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December 29, 2013     2

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Top 10 Ways to Make Your New Year’s Resolutions Stick!

Some people are into New Years resolutions. Some people aren’t. I am definitely a resolutions guy. I inventory the year in review – looking at what I’ve accomplished, how I’ve evolved, what I’ve learned and what opportunities for growth have yet to be tackled. For all of us “Resolutionists”, the start of the New Year affords us the opportunity to turn over a new leaf and make some positive changes in our lives. But far too often, people lose momentum and give up on their resolutions after only a short time. So I wanted to equip you all with the tools needed to be successful this New Years. So without further adieu, here are my Top 10 ways to make your New Year’s resolutions stick..

1. Focus on a very small number of resolutions, rather than several. You are far more likely to succeed if you focus on a small, manageable, number of resolutions, rather than trying to overhaul your entire life with several, lofty ones.

2. Be specific with your resolutions. Be sure to set specific, actionable resolutions. I suggest creating resolutions modeled after SMART Goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Reasonable, and Time Oriented). For example, saying you want to lose weight is too vague and leaves plenty of room for failure. But saying I want to lose 10 pounds in 90 days with weekly weigh-ins and a deadline of 3/31/14 provides you a framework for success.

3. Take small steps. Many people fail at their resolutions because they choose to focus on the destination, rather than the journey. TRANSLATION: It’s all about mapping out the small steps you’ll need to take to get you where you want to go. For example, it may not be possible to tackle unhealthy eating all at once, so why don’t you start by changing what you eat for breakfast. Once you are comfortable with this change, then tackle your mid-morning snack. And so on. Make sense?

4. Have an accountability partner. Want to know why coaches like me exist? Because people need someone who not only helps them identify those things in their life they want to work on, but also holds them accountable for getting them done. Find someone close to you that you can share your resolution(s) with and schedule regular check-ins to report your progress. Maybe it’s having them check in with you weekly to see how you’ve progressed with those small steps you identified in Step 3 above.

5. Celebrate your success between milestones. If you want to stay motivated as you move towards your goals, it’s important you celebrate the small victories along the way. For example, if your resolution is to quit smoking, celebrate when you reduce your cigarette consumption by 25%, 50%, 75% and so on. Giving yourself credit along the way keeps you energized and invested in your overall goal.

6. Don’t let a “slip up” derail your resolution. Smoking an extra cigarette, eating a piece of cake or skipping a workout may be a set back for your resolution, but it’s certainly no reason (or excuse) to throw in the towel. If you have a “slip up”, treat yourself with compassion and recommit yourself to your resolution.

7. Stay presently focused. Your assignment is to complete that one thing you can do today towards your overall resolution. It’s all about tackling the day your in. Don’t focus on the past or sweat the future. As with all things, staying presently focused is your best bet for achieving success.

8. Focus your thinking on new behaviors and thought patterns. Making resolutions stick involves changing your existing behaviors. You accomplish this by replacing your old, unwanted habits with new ones. This takes time, discipline and patience. So for those of you who want to stop eating junk food or spending all of your free time on the couch, establish and focus on good habits such as eating healthy foods or working out regularly.

9. Don’t take yourself so seriously. It’s okay to have a healthy passion for successfully completing your resolutions, but don’t drive yourself, or those you love, crazy with an obsessive, complicated and controlled manner for reaching your goals. It’s okay to have fun and laugh at yourself along the way.

10. Don’t wait till New Year’s Eve to make resolutions. Resolutions (or any type of goal) can be made throughout the year. Don’t let New Years be the only time you identify, establish and pursue those things that will make you happier, healthier, stronger and more at peace.

Happy New Year! I hope that 2014 is a year of love, peace, joy and growth for each and every one of you!

Do you have any additional tips for sticking to your New Year’s resolutions? Would you be willing to share your resolutions with the rest of us? Join in on the conversation by adding your comments below.

KEEP MOVING FORWARD!

