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CHANGE YOUR THOUGHTS ‐ VOLUME 2 AITCHISON STEVEN The Best of Change Your Thoughts ‐ Volume

The Best of Change Your Thoughts Volume 2 | Steven Aitchison


Dear friend

Thank you for downloading this eBook, I hope you will gain some useful insights from the many articles and the guest authors we have for you.

As you know my name is Steven Aitchison and I am the author of Change Your Thoughts blog, the biggest Personal Development blog in the UK.


You Are a Failure – A Letter To You

You Are a Failure – A Letter To You When you read the heading, how did

When you read the heading, how did it make you feel? did it make you feel anything? did you get angry? upset?

Believe it or not that’s how a lot of people feel, no matter what they achieve in life, they feel as if it’s never enough. They feel everything they have done ends in failure; their relationships, academia, work, fatherhood, motherhood etc they take it all and see it as a failure. I have dealt with clients so many times who have been able to rhyme off all their failures, and it seems to give them a sense of satisfaction at being able to list so many, that’s because they have gone over it so much in their heads.

I can empathize with the person who is suffering this, I have been there, we’ve all been there at some point, it might not have been as prolonged but we’ve still been there. The problem is when the person puts the blame on someone else, usually a failed marriage, a bad childhood, events that have happened in the past etc.

If you are one of these people, I really do know where you are coming from, but:

Now Is The Time To Take Responsibility

The time to start is now. It’s time to say, yes shitty things have happened to me, yes I had a shit childhood, yes I was bullied as a child. It’s great to own that, and say it happened to you, but it’s also time to let go.

Give yourself a break from analyzing the past, stop living there. Come back to the present and show everybody who you are today, not who you were yesterday. You are so much more than what happened to you. The very fact that you are with us today and reading this, whether you feel angry or not, makes your life a success. You’ve managed to come through the pain barrier, you’ve managed to stick two


fingers up to the people who hurt you and say I’m still here, I’m still fighting on and you know what! I’m a success.

You’ve cried enough tears, you’ve felt the anger, the pain, the heart tugging so many times and you’ve almost given up on a few occasions, but you didn’t, you’re here, and here is a good place if you want it to be.

You might be mad with me just now for saying all this, and tell me I don’t understand what you’ve been through, believe me I do, but what I will never understand is how you feel about it, that’s a personal thing and I don’t want to feel your pain, that’s yours to own and believe it or not is a gift which will help you in the future. I would love for you to say ‘I have felt real pain, real anger, real emotions and real moments when my life was almost over, but I am still here’

Choose to feel different

Maybe it’s not quite the right time, but you have the choice to feel different about life. Take responsibility and know that you own your feelings, nobody else.

When you know this, you will stop blaming others for feeling lousy.

When you know this you can change the way you think.

When you know this you can change your life.

Start the journey

How do you feel now? Angry? Mad? A sense of relief? Good, that’s what living in the now feels like, welcome back, it’s good to have you here.


Real Change – Should Uncomfortable?


Feel This

Real Change – Should Uncomfortable? It Feel This Author: Douglas Cartwright Douglas Cartwright is a personal

Author: Douglas Cartwright

Douglas Cartwright is a personal breakthrough and effectiveness coach who helps people get unstuck and start taking more action. His speciality is untying psychological knots that impede thinking and doing! To read more, please visit the site at , read the articles, listen to the audio, and request a free ‘explore your breakthrough’ session. For a powerful free technique on implementation, visit

“Tension and discomfort are necessary feelings in the process of achieving your goal. In fact, if you do not experience them then the goal is not important or not what you really want.” Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Avy Joseph (p114)

Marines train their minds to over-ride the pain impulses of their bodies. They can survive under torture, and out in harsh terrain in ways that would kill the rest of us.

People have willingly died for their beliefs – and survived because of them.

Victor Frankel got through a German concentration camp in horrific conditions because he believed there was something worth living for on the other side. He faced beatings, starvation and disease to extremes we can barely imagine.

This means that pain can be experienced to an outrageous degree but the people involved managed to live, get through it, and do what they needed to do to achieve their mission, or make it to the end of their confinement.


We in the West live in a society where life is ‘easy’ compared to most of the rest of the world. We medicate ourselves every time we feel a twinge, and dose ourselves with food, sex, drugs, and entertainment whenever we feel unhappy.

We run away from discomfort and tell ourselves we can’t stand the problems in our lives. See the examples above. As if we really know what ‘problems’ are!

As Avy Joseph says in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy:

“We all experience problems in many areas of our lives but don’t always realise that our minds and bodies respond to how we rate them. Evaluating a difficulty as unbearable is not only flawed but it also triggers images and feeling that fight against goal achievement (p31)”

I think we think we ‘shouldn’t have to experience ‘pain’ on the way to our success. Think again!

If you’ve ever watched the violent and satirical sci-fi film Starship Troopers you’ll see the drill sergeant spear a recruit’s hand with a knife and then announce (as the recruit screams) : “PAIN – is in your mind.” I think it probably felt quite real to the person with the knife through his hand!

Nevertheless, the idea is that it’s not just the feeling but what you tell yourself about it that determines whether you’ll get through it. In other words, it’s the meanings we choose to give to our ‘discomfort’.

Why we don’t stick with change

They tell themselves that they can’t stand the feelings that come with it as if the feelings shouldn’t be there. I know. I did this for years.

Here’s a revelation I had which is changing my life:

those ‘feelings’ are completely normal. Yes, completely. They are as normal as hunger when you haven’t eaten, sadness when you loose something valuable to you, and breathing hard if you’ve run a lot. They are as part of you as sexual desire (although we don’t usually enjoy them as much!) They’re hot-wired into your mind-body system so they’re not going anywhere anytime soon.

All this time you may have been rejecting the natural tensions that come along with changing the status quo. Isn’t that kind of like hating yourself for breathing?

This is partly why Susan Jeffers said :”Feel the fear and do it Anyway” because fear seems like a stop sign but is actually just neurological-kinaesthetic information reporting to you how your perceptions are measuring the gap between what you have, and what you want.


But the experts say we are engineered for change? So why do we feel tense and uncomfortable?

Well, the simple explanation is this. Your mind is designed to reinforce what you already believe. It has too, or you could not live a life where you doubted every element of your existence. If you did, you could not function. You’d be too scared to step out of bed in the morning in case the floor ate you. Or the bed!

So when you attempt to change your mind and body resists. It sends out waves of discomfort. It ‘says’ Stop! The status quo is under threat. This, is completely natural.

And maybe you have stopped. Too often?

But now you KNOW those feelings are natural, they’re just part of the process of change where old beliefs fight for their existence, you have the first piece of what you need. I don’t deny that this is a hard piece of truth. But it is true.

If you believe that God made you, then you believe that every part of you that is made is ‘good for purpose’, even if we don’t always use/feel it so. If you believe you just evolved, then these signals are simply that – signals from a body and mind about itself and its environment. They’re not instructions, and I genuinely don’t think they’re an infallible guidance system as some personal develop writers suggest. If they are, mine must be broken…!

So if we are often going to feel uncomfortable with the process of change (and I acknowledge there are plenty of times when change is fun) then what will help us stick with it until the change is made?

A goal we want

Healthy beliefs

Healthy self-talk

Reasons to persevere


So what is the thing you want to change? What will the outcome be when you have got it?

What difference is the change going to make in the ‘real’ world that is worth fighting for? How will I know I am different when I have made the change? What will be the improvements in my attitude and performance.

Grab a piece of paper write it down.

Now ask yourself what you currently think about making that change. Write down all the worries, fears, griped and ‘I can’t’ statements.


The next thing to do is to create a healthy belief about these feelings. It helps to write out a paragraph of what you want to believe instead.

Avy Joseph says a healthy belief = what you want + keeping it real (p98) unlike an unhealthy belief that usually demands the world ‘must’ and ‘should’ conform to its demands.

Let’s say that you were struggling to overcome your feelings. Let’s say your goal is to experience the remote control of power within you. Why a remote control? Well, if you hold it – no-one can push your buttons! You have some idea of what it will be like to see, hear and feel that.

After writing your negative thoughts, you might come up with something like this for a healthy belief:

“Labelling emotions as unbearable, too difficult, cannot override them, feel helpless in the presence of them, is definitely going to fail because of them are all ways of giving commands to your nervous system to create goal avoidance and away from motivation. (1)Removing these labels and downgrading them to ‘don’t love but can stand’, uncomfortable, I have the power to choose etc really helps me.

I can totally refuse (2) to use those labels and instead replacing them with ‘perhaps difficult but not unbearable’ or ‘in a different category to the comfortable emotions’ or even ‘all emotions are useful’ and ‘usefully produce discomfort in their message’ or ‘discomfortable messengers to prod me to alertness or to pay attention to something in my experience’. “

What I have done here is given new meanings to the feelings I had (1) and used statements where I acknowledge my ownership and control of the meanings I use


Next, you will need to make a list of what you’ll get if you use the healthy belief as a reminder to push through the uncomfortable feelings – until they change.

Write out as many benefits as possible.

I’ll be more in control.

I’ll feel more empowered

I’ll be able to go on that date, ask that owner for referrals etc.

I’ll have more peace.


Now, you are armed and ready to go. You can repeat and affirm to yourself your new belief in the mirror. Claude Hopkins in the Magic of Believing recommends this. When you feel like you need reasons to go on, read your reasons to go on!


When you’re self talk criticises you, take it down pro-wrestling style! Albert Ellis in his wonderful book: How to Stubbornly Refuse to make yourself Miserable about anything ever again – yes anything!” says you really need to passionately and aggressively dispute your inner talk.


According to WHO?

You and whose army?

Oh! So I have to feel helpless. Who decided that? Me. Well, I can decide OTHERWISE can’t I?”

Think about a couple having a humdinger of an argument. Then have it with your self-talk.

I like to think of changing the things that make us stuck as ‘psychological knots’. To undo a really gnarly knot my involve a lot of huffing, puffing, walking away in disgust and coming back again with a renewed determination. Changing your meanings and beliefs can sometimes be like this.

But persevere and you’ll get there.








Ask The Coach Procrastination 8 – Overcoming Author: Steven Aitchison Overcoming Procrastination Question from bretthimself answered

Author: Steven Aitchison

Overcoming Procrastination

Question from bretthimself answered by coach Steven Aitchison


Here’s my question:

I’ve found that my biggest sticking point in all of this is acting quickly. I have always been a micromanager of decisions and deliberate before taking action. However, as I procrastinate and weigh the decisions of what to do next or when to do my project, my mind drifts off to different places (like dark corners of the Internet), resulting in exponentially more time lost. The only time I can seem to pull myself together and not procrastinate (especially when finishing one project and moving on to the next) is when there’s a deadline to be met. But the pressure of the deadline seems to suck the life out of me and my work.

The question is: how can I do the things I want to do without procrastinating or deliberating when there is not the stress of a deadline?

Hi Brett


Thanks for your question on Ask The Coach

  • I recognise what you are saying here and believe there is a lot of things you can do to help yourself with this.

Is procrastination bad?

  • I would first like to say that procrastination is not always a bad thing. That might

sound counterintuitive, especially after everybody seems to tell us that procrastination is bad and all the self help gurus tell us exactly how to overcome


For some, procrastination works and it can be a great motivator for getting things done, albeit at the last minute, like you describe above, when there’s a deadline. This only works when there are a few deadlines throughout the year. In the real world, there are deadlines to be met every single day, so you can’t run on the adrenaline of leaving everything to the last minute as you will quickly burn out.

Know what type of procrastinator you are

You will see from the following six descriptions what type of procrastinator you are. It’s hard hitting, but it is good to know which type you are in order to overcome procrastination problems.

According to Linda Sapadin (author of The 6 Styles of Procrastination and How Students Can Overcome Them© (Penguin, 1999) with Jack Maguire) procrastinators fall into one of 6 styles:

The six types of procrastinators

Dreamers – This type of procrastinator want to have an easy, laid back life and not have to worry about the real things in life. They have had many jobs and live in the world of the unconscious where everything is magical and assume they are special in some way. They make promises they cannot keep and love the pleasure of buying something new, but hate the pain of paying for it.

Worriers – This type has a very small comfort zone and doesn’t like to stray too far out of the comfort zone. They love the security of their world and constantly fret when faced with fear or change. They suffer from ‘what if’ syndrome and everything might have a negative consequence. They put off a lot of things in their life in case something bad happens to them and hate facing a task head on.

Defiers – This procrastinator hates authority and cannot stick to a task given by a manager or someone else higher in authority. They promise the world but deliver an island. They tend to withhold on tasks given to them and delay them stating how busy they are and how important their other tasks are. This strategy gives a feeling of power and can even spill over into relationships.


Crisis Makers – This usually starts at school when the crisis maker has one night to prepare for an exam and they are all traumatised as they haven’t prepared however they are secretly boosting that they can get the work it takes other s 3 months to do in one night. The pressure and adrenaline spurs them on. They carry this on to the real world, and quickly find that running on adrenaline every day doesn’t work so they burn out quickly.

Perfectionists – It all or nothing for this type of procrastinator. It will take ages to get them going but once they do the job will be perfect, only trouble is, what should have taken 20 minutes takes 2 days. Their self esteem is on the line on every single task they do, because of this they avoid tasks they don’t think they can do perfectly so they miss out. Again this spills over into their life as well.

Overdoers – The overdoers will take on the world and make your dinner at the same time. They constantly aim to please and pride themselves on being able to do lots of jobs at the one time. However they cannot deliver on all their promises simply because they have too much to do and cannot concentrate on one task long enough to do it well.

The 6 steps of overcoming procrastination

Write it down

OMG not another person telling me to write it down. Yes, I am afraid so, ever wondered why so many people advise this? because it works. Write down your to do tasks for the day and realistically assign a time value to each one of them.

Start at the top and work your way through them until all your tasks for the day are finished. Do not reward yourself with the Internet, reading, TV, or anything else until all tasks have been done.

Pretty soon, if you practice this every day, you will develop a new habit and you will soon be known as the person who gets things done.

Remember do not reward yourself at all until all tasks are completed.

Stop making it a drama

If you get into the mode of thinking this is terrible, it’s never going to work, I am going to look foolish, what’s the point anyway – STOP! literally stop your mind from chattering and focus on the positive outcomes of what the task will achieve.

Do it now

Brett, you said you tend to consider things before you start them which leads you to drift off to other things. Whenever you have a task do anything that will start the project off and I really do mean anything. As soon as you get a task to do, don’t think just take the first thing in your mind that needs to be done and get going with it. It’s easier to roll a snowball down a hill when you have already


made the snowball, it’s the starting of making the snowball that’s the problem. So do anything at all to get going and pretty soon things will start to snowball and the task will be complete.

Let go of the adrenaline rush

People who do things at the last minute actually thrive on the adrenaline rush. However, you cannot expect to live like this every day of your life. It’s good to recognise that you like this adrenaline rush and it’s quite exciting but it’s time to try another way.

Get your adrenaline rush elsewhere. Go jump out of a plane at 10,000 feet (with a parachute of course!). Leave the adrenaline rush where it should be and start to work a different way to get your tasks complete.

You can get smaller adrenaline rushes by assigning deadlines for yourself. For example when you have been given two weeks to do something, give yourself a week to do it and create your won deadline. This way you will get finished a week early. If you do this religiously with every task you will, again, develop, a new habit of completing things early. However, a note of caution here: if you are going to do this for a boss, make sure you finish the task within the week but hand it in to your boss 2 days before the deadline, this way the boss will not start to pile things on you as they see you are someone who can get things done quick.

Stop trying to perfect the world

You cannot be perfect, it is literally impossible. Your perception of perfect is someone else’s perception of imperfect.

If you are a perfectionist, you might be proud of it, but it stops you doing things in life, you might not try new things as you are not able to perfect them.

To overcome being perfect try doing things the wrong way, try being late for an appointment, try dropping a cup onto the floor so it breaks – get out of the mold of being perfect, your life will change forever.

When you take on new tasks do so with an open mind, but take them on, don’t think that you might not be able to make it perfect just take it on and start straight away. It’s all about developing a new thinking pattern toward your tasks.

Learn to say NO!

Stop taking on too much work. You will learn in life that there are times when you have to hold up a hand and say NO!

You can’t do everything and to do something to a satisfactory level you have to be realistic about the amount of work you can take on. When you have taken on a certain number of tasks it’s time to stop any more work from being piled on you and gently remind the people who are trying to pile the work on you that you’ve got enough for now.


Saying No will also empower you and give you much more satisfaction and confidence in yourself.

Well Brett, I know this was a bit long winded, I got an idea and went with it, but I hope it has helped you in some way. Let me know your thoughts on this.


100 Ways To Develop Your Mind

100 Ways To Develop Your Mind Author: Steven Aitchison This weeks Sunday Siesta has been postpone

Author: Steven Aitchison

This weeks Sunday Siesta has been postponed as I have been working all weekend on this article. It’s my longest article ever at over 4500 words but I think it was worth the time and the effort.

  • I have been resisting doing this post for a while now. However, it kept niggling

away at the back of my mind and I kept getting more and more ideas to add to it

so here it is.

  • I was originally inspired to do this by Dragos Roua who wrote a great post 100

Ways to Live a Better Life and who was inspired by Mike King in this great post

100 Ways To Be A Better Leader who was inspired by Armen Shirvanian: 100 Ways to Show Boldness who was inspired by the maniac who started it all Luciano Passuello and his post Tackling Any Issue With A List Of 100

100 Ways To Develop Your Mind Author: Steven Aitchison This weeks Sunday Siesta has been postpone

So here I am with 100 Ways to Develop Your Mind

  • 1. Do the Thing You Fear the Most.

If there’s one thing that will change your thoughts quicker than anything else, it’s facing your fears.

  • 2. Stand up For Yourself

A lot of people have difficulty in standing up for themselves. The first time you do it can be very empowering and your thoughts about yourself will change forever. See Dealing With Confrontation



Stop Talking

It’s great to be silent for just a little while. Our thoughts turn inward and we begin to appreciate ourselves just a little more.

  • 4. Strengthen Your Strengths

Sometimes we focus too much on trying to strengthen our weaknesses when we should be concentrating on strengthening our strengths.

  • 5. Take A Walk Around an Art Gallery

You might not appreciate art or participate in it but it’s great to see the thoughts of others on canvas. It can give us a tiny glimpse of what goes on in other people’s minds.

  • 6. Blindfold Yourself for a Day

Walk in the shoes of a blind person for 1 full day, it will forever change the way you think about life.

  • 7. Stand on a Chair for 5 Minutes Per Day

Building self discipline is a great way to take control of your mind and your thoughts. If you just get up and stand on a sturdy chair your mind will be wondering what the hells going on and try and force you to get off the chair.

Disciplining your mind is



great way to

start changing your life. See


  • 8. Dance When There’s Nobody There

It’s a strange sensation to dance on your own, although when I have done this I look like a dog having a seizure, nonetheless it’s a great way to let go of your inhibitions.

  • 9. Give Money to Someone Unexpectedly

Whether it be on the internet, or in the street, just give a larger than normal donation to someone. This again is liberating and your thoughts about money will change for a few moments (that’s all it takes to start the process of changing your life.)

10. Strengthen Your Thoughts About Yourself

Reinforce your thoughts about your good points. If you are good at talking to people, tell yourself this often. If you are good at maths, tell yourself often. This has the benefit of reinforcing and strengthening your self image.



Take A Risk

Life would be boring without ever having taken a risk in your life. Do something that you didn’t want to do because you thought you wouldn’t be any good at it. This totally smashes the boundaries of your comfort zone and your life could change forever. Read This Post by Robin Easton

  • 12. Talk To A Stranger

Again this is breaking our comfort zones, but just saying hi to stranger in the street or good morning can have an enormous impact on your day and the person you said hi to.

  • 13. Walk Around The House Naked

I can almost feel the shock at this. I don’t mean when you’ve got guests in, I mean when everybody is out. Lock the door and totally liberate yourself and your thinking of what’s right and what’s wrong. I wouldn’t advise doing it all the time, but from time to time, it’s a great feeling.

  • 14. Read A Book By An Author You Most Avoid

reading books by authors we avoid gives us a chance to take control of our minds and lets us see another side to our thinking. We’ve got to ask why we avoid them in the first place, is it something within us that we are avoiding?

  • 15. Write An Article About Yourself

Imagine a newspaper has asked you to write an article of 1000 words or less about yourself and your life and they want to know what motivates you in life, now write the article. This helps put your life into some perspective and gets you thinking about your childhood and growing up.

  • 16. Stop Contact With Your Down People

If you have people in your life who constantly drag you down, or are negative all the time, drop them. Honestly drop them from your life, you are not serving them and they are not serving you and they are dragging your thoughts down. Read This Post by Dan And jennifer

  • 17. Believe In Yourself

A lot of people believe their life has been pre-destined and there’s nothing we can do to change it – absolute rubbish. YOU are the only person who controls the universe, yes I did mean universe. Your universe is different from mine so you control your own universe, think about that and start acting upon it.



Meditate Every Day

Another powerful thing that has the power to change your life and your thinking for good. Retreating into your mind for a few minutes every day will do you a power of good. Read How To Meditate

  • 19. Ask For A Discount

When you buy anything from a shop that is over $100, ask for a discount. Tell the salesman you’d like a 10% discount on the item. Most people are so afraid of doing this but it’s a great way to empower yourself and let go of another inhibition, what’s the worst that can happen?

  • 20. Risk Embarrassment

Imagine if you had seen the person of your dreams on a bus, or at the store and you didn’t do anything about it how much would you kick yourself. If this happens to you, do something about it, don’t keep it hidden. Just say to them you thought you would come over and say how attractive they looked and felt you had to tell them. You never know what will happen and how much your life could be changed. Obviously don’t turn into a weirdo and do it with every good looking person on the street.

  • 21. Work Toward, What You Think, Is An Impossible Goal

If you work toward a goal without expectation you don’t care about the outcome as much. When you don’t care about the outcome, you don’t have as much expectation.

  • 22. Practice Gratitude

We all know what we don’t have in our lives because we spend a lot of time wishing we had them, but are we really thankful for what we have? Spend time every single day being thankful for the good things we do have in our lives. read

The Post at ZenHabits on Gratitude

  • 23. Do Something Nice And Don’t Tell Anyone About It

We tell others about our acts of kindness to let them know how nice we are and to seek approval. If you keep your act of kindness to yourself without ever telling anyone the feeling of positive energy lasts much longer.

  • 24. Share Your Skills

Everybody has a skill of some kind. When you share it you not only have the power to help others, but you enhance your own skill by owning it.



Don’t Talk Just Listen

Enhance your listening skills by not talking when someone is speaking to you. Resist the urge to speak your views when someone is talking to you, just listen to them and ask them more open ended questions at the appropriate times. This has two benefits: a) You can really listen if you are not formulating the stories in your own head when someone is talking b) you will make the other person feel great as you are actively listening to them.

  • 26. Write Your Future Life Story

Start from the age you are just now and start writing your future life story as you’d like it to be. Be as outrageous as you want and just write about your ideal life and how you interact with it. Words on paper are powerful and can help shape your goals.

  • 27. Give Someone A Gift For No Reason

We always assume someone buys us a gift for a reason whether it be a birthday, christmas or special occasion. Buy someone a gift just because you know they would like it.

  • 28. Pass On Your Good Books

If you’ve read a book and it changed your thinking or life in some way, pass it on to someone else who might benefit.;

  • 29. Spend More Time With Your Kids

Your kids will grow up very quickly, spend as much time as you can with them.

  • 30. Forgive Behavior

The way we behave doesn’t necessarily reflect our true thoughts. Remember this when someone acts out of character and behaves in a way you don’t approve of.

  • 31. Allow Yourself To Be A Lazy Git

We are so used to filling our time with useful things to do and being productive we have forgotten the art of laziness. Being lazy is good every ONCE IN A WHILE and it allows our mind to slow down and relax.

  • 32. What Is Your Best Quality Today

Every morning for 10 seconds just state, out loud if you can, what your best quality is. Try and change it every day. This reinforces your strengths and weakens your perceived weaknesses.



Write A Comment

If you visit a blog you like, leave a comment and join in the community of people. Or, if there is not much of a community, be part of starting it.

  • 34. Tell Your Friends And Colleagues How Good They Are

If a friend or colleague does something good, tell them how good they are at that particular task. This reinforces someone else strengths or strengthens their weaknesses and makes them feel good about themselves.

  • 35. Make A Video Of Yourself And Post It To Youtube

Why on earth would you do this? Just because you can!

  • 36. List All Your Worries

Make a list of every single worry you have at the moment. You will notice that you don’t have as many worries as you thought. Worrying consumes our thinking and we think our whole life is one big worry. When you get it down on paper it’s extremely surprising that you don’t have as many as you’d thought.

  • 37. Work On Each Worry In Turn

Now that you have all your worries listed. Go through them and start acting on them in turn. If you find worries you cannot act upon it means there is nothing you can do to change the outcome of that worry, so forget it, why waste mind energy on something you cannot control at all? Read This Post for More Info

  • 38. Read About Successful People

If you want to change your thoughts and change your life read about people who have already done it and use them as guides.

  • 39. Tweet Your Moods

If you use twitter why not tweet your moods daily and see if there is some kind of pattern after a few months.

  • 40. Stop Watching Soaps

Soap operas actually have the power to alter your state of mind. People get so caught up in the emotions of the soap that they experience what the actors and actresses are doing.

  • 41. Have A News Break

What would happen if you never read a newspaper for a week? nothing at all, your life wouldn’t change, you wouldn’t run out of things to talk about, you


would still be as up on the world as everyone else. Newspapers sell because of their doom and gloom, read it and you are buying into it.

  • 42. Do Something Spontaneous

Jump on a bus without looking at the destination, book a holiday, take time off work, take your partner away, buy your kids a gift; do anything and make sure it’s out of character, (expand that boundary).

  • 43. Write To An Author

Authors are people just like you and I and they love getting feedback about their work. If a book touched you in some way or changed you, take time to write to the author and thank them. Don’t look for a reply, just thank them.

  • 44. Follow your instincts

We don’t trust ourselves nearly enough as we should. Follow your instincts more and pay attention to the signals your body is picking up and see where it takes you. You might find that your conscious brain gets in the way of your body signals a lot of the time. Read This Post for More Info

  • 45. If You Find Some Money Give It To Charity

If you find money in the street don’t pocket it, give it to someone who is homeless or better yet buy them a meal with it. If it’s a suitcase full of money, that’s obviously a different story.

  • 46. Your Thoughts Really Do Have Power

When you realize this, it will change your thinking in so many ways. I can’t tell you that it’s true you have to experience it for yourself.

  • 47. Always Admit It When You Have Made A Mistake

Don’t blame others or hide behind someone else. Hold your hands up and admit you made a mistake, no matter what the consequences are. You will be much more respected this way. However, don’t take the blame for others.

  • 48. Do Something Every Day To Improve Your Mind

Learn a new word, do an anagram puzzle, sudoku your mind, read a book, read a stimulating blog post, anything that will help your mind just a little. Just a little turns into something huge.

  • 49. Change Your Thinking Style

If something is not working out, try and change your thinking style and come at it from another angle. This is true of everything in life.



What Do You Really Want To Do In Life

You will find most people cannot answer this question simply because they are plodding along with life. When you know what you really want to do with your life then your life takes another path. read This Post by Dragos Roua

  • 51. Pass On Your Knowledge

Knowledge is for sharing, let others know what you know if it’s appropriate.

  • 52. Ask For What You Want In Life

If you don’t ask you won’t get. Asking for your wants puts it out there. I mean literally ask and metaphorically ask. When you want a big house or a mansion, ask out loud and send it out there. When you want the smaller things in life, ask for them from people who can give you them. Always pay it forward.

  • 53. When Someone Does You A Good Turn Pay It Forward

If you receive a compliment, thank the person and look for an opportunity to give someone else a compliment. If you receive a gift, give a gift to someone else at an opportune time.

  • 54. Always Have A Good Breakfast

We underestimate the power of food to keep our brains healthy and our minds alive with energy. If you don’t eat that much, make sure you have a good breakfast to set you up for the day. Read this post on eating by Vin Miller

  • 55. What Would People Say About You If You Died

This is not a morbid thought, but I often think about what people would say about me at my funeral. The thing is the ones who might say something bad, I can’t really not invite because I’ll be dead. However, the important people are ones I would care about most and I would like to develop my life’s values based on what people would say about me at my funeral; he was a caring man, he was a family man, he always told the truth no matter how hard it might seem, he had integrity etc.

  • 56. Sing Your Heart Out

I love to sing, I hopeless at it, but I love it. We have a radio station over in the UK called gold and it plays music from the 60s, 70s and 80s and I sing at the top of my voice as there is always something on that’s good. My sons are not very pleased about it though

50. What Do You Really Want To Do In Life You will find most people cannot
  • 57. Love The One You’re With

Always let your partner know how much you love them by telling them and showing them. This way your mind is focused on them for at least part of the day.



Pacing Whilst Studying

This has helped me a lot over the years. I paced my way through university. My theory is that the body and mind is being stimulated with the exercise you are doing whilst walking, this makes the blood flow. Blood flow to the brain help you to study and remember.

  • 59. Make New friends

Whether it be online or offline. Keeping yourself busy socially is stimulating for the mind and lets you see the world from others peoples perspective.

  • 60. Make Love Regularly

Releasing the feel good chemicals, endorphins, into your bloodstream is a great way to stimulate the mind. I have to admit to feeling much more creative after making love.

  • 61. Listen To Music

This stimulates the mind and can have tremendous benefits for your thoughts, therefore your life. I love listening to Baroque music whilst driving at night, I love rousing rock driving during the day and dance trance music at the weekend whist driving

  • 62. Listen To A Book Instead Of The Radio

Getting downloadable books from or is a great way to spend long journeys and learn something at the same time.

  • 63. Have A Sleep In

I am not a big fan of sleeping longer than I have to, but sometimes it’s great to lie in bed for a few hours longer than normal. It helps the brain recuperate.

  • 64. Turn Off The TV

There’s nothing more brain numbing than having the TV on all day every day. Exercise your mind and read a book, or at least watch something educational.

Read this post by Vin Miller

  • 65. Look For Evidence Of Your Beliefs

This will develop your mind and your critical thinking. If you look for evidence of your beliefs such as ‘what is the evidence that sea water is blue or green’, you’ll discover some great information on during your research.



Take Micro Naps

Taking a micro nap for 10 minutes a few times a day does wonders for your brain energy. read this post on Micro Naps

  • 67. Travel Often

Travel really does broaden your horizons especially if you really get into the local food and culture.

  • 68. Tidy House Tidy Mind

There really is nothing better than clearing your house or office space to clear your mind. When the house is not tidy there is always a niggling at the back of your mind. When the house, office and workspace is totally clean and tidy it frees your mind to concentrate on work or your family at home. read this post at DumbLittleMan

  • 69. Exercise Your Mind Not Just Your Body

We all know the benefits of exercising the body but exercising the mind by doing crosswords, maths puzzles, playing chess, reading, anagrams, sudoku etc, all help to increase the minds capacity for learning.

  • 70. Read Philosophy

the beauty of philosophy is that there is no right and wrong. However, reading different philosophers views about the world will stimulate your mind. Read this post by Tim Ferris

  • 71. Ditch The Credit Card

We have forgotten how to wait for the things we want in life, if we see something we like we want it now and using a credit card is too easy. Make the object of your desire more precious by saving up for it. This will discipline your mind as well as your money spending habits.

  • 72. Watch A Motivational Video On Youtube First Thing In The Morning

This is a great way to start the day. Just type in motivational into youtube search box, sort by view count and watch a few videos.

  • 73. Keep Up To Date With New Theories

Whatever field you are interested in keep up to date with new theories and discoveries. New theories in psychology are especially interesting albeit quite thin on the ground.



Take One Action Toward Your Goals Every Day

Your Self confidence, self esteem, and goals can only be reached by taking action. The more action you take the more your mind will help you to keep going.

  • 75. Never Let Your Mind Go Out Of Fashion

Keep up to date with the latest research on health, beauty and intelligence. Only those whose thoughts keep searching will stay intelligent for life.

  • 76. Confronting Your Stressors

Whatever you are stressed about the most tackle first. The less stress you have the less your mind has to cope with. Tackle the biggest stressors first and work your way down. Read this post by Jonathan Wells

  • 77. Drink Coffee And Tea

Despite evidence to the contrary coffee and tea have been shown to help the brain. Antioxidants and/or caffeine may help fight the onset of Alzheimer’s by 30-60% drinking 30 cups a day is obviously not good but 3-5 cups per day is okay.

  • 78. Carry Yourself With Confidence

People can tell by the way you walk if you are confident or not. Walk with purpose and have a purpose to walk. Read this post by Brandon Lindell

  • 79. Make Up Your Own Mind

When reading or listening to the news, do your own research and make up your own mind. The government and large corporations, whether deliberate or not, is a propaganda machine feeding you information to manipulate your thinking.

  • 80. Take Up Yoga

This is meant to be one of the best ways to relive stress and exercise both mind and body. watch this video to get you started

  • 81. Change Your Hands

Practice doing this with your less dominant hand. If you are right handed start doing things with your left hand and vice versa. If you are ambidextrous, start doing it with your feet

74. Take One Action Toward Your Goals Every Day Your Self confidence, self esteem, and goals
  • 82. Eat Plenty Of Fish

There is an abundance on new evidence that eating fish is great for our brains and keeping them healthy.



Reduce Your Alcohol Intake

I had to say this, I am an addiction worker. Don’t cut it out just reduce it to the recommended safe level.

  • 84. Quit The Smoking

Yep it can be one of the hardest drugs to give up but it is worth it. I feel so much better for giving up smoking and have a lot more energy than normal and my mind can function a lot better.

  • 85. Practice Deep Breathing

Getting plenty of oxygen to your brain is key for a healthy mind, deep breathing can help with this.

  • 86. Get A Dog/Cat

If you live alone why not go to one of the pet rescue centres and get a dog or a cat. People who have pets are shown to be less lonely, more active, and show fewer signs of stress. read this article by elizabeth Scott

  • 87. Break your Pattern

If you are the one who always goes shopping swap the routine with your partner. Or if you always go to a particular store, change it and go to the same store in another area. Do anything to break the patterns you have in life. This way your mind is kept more active.

  • 88. Try New Food

We have trained our palettes over the years and have gotten used to eating certain foods day in and day out. Try new foods and train your palette to eat better foods.

  • 89. Stimulate Your Brain By Going To A Concert

Whether it be a rock concert or am orchestral concert, getting out and hearing music live and being with people who enjoy the same music stimulates your mind and your emotions.

  • 90. Join An Internet Group

Join an internet discussion group to further your education on topics of interest. Want to start a business? join a group and get ideas for best practice. Want to know more about tropical fish? join a group. This educates your mind, gives you ideas and lets you meet people who are interested in the same topics as you.



Volunteer To Help Others

Volunteering is a great way to give back to the community and help others learn the skills you have. Even if you don’t think you have skills you can still help someone out in your community just by talking or doing their shopping for 1 hour per week.

  • 92. Read The Tao Te Ching

Has to be one of the best books, in my opinion, for developing your mind. read this blog byNaoto Matsumoto

  • 93. Practice Patience

Waiting in queues, traffic jams, on a telephone call can be very frustrating sometimes. If you use the time to develop your mind and focus on your goals your frustration will dissipate very quickly. Use free time like this constructively instead of getting angry and putting yourself in a bad mood.

  • 94. Practice Divergent Thinking

This is the practice of looking for multiple solutions to problems or issues that arise in your life, whether they be at home or at work. Don’t judge your solutions just put them down on paper until you can’t think of any other ways. get others involved in this as well. Read this article on divergent thinking

  • 95. Put On A New Hat

Edward De Bono wrote a book called Six Thinking Hats in which he proposed you to put on a different, mental, hat for each area of your life. For example you put on your parent hat when talking to your kids, you can also put on your child hat for playing around with your kids. mentally putting on different hats allows you to better go in and out of different roles in your life.

  • 96. Stop trying To Multitask

Multitasking can’t be done except with unconscious processes such as walking and talking. If you try to consciously multitask like make the kids lunches, have a telephone conversation and try and get the kids ready for school it can’t be done nearly as effectively as doing each task separately. Multitasking stresses out minds and helps to produce bad results. read this article by Dave Crenshaw

  • 97. Write A Short Essay On The Books Your Read

Doing this will keep your mind active and helps your to read in a different way as you are analyzing books instead of just reading. this way you retain more information and in a few years time you don’t embarrass yourself by saying ‘yeah, that was a great book but I can’t remember what it was about.’


  • 98. Allocate Time For Worrying

If you are a recovering worrier and you need some help, allocate a certain time each day to worry about everything. Once you’ve done the time of worry, leave it until the next day.

  • 99. Stop Faffing And Just Do It

Faffing is the art of doing small things to avoid completing a bigger task. I am constantly getting on at my son and saying ‘Stop faffing!’. We spend too much time faffing instead on concentrating on the task at hand. Read this Article at

  • 100. Read The Dictionary

Learning a new word every 2 -3 days will increase your vocabulary by 120 – 170 words per year.

  • 101. Always Over deliver On Your Promises

If you say your going to do something, don’t just do it and get the job complete, make sure you over deliver on everything you do.


Seeing the Beauty in Ugliness

Seeing the Beauty in Ugliness Author: Steven Aitchison Look at the image above and imagine that

Author: Steven Aitchison

Look at the image above and imagine that the seesaw represents a scale of beauty from 1 –


On one end of the scale represents beauty and the other end of the scale represents ugliness.

We look at people everyday and box them into lots of classifications, one of them being the box of beauty. Of course beauty is subjective and one person you might find attractive will not seem attractive to me. However, there are more or less universal beautiful people, crossing borders, and cultures.

We’ve all played the game at school ‘what would you give them, out of ten, for looks?’.

Look at the image again, take away the labels of ‘beautiful’ and ‘ugly’ from the two figures, and what are you left with?

You are left with two figures sitting on ‘The scale of beauty’ however, since they have no labels we cannot call one more beautiful than the other or one more ugly than the other. – they just………….are!

Looking without labelling

Our lives revolve around the dualities of life: good and evil, white and black, beauty and ugliness, right and wrong, happy and sad and so on. What if we could look at life and just see what’s in front of us, without putting a label on it.

Try it. Walk down a busy street and just glance at people as they are walking past, you’ll notice you label people almost immediately: businessman, fat, skinny, gorgeous, camp,


fashionable, handicapped and so on. That is just some of the labels we give. Try walking down the street and just seeing a person, it’s extremely difficult at first but with practice you will get to do it and turn of the little labelling machine you have in your head.

When the labeling machine is turned off you start to notice life in a different light and your life is a little more laid back. When you stop labeling others you will stop labeling yourself as well. You will become – just you!










Set Your Mind Alight and Find Your passion Author: Steven Aitchison If you want to change,

Author: Steven Aitchison

If you want to change, I mean really want to change, something about your life, I’d like to share what I have learned over the last few months that has made a tremendous difference in my life and hopefully help you change.

Lately I have been infused with a real passion and drive for what I am doing; writing and blogging. It’s never really been that way before as I had my mind on so many other ventures. Now the other ventures are out of the way I have the drive and real motivation to get ahead with my blogging, and with my writing. I am not the world’s best writer, I know that, and am working on this every day. However, I love it. I love the thought of someone reading my writing and it sparking a light in their mind that set’s them off down the road to the change they want. There’s no better feeling than that, and it’s even better when I get an email from someone to say how much an article has meant to them.

I am jumping out my bed even earlier than normal and can’t wait to start writing or interacting with readers. My mind is buzzing with ideas which have to be written down and saved in case I forget them. Admittedly not all the ideas mature into a fully written article but they are saved in case I can come at it from a different angle down the line somewhere.

How I keep my mind alight

The simple way for me is to literally immerse myself in what I want at the end of all this; to become a full time blogger and writer. I study what other bloggers have done before me and read their stories, I read their writing, I read writing in my field of interest which is personal development, I visit sites about writing, I visit job boards to get work as a freelance writer, I write, I write and I write. It’s seems to have gone beyond passion and my mind is alight with


possibilities, with ideas, it’s like the duracell bunny on 10 cups of coffee, the only problem is slowing down.

  • I am going with the flow just now as words are dripping off the page and I don’t want to stop in case the muse disappears on me, but I have ways for dealing with that.

  • I always had a goal to become a full time blogger, which is why I started the blog in the first place. However my mind wandered into affiliate marketing, internet marketing, making products that I was interested in, becoming a coach, so many things, and the blogging took a back seat. Now I can honestly see myself as a full time blogger, and it’s the very first time I have believed that I could actually do it. It’s taken me three years to reach this stage but every single change I have gone through to get here has been worth it.

  • I have managed to secure two long term writing positions with top blogs and am looking for

more. This is in the space of a few months of focus and concentration, imagine what it will be

like this time next year.

How to set YOUR mind alight to change your life

  • 1. Know what you’re aiming for

The example above shows I didn’t really know what I was aiming for with regards to my online goals. You really have to know what you’re aiming for. It’s like an archer firing at a target that he cannot see. Once you’ve got this clearly in your mind, find out if it sits right with you.

You find this out by visualising yourself doing what you’re aiming for, you feel yourself doing it, living it, breathing it. If it sits right with you and that gut feeling is saying ‘Go for it, fire that arrow’ it’s time for the next step.

  • 2. Deep immersion

Totally immerse yourself in your chosen goal. If your goal is to become a football player, you have to watch football, play football, join clubs, read football, go to matches, dream football, always have a ball at your foot. Read about your heroes in your chosen field. David Beckham’s old neighbours remarked that they never seen David without a football at his feet when he was younger. This is how we learn to become great, this is how we stand out from the crowd. Other people see your passion, your dedication, and are excited by working with you and helping you in your goals.

This part may last for some time, it could be months it could be years before you start seeing results but you have to keep deeply immersing yourself and never lose the passion.

  • 3. Planning from the middle outwards

Once you’ve deeply and passionately immersed yourself you will be surrounded by a network of people who will help you to get where you want to go. It’s now time for planning how you are going to get there. Some people get there in the deep immersion stage and everything naturally falls into place. However a lot of people will have to start planning after the immersion stage.


Your network of friends, family and new ‘network friends’ are key to you reaching your goals. The way to get them to help you is to help them as much as you possibly can. If someone asks you for help with something, you are never too big to do it. Always help out when you can. Even with the ‘outskirt’ people who ask for help, if they are genuine about their goal, then help them. Get a name as someone who is genuine and willing to help someone reach their goal.

From the network you will see a path of people who will help you to reach your goal faster. This is not using people, you are simply using their influence and contact and they will be asking for your help in the future, so they see it as an investment and you see it as an investment; a win- win situation.

  • 4. Maintain the passion

It’s easy at this stage to get sidetracked by other things. there are many people who have fallen from grace with the trappings of fame and fortune and forget the people who put them there. To maintain your passion, practice gratitude and remember all the people who have put you where you are today. This is true of everyday life as well. Keep you passion alive and see everything anew everyday. I read a great post the other night from Jonathan Wells which explains this better than I can, read it here

  • 5. Know when to branch out

There will come a time, like in a footballers career where their passion for playing will be turned to passion for teaching others. Once you’ve reached this stage it might be easy to think that you are over the hill and no longer have the skill you once had. This is not true at all , it simply means you direct your passion, your enthusiasm, your hunger into another part of the goal (no pun intended there). When a footballer plays, he plays for himself and the team, when a coach coaches they are carrying on the legacy they had as a player and reaching and touching the lives of so many more people.


Your thoughts and action determine your success. Keep your mind focused on your target, immerse yourself and help those around you and you will reach your goal.

How are you getting there?

What sets your mind alight? what are your passions? How did you get there? It would be great to hear your stories.


The Heliotropium and Givers of Energy

The Heliotropium and Givers of Energy Author: Steven Aitchison The Heliotrpium is a plant that turns

Author: Steven Aitchison

The Heliotrpium is a plant that turns itself toward the sun in order for photosynthesis to occur.

“……why do sunflowers always appear to be reaching toward the sun? The technical answer is that the flower’s orientation to the sun in due to differential growth of the stem. A plant-growth regulator builds up on the shaded side of the plant when unequal light conditions exist. Because of this, the darker side of the plant grows faster than the sunlit side, causing the stem to bend towards the sun.” (from the site

I think this is absolutely fascinating, and just shows how beautiful and intelligent nature really is. It also answered a lot of my questions on why we, as humans, gravitate toward people who seem to have a lot of positive energy and enthusiasm for life.

Energy givers

There are some people who are natural energy givers and a lot of people who are energy takers.

The energy givers willingly give out positive energy in order to help the people around them just by being positive, enthusiastic and have a natural love of life. I can think of many people in my life who are like this and I believe I was attracted to them for this reason. My wife is a perfect example of an energy giver, she is positive, funny, intelligent, compassionate and enthusiastic about life. However she can spot an energy taker a mile off and runs in the other direction to avoid them as do I. We are two of a kind and together we give a lot out to our family and friends.

Energy givers are attracted to each other by an invisible pull, just the the heliotropic plant, like the sunflower. You cannot see the sun’s rays but the sunflower can feel it and turns itself toward the sun to drink in it’s energy, in turn the sunflower gives out it’s energy through


vibrancy of colour and attracts bees and small animals who eat it’s stalk. We also use the sunflower for sunflower oil, sunflower seeds etc. So you see like attracts like just like an energy giver will be attracted to another energy giver.

Energy takers

Whilst a lot of us may not know a lot of energy givers most of us know energy takers. These are people who complain about everything, are negative, bitchy, condescending, and generally not nice people to be around. You just know an energy taker from the moment you talk to them. They might be funny, laugh a lot but it can be a someone else’s expense a lot of the time.

There are also energy takers who are just very quiet and don’t contribute much to themselves and the people around them. They believe life owes them something and complain when they don’t get what they want in life.

Turning from an energy taker to an energy giver

Give yourself a shake: Many energy takers can’t be bothered to do much with their lives, and that’s okay if you expect little in return. Even getting up and looking for another job instead of living on benefits is doing something positive. There are many people who need to live off benefits but the people who are able both mentally and physically are energy takers and one huge way to reverse this is do something about the situation instead of moaning how little the government gives you to live.

Contribute to the people around you: Give positive energy to those around. If you are part of a group of friends make sure you join in your conversations with funny stories, with encouragement, with laughter etc. You don’t have to be super confident just make an effort to join in and give some energy back to the group, instead of feeding off everyone else’s energy.

Stop complaining: There’s a time to complain and a way to do it, but if you complain all the time you will be ‘Billy no mates’ in a very short space of time. Complainers can become very boring very quickly and suck the energy out from people as soon as they start complaining about something. It’s okay every now and again, but not all the time.

Grow yourself: We are all growing every single day; spiritually, mentally, physically and intellectually. I believe we are here to reach our true potential and to pass on our potential in order for others to reach their true potential. Life is a beautiful adventure, it truly is if only we could look at it that way. Grow you mind, grow you spirit, look after yourself physically and grow your intellect whenever you can. YOU truly are an amazing person, believe in yourself enough to make your journey amazing.

Give to others: Help in any way you can and give something back to your community. This can be small things like smiling at someone in the street, volunteering a few hours a month, spend more time with your kids and family. When you give to others without expectation you receive abundance without owing anything.


Are You Planning to Fail

Are You Planning to Fail Author: Mr Self Development This guest post was written by Mr.

Author: Mr Self Development

This guest post was written by Mr. Self Development. Please support Mr. Self Development by subscribing to his blog at; Mr. Self Development is a motivational author that offers a practical guide to success and wealth.

Editors Note: This is a guest post from Mr Self Development from

Do you have a written plan that details how you will succeed, step-by-step, month-by-month? If you don’t, then you are planning to fail.

  • I don’t care if you’re trying to lose 20lbs, become CEO, win a golf tournament, or start your own business; you’ll need a ’solid’ plan that you ‘believe in,’ in order to succeed.

Without a plan, you have very little direction, and it will be almost impossible to be consistent. Without consistency you will never make any long-term progress; you will never experience success.

Develop a Good Plan

Sometime ago when I was looking to start a weight-lifting regiment, I decided to put together a weight-lifting ‘plan.’ I read several books on weight-lifting, I scanned the internet, and I talked with several individuals who were currently lifting weights.

Based on my research, I developed a plan using the best advice from each of my sources and

  • I placed that plan on the wall of my home gym.


[A 'good plan' should always include your goals, as well as specific daily direction to ensure you meet your goals.]

My plan included how long each workout would be, as well as what time I would begin my workouts.

Work the Plan

Of course, it’s not enough to just have a plan. In order for the ‘plan’ to work, you have to ‘work’ the plan. The ‘plan’ works, when you ‘work’ the plan.

If you’re trying to become a professional dancer, ‘working the plan’ may mean practicing 10 hours a day, but the plan has to be ‘worked.’

You must develop the habit of following the plan daily; ‘consistency’ and ‘habit’ will take you further than your ‘desires’ ever will.

Make Adjustments to the Plan

Although I believe I put together a good weight-lifting plan initially, it wasn’t a perfect plan. Three months into the plan, I realized that I needed to make some adjustments: I was over- working my pectoral muscles, so I decided to work them less frequently. I also made some additional changes in my diet.

Your initial plan will almost always change; this is not a problem (just make sure to have your ‘plan’ saved on your computer, so you can make quick updates and re-print as necessary).

‘Tweak the plan,’ until it’s the perfect plan for you.

Remain Faithful to the Plan

This is the most critical of all the steps. If you don’t faithfully work your plan everyday, how can you expect to succeed? A good plan will challenge you, it will stretch you, it will demand the very best from you.

Are you willing to remain faithful to your plan when things get tough?

Are you willing to stick to your plan, when someone is passing out ‘free’ donuts? Are you willing to stick to your plan, when everyone else has gone home for the day? Are you willing to stick to your plan, after you reach your goal? The question really becomes, how bad do you want it. If you want it bad enough, you will remain faithful.

In closing, if you don’t have a plan, develop a plan this week. Start with your research; find the best ways to get the results you seek (study folks who have already succeeded). Then begin to ‘work the plan’ daily; make adjustments as necessary, stay faithful to the plan (in the face of challenges), and you will succeed.


12 Qualities Women Want in Their Men

12 Qualities Women Want in Their Men Author: Steven Aitchison We all have good qualities and

Author: Steven Aitchison

We all have good qualities and bad qualities, but are there universal qualities that women look for in their partners?

Whilst I am not a woman I have worked with women most of my working life, in a big call centre office (the truth really comes out in an office!), I have two sisiters, my current place of work is predominantly women and I am married to a woman who knows what she wants. So I have done a lot of asking, a lot of research and have come up with 12 qualities a woman looks for in a man.

12 Qualities a woman looks for in a man

(In no particular order)

  • 1. Honesty – This is high up on the list and is a must for guys. When I say honest I mean being honest about everything. If your partner asks you ‘Do you like my hair’ a response could be ‘I like it but I preferred it when it was longer.’ When you are honest about everything you will get a reputation for being honest and you will get more respect and gain trust a lot quicker. If you are found out with one lie then the trust will dissappear and it will be hard to gain back.

  • 2. To be able to protect – According to the women I have spoken with they want to know their partner will be able to protect them physically in times of danger or trouble. That’s not to say women are weak it’s a security thing and knowing that their partner is capable or willing to protect them at all costs gives women a little more peace of mind.

  • 3. Get up and go – Women don’t like men who have no motivation to do anything with their lives. They want a man who has passion and has goals in life and has got the motivation to follow their dreams.



Belief – Believe in your wife/girlfriend and support and encourage her in everything she does.

  • 5. Sense of humour – This one obviously depends on each couple as everybody has a different sense of humour but women like men who can make them laugh. That’s not to say you have to be like Robin Williams, just someone who has a sense of humour and exercises it often.

  • 6. Reliability – This is another one high up on the list. You’ve got to be reliable if you want your partner to stick with you for the long term. If she has an evening meal planned for you and you promised you’ll be home by 7 and you come strolling in at 8, this is not being reliable. Yes, work is important but more important is the woman who loves you enough to prepare a meal and make an effort on a Friday night.

  • 7. Commitment – An absolute must for any long term relationship. If you are not committed then there will always be that little doubt in the back of her mind asking if you are really serious about the relationship.

  • 8. Respect – There’s no question of this, if you disrespect her you may as well throw the relationship out of the window right now. It’s not only respect for her but it’s respect for yourself as well. If you let people walk all over you then you are not respecting yourself and this is a turn off for women.

  • 9. Attuned to feelings – For the old fashioned man out there one of the main things you were missing was the ability to stay in tune with your partners feelings. If you are attuned to your partner’s feelings then it shows respect, caring and love. That doesn’t mean to say you let them walk all over you it just means you are in touch with her, and you know how to handle the emotions, upsets and excitement etc.

    • 10. Attractiveness – This is something you are born with and it’s also something that is very subjective. Everyone has an attractive feature about them and rest assured someone will be attracted to you because of it. However if you let yourself go and don’t really care about yourself, you’ll be dropped like a hot potato.

    • 11. Assertiveness – Woman can stand up for themselves very well but they still like a man to be assertive as well. Women don’t like weak men, so grow a pair and stand up for yourself and your wife.

    • 12. Faithful – Shouldn’t even have to be said here, but so many men think they can get away with being unfaithful and it not affect them. You will never be respected once you’ve been unfaithful and there is absolutely no excuse for it.


The Books on The Back Shelf of Your Mind

The Books on The Back Shelf of Your Mind Author: Steven Aitchison We all have fears,

Author: Steven Aitchison

We all have fears, worries, anxieties, and memories from our past that still haunt us. They are like books stored in a library on the back shelf of our mind. Just like a library our thoughts, and fears are stored in separate sections and we access the books in each of the sections everyday to help us deal with new experiences in our life.

It might be time to rewrite the books that you have stored. Just like in a library there are books that are timeless and can be read again and again and never be outdated, I am thinking of a particular book that I love, rather cliched but I love it ‘Think and Grow Rich’ by Napoleon Hill. It was written in the 1930’s but most of the principles still apply today and it is one I often refer to and have several copies lying about the house. So it is with the books in our minds, some will never be outdated but a lot of them are outdated and hold irrelevant information about our fears, and our beliefs.

The book of memories

The book of memories is a large book in which all our memories are stored and retrieved whenever required. Sometimes the pages of the book become distorted over time and sometimes the pages get ripped out altogether.

A lot of the time we keep this book on the very front shelf of our library and access it every single day when we re-live traumatic experiences. Reliving past experiences is debilitating and can literally stunt our mental growth. Painful memories that are still raw i.e. a few years old need to be talked about in an open way, preferably with a trained counselor. However talking about the event 10 years on is counterproductive and it’s time to stop reading the book. Mentally put the memory in your book and get it stored on the back shelf only to opened on rare occasions. This is in no way discounting the traumatic event you are simply saying to yourself ‘It’s time to move on’, reliving your past everyday will only halt your mental growth and you will be stuck for as long as you keep reliving old events.


New, more happier, memories should be stored in the book as often as possible and I think it’s important to push yourself to get out, meet new people, puish beyond your comfort zone or get back in touch with family and good friends to start depositing happier memories in your book.

The book of beliefs

Beliefs shape our lives and make us the person we are today and it’s important to revisit our beliefs regularly and keep them up to date. How do we do this?

As you walk along the path of life you will come across experiences that don’t quite sit right with you and this can be a time to question and reposition your beliefs. For example when I was younger I used to go out with a group of friends every weekend (that was when the weekend started on a Thursday night) and our main goal was to have a good time, have a drink, and try and pick up a woman (Sorry, that was my mentality when I was younger). The experiences of the weekend were then spoken about with each other and I went along with the crowd at first and after a few times it didn’t sit right with me. I questioned my belief about privacy and respect and made a new belief to respect myself and anybody I was involved with. From then on I always kept my experiences with the girls to myself as I didn’t feel it was right to discuss intimate details with everyone, I always took a lot of heat for that but I stuck to my guns.

To question your own beliefs it’s important to question others beliefs as well and then make your own decisions and find out where you stand on certain topics. Most people believe it is not right to kill another human being that is why we can live in relative peace and harmony. Yes, it’s true there are a lot of people out there who kill but they are few and far between and the media sensationalize the people who do, therefore leading us to believe the world is a bad place to live, but is it really a bad place to live? we have to question the media’s motives for printing stories of people who murder others, simply because it sells just like the thousands of books about crime they are bestsellers. I believe the media can help to fuel a murderers motivation to kill, I honestly do and I have taken a lot of stick for this viewpoint.

Question everything and look at your beliefs about everything. You start by asking the question: What are my beliefs about this subject? if you don’t really have a belief and it’s not important then leave it, if it’s something important to you then form a belief around it but have reasons for it.

The Book of values and principles

This is the book that we access everyday and some people don’t even have this book in their minds. This does not mean we don’t have values and principles it simply means we may not know what they are and have never voiced them in any way. Having values and principles helps us to focus on the person we want to be and the person we would like to become. Over the last few years my wife and I have taught our youngest son the value and principle of honesty. At a young age he was prone to lying, about big things and silly little things. A lot of children go through this and they are basically pushing the boundaries to find out what they can get away with and that’s part of growing up. However we know our son very well and always knew when he was lying. To teach him this value he would always be given a punishment for lying e.g. no TV, computer or xbox for the day. Over the last few years he has learned that lying does not help and that telling the truth, no matter the consequences, was


always the best way. We would also reward him for telling the truth and thanked him for his honesty, he may have still got into trouble but far less trouble than he would have if he had persisted with a lie.

Pick the values you would like to have in your life and try and live by those values. To help you choose values you can look at the list below. Decide on a few values at a time, and some of them you will already be living you just might need to solidify them. You will find that living this way has a tremendous impact on your life.

The book of knowledge

This book stores everything you have learned over your lifetime and like the book of beliefs you use it everyday as a way of gaining more knowledge and learning from new experiences. The trouble sometimes some people have is that they stop learning after coming out of school or university, or rather they stop actively looking to learn new things and form a belief that once you get past a certain age your brain can’t handle new information. This is not the case at all, the more we use our brains to learn the healthier it will become, once we stop seeking to learn new things our brains become, metaphorically, atrophied.

This really is the information age we are living in and the human brain is literally evolving into being able to store more information and in a more efficient way. Imagine our parents having to learn everything we have learned in our lifetime it just wouldn’t have happened however because our children are used to the amount of information they have to learn they don’t know any different so they get on with learning and their belief is that they can learn new things simply because they have to.

If you actively seek to learn new information whether it be on the computer or going back to college or university then do it if you can, it will keep your mind young, open and fresh to new ideas. The book of knowledge should be updated everyday.

The book of you

‘The book of you’ essentially contains everything that makes you YOU, everything I have written about above and all the little quirks and personality traits. It contains your sense of humour, your preferences about life, it contains the very soul of you. Spend a little time reading the book of you i.e. spend a little time alone to get back in touch with yourself and keep being you and keep being as authentic as possible.


37 Ways to communicate better with your children

37 Ways to communicate better with your children Author: Steven Aitchison How often have you asked

Author: Steven Aitchison

How often have you asked your kids ‘How was school today?’ and the reply was ‘it was okay!’ and that’s it. My youngest son just started high school today and my wife and I have been nervous and anxious for him, although we’ve been careful not to show him this. I took a day off work so I could spend a little longer with him when dropping him off for school and then to pick him up again. It was heartbreaking to watch him go into school, ‘He’s all grown up.’ I thought with a little lump in my throat, It’s like time is slipping by and before we know it he’ll be a grown man.

Well, when I went to pick him up, I was all excited and asked:

‘Well, how did it go?’

‘It was okay’ he said smiling, knowing I wanted to hear all about it. I eventually got some blood from the stone and he told me about it in dribs and drabs, however he seemed to enjoy it and has made a few friends already which is always good.

My other son, who is in his 3rd year at high school is exactly the same and sometimes I can’t even get blood from that stone. I advised them that we have spent weeks worrying and feeling anxious for them and all we ask in return is a little information about their day at school. So I advise them to give a little more and not have my wife beat the hell out of them just to get a little info. My wife duly comes home, practically running in to see how they got on at school and thankfully they were a little more open.

I guess it’s just boys being boys, I remember being exactly the same and always wondered why my mum was so interested in my school activities. My niece, on the other hand, talks at 100 miles per hour and talks for hours.


here’s a few tips I have learned over the years about communicating with children:

37 Ways to communicate better with your children

  • 1. Always be interested in their day, even if they don’t want to tell you anything.

  • 2. Pay attention to them and make them feel as if they are the only person in the room when

they speak to you.

  • 3. Make time to sit down with them in a relaxed manner to allow them to open up more.

  • 4. Sit down for family meals (One of the best decisions we made was to always make it a rule

to all sit round the dinner table together).

  • 5. Keep eye contact to show you are listening.

  • 6. Don’t dismiss the little things they tell you about.

  • 7. Keep close to them when they are talking, don’t have a conversation whilst you are in the

kitchen and they are in their room.

  • 8. Show them you love them and always tell them you love them.

  • 9. Tell them you believe in them often.

    • 10. Children are not your friends and letting them off with the small things could lead to

bigger problems in the future.

  • 11. Always listen to their side of the story if there are any arguments or rows going on.

  • 12. Praise them with every single thing they do well.

  • 13. Be as open and honest as possible with them about EVERYTHING.

  • 14. If you have more than 1 child make time so you can spend time alone together, even if

it’s driving to the shops.



Read between the lines. Kids have a way of telling you something without directly telling


  • 16. Don’t interrupt children when they are trying to tell you something.

  • 17. Ask their opinion on something that’s important to you and them.

  • 18. Tell them about your day and encourage discussion.

  • 19. Give them a hug at least 200 times per day

15. Read between the lines. Kids have a way of telling you something without directly telling
  • 20. Always say please and thank you when speaking to your kids, they will develop manners

this way.

  • 21. Encourage them to voice their opinion on the big family decisions, like buying a house, a

car etc.

  • 22. Tell them stories of when you were younger, kids always want to hear this.

  • 23. Play games with them as much as possible.

  • 24. Step into their world for a bit and get to learn what they like.

  • 25. Become a child for a day and just have a toy fight, pillow fight, wrestle, and do the silly

things that kids do.

  • 26. Respect their privacy, always knock.

  • 27. Give them unexpected presents.

  • 28. Let let go up the down escalator

  • 29. Let them have their own style and find it themselves.



be proud of them ,even when they didn’t quite make but tried their best.

  • 31. Just hold them, that little bit longer than you normally would.

  • 32. Let them find their own hobbies and encourage them in finding them.

  • 33. Stand back to let them them make their own mistakes, they’ll grow a lot quicker.

34.Take them to where you grew up and tell them about it.

  • 35. Forgive them as they forgive you.

  • 36. Don’t make them wear a jacket if they don’t want to even when it’s raining.

  • 37. Just love them for the little individuals they are, just love them!


9 Ways to debug your mind

9 Ways to debug your mind Author: Steven Aitchison Just like your computer your mind gets

Author: Steven Aitchison

Just like your computer your mind gets cluttered up with unnecessary or outdated code which makes it run slower or even ruins a few pieces of software and eventually causes your computer to shut down. So it is with the mind, only there is no debugging manual for the mind.

Here are a few suggestions to debug your mind of those little bugs that make your life less than perfect.

9 Ways to debug your mind

1. Know your own mind – Know your operating system

Not knowing your own mind is like not knowing what operating system your computer uses. Unless you know the operating system you can’t buy software for your computer and if you do chances are it will malfunction or not work at all. Knowing your mind is knowing what values and principles you live by. You might now know all your values and principles but you certainly know some of them. For example would you ever steal from someone, more than likely you wouldn’t, so that is one of the values you live by – I shall not steal from someone else. What about honesty? what about being authentic? What about having compassion for others? What about working hard? These are all values and principles you live your life by. By looking at and developing each value and principle you can start to strengthen each one.



Work on your beliefs – Learn the software

Are some of your beliefs outdated? Your beliefs about yourself and the world around you are constantly being updated but you can speed the process up and enjoy a fuller, richer life by knowing what your beliefs are and strengthening them to move you forward. Your beliefs are like the software you have on your computer, you know they are there but you might have not made the best use of them. For example I have photoshop on my computer but I really only use it for cropping, and touching up photos, when there is so much more I could do with photoshop if I only took the time to learn more about it. So it is with beliefs – I believe I am a decent writer but I have never pushed myself to put my writing out there and work on it more and begin to polish it and find my own voice. There are also some beliefs that no longer serve me well so I should drop them. For example I am now quite a confident person but beliefs from my past try and muscle their way in to my current belief, it’s now time to let go of the old belief and live the new belief.

  • 3. Dropping past memories – Deleting old files

Memories you have which can be harmful to your well being are best dropped altogether. Easy to say, harder to do. Some people spend a lifetime in therapy trying to understand why something happened from their childhood, why? Acknowledge that something bad has happened to you and whilst you might never be able to delete the memory you can choose when to access the memory. It’s like having old files on your computer, that will never do you or the computer any good but you choose to go into the folder and open the files up every day. It’s time for the delete button. If the memories are still raw, then that is a different story but if the memories are years old then it’s time to hit DELETE.

  • 4. Take time for yourself – Shutdown your emails, skype, and chat software

Our lives have become so busy with 1001 things to do for our kids, our families, our partners, our work, and friends. Sometimes you just have to shut the world out for a bit and take time for yourself and do something you enjoy. It’s like every time you go on the computer and there are people sending you emails, sending you tweets, wanting to googletalk or talk to you on skype. Shut everything down and take time for yourself. Take a day off work, don’t tell anybody, send the kids to school and spend the day reading, browsing shops, walking, in an art gallery, anything just to be yourself. The time we spend alone is time recharging our batteries.

  • 5. Learn new habits – Upgrade your software

Our habits can also become outdated and if we do the same as we have always done we will always get the same results. Just like your computer if you use the same software without upgrading it you will be missing out on the true potential of the software. Your habits need to be constantly upgraded and new ones introduced over time. If your habit is to exercise only after you have noticed you are piling on the pounds and then stop exercising, then it’s time to look at this habit and rework it so it suits you better and saves you the anguish and pain of piling on the pounds.



Keep your mind active – Learn new software

Our minds can become dull with the drudgery of life and going over the same things day in day out. We become bored and settle for a less than perfect life. If we constantly learn new things about our world and the people in it the world and life will not seem dull. Imagine if you were to keep using the Wordpress software which came out all those years ago, your blogs or websites wouldn’t be all that exciting, now there is so much more Wordpress can do and the current version on 2.8.4 is so much more powerful. Our minds need to keep active and constantly learning new information in order to keep on working in later life.

  • 7. Dropping the deadwood – Delete user permissions

As hard as it sounds there are some people in our lives who do not belong in our lives anymore, you’ve moved on perhaps they have to, but you still keep in touch for some reason, it could be pity, it could be guilt or misplaced loyalty. Whatever it is, if there are people in your life who drag you down, are negative, are not as committed as you, it’s time to say goodbye to them. Change the user permissions on the computer and lock them out. They will move on and you will move on, it’s called life and you will both feel better for it.

  • 8. Recharge your mind – Putting your computer on sleep mode

We are living in an age of information overload and as we learn to adapt and evolve to this we have to find a way to recharge our minds. One of the best ways of doings this, I find, is some form of meditation. 20 – 40 minutes per day will do wonders for your energy, productivity and creativity. When I have mentioned this in the past some people object stating that they cannot get 40 minutes to spend on meditating. The 40 minutes spent on meditating will free up at least 1 hour of your time during the day by recharging your mind and being able to think more clearer, more more productive and have more energy. So if you look at it from the point of view that you are saving at least 20 minutes per day instead of losing 40 minutes per day this might change your mind about meditation.

  • 9. Developing thinking skills – What language is your computer using?

Your computer software is only as good as the language it is written in. Imagine if all software was still written in an old computer language how far would computing have evolved – not very far at all. As computer languages have evolved programmers have written software with the ability to predict what may happen and ‘if’ something happens what to do about it. Our thinking skills are vital to be able to communicate with each other to get our thoughts across to someone else. whilst we were not taught thinking skills formally, we have developed thinking strategies over the course of our lives. It’s important to look at thinking as a skill in order to develop it. Using cognitive brain enhancing programs are one way to develop thinking skills as is reading more on the topic, which is way to big to go into in a post this size. Another thing I would recommend is reading about philosophical issues, I think this is a great exercise to develop thinking skills and can lead you to places in your mind you didn’t know existed.


6 Obstacles Threatening Your Progress.

6 Obstacles Threatening Your Progress. Author: Ayo Olaniyan Ayo Olaniyan is a certified Unitive™ Life Coach

Author: Ayo Olaniyan

6 Obstacles Threatening Your Progress. Author: Ayo Olaniyan Ayo Olaniyan is a certified Unitive™ Life Coach

Ayo Olaniyan is a certified Unitive™ Life Coach and Counsellor. He is a member of the European Mentoring and Coaching Council, an accredited professional counsellor with the Counselling Society and the author of Expanding Your Horizons. If you would like to enquire about personal and professional one-to-one coaching sessions, please visit or send an email to Remember, it's about creating a purpose driven life through personal development.

Editors Note: This is a guest post from Ayo Olaniyan from Discovering Purpose

I am starting a series this month titled 6 obstacles, 6 things and 6 reasons. Several bloggers have written on various topics such as 10 reasons why you should blog, quit your job, fall in love… I am hoping to target areas such as 6 obstacles threatening your progress, 6 reasons why you should get a life, 6 things you should know about yourself, 6 reasons why you should be happy and 6 reasons why you should go to the toilet (laugh).

According to the elook online dictionary ‘progress means the gradual improvement, growth or development in a positive way. It’s also the act of moving forward toward a desired goal, while obstacles are things standing in our way that must be removed, circumvented or surmounted.’

We often want to make progress in our jobs, personal development, finances, behaviour,

business, eating habits, exercising, with families…

the list is endless. It’s wonderful to have

.. great ideas, pictures of the future, think positively e.t.c but we must realise that there are

subtle obstacles that stand in the way of our progress.


What are these obstacles?

The Claim to Know Everything: This relates to people who think they know it all and refuse to accept advice or information that would enhance their productivity, from anyone. If you want to increase your chances of being successful or making a change for the better, you should be open to suggestions before disregarding any which may not be suitable for you. Those who claim to know everything make statements such as ‘I knew that already, I was going to do that, I agree with you but I am sure there’s another way….

Their minds, hearts, level of reasoning are completely closed to new ideas or suggestions BECAUSE THEY ARE NOT READY OR WILLING TO BE TAUGHT. Of course we need to strike a balance before everyone starts listening to time wasters offering ‘random suggestions;’ the focus here is to be open to ‘constructive contributions’.

The Fear of Change: This is a topic in its own right, but I would do my best to summarize it. In a positive context, change is the process or result of becoming different. It’s a transformation or transition from one level of development to another. We desire to experience or make changes in various aspects of our lives but it requires drive, motivation and commitment. We are afraid to make changes for the following reasons:

We don’t want to be pushed out of our comfort zone into the unknown

We lack the desire to experience change.

We associate change with anxiety and nervousness.

We’ve become conditioned due to an emotional/physical trauma we’ve experienced in

the past. We feel we may lose our rights as individuals and possibly get exploited.

When we get to a crossroad and we sincerely want to make a change, it might be useful to think on the following tips:

Think on the positive impacts that would be achieved from experiencing change Picture someone else in your shoes knowing if they handled change positively, you can. Think of the worst case scenarios which could occur and find alternative solutions to them.

Inconsistency: In order to attain the desired level of progress we have pictured, imagined or is striving towards, we need constant practice. Developing the qualities we desire, attaining a high level of personal growth/development requires a constant repetition of successful behaviours, skills, programs etc we’ve implemented to see such results. We get better and excel in certain projects by being consistent in our actions, methods and character. Footballers go through rigorous amounts of training before any game and a player found unfit on the training field or during the game is sidelined to the bench.

In order to develop good habits, it’s compulsory we build them on a daily basis.

The Blame Game: There’s a tendency to always trade blames on anything and everyone, wishing you never went down certain routes, made certain judgements, made decisions etc. Sometimes our egos have a way of interfering with us taking responsibilities for certain actions and our only way out, is to blame others. It’s common to hear statements such as, I


would have succeeded if only my …


supported me, I would have passed my exams if you



I would have been rich if I didn’t get married to you(laugh, I’ve actually heard

.. that). The list grows!!!! STOP IT TODAY!!!! REALISE OUR LIVES ARE OUR


Failing to take action: In the last 5-6years I have fallen in love with Nikes slogan, ‘Just Do It’. For us to be effective and yield results in our daily lives, we must make an effort to follow certain procedures. If we want to excel in any phase of our lives we need to be willing TO DO things differently. We mustn’t be comfortable in acquiring knowledge only but also take that step to practice what we’ve learnt. We are afraid to take actions for the following reasons:

We lack self confidence. We are afraid of failing. We don’t want to get embarrassed. We are filled with negative thoughts, believing those steps may not turn out to be successful.

I have got three words for you: JUST DO IT

Negative Thinking: We would always experience tough challenges in life and the easiest obstacle that confronts us is getting drowned in negative thoughts and pessimism. There’s a tendency to make bad decisions or judgements based on negative information fed into your mind. Dealing with negative thoughts when faced with stiff opposition requires perseverance, constant positive thoughts – looking at alternative solutions/suggestions to dealing with the present situation.

As you make progress there would come a time where the mind is unsettled and uncertain of the future. To stay on top of your game; you’ve GOT TO SHOW SOME OPTIMISM.

On a final note, do not expect everything to take a turn for progress overnight. These obstacles will be crossed as long as you remain diligent, hardworking and persistent in your quest for attaining progress.



5 Ways

to inject some passion

into your


5 Ways to inject some passion into your goals Author: Steven Aitchison Recently I wrote an

Author: Steven Aitchison

Recently I wrote an article describing my goal to reach 10,000 subscribers by the end of the year. It’s a very tall order but one I feel I will reach. I honestly don’t know how I can do this I just feel it. That was around 15 days ago and I still don’t know how I am going to reach that figure. When I see that I have only added around 100 subscribers in two weeks I was starting to think ‘I think I might have made a bit of a fool of myself by stating my goal of 10,000 subscribers’. As soon as I started thinking that my passion for the blog and writing diminished a little. Now that I have caught that thought I put even more effort in.

I have written a guest post for, Zenhabits and DumbLittleMan (2 have not been published yet). I have added new features to this blog, which may or may not work, I have banished the Google ads and have just bought the Thesis theme to make the blog more simple in style (don’t know when that will be ready as I am still working on it).

My thoughts are now firmly on writing and over the last two weeks I have written over 10,000 words in posts, produced two videos, tweeted my little beak off, set up a facebook profile, a youtube channel, sent off an article as a freelancer, and joined a forum for A- ListBloggers. My thoughts are all on writing just now and reaching that goal, it’s a hunger from the minute I wake up, even when I am at work I am thinking ‘oh, that would be a great post’ and I get it down on paper before I forget it.

What has given me the drive?

There are 3 things that are driving this passion right now

  • 1. A big hairy measurable goal



A passion for writing

  • 3. The avoidance of pain (being made to look stupid if I don’t reach my goal of 10,000 subscribers)

5 ways to inject some passion into your goals

Have a goal in mind

You can’t have passion in your life if you don’t have a goal or goals. Try and make your goal measurable so you’ll know that you’ve reached your goal at the end of all your hard work.

Reach out

Reach out to other people who can help you reach your goals even your competition. If you see someone you are competing with and they are doing well, look at what they are doing, break it down into little pieces and emulate each piece. There are always people who are willing to help you if they feel your passion and hunger so ask other people to help you, if they say no, then move on to someone else who can help but always make it a win-win so you both gain out of the partnership.

Small changes

100 incremental changes can make a huge difference on your goal whereas 1 big change might not make that much of a difference. You find out what works for you, throw away the bits that don’t and keep improving bit by bit.

Obsess about it

  • I can’t believe how obsessed I have become about writing over the last two weeks. At first i

thought ‘I’ll write a few guest posts, get some guest writers for CYT and write a little more for the blog’ It’s nothing like that. It’s like ‘I want to write the best post ever, every single

time, I want to write it now and I want to find a way to write in my sleep.’

Think about your goal often and every single day. Have a picture in your mind of you reaching your goal and the rewards it will bring. Do this especially when you are feeling a bit down and things aren’t going quite the way you planned. It’s a hunger, a drive you need to reach that goal no matter what.

Speak about it

  • I have spoken to my wife about my goals for the next five months and she has asked some

great questions one of them being ‘What are you going to get out of it?’ honestly I don’t know I just know I have to do it. So if you have friends and family who are willing to listen speak about your goals or join a forum who have people with similar goals to yours. Small

goals can be a one man show, big goals need an audience.

What are your goals?

What are your goals right now and how are you injecting passion into them? Why not share your thoughts with the readers and help them out.


5 Ways To Achieve Personal Excellence

5 Ways To Achieve Personal Excellence Author: Celestine Chua Celestine Chua chose her passion when she

Author: Celestine Chua

Celestine Chua chose her passion when she left her high paying Fortune 100 career in 2008 to help others grow. Today, she writes at her popular The Personal Excellence Blog and gives coaching to others who are passionate about achieving personal excellence. Some of her most popular articles to date: 50 Ways to Boost Your Productivity, 101 Most Inspiring Quotes of All Time and Cultivate Good Habits in 21 Days.

Editors Note: This is a guest post from Celestine Chua of The Personal Excellence Blog

Excellence – noun. the state of excelling; superiority; eminence:

Are you someone who strives for excellence? If you are reading this post, chances are you are

5 Ways To Achieve Personal Excellence Author: Celestine Chua Celestine Chua chose her passion when she

. Personally, I firmly believe that all of us are here to achieve greatness; to be the best that we can be and to shake and move the world. There is nothing more satisfying than overcoming a challenge that was previously deemed insurmountable; nothing more satisfying than looking back at who you are now and realizing that you have grown much more than you thought you could. To be human is to live to our highest potential.

Like you, I’m someone who endlessly strives for excellence. Excellence is one of my top values in life and is something which I hold myself towards ever since I was a kid. When I was in school, I was constantly striving for the best; I graduated from my business school as the top student in my major (I was in marketing). In my career, I secured placement in the best company in the world for marketers, after being pit against hundreds of applicants and evaluated in multiple rounds of tests and interviews. Even as I ultimately chose to quit my corporate job last year, it was a decision made to wholly pursue my passion in personal development and helping others to achieve personal excellence.

In my years of pursuit of personal excellence, I have found 5 timeless steps in ensuing my own growth which I’d love to share with you here and I hope will be useful to you:


1) Believe in Yourself

Self belief is the utmost important step. If you don’t believe in yourself, how do you expect anyone else to believe in you? If you want to achieve greatness, you have to first believe that you are capable of doing it. Know that there is no one else but you who can attain what you want to do. As Napoleon Hill puts it, “What the mind can conceive, it can achieve”.

One of my favorite stories is Sylvester Stallone’s real-life rags to riches story. Before he was propelled to stardom with the Rocky series, he was living out what others would deem as a ‘paltry’ existence as a wannabe actor. Because of his birth complication where he was born with a side of his face paralyzed and a slurred speech, he was rejected by countless casting agents in his quest for his dreams. At some point, he became poor as a pauper, and even his wife left him. But he never gave up. He firmly believed that he would be able to make it as an actor – not just an actor, but a movie star. And he finally did – today, he is an internationally acclaimed movie star, film director, producer and screenwriter. This would never have happened if he gave up his self-belief.

2) Keep Building Your Skills

The path to excellence is a continual one which requires constant upgrading and skills development. It’s said that it takes someone 10,000 hours of practice to reach the top in his/her discipline. Have you invested your 10,000 hours to develop your skills? If you haven’t, when can you start investing the time? If you have, how can you invest another 10,000 hours? No matter how much time and effort we have already spent in developing ourselves, there will always be opportunity to improve and be better.

Think about the skills which you possess at the moment as well as skills which you would like to have, but have yet to acquire. For example, some of the skills which I target to build for the upcoming few months are (1) Writing (2) Public Speaking (3) Productivity (4) Discipline (5) Organizational Skills (6) Badminton. How about yours?

1) Believe in Yourself Self belief is the utmost important step. If you don’t believe in

3) Get Out of Your Comfort Zone

When you are out of your comfort zone, you are already growing by default. Comfort zones are called comfort zones because it’s where you feel safe and comfortable. When you stay in an area of comfort, you subject yourself to things you have become accustomed to – which leads to little or no growth. On the other hand, if you move beyond that area of comfort, even by a little bit, you start facing things which you are not exposed to before. This new context and new stimuli triggers off a reprocessing process in your mind as you adapt to handle them. This means growth.

What are your comfort zones when it comes to your work? Environment? Diet? Daily routines? Places you go to? Clothes you wear? People you hang out with? Your goals? How can you change them around just to experience something different? How can you push yourself to an uncomfortable zone so you can grow? The more uncomfortable you feel about something, the more it means you are growing.


4) Be Around the Best.

I love this quote from Jim Rohn, which I feel sums this up – “You are the average of the five people you are around“. Who you are with has a role in affecting who you become. If you hang around people who are committed to excellence, sets themselves up to achieve nothing but the best, you are going to emerge a different person compared to if you hang around people who are jaded and are constantly lamenting about life. Cut yourself loose from people who don’t support you and increase your contact with the people who do. Above all, connect yourself with the best – the cream of the crop. If you have a goal to be a chef with your very own restaurant, start linking up with the top chefs of your country, or even possibly the world as you move forward on your endeavors. Even if it’s not possible to be personal friends, you can be connected with them by virtue of exposing yourself to outputs of their work – books, shows, interviews, etc. You will find yourself improving by leaps and bounds just from framing yourself together with them.

5) Set Huge Goals.

Emphasis on the word huge. Not the normal, standard goals which you know you will definitely be achieving with a certain amount of work and effort. We’re talking about the humongous goals which make you feel somewhat nervous and uncomfortable on whether it’s possible to even attain them. These are the goals which will really make you stretch yourself, soar, and then beam with an incredible lot of satisfaction when you do achieve them. Even if you don’t eventually get to nail them in the bag, the most important thing to realize is you have grown a lot more than if you set puny goals and achieved them. Be focused on the amount of growth you get and don’t be attached to the specific outcomes, because the outcomes don’t define who you are – Who you are define who you are.


Wear your red socks

Wear your red socks Author: Steven Aitchison Might seem a strange title for a blog post.

Author: Steven Aitchison

Might seem a strange title for a blog post. I wanted to talk about how little things can change your mindset and how you can learn to change something, seemingly, insignificant to change the way you feel.

Last year it was time to get a few new pairs of socks as the trusty old black ones were fast becoming grey. So when we were out shopping for some things for the house, I noticed a 7 pair pack of socks and picked them up. It was the socks that had different colours on the toes and heals but these ones also had the day of the week on the arch. Now, in our house we never had a matching pair of socks, it seemed the sock devil would come in the night and discard a few socks which meant we never got to wear matching socks and it was messing with my mind. You see in our house I have my own sock drawer but apparantly my wife and two boys seemed to think it was a communal sock drawer and they were forever stealing my socks. After a few ‘hey, they’re my socks!’ moments and me chasing my sons around the house to get my socks off (inevitably they would hide and then pounce on me when I found them and beat the living socks out of me!), I gave up and now we all share the same socks. However chasing my wife around the house was a differnt story. So, when I bought the new ones with the days of the week, my thoughts were ‘it will be difficult to lose socks that had matching colours and days of the week on them’ so there should be no problem finding a matching pair after they had been washed.


Family quirkiness

Here’s what happened; my wife didn’t wear them as she didn’t really like them, my youngest son thought it would be quite quirky to wear unmatching ones, me eldest son was experimenting on the hypothesis that socks may actually be able to start walking themselves if he wore them long enough. I was trying hard to keep it together and match them all up as soon as they came out the washing. I would wear my Monday ones on Monday, my tuesday ones on tuesday etc. When Saturday came around it was a great feeling just rolling my Saturday socks on, it was the weekend and I felt great. After a few months of this and a few more sock packs I started wearing my Saturday ones on a tTursday and when I felt really adventurous I wore them on a Wednesday. I noticed that I felt better after slipping on those red Saturday socks no matter what day of the week it was because I had associated them with the weekend, free time and time with my family. It then became a little family joke, whenever we felt a little down or stressed just ‘Put the red socks on’.

The power of association

This is the power of association in action and shows we can give power to anything to make us feel better. I know a lot of women in particular wear certain clothes depending on the way they feel. And guys, remember the times when you used to go out scouting for girls saying ‘I feel lucky tonight I’ve got my lucky boxer shorts on…’ or ‘my lucky shirt on’.


The power of Focus

The power of Focus Author: Steven Aitchison For the last few years I have been writing

Author: Steven Aitchison

For the last few years I have been writing for CYT and building a small business creating binaural beats and working on lots of other little projects. I have come to realize, only recently, that I am still un-focused when it comes to my internet life.

Once I get an idea in my head I chase it, implement the idea and then work on it now and again. I realize I have been doing this with my blog. I have been writing for 3 years in August and have managed to get 3500 subscribers to CYT, roughly 100 subscribers per month. Now, some people might think that is good but it’s really quite bad. I look at my contemporaries like Leo Babauta, he started blogging in 2007 and now has 120,000 subscribers 2 successful ebooks, a publishing deal and writes for numerous blogs and I ask myself what’s the difference between me and Leo?; FOCUS. I remember a conversation Leo and I had a few years ago whilst part of a personal development network. I asked how I could improve my blog and make it better. I received numerous replies but Leo wrote back with a few home truths and basically said I need to write more guest posts, write more for the blog and a few other things. At the time ZenHabits has a few hundred subscribers and I had about 1200, boy I wished I had listened.

Focus on your main tasks

It all comes down to focusing on the things we really want. I want to give up my full time job to do my internet work at home, but I have been saying this for 2 years now and bringing in an extra $1500 per month is not enough for me to give up my full time job. Admittedly when


first started I wasn’t bringing in anything and an extra $1500 per month is great but it’s not enough.


  • I have a plethora of ideas buzzing around my head at any one time and all of them would help me reach my goal of working full time from home, however I have not focused long enough

on any of the ideas to reach my goal.

Decision time

For the past few weeks I have been looking at my internet life and getting rid of all the projects I have started and cut them down to three main projects. They are; My Blog, Binaural-Mind site and my Lucid Dreaming project. I actually had 17 small projects on the go (and I wonder why I was buzzing all the time).

This is a great achievement for me. A few years ago I would have all these ideas and do nothing about them except for analyse them and give reasons why it wouldn’t work. A few months ago I implemented the ideas and just did it. Now, I have cut all the ideas down to 3 projects and focus solely on them. So, you can sort of see the evolution of my focus here and now it’s getting down to the nitty gritty of focusing.

A bold statement By December 31st 2009 I will have 10,000 subscribers

That’s not a pie in the sky statement and dream I have this is a goal I will achieve by the end of the year. And I know I will do this by focusing my attention more on the blog. That’s 6,500 subscribers in 5 months, so instead of getting 100 subscribers per month I need to get 1300 subscribers per month, a 1200% increase on my current monthly subscriber rate.

How will I achieve this? By writing quality content every day for the blog, a new post will be posted every single day by either myself or a guest poster and new features will be added to the blog such as;

‘Ask the coach’ – A joint project with Ayo Olaniyan

‘5 minute fix’ – A video section of the blog offering 5 minute personal development

tips. Book review section – This will review books by personal development bloggers out

there and there are some great ones on the way ‘Sunday Siesta’ – This has already started and is a great feature on this blog.

  • I have also started using a tool called DarkRoom. This is a tool for writers is basically it’s a

black screen and all you can do is write as there are no distractions, no icons at the bottom of

the screen it’s just you, a black screen and green text and I have to say it’s amazing for keeping my concentration focused on my writing.

  • I will also start guest posting for other bigger blogs out there to get my name known again.


How you can help me out

Well, I’m always looking for guest authors and I have a few lined up already which is great.

You could tweet, stumble and delicious my posts.

In return I will always give you quality advice and help when I can.

Look out 10k here I come

How you can help me out Well, I’m always looking for guest authors and I have


If success was easy everyone would do it

Author: Francesca Kotomski

Driven with my desire to do and see all that the world has to offer. Visit Francesca’s online biz here as well as her blog

If Success was Easy, Everyone Would do it

Success is a favorable or desirable outcome, the attainment of wealth or favor, as defined Webster’s Dictionary. Success is different for everyone, but it is definitely not an easy thing to accomplish, otherwise, everyone would do what it takes for success.

Success is a feeling and can be created and recreated again and again. Here are some tips to create success in your life:

Tip #1: Enjoy and celebrate each moment on the way to success. Success doesn’t have to be associated with wealth attainment. In fact, most people have achieved a level of success in some part of their lives, achieving a “desirable outcome.” Reminisce the feeling associated with your success achievement. You must have been very happy, inspired to achieve more, and desired to repeat your success. You may have thought that it wasn’t really that difficult to achieve success or maybe it was the hardest thing you did, enjoying in the feeling of accomplishment. As you reach for your next goal, focus on progress only, rewarding yourself every small step of the way. Each daily accomplishment is a small success story on the way to the bigger success story.

Tip #2: Keep the end in mind, always. If you have been striving for success in an area of your life, wealth or other, and are not reaching success, you might have lost sight of the end goal. You might have given up because it was too hard, too much work, or maybe you think that you don’t deserve your goal in the first place. Maybe someone convinced you that you can’t do what you set out to do and you folded and listened to them. You may think that you don’t know enough to be successful. If you focus on the end result as you defined success, you will keep striving for it and no one, not even you, will convince you otherwise.

Tip #3: Create, evaluate, and recreate. Life is about recreating yourself. If something doesn’t work, rather than fold, find a way to recreate. Troubleshoot or recreating is very similar. You create, evaluate and then refine. Keep up this pattern, with rewards for each step of the way on your path to success.

Tip #4: Success can be for anyone. Get out of your head that the successful are gifted or that they were handed their success on a silver platter. If that were the case, they really haven’t achieved success. Success takes work, perseverance, and determination. It doesn’t matter your education, height, knowledge or other factors. It can be for anyone that wants it bad enough.

Tip #5: Success is all about mindset. Know that you can, and you will achieve your goal. Visualize your goal, and you will be even closer. You will remain on the path and you will achieve your success. Be positive and remain on the path to success!


When you see “If Success was Easy, Everyone Would do it,” you may think that it’s too hard to achieve and you might just give up. Follow every tip given here, focus on your end result and you will enjoy success!


One lesson and six billion teachers

One lesson and six billion teachers Author: Steven Aitchison Recently I have been looking at the

Author: Steven Aitchison

Recently I have been looking at the way I interact with people, my clients, my work colleagues, my mentors, my wife and my children. I am a great listener and that comes across when someone is speaking to me and I suppose that’s a good thing if you are doing counselling of any kind. However I have noticed that I am also quite impatient with certain types of people, particularly anybody who is energy draining, you know the type of people who think everything is a hassle and the whole world is against them and nothing ever goes right for them ,it infuriates me to be around people like this and usually I avoid them like the plague. However, recently I thought about what people like this have to teach me. I recently had a chance to talk to someone like this in depth and had to hold it together long enough to ask myself ‘what is this person teaching me about myself?’ and the next question is ‘What am I teaching them about themselves?’. The answers were quite surprising to me.

What is this person teaching me about myself?

I am intolerant of negative people – wow!, what a revelation (sarcastic tone there) , how is this relevant? Well, I do counselling work for a living and being intolerant of certain types of people is not a good thing and that will come across to the person who is talking to me.

What am I teaching them about themselves?

If someone who has a dark outlook on life is talking to me and I am giving them vibes that I don’t like talking to them this is going to re-enforce their belief about themselves that nobody likes them, the world is a dark place etc etc.


What I did to change

I looked at the person in a different light. That person was there to teach me patience, to teach me tolerance and I had to remind myself of that. I was there to ask him a simple question ‘Why is your world so dark?’

This is exactly the question I asked him and he was taken aback when I asked that. He didn’t really think he had a dark outlook on life and it was a bit of a revelation to him as well. We spoke about it for a while and by asking that simple question he was able to change almost instantly as his perception of his world had changed. The next few sessions revealed that he had changed the way he looked at life and constantly asked himself what he would do if he was a positive person, obviously there were still dark moments but he was much more able to cope with them.

Everyone is a teacher

This was a great lesson for me and it’s one of those moments that changed a certain aspect of me for a lifetime. It’s those moments that make us grow as people and we can’t change overnight but we can have lots of a-ha moments which help to shape our lives.

What is someone trying to teach you?


The energy of money and how to make more of it

Author: Steven Aitchison

The pursuit of making more money has an energy to it. If you are focused and have clear goals in mind and you concentrate on them every day and take action you can and will create more abundance in your life.

Is money the root of all evil?

We have been programmed to believe that the pursuit of money is bad and it’s not good for the soul. This is without doubt one of the biggest lies we have been told as children, that and Santa Claus (I was gutted when I was told that Santa was a lie and I was 23 imagine how children feel!)

You’ve more than likely heard these sayings in your life:

‘Money doesn’t grow on trees you know’

‘We can’t afford it’

‘Money can’t buy you happiness’

‘The rich get richer and the poor get poorer’

‘To make more money you have to work harder’

‘Money is the root of all evil’

Until you rid yourself of the guilt of trying to better yourself financially you can’t begin to create more money into your life. We’ll speak about four steps to creating more money in your life a bit later but for now I’d like to speak about the difference between greed and making more money.

Greed and money

Thinking of some of my heroes I used to think why would they try and make more money when they obviously don’t need it. I am thinking of people like Richard Branson, James Dyson, Warren Buffet and Tony Robbins to name but a few. However when reading their biographies, watching and listening to them on interviews it is clear their goal is not to make more money but to feel alive by building on their brand and their customer loyalty, with the possible exception of Warren Buffe t who is an investment genius. So their goal is not to make more money it is a by-product of their goal of achieving more in their life. They are also philanthropists and they give back a hell of a lot to the world in the form of donations, settings up schools, giving knowledge and time to the younger generation. This is not greed it’s a desire to reach their potential, which is what Abraham Maslow speaks about in his ‘hierarchy of needs’ theory.

Greed is a different animal altogether. Greed is defined in the ‘New Oxford English Dictionary’ as: ‘Intense and selfish desire for something, especially wealth, power or food.’ If your goal is to create more money into your life simply for your own selfish needs then life


will be empty after a while. Giving back something to the world in the form of money, knowledge, education, and time is something everyone should strive for, I believe.

Four steps to creating more money in your life

I have learned these lessons the hard way and it has taken me over twenty years to finally be able to understand them, from the beginnings of selling sweets in the playground to where I am now. I still want to make more money and be financially able to do whatever I want but I am closer to my goal than when I first started out.

Step one – Blasting through your limiting beliefs

As I said in the beginning of this post we have been programmed to believe the pursuit of money and wealth is not good. Get rid of this thought as quickly as you can for it will hinder you from making progress in your life’s goal to create more money in your life. Money is the pathway to freedom for yourself and for others in your life. You will have the ability to help more people by being wealthy than you will be by being poor. Think of this for a moment:

More money in your life will mean you will buy more, when you buy more it means small and large businesses can stay in business, when they stay in business it means the banks can lend more money to them to expand therefore keeping the banks in business, when the banks are healthy financially it means they can lend more to people for loans and mortgages, when mortgages are purchased it means house builders are thriving, when house builders thrive it means more choice for house buyers and more social housing stock, when there is more social housing stock it means people getting out of poverty and bad housing conditions…………………….this could go on and on.

Look at the situation just now and what has happened to the whole economy because the banks have made poor decisions. However we as a nation are perpetuating the situation by not spending the way we used to and if we are really honest our situation has not really changed we still earn the same monthly income, the price of food is the same, the price of clothes has gone down, the price of cars has gone down so we should be spending the same to keep the economy afloat. However because a global financial crisis is great news for newspapers they print their horror stories and suddenly people have stopped spending, small businesses are going bust, house builders have stopped building and banks have stopped lending. Do you think if the ‘Global Crisis’ was never reported on TV, on the internet or in newspapers we would be in this situation right now, I definitely believe we wouldn’t. Yes this is an overly simplistic view of how the economy works but believe me when I say there are people out there making millions because the herd have listened to the media.

You were born to reach your full potential and that certainly does not mean living in poverty and scrimping and saving to get by in life. There is enough money in the world for everyone to thrive and that includes you. It’s time to open up your mind to the possibilities of making more money.

Step 2 – Creating your future

You can’t row your own boat until you know your destination. You can certainly row someone else’s boat and that is what most of us do in life. We go to school, leave and then go to university, leave and then row someone else’s boat by working for them, then we jump


off the boat after 45 years service and retire when it’s almost too late to really enjoy life. That’s not a life it’s an existence.

Rowing your own boat means controlling your own life. yes it also means taking more risks and failing more but you will learn a hell of a lot about the world works and how you work and how to better yourself. To do this you have to know what you want to do with your life, you need dreams to follow, you need a vision to hold and passion to drive you.

Start small, think big and build yourself up from there. What do you want in life?

Now you know what you want you need to know how you get it.

Step 3 – Help someone create their dream

Yours dreams are undoubtedly different from mine however the key to making more money in your life is to help people realise their dreams. What I mean by this is create something or pass on knowledge which will help someone else realise their dream. Now, the dream the other person has might not be huge but if you help them and they are willing to pay for it then you have helped yourself and someone else at the same time. When one person has a dream there are some others who have the same dream.

A fantastic example of this is someone who is selling an ebook right now, you can check it out on Google, called ‘How to build your own chicken coop‘. You might think this is a crazy idea, but the owner of the ebook thought ‘If I wanted to know how to build a chicken coup, there must be others too’. And now there are hundreds of happy people who had a tiny dream to build their own chicken coop and found someone willing to impart their knowledge for a small fee. This book is doing great and making the owner a lot of money.

So you see, people have all different kinds of dreams big and small and if you can help people realise their dreams, big or small you can help yourself create more money in your life and help people around the world.

Step 4 – Once you’ve made it it’s time to share it

I am nowhere near this stage yet but it is my ultimate goal that when I have become wealthy enough to have anything I want in life I will share my successes and teach people how they can emulate my success. And I will do this freely to people who have not made it yet and charge for it to businesses who are in the latter stages of step 3. This way the knowledge is always going round and being shared and I cannot think of a better way to enrich the world than by sharing knowledge on how to better create more money in people’s lives.


29 Ways worth

to increase

your feeling

of self

29 Ways worth to increase your feeling of self Author: Steven Aitchison Self worth comes from

Author: Steven Aitchison

Self worth comes from within, you won’t find it by having more money, having more friends, having a fancy car or a big house. It is something intrinsic and something we can’t gain extrinsically, meaning we won’t find self worth from external factors. Here are some things you can do to increase your feeling of self worth.

29 Ways to increase your feeling of self worth

  • 1. Write down 7 minor goals for the week and tick one off each day as you achieve it.

  • 2. Read a book a month. Reading a book is actually an achievement in this technology and media driven world and reading a full book is a great way to achieve a sense of accomplishment.

  • 3. At the end of each day before falling asleep write down something you feel proud about, either on the day or in the past.

  • 4. Tell someone else how much you appreciate them, being able to be open and honest is great for self worth.

  • 5. Say no! Learn the skill of saying no without offending the person asking.

  • 6. Everything you do, do to the best of your ability even if it cleaning the toilets or something equally as mundane, develop a reputation as someone who takes pride in their work.

  • 7. Walk tall and proud. walk as if you’ve got somewhere to go and you need to be there now, never run just walk tall and quickly.

  • 8. Dress as smart as you can for each occasion, whether it be work, meeting a friend, or going for an interview. Take pride in your appearance.

  • 9. Do something for yourself every day.

10. Learn a new skill or take up something you’ve always wanted to and stick with it.



Speak up for yourself in every area of your life, this might be hard to do at first but the first time you do it will be immense and if you carry on your self esteem and feelings of self worth will soar.

  • 12. Sing at the top of your voice, not outside but in the house and really give it loads (I love singing Free Fallin’ by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers at the top of my voice, ah! such a good feeling.)

  • 13. Forgive yourself! (You know what I mean)

  • 14. Get rid of the people who are dragging you down (I don’t mean kill them, I mean just stop having them in your life.)

  • 15. Work on your strengths. A lot of people focus on building up their weaknesses, instead get better at what you are good at.

  • 16. Take a walk in the rain………





you have the power to decide!

  • 17. Listen to other people and what they are saying.

  • 18. Reward your successes. As soon as you achieve something reward yourself.

  • 19. Never let anyone force you to break your core values.

  • 20. Stop the gossiping!

  • 21. Don’t read a newspaper for a week and gauge how you feel about yourself and the world around you.

  • 22. Help other people who need it.

  • 23. Always, Always, Always be honest with yourself and others. There is no need for lies and the energy it takes to continue a lie is unbelievable.

  • 24. Take a chance and take a risk or two. You don’t have long to live so just get up and do it.

  • 25. Listen to your self talk and slap the little person criticising you, I mean it, imagine there are two people one on each shoulder, the one who criticises you give them a slap or a punch in the mouth and start to pay attention to the one who is praising you.

  • 26. Don’t be afraid to accept help from other people, it means they respect you enough to help you with something.

  • 27. Start changing your thinking to be more optimistic about yourself, instead of ‘…I can’t do that….’ say ‘



never tried it, but I’ll give it a go…’

  • 28. Face your fears. Nothing will send your self esteem soaring more so than facing your fears and eventually conquering them.

  • 29. Always leave comments on a blog you like

11. Speak up for yourself in every ar ea of your life, this might be hard


How to be assertive

Author: Steven Aitchison

Thousands of people every day are suffering in difficult situations through lack of

assertiveness. Most commonly the assertiveness problems tend to arise at work and with

friends. However, assertiveness issues creep up everywhere whether it be with friends,

family, or work colleagues.

It’s okay saying to someone ‘stand up for yourself’ or ‘you should just say this to them… ’,


but to someone who suffers from lack of assertiveness it’s not an easy thing to do and can fill

people with dread at the thought of confronting someone with an issue they may have.

Bullies, whether at work or at home, prey on people who lack assertiveness and can

traumatise the person they subject their bullying tactics on. The bully is of course cowardly

and lack the backbone to pick on people who they know will stand up to them. Dealing with

people who intimidate you or belittle you is empowering and can literally change your life,

but how do you do it?

This guide will hopefully give you some tools to think about and implement when you feel

you need to be assertive in situations.

What is assertiveness?

Assertiveness is the ability to stand up for yourself and to express how you feel when you

feel it is necessary.

It includes:

Being able to express your opinions and views without feeling self conscious

Being able to say ‘no’ to people without feeling guilty about it.

Being able to ask for what you want.

Choosing how you live your life, without feeling guilty about it.

Having the ability to take risks when you feel you want and need to.

If you feel any of the above are missing from your life then you may have difficulty asserting

yourself and expressing yourself.

Some common beliefs about being assertive

A lot of the time you may fear being assertive by believing something will happen if you are

assertive in situations.

Have you had any of these thoughts?

‘I can’t say no, they’ll think I am being selfish’

‘I don’t have the right to say how I feel’


‘I am their parent I have to do this for them.’

‘I don’t want to cause a scene at work.’

‘I don’t want the other person to be upset or angry with me.’

‘If I stand up for myself people won’t like me because of it.’

Do you recognise any of these thoughts? Read the article ‘7 Irrational thoughts….’ Which

might help you deal with these types of thoughts.

Let me ask you something at this point. Think of someone you admire, someone who can be

assertive, not aggressive but assertive……



a moment to really think about them. How

do people react to them? I can almost guarantee you that you think they are admired by

everyone and everyone seems to like them and get on well with them and they seem to have

more people relate to them better than anyone else…….but, before you jump on the thought

‘but they are better (fill in the blank here) than me’, it’s nothing to do with looks, intelligence,

higher position, funnier or anything else, it’s to do with their ability to stand up for

themselves at the right time and to know when to apologise and take responsibility at the

right time. They may not necessarily stand out in the crowd but they are admired and

respected for their opinions.

Now think of someone who is aggressive, someone who others say ‘oh you don’t want to

mess with them’ or ‘they are too in your face’. These people are respected by some people

and hated by others, the ones who respect them are more than likely aggressive themselves.

Those who hate them or dislike them tend to stay out of their way and relate to them very


Now think of someone who is sheepish and says yes to everything, and doesn’t really speak

up for themselves or lacks self confidence. They tend to blend into the background and are

often thought of as less significant than others. This of course is a fault we humans have but

it is sadly true that a lot of people think this way. However this is not to say it is a bad thing

to blend into the background if that is your choice but you can be assertive and still blend into

the background.

Who would you most like to be like; the Aggressive one, the Assertive one or the Sheepish


Look at your problem areas

To change anything in your life you first have to recognise where the problem lies, I know

I’ve said this a million times but it’s worth re-iterating.

Look at the times when you feel you really wanted to stand up for yourself but feel you

couldn’t, or when you really wanted to say no but said yes, or didn’t say anything when the

idiot at work made you look like a fool.

Where does it occur most often?

Are there certain people you have the most problems with?


Is it when you are in a crowd?

Is it harder giving compliments or critiscisms or are both difficult?

Answering all these questions will help you understand when and with whom the problems of

assertiveness arise. It could be that you don’t like talking to the opposite sex or feel

intimidated, it could be you feel intimidated by people in authority. Answering the questions

above will help you see exactly where the problem lies.

After you have done the exercise above think about what you think might happen if you did

assert yourself in the situations and with the people you thought about.


My wife once told me she plans for almost all eventualities when she meets someone or feels

a difficult situation arising, meaning she rehearses what would happen in certain situations

and she thinks about her response to it before it has happened. She has gotten so good at this

over the years that it is second nature to her,