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3 Questions to Ask Yourself When You Feel Unsupported in Relationships

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Angry Couple

 

Written By Jennifer Twardowski
From Tiny Buddha

“A community of friends supporting each other can make a world of difference.” ~Unknown

Many of us feel we’re not getting the support we want or deserve in relationships.

Maybe we’ve never felt supported by our friends or family. Maybe we don’t feel supported by our peers or co-workers. Maybe we don’t even feel supported by our partner.

This can leave us feeling drained, tired, and unhappy, like we’re moving through life without much fuel to keep going.

During my adolescence and early adulthood, this was a huge struggle for me. I rarely found a place or group of friends where I felt like I “belonged” and, therefore, I didn’t feel supported. When I did feel supported by others, it only lasted for a few days or weeks before it dissipated.

Today, this has shifted. I feel much more supported in my current relationships and don’t feel nearly as drained as I once did.

There are still moments when I feel like I did growing up, but I’ve realized that opening up to support is a life-long journey. It’s an ongoing process of healing old wounds and allowing ourselves to become something new.

There are three questions that always help me realize what needs to be healed and how I need to shift my perception. If you don’t feel supported in your relationships, ask yourself:

1. Is my story preventing me from receiving support?

Do you tell yourself stories like “Nobody understands me,” “He can’t understand me because he hasn’t experienced what I’ve experienced,” or “I always have to take care of others and nobody can take care of me”?

Or, do you repeatedly tell yourself, “I am never supported in my relationships”?

Whatever your specific story is, it blocks you from receiving the support you desire.

Some other stories that prevent you from receiving support include: “If I tell others about my problems, it will cause them more stress,” “If I share this with others, they will judge me,” “I need to give to others in order to be loved,” and “If I want something from others, I won’t be loved.”

Formerly, I told myself the story “I will be a burden to others if I seek help and support.”

I’d think this at work when I needed extra help or a day off, so I’d feel hesitant to communicate this to coworkers. I’d also think this when going through tough times, which made me feel scared to open up to friends, so none of them would know what I was feeling.

When we acknowledge our stories, we are then able to shift our perception and open ourselves to receiving support from others.

2. Am I reaching out to others for support?

Often when we feel like we are not receiving what we desire from others it’s because we are not open to receiving. It’s as if we have a little shop set up for business, but we have all the doors locked!

Be sure to tell others when you are going through a difficult time. Ask people for help rather than to try to figure it all out on your own.

By letting people know that we are seeking support, we’re much more likely to receive it.

3. Am I supporting myself? 

What we experience outside of ourselves is often a reflection of whatever we are experiencing within ourselves. If we are not feeling supported by others, then it is likely true that we may not be supporting ourselves.

The key to shifting this is to find ways to feel full and supported within ourselves instead of focusing solely on what we want from others.

This was something I needed to do when dealing with various health issues. For a few years, I failed to address my health problems, which meant others couldn’t support me either.

I would not stay committed to diet and lifestyle changes that I knew would help me. This meant others didn’t have the opportunity to support me because my actions did not show that improving my health was important to me.

Ask yourself: Am I supporting my body when it’s sick or tired by letting it rest? Do I support myself by finding time to do the things that I love to do? Do I give myself the things I know I need—like going to doctor’s appointments when I’m sick or finding a therapist when I’m going through a difficult time?

Then take it a step further and ask yourself: Am I really “myself” when around others? Am I putting myself in relationships with people who truly accept me for who I am? Do I allow myself to share my authentic truth with others?

If we want to be fully supported in all aspects of ourselves, we need to choose to be in relationships where we feel free to be our authentic selves.

This might mean letting go of some relationships and releasing expectations that certain people will suddenly change and be supportive. By being in relationships with others who fully accept us, we are supporting ourselves.

In order to experience the highest degree of love and support in our relationships, we have to really love and support ourselves. So look within and become the master of your own self-care and self-love.

 

Image Sources: Angry couple silhouette via Shutterstock, Huffington Post

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Disclaimer: The techniques, strategies, and suggestions expressed here are intended to be used for educational purposes only.

The author, Drew Canole, and the associated www.fitlife.tv are not rendering medical advice, nor to diagnose, prescribe, or treat any disease, condition, illness, or injury. It is imperative that before beginning any nutrition or exercise program you receive full medical clearance from a licensed physician.

Drew Canole and Fitlife.tv claim no responsibility to any person or entity for any liability, loss, or damage caused or alleged to be caused directly or indirectly as a result of the use, application, or interpretation of the material presented here.

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40 Things You Need to Stop Worrying About

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Written By Kelly Fitzpatrick
From Greatist

We’ve all got things that send us on an anxiety tailspin. But freak out no more. While worrying can be beneficial in some instances, certain fears just aren’t worth the headache. We’ve got 40 things to stop worrying about right now, and tips for how to keep them in check.

Money

 

1. Bouncing a Check

We know worrying about finances is the top source of stress for most people, and bouncing a check isn’t exactly the height of fiscal responsibility . But for those who go into a cold sweat every time they bust out a checkbook, keep in mind the penalty for bouncing a check typically isn’t huge—about $30 on average. To prevent a problem, ask the bank about overdraft protection, and consider switching banks if yours doesn’t offer it.

2. Paying Rent Late

Paying bills can be a huge source of anxiety, especially when a late fee is involved. But there’s no need to stress too much about forgetting to drop off the rent check before heading out of town. First, if the due date falls on a weekend or holiday, the check typically isn’t considered late until the next business day. Plus, most landlords include a few day grace period where rent is not considered late (and subject to those pesky fees!). Refer to your lease to determine your landlord’s specific policy on a grace period and late fees.

3. The Cash-Only Restaurant

Most of us have been there: The check arrives and that formerly adorable little café turns into a nightmare — cash only?! First, understand the waiter or cashier probably sees this all the time, so there’s no need to panic. Ask to borrow the cash from a pal or date and then immediately go together to an ATM to pay them back. If alone, ask the waiter for the nearest ATM and head there; plastic-free places are typically pretty trusting. In the future, scan the menu for a cash-only warning before ordering, or check review sites, such as Yelp and Foursquare, which usually list whether cards are accepted.

4. Paying at the End of the Meal

The arrival of the check after a meal can miraculously halt all conversation and merriment. If the meals cost about the same, offer to split things evenly. If others want to split things evenly but there’s a big discrepancy in price, feel free to say so—being calm and assertive (not to be confused with aggressive) will get the message across without making you seem cheap. Next time, ask for separate checks before ordering. It’ll send other diners the message that everyone is paying their own way.

Social Life

 

5. Your Pal Has a Booger Hanging Out

Those of us who are easily embarrassed are less likely to tell others they have a tag showing, food in their teeth, or even, yes, a booger hanging out of their nose. But chances are most people will be relieved— temporarily embarrassed too, but mostly relieved—to be informed. And next time we can count on that pal to be on booger patrol for us.

6. Inviting Overnight Guests

Afraid the lumpy pull-out sofa isn’t up to snuff or the dog will keep guests up all night? If the concern is impeding quality time with good pals, address it—that time with friends is essential to our physical and emotional health. Try, “I’d love for you to stay with me, but all we have is an air mattress.” If your pals aren’t down for snuggling next to Fido, trust that they’ll get a hotel. If they say it’s fine, though, take them at their word and get on with the fun stuff.

7. Wearing the Wrong Outfit

The pile of rejected outfits is growing, but still nothing seems to fit the bill. Rest assured, clothing is actually not the first thing most women notice about each other—it’s their waist size. And studies suggest men remember even less about others’ appearance than women do . And who wants to impress people that prioritize clothing (or waist size!) so highly anyway?

8. Last Night’s Drunk Texts

Throwing back a few too many last night probably means your phone is filled with regrettable texts. Handle the clean-up calmly—if the messages are simply embarrassing but otherwise inoffensive, send something along the lines of: “Sry abt those texts, had a bit too much to drink!” If the texts were potentially upsetting, though, pick up the phone. Calmly apologize (yep, there’s a right way to apologize) and try to make it up to them—getting to see you miserably hungover at brunch should do the trick.

9. Forgetting to Call a Friend

Whether it was a true slipup or an “accident,” there’s no need to feel like a jerk. Wait until there’s actually time to chat (not in between errands, while watching TV, or any other time you can only devote partial attention) and then call back. Quickly apologize for the mistake and move on to more important matters, like what’s going on in their life—after all, meaningful talks are important for both parties.

10. Telling a White Lie

The best rule we could find for white lies is this: They’re okay when protecting others, but plain dishonest when they protect the liar. (“Oh no! The dog must have knocked over that vase” won’t fly.) The goal in telling a fib should be showing compassion, but many of us can still feel frantic when grasping at something positive to say about an ugly baby or a less than delicious dinner. Instead of all-out lying, mention one thing you like. (“Wow, your son’s eyes are such a great color!”) Awkwardness averted.

11. Making a Freudian Slip

We really did mean to tell that busty woman her idea was “the best,” it just came out wrong—and studies show subconscious factors can cause a verbal slipup . At this point, dwelling on it only makes things weirder for everyone involved. If it can be glossed over, do so. If not, go with: “Geez, sorry about that. I haven’t had enough coffee today, so I’m half asleep.”

12. A Bad Haircut

This fear can drive us to spend hundreds on haircuts, but there’s no need. The worst-case scenario is a less-than-great haircut for a few weeks (seriously, even the beauty-obsessed will recover), but chances are it’s an opportunity for new hair accessories. Most important, stay confident about whatever ’do you end up with: One study found subjects’ self-confidence about teeth—not necessarily the appearance of their pearly whites—was a better predictor of their well-being .

Working and Networking

 

13. Being Late For an Interview

Whenever possible, alert the interviewer as soon as you realize you’ll be late. Once the interview’s begun, apologize and offer a brief explanation. (Just don’t blame it on someone else, since most employers won’t want to hire someone who likes to shift blame.) Then move on. Dwelling on it (whether its out loud or in our heads) will only worsen the rest of the meeting.

14. Forgetting Someone’s Name

When bumping into a semi-stranger out and about, take the opportunity to introduce whoever’s in tow (like a child or significant other). Hopefully the other person will say his/her own name. In a professional situation? Politely confess the name is escaping you and ask again. To avoid that sticky situation in the first place, try to commit names to memory by repeating and visualizing the name .

15. Not Responding to an Email

Ugh, an email has been sitting in your inbox for two weeks, and now you don’t even know whether to respond at all. Do it! Write that it slipped through the cracks and then address the issue at hand. In the future, try to respond to every email within 24 hours if only to say, “I’ll be able to get to this on ____ date.” And remember, almost all of us have done this.

16. Taking a Day Off

Some of us panic whenever we think about taking a day off, but personal time away from the office is essential. Banish worries by first being honest: Rather than playing sick, schedule a day off here and there whenever it might be needed (i.e. right after a huge presentation)—that eliminates all the Ferris Bueller-style panic. Then completely unplug. Set up an out-of-office message on email and turn off your phone.

17. A Tough Meeting With Your Boss

That request for a raise is coming out a lot more like stutters and suddenly we notice we’re wearing footie pajamas. (Phew, that was just a nightmare.) Prep for a big meeting by actually writing down what needs to be said. Don’t read it like a script, but skim it beforehand until the main points stick. Then remember, what’s the worst that could happen? The boss will say no to that raise, but probably stop short of giving us the boot.

18. Being Late for Fido’s Evening Stroll

If an extra 30 minutes at work causes an anxiety attack about the pooch, chances are that 30 minutes won’t be put to good use. While it’s great for dog owners to be concerned about getting the pup plenty of exercise, it’ll usually be pretty obvious if the dog’s not getting enough outdoor time. Look for weight gain or hyperactivity—if there are no negative signals, don’t fret too much about being late for this appointment.

Romantic Relationships

 

19. The Possibility of Cheating on Your Significant Other

No need to let a little harmless flirting (keyword: harmless) leave us rife with guilt. People wary of getting too attached to another person are most likely to stray—but remember, we do actually choose whether or not we cheat . So calmly remind yourself of the importance of the relationship and remember you’re in control. It should help put things in perspective.

20. The Possibility of Being Cheated On

Chances are being suspicious and worried about cheating will not reduce the chances of it happening. Being trusting and open to the possibility (that’s possibility, not probability) of being hurt is essential in a lasting relationship . Plus, anyone who’d cheat isn’t worth worrying about.

21. Not Getting Along With the In-Laws

About 60 percent of women and 15 percent of men say they have a tough relationship with in-laws, so don’t worry about being the only one. But to avoid the strain, change the expectations—many women expect to be unconditionally loved and embraced like a daughter while her mother-in-law plans to be treated as the authority when it comes to her kid. Just accept that marriage won’t make everyone get along.

22. A Bad First Date

First dates go badly. There, we said it. But no need to worry, seeing as that will only contribute sweaty pits and a trembling voice to the mix. Instead try to focus on what the other person has to say and engage with them to forget about your own nerves. In fact, just knowing the other person is equally nervous can make us feel better—and make the date go more smoothly !

23. Being Bad in Bed

Men say the only way to be bad in bed is to not be into it—which is a lot more likely when worrying about being bad in bed. No matter your partner’s gender, the best way to ensure good sex is to constantly look and ask for feedback. But remember, a lot goes into “good sex” for women, like their mindset and feelings about the relationship, so out-of-the-bedroom changes could make a difference too .

24. Being Rejected

Just go ask them! Studies have found some people are more sensitive to rejection and those people tend to sit and think about the potential rejection more than others . Sound familiar? Stop thinking and start doing!

Health

 

25. Getting Sick

Whether there’s a big event coming up or flu season is on its way, we almost all occasionally worry about getting sick. Instead, focus on positive changes, like eating well and staying active. Annual check-ups should help quell nerves, but otherwise, worrying about it isn’t much help. In fact, stress could increase risk of illness.

26. Chronic Headaches

There’s no need to assume frequent headaches are a symptom of a brain tumor. They could also be the result of that daily cup of Joe, rebounding from pain medication, or even a heavy bag. Sure, ask a doc if the pain persists, but don’t jump to any conclusions.

27. Shedding Hair

It’s completely normal to shed a lot—up to 100 hairs per day. Losing more than 125 hairs per day is considered excessive, but still reversible. For example, stress or poor diet could be to blame .

28. Forgetting to Wash Your Face Before Bed

Don’t worry, it’s not a recipe for insta-breakout. Actually, poor hygiene isn’t a cause of acne — oil production and dead skin cells are. Don’t make it a habit, but don’t freak out if you hit the sheets before scrubbing up.

29. Sharing Toiletries and Cosmetics With Pals

Stop the presses! This just in: Sharing earrings or even a toothbrush with a friend is probably safe. We were shocked, too. While lipstick could spread herpes, that toothbrush is A-okay (well, still weird, but y’know). And as long as piercings are healed (that’s typically six weeks after getting pierced), they won’t be infected by someone else’s earrings.

30. Being Scatterbrained

Your house keys are at the office, your cell phone’s in a cab, and your cat’s birthday went uncelebrated. These mishaps probably aren’t signs of Alzheimer’s disease—it’s more likely you’re just stressed, anxious, or plain getting older. (Age-related memory loss might start by age 45 .) Try doing just one task at a time (first send an email, then walk out the door) to fight forgetfulness .

Cooking and Eating

 

31. That Milk Expired Yesterday

Expiration dates aren’t always the last word on food freshness, and terms like sell-by and use-by can get confusing. Some foods last longer, and some (like meat) actually may not survive at home until the store’s sell-by date. Appearance, smell, and taste are usually good guidelines though.

32. Swallowing Gum

Time to put this myth to bed. Gum will not stay in your stomach for years on end. For kiddos it could cause an intestinal blockage, but it’d take significantly more than one piece.

33. Not Getting Enough Protein

Sure, protein’s definitely important. But most people don’t need to worry about not eating enough. It’s easy to reach the recommended daily allowance (around 50 grams for adults) with just a few servings of legumes, dairy, and/or meat.

34. Eating an Indulgent Dessert

That cupcake was freakin’ delicious. No need to beat ourselves up about it. Dwelling on eating a “bad” food makes eating healthy in the future harder, not easier.

Accidents and Disasters

 

35. Bed Bugs

Getting a bed bug infestation would really, really suck. The good news: Scientists have not found bed bugs transmit any diseases to humans. Avoid an infestation with precautionary measures, but there’s no need to burn down the house if bed bugs turn up. Instead, call a pro to assess the situation and offer next steps.

36. Dropping Your Phone in the Toilet

There’s no such thing as true prevention here, so focus on preparation. Immediately yank it back out of the toilet. If possible, immediately remove the battery without stopping to shut down (if not, just immediately power off). If there was anything but water involved, rinse the phone with fresh water. Take the phone apart as much as possible before putting it somewhere to dry for three days, and covering it in rice might help wick away moisture—yeah, seriously. Of course, there are always waterproof cases to prevent this catastrophe in the first place.

37. Losing a Wallet

While it’s inconvenient, losing a wallet is not the end of the world. These days almost everything in a wallet is replaceable (if not, take it out of that wallet now—including a social security card). When in public, allow 15 minutes to calmly retrace steps and search for the wallet (at home, allow an hour). Then start canceling credit cards. Make a list of account numbers and associated phone numbers to keep safely at home, along with contact info for the DMV.

Transportation

 

38. Missing an Oil Change

Modern engine oil typically doesn’t need to be changed every 3,000 miles or three months as we’ve always been told. First, check the car’s manual, which may actually recommend less frequent changes. Then, if the car has an oil monitoring system, we can safely rely on that to tell us when an oil change is actually necessary. Of course, there’s the old-fashioned method, too: just check the oil.

39. The Possibility of Falling on Train Tracks

One study found that over 13 years, there was an average of 25 homicidal or accidental subway deaths per year in NYC. That’s out of about 1.5 billion trips (on NYC’s MTA alone) per year. Sure, stand away from the tracks, but no need to fear for your life.

40. Using Electronics During Takeoff and Landing

Yeah, it could get us kicked off the plane or—more likely—dressed down by the flight attendant, but chances are forgetting to turn off our Kindles did not just send the plane off in the wrong direction. The FAA doesn’t actually have proof electronics can mess with the plane’s navigation, but it’s still a regulation. The takeaway: Power down when told to, but if something accidentally stays on, there’s no need to panic.

 

Image Source: Sikorski

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Disclaimer: The techniques, strategies, and suggestions expressed here are intended to be used for educational purposes only.

The author, Drew Canole, and the associated www.fitlife.tv are not rendering medical advice, nor to diagnose, prescribe, or treat any disease, condition, illness, or injury. It is imperative that before beginning any nutrition or exercise program you receive full medical clearance from a licensed physician.

Drew Canole and Fitlife.tv claim no responsibility to any person or entity for any liability, loss, or damage caused or alleged to be caused directly or indirectly as a result of the use, application, or interpretation of the material presented here.

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7 Things You Should Stop Expecting from Others

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7 Things You Should Stop Expecting from Others

 

Written By Marc Chernoff
From Marc & Angel Hack Life

“I’m not in this world to live up to your expectations
and you’re not in this world to live up to mine.”
―Bruce Lee

The biggest disappointments in our lives are often the result of misplaced expectations.  This is especially true when it comes to our relationships and interactions with others.

Tempering your expectations of other people will greatly reduce unnecessary frustration and suffering, in both your life and theirs, and help you refocus on the things that truly matter.

Which means it’s time to…

1.  Stop expecting them to agree with you.

You deserve to be happy.  You deserve to live a life you are excited about.  Don’t let the opinions of others make you forget that.  You are not in this world to live up to the expectations of others, nor should you feel that others are here to live up to yours.  In fact, the more you approve of your own decisions in life, the less approval you need from everyone else.

You have to dare to be yourself, and follow you own intuition, however frightening or strange that may feel or prove to be.  Don’t compare yourself to others.  Don’t get discouraged by their progress or success.  Follow your own path and stay true to your own purpose.  Success is ultimately about spending your life happily in your own way.

2.  Stop expecting them to respect you more than you respect yourself.

True strength is in the soul and spirit, not in muscles.  It’s about having faith and trust in who you are, and a willingness to act upon it.  Decide this minute to never again beg anyone for the love, respect, and attention that you should be showing yourself.

Today, look at yourself in the mirror and say, “I love you, and from now on I’m going to act like it.”  It’s important to be nice to others, but it’s even more important to be nice to yourself.  When you practice self-love and self-respect, you give yourself the opportunity to be happy.  When you are happy, you become a better friend, a better family member, and a better YOU.  (Angel and I discuss this in more detail in the “Self-Love” chapter of 1,000 Little Things Happy, Successful People Do Differently.)

3.  Stop expecting (and needing) them to like you.

You might feel unwanted and unworthy to one person, but you are priceless to another.  Don’t ever forget your worth.  Spend time with those who value you.  No matter how good you are to people, there will always be one negative person who criticizes you.  Smile, ignore them, and carry on.