Joel

As always, my goal is to give my readers something useful, tangible and worth their time, so if you don’t like something you read here, leave it, and only take away what works for you.

November 10, 2013     0

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Overcoming Nasty Habits to Achieving Your Health and Hotness Goals!

For all you fitness buffs, this ones for you! This article is about why people go into an exercise and nutrition regime and fail time and time again, and how you can break the cycle. I have the pleasure of being an on-staff life coach at Mark Fisher Fitness, (MFF), an incredible gym in Hells Kitchen that I recommend to anybody who is interested in reaching their health and hotness goals. Mark Fisher asked me to write an article that would be impactful to the members of the gym and those brave souls (MFF calls them “ninjas”) going through the intensive exercise, nutrition and coaching program, Snatched in 6 Weeks! The topic I chose was GAILs (Gremlins, Assumptions, Interpretations and Limiting Beliefs), a nasty group of bad habits that, if left unchecked, can infect every area of our life. Whether you’re a fitness buff or not, read this informative article about how you can begin to recognize these bad habits in your life and begin to weaken their hold on you. Check my article out below:

Fellow Ninjas –

When we think about the time and commitment that goes into our exercise regime, falling victim to our own “head games” shouldn’t be one of the hurdles we have to clear. Alas, this isn’t always the case and it’s good to know what’s going on in these noggins of ours. As an on staff coach at MFF and fellow ninja (in week 4 of Snatched in 6 Weeks ), I want to make sure we all have our heads screwed on straight about a few of the more popular mental blocks that could keep so many of us from achieving our health and hotness success.

An unwanted party guest and all together vicious queen, GAIL shows up in our lives at the most inopportune times. So who is this mischievous maiden and how can she f*ck up our fitness goals? Let’s break her down!

G.A.I.L. is an acronym for four nasty buggers that can plague our lives if left unchecked, Gremlins, Assumptions, Interpretations and Limiting Beliefs. So let’s define each and discuss how they might show up in our ninja lives and how we can overcome them.

1. Gremlins - Some of you crazy kids, like me, are old enough to remember the 1984 movie starring those cute little fluffy critters that, when exposed to water, turn into monstrous saboteurs hell bent on destroying everything in their path. Well guess what? The gremlin in our heads operate in a similar fashion trying to sabotage us in our efforts to achieve our health and hotness goals. This “inner critic” plays on our insecurities and keeps us feeling small, fearful and unsatisfied by telling us we’re not strong enough, smart enough, deserving enough, etc. to achieve our goals and dreams. Gremlins vary from person to person and are based on individual life experiences. For the purposes of ninja training, a good example of a gremlin is one that tries to sabotage your nutrition and physical efforts by telling you that you’re going to fail because you lack the discipline or strength needed to succeed in Snatched.

So what can you do about keeping these little saboteurs in check? Bring them into the light. Just like the movie, our gremlins don’t like to be exposed. As long as they can keep you playing small, feeling insecure and afraid to move outside of your comfort zone (where all real growth takes place), they can continue to take up space in your head. But if you’re able to identify your gremlins (I’m fat, I’m unworthy, I’m weak, I’m a loser, etc.), recognize when they’re whispering in your ear and purposefully continue to move forward in the way of your goals, you can push through them and the headlock that they have on you!

2. Assumptions - Simply put, an assumption is an expectation that because something has happened before, it will happen again. These are especially dangerous for ninjas who have dealt with unsuccessful diets or exercise plans in the past. You can sign up for Snatched, or any fitness/nutrition program, with the best of intentions, but then quickly derail yourself with negative assumptions you’ve created around your ability to achieve your exercise and nutrition goals. A good example of an assumption is one in which you think you’re destined to fail at your nutrition goals because you were unsuccessful with diets you’ve tried in the past. Assumptions are dangerous because they allow us to rationalize self-sabotaging behavior. Two weeks into your fitness/nutrition program, after a particularly stressful day at the office, you might find yourself thinking, “F*ck it! I don’t need to try to keep to my nutrition plan because it won’t worry anyway.”

