The Key to Better Decisions

decisionsMaking good decisions is a big part of being alive, and has an even bigger role for the self-employed. Wouldn’t you love to know that you can easily improve your decision making skills while also improving your health, reducing your stress, and having more fun?!?

Sounds amazing, right. It is!

Relax Into It

As I’ve written before, there is tremendous power in relaxing on a regular basis. Research is showing us that when we’re relaxed, we think clearer. Solutions come to us quicker when we’re not stressed. Our DNA relaxes, too, opening up access to receptors that allow us to heal our body. The list of  benefits goes on. Plus, we’re also a lot more fun to be around when we aren’t stressed out of our mind.

Decisions Come with Ease

Marc Allen is a successful composer and the multi-millionaire founder of publishing house, New World Library. (He originally founded Whatever Publishing with Shakti Gawain, which later became New World Library). In this wonderful 2011 interview with Lilou Mace, Marc candidly and humorously shares his personal journey to creating and sustaining his successful business.

If you haven’t watched this before, grab your favorite drink and enjoy this inspiring conversation. (Even if you have watched it before, it’s fun to watch each time.)

Marc has thrived the most when he made regular time for relaxation, with his attention on appreciation and his custom affirmations…and struggled when he forgot his practice. As a result, he’s learned to build some serious relaxation time into his business, beginning with his unique work schedule. Marc works Tuesday through Friday, after 1pm only, and part of Saturday. The rest of the time he reserves to ensure he has plenty of time to rest, relax, and watch clouds float by. His business flourishes when he makes time for this important practice.

His examples shows that you can start a great business with little money, and grow it successfully with ease. Here’s his favorite affirmation:

MarcAllen_financialSuccess
After watching this video, and learning how relaxation, appreciation, and affirmations can improve your business decision-making, what are you inspired to do next? Please share your thoughts below in the comments.

Your Body Compass

Body Compass

Have you heard the term ‘Body Compass’ and do you know how it can help you every day?

After sharing my blog post about the incredible power of decision, I received a bunch of emails and messages from people saying that they find it hard to know which decision is right for them. While many liked the idea of following what feels better, the question remained: “How do you know when every choice feels both good and bad?”

I’ve briefly mentioned the Body Compass before, but it makes sense to devote an entire post to this topic.

In our heavily plugged-in lives, constantly on the computer, or our phone, juggling virtual and real-life deadlines, dramas, and details, we’ve become increasingly disconnected from our bodies. We need a way to navigate the world than electronics can provide.

Thirty years ago, I would have made most of my difficult decisions by making a pros/cons list. Since then, I discovered the power of the Body Compass to guide me in making good decisions in even the most difficult situations.

What is the ‘Body Compass’ ?

Just as a magnetic compass can help us navigate the globe, the Body Compass uses the human body to guide decision-making and receive guidance. Our bodies are an amazing collection of energetic sensors which are always providing us with feedback. These sensors are so fine tuned, work well together, and these sensors let us know what matters to us physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

Like any tool, you have to know you have it AND how to use it, to reap the benefit.

5 Steps to Tap Into Your Own Body Compass

Here are 5 steps to become receptive to and use the information from your Body Compass:

  1. BREATHE, slow down, and relax – Take 3 deep breaths. Be still. Get out into nature. Put your bare feet on the ground. Release the mental snowballs. If you must remain inside, step away from the electronics. Go get a drink of water, walk around a moment, or take a bathroom break. We think much better and can connect with our Body Compass when we are not mired in the stress. First, we have to release any stress in our system.
  2. Get into heart coherence – After your cleansing deep breaths, lower your head as if you are looking at your own heart while putting your hand on your heart. This is a quick action that puts your heart into a coherent state which then signals your organs to function in harmony with each other. (If you want to know more about Heart Coherence, visit the HeartMath Institute’s site.)
  3. Bring your question to mind – Some find it helpful to write the question on paper first, so that they can look at the question anew once they are in a more relaxed state. Don’t try to ‘think’. Just be aware of your question, and move to the next step.
  4. Notice what sensations or feelings show up in your body along with thoughts – For instance, you might feel tightness around your gut / solar plexus at the same time you have a memory flash in your mind. There’s a connection between the sensation and the thoughts/memories that arise. You might experience an emotional release, such as crying, sighing, yawning, coughing, sneezing. Let it happen, and see what awareness you have afterward.
  5. Use the information that surfaces to show you what feels best – Often one option will feel slightly better, if not much better, than the others. Sometimes one idea feels lighter in the body, than the other. Choose the best, lightest feeling option.

