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Have you ever taken the blame game relationship quiz? Ever give this test to someone else? It never seems like much fun for anyone, does it? How would you like stop playing “Who’s Right, Who’s Wrong” game, once and for all? If so, here you’ll find five practical steps for creating those magical relationships of co-creation and abundance you’ve always wanted. Discover relationship advice that opens the door to mutual respect, enhanced intimacy and cooperation in all your important relationships.
How often do you notice people playing this: “I’m Right, You‘re Wrong” game? Have you ever wondered why this is so common, especially in more intimate relationships? This problem begins by our culture training us to focus on right-wrong thinking.
The good news is that you can unlearn this power-over approach, and start having more genuine cooperation in your relationships. Sound good? Then please keep reading. Just ahead you’ll find five steps to open the doors that lead beyond “Us Against Them” thinking and into the power of “WE.”
Our life journey has included years of “Us vs. Them” training. Growing up, each step along the way we heard: “It’s a dog-eat-dog world,” “Look out for number one,” “Watch your back,” and other such expressions. These created strong mental habits which govern our thinking as well as our actions. Even in our most loving and trusting relationships, we often end up playing the good-bad, right-wrong games.
One of the essential skills we all learned is how to prove we are right and defend against being proven wrong. This has become very deeply ingrained. It won’t change overnight, and it won’t change just by “wanting” it to.
The only way to begin shifting this way of thinking is to learn something new: skills and understandings that open the door to new possibilities. Your desire for more co-creative relationships is what prepares you to use the first step.
Step 1 - INTENTION
Are you clear about your intentions? Do you know the difference between a strategy and an intention? Knowing this difference is essential. Without this you tend to get stuck wanting other people to agree with your strategies. This can leave people feeling closed and defensive. Even worse, being attached to one particular strategy dramatically limits your opportunities to be satisfied.
One strategy = One opportunity.
On the other hand, a strategy-free intention describes only what you value and the qualities you want to experience in a situation. Starting with pure intention like this is necessary when creating outcomes that will satisfy everyone. Identifying a clear, strategy-free intention is also essential for using the next step.
Step 2 - ALIGNMENT
Is everyone on the same page? Do you want similar results? Establishing alignment is the second step to successful co-creation. In life, we go about our own lives, trying to achieve our own goals, yet we are all still interconnected. This puts limits on how far we can get in achieving our own results without cooperation.
The process of creating alignment starts by getting clear about what is important to everyone. It’s co-creating a shared vision of success. Beginning by learning alignment paves the way for easy agreements and abundant results, which produces far greater satisfaction for everyone. You need alignment to use the next step.
Step 3 - NEGOTIATION
Will you take everyone’s needs into consideration? Will you keep at it until everyone is satisfied? Understanding the difference between negotiation and compromise plays a big part in being willing and able to stick with the process.
Compromise is the way of an “Us Against Them” world. It begins by identifying what everyone wants. Then you see who’s willing to give up parts of what they want until everyone can live with what’s left. This results from having your attention focused on lack, limitation, and fear. It’s based in the belief that there isn’t enough to go around, so you have to settle for or take whatever you can get.
Negotiation is the way in an abundant world. It begins by identifying what everyone values and what is missing for them. Then, while you keep your attention focused on everyone’s values, strategies will emerge that make it possible for everyone to be satisfied, without any compromise needed. Once everyone is satisfied with the strategies, you‘re ready to use step number four.
Step 4 - AGREEMENT
What’s the plan? What needs to happen and who’s willing to do what? After everyone’s had their say, people often people think they’ve made agreements. In reality they’ve only expressed vague understandings of what they want, and how they would like that to happen.
Co-creation relies on your ability to make clear, doable requests that lead to definite agreements. Powerful agreements are specific about who, what, when, where, and how. They include a positive confirmation of each person’s willingness to do their part.
Explicit agreements increase your effectiveness and everyone’s satisfaction. Once you’ve made your powerful agreements you‘re all set for step number five.
Step 5 - ACCOUNTABILITY
Will your agreements continue to work for everyone? Will they create the results you want? Without accountability you can’t know if your agreements are actually working. If you wait to find out they aren’t working, you may have already built up dangerous levels of frustration, resentment, and resignation.