So here’s what you need to know about assumptions. They’re based on past events and stale circumstances that no longer play a relevant role in your life. By holding on to these assumptions, you keep yourself stuck in some past experience that never served you to begin with. Crazy, right?! When an assumption comes up for you, remind yourself that it serves no purpose in your present life and move past it with an open mind. By opening yourself up to all of the amazing possibilities of your training and nutrition program, you can reach your health and hotness goals (provided you’re willing to do the work)!

3. Interpretations - An interpretation is an opinion or judgment that you create about an event, situation, person or experience and believe to be true. As human beings we have a tendency to create interpretations in our lives based on our own individual experiences and personal bias. A great example of an interpretation is around trainer/instructor feedback. I remember a time when I used to interpret the critiques I received from my instructors as negative. Even if they were trying to help me with form, I would think there was something wrong with me for not “nailing it” (having perfect form) every time. For us ninjas, it’s easy for our personal interpretations of what’s going on at the gym to skew our perception of ourselves and others.

So the next time you make an interpretation about someone or something going on in your life, ask yourself if this is based on personal opinion or fact. You can also ask yourself if there is another way to look at it. In my example, instead of interpreting instructor feedback as something negative, I chose to see it as an added benefit to my training. This helped me shift my perspective and look at the feedback I get from Mark and all the other hot ass instructors as helpful and beneficial to my own Snatched success!

4. Limiting Beliefs - Last, but certainly not least in GAIL’s bag of dirty tricks are limiting beliefs. These are beliefs that you accept about life, about yourself, about your world, or about the people in it that limits you in some way. They cap your potential to succeed and prevent you from reaching your full potential. Examples of limiting beliefs include: “I am no good at sports.”, “I am too old to start a fitness program.” and “I’m not smart enough to get that job so I won’t even apply.”

Think about any limiting beliefs you may be holding on to (not smart enough, too old, not strong enough, etc.) and begin to rewrite them in a manner that serves you. If you have a limiting belief that says “I’m not smart enough to…” call yourself out on it, ask yourself if this belief is serving you and if not, kick its ass to the curb!

Just remember, GAIL is an all around b*tch, but she’s totally manageable, provided you are willing to do the work to reprogram your self-imposed barriers to success.

The only limitations we have in this world are the ones we place on ourselves. (That’s a TWEETable!)

The sky is the limit provided you give yourself the opportunity to fly!

Do you have a friend who is trying to reach a fitness goal, or any other type of goal in their life, and may be the victim of GAIL? I gave you some solid advice on identifying and overcoming them, so please share this article so they can overcome their GAILs and achieve their goals.

Can you identify where you are experiencing Gremlins, Assumptions, Interpretations or Limiting Beliefs in your life and how you can use the tips above to overcome them? Join in on the conversation by leaving your comments below.

KEEP MOVING FORWARD!

Joel

As always, my goal is to give my readers something useful, tangible and worth their time, so if you don’t like something you read here, leave it, and only take away what works for you.

October 22, 2013     0

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Life Lessons from a 42 Year Old Wisdom Junkie

So I turn 42 on Sunday. Yep, I’m one of those crazy people who claim their age and feel no need to hide it. I subscribe to the philosophy that as I get older, I get better. Age and experience have offered me increased wisdom and a deeper understanding of who I am, why I’m here and how I can make a difference in the world. They also continue to impress upon me the fact that there is still so much more learning and growing to be done.

And it was during this birthday contemplation, I decided to share some of the life lessons I’ve learned along the way, and the impact they can have on your life. I’ve touched upon a few of these in previous articles, but they definitely bear repeating. Many of them will seem like such simple concepts, yet the majority of people in the world haven’t mastered them. You may recognize some, or maybe even all of these lessons. My goal here isn’t to stump my readers with obscure knowledge and B-side concepts, instead my hope is that the information provided is transparent, easily digestible and something that leads to reflection and growth. So without further adieu, here are 10 life lessons I’ve learned along the way and how they can impact your life.
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1. Stop comparing yourself to others. Comparison leads to separation and judgment of yourself and others. Recognize you are enough just as you are and that we are all on our own unique and incomparable path.

