Nov 142019
 

At some point, we all make assumptions based on our expectations, preconceived beliefs and ideas. Most of the time, our conclusions are wrong and negatively impact our relationships, opportunities and possibilities. When you challenge your suppositions, you break through to a different perception, which allows for different results. Here are 3 steps to allow you to see more clearly.





Transcript:

Thank you for watching. I’m Linda-Ann Stewart, a vision strategist and I want to tell you a story about how assumptions can be damaging.

I once had a friend who would take the things I said the wrong way. If I said I preferred the color green over blue, she’d take it as an attack on her taste, because blue was her favorite color. If I shared some achievement or good news, she assumed I was putting her down.

This didn’t happen all the time, but when it did, I felt like I’d walked into an episode of the Twilight Zone. I’d be disoriented, trying to figure out how she could have misinterpreted what I said. And then I’d try to assure her I didn’t mean it the way she took it.

Unfortunately, that never worked. Because of this, the friendship eventually ended.

In hindsight, I realized that she was expecting me to attack her, so she took everything I said personally. The story she created around that became her reality. And nothing could convince her otherwise. Because she’d filtered what I said through the lens of her belief and her motivations, she couldn’t see me, or what I said, clearly.

We all do something similar, don’t we, at some time or another? When you make an assumption, you’re filtering what’s said or done through your own expectations and motivations. Your perception is muddied by your preconceived ideas and beliefs. And it generally causes to you to jump to an incorrect conclusion and then act on it, most of the time to your detriment. It could cost you friends, promotions, sales or your self-confidence.

Haven’t you ever leaped to a conclusion, discovered it was wrong, and then had to apologize for it? You weren’t seeing clearly through your filter. Here are 3 steps to see more clearly:

1. Start becoming aware of your assumptions, not only about other people and situations, but about yourself, too. Don’t believe everything you’re telling yourself about the situation, because it’s probably wrong.

2. Question whether there may be another explanation, one that may be as or more accurate or realistic than your conclusion. This allows you to catch those false perceptions before you act on them.

3. Challenge your suppositions and look for evidence that supports or disproves them. When you do, you begin to clear away your filters and perceive things more clearly. And this opens up more possibilities and opportunities for you, in all areas of your life. It may even save a friendship.

If you’d to achieve a 90-day goal more easily, download my free comprehensive Strategic Vision blueprint at www. Linda-AnnStewart.com/setyourcourse.html. You’ll receive the blueprint, as well as tips and directions about the 4 vital areas you need to address so you can accomplish your goal.

Thank you for watching. How can you be more mindful and present, and become aware of your assumptions?

Read the accompanying article, Assumptions Don’t Serve You.

Oct 102019
 

Stress and anxiety can quickly escalate and send you spiraling off course. But there’s a simple technique you can do in two minutes that will reduce stress, anxiety, and improve your overall health. Learn this technique and a couple of tips that will make it more effective so you’re able to stay on course and achieve your goals.





Transcript:

Thank you for joining me. I’m Linda-Ann Stewart and a vision strategist. I wanted to talk about a natural way to reduce stress and anxiety that takes about two minutes to begin working. Wouldn’t that be wonderful? I can attest that it does work.

Recently, I was scheduled for a medical appointment immediately after my regular checkup with my primary provider, making it a two-fer. But the later one had to be coordinated between two offices and there was some confusion between them. The morning of the appointments, I called to see if the confusion had been cleared up. It hadn’t. Great, huh?

After another couple of more calls, it still wasn’t handled. As you can imagine, I was getting more tense and anxious the closer the time came for me to leave, and still no resolution. My blood pressure and heartrate were soaring, just what you want before a checkup, right?

Finally, I made a call a few minutes before I was to leave for my regular medical checkup, planning on rescheduling the second appointment, but I discovered that it had finally be straightened out.. Whew! Except, I was sure my blood pressure was going to be through the roof when I saw my primary provider in about half an hour.

To lower my stress, my blood pressure and my heart rate, I sat and took long, slow, deep breaths for a couple of minutes. That’s about all the time I had before I had to leave. At my regular appointment, my blood pressure was within a couple of points of my normal. It was such a relief!

When you take long, slow, deep breaths, it releases chemicals that reverses the stress response, and it only takes a couple of minutes for it to happen. When I say deep breath, I don’t mean [raise shoulders and breathe]. That will actually increase the feelings of stress and anxiety.

Instead, breathe from your belly. Push your belly out as you breathe in. Then pull it in to force the air out. If you haven’t done this before, it feels counterintuitive and awkward. But it’s the way you breathe when you’re sleeping.

To best activate this relaxation response, breathe in to the count of 4, and breathe out to the count of 8. Just do that cycle 10 times, and you’ll start noticing you’re feeling calmer. It’s a physiological reaction.

To make it even more effective, breath in through your nose, and out through your mouth, as if you’re gently blowing out candles. It’s called “pursed lip” breathing and more efficiently empties the lungs. This allows more space for oxygen to enter when you inhale.

This breathing technique will allow you to think more clearly, to communicate better and make better decisions, improve your memory and immune system, reduce inflammation and symptoms of depression, in addition to easing stress and anxiety. It’s better than any pill. Just a minute of it will begin to ease performance anxiety.

I know it seems too easy, but try it. If you’re especially uptight, do the cycle, inhale 4, exhale 8, 25 times, which would be about 5 minutes. I know it works from my personal life, because this recent issue isn’t the only time I’ve used it. And I’ve also taught it to my clients, and it’s helped them stay on course to their goals.

If you’d like some help in getting on course and programming your business for success, apply for a Complimentary Coaching Consultation.

Thank you for watching. You have the ability to take charge of your stress and anxiety and have a more harmonious life. I hope you practice this technique for your health and well being. Take care.

Read the accompanying article, How to Stay On Course with Your Priorities.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

Self-Compassion Can Help Tame Your Inner Critic

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Sep 112019
 

When you make a mistake or mess up, you probably harshly judge and condemn yourself. This is your inner critic trying to motivate you to do better. But it generally makes things worse. To tame your inner critic, stop accepting what it says or fighting it. Instead, use self-compassion and be kind to yourself and that part of you. Here’s a three step strategy to defuse your inner critic and improve your relationship with yourself.



Transcript:

Thank you for watching. I’m Linda-Ann Stewart of Heartvision Consulting and a vision strategist. I’d like to give you a strategy that will help you improve your relationship with yourself and your ability to achieve your goals. It has to do with being kind or compassionate to yourself and your inner critic.

Unfortunately, when people do something less than perfect, they tend to judge, criticize and beat themselves up. Do you ever do that? Your inner critic is trying to whip you back into line, to motivate or protect you. But all those negative beliefs and labels you’ve given yourself surface, and make you feel lousy. Does it ever help? No, it doesn’t.

So how can you be compassionate with yourself and deal with the inner critic? Here’s a three step strategy to do so.

1. The first step is to pay attention when your inner critic starts its refrain, but refuse to buy into it. What it’s saying is generally not true. It’s just regurgitated stuff from the past, isn’t it? Just observe what you’re thinking and the feelings it dredges up. This is called being mindful. Not reacting to those ideas, just recognizing them.

2. Second step, acknowledge your inner critic and what it’s repeating. How could you be compassionate to this inner critic? Instead of fighting it, just say something like, “I understand what you’re trying to do.” Or “I know you think this is helpful, but it’s not.” One way is to talk to it like you would to a child who is verbally beating themselves up. Be kind.

3. Third step, be compassionate towards yourself. Say something like, “I messed up, but I’ll do better next time.” Or “I’m human and learning more every day.” Or “I had a moment of weakness. I’ll make a better choice next time.” What would you say to your best friend who’d made the kind of mistake you did? You’d be kind.

When you’re nice to yourself, you have more motivation to do and be better. You actually take more responsibility for your actions. Being compassionate towards yourself allows you to learn and make different choices next time. It will improve your self-image, your well being and your ability to achieve your goals.

If you’d to achieve a 90-day goal more easily, download my free comprehensive Strategic Vision Worksheet.

Thank you for watching. How can you be kinder towards yourself? Take care.

Read the accompanying article, Be Kind to Yourself for More Success.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

How You Can Get More Done in Less Time

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Aug 082019
 

When you try to stay focused for eight hours a day, you end up being exhausted. This decreases your productivity and efficiency. But placing your attention on one task at a time is the best way to get more done. Focused work is much more effective than distracted time or multitasking. Learn how you can focus more, while staying fresh and getting more done, more easily.



Transcript:

Thank you for joining me. I’m Linda-Ann Stewart of Heartvision Consulting. I’d like to give you a tip to maximize your productivity and efficiency through the effective use of focus. Being able to focus on one task or project at a time is a key to success. In fact, focused work is worth four hours of unfocused work. But staying focused for long periods of time is tiring, isn’t it?

You know that trying to pay attention to one thing for a 8 hours exhausts you and erodes your productivity, right? However, when you take breaks, it helps to refresh your mind and improve your efficiency. This is a bit counter-intuitive.

Research has shown that the most productive workers work 52 minutes on average, and then take a 17 minute break to recharge. Some can work more, some less. That’s why it’s an average.

And a break doesn’t mean doing something else on the computer, like checking into Facebook or watching videos on YouTube. It means taking an actual break, such as a short walk, getting some coffee, or reading a book. This gives the mind a breather. Shifting to something completely different.

If you have a hard time focusing for 52 minutes or thereabouts, work for 20-30 minutes or so, then take a shorter break, say 5 or 10 minutes.

Personally, I’ve found that taking a break every hour to hour-and-a-half works best for me. I’ve discovered that my attention begins to tire out after 90 minutes. It becomes harder for me to think. Since we know being sedentary is bad for you, I get up and walk around for a few minutes. This helps me get the kinks out and allows my mind to rejuvenate. When I get back to my computer, I’m ready to focus on my next task.

The longer you can concentrate on one item at a time, the more you’ll be able to get done in less time. That’s something to strive for, right? And you’ll be less fried at the end of the day. Not only will that help your work, it will improve the overall quality of your life.

If you’d like more tips on how to increase your productivity and accelerate your success, download my free guide, Take Control of Your Day

Thank you for watching. How can you schedule your focus time and your breaks into your day?

Read the accompanying article Are Distractions Sabotaging Your Success?

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

Planning for the Unexpected

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Jul 172019
 

Life doesn’t always flow smoothly. There are always bumps along the way. They can take you off track and make it difficult to get back on track afterwards. But there is something you can do to be proactive and keep yourself on course.



Transcript:

Thank you for watching. I’m Linda-Ann Stewart of Heartvision Consulting. When you set an intention and create a plan to achieve a goal or vision, you think you’re on the road to success, right? And if you follow your plan, you have a really good chance accomplishing it.

But unfortunately, your environment and life may lead you astray. Life Happens, doesn’t it? There are all sorts of distractions that can take you off course. Everything from an unexpected event, like oops, you forgot to put in that paperwork and have to carve out time from your busy schedule to do it. Or you could have a disaster like losing your phone, and with it all your contacts, photos, calendar. Or you could just be fatigued because you’ve worked (or played) so hard.

Things like this can knock you off course and make it hard to get back on track once they’ve been taken care of. They can throw you off your game, sabotage your progress, and make it difficult to get focused again.

But if you plan for them, deciding ahead of time how you’re going to handle unexpected situations, you’ll be able to stay on course. For instance, schedule empty time in your schedule each week for unexpected problems. With your phone, regularly back up everything on it. And figure out what automatic tasks you can perform when you’re tired. Think ahead.

I know you can’t predict all the specific unforeseen issues that can arise. But you can have a plan in place for how you’re going to stay on track during them or after they’re over. You don’t have to know the exact distraction, but you can know what to do when something comes up.

Because, life doesn’t always flow smoothly, does it? There are always going to be bumps and curves, but you can take them into account. You can plan for the expected unexpected circumstances. In this way, you stay in control and on course to whatever your goal or vision might be.

If you’d like some help in getting, and staying on course, and achieving your goals, apply for a complimentary coaching consultation.

Thank you for watching. What’s your plan to deal with the unexpected?

Read the accompanying article Set Yourself Up for Success.

3 Exercises to Improve Your Self-Image

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Jun 192019
 

Your self-image is about how you view yourself, and changes every day. You can affect it by the things about yourself that you focus on. When you pay attention to what’s right about you, you start making different decisions that increases your positive view of yourself. Here are 3 short, easy exercises to do that will help to improve your self-image.



Transcript:

Thank you for joining me. I’m Linda-Ann Stewart of Heartvision Consulting. I’d like to talk a little bit about your self-image and give you 3 easy exercises to improve it.

Your self-image is about how you view yourself, the image you have of yourself. It’s like a reflection in a mirror, but it’s not just about your physical appearance. It’s about who you are and how you interact with your environment.

Unfortunately, when your perception of yourself leans towards the negative, it can hold you back and sabotage your goals. But you already know that, right? The good news is that your self-image is malleable. It changes every day with your thoughts, choices and actions.

My tip to improve it has to do with focusing on what it is you like and appreciate about yourself. When you pay attention to what’s right about you, you start making different decisions that then increases your positive view of yourself.

So here are the three easy exercises to do to get you started.

1. Find one thing you like about yourself. It could be your appearance or one aspect of your appearance, like your hair. It could be that you’re organized, prompt, creative or responsible. What is it for you?

2. Identify one skill or ability you possess. This could be that you’re a good listener, a great cook, or an artist. And then describe how it’s affected you and others. What’s your skill or ability?

