Monday, November 20, 2017

You have only three choices.


OK, you have three choices –

resist, accept or consider.

Tim Connor

I know what you are thinking – three choices about what?  No, I’m not a psychic, but the title is basically saying in life we generally have three choices when it comes to decisions, actions and behavior.  Consider – A job offer? (three choices) Start a new relationship? (three choices) End a relationship? (three choices) Move? Invest? Retire? Start a business? Sell something?  Buy something?  (three choices).  See where I/m going with this?  Not yet?  OK, how about you are sitting in one of my seminars and as I share my ideas, approaches, solutions etc. you sit there thinking – this guy is an idiot or -  he is a genius or – I’m not sure where he is going with this, but I’ll give him a little more time?  (Three choices). Ever been there?  There now with a decision that needs to be made or an option you are considering that needs action?

I’m not trying to make something difficult or challenging seem simple or trite but ask you to look at most of life’s choices in a more practical way rather than what I hear so often “It’s complicate!”

What I’d like to share in this brief article is what contributes to which position we take based on the title regardless of what we are facing, dealing with or has come into our life unexpectedly – do we resist – say no, accept – say yes or consider – say I’ll think about it?

Yes, I could go on for pages and there are thousands of books that address this issue but let me give you my short version. (say yes!!!)

Why we say no (resist) – sure we all know about the impact fear has on our life, decisions and actions but have you ever considered what fake fear (yes borrowing a line from politics – but it applies here) has on your actions?  What is fake fear – it’s simply stuff that doesn’t warrant real fear in the present, but for whatever reason we talk ourselves into being fearful.  Should I ask her/him out?  Should I ask for a raise?  Should I _______?  There are literally hundreds if not thousands of - should I’s or should I not’s - that we don’t or do - do because of the impact of self-generated fear.  (Yes, I just made that up).  We convince ourselves that there is real (emotional or physical) danger with or without this action or decision.  And where does this come from?  I’ll tell you – 10 years of early mental and emotional (and sometimes physical) conditioning given to you by your early environment (parents, teachers, friends, relatives etc.).  They drilled into you – you can’t, you shouldn’t, you won’t, you will never, and you know what – you are still hearing those messages no matter how subtle or distant.  You are still behaving according to their rules, guidance or expectations.  Enough – that was years ago – you are a new you – turn them off, let them go and no longer give them power over your life.

Why we say yes (accept) – we all have real and imaginary desires, goals, dreams and hopes and we really want them.  Some we work hard to achieve while others remain in our “I hope someday” column but that’s what they are – hopes or dreams that we want, think we want, believe we want etc.  Ever had someone give you a special present you didn’t ask for, expect or deserve?  Did you refuse it? Return it? Probably not because deep inside you feel/believe you are worthy of it, deserve it or want it even though you didn’t even know it existed. 
Ever had a conversation with someone where all you did was keep nodding yes, saying – yeah or just keep agreeing with everything they uttered?  Where did this come from?  Read the above example (resist) again but this time just replace the fear and negative stuff with positive stuff – you know why – because the outcome has the same contributor or source – what you were taught, instructed, guided, conditioned etc. to believe before you were eleven years old.  Try it.  I’ll do one for you.  “Name” – have you ever thought about starting your own business?” “You know I always have but just didn’t know what the best time would be, or circumstances were - to begin.” “What are you waiting for?”  OK - here comes either the fake fear or the fake optimism – you will either convince yourself that now is the time (say yes – accept) or feel uncertain (say no – resist).  Or, the next camp which is to say – maybe (I’ll think about it). Think about something in your life right now where you are either in camp one (resisting) or camp two (accepting).  What’s contributing to the thoughts, feelings, emotions or actions? And where are these coming from?

Why we say maybe (I’ll consider) -  If you are still with me - I’m sure you know where I am going with the third option or choice.  Yes, you’re right – the maybe or I’ll consider it - is a mix of both camp one and camp two above and you just are not sure at this point which way to go.  Well, let me tell you if you aren’t sure which way will be your final verdict.  Whichever is the strongest in your mind, (you can’t or won’t lessons or can and will ones) history and experience will ultimately sway or convince you to go in that direction.

So, you have some no’s in your past, but you also have some yes’s there also.  I’ll leave you with a final question – you are considering something new or different (what should I do or say) you already know which way you want to go (and even will go) and you are just waiting to receive, feel or experience enough validation, evidence, proof or confirmation to admit your decision, choice or action.  Am I right?  Think about it.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

How do you feel about yourself?

How do you feel about yourself?
Tim Connor

This might, at first seem like a silly question – and probably one you have never asked yourself. I know I never have and I have written entire manuals that are nothing but page after page of questions - go figure.

How about another quickie – why is this question important?

Without appearing to be looking for either praise or pity let me share what this question did for me the first time someone asked it of me.  By the way, this person died over 100 years ago but is one of my mentors.  When I was recently re-reading one of his books after a few years this question just hit me between the eyes like a baseball bat.  Trust me – I never saw it coming, but when I put the book down and thought about it seriously - both tears and laughter filled my head for a long time.

You might be asking at this point – why – this question isn’t that big of a deal.  OK, well let me ask you a few more and then you can decide whether you want to finish this article or not.

Have any regrets in life?

Ever disappointed anyone? Yourself?

Ever felt abandoned or betrayed by someone?

Ever felt stuck?  Lost? Confused?

Ever asked yourself – what is this or why did this happen to me?

Ever felt like you got something negative you didn’t deserve?

I could go on but if all of your answers to the above were no – well - have a nice day. Yeah right!

First – notice that I didn’t use the words – describe yourself, defend yourself, define yourself, explain yourself or promote yourself. How do you feel about yourself – in other words – how and why do you – like, approve, love, accept, validate and justify yourself?  Answer these questions in writing - one at a time – take a few minutes and when you have finished the exercise come back and finish the article.

Did you do the exercise?  Let me guess – you just kept reading!  Oh well - here’s the rest of the article, hopefully it will have value for you even though you didn’t do your homework.

There are many contributors to how and why we feel about ourselves from time to time and just a few are – self-esteem, fears caused by either real or imaginary emotional or physical threats, the need for others’ approval, the desire to be in control of all areas of our life, the desire to avoid adversity, challenges or even failure and the need for validation and appreciation.

If we handle these or get the ones we need or value as needed on schedule and from the sources, we feel necessary guess what – we will generally feel great about ourselves and our life.  However, if we fail to get any or the ones we feel vital we will tend to let the absence of these have a negative influence on our self-perception and thus our feelings about how our life is, is going or how it might be in the future.

Keep in mind all of these self-emotions, reactions and responses are caused by expectations and often if not, always these expectations are not grounded in reality but controlled by ego needs, or insecurities caused by any number of situations, people or circumstances in our past.  The real issue is – how do these feelings contribute to the quality of our life?  It’s really simple but not easy – negative stuff tends to make us feel negative and therefore think negative stuff and these tend to create negative circumstances that drive negative emotions and feelings.  The opposite is true – positive stuff tends to make us feel positive and positive feelings generally create positive outcomes.  Neither of these are absolutes - as I said – they tend to.

So, the real question is – how can we learn to always feel good about ourselves no matter what is going on in our life, who is in it and/or what is missing etc.?
One of the topics I discuss in some of my seminars is – are you an inside-out person or an outside-in person.  Let me explain.

Outside-in people turn over the quality or the responsibility of their lives and how they react, accept, deal with etc. to outside circumstances or people i.e. the weather, traffic, long lines, unpleasant people, poor service, flat tires – you name it - if it happens to them they go into blame mode, whine mode, complain mode, anger mode- whatever.

