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Perfect is a Myth

30 Apr

 workplace

workplace

workplace

The above photos come from this Buzzfeed post about the workplaces of historically creative people.  As I looked through each photo, I was surprised to see such drastic differences between each space.  I was inspired when I realized how imperfect each space seems. 

There are so many times in which my idea of how things SHOULD be has kept me from moving forward with a goal or decision.  I, for example, would have sat in each one of those creative spaces and told myself, “I will write/ paint/ or create once I get my room organized/ clean/ or conducive to my process.”  This means I would have likely created NOTHING. Think about how this may be true for you.  How many times have you procrastinated a task because the conditions weren’t perfect?  In what ways have you stalled your growth because you didn’t have the perfect amount of free time to devote to that class/project/relationship/struggle?

It is important that we realize “perfect” is a myth.  The conditions to grow and change will never be perfect. The conditions will be messy and often inconvenient.  Are you going to let that stop you?

P.S. I found the Buzzfeed post via this wonderful blog.

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Fear of Failure

26 Apr

Did you know that the first book written by Dr. Seuss was rejected by 27 different publishers?  I was unaware of this until I came across this wonderful slide show of 26 successful people who failed at first.  I wonder how many kids would have missed out if Theodor Seuss Geisel had let rejection or fear of failure stop him?

Fear of failure can often cause significant anxiety. And this anxiety can greatly limit your achievements and experiences – IF you let it.  If you were to interview some of the most successful people in your life, they would all have two things in common. They would all tell you that they have stumbled, made mistakes, embarrassed themselves, and experienced rejection. They would tell you that they have FAILED.  They would also tell you that they did not let those failures (or the fear of future failures) keep them from moving forward.

Start each day knowing that you will both succeed and fail at something within that 24 hour period. And end each day reminding yourself of the many ways in which you met your goals for that day.

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P.S. For more about goals, see here.

Making those New Year’s resolutions stick

3 Jan

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It is that time of year. The time when so many of us are creating new goals for change and calling them “New Year’s resolutions.”  Unfortunately for many of us, those resolutions will be all but forgotten in less than a month.  The good news is that there are many ways to approach a resolution that will foster success. The even better news is that you specifically CAN follow through with whatever it is that you have resolved to do.

BE SPECIFIC – When creating your resolution, be intentional about describing exactly what is it you want to change.  Instead of saying, “I want to lose weight”  try “I will exercise 3 times a week, and create healthy meal plans every Sunday.”  Instead of “I want to be more positive” try “I will keep a weekly gratitude journal.”  The more specific you are when creating your goal, the more concrete and attainable it becomes.

BE REALISTIC – Set yourself up for success by creating small realistic goals that add up to the bigger picture. By creating realistic goals for yourself you will get several success-oriented mood boosts throughout your journey.  Being realistic also means acknowledging that you are going to struggle along the way.  Don’t let small setbacks stop your progress completely. A setback can teach you about how to succeed in the future.  Learn from your mistakes and move forward.  The only real failure is not trying at all.

VISUALIZE, VISUALIZE, VISUALIZE – Images and metaphors are the language of our subconscious mind.  This subconscious is so powerful in creating meaningful and lasting change.  The subconscious mind is where patterns often live and breathe. What this means is that if you can imagine vivid pictures of your goal, you are that much closer to breathing life into the pattern you are wanting to create.

When imagining the change you want to see in your life, it can be incredibly helpful to channel this onto paper.  My favorite ways to do this are by creating a vision board and engaging in artwork.  Remember, it’s about the PROCESS not the product.

GET AN ACCOUNTABLITY PARTNER – Tell someone who has a positive influence in your life about your goal and offer to exchange motivational support. Set up specific times during the day, week, or month in which you can check in with each other to talk about your progress and struggles on your journey.  Make sure to tell your partner about the specifics of your goal (for example, I will exercise 2 times this week before work). This sets you up to be held accountable for moving forward with your plans.

WATCH YOUR LANGUAGE – I cannot tell you how many times a small word such as “can’t” has stood directly in the way between a person and their goals.  Pay attention to the things you tell yourself. Every time you start to say “I can’t…” try changing that to “I choose not to…”  Take responsibility for your choices and you will be amazed at the sense of empowerment you may start to experience.

SEEK PROFESSIONAL GUIDANCE – Whatever your goals, there is likely someone who has helpful information for you.  Nutritionists, doctors, teachers, money managers, counselors – all out there just waiting to serve you.  There are also so many online resources and support systems that are accessible for free. Take advantage of the resources around you.

Take the first step today toward your resolution and post it in the comments section below.

(image found here)