3. Remember one achievement you’ve had or time when you were successful.
Something that you’re proud of. It could be winning an award or just participating in a competition. It could a time when you were promoted or did a great job on a project. It doesn’t matter how big or small it might be in the scheme of things. What matters is how you feel about it. What have you accomplished that you’re proud of?

Write all of these in your phone, on an index card, or someplace where you see them often. Now, you can add items to each one, making a list to further boost your self-image, but I wanted to make it really easy to get you started.

When you begin to slip into a negative frame of mind about yourself, remember these three items. Your self-image will begin to improve because you’re paying more attention to what you appreciate about yourself than to what you don’t. And that can change your world.

If you’d like more tips on how to make your day flow more smoothly, download my free guide, Take Control of Your Day.

Thank you for watching. And remember to focus on what you appreciate about yourself. Take care.

Read the accompanying article, 5 Steps to Create a Greater Self-Image.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

Meditation to Train Yourself to Be Positive

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May 132019
 

Optimists aren’t born, they develop the skill over years. They choose to focus on the positive and not the negative. As they do, they develop the habit to look on the bright side. This meditation will help you shift from negative thinking to positive, and to consider the best outcome for you.



Transcript:

Thank you for joining me. I’m Linda-Ann Stewart of Heartvision Consulting. I’d like to share a short meditation with you to help you to train yourself to become more positive. Optimists aren’t born, they develop the skill over years. They choose to focus on the positive and not the negative.

As they do, they develop the habit to look on the bright side. They literally train themselves to seek out the benefit in every situation. What they seek, they tend to find, because they set their subconscious the task to find it. This meditation will encourage you to do that and establish a more positive direction for your thinking.

If you feel comfortable, just close your eyes. Take a deep breath and relax.

Just notice what thoughts are running through your mind right now? Just notice what they are. It may take a moment or two to catch them, because they generally run beneath your conscious awareness. Just allow one of them to surface. Are these thoughts supporting you and your endeavors? Or are they hindering you and holding you back?

If your thoughts aren’t supportive or helpful, don’t accept them simply because you’re thinking them. That doesn’t make them true. What ideas are the opposite of your unhelpful thoughts? What idea would be more positive and uplifting? Once you determine what it is, repeat the positive idea that would be more supportive.

Then, consider what the best outcome for your endeavors would be. Visualize it, using all your senses, feel it. You may become aware of your next step along the way. If there are any challenges in your path, you notice them, deal with them, and move on. You search for and find the best in every situation. You focus and act on the positive possibilities and opportunities.

Whenever the negative, unhelpful ideas surface, or you feel anxious or upset, you bring your attention back to the positive idea that’s more supportive. Focus on it. Repeat the positive idea to yourself and then visualize the best outcome and result.

Open your eyes.

When you practice this short meditation every day, you’ll start to retrain your mind and brain to be more positive all the time. This way of thinking will become a habit for you. And it’s not just your thinking that will be changed. When you’re more positive, you take more action, because you expect it to turn out in the best way possible. This empowers you to make a greater impact in your world.

If you’d like more tips on how to use visualization to make your day flow more smoothly, download my free guide, Take Control of Your Day.

Thank you for watching. What positive thought could you focus on right now? Take care.

Read the accompanying article, How to Train Yourself to be More Positive.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

3 Tips to Handle Obstacles

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Apr 182019
 

Most people spin off course when an obstacle arises. They don’t seek for the core of the problem and just react. This can make it worse. But you can take charge and discover a lasting solution. Learn what to ask yourself to get yourself back on course.



Transcript:

Thank you for watching. I’m Linda-Ann Stewart, a vision strategist. Today, I’d like to give you 3 tips on how to take charge and handle obstacles. If you don’t know what to do when trouble arises, it can send you spinning off course, can’t it?

Unfortunately, when most people hit an obstacle, they aren’t even sure what the problem is. They just look at what’s obvious and don’t investigate any further, right? This generally won’t solve the problem and may just get you in deeper.

So your first step is to discover what the obstacle actually is. Don’t just react or you could make it worse. Ask yourself if the problem is what’s showing up, like miscommunication, or if it’s a deeper, systemic issue? Keep digging until you identify the core of the obstacle. Once you do, you’ll be able to find creative solutions that will last.

Second, take responsibility for your part in contributing to the obstacle. Sometimes you have had a part in creating it, and sometimes you haven’t. But you still have responsibility to contribute to the solution. Ask yourself these questions, “What could I have done differently to prevent it?” and “What can I do differently from this point on to improve the result?” The answers you come up with will help prevent similar issues from arising.

Third, ask yourself, “What can I learn from this?” Because there’s always something for you to learn to use in the future. This is how we grow, develop and gain experience. If you don’t learn from it, you’ll continue to repeat the pattern, and I don’t think you want that, do you? When you’ve determined what you’ve learned, you can put it into practice.

These 3 tips will get you back on course. About 85% of your success is due to your mindset, which affects how you respond to life and to challenges. By taking charge when an obstacle arises, you empower yourself to work through it and become more successful.

If you’d like more tips on how to increase your productivity and accelerate your success, download my free guide, Take Control of Your Day.

Thank you for watching. Can you commit to putting these tips into action in your life?

Read the accompanying article How Accountability Can Increase Your Success.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

How to Build Your Momentum to Achieve Your Goal

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Mar 202019
 

Taking action towards a goal causes you to feel a sense of satisfaction and well being. This is due to a physiological response. When you harness that process, you’re able to build your momentum, just like a train pulling out of the station. Learn how the process works and use it to consistently achieve your goals.



Transcript:

Thank you for watching. I’m Linda-Ann Stewart, a vision strategist coach and I want to share a coaching tip with you to help you achieve your goals, vision and dream more easily. I’m sure you have a goal you want to accomplish. Do you work towards it every day? Or do other matters get in the way?

Working on achieving a goal encourages you because you feel a sense of satisfaction when you do. Taking action towards it triggers areas in the brain that release chemicals causing you to feel good. When you accomplish one step towards a goal, it triggers that release of pleasure chemicals.

Think of how you felt when you made a step in the direction of a goal. Didn’t you get a bit of a glow of well being? That’s the brain rewarding you for what you’ve done.

And because you feel good, it causes you to repeat the process, right? You want to feel good again. As you take another step, you get that sense of fulfillment. It’s said that a body in motion tends to stay in motion, right? In this case, it’s also that the more actions you take, the better you feel, because of your brain chemistry.

So here’s your coaching tip. If you want to build momentum, and trigger the brain’s reward circuit, take some action towards your goal, even if it’s just for 5 minutes. Even if it’s just one minor thing. It doesn’t matter how small the step, the brain rewards big and small accomplishments alike. The sense of joy and pride will encourage you to do more. And very soon, you’ll have achieved that goal and reached that dream, by using your brain chemistry to motivate you and build your momentum.

If you’d like some help in getting on course and achieving your goals, apply for a complimentary coaching consultation.

Thank you for watching. What one step can you take today that will trigger your brain’s reward circuit? Make sure that that step is one that takes you in the direction of your goal. Take care.

Read the accompanying article 4 Reasons Why You Don’t Pursue Your Dream (and What to Do About Them).

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

2 Simple Ways to Calm Stress

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Feb 202019
 

When you feel rushed, pressured or overwhelmed, it triggers the stress response in your body and mind. You act reflexively and can’t think clearly. Learn a couple of very simple tips on how to reverse the stress response and be able to respond more effectively.



Transcript:

Thank you for joining me. I’m Linda-Ann Stewart, a vision strategist coach with a coaching tip for you. Do you ever get rushed or pressured? I’m sure you do, what with everything you have to handle in a day. I want to share a couple of simple techniques that can ease that pressure and improve your ability to handle your challenges.

When you feel anxious or overwhelmed, it triggers the stress response, otherwise called the fight or flight response. You’ve heard of this, right? And when you’re stressed, you can’t think creatively or resourcefully or plan effectively.

Your choices are limited to simply reacting to whatever is happening in that moment. And when you react impulsively, it may not be the best way to handle the situation. Have you ever snapped at someone and then regretted it? That’s what I’m talking about. It’s a reflex.

The remedy is to reverse the stress response. To activate the opposite response. And it’s really simple. Before you react to a situation, or when you need to slow down, stop. Take a few long, slow, deep breaths. This calms the stress response down and allows you to think more clearly. It gives you more resources to handle whatever the situation might be.

And your second tip, wait about 10 seconds to gather your thoughts and before you make a decision or respond to the situation. Remember your mom telling you to count to 10? Well, she was right. This engages the executive center of your brain, the part of you that thinks things through and manages your emotions. You can then make more informed decisions that will bring you better results.

I know these seem too easy to be effective. But they’re natural remedies for when you’re stressed. The fun is trying to remember to do them when you’re stuck in “go, go, go” mode. When you do use them, you’re going to notice a difference.

If you’d like more tips on how to make your day flow more smoothly, download my free guide, Take Control of Your Day.

Thank you for watching. I’d love to hear how these two simple tips work for you. Take care.

Read the accompanying article, The Hurrier You Go, The Behinder You Get.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart