Showing posts with label self improvement. Show all posts
Showing posts with label self improvement. Show all posts

Start Choosing the Best Environment for Success

Success in any area of life never happens in a complete vacuum. Often it is just as much dependent on an individual’s will-power and intelligence as it is on their environment and outside circumstances.

To find happiness and success, you therefore need to pay attention and take some control over the type of environments you are surrounding yourself in on a daily basis; even the strongest and brightest of minds will find it difficult to achieve their goals if they are in a completely wrong environment for them. This is because every aspect of your external life has some influence over your internal thoughts and behaviors, especially the people you surround yourself with on a daily basis, and the type of places where you spend most of your time.

Time to look at the people you surround yourself with…..

The first main aspect of our environment that influences our success is the people we surround ourselves with on a daily basis. 

For example, a recent study published in a 2013 issue of Psychological Science found that surrounding yourself with friends who are more self-disciplined can also help you become more self-disciplined. This is just one of many examples of how our social network can have an influence over our own behavior and goal-seeking.

It fits well with other research that shows if you hang around people who are obese and unhealthy, it’s more likely you will become obese and unhealthy. And if you hang around with people who are lazy and don’t study for class, it’s likely you’ll end up with similar grades as them too. More and more scientific evidence is beginning to show that we become a reflection of the types of people we hang out with the most. This social influence affects every area of our lives: at home, at work, at school, at a party, or wherever.

So take a moment to think about some of your own personal goals and values. Are there any people in your life who are currently holding you back from achieving them? Be honest. Instead of spending time with people who make you hate life and make you want to give up, spend time with people who make you love life and motivate you to improve yourself for the better. 

That to me is one of the most important characteristics in a healthy relationship. It’s also essential to achieving success. If you have the right people in your life, it’ll be easy to find that extra boost of support when you really need it.

Think about the places you spend your time at……

The second main aspect of our environment that influences our success is the places we spend most of our time at.

For example, one important factor that has shown to increase productivity and happiness is giving people some freedom to design their own workplace. Taking ownership over where you spend your time allows you to choose an environment that motivates and inspires you. A good environment for success should keep your senses stimulated and awake while you work on your goals, while not being too distracting. 

For example, one specific thing you could do is put plants or a fish tank in your office, gym, or workplace to surround yourself with nature more. There have been countless studies showing how exposing ourselves to nature can improve focus, minimize stress, and boost cognitive ability.

Another thing you can do is decorate your workspace with motivational posters and quotes. These can be great resources to have around the office when you need something to lift your mood. Find images that are visually appealing to you, with designs and colors that make you feel good and set the right tone for you and your goals.

Often when working for large organizations we can lose a sense of our personal identity. Your office is usually the one place you have some freedom to express yourself, so create a work environment that works for you – something that reflects some of your own values and interests, and something that motivates and inspires you.

Try changing your workspace around every few months or so to keep it fresh and interesting. On the surface it may not seem like a big deal, but remember this is the place you work at everyday, so it’s going to have an influence on your success and inspiration whether you realize it or not. You might as well make it as positive as possible.

It’s about choosing an environment that brings out the best in you……..

At the end of the day, you can’t meet your full potential for success unless you find an environment that brings out the very best in you. Try to become more aware of the people and places you interact with on a daily basis. Are they encouraging your success or discouraging it? How can you make some changes to your environment so that it better serves you and your goals?

Achieve your full potential and work with a Business and Life Management Coach who has over 20 years’ experience empowering individuals, executives and business owners to attain self-defined success in their professional & personal lives. Book a complimentary session at

Become Aware of The Feedback In Your Life!

Our minds are a lot like a feedback loop.

We process information from our environment, we respond to it through our actions, and then we get new information back based on the effects of those actions. This cycle continues as we continue to adapt and change to new situations in our lives.
One key to happiness and success however we may define those terms, is paying attention to this constant feedback as much as possible.
When we do things that get positive feedback, we should continue to do those things in the future, because we know that they work and bring desirable results. And when we do something that gets negative feedback, we should change our course of action in hopes of getting different results.
However, some people try to ignore this feedback or they just aren’t good at being fully aware of all the feedback they get from their lives. They get stuck in their own ways, staying attached to old habits and old ways of thinking and believe those are their only options. Not because they actually worked or helped them live better lives but because that is all they know to do.

"Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." -Albert Einstein
The more you pay attention to the feedback in your life, the better you can adapt and change to your life in a healthy way.

We receive feedback in a variety of forms including but not limited to:
  • The feedback we get from our actions. Does doing that thing bring you closer to your values and goals in life or further away?
  • The feedback we get from people. Are your friends, family, coworkers, or whoever responding positively or negatively to what you do and say?
  • The feedback we get from our bodies. Does eating that make you feel healthy or less healthy? Does doing that activity make you feel fit or less fit?
  • The feedback we get from our emotions. Does doing that make you feel more emotionally stable or less emotionally stable?

Everything we experience can be viewed as a type of feedback. To make the most of this feedback we have to exercise both awareness and honesty on a daily basis. This is the beginning of knowing what needs to change in order to improve and grow.
The first step is to pay more attention to things we normally don’t whether it’s our emotions, habits, relationships, health, work, or whatever else it is that makes up the components of our lives.
Be a witness to your life to help build more awareness to your everyday thoughts, habits, and routines.
Once you learn to harness your awareness in one area it will become easier to apply that same focused awareness to all other aspects of your life. In doing so, you’ll become more attuned to the various forms of feedback you get every day.
Secondly, to make the most of your feedback you need to be honest with yourself as much as possible. If you always distort your feedback into something positive or negative and you don’t actually see what the feedback is truly communicating, then you won’t be able to respond to that feedback in the most effective way.
Be more aware of your actions and be honest about their effects because that is the beginning of knowing what is needed to improve all aspects of your life!

Get the tools you need to excel in your life! Work with a Business and Life Management Coach who has over 20 years’ experience empowering people to attain self-defined success in their professional & personal lives. Denise’s passion for personal development is at the core of her business and life philosophy and is committed to helping others achieve their full potential in order to live richer, more fulfilling lives. Book a complimentary session at to get started in reaching your goals today! Phone, on-site and e-mail coaching available.

Ref: Emotion Machine

How to Get Organized

Creating productive habits will help you get organized, simplify your life and get everything under control so you can get things done. Look at all the improvements you can make to your daily routine and pick one at a time to incrementally change the way you do things so you can improve your life. Once one habit is changed then move on to the next one until you have a revamped your way of life to stay organized in everything you do. Its’ not that difficult if you take one thing at a time and put some action into it!

Collect information wherever you go. If you carry a capture tool with you whether it’s a small notebook, smart phone or anything else that works for you it will allow you to write down tasks, ideas, projects, phone numbers or anything else that pops into your head each day. I like to start my day by writing a physical list in the morning and use it to check things off as the day progresses. I also put certain reminders in my phone to make sure I address tasks that are very important.

The key elements of the capture habit are: take your capture tool with you wherever you go, write everything down before you forget, and empty your notes of what still needs to be done into your future to-do list when you get back to your home or office.

Process all information that comes to your inbox and create an action to follow. An inbox is any place where you check your messages or read incoming information. The first thing you have to do is minimize your inboxes. List all the ways in which you receive information, evaluate each to see if it gives you value, and find ways to combine or eliminate inboxes.

Make sure that all the papers, letters, bills etc. that come into your home get placed in the one inbox so you can address all of them at the same time preferably at the end of your day or week.  If you use a smart phone make sure you get all your messages together in one area whether they are in different email accounts, text messages or voicemails. Once you scroll through them you can then decide what to do at that moment.

Start with the top item on your inbox and work your way down, making immediate decisions as you go along, delete or trash it, delegate or save  it. If it’s something you can deal with in two minutes or less, do it immediately. File it if it’s something you need for reference. Add it to your to-do list or calendar to do at another time. Work your way down through each item until the inbox is empty. Leave nothing in the inboxes.

Plan at the beginning of each week the larger tasks that you want to accomplish and schedule them first on your list. Prioritize your tasks to get the most important ones done in the morning each day to ensure that they get done. Planning gives purpose to your week because you’re not just checking items off of a to-do list, you’re doing what’s important to you and what will take you closer to achieving your goals.

Do One Thing at a Time without distractions and select a task and decide that you’re going to work on it either until it’s done, or for a set amount of time. Before you get started de-clutter your desk and eliminate all distractions, shut off your e-mail and cell phone, get off the internet if it isn’t part of your work, and so on. Focus on the task you’ve selected to the exclusion of everything else during the time that you’ve allotted to that task. If you get interrupted or think of something else that needs to be done while you’re focusing on a task, write it down for later and get back to the task until completed.

Use an Easy System instead of getting caught up fiddling with tools and making things too complicated. Concentrate on “doing” and not on the tools. What will work for you is what is best, so think about what is the easiest to implement and start. I create a paper list each morning that I carry with me to add and cross off things as the day progresses. I use my Blackberry to complement my schedule with reminders and put future tasks into my calendar as they come to play. This works for me but you can also separate your tasks in each area for everything work related, all your personal tasks, for calls you can make from anywhere, your list of errands, things you need to follow up on and a list of stuff you don’t want to or can’t do right now, but want to check on later.

Keep lists simple so you can stay focused. All you really need is one list to work off of daily and a master list that you review and update weekly/monthly. I use Outlook as my master list and sink it with my Blackberry. You can also add the small less important tasks as well and whatever doesn’t get done you should put on the following day’s list. If it’s still there at the end of the week then take it off your list because it doesn’t seem to be worth your time…lol

Everything Has Its Place and your life can be completely organized by following two rules: everything you own should have a home, and when you’re done using any item, put it back where it belongs. Create a simple filing system so that you can keep things organized and quickly file any papers that have been finalized or that you’re going to need for future reference.  Putting things where they belong, immediately, is a good productive habit. Treat it like any other habit and focus on it for a month to turn it into something automatic.

Set and Keep Routines. It’s important to create productive routines and eliminate the habits that you have that no longer serve you. You should make sure that you are mentally and physically doing what is in your best interest each day. Find routines that work for you so they are within your comfort zone. It’s important to create structure so your routine will work within your home and work life. Following a routine that is flexible as well reduces stress and leads to living an organized, focused life. Knowing what you will be doing each day creates a sense of calm internally.

Do a Weekly Review so you can see the progress you have made with each task completed. It is important to focus and look at your accomplishments so you see improvements to your life and acknowledge the steps that were taken to bring you closer to your goals whether they are daily, weekly, monthly or yearly. Focus on what is important and make sure that your projects/tasks lineup with your goals concentrating on what matters the most. A plan for the future is great but you must live in the now to make each day productive, organized and purposeful.

Tap Into Your Passion and do those things that bring joy to your world. Embracing something that you feel passionate about will replenish your soul and give you the energy and focus to stay on track. If you’re passionate about your work, your family or your home, then your task list will almost seem like a list of rewards.

Get Organized and A
chieve Your Full Potential! Work with a Business and Life Management Coach with over 20 years experience empowering individuals, executives and business owners to attain self-defined success in their professional and personal lives. Book a complimentary session at to get started in reaching your goals today.

What Is It Really About?

What is life about to you? If its about things then that is all you will have. Focus on being a better person and life will respond in kind. Don't rely on others to create your path, its all within your power of choice. Embrace the moment and enjoy the beauty that surrounds you. Give and you will see a whole new side of life.......

Stop Over Analyzing and Live Life!

Sometimes we often contemplate life from every angle. We weigh the pros and cons of every endeavor, every relationship to ensure we don’t take one false step. Unfortunately most of the time they do not protect us from mistakes, nor do they protect us from the very things we are looking to avoid.

Over analyzing life is the major cause of procrastination, and insidious thought. The more you think, the more you conjure up thoughts of how the world is out to get you or that you aren’t capable of attaining whatever goals you desire. We sabotage ourselves. Others don’t sabotage us unless we let them. But more often we do it to ourselves. Over and over until it becomes a part of our psyche and we have to self reprogram our minds into a healthy disposition.

We must rid our thoughts of self defeating feelings. Whether you feel you’re not good enough to date a particular person, or that you’re unqualified for a particular job, you are entitled to anything you want just as anyone else is. No one can make you believe it but you. Just as one obsesses about how they aren’t capable, one can choose to think that they are. It’s the choices they make that determine the happiness of their life. Not circumstances.

Choice is the key word in all of this. It’s what one chooses to think about. For many they consume their minds with needless, irrelevant processes that sap their energy or forms negative energy that they in turn… attract. We are what we attract and attracting these negative forces in our life is our own doing. We have the power to change it. But often many people over analyze themselves into negative dispositions that consume their thoughts, until they manifest it themselves in life.

Life is meant to be lived. The greatest people the world has ever known became great by making things happen and not merely thinking about them and every pitfall that may arrive along the way. You owe it to yourself to be the best person you can be and that starts in your head.  It’s unnatural to be positive every second of the day, but we can choose how we digest and manifest information. How we cope with the information we’re given is a reflection of how we think about ourselves. Many things you will analyze will never materialize, because they are figments of your imagination.

You cannot assume what people are thinking. You cannot assume what people will do. You cannot assume that someone is thinking of you when you are, or in the way you are. It’s a ridiculous process that only feeds fear and uncertainty. Focus on you, and what you’re doing, and don’t make judgments on the hypothetical.

Over analyzing can cripple you to non action. Free your mind of these negative thoughts and bathe in the glorious ether of self awareness and confidence. The more you do the more you’ll be focused on things that will make you happy, and less on those negatives you attract.

Learn to stop over analyzing and embrace the life you were meant to live! Work with a Business and Life Management Coach that specializes in human development and personal effectiveness for individuals and professionals. Book a complimentary session today!

The Power of Letting Go.........

A story for reflection….. Two Buddhist Monks were on a journey and they approached a rough and raging river. On the river bank they saw a young woman who was clearly in need of help to cross to the other side of the river. The junior monk walked straight past her without giving it a thought and crossed the river. The senior monk offered to help the woman and carried her across the river. Once across they parted ways and the two monks continued on their journey. As the journey continued, the senior monk could see that the junior monk had something of concern on his mind, and asked what was wrong. The junior monk replied, "As monks we are debarred from touching a woman, how could you then carry that woman on your shoulders?"  The senior monk replied, "I left the woman a long time ago when I put her down at the river bank, however, you seem to be carrying her still."
This story shows the importance of detachment.
The things we hold onto, bear grudges or perhaps feel angry and hurt about cloud our mind and prevent us from being the best we can be. Letting go usually involves some form of forgiveness or acceptance – whether it’s for yourself, someone else, a situation or even an unknown third party. The irony is that whatever you’re holding onto, it’s probably hurting or bothering you much more than it does anyone else. Letting go doesn’t mean we condone a situation or behavior, it’s about lightening our load. When we let go of whatever is bothering us we set ourselves free and get to reclaim that energy for ourselves. You don’t need to know how to let go, you just need to be willing. You can’t change the past, but you can learn from it and change how you feel going forwards. Remember - whatever you find it hardest to let go of is probably what you need to let go of the most.

There is tremendous power in letting go because it clears your mind and takes away distractions so you can concentrate on living in the present. Letting go of all the things that drain your mind and body allows you to gain more focus and confidence in yourself to achieve your goals. Improving your present moment improves your future as well and will bring more happiness, joy and real freedom into your life..

Below is an exercise that will help you gain some clarity of the things you need to let go off.  Just listing what you need to let go of here will raise your level of awareness and you’ll naturally begin to loosen your grip on the things that do not serve you.  So ask yourself and write down what you’re holding onto, what slows you down, what riles you up and anything that gets in the way of you being the best you can be!

  •   What do I need to let go of?    How I benefit by holding on?
Now look at this list and imagine letting go of everything on this list. How does it make you feel?

What have you learned about yourself from doing this exercise?

If you need to let go of something you’ve done, simply ask, “What do I need that will allow me to let this go?” Perhaps you need to make some kind of apology or find a meaningful way to make it up to yourself or someone else. While we can’t change the past, we can make peace in the present and learn from it. Also ask yourself, “What do I gain by holding on to this?” Perhaps by holding on to resentments, anger, hurt, you don’t need to accept your part in the situation, or perhaps it stops you from feeling how hurt you really were, maybe you get to stay in ‘the right’ or avoid dealing with someone.

By becoming aware of the things that do not serve your life now will allow you to start the process of letting go and redirecting your energy toward what empowers you and brings you joy.

Start today and get the support you need by working with a Business and Life Management Coach with over 20 years experience empowering people to attain self defined success in their personal and professional lives. Achieve your full potential and book a complimentary session.

Take Action and Change Your Life Today!

Life is constantly testing us for our level of commitment, and life's greatest rewards are reserved for those who demonstrate a never-ending commitment to act until they achieve. This level of resolve can move mountains, but it must be constant and consistent. As simplistic as this may sound, it is still the common denominator separating those who live their dreams from those who live in regret. Action is a great restorer and builder of confidence. Inaction is not only the result, but the cause of fear. Perhaps the action you take will be successful; perhaps different action or adjustments will have to follow. But any action is better than no action at all…..............Start today and book your complimentary session at

Creating The Best Work-Life Balance

For most people, juggling the demands of career and personal life is an ongoing challenge. With so many demands on your time from work to family obligations, it can be difficult to strike a balance. The goal is to make time for the activities that are the most important to you so you can live a happy life.

Here are some ideas to help you find the balance that's best for you:

Keep a log. Track everything you do for one week. Include work-related and non-work-related activities. Decide what's necessary and what satisfies you the most. Cut or delegate activities you don't enjoy and don't have time for. If you don't have the authority to make certain decisions, talk with your family on a personal level or professionally to your supervisor at work.

Take advantage of your options. Find out if your employer offers flex hours, a compressed workweek, job-sharing or telecommuting for your role. The flexibility may alleviate some of your stress and free up some time. Sometimes the options have been there all along but never explored.

Learn to say no. Whether it's a co-worker asking you to spearhead an extra project or your child's teacher asking you to manage the class play, remember that it's OK to respectfully say no. When you quit doing the things you only do out of guilt or a false sense of obligation, you'll make more room in your life for the activities that are meaningful to you and bring you joy.

Leave work at work. With today's global business mentality and the technology to connect to anyone at any time from virtually anywhere, there's no boundary between work and home unless you create it. Make a conscious decision to separate work time from personal time. When with your family for instance, turn off your cell phone and put away your laptop computer.

Manage your time. Organize household tasks efficiently. Doing one or two loads of laundry every day, rather than saving it all for your day off, and running errands in batches are good places to begin. A weekly family calendar of important dates and a daily list of to-dos will help you avoid deadline panic. If your employer offers a course in time management, sign up for it.

Communicate clearly. Limit time-consuming misunderstandings by communicating clearly and listening carefully. Listening to others is very important in the communication process and will help you to understand each situation better. Take the necessary steps to get your thoughts and feelings shared and respected by others.

Fight the guilt. Remember, having a family and a job is OK for both men and women. Making the right choices with a clear conscious will become critical to your success in both areas. Instead of feeling bad, take action by making your life better and more rewarding.

Nurture yourself. Set aside time each day for an activity that you enjoy, such as walking, working out or listening to music. Unwind after a hectic workday by reading, meditating, practicing yoga or taking a nap. Just spend some time winding down in a peaceful environment.

Set aside one night each week for recreation. Take the phone off the hook, power down the computer and turn off the TV. Discover activities you can do with your partner, family or friends that are fun. Making time for activities you enjoy will rejuvenate you and will bring more joy into your life.

Protect your day off. Try to schedule some of your routine chores on workdays so that your days off are more relaxing. Don’t let everything pile up until that one day. Each day accomplish something small and it will make your chores less stressful.

Get enough sleep. There's nothing as stressful and potentially dangerous as working when you're sleep-deprived. Not only is your productivity affected, but also you can make costly mistakes. Get 8 hours of sleep so you are fully rested and can start your day refreshed. Your family and co workers will benefit as well from your energized self!

Bolster your support system. Make sure you release your energy by talking to a trusted friend or co-worker during times of stress or hardship. Ensure you have trusted friends, neighbors and relatives who can assist you when you need a favor when you have to work overtime or travel for your job. Having a support system alleviates the pressure of having to take care of everything yourself.

Seek professional help. Everyone needs help from time to time. If your life feels too chaotic to manage and you're spinning your wheels worrying about it, talk with a professional coach to give you the support you need to achieve your goals. If you're experiencing high levels of stress because of marital, financial, chemical dependency or legal problems, a professional can provide you with specialized resources to get you help in those areas.

Remember, striking a work-life balance isn't a one-shot deal. Creating balance in your life is a continuous process. Demands on your time change as your family, interests and work life change. Assess your situation every few months to make sure you're keeping on track. Balance doesn't mean doing everything. Examine your priorities and set boundaries. Be firm in what you can and cannot do. Only you can change your situation and restore harmony to your lifestyle.

Give yourself a gift! Work with a Business and Life Management Coach who has over 20 years experience empowering people to attain self-defined success in their professional & personal lives. To book a complimentary session, visit my website at

The Wheel of Life

The Wheel of Life is a great tool to help you improve your life balance. It helps you quickly and graphically identify the areas you need to devote more energy to, and helps you understand where you might want to cut back. It is used in preparation for coaching sessions and setting short and long term goals. The challenge now is to transform this knowledge and desire for a more balanced life into a positive program of action!

Start by giving yourself a score of 1 to 10 depending on how satisfied you currently are in relation to each area on the wheel. 1 is pretty much as unhappy as you can be whereas 10 is the perfect score. As you score each area it is vital to be honest so that you can identify the areas for change and set goals to improve the key areas of your life. When you have scored all areas, join together all the points on each section to create a wheel. This will show you how balanced overall your life is and the areas you really need to focus on to set goals for improvement. After you have completed the wheel put a date on it and then review it every 3 months. Hopefully you will have gained self awareness, created healthy habits and made significant improvements in your key areas throughout time. You may then find that another area now requires your focus instead.

The Wheel is meant to change as your life improves and is a very simple yet powerful tool to help you identify the areas of your life that you have neglected and need to prioritize more in future. To learn more about how life coaching can help you attain balance in your life, book a complimentary session at

Being a Good Friend is a Virtue

Do you ever wonder why some people have lifelong friends and others don’t? How do people sustain good friendships no matter how many years pass or much distance is between them? The answers are simple if you live by the rules of honoring your friends the same way you would honor yourself.

To have a friend you have to be a friend. You must remember to do your part by initiating calls and spending time being part of their life. Asking how the other person is feeling or asking how their day went when you see them or talk on the phone is important. This shows that you care about them and are interested in what’s going on in their life. If you are always talking about yourself without showing interest in the other person then you can’t expect the relationship to be a lasting one. The friendship will become unbalanced and an uneasiness or distance is likely to arise.

Be Reliable and Considerate. If you and your friend agree to meet somewhere, don't be late, and never stand them up. If you're not going to make it on time or make it at all, call them as soon as you realize it. Apologize and ask to reschedule. Don't make them wait without reason because it's rude, and it is certainly not a good way to develop a friendship. When you commit and say you'll do something, just do it. Don’t wait to cancel plans because something better came up. That is being selfish and inconsiderate of your friend’s time and company. Be someone that people know that they can count on.

Be a Good Listener. Many people think that in order to be seen as "friend material" they have to appear very interesting. Far more important than this is the ability to show that you're interested in others. Listen carefully to what people say, remember important details about them, ask questions about their interests, and just take the time to learn more about them. You don't want to be the person that always has a better story than anyone else or that changes the subject abruptly instead of continuing the flow of conversation. These people appear too wrapped up in themselves to be good friends.

Be Trustworthy. One of the best things about having a friend is that you have someone to whom you can talk to about anything, even secrets that you hide from the rest of the world. The key to being a good confidante is the ability to respect their information so you shouldn't disclose things that were told to you in confidence. Before people even feel comfortable opening up to you, however, you need to build trust. Be honest about yourself and your beliefs and you will gain your friends trust.

Be There. You've probably heard of fair-weather friends. They're the ones who are happy to be around you when things are going well, but are nowhere to be found when you really need them. Part of being a friend is being prepared to make sacrifices of your time and energy in order to help out your friends. If a friend needs help with an unpleasant chore, or if he or she just needs a shoulder to cry on, or someone to vent to just by being there for them will mean a lot. This works both ways and you should surround yourself with friends who are there for you as well.

Make new friends but choose them wisely. As you befriend more people, you may find that some are easier to get along with than others. While you always give people the benefit of the doubt, sometimes you realize that certain friendships are unhealthy, such as if a person is constantly negative or introducing questionable behaviors into your life. If this is the case, ease your way out of the friendship as gracefully as possible. Preoccupy yourself with other things that you enjoy. Cherish those friends who are a positive influence in your life and do your best to be a positive influence in theirs. Never leave old good-friends because you may like someone new more. This is a big mistake. It's great to have different groups of friends, but if you abandon one group for another, you may soon find yourself without any friends at all.

Be Yourself. Don't be untrue to your convictions and beliefs, and if this causes you to lose some friends, you're better off without them. You'll also find that your integrity may help you win better friends, and if you just "be yourself" you'll make friends who like you for who you are. That is what friendship is all about. In Good times and bad, a real friend accepts you for who you are.

We cannot tell the precise moment when a true friendship is formed but when you have one it will bring forth unconditional support, honesty, trust and respect into the relationship. The most beautiful discovery that true friends can make is that they can grow separately without growing apart. The vitality in a friendship lies in the honoring of differences, not simply in the enjoyment of similarities. Look at how many really good friends you have? Develop the characteristics needed to sustain solid friendships and enhance your life. Being a good friend is how lifelong friendships start!

“A good friend is a connection to life - a tie to the past, a road to the future, the key to sanity in a totally insane world.” ~Lois Wyse

Give yourself a gift! Work with a Business and Life Management Coach who has over 20 years experience empowering people to attain self-defined success in their professional & personal lives. To book a complimentary session visit

Embrace the Moment and Learn To Be Happy

Simply by learning to embrace and live in the moment you can achieve the happiness that seems to elude most people. Simple living is a concept that most people can’t imagine because the world is so complicated. Actually your world is what you have made of it and its pace has been created by you. Think for a minute of a typical day in your life. Is it rushed from the time you wake up? Are you stressed about everything along the way or is it calm and peaceful throughout the day? The way you are living is what you have chosen, not what has been given to you. Your life is the blueprint of the choices you have made, and will only change when you change the plan. Being happy is all relative to what it is that makes you happy. Everyone can learn to embrace the moment and be free of the patterns they have created. Think about if you are living your life expecting someone else to make you happy, or are you taking responsibility for your own happiness? Do you you rely on money, family and friends to make your world happy even though those are outside forces that were created by your own decisions? Why can’t you live in the moment if it brings you joy instead of expecting something more from others?

A good place to start is with your own internal dialogue and what is in your head. If you tell yourself each morning that you are able to handle things calmly and honestly, and then remind yourself throughout the day that you are what you think, and then you will start to become aware of your actions. Look at the things that take place throughout your day without judgment so there is less stress in your life. Treat others with respect and respect will be given to you in return. Happiness comes from within, but how you have chosen to live in the external world that you have created, will determine how often you feel peace, joy, and respect. To be able to live with an attitude of gratitude and to be thankful for the simple things that cross your path every day will bring you more joy. Allowing that joy to enter your heart will bring peace to your soul. Internal peace is always found through self awareness and growth.

Make a list of the things that make you happy and look at how much, or how often those things are in your life now. Each day you should surround yourself with what actually brings you joy. First, knowing what those things are, and then creating the space for them will be the start of making joy prevalent in your life. You must also start to create boundaries and eliminate the things and people that are not serving you as well. Stop giving your energy each day to things that drain you. Start becoming aware of how you spend your time and what moments you are missing along the way. Appreciating simple pleasures each day will slow your mind down and bring you back to the basics of feeling joyful. Being aware of what’s right in front of you will force you into the moment. Embracing the many little moments that take place in a day can bring a lifetime of happiness and joy to your life.

Find a minute of peace in your day or evening to just close your eyes and give thanks with a happy heart for all your blessings. Call people you love more often and spend less time with those who are always angry. Create an outside activity each day even if it’s for 15 minutes and connect with the world. Commit yourself to organize something in your home or at work to get your surroundings in line with your values. Make a commitment to change just one thing today and embrace the moment, even if the moment is reading this article. Take a deep breath and close your eyes. Once you are relaxed, open your eyes and think about what you just read and how you can apply something to your present circumstance.

It’s really up to you to make the simple changes that will help you embrace moments that can bring you happiness. If your world is so complicated that you can’t stop and feel some joy throughout your day, then enjoyment of the moment is lost. Stress and judgment will not bring you the happiness you deserve. You always have the power to bring joy into your life because your life is your own, and happiness is a choice. Uncomplicate the day and release the negative thoughts in your mind. The simple things that make you truly happy will become more prevalent and those moments you embrace will define your happiness.

“When we are capable of living in the moment free from the tyranny of “shoulds,” free from the nagging sensation that this moment isn’t right, we will have peaceful hearts. “ -- Joan Borysenko

Denise Dema is a Business and Life Management Coach who has over 20 years experience empowering individuals, entrepreneurs and business owners to attain self-defined success in their professional & personal lives. To learn more about the author and her practice please visit

How to Gain Respect and Live Responsibly

Whenever we start a new year we usually go through some review in our mind of the previous year and what we have accomplished or have yet to accomplish in our life. Setting goals, releasing negative feelings, forgiving and striving for some personal growth is always on people’s minds, no matter what they have experienced in life.

Many times, the thought of professional and financial attainment or lack of is what a new year brings, along with all the emotional feelings that follow. When you take the honorable approach throughout your life, it will always result in other gifts coming your way without intentionally seeking them. This is why I encourage people I coach to make the three R’s a reality in their lives. They are: Respect for self, Respect for others and Responsibility for all your actions. People’s intentions are often not the reality that they live. It’s not because they don’t want to, but because they just don’t have the discipline to be consistent without help from others. To change one's behavior and thought processes can challenge a person’s will. Most people alone are not strong-willed enough to stick with it throughout the time it takes to attain their goal. It’s never too late to start to live your life in a respectful and responsible way, so your daily interactions will be set on a positive path. So let’s start with some of the thoughts and activities that are associated with respect and responsibility.

Respect for Self is a feeling of confidence and pride in one’s owns abilities and worth. Having regard for one's character, and one's conduct with appreciation of one’s self elevates our awareness of who we are. Self- respect is the cornerstone on which many other attributes are built such as dignity, honesty, loyalty, confidence and integrity. Feeling good about yourself, thinking enough of yourself to make decisions that will be good for your long term emotional, physical, spiritual and mental health, will improve your character and self worth. Always surround yourself with people who have your best interests involved, who care about your thoughts and feelings, who share your passions and interests and who live healthy lifestyles. Conduct yourself on a daily basis with a happy heart, engage in physical activities that are health-oriented, be polite and pleasant to others and it will elevate your own self- respect. By walking the walk and talking the talk you can display the respect you have of yourself by honoring your body and mind. The person with self-respect simply likes themselves. It should not be contingent on success or a result of comparing ourselves with others. Self -respect is a given because of who we are and not because of what we can or cannot do. No one can take steps towards their goals, dreams and aspirations without liking the person they currently are.

In general character good or bad, is considered to be observable in one's conduct. Look at how you act each day, what you do to honor yourself and how you display those qualities that show self-respect. Those with self-respect are less prone to blame others, have guilt, live with regret, lie, have secrets and stress. Ask yourself if you display any of these traits and start to acknowledge why you feel this way. Be thankful on a daily basis for the blessings you have now and at the same time examine the beliefs, biases, assumptions, and myths inherited from family, school, religion, and society. One by one, dismantle and discard those not in keeping with healthy, honorable and virtuous living, and cherish those that are. Part of our personal development is the view we have of our self, and respecting yourself will play a big role in your chosen path in life. Have fun as you develop friendships, interests, purposes and passions. Enjoy the journey of learning to respect yourself as a unique individual who has something to offer in this world. When you act with integrity, your words and actions will match, which gives you self respect and a peaceful heart. Respect for ourselves feeds our respect for others.

“Respect for ourselves guides our morals; respect for others guides our manners”. –Laurence Sterne

Respect for Others is to have unbiased consideration and regard for the rights, values, beliefs and property of all people. To hold in special regard someone's opinions, talents and/or abilities, reflects your own values and standards. It also shares what you believe in, and in part, what you see or would like to see in yourself. By respecting others, you show the attitude of friendliness and comfort towards them. Listening to other people’s thoughts, feelings and desires without judgment, allows you to respect them for who they are, and not what you want them to be. Very often, we impose our own ideas on others without being able to respect other people's inherent differences. Everyone you encounter has a unique moral fiber that has created who they are and how they think. Being able to allow others to express themselves in their own way will open your mind to different theories and information that might not be part of your mindset. Respecting other people in your personal and professional environments will encourage the same respect be given to you, in return. We show respect by speaking and acting with courtesy. Always treat people the way you would want to be treated: with civility and dignity. Ask yourself if at any time during your day: Did my verbiage or actions ridicule, embarrass or hurt other people? Become aware of how you treat people, so you can improve your behavior. Being fair minded, truthful and polite will reflect the virtues of respect and bring back to you the same positive energy that you put out to others.

“Every human being, of whatever origin, of whatever station, deserves respect. We must each respect others even as we respect ourselves”. -Ulysses S. Grant

Responsibility means to accept accountability for your actions. When you make a mistake, you accept it, correct it, and offer amends, instead of making excuses. Responsibility is the ability to respond and make smart choices for yourself. Being responsible for your actions allows you to accept that everything along the way that happens to you, good and bad, has been determined by the choices you have made. You are in control of those decisions and blaming others for your situation is avoiding your responsibility. You can pretty much choose almost everything in your life; your career, your spouse, where you live, who your friends are, your social activities with the one exception of the parents you were born to. You need to make sure that you acknowledge the responsibility that follows those decisions because they are your own and not anyone else’s. Personal growth develops when we are accountable because we accept the choices that we made and learn and grow from them.

People who take complete responsibility for their lives experience inner joy and control of circumstances. They are able to make better choices because they understand that they are responsible for those decisions. Take a review of yourself to see how often you take responsibility or place blame on others. Listen to your verbiage to see if you often point fingers of blame at your friends, spouse, co workers and family. Are you making excuses and shifting responsibility to others for the things that don’t always go right? How many times have you said: "He/she did this to me?" You can change these negative behavior patterns by first understanding that you made choices that ultimately created these results. Taking responsibility is the first step in acknowledging that you have the control to make better choices in the future. Become proactive, not reactive, to your situations and be accountable. Acknowledge that your life is your responsibility. No one can live your life for you. You are in charge. No matter how hard you try to blame others for the events of your life, each event is the result of choices you made and are making. By breaking the blame-game patterns in your life and accepting responsibility, you will see your circumstances change for the better.

“The willingness to accept responsibility for one's own life is the source from which self-respect springs” –Joan Didion

When you put into practice the three R’s on a daily basis you will start to see your life change with positive experiences. Lessons are learned and spiritual growth becomes prevalent. Don’t allow the past to dictate the present, unless it honors you and your life. Start to modify your behavior to reflect actions that display respect for yourself, respect for others and take responsibility for all your actions. It’s never too late to get support so you can be on a better path in your life. You do have the power to change your circumstances and the change starts the day you commit to live an honorable life.

Denise Dema is a Business and Life Management Coach with over 20 years experience empowering individuals, entrepreneurs and business owners to attain self-defined success in their professional and personal lives. To learn more about the author and her practice please visit