2. Let go of the need to be perfect. This form of control keeps us constantly trying and constantly failing to live up to an unrealistic ideal of who we think we should be. If only I were thinner, prettier, stronger, smarter, etc. Let go of your need to be perfect and see just how much happier (and easier) life can be.

3. Own your vulnerabilities. We all have them. So why do most us look at them as some sort of shortcoming and weakness and pretend they don’t exist? The fact of the matter is, it’s only when you’re able to own, accept and learn from your vulnerabilities that you’re able to treat yourself, and others, with the compassion, understanding and forgiveness we all richly deserve.

4. Learn to say no in your life. In order to be there for the people in your life, you need to be there for yourself first. So learn to be okay with saying no to others so you make the time for those things that add meaning and enrichment to your life. You’re not a bad person for making yourself a priority.

5. Don’t keep company with the wrong people. You’ve heard it said time and time again, including by yours truly. You are the company you keep. So why not surround yourself with people who let you be the real you, support your dreams and foster an atmosphere of acceptance and love.

6. Stop trying to be someone else. Trying to live in the mold of others people’s expectations is a fool’s errand. It’s an exhaustive effort that takes us farther away from who we really are. Impress others by following your own path and find your acceptance by leading a fully realized and uncompromised existence. Check out my blog, Are You Keeping It Real.

7. Stop trying to control every aspect of your life. A kissing cousin of perfectionism, control is another enemy of peace of mind and happiness. You can have a beautiful, meaningful and fulfilled life without micromanaging every aspect of it. You just need to have faith, accept that things won’t always go as planned and not be afraid to ask for help, either from your higher power or from your loved ones.

8. Learn to move past fear. Fear is without a doubt the greatest paralyzer in the world today. Fear of failure, fear of success and fear of judgment by others debilitate people and keep them from pursuing their dreams. Recognize that you only have one life to live and that you don’t want to be on your deathbed filled with regret over what could have been. Identify what it is that makes you afraid, ask yourself if it is rational (or even real) and move past it in pursuit of your dreams. Check out my blog, Letting Fear Be Your Guide.

9. Live in the now. We spend too much time regretting the past and dreaming of the future. We trap ourselves into feelings of guilt and embarrassment by holding on to shameful or humiliating memories and putting them on perpetual playback in our heads. Conversely, we propel ourselves into the future by dreaming of the day when we will have everything we think we need to have a perfect life. But it’s only when we stay present minded, grateful for everything we have and dedicated to our life’s journey (not the destination) that we learn, grow and become the people we’re meant to be.

10. Stop gossiping. I’ll let you in on a secret. People only gossip for one reason, insecurity, plain and simple. They figure if they’re pointing the finger at someone else, no one will be able to see what they’re trying to hide about themselves. This nasty little habit does nothing but create separation and judgment in the world. So the next time you’re thinking about joining in on a gossip session, remind yourself of your own inner work, learn to practice compassion and end the conversation before it has a chance to begin.

Did any of the above life lessons strike a chord with you? Learn anything new about yourself from reading this article? Join in on the conversation by adding your comments below.

KEEP MOVING FORWARD!

Joel

As always, my goal is to give my readers something useful, tangible and worth their time, so if you don’t like something you read here, leave it, and only take away what works for you.

September 26, 2013     6

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How to Avoid Common Impediments to a Happy Life

A happy life is becoming ever more elusive these days. Our society conditions us to believe that happiness is only achieved by looking outside ourselves for guidance on who to be, what to do and how to act. Truth be told, this lifestyle ignores the one surefire way you can achieve happiness in your life, by looking inward for your guidance and answers. Here are some common, externally focused roadblocks to being happy and how to overcome them.

