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Why do we resist change?

Heraclitus, a Greek philosopher, had been quoted as saying “change is the only constant in life.”

Aren’t you glad for change?

Consider that Heraclitus is from the 6th century, change is nothing new. Admittedly, it is happening at an increasing pace. Technologies, ideas, theories are continually evolving.

If change is unavoidable, what’s the point of worrying over it?

Obviously, how we feel about change depends on the circumstances. In our work lives a healthy attitude toward the idea of change is important if we want to grow professionally.  If fear of change is hindering us from doing this, we can work hard to change our perception. 

Change itself is not the problem but rather how we perceive it. Perceptions, when not challenged, lead to beliefs, and beliefs lead to behaviors which directly influence our results.  Embrace change as the opportunity of transformation.  Here is how:     

  1. Recognize that change is constant.
  2. Become good at asking questions – the more you know, the better equipped you will be for new growth.
  3. Maintain a positive perception so to gain positive results.

The workplace will continue to change.  In fact, it will evolve at an even faster rate moving forward.  Preferring to keep things “as is” might feel comfortable but disruption is inevitable, and no business is immune. Afterall, progress is rarely made without change.  

Keep perspective, harness the learning experience, and see the many possibilities on the horizon.   

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What are you choosing to pay attention to?

If there is a sudden loud sound, your awareness will immediately focus there. Your inner thoughts can capture your attention in a slightly different, yet still commanding, way. They too get pulled toward what distracts us most. Unlike an external loud noise where we identify the source and then move on, with internal loud noise, it is often difficult to steer your focus away from the hypothetical issue, which quickly turns into worry.   

Thoughts have weight – they can pull you down.  Thoughts have height – they can lift you up.  Thoughts have length – they can last a lifetime.   What direction are you allowing your thoughts to take you?

Worry is, sadly, an inevitability of life.  However, worry is rarely productive – so it’s crucial you not allow yourself to sit in that state for long.  Treat those thoughts just like an external loud sound- identify its source, release it from your memory and move on. 

Every time you’re pulled into unproductive thoughts, that’s the precise moment you need to relax and release.  Here is how:

  • Identify the thought – Is it good or bad?
  • Observe how it makes you feel – Optimistic or pessimistic?
  • Dispute the thought – Does this thought serve me well?
  • Come up with an alternative (and more accurate) way of looking at what happened.

Now you know…

“I did then what I knew how to do.  Now that I know better, I do better.” -Maya Angelou

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What do you see?

What about work has been weighing most heavily on your mind? 

Maybe it is a challenge, a change, or a struggle you find yourself in.  Now hold that thought and pause for a moment.  Reflect on it. 

If you are like the rest of us, human, then your answer was fixated on limitations and/or obstacles.  Rather than feeling a sense of progress, you feel stuck – Right?

“We only see what we want to see; we only hear what we want to hear. Our belief system is just like a mirror that only shows us what we believe.” –  Don Miguel Ruiz

What a profoundly simple yet simply profound concept.  Whatever it is that weighs most on your mind, just observe the situation without trying to solve it.  Silence the analytical judging mind so you can be in a state of wonder and curiosity.  Your focus begins to shift away from the obstacles and towards possible opportunities. Right?   

Always know that every dip and rise in the roller coaster of life holds opportunities.  You just need to tell yourself so – because, you see what you want to see. 

The goal of this message is to give you something more useful than answers…the ability to arrive at your own answers. Life will always have uncertainties and challenges.  The key to thriving, both personally and professionally, lies in what you choose to see in such trying moments.      

You are able.  You are capable. 

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Want to become highly resilient and super happy?

It’s summer!

A magical season where us northerners come out of winter hibernation (being indoors) and soak up the sun.  Whether you prefer a trip to the mountains or a trip to the beach, we tend to view the next several months as a time to recharge ourselves.

 

CAUTION:  Summer is temporary.  Being resilient and able to recharge yourself should not be.

 

 

Here is my challenge:  Right now, invest less than 20 minutes, pull up and watch two short videos.  The links are below…

I can guarantee that these will forever change how you recharge for resilience and happiness.

Will you accept this challenge?

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Success is not like a spigot…

Growing up my parents had one of those old manual hand pumps for their spigot.  Humor me, I am not that old, they had a well system.

I would pump and pump, but water would never come out.  Eventually I gave up and thought to myself, “This thing doesn’t work!”  Then to justify giving up I’d tell myself, “I did everything Mom told me to do, and I didn’t get any water.”

hand pump spigotThere are some parallel lessons here related to personal and professional challenges.

Despite feverishly pumping with no instant results, it’s important to remember that with continued effort and persistence the desired results WILL come pouring out. As we feverishly pump, yet nothing appears to be happening, with continued effort and persistence the desired results WILL come pouring out.  It also provides the opportunity to look at the pump with curiosity and wonder what possibilities there might be to improve the pump.