Inside-out people just accept what is happening whether they like it or not, feel they deserve it not and deal with it.  They don’t scream, yell, panic, blame – whatever – they just wait, fix the tire etc. and move on.

So, before we wrap this up let me share a few ideas on how to better manage life’s circumstances that contribute to how we feel about ourselves. I call these my Life ”Mantras.” In no special order here are just a few of them; If you want the whole list let me know – it’s on me.

-If it happens I’ll get excited if it doesn’t I won’t be disappointed.

-I was not put on the earth for your approval.

-I can’t control much but IK can control me.

-If I’m thinking it it’s impacting me.

-Every day I can learn something important if I’m open and willing.

-We are here for a little while and then we are gone forever.

-I am on God’s schedule not mine.

-Every day is a gift.

-It is what it is.

-My life does not revolve around yours.

-Failure, adversity and trials are necessary to grow and get better and wiser.

-Gratitude and appreciation of others are more important than selfies.

-We’re born then we die – everything in between is trivia.

-If you don’t ask you will never know.

-It’s not over till it’s over.

-My age is none of my business.

-What can you lose that you don’t really need.

-Our dreams should be better than our memories.

-If you always tell the truth you don’t have to remember what you said.

Got any of your own that you use to help you deal with issues, people, challenges in a positive way so that they don’t have a negative impact on your day, life, career, relationships etc.?


Sunday, November 5, 2017

Is technology stealing the quality of your life?


Is technology the answer to

life’s present and future challenges?

Tim Connor

Let me be perfectly clear from the outset – I am not against technology, change, AI, transformation or the steps we take into the future.  Also, I’m sure many of you will take issue with some of my points that follow – remember – truth is not what you or I think it is but – what it is.  But let me also be clear that I believe that not all of these advances will improve humanity’s ability to deal with many of its core issues such as; conflict, separation, loneliness, uncertainty, decision making, inner peace, fear, the need for love and acceptance, life meaning and purpose.

Trust me – your latest iPhone version, Facebook connection and iPad app are not going to solve your issues of patience, the need for control, stressors, but let me guess – at this point I have lost a large percentage of people who started reading this article and came to the conclusion that I am out touch, living in the past or just don’t get it?  For you folks check back with me in a few years and let’s chat about how technology has improved your overall life and its fundamental desires, needs and challenges.  For the rest of you who have an open mind, let me share what I believe are the positives as well as the negatives of our gradual addiction to any device or technology in general that we feel is vital for our existence and the ultimate achievement of our human purpose on the earth.

The age-old questions for thousands of years that have still not been answered – where did we come from, why are we here and where are we going still plague most of humanity and yet every year more and more technological progress is made.  Yes, technology may make some cures more successful and rapid, it may improve transportation and our ability to more quickly grab information that is vital and valuable. But consider - stress is still increasing, the divorce rate is the same as it was in the 50’s.  “Or, how about suicide rates among those 35 to 64 years old they have increased 28 percent (32 percent for women, 27 percent for men). The greatest increases in suicide rates were among people aged 50 to 54 years (48 percent) and 55 to 59 years (49 percent).  

Why?  There is more technology and information available today than at any time in history.  Isn’t it helping?  How about obesity - more than one in two adults and nearly one in six children are overweight or obese today. Adult obesity rates are highest in the United States. Obesity rates are projected to increase dramatically by 2030. Got an iPhone that will solve that?

Let me add before I forget what I believe is an important factor – one of the most critical things vital for success, happiness and inner peace is not information but wisdom and yes, information is a valuable contributor to wisdom but if you rely only on it – sooner or later your information will not benefit you but contribute to your life chaos.

You might think at this point I’m being negative but no matter where you look – in some segment of society technology may have many advantages but it isn’t solving many of life’s critical issues and trust me it never will.

There are more books, YouTube segments, motivational speakers, psychiatrists, life coaches available today than at any time in history and yet we still have many of the same problems people have faced for years  such as; impatience and how it leads to stress and then death, conflict and how it leads to separation and loneliness, fear and how it contributes to illness, uncertainty and change and how they lead to insecurity.

