Making Changes Last – The Daily, June 8, 2020

The trees grow as tall as they can. We should aspire to be so grand

“Be the change that you wish to see in the world.” 
― Mahatma Gandhi

“Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.” 
― Leo Tolstoy

It’s easy to criticize, judge, and talk about what other people should or shouldn’t be doing. It’s less simple when it comes to changing ourselves. Before looking around and finding fault with others, peer into your own life and see what’s going on there. You might be surprised that you are less than perfect, and therefore have no right to demand that others be so.

Momentum – Make a decision and stick with it. The only way to get something accomplished is to do it. It’s amazing how so many people will say that they want to lose weight, and yet they continue to overeat and not exercise. They want the reward without the work. Life kind of works in the opposite way – you get out of it what you put into it. At some point, realizing that anything worth having takes work and then doing the work brings a satisfaction upon completion that is more fulfilling than anything else.

Stop looking for easy answers and do the work if you really want something. Or else just let it go. No one is interested in hearing about the things you want to do if you aren’t actually doing them.

1984 – On June 8th, 1949, George Orwell published his last book, 1984. All of his books make for incredible reading and inspire a thought-provoking journey. Born into privilege in India, Eric Blair, the real name of the author, became disillusioned and left to follow a life of poverty in England and Paris.

Orwell’s last novel, 1984, brought him lasting fame with its vision of a future where all citizens are watched constantly and language is twisted to aid in oppression. It’s a grim outlook that speaks to the times of today.

Thought of the Day – Don’t assume that what you hear and read are true. Make sense of it yourself and listen to many different viewpoints. Following anything blindly impairs your ability to make fair assessments. Stay informed and enjoy a beautiful day.

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” 
― Martin Luther King Jr

Think Only of What You Want

My view from my balcony on Canada Day – fireworks always bring our awareness to the present moment

When you truly become aware that you are in control of your thoughts, your life can change instantly.

Some people never recognize this potential within themselves. They feel that everything happens to them by chance, and that they have no control over the circumstances of life.

This just isn’t true.

While it is true that as children we have very little control over our life situation, as we get older we are able to design our lives in whatever way we choose.

Our thoughts and emotions play the biggest role in who we are and who we will become.

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Be Who You Want to Be – Take Action

You don’t have to move fast, but you do need to move

This is it. You may have decided that you are going to make some big changes in your life. It could be a change in careers, moving, leaving or starting a relationship, or going back to school.

Now what?

I have done these things – all of them – so many times over the last few decades that I have learned a thing or two about myself during the process.

I have lived in other countries, switched careers four times, gone back to school full-time while still working, started and ended long-term relationships, and moved more times than I can count.

In other words, I have lived a life full of changes all of the time.

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Be Who You Want to Be – Focus

I am dwarfed by the magnificence of creation. My problems are meaningless. I choose to live in joy

It can be overwhelming sometimes to know what you want. There are so many choices, so many different options that making a decision and narrowing it down to one can be intimidating.

And that can be just what to have for breakfast!

The world is like a big buffet. No two people are the same, nor do we need to be. We all have basic needs of survival, like having food, shelter and safety. After that, it becomes a choice as to what interests you and how you want to live your life.

Sometimes other people make our choices for us, and if these choices don’t resonate with us then we can feel resentment. As we get older we have the power to reclaim our lives and do what we choose to do.

So why do so many people stay in jobs or careers that they absolutely despise?

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Be Who You Want to Be – Planning

Sit, think, and figure it out. You can’t get there if you don’t know where you are going! Photo Credit: Dawn Kay

Would you ask a 16 year old to plan your life for you? Are you in a career now that you decided on many years ago that doesn’t satisfy you? Are you afraid to leave because you have invested so much time into it that you are scared to walk away?

Some people suffer for years because they are following a path that was laid out long ago that no longer resonates with them. Maybe it never did, but they were encouraged to go into a certain line of work by others, usually family.

Yes, we all need to be productive in life, but don’t you envy the people who make a living doing what they are passionate about? Don’t you wish you could wake up every day, excited and anticipating all that is to come?

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It All Starts With a Plan

A long road ahead, easily manoeuvred one step at a time

Sometimes getting started is the hardest part.

Whenever I decide I want to begin a new project, the first thing that runs through my mind is usually negative. How hard is this going to be? How much of my time is this going to take? What can go wrong? What if I invest a lot of time and find out I don’t want to do it after all?

I have decided that this type of thinking is stopping me before I even get going. I have a new plan of action – start with the positive questions instead of the negative ones. It’s a simple switch that works like a miracle.

I have several projects on the go right now. As I consider how to attack these head-on, I’m thinking in terms of what positive things they will bring into my life. In other words, I start by looking for the benefits and not the negatives.

These are the steps I take:

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Seeking Perfection, Finding Resistance

New moon, time to plan. Full moon, time to act. Moments unfolding in perfection, always

I sure wish I had… I really wish I was… Oh how different things could be if…

Now fill in the blanks. 

When I think of these statements and fill in my own blanks, I am one step closer to knowing what my dreams are. And in that knowing, I now have the power to make those things my reality.

I developed the crutch of seeking perfection at a young age. Now I know that the perfection I thought I was working towards was just an excuse not to get started. 

At the root of perfectionism lies the seed of procrastination.

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Start From Where You Are

Barbados – Someone looked at this rock and saw stairs. What wonderful ingenuity

Everything happens right now. Start from where you are. Where else can you start from?  It’s a good time to check in with yourself and really get in touch with how you feel.

Sometimes we get so busy just getting through life that we lose sight of what we truly want to create.

Check in and ask yourself how you feel. Are you a little bored, like you know that there should be something more to life, but things seem a little pointless sometimes?

Is inertia holding you back? It’s time to break free from the gravitational pull of mediocrity and take control of your life – because it’s your life to control.

Life is way too short to waste time being ordinary.

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Stop Procrastinating and Get On With Life

I wanted to get my yoga teacher certificate – so I went and did it!

What would life be like if we never procrastinated? Where do you think you might be now if, instead of putting things off, you had simply done what needed to be done without making a big deal about it?

Procrastination takes a lot of effort and doesn’t make us feel good about ourselves. So why do we do it?

If you are honest with yourself, there are a couple of reasons why it seems better to put something off than to just do it. One is fear, and the other is because the project isn’t something you actually want to do.

Why do we do things we don’t want to do? It could be to save money, or to try to make someone else happy, or out of a sense of obligation. When a project excites us we jump ahead and would never think of putting it off. If it holds no interest for us, then we approach it with a sense of resentment and avoidance.

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Get What You Want

Reach for the sky – it doesn’t hurt to try!

When I ask people what their number one health goal is, most say that they want to lose weight.

Almost immediately after saying this, they go on to provide at least three reasons why they can’t. It’s usually something like I’m too stressed, I don’t have time to cook, I like food too much, or I hate exercise.

When your reasons not to do something are much stronger than your reasons why you could do something, you have no chance. Zero. As in, don’t even try because there’s no way it will happen.

The reasons you make up either move you towards a goal, or away from it. You give yourself permission to either continue the behaviour that got you to where you are in the first place, or to make the changes necessary.

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