Wednesday, April 29, 2015

The Project You Life Journey

Living A Determined Life

The Project You Life Journey is a continuous journey of self discovery and self actualization.
Many elements and tools are required for this journey, including:
  • a positive and supportive attitude 
  • a willingness to make changes in key aspects of your life 
  • fine- tuning your thoughts and actions 
  • the patience and fortitude to remain on the journey despite hurdles and setbacks, and 
  • the capacity for inner reflection, analysis and deeper understanding about you, your emotional makeup and your needs, wants, desires, dreams, and hopes.

Perhaps the two most important tools you will need on this journey of Living A Determined Life are gratitude and optimism. We will discuss both of these critical elements in future posts.
Whenever you ask anyone what they want for their life and where they want to go, the answer can usually be summed up as "go forward." 
Whether it is career success, material possessions, increased spirituality, dreams for their children, or a drive to improve society and the world around them, everyone seeks improvements in their lives. 
Everyone wants higher levels, or more frequent occurrences, of happiness, joy, contentment, ecstasy, pleasure, satisfaction, love, enjoyment, etc. And everyone wants more of something ── wealth, health, fitness, sex, success, family time, power, freedom, knowledge, influence, energy, authority, or a multitude of other things.
As such, everyone wants to go forward, however they define forward progress, future success and greater abundance for themselves.
However, to truly go forward you have to go within first. Deeply. 
The path to Living a Determined Life starts within, and then branches out to encompass all aspects of your life. This is what makes the Project You Life Journey a path of discovery and understanding.
No two Project You Life Journeys will ever be the same, for no two people walking this earth are ever the same. This is a journey of self discovery, self understanding and self satisfaction that creates authentic happiness through the living of one's own values.

It starts with your mind, but quickly encapsulates your emotions, heart and soul to help you design a path and a life that are truly suited for your nature and your overall well- being. 
The end result is an opportunity to lead a satisfying and gratifying life determined by you and in a holistic fashion that is congruent with your soul and aligned with your life's true purpose. 
When one embarks upon a Project You Life Journey, they soon have answers to the two most intriguing questions anyone can ask you:
Are you truly alive?
What are you doing with your life? 

This article is partially excerpted from Project You: Living A Determined Life, which is available in paperback and Kindle formats at Amazon 

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Following Your Conscience Creates Self Respect

Increasing Self Respect Makes Life More Pleasant 

You know instinctively when you are lying to yourself and trying to rationalize some course of action that your conscience is advising against. 

Going against your conscience usually results in a unpleasant results and a decrease in self respect. 

Follow your conscience and you will wake up each morning with a greater amount of respect for yourself. Disobey your conscience and the seeds of regret and self disenchantment begin to sprout. As William Penn wrote, "Only trust thyself and another shall not betray thee.

You also need to respect yourself enough to walk away from anything -- or anyone -- that no longer renews you, helps you grow or makes you happy. 

Of course, this is not to suggest that you run away from your responsibilities (particularly parental ones) or your relationships simply because you are unhappy or not feeling any growth. In fact, personal growth will come from how you work your way through such situations.

On the other hand, as Zig Ziglar points out, "Life is too short to spend your precious time trying to convince a person who wants to live in gloom and doom otherwise. Give lifting that person your best show but don't hang around long enough for his or her bad attitude to pull you down. Instead, surround yourself with optimistic people.

Respecting yourself also includes limiting the amount of damage you do to your body through over eating, alcohol, drugs, and your sleeping patterns. 

Respect is not something that you turn on and off like a water tap. It should gush from you at all times, toward all people, living creatures, the environment, property, and things in general. 

But, of course, before you can truly give respect to others, you have to have respect for yourself. 

Yes, you will occasionally come across people whose actions do not warrant respect. In such situations it is best to recall Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's words above to treat such people "as if they were what they ought to be." In doing so, perhaps you might just help them overcome whatever obstacles and hurdles they face and be a factor in them becoming what they ought to be. 

Even if your own respectful actions do not seem to have any impact on them, at least you will be left with a positive, respectful feeling toward yourself. Such a feeling makes it easier to walk away from idiots and those with self-proclaimed ambits of authority while maintaining peace with yourself instead of being angry with them and the world. 

Just add a little bit of respect into each of your encounters with others, and life will become a whole lot more pleasant and rewarding. 

Please take 10 minutes and think about ways you can improve your own self respect, and what actions you can take to bring more respect into the world around you.

This article is partially excerpted from Project You: Living A Determined Life, available in paperback and Kindle formats at Amazon

Saturday, April 25, 2015

The Right Path to Self Respect

Self Respect is a Long-Haul Journey

When these words from Shakti Gawain ring true for you, you will know that you are on the right path to self respect:
"I am learning to be patient and compassionate with myself as I gain the courage to be true to myself."
As detailed in our top-selling book  Project You: Living A Determined Life, it is far more important to be true to yourself than to seek acceptance and confirmation from others. 
The same goes for respect. As Steven H. Coogler writes, "Seek respect mainly from thyself, for it comes first from within."
One of the ironies about respect and self respect was identified centuries ago by the Chinese philosopher Lao-Tzu: "When you are content to be simply yourself and don't compare or compete, everybody will respect you."
Your continued personal development comes through the continuous process of building and maintaining high levels of self esteem and self respect. By changing the way you think about yourself, and by changing the internal verbal dialogues you have with yourself, you change your attitude, belief in yourself and your own abilities, the convictions you hold, and your energy levels.
All from simply how you think about and feel about you! 
And, as Lydia M. Child emphasizes, "Belief in oneself is one of the most important bricks in building any successful venture." (The most important venture you ever build will be you.)
Now, a word of caution! This is not a self-hype, temporary motivational exercise. Yes, there is a role for motivational affirmations that temporarily build short-term bursts of self belief (especially in sports and other performance or competitive activities). We have all witnessed underdogs will themselves to victories in countless movies and sporting events.
Rather, this is a long-haul journey requiring the patience and compassion described by Shakti Gawain above. It also requires complete and honest truth with one's self. We all have strengths and limitations. No one is perfect. You have to be honest with yourself about your imperfections.

"Above all," as Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoyevsky said, "do not lie to yourself. The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lies comes to such a pass that he cannot distinguish the truth within him, around him, and so loses all respect for himself and others." 
For most of us, gaining -- and maintaining -- self respect is often one of the most difficult parts of the Project You Life Journey. As we wrote in our previous post on Self Respect Requires Taking Control of Your Thoughts, this takes time, patience and commitment. 
It also takes a willingness to test self-imposed boundaries. And it takes the mental energy required to frequently pause and have reflective conversations with yourself on what you are thinking and feeling about yourself. 
Today......right now.....couldn't be a better time to have such a reflective conversation. 

Project You: Living A Determined Life is a guide to Authentic Success, a journey that starts with self-understanding and self-respect.