So, yesterday I went to my first Bikram yoga class, a.k.a. “hot yoga”. I have friends that take or have taken Bikram classes and I’ve heard stories about passing out, having to leave, and my personal nightmare – throwing up in class. Trying something new can feel awkward, uncomfortable or downright intimidating. But you should do it anyway. (more…)
2011 – New Year, New goals, same challenge with procrastination. When I say procrastination sucks, I mean it will literally suck the energy, momentum and life right out of you. It’s been my Achilles heel for as long as I can remember. Most of the time it’s just a horrible habit that feeds my somewhat twisted enjoyment of working under pressure. The adrenaline rush of beating the clock to get something done. I’ll easily pull through a pressure situation and feed the chaos I created for myself with a false sense of accomplishment. Sound familiar?
Most of the time, it just means a self imposed adrenaline rush. Today it cost me something I really wanted and I am trying not to kick myself too hard or too many times over it. I’m telling myself to use it as fuel for getting past this procrastination habit. That’s all it is, a bad habit, one I’m more than ready to kick. I juggle multiple projects, am writing a book, training for the Rock n Roll half marathon, work full time, am launching a new site all while maintaining a decent balance with my family of two boys, a husband, house and two dogs. I get all the hard stuff done, but buying two tickets to a symposium I really want to attend – that’s the stuff that kills me, the simple stuff!
The symposium’s keynote speaker, Peter Shankman, is someone that I admire and respect greatly. He’s a brilliant entrepreneur, speaker, and adventurist among a zillion other things and loves to live life to its fullest. I share his enthusiasm for life, running and doing. Thanks to answering a query in his “baby” HARO, I was in a Family Circle article about moms who did something daring. In my instance, I went skydiving with my son on his eighteenth birthday, something I could get addicted to in a heartbeat. Coincidentally, Peter is an avid skydiver. He’s been my inspiration for many years, for many reasons. His 2011 challenge and the fact that my procrastination blew my opportunity for my son and I to see him as a keynote speaker this Friday are the reason for this post. His challenge is different than mine, yet it seems as we’re both ready to make a change. He is authentic and honest and I respect and relate to the rawness in his posts.
I have huge goals and procrastination has no place in helping me achieve any of them. If you share this Achilles heel – please do something today that you have been putting off. No matter how small, give yourself a success today. Repeat tomorrow until a new habit forms – one that will take you to great places in 2011.
A few days ago I talked about the fear mindset and how it can really hold you back. The antidote to that of course is action. But once you get into action mode, the next step is perseverance. I’d like to introduce you to Naomi Dunford, someone I absolutely love. She’s genuine, swears like a sailor, and has been there – done that. Please take a minute to read one of her latest posts. What is it that you’re putting off?
Sometimes you just have to tell yourself to shut the FUD up – FUD, meaning Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt…
Fear can paralyze the most ambitious people and plans. In and of itself, fear isn’t a bad thing, it keeps us safe by alerting our senses to real danger – a bad vibe from a stranger, standing too close to the edge of a mountain (without a harness) etc.
HOWEVER, when the fear is based on all the “what-ifs” in your head that will probably never happen – and if they did happen, certainly wouldn’t kill you, it just keeps you stagnant. Fear of failure, fear of success, fear of looking or feeling silly. It’s your built in protection, but in these cases, it just doesn’t serve you… If you don’t address the fear, you can easily find yourself in a vicious cycle of self-sabotage.
Learning to move beyond it takes commitment
First – Don’t fight the fear. It only makes it worse. Acknowledge it and take away its power. Understand that you have a fear, and also that it’s only a thought in your head, a feeling in your body. What you are fearing has not happened. What you’re feeling is a chemical reaction in your brain. The perfect example is a scary movie or a motion ride. Your brain reacts as if the events were actually taking place. Your heart beats faster, you may break out in a sweat, your stomach tenses. That’s the power of 100 BILLION nerve cells at work.
Second – Reprogram your mind. If you find yourself feeling those fear symptoms as you’re contemplating something new like a career change, starting new business, relationship etc. immediately start thinking of something pleasant, a vacation, your favorite food, all the good things that would be a result of the change. Another option is to use a positive affirmation. That will help stop the current chemical reaction induced by fear and replace it with a different process the helps transition the brain out of fear mode. Make this a habit.
Third – Add action. Even if it’s miniscule, DO something. Take one step towards making your decision or trying something new and then do it. It may sound too simple, but your thoughts have the most power over your life. Make sure you’re creating a mindset that serves you rather than one that leaves you parlyzed with fear. It’s a very empowering skill to master.
Yes, my age old theme – taking action. Doing the same old things will only get you the same old results.
A couple of days ago I found out that Greg Reid, one of my favorite authors was going to have a book signing today at a nearby bookstore. The timing was perfect and I put it on my calendar. For a variety of reasons, I only got about three hours of sleep last night, and had a pretty full day today. It would have been so easy to blow off the book signing and just go home and relax.
Looming in the back of my mind was John Assaraf’s voice asking me “Are you interested or committed?” If you’re interested, you’ll do things when it’s easy, if you’re committed, you’ll do them even when it’s inconvenient. Fine John, I’m still committed…
Best decision I could have made. Met a lot of great people at the signing. In addition to meeting Greg, I also had the opportunity to meet his mentor David M. Corbin, and Harry Paul, author of FISH. Many inspirational stories about persistance and taking action. It was a very timely reminder about surrounding yourself with like minded people – those who propel you forward rather than drag you down.
A while back I spoke to Greg about the book I’m working on and he was gracious beyond belief in answering my questions and giving me tips in moving forward. I love meeting genuine people who are willing to help others.
I left the signing feeling revitalized, energized and ready to keep moving forward full steam ahead. If you need a little motivation please check out Greg Reid’s Three Feet from Gold: Turn Your Obstacles into Opportunities! (Think and Grow Rich)
and David M Corbin’s Illuminate: Harnessing the Positive Power of Negative Thinking – You’ll be glad you did.
Do it—Go take action!! 😉
Just a short post to say farewell to a man who became the epitiome of living life. Because of his fame, he fought his battle with cancer in the public eye. With grace and dignity, Patrick found a way to battle his disease while pursuing his dreams and passion to the very end. The most important gift Patrick gave us was the reminder to live life to the fullest each and every day.
Choreographer Kenny Ortega had this to say “Patrick loved life, and had such an enthusiasm for everything he did. If he could climb it, he climbed it. If he could write it, he wrote it. If he could dance it, well, we all know he did. He lived.”
If I’ve learned nothing else in life from the deaths of many friends and family, it is to always live life to the fullest, relentlessly pursue your passions, be kind to others along the way, always be present in the moment and leave this world better than you found it.
For more on Patrick’s life.