How to Overcome a Fear of Public Speaking

Can you really overcome a fear of public speaking? Yes! I talk about how I overcame my debilitating fear of public speaking. I’ll never forget the countless times I faked ill for school in my attempts to not have to give a book report. Today I get up in front of people all the time and give presentations. In the video I share my two tips that I used. I hope it’ll be a blessing to you. Thanks.

What is your morning routine?

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Your morning routine can make the difference between you achieving your goals or having them stay as dreams.

I added getting up earlier and cutting out TV in the morning. I have found that not only does my day go better, but I have more energy. TV was apart of my daily routine for many years. I’d watch the news, sports, and the weather. By the time I saw everything I needed to, it was time to go to work.

Today I do not even miss it. The news in my opinion can put you in a foul mood. The Dow Jones market might dip and it is panic on Wall Street, but it does not need to be panic for you. The world will keep on spinning. It is for you to be thankful for finances you do have and your ability to pay your bills.

There might be news of trouble in the Middle East. However you do not need to concern yourself with that because the news on whatever political side you are on will have something bad to report. Therefore, commit to making gratitude part of your early morning before work. You might be surprised as to what it can do for you.

Whatever news that is urgent for you to know to survive, you will find out about it. Therefore, committing time out of your day to waste on watching a broadcast is a time-waster. The news like anything today is purely for entertainment. Do something productive with your precious time.

I have committed to writing in a journal and I never thought I would do that. It has been the best thing I have ever done in my life. I am discovering things about myself as well as finding my mood changing. What is your morning routine?

 

How Gratitude can Improve your Marrige

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Gratitude in marriage can help transform your perspective on your spouse. 

For years my marriage was not going well. Sometimes it felt as if our lows were pits. A big reason for this was me. When I started to change then my marriage followed suit. Then when I started my gratitude journal, my love for my wife grew deeper.

All too often it is easy to focus on what someone is not doing rather than what they are doing. Maybe there are needs that have gone unmet for weeks, months, or even years. It can be easy to develop a bitter heart or a complaining attitude. However, complaining never motivated anyone to act.

At the heart of it your spouse is doing the best that they are aware of. If they knew of a different way to do things then trust that they would. This is where going to counseling can give insights into the ‘why’ they are and why they act accordingly. Their actions or inabilities come from somewhere deep within their soul.

The important aspect to remember is daily remind yourself of your love for them. I do this by simply stating each day how grateful I am for her and I get specific about the ‘what’. In times when I get annoyed and lose sight I bring myself back to how grateful I am. The more you practice gratitude with your spouse the more your perspective will change. The perspective will help you to know how blessed you really are.

Gratitude gives perspective, which yields a change of attitude that will lead to better actions.

How to Think Better

Most of my life I struggled with a negative thought life. In this video I share the steps I took to change all of that. 

By the way the book I am holding is called ‘Make Peace with your Mind’ by Mark Coleman. The book was an excellent resource for me when I began my journey of changing my thoughts. Thanks for watching.

How to Teach Children to be Grateful

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Can children and teenagers be grateful? Yes and it might be easier than you think.

‘Teenagers!’ the parent said in a raised voice as he threw his hands up in the air. He was lost as to how to communicate with his son and it revealed the greater problem the parent was having of raising a teenager in today’s world. It is unfortunate that when people think of teenagers they think of a negative experience they had or they are reminded of many failed attempts to communicate or reach out to their own children.

I have worked with junior high and high school students for about twenty years and I can write with confidence that teenagers are not as bad as one might think. They have brought a joy and provided me with many wonderful lessons to better myself. If you allow yourself to be aware in the moment then you may be surprised at the different lessons youth today are teaching today. However that is besides the point of this blog post.

How can we teach children and teenagers to be grateful? It is easier than you might think.

  1. You are the Model. Whether you are aware or not we are all teaching one another all the time. Your children are watching and you are teaching them how to act in the world and in situations. If you are a grateful person then they will pick up on it. If you tend to lose your cool then they’ll witness it as well.
  2. It is more than saying thank you. It is a lifestyle. Therefore, develop a time in your day to stop and be thankful. I personally have a gratitude journal and I write about the people, things that are a blessing to me.
  3. Teach various forms of thankfulness. Take your child with you to the store to purchase thank you notes and teach them the importance of it. If you are buying a gift then explain it to them. This may seem obvious but common practice is not always common sense. Often we might think ‘oh I won’t bother them they are busy.’ There is always time for a teachable moment. How else will a youth learn if not taught and explained to them.
  4. Take a Time Out. When you feel overwhelmed at any point in any given situation then stop. When we feel overwhelmed that is our body and mind telling us to take a break. We need to listen to that. Instead of continuing in that moment we can pray, meditate or even reflect on things we are grateful for. By doing this you will be able to come back to the present moment and enjoy it for what it is.