Had enough of the negatives?  I know I have.  So, Tim what’s the point of this article – what are you trying to say?  Glad you asked.  Let me briefly share what I believe are the basic causes and some simple solutions.

Before I do however, I want to go on record - during my career I have been a big advocate and supporter of books and studies by some of the world’s most trusted futurists, trend setters and thinkers who were sharing their insight, research and wisdom with the world.

There are some basic human needs that have not changed for thousands of years and are still relevant today – in no order here are just a few – the need for control, the desire for acceptance, answers to some of life’s critical questions, the fear of uncertainty, the concern of conflict and its impact and the need for connection.  Yes, there are others but let’s just briefly discuss these as they relate to technology and its benefits and or drawbacks to dealing with these.

Ever been to a social media site and seen an old flame, buddy or friend who was now more successful, wealthier, better looking or more connected or famous than you? How did you feel – glad, envious, sad, jealous – something else?

Ever received an email or text from someone wanting to end a relationship?

Ever gotten lost cause your GPS lady was in a bad mood? Just kidding but I’m sure you get my point.  Yes, technology has and will continue to solve many of life’s challenges and needs as it continues to advance but my question is simply – are you letting it replace the human element in your life, relationships, career or business?

Do you spend more time on your iPad, iPhone or computer than you do talking with or to – friends, spouse, employees, children, customers or friends?  Statistics now say that the average person spends between 6-9 hours a day looking at a screen!!!  I’ll let that speak for itself.

So, the answer – just a brief look at a few things to consider.

Words are important – Mark Twain once said, “if there is no malice in your heart there can’t be malice in your words.” Words matter – the ones you say to others and the ones you say to yourself.

Intent is critical – There are two types of intent – real intent and stated intent. Know the difference? Simple one is what you say and the other is what you do.

Beliefs are the foundation – Everything you decide, do, say, feel and have or don’t is the result of your foundation of beliefs. If you want something in life to change – you have to start, there.

Validation or self – People who make life about service to others have a greater impact on society than the world of “selfies”.

Gratitude vs. ego – People who come at life with gratitude and appreciation live longer and are healthier than those who don’t.

Everything is perception and mindsets – No one looks at anything the same.  Everything you think, believe, feel, decide is driven by your mental interpretation (perception) of others, circumstances and life.

Closeness and connection – Yes, solitude is valuable, but no one wants to spend all of their time separated from others.  We all want, once in a while or more often, to feel the human touch.

Humility is the difference – You will never be the best looking, smartest, most clever, best, wealthiest etc. person in the room.  Yes, maybe once in a while but it will all depend on which room you are in.

Conflict is normal – Why? Because we all have our own personal version of - right and wrong, good and bad, smart or stupid etc.

Change is constant – Change has been happening for over 150 million years and it will never stop.  But consider, it is happening faster and faster every day as we move into the future and this trend will not end.

Uncertainty is everywhere – nothing is certain.  Oswald Chambers once said, “The only thing in life that is certain is its uncertainty.” Period!

Fear is a choice – There are only two emotions – love and fear.  Love comes from a position of positive while fear comes from a position of negative.

Character matters – Who you are speaks so loudly.  What you do means more than what you say.

And finally, spirituality – You believe in God and a higher power or you don’t.  But, let me ask you – what would the world be like without a higher power governing human’s existence, progress and behavior? Just look back over the past two hundred years of all of the evil that has existed.  I ask you – if these people were able to dominate the world – what do you think life would be like today?

How is technology improving the above?  Think about it.  Yes, it may make positive contributions but are they the answer or do we need something else to ensure that human relationships control the quality of life and not robotic thinking and acting?