In this crazy world that’s trying to make you like everyone else, the toughest battle you’ll ever have to fight is the battle to be yourself.  And as you’re fighting back, not everyone will like you.  Sometimes people will call you names because you’re “different.”  But that’s perfectly OK.  The things that make you different are the things that make YOU, and the right people will love you for it.

4.  Stop expecting them to fit your idea of who they are.

Loving and respecting others means allowing them to be themselves.  When you stop expecting people to be a certain way, you can begin to appreciate THEM.

Pay close attention, and respect people for who they are and not for who you want them to be.  We don’t know most people half as well as we believe we do; and truly knowing someone is a big part of what makes them wonderful.  Every human being is remarkable and beautiful; it just takes a patient set of eyes to see it.  The more you get to know someone, the more you will be able to look beyond their appearance and see the beauty of who they truly are.  (Read The Mastery of Love.)

5.  Stop expecting them to know what you’re thinking.

People can’t read minds.  They will never know how you feel unless you tell them.  Your boss?  Yeah, he doesn’t know you’re hoping for a promotion because you haven’t told him yet.  That cute guy you haven’t talked to because you’re too shy?  Yeah, you guessed it, he hasn’t given you the time of day simply because you haven’t given him the time of day either.

In life, you have to communicate with others regularly and effectively.  And often, you have to open your vocal cords and speak the first words.  You have to tell people what you’re thinking.  It’s as simple as that.

6.  Stop expecting them to suddenly change.

If there’s a specific behavior someone you care about has that you’re hoping disappears over time, it probably won’t.  If you really need them to change something, be honest and put all the cards on the table so this person knows how you feel and what you need them to do.

For the most part though, you can’t change people and you shouldn’t try.  Either you accept who they are or you choose to live without them.  It’s might sound harsh, but it’s not.  When you try to change people, they often remain the same, but when you don’t try to change them – when you support them and allow them the freedom to be as they are – they gradually change in the most beautiful way.  Because what really changes is the way you see them.  (Read A New Earth.)

7.  Stop expecting them to be “OK.”

Be kinder than necessary, for everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle, just like you.  Every smile or sign of strength hides an inner struggle every bit as complex and extraordinary as your own.

Remember that embracing your light doesn’t mean ignoring your dark.  We are measured by our ability to overcome adversities and insecurities, not avoid them.  Supporting, sharing and making contributions to other people is one of life’s greatest rewards.  This happens naturally if we allow it, because we all share very similar dreams, needs and struggles.  Once we accept this, the world then is a place where we can look someone else in the eye and say, “I’m lost and struggling at the moment,” and they can nod and say, “Me too,” and that’s OK.  Because not being “OK” all the time, is perfectly OK.

Afterthoughts

People rarely behave exactly the way you want them to.  Hope for the best, but expect less.  And remember, the magnitude of your happiness will be directly proportional to your thoughts and how you choose to think about things.  Even if a situation or relationship doesn’t work out at all, it’s still worth it if it made you feel something new, and if it taught you something new.

Your turn…

What would you add to this post?  What do you need to stop expecting from others?  Leave a comment below and share your thoughts with the community.

 

Image Source: Power of Positivity, Alex Berlin

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Disclaimer: The techniques, strategies, and suggestions expressed here are intended to be used for educational purposes only.

The author, Drew Canole, and the associated www.fitlife.tv are not rendering medical advice, nor to diagnose, prescribe, or treat any disease, condition, illness, or injury. It is imperative that before beginning any nutrition or exercise program you receive full medical clearance from a licensed physician.

Drew Canole and Fitlife.tv claim no responsibility to any person or entity for any liability, loss, or damage caused or alleged to be caused directly or indirectly as a result of the use, application, or interpretation of the material presented here.

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Why This Generation Is So Overly Obsessed With Falling In Love

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Written By Tiana Pluck
From Elite Daily

There’s a feeling we all get when a gorgeous stranger passes by or pops up on the Instagram “popular page.”

Friends say it’s a coincidence, but you swear it’s fate. It’s as if, in that instant, the heavens have opened up, shone down a light and whispered to you, “That’s the one.”

We’ve all seen the story play out countless times on the big screen.

Any rom-com enthusiast knows there is a point in the movie when the protagonist finds the one character he or she will spend the next 90 minutes pursuing.

And we all know these two will definitely end up together because, if not, it would be rated as the worst love story ever, right?

Well, let me make something clear: 90 percent of the real world is built upon nothing but sucky love stories.

Everyone experiences these same movie moments, but the sheer difference is that not all of them end in an elaborate chase to someone’s heart.

Realistically, these scenarios end in dry conversations, useless attempts to obtain a phone number, drunken mistakes and/or true heartbreak.

And, isn’t it insane that all of this pain can stem from a relationship that is so brief and surface-level? I mean, after all, we’re pining after someone who we’ve never even properly met or gotten to know most of the time.

So, is it really possible to get so attached so fast?

I’m no expert, and you can call it “being psycho” if you’d like, but I believe you can. Everyone, at some point, has caught feelings for some ambiguous figure before.

Whether it’s a celebrity crush, a person’s social media profile or a person who’s only been described to you by a mutual friend, if the person seems to match what you’re looking for in a significant other, you’re all in.

We have this scary ability to instantly become emotionally, and sometimes mentally, fixated on people we virtually have no clue about. Personally, I believe this to be a sickness all its own.

So, break it down:

What happens?

Symptoms of this sickness: desperation and unrealistic expectations.

We get this mindset that “life as we know it will cease to function if we do not successfully engage this person in conversation.”

We make pathetic (and sometimes half-assed) attempts at talking to the person, and we often do not take the time to plan out what we say.

You’ll dream up scenarios of the two of you making out, cuddling in bed, relaxing on vacation at a secluded beach house, visiting each other’s parents for the holidays, buying your first pet together, having your first fight, making up after your first fight and so on.

You essentially “fall in love” with someone you’ve never really spoken to because, in your head, this person is already the perfect mate.

But, don’t worry if you’re guilty of this condition. You’re among friends, and we’ll get you through this.


Why do we do this to ourselves?

Speaking as a 20-something young adult, the aforementioned “symptoms” of this condition are further magnified by society.

We, as young people, are constantly receiving messages that tell us we should aspire for love, that we’re “missing out on” if we’re single or that everyone else around us has somehow caught on to these ideas more quickly than we have.

In this digital age, we’re constantly plugged in to every little thing that happens around us, and these messages are messing with our sense of timing and good judgment.

You may think you’re resilient to these worldly pressures, but are you seriously telling me you weren’t a little bit ticked off at your friend’s recent engagement announcement on Facebook (especially when you’re still getting over your last breakup)?

Or what about the 200 plus Instagram likes your best friend got on that photo with her boyfriend? (It sort of makes that “artsy” photo of your frozen yogurt cup seem a bit meaningless, huh?)

We’re all affected. There’s no denying it.

As young people of this generation, we internalize the stranger who passes us by as the one we could call ours because we see it happen for so many other people.

There’s a part of us that hopes and prays if we could just figure out how to be nice enough, cute enough, bubbly enough, sexy enough or simply just “enough,” the person would want us back, too.

Inside all of us lies a basic desire to be wanted, plain and simple. That’s why it’s not so crazy when the stranger on the subway is the only think we can think about.

We want love, and when we catch a rare glimpse of what could be just that, we attack like the poor, clueless love predators we are.


What’s the prognosis?

You’ll be okay, but hear me now, 20-somethings: You have time. You aren’t missing out if you aren’t tied down by age 24.

Be strong enough to enjoy this time, and work on yourself in the process.

I’m not saying it’s easy because it does get lonely, and there are times when you’ll want to unfollow or unfriend everyone else who is in a relationship.

You won’t always be happy for your friend who just celebrated her anniversary.

You won’t always get a reply from the guy you met online. You won’t always have a happy ending.

But, it takes some bad love stories to get to the one that’s truly worth retelling.

 

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Disclaimer: The techniques, strategies, and suggestions expressed here are intended to be used for educational purposes only.

The author, Drew Canole, and the associated www.fitlife.tv are not rendering medical advice, nor to diagnose, prescribe, or treat any disease, condition, illness, or injury. It is imperative that before beginning any nutrition or exercise program you receive full medical clearance from a licensed physician.

Drew Canole and Fitlife.tv claim no responsibility to any person or entity for any liability, loss, or damage caused or alleged to be caused directly or indirectly as a result of the use, application, or interpretation of the material presented here.

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Why It’s Absolutely Disrespectful To Break Up With Someone In A Text

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Written By Dan Scotti
From Elite Daily

I’m not really sure there’s a “pleasant” way to break someone’s heart – but there is certainly a right way to go about it.

Nobody likes rejection, and when it comes from the mouth of a lover, or former lover, it surely doesn’t become any easier of a pill to swallow.

Part of what makes rejection so difficult is that there isn’t usually much you can say, or do, in response to it. Sometimes you just have to accept it.

I mean, if your girlfriend truly believes she’d be better off without you, it would almost be unfair to force her to stick around and try to convince her otherwise.

And while you should always fight for the people whom you love – part of loving is letting go, and sometimes accepting rejection is simply the right thing to do, as a mature person.

But rejection is almost always a two-way street. There are proper, mature, ways of going about being rejected – and, at the same time – there are right and wrong ways of delivering it, as well. And this concept applies especially in regard to relationships, and the people involved in them.

When breaking up with someone, you need to be mindful of the consequences of your own actions.

Remember, with matters of love, you’re almost always playing with a person’s most intense emotions. And while you might think that a breakup is in both of your best interests, you can never be too sure your significant other will agree.

For this reason, it’s only fair to go the extra mile, yourself, to make sure he or she is comfortable with how things are playing out – or, at the very least, understand where you’re coming from.

True closure requires two people seeing eye to eye with each other, without any questions left unanswered.

Don’t half-ass a breakup. If you want to cut ties with someone, do your due diligence, and handle your business the right way. There’s nothing admirable about getting the f*ck out of Dodge, once you find yourself unsatisfied in a romantic situation.

And nothing screams “getting out of Dodge,” like breaking up with someone you once loved over text.

Personally, I don’t think I could ever break up with someone over text – and this is coming from the kid who will likely bring an iPhone charger to your dinner party.

While, at times, my phone may seem like an extension of my hand –  I would never make the mistake of blurring the line between romantic affairs and ones that can be handled over the phone.

Think about it. Phones are designed to make matters more convenient. Sure, I might forgo picking up food myself, on behalf of Seamless.

I may bypass hailing a cab in the winter, with the help of Uber. But I make use of all of these services solely because they’re more convenient from the screen of my phone.

And breaking up with someone over text is no different. It might be more convenient, but it also demonstrates a blatant lack of empathy toward the person you’re breaking up with.

While invested in a relationship, it should be one of the most important aspects of your life.

If you’re able to just remove that part of your life, with the tap of an iPhone screen, then it only becomes evident how little the relationship honestly meant to you.

Relationships should be predicated on the notion of genuineness, of authenticity.

How you choose to handle the matters of your relationship, while you’re in them, should mirror how you choose to go about your relationship when it ends.

There shouldn’t be a drop off in your sincerity once things go sour; that’s just selfish.

According to Anna Miller for the American Psychological Association, “When someone chooses to text break up, they are also choosing not to write a letter, call or email,” she writes in her book. In other words, the method is a part of the message itself.”

In other words, when you decide to break up with someone over text – you’re inadvertently telling that person that you want to take the easy way out.

Ilana Gershon, PhD, anthropologist and associate professor at Indiana University, decided to take a deeper look into the psychology behind present day breakups – and the repercussions of text breakups.

Gershon’s research, which polled 72 subjects – most of whom were undergraduates – expressed the importance of media ideologies, or the “views about how and when various modes of communication should be used,” as explained by Miller.

Part of why text breakups are so discourteous, is because of mismatches in the media ideologies between lovers.

While one person might invest a great deal of weight into matters of text, others might not. It’s not to say that one person is necessarily right and the other isn’t, it’s just selfish to assume that your significant other will view text messages in the same light as you.

And this focus on a message’s unique medium, Gershon explains, is something that’s specific to American culture. However, while we might care the most about message medium – we don’t seem to be doing much about it.

According to one survey administered by WhatsYourPrice.com, a dating site, statistics showed that 88 percent of males reported breaking up with someone over text – and 18 percent of women have too. Clearly, these numbers aren’t very reassuring.

Almost nine out of every 10 men included in that survey probably went about their breakups incorrectly.

If you want to close the book on a certain relationship, always make sure you’re doing so in a classy matter – and not one that you, or your significant other, will regret in the coming years.

With anything in life, it’s always best to finish strong. Whether it’s at a job you may not like – or in a relationship with someone whom you might have once loved – how you choose to finish something will likely serve as someone’s lasting impression of you.

Have the respect for your significant other – and yourself – and break up in person. It’s just the right thing to do.

 

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Disclaimer: The techniques, strategies, and suggestions expressed here are intended to be used for educational purposes only.

The author, Drew Canole, and the associated www.fitlife.tv are not rendering medical advice, nor to diagnose, prescribe, or treat any disease, condition, illness, or injury. It is imperative that before beginning any nutrition or exercise program you receive full medical clearance from a licensed physician.

Drew Canole and Fitlife.tv claim no responsibility to any person or entity for any liability, loss, or damage caused or alleged to be caused directly or indirectly as a result of the use, application, or interpretation of the material presented here.

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5 Childhood Beliefs Women Shouldn’t Bring Into Adult Relationships

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Written By Maheen Khan
From Elite Daily

Women are a rare breed.

We can be go-getters, achievers, run both a business and a household, divas, fashionistas, super moms, you name it.

We have incredible strength, and even in your darkest times, when you didn’t know how you would make it, you did.

At the same time, we have complex feelings and emotions. We crave love, perfect dates, a family and so many more things. Each of us is on the lookout for “the one.”

As little girls, we grew up believing certain things that make relationships harder when we grow up. Here are few of those things:

1. Prince charming will come.

Each of us who read “Cinderella,” “Beauty and the Beast” or any other fairytale, always believed Prince Charming would come on his white horse and sweep us off our feet.

We all imagined our happy endings, but as you grow up, you realize this isn’t always true.

You will meet many guys. Sometimes, the right ones but more often than not, the wrong ones.

Wrong doesn’t necessarily mean he isn’t a nice guy, though. Maybe you two just aren’t compatible or you want very different things from life. He might be someone else’s prince charming, but he’s definitely not yours.

Because of our clouded judgment, we mistake him to be “the one.” It is then you realize you might have to encounter a few mistakes to land perfection.


2. You will never get hurt.

Relationships are hard and not everybody has them figured out. You grow up believing the world is a beautiful place and nobody gets hurt.

When you go through your first tough breakup, you find out how untrue it is.

A broken heart is never easy to mend. Finding the courage to love again after having your heart broken is even more difficult.

You might get hurt more than once, but in the process, you also discover this newfound courage to get back up each time you fall.


3. You will never be played.

Guys come in all shapes and sizes, and they might not always have the right intentions for you. You might encounter a guy like this at some point.

As fate will have it, you might fall hopelessly in love with him. You are vulnerable, he’s done and said all the right things and he becomes the center of your universe.

But, what happens when you aren’t the center of his universe?

He starts to flake, cancels plans, gives you mixed signals and plays the “one foot in and one foot out” game.

You both know where this is going and you hope against all hopes it’s not going south. He was supposed to be different.

This is extremely hard, especially when you never believed it would happen to you.


4. You will always be treated like Daddy’s little girl.

Remember when you were a kid and your dad always called you his princess? Well, relationships do not always work that way.

This sets a lot of high expectations, but a relationship is a two-way street. You get what you give.

You will have to make a few sacrifices and give up on things important to you for the other person. But, when you are in love, it’s no big deal.

The other person’s happiness makes you happy, just like how your dad found happiness in your smile.


5. It’s going to be easy.

Just like everything else in life, nothing worth having comes easy. Love and relationships are a part of that.

Sometimes love alone isn’t enough; there are greater things that control our lives.

We always imagined a happy ending, but when you grow up, you find out the story really begins after that happy ending.

What happens five years after the happy ending? The two people look at each other with the same love in their eyes, but probably not with the same excitement and fluttering heartbeats.

If you look closely, you might also find a little less happiness in those eyes. It is then that you realize a relationship requires a lot of work to stay afloat, and love isn’t always enough.


So, why is it that as we grow up, the little girl who believed all these things gets lost somewhere?

After a few scars on our hearts, we don’t really look at love the same way again. That little girl gets lost because she is terrified of the pain after a heartbreak.

She learns to build walls around her heart and protect it like a soldier. The guard goes up after you realize you can also be played.

That little girl is now a woman who also knows how to play the game.

Why aren’t all the things that we believed as little girls true? Because we are just beautiful souls brought up listening to fairy tales in a cruel world.

Your strength isn’t lost, and you will find it once the rose-tinted glasses come off.

You’ll find it when you realize your vulnerability, your naked body, your bare heart and all those flaws and perfections are perfect. Because they make up who you are.

Anyone who can’t respect that isn’t worth it, and someday, your fairytale will come true.

 

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Disclaimer: The techniques, strategies, and suggestions expressed here are intended to be used for educational purposes only.

The author, Drew Canole, and the associated www.fitlife.tv are not rendering medical advice, nor to diagnose, prescribe, or treat any disease, condition, illness, or injury. It is imperative that before beginning any nutrition or exercise program you receive full medical clearance from a licensed physician.

Drew Canole and Fitlife.tv claim no responsibility to any person or entity for any liability, loss, or damage caused or alleged to be caused directly or indirectly as a result of the use, application, or interpretation of the material presented here.

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3 Really Important Things I’ve Learned From Being Criticized

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Written By Vironika Tugaleva
From HighExistence

In my daydreams of bringing my story to the world and helping people, I’d imagine changing lives, I’d imagine receiving grateful letters, I’d imagine those sparkly eyes that mean you’ve really inspired someone. What I did not imagine was any person grimacing in the glow of their computer screen, deciding on the best way to communicate their distaste for me in a midnight email. And yet, here I am.

I heard somewhere if you’re being criticized that means you’re authentic. That’s been an incredibly hard lesson for me to learn. When I started doing this work, I was convinced that, because my intentions were pure, and my heart was in the right place, every one I tried to help would appreciate it, everyone who heard my message would believe it, and everybody who met me would like me. I thought I was immune from being criticized.

I thought I was immune from being criticized.

Needless to say, this is just not the way things are.

I learned, mostly, from pain. Each time someone would unsubscribe from my email list, it would hurt me. Each time someone criticized my message or my work, it would hurt me. Each time someone would give me that look that said, “This is so not backed up by data,” it would hurt me.

Each time I got hurt, I was split open, more vulnerable than ever. Each time I got hurt, I had the opportunity to look even deeper within me; to discover the true cause of my pain.

With enough criticism followed by introspection, something clicked.

A few days ago, I received a rude email but there was no pain – just awareness about why this person acted this way. It wasn’t the most pleasurable experience, but it was peaceful. I am overwhelmed with self-gratitude for taking the time to do inner work when I was criticized, so that I could come to peace with it.

This post is a celebration of how far we can all come if we take those precious moments of pain after someone’s words sting us and find out more about ourselves.

Read: The Complete Guide to Not Giving a F*ck!

So, as a former approval-seeker addict, I bring to you this list of things I’ve learned from looking deep within each time I reacted to criticism. I hope that this will encourage and empower you to take other people’s opinions with a grain of self-awareness.

Lesson #1: Everybody who does anything gets criticized

The day this lesson finally became internalized, my partner and I were visiting his family. The sun had long gone down, and we decided to take a walk and enjoy the still, warm air. I still remember saying to him:

I know this isn’t healthy, but the people I look to for advice on how to act in many situations are people like Jesus, Ghandi, Mother Teresa. And I just feel like, if I was actually doing a good job like they did, people wouldn’t criticize me because people didn’t criticize them.

Jamie actually laughed out loud at me after I said this.

“You don’t think people criticized Jesus?”

“Oh.”

I saw what was so funny, but the feeling persisted.

“What about Mother Teresa? What about Gandhi?”

We went back to the house and did some searching on the internet for people who hate my idols. Turns out, lots of people hate Gandhi, and lots of people hate Mother Teresa. In fact, some journalist even wrote an entire book about how Mother Teresa is a cheat and a fraud! And don’t even get me started on what people think of Tony Robbins.

gandhi quote

Something burst within me that night. Of course, everyone gets criticized. I know that now. I also know that how you feel about the leaders you admire is how you will feel about yourself as a leader. If you assume they don’t receive criticism, you will be shocked when it happens to you.

If you’ve got this belief system, as I did, take a moment right now and do a Google search. Just type in “I Hate + (name of the person you think is too awesome to be hated)”. It might just be the most liberating thing you ever do.

Lesson #2: People criticize you for that which they do not accept in themselves

I don’t think a day goes by where I don’t reexperience this insight. The lesson is simple:

People’s experiences and emotions reflect their mindsets, and those mindsets do not necessarily reflect reality.

First, I learned this about my appearance, realizing that my loathing from my thoughts, not from my appearance. I didn’t need to fix my face. I needed to check my thoughts about myself.

Then, I learned it about my relationships with men, realizing that the advice other women gave me came from their experiences, not from the truth. I didn’t need to learn to be withholding or play hard to get. I needed to check my beliefs about men.

Now, I’ve learned it about my work, realizing that the criticism and the praise that people give me come directly from their beliefs, not from my work’s inherent value. I don’t need to please everyone. I need to do my best and check my beliefs about helping people.

This lesson has been especially obvious when I’ve received mid-way through reading a nasty email a gratitude-laden, loving email that said the exact opposite. How can both of these people be right? How can I be simultaneously insincere and the most sincere person someone’s ever met at the same time?!

I’ve learned that believing praise is as dangerous as believing criticism because it accepts another’s opinion as truth instead of as an interpretation.

In the end, a person’s compliments can only show me what they hope they are or what they are afraid to let themselves be. If the compliment feels good to me, then it shows me what I’d like to be or what I think I am. The compliment, for both parties, reveals only our mindsets, not the truth.

A person’s criticisms can only show me what they will not accept in themselves. If the criticism hurts me, then it shows me what I subconsciously think I am. The insult, for both parties, reveals only our mindsets, not the truth.

From this, I’ve realized that I always have a choice. I have a choice in taking any compliment as much as I have a choice in soaking up any criticism. I hope you realize your power to take that choice as well.

Everyone from your parents to your boss is constantly projecting themselves onto you. The only people who aren’t are ones that practice mindfulness – and even they get lost sometimes.

Before you accept anyone’s words as truth, ask yourself:

How is this person’s reaction a reflection of their mindset about themselves? About who they are? About what they deserve? About what this event means in the grand scheme of things?

You might just find that they’re reacting to their own limitations, and you’ve only triggered them.

Read: How to Deal With People Judging You and Your Work

You might also find that their words are great feedback! You never know what you’ll find by asking these questions. Don’t assume it’s all projection – that, too, would be blindness. Stay open and receive whatever comes your way.

Lesson #3: If you’re hurt by someone’s insult, it’s because you already believe it

When someone criticizes you, it’s like they’re hitting a dusty mattress in your mind. The comment brings dust into your awareness and clouds your vision, but that dust was already there in the first place. Even though this person’s actions have triggered your response, you’re the one with the trigger.

If someone came up to me and said, “You’re too tall,” there’s no way I would be offended. There are many insults like that for you too. There are things someone could tell you that would make you laugh, while they might make someone else cry.

Just like other people’s criticisms originate in their mindsets, your reactions originate in yours. If someone’s words hurt you, it’s because you subconsciously believe them.

This is how criticism becomes an amazing self-awareness tool. You can actually experience gratitude towards the person who is triggering feelings of rejection and hurt within you. You can say, “Thank you for showing me the toxic thoughts that still reside within my mind.”


If you need a way to snap out of feeling rejected or lonely after someone has criticized you, you can try this “mind game” that I like to do in those times.

Imagine that you have some insecurity that you don’t really have.

After I got that critical email a few days ago, I imagined that I had anxiety about whether or not my partner was interested in me. This one is pretty easy for me because, at one point, I did have this insecurity. I can imagine all the triggers perfectly.

So, I put myself in the mindset of my past self – worried about him thinking I was stupid or ugly or boring. What happened next was so perfect. I asked him a question. He didn’t reply. I could see that he didn’t hear me, but I sat there thinking, “Wow if I thought he didn’t like me, I would be very, very upset right now!”

And so, looking at the email I received, I can say, “If I were to get upset about this, that would mean I believe what she is saying is true.”


Like this, a single rude email turned into a moment of self-awareness and self-love that was so moving that I wanted to celebrate it. And I suppose I am celebrating by sharing this with you!

I hope that, if you’re struggling with putting other people’s opinions of you on the shelf, you’ll come back to the ideas in this post. Of course, it takes time to cleanse out those toxic thought patterns about ourselves and even longer to realize how those thoughts affect our relationships, but speaking from experience this is time well spent.

Read: 10 Best Books on Positive Psychology You Need to Read for Authentic Change

In the end, after you are criticized (which you absolutely will be), you will use your mind to either prove to yourself why everything the person said is true and reinforce old, toxic patterns of perception or you will use your mind to explore yourself more deeply and come to a better understanding of human nature.

That choice exists for each of us in each painful situation. I hope that you and I can join hands in making the healthy one.

 

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Disclaimer: The techniques, strategies, and suggestions expressed here are intended to be used for educational purposes only.

The author, Drew Canole, and the associated www.fitlife.tv are not rendering medical advice, nor to diagnose, prescribe, or treat any disease, condition, illness, or injury. It is imperative that before beginning any nutrition or exercise program you receive full medical clearance from a licensed physician.

Drew Canole and Fitlife.tv claim no responsibility to any person or entity for any liability, loss, or damage caused or alleged to be caused directly or indirectly as a result of the use, application, or interpretation of the material presented here.

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4 Challenging Questions to Ask Yourself Before It’s Too Late

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Written By Geoff Thompson
From HighExistence

“Young man seize every moment of your time, the days fly by, ere long too you shall grow old, if you believe me not, see here in the courtyard how the frost glitters white and cold and cruel on the grass that once was green.”

— Zen poem

As those of you who follow my regular articles here will know, I am a voracious self-investor: I spend an inordinate amount of time and money on self-development (if I don’t invest in me who will?!).

I am especially fond of buying and reading the Great Works: The Vedas – The Upanishads being my favourite section, The Tao Te Ching (read it probably twenty times), The Torah (first five books of the Old Testament), The New Testament, the Guru-Granth Sahib and the Bhagavad-Gita (to name but a few).

I am currently making my way through a particularly beautiful translation of the Holy Qur’an. As with all of the bibles, it is heavy going. Not because the book is made difficult to read, rather because it is so rich in content that you are almost forced to pace yourself. There is no filler in these books, and – if you are not ready for them – they can be very jarring.

Yesterday, I read nearly five hundred pages in two sittings (see here on how to read more books). I am hungry to grow my being, and this book, so far, has been pure protein to my spiritual sinews. One of the most inspiring verses for me is on the subject of striving. It says:

God favours those that strive, he favours not those who do not strive.

This might seem, at first glance, to be little more than a throwaway line, but for me it was a true revelation.

What it is actually saying is that God, Allah, The Universe, The Akashic felid, the Collective Unconscious awaits your command. You, my friend, are at the helm, you are the driver — the steering of the wheel in this brief span of incarnation is your responsibility. How very exciting!

If you strive, God will favour you. If you sit on your arse and do nothing, God will not favour you. The more you strive, the more you are favoured, the less you strive, the less you are favoured.