No great journey is linear. In reality it’s continual sequences of ups and downs expansions and contractions. You make progress and then you stumble. Every advance reveals a new shortcoming.  Major upsets lead to breakthrough moments.

Your must enter the lows and optimize the highs in order to achieve a positive slope within the maze of real life.

Success…

It’s sleepless nights brainstorming ideas.  It’s a roller coaster of incremental successes and failures. It’s a war with self-doubt.  Success is persevering long enough to transform vision into reality!

Your success, and the next big breakthrough, is much closer to the surface than you might think.

You just need to stay focused and keep on pumping!

 

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Feeling too busy to accomplish your goals?

Feeling too busy to accomplish your goals?  We all know that feeling.

This month’s message is meant to help you “own your days” versus letting the days own you. I want you to maximize your energy on the right tasks/strategies to be as productive as possible.

whirlwind
Whirlwind of Busy:  Don’t Get Sucked In

How amazing does it feel when you have a really busy day, but you were also super productive?  Who doesn’t want more of those days?!?!

If you open your mind to the possibility of it, it’s pretty simple:

  1. Understand exactly what needs to be done each day. Don’t worry about the whole week or month.  Focus on today!
  2. Become crystal clear on what daily activities have the biggest impact on our goals. Need help with that?  Ask me!
  3. Create a daily short-priority list. After making your list, decide which activities have the highest impact.
  4. Then focus on one thing at a time – that which offers the biggest gain.

When the whirlwind of busyness starts whipping up your day, take control of it. This is something you can change and will get better at over time. We all fall into the busy category from time to time but, during those times, it is important to recognize it for what it is and move forward with action.  Look back on the 4 steps above.  Maybe have them printed out where you see them regularly, to help to make them your new habit.

What one activity will deliver you the biggest gains tomorrow?

Please share your thoughts in the comments section below as I learn just as much from you as you do from me.

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Little by little, a little becomes a lot.

I am here to tell you that small improvements accumulate into remarkable results.  A slight change in your daily routine can guide your year-end results to a very different destination.  How you approach things now will determine the difference between where you are and where you could be.

In his book Atomic Habits James Clear states, “You do not rise to the level of your goals.  You fall to the level of your systems.”  Results have very little to do with the goals you set and everything to do with the systems you followed.  Think on that…

goalsOur potential weighs so heavily on what we think and the beliefs that materialize from thoughts.   This is because behind every action you take there is a system of beliefs and these beliefs will either empower or disempower you.  Henry Ford was spot on when he said, “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t, you are right.” 

If you want to change your results, then change the beliefs that caused them.  Realign your beliefs and your actions will follow.  Those new actions will become a system of small improvements that achieve different outcomes – goal shattering, winning outcomes.

Hitting those year-end goals…You Got This!

Please share your thoughts in the comments section below as I learn just as much from you as you do from me.

Follow this blog by clicking the icon on the upper right side of this page.   

Follow me on Twitter @JimCarchidi

 

 

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Becoming the conscious observer: How thoughts had limited my possibilities

Don’t be so quick to give into your thoughts!

“Sometimes our thoughts do not have our best interest in mind” – Dali Lama

Dalai LamaWhere your attention goes your energy flows.  And where your energy flows, whatever you focus on grows.  Interestingly, only you, through your attention, can give thoughts value and power.

What thoughts are you holding onto?  Whether anchored in the past or focused on the future, “Are they making your life today better or worse?”

Our potential weighs so heavily on what we think – literally our thoughts (those we choose to pay attention to) shape our life.  When we place enough attention to a thought it eventually turns into a belief.  And our beliefs either empower or disempower us.  Essentially, what you think about and tell yourself becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Seems simple enough yet our brain is innately programed with a negativity bias.  We have strong tendency to place our attention and energy on things like “what could go wrong” and “our perceived limitations.”  This mental loop of planning for the worse tends to have us view the present as not good enough.  It’s as if we live with one foot in the past saying, “If only things had been different.” And the other foot in the future saying, “When this happens, things will be better.”  Meanwhile we completely ignore the present which is the only place where life actually exists.neuroplasticity

“Make the present moment your friend rather than your enemy.  Too many people live habitually as if the present moment were some obstacle they need to overcome in order to get to the next.  And imagine living your whole life like that, where always this moment is never quite right because you need to get to the next one.  That is continuous stress.”  – Eckert Tolle

They say that stress is a byproduct of obsessively thinking about the past while anxiety results when we try controlling or forcing outcomes in life.  Admittedly there are valid moments where past analysis and/or future forecasting is beneficial (mostly in our professional lives).  However, too much time spent thinking about what’s already happened or what might happen is toxic to our livelihood and potential.  The point I am trying to make is this.  Whether you are predominantly anchored in the past or lost in the future, thoughts lead to beliefs and beliefs shape reality – the life you live.

