Jan 072021
 

By Linda-Ann Stewart

Haven’t you had days when everything seemed to go wrong? You spilled your coffee on your proposal, the copier jammed, and you had a flat tire. Or maybe you’ve had times when the future looked dark and it was hard to see any light. When you’re down, it’s hard to see that there’s a way up. It becomes difficult to remember a time when things went well.

In these times, it’s challenging to stay positive, even when you know that being optimistic brings better results. You know shifting into a more upbeat frame of mind can turn things around and open doors for you. But when you’re down, it’s hard to focus on being positive. And this shuts down your ability to innovate.

What if you had a journal of evidence to remind you of times when things worked out? When you read about instances when you had good things happen, your mood lifts. Shifting your attention to something better changes your perspective and life flows more smoothly. You open to a broader range of possibilities and engage your creative mind to find solutions.

When you keep a journal of times when you were happy or when a situation worked out, it keeps you focused on the positive. And a journal gives you something to refer to when you need a mental boost. The more often you add to this journal, the more you train your mind to look for joy in everyday occurrences. You create an upward spiral of positivity that buoys you up when things go wrong.

There are several types of journals you can keep, and none of them take much time to update each day. Consider creating one of the following:

Gratitude. Evidence shows that writing three to ten gratitudes each day can improve your attitude within three weeks. People who keep a gratitude journal feel better about their lives as a whole and make more progress on their personal goals. Also, they better at bouncing back after adversity.

Falling Star. This is when you have something amazing drop into your lap. For example, you talk to someone in line at the store and gain a new customer. Or you mention that you need a plumber, and your neighbor gives you a great reference for one. By remembering that good things come when you least expect it, you prime your mind to seek opportunities for you.

Bright Side. This is when a situation looks grim, but suddenly turns around. For instance, I had to find a new home insurance policy after my old one had increased substantially. My new agent found one, with the same coverage, for almost half the price. This one could also be called “Dawn,” as in, “It’s always darkest before the dawn.”

Awe. What inspires awe for you? A beautiful sunset, a hummingbird hovering, or crashing waves? Awe can be found in the smallest of moments and can bring a sense of happiness and joy. When you take note of them, you remember how you felt at that time. Referring to a moment of awe can reduce stress and improve your well being.

Manifestation or the Law of Attraction. When have you successfully attracted or manifested something you were focusing on? Describe it in this journal so you can recall it in the future. Include your attitude and belief about the situation. Your item could be as simple as finding a great parking place or as complex as being offered the perfect job. This journal can encourage and support your spirituality.

Daily practice with any of these types of journals conditions your mind to seek out the positive, which keeps you more optimistic. And being able to refer to them when you’re down reminds you that things can, and will, get better. It brings you back into a sense of balance. It takes a bit of effort and dedication, but the rewards will be long lasting.

Affirmation:

The Universe supports all of my endeavors. When I keep my thoughts positive, I provide a clear channel through which the Universe can work. I stay positive by remembering times when events have gone well for me. In so doing, it creates an upbeat attitude and allows me to be more effective.

Watch the accompanying video, Use Journaling for Mindfulness and Success.

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. To achieve a 90-day goal more easily, sign up for her FREE comprehensive Strategic Vision blueprint at www.Linda-AnnStewart.com/setyourcourse.html. You can contact her at LAS@Linda-AnnStewart.com or 928-600-0452.
Dec 032020
 

by Linda-Ann Stewart

How do you feel when someone is kind to you? For instance, when a friend sends you a card, gives you a compliment or your spouse does the dishes for you. Don’t you feel uplifted? And how do you feel when you do something nice for someone else? Maybe you do an errand for a friend, call to see how they’re doing, or help a neighbor carry in her groceries. Don’t you feel a sense of satisfaction? And what if you see someone be generous to a stranger? Doesn’t that give you a warm glow and motivate you to do something considerate, too?

When you see, do, or are the recipient of kindness, it releases hormones that cause you to feel good, inspired and happy. It stimulates the reward centers of the brain. Within a few minutes the hormones have stopped flowing, but by remembering the action, you can recreate the joy. Kindness is like a pebble thrown into a pond, with the ripples extending outward and touching places unseen.

The Benefits of Kindness

The paradox of kindness and compassion is the benefits it brings to the one who acts, as well as the recipient. Not only do you impact the person you’re giving to, you’re receiving good feelings in return. Remember what your mother used to say, “It’s better to give than receive”? In this case, you receive far more than you give.

Showing kindness and compassion to others bestows the following on you:

  • You’re more attractive to others, personally and professionally.
  • People like and trust you more.
  • You’re more creative.
  • Your self-esteem and self-worth increases.
  • Your optimism and positive thinking grows.
  • You feel calmer and happier.
  • Your stress, pain, anxiety, depression and blood pressure reduces.

Kindness Can Be Challenging

Sometimes being kind can be challenging. There are people who irritate you and you may want to lash out at them. But you don’t know what has happened in their life that has caused them to be annoying. These are times when being altruistic and compassionate can have the best results. You may just change someone’s life, in addition to your own.  

For instance, consider being kind in the following conditions:

  • Smile and compliment the grouchy clerk. They might have had a bad day full of grumpy customers and it’s rubbed off on them.
  • Let the aggressive driver into the lane in front of you. They may be running late to an important appointment that could be vital to their well being.
  • Don’t complain when the elderly gentleman cuts ahead of you in line at the grocery store.  He may have mild dementia and not have even noticed you were there.

In difficult situations, consider what the other person might be dealing with that’s caused them to be rude. You’re not kind just for them. You do it for you, because it’s better for your health, mentally, physically and emotionally.

Focus on Kindness

The more you focus on being kind, the more you want to be kind. And the kinder you are, the more you’ll grow that area of your brain. Pure altruism brings you all the rewards mentioned and more. As you’re being kind to others, don’t forget to be kind and compassionate towards yourself. You deserve to be treated well, too, by yourself and others.

In the Christmas season, we focus on peace and goodwill towards others. Why can’t we have this spirit all year long? Think of the life we’d all have. It begins with each one of us being kind, on a daily basis. It’s a very simple mindset that takes on a joyful life of its own.

AFFIRMATION:

Whenever I have a choice of how to respond to a situation, I choose kindness. Kindness allows the spirit of the Universe to flow through me, blessing my life and the life I impact. I cultivate a generous spirit and compassionate attitude towards myself and others. I generate peace and goodwill towards all people, every day of the year.

Watch the accompanying video, Guided Meditation for Kindness.

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. To achieve a 90-day goal more easily, sign up for her FREE comprehensive Strategic Vision blueprint at www.Linda-AnnStewart.com/setyourcourse.html. You can contact her at LAS@Linda-AnnStewart.com or 928-600-0452.

How to Stay Mindfully Focused

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Nov 172020
 

It’s hard to stay focused and not get distracted in our frantic, fast-paced lives. But focus is the best way to achieve your goals and be productive. Focus is one of the most important skills a person can develop. Learn a simple technique to learn how to be more focused and get more done, more easily.

Transcript:

Thank you for joining me. In our frantic day-to-day lives, it’s hard to stay focused, isn’t it? We’re pulled in so many different directions. But being able to focus on a task or project is the way to get it done and done well. I’d like to share a simple technique for you to be able to hone your attention, to be more single-minded, and get more done, more easily. Wouldn’t that be great?

I’m Linda-Ann Stewart, a vision strategist. The technique I’m going to share with you combines a couple of tactics. One is deep breathing, and the other is self-talk. Either of which is good to help calm you down and get focused. But together, they are an unbeatable combination.

Using this technique allows you to pay attention to what you want to pay attention to, to what’s important and not what’s trying to distract you. When you take care of what’s important first, you can deal with other things later.

When you want to focus on a task, first take three long, slow, deep breaths. This calms your brain and nervous system so you can focus. It also allows you to take a mental step back to make a decision on what to do next. Rather than being pushed by events, you can make a choice of what to do next. It’s the difference between reacting and responding. When you respond, you’re reclaiming your power over your actions. 

