Oct 172017
 

Do you sometimes leap into a situation before you look at it? Does it ever turn out as you hoped? If you think about the action you’re going to take before you commit to it, you’ll get better results. Discover what you can do to improve your results and some questions to ask that can lead you in that direction.



Transcript:

Do you sometimes jump into a situation before you’ve had time to assess it? How often does that turn out the way you hoped? And how can you get better results?

I’m Linda-Ann Stewart, vision strategist, hypnotherapist and speaker. I help women entrepreneurs to focus, gain control, and accelerate to the next level of their business. Today, I’d like to talk to you about how you can get better outcomes by planning before you step into a situation. Many people will leap before they look, and it rarely brings them the results they expected.

Maybe a friend made a suggestion that sounded good to you at the time. For instance, years ago, I took a friend’s advice and joined a gym for 6 months. I hated it, and after the first few visits, the membership went unused. Has anything like that ever happened to you?

Or maybe you made a commitment before you’d thought it through. Such as volunteering for a charity before you knew much about it. Once you found out more, you realized it wasn’t right for you. Have you ever done that?

Or, as entrepreneurs, we often spring into different types of marketing without any idea of whether they work for our business. For example, you decide to network because someone said it was the best thing since sliced bread. But, when you attend an event, you stand in the corner of the room, never meet anyone, and never follow up with those you do meet. Have you known of anyone who did this?

It’s a truism, that, as Ben Franklin said, “If you fail to plan, you’re planning to fail.” It feels good to spring into action. You feel like you’re doing something, making progress, building momentum. But all too often, you’re just wasting time and energy because it doesn’t fit into a whole picture. It’s just pieces that don’t fit together.

Don’t get me wrong. Action is important, because without it nothing happens. It also anchors a commitment to change and to move forward. But action needs to be targeted, with a specific reason for doing it. That’s where the plan comes in. Think before you leap.

Some questions to ask yourself: What is your plan for your action? Why are you doing it? What do you expect from it? Will there be any consequences? After you leap, what’s next? What steps are you going to take, and how will you know when you’re getting results?

I’ll post the questions I just mentioned with the video (see above). And for a free ebook of tips on how to take charge of your day, and get more done more easily, click on the link for it that accompanies this video (see below).

Think through what you plan to do. When you’re deliberate and intentional about your actions, you’ll be much more successful. They’ll be more integrated with who you are and what you want. So how can you create a thoughtful plan that supports your next steps?

Free Guide: Take Control of Your Day, with specific tips and instructions on how you can get more done more easily. Increase your efficiency, confidence and clarity, while reducing your sense of struggle and overwhelm. http://www.Linda-AnnStewart.com/guide.html

Read the complementary article, Are You Putting the Cart Before the Horse?

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

Oct 062017
 

Step Through WoodsCan You Have More Willpower?
Most people think that you don’t have any control over how much willpower you have. You’re either born with it or you’re not. But recent research debunks that myth. Instead, studies find that it’s more like a muscle that gets better with exercise. Willpower helps you be able to fulfill more of your goals and potential. Learn 3 approaches to learn how to do increase your use of this valuable trait.

5 Reasonable Ways To Be Optimistic
Optimists aren’t born that way, they learn this perspective over time. Research shows that optimists are healthier, more successful and more resourceful. You always have a choice of what to think, and this impacts how you feel. Learn some simple ways to practice being more optimistic and reap the benefits that brings.

The Power of Mind Map: Get More Things Done & Make Creativity Easy
The concept behind this idea has been around for decades. It’s one that allows you to access more of your creativity and innovation. You can identify more of what needs to be done and in what order. This article gives some step by step directions on how to utilize this valuable technique.

Oct 052017
 

by Linda-Ann Stewart

“Action without planning is the cause of every failure.” Alec Mackenzie, time management expert

Quote-Mackenzie-Action

Last year, my husband and I hiked a mile-and-a-half down the South Kaibab trail in the Grand Canyon. We planned and trained for almost a year. When the day arrived, we had the right boots and equipment, and enough food and water to sustain us. Unfortunately, many people on the trail hadn’t had the same foresight.

There are warnings all over the park and at the trailhead about how much water a hiker needs. But sadly, many hikers we saw took only a fraction of the water they needed. We witnessed several people in distress due to dehydration: weak, tired or dizzy. A family fought over their child’s small bottle of water, because they’d already drunk their allotment. Two women hiked the dirt and rock trail, that was hundreds of feet above the canyon floor, in high heels. One turned ankle in the wrong place could have been disastrous.

These visitors let their enthusiasm overrun their common sense. Instead of thinking ahead, they impetuously jumped into an experience and suffered for it. Fortunately, most Grand Canyon visitors survive with just blisters, sore muscles and a headache from dehydration. But they could have avoided those consequences if they’d just heeded the warnings and considered what they’d need for a safe hike.

Unfortunately, many people act in a similar way when they get an idea. They leap into action before they even know what to do. In our Western culture, action is idolized. Supposedly, if you just take action, any action, you’ll be successful. Action is considered a panacea and always brings you results, so the thought goes. But how many people do you know who are so busy that they barely have a personal life, but they’re not achieving their goals?

Some people want to let the Universe guide their way. They don’t have any direction, and just react to whatever shows up in their path. In this case, the Universe is simply acting on their strongest desires. And those desires change from day to day. Even when you let the Universe guide you, have a vision of where you want to end up. You can always intend, “This or something better.” Then the Law of Attraction can draw what you need to manifest your greater good.

Have you ever seen a skyrocket firecracker flying through the air? It spirals all over the place because it has thrust, but no guidance system. Most of the time, it goes up to explode in a beautiful display, but there are occasions when it swirls down to the ground and sets something on fire. This is what it’s like when you jump into action before developing a plan. You’re probably going to go up, but you don’t have any control over your direction. And you also have a good chance of crashing and burning.

The same is true if you have a plan, but you don’t know where you want to end up. If you have no vision, it’s like throwing darts at a target while blindfolded. You don’t know where your target is, so you waste your energy and ammunition. This happens if you have a marketing plan, before you settle on a niche. You spray the consumers with information, but because it’s not aimed properly, it’s ineffective. Instead, you need to find the right people for your product or service then spend your energy on connecting with them.

There are times when jumping into action, without a plan, can be helpful. But it has to be strategic. You want to build up some momentum, stir up some information, gain clarity or some other specific reason. Doing that is a plan in itself. You know the results you want from your actions.

Conversely, you need to keep from getting stuck in the planning process. Your plan isn’t going to ever be perfect. You’ll tweak it along the way. And there will be times when it will change completely, as you get feedback or knowledge. Making progress is better than perfecting your plan.

When you’ve decided to create something new in your life, be intentional about it. Don’t “Put the cart before the horse.” Keep your priorities straight and make sure you have some sort of plan. Life can be treacherous and catch you off guard. If you’re going for a trek in unfamiliar territory, isn’t it a good idea to heed the warnings, make sure you have the right equipment and plenty of resources to sustain you? This isn’t just good advice for the Grand Canyon, but also for every area of your life. Make sure your horse draws your cart, and you’ll make faster progress.

Affirmation:

I decide what direction I want to go in, and the Universe then lights my path. It ensures that I receive whatever I need for the fulfillment of my desire. I stay on track and take the steps I need towards my vision. Each step illumines the next one. And the Universe provides me with whatever is for my Highest Good.

Watch the complementary video Think Before You Leap.

As a vision strategist, hypnotherapist, and speaker, Linda-Ann Stewart helps women entrepreneurs and small business owners who feel stuck, immobilized and overwhelmed to to get clear, focused and on the fast track to the next level of their business. If you'd like some help to reach your goals, email her at LAS@Linda-AnnStewart.com with "Complimentary Consultation" in the subject line.
Sep 212017
 

Grand Canyon Train TracksAre Our Workplaces Getting Ruder?
Rudeness, disrespect or insensitive behavior at work affects job performance in a major way, and its incidence is increasing. It harms your relationships and your mental and physical health. But incivility doesn’t just impact us at work. We experience it in our private lives, too. This article gives 4 suggestions on how to deal with the issue at work. But these approaches can also be used in other areas of our lives.

5 Practical Steps to Stop Procrastination for Good
If you’re a procrastinator, you tend to delay acting until a deadline is looming. Unfortunately, that generally means you do sub-par work and never live up to your potential. This article, paraphrasing a TED Talk on the subject, gives a clever metaphor for what happens in a procrastinators brain. It also gives 5 steps to derail procrastination and a link to the TED Talk the author mentions.

