Maximize Your Motivation, Determination, and Perseverance
Nov02

Maximize Your Motivation, Determination, and Perseverance

6 ways to uncover your true grit As a prisoner of war in the steamy jungles of Vietnam, he held out for months, repeatedly refusing to sign documents decrying American aggression in Southeast Asia presented to him by the North Vietnamese after his crash and imprisonment. During these times, he drew inspiration from the memory of how his grandfather had been the only person in their village strong enough not to vote for Hitler during elections, despite threats of execution. As a child in Germany, he had looked up and marvelled at the US enemy planes, and resolved to one day fly for the United States of America. His father had been killed in the war and his mother was desperately poor. People were starving to death in Germany after WW2. He got used to feeding off garbage. He was a survivor. In these conditions, he sold scrap metal to raise money and hitch-hiked to Hamburg to get passage to America. Once in the US, he lived on the streets in Manhattan. He studied for years (sometimes living in an upturned boat), eventually achieved his dream, and became a US Navy pilot, but… Motivated to persevere He was shot down on his first mission over Vietnam. Eventually, he was captured by enemy troops; he managed to escape, but was recaptured. He joined other captives and instigated an escape plan. The prisoners heard their captors planning to kill them; there was no time to lose. They managed to escape and overpower their guards. Leeches, starvation, danger, and misery followed. He never gave up hope. At one point, he and another man thought they’d been spotted by US planes and rescue was imminent – it wasn’t. They kept going, trying to make it to Thailand. His friend was killed by villagers. He kept on alone, eating snakes but always on the edge of starvation. After 23 days surviving in the jungle, sick, injured, but managing to evade capture, he was rescued by a US helicopter. He had been behind enemy lines for over six months. His weight had dropped to 93 pounds. He was the only POW ever to escape and survive during the Vietnam War. He continued a successful career as a pilot for many years. We can all persevere even when we think we can’t. How to increase determination and maximize motivation Okay, most of us don’t experience such stark conditions as Dieter Dengler (1), but we all sometimes need to keep going when every part of us is screaming, “I can’t go on!” Whether it’s: facing illness; keeping a family together; facing massive life changes after divorce; making...

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The Importance of Being Independent
Oct15

The Importance of Being Independent

The Importance of Being Independent As children we have to rely on others. We need them to provide food, shelter, safety, and the right environment for us to grow and achieve our potential. Some of us receive more support than others. Some of us thrive better than others. But as we get older we have to learn to make the best decisions and choices that suit us and the way we want to progress in the world. Making the wrong choices, either to please others, or because we feel that we ought, benefits no one long-term. Becoming an independent, functioning human being is the most worthwhile outcome we can hope for ourselves. – Making our own choices and decisions is an important part of being independent. Sometimes we may make the wrong choices, but those are often the experiences in life which are the most valuable. The times when we learn the most, the situations that teach us a lot. – Knowing ones own mind and developing independent thought, which is expressed in a courteous, respectful way is an important skill. Being independent means sometimes agreeing with others and their opinions, and sometimes disagreeing. This approach can lead to interesting conversations, discussions and debates which encourage independent thought and add value to lively interactions. – Standing on ones own feet is important. Knowing that one can function well either in or out of a relationship is invaluable. Then if a potential new relationship comes along it will add to their quality of life rather than define who the person is. Some people are so fearful of being without a relationship that they stay in a bad one until a new person comes along. They never discover how capable they are as a person in their own right. – Having ones own money is often valued by independent people. They do not have to ask for an allowance and can pay their own way. They value not being beholden to others, and being able to do simple things like buying gifts without a second thought. – Maintaining ones own home is the ultimate in independent living. Some people choose to keep their own home even after they have committed themselves to a relationship. They may see it as an investment, part of their retirement plan, but it can also be regarded as an insurance policy in case their new relationship does not work out as planned. – Some people are wary of relationships. They may have been single for a long time, or may have been hurt or let down by an important relationship in the past. They may want...

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Beauty Is On the Inside
Oct13

Beauty Is On the Inside

It seems to be a fact that we all forget that inner beauty exists exclusively in us and has is not the same us superficial beauty. Although we all maintain our physical beauty and are conscious of it, it is also important to recognise our inner beauty. Having the balance of both inner and outer beauty can really enhance the way we feel about ourselves. It is all about noticing and appreciating the fact that we have beauty inside us that we are all born with. Beauty can play a major part of our self-esteem. Anita Dhanjal reminds us to look within to find beauty and confidence. Beauty whether it is inner or outer are both important however, there can be some confusion as to the differences between them. If we firstly take a look at ‘outer beauty’, which is what we all see initially. This generally refers to the characteristics of a person – the physical make up. We all spend a huge amount of time ensuring we look our best and the fact is it does make us feel good. In contrast, ‘inner beauty’ is not visibly seen as such but belongs deep within us – the inner make up. It is something we feel inside when we are totally just being ourselves. These are the unique, positive aspects of an individual; personality, intelligence, compassion, empathy, kindness, creativity, sensitivity, confidence…the list goes on. It is possible to bring these inner attributes out to the outer surface of one self to compliment and enhance the beauty of the eye. It is possible to have both beauties hand in hand. The key is to be able to positively manage the way we feel about ourselves and that is accomplished through changing the way we think. Having self- awareness of who we are and also what makes us the way we are, can help us discover the unique gifts which we all have inside us. These gifts can make a difference to our lives and to others around us. It is a matter of self-discovery. Maintaining a positive inner image of ourselves and having self belief that it is not always about what we physically look like, can be a step in the right direction. If we learn to love ourselves then we will receive the love back from others around us. The positive vibes that we send out will shine through from within us and people will notice. Inner beauty can be seen through helping others such as family or friends in need, being genuine and trustworthy, having unconditional love for all, being kind and having that aura that...

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12 Secrets of Being Happy
Oct03

12 Secrets of Being Happy

Every time I saw my father in the couple of years before he died, he would say: ‘Tell me Linda, are you happy?’ I think he knew he was coming to the end of his life and wanted to reassure himself of my well-being. Maybe it would have been kinder to reply: ‘Yes, Dad, I’m happy.’ But my relationship had come to an end after more than 20 years and the future looked bleak. Value happiness: Happiness can be learned, but finding meaning and a purpose in life is what leads to it, not the other way around I found myself saying: ‘Right now, no, but I will be again, I’m pretty sure of that. And you’re not to worry. No one can expect to be happy all the time.’ And yet it seems the pursuit of happiness has become a national preoccupation. Eminent economists, politicians and psychologists debate endlessly about the best way to create a happy society, while David Cameron’s ‘happiness index’ aims to pin down just how content we are. Plenty of woolly self-help books exist which promise to unlock the secret of happiness. Just last week, the Institute of Economic Affairs concluded rather prosaically that money had a large part to play. But I’ve found, when my life isn’t going to plan, there are plenty of simple things that help — for starters, my friends, my son and my dog. Then there’s walking in the countryside, getting lost in a good book, learning something new, still being a size 10 as I approach 60, a new recipe that turns out well. The list is endless. But a new book tries to probe deeper. In it, you won’t find spiritual philosophy, but evidence-based material that aims to unlock the secrets of happy people. In the World Book Of Happiness, Leo Bormans has drawn together the research and discoveries of the world’s leading experts on the psychology of happiness. Researchers have questioned thousands of people and what he has discovered is as surprising as it is inspiring. ACCEPT WHAT YOU HAVE Research shows that happy people have modest levels of expectation and aspirations — they want what they can get — while unhappy people never seem to get what they want. They also know how to avoid disappointments and how to generate pleasant surprises. This is because they strive for realistic goals and are happy with their lot. As Dr Jose de Jesus Garcia Vega, of the University of Monterrey, Mexico, confirms, we must accept things as they come. ‘We spend a lot of time complaining about the things that happen to us, but this is a...

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WHY BEING HONEST WITH YOURSELF IS KEEPING YOU FROM GETTING WHAT YOU WANT
Sep23

WHY BEING HONEST WITH YOURSELF IS KEEPING YOU FROM GETTING WHAT YOU WANT

When it comes to being honest with yourself, sometimes it gets in the way of you expressing who you really are. That’s because the truth about your situation is NOT the truth about who you are. If your current situation is not what you want, then being honest about it isn’t going to be very useful to you. Because being honest about it keeps you repeating the same story in your head, and in turn, keeps you experiencing the same situation and the same feelings surrounding it. (Of course, if things are exactly the way you want them to be right now, you can stop reading this article.) The trouble is we’re told over and over that we need to accept the truth about ourselves and our reality. And most of the time, we’re not looking at the core truth, but the circumstantial truth. This is a big difference. Becoming aware of the fact that what you’re experiencing is not what you want is useful. Because without that awareness, you wouldn’t know that it’s something you want to change. Telling the truth about it over and over, however, isn’t very useful. It keeps you on a merry-go-round of conditioning yourself to believe that is just the way things are. Well, the truth is, that’s the way things are because that’s what you created. Things are not the way they are because it’s just the truth, or at a fixed state because that is the way they should be. They are only that way because you have been repeating that story. You can change your story at any time. So, in order to tell a different story (and change your experience), you have to stop placing so much importance on telling the truth (about your situation). The trick is, you have to tell a different story, even though that’s not what you’re currently experiencing. And the key to that is realizing that your current story is something that you can rewrite. It’s not written in permanent marker and sealed in a security envelope with super glue. Although you may think that because you’ve been confusing the truth about who you are with the truth about your circumstances. You can deliberately choose something different now. The Truth is, Your Telling the Truth Is not True It’s not true because it’s just what you decided. The real truth about you is that you can create whatever you want. You can have the perfect path because you’re the one that decides it. All you have to do is start using your creative power to move in the direction of what you most want...

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