Yes, there are more and if you want to become familiar with them and their impact on life - just spend some time using technology to research the consequences of technology and change – you might be surprised.  Here’s just one link to get started  https://www.scu.edu/ethics/focus-areas/technology-ethics/resources/the-unanticipated-consequences-of-technology/.


Sunday, October 8, 2017

What you resist - persists.


What you resist persists

Tim Connor

You may be familiar with the phrase – what you resist persists.  Exactly what does this mean and how does it impact the quality of our future and life in general?

Resistance - something that is a source of opposition to the flow of energy. In psychology - the process by which the ego keeps repressed thoughts and feelings from the conscious mind.

My definition – when we oppose, confront, struggle with or are in denial of what is – truth or reality.

Here are my thoughts.

The mind is in control of every aspect of our life.  It is filled with myths, memories, misrepresentations, old inappropriate information, experience, disappointments, lies and yes truth and experience. 

But the question remains, when confronted with circumstances, people or events that you are uncomfortable with, don’t like, disagree with or are afraid of how do you react?  What are your emotional responses? What do you think?  What do you do?  Here is the real issue – what memories or data does your mind default to in these situations - courage, confidence, hope, acceptance, trust, faith or action or fear, anger, doubt, resentment, worry, stress and anxiety?  Or others I didn’t list?  Another question is – do you have any control over which reaction you have or are all of your actions and/or reactions simply in your mind in auto-pilot?  Let’s take the first one first – what does your mind default to?

First, we tend to resist what we are uncomfortable with, can’t control, are unaware of or disagree with.  And why? For starters our mind can have two reactions to everything in life – come from a fear position – anger, stress, denial, anxiety or in summary – a flight, fight or freeze perspective OR from a love position – joy, peace, confidence, belief, hope and faith.  I won’t go into the years of research that has come to these conclusions, if you want the sources I’ll be happy to give them to you. Due to our biological historical makeup and human evolutionary history the average person initially always comes from emotions in the fear mode first.  This is our natural tendency and our homo sapiens heritage.

What you believe determines how you perceive people and circumstances. How you perceive these, determines your actions, decisions and behavior.  These actions contribute to your consequences and outcomes.

Do you have control over your response or reaction?

Emotions are the primary contributors to our reactions and responses to everything in life.  Let me repeat - we can choose to respond with fear emotions (and there are many) or with love (not romantic love) emotions. We can have control over our reactions and/or responses but the ability to control these requires a number of factors such as; discipline, confidence, acceptance, courage, self-esteem, values and belief structures and self-control.  When we let our emotions drive our responses we are literally turning the control of our life over to these outside circumstances or people believing we have no control over them so we are doomed to letting them determine the quality of our lives.  I know that most people have what they feel are legitimate excuses or reasons for some of their negative behaviors but in the end even these excuses are grounded in our emotional body.

Until we learn to let our desires, dreams, hopes and experience determine our responses to circumstances (coming from the love portion rather than the fear portion of the brain - archipallium or primitive reptilian) we will always tend to make things worse due to our lack of perceived control.

So, the answer to this question above is – Yes, but it takes consistent conscious awareness and presence to accomplish this.

How do we do this?

There are many ways to accomplish the above but keep in mind that it takes; patience, persistence, awareness, the desire to change, the willingness to change and mature actions grounded in discipline.  Here are a few things to consider to accomplish your desired changes.

Anchors and triggers – An anchor or trigger can be any approach you use as a reminder to think or act in a certain way when something happens in your life.  It can be an affirmation - verbal or illustration; it can be a sentence you repeat when something happens. For example, one of mine is – whenever I drop something I have trained myself to use that as a trigger to repeat one of my affirmations.  It can be anything that keeps you focused on how you want to feel or act no matter what is going on around you - now.

Evaluation – A careful and honest self-evaluation is essential if you want to change anything.  You need to ask yourself questions like; why am I here?  How did I get here? Why do I always act this way? Is this the way I want to act? Why do I let others behavior influence me? Etc.

Meditation – Mediation is simply quieting the mind for short periods of time and just listening – to your inner voice, your spirit, your experience etc. This is also an excellent way to manage stress.

Prayer – I won’t go into detail on this as there are numerous books available on why pray, how to pray, when to pray etc.  I suggest you read a few of them – regardless of your spiritual inclinations.

Therapy – This can be an excellent way to get in touch with some or all of the causes of thoughts, mindsets, attitudes, behaviors and feelings.  A word of caution however, if you are not willing to be honest during this process – don’t waste your time or money.

Focus – Focus is the single best way to create a moment by moment personal environment that is productive, peaceful and leaves you with few regrets and disappointment.  Focus isn’t easy as we live in a very distracting world but in the end if you can learn to keep your focus on what really matters you will be amazed at how much more effective you will be and how little what is going on around you controls you.

Learning – Keep learning.  Keep reading.  Keep growing. Keep adapting.  Use change as a positive motivator but don’t let it change you in negative ways.

None of these are magic bullets that will guarantee immediate change or success but they can help you to start moving in a new or different direction.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Truth doesn't have versions.


  

Truth doesn't have versions -



The sky is falling - the sky is falling.  The earth is flat.  We are all going to die in this storm.  The end of life as we know it will happen this year.  Give me a break.  Just because the speed limit is 70 MPH - I don't have to go that fast.  Just because the expiration date on my eggs is three days past doesn't mean I have to throw them away.  Made my point yet or would you like twenty-five more examples (just kidding)?



Yes, I accept that some things I don't like or agree with are true but I also know that some things you believe are true are not - so - does the wind blow in both directions?  Well yes.  So, why then can't some people accept what is true when there is more than enough evidence and why do so many people live their lives in the realm of lies and ignore or deny obvious truths?  I don't have 200 pages to deal with this so I'll do my best with just a few words.



So, what is truth - truth is most often used to mean being in accord with fact or reality or fidelity to an original or standard. Truth may also often be used in modern contexts to refer to an idea of "truth to self," or authenticity.  Need more?  Want more?  Truth - fact, veracity, certainty, actuality, reality.  FYI - Truth isn't - opinion, impression, interpretation, estimation, judgment, belief, experience -  Got this one too?



Therefore, I have three questions -



1)   Why do people act like their opinions etc. are the truth?



2)   Why do people work so hard to convince others that their version of truth is the only one or the only one that matters or the only one that you or I should believe?



3)   How many facts (reality do we need) to know what is true or not true.



Is - gravity a truth?

Is - physical death a truth?

Is - the fact that change is constant a truth?



OR,



Is - the weather is crappy today - a truth?

Is - the service in this establishment is really bad - a truth?

Is - this "__________" (whatever) you believe - a truth?

Is - this technology is really slow - a truth?



Again - got it?



So, back to my questions.



Why do people act like their opinion etc. is the truth? Everything in life is a perception - the weather, time, health, food etc. In other words - This corn is too hot.  No, it isn't!  This movie is too long. Maybe yes and maybe no. That color is too dark. See where I'm going with this? Ever had an argument or disagreement with someone?  Sure, we all have.  What caused it?  Very simply - two different opinions coming face to face with each other - when only one could win but both were not necessarily true but you both believed that each of yours were true as far as the two of you were concerned. 



All conflict is the result of perceptual interpretation not necessarily based on truth and why - because truth does not have to be defended if it is real truth. When people can't let go of the need to justify opinions, attitudes, decisions, actions, feelings etc. that might be inconsistent with truth it is generally because of one of the following exists; the need for control, ego needs, arrogance, low self-esteem, insecurity or early conditioning that caused them to feel they need to get others approval in order to achieve self-acceptance and the way they do this is by being right or agreeing with them when they really don't.



Why do people work so hard to convince others that their version of truth is the only one or the only one that matters or the only one that you or I should believe or accept?  A lot of this stems from the previous discussion but for clarity I will add a couple of other items.  One is called projection.  



This is simply a refusal to accept a certain type of self-behavior and implying others of having the behavior that you have but refuse to acknowledge, admit or accept it.  In other words - "I am always late but can't admit it, but I always blame you for being late whether you are or are not."  



Another one is expanding on something or just making things up that aren't true.  I want others to think I am successful so I create a self-story that over time I come to believe as true.  Even if you know me well and know what I say about myself isn't true, I will still boast about these untruths as if they were true.  Actually, you would be quite amazed at how many people have this behavior.



How many facts (reality do we need) to know what is true or not true.

Well, if you see a lose wire coming from a generator you might want to avoid it.  If you see a red-hot grill you might not want to touch it.  How many facts do you need to avoid these disasters? Probably just one. If you want to know if Heaven is for real you might need a few more facts.  But here's the real issue when it comes to truth.  Some things, many things might be or could be true, but we don't know it because we don't have enough information to make a decision.  If this is true just because we lack evidence doesn't mean something is or isn't true.  Just because you don't believe in God - doesn't mean He doesn't exist.



Think about it. For years people believed the earth was flat until what - someone figured out that it wasn't.  But, many people continued to believe in this untruth because they lacked wisdom, knowledge or information.  The same is true today.  Could many things be untrue today that we just don't know are untrue but still believe they are?  And the opposite.  Could many things we believe are not true actually be true?

Saturday, September 2, 2017

How do you make important life decisions?


How do you make important life/career/relationship decisions?

Tim Connor

Few decisions in life are ever really easy.  In fact, some of them might appear to be easy on the surface or with a quick view or when we look at just the short term impact, but if we took the time to take a longer view of even the simplest decisions we might find that they have a bigger influence on our life than we might have considered if we had made them differently.

For example, there are many factors both short and long term that are impacted by our decisions such as; health, freedom, happiness, inner peace, long term success, relationships, self-esteem, self-value, financial freedom or status, career outcomes just to mention a few.  What we eat, what we drink, how much sleep we get, who we associate with, how we drive etc.

There are many factors that contribute to our decision process such as; the need for control, the desire for approval, the hope of security, the concern for our health, considering what others might think or how they might interpret our decisions, short and long-term commitments, previous decisions and their outcomes or consequences, emotional maturity, accurate information and our degree of wisdom and emotional control.  Need I go on?  OK, one more - instinct.

Let’s take a brief look at just a few of these to see if you are using them in an effective way to arrive at conclusions, research concepts that contribute to decisions or actual steps you take.

Let’s consider two critical areas first – the issue of consequences and the fact that there is little in life we can control.

Consequences

All choices lead to consequences. Some of them are positive and some are negative. Some are short term whiles can take years to play out. We always have options and choices. We may not like some of them, but we always have them. The choices we are given present us with the opportunity to move steadily in the direction of a better way of life or the opposite as we move toward our destiny. If we chose wisely, we move smoothly toward this favorable destination. If we choose poorly, I guarantee that sooner or later we will be guided back to the correct or a more favorable path.

Each of us is responsible for the quality of our life. To point your finger at anyone or something in your environment other than yourself for your life’s outcomes is to live in frustration, anxiety, stress and denial. Each of us is free to choose any path. So, choose wisely today, for tomorrow’s harvest is planted today.

What consequences are you paying today as a result of past or previous choices, decisions or actions?

Please consider the following as you develop or nurture your decision approach.

Control

Life will never be exactly what we want it to be or expect it to be. When you think you should be in control of anything – a project, a person, a situation, whatever – sooner or later, life is going to let you know that being in control is not what is important. What is - is learning to live happily and successfully without it.



Decision history

Have you ever reviewed and analyzed your past when it come to your decisions and their outcomes?  My experience and research tells me that most people don’t.  They just keep making decisions, dealing with consequences, moving on and repeating the process.  “New/different day, same stuff, same actions”. From personal experience, this is not an ideal way to live life expecting it to get better as the years pass.  You’ve heard it – “Expecting different results from repeated behavior is a mild form of insanity.”

Your decision process

Most people have a decision process but it’s more an auto-pilot process than a thoughtful one.  Something happens, they have options, they consider the short-term outcomes, they decide and they act or they – procrastinate and trust me – procrastinating is a decision.  A process means that you have developed a – repeatable, workable, successful and manageable approach or philosophy – doesn’t matter whether it’s in the kitchen making a new dish for your guests or it’s your heart surgeon preparing you as a patient for an upcoming event.  It’s all the same – you consider, you evaluate, you forecast, you plan, you act, you consider outcomes and then you repeat the process.  Simple? No.  Necessary? Yes, if you want better outcomes.

A few things you might want to consider –

-The future is never a guarantee no matter how perfect or right your decisions seem at the time.

-The future outcome is not a function of your history of favorable or wise past decisions.

-Outcomes can vary person to person with people who face the same issues and have to make the same types of decisions since we all interpret things uniquely and our environments vary.

-No decision guarantees that people affected by it will like it.

-The longer you wait to decide the greater the cost can be.

-Decision dysfunction (the inability to decide – no matter the issue) is common with people; who procrastinate, have a victim mindset, have low self-esteem or seek others approval.

-There is never a perfect time to decide anything.

-One of the best things you can do when it comes to decisions is to trust your “inner guidance system”.

Why not add a few of your own from your personal experience.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Anything missing in your life?


Anything missing in your life?

Tim Connor

No one in life has or gets everything they want, need or desire.  Let me repeat – no one. Are you waiting for some desire or need to be fulfilled?  Just had one satisfied?  None of these?  All of these?  Boy, could I go on for pages with this stuff, but we both have better things to do so let me cut to the chase.

You can’t have everything in life you want but you can have something – you can have more.

As the years pass for me I have had to let go of many dreams but many of them were replaced with new ones and I’m sure many of the new ones will one day have to be left behind – so what’s the point of desires, wants, dreams, goals, wishes etc.? They give us a reason to get up every day.  They inspire our effort, creativity, hope and yes even our purpose for living.

You may not have your health or the love of your life or your dream home or even your dream job but let me ask you – do you have a roof over your head?  Do you have people in your life who care?  Do you have a career, business or even a job?  I won’t belabor many of the negative statistics but give you just two – there are over 150 million orphans and homeless people in the world.  Every day over 10,000 people in the world die of starvation.

So, let me ask you again – what’s missing in your life?  What do you need to feel whole, alive, real, passionate, worthwhile or even just alive?  Better income?  More friends?  Better health? Bigger house?  Better car? This list is endless.

Here’s another question for you – if what’s missing in your life was satisfied or given to you today would that be the end of your search or would you now need something else, something better, something different?  Wanta bet?  Yep, something else (new/different/better) would now be the focus of your next need and again and again and again until when?  Well, until you think you have everything you want or need (never going to happen) or when you’re dead or even deserve.

Last year due to complications of hip surgery I almost died.  Then within a few weeks I had to have open heart surgery because of the complications.  Trust me – I’m happy just still being here and writing this article and heading towards my next speaking engagement next week.

Would I like a better car? Yep.  Nicer digs?  Yep.  More money in the bank? Yep. More and better vacations?  Yep.  Heard enough?  Yep.  But let me ask you – what really matters to you when push comes to shove?  Or are you so spoiled or “selfie oriented” that you will never be happy till you have it all, more, better or even less?

Let me close with a simple concept if you are still with me.

If something is missing in your life and you knew for a fact that you would never achieve it, get it, have it, own it or - whatever . . . would you pack it in and call it quits?  I doubt it.  What you would do?  You would finally be happy with what you have, who you are, where you are, where you are going and what you are doing.  Cause you know what?  Some day for you and for me - the journey of having will be over forever.