Wearing masks - Trying to live in the mold of others people’s expectations can be exhausting and take us farther away from who we really are. If we wear these masks long enough, we run the risk of losing sight of who we really are all together. Gay men are especially susceptible to this type of negative behavior due to the unaccepting environments we grew up in. Impress others by following your own path and find your acceptance by leading a fully realized and uncompromised life. Check out my blog, Are You Keeping It Real.

Judging Others - Truth be told, people love to judge. We like to judge others who share our same insecurities. If we’re pointing the finger at someone else, we’re keeping the spotlight off of us. Judgment takes on many forms, but one of the most prevalent is gossip. Gay men love to judge, and we certainly love to gossip. How many times have you watched a group of gay men shred another gay man for how his hair is styled, what he’s wearing or how he’s acting? I’m certainly guilty of judging others and participating in gossip. I recognize now it was simply my desperate attempt to mask my own insecurities. When we recognize our judgment of others comes from a place of fear and insecurity, we’re able to shift our perception to one of empathy, compassion and understanding. Shifting from a fear based perspective to one of love is the key to living an authentic and happy life.

Looking to others for your life purpose - Much like wearing masks, this form of external living keeps your life in the control of others. A great example is letting others choose your career for you. I can’t tell you how many times I hear stories about people who went into a specific line of work because their parents wanted them to or because people told them they wouldn’t make any money pursuing their real passion. If this hits home with you, you’re in good company. Many people let outside influences guide their life trajectory. Designate yourself the #1 expert on what’s best for your life and don’t let others steer you down the wrong path.

Procrastinating - We’ve all experienced the negative outcomes associated with putting off important things in life, so why do we continue to do it? When you procrastinate on those things that are important to you like pursuing your dream job, mending broken relationships or spending time with loved ones, feelings of guilt, sadness and shame can surface. Procrastination can start small, but end big. Time moves quickly and if you’re not careful, days, months and years can go flying by. You certainly don’t want to be on your deathbed with a laundry list of excuses for not being the person you wanted to be and not leading the life you envisioned for yourself. The time we have on this planet is uncertain, so don’t put off to tomorrow what you can do today. Check out my blog, Regrets of the Dying.

Living in the grip of fear - The number one reason people fail to make positive change in their life and realize their full potential is fear. In our society, people are under the misguided notion that fear equates to weakness, so we pretend we’re indestructible and nothing gets to us. Of course, that couldn’t be farther from the truth. When you acknowledge your fear and identify what exactly you’re afraid of, you weaken its hold on you. Oftentimes, you realize the real truth about fear; it’s not real or rational. My favorite way of explaining fear is with a well-known acronym: False Evidence Appearing Real. Check out my blog, Letting Fear Be Your Guide.

Seeking perfection - Want to know one of the quickest paths to experiencing failure and shame? It’s trying to be a perfectionist. Society (via loved ones, advertisements, TV, etc.) sends us an inaccurate and all together unfair messages that if we can’t brilliantly execute on all aspects of our lives, that we’re not enough, that we have somehow failed. We hold ourselves to this unrealistic ideal, hide our perceived weakness and shame ourselves for not being perfect. The fact of the matter is, you are enough just the way you are. It’s okay to not be able to do everything. It’s okay to talk about your feelings of weakness and inadequacy. And it’s definitely okay to ask for help.

Trying to control - A kissing cousin of perfection, control is another enemy of peace of mind and happiness. When you spend all of your time trying to control every inch of your life, you burn through a ton of positive energy and burden yourself with worry. So do yourself a favor, ease up on the reigns, and trust everything in life is happening exactly as it’s supposed to be. You can have a beautiful, meaningful and fulfilled life without micromanaging every aspect of it. You just need to have faith, accept that things won’t always go as planned and not be afraid to ask for help, either from your higher power or from your loved ones.

Keeping company with the wrong people - You’ve heard it time and time again. You are the company you keep. So why not surround yourself with people who let you be the real you, support your dreams and foster an atmosphere of acceptance and love. Enough said.