You might have to practice feeling your body from the inside-out.Many of us have been socialized to only feel what happens to the outside of our bodies (scrapes, cuts, bruises), not what’s going on inside, especially if it’s emotional. When you are willing to slow down and really feel your body from the inside, you’ll start to notice all kinds of sensations.

There are several ways to practice. Meditation can help you become aware of your body while it is still, and relatively relaxed.

You can also practice scanning your body as you fall asleep at night…or just as you wake up. Let your awareness scan your body from the top of your head to the soles of your feet, and back up to the crown of your head. Notice what you feel and what thoughts arise.

The other day, I used my Body Compass to see where I was creating unnecessary drama and frustration. As I looked at my To-Do list that day, suddenly 5 items seemed very urgent. Drop-what-you-are-doing-urgent. Not only that, they each had specific requirements, so they needed to be done in a specific order, which made each more complicated. I found myself being paralyzed with the feeling of urgency, and then came the indecision. No matter how I looked at these 5 items, they needed to be done and they were getting in each others way!

Fortunately, the indecision reminded me of my Body Compass. (See? Contrast has its blessings!) I got quiet, centered, and heart-coherent. I looked at each item on my list, and noticed how my body felt. In a flash, I suddenly realized that *I* was the only person claiming that three of these tasks were ‘urgent’. In that realization, it became crystal clear that a few things didn’t even need to be done…at all! Ever. Unless I wanted to do them. They were options, but I had turned them into ‘shoulds’.

I let out a big sigh. I immediately felt the stress drain away from the dilemma, and my next course of action was clear: The other two items didn’t need to happen TODAY. They could easily be done the next day. What a relief! What seemed like an urgent quagmire had quickly become easy and doable.

Once you learn to understand your Body Compass and use it regularly, you’ll find it one of the most helpful tools for growing a thriving business. It’s always with you, and it’s free. You just have to CHOOSE to remember it and use it!

Your turn…Are you ready to start putting your Body Compass to work for you? If you already do, what experiences have you had with your Body Compass? Share your insights below.

 

Composite Image credit: Barry-Jansson & Associates,
Resource files via paffy, and lightwise.

Managing the Naysayers

Managing the NaysayersHas this happened to you: Feeling good, joyfully setting and working toward goals that delight you when, seemingly out of nowhere, appear the naysayers discouraging your efforts.

Naysayers are the people in our lives finding fault with our decisions, questioning our ideas, and unable to believe in new possibilities.

You can tell a naysayer because they limited the possibilities in their own minds, and are convinced what is true for them is also true for others. They are known for generalized statements such as:

The field is over-saturated.

It’s impossible to succeed.

No one makes money doing that.

You’re going to fail.

I wouldn’t bother, if I was you.

You can’t afford that…

Sound familiar?

Naysayers

Those comments, by the way, are a sampling of what I was told after starting my presentation design business in the 1990s.

It was easy for me to dismiss them because I could really feel in my heart that this was the way to go…and the right time to do it.

Turns out, there was a great need for the services I was providing, and clients sought me out. The first year I replaced my corporate income and the second year I was earning six figures.

I remembered this 18 months later when I envisioned myself buying a new home and found that my real estate agent was, in fact, a naysayer. She didn’t believe in my ability, as a self-employed single parent, to afford a home of my own. Rather than help me find something in my budget, she gave me a map highlighting to the worst part of town (with houses ready to be demolished).

The Blessing in Naysayers

As with all contrast, there is a blessing in having naysayers in our life. They show us what *we* believe. If we are discouraged by naysayers, that reveals how we are not believing in ourselves. Even an inkling of worry or doubt in us will become triggered by the naysayers.

However, if we truly believe in what we are doing, then we cannot be dissuaded no matter what anyone else says or does. Naysayer comments will seem empty or almost comical because we know what we want, and we already feel the strong momentum of our success is underway. Like someone telling a builder it’s impossible to build a building when it’s already framed up and ready to finish.

If we recognize the naysayer for who they are, a person projecting their own fears, doubts, and limited beliefs, then it is easier to forgive them and move past their comments. This is what I did with my naysayer real estate agent.

Rather than argue with her or try to convince her that she was wrong, I recognized that she was just not with the program I had embarked upon. She didn’t see or understand the magic that I was already creating in my life. I mentally patted her on the top of her head, forgave her for not seeing the magic, and went around her to get approved by a mortgage lender and find the property I wanted to purchase. Then, I contacted her again to finalize the purchase.

Some people might have skipped that last step, and found a new agent who believed in them. Because I knew this agent personally, and knew she needed the sale (naysayers often live a difficult life), I wanted to help her out. I also wanted to share the magic I was creating, so she could open her eyes to new possibilities.

Tips for Managing Naysayers

  1. As always, it starts with you: Get clear on your decisions before you discuss them with others. When you are solid in your knowing, clear on what feels best to you, comments from naysayers will not bother you. In some cases, they might even amuse you.
  2. Be choosy. Chances are, you are aware of some naysayers in your life right now. Unless you enjoy conflict, be choosy about who has the privilege of discussing your business decisions with you. Not everyone in your life needs to know every business decision you have made.
  3. Naysayers who are closer to you: Significant other or a business partner, and/or both, who are naysayers really challenge our commitment to our choices. Managing naysayers who live and/or work with us requires us to really be in touch with how we feel, and be willing to own our power to make our own choices. When you know what is important and which decision feels best to you, you’ll be better able to detach yourself from their comments.If your business partner is constantly naysaying, despite your business decisions always working out well, it might be a good idea to renegotiate how you interact. Perhaps you can agree to each make certain decisions without each others approval. Or you might want to find a new business partner.
  4. When you are your own naysayer it is time to go within and figure out what’s going on. If you cannot trust your own ideas and decisions, it’s time to work on your self-love and self-esteem. There is no room for success and well-being when we lack trust in ourselves.
  5. Use the naysayer triggers to look at your own doubts and fears. When someone elses naysaying bothers you, it’s a good indication that you harbor some of those same feelings. Otherwise, their comments wouldn’t trigger you.
  6. Bless the naysayers. Yeah, you read that right: Mentally thank and appreciate the naysayers for either showing you your own doubts and fears, or for revealing how solid you feel on the topic. Either way, they are providing a valuable service, and that deserves some appreciation!

How have you dealt with naysayers? It’s your turn to share how you’ve dealt with the naysayers in your life…comment below so we can all benefit.

Image Credit: pixelbliss

Getting the Most from Business Advice

Business advice cloud

I’ve been inspired to share this insight with you today.

You have probably noticed that I don’t write blog posts every day, every week or even every month. There is an important reason for this beyond the fact that there are already a myriad of free resources on this site. I used to write more often, and all of it is available in the archives, but I’ve learned the importance of only taking inspired action. In the meantime, I remain quiet to become aware and allow my intuition to show me when it’s time to take the action of sharing insights.

Let’s back up a moment and look at thoughts and actions from a vibrational point of view.

Everything we perceive starts first as pure consciousness—as a thought that may eventually become more thought, word, energy, or inspire actions. Pure consciousness is formless and ever-present, ready to respond and be transformed by our energy. Since we live in a vibrational universe (yes, that includes the full spectrum of sounds we can hear as well as those we cannot), the vibration or resonance of the formless consciousness has a direct effect on the resulting thoughts, words, energy or actions. Furthermore, our beliefs are additional filters through which the pure consciousness passes on its way to generating an effect.

Therefore, it doesn’t matter if you take the same actions as other people, your results will reflect the consciousness you are flowing.

For instance, a belief that certain clients are always difficult will skew pure consciousness on its way to effecting new thoughts, words, energy or actions related to acquiring new clients or managing existing clients. No matter what actions you take they will result in you experiencing those certain clients as difficult. It must, because the lens through which you are perceiving consciousness is directing it to be so. Law of Attraction is always vibrationally lining us up with our consciousness so that we prove our beliefs as *right*. Until we change our beliefs and the consciousness we are flowing, nothing else will change.

Seems like wherever you turn, there are people dishing out one-size-fits-all business advice based on their point of view or what worked for them (or others) in the past. Everyone has an opinion on how you should run your business. This is beyond crazy-making for business owners who want to find the right solutions. What worked for one person at one time in their life may not work for another person, or even the SAME person at a different point in their life. Why is that? Because the vast majority of business advice is offered with little, if any, attention paid to the consciousness that accompanies their point of view or experience.

Even if it makes absolutely NO sense for your business or for you as the business owner! Taking action is so much less important than being aware of and conscious of the energy you are flowing.

Andrew Carnegie, once the richest industrialist in 1900s America and the man who inspired Napolean Hill to write his powerful book, Think and Grow Rich, understood this important nuance. Andrew, along with his cousins, was first taught this concept by his Uncle in his native Scotland. On his way to building some of the largest and most profitable companies in his time, Andrew asked questions and listened to answers, but he never took action unless it felt right to him. Even if everyone else was doing it, Andrew took the time to become aware of his own thoughts and feelings, to listen to his intuition, and only take inspired actions on any decision.

There are a few people who truly understand this, and those are the people who do not give out one-size-fits all advice. Not everyone who is currently in business is emotionally, physically, or spiritually prepared to receive this information. Those folks may need to live more life before their own consciousness is ready for the next step. In the meantime, they will read or listen to the surface words and never understand the profound underlying teachings.

Fortunately, if you are reading this blog post, you have a leg up on the majority! Here are 3 simple steps to invest your time and attention so you may begin to do to get the most from any business advice:

1. Start with Awareness Awareness is a form of pure consciousness and it has amazing healing powers. Choosing to become aware of a story we are telling, or a feeling inside of us (even when we cannot attach words to it), or an action we are taking can help us see what is working and what is not working for our lives and business. In order to become aware, you must first be willing to be quiet. Be silent in the stillness, and just notice what you become aware of. That’s it. No judgements. No actions. Just awareness. Incredibly powerful!

So many people are overwhelmed with the daily details of life that they think taking time to be quiet and aware is a waste or unproductive use of time. Nothing could be further from the truth! Those are the people who are forever on a rat-wheel and never able to move beyond. Invest the time in your own quiet awareness, and you’ll see your intuition blossom as you start to see your situation from an entirely new perspective*. Solutions will present themselves, and struggle will become a forgotten habit.

*Don’t be surprised when you begin to realize that every life and business dilemma is an opportunity for spiritual growth. Not religious growth – spiritual growth, growing your own consciousness, and becoming a better version of you.

2. Let intuition guide you Once awareness has opened the door to possibilities, your intuition will begin quietly pointing you toward the best solutions for you. Not the best solutions for everyone. Not even the best solutions for others in your area. Your intuition is your personal guidance, meant only for you. Listen to it and follow it, and it will reward you every time!

3. Follow the inspiration With your awareness and intuition in place, you will start to notice when an idea feels really good to you. Only take actions that feel good to you. I don’t mean good for a few minutes, then irritating or like pulling teeth the rest of the time. I mean actions that feel light and easy to you the entire way. That emotional guidance is telling you that is the direction for you to go. It might not be the right direction for everyone, but the light and easy feeling is an indication that it is right for you.

Some people will think that you are crazy for following your own intuition. Let them. They need to mind their own vibrational guidance, and let you mind yours.

Taking action when something does not feel good usually means that you are trying to force an outcome. Your consciousness is not aligned with the action, which is why it doesn’t feel good. No good result will come of effort taken that doesn’t feel good in your heart. However, recognizing and being aware when it doesn’t feel good to you is powerful information for making decisions moving forward.

With these three steps in place, if anyone offers you business advice, you will know if it’s right for you. It’s OK to take a pass. (Just like the old adage, take what resonates and leave the rest.) It’s best to follow the advice that is aligned with your intuition and inspiration. Read that last sentence again, because it’s really the only one-size-fits-all business advice that’s worth following.

What have your life and business experiences shown you about getting the most from business advice? Share your thoughts and comments below.

 

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