25th May 2014

Uncovering the Mystery of Self Power

Have you noticed how some people just seem to have power exuding from them, whilst others follow the power rather than possess it. Why is that? I was just reflecting on self power after a recent incident in my own career where I turned down a consulting engagement because my last experience with this particular client was the only stressful experience of my working career. I promised myself at the time that i would never subject myself to that again.

After 18 months, they asked if i would once again help them with some strategic work. At first I considered it, but then during the discussions I realised warning bells that sounded far too familiar. It’s not always easy to turn away work, but turning this one down was far more satisfying that any financial recompense could provide. I realised that I was also feeling something else – power. Not the arrogant maniacal power, but a deep inner self power. It made me realise that in the previous situation I gave my power away, and in doing so lost control of the outcome. Not so this time. I was prepared to accept the outcome and had the power to say yes or no. And in doing so it felt fantastic.

We are all born with power – during our lives we make constant choices as to whether keep it or give it away. Its like a bank account – when we do empowering things – perform well with our work, make good decisions, lead with compassion, we are topping up our power account. When we let others undervalue us, mislead us in our negotiations, fail to deliver to a promise, we draw down on that account. Its so easy in life as we try to please those around us to keep making withdrawals and not topping up.

I have had a year of massive change in my life – and many of the secure elements of my life from which I drew self power were cut away. After a year of rebuilding my life, I feel more self power than I have in years. And this time, I am going to keep my account in a much healthier state.

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28th June 2011

Who Do You Need to Be Next?

I would like to share the message I received this morning from Mike Litman – sorry Mike I cannot link to your email, but I can certainly credit you with this interesting bit of wisdom.

Mike related how just 8 years ago when he thought he was so ready for the big time – today he realises he would have been mediocre at best. The reason – his habits of his current level would not support this higher level of success. I think this is very profound – Mike recognized that every level of income demands a different you.

I guess I relate so closely to that as I have previously had a very high income, and a high lifestyle. Since the accident with my arm, I have had to let my business fall away, along with my income – and yes, also the lifestyle. I have had to create a new me in the reverse direction. If I had tried to continue my previous “me” – my finances today would be a disaster, instead of just my wardrobe and social life.

As Mike said “ Every level of income demands a different you. You can’t build a $100,000 a year income inside a $20,000 a year mind. You can’t build a powerful mind inside a house filled with weak habits. You can’t build a organized life inside a chaotic and scattered mind…You just can’t.”

Just as I paid the price as I advanced up with each level of my business success, I have had to pay the price and adapt my life habits with the demise of that success. This was not easy, as many people with the economic disaster have also found. Many of those people will just not slow down and stop long enough to recognize exactly how they need to change.

This message works on both sides of the success. The new habits to support the new life stage need to support that stage. And before you get to the next one you need to start adapting, ahead of the change. So if you are on the way up – ask yourself “who do I need to be to double my success, double my income or double my happiness. If you have hit a major bump – ask yourself “who do I need to be to survive this, who do I need to be to recover and who do I need to be to find some value in this experience”?

  • What habits do you need to replace or change?
  • What decisions do you need to make?

And as Mike signed off – you don’t have to get it right, you just have to get it going.

Thank you Mike for coaching me today.

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22nd June 2011

Are You Sabotaging Your Own Success?

I have been struggling recently to understand why I don’t seem to be able to move forward with any of several good ideas I have for making a good income. After a rather insignificant accident with my arm – that lead to significant impact on my ability to drive or use a computer, my consulting career came to a screaming halt. Since this happened when I was on holiday, I was not able to claim any ACC income support. This left me with 3 years of a series of painful procedures that did little to remedy the tendon injury to my elbow. During this time I did what I could to find ways to work within my limitations – but 10 minutes every 2 hours at a computer wasn’t going to get me far. I tried to stay positive and focus on the things i could do – phone friends and family to offer support in any way I could, think how I might change my business to avoid long periods of scrolling [I could handle typing okay, but not anything that required reading through large documents. I wrote a few books – I just couldn’t edit them down for many months later. Although this resulted in a successful outcome, it wasn’t replacing my previous high income by any means [but it was keeping me fed].

I became so successful at doing the best I could – and being happy anyway, that when the time came to get back into the game I couldn’t motivate myself. I still had cash in the bank [which is meant to be applied to repairing my home] – so I started to wonder whether I was just too comfortable slinking down to my home office in my trackies, and pulling down whatever capital reserve I needed each month to pay the bills. Every business opportunity I researched that showed incredible promise is still sitting in my computer drive, instead of my bank account. I was self-sabotaging. The fear of knowing that these businesses would be successful would mean I would have to get back out into the world – getting into the rat race morning traffic, grooming myself up in expensive suits to look professional, not getting my midday walk in the sun, dealing with people I really don’t want to deal with.

So how do I get out of this rut – the first step has been taken, I will cover that off in my next blog.

Are you also sabotaging your own success?

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28th June 2010

Protecting Your Mind

Clothe your mind in the right thoughts every morning, just as you clothe your body. Don’t enter the world of negativity naked – know who you are, what you value, where you are going right now and what helps you get there. Keep your mind clothed in positive feelings, activities, people and sensory stimulus.

You wouldn’t let go outside on a cold wintery day naked, we protect our bodies by wrapping them in clothing that protects us from harsh elements. Yet, every day we let destructive forces rip into our minds – because we didn’t do what we needed to do to protect it.

So, design a wardrobe of positive affirmations that remind you of your current purpose in life and what’s important to you – choose from it every morning as part of your daily get-ready routine.

Your Action – design a wardrobe of positive affirmations that support you, and choose from it every morning as part of your daily get-ready routine.

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14th December 2008

Building Your Business During A Recession

So your sales are down 30 percent.

You have to choose how to move forward with your business. You can focus on all the downsides and reduce your business to meet the market – or you can choose to build on past achievements and current profitable capabilities.

This choice of mind set changes you from React > Rebound > Build Momentum

Your focus is now on assets, not deficits.

Start with yourself – your personal assets, relationships and situational assets. Magnify what is best – and focus on what is next.

Tell yourself that your motto is to ‘Try’ not ‘Deny’. And tell yourself at least twice a day for 21 days.
When your vision is focused, your assets will align and you can identify what you can grow and what has to go. Start each day with what is possible, with what you want. Be guided by the vision and evaluate each action towards its power to move your forward towards your goal or back.

Each of us, little by little create the perfect storm. The only difference is that you either create a good storm or a bad storm.

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14th November 2008

Developing The Habit of Peak Mental Performance

Today I want to talk with you about learning to gain better control over your mental state and how to engage your mental performance supply chain to prepare your brain for the right action. The four main supply elements our brain needs daily for peak performance are:

  1. Exercise
  2. Relaxation
  3. Quality sleep
  4. Good nutrition

Until it becomes an ingrained habit to supply all four of these elements to our bodies we cannot attain a state of optimised health and wellbeing. We cannot reach a state where our brain is fully equipped to manage our emotions, thoughts and behaviour.

When faced with unexpected demands for fast and clear decision making, we need to engage a clear mental state ‘in the moment’. This means you must restrain your learned emotional response : outburst, fear and panic. The first effect of this response is a physical one, so our control mechanism must also first be physical: Breathe out, slow your mind and your pulse, and pay attention to your heart.

Once you have reached a physical state of calmness, you need to engage your cognitive capability – controlling your thoughts – and focus on some positive element of the situation. Even if this is generic as appreciating the opportunity to find a better way to do something. Focus on what can be learned from this situation. This help you find the silver lining. It also helps you respond calmly and positively.

Evoking this controlled response takes some practice. After all, you are trying to overcome a lifetime of learned response behaviour. So start practising with less challenging situations where you can be more mechanical in adopting your controlled response, just as you would if you were engaging a physical challenge.

One of my favourites is when stuck in traffic. In many of us this evokes a stress response, But instead, see this as a moment in time that you have to yourself and relinquish control. It’s about accepting that there are moments in life you simply cannot control despite your good intentions.

Practicing with interactions with children is another rewarding environment – in fact with any close personal relationship.

The result of this practice is that you develop the emotional flexibility, strength and capacity to respond readily to times of diversity and you quickly learn to recognise how much power you have over the way you feel. For instance if you feel tired, you can dial up a wave of exuberance and passion about the task you are currently working on. If you are irritated and angry in a traffic jam, activate care and compassion. Sit there are try to imagine where all the other people are going. They may have some personal emergency – whereas you are only late for a meeting. I’m not try to suggest this is an easy thing – it takes a very strong will to break a habit that has taken a lifetime to perfect and one that results in a vicious spiral of negative emotion.

The result of this old response is a downward spiral of negative emotions focused on how bad things can get – as if they had already happened. So many of us worry more about what might happen that what is actually happening. A lot of you will know the book – How to Stop Worrying and Start Living. The author talks about living in day tight compartments, visualising the very worst possible outcome, building the resolve to accepting that – then everything better than that is a bonus and not to be stressed over. It really helps put things in perspective.

One of the surprising outcomes of adopting your new mental performance response state is that you start welcoming more challenges, strong challenges that would have sent you into a frenzy of anxiety. You start to appreciate the change in focus and the heightened state of awareness you feel.

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20th July 2008

How To Custom Design Your Habits

I am sure you have heard the saying “Old habits die hard” – but fortunately with the right effort, they do die. Most people trying to change a habit attempt to go at is hard and fast and burn out their efforts in the first 10 to 14 days.

The only way to kill a habit that has taken a lifetime to build, is to spend a lifetime killing it. Now this may seem a bit strange to you – but consider this. If you tell yourself you are going on a diet – guess what you end up thinking about every waking hour. Tell yourself you are going to improve your nutrition so that by nourishing your body it will better serve you, longer [and look better] – and the only time you think of it is when you are faced with a food choice. The difference is amazing…and you end up losing weight.

By thinking in lifetime terms, your investment starts smaller, but lasts longer. Its like investing in slower return blue chip stocks, instead of the high return ones that crash within 3 years.

You need to give your brain time to accustom to the changes in your thinking, and in your body. Choosing the right conscious path triggers the right subconscious feelings, emotions and eventually habits. This is the key to self mastery in every aspect of your life.

You need to become aware of what thoughts and messages you send to yourself trigger the right and wrong behaviours

Now frame your goals in terms of those messages that prompt the behaviour you want. Since this is different for each of us, you will need to work this out for yourself. For those wanting to lose weight – the wrong trigger is ‘going on a diet’. The right trigger may be improving your nutrition, nourishing your body, creating great skin, getting fit…whatever resonates for you.

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8th February 2008

Make Now Your Finest Hour

How you define yourself has a lot to do with your future. Your reality is what you create right now.

We all have challenges, every day. Big challenges are there to strengthen you. How you react to those challenges is how you define yourself. The decisions you make at those tough times in your life help shape your future.

 Dont look at what is in front of you, look to where you want to be in the future. This helps to change your focus from what you are going through, to what you are going to.

Make this very moment, your finest hour….remember, you will never have this hour again. If you normally react to the challenge you have right this hour in a non-productive way, then this is your biggest chance in your life so far to change that.

It doesn’t matter what you have or have not done in the past, or what mistakes have brought grief into your life in the past….you can change it all now with one moment in time. By making a better decision you, you forever change the path of your life, if for no other reason as you will now have a new opinion of yourself. And that new truth about yourself will propel you into new habits, that will continue to strengthen everytime you make this new better choice – until it becomes your new habit, your new way of acting, your new and more successful you.

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5th July 2007

Give Yourself A Place To Stand

The road to success has many diversions. Some of them good and some of them not so good. Either way – a key success attribute is to always give yourself permission. Permission to succeed and permission to fail. To many, this may seem obvious. But on many occassions we are too hard on ourselves when things don’t work out as planned.

In the past few days I ‘potentially’ lost a large sum of money in a term investment that was safe as could be when I entered it, but two years later and a coup in Fiji has brought this once stable finance company to its knees – just six weeks before my 2 year term was due to mature.

Naturally, I was bummed, big time. But, rather than beat myself I gave myself time to deal with the outflow of the next years plans to which that capital was assigned. Whenever something like this happens I never look back. I remind myself of two things:

  1. All I need is a place to stand
  2. I forgive myself for stumbling during my learning adventure.

It reminded me of a great quote by 17th Century poet – George Herbert ” He who cannot forgive, breaks in the bridge over which he himself must pass”

When things go wrong you have to forgive yourself – because there will be plenty of others that will remind you what a fool thing you have done [all experts after the fact of course].

I am a person who lives by the value – it’s not the years in your life that count; its the life in your years. I pack a whole lot more into my life than most, and so naturally I am going to stumble more often.

I now have a system – i remove myself from all communications with others and work on how to adjust my life going forward. It is “my system” and it works for me [ along with a fine bottle of chamgagne]. Within 24 hours I am back on track in a slightly different path – but still heading to the same destination.

I urge you to have your own emergency system, so when something major happens you have a well defined response on how to manage it and get back on track.

And if you need help with that – post a comment here, I will be happy to help.


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11th June 2007

Success Comes From Doing What Others Don’t

I was just reading an email from success coach Bob Proctor where he bodly admitted that after years of teaching others how to be successful, he realised that he didn’t really know what made one person successful, where others failed. It seemed that his normal success quest through autobiographies and interviews failed to reveal ‘the secret’. Finally the realization emerged – THEY FORMED THE HABIT OF DOING THINGS THAT FAILURES DON’T LIKE TO DO

It’s actually that simple – successful people do things that failures don’t like to do – by habit. Or is it that simple. I have yet to find it so.

Firstly – it’s easy to say that successful people have the habit of doing “Things” but exactly what “things” are we talking about?

One “thing” I have recognised is the very act of finding and following your passion – your life purpose. The trail to this destination is often not found on the ‘normal life path – the job, the business, the family life, the social life’.

However, once you step off this ‘normal life’ path – people start looking at you as if you were from Mars – I can sense their unspoken words – “just what are you thinking?”  “you are crazy giving up a high paid consulting career to earn a few dollars a day”….. and you know what, it is really hard to shield yourself from those attitudes. But I belive in myself, and I believe that finding your life purpose is the single most important reason for living. I believe I have found my life purpose. Fulfilling it is not going to be completed in the time I allocated myself, but I am passionate about continuing my journey. I may have to get back on the highway of normal life for a while to earn sufficient to continue my journey, but I will not lose sight of my destination. It is merely a means to an end. I am not afraid to do what others are not willing to do. Even if I do not reach my destiny, I have not failed. I have succeeded in giving myself permission to reach out to the highest goal in life. Success for me is now a habit. Following the road less travelled is a habit for me. And like Bob said ‘ successful people form the habit of doing things that failures don’t like to do’.

And I would love to help you do the same.



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