Tuesday, January 17, 2017
We know that forgiveness is hard.
Even harder for many people, is forgiving themselves for their actions, inaction, words, or thoughts.
Interestingly, over 65% of the respondents in the Project You Global Survey on Forgiveness admitted that they have difficulties in forgiving themselves sometimes. In addition, another 14% responded that they "often" have difficulties in forgiving themselves.
Only one in five respondents (21%) to our survey, who came from 18 different nationalities spread across the globe, said they have no difficulties in forgiving themselves.
It seems that self-forgiveness is not a very common practice.
The path to self-forgiveness is not often an easy one. In fact, even for those who are good at consistently forgiving others, forgiving one's self is often a more difficult task.
In order to forgive ourselves, we have to be honest with ourselves and admit our mistakes and wrong actions. Plus, we have to take personal ownership for the wrongdoing. Trying to place blame elsewhere, or making excuses for our behavior, are not congruent with the self-forgiving process.
On the other hand, not forgiving one's self and learning the lessons from one's misdeeds means to be shackled to the past and unable to move forward. It also extracts serious costs on our mental, emotional, and physical well-being. As Publilus Syrus wrote over two thousand years ago, "How unhappy is he who cannot forgive himself."
Regular readers of the Project You Life blog will know that we are encouraging everyone to make 2017 a Personal Year of Forgiveness.
Through self-awareness and self-understanding, along with copious amounts of reflection and commitment, everyone can learn to forgive themselves and move beyond their past deeds and actions.
We have created a six-step process for forgiving yourself, which you will find in our latest book Project You: Forgiveness Words of Wisdom. The book launches tomorrow (January 18th) on Amazon in both paperback and Kindle formats.
The ideas, techniques, and quotes in Project You: Forgiveness Words of Wisdom will assist you on your own journey to inner peace through forgiveness and to your own ability to Live A Determined Life.
Forgive yourself. Let go of the past. Move on.
May this become your personal forgiveness mantra for 2917 and beyond.
Monday, January 16, 2017
Absence of Forgiving Prevalent in Family Relationships and Society
We were stunned by one result in the 2016 Project You Global Survey on Forgiveness — 39% of the respondents said their own families were not forgiving at all, while another 16% said that their family members were not forgiving "very often."
Admittedly, we had suspected that the lack of forgiveness is a major cause of family dysfunction. But we had not anticipated the severity of these results.
With 55% of respondents indicating there is little or no forgiveness within their own families, it is little wonder that people do not feel there is sufficient forgiveness in the world today (88% of the respondents to our survey, who come from 18 different nationalities, agreed that there is not enough forgiveness in today's world).
Contrast these results with the responses to our questions on forgiveness in the workplace and within the countries in which respondents lived.
While both country level and workplace level forgiveness were deemed to be highly situational, the level of forgiveness in each was remarkably higher than indicated for families.
For instance, only 19% said forgiveness happens "not very often" and just 3% said forgiveness does not happen at all in the countries in which they live. So that's a 22% lack of forgiveness at the country level compared to the 55% within families.
As for the workplace, just over 14% said that forgiveness in the organizations in which they work happens "not very often" or "not at all." That's about one-fourth the level of the absence of forgiveness in families.
You can download the full results of the survey here: 2016 Project You Global Survey on Forgiveness.
Personal Year of Forgiveness
The lack of forgiveness within families is one of the biggest ills of society. We had suspected that this may only be a problem in the materialized western world. But the responses were fairly consistent across all 18 different nationalities that responded to our global survey on forgiveness.
We also see the lack of forgiveness occurring frequently in other aspects of today's world. We all witnessed the anger, fury, and antagonism that surrounded last year's Brexit vote and the lengthy U.S. election process. Numerous studies are also showing increased incivility in the workplace across the globe.
Hence, Project You is calling for 2017 to be a Personal Year of Forgiveness.
We want to start a dialogue on forgiveness. We want to encourage acts of forgiveness at the family, workplace, and national levels.
We ask that you help start this dialogue by sharing this blog post and our two previous blog posts (Research Confirms Forgiving Is Difficult and Why Are We So Hesitant To Forgive?) with your family, friends, and colleagues. And please share these in Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and elsewhere.
And most important, please share with us and your fellow readers in the comments section below your own ideas on how we can stimulate a Personal Year of Forgiveness with everyone.