Next, engage in talking to yourself to keep yourself focused. Just saying things like, “Focus” or “concentrate” or “stick with it,” will rein in your thoughts to stay on task. You could also talk to yourself as if you’re a third person, like, “Linda-Ann, continue working on this for the next half-hour.” When you say your name, it catches your attention, doesn’t it? And you’re more likely to follow your own directions.

When you stay mindfully focused you’ll find yourself being more productive and efficient, while increasing your peace of mind. As a side benefit, you’ll also be training yourself to be more focused, so the more you practice, the better at it you’ll become. You’ll be developing a vital skill that you can use for the rest of your life, in all areas of your life.

If you’d to achieve a 90-day goal more easily, download my free comprehensive Strategic Vision guide at www.SetYourCourseGuide.com. You’ll receive the guide, as well as a training video that walks you through it with tips and directions to support you in you in accomplishing your goal.

Thank you for watching. How can you use this technique of deep breathing and self-talk today? Take care.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

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Nov 132020
 

Why willpower is overrated

Self-control, and all the benefits from it, may not be related to inhibiting impulses at all. People who exhibit more self-control may be structuring their environment so that there are fewer temptations. They also reframe temptations so they’re easier to dismiss. Learn more about how to train yourself to have more self-control, achieve your goals and have a better life.

11 Warning Signs of Gaslighting

Gaslighting is a manipulation tactic used to gain power over other people. And it works all too well. It’s done slowly, over time, so that the victim doesn’t recognize that they’re being brainwashed. They begin to question their own reality. This article details how gaslighters use various techniques so that you can identify them and not fall into the gaslighters trap.

How to Use Positive Affirmations for Stress Relief

Positive affirmations are an effective way to reprogram your subconscious mind and align your beliefs with what you want in life. Affirmations can relieve stress, improve your self-image, increase motivation and keep you on course to your goals. This article highlights guidelines to creating and using your own positive self-talk statements to create the life you want.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

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Oct 302020
 

10 Ways to Be More Mindful at Work

Mindfulness can be difficult in the middle of the hustle and bustle of life. Time is always at a premium. But you don’t need to meditate every day to experience the benefits of mindfulness at work. Here are a few ways you can inject mindful moments into your day so you can de-stress and do your best.

5 Reasons that Daily Brain Breaks Are Important

Daily brain breaks are key for mental and emotional health. Giving your mind a rest throughout the day allows it to recharge, stay focused and positive. Included with the reasons you need to give your mind a break during the day are ways to do so.

How to Disarm Internal Triggers of Distractions

Everyone has uncomfortable emotions or undesirable habits they want to change. Fortunately, you can develop new methods to cope with those issues and improve your life. Use this 4-step method to handle unwanted thoughts that can derail your focus.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

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Oct 092020
 

Nine Ways Mindfulness Reduces Stress

Mounting evidence from multiple studies indicate that mindfulness builds resilience and helps energize you. Here’s how mindfulness gives you the space to respond calmly under pressure. The article includes a meditation for lowering stress levels.

Protect your brain from stress

It’s not uncommon to feel disorganized and forgetful when you’re under a lot of stress. But over the long term, stress may actually change your brain in ways that affect your memory. Stress management may reduce health problems linked to stress, which include cognitive problems and a higher risk for Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.

Self-Compassion Makes Life More Manageable

Western society celebrate self-confidence, and encourages people to build this quality. But for greater success and happiness, self-compassion may be more beneficial. Self-compassion encourages you to acknowledge and accept your limitations and flaws. This can lead to positive changes in your life because instead of tearing yourself down, you accept that you’re human.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

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Sep 112020
 

9 Mindset Shifts That Will Help You Live Your Dream Life

Mindset is at the core of every success and blocks that you might have. It affects how you perceive the world and whether you feel capable of overcoming obstacles. You believe what you tell yourself and then act on those beliefs. To align your beliefs with your desired outcomes, use these strategies to shift your attitudes.

8 Strategies to Manage Overwhelming Feelings

When you feel overwhelmed, your mind shuts down and you can feel paralyzed. So you deal with what’s immediate, or escape to watch cat videos. Instead, use tactics such as taking a walk, breathing or gratitude. If those don’t work, try these tips to keep calm and carry on.

9 Signs You’re Dealing With an Emotional Manipulator

Emotional manipulators defy logic. They derive satisfaction from controlling you and creating chaos. They can cause you to doubt yourself and destroy your self-esteem. But you can learn how to spot them. When you do, trust yourself and stay away from them. They don’t want to be a positive force in your life.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

Guided Meditation to a Calm Mind and Better Life

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Sep 102020
 

When you’re upset, it affects your body, tensing your muscles. The reverse is also true, if your body is relaxed, then your mind is calm. You can control your state of mind through relaxing your body so you can be more peaceful. A calm mind allows you have a sense of well-being and to think more clearly. Use this meditation to access a peaceful state that can contribute to more success and satisfaction in your life.

Transcript:

Thank you for joining me. Have you ever noticed that when you’re upset, stressed, anxious or worried that your muscles are tense? And that you breathe shallowly, from your upper chest? Your thoughts are telling your body that you’re feeling threatened, and they’re responding to protect you.

But did you realize that when you deliberately relax your muscles and take deep breaths, your mind begins to calm down and you feel more peaceful? It’s true. What affects the mind will affect the body and vice versa. You have the power to take control over your state of mind, by affecting your body.

I’m Linda-Ann Stewart, of Heartvision Consulting. I’m a vision strategist, helping women program their business for success by creating a master plan. But I’ve also been a hypnotherapist for over 30 years. I’ve helped hundreds of people to improve their quality of life through relaxation and then to achieve their goals.

I’d like to lead you through a short meditation of deliberate relaxation that will help you find more calm, so you have a better life.

If you want to, close your eyes.

Take a long slow deep breath. Now let it out, letting it go. Take another deep breath in. Now exhale, letting it go, all the way out. Take one more deep breath. And let it go, all the way out.

Now place your attention on your scalp. Let go of the muscles there. Imagine them becoming like a floppy rubber band.

Bring your attention to your face. Relax your facial muscles.

Place your attention on your neck, and let those muscles relax.

Now your shoulders drop, loose and limp.

Your arms relax, like a rag doll.

Your chest and abdoman become soft and relaxed.

Place your attention on your back, and you let it relax, becoming like soft putty, relaxing all the way down to your hips.

And now your legs relax, all the way down to your toes.

Just relaxing your entire body from the top of your head to the bottoms of your feet.

Now imagine that you’re feeling calm, peaceful, serene, like your mind is a calm pool of water. Safe and secure. Floating with a sense of well being.

I wonder how you can create this calm, peace, serenity, safety, security and well-being in your life from this moment on? Maybe you can create it with 3 deep breaths, and a quick relaxation. Maybe you can simply remember how it felt to be at ease. No matter how, it can be easy for you now to create this calm and well being in your life. And you can bring this peace with you into your life as you open your eyes.

How did that feel? The more you practice it, the easier it becomes. The effects accumulate over time.

Whenever your mind is calm, you have a sense of well being, are able to think more clearly and make better decisions. You’re more creative, resourceful, and resilient in the face of challenges. In addition, you’re more attractive to people, both in your personal and professional lives. You’re able to feel more fulfilled and satisfied in your work. Isn’t that worth taking a couple of minutes out of every day to practice this exercise?

If you’d to achieve a 90-day goal more easily, download my free comprehensive Strategic Vision guide at www. SetYourCourseGuide.com. You’ll receive the guide, as well as a training video of that walks you through it with tips and directions to support you in being able to  accomplish your goal.

Thank you for watching. I hope you’re able to take this meditation and practice it daily to bring you a much better life. Take care.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart

For Success, Seek Well-being First

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Sep 042020
 

by Linda-Ann Stewart

Many people chase after the elusive dream of success, thinking it will bring them happiness. They work harder and harder, but continue to feel unsatisfied. They achieve periodic goals or milestones, and get transitory elation from them, but that jubilation doesn’t last. What if they have it backwards? What if a sense of well-being leads to success, rather than the other way around?