Three Ways to Put A Positive Spin on (Almost) Anything
We know that research has shown that being positive is good for the mind and body. But there are just times when stuff happens, and it becomes incredibly difficult. The author of this article experienced such a period. She got through it by using 3 strategies. They’re ones that I’ve used for many decades and teach my clients. They work and are proven to improve your mood and attitude in a short time.

Sep 072017
 

by Linda-Ann Stewart

Emerson-Self-trustQuote“Self-trust is the first secret of success.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

Do you know what you want? Many people don’t know what they want because they don’t trust themselves to achieve it. They’d rather not want anything than be disappointed. They distrust the validity of their own desires and doubt their judgment because of past failures.

Before you take steps towards accomplishing a dream, you have to believe in yourself and your abilities. You need to know that you can access the knowledge, develop the habits, and find the opportunities to create your goal.

What exactly is self-trust? It’s a belief in yourself, trusting that you’ll be there for yourself, that you can handle what life throws at you. It means that you’re accountable and responsible for yourself. When you’re able to depend on yourself, you have confidence that you’ll be on your side. Self-trust ensures that you’re interested in and supportive of your wellbeing.

Being able to trust yourself is the first ingredient you need to be successful in all areas of your life. Not trusting yourself means you don’t believe you’ll finish what you intend to do. Distrusting yourself undermines your relationship with yourself and everyone else, including the Universe.

In business, it’s said that “People do business with those they know, like and trust.” The same is true of your personal life. You’re attracted to those you like and trust and vice versa. Are you trustworthy enough for you to be friends or do business with? If not, how can you reach that place of inner assurance?

Self-trust doesn’t just happen. It has to be built, the same as in any relationship. When you first meet someone, you rarely trust them immediately. Over time and through experience, they have to show that they’re truthful and reliable. You develop a relationship with yourself the same way. Here are four ways in which you can start to cultivate a sense of self-trust.

1. Honor your values. Your values are principles you choose to live by. They’re standards of behavior or ideals that you uphold, like integrity, service, or family. There will be times when it’s hard to stay true to them. But if you don’t, you’ll feel inauthentic and like you’ve abandoned yourself. And you’ll sense a separation from the Universe. When you live according to your values, it builds your self-worth and self-esteem.

2. Honor yourself. Pay attention to your health and wellbeing. When you need to take care of yourself, refuse extra demands on your time. You’re as important as anyone else, and if you don’t treat yourself well, no one else will do so either. If someone asks you to do something you don’t want to do or can’t fulfill, be kind to them (and yourself) and say no. As you support your worth, you’ll develop a positive self-regard.

3. Honor your agreements and commitments. If you do consent to perform some action, follow through and fulfill it. Not doing so breaks a promise to yourself and others. And those who break promises can’t be trusted. The same is true when you agree to a condition, like not to track mud onto the carpet. Keeping appointments you make also falls under this heading. Be on time or as close to it as possible. By doing so, you’re fostering self-respect and earning the respect of others.

4. Honor your decisions. After you make a decision, stick to it, unless you get new information that affects your choice. Stop seeking others’ approval for your choices. Take responsibility for your decisions and for their consequences. Some people won’t like that you’re being autonomous, but that’s their problem. It’s your life and you make the choices based on your experiences and what’s important to you. Rely on your own authority.

Trust grows more trust, in yourself and others. When you believe in yourself, it allows for innovation, creativity, and the flexibility to change directions when needed. The more you trust yourself, the more you trust the Universe and the Law of Attraction. You’re able to let go of fear and doubt, and have faith that you live in a beneficial universe.

Affirmation:
The Universe perceives me as a worthwhile human being. It has given me everything I need to succeed, personally and professionally. It’s my responsibility to exercise the qualities It has bestowed upon me. As I advocate for myself, I feel more whole and authentic.

Watch the accompanying video Stop Fighting Yourself.

As a vision strategist, hypnotherapist, and speaker, Linda-Ann Stewart helps women entrepreneurs and small business owners who feel stuck, immobilized and overwhelmed to to get clear, focused and on the fast track to the next level of their business. If you'd like some help to reach your goals, email her at LAS@Linda-AnnStewart.com with "Complimentary Consultation" in the subject line.
Sep 012017
 

Sparks of InsightTry changing the pronoun of your affirmation from “I” to “You” or “Your Name.” You respond differently when someone else encourages you. You feel believed in, validated, appreciated. In doing so, you actually become your own coach. The third person, “Your Name,” helps by being from some neutral party. It’s more objective and detached, therefore connects with the mind on a different level.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

Aug 182017
 

GC-Sunset-4-16-0742-smScience Knows the 2-Step Process for Breaking the Bad Habits Holding You Back
Habits can be hard to break. And they can be nearly impossible if you just use willpower. But there are better ways. Understand what prompts your habits and deal with them at the core. This article gives a practical strategy to break unwelcome habits and start yourself on a new road.

How to Stop Spinning Your Wheels
We all spin our wheels at some time or other. Either we get stuck in a feedback loop of being upset, or we repeat actions that don’t get us the results we want. This article focuses on the spinning we do when we’re upset, but the suggestions can also work to get us better outcomes in general.

How to to Stop Receiving Offensive Criticism
Everyone has experienced criticism (sometimes unsolicited) that goes over the line into rudeness and beyond. This article is more about how to ask for an opinion in a way that doesn’t open you up for criticism that goes too far. Learn how to ask questions to get helpful feedback and how to handle once you get it.

Are You in Alignment with Your Motivation?

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Aug 152017
 

Your motivation causes you to take action every day. Sometimes, you want something that doesn’t fit with who you are. In that case, you either achieve your goals or avoid them. Learn 3 tips to align your motivation with what will work for you.



Transcript:
When I talk about motivation in this context, I’m not talking about it as emotional inspiration to get you to make changes. I’m talking about basic motivation, the kind that causes you to take action in everyday situations. Do your inherent motives motivate you to achieve the goals you think you want?

For instance, I had a friend who wanted to be a runner. He’d always pictured himself as a runner, had bought the shoes, read books on it. But actually getting himself out the door to do it… wasn’t happening. It wasn’t right for him. Instead, he found that he preferred the comfort and community of an indoor gym. He had to align his personality and motives with what worked for him.

All you have to do to notice your motives is to look at your life. Are you doing what it is you want to get you where you want to go? If not, check what your motivation might be. You may be wanting something that doesn’t fit with your personality. And since it’s so out of your comfort zone, and out of character, you won’t fulfill it.

However, consider what you can do to satisfy that desire. Scale it back or shift it somehow. When you do follow-up after a networking meeting, if making phone calls makes you cringe, send cards instead. If you want to be an oil painter, but the smell of the paint makes you nauseous, switch to acrylic’s or watercolor. There’s more than one way to climb a mountain.

My coaching tip for you is to:
1st – assess what you truly want.
2nd – become aware of your actions towards it.
3rd – pick a way to achieve it that works for you.
When you align your motives to actions that are natural for you, you’ll be much happier and more successful.

Read the accompanying article Are Your Motives Clear?

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

As a vision strategist, hypnotherapist, and speaker, Linda-Ann Stewart helps women entrepreneurs and small business owners who feel stuck, immobilized and overwhelmed to to get clear, focused and on the fast track to the next level of their business. If you'd like some help to reach your goals, email her at LAS@Linda-AnnStewart.com with "Complimentary Consultation" in the subject line.

Trending Articles of the Week

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Aug 102017
 

Sunset at Hopi Point at Grand Canyon12 Habits of Genuine People
Genuine people know who they are. They are confident enough to be comfortable in their own skin. People who are genuine walk their talk and inspire trust. These 12 characteristics can help you determine whether someone is actually genuine and authentic.

Why We Should Be Having More Meaningful Conversations
Introverts hate small talk. They prefer to dive into deep conversations. Research is now verifying that deep discussions are good for you, making you happier. If you have trouble having meaningful discussions, this article gives you some direction on how to initiate them.

Why Keeping a Daily Journal Could Change Your Life
Journaling gives you powerful access to your creativity and being able to find solutions. Research shows that it can improve your health and well being. This article focuses on how to use it to organize and streamline your day for maximum efficiency. But the writer also goes into many of the other benefits that keeping a journal brings.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

Are Your Motives Clear?

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Aug 102017
 

by Linda-Ann Stewart

For awhile on my Facebook Business page, someone I knew made belittling and insulting comments. From his remarks, it was obvious he had read only the title of my post, didn’t have any knowledge of the topic nor had read the content. Over time, instead of consistently sharing an idea or article to serve my audience, I posted less and less. My unconscious motivation was to avoid his harassment and not subject my other readers to his attacks. This action was not in my best interest and sabotaged my efforts to share subjects of interest with my followers.

MotivationAre your actions matching up with what you want? Mine weren’t. If not, it’s time to look at what’s motivating you and compare it to the outcomes you desire. That’s what I had to do, once I became aware of what I was doing. To eliminate the aggravation, I banned him from the page. Since it’s public, he can read the page but he can’t interact on it.

Napoleon Hill said, “Your every act is the result of a given cause—your motives.” Your motivation may come from earlier in your life, and you haven’t updated it to support you in the present day. Mine came from childhood when I didn’t want to offend anyone. This time, I decided it was better to risk upsetting this one person than it was to stop reaching out to my followers.

The motivation you had when you were younger may have been beneficial, but the way you execute it now isn’t working for you. For instance, being a class clown brought Joe good attention in high school, but interferes with his job as an adult. Instead of entertaining his boss, he gets written up for distracting his coworkers and not meeting his deadlines. His motivation is to get acknowledgement, but the behavior isn’t fulfilling its purpose anymore.

Or consider when the football star was a bully in high school, it brought him admiration. But in his life now, it doesn’t get him respect, which is what he craves. Instead, he alienates the very people he wants to impress.

Conversely, good intentions can lead to bad results. The grade A student in school, who kept her head down and studied hard, got good grades in school. Teachers praised her for being so quiet and unassuming. But as an adult, it keeps her from taking credit for her work or putting herself forward for advancement.

And then there’s the big sister who was commended for taking care of her younger siblings. But now, when she takes care of everyone, they deplete her energy and bank account. Both of these women had positive motivations and behaviors that were appropriate when they were young. But when they got older, the same type of actions no longer benefited them.

Most motivations operate unconsciously. You’re not aware of why you’re doing what you’re doing. Your motivation may be valid, but the way you fulfill it may be an outdated remnant of the past. It’s important to get clear on the reason that’s driving your actions so you can obtain the outcomes you want.

To recognize where you may be sabotaging yourself, and how to get your motives and actions aligned, explore these suggestions.

1. Are you disappointed, puzzled or confused about why you’re not getting the outcomes you expect? This is a signal that something is amiss. Awareness is the first step, because before you can resolve a situation, you have to acknowledge there’s a problem.

2. Examine your actions. What results have they brought you in the past, and are they bringing similar ones now? If not, then there’s a mismatch between your behavior and your desired outcome. It’s tempting to just change your actions without going deeper. But at the first sign of stress, it’s normal to return to the behavior that’s familiar. Discover what your incentive is so you can stay on track.

3. Assess the purpose behind your action. What is it trying to do for you? It may be trying to protect you or bring you recognition. You may be trying to avoid something uncomfortable, through procrastination or a search for perfection. Or you could be seeking to attract something better into your life, such as acknowledgement or friends. That reason steers your impulses.

4. Now that you know your motivation, how can you modify your beliefs and actions to receive your desired outcome? Once you’ve understood what you need to change, you have a better chance of success. Whenever you get stressed, remind yourself of why you’re changing your habits and stick to it.

Unconscious ideas and urges create situations that you don’t expect. When you get clear on your motives, you can then intentionally change the way you’re fulfilling them. It’s never easy to break with the past, but you have a greater chance of success when you clarify your reasons.

Affirmation:
I now get clear on the motives for my actions. If the way I fulfill that purpose no longer serves me, I set my intention to change it. The Universe completely supports me in my efforts to improve my life.

Watch the accompanying Coaching Tip video Are You in Alignment with Your Motivation?

As a vision strategist, hypnotherapist, and speaker, Linda-Ann Stewart helps women entrepreneurs and small business owners who feel stuck, immobilized and overwhelmed to to get clear, focused and on the fast track to the next level of their business. If you'd like some help to reach your goals, email her at LAS@Linda-AnnStewart.com with "Complimentary Consultation" in the subject line.