Sunday, January 15, 2017
To Forgive Is To Set Yourself Free
The Project You Global Survey on Forgiveness late last year confirms that there is a great deal of hesitancy to forgive. This reluctance to take action is one of the key hurdles preventing more forgiveness in the world, both in our personal and professional relationships.
In this global survey on forgiveness, we asked participants what action they would take with regards to a person with whom they are currently in conflict. We gave three options: forgiveness, revenge, or do nothing. A full 35% of the respondents, who came from 18 different nationalities, chose the "do nothing" option.
When asked what is holding them back from forgiveness, 31% indicated pride while another 30% said anger.
Many people are afraid to forgive simply because somehow they feel they must remember the wrong, the hurt, and the paid they experienced in order to learn and retain the lessons from these. This is utter nonsense.
There is no need for this. You can remember the lessons without having to hang on to the wrong done to you or to constantly suffer from recalling the agony you felt at the time and since.
Likewise, forgiveness does not excuse the other person's behavior or words. Forgiveness does, however, prevent their behavior and words from razing your emotions, flattening your spirit, and destroying your heart.
This is why Lewis B. Smedes was so correct when he wrote: "To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you."
Personal Year of Forgiveness
Through our books, our blog, and a series of events we are planning, Project You is dedicated this year to helping people become more conscious of the power of forgiveness and more aware of the numerous benefits of living a forgiving life.
As such we are also encouraging everyone to make 2017 a Personal Year of Forgiveness by incorporating forgiveness into everything you do, from your New Year's Resolutions and 2017 goal setting to your daily habits.
- Practice forgiveness and you will find a higher level of inner peace and happiness.
- Practice forgiveness and you will increase your ability to love on all fronts.
- Practice forgiveness and you will become a better individual, partner, friend, parent, and even co-worker.
Forgive. Let go. Move on.
May this become your personal mantra in 2017 and beyond.
Saturday, January 14, 2017
Calling for a Personal Year of Forgiveness
Research conducted last year by Project You confirms that for many forgiveness is a difficult process and often not an easy thing to do.
In our Global Survey on Forgiveness late last year, 45% of the respondents said their first instinctive response, if asked to forgive one person in their life right now, would be "no way." Another 6% expressed self-righteousness ("I didn't do anything wrong, I'm in the right here") and almost 5% indicated an angry response in line with "why should I be the one to forgive?"
Additionally, when given a choice between forgiveness, revenge, or doing nothing with regards to a particular person with whom they are currently in personal or professional conflict with, 35% chose the "do nothing" option.
We also asked "does the pain of your hurt or offense seem so great and personal that you find it difficult to share with others?" Almost 37% replied yes to this question.
Our research project also confirmed that there is not enough forgiveness in the world today (88% of respondents from 18 different nationalities who took part in our survey agreed with this statement).
There is no question that forgiving can be hard. Complete, unconditional forgiveness is even harder — sometimes even impossible — to grant.
Extending forgiveness is one of the hardest things we can do, but it is absolutely essential for our mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being.
As such, Project You is calling for a Personal Year of Forgiveness.
Personal Year of Forgiveness
There is so much anger, fury and antagonism in today's world. We have all witnessed this with Brexit, the tonality of the U.S. election, and increasing incivility in the workplace across the globe.
We are encouraging everyone to consider how they can intentionally be more forgiving, of both themselves and others, in 2017.
Make this your Personal Year of Forgiveness. Add forgiveness to one of your key New Year's Resolutions or goals for the year.
Become more conscious of the power of forgiveness and make a conscientious effort to become more forgiving....both in your personal life and in your workplaces.
What can you do?
Start by reading about the numerous benefits of forgiveness. Learn and practice the forgiveness techniques that have helped others. Choose one person to forgive before the end of this month and prepare a plan for how you will convey your forgiveness. Share your own ideas and thoughts in the comments box below.
Marianne Williamson wrote, "The practice of forgiveness is our most important contribution to the healing of the world."
There are many parts of our world that need healing today. Let us each take the steps of forgiveness that will create progress in this healing. You can start by sharing this blog post in your social media channels and with your family, friends, and colleagues.
Help us make 2017 everyone's Personal Year of Forgiveness.
Thursday, January 12, 2017
Project You 2016 Global Survey on Forgiveness Results
Late last year Project You conducted a Global Survey on Forgiveness. Remarkably we received responses from 18 different nationalities, plus one respondent who identified herself as a "world citizen."
As expected, there were noticeable differences in the responses received to our 12-question survey. However, there was one thing the vast majority (88%) agreed on — there simply is not enough forgiveness in the world today.
This is an astonishing response. Equally astonishing is that 39% of the respondents to our survey said members of their own families are not forgiving at all, while another 16% said that their family members were not forgiving very often.
With 55% of respondents indicating that there is little or no forgiveness within their own families, it is little wonder that people do not feel there is sufficient forgiveness in today's world. We fully agree with Marianne Williamson's comment that "The practice of forgiveness is our most important contribution to the healing of the world."
What makes forgiveness so difficult?
Forgiveness requires the right mindset and attitude. It also requires an appropriate level of humility and the willingness to acknowledge the human values of the other person. And all this needs to be combined with strong personal willpower and fortitude based on deep-seated self-understanding.
That's not an easy combination to find or generate on demand.
Often our sense of pride, self-righteousness, and ego get in the way of forgiveness. In fact, these are often huge hurdles. In the Project You Global Survey on Forgiveness, 45% of respondents said their instinctive first reaction, if asked to forgive one person in their life right now, would be "no way."
Another 6% expressed self-righteousness (I didn't do anything wrong, I'm in the right here), while almost 5% indicated an angry response in line with "why should I be the one to forgive?"
Less than one-third (32%) responded to this question with the positive choice of "it's really something I should do."
Responses to the Project You Global Survey on Forgiveness were received from 18 different nationalities: Argentinian, American, Australian, British, Canadian, Dutch, English, French, Indian, Italian, Japanese, Malaysian, Pakistani, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Sicilian, Singaporean, and the one woman who identified herself as a World Citizen.
The detailed survey results can be viewed and downloaded from the Project You website by clicking this link: 2016 Global Survey on Forgiveness Detailed Results
Tuesday, January 3, 2017
Achieving Personal Goals and Staying Motivated
For many, today is the first "official" day of 2017. The college bowl games are over. Kids are back in school. Most of us are back at our desks and workplaces.
As such, our attention turns to our personal and professional goals and objectives for 2017.
Here are some tools and tips to help you achieve your personal goals and stay motivated throughout the course of the year, no matter what hurdles or bumps you encounter along the way.
First, today is the final free day in the Amazon Kindle store for our book Project You: Words of Wisdom. It is the #2 ranked motivational book and the #3 ranked self-help book and you can download a free copy now at: Project You: Words of Wisdom.
|#2 Ranked Motivational Book in Amazon Kindle Store|
Additionally, we have three short articles that will help you overcome the mistakes that many people make when setting New Year's Resolutions and other personal goals:
And lastly, here's a link to our easy-to-use and very helpful Project You personal change action plan template:
We hope these are all useful in helping to make 2017 your best year yet!
Don't forget: download your personal copy of Project You: Words of Wisdom now!
Best wishes for continued success in 2017.
Monday, January 2, 2017
30-60-90 Action Plan Template for Achieving Personal Goals
In business there is a saying: what gets measured gets done.
The same applies to our personal lives, especially when it comes to setting and achieving our New Year's Resolutions.
The help you track and measure progress on your individual goals, we have created the Project You Personal Change Action Plan. This action plan is easy to use and helps you think through the steps and actions needed to achieve any goal or objective over the course of 30, 60, and 90 days.
It also incorporates the 7 Factors for Successfully Implementing Personal Change, which we wrote about yesterday. You can even modify this personal change template to suit your particular needs.
You can read and copy our action plan template at this link: Project You Personal Change Action Plan.
In addition, we are pleased to share with you two articles that will help you achieve your New Year's Resolutions or any other personal goals you've set for yourself:
Lastly, to help keep you motivated throughout the year, our book Project You: Words of Wisdom, is available free in the Amazon Kindle store through January 3rd. The paperback version is only $6.45.
Currently the #3 motivational book and the #5 self-help book in the Amazon Kindle Store, Project You: Words of Wisdom is full of motivational quotes, tips, and techniques for helping you achieve your 2017 goals and aspirations. To get your copy, click on this link: Project You Words of Wisdom.
We wish you continued success in 2017.
Sunday, January 1, 2017
Seven Key Success Factors for Personal Change
Every time you tear a leaf off a calendar,
you present a new place for new ideas and progress.
Happy New Year. A time for starting your personal growth and change actions anew.
As we wrote in yesterday’s blog post, there are many reasons why personal change initiatives fail.
According to some scientific research, it takes on average 66 days for a new behavior to become a new habit. That’s a little over two months!
No wonder so many people give up and abandon their personal change initiatives before reaching success. They typically quit too early in the process, often because they underestimate the time required to fully inculcate and instill a new behavior or a new change into their daily routines.
Don’t let this happen to you. Here are 7 Key Success Factors you can use to implement any personal change initiative in any aspect of your life.
1. Put time aside daily / weekly to review the actions you are taking, to monitor progress towards your goal, to make adjustments in either actions or stipulated deadline as necessary, and to re-commit yourself to achieving your desired outcome. Spend some time to also read some motivational quotes or anything else that personally inspires you.
2. Give priority to your personal change initiative over daily tasks. It is far too easy to get overloaded with the necessities and chores of daily life. But the actions on your “to do” list are not moving you in the direction you desired. Create a “Priority To Do” list of the things you need to do in order to achieve your desired outcome. Give this list priority over the things on your daily list.
3. Write your personal change goals in a SMART format:
This technique has worked well over the years in the business world. Now apply it to your own Project You Personal Change Initiative.
Here’s an example of a not SMART goal: to lose weight and get in shape.
What is meant by “get in shape?” How much weight needs to be lost? And in what time period?
Here’s how to translate that to a SMART goal: lose 8 pounds in 30 days and increase personal fitness level by walking at least four miles three times a week.
What you want to measure is not only the outcome, but also the action steps being taken.
What is achievable here is walking four times a week. If you only lose 6 pounds in 30 days, despite having done your four walks a week, it merely means you need to extend your deadline by a couple of weeks. You’re certainly not a failure just because you cannot hit a self-imposed deadline.
4. Share your goals with others and allow them to hold you accountable — when you share your personal change goal with someone else, it helps you to be more committed to accomplishing the goal (partly because sharing the goal is a bit like promising the other person that you are committed to it). Allow this other person to hold you accountable by permitting them to help you track progress, push and motivate you, and even cajole you into action when necessary. Yes, they may become a nag; but not necessarily more so than our own conscience!
5. Focus on 1-3 change initiatives at a time. This is why New Year’s Resolutions often go astray. People make New Year’s Resolutions lists that quickly tally into double digits. No one can make that many changes in their life all at one time. It is best to pick 1-3 that are of the highest priority for you and focus on these. Once one or two are accomplished (which takes on average 66 days according to one scientific study), then add one more.
6. Track progress. If you do not monitor your progress you will not have a good understanding of the realistic nature of the deadline you have set for yourself. Failing to meet a self-determined deadline may or may not be an indicator of failure. Most likely it is merely an indicator of failing to set a realistic deadline. Also, by tracking progress you will know if the actions you are taking are having the intended results. If they are not, you have the opportunity to make adjustments or try new actions.
7. Recognize effort and reward success. Too many people do not give themselves credit or self praise for their efforts, despite the fact that such actions are highly self motivating. There is no need to only focus on outcomes. Focus on the actions you are taking. And, when success is yours be sure that the reward is appropriate. Managed to lose those 8 pounds? Celebrating with a couple of slices of pizza is fine. Celebrating by eating a whole pizza only serves to negate your hard efforts and some of the success you have just enjoyed!
It is not enough to commit to change. You also have to commit to action. These 7 Key Success Factors for Implementing Personal Change are designed to help to commit to action, and then to sustain (and modify) the actions you take.
Here’s one more tool for you to use: the Project You Personal Change Action Plan, which incorporates these 7 Key Success Factors for Implementing Personal Change.
For some additional help, read our article: 8 Steps for Making (and Keeping) Successful New Year's Resolutions.
And, to keep you motivated throughout the year, our book Project You: Words of Wisdom, is available free in the Amazon Kindle store through January 3rd. The paperback version is only $6.45.
Currently the #1 motivational book and the #1 self-help book in the Amazon Kindle Store, Project You: Words of Wisdom is full of motivational quotes, tips, and techniques for helping you achieve your 2017 goals and aspirations. To get your copy, click on this link: Project You Words of Wisdom.
Best wishes for continued success in 2017.