Make no mistake, we have little to no control over our inner thoughts.  On the contrary thoughts cannot just take over your mind.  Only once you place attention on a thought can it materialize and influence (empower/disempower) your livelihood and potential.  This is your responsibility, you have control over the thoughts you hold onto, placing energy and attention on.  A thought is just that – a thought…until you rest your mind on it, dwell on it, and choose to believe it.  Once that happens your thought has the power to become life changing.

Think of it this way.  If Kennedy thought landing on the moon was impossible (which you can bet was one of the many thoughts he had) it would have become his belief.  And that belief would have changed his presidential legacy, the country’s legacy, and all human potential for that matter.  Make sense?

Here is my straight forward advice… When negative thoughts or feelings come into your mind, simply observe them, and but for the rare instance of life/death situation, let it go.  Depending on life’s circumstances it is perfectly natural to “feel” worried, stressed, doubtful (thoughts)…but you do not necessarily need to “be”  worried, stressed, doubtful (beliefs, state of being).  Beliefs define what we are capable of and the quality of our lives.  Our perception of who we are, of the world around us, situations we face – when we adopt them as (truth, a belief) they literally shape our reality.

“Once you notice you are feeling a particular way, then you generate more thoughts equal stressto how you’re feeling, and then you release more chemicals from your brain to make you feel the way you’ve been thinking.  And since the hormones of long-term stress down-regulate the expression of healthy genes and create disease…you must stop placing attention on any feelings related to stress…” – Dr Joe Dispenza

Your attention is the mind’s spotlight.  What you chose to focus it on will become the picture of the life you live.  The best way to predict your future is to create it.  Leverage the power of choice.  What thoughts you choose place your attention and energy on.  Unleash your human potential and turn those dreams into reality.  You got this.  The choice is yours and yours alone to make.

Please share your thoughts in the comments section below as I learn just as much from you as you do from me.

Follow this blog by clicking the icon on the upper right side of this page.   

Follow me on Twitter @JimCarchidi

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Where your focus goes, energy flows…

…And where energy flows, whatever you focus on grows.

After several days of shooting abdominal pain, I finally gave in and went to an urgent care center.  Within minutes of seeing the Doctor I was told, “you need to be admitted to a hospital.”

They called the ER and notified them that I would be coming.  The next thing I know, I am in the ER.  Before I could even give them my insurance card, I hear my name being called.  Next came a barrage of blood work, an injection for the pain, an ultrasound and then waiting…waiting…and more waiting.

ambulanceFortunately, there is a happy ending.  No issues with my appendix.  The cause of my pain…self-induced, over production of cortisol (stress hormones).

For weeks I had been accepting the wrong self-talk, that inner dialogue we all have between our two ears.  Being obsessed with all that could go wrong, rather than all that could go right, was wreaking havoc on my nervous system.  Literally, my emotions (thoughts and feelings) brought on phyical pain.

The underlying truth here is that when we constantly analyze and place our attention on what “could” go wrong – we are contributing to things going wrong.

I learned a valuable life lesson – how to predict my future…

The best way to predict the future is to create it.  Make sure your self-talk is focused on daily possibilities rather than potential disruptions.

What thoughts will you pay attention to when you get up tomorrow?

Please share your thoughts in the comments section below as I learn just as much from you as you do from me.

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The Greatest Gift is…

The greatest gift of all – your presence.

birthday bow box card
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Are you already feeling some stress at the very thought of the upcoming holiday season?  If so, you are not alone. And, it doesn’t have to be that way!

Instead of being overwhelmed or exhausted by the many demands of the holidays, take a different approach—one that involves involving more “being” and less “doing.”

According to research* from Harvard University, you are happier when you are present, and the ones you are with experience a greater sense of wellbeing.  When we are not centered in the present moment our minds are torn between two worlds – the past and the future.  Don’t get me wrong, there are times to reminisce and/or daydream, but when we habitually are thinking of something other than what we are doing, life can pass you by.  That is why we must stay focused on our presence in the present.

Develop the mental fitness to let go of distractions and overcome the mind’s natural tendency to wonder.  Don’t let a long to-do list of the holiday season distract you from what really counts.  Be present when talking with family and friends.  Be present when working with your JFC team.  Be here now and be fully present!

Challenge yourself to be in the moment.  As you do, you will surely be home for the holidays, and your family and friends will receive the greatest gift of all – your presence.

“Realize deeply that the present moment is all you have.  Make the Now the primary focus of your life.” – Eckhart Tolle

Please share your thoughts in the comments section below as I learn just as much from you as you do from me.

Follow this blog by clicking the icon on the upper right side of this page.   

Follow me on Twitter @JimCarchidi

 

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