Feeling a sense of entitlement - Many people have the misguided notion that the things they want for their lives can and should be handed to them with no effort on their part. The reason why they have this mindset can be attributed to any number of things, but the outcome is almost always the same. They make no progress towards achieving their dreams. Remember,

Awareness is powerful, but it can be rendered useless without action!

Knowing what you want for your life gets you nowhere if you don’t take action to obtain it. Don’t wait around for others to give you what you want or you may never achieve the goals and dreams you have for your life.

So are you dealing with any of the above impediments to a happy life? Have you overcame any of the above happiness barriers and have wisdom to impart on other readers? Join in on the conversation by adding your comments below.

KEEP MOVING FORWARD!

Joel

As always, my goal is to give my readers something useful, tangible and worth their time. If you don’t like something you read here, leave it and only take away what resonates with you.

September 5, 2013     10

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Regrets of the Dying

Bronnie Ware was a palliative nurse providing care and company to people in their final weeks. She got to know her patients well and had many meaningful conversations with them about their lives. When Bronnie asked them if they had any regrets or would do anything differently, she began to notice common themes in her patients’ answers, which she felt compelled to capture in a blog, Inspiration and Chai and later in a book, The Top Five Regrets of the Dying-A Life Transformed by the Dearly Departing.

When I read Bronnie’s story and the regrets her patients experienced on their deathbeds, it moved me so deeply I felt compelled to write about it in my own words and share it with you. I hope that it resonates with you as much as it did with me!

1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself not the life others expected of me.

We spend so much time concerned about what others think of us that we lose sight of who we truly are. We’re afraid that if people knew who we really were they would judge us or reject us all together. Sadly, it’s these types of limiting beliefs that keeps us playing small and not moving forward with our dreams. At the end of your life, you won’t be concerned with other’s opinions or expectations, only those unfulfilled dreams you didn’t achieve when you had the chance. It’s important you not let the opinions or expectations of others deter you from realizing your dreams.

2. I wish I didn’t work so hard.

Although I love coaching and the thrill I get from helping others, I have no desire to work my life away, neglect my relationships or sacrifice my good health by not taking care of myself. You don’t want to get to the end of your life and be remembered by the people who knew you as “the guy who worked too much”. So find work that not only fulfills you, but also provides you the ability to have a personal life. One of life’s universal truths is that balance is a fundamental requirement to a successful life. So live your life consciously, passionately and in balance. Nurture your friendships and relationships and take care of yourself (mind, body and soul).

3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.

There are a variety of reasons why people keep their feelings to themselves. Some do it because they were brought up to think expressing how they feel is rude. Others are afraid of expressing their feelings for fear of rejection, judgment or attack by others. Regardless of your intentions, keeping things “bottled up” can lead to frustration, anger and resentment. It can rob you of your peace of mind, increase your stress level and ultimately lead to sickness and disease. Part of leading an uncompromised life is being able to politely and calmly voice your opinion, ask for what you need and speak up when you feel you’ve been wronged.

4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.

Our friendships are by far one of our most prized possessions. Unfortunately, many people forget this, get caught up in the business of their daily lives and let them slip away. We have a million reasons for neglecting our friendships including personal commitments, long work hours, family obligations, etc. Many of these reasons are completely valid, but when we’re on our deathbed, the only things that are really going to matter are the people that we loved and shared our lives with.

5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.

Our society conditions us to look externally to measure our happiness. When we’re not comparing ourselves to others, we’re thinking about all the things we wish we had to make our lives better (more money, a new car, a bigger house, etc.). The fact of the matter is happiness is a choice, not an acquisition. If you want true and lasting happiness, then look inward to determine what you need to do with your life to put a smile on your face and contentment in your heart.

We only have one shot at life and our time here is uncertain, so use the wisdom imparted by those who died before you to focus on those things that ensure your time on this this planet is filled with happiness, fulfillment and love.

In what ways has this blog resonated with you? Can you think of ways to ensure you don’t have these same regrets on your deathbed someday? Join in on the conversation by sharing your experiences in the comments section below.

KEEP MOVING FORWARD!

Joel

As always, my goal is to give my readers something useful, tangible and worth their time. If you don’t like something you read here, leave it and only take away what resonates with you.

August 27, 2013     2

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Letting FEAR Be Your Guide

Fear is by far the single greatest driving force preventing people from achieving their dreams. It can cause paralysis and keep people stuck in less than ideal circumstances, always wanting more but convinced it’s out of their reach.

But what if I told you that fear can be a powerful tool to guide you towards achieving your dreams?

Let me explain. When I first entertained the idea of coaching as a profession, I quickly abandoned the idea. I talked myself out of it by pointing out all the years I’ve logged in at my corporate job and the concerns around starting a business in this economy. At the time, I thought I was making a sensible decision about my life. My thinking appeared sound and I could find support for my choice from loved ones. What I didn’t understand at the time was that my rationale was BS and I was simply afraid. It would be another 18 months before I figured out that the real reasons why I didn’t want to pursue a life coaching career were fear of failure and judgment by others.

So what did I learn about fear to make it work for me instead of against me? For starters, I learned that fear can be one of the most powerful indicators you’re on the right path towards achieving your dreams. When people make the conscious choice to pursue their dreams (e.g. starting a business, changing careers), fear generally follows them on their journey. Why?

Change is scary.

As a species, humans have a tendency to stay in situations that are familiar, even if they’re painful or not aligned with their dreams. When we think about making meaningful change in our lives, fear sets in and we move into uncharted territory (the unknown). Most people can’t deal with these feelings and retreat to the safety and security of their comfort zone (what is familiar). We rationalize this behavior all sorts of ways (it’s not the right time, my job is perfectly fine, people will think I’m crazy, etc). The list is endless, but the outcome is the same. We remain stuck in the same place we were before we entertained our dreams. If left unchecked, this can become a repeating cycle of disappointment that stays with us our entire lives.

So how do we make fear work for us instead of against us? The first thing to do is recognize why we’re experiencing fear and then take action. Here are some tips for overcoming fear and moving forward with your dreams:

    Identify and own your fear.

    In our society, people are under the misguided notion that fear equates to weakness, so we pretend we’re indestructible and nothing gets to us. Of course, that couldn’t be farther from the truth. When you acknowledge your fear and identify what exactly you’re afraid of, you weaken its hold on you. Oftentimes, you realize the real truth about fear; it’s not real or rational. My favorite way of explaining fear is with a well-known acronym: False Evidence Appearing Real.

    Develop an action plan.

    Create an action plan that breaks down the process of achieving your dreams into a series of small, manageable goals. Then you can tackle your list one goal at a time. I like to create S.M.A.R.T. goals (specific, measurable, achievable, reasonable and time-oriented). For example, don’t just say you want to create a budget for yourself. Instead, say you want to create a budget for yourself within the next 2 weeks that will save you at least $XXX dollars a month over the next 3 years. Make sure the goal is something reasonable and one you can accomplish.

    Find an accountability partner.

    This needs to be somebody who can really hold you accountable for getting your action steps completed. They also need to be somebody you can confide in when dealing with fear or mental blocks. Recent studies have stated that you are 33% more likely to achieve your goals when you have an accountability partner. This is the main reason why coaches like me exist.

Remember, knowing what you want for yourself won’t get you far unless you’re willing to bust out of your comfort zone, embrace your fear and move forward in the direction of your dreams. Don’t let anyone or anything keep you from living your best possible life!

So how is fear keeping you from achieving your dreams? Have you used fear as a compass to guide you towards achieving your dreams? Join in on the conversation by sharing your experiences in the comments section below.

KEEP MOVING FORWARD!

Joel

My goal is always to give my readers something useful, tangible and worth their time. If you don’t like something you read here, leave it and only take away what resonates with you.