And Confusion is a Good Thing because….?

Have you ever been confused? At a seminar once upon a time, a larger than life character told me that being confused is definitely cause for celebration. The idea being that when someone is confused, that’s the precursor to learning something new.

Simply said, nothing in life has any meaning except the meaning we attach to it.  If you can change or start a belief in a heartbeat, how does it work?  The answer is simple: We naturally learn by taking a new experience and linking it up to a previous experience.  The brain cells that fire together, wire together. And they wire together with emotion and feeling.

So, if we want to stop a pattern of unhealthy thinking, putting ourselves in a new highly emotional state of confusion is healthy, IF in those moments we consciously attach a new meaning to an old pattern.

For instance, in 1999 when I went through my coaches training with Mr. Larger than Life, we showed up one morning all expecting to have a day of classroom instruction. Instead we were directed to a van and told we were off to an “experience”!

Thirty minutes later, as we pulled into the skydiving place, people got confused. Thoughts ran through everyone’s mind: This was not the training day we were supposed to have; OMG we have to jump out of a plane?!?; OMG the fear; OMG the panic; OMG the anxiety; OMG the CONFUSION and OMG I AM GOING TO DIE!! People were frantically trying to reason out the situation and decipher what it meant for them because they did not automatically have a past frame of reference to link it to!

While most were in a state of confusion, I was feeling something different! You see, I had a past frame of reference from being in the US Army. I had already experienced their moment of panic, fear and confusion when I went through US Army Airborne School.  And in my moment of panic, fear and confusion jumping out the door at only 1,200 feet, I anchored in the new belief that, if I live through this, I can do anything! And, I had those brain cells fire together and wire together over the next 4 jumps. So, when we had to jump out of the plane in tandem with a 12,000 foot free fall and plenty of time to react to any issues, I was not fearful, but positively excited! I knew, “I could handle anything!”

The great thing was, at the day’s end, everyone wanted to go up again and experience skydiving without a tandem instructor and go solo! And, we had all bonded and participated in a life event that brought us all closer together!

Ultimately, skydiving a second time was not to be. Mr. Larger than Life had something better in store for us. At the end of the next day of training, at about 10pm, instead of going home, we were stretched again.

The instructions were simple: empty all of your pockets and give us everything except your drivers’ license. Take this small bag that contains fifty cents, an emergency number to call, pocket camera for proof, a small pack of almonds as our gift to you. Men have to go alone, women in groups of two and you have 15 hours to get from San Diego to Los Angeles and back again using nothing but your coaching skills and your ability to add value to others. “If you are not back by 5pm Sunday, you fail the course!”

Let me just say, while some were excited, I was not.  This was my moment of  “OMG to LA and back on a Sunday night, alone?, OMG the fear, OMG the panic, OMG the anxiety, OMG the CONFUSION and OMG I AM GOING TO DIE!!

How do you think it ended? That’s a Thought of the Week for another time. Or, do you know the ending already?  Successful people thrive on OMG moments!

What are your OMG moments that have shaped your success…I would LOVE to know them! Comment below!

 

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There is a Miracle Pill after all…

The next time you are sick and need to go to the doctor, try this miracle pill.  Although it is not yet approved by the FDA and not covered by insurance, it is still an amazing drug.

This miracle drug:

  • Releases endorphins in your body which are natural pain killers, they also boost your bodies’ natural immune system
  • Improves your blood circulation by naturally elevating your heart rate and blood pressure, which in turn, help to stimulate your heart and lungs
  • Improves oxygen flow into the bloodstream causing an natural increase in energy, mental clarity, and focus
  • And while you’re on it, it burns 78 times more calories than when you’re sitting at your normal resting heart rate

So, how much would you pay for an over the counter drug that provides all of that? Well, good news, it is FREE! Yes, FREE!

And NO, I’m not talking about exercise!

You know the old saying, “Laughter is the best medicine?” Literally, it is! The magic pill is laughter.

If you want to break the ice at work, learn a new joke. If you want to bring the family together, watch America’s Funniest Home Videos together. If you need to impress that special someone, nothing makes a date better than sharing a good laugh. If you want to increase the quality of your life, especially in these times, lighten up and laugh more.

Just to illustrate my point, when was the last time you had a really hard belly laugh? Can you even remember? Finding, telling, and mastering the art of telling good, honest, clean jokes can be learned by anyone! You will naturally become the hit of the party, improve your relationships and attract people to you while having FUN doing it!

“By the way, did you see the church bulletin last week? It read, “Bertha Belch, a missionary from Africa will be speaking tonight at Memorial Church. Come tonight and hear Berth Belch all the way from Africa.”

 ~OR~

“A student was asked if he knew what Roe vs. Wade was all about. He answered that he thought it was the decision George Washington had to make when he decided to cross the Delaware.”

~Jokes taken from “Healing through Humor,” by Charles Francis Hunter

Do you have some favorite jokes you’d like to share?  Post them below, we want to hear them!

Reach Your Goals Faster! 2 Essential Steps

Would you like to reach your goals faster?  Here are 2 steps that are critical to achieving them much quicker!  I’ll give you a hint: the key to success lies in your emotions.

Napoleon Hill wrote one of the most classic books ever written on success and achievement, “Think & Grow Rich.” One of the reasons this is such a classic book is that he used the principle of modeling. Modeling is the process of studying how an outcome is repeatedly achieved.

Hill found that the successful achievement of any goal was based on the following four steps.

1. Connect with your Purpose or Burning Desire

2. Believe and Trust in yourself and the value of your actions

3. Organize a plan of action and even more importantly take action

4. Never Give Up! Perseverance does pay off!

To make this process effective, it’s crucial to do all of the steps in order and be absolutely consistent.

When most people see someone achieve something they themselves want to achieve, many times the temptation is to ask, “How did you do that?” But steps number one and two are 100% emotional.

Until you figure out why you want to achieve that specific goal; what it means to you; what it will add to your life and what it will cost you to not achieve it, knowing how to do it will not significantly increase your chance of reaching it. Connecting emotionally with your drive is essential.

Once you are emotionally connected with the “WHY” of your goal, it’s time to put some focus on your faith and belief in yourself as well as your belief in your strategy. Trusting in your plan doesn’t mean not being open to evaluating its effectiveness periodically. Quite the opposite: you need to make adjustments as needed which is what step 3 is all about. But it does mean that you have to truly believe that your actions can and will lead to the results you want. Self-doubt is distracting at best and has the potential of being crippling.

It takes time to stop and reconnect to the emotions associated with your goals. It’s a step we often skip in our hurry to get to the end goal. But it’s precisely what will help you achieve your goals much quicker. That initial step will ward off self-sabotage. It will help you stay motivated when the initial burst of energy is long gone and you are left with the hard work of persevering.

The key is to reaching your goals faster is to address the emotional component of goal setting before you move to the logical and practical aspect of reaching them.

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Hesitation is the leading cause of roadkill

What’s the surest way to chip away at your self-esteem?  You guessed it: hesitation!  Join me as we look at how hesitation –a by-product of not being clear on what you want– leads to self-doubt and what you can do about it.

Motivation, personal development, and tips on raising your self confidence and self esteem by executive and life coach James Murphy

 

Outcome vs. State, Who Won?

Are you sitting on the sidelines waiting to get in the game? Ask yourself, “What do I want to have right now?”

How you answered the question could be the difference between success and disappointment. Successful people have a specific outcome in mind as opposed to an emotional state.

An outcome is a specific result that you are focused on achieving. It is the left brain answer to your question. In land navigation every point has a specific grid coordinate. A person on a trip to Hawaii needs a specific grid coordinate to tell them exactly where they are starting from, where they are in the process of the flight, and how they will know when they have achieved their final destination. Without the grid coordinates a person is easily lost. Our lives are the same way. It is important to be able to answer this question in order to define your outcomes, “What is the specific result that I am focused on achieving today?”

A state is the exact opposite. It is a right brain answer and will be defined as value (feeling word) and is 100% emotional. Using the Hawaii example, a state is what you are going to be feeling once you step off of the plane: rest, relaxation, peace, quiet, tranquility, etc. It will be the emotional experience that is defined by your achieving your outcome.

Why is this distinction important? Because of one simple principle: Motion Creates Emotion. Motion creates momentum and momentum is power, energy and force. The reverse is not automatically true. Emotion does not always lead to motion. Do you need proof? I will give two words, lethargy and depression.

A person who is looking for a new experience must define their outcome; choose to take action towards its achievement so the desired emotional state will be produced.

So, if you hear someone talk in a language pattern of, “When I feel happy, then, I will get up and go walk” or “Once I get past this tired feeling, I will get to the gym,” they never will get to the emotional states that they most desire from life. However, if they would bet up and go for a walk first, chances are they would feel happy and if they get to the gym to work out, they will probably get past the tired feeling.

Ask yourself, “What do I want? What’s my outcome; What is the specific result that I am focused on achieving?”

Having the answer to these question is critical to your success.

 

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The 3 Principles of Wealth

Money is Emotion

If you gave anyone three wishes, one of them would, for most people, be to have financial abundance and certainty to the point where “they would never have to worry about money again.”

If you want to have that level of financial certainty in life…there are only three fundamental financial principles you need to master. Although they are frustratingly simple, they can be a challenge to put into practice.

  • First and foremost, it’s critical to understand that money is used to buy an emotional experience. In other words, the reason people are willing to buy something is for the emotional experience it provides them. That principle applies the the frappuccino at Starbucks as much as the laptop you purchased.
  • The second law of income is that you will only have as much money as you can successfully manage. It is a fallacy to think that you once you have a certain amount of money, you will never have to worry about money again. The richest and most successful people are distinctly aware of how and where they spend their money. They understand their buying and spending habits, behaviors, and they watch the money come in and go out.

If we have some fun combining number one and two, what I’m saying is that managing your money really comes down to managing your emotional spending habits. Before making a purchase, ask yourself what emotional experience am I trying to extract from it. Is that experience worth its cost? Many times it does, but you might be surprised how many times, it’s not.

  • The third law of income states that A-B=C. A is your assets (income you bring in each month) minus your “B,” which is your bills (monthly expenses) which equals your “C,” cash on hand. Interestingly what gives you the feeling of financial safety or certainty is not your total net worth. It’s positive cash flow. Your net worth is not likely to give you a feeling of financial safety is you have a negative cash flow month after month. Your emotions are tied to your cash flow.

If you ask most people who are struggling, which they would rather do, make more money or cut expenses in order to have more money, most will say, “Make more money.” There is a fundamental challenge with this psychology: Your spending habits will always grow in proportion to your income! That is why rock stars, movie stars, and entertainers with millions go broke.

So whether you take in $80 K or $500 K a year, it’s what you clear that brings you that feeling of satisfaction; a feeling of financial safety. If your cash outflow is greater than your cash inflow month after month, you will live with the feeling of scarcity, anxiety or stress. You will continually yearn for more money without ever feeling truly secure.

That’s true no matter how much money you make and whether it’s in your personal life or your business.

Are you taking steps toward what you want?

When would you like to make your first million? When would you like to find and marry your soul mate? When would you like to drop those extra pounds so you look good this summer? When would you like to find a better sense of peace in your life? When would you like to get to that next promotion and pay raise at work?
If you are like most people, the answer to all of these questions is easy. I am sure you would like to have had it all yesterday! Maybe a person could settle for right now, but yesterday would probably have been better!
It is true that whatever you want, you can’t have it yesterday. However, you can choose to take action towards those results right now. If you want that million dollars and pass on making that extra payment to pay off your debt, you are missing out on having that million dollars for now. If you fail to smile and just say hello to that attractive guy or gal at the grocery store, you might be missing out on your soul mate. If you don’t leave just one more bite of food on your plate than you did yesterday, you are missing out on that great beach body. 
A person may say, “But James, that one extra payment, smile, and bite of food are not enough!” Says who? If you are not willing to manage your money and will waste an opportunity to take a step toward being debt free, how can you manage a million? If you are not willing to give more than you expect back in a relationship and pass on a smile that may make someone’s day go from bad to great, how can you emotionally support your soul mate? If you can’t pass on that one bite of food and eat 40 less calories at every meal (840 calories a week is almost 1/3 lb), then how will you be able to manage passing on all of the deserts when you are out with friends so you can feel fantastic on the beach?
Managing your life comes down to managing moments. If the small results are not enough for you to acknowledge and appreciate, you may never have the appreciation for attaining the end goal. We are the ones who make things bigger, harder, and more difficult than they need to be. Why not make feeling good about yourself and your actions be easy? How many more happy people would there be in the world. Life is only as difficult as you make it! 
The key to getting results NOW is to manage and appreciate the moments and the immediate actions you take right now in order to make a difference in your life.  
To  your continued success, 
James

Fear, Anxiety or Excitement –which is it?

You will have to forgive me again for talking about running this week! This weekend is my big 100-mile race that you have all been reading about for the last six months, so bear with me one more time.  Well, perhaps I will give a recap on what I get from the race next week and then I am done talking about it, I promise!

Anyway, I as I was packing enough clothes and food for the entire crew of the USS Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier tonight, I am feeling a mixture of excitement, fear and anxiety. I always tell my clients, “If you are looking for financial planner, get one who is debt free and works because they choose to”. Same for a coach, “Get one who says I am my own best client.” 

I have been coaching myself hard tonight. On the eve of big life events, it is just like a ride on a roller coaster. There are only two main emotions on a roller coaster…fear and excitement. Picture the people on the ride…clenching onto the shoulder harness in fear and putting their hands up and screaming, “Bring it on!!!” at the top of their lungs.

What allows a person to let go of the shoulder harness of fear and scream with excitement is letting go of expectation and the “What if’s…”, along with having a little bit of faith and trust. Trust that the ride will end safely, faith that it will stay on the track, so you can enjoy the rush of adrenaline that each new exciting experience in life brings. 

Some fear and anxiety is healthy. It is what motivates me to remember to run upstairs and pack my rain jacket just in case. Being able to manage those emotions and put them to good use is critical. It allows you to feel prepared for the ride so you can let go, enjoy it free of expectation and trust that it will be a great ride. 
  
In the end, you will be living a life of events and rides that are thrilling. AND, you may find that you are addicted to the ride. So, I may have to go back on my word that this is the end of my writing about running for a while. After all, there is the Marine Corps Marathon in October with one of my Marine clients who will have just came back from a tour in Afghanistan (Stay safe brother!). And, I just planned for another possible marathon in France in 2013 with another fantastic friend. They serve wine at every water station and everyone dresses up! Life is full of such wonderful rides! 

Enjoy your life since you only have one. Live it fully doing what you love. Have a life full of wonderful tales to tell your grandkids as they sit on your knees! I hope you continue to ride the ride and remember that it is only a slight adjustment to go from fear and anxiety to excitement and fun. Enjoy the ride!

Are You Doing What You Love?

Overnight, the death toll has risen from 800 to over 10,000 in Japan. I think of all these people who started that day like any other day.  They got up, fed the kids maybe, kissed their loved ones goodbye, and got in their car to go to work? 

  

Out of those 10,000 people who lost their life, I wonder how many people died doing something they loved? How many jumped out of bed that morning and lived that day like it was going to be their last? I know it is very cliche’, but seriously, how many died that day doing something they totally loved?

  

Katherine Mansfield once wrote, ” How can you hesitate? Risk! Risk anything! Care no more for the opinion of others, for those voices. Do the hardest thing on earth for you. Act for yourself. Face the truth.”

  

My junior high band teacher, Mr. Bob Brown, died while out on a run. I have several other family members who have died doing what they loved or died coming back from doing something they loved. I am almost certain my Grandma Nora died with a crochet needle in her hand because other than playing Kings Corners with her, she was always crocheting another afghan for a loved one!

 

No matter when I die, I want to die doing something I love! I hope I die right at the end of a marathon, a great run, after telling my kids how proud of them I am, after a million dollar coaching call, watching a brilliant sunset or sunrise, or some other life event that is meaningful. I promised my wife I would live at lease one minute longer than her so she would never be widowed. No matter when it is, I want to go right after a moment that is larger than life.

 

The challenge is to live life as consistently as possible in the pursuit of everything that is meaningful to you. Horrendous tragedies like what many in Japan are experiencing remind us that you never know what will happen when you walk out the door in the morning. But you always have control of how you say goodbye to your loved ones before you leave, what you do during the day, and how you help others along the way!

 

Regardless of when that is, end on a high note doing what you love, and make sure you always make others aware of their worth. Tell the important people in your life how much you love them. The only comfort they will have when you are gone is to know that you loved them and that you died doing what you love and living a life of love!  Take control of your life. Choose to make each day count! 

My day is looking pretty exciting all of a sudden! How about yours?

 

To your continued success,

James


Emotional Success

Emotions vs. Logic

Well, it finally happened. As I was walking my daughter to school the other day, she became very disappointed because in a moment of fear, she realized we had left part of her first grade project at home. I could not pass up the opportunity to console my little one, so I scooped her up in my arms, held her tight and told her how much I understood her disappointment. 
By the time we got to the school, she was begging me to put her down since other kids were looking. I had to put her down because she is not a toddler anymore, and carrying her is not as easy as it once was. The parent behind me must have noticed my pain because their comment hit me like a ton of bricks, “You won’t be able to do that for much longer.”
It was a very true statement; my baby girl is growing up fast. Change is always interesting; we resist it and fight it often.  Mr. Spock from Star Trek stated, “If change is inevitable, predictable and beneficial…doesn’t logic demand that you be part of it?”  Yes, logically I suppose it does.
However, we are much more emotional than logical beings! Deep down, I want to be the loving, protective daddy who scoops up his baby girl in her moment of distress and makes all of her pain go away with my hugs and kisses! 
The bottom line is that everything we do in life is guided more by emotions than logic. There are positive and negative emotions. Positive emotions we want more of, and negative emotions less of. The true way to have all you want in life is to make it your purpose to meet others’ emotional needs; not logically but emotionally, through experiences, shared moments of happiness, love and joy. 
In these challenging times, the people who will shine are the people who make the greatest emotional difference for the world. Remember the words of Gandhi, “Be the change you want to see in the world.” Live the emotional states that you want to see in the world. People will be drawn to you like bees to honey. To change around a quote from one of my most important mentors, Zig Ziglar, “You can get everything you want in life, if you just help enough people get emotionally what they want from life.” If you still don’t know what you want emotionally from life, let me give you a clue: everyone wants love, peace, happiness, prosperity, and everyone wants to know they are helping others to achieve the same!

Are you Any-body or some-body?

Are you Any-body or Some-body Special?

Being different in life is a great way to build your self confidence. The definition of self confidence is, “You decide to take a specific action so that you can earn and deserve the right to feel good about yourself.”

I was contemplating this last weekend on my long run and started to thing about the implications of the definition. I know I have covered this in previous thoughts but some things are so important, sometimes, they bear repeating.

Do you realize the amount of freedom we are blessed to have? In America, almost Any-body can do almost anything. That is the dream and the hope that has built this nation. The sad part about America is that although almost Any-body can do anything, most Any-body and Every-body tends to do what is easiest. We all tend to take the path of least resistance in life. We see this everyday in work, finances, health, and relationships.

Any-body can do something but it takes Some-body special to do what others are not willing too. It takes Some-body special to get up on a Saturday morning at 5am and go out on a training run for 17 miles. Any-body can sneak out of the office early on Friday to get to happy hour but it takes Some-body special to put in that little bit of extra time to get the job done right before leaving. Anybody can go out and get a credit card and get in debt by overspending but it takes a special Some-body to earn, save and actually own their home and car mortgage free. Anybody can put on that extra 20 pounds by sitting on the couch every night watching TV (one statistic I read stated the average child watches 22 hours of TV per week and adults average 8 hours per week—but they can not find time to exercise or spend quality family time). Anybody can go to work for somebody else, not pursue their dreams and put in their 8 hours and go home. It takes a Some-body special to understand their interests, strengths, and purpose in life, create their own business, and take on the risks of being an entrepreneur and providing jobs to others so they can feed their families. Any-body can not be invested in their community and not go out of their way to cultivate friendships outside of co-workers. It takes Some-body to find a meaningful pursuit that helps others less fortunate than them and invest their time building relationships with others. Do you get the point?

My question to you this week is, “In your life, where are you showing up an Any-body?” Where are you doing what Any-body and Every-body else is?” Where are you buying into the status quo of underachievement, living that unfulfilled meaningless life, and believing that you can’t do anything in the current economics to make your life better? Any-body can be an ant, following the ant in front of them, going to the same piece of food, taking your little piece and returning home. It takes a Some-body special ant to break away from the status quo and go find food itself. That is what builds up the self confidence of the ant and in the end benefits the entire community! Step up, face life’s challenges, commit to something different that Any-body COULD do, and be that Some-body special to ACTUALLY do it.

My Pet Black Widow –The Power of Choice

A client once told me at the end of a coaching session, “you must never have any problems in life!”

Since the first day of my coaching training I was taught that emotional state management is vital during every coaching session. I took his statement as a compliment in that I showed up “in state” for our coaching sessions, however, nothing could be farther from the truth. When it comes to my own life and problems, I am my own best coaching client.

That memory was triggered this weekend as I was out watering my grass. Here in North Carolina we water our grass weekly in an effort to keep it alive during the hot and humid summer months. Every Sunday I do a deep watering and in one corner of the lawn, in a small green telephone hub lives a big black widow. She is absolutely beautiful; dark black with bright red markings on her abdomen.

We have developed an interesting relationship over the last month. At first, my immediate thought was to kill her. She could be very dangerous if the kids got a little too inquisitive. I really did not want to do that but how do you relocate a black widow? My next line of defense was to just water the heck out of her web and see if she would eventually get the hint and relocate on her own.

Guess what? After weeks of wrecking her web, she just rebuilds. That is the problem. No matter how many times I tear down her web she just continues to rebuild. After all, that is what spiders do. They know who they are and it does not matter what happens to their web, they really don’t care. She just reacts, takes action, and rebuilds.

I wish in some ways, when it came to my own problems and challenges, I could be like that black widow. There would never have to be a reason “why” something was the way it was, there would be no focus on what I may lose or have just lost, and no worry or uncertainties about what the future held; I would just react, take action and build.

In a way that could be possible. I could be more like her. In order to react to situations instinctively, I would just have to be very aware of who I am, what my strengths are, wait patiently for something to happen and react. If a fly became trapped, dinner would be served, and then I would get to work building again! If someone or something outside of my control and influence came along and wrecked everything I had just built, I would just get to work rebuilding. There would not be any emotions involved.

Somewhere in the process of reacting to the events around me without having to think or feel, there would be something missing though. I think that life would almost have no purpose or meaning. I think that I would miss thinking about things, exploring options, growing and being able to celebrate success. I think that, as a spider, I would miss being able to choose how I wanted to act and react to life around me.

Maybe having problems and challenges is not so bad after all. There are other upsides to being human too. I don’t really have to worry about getting eaten by my mate!

So, I think I will just keep the black widow as a reminder that thinking a little too much about things is not healthy. Balancing thinking with action towards what I choose to build and create works just fine for me. Choice is one of the greatest gifts in life.

Spiders and Personal Results Coaches all have problems and challenges in life. Choosing how we are going to react to them and take action is the difference between the two. I am probably the only one on the block with a pet Black Widow. She reminds me every week that I always have a choice in life –and so do you. Choose wisely this week how you are going to act and react as you travel down the road ahead.

JULY SPECIAL: ONLY 2 Weeks Left!!

COACHING Special: Fast Track for Success in JULY for only $199!!

BONUS: Sign up in July & receive your FREE 2-CD set “Maintaining Massive Momentum CD with audio transcript!” (A $19.99 value)

Here is an example of one of my client’s success last month with the Fast Track Program.

“I have to say that my clothes are already starting to feel much looser. I wore a jacket to church on Sunday and I could already tell that the jacket was much looser. I am also starting to wear several shirts that had just gotten too tight for me but are now starting to fit much better.

Regardless of the weigh-in tomorrow I would say that this program has been a huge success. I was 201.4 at the beginning of the month and I have lost nearly 9 pounds so far. Given the fact that I was completely out of the loop for two weeks with regards to physical activity – one week because of a sinus infection and one week because of surgery, this was mostly achieved through practicing good self-control on the eating front. I am still trying to hit 190 by the end of this week. Also, the only time I have lost weight in the past is when I was on a diet (I have tried several over the years) or on a physical fitness plan…….so, to me, to accomplish this without a “diet” mentality is actually a bigger win than just about anything else. I also noticed this AM that I have much more energy that I did at the beginning of the month.

I have now set a new goal to hit 183 by July 31st…. I am actually confident that I can achieve this goal using this method that we have used here.”

At weigh-in the next morning at the completion of the 30-days with the Fast Track to Success Plan…

“I was at 191.8 this morning…..So, I have lost a total of over 9 1/2 pounds in the last 30 days! I am feeling great! My goals are set for today!”

Thanks,

J.S.

Are you looking to jump start your weight loss for spring, take control of your finances, build a better relationship or take the next step in your career? The Fast Track for Success program allows you to focus on making those consistent changes daily for you to get what you want by making “small deposits every day.” Most of us overestimate what we can do in a year and underestimate what we can do in ten.

For only $199 you get a specialized, 6-Step program personalized to achieve your goal.
Step 1: Complete the Pre-Call Worksheet for a single goal
Step 2: 30-minute Coaching session to set up new strategies for success
Step 3: You send me a daily email or voicemail with the top 3-5 specific things you are committed to do that day to reach your monthly goal. I will personally respond to every email or voicemail with helpful tips, hints, and strategies to overcome your challenges you have along the way
Step 4: After the completion of week 2, a 15-minute check-in call to measure and monitor your success.
Step 5: Repeat Step 3
Step 6: 15-Minute Celebration Call to re-enforce the changes you have made and revise strategies for continued success.

The bottom line is that most people are excited to start a goal for 24-48 hours before the emotional high wears off but it takes 17-21 days to develop a new habit.

I invite you to experience more success in a single month than you have had in the first two quarters of this year. Success can be yours for only $5 per day, M-F. The only reason you won’t call to achieve the life of your dreams is because of time and money. How many calls and emails do you make in a day? Make one that will change your life! Where else are you guaranteed to experience results and create what you most want in life? Put your investment to good use–on yourself!

Have you forgotten…Yourself?

I was focused, motivated and determined last weekend to achieve three major outcomes: finish my 2008 taxes, plant my new tree, and put up the basketball hoop for my son. I worked late into the evening on Friday night to complete the taxes, I was up early Saturday morning planting my new tree and Saturday evening I assembled the basketball hoop. Sunday morning found me grocery shopping and by 2:00 that afternoon I was wiped out, standing in the kitchen wondering what to do next.

When I was single, the first thing I would do every night when I got home was to put on some music. I did not have a TV or girlfriend at the time and jazz music was my best friend. We would have long conversations as I made dinner, returned emails and did laundry. I could never understand how I could live without it because when my condo was quiet, it was a weird feeling.

Now, with 2 kids, basketball, swimming, tennis, choir and gymnastic practices, dinner, bedtime, relationship time and work; free time is few and far between. Life just seems to continue to go faster and faster the older I get. I am not filling the quiet time with music since it is automatically filled with the sounds of a full life. But the quiet time still manages to get blocked out.

But there I was, standing in a moment of perfect silence, and thinking, “What’s next? I don’t know what to do. I’m confused.” The silence had found me again.

Are you comfortable being alone with yourself in a moment of silence? If you had 30 minutes on a Friday or Saturday evening to turn off the lights, sit on the couch and “be” alone, would you be able to do it? (No reading, TV, falling asleep, or other activity allowed!)

In quiet time, we become open to ourselves and what is truly important to us. We can let go of the errands, people, situations, and work we “must, need, and should” be doing. In the silence, we can reconnect with ourselves, find peace in the moment, and in that moment become open to what is truly important to us in our lives.

Take some time each day to stop, close your eyes, and be comfortable in the silence of your own self. Take the problems of your life there and ask for an answer to come to you. The more comfortable you become with yourself in your own silence, the more comfortable you will be running your life. Silence can be your greatest friend and the sweetest music to listen to.

I wish you many peaceful moments this week. Run your life instead of having your life run you. Enjoy those sweet moments of silence.

Be sure to check out my website, www.evolutionforsuccess.com, with details for an exciting new 2-Hour Parenting Teleconference which will be recorded on 2-CD’s in the month of April.

By the way, if you know anyone who needs support hiring the right person for the job, have them check out the Sure Hire Behavioral Assessment at www.surehirenow.com
You can receive a $25 Gift Card to any store of your choice as a “Thank You” for your referral.

Please pass this on to anyone who needs an encouraging “Thought” this week. They can sign up for the “Thought of the Week” by sending me an email at james@evolutionforsuccess.com and place “subscribe” in the subject line. I never share my email list with anyone. Your privacy is of utmost importance to me.

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"Two Roads Converged…"

“Two Roads Converged…”

Last week, I had the distinct pleasure of taking Isabelle to school. As we came up to the stoplight leading out of our neighborhood, the line was very long and I guessed that it would take about 3 light changes before we would be able to turn left onto the main street. We were looking at a ten minute wait in line which meant she would be late for school.

Instinct took over and I quickly merged into the right hand lane. I drove past the long line of cars straight up to the light. At this point, the only way for us to go was the “wrong” way. We had to turn right instead of left, which took us farther away from her school. Isabelle immediately realized we were going the wrong direction and asked, “Daddy, why are we were going the “wrong” way?”

I turned right, drove 100 yards and turned around in a different neighborhood entrance. Almost immediately, I was able to make the left hand turn onto the main street going towards Isabelle’s school. As I drove, I explained to Isabelle that I was taking a “secret short cut” to school and even though it seemed like the “wrong” way, sometimes going the opposite way of everyone else was quicker. We would have to experiment and see if it was true. In this case, it was true, much to her delight. She even waved at the line of cars as we passed them, who were still waiting for the light to turn green.

A similar experience occurred at the Atlanta airport last Friday. I was waiting for my return flight and needed to stretch my legs one last time before boarding time. As I walked farther and farther down the terminal wing away from the main hub, I noticed that not only did the people traffic lighten up but the drink prices for Coke and water dropped with every store. It was also amazing that the Coke prices were lower than the water prices. Isn’t it ironic how what is better for you is sometimes more expensive and what seems easier, less expensive and more convenient is sometimes not as good for you?

In today’s world, with the media news, business forecasts, stock market news, and radio ads, you may need to get away from the mainstream, take a walk away from the mainstream to where it is not as crowded. It is good to notice where opportunity lies and more often than not, it will be away from popular idealism. Making a little bit better investment on what you are feeding your mind, body and spirit can make a big difference in your health. It can also provide you the edge that will make a small difference in your life today and a very BIG difference in your life in the long run. Make the investment in yourself that will yield results for you mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually. If you take the initiative to walk a little farther away from the crowds you may be surprised at the deals you will find.

This morning Isabelle asked me if we were taking the “secret short cut” to school. It took me a moment to understand that she had changed her association from us going to school the “wrong” way to the “secret short cut” way. Separate yourself from the rest of the people who are waiting in line for something different to happen. That is the secret to getting ahead. All of the answers you need to overcome any challenge in your life right now are out there waiting for you. Be courageous, brave and try going the “wrong” way once in a while. We will see you at the “secret short cut” turnaround and we’ll be sure and wave “Hi!”

If you know someone who needs an encouraging “Thought” this week. Please feel free to forward this email. You can sign up for the weekly, “Thought” at www.evolutionforsuccess.com We value your privacy and keep our email database private and confidential. Thank you for reading!

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What are you Willing to Give Up?



What are you willing to give up?

Have you ever had a nightmare that seemed real? During Nicolas’ youth sports we saw many nightmares come true when it came to watching fathers coach their sons’ team. Whether it was the other parents in the stands complaining of favoritism and unfair playing time, the coach getting upset at how his son was playing or the son acting out in defiance of the father; it seemed that for both the father and the son there was more pain associated to coaching and playing than pleasure.

So, there I was on the Board of Directors at the YMCA, my son on a basketball roster that had no coach, and the Director of the YMCA asking me if I had ever considered coaching.

Of course, I had considered it and promptly dismissed it. I had all of the freedom that I wanted being the “Best Fan” on the sidelines. All I had to do was show up, sit down and cheer for Nicolas from the bench and occasionally bring drinks. Bringing drinks was the best part because I could bring his favorite flavor Gatorade and be the hero without much effort.

As I heard myself say, “Sure, I can be an assistant coach for the team,” I was screaming inside of my head, “What did you just say?” And, as I showed up on the first day of practice, as the Head Coach for the team, I was way out of my comfort zone.

A funny thing happened as the weeks of practice and games progressed. I received some basketball training books, I checked out training DVD’s from the library, and continued to educate and discipline myself to show up with a plan for every practice. I agonized over every drill, every tip, hint and suggestion that I gave every young boy. I arm chair quarterbacked myself in my abilities after every practice and game. And, through personal discipline to always be a better coach, learned a lot.

One practice in particular, I took candy to reward players for some drills we did at the end of practice and as the boys eagerly grabbed and fought for their favorite flavor, one young boy on the team, Johnny declined. His dad explained to me that for Lent he had given up candy. Johnny was 9 at the time and I was seriously impressed at the character and discipline he was living. As I learned more about Johnny I found that he played on our team, his school team, and lived at the gym playing ball with the grownups 7 days a week. His mom would pick him up from his school practice, feed him in the car and bring him to our practice. Sometimes after our practice, if his schoolwork was completed, his dad would take him to the gym to play.

Many people in life want the Freedom and instant gratification that comes from having no discipline or rules. You have heard people say, “I want to be thin so that I can eat whatever I want” or “I wish I was rich so I could buy anything that I wanted and not worry about money ever again.” If you were thin, you would not eat anything you wanted and if you did, you would not be thin for long. Same with being rich, if you never focused and concerned about how you spent your money, you would find yourself broke.

True Freedom in life comes only through discipline. The word discipline comes from the root word disciple, which means, “a student, a learner.” Discipline also comes in two different forms. We can discipline ourselves to NOT have something. During Lent, it is traditionally represented as something that you “give up” for the 40 days. If you are older, you may remember that every Friday it was tradition to not eat red meat. Fasting is also associated with Lent in order to represent cleansing and purification. The ability to discipline ourselves also can be done to “have” something. I personally am giving up procrastination and am disciplining myself to “Have” more focus in my writing and business sales everyday.

We learn through gaining knowledge, taking action and self evaluation. The freedom of movement a thin person experiences only comes by being disciplined about what they put in their mouth and how they move their body to exercise. A rich person is rich because they have disciplined themselves on how to maximize their income and cut their expenses to an acceptable standard of living for themselves. Johnny will grow up and experience the joy and freedom of being on his high school team, college team, and I believe the NBA because he disciplines himself to create positive habits and behaviors that put him ahead. The freedom to REALLY develop a meaningful relationship with my son only came when I overcame my own fears and insecurities. I disciplined myself with gaining knowledge, planning, taking action, and self evaluating my performance to become the coach that I wanted to be for myself, my son, and his team mates.

If you want to travel more, buy that new car, improve your relationships, move towards that more meaningful job it will only come from disciplining yourself to do something new in order to grow. I would encourage you to find a place in life where you can set a higher standard of discipline for yourself. You will be amazed at the results you will receive from it in the long run. Nicolas will not remember that I used to bring Lemon-Lime Gatorade for his drinks once a season, but he will always remember me as his coach and “Best Fan.” You can the freedom to have all that you desire in life with a little more discipline. It is the essence of success and the cornerstone of character.

To your continued success,

James M Murphy