You create accountability by setting specific times to review how well your agreements are working, and schedule discussions to see what changes might be needed.
These accountability meetings will allow you to continue practicing the 5 steps of co-creation.
1 - Do you still have a clear INTENTION?
2 - Are you still in ALIGNMENT?
3 - Do you need more NEGOTIATION?
4 - Is it time to make new AGREEMENTS?
5 - How will you ensure ongoing ACCOUNTABILITY?
Accountability is the final step that opens the doors to the co-creative power of “WE.”
Now you have all five steps that open the doors improved communication, enhanced intimacy, and genuine partnerships. We hope you choose to learn more about these five steps and commit to practicing them in all of your important relationships.
If you are ready to find out about other relationship, communication, and intimacy enhancing tools and techniques, including additional self helptips, sign up for our thought-provoking and motivational Weekly Action Tips eMail series at: http://www.FocusedAttention.com
Each tip offers real world advice for creating and maintaining the relationships that you’ve always wanted.
Or visit us at: http://www.NewAgeSelfHelp.com
End your “pursuit of happiness” by discovering the art of “having happiness now.” Has it ever seemed to you that: relationships are free but happiness is sold separately? Learn why authentic happiness is a choice you can start making today, and discover how to start finding the happiness you‘re looking for just one step away.
Would you like to be 100% happier than you are now? How about 1,000% happier? What stands between you and having greater happiness now? Read on to see how you can discover the happiness you‘re looking for in your life. It’s just one step away.
Have you ever noticed how often people rely on others in their pursuit of happiness? How they expect someone else to make them happy? You might hear people say things like: “If only he would be nicer.” “Didn’t she know that would hurt my feelings?” “I would be happy if he would only talk to me more.”
When people have this idea in their head they can spend a lot of time figuring out how to fix or change other people.
What’s the trouble if you try this strategy? Not only do the other people feel irritated, they often get defensive at your attempt to “FIX” them. And it leaves you powerless. If THEY don’t change, YOU can’t be happy.
But even more important is that, since what you focus your attention on grows, focusing on what you don’t like will cause it to become what you notice most in your life.
Say, for example, when your significant other comes home they often leave a trail with their clothes, bags, books, whatever, strewn throughout the house. It drives you nuts! Every time you look at the residue of stuff they leave behind them, you feel irritated.
This has gone on for so long that now you notice every little piece of debris, everywhere you look, all the time.
And what you focus your attention on grows.
Perhaps you say something like this to them: “Can’t you pick up after yourself? You are such a slob.”
It’s probably not the first time you’ve talked about the clothes on the floor. And probably not much has changed since that first time. So what happens next?
The person leaving the clothes around probably gets annoyed at being told what to do. You lose hope that things will ever change. And you focus more and more on what you don’t enjoy about your partner.
Remember, what you focus your attention on grows!
So here it is, the step that will move you closer to being happier than ever before: Develop YOUR ability to focus your attention on what you ENJOY.
Maybe this sounds too simple. But ask yourself: “What would my day be like if I started and ended it by simply noticing or remembering everything that I enjoy in my life?”
Remember, what you focus your attention on grows. Focus on what you enjoy - it’s quite simply the fastest, easiest step you can take to start finding happiness in every moment.
Try this. Pretend that you have an emotional bank account. Every one of your thoughts makes a deposit. This means that if you‘re constantly depositing painful memories in your emotional bank account, they will grow and grow.
They’ll even start multiplying if you‘re using the law of compound interest. What’s this? It’s compounding the effect of thoughts like: “What a slob!” with more thoughts like: “She doesn’t care about me.” or “He’s the most selfish person I’ve ever met.”
Now, do you feel happy?
Now imagine that each day, you look for things that you enjoy, and you are thankful for them.
Your significant other comes into the house and smiles. Is that something to be thankful for? They ask you if you would like a cup of tea. Is that something to be thankful for? You see them put something away, without being asked. Is that something to be thankful for?
Now imagine depositing these memories in your emotional bank account, day after day. And compound them with as many other thankful, grateful thoughts as you can so they grow and grow. “It’s lovely when he brings me tea; he’s so considerate sometimes.” “I’m so glad we like doing things together.” “We just have so much in common; she is so much fun to be with”
How do you feel now?
Happy or sad, good or bad, pleasure or pain - authentic happiness is up to you. Focus on what you enjoy. Enjoy being thankful. It’s something anyone can do, even you.
What you focus your attention on will grow. You do have an emotional bank account so start saving your happiness up today. With a bank-full of thankful, you’ll be a master at the art of “having happiness now.”
Are you ready to embrace happiness? If so, it's time to discover some of the other effective personal growth that we offer. Sign up for our thought-provoking and motivational Weekly Action Tips eMail series today at: http://www.FocusedAttention.com
Each tip provides practical advice for putting yourself on the path to true happiness and understanding.
Or for more on this topic visit our blog at: http://www.newageselfhelp.com/main/knowing-yourself-loving-yourself
Do you go out of your way to avoid conflicts and face-to-face confrontation? Would you like to create a more respectful space in these critical situations? If so, read on and you’ll discover more than just a new conflict management skills. Here you’ll find the confidence to stand your ground and resolve even the most difficult situations so you can finally start experiencing the joy of creating solutions that satisfy everyone involved.
If you‘re like most people you often avoid conflict at all costs. Do you hate the tension and worry you feel when a confrontation is looming? And what about the bad feelings that linger long after a confrontation is over? It’s no wonder people try to avoid face-to-face confrontations. But what if you could change all that? In this article you’ll discover three secrets for avoiding confrontation and feeling more comfortable and confident when other people feel dissatisfied or upset.
“How can I avoid confrontation?”
First, it’s important to really understand what confrontation is. Webster’s defines it as: “a discord resulting from a clash of ideas or opinions.” Confrontation happens anytime people are opposed to each other’s opinions or goals. Confrontations don’t happen simply because people have different ideas, opinions, or goals, because there will always be others who have differing ideas and goals! Confrontation only happens when people see these as “opposing” ideas or think that these ideas “clash.”
So, Secret Number One for avoiding confrontation is: Stop trying to avoid it! Why? It’s inevitable. You can greatly reduce your tension about confrontation if you simply stop putting so much energy into worrying about confrontation happening.
Which leads us to Secret Number Two: Redefine “confrontation!” Since people will always have differing opinions, the only way to truly prevent or avoid a “confrontation” is to look at it from a different perspective.
First, you need to realize that what you‘re avoiding isn’t really conflict or confrontation. What you‘re avoiding is how you’ll feel if:
* You hear Judgments from others or yourself
* You‘re not being able to get what’s Important to You
* You lose the Relationship
* or . . .
There are any number of other outcomes that you might fear will result from a confrontation. Continuing to see confrontation as something to be avoided keeps you in a state of fear, which stimulates your “flight or fight” reflex. That’s why you want to have no part in it.
Here’s another definition of “confrontation:” to bring face-to-face. Once you accept that some people will always have different opinions than you, then you can relax and be open to the opportunities to meet them face-to-face.
When you learn to handle confrontation creatively, instead of defending your position or attacking the other person, you can begin to explore the situation and discover a meeting of minds that is satisfying for everyone. You can start by keeping this question in mind: “When I meet someone with a different point of view, how can I handle it creatively and grow from it?”
By avoiding confrontation you are also dodging opportunities for learning, cooperation, and personal growth, because these are the benefits from truly meeting someone face-to-face. By learning to successfully explore differences you can reduce your fear about people having different opinions or their dissatisfaction.
“But, what can I do if all that occurs to me is running for the hills?”
You can begin by using those uncomfortable feelings as warning signals. As soon as you notice you are feeling tense or upset, we suggest you stop for a moment and then choose to adopt the mindset of an explorer. Two things are necessary to be an explorer: you first have to believe there is something worth discovering, and then you must be committed to discovering it.
Columbus knew that India was the source of precious spices and other valuable goods, and he believed he could find a shorter route to the Indies by ship. His belief and commitment gave him the courage to explore uncharted territory.
That’s what we mean by an exploring mindset: that you are committed to making discoveries intended to create satisfying results for everyone involved. When facing a confrontation, the belief that you can create results that are satisfying for everyone can give you the courage to explore different solutions.
“But how can I come up with a solution that is satisfying for everyone?”
Use Secret Number Three: Focus on values! The only way to achieve a solution that is satisfying for everyone is to discover what people value. But their values are often hidden by their opinions and complaints.
Just like Columbus kept his focus on the western horizon, you navigate through your conversation while keeping your focus on mutually satisfying solutions, and your commitment to explore everyone’s values.
Think of a confrontation as a treasure map, a map that can guide you across a sea of uncertainty and different opinions. Through persistence you can discover a magnificent treasure of values that were hidden just over the horizon of dissatisfaction and complaints. Discovering what everyone values can give you the clarity you need to negotiate strategies that will satisfy everyone involved.
Here’s a truth you can use as a compass to direct your course: anything people do or say is always because they value something or they are trying to meet some need. The ability to accurately identify what everyone values and needs is essential for creating satisfying outcomes.
Unfortunately, few of us were taught how to figure out what we deeply value or were encouraged to identify our needs. This takes patience and practice, but once you learn these skills you’ll know it’s possible to achieve solutions that are satisfying for everyone. These skills can give you the courage to continue on your adventure and explore uncharted territory.
Are you ready to start exploring? The life you choose begins here:
Sign up for our thought-provoking and motivational Weekly Action Tips eMail series at: http://www.NewAgeSelfHelp.comand uncover a valuable set of self improvement skills for creating cooperation in any situation you face.
Each tip offers practical advice for creating and living the life you really want.
Or visit us at: http://www.FocusedAttention.com
What’s missing in most “anger management,” and “anger control,” techniques?” Well, they miss the upside of anger: how to use your anger to create the life you truly want. No, is not about becoming that “angry man” or “angry woman” who scares people into submission. Here you’ll find something much more enjoyable: the secrets for getting to the heart of anger and a simple process for using your anger to create a truly satisfying life.
Do you ever feel guilty or confused when you get angry? Do you look for reasons that justify your anger? Anger is not the problem. And guess what, neither are you. You heard right. Anger is not the problem. The problem is not being able to identify what it is that makes you angry so you can do something about it. Read on to discover how you can get the heart of anger so you can use your anger to help create the life you really want.
"What makes me so angry?"
We usually become angry because two things are happening. First, we believe that someone or something is preventing us from getting what we want. Second, we believe that something either should or should not be happening the way it is. This thinking focuses our attention entirely on limitation and fear.
Think about it, if all of your attention is focused on not getting what you want, and what should or shouldn’t happen, how would you expect to feel? Is it any wonder this kind of thinking results in stress, tension, and confusion? How else would you feel but angry?
When you learn that all anger comes from focusing your attention on these things, then your anger can become a warning bell that you need to re-focus your attention. So that’s the upside of anger: it’s always a reminder to focus your attention on creating the life you want.
Here’s an example: Pat was waiting for Leslie at their favorite restaurant. They agreed to meet at 7:15. After waiting for 20 minutes, Pat began to feel a little angry. “Leslie knows I hate waiting. We had an agreement. How selfish ... Not even a phone call to explain ... I’m only waiting another five minutes and then I’m leaving ...” Pat thought. And the more Pat had these thoughts, the angrier Pat felt.
Let’s explore these thoughts that made Pat so angry. It sounds like Pat believes that Leslie should not be late if they had an agreement, that the evening would be ruined by Leslie’s late arrival and that if people really cared about each other they would call and explain the sudden change in plans.
When you focus your attention on limitations and fear as Pat did, anger is an understandable response.
"Then what do you suggest I focus my attention on?"
We believe that lying beneath people’s anger are things they value that are missing in the situation. The most effective way we’ve found to move from feeling angry to creating a satisfying life is to start by figuring out what’s at the heart of anger - what we value. In this situation one thing Pat may highly value is peacefulness. So what prevents Pat from being peaceful in this situation? It may be that Pat needs more predictability in order to have a sense of peacefulness.
Once you know what you need, you‘re able to take action to get those needs met. As one example, Pat may want to make an agreement with Leslie to call if either of them will be late.
"So, how can I use this in my life?"
The most effective “anger management” starts with understanding that anger is not the problem. Next you can begin to notice the very first moment when you start to feel tense or irritated. This is the best time to use your anger as an alarm bell, warning you to shift your focus of attention. Then you single out any should/shouldn’t, judgment type statements you hear yourself thinking.
Once you have a statement to work with, you get to the heart of anger by exploring each of these statements. You discover the hidden values within it, like how Pat values peacefulness. When you identify what you value, you ask yourself the question: “What do I need in order to experience what I value right now in this situation?” Like Pat’s need for predictability. Then think of some ways you might be able to get that need met and start to experience what you value. The same way Pat and Leslie agreed to call if they will be late.
Don’t look back in anger at what’s just happened; look ahead to see how you can get what you need so you will start experiencing what you value. When you focus your attention on what you value, what you need, and how you‘re going to get those needs met, anger can be transformed into an opportunity to create a truly enjoyable life where you experience what you truly value.
If you're ready for more effective anger management skills and other personal growthcoaching, sign up for our thought-provoking and motivational Weekly Action Tips eMail series at: http://www.FocusedAttention.com
Each tip offers practical advice for creating and living the life you really want.
Or visit us on our blog at: http://www.NewAgeSelfHelp
Are there some relationships in your life that just take more work to maintain than you‘re enjoying? Do you find yourself wanting to be compassionate and be able to listen in a caring way but it’s just not supporting you and the kind of life you want to have? We agree that nurturing love and respect is an all-important task in creating healthy family relationships or any relationships for that matter. But what happens when one party isn't cooperating? How is it possible to get along and create a healthy relationship when one person refuses to, or for some reason can't, put forth the effort to cooperate in the process?
How do you create love and respect in a relationship when the other person isn’t supporting the process? If you‘re like most people, you care a great deal about the people you‘re in some kind of relationship with. You might want to be compassionate and be able to listen to them in a caring way, but it might seem like the other person isn’t trying to help the situation or that they‘re being negative or interacting in less than productive ways. Does any of this sound familiar? If so you‘re probably feeling confused, frustrated, and perhaps even guilty about not being able to be nicer to this person you care about.
We believe these feelings come from misunderstanding the true meanings of compassion and caring. Here's what we mean: in many people’s minds empathy and compassion are often associated with self-sacrifice or selflessness. People think that if you are a compassionate person you ALWAYS behave compassionately and are able to listen caringly – no matter how you feel. This can be especially difficult when embroiled in a relationship that is creating hurt feelings and other kinds of emotional pain.
The notion that one should be selfless and just sacrifice their feelings for the sake of getting along is far from the truth as we see it. Most people want to cultivate compassion and learn empathic listening to enhance their relationships, to create closeness and understanding. This can only happen when you actually want to do this, when empathizing with the other person is the most wonderful thing you can imagine doing in that moment.
Also, empathy is not just something we offer other people. We find that many people don’t understand how to use self-empathy – listening caringly to yourself. Yet it’s a vital ingredient in learning to understand yourself in order to stay true to what’s most important to you. And these are essential building blocks for creating closeness and understanding with others.
Empathy from hell is not beneficial
If you attempt to listen empathically to another person when you would much rather be doing something else, two things are likely to happen. First, you’ll probably feel resentment and become judgmental about that person and their behavior. This happens because you‘re not being honest with yourself; you’d rather be doing something else but because of some idea that you should listen compassionately to this person no matter what, you go against your own desires.
When this happens, it is easy to begin blaming them for the lack of happiness you feel with thoughts such as, if they would only ... stop complaining, think positively, get a different job, stop being so negative, get some friends ... or any number of other ideas you believe would help the relationship.
Second, whenever you listen to someone with these kinds of negative thoughts running around in your head, they are sure to detect the resentment and judgmental attitude sooner or later. This will create just the opposite of the understanding and closeness you hope for and will continue to tear down any hope of a healthy, happy relationship.
Following, NOT sacrificing, your feelings
In dealing with a situation like this start by giving yourself permission NOT to empathize, not to just throw your emotional pain out the window in the spirit of self sacrifice. Be honest with yourself about how you feel and what’s most important to you in each moment. Never attempt to be empathetic unless it’s the most wonderful thing you can imagine doing in that moment.
We suggest you start using your emotions as your guide in knowing when to empathize and when to step away. Being true to what would give you joy in the moment is one of the most important first steps you can take not only to get along, but to create the closeness and understanding you want.
When you begin to be more honest with yourself about how you are and what you want, it’s easier to accept others as they are. This is the key to saving your relationship if it's lacking love and respect. Practicing this requires many more understandings and skills than we can go into here. However, we would like to offer you two practical exercises we believe will improve a situation in which one party is not able to cooperate in the way you want them to.
Since we‘re positive that What You Focus Your Attention on Grows, we recommend you begin making lists of the other party's positive qualities, the things you enjoy about them, what you are grateful for about them. These can be things from the past or present, and nothing is too small to include.
When you’ve completed the initial list, any time you feel uncomfortable or hear yourself beginning to judge the other person, take out your list and read it. When you‘re done reading it, add at least one more thing to the list.
Cultivate more joy in your life. To do this you must be very clear about what is most important to you. You can download our free *Values Exercise as a starting place. Use this exercise to discover what you value most deeply in specific situations – what qualities bring joy to your life. Once you do the exercise and have narrowed your list of values down to the three qualities that would bring you the most joy in your current situation, come up with at least two things that you can start doing right now that will help you experience more of these qualities in your life. http://www.focusedattention.com/store/thankyou/free_Values_Exercise_registration.htm
For example, if you do the values exercise and find that connection with people brings you a lot of joy, you might come up with a list of friends you can call when you‘re not able to get the quality of connection you want from the troubling relationship. If you find that play and exercise are important, plan ways you can have more play or exercise with your children or friends.
This shift in your relationship starts when you realize that your happiness does not depend on others' actions and that you can stay true to yourself and find alternative ways to experience what you value. We are confident that this shift will help you have less resentment and dissatisfaction, will greatly improve your ability to be compassionate and listen emphatically, and boost the love and respect of experience in all your relationships.
So let’s recap:
1. Pay more attention to how you are and what you want most (Practice Self Empathy).
2. Focus more on what you can be grateful for about the other party.
3. Take responsibility for bringing the qualities that cultivate joy into your life.
Practice makes perfect, but these techniques are only the beginning of your journey toward developing healthy, happy relationships. If you‘re looking for honest and practical
relationship advicethat supports a healthy lifestyle, sign up for our thought-provoking and motivational Weekly Action Tips eMail series at: http://www.FocusedAttention.com
Each tip offers real world advice for creating and maintaining the relationships that you’ve always wanted.
Or visit us at: http://www.NewAgeSelfHelp.com
In trying to keep up with this world’s increasingly fast pace, it’s easy to lose sight of what’s important. Perhaps you live day-to-day, task-to-task without the balance in your life that keeps what’s most important to you in the forefront. How do you live your life productively and also maintain the delicate “yin and yang” between what has to be done and what’s fun for you to do? Do you want the kind of time management skills that might actually change your life forever? Read on to discover effective ways you can create a more balanced life.
Most people start exploring the matter of balance in their life by talking about a work-life balance. For instance, is my work life taking away from having completely fulfilling relationships with loved ones? How do I know if I’m devoting enough time and energy to these relationships? But what other areas of your life don’t seem balanced?
This idea of work-life balance, begs another question: What are we really balancing between? Is our work-life not a part of our life-life? Often, that uncomfortable feeling related to this matter of living a balanced life stems from a lack of clarification regarding what you value most. Without this identification, it’s nearly impossible to begin truly balancing your life.
Are You Bogged Down Carrying an Ideal that Isn't Yours?
So, the first thing we suggest you ask yourself is whether there truly is a lack of balance. Or is it possible that you have an idealized mental image about a balance life that you aren’t living up to? We don’t presume that one of these is more true for you than the other. But the steps to take care of the issue would be very different depending upon which case most resembles your own.
What do we mean by an idealized mental image? It seems that the majority of personal growth coaches have their own prescriptions for just exactly what balance means. These folks have developed all sorts of pie charts, star diagrams, graphs, and worksheets that define the different areas of your life, and then show you how to rate yourself in each area. They also suggest it’s best to make sure you score evenly in each area.
When we did one of the above-mentioned balance exercises, we realized that when we mapped out the number of hours a day we spend doing all the different things that keep us busy, we don’t schedule a lot of time to get together with friends and just hang out, have long phone conversations, go out to dinner, or have barbecues at the beach. We spend some time doing this, but not an “equal” amount of time.
We started experiencing this nagging idea that somehow we “should” be doing these kinds of things because we weren’t scoring very well on the balance chart in the area of “friends and socializing.” And if we were scoring low in this area, we were concerned that our life was somehow “out of balance.”
But the thing is, the longer we considered this, the more we realized it wasn’t really creating any “problem” in our life, nor did we feel any discomfort in the moments we were engaged in our business activities.
In fact, we realized that since our “work” is our passion, we couldn’t imagine trading this for time doing something that would be “less fun” in those moments. We found that the balance we’ve achieved between these activities suits us, even though they are not “equal.”
Time Management = Don't Fix It If It Ain't Broke!
We‘re not much for a one-size-fits-all mentality so we believe that the best way for a person to determine if they have “balance” in their lives is to see whether or not they‘re “falling down.” Of course we don’t mean that you‘re literally falling down. But if you‘re not giving enough attention to an area of your life that’s truly important to you, it’s our experience that you‘re going to end up having some problems in that area.
So the next time you have any nagging doubt about whether or not you have a balanced life—stop. Don’t start fixing something unless it’s broken. Ask yourself, “Are there areas of my life that I’m having problems?” If you discover you‘re not giving enough attention to an area of your life that’s truly important to you, then this is an area you would do well to devote more attention to.
On the other hand, we ask that you consider whether it’s possible that, like us, the nagging doubt about having “balance” is really holding on to someone else’s ideal that you’ve adopted along the way, and there really is nothing “wrong” here?
You are the only true authority in your life! The most effective time management system begins with the idea that you only invest your time in the things that are most important to you.
How to Manage Your Time to Create Your Best Life
When you ask yourself the question “Are there are areas of my life that are having problems?” you may discover that your intimate relationships are falling down, that having deep, and caring connections are truly lacking for you in your life, or that you‘re not having enough alone time to actually relax and rejuvenate.
This is where the new time management system comes in. if you discover areas that are falling down, you begin exploring the ways you are actually spending your time now and what has you spend your time there. This exploration allows you to begin making conscious choices about how you spend your time – turning off autopilot and turning on your inner pilot.
When you delve into this area, you may find you‘re spending some of your time doing things that you aren’t really enjoying in some moments. If so, you may want to ask yourself if you‘re doing those things because you “want to” or because you think you “have to.”
If it’s because you think you “have to,” then we suggest you start keeping a close eye on how much you‘re enjoying how you‘re spending your time. Start figuring out how much you value each of the activities that fill up your days. At that point it shouldn’t be too hard for you to determine which things you would be willing to spend less time doing.
New Strategies for a Truly Balanced Life
Your next step would be to come up with specific strategies for doing less of what you enjoy doing least. You can fill this newly freed-up time with what’s missing for you now, such as activities that offer the opportunity for caring connections with people. Then it’s simply a matter of committing to these new strategies. You‘re in control of how you live your life, and getting a handle on attaining what’s important to you will change your life forever.
If you would like some help with this, you can download our complementary value-based activity spreadsheet on our website at: http://www.focusedattention.com/store/thank-you/free_Activity_Spreadsheet_registration.htm?s=fai
You may notice that it really doesn’t matter if you find you‘re being nagged by some adopted ideal, or if something truly is missing. Either way, the first step in beginning to have more of what you want in your life is to figure out what is truly important to you. Then let go of anyone else’s idea of what “should” be important to you. And the surest way we know for you to find what’s important to you is to do what feels best to you in every moment.
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Once you’ve identify what you enjoy and what you don’t, you can begin balancing your life by focusing more on the areas you enjoy and doing less of those things you don’t. If you can accomplish this, or even just begin to practice it, this will certainly change your life for the better as it will lead to achieving balance that’s tailored to you and your personal values.
If you want more innovative solutions for creating a satisfying life or discover other self improvementtips tools and strategies, sign up for our free thought-provoking, motivational Weekly Action Tips eMail series at: http://www.FocusedAttention.com
Each tip offers practical advice for creating and living the life you really want.
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