Saturday, May 30, 2009

Living lean

Living leaner can help you live larger.

I'm not talking about the latest diet craze and I don't claim to be a fitness guru. I'm talking about trimming all the extra "stuff" that weighs you down in life.

It's time to trim.

First figure out what NOT to trim

Basically, what is the "meat" of your life? People only NEED a few things, like food and water, air, some form of shelter to keep them from harm… but beyond that, what makes your life undeniably yours? Relationships, home, job, family… This is the area you DON'T need to trim; because it defines who you are.


Trim the meaningless

This is the obvious fat. Stuff that means nothing to you, whether it's physical clutter or some activity that you do… it just brings no sense of fulfillment to your life. Simply put - get rid of it! If it's "junk" then literally donate it to charity. If its some sort of activity that you don't need or want to do, let someone do it.

Trim the "cling-ons"

These are the things that are around because THEY feel it's important. Now this is not advice on being selfish, but it is a lesson in how to be self-caring. Carefully evaluate why something is hanging on to your life. If it's not mutually beneficial, then perhaps it's time to change it.

Trim the time wasters

There are some things that are meaningful to you, but just take more than they give. It could be a long-winded conversation with a loved one, or some other activity that just always takes longer than it should. For this, you just have to learn short cuts and ways to politely know when to end things. Once the value is gone from the time spent, it's time to spend that time someplace else.

Add more "meat"

Fortunately time is finite in every day; so you have to choose wisely what to do with it. If you just trim the "fat" you'll be left with pockets that can just get filled up with different "fat." By adding more meaningful stuff to those moments, you won't have any more time to waste.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Ask right...

Despite our own popular opinion, we don’t know it all. There are times we need to seek out the advice of others.

Knowing how to ask for help is the smartest thing you can do.

Know what to ask

Reduce your need to a sentence or two. Keep the questions simple, so the solution can be simple too.

Know who to ask

The person you ask needs to have YOUR best interests at heart, not theirs. This is about forwarding your life, not the manipulations of someone else’s selfish agenda.

Speak in questions

You are ASKING for advice, not looking for someone to rant to. Instead of saying something like “they don’t listen to me” you could ask “what would you do if someone else doesn’t listen to you?” That gives them another opportunity to give you an opinion.

Don’t box them in

It’s the details that bog you down. Don’t share too many details with your advisor unless they ask for them. Perhaps their freedom from details will bring about suggestions that can free you up too.

Listen openly

Don’t filter their advice against your details either. Don’t immediately jump to “it won’t work because…” That’s just setting you up to repeat failure. Take in their advice fully; then move on to making plans.

Follow through

Be willing to give the advice a chance. After all, you came here for advice; it’s no good unless you do something with it.

Follow up

Make an appointment to follow up with your advisor at a later date. That turns the advice into goals, and the follow through into a contract.

Monday, May 04, 2009

The Glass Just is...

The glass just is… the liquid in it, just is. You can see it as half-full or half-empty all you want; it’s still just a glass with some stuff in it. It is both… and neither.

The closer you can come to that ‘truth’ the more direct an experience you will have. No judgment, only experience.

Getting to that place is “half” the journey…

Recognize your Point of View

All too often we just assume we’re seeing things as they are. We don’t realize just how much we read into what we see… our past experiences, our current mood, the angle of our view… they all color the “truth.” First thing, acknowledge that this is just the way you see it. That will get you to separate your view from what you are viewing.

See the Value of the Other Half

It really isn’t an either-or situation. Just because a perspective is different than yours, doesn’t make it automatically wrong. Consider that there’re lessons to be learned by seeing the “opposite” point of view. A pessimist isn’t always a “downer’ and an optimist isn’t always a “dreamer.”

Seeing the other side will help you to…

Get to Neutral

“Neutral” is Balance. It isn’t “nothing” … but rather having both sides equal to one another. It is all about being centered between the duality known as “Life.”

Neutral isn’t Passive

You know that birds can fly best when they’re balanced. They can fly longer and farther, and with a lot less stress being in that “neutral” state. The same ought to be with you. When you get balanced, don’t just sit there like a lump… go do something!

Direct Experience

How about going one step beyond neutral? How about experiencing something as it is? Got a glass with some water in it? Drink up. Then you’ll get it…


(And then the glass will be empty and you’ll be full. Funny how that works, eh?)