Your kids will go as you go. I understand parents are busy in today’s world however if you do not have a moment to stop and teach then you are just too busy. Thanks for reading.

Gratitude in Life’s Lessons

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Gratitude provides us with perspective to enjoy the lessons that life provides us.

Perspective is something that can be obtained easily however, it can be elusive because it   does not involve the ego. Gratitude is the key to disabling the ego. Sometimes perspective can be won due to experiences that life provides, yet this is not the only way. Perspective is the ability to step out of your view to witness the world in a different point of view. Often it is like the cliche to ‘walk a mile in someone else’s shoes.’

What I found when I was thankful was that it subdued my ego and granted me access to perspective. When I found perspective then I realized that I judged less and was grateful for feedback. My ego was sensitive to feedback because my issue was that I felt judged often. Now I realize my issues was rooted in the fact that I judged others and in turn I judged myself.

The cycle was broken with gratitude. I find that there is always a lesson in life if I am looking for it. One of the secrets of this life is that we are all teaching one another. Whether we realize it or not at the time. We are providing lessons of to do or not to do. It is perspective that enables us to understand the lesson.

If you find yourself in a predicament then consider being grateful for it because it is meant to help you become aware of something. Before you become angry at your child or an individual stop and ask yourself what they are teaching you in that moment. Perspective empowers us to become more conscious and understand the lesson.

Thanks for reading.

How Gratitude can Change your Finances

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Can gratitude change our finances? Or is it something a person does to not deal with reality? 

I have seen in my own life that gratitude has transformed my personal outlook on events, experiences, and relationships. I was curious if it could change the area of my finances. Every day I write in my journal ten things I am thankful for and I can honestly write that it has made a huge difference in my life.

First glance it might be easy to say a resounding ‘No!’ to the question. How could giving thanks produce a higher income or put more money in your pocket? Here is the rub a perspective of poverty versus one of abundance produce different results in our lives. I grew up with not having much and I took that same philosophy into my marriage and career. My thoughts of lack produced just what I thought in everything I touched.

I took up journaling because enough people recommended it. Now I am not writing that you can journal your way into a fortune. Yet being thankful what you already have gives you the perspective of how abundant you really are. Moving from a poverty mindset to an abundant one has empowered me to not only witness God’s blessings but also encouraged me to think about other possibilities to earn extra income that I would never have considered before.

Most mornings I will journal how I am thankful that God has provided enough money for me to pay my bills. Each month it is amazing to watch God provide. Thankfulness costs us nothing whereas a negative attitude is costly. Negative attitudes never produce good in our lives, they always bring more negativity.

There was a study done that showed that people who have an attitude of gratitude are more likely to get a job than people who are not. Why? It’s psychology. We are naturally attracted to people who have a thankful heart rather than those who complain. Have you ever been around a person who complained all the time? I have and after awhile it gets old and even brings you down.

Having an attitude of gratitude in your finances may not necessarily put more money in your pocket but it will empower you to think of the possibilities that are at your finger tips. Essentially you will be encouraged to do things and take steps towards goals than you would if you stayed with the negative attitude. A complaining money conscious attitude thrives off the fear that we feed it. Develop an attitude of gratitude and you will be surprised at how the world opens up.

An easy step tomorrow is write down 10 things you are thankful for. It’ll probably take you a whole 5-10 minutes depending on how fast you write. Then notice your perspective throughout the day. If you like the result then do it again the next day. You’ll be surprised how your world can change with thankfulness.

My Gratitude to My Teacher

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I am thankful to my English and American Literature teacher Dr. Debra Young. She made a huge difference in my life that I am eternally grateful for.

So far this year I have read 36 books and last year it was 30. I never had any desire to read. I had heard all the famous saying, ‘Readers are Leaders.’ However, I had always thought reading was a waste of time. I could not have been more wrong, because reading has changed my life.

When I was a kid I struggled with reading and also had a stuttering problem. I can remember getting behind the other students in the reading classes. After awhile I stopped trying and developed a distaste for it. Often we fear the unknown or what we have difficulty understanding. I read one book in high school and that was Animal Farm by George Orwell. I enjoyed that book but could not bring myself to read anything else because I did not understand different author’s writing styles and the thickness of books was intimidating.

I was a junior in college when I took my first Literature class. I had heard the horror stories from other students who did not like to read about how difficult the classes were. But then a student informed me that Dr. Debra Young was the teacher to get for both English and American Literature. I took her classes. Young was such a great teacher that she put my mind at ease with her teaching style and brought out a curiosity and desire to read.

There is nothing specific that she communicated but rather her passion for reading and the lives of the authors sparked my interest. It created in my heart a passion to know and to read for myself. The more I read the better at reading I became and the quicker that I was able to read a book. I will forever be grateful to Dr. Young for inspiring me to read and indirectly removing my mental barriers. Thank you for making a difference in my life.

Today I probably buy too many books for me to read, but there is an excitement in wanting to know the knowledge that the author will be communicating. If you struggle with reading like I did then let me assure you that while it may be intimidating cracking open a book that it can change your life. Below are a few tips I use when reading.

  1. I use a highlighter and tabs to denote excellent quotes and observations. It helps me to keep up my pace.
  2. A good author will typically tell you in the first sentence of a paragraph what it is about and then summarize it in the last sentence. Therefore, you only need to read two sentences.
  3. You will be able to get the gist of a what a write is saying and thus you can skip portions of the book.
  4. Get into a disciplined mind set. This is key because in our world it can be difficult to read due to constant distractions. Put your phone in another room.
  5. If a book is making you tired then it could just be the book like ‘War and Peace’ or it could be that you are not reading fast enough and your mind is getting bored. Therefore, use your finger to help your eyes as you read.

I personally use these tips when reading. You have the ability to read anything as long as you set your mind to do it. Thanks.

My Gratitude Rock

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A Gratitude Rock is a reminder to be thankful and to adjust my thinking.

Almost two years ago I made a commitment to only think positivity. I realized that I had a tendency to dwell on negativity. It makes sense because my mind wants to naturally drift there because that was the thinking I grew up with. Negative thinking only breeds more negative thinking and that will give us bad results in our lives. Why? It is what we are focusing on. We receive what we focus on.

As a kid I felt much judgment in my life and my world reflected that. It seemed as if nothing I did was right and the more I pondered judgment the more I found it in my life. I experienced this again in my second stop at a church I worked at in California. I talk about this experience more in depth in my new book The Power of Ownership (see link below to get a free copy). The more I dwelt on what I did not want the more I received it. As the saying goes, “Everywhere you look, you will see what you are looking for.” If you are looking for something to be thankful for then you’ll find it. If you are looking for someone to judge or to be judged then you do not have to look far.

The Way to Move out of Judgment is to move into Gratitude.

Recently I found myself wanting to dwell on negativity. It was my old way of thinking that was creeping in. I decided to pick up a small rock and use it as a reminder to always be thankful and to bless others and circumstances. I realize a gratitude rock is not a new concept, but my simple act of picking up the little stone has made a huge difference. I carry it with me wherever I go and it reminds me to give thanks.

I encourage you to find your own ‘Gratitude Rock’ and carry it. Let it serve as a reminder that in whatever situation to give thanks. Also check out this great ‘Free’ read on Amazon. Thanks!

How Blessing can Empower you

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The simple act of blessing a person can transform your outlook in life.

Thanksgiving is this week and I thought I would share a life hack that will empower you in stressful situations. It is the art of blessing. Jesus said in Luke 6:28 “Bless those who curse you…” In our world it is an eye for an eye or we’ll get even. The world seems to operate in a reactionary way. Often our reactions to events or things is not the best. A person says something about us and we want to defend ourselves. “We are not a doormat,” we tell ourselves. You would be correct, you are not a doormat for people to walk all over. However there is a better way to respond to situations than just to react.

Responding rather than reacting is the key. Now responding does not excuse a person’s bad behavior. To respond means to speak without judgement and emotion. It is not like a robot but rather to have strength under control. You let your emotions roar out and allow your pride to defend but what does that accomplish? You are momentarily satisfied and now have offended others.

In that moment before you choose to react take the time to bless that person or event or thing. Blessing stops the negative thought cycle. It reminds me of that scene in the movie A Field of Dreams where Timothy Busfield’s character says “When did all the baseball players get here.” His perception was it was an empty field yet Kevin Costner’s character had done all this because of what he witnessed.

We tend to see things not as they are, but as we are.

Taking a moment to bless another or situation means to allow yourself that moment to heal. It doesn’t mean that you excuse the poor behavior, but it empowers you to recognize what is really going on. I keep a gratitude/ blessing journal every morning I wake up and write down 10 things, situations that I am thankful for. I find that whatever challenge I am having that it is not a challenge at all.

It takes me about 3-5 minutes to write everything down. In doing so I realize I now things differently and have found more peace. The same can happen for you as well. Like anything it takes practice and the more you do it the more easier it will be.

Thanks for reading!