We all know successful people who are driven and unhappy. So, it’s true that some people are successful even though they’re miserable. However, they’re using work as a drug to avoid their distress. They’re trying to fill a deep well of insecurity and inadequacy with power and control. But they’ll never have enough success to feel happy or complete.

Why Well-being Matters

Studies show that people who have a sense of well-being and optimism have a likelier chance of achieving the success they seek. They also have a greater sense of satisfaction in their lives, both personally and professionally. They’re more productive, creative and resilient in life. Since that’s the case, wouldn’t it be a better idea to seek well-being before success?

Your brain and subconscious can be altered by your focus. When you take positive actions, you rewire the brain and build more resources for the subconscious mind to use to help you. You can improve your happiness and well-being with some simple exercises to change the way you think.

How to Cultivate a Sense of Well-being

You can train your mind with the habit of being more positive and peaceful. Here are four ways to cultivate a sense of well-being and create more satisfaction in your life.  

Be kind to others. Volunteering and helping others engenders well-being and improves productivity.  Even just smiling at others increases your happiness. Recently, a couple of my friends have been sending cards to their acquaintances and they feel uplifted by doing so. I’ve been one of their recipients and it’s uplifted me as well. For this kind of boost, you can also send an email that acknowledges or compliments a friend or coworker.

Be mindful. For only a couple of minutes a day, just be present with yourself. Notice how you feel, mentally and physically. Become aware of your thoughts and feelings. Scan your body to notice where it might be tense, and then relax that area. Because I spend so much time on the computer, I will periodically close my eyes and relax various areas of my body. What impacts the mind, impacts the body and vice versa. When your mind is tense, so is your body. And when your body is relaxed, your mind is at peace.

Do deep breathing. A couple of minutes every day do some deep breathing. Breathe in for a count of four, breath out for a count of eight. This signals your nervous system to calm down. After stressful experiences, practicing this activity has quickly lowered my blood pressure to almost normal. This is a good exercise when you feel pressured with a deadline or decision. You’ll be more effective coming from a peaceful frame of mind.

Keep a gratitude journal. Every day, write down three things you’re grateful for. This exercise makes you notice positive things around you. One day last month, a heavy rainstorm came and passed while I was in the grocery store. It seems like a small thing, but I was grateful that my timing was such that I didn’t get wet. Studies show that within three weeks of daily gratitude practice, you’ll be more optimistic.

You only need to do one of these each day to notice an improved mood and mindset within a few weeks. When you have a sense of well-being and a more positive mindset, your actions have a better outcome. Instead of waiting to be successful to be happy, why not feel better while you’re working towards success?

Affirmation:

The Universe created me to be successful and supports me in my endeavors. There is a Divine plan for my success in life. Everything I need for success is provided. To align myself with the Universe’s plan for me, I cultivate my sense of well-being, happiness and positive attitude.

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. To achieve a 90-day goal more easily, sign up for her FREE comprehensive Strategic Vision blueprint at www.Linda-AnnStewart.com/setyourcourse.html. You can contact her at LAS@Linda-AnnStewart.com or 928-600-0452.

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Aug 282020
 

3 Ways to Better Understand Your Emotions

Many struggle to identify what exactly they’re feeling, and often times the most obvious label isn’t actually the most accurate. Because of society, culture, and family rules about ignoring or suppressing them, many people don’t even recognize that they’re feeling anything. But it leaks out in inappropriate ways. But when we’re able to accurately label what we’re feeling, we can decide how to address the issue.

Use Guided Imagery For Relaxation

Both guided imagery and relaxation are amazing remedies for stress and anxiety. The benefits have long ranging mental, emotional and physical effects. This article gives some specific instructions and tips on how to practice this effective technique.

A quick technique to overcome procrastination

Procrastination sabotages your productivity, effectiveness, and can impact your relationships. It’s designed to have you put off what might be boring, uncomfortable or unpleasant. But those tasks still need to be done, and putting them off means that you waste your time and energy. This article shows you 4 steps and several tips to break the habit of procrastination.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart