environment?

The floor is yours: What type of relationships do you build? Why do you think relationships matter? Share your thoughts in the comments.

Get Confident in 21 Easy Steps


Editor’s Note: A similar post was originally published in July 22nd, 2011 on Prolific Living. It has now been expanded, revamped, revised, and updated with fresh new content. Enjoy and spread the word!

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42 Affirmations Every Successful Entrepreneur Believes http://www.prolificliving.com/positive-affirmations-for-entrepreneurs/ http://www.prolificliving.com/positive-affirmations-for-entrepreneurs/#comments Sun, 20 Jul 2014 21:29:47 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=39895 Affirmations, huh? Once a skeptic, now a believer. A few years ago, I was a serious corporate gal who would poke fun at anything that could not be proven for a fact. Affirmations were the last thing I could take seriously, and yet, funny enough, affirmations and the subsequent changes in mindset and thinking created […]

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Affirmations, huh? Once a skeptic, now a believer.

Affirmations_Edinburgh

A few years ago, I was a serious corporate gal who would poke fun at anything that could not be proven for a fact.

Affirmations were the last thing I could take seriously, and yet, funny enough, affirmations and the subsequent changes in mindset and thinking created the conditions for my transition from corporate to entrepreneurship.

Positive affirmations were the seeds that enabled me to land my dream company and online businesses and partnership with my husband.

Reminder: You can still grab The Positive Affirmations for Life program with more than 4 hours of audio affirmations for 7 life situations that impact your happiness and success the most including the wealth attraction and career success tracks.

Specifically, I can attribute the following to learning and using positive affirmations in my life:

  • Healing from my past mistakes.
  • Accepting myself for who I am.
  • Forgiving myself for past failures.
  • Letting go of a 12-years success career that was all wrong for me.
  • Learning to start over in a new direction.
  • Believing in my own eventual success.
  • Discovering my life purpose in the process.
  • Overcoming my fears to move in the direction of my dreams.

Isn’t it ironic that I now pay tribute to the very thing I used to poke fun?

Well, here’s the thing. If I was able to experience that level of change in belief and mindset, I am convinced you can too. I used the power of affirmations and guided meditation to achieve my goals.

So let’s talk about what you can do to achieve the same because this stuff can change your life forever.

The lesson here is simple (not easy, but simple): We all change and evolve when we know better.

So go ahead and let the skeptic part of you find it silly or cute or plain dumb to look at positive affirmations as an answer to improve your life, enhance your career and land your dream business. But give affirmations a try anyway.

It starts by believing, if only for a minute, that you deserve a positive, fulfilling, happy life and enjoyable fulfilling work and career. Period. No ifs. No buts. No excuses.

Can we please stop confusing affirmations with magic?

Positive affirmations are phrases or statements that retrain your brain to think the right way and in doing so, cultivate the right mindset and energy for everything you want in your life.

Got it? Everything you want in your life can be yours. That can be your first affirmation.

I am worthy and deserving of everything that I want in my life.

Affirmations help you believe that you are already experiencing that outcome in the present moment and helping manifest it in the future.

How, you ask?

Let me give you examples.

If you want to be healthy, you envision health already happening to you.

If you want to have a highly profitable online business, you envision that success and money is already pouring into your business.

If you want to attract the right partner into your life, you live as though you already have met and believe in this person’s existence.

Then, you state those eventual realities as facts in the first person – I am, I believe, I do – and repeat them over and over to yourself, believing that the outcome is simply inevitable.

Because it is. If you believe first.

Now, here’s where the confusion comes from those who confuse affirmations with magic. Which is mainly prevalent in the Harry Potter world and generally requires the use of a wand.

Affirmations do not absolve you of taking the action that will bring you to the eventual outcome.

Um. Yes. You still have to take action and do the work.

If you want to get healthy, you have got to set up everything else in your life to achieve that health from environment, diet, habits, and family support.

If you want to create your own profitable online business, you have got to work hard, make sacrifices, and be patient.

And I bet you’re very good at taking all the action.

But are you creating the positive and supportive mental thoughts and beliefs that make the ride to the top easier, smoother and quicker?

If not, affirmations will be your very best friend.

Because everything you want is so much harder, if not completely impossible, with the negative berating mindset that is full of doubts, criticism, insecurity and impatience.

So why not ease the road to your dreams?

How to use positive affirmations for entrepreneurs in your daily life and not feel, ahem, silly?

Here’s one thing I’ve noticed in our culture. Negative thoughts, statements full of doubt and insecurity, and terrible prospect for the future is completely normal.

Tell me if these are not totally normal conversation starters:

I’m in a new job but I already have a bad feeling about it. You know?

I started my own business, we’ll see what happens, you know 95% of businesses fail, right?

My first product just didn’t sell. This is so hard. I don’t know why I’m even doing it.

I know, right? I’m going to be a starving artist for decades.

You left your safe job? Well, at least your spouse still has a job while you do your own “thing” for a while.

I feel just awful. I have to go speak to a crowd about marketing their business. Argh.

And on and on and on these negative downright disgusting dialogues continue, while any positive affirmative phrase is met with a look of surprise and even shock!

So you know what? It’s up to you if you want to continue the trend or buck it. I want to set up everything in my life to create ALL the success for my growing business, not just some of it. And if you want the same for yourself, your mind and body and spirit all have to be on board with your entrepreneurship dreams.

You may feel silly at first, but you may also feel good. And positive. And more creative. And more productive. And even more profitable.

Now that’s a good price to pay for a wee bit of silliness. Don’t you think?

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The 42 Positive Affirmations Every successful Entrepreneur Believes (Even if They Never Admit It)

  1. Being an entrepreneur is my natural path in life.
  2. Success and money come easily to me.
  3. What I focus on grows and so I focus on my business.
  4. My service is a gift to this world and I feel compelled to share it.
  5. I am building a successful company every day.
  6. My work makes a difference in this world.
  7. I believe in the value I create in the lives of others through my business.
  8. I am smart, successful, savvy about business.
  9. The success of my fellow entrepreneurs fuels me with energy and joy.
  10. Whatever I can dream up for my business, I can achieve.
  11. Entrepreneurship is a path of service and prosperity.
  12. I create daily opportunities for growth for myself and others.
  13. My failures have made me a better entrepreneur.
  14. My income is growing every day by doing something I love.
  15. The passion I have for my work enables me to create real value.
  16. There are no limits to what I can achieve.
  17. I am driven by passion and purpose.
  18. Money and wealth comes to me easily.
  19. I attract my ideal clients and customers with my energy.
  20. I serve my highest work to my clients and customers.
  21. My business is set up for massive success and growth.
  22. I am energized by challenges in my business.
  23. My business is growing at exactly the right pace.
  24. I started my business at precisely the right time in my life.
  25. My business meets and exceeds my needs and my family’s needs.
  26. I get everything I want by first helping others get everything they want.
  27. My business helps me serve my life purpose.
  28. Entrepreneurship is the safest bet to security and wealth.
  29. I treasure the freedom my business affords me.
  30. I love work and feel charged and energized by work.
  31. My work leaves me stronger and happier at the end of the day.
  32. I focus on the value-generating parts of my business.
  33. Being my own boss is a responsibility I handle with care.
  34. I invest in myself and in my business every day.
  35. My business dreams align to my core values.
  36. I am making a difference in this world with my business.
  37. My success or failures do not define me. They grow me.
  38. My ideas come to life through my business.
  39. I leave a small dent in the universe with my work.
  40. I take entrepreneurship seriously, without taking myself too seriously.
  41. I appreciate all the lessons that owning my business has taught me.
  42. Success and growth are inevitable outcomes of my work.

Up for an affirmation challenge with me?

As a former skeptic, I get it. You don’t think this will work, so I am asking you to a challenge.

Let’s both commit to saying 5 – only 5 – affirmations from the list of 42 above every day. Choose your own set of 5 positive affirmations for entrepreneurs, and repeat it every day before you start your work and every evening before you shut down. Do this for 1 week.

If you want to get serious results, use Guided Affirmation tracks that I created with my voice with over 300 affirmations!

On top of the affirmation challenge, remember to do the regular work. This is not magic. This has to be combined with your work!

Watch the one-minute video inspiration I made for you!

I am confident that you WILL see positive results in your business, even if you don’t want to admit it. That’s okay! The deed will be done, my dear fellow entrepreneur and you will be far more successful with positive affirmations than negative thoughts.

Spilling the beans on what’s coming next …

Oh joy joy! Here comes the next heart-and-soul filled project. I am working on my next product for you. It is based on feedback from amazing readers like you and I am excited to focus on it. It’ll be an audio-based affirmations program with guided tracks to help you through life’s challenges. What life challenge would you like to see in this program?

UPDATE: It’s here and you can start listening to the audio tracks right now!

Grab The Positive Affirmations for Life program with more than 4 hours of audio affirmations for 7 life situations that impact your happiness and success the most including the wealth attraction and career success tracks.

Don’t forget to grab my popular 21 Step Confidence Building program below:

Get Confident in 21 Easy Steps


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How to Stop Procrastinating: 18 Easy Ways http://www.prolificliving.com/18-radical-ways-to-stop-procrastination/ http://www.prolificliving.com/18-radical-ways-to-stop-procrastination/#comments Sun, 13 Jul 2014 15:27:20 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=25646 Why do we love to procrastinate? It is an undoubted truth, that the less one has to do, the less time one finds to do it in. ~Earl of Chesterfield First, the obvious: Everyone procrastinates. I do it, my corporate and entrepreneur friends and the ones in between do it and I know for a fact […]

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Why do we love to procrastinate?

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It is an undoubted truth, that the less one has to do, the less time one finds to do it in. ~Earl of Chesterfield

First, the obvious: Everyone procrastinates.

I do it, my corporate and entrepreneur friends and the ones in between do it and I know for a fact that super successful gurus do it on occasion too. It’s just a human thing to put off what we could get done now for later. So relax. You’re not alone.

Reminder: You can still grab The Positive Affirmations for Life program with more than 4 hours of audio affirmations for 7 life situations that impact your happiness and success the most.

But the ones who get a lot done in short periods of time and seem untouchable by excuses that plague the rest of us simply have learned how best to manage their procrastination tendencies. You can too. I’ll tell you how.

Procrastination is not in your DNA make-up, it is not inherited from your parents or siblings and it most certainly does not “run” in your family – in fact, removing that phrase altogether from your vocabulary can improve your life drastically.

Procrastination is a bad habit that has formed over the years, and in order to break this habit, you must create enough reason and momentum to build the opposite habit, the habit of getting things done.

Let’s find out why we procrastinate first.

Getting things done is hard work, definitely harder than getting nothing done. Or getting easy things done. Right?

We are creatures of comfort so we resist the notion of hard work, because it translates to discomfort and maybe even pain.

We might have to move our bodies and put in effort and concentrate and focus and even break a sweat. So we resist.

These walls of resistance manifest in the simplest and costliest form in our lives: Procrastination.

But here’s the irony. Procrastinating is actually harder on you over time than overcoming resistance and doing the work.

Why?

Because procrastination can cause fatigue and stress and anxiety. It can leave you feeling empty and dissatisfied with yourself. It makes you feel guilty and nags you like an annoying fly in your bedroom in the middle of the night.

On the other hand, completing a task elevates you to high levels of true happiness, gives you a sense of accomplishment, and makes you more productive for the next task.

Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task. ~William James

So the question is, which feeling do you want more?

Getting in the flow of getting it done. You know this.

Tell me if this is not true for you. When you actually commit to doing something, you get it done fast and without any fuss. You are focused. Your decision drives you, and you know what needs to happen and you just do it.

Plus the satisfaction that comes from your results generates even more creativity and productivity.

Those are the times you are in the zone. You are on top of it. You are untouchable by delays and excuses. You are doing your best and moving towards your goals and desires.

You love this feeling of completion. You secretly prefer this feeling to stress of procrastinating and yet you manage to procrastinate on a whole lot of things. Why is that?

Because you have a habit of procrastinating. But the good news about habits is that you can break them by interrupting them and replacing them with better, more fruitful habits.

18 ways to learn how to stop procrastinating now.

1. Determine if it’s worth doing.

You might just be procrastinating because you don’t want to do something for a good reason. It may be a job you hate, a procedure you can’t stand, a part of your life that you simply want to escape. That is different from procrastinating on your dreams and real goals.

To this, I would say examine the task at hand before doing it because why do something you hate with so many opportunities to do what we love?

2. Tiptoe in to see what happens.

Pick the thing you are procrastinating right now and just tiptoe in to see what happens. Do a fraction of it. Then decide how you feel about the advice.

Often you overwhelm yourself with the idea of doing it all and then you sit on it because it’s too much. What if you just did 15 minutes or half an hour? What if you got on board for just a wee bit to get a taste and break the waiting cycle?

3. Don’t listen to your moods. They lie.

The strongest reason we procrastinate is because we just “don’t feel like doing it!” You know what happens if you listen to that lousy mood? Nothing happens!

So before you do whatever you need to do, change your mood with a meditation track or check out my popular 10 Minute Invigorator Program that is guaranteed to switch up your mood in 10 minutes or less.

office-tea-clean

4. Clean up the environment.

The environment you surround yourself with can either perpetuate your procrastination or nip it in the bud. Take a look at your desk, your house, your space where you need to do this work. Is it clean or cluttered?

Have courage and clean up the mess, throw away the rubbish you don’t need, and create a peaceful and productive space that is inducive to creativity and positivity.

5. Commit to it loud and clear.

In the first 20 minutes of my 6am Ashtanga yoga practice,  a voice inside me is complaining and fussing “This is way too hard at this crazy hour. Let me go back to bed. Stop! I don’t feel like it!” And I know right then that if I give power to that mental shift, if I don’t commit loudly to the breath and the practice, if I stare at the clock, then I might as well go home.

Commit already. Commit loud. Commit and mean it. Commit to yourself.

6. Share your commitment with one person.

Choose one person, a partner, a spouse, a role model, a good friend, and tell them you committed to something specific, with dates and times. Ask if they please hold you accountable in a friendly but firm way?

The best partner is someone who may need the encouragement too. What is it that they are procrastinating on? Can you keep one another honest? Of course you can! Together, you are twice as strong!

7. Stop playing the victim card.

Why do we glorify being a victim of circumstance? Why do complainers get so many listening ears? There is nothing sexy or healthy about playing the victim, trust me.

Be your own hero instead. Be a warrior of peace. Be strong and tall and grateful for life. Stop the victim mindset and when it creeps in, just change it by telling yourself that you are in charge.

8. Kill the excuses. Abolish the distractions.

In order to do this, you must first know the definition of an excuse and a distraction. The dictionary definition says an excuse is “a reason put forward to conceal the real reason for an action.

Excuses and distractions build the walls of resistance, but only if you give them focus and attention. Put your focus and attention where it belongs: on the task at hand.

9. Maximize the small chunks of time.

You have got to manage your time well if you want to be a success. One good news is that you don’t need large chunks of time to get things done.

If you can’t dedicate an hour or two a day to something that matters to you, you can start with 15 minutes or 30 minutes a day, but for the long term, think about a fundamental shift in your lifestyle design. For now, use the 10-minute chunks everywhere you can find them.

10. Let the power of mantra guide you.

Mantras are positive affirmations you repeat to yourself over and over. Guided meditation can help you achieve this. You can even synchronize your breathing. In-breath will do the first half of the mantra and out breath the second half.

Some of my favorites are “If they can, so can I” and “I’ll do it now so I can reap the reward later.” Choose your own mantra and repeat it.

11. Turn a deaf ear to your lizard brain.

The inner voice is negative, it is your lizard brain, as Seth would tell us, and if you let it loose, it will destroy your mind with negativity. Stop listening to it by not focusing on it.

Recognize when you may be entering your lizard brain, it’s usually when you doubt your ability to get something done. Even if you don’t believe in yourself at first, keep repeating your positive mantra to quiet the negativity.

12. Visualize the end goal. See it in your mind’s eye.

Visualization is a powerful exercise that helps you focus on the end goal. It is a proven technique that kills procrastination and motivates you to high levels of success.

It takes a lot of focus and attention to seeing the end goal and how it can manifest itself in your life. Start with creating a vision board if you want to give this a full try.

13. Create enough pain to move you to action.

Pain moves you to action. It was pain that led me out of my corporate life and into running my own businesses. If you have enough pain, you will start doing. And if you told me that you wanted out of the corporate world but you are sitting around not taking any action, it’s because you are not in enough pain to take action.

So are you in pain from not doing what needs to be done? Let’s take weight loss. Are you in enough anguish from your weight and health problems to take action yet? If not, then can you creatively create more pain (yes I am asking you to create more pain in your comfortable state)?

14. Harness the fear and win.

Say no to fear. Fear is procrastination’s best ally so it’s bound to show up. Just don’t accept it. Don’t invite it in. Engage it in conversation to calm your nerves, to be in charge, to have control. If you can do this once, you can do it again and soon it becomes a habit.

Who hasn’t had a conversation with oneself? Why not make it a good one? In the privacy of your thoughts, ask yourself why you are procrastinating, what it is, is it fear, is it laziness, is it lack of knowledge? What is at your soft core? Listen to the whispers coming back. Then let your own inner guide help you push past the fear.

15. Cultivate self-discipline.

It’s either the pain of getting self-disciplined now or tasting the bitter pill of regret later. When put in that perspective, it is a quick decision. To translate it to action, create your own small habits that will build up your productivity.

Everyone is different. Cultivate at the pace what works for you, maybe an hour early in the morning, maybe a Sunday night ritual, maybe timing yourself, maybe working in complete isolation. Find that magic habit that works for you. That’s your self-discipline.

16. Make that deadline count.

Setting deadlines is easy to do and hard to keep. Nothing could be easier than putting a date on the calendar so how do you make it count if you hate deadlines? Put some repercussions in place.

Tell yourself that if you are not done by this date, you have to give up on something you really like. For me, the ultimate punishment would be my daily good tea. What do you want to give up if you don’t meet that deadline?

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17. Drop the perfectionism.

Perfectionism is not something to be proud of. It is a habit that holds you back from delivery results. Don’t mistake it with high quality. Of course you must delivery your highest work at the best quality, but perfection? Do you think that it even exists?

Have you ever achieved the state of perfectionism and been rewarded to the point that you now hold yourself to it every time? Learn to cure your perfectionism and move yourself to a steady state of taking action.

18. Reward yourself big every time.

We do not reward ourselves nearly enough. When you achieve a goal, any shape or size, especially one you have been procrastinating on for a long time, celebrate it! Buy yourself something wonderful. Give yourself a day off. Do something you rarely do for yourself. Look at your accomplishment with gratitude and joy.

It’s a big deal when you break through the barriers of procrastination. Congratulations are in order! How do you celebrate in style? I book a trip somewhere special and run off to practice more yoga.

We must all suffer one of two things: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret and disappointment. ~ Jim Rohn

What are you procrastinating on? Did you learn more about how to stop procrastinating by stopping here?

Get Confident in 21 Easy Steps


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7 Productivity Hacks You Could Be Using Right Now http://www.prolificliving.com/path-to-long-term-productivity/ http://www.prolificliving.com/path-to-long-term-productivity/#comments Sun, 06 Jul 2014 02:25:51 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=26970 Wait, is this your relationship with productivity? Admit it, you envy productive people. You keep telling yourself that you could be more productive if only you use your time better and smarter. You read books and blogs and listen to podcasts on productivity hacks. You know the drill by heart: Set goals, use a timer […]

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Wait, is this your relationship with productivity?

Admit it, you envy productive people. You keep telling yourself that you could be more productive if only you use your time better and smarter. You read books and blogs and listen to podcasts on productivity hacks. You know the drill by heart: Set goals, use a timer for uninterrupted focus, avoid distractions, focus on one task at a time, and just hustle after what you want. But when it’s late morning already, and you have not accomplished any of your to-do items even though you got up early and hustled to work.

You wonder to yourself when you will figure this productivity ‘thing’ out.

Here’s the problem: Your relationship with productivity is a forceful one.

You want to force productivity into your day, rather than, shall we say, integrate it? Forcing habits, routines, and ideas into ourselves fails every single time.

Why is this so hard to see this?

Because the failure is not immediate, it happens gradually. See, at first, when you force yourself to use a timer to complete a task, you will be successful at it. But it doesn’t “stick” and sooner or later, your older, stronger, and more established habits will swing you back to your natural rhythm. And you are back to wondering why productivity is so elusive, so out of reach for you.

Well, it isn’t. You can achieve it but first, improve our relationship with productivity.

Stop forcing productivity. Start integrating it instead.

Instead of forcing productivity into your life, choose to integrate it.

First, you need to understand the pieces of the puzzle that create a completely productive system for you.

I repeat the important keywords: For You!

Then integrate these pieces as small building blocks into your lifestyle, your habits, and your natural rhythms. In order to know what these building blocks are, you have to understand what is getting in the way of your productivity and what is enabling your productivity? Do you know that already?

Because sometimes, there are no outside forces, no deadlines and no pressures from others to get anything done. You need to drive yourself to results. You need to motivate yourself to be productive. And you need to do this every day, sometimes, multiple times a day, and it feels like a massive effort.

How do you make productivity flow into your days?

How do you make it your standard mode of operation, not something you need to strive for?

7 Productivity hacks you could be using right now

Yes, tools and apps and technology can make us more efficient, and sometimes enable lots of productivity too. We are not going into that here. We are taking the indirect approach to productivity. The only thing you need to put these productivity hacks to work is your decision to take them seriously.

If you have doubts that it won’t work, make a deal with yourself. Commit to doing them for only a week. If you are not massively productive at the end of that week, come back here and let me know. We’ll find you a new solution!

Now, the seven productivity hacks you could be doing now:

1. Empty the mind, focus the mind.

Professional sports athletes and dancers pump themselves up before a performance by visualization and meditation and affirmations and more techniques. In essence, they empty the mind clutter, they quiet the mind chatter, they put everything aside so they can focus singularly on the task at hand. First, you empty your mind, then you focus it. Do this by simply saying it out loud.

For instance, before writing your daily 1000 or 5000 words a day, you say: “I empty my mind of all chatter. I focus my mind on writing 5000 words now.” Repeat this mantra. Believe it. Get on board with it. Focus on it. Then and only then start your work.

2. Tackle the ugly monkey first. Then a big reward.

You’ve heard it but are you doing it? Eat the frog first thing in the morning. Attack the ugliest task first. One thing I’d add to that: put the ugly task or the frog on the calendar and treat it like a meeting. You can only do this if you’ve already done #1: Empty the mind, focus the mind.

And one more thing, give yourself a reward. Seriously, reward yourself like you would a child or a dog. Your own sense of accomplishment is a great reward but why not throw something else in the mix? I love and dread making my career videos. They take massive efforts of preparation, focus, creativity, attention, energy, and presence to create. I am at best exhausted for the rest of the day after doing just two.

But, but but BUT, I also feel the greatest sense of completion and accomplishment when I am done. Then comes reward time. I give myself downtime, movie time, or yoga time.

3. Exercise the body 30 minutes a day. Minimum.

yoga-beach
Look, I am not saying you can’t be productive without exercise. I am saying don’t be!

Your body’s health and happiness is directly related to your productivity and throughput.

When you are sick, you are not doing so hot on the productivity scale. To avoid using sick time, stick to any exercise routine that works for you but do 30 minutes minimum per day. Every Single Day!

Exercise is one of those productivity hacks that doesn’t make sense at first because it feels like you are taking time out from work but in fact, you are getting time back: with more energy, more focus, better health and higher creativity.

If you are not doing this, you are sabotaging your every chance at massive productivity and subsequently, massive success. Exercise clears the mind. Exercise rejuvenates the body. Exercise helps with digestion and perspiration is a natural purifier and detoxifier. Exercise combats countless health problems. Exercise builds your confidence. Exercise heals and strengthens the body. Exercise controls your weight. Exercise improves your mood and kicks in your creativity. Exercise gives you time to connect with your body and your mind.

The result: A more productive you!

4. Do nothing first, then do everything: Meditation.

If you are too busy to meditate 20 minutes a day, a zen master once said, then meditate for an hour. Meditation, like exercise, gives you time back and the quality of the time that you get back from meditating as little as 10 minutes a day is much higher than if you were to skip this. See, you don’t need hours and hours of time to be massively productive.

You need only to increase your level and quality of productivity during the time that you have. Meditation is an excellent tool to help you achieve this.

These guided meditation tracks have been my go-to source of meditation for several years now, and I can’t recommend them enough. Do it for the sake of productivity and you may just fall in love with meditation in the process.

5. Streamline the process: Stick to one single tool.

You don’t need more tools and apps and processes to be more productive. It’s not a linear process. You need to eliminate and in fact, I suggest sticking to a single method.

If you are following Getting Things Done by David Allen, then stick to just that system. If you are trying a new app, then use only that app.

If you are following the Pomodoro Technique, then stick to that.

Use one single system or app or tool for a period of 2 weeks, measure results, then move on to another if you are not happy or continue using that system if it works.

6. Watch what you put in your mouth: Eat a high-energy inducing diet.

Your diet couldn’t be more instrumental to your productivity. If you live on caffeine, sodas, junk foods and fast foods, you are willingly handing over hours of power productivity over to your body so it can digest and deal with the “food”.

Think how productive you feel after a heavy lunch or after a day or two of eating poorly? Think how much effort it takes to just focus when you are tired and dizzy from a hangover? Note: I’ve never had one but I’ve observed a few who did! Not pretty!

Now compare this to how productive you feel after a healthy meal, a green juice or a raw salad? If you’ve never had a green juice, grab The Healthy Juicer’s Bible and add juicing to your life, if only for the increased energy. Change your diet if you want to super charge your productivity. Simple as that.

7. Get the rest your body needs: More Sleep, not less!

Are you obsessed with getting less sleep so you can secretly brag about it? The person who sleeps 4 hours a night is not a hero. Sleep loss can lead to serious health issues, loss of focus, and according to WebMd, it dumbs you down! Ouch!

Don’t get me wrong. I’ve tried every hack to sleep less over the years, and now that I am getting enough sleep, my productivity has doubled! Doubled!! I love my waking hours just like you, and yes, I do wish that we needed less sleep so we could participate longer hours in life, but that’s not up to us to change, and if you force yourself to sleep less, it catches up sooner or later.

Commit to getting enough sleep and be proud of it. And trust the rested happy body to give back with focus and productivity.

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10 productivity blogs you should be reading.

Here’s 10 great productivity blogs with a link to one of their best articles. Read and grow your own productivity:

  1. Getting Things Done
  2. A Year of Productivity
  3. Productivityist
  4. Productivity501
  5. Dumb Little Man
  6. Change Your Thoughts
  7. Smarter Strategies
  8. Steve Pavlina
  9. Lifehack.org
  10. Prolific Living

Ready to go from procrastination to productivity?

These hacks are the path to your long-term sustainable productivity. You can break the cycles of procrastination, rewire your brain, release old patterns and lay the groundwork for a new cycle: more productivity. Now if you can’t remember all the details, just know the single secret to your long term productivity.

Everything else is secondary and pales in comparison. This one is the one non-negotiable in your list. This is the one thing you cannot afford to sacrifice when things get too busy and when you are too tired and too preoccupied.

This is the only thing you will definitely regret if you overlook it long enough. If I must say it in a Shakespearean tongue, then I will:

If thou wishes to be a productive human being, thou canst neglect thy health! ~ Prolific Living

Why do it alone? Stop being a hero. Work with an expert.

If you have done all of these productivity hacks, and you are still having trouble integrating productivity into your life, stop losing more time, and start working with a productivity expert or coach to build a system that works for you. I had only 6 weeks to write, edit, layout and turn in a 40,000 word manuscript to my publishers for my first book.

Even though my specific project – in this case, turning in a book to publishers – may be unique, I followed a productivity and results-oriented system that can be replicated and applied to other projects, and I gladly share this and other productivity tools that have served me well with my clients. Interested in super charging your own productivity? Apply to my coaching program here.

Don’t leave yet! Share your single best productivity secret in the comments below.

Get Confident in 21 Easy Steps


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The Importance of Being Punctual http://www.prolificliving.com/the-importance-of-being-punctual/ http://www.prolificliving.com/the-importance-of-being-punctual/#comments Mon, 30 Jun 2014 14:00:47 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=16644 Is that a real emergency or just a poor excuse? Person A: I am so sorry I am late. I was stuck in traffic. Person B: No kidding. Cause, ya know, I chartered a plane to get here! I am so tempted to respond this way to every Person A who has been notoriously late […]

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Is that a real emergency or just a poor excuse?

Person A: I am so sorry I am late. I was stuck in traffic.
Person B: No kidding. Cause, ya know, I chartered a plane to get here!

I am so tempted to respond this way to every Person A who has been notoriously late to a meeting with me and arrives blurting out this ridiculous excuse. They may be friends, family, guests, co-worker, clients, or perfect strangers, it matters little who they are because tardy is a serious lack of respect.

Am I the only one left who feels this way about punctuality and tardiness? Please say it isn’t so.

Has our culture written off the importance of being punctual as insignificant and inconsequential?

Can we not have confidence enough to politely ask that people do us the courtesy to simply be on time?

Can we not have enough respect for the other person’s time and effort to show up at the hour that we said we would?

Are we really that incapable of handling ourselves and managing our time as adults with all gadgets of technology known to man?

The dreaded truth: what it really means to be late …

Let me dispel a few preconceived notions about being late. This quiet truth deserves a voice and it rarely gets heard.

Being late …

  • … does not make you an important or special person. Whoever you are doesn’t reserve you the right to be late.
  • … late once or twice in your life may be unavoidable but being late consistently makes you unreliable.
  • … says you clearly do not respect the other person’s time, only yours.
  • … affects your boss’s impression of you and damages your upward mobility at the company.
  • … consistently implies you are rude and lack all consideration and respect for the other person as well as for the commitment you made.

Your apologies for being late, however profuse and sincere, do not excuse the tardy. I am not saying not to apologize, I am saying not to be late!

Your reasons for being late insult the other person’s intelligence.

Let’s state the obvious here: Emergencies are exempt from the list above. Emergency, however, is defined as an unavoidable and uncontrollable situation which puts you in a position that makes it impossible to comply with your original plans because something more important has arisen at the last minute.

No, that is not an emergency!

The short list below shows examples of what is not an emergency, and rather results from lack of planning and a personal choice:

  • You spill coffee (or any beverage) on yourself on your way out the door.
  • Your children making you late. For whatever reason.
  • You have an argument with your spouse, your partner, your neighbor and then you are late.
  • Your dog or cat or other four-legged friend does something to make you late. Anything!
  • You answer an unexpected call which runs over and makes you late.
  • You ‘lose track of time’ and are thereby,  you guessed it, late.
  • You forget altogether about the appointment and are embarrassingly late.
  • You are “stuck” in ‘unavoidable’ traffic or re-routed due to construction routes.

The last one is my pet peeve. Calculating the distance between two points takes simple thinking. The two tools you need are access to Google and a device that tells time.

If you have never traveled that route and are not familiar with traffic patterns, give yourself at least 15 extra minutes on top of what Google maps or your GPS dictates.

Traffic is not a new phenomena in our lives. You can manage extremely well with minimal planning. Traffic does not control you, excuse you, make you late or hold you back. You do. Be smart, be responsible, and plan around it!

But some days, life has other plans and hands you a real emergency such as:

  • Your punctual train or public transportation is delayed because of unforeseen circumstances.
  • You have an accident or a punctured tire while in transit.
  • You become ill and unable to go the meeting – in which case you will be a no-show not just late.
  • Someone you care for becomes ill and needs your help.

May none of these real emergencies ever detain you. May you be healthy and outside the emergency zone at all times. But if they do, please immediately contact the other person and let them know. Communication is consideration when emergencies arise.

Reminder: You can still grab The Positive Affirmations for Life program with more than 4 hours of audio affirmations for 7 life situations that impact your happiness and success the most.

11 reasons why it pays to be punctual in life

Embracing punctuality is more than just an admirable trait; it introduces you to a brand new way of living that you will love! You feel content and happy with yourself rather than frustrated and guilty.

Why is the importance of being punctual in life anyway if there are far too many Person A types around.

Because it is the right thing to do – but I shall give you 11 more reasons just to be safe.

The best motivator I can give you is that if you are a conscientious Person A, being late adds unnecessary stress to your life and breaking the habit removes it.

Below are 11 more reasons why punctuality matters in a professional world among smart people:

  1. You show respect for the Person B in your life.
  2. You respect yourself enough to keep your word.
  3. You prove that you can be trustworthy.
  4. You are appreciated for being on time.
  5. You are regarded as a reliable person.
  6. You are seen as a professional.
  7. You are taken seriously and on your word.
  8. You build a strong reputation for your character.
  9. You open doors and attract more opportunities to yourself.
  10. You eliminate stress from your life by removing the anxiety of being late.
  11. You do the right thing and feel good about it.

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What you should do when someone is late?

You have choices as in all things in life. The most popular choice is to never mention it, to be flexible with people’s schedules, and to convince yourself it’s no big deal and your time doesn’t matter all that much. After all, what’s a few minutes here and there?

Or (can you tell this is my recommendation?) you could bring it up gently once, make the point, request that they respect your time next time. If it happens again in the future, know that you have a choice about interacting with that person.

You cannot change any one except yourself but a kind reminder in a gentle tone will get the message across. Well, most of the time!

If you are on the receiving side of this, I would encourage you to see it from the other person’s point of view. Your time is just as valuable as theirs, regardless of your life circumstance.

In response to Person A being late, you could say:

John/Jill/honey/bro/sis/you, I just wanted to let you know that I also went through a lot of effort to be here on time and I still had to wait 10 (or more) minutes for you. I hope that this will not happen again in our future meetings.

Be polite, be sincere, be kind but be honest and have these tougher conversations for more rewarding relationships in the future.

If the late person continues to disrespect your time and ignores your hints, it may just be a strong sign to let go of the relationship or stop living up to their expectations.

We make our choices in a free world about lifestyle, commitments, priorities, and family.

If we are responsible individuals, we will only take on as much as we can handle and handle that which we take on very well.

If we are reliable individuals, we will meet our commitments to others or break the commitment professionally if we cannot make it.

If we are smart individuals, we will prioritize our activities.

And if we are considerate individuals, we will plan ahead, show up early and set an example to follow.

Have you seen The Birdcage? One of my favorite movies of all time, hilarious even on the 5th watch. In it, a dialogue takes place between Agador and Amand. When Agador, the house chef, announces that dinner is served as it is 8 o’clock, Amand, the party host, responds: “Yeah well, 8 o’clock – that means 8:15, 8:30, quarter to 9!” Agador scratches his head as he heads back to the kitchen.

Robin Williams may be hilarious in his role as Amand but he is wrong in this instance!

8 o’clock means 8 o’clock unless appended with a clause, such as “I don’t really mean 8 sharp.“, “8 is fine but we’ll be at least 10 minutes late.” or  “We meet 8ish, give or take a few minutes.” Otherwise, 8 o’clock it is, baby. Be there or be square!

8 things you can do to heal your own tardiness

Listen, being late is not in your DNA. It’s not something you “inherit” from your family. It is not a characteristic trait. It is just a good habit and like all habits, it can be broken or preserved. It is a matter of personal choice and priority. Make the right one every time!

The real problem with being constantly late is that it makes you stressed and anxious. Why add this pressure to your life when you can live with inner peace? There is a better way to live than chasing the clock every day from too many commitments, too much activity and too many promises. So I put together a short guide for you if you find yourself constantly late, and if you swear it is “impossible for me to be on time!” – first of all, I disagree, it is very much possible. Here’s 8 things that can heal your tardiness:

  1. Simplify your life by thinking about why you are doing something before committing.
  2. Say no more often. “No, I’m afraid I can’t take that on right now, thanks for asking though!”
  3. Give yourself more wiggle room in between appointments.
  4. Be aware of your body rhythms. If you are not a morning person, don’t keep making morning appointments.
  5. Stop thinking of yourself as a perpetually late person. You can change your habits if you so decide.
  6. Aim to arrive 10 minutes early for every appointment for a week.
  7. Apologize if you are late and ask if there is anything you can do to make it up to the other person.
  8. Celebrate your success when you have been on time for 3 times in a row. Then repeat for 3 more times.

With these actionable tips, you may find it easier to develop your own punctuality even for the first time in your life. You are not ‘afflicted’ with tardiness. Your mind has the power to train and become the most punctual person you ever know. And when that happens, you may be sending this article to your friends and family, asking if they could please observe more punctuality in their appointments with you.

In fact, share this article with at least one friend that is ‘suffering from the tardiness syndrome’ and help make this a more punctual world! Would you?

If I have not stirred the pot with this one, I am lucky. Really, tell me, is it just me being so persistent on punctuality and respecting other people’s time, including the very minutes? Do you make an effort to show up on time? Do you feel indifferent about being on time or being late? Please share your thoughts!

Get Confident in 21 Easy Steps


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19 Common Errors in the English Language that You Must Avoid http://www.prolificliving.com/19-errors-to-avoid-in-your-use-of-the-english-language/ http://www.prolificliving.com/19-errors-to-avoid-in-your-use-of-the-english-language/#comments Sat, 21 Jun 2014 16:20:10 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=13505 You Idiot!: My 7th grade lesson on the English language “You idiot” might have been one of the first phrases I learned in English. It was not necessarily directed at me (at least, not that time!). It was often directed at the 11-year old boy sitting next to me in class in Izmir, Turkey. It […]

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You Idiot!: My 7th grade lesson on the English language

You idiot” might have been one of the first phrases I learned in English.

errors in the english langauge

It was not necessarily directed at me (at least, not that time!). It was often directed at the 11-year old boy sitting next to me in class in Izmir, Turkey. It came loud and clear from our disgruntled British teacher. He was almost always disgruntled, poor man, not to mention visibly hurt when we mangled his perfect language.

Brute force teaching methods for avoiding errors in the English language can be marvelously effective. I have never lost that sense of respect and responsibility toward the English language.

I started to learn English at the age of 12 in Ankara, Turkey. My mother tongue is Farsi. I had to take a year of Arabic while living in Iran. The move to Turkey made it imperative that I learn Turkish fast for survival. If I count the German lessons during the same school year, English was the fourth language that I started learning.

So you see, English is not my first language by any stretch!

I also did not go on to major (or minor) in English. A part of me wishes that I had. I studied Engineering instead and went to (gasp!) public schools all the way.

Yet I have never ever used any of this as an excuse or a weaknesses when it comes to proper use of the English language.

Instead I use my powerful story to show that it is critical for all of us, particularly those of us living in English speaking countries, to be able to speak and write using proper and polished English.

And to be able to master the language, it helps to have a positive attitude towards it. It helps to desire to learn it, to excel at it, to become intimately familiar with one of the greatest modern languages of our time.

So what if English is not your first language?

English is not an easy language to learn, I admit.

In fact, it’s bloody hard! Alright?

English may be easy enough to get started and communicate the basics, sure, so is every language under the sun. But it can take many long years for your ears and mouth to learn all the wacky expressions and phrases, all the myriads of ways of using the language.

The road to achieving excellent flawless writing skills is long and arduous.

But you can learn to follow the fundamental basics of English in your daily use of it. The simple application of basic grammar and spelling are becoming more the exception than the rule but it doesn’t mean the incorrect way of doing it is ever EVER correct.

19 Common Errors in the English Language You Must Avoid

So without further ado, let’s talk about errors in the english language that you should avoid. I implore you to remember these 19 Significant and Simple rules every time you put pen to paper or finger to keyboard:

1. its vs. it’s

its = a possessive pronoun. Examples would be: The puppy played with its toy. The computer and its power supply are for sale. Do you know whether my car needs its own inspection?

it’s = contraction of it is. Examples would be: It’s much too hot in July. I think it’s going to rain. I doubt it’s ever going to be the same.

Easy reminder: You can replace it’s with it is every time and re-read your sentence for meaning.

2. there vs. their vs. they’re

there =an adverb, in or at that place. There is only one lemon left. There should be an easier way to do this. I hope you don’t go there.

their=a possessive pronoun. Their mansion is beautiful. Their olive trees make me dream of Italy. Their baby cries a lot.

they’re=contraction of they are. They’re simply stunning. They’re going to perform for us. Don’t act as if they’re here already!

Easy reminder: You can replace they’re with they are every time and re-read your sentence for meaning.

3. lose vs. loose

lose = a verb, to come to be without something; to suffer the loss of something. I do not wish to lose more weight. I was about to lose my ear ring. She cannot stand the thought of losing him.

loose=an adjective, free or released from attachment; not bound together; not strict. My belt is very loose around my waist. She likes to wear her hair loose and free.That is a loose interpretation of our document.

Easy reminder= Lose has come to be without its extra “o”!!!

4. whose vs. who’s

whose= possessive form of who. Whose plans are these? Whose money did he take? Do you know whose boat we saw the other day?
who’s= a contraction for who is.
Who’s going to clean all this mess? She was wondering who’s going to dance with her. Do we need to tell them who’s going to be there?

Easy reminder: You can replace who’s with who is every time and see if it makes sense.

5. your vs. you’re

your=possessive pronoun. Your job is very exciting. I wish I were in your shoes. Did you tell me your secret yet?
you’re=contraction for you are. You’re
going to amaze them with your performance.I want you to know how much you’re delivering for us. Perhaps you’re about to get started?

Easy reminder: You can replace you’re with you are every time and see if it makes sense.

6. write and right.

write=verb, to express in writing. I want to learn how to write well. Did you write this? Write a letter to Mom
right=adjective, correct, justified, suitable, opposite of left. The little boy knew right versus wrong. It’s the right way to do things. I meant to write this for you right away.

7. me vs. I

The best explanation for this rule is here; nonetheless here is a simple explanation:

I=subject. Me=object. Which one to use when?

Let’s learn by example:
1. This would be wrong: They are going to send my wife and I a package.
Why? The rule is that the sentence should make sense if you remove the person and preceding the I. So in our case:
They are going to send I a package. This is obviously wrong. It should be: They are going to send me a package.

2.This would be wrong: Jim and me are going to the beach.
Why? Remove Jim and. In this case, also adjust the verb to match single form of first person. Then re-read the sentence:
Me am going to the beach. This is also obviously wrong. It should be: Jim and I are going to the beach.

3. This would be wrong: The best one is sent to Ashley and I.
Easy way to remember this is that I does not follow a verb. I should always make sense if it is followed by a verb.
Correct form would be The best one is sent to Ashley and me.

I am rather pleased to learn that my favorite phrase, “it is she“, upon answering the phone has formal correctness on its side but is rather antiquated

8. effect and affect

effect=noun, produced by a cause; a result. The effect of your leadership is visible here. The rules are in effect as of today. What if the change has no effect?

affect=verb, to act on; to produce a chance. She affected all of us with her speech.The cold weather affected my plants last night.I let the movie affect me deeply.

9. accept vs. except

accept=verb, to take or receive. I accept the challenge. They accepted the generous gift. Why not accept our flaws and still love ourselves?
except=preposition, excluding, save, but.
 So it will never follow a subject such as I, they, we.

Everyone except me decided to go. Do anything you can to please her except calling her. Except for her attitude, I think she is ideal.

10. gone vs. went

“Went” is the past tense of the verb to go whereas “gone” is the past participle. Use them correctly.

Correct: I went to the store. I should have gone to the open market instead.
Incorrect: I should’ve went somewhere!

11. the apostrophe disaster for plural form

The most common error is to put apostrophe where apostrophe has no business. When you form a plural for nouns, there is no need whatsoever to add an apostrophe.

These are all wrong forms of plural nouns = Cat’s, Dog’s, Lot’s (not even a word), ABC’s,
Plural forms in most cases are made by simply adding an ‘s’ to the singular form = Cats, Dogs, lots, ABCs.

Even though the use of apostrophe before an S in an acronym is almost universal when you make it plural, it is still incorrect.

12. ending sentences with preposition

It has also become common to use prepositions inappropriately or to end phrases and questions with prepositions.
Examples of some prepositions: at, of, with, in.

Wrong: Where are we at with our plans? Where is the movie theater at?
Correct: Where are we with our plans? Where is the movie theater?

When asking about the location of a place, “at” should not be used after “where.”

Note: Don’t confuse phrasal verbs which make up a huge category in English language and are best described here. For instance, a preposition always is used in the phrase “to hang out” (where did you want to hang out?) and the verb wouldn’t make sense without this preposition.

13. the dangling participle

The dangling participle can seriously change the flow and meaning of your writing. It is important to make sure we qualify the intended words.

Examples:
Misinterpreted: Cooking on the stove, she decided it was time to turn the vegetables.
It sounds as though she was being cooked on the stove herself.
Better: She decided it was time to turn the vegetables which were cooking on the stove.

Misinterpreted: Sunburned and dehydrated, mom decided it was time for the children to go into the house.
It sounds as though the Mom is sunburned and dehydrated.
Better: Mom decided it was time for the children, who were sunburned and dehydrated, to go into the house.

14. could of vs. could have

This is very simple. I’m afraid “could of” is not even a phrase. It is often misused perhaps because it is phonetically so close to “could have
I wonder if I could have majored in English.

15. here vs. hear

here=adverb, in this place; in this spot. I am here and planning to stay. I wish you were here. It is here in this place that we met.
hear=verb, to be within earshot; to perceive by ear.
I hear you. We do not want to hear the policies one more time. If only she heard what he had to say!

Easy reminder: Here is There with a preceding T and the two are almost opposites so think of them in a pair.

16. irregardless vs. regardless

This is very simple also. I’m afraid “irregardless” has never and will never be a valid word. It is completely made up. It’s not going to join the ranks of words regardless of what we do!

17. then vs. than

then=adverb, at the time; immediately or soon afterward. I will eat; then I will go. He shall see you then. If you want to be there by then, you had better hurry.
than=used after comparative adjectives. He is taller than she is. I wonder how much more than this I can pay. Will you please speak louder than them?

18. to vs. too vs. two

to=preposition. If you want me to do this, I will. You should be prepared to go.
too=adverb, also. They want to perform too. She too has one. So will they see you too?
two=noun, one plus one. I want you two to decide amongst yourselves.If only the two of them could see you.How long before you two grow up?

19. were vs. where vs. we’re

were=past tense of verb to be. If I were a rich girl, I would live in Italy. You were happier then. I think they were going to stay.
where=adverb, in or at what place. Where were you last night? Where can we go from here? Where in this world did my dog disappear?
we’re=contraction of we are. We’re going to be famous. We’re not there yet. We’re about to make a huge difference.

The Angry Flower take on Errors in the English Language

If you think me harsh, let Bob’s Angry Flower tell it to you straight:
errors in the english language

8 Easy to Implement Suggestions to Avoid English Language Pitfalls

Well, my friends, this is by no means a comprehensive list. This is just a list of most common errors which I see and find easiest to avoid. Writing and learning has never been easier. We are a click away from a dictionary or thesaurus and all other English language resources all over the web. I think as humans, we all err at some point or another. The goal is not to become infallible. The goal is to become aware and conscious of how we use the English language and to strive to be the absolute best we can be.

In my parting thoughts, I leave you with 8 quick suggestions that can help you avoid these terrible pitfalls:

  1. Proofread your writing. Twice.
  2. Proofread it three times if you are going to publish it anywhere.
  3. Have a friend or a peer proof read it with a critical eye for oversights and errors.
  4. Use a dictionary and thesaurus when in doubt.
  5. Train your spell checker to kick in before you send or publish anything.
  6. For long documents, walk away from them for a little while and come back with a fresh mind and a critical eye.
  7. Find a gentle way to tell others when you catch an error. Just do it in private.
  8. Always be open to feedback and receive it with kindness.

Let us not allow poor writing skills overshadow our brilliant potential.
Let us not succumb to the everyday disasters in the language by just following the crowd.
Let us show love and care about the way the English language is spoken and written.
Let us preserve the beauty of the English language.

What to do next about all this language stuff …

First, grab a copy of Empower Your Writing, a manifesto that I published on writing well.

Then, share one single thought about English. Do you like it? Do you hate it? Is there a common error that gets on your last nerve? Tell us in the comments.

Get Confident in 21 Easy Steps



Knowing that irony has a sense of humor, I would not be surprised if you caught an error here even after I proofread it 5 times! Hey, feel free to tell me.

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How to Go from Fear to Motivation with 22 Radical Thoughts http://www.prolificliving.com/from-fear-to-motivation-in-22-radical-thoughts/ http://www.prolificliving.com/from-fear-to-motivation-in-22-radical-thoughts/#comments Sun, 15 Jun 2014 21:40:27 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=17809 Going from Fear to Motivation with a Simple Shift My motivation is insanely out of control lately. Something has switched inside after I dropped my negative thoughts and adopted these 22 radical thoughts that I share here. I am basking in the glorious aftermath of living on the other side of fear: in a constant state […]

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Going from Fear to Motivation with a Simple Shift

My motivation is insanely out of control lately. Something has switched inside after I dropped my negative thoughts and adopted these 22 radical thoughts that I share here. I am basking in the glorious aftermath of living on the other side of fear: in a constant state of motivation. Think it’s too good to be true? So did I, but so glad I was wrong!

positive-light

Lately, my energy is to the roof. My focus is laser sharp. My productivity is highest it’s ever been. I feel a great sense of urgency and nobody can talk me out of the work I need to do.

I can’t stand the idea of resting and relaxing for a minute longer than necessary. I cannot keep count of all the ideas running through my head and what’s more, I can smell no fear in pursuing every single one of them.

No fear. Not anymore. I am done being scared. I am done making decisions with fear. I am finished half-committing to my goals. I am done fooling around with my dreams. What about you?

I’ve turned a corner and I am not looking back. It happened when I woke up one day only to realize I have been chasing an empty dream, an illusion of happiness, and a mere shadow of success. Have you turned that corner yet?

Failure is grand. Fear of failure a complete waste of time.

I’ve had it with fear of failure. I am weary of thoughts of failure, anticipation of failure, worries of failure and they have nothing to do with failure itself. Failure itself has been really good to me in life. In hindsight, of course – I was never that smart when it first knocked me off my feet.

Failure taught me whom to trust. Failure showed me the true colors of friends. Failure proved what I am not willing to give up in life. Failure brought my values to light. Failure opened doors which always led to better success. Failure connected me with better opportunities, brighter outcomes and greater results.

You see, failure has been so good to me and I bet it’s been really good to you too.

Fear of failure on the other hand has been nothing but a waste of precious time.

Enough already!

So you fail. Great. You tried something. You learned something. You risked something. In fact, who are you not to fail? Whoever achieved greatness without it?

Fail.

Fail again.

Fail often.

Fail shamelessly and proudly.

Fail until you get it out of the way so you make room for nothing but success. Success on your terms, in your words, by your definition.

Fear of success, anyone?

But then there is another fear lurking around. Another one you rarely hear about. The fear of massive success, of the incredible realization of your wildest ideas and your greatest desires.

You may crave success badly but tell me, do you not foster any fear from realizing your truest and greatest potential?

Do you not fear the thought of influencing people with your work, of touching the lives of hundreds or thousands of other human beings, of being a leader, a role model, an inspiration for others to follow?

Success is as a scary beast as failure – and both of these fears, you must conquer before you can step out of your mediocre achievements and do something really great with your life.

That’s where motivation comes in. Tap into yours. You are the source for your own motivation, you just need to wake it up! True motivation comes from within, this seemingly infinite well of motivation that rises from the pit of your belly and refuses to leave until you have taken notice of it. Tell me you have felt that before.

If yes, great. If no, then you are not listening. You are not hearing yourself. You are not following the rhythms of your heart. So let’s change that around with these 22 radical thoughts to help you move from fear to motivation.

From Fear to Motivation: 22 Radical Thoughts

You can start right here, right now. I will start all over with you too. First change the thoughts, then watch the actions follow suit.

  1. Get vigilant. End the passive cycles.
  2. Be awake at the wheel of your life.
  3. Fight complacence. Fight it hard.
  4. Reject boredom at the door. Never let it in. Not for a second.
  5. Be madly in love with your life.
  6. Be madly in love with you. That’s right. Let them call it vanity or selfishness. I call it the first rule of true happiness.
  7. Find your purpose. Your real true purpose. If you can’t find it right away, please for heaven’s sake, don’t give up. It took me over two decades to find mine.
  8. Find some ounce of meaning in what you do during the day. Please find a way to make this happen for you.
  9. Stop sacrificing for others so much. Giving is fine. Sacrificing no!
  10. Do something – anything – just for yourself. It takes knowing yourself to do something for yourself. Maybe do that first.
  11. Remember to value the person you see in the mirror. It is the one person who stays with you through thick and thin, in loneliness and in the crowds, in darkness and in light. Hear me again: the only person! Make friends with yourself. Find solitude, not emptiness, in your own company.
  12. Listen to no one who dares tell you what you can or cannot do. Turn a deaf ear to naysayers. Who are they to set limits for you and judge your potential? Who are they to judge your capacity for success or your tolerance for failure?
  13. Stop abusing your body with alcohol and drugs and smoking. Are you not intoxicated enough on your raw health, on your life, on your freedom to living on your terms? Do you think you are invincible against the disasters awaiting you from abuse?
  14. Stop blaming the industries, your parents, your children, your teachers, or the circumstances or the culture for your troubles. They don’t care and they shouldn’t. You should. Your life is in your own hands. It always has been.
  15. Choose to see only the radically positive light in your life.
  16. Take a risk. Not a stupid risk. Take responsible calculated risks to find out where your limits and boundaries lie. Then up the ante. Every day.
  17. Step out of the boxes of society. In fact, crush the box altogether and rebuild it. Build your own box. In your own shape. Your own dimensions. Make it your art . Let it be your brand and your identity.
  18. Live your motto. Live your values — and only yours. Let others’ values be just that – their values. And let their limitations be theirs too.
  19. Never be a copycat. Try authenticity. Try originality. Try being exactly who you are meant to be. What worked for the massively successful individuals may not work for you.
  20. Be different but essentially, be yourself, in fact, be the best version of you.
  21. Be radically uncommon – but be smart, responsible, kind, sincere and genuine at the same time. Yes, it is possible to be all of that and massively successful to boot.
  22. Be kind to yourself. This process takes time and you are worth every minute. Be kind. Believe. Don’t give up. Have patience.

Yoga headstand meditation

The Mantra for Staying Motivated Daily

A mantra is a phrase or several phrases that you repeat to yourself to make thoughts and habits stick. Here’s a mantra for staying motivated. Just say to yourself:

  • Today is the day that I drop the heavy weight of doubts and fears, bury them deep under the ground and take the rest of the journey without them.
  • Today is the day that I take my dreams seriously (but myself not so much!).
  • Today is the day that I make no exceptions to my values but plenty of room for failure, should it wish to show up.
  • Today is the day that I refuse to touch any endeavor unless it is with my absolute best effort. Tomorrow, I will raise the bar higher.

If you like this post, check out my Kindle book: The 8 Pillars of Motivation.

Get Confident in 21 Easy Steps


Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on Nov 4th, 2010 on Prolific Living. It has now been revamped, revised, and updated with fresh new content. Enjoy and spread the word!

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8 Little-known Corporate Career Mistakes You Must Avoid http://www.prolificliving.com/top-8-mistakes-of-my-corporate-career-and-how-to-avoid-them/ http://www.prolificliving.com/top-8-mistakes-of-my-corporate-career-and-how-to-avoid-them/#comments Mon, 09 Jun 2014 04:35:06 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=25958 They didn’t warn you about this at your Corporate 101 Class? Of course that’s a joke. There’s no Corporate 101. There is no basic training about mistakes you must avoid if you want to succeed at your job. There is no place to come clean with your corporate career mistakes and start over. There is […]

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corporate-career-mistakes

They didn’t warn you about this at your Corporate 101 Class?

Of course that’s a joke. There’s no Corporate 101. There is no basic training about mistakes you must avoid if you want to succeed at your job.

There is no place to come clean with your corporate career mistakes and start over.

There is learning by experience and learning by being an insider. Or not learning until it’s too late!

In the early years of my 12 year career, I went down a lot of dark alleys; I came up to a lot of dead-ends and I turned to a lot of wrong people; I believed a lot of rubbish and I made a lot of corporate career mistakes and what I learned is this:

You can accept your mistakes; you can learn from them; you can move on from them but you never want to make them in vain.

You must learn from your mistakes once you have made them.

Now what would be even better is to avoid your mistakes in the first place!

Reminder: Did you know we have a step-by-step course here to teach you everything you need for getting recognized, getting promoted and creating your dream career at your job?

Your situation is not that unique.

While no two companies are identical and no two employees are the same, an uncanny similarity runs across a large portion of corporations and cultures.

So these 8 corporate career facts I daresay apply across the board. No matter how unique you think you may be, you will likely find relevance here to your job situation.

Warning: You may find my tone harsh and negative here. My intent is to be clear. Plus reality bites, direct experience speaks volumes and the experiences you will read about here are not singular as I watched many of my colleagues and clients share a similar path in their own journey of corporate career mistakes. So pay attention and don’t be next!

Career Fact #1: Top-notch industry certifications do not necessarily get you a promotion, more money, or even credibility.

The myth goes like this: If you get certified in your industry or your niche, you are suddenly rewarded by your company.

While it does “depend” on company policy, even that is not enforceable and can change.

After earning two electrical engineering degrees, I went for a hard-core certification called the CCIE that only 7000 people in the world held it at the time – yeah, I thought it was special. It virtually guaranteed paths to recognition and compensation adjustment from my grossly-underpaid state at my job.

As soon as I got certified, the powers that be changed the rules and I had to shamefully beg for the promotion and raise for two years.

Years later, I went for another certification called the PMP because, as you see, I never lost faith in the myth. This one hardly brought me any more recognition than the first.

Bottom line is this: Ask yourself why you want to get certified and if it is really imperative to you doing a good job at work and advancing? What do those acronyms mean anyway and whom are you trying to impress, and is it even worthy to spend your time doing something impressive rather than something useful?

Don’t go with the hype on this one. Focus on what really matters.

Career Fact #2: You will have to ask for a raise and a promotion. Loud and clear. More than once.

I was terrified of asking for a raise and promotion but that was before I understood the secret corporate code on how to do it right. And that’s when the raises and promotions started coming – when I asked for them the right way.

I used to subscribe to the false theory that if you work hard enough, you will indeed be rewarded.

This, my dear reader, is naiveté talking, not reality.

It does not matter how hard you work, how many nights and weekends you put in, and how many hours on top of your average peers you contribute to a project, this does not necessarily promise you a higher pay, advancement, or larger bonus.

You need to clearly identify the important tasks to your management and leadership and understand the impact and the visibility of those, and focus your energy there, not everywhere.

You must ask for what you are worth. It does not land on your lap out of the goodness of anyone’s heart.

Career Fact #3: Executive leadership makes decisions to please shareholder interest, not yours.

People forget that the corporation is not there for them; it is there to answer to its shareholders.

Let this one sink in because it bites but it’s true. True leadership is – as it should be – the magnet that holds a mission and a vision together, and without it, things begin to disintegrate from within.

Companies learn this lesson the hard way but you don’t have to. Don’t expect the executive leadership to do right by you. They may consider what is in the best interest of the employees but they have shareholders to answer to first.

If they don’t make decisions that resonate with your core values, think twice before working at this company.

At least, you now know where the motive resides next time you hear a lousy decision from the top.

Career Fact #4: The Human Resources (HR) is not there to protect you, dear one. Their only job is to protect the company.

First of all, if you can, avoid HR – Human Resources – altogether, not because you want to keep the mishaps to yourself but because they are of no help in general. They will not act in your interest and they will not solve your problem because they do not care about you. HR is there to protect the company.

Disagree with this all you want; I know I did it when I first heard it. Seek a mentor or trusted leader instead for advice, and make sure they are outside your direct chain of command.

Alas, it’s true: HR simply protects the corporation’s interests. Not yours.

No matter what your story may be, the decisions made by the HR will likely not be in your favor and you will be left with larger problems to solve as a result.

Your issues may very well be valid, but think twice before running to HR and did I mention: they protect the company first and foremost.

Career Fact #5: You do not need to do everything they ask you in order to be rewarded, recognized and raised high.

I used to do it all; everything they asked me to do, I would do with my head down and my pride high. Then I realized that I was yet again being an idiot about the way things work.

First of all, most of my work was needless busy work, and second of all, very little of it mattered during performance period. Guess when I had my best, most amazing performance ratings? During the periods when I worked the least hours but only on the most effective projects and activities. (Yes, it did not cease to shock me either!)

So however tempted you may be, do not do everything that is asked of you. Do not respond to all that comes across your desk.

Ask yourself if a task or request is really important and if you really need to attend every meeting and listen to every training and answer every email.

You will find that top performers do very little but they do focus on the important work. Learn to distinguish between busy work that average employees do and important work that the company really wants you to do.

chess-play-right

Career Fact #6: Putting your career in your manager’s hands is as safe a bet for success as letting your child run wild in a busy street.

Now I admit I had good managers; I liked them. I was sincere in my appreciation of them too. They were gracious people for the most part, the exceptions notwithstanding.

What hurt me was my confusion: I believed that simply because I loved my team and my company, they too loved me in return and I defined that love as being taken care of.

So in the early years, I simply let my managers “manage” my career and what a colossal mistake that was.

Be in charge of your own career and drive it forward. If they give you opportunities, look at your plan and see if it aligns to where you want to be and what you want to do and if it does not, then decline.

You decide where to go next, how long to stay on this team, and even what projects you are going to work on. Have a voice about your career because no one else will.

Career Fact #7: Impact and results are not the same and you need to speak to your impact or become irrelevant.

Do not confuse results with impact. You may be getting a lot of results, small, medium and large in size, but that’s not the same as having a great impact. Impact means you had something to do with the company’s bottom line in one measurable form or another but anything could be a ‘result’ of your hard work.

So ask yourself: Are you having an impact in your company, in your customers, and in your community? Or are you just busy getting random results to various tasks? Are you working on some dead-end corporate initiative that will be on the shelf before the end of the quarter, and one that will suck the living soul out of you in the process?

Then do the right thing and focus on impact instead.

Career Fact #8: No one cares if you quit or leave or even die so don’t kill yourself for your corporation.

Sorry to be so dramatic but I wish someone were that dramatic with me.

The sense of urgency about everything at corporate is a little ridiculous and the sacrifices expected of you are uncalled for.

Some people cruise by, yes. Others are asked to do horrendous amounts of work and for that period of time, you are made to believe that you matter, and that your work is integral to the company success.

The truth suggests otherwise. Even if you are the VP or the CEO, you are not that important. You are in fact entirely – and quickly – replaceable. So what are you doing giving up on your family time and your health and well-being?

What are you doing getting stressed out?

Make smart choices and draw the line where it needs to be. Ironically, that line brings you respect and you may find balance in your personal life again.

What to do if you really want to get ahead, get promoted and get paid your worth.

Did these little-known corporate career truths resonate with you?

As you navigate the corporate landscape, I hope to help you to avoid your corporate career mistake. Or recover from them fast.

If you want to go even further, if you want to get ahead and get promoted and become the next rising corporate employee at your company, then check out Crack the Code to Get Promoted, an online program that examines all of pieces to the “get promoted” puzzle, and shows you how to best position yourself for massive success.


Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on Oct 10, 2011 on Prolific Living. It has now been revamped, revised, and updated with fresh new content. Enjoy and spread the word!

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15 Secrets to Writing Great Fiction from Game of Thrones Author George R.R. Martin http://www.prolificliving.com/secrets-fiction-writing-game-of-thrones/ http://www.prolificliving.com/secrets-fiction-writing-game-of-thrones/#comments Mon, 02 Jun 2014 14:13:23 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=39432 What do you mean you don’t like fiction? Everyone has a hero. A hero inspires you to question the status quo, to think differently about an old concept, to rise above your modus operandi. A hero is someone that not only pushes you to a new height, but also makes you giddy with confidence about […]

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dinner-with-george

What do you mean you don’t like fiction?

Everyone has a hero. A hero inspires you to question the status quo, to think differently about an old concept, to rise above your modus operandi. A hero is someone that not only pushes you to a new height, but also makes you giddy with confidence about your own ability to master your craft and rise beyond your limitations.

My hero is George R.R. Martin and I met him and dined with him at ConCarolina 2014. It was ridiculous fun and inspiration and now it’s time to put that inspiration to work.

Do you read fiction? I Love Fiction. I inhale good fiction. I cannot imagine a world without fiction.

In fact, I can’t relate to you if you haven’t at least once in your life fallen hopelessly in love with a fictional character.

Reading or writing fiction are not a waste of time and taking a break from reality is not without its many great benefits. After all, it is the power of your imagination that makes all your dreams possible, and fiction helps you cultivate that side of your brain.

Great fiction is still a rare gem and those who create it for us are, in my mind, extremely special human beings. Ever wonder:

  • What goes into writing great fiction?
  • How do you stay motivated to write great fiction?
  • What does an aspiring writer need to know about the craft?
  • What makes us obsessed with Game of Thrones and the book series so much?

We asked George R. R. Martin for his thoughts during dinner and panel discussions and well, he answered.

15 Secrets to Writing Great Fiction from George R.R. Martin

To my aspiring writer friends, here are the 15 secrets to writing great fiction directly from the source, the mastermind behind Game of Thrones TV show, the creator of A Song of Ice and Fire series, Mr. George R.R. Martin:

meeting-grrm

1. On getting past the ‘writer’s block‘ once and for all:

Just sit your a$$ down in front of the computer and Turn It On. If you want to be a writer, you must write. This seems obvious but a lot of people who say they want to be a writer never quite get around to writing. Sometimes they even have very specific story ideas and they tell you about it at a party or in an email but they never actually sit their a$$ in the chair and write and that’s not a writer, that’s a talker. If you want to be a writer, you have to write.

2. On your books not being for every type of reader:

Different books are for different people. We each read for our own reasons. There are lots of stories where the boy gets the girl and the hero kills the villain. That’s not what I write about.

3. On developing the habit of writing:

Write. Write everyday. Write as much as you can. Finish something and send it off. Then write something else. Keep writing.

4. On becoming a writer and writing for a living:

You have to keep doing it if you want to make it a profession. It’s not an easy profession. It’s not easy to do the work. It’s not easy to persist and build a career because you’ll get a lot of rejection. People who make it in the long run are the people who keep doing it. And hopefully you are of the right temperament for it.

5. On not writing for the wrong reasons:

Write for the right reasons. There are people who want to be a writer but for the wrong reasons. Status and fame and money are good perks but not good reasons to write. Write because you have stories that you must tell and nobody – nobody – can talk you out of telling them.

reading-by-grrm

6. On learning from both criticism and praise:

You need a certain amount of praise along the way but you need the criticism too. Your mother will always like what you write by large … unless you have a really nasty mother. But you have to give it to other people too and hear what they say. When they praise you, let it encourage you and when they criticize you, learn something from it. You just gotta keep doing it.

7. On you alone being in charge of the outcome of your story:

Art is not a democracy. People don’t get to vote on how it ends.

8. On delivering your work without compromising the quality:

Ten years from now, no one is going to care how quickly the books (A Song of Ice and Fire series) came out. The only thing that will matter, the only thing anyone will remember, is how good they were. That’s my main concern, and always will be.

9. On tempering the fantasy and magic in your fiction:

Pour the magic in your fantasy story as you would salt in a meal. Just sprinkle a little because if you put too much, all you’ll taste is the salt. I want magic but I want magic handled subtly and with a certain amount of ambiguity.

10. On keeping track of your world building and characters:

I use my brain. But I do refresh myself all the time. Sure I have notes and documents I reference but when I shift gears, I re-read the previous 2-3 sometimes 4-5 chapters by that POV character before continuing the story in their voice so I get inside their head and remember what they are dealing with.

11. On finishing what you write, the shockingly-obvious advice:

You must finish what you write. No one is buying fragments. Noone is buying scenes or episodes. If you want to be a professional writer, if you want to actually write things people are going to publish, you have to make yourself finish the stories that you begin. A good story needs a beginning, a middle and an end.

12. On marketing your story once you finish it:

Most writers don’t do it. They have novels in their trunks and short stories in their drawers. Or they send it out once and they get rejected and then never send it out again. No. You must keep sending it out.

13. On not touching your story when you market it:

Do not fiddle with your story after you send it off to your editor. That endless fiddling with the story won’t get you anywhere. When you finish your story, put it on the market. When it comes back from an editor, put it in an envelope and send it to another editor. Preferably on the same day. If the editor comes back with suggestions, then you have a direction and that’s when you re-write. If you want to.

14. On creating the experience for the reader, not just saying what happened:

My view as a writer is that I want to put you in the scene, no matter what the scene. I want to put you there and give you the feeling of it. I don’t want to write that someone sang a song. I want to give you the lyrics.

15. On starting your writing career with short stories:

If you are a young writer or a beginning writer at whatever age, start with short stories. When you are new, you are going to write some bad stories and you’ll experiment with techniques as you should in order to use your tools. If you write a short story, you’ve wasted a month at most. When you write a bad novel, you’ve wasted one or more years. Learn your craft first with short stories. Another advantage is if you start selling those short stories, then people get to know your name and when your first novel comes out, the introduction isn’t ‘Here’s a novel by some writer you’ve never heard of.’ but rather, ‘Here’s the long-awaited first novel by this rising young writer that you’ve seen in all these magazines.’ This way you give yourself the best possible chance to succeed as a writer. That’s how I did it.”

The sources used for this article: ConCarolina conference panel and conversations with George as well as the George R.R. Martin podcast series in 2006.

GOT-dinner

The secrets to writing great fiction may not be what you expected but just because they are obvious and simple doesn’t make them easy!

If you are looking for a silver bullet to establish yourself as a writer, you will be sorely disappointed, but if you follow George R.R. Martin’s advice and believe in the stories that your heart is aching to tell on paper, then you shall be rewarded with sweet delights.

So as you pack your writing tools, pack up your self-confidence. In fact, speaking of writing, grab my 21-step confidence building book to stay motivated as you tackle your first novel or short-story … or even blog post!

Get Confident in 21 Easy Steps


 

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Stuck in a Loop? Behave Yourself into a New Way of Thinking http://www.prolificliving.com/behave-new-way-of-thinking/ http://www.prolificliving.com/behave-new-way-of-thinking/#comments Mon, 19 May 2014 12:41:56 +0000 http://www.prolificliving.com/?p=39370 You can’t think yourself into a new way of behaving. You need to behave yourself into a new way of thinking. ~ Robin Sharma Is it possible that you analyze every possible outcome, ask everyone’s opinions and seek advice from friends and family which you don’t even intend to use before committing to any action? […]

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You can’t think yourself into a new way of behaving. You need to behave yourself into a new way of thinking. ~ Robin Sharma

overthinking

Is it possible that you analyze every possible outcome, ask everyone’s opinions and seek advice from friends and family which you don’t even intend to use before committing to any action?

Is it possible that you are just delaying the very thing that you so badly want to do by giving your fears and insecurities way too much power than they deserve?

Is it possible, maybe just ever so slightly, that you think too much before taking action?

Reminder: You can still grab The Positive Affirmations for Life program with more than 4 hours of audio affirmations for 7 life situations that impact your happiness and success the most.

Confessions of an ex-corporate gal. Use it to your own advantage.

Okay, I’ll go first. Yes, yes and yes to the above questions.

I, Farnoosh Brock, have more than once in my life thought waaaaay too much about the things that I badly wanted to do. It cost me dearly.

My worst offender? I thought way too much about what I “should” do about my career woes:

Oh god! I’ve been here at the company for so long and I’m still unhappy. Should I leave anyway? Should I go to another company? Should I – could I, would I dare – start a business and go out on my own?

And I thought and thought about those questions for a few years.

A Few Years!

If I had taken some action from day one, Any Action, I would have been able to pursue all those possibilities and drawn conclusion from actual experience!

I could go off to another company, get more experience, then quit to start my first business, fail and fail until I learn the ropes, then set up my second business and whatever happens, just keep taking action.

But I didn’t do that because too much thinking got in the way.

Instead, I got lost in my thoughts and as Eckhart Tolle would agree, I forgot the urgency of the present moment.

I lost much precious time to overthinking and devoted far less time to immediate action.

And a few years passed while I was still, you got it, thinking about it all! But of course I didn’t call it that. No way! I called it “careful planning.”

Note to myself: Whatever!!!

Note to you: Don’t do this!

Okay, you’re right. Sometimes careful planning is warranted.

There are some life changing decisions you do need to think seriously about, like choosing your life partner, walking down the aisle to say “I do!” forever, or having a first child or a fourth child and even getting a pet.

There are irreversible consequences to some of your actions, and those decisions deserve your full attention and serious careful consideration before taking immature action.

But starting your own business?

Taking that trip you’ve always dreamt about?

Writing that book you keep putting off?

Creating that product to help others and make a difference?

Those are the things best left outside the long-term thinking loop. Because next year, you’ll wish you had started today. You’ll wish you had taken some action today to get you closer to these goals, these desires, these dreams.

But no matter what you logically understand, you are still stuck in the thinking loop. You are still numb to action. What to do?

The thing that really paralyzes you from taking action …

Did you know that you don’t have to do it all at once? Imagine that!

Einstein said the only reason for time is so that everything does not happen at once.

You don’t have forever but you do have time. So use it to take small daily steps in the direction of your dreams.

If you are using your time well, your steps will add up to a giant’s distance run!

But if you are biding your time in thinking land, you will be standing in the same spot a month or a year from now. Plus you’d wary of all that thinking.

You forget that you are in charge. Fully in charge. Your mind is a powerful tool and it’s yours to use so learn to use it well.

Train yourself to produce results in small tiny steps every day, then measure out your progress and watch it grow over time. Your progress will fuel further action – you don’t need a motivation source beyond your own proven factual progress.

When you repeat this, taking action, measuring progress, not over-thinking every minuscule idea to death, you’ll gently slip into this new way of behaving. It will become your true nature, your default mode if you will! And overthinking will have less and less power over you.

Remember again what paralyzes you the most because it’s false: You don’t have to do everything by today!

You don’t have to write the entire book now or quit your job Monday morning before you have even start your own business.

So stop thinking so much about it to make room for taking that an actual step forward.

Your circumstances will only improve by your taking action. Likewise, they won’t improve by your just thinking about it.

Stuck in the thinking loop? Break free with outsmarting yourself.

Last week, I opened early registration to my Smart Exit Blueprint course which helps you get out of a dead-end job in a smart and sensible way and helps you chart the course of Employee to Entrepreneur.

I am ecstatic to have an influx of new students in the door. They are all fabulously talented, smart and brilliant, and ready to take action and make changes in their lives.

But whenever I open this course for registration, I invariably get a few who show extreme interest in taking the course and in working with me. They have the greatest intention to move away from their career woes and do something about it. They need the course and the guidance badly, but they still want to “think about it.”

They are still thinking:

Should I quit my job? Should I start my own business? Can I really do this? Does it make good sense? What if I fail? What if I regret it?

I want to tell them my story, but I hesitate. I know they have been thinking about it for years too. Their situation has only worsened as they stay stuck in the thinking loop. I know, because I did that.

They are the victim of a circumstance they have perpetuated by too much thinking and too little action.

And I know well that I can’t help them until they break out of overthinking and decide to take action. But I hope to help YOU in not doing the same.

Are you ever stuck in this thinking loop?

See, the thinking loop is just like it sounds: a loop that goes round and round, you pass the same point many times in this loop, and you never quite make any progress away from it.

Your thoughts are teeny tiny entities that have no power without your help so they are starving for your time and attention. They grow when you focus on them and take you deeper and deeper into a maze of more thoughts. The thinking loop grows as you focus more and pay it more attention.

To break free of this loop, outsmart yourself and break the pattern. Here’s how.

Start telling yourself that you are simply delaying the thinking for the time being. You will definitely come back to it and do further analysis about your decision but right now, you have to go off and take care of something.

I have thought about it starting a business for a while now. Which is smart of me. Now I’ll take a break from thinking about it, go off and start the business by taking the first action, then come back and think about it some more.

Of course what you are doing is committing to action and cheating on the overthinking demon. Action is what you are really craving for. Action is what feeds the real hunger, because it’s something that gets you closer to your goals and away from your unhappy circumstances.

taking-action

So tell your thoughts you’re putting them on hold and go off and take some real action. Be it starting that business, laying the groundwork for creating a smart exit strategy or writing the first chapter of your book.

And if you need help doing that, if you want to invest in yourself while you are creating that smart exit strategy out of your job using a proven step-by-step system in Smart Exit Blueprint course, you can sign up via regular registration while doors are open and seats remain. Payment plan is still available. See here for registration.

register-SEB-FAQ 2

Don’t think too much about it if it feels right and you need expert help and guidance quitting that job and starting that business. Also, class is 80% full as of today. Just sayin’!

The doing is what sets you free. The first step is what breaks the thinking loop. Do this every day with the thing you procrastinate the most and you’ll be behaving your way into a new way of thinking.

So what are you waiting for? Have you not thought about it long enough? Commit to taking action and making a decision in the comments section and let’s talk.

Get Confident in 21 Easy Steps


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