Apr 202018
 

Sparks of InsightDo you feel that becoming more positive is overwhelming? You have to stay aware and alert of everything you’re thinking and saying, and be able to look on the bright side of things. Optimists aren’t born, they’re programmed. You don’t have to change your whole way of thinking at one time. An easier way to do it is to chip away at it. Develop optimism on one subject at a time. Pick an area that is fairly easy for you to be positive about, something that you’re relatively confident in, such as cooking, or making phone calls, or your hair. Stay aware of what you think of that area, changing any negative comments to positive ones. Once you’ve made that a habit, add another, more difficult area and build from there.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

Apr 192018
 

Sunset at Hopi Point at Grand CanyonHow to Stop Procrastinating
Procrastination is something up to 95% of us do at some time or other. In this article and video, explore why it happens and strategies for managing and prioritizing your workload more effectively. Learn 4 tips on how to overcome the habit of delaying important tasks.

5 Toxic Personalities Successful People Avoid
Some people are dream killers or stop us from taking a risk, and we don’t always realize what they’re doing. It’s important to be aware of who we’re spending time with. We need to distinguish between those who support us. and those who don’t. Learn the five types of people to avoid when chasing goals.

The Extraordinary Power of Visualizing Success
When you think of obstacles, you allow them to stop you from achieving your goals. Top performers, in sports and business, know the importance of picturing themselves succeeding in their minds before they actually do in reality. Learn some tips on how to use visualization to accomplish your dreams.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

Apr 182018
 

by Linda-Ann Stewart

stressometer-kcMKoR4Xi-opt
Our lives today are filled with things that keep us busy and distracted. We obsess over our cell phones: talking, texting, tweeting, checking Facebook and surfing the internet. We’re working longer hours and have less time off. When we do take vacations, it’s generally rushing to a location so we can participate in activities that keep us busy.

Our frantic lives have become a habit. We have a need to fill every waking moment with activity. When we don’t have anything to do, we feel anxious, panicked and seek to do anything that will relieve the discomfort. This craving to be productive has spun out of control.

We can actually become addicted to the adrenaline rush that stress provides. Many people become adrenaline junkies, seeking thrills in ever dangerous sports so that they get their hit of this chemical. Once we’ve reached this high level of stress, our ability to think things through, reason, be creative and learn decreases.

We can become addicted to the habit of stress. A habit is formed by doing the same thing over and over until it becomes automatic. Not only do we get a physical jolt of adrenaline from it, but we also receive emotional rewards. And a habit tied to an emotional benefit can become hard to change.

Some of the benefits to chronic stress include:

  • Stress can distract a person from what isn’t working in their life.
  • It gives people the excuse not to deal with a bad relationship, unhealthy eating habits, or family issues because they’re just so busy.
  • People have used it as justification to indulge in destructive lifestyle habits, such as drugs or excessive drinking.
  • Many people think that when they’re frazzled, they look more important or committed.
  • Looking busy and stressed can also keep people from dumping more responsibility on them.
  • People feel sorry for the person who’s stressed, and do what they can to keep from upsetting them.

Chronic stress will eventually lead to a physical, mental and emotional collapse, because sooner or later the adrenaline runs out. This amount of stress also reduces the effectiveness of our immune systems and makes us more susceptible to illness and disease.

Stress caused by our own busyness is a choice. We make decisions every hour of the day that contribute to the pressure we feel. Some of it is caused by trying to control every aspect of our lives. Trying to be perfect also pushes us to feel overwhelmed. Neither of these is realistic or constructive.

Like any habit, it’s uncomfortable when we begin to break it. Some people get panicky when they first start to relax. It feels unfamiliar, unnerving and unsafe.

It takes a change of perspective before the habit can be altered. We have to realize that our mindset and decisions have helped create the stress that we’ve been exhibiting. Then we have to be willing to handle the things we’ve been avoiding.

