Oct 062017
 

Sparks of InsightIt’s easy and natural to be angry when you’re inconvenienced, treated rudely or poorly by someone. Rather than giving in to your first impulse, try taking a mental step back and approaching it from a more spiritual direction. Imagine yourself in their situation, and ask how you would react. You might discover that, although it shouldn’t have happened, you would be in a bad mood, too. Respond with empathy and compassion, and see what happens. More than likely, they’ll moderate their actions. If they don’t, you’ll have gotten some understanding and taken the high road.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

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 082017
 

Sparks of Insight“I expect wonderful things to happen today. My attitude of expectancy opens doors for me. It releases the Power of the Universe that creates good.”

Expecting the best gives the subconscious direction to find and create the good that’s already available in potential from the Universe. Tuning into it is like turning the channel of your television. The channel you’re seeking is always broadcasting, you just need to find its signal.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

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.
Aug 252017
 

Sparks of Insight“Acceptance of what has happened is the first step to overcoming the consequences of any misfortune.” – William James

Resisting, denying or ignoring a reality just gives it more energy. Before anything can change, you have to know what needs to change. Accepting that it is so doesn’t mean that you’re giving in to it. All you’re doing is stating, “This is where I am now, and now I can change it.” The energy you were using to repress the situation can now be used to recreate the outcome.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

Aug 182017
 

Sparks of InsightThe past can’t be changed. But it doesn’t need to affect you any longer. Past experiences created beliefs that developed into attitudes. Attitudes formed into feelings and emotions which prompted certain choices based on them. Those responses then created your experience. You can change the original beliefs to be more self-supporting ones. You have the choice. Your future is shaped by the thoughts that you choose to entertain today.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

Sparks of Insight

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Aug 112017
 

Sparks of Insight“I now allow the mind of God to think differently about this problem. I am open to new perspectives and new ideas on how to solve it. I release any resistance to whatever needs to happen for the solution to be made plain.”

Many times we get into a rut when dealing with a problem. There doesn’t seem to be any solution, and our very belief about that blocks any possibility of resolution. But from the perspective of the Universe, there is no problem, there are only solutions.

~ 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.

Sparks of Insight

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Aug 052017
 

Sparks of InsightI’ve heard people say that, although they once had close relationship with God, they feel a distance or complete absence of the Divine. They wonder why God has abandoned them. The Universe still indwells and surrounds them. What has happened is that they’ve changed their relationship with themselves or with God. They either have moved away from their connection, by feeling depressed or traumatized, or they have evolved and they need to update their relationship. No matter what, God hasn’t moved. It’s just that they have changed their perspective. If you’re feeling distant from your center, then you’re the one who has moved.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart