Words of Wisdom

Monday, December 28, 2009

Overcoming Challenges of Life

“Life's challenges are not supposed to paralyze you, they're supposed to help you discover who you are.”

The first step you need to take is to get a complete picture of whatever challenge you are facing, including the good that will come out of it when properly handled. One example is improved relationships.

“Accept the challenges so that you may feel the exhilaration of victory.”

The second step is to pinpoint the specific challenge area or areas where you need strengthening.

Using the example, let’s say that after careful analysis of all the factors, you look at the following:

  • The seriousness of your efforts to meet and befriend new people and, then, to generate interest in your product, service, or opportunity.
  • The degree of discipline you demonstrated in following up with interested prospects.
  • The leadership ability, or lack of it, you showed in helping those people come on board as associates or clients.
  • Your caring enough about the people you are working with to help them in whatever way they needed assistance and encouragement from there on.

“Don't be afraid to fail. Don't waste energy trying to cover up failure. Learn from your failures and go on to the next challenge. It's OK to fail. If you're not failing, you're not growing.”

The third step is to brainstorm about your specific challenge, and write down some solution ideas.

  • Analyze it from both your viewpoint and that of potential prospects’.

  • Analyze it relative to how you are handling the situation and how successful leaders in your industry are handling it.
  • Compare your success at it now with your success at it a year ago, two years ago, or even five years ago. Are you improving? If not, is this maybe one of the reasons you might be stuck in your progress?
  • Take into account all the factors, some of which you need to deal with to reach your goal, that you may have carelessly ignored before now.

“Opportunities to find deeper powers within ourselves come when life seems most challenging.”

The fourth step is to give the analytical half of your brain time to compute the pros and cons of the possible solutions.

Each time your subconscious pops a possible solution into your mind, jot it down and save it. Give your subconscious mind time to analyze the full scope of the situation.

“We choose to go...not because [it is] easy, but because [it is] hard, because that goal will serve to measure and organize the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win.”

The fifth step is taken one to three days after your brainstorming session.

Analyze your best options, while focusing on win-win solutions. This requires compassion, understanding, humility, and forgiveness so you can heal any broken relationships that may exist.

Using our business expansion challenge as an example, you may have had such responses as:

  • Strengthen your desire by focusing on your dream.
  • Make a list of opportunities to meet new people and schedule them into your planner.

  • Learn to meet new people and make more friends.

  • Explore continuing education opportunities in your industry to better prepare yourself to present what you have to offer in an appropriate, interesting way.

The sixth step and final step is the most obvious one: Choose what you believe is the best win-win solution and get behind it with dedicated, focused effort so you can make it work. Press forward with action, and have confidence in your ability to succeed while striving for an excellent result. But, if you don’t attain it, keep going. At the very least, you learned what doesn’t work and you can begin again, more intelligently, with increased vigor and renewed commitment.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

How To Build Confidence and Overcome Fear

“Confidence comes not from always being right but from not fearing to be wrong.”

“Count your blessings. Once you realize how valuable you are and how much you have going for you, the smiles will return, the sun will break out, the music will play, and you will finally be able to move forward the life that God intended for you with grace, strength, courage, and confidence.” Og Mandino

Yes, fear is real and we must recognize it exists before we can conquer it. Most fear today is psychological. Worry, tension, embarrassment, panic – all from mismanaged. Fear is success enemy number one. Fear stop people from capitalizing an opportunity, it wears down physical vitality, it make people sick, shorten life, closes your mouth when you want to speak.

Two step procedure to cure fear and win confidence:

  • Isolate your fear. Pin it down. Determine exactly what you are afraid of.
  • Then take action. There is some kind of action for any kind of fear.

Two Ways to put people in proper perspective:

  • The other fellow is important, you are important too. “We’re just two important people sitting down to discuss something of mutual interest and benefit.
  • Develop an understanding attitude.

Remember two short sentences when someone declares war on you. “Underneath he’s probably a very nice guy. Most folks are.” There is within us a desire to be right, think right and act right. When we go against that desire, we put a cancer in our conscience. This cancer grows and grows by eating away at our confidence. Avoid asking yourself “Will I get caught? Will they find out? Will I get away with it?” People who are shy in introducing themselves can replace this timidity with confidence just by taking three simple actions simultaneously. First: reach for other person’s hand and clasp it warmly, Second: look directly at the other person, Third: say I’m very glad to know you. This three will banish shyness. Confidence action produces confident thinking.

Confidence Building Exercise.

  • Be a front seater. Most folks scramble to sit in the back rows so they won’t be “too conspicuous” or lack confidence.
  • Practice making eye contact. Instinctively, you ask yourself questions about fellow who doesn’t look you in the eye. “What’s he trying to hide?, What’s he afraid of?, Is he trying to put something over on me?, Is he holding something back?”, or it may say “I feel weak besides you. I feel inferior to you, I’m afraid of you” or I feel guilty, I’ve done something or I’ve thought something that I don’t want you to know.” Make your eyes work for you. Aim them right at others eyes. It not only gives you confidence, it wins you confidence, too.
  • Walk 25% faster. Throw your shoulders back, lift up your head, move ahead just a little faster, and feel self-confidence grow.
  • Practice Speaking-up. Those who fail to participate thinks to himself: My opinion is probably worthless, If I say something, I’ll probably look foolish, I’ll just say nothing, besides, the others probably know more than I. I don’t want the others to know how ignorant I am. Each time we fail to speak – we take one more dose of confidence poison; we become less and less confidence of ourselves.

On the positive side: The more you speak up, the more you add to your confidence and the easier it to speak up the next time. Speak-up. It’s a confidence building vitamin. Make it a rule to speak up at every open meeting you attend, Speak-up and say something voluntarily at every business conference, committee meeting, community forum you attend. Make no exception. Comment, make a suggestion, ask a question and don’t be the last to speak. Try to be the ice breaker and never worry about looking foolish. You won’t.

  • Smile Big. Try to feel defeated and smile big at the same time. You can’t. A big smile gives you confidence. A big smile beats fear, rolls away worry, defeat despondency. Harness the power of smiling.
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