Here are five steps to break the habit of chronic stress:

1. Become aware of what you’re doing that’s causing you to be so busy and pressured.
2. Learn what the benefit of it is for you, and decide if it’s worth the eventual burnout and exhaustion.
3. Address whatever emotional reason has pushed you to be so busy.
4. Let go of some of the control that you’ve been exerting in your life. Delegate to others and let them run with the project. Accept that everything isn’t going to be perfect. Don’t look at your cell phone more than once an hour. When you’re with someone at a restaurant, if your phone rings, let it go to voicemail.
5. Take time outs. Do deep breathing, learn mindfulness meditation, practice yoga, do relaxation exercises, exercise. These all work by switching on another physical system that naturally reduces stress.

When you begin to practice these steps, you may feel strange and uneasy. That’s normal. But the physical, mental and emotional benefits are well worth the effort. You’ll be able to think clearer and have more resources to deal with the challenges of your life. Feeling centered will become more natural.

Breaking a habit is rarely easy. You have to perform new actions consistently over and over until you’ve created a new behavior. However, once you have them instilled in your life, you’ll find that your life is much happier and healthier.

Affirmation:
I deserve to have time to enjoy my life. Whatever has been promoting stress in my life is out of balance with the Universe. I now make new choices to restore balance and harmony in my life. Divine Order is now taking place in every area of my life, allowing me to be calm and centered. The Universe supports me in my endeavor to establish peace and serenity.

~ 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.
Apr 052018
 

by Linda-Ann Stewart

Message_Bubbles-2103156Caroline was a massage therapist who worked in a spa. The spa did all the marketing and scheduled her clients for her, and paid her per client. But Caroline thought she could have more freedom and get more clients on her own. She left the spa, and opened her own office.

But she discovered that she hated the administrative chores the spa had done for her, such as scheduling, paying utilities, and marketing. This caused her to be chronically forgetful. She’d forget to take business cards when networking, pay her bills, or write down appointments, which caused her to miss them. Although her clients knew and liked her, they learned not to trust her and they went elsewhere. Because of her refusal to work on the details of her business, she made less than she had at the spa.

Finally, one of her friends confronted her and said that Caroline’s excuses were clues she was leaving herself. Caroline realized that she really just wanted to give massages. She gave up her business and returned to the spa, where she could let others handle the tasks she despised. She needed the structure the spa gave her. Even though she was giving up control, she was gaining the freedom she’d craved.

Do you chronically defend yourself, to yourself or others about why you didn’t do what you had agreed to do? At your core, you just didn’t want to do whatever it was. Something within you was preventing it. You’re giving yourself a message that you haven’t listened to yet.

When you use excuses, you’re giving the Law of Attraction conflicting information. On one side, you’ve agreed to something, and on the other, you are reluctant to follow through. By not being clear, the Law of Attraction won’t know what you really want. You’ll just idle in neutral until you decide which way you really want to go.

There are times when excuses are valid. For example, if you had a flat tire on the way to work. Or an important phone call delayed your leaving for an appointment. Events that are unexpected and unavoidable are legitimate reasons why you weren’t able to fulfill a promise. But the question to ask yourself is, are your explanations reasonable or are they just trying to get you out of trouble?

The stories you tell yourself are hints as to how motivated you are to achieve your goals, dreams and vision. They may be telling you how you feel about your commitment or your direction. Here are some of the possible messages your excuses are communicating:

Fear. You’re afraid of the next step or where it may take you. Or you’re not confident that you know how to accomplish your task, goal or agreement. Ask yourself, “What’s the worst that could happen?” Generally, when you bring the fear into your awareness, you realize it has little validity. Ask yourself, “What do I need to do to gain that confidence?” It could be something as simple as learning a new skill.

Not the right goal/dream/vision.
You could be going in the wrong direction. Or your task, vision or your motivation to achieve it isn’t strong enough. When you find yourself not taking the actions you need to, ask yourself if you’re ambivalent over your goal. If there’s a part of you holding back, you need to address its concerns. Are you really committed to your dream or vision? If not, choose another one or scale back on your current one.

It’s a “should.” You think you “should” want a particular goal. Others have told you that it’s the right one for you. But it doesn’t really resonate with you, or you felt pressured into doing it. This one is especially true when you’ve agreed to do something you really didn’t want to do, such as participate in a charity event. Is it really your priority, or someone else’s? To simplify your life, decline someone else’s objective for you and focus on what you really want

These are just a few of the excuses we make. The only way you’re going to fulfill your goals is if you transcend your excuses. Listen to the message they’re telling you. When you hear it, and change your responses, you’ll be happier and on track to your dream.

Affirmation:
I now become aware of the excuses I make. I realize that they’re giving me powerful messages about what’s holding me back. Since the Universe only wants the best for me, it must be my beliefs and attitudes that are sabotaging me. By understanding the messages I’m giving myself, I’m able to change my beliefs and thus change my responses to support my dreams.

Watch the accompanying video, Stop Believing Your Excuses.

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.
Mar 292018
 

Step Through Woods4 Proven Ways to Bounce Back From Failure
Setbacks are normal, and are actually teaching moments. The only time you fail is when you quit trying. That said, it can be difficult to get back into the swing when you feel you swung and missed. Part of the ability to do it more easily has to do with learned behavior, and part has to do with personality. The tips in this article can help you recover, learn from the experience and try again.

Are You a Goal-Getter?
When you set a goal, you may be uncertain about your chances of success in achieving it. But you think there’s at least a good possibility for it to happen. Wouldn’t you like to increase your odds of success? This article shares 7 steps to achieving the goals you want to accomplish.

How to Program Your Mind to Kick the Bad Habit
We all have bad habits of one kind or another. Sometimes, we excuse ourselves when we try to overcome them and don’t succeed. They’re just so much a part of us and it’s hard to change them. They exist because at some time in the past they helped us. But that time is past and if you want to eliminate them, use the 3 steps in this article.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

Mar 012018
 

Sparks of Insight“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.”
– Aristotle

When we first create a habit, we have to be conscious about it. Remember when you first learned to ride a bicycle or drive? You had to think through every movement, every action. Eventually, they became natural and it would be difficult to change the order. By repeating a thought or action, it becomes a habit. Therefore, failure can be a habit, just as success can be. What are you repeatedly doing that doesn’t move you forward to your goals?

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

Decide to Choose Clarity

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Feb 222018
 

By Linda-Ann Stewart

Signpost-confused-medBecky lived in an apartment with a couple of roommates, and she wanted a space of her own. Faced with all the options available to her, she kept saying, “I’m so confused.” She was afraid she was going to make the wrong decision, get trapped somewhere she didn’t want to be, or miss out on something better. The confusion left her paralyzed. So she didn’t choose anything different and even when her roommates changed, she stayed where she was.

Clarity is vitally important for you to know what you want. Once you are clear on your goal, you can focus on it and move in that direction. Clarity is necessary for you to have success in any area of your life. If you don’t know what you want, you’ll just drift along and receive the results of the average of your thoughts.

Without clarity, you’re in a perpetual state of confusion. This causes insecurity and stress, which simply creates more turmoil. You run around in circles and don’t get anywhere. You might look at one option after another, and all the possibilities you face produces more chaos for you.

But the only person who is generating your confusion is you. By affirming that you’re in this state, refusing to commit to a path, or allowing yourself to get overwhelmed by choices, you’re contributing to the challenge. You’re giving your subconscious mind the message to keep you scattered. The underlying issue may be that you’re trying to avoid responsibility, afraid you’ll make a mistake, get stuck in a situation, or fail.

Believe it or not, uncertainty is a choice. It’s a decision not to decide. Once you whittle down your choices, and choose a direction, it clears away the mental fog. It may become evident that you don’t want to go that route. That’s fine. You can stay open to other possibilities and change your mind. But don’t change it too much, or you’ll find yourself back in the mists that clouded your mind in the first place.

When you pick a track and determine to continue on it, the haze clears away, and you can see a little way ahead. Take one step, then another. At this point, you don’t need to know where you’re going to end up. It’s enough that you’ve chosen to move in a direction. Because when you’re moving, the Universe can guide you.

Initially, any direction is better than being stalled. So even if you’re not certain about what you want, choose a path. As you’re moving, you’ll discover what you want and don’t want. Write down your goals or intentions. This prompts you to be more specific in what you desire. Then read them every day. Ask yourself, “What can I do today that will move me in their direction?”

Once you’ve made a decision, don’t second guess yourself. If new information comes your way, or circumstances change, then you can reevaluate your choice. But don’t be distracted by a shiny, new idea or opportunity that leads you in a different direction without some reason. The diversion is a mirage and simply an old habit trying to prevent change. If you become uncomfortable, it’s just the old habit of confusion trying to lure you back into its lair. Stay on track, and confusion will fade away.

As you build your commitment to your decisions, you’ll gain confidence that you can make wise ones. The Universe and your inner self will guide you to make ones that take you on your optimal path. Trust yourself, because you do have the knowledge within to make the right choices for your greatest good.

Affirmation:
I am always being guided and directed by the One Life within me. I pick a direction, make a choice and take a step. As I move forward, the next step is made clear to me. My path is made smooth and straight. Each day, I take action to propel myself towards a greater good.

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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Feb 092018
 

Sunset Crater plant Knowing Yourself: How to Improve Your Understanding of Others
Getting to know yourself isn’t being self-involved. It’s to understand the different parts of yourself and how they could be activated in your life. It gives you more control over your reactions. When you understand yourself better, it allows you to be more empathetic and compassionate towards others.

How to Deal with a Passive Aggressive Person
We’ve all had to deal with someone who is antagonistic, but acts it out covertly. They may play mind games with you, try to undermine you or put you down. It’s hard to deal with them, because they’re so underhanded in their actions. This article details some of their behaviors so you can recognize them. It also gives some great tips on how to handle them so you can take control of the situation.

How to (Try to) Not Take Things Personally
Are you hypersensitive? Do you take things personally? If so, it’s hard when someone takes aim at you. You don’t just roll with it, and can be hurt and become defensive. This isn’t in your best interest or help the situation. This article gives 6 great tips to take a step back and help you be less sensitive to inevitable criticism.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

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Feb 012018
 

"[ Personal Boundaries 101 – Part 2
If you read part 1 of this article, you know what boundaries are. Now it’s time to execute them. It’s hard to express them to other people, especially if you haven’t in the past. But this is where they are truly helpful. This article sets some simple guidelines of how to enforce your boundaries.

Why We Sabotage Ourselves
There are all sorts of reasons why we sabotage ourselves. Sometimes it’s due to fear, and other times it’s a reaction to past abuse. But you can change the pattern and begin to have what you want. This article gives some guidance as to how you can identify and resolve self-sabotaging behavior.

Rohn: If You Change Yourself, You Can Change Your Life
As humans, we have power over our attitudes. They aren’t set in stone. When you change your attitude, it enables you to make different decisions, which alters your outcomes. You may not be able to change others, but you can change yourself. And that determines how to respond to the difficult situations that arise in your life.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

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Jan 192018
 

Sunset Crater, Flagstaff AZCreating the Right Attitude for Success
If you’re not reaching the kind of success you want, you need to assess where you’re holding yourself back. It may mean you need to develop some new skills. But more likely, it’s a result of your attitude. Believe it or not, having the right attitude for success is a skill. And it’s not just about having a positive one. This article covers some of the attitudes you need to readjust or cultivate to achieve success.

10 Life-Changing Tips for Highly Sensitive People
Some people love conflict and argument. They need it to feel stimulated. But then there are other people, an estimated 15-20% of the population, who are sensitive. They feel overstimulated in situations others deal with easily. There isn’t anything wrong with sensitive people. They’re just wired differently. If you’re one of those people, here are some valuable tips on how to accept yourself and start thriving.

7 Things To Do If You’re Feeling Overwhelmed
Do you often feel overwhelmed with too much to do, and too little time in which to get it done? Technology promised to make life easier, but it has failed in that promise. And we’re expected to do more and more, just to keep up. So far, we can’t clone ourselves so we have more bodies to get it all done. Instead, we have to find ways to deal with the unrealistic demands. Here are some suggestions on how to approach your life if you feel overwhelmed.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart