Why You Should Never Give Up On Your Dreams And Ambitions

Why Your Special Dreams Are Important

“A dream doesn’t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work.”
Colin Powell

When we were growing up as a kids, we had all kinds of dreams rattling around in our heads. There was no one to tell us we couldn’t achieve what we wanted to achieve. In fact, we acted out our dreams as if we were already living with them. As we got older, our dreams started to die as did our confidence in ourselves.

Well, I’m here to tell you that no matter how old you are you don’t have to give up on those dreams. Don’t be that person who lives with regret. You may have had some setbacks that made you think twice about whether you were good enough to achieve it but remember this, perseverance pays off in the long run.

The world is full of people who gave up on their dreams way too early only to live with regret later in life.

Do you want to be that person?

I hope not! I hope you understand that dreams are what guides us through life. They inspire and motivate us to try new things, to take chances and find out how far we can push ourselves.

The idea that having dreams and living them are not important is a fallacy. This comes from people who are jealous of others realizing their dreams, who are afraid of making their dreams a reality, and from those who followed their dreams but couldn’t make them work.

This is an important concept to understand as not every dream will work out but if you don’t try your dreams will die when you die.

I don’t know about you but my dreams are important to me. It’s where I find my purpose in life. It’s what I was put here to do and become. If I disregard it because it’s too hard or I’m afraid I’ll fail then I’m telling the world I’m not worthy of my dreams.

Is that how you feel?

Can you comprehend the significance of that in your own life?

Are you willing to make the supreme sacrifice to become what you were created for?

Are you willing to go through the ups and downs, take your lumps and still be on fire to make those incredible dreams a reality?

If so, let move on to putting those ambitions to work.

Putting Your Ambitions To Work

“A man without ambition is dead. A man with ambition but no love is dead. A man with ambition and love for his blessings here on earth is ever so alive.”
Pearl Bailey

Author Zachary Slayback writes, “Your ambitions are your destination.”

So, where are they taking you?

Are you an ambitious person or someone who is cautious at every turn?

Neel Burton, psychiatrist and author of Heaven and Hell: The Psychology of the Emotions states, “On average, ambitious people attain higher levels of education and income, build more prestigious careers, and report higher overall levels of life satisfaction. Many of man’s greatest achievements are the products, or accidents, of their ambition.”

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Your greatest achievement will come when you take risks. That’s what ambition is all about. When you expose yourself to new experiences and interact with others, you force yourself to grow. Ambition fuels that growth so that you are always moving forward.

Sometimes, your ambition makes you bite off more than you can chew but a good dose of reality is good for ambitious people. On the other hand, having so many goals and ambitions but no motivation is a recipe you don’t want to work on.

Ambition is a hunger that must be fed. It is the drive to succeed at all costs.. How often have you had people tell you to slow down and take a breather? You need to harness the drive and use it to the best of your ability.

Are you the kind of person who wants to serve others? To make a difference in the world? You’ll never get there if you give up!

Marie Forleo, the world-renowned life coach, motivational speaker and best-selling author says this about ambition: “Honor that hunger you feel to learn, explore and create. Ambition isn’t bad. It’s beautiful. And when it’s channeled in service of your highest self, it truly can change the world.”

I want to change the world around me. I want to inspire people. Bring them to God and help them reach their full potential. I can’t do that if I don’t harness my ambition and set it in motion down the right pathway. I need to channel my dreams in a way that keeps me grounded but inspired.

I need to push myself out of my comfort zone and into a place where it’s sink or swim because that’s the place where I do my best work.

Why? Because it is in the moment where the true and authentic me comes out.

When you are authentic in your vision, your ambition takes over and you can meet the challenges of life and still reach your goals.

Do Your Actions Match Your Ambitions?

You can have all the ambition in the world but if your action don’t serve your ambitions well enough, you’ll be stuck in neutral. Kind of like a chicken without a head running around in circles doing nothing but making noise.

You’ll be better served by holding yourself accountable for your actions and learning from your mistakes. It’s not a crap-shoot. It’s more like making sure your goals and your action meet in the middle where you can adjust things so you stay on track.

When setbacks come how will you respond to them?

“The key is to be prepared for setbacks and respond in a positive and productive way” according to Chip Augustus. This avoids the urge to give up or to go down in flames if you don’t prepare yourself.

Finally, what are you prepared to do to make your ambitions come true?

Are you willing to put in the time, energy and patience to make your dreams come true? No goal is too farfetched if you are willing to make it happen.

Harriet Tubman said it best…“Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.” 

Why Giving Up Is Never The Answer To Anything

“Being defeated is often a temporary condition. Giving up is what makes it permanent.” 
Marilyn vos Savant

Try OR Give Up

Author Nicolas Cole states that “When you “give up, you continue to carry that baggage with you long into the future. You still think about it. You wonder. You may even feel regret. That’s very different than fighting as long as you can for an idea and then realizing it’s time to pivot, or shift, or move on all together.”

Most people cannot make that distinction. They fight the losing battle because they’re afraid of failing but learning from your failures is what all success stories are made of.

He goes on to say “When you “give up” on something, it encourages the habit. You start to be “ok” with quitting–and that’s not good. Resilience is the habit you want to practice here.”

No one wants to be a quitter or be known as a quitter. Unfortunately, it’s a habit far too many people have acquired.

According to Tim Denning, the blogger for Entrepreneur.com, we all go through phases where we want to give up. We lose motivation, our hearts are just not in it but sometimes, “It’s easier to give up and take the easy road rather than keep yourself going.”

The easy way out doesn’t do us any good. We cannot develop the skills necessary to make a difference in life. We lose out on the adventures life hands us and the world loses out on what we have to offer.

He goes on to say “I conditioned myself to believe that to give up on life in general and settle for mediocrity was the same as accepting that it was time to die. When you give up on life, you are ending any chance of success you may have ever had.”

Is that what you have to look forward to? A life of mediocrity? Stopping yourself from becoming what God has intended you to be?

I don’t think so.

Too many people have overcome obstacles to make a life for themselves. They are my heroes. They inspire me! Tim is one of those guys that you root for.

Why?

He never gives up or gives in and he is successful because he doesn’t just blindly go after things. He works hard, knows what he wants to accomplish and finds a way.

He finishes up by stating:

Never give up on your dream.
Never give up on romance.
Never give up on yourself.
Most of all, never give up on life.

“The answer for how to never give up is to have a purpose greater than you. The challenge with your must-have goal is that if it only inspires you, you’ll lose momentum eventually.”

I make it a habit to study people who are successful and learn not only from their victories but from their mistakes. I see a determination I want to mimic and when they find a way to overcome challenges and problems, it gives me hope.

Adam Sicinski writes this about challenges: “It is not so much what happens to us that actually makes a difference, it is rather what we do with what happens to us that determines where we will end up, what we will have, and how we will be transformed by our experiences.”

Keep that in mind the next time you think about giving up. Your experiences are what drives you forward.

Here Are 7 Reasons Why You Should Never Give Up

  1. Anything Is Possible 
    In life, anything is possible. The world is filled with people taking chances, setting records and doing the impossible. Are you any different? As long as you’re alive you have the chance to be special. “To all the other dreamers out there, don’t ever stop or let the world’s negativity disenchant you or your spirit. If you surround yourself with love and the right people, anything is possible.” Adam Green
  2. You Are Stronger Than You Think 
    You will never know how strong you are until you push yourself beyond its limits. Success doesn’t come to weak of heart but from the strength of our soul. “When life knocks us down and it seems impossible to get back up, when life demands more from us than we are able to give, then more than ever, we need to find a way to do what needs to be done. It is at just these times that we come face to face with a reserve of strength we never knew we had.” Dwayne Savaya
  3. Be An Inspiration To Others
    By refusing to give up, you will be an inspiration to someone who is thinking of quitting themself. Those who succeed become the leaders and inspire those that need help in their own journey. To inspire others is to awaken the possibilities still dormant in another’s heart. It is how we help one another to do great things that were never imagined before. ”Average leaders raise the bar on themselves; good leaders raise the bar for others; great leaders inspire others to raise their own bar.” Orrin Woodward 
  4. You Are Closer To Success Than You Know
    Often, we see successful people and think it must have been easy for them yet we think we are still far away from being successful ourselves. The key is to understand that success isn’t something glamorous but keeping the faith when things look bleak, staying positive when things are crumbling all around you, and being consistent in working towards your ultimate version of what you want to accomplish. Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.” Thomas A. Edison
  5. Quitting Sends The Wrong Message About You And Your Intentions
    You know that actions speak louder than words but your brain doesn’t. The brain cannot distinguish between the real and the imagined so when your intentions lack resolve so do you. Don’t set a precedent that you will have a hard time living down. “The thing I most connect with is the idea of not giving up. And that’s a thing I have in my own life. You have to trust your instincts and keep trying.” Callie Thorne
  6. The Consequences Of Quitting Are Enormous
    There’s a high a price indeed for abandoning your dreams and because quitting is the path of least resistance, we don’t understand the true consequences until it’s too way late. We make rash decisions that over time, plays with our emotions and causes physical and mental side-effects which we never get over.   “Never let life impede on your ability to manifest your dreams. Dig deeper into your dreams and deeper into yourself and believe that anything is possible, and make it happen.” Corin Nemec
  7. The Process Shapes You Before The Rewards Kick In
    Setting goals and achieving them starts with the process. This process is what shapes us, teaches us perseverance and builds self-confidence. Greatness comes in the pursuit of a worthy goal as we are forged in the fire of life. This is how we are shaped into the persons we ultimately want to become. “The benefits of the accomplished journey cannot be weighed in terms of perfect moments, but in terms of how this journey affects and changes our character.” Ella Maillart

Finding Your Purpose Is The Key To Your Dreams And Ambitions

“Your purpose in life is to find your purpose and give your whole heart and soul to it”
Gautama Buddha

Why do we do the things we do?

Why do we even try if we fail more than not?

It’s the human spirit that is alive and well. It’s the curiosity to find out what we are capable of. It’s also the reason why, “Every success story is accompanied by some form of adversity or struggle” according to author Gary Savoie.

Every one of us has a struggle. For some, it is a major struggle that takes years of patience and determination while for others, luck, timing and planning allow them to reach their goals at a record pace. The idea here is not about giving up on your goals but overcoming the struggles that make us stronger in the long run.

I’m no stranger to failure but that doesn’t mean I give up on my dreams. The fact that I’m more determined now than I have ever been is a credit to my attitude and spirit. Life has never been easy but that’s not an excuse for me. Instead, it’s my motivation. It’s my inspiration.

So what if I come from a broken home!

So what if my first love died of leukemia!

So what if I never finished college!

So what if I was nearly killed in two separate car accidents!

I’m not making light of the fact that these things happened. They are a part of life and I’ve accepted them but I don’t let them hinder me. Not in the least.

What part of your past has caused you to question your dreams?

What part of your struggle has caused you the most pain?

Use them as motivation to push yourself to the limits because you are worthy of reaching your goals. You DO have what it takes to succeed but it’s not about the final step but what you do to get there.

If you already know your purpose in life, GREAT! If not, examine your heart and your life. See what talents God has given you. Find what makes you happy. Plan out your strategy and GO FOR IT!

On the other side of the coin… . Imagine how your life will be if you give up on your dreams?

What would that look like to you?

What kind of life would you be leading?

Would you be happy?

Would you be sad?

How would you like to be known for?

Adrianna Langford says, “Think of all the situations that you have been through, how bad you fought for the dream you wanted the most, and most importantly for those of you that are still struggling to reach their destination this is not the time to quit.”

What drives you to do the things you do?

Why do you wake up in the morning everyday?

Your purpose is filled with a myriad of daily questions you must answer to realize what your dreams and ambitions are telling you.

The same thing can be said for your reasons.

If money is all that drives you then you will feel hollow inside once you do reach your dreams because there is nothing left to pursue.

If love is all you care about then your dreams and ambitions will reflect that. It’s not always about the actual dreams you are pursuing but your reason why.

If you can answer your reason why… you can find your purpose. Once you have your main purpose, your dreams and ambitions will come into focus and push you on the road to making things happen.

authenticity

Here are a couple of questions you must answer before you can take the next step

Am I in an authentic alignment with my beliefs and my dreams?

Do I take the initiative to make things happen?

Is your mindset in alignment with your ambitions.

Just because you think you want to do something doesn’t mean you are going to take the action to make it so. I know too many people who are married to negativity. They don’t believe they can achieve what they put their mind to. They give up because their excuses are too powerful in their own mind.

I also have people trying to stop me from trying to make my dreams come true. They think they’re stopping me from the pain of failure of think I’m not capable but I don’t think like them nor do i act like them.

You’ve got to put your big boy boots on and make the attempt. Not some half-hearted one but push yourself to the max. No one ever accomplished anything without some kind of fear but facing your fears is what life is all about. Without fear, We’d all be sitting on the couch watching television instead making our dreams come true

Megan Shauri writes this about fear, “Fear is a great deterrent to going after a dream. What if we fail? What if we realize that we are not as good as we thought? What if we can’t do it?”

Too many what ifs and not enough can do’s. Fear is only real in your mind. Let me give you an example.

My youngest daughter loves to sing and act. In her freshman year of high school, she tried out and got one of the leads of the musical “Legally Blonde.” For two months she practiced her lines and learned all the songs. She realized her dream of performing in front of a big crowd.

One month after the play was over, she was offered an audition for another musical outside of school. This was from a local production company and she gave every excuse in the book as to why she didn’t want to do it. I wouldn’t let her get off that easy. I pushed her because I knew it would be good for her. Well, she went in kicking and screaming but when it came time to audition, she nailed the part.

On the way home, she thanked me for pushing her and realized all the fears she had forced her to go deep inside and find her passion and let it come alive.

What Have We Learned Today?

  • If you want to do something with your life, you must take chances and find your passion.
  • Your dreams are important.
  • You deserve everything you work for.
  • Find your why for doing what you want to do.
  • Be authentic in your alignment of what you want to do.
  • Have fun doing it.
  • Never give up on your dreams.

The world is made up of all kinds of dreams. FLook for people that share your passion and ambitions and find a way to make it work. If you fail, get up, dust yourself off, learn from your mistakes, and don’t give up. There is something waiting at the end of your dreams and it’s up to you to find it!

Unleash The Power Within: Why Self Motivation Really Does Work

Self Confidence and Motivation

self motivation

Are you self motivated?

Do you have the intestinal fortitude to meet challenges and self motivate yourself?

If you’re like most people. you can only go so far in motivating yourself to achieve your ultimate goals. The rest should be left up to others who can get you to where you want to go in life.

As a life coach, I find most motivational information to be too much on the cheerleading side and light on the real motivation. It’s one thing to try and motivate people but let’s get real here… most people don’t have it in them to motivate themselves. They lack the motivation and inspiration to make a real difference in their lives.

If you want to unleash the power within, you must be willing to have someone coach you and be accountable for helping you achieve your goals. If you’re unwilling to do this, the odds are overwhelming in failure’s favor.

“Be miserable. Or motivate yourself. Whatever has to be done, it’s always your choice.”

Wayne Dwyer

So, what’s lacking in finding your inner power?

1- Understanding where your power comes from – For goal-oriented individuals, the first thing you must be aware of is how powerful the human mind is. It’s not all about going out and achieving a goal because you can, but firing up your inner spirit and forcing yourself out of your comfort zone.

This stops most people from even trying to motivate themselves. They don’t give themselves enough credit for how strong they are intellectually and emotionally to carry out their particular endeavor. The days of having someone yell at you like a drill instructor to motivate and inspire you are long gone. No one likes to go through that type of treatment.

2- Limiting beliefs – Do you believe in yourself? Do you really believe you can do something you put your mind to? These questions get to the heart of whether we have or don’t have self confidence. Self confidence and motivation lie at the heart of fulfilling our goals but if you lack the proper belief system, how can you unleash your personal power? Often times, we sabotage our efforts without really knowing why until we look back and see it was our limiting beliefs which short-circuited our results.

Many of our limiting beliefs com from our childhood, especially from our parents, teachers and peers. We grow up thinking or told we can’t do something even though we’ve never tried to do it or believed we would fail so we don’t give a full effort. Failure is not the problem, it’s the belief that we will fail no matter how hard we try to succeed.

You cannot self motivate yourself with limiting beliefs. Most of these limiting beliefs belong to one or more of the three basic reasons why we do limit our beliefs.

They are:

  1. I’m not good enough to (insert your problem here).
  2. Making mistakes and failing are bad.
  3. I’m not important enough to receive (insert what you want here).

3- Procrastination – it’s one thing to want to do something … it’s a totally different thing to actually do it. We always seem find a way not to follow through with our goals or action. Procrastination affects everyone no matter how successful you are.

In David Allen’s bestselling book, “Getting Things Done” he talks about the 2-minute rule for overcoming procrastination. In the 2-minute rule, If the particular task takes less than two minutes to finish, then follow the rule and do it right now or risk putting it off till later and then things will pile up and you will feel overwhelmed.

According to James Clear, “Most of the tasks that you procrastinate on aren’t actually difficult to do — you have the talent and skills to accomplish them — you just avoid starting them for one reason or another.” I think everyone believes this but the don’t take it to heart. They suffer from thinking of creative reasons why right now isn’t the best time to do something but in reality… it is and I will show you.

The world is filled with dreamers who dream their lives away thinking of great things they will do but never get around to doing them. When you start an action, you usually take it to the finish line unless an interruption comes.

Don’t believe me?

Think of something you wanted to do but something caught your attention and you never got around to it. Now think of something you wanted to do and you did take action. You were motivated enough to start and once you did, you got into it and took it to it’s logical conclusion.

What was the key word here?

That’s right… motivation. You need that to complete any action you take. The only problem is… pushing yourself to take the action. Once you start, you’re in good shape to finish. This is why most self-motivation manuals and talks don’t work. The info is good but the motivational techniques are lacking.

What you need is to learn the proper motivational techniques that work for you not the one-size fits all techniques that promote procrstination.

So, where do you find these motivational techniques?

Motivational Techniques Training

“Do not wait; the time will never be ‘just right.’ Start where you stand, and work with whatever tools you may have at your command, and better tools will be found as you go along.” 

George Herbert

If you want to succeed with self motivation, you need to learn the proper motivational techniques that get you off your butt and instill in you a respect for taking action. Self confidence comes from doing not emotional feelings. Working and achieving build self-esteem and allow you to take calculated risks when the reward is great.

Here are some 7 motivational techniques to put into place which help you to be successful in any endeavor.

1- Creative a Positive Environment Nothing motivates us more than being positive. Once you let negativity grab a hold, it’s almost impossible to get rid of. The type of environment you surround yourself with is crucial to the outcome of your desired goal. Put yourself in a negative environment and it’s like putting a ten ton weight on your shoulders. It literally knocks you down and you feel like you’re lifting a great weight off your shoulder at the same time you’re trying to accomplish something. The positive environment takes that weight off your shoulder and makes you float like you’re walking on air. The difference between negative and positive is all in how it affects you both mentally and physically.

2- Connect To Your Most Inner Values – Those values that you hold close to your heart are the ones that motivate you to take action. Your heart and mind knows the difference between good and bad and psychologically, it will hold you back even if you don’t understand why. It’s a mechanism we are born with that helps us to manage how we live, love and act. It’s more than that little voice in your head… it your brain’s way of telling you whether to stop or go. Those inner values are really your core values and they are responsible for you becoming self-aware, being a confident person and by following through with the principles and purpose for which we were created for.

3- Surround Yourself With The Right People – According to the great motivational speaker Jim Rohn, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”  Are you spending your time with the right people?

Leon Logothetis, the noted world traveler, adventurer, author, and TV host, asks four questions regarding the company you keep. They are…

  • Do they make you feel like you have what it takes to reach your goals?
  • Do they support you?
  • Do they make you feel attractive?
  • You you feel happy and energized after spending time with them?

If the answer is yes then you have made a wise choice. When people share the same likes, dislikes, and are interested in the same things, generally they are the types of people you want to hang out with. The ones who complain, are jealous of others and make you feel squeamish to be around obviously are not great influencers. But on the other hand, you don’t want people to be yes men. You want to surround yourself with people who challenge you to better yourself, want to see the best in you and tell you the real truth so you have all the information you need to make better decisions with your life

4- Find Your Immediate Why – The famous Russian novelist Fyodor Dostoyevsky once wrote, “The mystery of human existence lies not in just staying alive, but in finding something to live for.” Your why is what you live for. It is the roadmap that gives your live purpose. Without it, you are just a drifter, someone who never takes action, a dreamer of dreams that’s afraid to take the next step. Are you doing things for the right reason? Your why answers that question and gives you clarity and direction and who doesn’t want clarity and direction in a world that has lost its way?

5- Discover The How That Works For Your Personality – Your personality plays a huge part in how motivation works for you. If your are the A-type personality, you’ll just head first without a thought but if you are shy or are the nervous type, it will take a much more to push you. research has found that openness to experience plays a big part in how motivated we get to any particular activity. So does the level of control we have towards the activity. Different types of personalities behave differently when control is the determining factor. What type of personality do you have and does it affect your motivation? Learn what types of things motivate you and use them to make the How work for your personality. Maybe the problem with getting motivated in not in the actual action you take but the type of How you use.

6- Use Positive Self Talk – In a landmark June 2016 study published in the journal Frontiers in Psychology entitled, “Brief Online Training Enhances Competitive Performance: Findings of the BBC Lab UK Psychological Skills Intervention Study” it was determined that self-talk is the most effective motivational technique.

According to Christopher Bergland, the technique of using image visualization and the ‘if-then’ planning strategy showed that  across the board, “Researchers found that those using motivational self-talk—for example telling yourself “I can do better next time”—led to optimal performance during every portion of a competition task.”

This is stunning as it shows that we can actually self-talk our way to success. Christopher explains how it helped him in his own quest to become a world record holder in the Triple Ironman Competition by stating, “Well crafted self-talk allowed me to fortify my conviction that I had the ability and chutzpah to go farther and faster than others, without ever feeling cocky.”

7- Imagine You’re Already Successful – As much as everything else is important here, without this inner belief, you’re dead in the water. According to the Code Of Living blog, “As you achieve more success, your drive or motivation increases. And as you face more failure, your drive or motivation decreases.” Thinking you are already successful is all about dreaming big. It’s where you start the engine of success. Every goal you achieve begins with an idea from your imagination and takes off from there. Imagination is the magnet that brings all ideas forward. Success is just the byproduct of an imagination that puts motivation into action.

Why Is Self Motivation Important?

displaying self confidence

“You are essentially who you create yourself to be and all that occurs in your life is the result of your own making.” 
Stephen Richards
Think Your way to Success: Let Your Dreams Run Free

We see how self motivation can help us achieve our goals but what are the real benefits of self motivation?

People who are self-motivated are more organised, have better time management skills and have higher levels of self-esteem and confidence. These skills are important key to being successful not only in life but in achieving our set goals.

Jack Canfield, the #1 bestselling author of “Chicken Soup For The Soul” states that self-motivators “Learn because they WANT to, not because they think they “have” to.” That’s an important lesson for those who are waiting for motivation to bite them in the ass.

It’s a life-long pursuit for knowledge, wisdom and discovery. Jack goes on to say, “Self-motivated learners tend to have a deeper understanding of their own strengths and weaknesses.” This means self-motivators view life as a never ending quest to learn and improve themselves. They’re not intent to settle for mediocrity.

Life has a way of throwing trials and tribulations our way but those who have the strongest self-motivation are usually the ones who succeed at all costs. They   are the ones with vision and use a self-motivation as their chief strategy in finding their true calling.

Being a self-motivator provides inner strength. It is that strength which allows an individual to accomplish great things. It is also a confidence booster. As you motivate yourself through the maze of life, you’ll realize how strong you really are and that’s the best confidence booster anyone can have.

What is it that motivates you?

How can you motivate yourself?

By understanding the techniques I’ve written about here you can take your confidence to the next level and achieve your own measure of greatness in the world.

 

Why Do So Many People End Up Trapped In Unhappiness?

Trapped In Unhappiness

“In this life, we have to make many choices. Some are very important choices. Some are not. Many of our choices are between good and evil. The choices we make, however, determine to a large extent our happiness or our unhappiness, because we have to live with the consequences of our choices.”
James E. Faust

In a Harris Poll of Americans ages 18 and older in May 2017, it was found that only 1 in 3 could actually say they were happy. This poll determined that those who were the happiest were men and women from high-income households and those with at least high school diploma or less.

According to John Gerzema, the CEO of  the Harris Poll, “To me, it feels like a cultural lack of presence, We are so caught up in our texting, multitasking, jobs and commutes that we seem to have less and less free time. Older people age 65+ are the happiest.”

This shines a light on what is happening to people all over the world. It’s not just about politics, the threat of war or what color our skin is but a lack of closeness between people of all ages and ethnicities. People are just not as emotionally attached as they used to be. Finding real happiness is beyond the reach of most people.

The idea that we feel trapped is echoed in the fact so many people don’t enjoy the jobs they are at or  feel they get enough quality time with their family. Their energy level is reflected in lack of good health and they feel they don’t have the time to do anything about it.

Why is this such a major problem in the world and what can be done to combat the unhappiness to which a majority of people sadly find themselves falling into?

The Trap Of Unhappiness

“There are seeds of self-destruction in all of us that will bear only unhappiness if allowed to grow.”
Dorothea Brande

Essentially, it all comes down to living in some of a trap. We fall into this trap, not recognizing our fall until it’s way too late to do anything about it.

The trap innocently begins after high school and quietly manifests itself as a maze of quests and searches that forces us to make decisions based on emotions and not logic.

Decision #1 – Either you leave high school and go into college, take on an apprenticeship or get stuck with a low entry job with no benefits and low salary. You have to fight your way up the ladder or get stuck working more than one low-paying job to make ends meet.

Decision #2 – Live with your parents until you can afford to move out or give up your freedom and feel bound by your parents rules and regulations. Even though they love and care about you, being a twenty-something living in your parents home puts undue pressure to “Make it” in the real world.

We all know, this is the age when communication is at its lowest between family members and teenage angst gives way to realities of the real world.

Decision #3 – If you took on the apprenticeship, then you work hard to stand on your own two feet and become a working member of society. If you went to college, you must spend four years or more pushing yourself to the limit to graduate and get that “Great job” that will allow you to move out on your own and begin the life you dreamed about when you started college in the first place.

You enjoy the freedom and the means that work offers you as well as the feeling of success, so you climb the ladder. You intend to find work that is fulfilling and rewarding at some point in the future but that future never seems to come.

Decision #3 – You meet someone and maybe get married and have children. Either way, you now have too many responsibilities and commitments to people other than yourself thrust upon your shoulders at such a young age. You obviously need that job to make ends meet but it isn’t the life you imagined.

Decision # 5 – You start to accumulate expensive items like cars and televisions while working longer hours with more responsibility. The trappings of life box you in and it feels like a prison. You come home in the evenings exhausted and with no energy to pursue other interests or things that quench the thirst in your heart. Stress and a lack of exercise and or passion leaves you tired and unhealthy. You feel like you’re too old to begin a new career or to change your life.

Does all of this sound familiar? It’s a trap that befalls many of us but it doesn’t have to be if you don’t want it to be. Awareness of the problem puts you one step ahead of everyone else. It’s one step closer to breaking out of the unhappiness trap!

Spiritual Happiness Versus Economic Happiness

“Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, or worn. It is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace & gratitude.”
Denis Waitley

“We need to look at why we are unhappy,” says Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, founder of the Art of Living spiritual movement. ”Usually, it’s lack of energy in body and mind.”  Living in a consumer-driven culture doesn’t help with being a happier person. He goes on to say “When people are fed up with their routine, and life seems to have no aim and meaning, then people do get depressed, despite having so many physical comforts.”

According to Time’s Special Edition entitled “The Science Of Happiness” it was determined that “Scientists have found, again and again, that those with a spiritual practice or who follow religious beliefs tend to be happier than those who don’t. Study after study has found that religious people tend to be less depressed and less anxious than nonbelievers, better able to handle the vicissitudes of life than nonbelievers. “

They goes on to state, “A 2015 survey by researchers at the London School of Economics and the Erasmus University Medical Center in the Netherlands found that participating in a religious organization was the only social activity associated with sustained happiness—even more than volunteering for a charity, taking educational courses or participating in a political or community organization. It’s as if a sense of spirituality and an active, social religious practice were an effective vaccine against the virus of unhappiness.”

It seems that all the studies about spiritual versus economic happiness realize that the higher the standard of living the happier people tend to be but on the other side of the spectrum, the higher the inequality between economic divisions in society, the higher people tend to fall into the unhappy spectrum.

This no more apparent than in the September 3, 2015 paper in Psychological Science entitled, “Income Inequality Explains Why Economic Growth Does Not Always Translate to an Increase in Happiness” from Shigehiro Oishi at the University of Virginia and Selin Kesebir at the London Business School.

“Every single time income inequality decreased between two time points, the percentage of ‘very happy’ responses went up,” the researchers write. “And every time income inequality increased, the percentage of ‘very happy’ responses went down. In other words, although economic growth was steady and strong during this period, the evenness of the income distribution was fluctuating, and happiness was inversely related to income inequality.”

This is echoed by John Robbins, son of the co-founder of Baskin-Robbins Ice cream franchise when he said, “I believe there is truth in both camps. Up to a certain point, money is vital to happiness for almost everyone. It can buy food, clothing, and housing and provide for other basic needs. Once a person’s basic needs are met, though, money takes on a different meaning.”

That’s where the spiritual side is missing from today’s society. We are either in rapid pursuit of financial gain or jealous of others who are rich. It’s an either or situation which leaves out the spiritual side of things that can bring on true happiness.

On the Action For Happiness website they talk about getting in touch with your spiritual side. They explain this by stating: “Living happily depends on how we are in our inner lives – our thoughts, emotions, beliefs and desires. Having a spiritual dimension means finding a sense of inner peace – both peace of mind and peace in the heart. It also means allowing our inner values to guide how we interact with the world around us – our concern for others, our connection with the natural world and our interst in making a positive contribution to society.”

This is something most of us miss. We end up trying to balance both the spiritual side and the financial side but lose out to the trappings of society. If we pursue a more traditional approach of satisfying the inner soul then we will be better equipped and able to handle the economic portion of our lives.

Of course, that’s easier said than done. Tell that to someone who doesn’t have enough to eat or someone who can’t afford a place to live. Happiness is relative to how we live… from our values and how we were brought up to the influences of society and our peers both from growing up to going to school to our working lives.

Ending the Unhappiness Trap

“So many people live within unhappy circumstances and yet will not take the initiative to change their situation because they are conditioned to a life of security, conformity, and conservation, all of which may appear to give one peace of mind, but in reality, nothing is more damaging to the adventurous spirit.”
Christopher McCandless

One of the byproducts of unhappiness in society is an increase in medications. According to the Market Watch article, “7 Reasons Americans Are Unhappy”  from August 30, 2016, “The rate of antidepressant use has surged 400% over the last decade, according to the CDC, though that may also be due to the heavy marketing of drugs like Zoloft, Lexapro and Paxil. The percentage of workers testing positive for illicit drugs such as cocaine, amphetamines and methamphetamines has increased for the second consecutive year in the general U.S. workforce, according to a 2015 workplace urine drug test of more than 6.6 million tests by Quest Diagnostics, a company that provides clinical laboratory tests on potential and/or current employees for companies. Some 4.7% of the general U.S. workforce tested positive for illegal drugs in 2014, compared with 4.3% in 2013.”

People are drowning their sorrows in drugs to offset the unhappiness they feel in everyday life. It doesn’t help that doctors and drug companies are pushing these drugs on people who most of the time, really don’t need them.

Unhappiness has become an epidemic more than the drugs themselves and the drugs are just a way to mask the sadness people feel.

Scott Mautz, the author of “Find the Fire: Ignite Your Inspiration and Make Work Exciting Again” has an interesting take on the unhappiness trap. In an interview with Dr. Annie McKee (University of Pennsylvania) she states The helplessness trap is the most dangerous of all. When you feel disempowered, like a victim of your circumstances, it’s a dangerous place to be as it’s hard to take bold steps.”

This type of trap sneaks up on us over time and forces us to make bad decisions which we regret having to deal with.

But sometimes, we’re our worst enemies.

Here Are 5 Ways You Can End The Unhappiness Trap Without Going Crazy Or Falling Into Depression

1- STOP COMPLAINING

If you notice, most people who are unhappy seem to complain about everything all the time. They put so much emphasis on their complaints but do nothing to make their lives better. It’s as if they need to complain to feel important  in some kind of weird way. They keep their minds and hearts focus on life’s negative aspects instead of feeling all the positivity going on around. they end up blind to life… just their own pain and heartache.

When you stop complaining you take the emphasis off of your complaints and back on to your own responsibility. Responsible people are happier because they are dealing with life the best they can and live with their decisions whether good or bad.

Ken Wert, the founder of Meant 2 Be Happy Blog states, “The habit of complaint is a self-inflicted wound. It darkens horizons and amplifies the ugly. Never ignore warning signs or hide from reality, of course. Just don’t dwell so exclusively on it.”

2- STOP BLAMING OTHERS

Don’t you hate it when people refuse to blame themselves for all the things happening in their life?  They look at life as a garden filled with weeds which they planted but don’t want the responsibility of pruning away the bad . It’s always someone else’s fault, someone else’s responsibility and we keep the focus on who, what and where instead looking inward and see where we went wrong and more importantly, how we can fix the situation.

Blame is a trap that is self-inflicted and a band aid does not heal the wound. It is forever left to fester and infect others..

3- STOP COMPARING

Those who are unhappy use comparison to make themselves feel better. They compare their situation to others, themselves to others and see things in a distorted type of funhouse mirror where everything is not as it appears to be.

Some people go their entire lives dissatisfied with how they look, how they feel because they can’t live up to what others appear to be. They copy the outward appearance of others but don’t know or understand what that person feels on the inside. We’ve all become clones of one another while distancing ourselves from  the emotional part that makes us who we are.

It’s time to embrace your uniqueness and love who you are. God made you this way for a reason and He loves you just the way you are. Why try to be something you’re not just to please people who don’t appreciate the real you.

4- STOP WORRYING SO MUCH

Stop being a worry-wart! If you are plagued with various fears, middling doubt and overwhelming anxiety you’ll find that life will send very few things you can find joy in.

Worry doesn’t solve any problem. Instead, be cognizant of what you are going through but work at solving your problems in a healthy way.

Everyone has problems but those who take them to the next step with worry rob themselves of a peaceful existence clouded with doubts and causes both mental and physical harm.

Learn to trust God that things will work out. Hand your problems, doubts and fears to God and let things work out according to His will. Trust that things will work out alright. Ken Wert goes on to say, “Let go of the need to control. Take reasonable precautions, of course, but not out of fear that something terrible will otherwise happen, but out of respect for your health and well-being.”

5- LEARN TO LIVE WITH GRATITUDE

If there is one thing most people lack it is the idea of being grateful for what they have. Being jealous of others and what they have, the lives they lead or what they do is a recipe for true unhappiness.

The happiest people on earth know that being grateful brings inner peace and counting your blessings makes you a more positive person.

Here Are 3 Ways Gratitude Can Help You To Be A Happier Person

  • It reminds you of what’s important in life
  • It reminds you to thank others and put others first
  • It reminds you of the positive things in your life

Once you understand what makes you unhappy you can change those things and turn your unhappiness into a life of gratitude and thankfulness. That is where happiness exists. Each one of us has the chance to be happy but it’s up to each person to work at being happy. It’s your decision. Make the best of it!

The 5 Main Ingredients To A Happy and Fulfilling Christian Life

Are You Living A Happy And Fulfilling Christian life?

Do you know the secret to living a happy and fulfilling Christian life?

In this article I am going to blast away the myths, the false beliefs and ideas that keep most people from living the kind of Christian life they’ve always dreamed of.

What does it take to be happy person? We’ve all seen those people who seem to have it all… great health, money in the bank, a great job but many of the people who fit that type of lifestyle are both miserable and empty inside. They look to drugs, sex, money and power to fill a need that just can’t be quenched.

Then you have the average person who has neither the wealth, the power or the greed of the jet-set lifestyle that would breed the kind of happiness we all aspire to. No, they understand what’s important in life and live by a set of rules that is different from how the rest of the world lives.

What is their big secret? What do they posses that unhappy are missing out on? What do Christians have that the rest of the world needs to lead a happy and fulfilling life?

Since there isn’t one basic recipe that will work for everyone, there are several ingredients that most happy Christians seem to have in common. I will give you the list of these ingredients and will go into deeper detail so that you can incorporate them into your life.

The idea here isn’t to just do these things and they will make you happy… the idea is to make them part of who you are on the inside until they become an authentic part of your everyday activities.

The 5 Main Ingredients Of A Happy And Fulfilling Christian Life

1- God – At the center of everyone’s life should be a special relationship with God. As a Christian, Jesus Christ comes first in my life. I couldn’t hope to live a happy life without involving Jesus in all my activities. Through prayer, bible study as well as partaking in the Eucharist, I make it a habit to live and know the complete joy that Jesus has to offer me.

No matter what happens, Jesus is by my side as I experience His love and protection. He brings a joy that the world just cannot provide and I seek to know Him better and His purpose for my life. I may not be considered a rich person according to the world but my riches are stored in heaven. My day-to-day needs are taken care of and my family is healthy and happy.

Candy Arrington writes, “Seeking God in decision-making and all life activities leads to happiness because this puts us in line with His will for our lives.”

When we are able to tap into God’s mighty strength it allows us to overcome the frustrations and difficulties that we encounter in our daily struggles. More importantly, it’s learning to recognize all the blessings we’ve already been given instead of looking for more which  is the key to happiness for Christians everywhere.

What more do I need to be a follower of Christ?

Colossians 2:2, speaks of knowing God intimately: “That their hearts may be encouraged, having been knit together in love, and attaining to all the wealth that comes from the full assurance of understanding, resulting in a true knowledge of God’s mystery, that is, Christ Himself.”

2- Love – Besides God, love is the most important thing we have is this world to bring happiness and contentment. But the problem with the world is, we associate sex with love and we don’t put enough emphasis on the relationship first. True love is a gift from God. It is a relationship that God wants to be a part of. Can you find love on your own? Maybe… But God has a plan for each one of us and it includes that special someone.

Love is not a selfish thing as most people believe. In fact, love is something you give from the very depths of your soul. Research studies have proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that those who give unselfishly of themselves are the happiest people in the world. It is important to have someone to love and someone that loves you. It is what we were made for but the sheer the beauty of love has been perverted by the sins of pornography, pride and greed.

Without love, there is emptiness and boredom. Almost every song written is about love in one form or another and everyone who doesn’t have it wants it. J. M. Barrie once said, “If you have it, you don’t need to have anything else, and if you don’t have it, it doesn’t much matter what else you have.”

So the eternal question is, why is love so important to happiness?

  • It’s about connecting with another human being
  • It is a pathway to one’s self discovery
  • It is the one thing that nurture’s life in all in forms
  • It is a great motivator
  • It is a great teacher
  • It is a support structure for which you to build your life upon

Love is about reaching out to others to form natural bonds and is one of the most essential ingredients for human survival but love, according to God is

1 Corinthians 13:4-8 speaks of love this way: “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.”

3- Facing Challenges – Whoever thought that facing challenges in life would be so important to attaining happiness and being fulfilled? Why are challenges so important in our lives?

As Christians, God never said life would be easy. We must expect to go through trials and suffering but there is hope. It comes in the form of a God who loves us and desires only what is best for us. The trials we go through act as a mirror to the weakest parts of our being.

Most of us go through life with our eyes closed until we have to face a major obstacle. It’s only then do we call on the Lord for help. We need to be aware that courage and patience are built on faith. A faith that believes God is with us and helping us on our journey through life.

Challenges create circumstances where we must grow. It builds character and in order to overcome these trials, we must choose to rise to the occasion. That strength cannot prosper unless we have God with us. These trials are God’s way of teaching us humility, compassion and trust. Through it all, we see God’s love in everything.

“Challenges teach us, allow us to become more empathetic, humble, and fearless. Challenges will happen, so allow them to add to your experience of life rather than to diminish it.” Barrie Davenport

Take Charles Rentz for instance. He was born without arms or legs yet he can accomplish anything he puts his mind to. He trusted God throughout his own trials and tribulations and continues to face life’s biggest challenges squarely upon his faith in Jesus. He understood why challenges are God’s way of bringing us closer to Him via the trust factor. He states: “My entire life is built upon my faith in my Creator who has endowed me with so many blessings.”

Philippians 4:12-13 tells us this about living with adversity: “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”

4- Peace of Mind – Everyone wants to live a peaceful existence. According to the Dalai Lama, “If we have peace of mind, we’ll always feel happy. Deceiving ourselves that money is the source of happiness, we won’t.

Why is this quote from a Buddhist monk so important to understanding Christian happiness? Happiness is ours if we want it. It’s not based on anything the world can give us but the peace of mind that comes from knowing God.

Another great quote from the Indian spiritual leader Dada Vaswani, goes like this: “Happiness, true happiness, is an inner quality. It is a state of mind. If your mind is at peace, you are happy. If your mind is at peace, but you have nothing else, you can be happy. If you have everything the world can give – pleasure, possessions, power – but lack peace of mind, you can never be happy.”

This is why happiness in the world is transitory. We lack peace of mind because we are searching for things that add to our stress and keep us from being at peace. Think about your own life. What is keeping you from being at peace? What are you doing that makes it hard for you to concentrate on being peaceful?

Take this quote from the #1 Bestselling author Eckhart Tolle, “Most people treat the present moment as if it were an obstacle that they need to overcome. Since the present moment is life itself, it is an insane way to live.”

We are so busy chasing after things that we cannot take with us that we forget to live in the here and now. We don’t give enough meaning to what God has given to us at this moment in time that we lose our ability to appreciate all the good in our lives.

The idea is to slow down, pray and appreciate what you have for you may lose it at any time. Think of it this way… Do you want more, more, more or are you contented that your needs have all been met?

Be satisfied with what you have been given. Some people are never content with their current circumstances because they always want more or think having more is better in the long run but watch out what you wish for as you will have to deal with it when you receive it.

Philippians 4:6-7 tells us:  “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

So beautifully said and words most Christians forget to live by.

5- Adjust your attitude – To live a heart-centered life we need to live through God’s ways not our own. This means we must adjust our attitudes to that of a higher power. We are not the owners of our lives for as Christians, we have given ourselves over to Christ.

Are you being merciful and compassionate to your fellow man? Do you give love when the world says no? Do you offer yourself to others as an act of love or do you pick your spots?

Our attitudes form the soil from which the root of our actions will grow. Are you watering and pruning your actions or do they grow like weeds?

Evangelical Christian pastor Chuck Swindoll writes in his book  ”Strengthening Your Grip”: “I believe the single most significant decision I can make on a day-to-day basis is my choice of attitude. It is more important than my past, my education, my bankroll, my successes or failures, fame or pain, what other people think of me or say about me, my circumstances, or my position. Attitude is that ‘single string’ that keeps me going or cripples my progress. It alone fuels my fire or assaults my hope. When my attitudes are right, there’s no barrier too high, no valley too deep, no dream too extreme, no challenge too great for me.”

Your actions depend on where you spend your thoughts. If those thoughts are not based on God’s word then we are not applying His truth to our life. That’s where we become misguided in our search for happiness and joy.

We avoid change because change is hard. If we walk in darkness we can’t avoid sin but changing our attitude brings about real change. Attitude and direction go hand in hand. This is why Jesus tries to get our attention to point us in the right direction.

How often have you seen big name stars going in rehab or dying from drug and alcohol abuse? it’s an epidemic in society yet to live a happy and fulfilling life avoids all that. It focuses itself on the ways of God so that we walk along the path of righteousness.

It is one thing to know about God but another altogether to actually surrender ourselves to Him. When you can do that peace, love and harmony are yours for the taking.

Philippians 4:8 talks to us about our attitude: “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.”

Seeking God’s Version Of Happiness And Fulfillment

Despite what the world has to offer, God’s way is still the best way. Pedro Gelabert states that “Happiness is the result of righteous living. Happiness comes to you when you OBEY God. It is the result of OBEYING His Word. To obey God you must know what He says in the Bible. You cannot know God’s will or please Him unless you know His Word, the Bible. There is no other way around it. In fact, this is exactly how Jesus concludes His Sermon on the Mount:

Matthew 7:24-27: “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”

If we live by Christ we shall die with Christ. All else has no meaning. If you seek happiness and fulfillment beyond Christ you will only find pain and unhappiness. By walking with God we will know true happiness and true fulfillment.

Society doesn’t know Jesus like we know Jesus. It has its own brand of morality, its own rules for being happy and its own pathway towards happiness. Don’t be misled by what society offers. Be strong in faith, strong in action and be an example of unconditional love. Only then can you find real happiness and fulfillment while you are still alive.

So, what is the Christian’s secret to a happy and fulfilling life? Seeking out God in every circumstance and allowing Him to shape us into the persons we are meant to be.

Turn Your Biggest Disappointments Into Your Greatest Opportunities

Turning Disappointments Into Massive Opportunities

“Our heavenly Father understands our disappointment, suffering, pain, fear, and doubt. He is always there to encourage our hearts and help us understand that He’s sufficient for all of our needs.”

Charles Stanley

Each of us has had huge disappointments in life. From losing your best friend to not getting the job you wanted so badly but disappointments are what motivates us to take advantage of opportunities when they arise.

I remember when I was just starting out as a writer. I was all excited to put pen to paper and change the world. So, when I released my first book in 2012 entitled “Warning: Your Healthy Diet May Be Killing You” and it failed to become a best seller, I was very upset. It took me two long years to research and write and the information was going to change the lives of millions of people… or so I thought.

It was such a high to finish my book that I didn’t bother to market it until I actually completed it. Big mistake! But I definitely learned my lesson and carried it on to each and every book I wrote. The lesson learned gave me an opportunity to figure out what to do next.

That’s when I found out about a three day seminar called Author 101 University happening in Los Angeles in April of 2015, I immediately jumped on the opportunity to attend. It was a chance to not only learn about the writing part but how to market my book as well.

The idea was to be around talented people who knew more than I did and be able to pick their brains. I learned so much but the opportunity came about when I pitched my idea to faith division of Morgan James Publishing Company. They loved my idea and offered me a contract right then and there. Talk about making full use of your opportunities.

Disappointments have a way of opening up doorways to opportunities you never thought were possible. The world is filled with stories of people turning lemons into lemonade yet too often we complain about our disappointments without doing something about it. We lose ourselves in bitterness and let the real opportunities slip through our fingers.

Disappointments come and go, especially when you are going through major problems, but you need to take a step back, take a deep breath, and deal with them before you are overcome with anger and grief.

How To Overcome Disappointments In Life

The first step in the process of overcoming disappointments in life is to learn what you (or others) did that made you so disappointed. By understanding the real source of your disappointments, you can evaluate not only the reason behind why they happened but learn how to prevent them from ever happening again.

This is your time to be honest with yourself as you assess the situation. Don’t try to cover up the truth. Learn to be objective with your problems so you can separate fact from fiction. You won’t be able to learn any lesson unless you are brutally honesty with yourself.

If the disappointment lies within the realm of others, you may not want to confront them out of fear of hurting their feelings. You need to squash this feeling right away. You don’t want them repeating the same mistakes and ultimately disappoint you every time. You be as tactful as you possibly can without hurting their feelings can. They need to realize they didn’t do what was expected you need to clarify the situation before it gets worse..

Once you have confronted all the reason for the disappointments, the next thing is to do is figure out what steps you need to take to avoid them in the future.

Here are 5 steps you must take…

1- Don’t take on more than you can handle – Most people want to accomplish everything yesterday! But that’s not going to happen. Disappointments come when we put too way much on our plate and expect to handle them without any problems. There will always stumbling blocks you’ve never thought of which will prevent you from getting things done. When you plan your time, try to anticipate these as much as you can.

2- Be flexible with your plans – Life seems to always throws curve balls at us, and without the proper flexibility, disappointment will happen on a regular basis. People tend to learn more when they are flexible. You must be willing to explore more options and step out you’re the box which you have wrapped around yourself. Sometimes, we can’t see the trees for the forest because we’ve become too closed-minded in our attitudes.

3- Learn from other’s disappointments – The more disappointments happen in a short period of time, the more overwhelmed you can get. One idea is to search out others in your circle of influence and pick their brains. Ask them what they have learned from their own experiences and if they found opportunities because of them. The calming voice of someone who has overcome their own bitter disappointments in life can be very inspirational. A great example of this happened to me when my parents divorced. I had no frame of reference of what I was about to experience so I decided to talk to friends whose parents had already divorced  and pick their brains. Even though the future seemed scary, at least I had some information to go on and someone who could understand my plight. People like this can make you feel comfortable because they won’t judge you for your situation.

4- Accept each new day as a fresh opportunity to enjoy life – It’s hard enough trying to get through each day when things are not going your way but that’s life. Each day offers a new chance for better opportunities to come your way. You must believe that. The Law of Attraction states that “We attract attract into our lives whatever we are focusing on.” So, if you focus on the negative, chances are disappointments will come. Focus on the positive side of life and a whole new world of opportunity opens up if you are willing to take the plunge. The more you carry your setbacks with you the more they will weigh you down.

5- Transform Your Perspective – Each person has a different point of view when it comes to life. We all see things a little bit differently so shift your perspective on the situation at hand and what your expectations were regarding the situation. You’ll find a bit more clarity in judgment as well as being more objective in the future.

Trusting God Through Life’s Disappointments

The most important thing, we as humans can do, is trust God no matter what the circumstances are. When life’s disappointment come, and they will when we can least afford them, we need someone we can lean on when they get to be too much for us to handle.

So what do you do when your life seems to fail you and you are left to pick up the pieces all alone?

Give up your disappointments to God. Let Him shoulder the burden and lean on Him for strength and guidance. It’s so easy for us to blame God when things go wrong but it’s in the darkest moments that He is carrying us when we most need it.

Bad things happen to good people. It’s all part of life but that doesn’t mean we run out on Him.

He speaks of trusting Him in Joshua 1:9“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”

He speaks to us with empathy in Hebrews 4:16“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin

He tells us we’d never be alone in Psalms 139: 2,3,5,7,8 –  “You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar…You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways…You hem me in behind and before, and you lay your hand upon me…Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.”

It is at this very time when we must give thanks in the midst of disappointment. God tells us 1 Thessalonians 5:18. “In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”  

According to Kay Arthur, “When we walk in obedience to this command and, no matter the situation, we give thanks in everything, and then we are walking in obedience of faith.”

It’s all about faith. Faith in God, faith in ourselves, and faith in His resurrection. If we allow our spirits to be troubled, we allow disappointments to creep in and then we make the choice to walk in the flesh rather than walk with the Holy Spirit.

It’s tough. No one can deny that but if we are able to hand over the reins of our lives to God then we allow Him to guide us along the pathway of obedience. He never said it would be easy but take heart in 1 Peter 5:10 – “And after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.”

Disappointments happen for a reason. We don’t know why but we have to deal with them as they come. This is how we learn and get strengthened.

How To Take Advantage Of Opportunities While They Are Available

“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.”
Thomas Edison

According to blogger Terrence Brown, “Real opportunities are the ones that we don’t immediately see. They come by at the most unexpected, mostly inopportune, times. We are so obsessed with other distractions or our own opinions that we normally miss the majority of opportunity that falls across our path.”

To take advantage of opportunities you need to be an opportunist. That means, taking advantage of the opportunities when they come. If you put them off till another time, they most certainly will pass you by.

Barbara Seifert, Ph. D., CPC states “If you have a desire and the opportunity to achieve it, why is that you don’t take advantage of them? Why do these desires that seem hard to get become ignored?  You may justify that it’s not the ‘right time’ or you don’t have ‘the money.  There may be a ‘little voice” that says ‘you might not get the desired results anyway’ or that ‘you aren’t deserving’ of what you truly want.   So you might put it off, procrastinate on or stop working to attain the thing you truly want inside.”

We often wallow in disappointment to the extent we shut out opportunities that come with setbacks. Awareness is the key to overcoming those roadblocks and seeing opportunities for what they are… challenges that lead us to bigger and better places in our lives.

To take that idea a step further, Adam Sicinski writes, “Life’s opportunities are often disguised as problems that require hard work and major emotional discomfort. And it is for this very reason why most people fail to recognize opportunities.”

Can you see the opportunities in your own disappointments?

Are you looking for those opportunities or have you allowed your disappoints to crowd your mind and close your heart?

Remember, hope is what opportunity thrives on. Always remain hopeful of what comes next. Look ahead not behind you. I know what bitter disappointment feels like. Having lost the first girl I ever loved at eighteen years old at the same time my parents got divorced and my best friend left for the Air Force were blows I had a hard time recovering from but the closer I remained to God, the easier it was to overcome disappointment and take advantage of the opportunities God was opening up for me.

Life is tough but you are tougher. Go out and make the most of your life. Leave your regrets behind and walk in faith with Jesus. He will never let you down.

Dealing With The Devastating Effects Of Depression Part 2

Coping With Depression

In part two of our 2-part dealing with depression, We have some more great information on living with depression and how to make the best of your condition.

Treating depression is something most of us are deathly afraid of. Most people are in denial about how they feel and hide themselves away so that no one knows what they are going through but this is the worst thing you can do.

Here are some important questions all of us have had at one time or another when it comes to coping with or dealing with the effects of depression.

1- How can I put ourselves out there with a total stranger who knows nothing about my circumstances?

2- Do I really want others to know I’m suffering with symptoms of depression?

3- Is it really depression or am I just going through a bad time

4- Will people think I’m crazy if they find out about my depression?

5- Will I or can I get better or am I stuck feeling this way?

Learning how to deal with depression takes inner strength and a willpower to decide to get treatment. Each day you put it off makes it that much harder.

Please note, there is hope. There is always hope. Nothing is that bad where you hurt yourself or God forbid, take your own life. I have suffered from depression a good amount of my life and have learned a great deal about what triggers it and how to cope when things get rough. Believe me, I know how you feel but know there are caring people out there who definitely want to hep.

What Is Depression And Am I Suffering From It?

The more you learn about depression the more you can understand what is going on inside you and how to cope with it on a daily basis. This first video give us the definition, the signs, and what you need to do to get help.

VIDEO #1 – What Is Depression? By Helen M. Farrell

Depression is the leading cause of disability in the world today; in the United States alone, almost ten percent of adults struggle with the depression. Since it’s a mental illness, it is much harder to understand and treat a person’s normal physical maladies. Helen M. Farrell talks about the various symptoms and clinical treatments of depression, and gives some great tips for cope with depression and learning what is going on with you menatally.

1- One major source of confusion is the difference between having depression and feeling depressed. Most people don’t know the difference and suffer needlessly because of it.

2- Everyone gets a bit down during their lifetime but what we all need to know is what triggers an episode. This is why it can just pop up out of thin air. Our circumstances change daily and things can get better very quickly or they can go downhill. The choice is your to make.

3- Clinical depression totally different affair. It is a qualified medical disorder and it won’t go away unless you do something about it. It can linger on until you are be diagnosed so if you have it for more than 2 weeks
consecutively and it interferes significantly with your ability to work, play and love then chances are, you can be diagnosed as clinically depressed.

4- Depression has many symptoms:

  1. Low mood
  2. Loss of interest in things you like to do
  3. Changes in appetite
  4. Feelings of worthlessness
  5. Feelings of excessive guilt
  6. Too much or too little sleep
  7. Poor concentration
  8. Constant restlessness
  9. Loss of energy
  10. Recurrent thoughts of suicide

5- If you have at least 5 of these symptoms, you qualify for a diagnosis for depression but only a qualified doctor can make the final evaluation. Once diagnosed, treating depression is much easier when you have all the facts.

6- It’s not just your behavioral symptoms that are inherent in depressive moods but physical ones as well. These manifestations occur within the brain.

  1. Changes can be seen with the naked eye
  2. Can be seen through X-rays and MRI’s
  3. Abnormal depletion of certain neurotransmitters inside the brain
    1. Dopamine – controls pleasure centers
    2. Serotonin – maintains mood balance
    3. Norepinephrine – one of the stress hormones
  4. IV. Sleep patterns
    1. Hormone abnormalities
    2. Thyroid
    3. High levels of cortisol – another stress hormone

7- Most doctors are still baffled as to what causes depression in humans but they are constantly working on trying to figure out the complexities so they can make it easier to treat. One major theory has to do with a person’s genes combined with their environment and how they are mixed together.

8- Nothing can accurately predict when and how severe an episode will appear nor can it predict who is struggling with it unless the person goes through a battery of tests to determine if they are qualified to be diagnosed.

9- According to The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/index.shtml it takes the average person suffering with a mental illness 10 years to ask for help. This is a shame as it makes it so much harder to treat when people when they let it go for so long a period of time.

10- There are effective treatments available for those who suffer from depressive episodes. These may include medications, therapy with a trained mental therapist as well as experimental physical therapies that can boost
brain chemicals.

11- Taking the first steps to getting help can seem like an impossible dream for those suffering with a mental disorder but you can help them overcome their  feelings of guilt and shame by being there to help guide them to seek out the professional help they need to feel better..

12- It seems talking about depression can be one of the best things you can do to help a sufferer but be careful. Do not compare anything you have gone through as it will just bring out feelings of shame and makes them feel guilty for struggling with their own form of mental illness. Your love and care is just what they need to help them overcome the stigma and gives them someone they can trust in their fight for a better and normal life.

I hope these facts can help you understand what depression is and what can be done to help those or yourself overcome depression and live the life you were meant to live.

How To Deal With Depression The Proper Way

VIDEO #2 – How To Deal With Depression By Noah Elkrief

In our second video,  we have a well done video with lots of great information and tactics you can use to help you cope with all forms of depression with bestselling author, Noah Elkrief.

If you want to deal with depression effectively, the first thing you must do is have a basic understanding of what depression is and what it entails. Then, you can recognize that who you are is not a depressed person but a normal person dealing with a mental health issue.

Let’s go over what you need to learn to help you cope with this illness and what you can do to overcome it and deal effectively if the episodes come back.

1- When we feel depressed we tend to use the terminology that points directly to the I as in “I am depressed.” But are you really depressed? This is a key question that sets up the tone of the video.

2- How do you feel right now? What are you going through right now? These two questions outline the difference between what has happened before and what you are going through at this particular time. This is also a key thing to understand as now is the most important. The past is gone… worry about now.

3- Depression is just a set of feelings which may include:

  • Pressure in the chest
  • Loneliness
  • Worthlessness
  • Sadness
  • Unlike-ability
  • No willpower
  • No motivation
  • Feelings of lack

4- All of these are just expressions, a set of feelings. They do not represent who you are. Your feelings are associated with your depression but they are not depression in of themselves. It’s not who you are.

5- You were you before you had those feelings and you will still be you after those feelings go away. These feelings come at different times so your feelings can change so that does not define who the real you is.

6- During the week there are times when forget about depression or the thoughts associated with depression. It comes and goes but it’s not the real you. That’s the big distinction

7- When you believe it’s all about you, you can’t do something about it but the second you empower yourself and distance the real you from what you’re feeling, that’s when you can begin the investigation into your feelings.

8– The next thing that crops up is usually negative thoughts about yourself. Something along the lines of “I’m bad” or “It’s all my fault” or even “I’m not good enough” but those thoughts are based on negative feelings and not the truth.

9- Instead, it’s all about recognizing you are not to blame for your feelings.

10- What creates depression are your thoughts. Be open to the possibility that your thoughts are tricking you into feeling a certain way and that way is wrong. Your thoughts have a way of distracting you from the truth.

11- This is why situations can’t create depression and neither can our appearance. It stems from what we are feeling based on our thoughts. Conquer your thoughts and they can’t rule you.

12- Depression only means something about you if you don’t have control over these debilitating thoughts and feelings whether you believe them or not.

13- Do you pick what thoughts enter your mind? If you did, why would you put negative thoughts there? It’s just random thoughts that you allow to come in because you are not open to believing the good about yourself.

14- When a thought enters your mind you automatically believe it because why would you question your thoughts since they are supposed to guide you through your daily lives?

How Negative Thoughts Fuel Depression

15- Ultimately, all you want is peace but your thoughts don’t listen to your wants so why listen to those negative thoughts when they only cause unhappiness?

16- We give attention to those thoughts and end up thinking those same thoughts over and over and over again.

17- This is why we ask this one important question. Why keep giving attention to the same stories in your head? The less you let them get to you the less depressed you feel.

18- If you don’t control your thoughts they will control you. The thoughts coming into your mind are to blame for your feelings not you, the person.

19- So, are the thoughts we are feeling always true? No, especially when they are negative in nature.

20- There are two categories of thoughts

  • Situations that cause us to think our situations are bad and they cause depression
  • Am I bad? Could it be me who is to blame?

21- Blame is something you don’t need to think about for blame is not important here. The idea is to understand this: Those thoughts of your, when they get negative, are to blame and make you feel guilty and ashamed and upset. Without those thoughts you can avoid the pain that comes with depression.

22- Stop believing those negative thoughts because they are playing tricks on you.

23- Fist comes the thought, followed by your belief in it then those feelings come rushing in. This is the same whether for negative or positive thoughts. You just need to avoid those bad thoughts or all the bad thoughts you’ve ever had will come flooding back.

24- Look at who you are, your good points and see what those negative thoughts can do to you. Turn away from those negative thoughts and see the positive in your life. Remember, you are not alone in this quest. Others have gone through the same ordeals, had the same feelings and think the same thoughts. That is not unique to
you… what is unique is that you are a special person that is stronger than you believe and can overcome anything if you understand the reasons behind depression and what you can do to overcome it.

I hope this has given you some food for thought (make sure they are positive ones) and you will see a big difference in how you feel.

Dealing With The Devastating Effects Of Depression Part 1

Dealing With Depression

The world has become a tough place to live and work in. Many are feeling the damaging effects of having no job or lost a job over the past few years, have lost family members to cancer, drug abuse or Alzheimer’s, and know family members and friends who haven’t quite coped with all the hate and violence going on all around us but I am here to offer a glimmer of hope.

Depression… the word conjures up pictures of people sitting around the house moaning and unable to deal with life in general but it’s something we all must deal with at one time or another. Most of us either know someone who has gone through bouts of depression or is currently battling this debilitating disease. Dealing with depression has become a national epidemic with more and more people suffering everyday.

Depression holds a special place in my heart as I have gone through bouts of it myself having come from a broken family, lost my first girlfriend to leukemia and dealt with things that would have destroyed most others will to live but through it all, I had God to help me cope. I’ve wanted to give help to others by making some of this information available, so that at the very least, individuals could learn some things they can do to start dealing with depression.

Below are some videos that you can use to start dealing with depression in a caring and loving atmosphere.

Video #1 – Depression – The 7 Differences Between Men And Women By Kati Morton

Kati Morton talks about the 7 differences between men and women in how they they suffer from depression.

Did you know that women are 2x more likely than men to struggle with depression but those numbers may be a bit skewed as men do not like to admit they are depressed because it is a macho thing. Only now have
many men started to overcome the sigma and pride associated with depression and are finally coming
forward to deal with the mental aspect of depression.

One side note, doctors have only begun to treat depression in men differently than in women from both
a physical and mental aspect and are using different methods than the one-size-fits-all that was so
prevalent years past.

  1. Women tend to be the more emotional of the two sexes so they feel more sadness which leads to
    self-worth problems. Men on the other hand react differently as they are more irritable and agitated.
  2. Women take their negative feelings out on themselves and internalize everything whereas men are
    much more likely to lash out and blame others for what they are feeling and going through.
  3. Women cope with depression with food and friends which makes things even worse as their self
    worth spirals out of control. Men, on the other hand,  cope with depression through physical means by overindulging in TV, sex, drugs and alcohol.
  4. Women let stress get the better of them, especially when it comes to life events. Men believe it’s just
    a part of life so they tuck those feelings deep inside. This can be  more tragic in men as they are prone to
    do physical damage to themselves.
  5. Depression in women also leads to eating disorders. They cope by using food as a numbing agent.
    Men take the high road with food because their depression attacks them physically through sex and self
    abuse.
  6. Depression is more debilitating to women. They tend to ruminate about it and let it eat them from
    the inside out. They take these feelings with them through every relationship and have higher
    expectations which can never be met. Men take out their feelings on those close to them because they can’t
    deal with the awkward feelings. They don’t look for others to help them as they tend to abuse women to quell their inner pride.
  7. Women are better at reaching out for help than men and are better with opening up about their own
    feelings. Men don’t like to talk about their feelings and depression seems to sneak up on them without
    their acknowledgement.

Once you understand the differences you can start coping with your own form of depression as well as
those of the opposite sex. It makes it much easier when you better understand these differences.
Hope this clears up some common misconceptions regarding men and women who suffer from
depression.

The Truth About Depression

VIDEO #2 – You’re Not Alone: The Truth About Depression By Colette Stearns

Teenager, Colette Stearns opens up about many of the misconceptions about depression, how it affected her, and how she was able to overcome it.

Too many teenagers let depression get the better of them but Colette goes deep inside her own depression and shows other teenagers what they need to do to deal with it as well as letting them know their not alone in their battle.

Here is an overview of what she said.

  1. There are many prominent misconceptions and stigmas attached to depression and mental orders but way too often people do not like to talk about it in public, especially teenagers who are left to deal with it in an immure way.
  2. The feelings of shame and disgrace are widespread, especially in teenagers who are constantly battling hormones and peer pressure at the same time. The pressures are enormous for those who don’t fit in.
  3. It is a mood disorder which makes it tough to concentrate, especially for young minds. When combined with unexplained physical problems can lead to thoughts of suicide.
  4. The problems associated with depression can disable even the strongest of wills and are hard to diagnose if the person is unwilling to cooperate or even acknowledge their depressive behavior.
  5. Depression is diagnosed as having major depressive episodes with the various symptoms for at least two or more weeks straight. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, Depression and anxiety disorders are different, but people with depression often experience symptoms similar to those of an anxiety disorder, such as nervousness, irritability, and problems sleeping and concentrating. But each disorder has its own causes and its own emotional and behavioral symptoms.
  6.  11% of teenagers will experience episodes of depressive behavior by the time they are 18 and half of those will experience it by the time they reach fourteen. it has become an epidemic for our children and much more needs to be done to get it out in the open.
  7. It is the third leading cause of death in young adults ranging in ages of 15-24. This is a shame and is devastating to the families involved.
  8. Too many people do not take the time to try and understand the disease and disorder and ridicule it. People can be very cruel but we need to stand up and educate them on what depression is and how we ca all chip in and lend our support to those who suffer from it.
  9. Education is the key to helping those suffering from depression so they don’t have to go it alone.
  10. Need the support of family and friends to help cope and mange the symptoms. This is why we all need to get involved because it affects everyone’s family ant one time or another.
  11. Most young people do not like to admit they are feeling depressed because of the stigma attached so they keep it to themselves. Unfortunately, this is a major problem for teenagers and we need to offer our support and love so they can get the help they desperately need.
  12. Look for peer programs in school, support in your county or even state and federal programs.
    Some mentioned are National Suicide Prevention Hotline 1-800-273-8255
    NAMI – National Alliance On Mental Illness www.nami.org
  13. Depression is real and you don’t need to hide behind your shame. It’s better to come out and look for help. You’re not alone in your struggle. Many people are there to help… that means you!

Hope this helps you with some knowledge that can beneficial for you or someone
you know who needs help now!

How To Deal With Difficult Times

VIDEO #3 – How To Deal With The Difficult Times By Brendon Burchard

We hear so much about what depression does but we never really hear from the people suffering from depression. Watch and listen to Best-selling author and trainer, Brendon Burchard, as he talks about the depression he went through and how he deals with difficult times. You can learn a lot from his wisdom.

In this video, best-selling author and Personal Development Trainer, Brendon
Burchard talks about the five ways to deal with difficult times that help you avoid
deal with depression.

  1. Learn How To Set Small, Simple Daily Goals – Sometimes going through life’s difficulties can zap all our energies so it’s very important to set small daily goals that are both achievable and able to push you forward. This keeps you in a positive mindset and helps you feel good about yourself.
  2. Keep Perspective On Life – You can always draw strength from your past when you’ve done great things. The moments when things were good are still there and will come again. You have to have hope. That is so important during difficult times. God gives us hope in difficult times and when you take up His offer, you have an Advocate (the Holy Spirit) in your corner who loves you and wants the best for you. Take solace in the fact that you are God’s miracle and He will not forsake you. We all have difficult times… it’s how we deal with them that determines whether we get out of them or not. God will not let you fail, that’s your decision.
  3. Ask The Right Questions – Asking the right questions such as “What should I be learning here?” or “What is my purpose? “ can give you a chance to reboot your life and make good choices that can help you overcome your depression and feeling of hopelessness. To make this work for you, you need to write these questions down on a piece of paper and honestly answer them. This is a formula
    for success. Many people won’t take the time to do this step but I appeal to you to make this a daily occurrence so you can draw strength.
  4. Be You’re your Best Self Despite Life’s Difficulties – Life throws us curveballs when we least expect them but you need to stay in control of your emotions. You know what your best self is and so how would that best self interact with this particular situation. Be conscious of what you do, say and feel so you can learn how to deal with your problems. Brendon says that “When times are tough, we often feel that we can’t understand or handle things, that we lack competence or capability. So, to shore up those feelings, be strategic and ask, “What could I learn now to better handle this stage of my life?” Develop a learning curriculum for yourself and start studying things that can help or advance your life.”
  5. Keep Gratitude Alive – Gratitude is the most important part of life. Why? If you aren’t grateful for what you have, you tend to become a worrier. You become selfish in your attitudes and you forget you are part of a bigger picture in God’s world. Be thankful, be appreciative and learn to love others unconditionally. Without them, life becomes and hard place to be happy in.

As a bonus, I’ve collected 10 quotes about depression from real people and what they have said about their suffering with depression. Too often, those that are suffering from depression don’t get the chance to tell their story.

Can you identify with any of these quotes?
1- “Before you can see the light you have to deal with the darkness. Don’t let your struggle become your identity.”
2- “You feel like you’re in a constant state of worry.”
3- “It limits what you can do in your life.”
4- “It’s a state of mind where nothing you can make you feel better.”
5- “Sometimes in life you fall down but you feel you don’t have the the strength to get back up.”
6- “You put a mask on and pretend everything is alright.”
7- “Fear comes in, especially when you walk in your house and know it’s broken
and there’s nothing you can do about it.”
8- “The only time you feel you don’t have to impress everybody is when you’re
alone in bed.”
9- “You have doubts and are scared about the future but do you still have hope? Do
you know who you are? What’s important is you. Accept yourself even if others don’t. Know you are loved.”
10- “It’s normal to go through bouts of confusion and frustration and craziness in
your life . It happens all around you.”

Hope this is inspirational for you to see that others share your pain but also want the very best for you.

Be Energized With The Power Of Positive Thinking Part 3

Unlocking The Conscious And Unconscious Mind

How do you take your brain off its default system and use it to create miracles, magic and some really amazing opportunities in your life? Your brain is a powerful force indeed and when you learn how to control it you will be amazed at what you can actually achieve.

According to Earl Nightingale, “Whatever we plant in our subconscious mind and nourish with repetition and emotion will one day become a reality.”

This is the key to a world where you can use the subconscious mind to better your life and become all that you were meant to be.. The subconscious is active all of time yet most of us don’t have any clue as to how to tap into the sheer power it possesses. .

We think a little positive thinking will go a long way but that is only have the battle. The idea is to reprogram the mind to change what needs to change and benefit from the reprogramming. The subconscious learns through constant repetition to make things a habit. That habit drives you wherever you go and whatever you do.

The Struggle Between The Conscious and The Subconscious Mind

How do you create a life full of miracles, magic and amazing opportunities?

Inside your brain stem is something called the Reticular Activating System or RAS which is considered to be the gatekeeper that screens out data that the brain deems unimportant or not worthy enough to follow from your environment.

RAS is one of the most powerful forces known to man. According to Kris Hallbom and Tim Hallbom, “All of your future goals and dreams are not only a reflection of your subconscious thinking but they are also mediated by your Reticular Activating System (RAS). The RAS is the part of your brain that serves as a filter between your conscious mind and your subconscious mind. The RAS, which is located in the core of your brain stem, takes instructions from your conscious mind, and passes them on to your subconscious mind.”

Its main function is to process information that comes through. It can only process 147 bits of information at any one time therefore, it only lets in information that is relevant and important. Everything else is screened out. When you feel overloaded, your mind cannot process any information at all. It’s like a computer without enough memory. It slows down and cannot function properly.

Your brain focuses on the things it says are important and relevant to your survival and well-being but you can learn to control the RAS to better equip yourself in life. In Annie Grace’s well-written article entitled, “Liminal Thinking: The Key to Unlocking Your Unconscious Mind” she states, “Your unconscious mind is responsible for your desires. We don’t think about the distinction between our conscious and unconscious thoughts, but that distinction is vital to realizing why we continue to do things we vowed to stop. Studies confirm we have two separate thinking systems—the conscious and unconscious. The give-and-take between unconscious choices and our rational, conscious goals helps explain why we continue to do things we no longer desire to do.”

How does your brain decide what is important and relevant to you?

It does this by assessing the external environment against what is contained in your long-term memory. This included your core beliefs, experiences, values and conditioning. This is what is considered your default system. If you choose to believe something is impossible despite it existing for real, you will not see it. It will become
impervious to your field of vision. This is why beliefs must change as part of the reprogramming effort. It must fall in line with what you want to change as long as it is part of the authentic you.

You have the power to override this default system with your thinking part of the brain which is known as the frontal lobe. It is a simple as choosing to put all your focus and attention on what you want because what you put your focus on what you find.

Quantum physics has proven this model to be true. It states that in any point in time, all possibilities exist and the moment we focus on one thing, the rest drop out of existence. But when we alter our focus, the possibilities change in our mind and we lose track of what we’re doing.

Here are two good examples of that model:

  • Finding a parking space for your car – Ever tried to find a parking space for your car and got really frustrated when you couldn’t. Everything changed when you put your focus on getting the parking space. You convinced yourself it was opening up and boom, a spot became available. When this becomes a habit, it gets easier every time to get a parking space. It is not a game of chance but RAS working in your favor. When you focus and believe, your brain kicks into gear and your RAS is activated to see opportunities for parking spaces.
  • Noticing things you never noticed before – Returning to the idea of cars, ever decided you wanted to buy a new car but didn’t know which one to buy? You happen to see one in the paper or on a commercial and all of the sudden you see them everywhere? Before they weren’t on your radar but
    your brain now has been activated to see them. Even though they were always there only now has your RAS been activated to notice them.

How Does The Brain Activate RAS?

The RAS works on both a conscious and unconscious level. At any given time we are bombarded by 2 million bits of information but the brain cannot process all this data at once. Instead, we observe things at an unconscious level happening all around us so that we can focus on what we feel is important. That is when RAS kicks into overdrive and starts doing its magic.

The brain has the capacity to see the smallest things once you put your mind’s focus upon them. You cannot do or find things if you don’t believe in yourself. This is the whole point of positive thinking. Activating RAS based on the belief that you can and you will! That is how great things happen and how feats that once were thought to be impossible become the norm.

To most people, this seems like pure magic or sleight-of-hand but it isn’t. It is what your brain was built to do. RAS was put there for our most basic of instincts, to find food, water and protect us for survival. As humans evolved, our brains grew and we learned coping mechanisms that helped us survive. What we learned to focus on helped us evolve into the beings we are today.

How Are You Using Your RAS?

Are you living on automatic pilot and letting your conditioned brain dictate what you see and don’t see? Or, are you taking matters into your own hands and focusing on the things you really want? Positive thinking will get you there if you allow your RAS to be activated to do its job.

Have you ever focused on other people’s faults and weaknesses?

The more you focus on their faults and weaknesses the more you see them. The same goes for your own faults and weaknesses. Start focusing on your strengths and good points and let RAS work for you instead of against you. No one is perfect but focusing too much on the negative side of things hurts your potential and keeps you from pursuing your greater self. This is the self God created you to be. It’s not about being weak but gaining strength. Strength to carry on, believing in one’s sel, and learning from our mistakes. That’s where positive thinking gives us the edge.

What you focus upon you will definitely find. When you focus on new ideas do you focus on whether other’s will like it or hate it. Whatever you focus on will happen. Positive thinking gets you past the gatekeeper and puts you on the pathway to success. Whatever you focus on will ultimately happen whether you like it or not. You must focus on the positive for positive things to happen.

What you focus on becomes your perception. You miss things you don’t focus upon. Life is filled with both good and bad so what you focus on you’ll receive as well as see and react to.

All possibilities exist in the universe. You decide where you choose to put your focus on and attention on as it will decide the difference between an expansive life of amazing miracles and great opportunities or a life filled with drama, excuses and limitations.

What will you choose?

This is amazing stuff isn’t it? The more you learn the secrets of positive thinking the more you will become the person of your dreams. Implement these strategies and see how much better your life becomes!