Sunday, January 31, 2016

Patience With Ourselves Has Many Benefits

Patience is both a Virtue and a Tool of Personal Success

The Project You Life Journey is a long, continuous one, with a destination set by you and at a pace established by you.
This is not a journey of perfection, but one of nonstop and unremitting improvement. The objective is to aim for a continuous achievement of success milestones that will provide you with daily, weekly and monthly confirmation that you are attaining higher levels of self satisfaction, self-determined happiness and self-defined levels of contentment.
Along this journey you will find times when you have made mistakes or chosen wrong options. That is fine, because doing so increases your ability to learn new things, gain greater insights into yourself and move forward with your life.
Of course, it goes without saying that this journey requires patience….with yourself, with others, and with the circumstances and situations we face.
Perhaps the greatest patience will be required with the self-imposed time deadlines we tend to set for ourselves. We often forget that the universe does not work on the same clock or to the same deadlines as we do. In fact, it usually takes longer to accomplish a specific goal than the time frame we originally set for ourselves. Not meeting our own, arbitrarily set deadlines is not a failure of accomplishment. Rather, it is a failure in setting correct and proper deadlines!
Does it matter if it takes three weeks longer for you to lose the final amount of weight you set as a goal? Not in the bigger picture of your Project You Life Journey it doesn't. Does it matter if it takes several months longer to accomplish your major renovation or hobby project than you set yourself? Not in the bigger picture of your Project You Life Journey it doesn't.
We are so programmed in today's world to establish hard and firm deadlines for ourselves that much of our angst and worries are,  not about accomplishing a certain objective as it is about doing so within a specified time we set for ourselves! Drop the angst and worries about deadlines and your progress toward your goal will become smoother and more fulfilling.
Yes, proper goal setting techniques state that all goals should be time bound. And that's fine, especially in terms of keeping you motivated toward accomplishing a desired goal. But when the pressures of meeting an arbitrary deadline cause an imbalance in your inner peace, or cause your brain to start sending negative messages of failure and unworthiness, it's best to adjust the target date so that you can remain clearly focused on accomplishing your goal.
There's a reason that patience is said to be one of the seven heavenly virtues. And it is certainly one of the tools you will want to bring with you on your Project You Life Journey.

This article is excerpted from the Amazon best-selling personal development and growth book Project You: Living A Determined Life, available in Kindle and paperback. 

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Taking Responsibility For Your Life's Journey

Accept Personal Responsibility for Setbacks and Successes 

Your life is in your hands. It is up to you to determine your happiness, your satisfaction, your contentment. No one else is in charge. No one else gets the credit. And likewise, no one else is to blame. It is squarely your responsibility. 
In fact, this is at the crux of what we mean Living A Determined Life
In fact, as American psychologist Albert Ellis wrote, "The best years of your life are the ones in which you decide your problems are your own. You do not blame them on your mother, the ecology, or the president. You can realize that you control your own destiny."
You, and no one else, are responsible for the energy and attitude you bring into every situation, every encounter with other people, and even every room you enter.
As George Bernard Shaw wrote, "People are always blaming their circumstances for what they are. I don't believe in circumstances. The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and if they can't find them, make them."
It is rather fascinating that the last two letters of the word blame are me. Is this just a coincidence? Or is it an indication that taking responsibility for blame ends with me and not someone or something else? Is it a sign that we should each focus blame and responsibility for our circumstances first on ourselves ("me"), rather than assigned and delegated to others, outside circumstances, or factors beyond our control? It is something worth thinking about.
Plus, when you blame others you give up your power to grow.  You give up the power to learn from mistakes. You give up your power to learn new things. And you give up the power to understand your own decision-making process.
Your Project You Life Journey will be made easier when you learn to accept personal responsibility for failures and setbacks, and when you see each and every failure or setback as a learning experience. The importance of this is illustrated by these perspectives:
Mistakes are a fact of life. It is the response to error that counts. ~Nikki Giovanni, American poet
A man should never be ashamed to own that he has been in the wrong, which is but saying he is wiser today than he was yesterday. ~Alexander Pope, English poet
Opportunity often comes disguised in the form of misfortune, or temporary defeat. ~Napoleon Hill, author of Think and Grow Rich
A man can fail many times, but he isn't a failure until he begins to blame someone else. ~John Burroughs, American naturalist and essayist
When you encounter pain, frustration, disappointment and all of the other emotions related to unfulfilled desires and delayed dream achievement, realize that these are signals that something in your life needs to change. 
And most important, understand that these signals are also telling you that you are responsible for making the required changes that will either place you back onto your correct Project You Life Journey path or will speed your progress on your chosen path.

This article is excerpted from the Amazon best-selling personal development book Project You: Living A Determined Life, available in Kindle and paperback formats. 

Friday, January 29, 2016

Be A Person Of Character

Defining People of Character 

It is said that people show their true character by what they laugh at. Likewise, some of the truest tests of character come when no one else is looking, or when someone is in the wrong or is shown to be wrong about something they thought was true. How you handle such situations defines and hones your character.
Australian writer and change leader Ian Berry has penned an interesting and thought-provoking list defining people of character:
People of character lay it on the line.
People of character are unafraid to speak their minds.
People of character always tell the truth as they see it.
People of character are trustworthy.
People of character enjoy being popular but don't seek popularity.
People of character seek win/win but do not compromise their principles.
People of character do what they believe is best for the common good regardless of the resistance they encounter.
People of character praise in public and criticize in private.
People of character put others first.
People of character are givers not takers.
People of character focus on building people's self esteem and never engage in put downs or the blame and shame game.
People of character are those we really look up to and admire.
People of character are those we follow when it matters most.

As Ian likes to say, "Be a person of character. You are needed like never before.

This article is excerpted from the Amazon best-selling personal development book Project You: Living A Determined Life, available in both Kindle and paperback formats. 

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Optimism Has Many Benefits

Optimism Is Crucial For Success

Here's one of our favorite quotes, which comes from American editor and writer Thomas Dreier:
The world is a great mirror. It reflects back to you what you are. If you are loving, if you are friendly, if you are helpful, the world will prove loving and friendly and helpful to you. The world is what you are.
The same goes for optimism. An optimistic person will find, notice and leverage positives in life and opportunities. A pessimistic person will see the negatives and hurdles in the same life opportunities. As Sir John Lubbock, an English baron and philanthropist in the 19th century wrote, "What we see depends mainly on what we look for."
Dr. Martin Seligman, professor of positive psychology at the University of Pennsylvania and best-selling author, writes, "The traditional version tells us that there are two things you need to succeed: talent and hunger, or drive. I have added a third thing, and that is optimism. You can have all the talent in the world, but if you don't believe you can overcome failure, if you do not mentally rehearse success, then your talent and drive will come to nothing once you have been knocked down."
Everything you read on the subject will tell you that optimism boosts energy levels, creates higher levels of focus and concentration, improves your chances of reaching a set goal, and prevents health problems from occurring. That would seem to be a better route than wallowing in pessimism and depression from the setbacks and hurdles that get thrown at you.
Ever met a truly successful cynic? It's doubtful. Any level of real success in life will not be achieved in the presence of cynicism. In fact, there are no successful cynics to be found.
Cynicism, while not quite as bad an opposite to optimism as pessimism, is an attitude that should be avoided. Cynics tend to play the blame game, citing a long list of external circumstances or people blocking their way. 
Successful people focus on the positives in their lives and take responsibility for finding solutions to whatever they deem as problems. Cynics, unfortunately, have an attitude holding them back.
As Nobel Peace Prize winner Nicholas Murray Butler said, "Optimism is essential to achievement and it is also the foundation of courage and true progress."
The following comparison pretty much sums up the difference between a positive, optimistic attitude and a negative, cynical or pessimistic one:
Winners say: "It may be difficult but it is possible."
Losers say: "It may be possible but it is too difficult."

As the old saying goes, since you're going to have an attitude you may as well make it an optimistic one. 

This article is partially excerpted from the Amazon best-selling personal development book Project You: Living A Determined Life, available in both paperback and Kindle formats. 

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Have An Attitude Of Gratitude

Being Grateful is Self-Rewarding and Creates A Less Stressful Life

The phrase have an attitude of gratitude has practically become trite. But until a better phrase comes along, it is certainly one worth adhering to. 

Keys to a Project You Life Journey
George Horace Lorimer, the editor-in-chief of The Saturday Evening Post for over 35 years, had a great philosophy about gratitude: "It is good to have money and the things money can buy, but it is good too to check up once in awhile and make sure that you have not lost the things money cannot buy."
Today, many people, particularly in the New Age thinking of spiritual and personal self development, advocate that we each undertake a daily ritual of gratitude identification by asking ourselves:
What or who inspired me today?
What or who brought happiness to me today?
What or who brought comfort, peace or love to me today and how did they do so?

Being thankful and grateful for the acts of kindness ─ both great and small ─ that you receive throughout each day is a self-rewarding and less stressful way to travel your path. 
Expressing your gratitude with sincerity to those who have given you something and who have helped to ease your journey during the course of each day will be appreciated by those others while simultaneously adding to your own karmic bank.  
This concludes our short series of blog posts on gratitude. We hope they have sparked many thoughts and ideas on how you can commit to making 2016 your personal Year of Gratitude. Please let us know how your gratitude journey progresses throughout the year. 

This article has been partially excerpted from the Amazon best-selling book Project You: Living A Determined Life, available in both paperback and Kindle formats. 

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Express Your Gratitude Formally and Informally

A Key Component of Gratitude Is Expressing This To Others 

Gratitude on the micro, day-to-day interaction level is equally important in achieving satisfaction and contentment along your life journey. 
One of the laws of the universe clearly seems to be that the more grateful you are for the people and little things in your life, the more people and little things will come your way to be grateful for. 
Here is how a few motivational speakers have defined this concept over the years:
There is no better opportunity to receive more than to be thankful for what you already have. Thanksgiving opens the windows of opportunity for ideas to flow your way. ~Jim Rohn
The more you recognize and express gratitude for the things you have, the more things you will have to express gratitude for. ~Zig Ziglar
Feeling grateful or appreciative of someone or something in your life actually attracts more of the things that you appreciate and value into your life. ~Christiane Northrup

Like the ability to expertly tell a joke, being able to express gratitude (on a more micro level) is becoming a lost skill. 
Too few people stop to say thanks any more, either formally or informally. People will dash off an email to voice a complaint, yet few will take the time to be courteous with a single note of thanks.
Perhaps because expressions of personal gratitude are so rare, especially formal written ones, they are even more greatly appreciated by recipients. 
In reality, it takes so little effort to sincerely say thank you to everyone who does something for you. 
This is probably one of the easiest habits to form, and yet we somehow let opportunities slip past us, and others to be handled with unfelt, insincere utterances of "thanks" rather than a robust, and heart-felt "THANK YOU."
As William Arthur Ward, the author of Fountains of Faith and one of the most quoted writers of inspirational maxims wrote, "Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it." 
As you continue to make 2016 your personal Year of Gratitude, remember that a key component of sincere gratitude is expressing this to others, both formally and informally.
Please share other ideas you have in the comments section below. Thank You! 

This article is partially excerpted from our best-selling book Project You: Living A Determined Life, available today in paperback and Kindle formats at Amazon. 

Friday, January 22, 2016

Create Your Gratitude List

Tips for making Gratitude a present condition and state of mind

Here's an exercise you should do at least twice a year ── get a sheet of paper and list all of the things for which you are grateful. This should be things, people, events, emotions, feelings, and thoughts that you are truly grateful for today.
If you write something in the past tense, edit it into the present tense. For instance, rather than being grateful for the great family vacation you had last year, write that you are grateful for the wonderful memories you have of that vacation and the deeper bonds and love between family members that abounds today as a result.
Likewise, instead of writing that you are grateful for the excellent advice of your mentors and teachers over the years, write that you are grateful for the opportunities you have today to put their advice and lessons to use.
Gratitude should be a present condition and state of mind. 
Too many people express gratitude in the past tense and then do not bring their gratitude with them into their experiences and interactions today. 
Being happy and thankful about past experiences is fine, but the fact is you live in the present and the chances of Living A Determined Life in the future are not great if you do not start with an abundance of gratitude today.
This should be a macro-level list, such as you are thankful for:
a)     having (name of person/s) in my life
b)     my specific talents in _______________ and being able to use these talents in pursuit of _______________
c)      my fitness level (if appropriate)
d)     my health status (if appropriate)
e)     my opportunities to contribute to the causes / community concerns that I am passionate about (list these)
f)       the challenges and opportunities given to me in my roles as mother/father, sister/brother, spouse, partner, grandparent, etc.
g)     my desire and willingness to start Living A Determined Life

Your gratitude list should be at least ten items long. 
If you cannot find ten macro-level things you are grateful for, come back to this exercise after you have read and contemplated chapters 5-9 of Project You: Living A Determined Life. 
A re-reading and internalization of the two previous blog posts on attitude may also help. 
We wrote earlier about making 2016 Your Personal Year of Gratitude. Knowing what you are grateful for, and ensuring that these are written in the present tense, will help you achieve this goal. 
Kindly share other ideas you have for creating Gratitude Lists in the comments below, as we'll be most grateful! 

This article is partially excerpted from the Amazon best-selling book Project You: Living A Determined Life. Get your copy today in paperback or Kindle formats at Amazon. 

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Gratitude Produces The Most Contented and Happiest People

Being Grateful Increases Personal Peace and Satisfaction 

It is interesting to observe that the most contented and happiest people are those who fully embrace both their good and bad experiences. Such people know and understand that the hurdles, problems and even the awful events they have experienced were all important and crucial aspects of their personal journeys.

Project You Life Journey Keys

As spiritual beings temporarily trapped in the human form our purpose in this life is to experience what is needed for our spirits, the spirits of others, and indeed the universe, to grow and expand. 
At different points in our respective life journeys, each of these spiritual needs will be experienced and fulfilled (but not always in ways that our mental and emotional selves desire).
It is important to understand that your life experiences are for your spiritual growth, not your human, mental, or emotional growth. 
When you fully grasp this concept, it is a whole lot easier to have gratitude for everything life throws at you, rather than just the things, events and people your human aspect considers good.

At a macro level the more you are honestly and deeply grateful for: a) being alive, and b) the experiences you have at each particular point along your own path, then the more satisfied and at peace you will be when it is time for you to pass beyond this particular world. 

This article is partially excerpted from the Amazon best-selling book Project You: Living A Determined Life. Get your copy now in Kindle or paperback format at Amazon

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Make 2016 Your Personal Year of Gratitude

Be Truly Appreciative and Thankful Has Many Benefits 

Throughout the ages, philosophers, thinkers, gurus, sages, and leaders of every spiritual and religious tradition have taught that the cultivation of gratitude is a key to experiencing deeper levels of fulfillment, self esteem, well being and authentic happiness on an individual level.
Keys to a Project You Life Journey
Gratitude has also long been seen as necessary for creating a more robust, friendly, co-operative society on a tribal or collective level.
In fact, some thinkers have put gratitude at the top of their attitude lists, including these two:
Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues but the parent of all others. ~Marcus Cicero
Of all the attitudes we can acquire, surely the attitude of gratitude is the most important and by far the most life changing. ~Zig Ziglar
Whether it is first or not, gratitude will certainly unlock your character and create more fullness in your life.
Gratitude, from a Project You Life Journey approach, takes place on two levels: 
a) the macro view of being thankful for the opportunity of life, and 
b) at the micro, day-to-day dealings with people.

Gratitude is not simply being thankful or feeling blessed for the positive events in your life and for the range of happy and satisfied emotions you feel. 
Rather, it is about being truly appreciative and thankful for being given the opportunity to experience this world as a living, breathing, thinking, and feeling sentient being.
As we are only mid-way into January, it's not too late for all of us to make a commitment to make 2016 your Year of Gratitude. Feel free to share your ideas on how to do this in the comments section below. (We'll be most grateful!) 

This article is partially excerpted from the Amazon best-selling book Project You: Living A Determined Life, which is available in paperback and Kindle formats. 

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Your Attitude Determines Your Altitude

Your Attitude Determines How Well You Succeed 

Some final thoughts as we conclude this series of blog posts on attitude. 

Albert Einstein said, "Out of clutter, find Simplicity. From discord, find Harmony. In the middle of difficulty lies Opportunity." 

You do not need to let events, heartaches, disappointments, and worries control your life. 
John Maxwell uses a sailing analogy to demonstrate this: "The pessimist complains about the wind. The optimist expects it to change. The leader adjusts the sails."
No matter which way the wind is blowing, you can always sail in your desired direction. As Maxwell adds, "Our attitude at the beginning of a task will affect its outcome more than anything else."
Highly successful college football coach Lou Holtz puts it another way, "Ability is what you are capable of doing. Motivation determines what you can do. Attitude determines how well you do it."
You have probably come across the phrase "your attitude determines your altitude." Although the origins of the phrase are in dispute, there is no arguing the merits of the quotation and the thinking behind it.
This is not to suggest that simply having some wide-eyed, highly optimistic attitude will get you what you desire, or is the only tool you need on the path to success. Joe Paterno, the winningest coach in college football, probably said it best: "The will to win is important, but the will to prepare is vital."
There are two key aspects to a winning attitude: 1) not being afraid to fail, and 2) thinking positively. 
Michael Jordan, the greatest basketball player of all time, has spoken about both of these aspects:

I never look at the consequences of missing a big shot. When you think about the consequences, you always think of a negative result.
The bottom line is, while you may not be able to change the world, or the events in the world directly or indirectly impacting upon you, you can always change yourself, and your likelihood of success, by adjusting your attitude and your thinking

This article is partially excerpted from the best-selling book Project You: Living A Determined Life, available at Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats. 

Saturday, January 16, 2016

A Successful Attitude Helps Create A Successful Life

You Can Always Change Yourself By Adjusting Your Attitude 

Your attitude is the summation of your personal philosophy on life. 

As Jim Rohn says, "Your personal philosophy is the greatest determining factor in how your life works out." 

Hence, your attitude, being the summation of your personal philosophy, can be considered the greatest determining factor in how you shape your life and control your destiny (i.e. how you Live A Determined Life).

Look at these personal philosophies and you can tell exactly what kinds of attitudes these highly successful people have:
The world is a great mirror. It reflects back to you what you are. If you are loving, if you are friendly, if you are helpful, the world will prove loving and friendly and helpful to you. The world is what you are. ~Thomas Dreier
My philosophy is that not only are you responsible for your life, but doing the best at this moment puts you in the best place for the next moment.  ~Oprah Winfrey 
Positive self-direction is the action plan that all winners in life use to turn imagination into reality, fantasy into fact, and dreams into actual goals. ~Denis Waitley
People who stay on top, who are winners year after year, have one thing in common – a winning attitude. They know that complacency breeds mediocrity, so they give 100 percent. They always are the best they can be, and they never spend time thinking about what they have done, because it steals from what they’ve yet to do. ~A. J. Foyt
Man is unlike any other animal on the planet in that we can create our own motivations and attitudes. 
This wasn't the common thinking for thousands of years when men thought they were merely at the mercy of pre-ordained destinies. William James, the 19th Century philosopher, was most influential in spreading the understanding that man could control his destiny. He wrote: "The greatest revolution of our generation is the discovery that human beings, by changing their inner attitudes of their minds, can change the outer aspects of their lives."

While that was extremely revolutionary thinking at the end of the 19th century, it is certainly the accepted thinking today, at least in those parts of the world which have advanced beyond the basic poverty level. 
The bottom line is, while you may not be able to change the world, or the events in the world directly or indirectly impacting upon you, you can always change yourself by adjusting your attitude and your thinking. 

This article is excerpted from the best-selling book Project You: Living A Determined Life, available at Amazon in Kindle and paperback formats. 

Friday, January 15, 2016

Motivational Quotes on Attitude

Your Attitude is an Extension of What You Believe 

If you fill your mind with new learning you will never stagnate. 
Have an attitude of courage and you will be able to face life's varied situations with greater confidence and strength. Likewise, if you load your mind with optimistic attitudes you will always have hope.

But only you can determine how to fill your mind and what attitudes you will allow to dominate your personality. And remember, your attitude is an expression of what you believe, the values you carry within and the expectations you have for the future.
Here's what some leading thinkers have had to say about attitude:
Your living is determined not so much by what life brings to you as by the attitude you bring to life; not so much by what happens to you as by the way your mind looks at what happens. ~John Homer Miller, American author
Whatever life has handed to us, whether it is one talent or a hundred, it is our responsibility to do something with what we have been given! That is how we change pennies into fortunes and obstacles into opportunity - by taking all that we have and all that we are and putting it to work. ~Jim Rohn, motivational speaker and writer
You've got to love what you're doing. If you love it, you can overcome any handicap or the soreness or all the aches and pains, and continue to play for a long, long time.  ~Gordie Howe, Hall of Fame hockey player
Once you say you're going to settle for second, that's what happens to you in life, I find. ~ John F. Kennedy, American President
Quality questions create a quality life. Successful people ask better questions, and as a result, they get better answers. ~Anthony Robbins, author, speaker and peak performance expert
A pessimist is one who makes difficulties of his opportunities and an optimist is one who makes opportunities of his difficulties. ~Harry S Truman, American President
The spirit, the will to win, and the will to excel are the things that endure. These qualities are so much more important than the events that occur. ~Vince Lombardi, famed American football coach
It is not what happens to us, it is what we choose to do about what happens that makes the difference in how our lives turn out. ~Jim Rohn, motivational speaker and writer
There are two ways to face the future. One way is with apprehension; the other is with anticipation. ~Jim Rohn, motivational speaker and writer

Motivational quotes are one way to fill your mind with an optimistic attitude. There are numerous such motivational quotes in our book Project You: Words of Wisdom, which is available at Amazon in Kindle and paperback formats. 
If you have your own favorite quote or quotes on attitude, please share them with us in the comments box below. 

This article is partially excerpted from the best-selling book Project You: Living A Determined Life, available at Amazon in Kindle and paperback formats. 

Thursday, January 14, 2016

A Positive Attitude Is Attracting. And Attractive.

A Positive Mental Attitude Means "Thinking in the Beauty Way" 

One of the originators of the self-help movement was Napoleon Hill, who wrote: "Your mental attitude is something you can control outright, and you must use self-discipline until you create a positive mental attitude ── your mental attitude attracts to you everything that makes you what you are." 

In a similar vein, Norman Vincent Peale used to preach, "A positive thinker does not refuse to recognize the negative; he refuses to dwell on it. Positive thinking is a form of thought which habitually looks for the best results from the worst conditions."
And management guru John Maxwell said, "Your attitude is the eye of your soul. If your attitude is negative then you see things negatively. If it is positive then you see things positively."
Your attitude and the beliefs associated with your attitude will either empower you or impede you. The choice will always be yours.
In many ways, the thoughts you dwell upon in your mind, and the attitudes that propel you through every day, are more important than the food and vitamins you put into your body. An attitude of I'm a failure or I'll never be happy again, or thoughts like I hate this person or I am going to get revenge on that person, do more harm to you than junk food. A constant diet of such killer thoughts will destroy you long before cholesterol hardens your arteries.
The Navajo people in North America have an expression for this. They believe that the thoughts that dominate their minds will shape their lives, so they want to fill their minds with only that which is enriching, harmonious and enlightening. They call this thinking in the Beauty Way. It's a process designed to rid themselves of all thoughts that are destructive and replacing those with ones that are good, peaceful and heartening.
This makes a lot of sense. If you fill your mind with new learning you will never stagnate. Have an attitude of courage and you will be able to face life's varied situations with greater confidence and strength. Likewise, if you load your mind with optimistic attitudes you will always have hope.

But only you can determine how to fill your mind and what attitudes you will allow to dominate your personality. And remember, your attitude is an expression of what you believe, the values you carry within and the expectations you have for the future. 

This article is excerpted from the best-selling book Project You: Living A Determined Life, available in paperback and Kindle formats at Amazon. 

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Your Attitude Is Up To You (And No One Else)

You Are Responsible for the Attitude You Bring To Each Day

Attitude makes all the difference in how you approach life and what you take from your experiences in this world.
Sports coaches and leading athletes all know the right attitude makes a difference in athletic performance, and their knowledge applies directly to the game of life.
It has been said that "success is 99% attitude." While you can argue the exact percentage, there is no denying the fact that attitude does play a major role in any significant personal success. As Thomas Jefferson wrote, "Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude."
There are numerous aspects of attitude of which you should become aware: the motivational aspect of attitude, how attitude helps recover from failures, the impact of a negative attitude, how your attitude helps set your expectations about the future, and how the right attitude prepares you to handle challenges and tap into opportunities.
Having a strong, uplifting and reinforcing attitude is vital to keep you going through good times and bad. As Albert Einstein said, "Weakness of attitude becomes weakness of character." Or, in the words of Brian Tracy, "An attitude of positive expectation is the mark of the superior personality."
Almost all of the self-development and motivational writers will tell you that it is not what happens to you in life that matters, but rather how you deal with your experiences and what you make of the experiences you encounter. They will also tell you that how you deal with such experiences will be primarily based on your attitude.
Think about it….for every experience you encounter your attitude will make a difference.

It is your choice what kind of attitude you bring to these encounters. But since you are going to have an attitude anyway, you might as well have a positive, uplifting and reinforcing one, no matter what the encounter or circumstances.
Your daily attitude and level of gratitude for this opportunity of life will determine the progress you make on your journey each day. A positive attitude and a high level of gratitude will help you move forward. Likewise, a negative attitude or poor gratitude level will result in setbacks, backward steps or deviation from your intended path.
So which attitude will you take into today? Into tomorrow? Into every day? 

This article is partially excerpted from the best-selling book Project You: Living A Determined Life, available at Amazon in Kindle and Paperback formats. 

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Motivation Creates Compelling Images For Success

Real Motivation Is That Drive From Within

According to motivational speaker Zig Ziglar, "People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing. That's why we recommend it daily."
His pithy saying on motivation is at the heart of why some people get motivated and others do not. Everybody has their moments of motivation; a time when sparks go off internally and they tell themselves (or others) "I am going to do this or that."
"Real motivation is that drive from within," believes motivational speaker Denis Waitley. "You know where you are going because you have a compelling image inside, not a travel poster on the wall."
Adds his fellow motivational speaker Brian Tracy, "The clearer you are about the consequences of your actions and the more intensely you desire to enjoy the consequences that your behaviors may lead to, the more motivated you will be."
The closer you are to self actualization on Maslow's scale, the greater will self satisfaction be as a motivating factor. Naturally, there are few greater reasons for doing anything than taking action because it fits in with your own self image or because it has importance and relevance to you.
When you combine this kind of motivation with determination and commitment, you are nearly unstoppable. You may never achieve the exact, glorious outcome you envision for yourself, but whatever you achieve through motivated action will be far greater than living a passive existence where life simply passes you by.
As Abraham Lincoln noted, "Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any one thing."
Let your personal resolution to achieve your ProjectYou Life Journey goals be your fundamental motivating factor and A Determined Life will be yours. 

This article is excerpted from Project You: Living A Determined Life, a best-selling book at Amazon available in Kindle and paperback formats. 

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Monitoring Your Determined Life Journey

Creating Your Weekly Solitude Hour

As the first weekend of 2016 comes to a close, many people are working on their New Year's Resolutions and other lists of goals and objectives for this brand new year. 

Others may be thinking longer-term, and creating their Project You Life Journey paths for the next 3-5 years, or perhaps even longer.

Either way, once you have outlined your goals and action plans, do not cast these in stone or think that they cannot be modified or amended. 
As unforeseen opportunities and unexpected hurdles come your way, your path will need to be occasionally (and sometimes frequently) altered and revised.

A person who rigidly sticks to an initial Project You Life Journey road map is likely to miss out on the benefits for self development and growth that result from such unplanned opportunities. For instance, an unexpected job opportunity in another location or country might offer both tremendous career advancement and personal development opportunities. To reject the job offer solely because it is not in one's road map would be foolish (although rejecting it for other reasons would be valid).
Similarly, a person may find it a struggle to surmount obstacles blocking their path. The wrong approach would be to abandon their goals simply because their road map dictates only one direction to proceed. As an example, if someone is unsuccessful at auditioning for a role in a community play, they could see this as a key obstacle. On the other hand, if they volunteer to be the stage manager for the production, they can still retain some involvement in the play, enabling them to perhaps learn more about the craft of acting through listening to the instructions of the director and watching more skillful actors rehearse and perform.
Perhaps the best methodology for monitoring your Project You Life Journey progress is to allocate time on a biweekly or weekly basis for a personal Solitude Hour
This would be a dedicated time of reflection devoted strictly to monitoring your Project You Life Journey.
In effect, your Solitude Hour would be an internal conversation with your spirit, doing a "gut check" on your progress and validating how well your actions, activities, thoughts, emotions, and feelings in the intervening time period have been aligned with both your path and your long-term dreams, hopes, desires and goals. 
All thoughts not associated with your Project Your Life Journey should be pushed aside during your Solitude Hour.
You should consider your Solitude Hour to be a regular appointment with your soul, a regularly scheduled chat session that has greater importance than any other engagement or meeting on your calendar. 

And speaking of being scheduled, put your Solitude Hour onto your schedule, just like any other appointment or call you schedule. Let nothing interfere with it. This is YOUR TIME for YOU. Hence block your schedule accordingly. 

Whatever your plans or goals are for this new year, we hope that you will begin to Live A Determined Life and have your best year ever. 

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

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Be Driven By Commitment

A Commitment is a Promise to Yourself 

Note the slight spelling difference between impossible and possible. Those two additional letters (i and m) are most often used together to represent "I am." It may sound silly, but simply changing one's thinking that impossible actually means I'm possible works. Such thinking changes "impossible tasks" into "I'm possible tasks." Again, it sounds silly, but it does work and may reinforce your commitment to tackle the hard tasks at hand.
Vince Lombardi, the famous American football coach whose name now adorns the Super Bowl Trophy, said, "The quality of a person's life is in direct proportion to their commitment to excellence regardless of their chosen field of endeavor." If you are a teacher, you should strive to be an excellent teacher. If you are a scientist, your aim should be to be an excellent one.
Steve Prefontaine, the American distance runner who held seven track records before his tragic death in a car accident at 24, said, "To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift." This applies equally to your life and your unique gift as it does to any sportsman on the playing field.
Adds George Halas, another famous American football coach, "Nobody who ever gave his best regretted it." Coach Lombardi, who was the opponent of Halas across the field for many years, used to say, "The harder you work, the harder it is to surrender." It is little wonder that their two teams used to have some ferocious game battles. They knew how to instill commitment in their players.
Work hard. Give your best. Don't sacrifice the gift you have been given. Strive for excellence. Don't do things halfheartedly. These coaches and athletes knew what commitment was all about.
If your goals are clearly articulated, and if you make an unconditional commitment to achieve your most important ambitions and dreams, then you will find yourself properly positioned to find the resources, power, energy, assistance, and a correct path to accomplish what you set out to do.
A solid commitment to yourself (and that's really what a commitment is  ─ a promise to one's self) will give you plenty of reasons to get out of bed in the morning, to practice your skill set, to work on important things rather than seemingly urgent tasks, and to take on new experiences en route to accomplishing your desires.
Remember, good habits are just as addictive as bad ones. If you ensure that your habits are centered on your commitment to your goals, you will attain these in a more timely manner.
After all, a person driven by commitment knows where they are going….and the whole world steps aside for the person who knows where they are going

This article is excerpted from the best-selling book Project You: Living A Determined Life, available at Amazon in Kindle and paperback formats.