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Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Letting go of the past - a simple method

It can be very easy to say "let it go", "let it slide", "forget about it" and so forth. It's possible to say those words and similar till you are blue in the face; but all those hurtful things are still there pulling faces at you, laughing at you, making you feel so low, dragging you down and keeping you from the power to reach for success.

You know for a fact that you can have a fast, powerful sports car, but, load it up with lots of unnecessary junk and it's going to have only one speed - dead slow - no matter how hard you press that accelerator and wish it forward. This applies to your life. Load your mind up with all sorts of junk from the past and you've got it - no power - no matter how hard you try or wish.

All that hurtful, humiliating, painful, debilitating, embarrassing "stuff" from the past eating away at your character, confidence and personal power like battery acid. What can you do? How can you begin to move forward?

Forgiveness. You MUST forgive the past. Forgive the people who may have wronged you in some way. Forgive all the incidents. Forgive yourself. Forgive even your God. For it is only through true and heartfelt forgiveness of the past and all those involved that you can genuinely begin to "let it go", "let it slide", truly "forget about it" and move forward again. Everybody makes mistakes. We are all only human, and our greatest teachers are our mistakes. All those people from the past who you believe wronged you - well - they, just like you, are only human too. You need to recognise that and be prepared to forgive just as you would like to be forgiven for your past mistakes.

Action plan. Make a list. A list of all the people, incidents, wrongs, mistakes made, hurts, jealousies that are encumbering your life, that are robbing you of your power. Write everything down. Don't miss a thing. Not a single crumb. This is going to be one nasty document. Add descriptions if you wish - just get it ALL out on paper.

The old you would have framed this document on the wall so you could read over it every day and gloat about all your excuses for "not making it".

The new you is going to handle the situation totally differently. You are going to set aside a day - a whole day - to be alone. You need to find a lonely spot a long way from everyone. Perhaps a trip to the country will do it. Pack a picnic lunch. Look on this as a celebration. A celebration of forgiveness.

You will arrive safely at the designated spot. You spread out your picnic. An excellent spot is somewhere high like a mountain top. You take out your list. In a very loud voice you call out "I forgive my wife for not loving me as she should.", "I forgive my aunt Joan for embarrassing me so much at that family party in 1987", "I forgive with all my heart and soul the driver of that car that smashed into ours injuring my son so badly - I forgive you." Obviously these are only examples - yours will be yours. If you feel you need to read it over many times until you feel "done".

Now destroy the list completely. Bury or scatter to the wind any remains. Make sure it is gone forever. Celebrate your forgiveness event with your picnic and go home. It is done. You are free. Forgive always. We are all one. As you have just forgiven others, so too have you been forgiven.

3 fantastic quotes:

"Inner peace can be reached only when we practice forgiveness. Forgiveness is letting go of the past" - Gerald Jampolsky

"The practice of forgiveness is our most important contribution to the healing of the world" - Marianne Williamson

"Forgiveness is the giving, and so the receiving, of life" - George MacDonald

A relevant book to read: "Total Forgiveness" by R. T. Kendall

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Letting go of the past

Have you ever watched one of those movies where the convicts are chained to a great big steel ball? Not only are they chained to the steel ball but also their hands and feet are chained in there as well! Quite obviously they can no longer sprint for freedom, which I guess is the idea of it all in the first place. They all move slowly and awkwardly and seem quite a dispirited lot. They physically can't let go of the past. It's chained to them, a constant reminder of what they have done and what has happened to them.

How many of us go through life all chained up to the past, dragging a huge heavy ball of old "stuff" around and never letting go. It can be just as exhausting as being chained to the real thing. If there is one thing that can stop you moving forward to your better future - it's your past.

It can be all of those little things that happened to you that you wished hadn't. But - they did! Let's be realistic; you know that you can never go back in time to change what happened to you at school, at home, at work, with friends, with business, with finances, with relationships, with your health. All those terrible, horrible, embarrassing, financially crippling, emotionally debilitating, health destroying things. They all happened and, at least to you, they were very real.

I'm going to tell you a personal story. When I was young and at secondary school (college in America) my mum and dad moved home a lot. I was very shy at the time and with all the new schools and having to constantly make and lose friends, my self confidence was pretty much destroyed. Each school I went to seemed to have a different syllabus and way of teaching. The last school I went to was an all boys private school. I was having a very hard time especially with maths.

One day there was a problem with maths that I just could not understand so I asked the teacher if he could spend some time with me to help. He must have been having an ultra "bad day at the office" because I was told very abruptly to not waste his time. All my life I have carried a great dislike for that person. Not quite hate but a sort of "I hope I one day bump into him in a dark alley someplace" thing. I have dragged that particular steel ball along all my life up to now.

Well it just so happened that this school had a reunion recently - and I went. I got to meet guys I hadn't seen for 40 years! It was a great night. Also present were some of our old teachers - and, yes - THAT old teacher. He walked up to me and we started chatting, and guess what? He was a great guy! Not at all like I remembered. We talked, as old friends do, about our grandchildren and how wonderful it was to be grandparents. We chatted about lots of stuff for some time. As we talked I could feel the chain holding that steel ball snap and gently fall away.

We all need to let go of the past. It's gone, can't be changed, history. Letting go of the past is one of the most liberating things you can do to empower yourself. You may have tens, hundreds, perhaps even thousands of different size steel balls chained to you day and night, exhausting you as you desperately try to move forward and make progress. You need to find a way to let them all go, cut them loose, one by one. Believe me, letting go of the past can be a wonderful and liberating gift to yourself.

How to start - stay tuned till next post.

A quote for you: "Let go. Why do you cling to pain? There is nothing you can do about the wrongs of yesterday. It is not yours to judge. Why hold on to the very thing which keeps you from hope and love? - Leo Buscaglia

Inspirational reading: "Emotionally Free: Letting Go of the Past to Live in the Moment" - By David Viscott M.D.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Maximise Your Social Potential

Have you chanced upon a person who's so naturally sociable that
when you put him/her inside a room full of strangers, he/she will
end up friends with virtually everybody? We usually call this sort
of person a "people person". He or she automatically knows how
to maximise their social potential. While some people can do this
automatically and unconsciously, others will need to learn the

Learning to be a people person is a great way to empower
yourself. You just have to know how to begin. Listed below are
ten great ways to start.

1. Be genuine.

Hypocrisy will simply bring you all the way down every time.
Once it is sensed that you are Mr. Hypocrite with selfish
intentions, you might as well say goodbye to meeting and keeping
new friends. Be genuinely nice, and interested in people.

2. Be a great listener.

To earn the love and trust of people, listen to their problems and
sympathize with them. Do not just hear them out, listen to them
with your heart. Make eye contact when a person talks to you.
Listen as if every word matters, and it does. By doing so you will
earn people's trust and confidence.

3. Laugh easily and often.

Find the humor in life. A person exuding a wonderful sense of
humor attracts crowds and sooner or later, attracts success. Just
remember; be genuine - if you don't get the joke or it's just not
funny - don't fake laugh. People will see straight through you.

4. Don't forget yourself.

In the process of fluttering about on your social campaign, you
could forget the real you. Remember to love and appreciate
yourself before anyone else. If you see yourself as respectable and
deserving of affection, people will pick up on that and treat you

5. Perform random acts of kindness.

It's not necessary to give all of your savings to charity. Just
small acts of kindness count here. This can be as basic as giving
someone you may know a surprise "thank you", "get well soon",
or "take-care" card or helping an elderly person across the street.
Good deeds are great deeds. You'll feel better for it too.

6. Contact old friends.

Revisit the good old days by searching through your old records
and look for those great people whom you would like to
communicate with again - and do it! I recently attended a school reunion and met old friends I had not seen for 40 years. It was magic!

7 Personality makeover.

Are you grumpy, crabby and generally moody? Well stop! you
can't experience life to the full like that. Abolish the bad traits
and habits that constantly hinder your growth. And anyhow, who
wants a bad-tempered friend?

8. Act confident (even if you don't feel it).

Adopt the ability to stride to the opposite corner of a room and
present yourself to people with a winning smile. Practice makes perfect. Remember to be confident - not arrogant.

9. Exercise restraint.

When angered, don't snap at anybody. Never throw a tantrum.
Always stay calm and poised. Be grownup enough to take control
of a situation and transform your wrath into something more
profitable and peaceful. Once people think that you have a hair
trigger temper, they will find it difficult to trust you. The
smartest person in a room is always the peacemaker.

10. Continue fostering your relationships.

The great relationships you have built with all the people you
have in your life are far too precious to let slip and lose. Treat
these friendships and relationships like gold and they will return
diamonds. Get out and have fun with these people. Start to and
keep doing things together on a regular basis. Happiness will
never be far from you as long as the people who count the most
are close to you.

Maximising your social potential means becoming a better and
more likable and lovable person. It's a win-win situation: the
people you know will know they can turn to you anytime and

A quote for you: "The greatest discovery of this generation is that human beings can alter their lives by altering their attitude of mind" - Albert Schweitzer

A book for you: "How To Change Your Life" by Ernest Holmes and Michael Bernard Beckwith.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Good Vibrations

"My mother used to tell me about vibrations", Brian Wilson once said in an interview. "I really didn't understand too much what that meant when I was a boy. It scared me, the word 'vibrations' ". He was remembering how his mother, Audree, was telling him about the effect vibrations had on dogs and people. "To think that invisible feelings, invisible vibrations existed, scared me to death. But she talked about how dogs could pick up vibrations from people; they would bark at some people and not bark at others. And the same thing happened with people. And so it came to pass that we talked about good vibrations."

I defy anyone to listen to The Beach Boys perform "Good Vibrations" and not feel better or uplifted afterwards. What a great song! I had the joy of hearing the song performed live about two years ago when Brian Wilson visited Melbourne, Australia with his Smile tour. Brilliant just doesn't cover it.

Good Vibrations was originally composed during the Pet Sounds sessions. Wilson first enlisted the help of Pet Sounds lyricist Tony Asher for help in putting words to the idea. Beach Boys frontman Mike Love supplied the final version around August 24, 1966.

Wilson recorded the song in sections, at different studios, in order to capture the sound he heard in his head. The production of the song is reported to have spanned seventeen recording sessions at four different recording studios, and used over 90 hours of magnetic recording tape. He is credited with developing the use of the recording studio as an instrument. Brian Wilson, The Beach Boys, and dozens of top studio musicians, recorded and re-recorded seemingly unrelated musical and vocal sections for the song, then edited and mixed these sections into a 3 minute 35 second pop masterpiece.

Some of the unusual sounds employed have been credited to the use of a Theremin-like instrument called "The Box". It was built and played by a Dr. Paul Tanner. A Theremin is a strange instrument that uses electric current to produce sound. It is played by moving a hand near an aerial involving an electric field and is very hard to control. You have heard them used in all those old science fiction movies. "Paul's Box", as it became known, was used on several Hollywood productions and was included in the 1960's TV show "My Favourite Martian" (the sound of Martin's antennas raising).

When Dr. Tanner felt it was time to retire his "box" it was given to a hospital in Santa Monica, California, because they were interested in using it for hearing tests. The box had a range of tones that would extend outside of the upper and lower limits of human hearing. Years later Dr. Tanner checked back with the hospital to find out what had happened to "Paul's Box". It had unfortunately been destroyed in the earthquake of 1971!

"Good Vibrations" was released as a single on October 10, 1966 (backed by the Pet Sounds instrumental "Let's Go Away For Awhile"). It was the band's third U.S. number one hit, the other two being "I Get Around" and "Help Me, Rhonda". This song also became The Beach Boys first British chart-topper.

Music seems to be therapeutic to many of us. It can be expressive, uplifting, energizing and empowering. I know for a fact that if you want to lift heavier weights and perform more repetitions than usual during a workout - put on some music. It works every time! When my wife plays her grand piano for a while it's not too long before our dog settles down nearby to listen. Our daughter once earned some money to help cover her university costs by acting as a Musical Therapist (she is a violinist) at a home for the elderly. The music helped to calm and to heal. Some Quantum Scientists believe that music is the most important force in existence and could prove to contain the answers to life.

So next time all the vibrations around you seem to be of a negative nature, empower yourself, take action, take my suggestion, and try some "Good Vibrations".

4 Brian Wilson Quotes:

"Beware the lollipop of mediocrity; lick it once and you'll suck forever."

"I'm not a genius. I'm just a hard-working guy."

"I've never written one note or word of music simply because I think it will make money."

"A voice or a song can be so comforting to someone who really needs it."

Buy the book: "The beach Boys: The Definitive Diary of America's Greatest Band on Stage and in the Studio"

Buy the CD: "The Sounds Of Summer - The Very Best of The Beach Boys"