Thursday, January 27, 2011

A Valentine’s Day Romance Tune-Up

By Julie Rahm

What word comes to mind as you think about Valentine’s Day? Love is the number one response. Romance and chocolate are close seconds. When I ask men, they laugh and say “extortion”, a la Jay Leno. Whatever comes to mind, your thoughts about Valentine’s Day reveal the reality of your relationship. Is it time for a romance tune-up? If so, let’s get into the Mindset Mechanic Tool Kit and get to it.

To rekindle romance, it takes a peak performance mindset. A peak performance mindset means mastering your mind, body, productivity, and influence. Yes, the mindset that drives business success can also create romantic success!

Master your mind      Use the metaphorical level to reveal whether positive or negative thoughts are ruling your relationship. Your thoughts affect the way you feel. The way you feel affects the way you act. And the way you act affects the results you get. A positive, romantic relationship starts with positive thoughts. When the level is tilting from the weight of negative thoughts, use the metaphorical pliers to pluck the thoughts from your mind. If you are holding onto past negative thoughts, it is time to pluck them out and let them go! Then, hammer in believable better-feeling thoughts until the level is in balance again. Start by thinking of your partner’s positive attributes.

Master your body      Without a healthy body you will not have the energy you deserve and will be too fatigued to enjoy your partner! The physical body is home for your mind and spirit. Are you a caretaker or a slumlord? Use the metaphorical flashlight to examine the thoughts you have about your health. Do you take responsibility for your weight, for eating healthy foods, and for exercising regularly? If not, use the metaphorical hammer and hammer in the thought that nothing else is more important than maintaining a healthy, vibrant body.

Master your productivity      In the context of personal relationships, productivity means asking yourself each day, “Where does this day fit into the big picture”? Use the metaphorical plumb line to point to what actions you need to take each day to advance your relationship forward.

Master your influence       Mastering influence means mastering communication skills. Use the metaphorical flashlight to examine your thoughts about communicating. Do you need to be right? If so, use the metaphorical pliers to pluck out that thought. Nothing impedes romance like a partner’s need to be right! And, the person who is busy being right is not listening. Use the metaphorical hammer to hammer in a balance between talking and listening. Use the pliers to pluck out thoughts of criticism and judgment. Then, hammer in thoughts of kindness as you communicate with each other.

A romance tune-up is as simple as applying a peak performance mindset to personal relationships. Master your mind, body, productivity and influence with your partner and feel the heat rise. Your re-kindled romance will be ablaze with passion!

Find America's Mindset Mechanic online at http://www.americasmindsetmechanic.com/ and on the radio at FM107.1 WTKF/AM1240 WJNC, http://www.wtkf107.com/mindset.html, and http://webtalkradio.net/shows/the-mindset-mechanic/.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Managing Stress

By Julie Rahm

Are you feeling overwhelmed? Would you rather feel overjoyed? The solution is to manage your stress. Stress depletes your energy and keeps you stuck.

Let’s open the Mindset Mechanic tool kit and explore tools and techniques to tune up your energy and tune out stress! The metaphorical tools you need are the screwdriver and the hammer. Use the screwdriver to connect your intention to de-stress with actions, and your actions with results. Then use the hammer to hammer in the mindset framework for being focused on the moment. Being focused enables you to use techniques that immediately reduce stress and add energy.

The first technique is "holding your tongue" - a favorite of Dr. Jerry Teplitz. Instead of letting grumpy co-workers get to you, place the tip of your tongue gently against the roof of your mouth, about a quarter-inch behind your teeth. "Holding your tongue" keeps the energy flowing in your body, reducing stress and providing the boost you need to stay calm.

The second technique is breathing. Take five deep breaths before you speak. Find a private place and take five minutes to breathe. Count to four as you inhale, allowing the air to push your bellybutton out. Count to four as you exhale. Imagine exhaling whatever is causing stress. Breathing changes the physical response of your body, allowing negative energy to dissipate.

Another technique best done privately takes only two minutes. Close your eyes. Place your hand over your heart. As you inhale, imagine breathing in love and support. Imagine breathing through the heart instead of the lungs and connecting with the Divine.

Finally, learn from my 14-pound seven-month-old Yorkie Tank the Wonder Dog. Shake it off. Like Tank after he gets wet, shake your body from head to toe. Shaking it off releases whatever negative energy is left in your body.

I use these techniques regularly for serious matters, and not-so-serious matters. For instance, as I was writing this article, Tank put his front paws on my lap, cocked his head, and gave me those "Don’t make me tinkle on the carpet" eyes. So we went outside. Actually, Tank just wanted to run and run. He eluded me in the neighbors’ thick bushes three doors down. I called his name, but the brisk wind carried my voice away so he did not come. After trespassing through several neighbors’ backyards, I gave up. Anxiety crept in with thoughts of speeding cars and trashed yards. I "held my tongue" and began four-count breathing. Wiping the mud off of my shoes, I entered the back door only to hear my husband laughing as he spoke with our neighbor around the corner. Apparently, Tank ran to greet her as she arrived home with groceries. I slipped off my jacket, "shook it off" and laughed. My husband, leash in hand, retrieved Tank.

Ultimately, some stress is minor like the episode with Tank. Other stress is incapacitating. Either way, use these techniques to tune up your energy and tune out stress.


Find the Mindset Mechanic online at www.AmericasMindsetMechanic.com and on the radio at FM107.1 WTKF/AM1240 WJNC and www.TheTalkStation.com.












Saturday, January 1, 2011

The Secret to Achieving Your New Year’s Resolutions

By Julie Rahm
Do you find yourself setting the same New Year’s resolutions year after year? If so, this is the year to get them done! In the next few paragraphs, I will present a three-part plan of action containing a secret that is guaranteed to bring success. The three components of the action plan are motivation, resources, and habits.

Part one of the action plan is motivation. You need something big enough to motivate you no matter what obstacles to success arise. You will need your metaphorical screwdriver. The screwdriver will remind you to connect your intentions with your actions by writing down each resolution at the top of a blank sheet of paper. Now, imagine that a genie has granted your wish and the resolution is accomplished. How would your life be different? Underneath the resolution, make a list of all the things you can be, do or have when you achieve the resolution. Again, imagine a genie has made the new list a reality. Now, how would your life be different? Continue the list with additional ways your lifestyle would change. Imagine everything on the list is a reality in your life and then decide how satisfied with your life you would be. On a scale from one to ten, with one being pathetic and ten being completely awesome, rate your satisfaction level with life. If you did not answer with a ten, what would it take to make it a ten?

For example, say my resolution is to weigh xxx lbs. When I weigh xxx lbs the benefits will include more confidence and self esteem. My clothes will fit better. I will have more energy at the end of the day. I will feel better so I will smile more. Smiling more will bring more opportunities my way, because people like being around happy people. You get the idea. And when all of those benefits are a reality, additional benefits could be that I would have more influence, make more money, help more people, and have more freedom. Then, I would rate my satisfaction with life with all of those benefits a reality.

The second part of your plan of action is resources. What resources do you need to accomplish your resolution and how can you get those resources? List the resources you need, how much you need, and where and when you can get them. In the example, I need time, money, and people. I need time to exercise, plan meals and shop for food. This time could come from either waking up earlier in the morning or using part of my lunch break. I may need money for a gym membership, a personal trainer, or new running shoes. Instead of a personal trainer, maybe I could get a friend to exercise with me. You get the idea.

The third part of the plan of action is the secret ingredient to success – habits. Identify the habits, beliefs, and behaviors that sabotage you and trade them for new habits and behaviors. Become aware of the rules by which you live that are no longer necessary. Use the metaphorical level, flashlight, pliers, utility knife, and hammer.

When the level indicates your mood is tilting negatively, your thoughts are taking you away from achieving the resolution. Shine the flashlight into the recesses of your mind to reveal what thoughts turned your mood in the wrong direction. Use the pliers to pluck out those thoughts. Delete the cumulative effects of past experiences and memories by using the utility knife to cut the cord to the effects and the memories. Now you are free to handle only the events of the present moment. Use the hammer to hammer in the new thoughts, beliefs, and expectations that will create new habits and behaviors that will ensure success.

Journaling is a very effective way to discover the habits, thoughts, beliefs, and rules you live by that keep you stuck. Whether you journal one sentence or pages, over time you will become aware of your thought patterns so you can trade them for better patterns. My free gift to you as a member of the Mindset Mechanic Community (membership is also free) is a 52-week guided online journal. Visit www.AmericasMindsetMechanic.com to join. Start a journaling habit at a frequency you can maintain. When you need help uncovering the habitual thought patterns keeping you stuck, simply click on the button to request coaching and I will communicate with you through your journal.

So as you list your New Year’s resolutions, develop your three-part plans of action that are guaranteed to succeed. First, find your motivation for achieving your resolutions. Second, list the resources you need to succeed. Third, become aware of the habitual thoughts that have kept you stuck. Use your metaphorical tool kit and your guided online journal. And, enjoy your success!
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