In the New Testament the parable of the talents concurs.

Those that have, are given more; those that have not, it is taken away from them.

Your fortune is determined by your actions.

What both divine prophets Jesus Christ and Mohammed are offering us is the secret to the universe. Strive and make good. Don’t strive and be afraid. Be terrified, because all too soon you will be at the end of your allotted time (and that could be another seventy years or another seven seconds).

One day we are going to get a life review, and we will ask ourselves, “did I do enough?”

Knowing that the opportunities we were scared to take, were all there to take – for me, for you, or for anyone else that had the courage to take them – did we do enough?

The Four Questions

Deeper into the belly of the Holy Qur’an the Fifth Holy Imam Muhammad Ibne Baquir Ali Al –Baquir says that on the Day Of Judgment none shall take even a single step but after answering the following four questions:

the four challenging questions infographic

I found these four questions both exhilarating and challenging.

Exhilarating because they gave me the opportunity here, now, in the middle days of my unfolding life to take stock, to assess, to ask myself, “Am I living enough? Am I asking enough of my bodily vehicle? Am I earning my potential and are my earnings honest? Am I using my earnings to expand myself, and in doing so expand everyone around me or am I hiding my ‘rainy-day’ money under the bed in a biscuit tin for fear of poverty?”

It also challenged me because I was starkly reminded that soon my time will be gone, and I don’t want to look back and see only the opportunities that I missed for fear of making a mistake, for fear of being uncomfortable or simply for fear of fear itself.

My time is precious like diamonds, and all too soon it will return to dust.

How many of us really take this magnificent machine (our body and mind) out for a track day and see what it is really capable of?

Gurdjieff, for instance, was so prolific in his self-development and work that he was able to keep a whole commune on his sole wage. He believed that each man had the innate ability to earn enough money for the upkeep of 35 adults. Most people stay so comfortable in their body and mind that they struggle with the upkeep even of themselves, and then blame (as we have all blamed) the economy, the government or God for our lack.

And this is not just about working our allotted hours in physical labour, many people do that and still fail to grow, you cannot mistake simple hard work for spiritual progress. It is more about continually challenging ourselves, physically, mentally, emotionally, intellectually, socially, morally, ethically, spiritually. It is about expanding our being so much, through personal striving, that our intellect becomes mature enough to collect and process the great spiritual insights waiting for anyone who is prepared to break through the bonds of their fear-guard.

This means seeking out discomfort NOW, wherever you can find it. If it is sitting at the other end of the world what are you waiting for? Travel to it, marinate in it. If you think it can’t be done, you are wrong. Others are already doing it, and they are not different from you.

The greater the demand placed on you, the greater the rewards.

And everyone’s discomfort is different; one man’s fear is another man’s friend.

Where your dragon-fear nests, there too you will find your potential.

Turn towards your potential, edge towards your potential, creep towards it, walk towards it, run at it full pelt and bury your life inside your potential, just don’t sit around waiting for the right time, the next time, another time, any time (but now).

There is no right time.

There are excuses why another time is better… and there is NOW.

Some windows of opportunity only open once.

I was privileged to train in Neil Adams full-time judo class for eighteen months. After I had left, the school was disbanded. Neil moved away and the class was no more. If I did not take that opportunity there and then — and I was very scared at the time — I’d have missed my moment.

BJJ legend Rigan Machado told me that he was so hungry to grow his grappling game that he actually travelled 5,000 miles just to be on the mat with Neil. He knew that just to be in the same room with greatness – no matter what the discomfort or cost in getting there – would draw greatness towards him. It would have a profound and life-changing effect on him; in proportion to the amount of effort that he made to get him there. And yet there are people with greater opportunities than this on their very doorstep who are too afraid to break comfort and take advantage.

How many knowledge-libraries are you sitting on top of? How many schools and colleges and universities are as close to you as a stone’s throw? What masters are sitting on the periphery of your life?

Let us not be in any doubt about one thing. The Imam Muhammad ibne Baquir was talking to me directly, he was asking me personally, he had singled me out:

Are you really working hard enough Geoff? Are you really investing all the hours you have? Are you really being brave? And what of the many opportunities we have presented you with Geoffrey, are you honestly taking advantage of them? Or are you using ‘very worthy’ excuses to hide the fact that you are too lazy, too greedy, too ignorant or too scared?’

He is jumping from the pages, embracing me, hugging me and saying ‘Geoffrey for f*cks sake, your time is a melting clock, all too soon it’ll be gone and when the questions are asked (and they will be asked of us all) and you complain ‘not enough time, not enough energy, not enough opportunity, not enough money’ you will be asked to stand in the very long line of other excuse makers, ‘the great fallen’, wishing then that you’d taken your life in hand like the small queue of the rare few and done what was possible.

And if it is possible for one, it is possible for all.

And from the great perspective of the here-after I am sure I will look at my life, counting backwards, and know that, of course, there was all the opportunity I could ask for, all the energy was there for the taking and the resources would have been as abundant to me and my striving was for them.

I am in the world, you are in the world. We are so very blessed. Do we really need to wait until there is no life left in us before we really wish to live the life that is left in us?

This is our time. This is our life. It is our turn on the merry-go-round of mortal existence. Don’t let’s sit on the side-lines while the brave few take all the fun.

Ditch your fear, take your risks, take your opportunities while they are there and for God’s sake, live your life now.

 

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Disclaimer: The techniques, strategies, and suggestions expressed here are intended to be used for educational purposes only.

The author, Drew Canole, and the associated www.fitlife.tv are not rendering medical advice, nor to diagnose, prescribe, or treat any disease, condition, illness, or injury. It is imperative that before beginning any nutrition or exercise program you receive full medical clearance from a licensed physician.

Drew Canole and Fitlife.tv claim no responsibility to any person or entity for any liability, loss, or damage caused or alleged to be caused directly or indirectly as a result of the use, application, or interpretation of the material presented here.

whats-your-excuse

14 Lies Your Mind Tells You to Prevent Life Changes

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Written By Leo Babauta
From HighExistence

The mind is a wonderful thing.

It’s also a complete liar that constantly tries to convince us not to take actions we know are good for us, and stops many great changes in our lives.

Scumbag mind.

I’ve had to learn to watch these rationalizations and excuses very carefully, in order to make the changes I’ve made in my life: a healthier diet, regular exercise, meditation, minimalism, writing daily, getting out of debt, quitting smoking, and so on.

If I hadn’t learned these excuses, and how to counter them, I would never have stuck to these changes. In fact, I failed many times before 2005 (when I started changing my life), because these excuses had complete power over me.

Let’s expose the cowardly mind’s excuses and rationalizations once and for all.

First, the main principle: the mind wants comfort, and is afraid of discomfort and change. The mind is used to its comfort cocoon, and anytime we try to push beyond that comfort zone very far or for very long, the mind tries desperately to get back into the cocoon. At any cost, including our long-term health and happiness.

OK, with that in mind, let’s go into the excuses:

1. I can’t do it.

It seems too hard, so we think we can’t stick to the change. We don’t believe in ourselves. This can be countered from the fact that many other people no more capable than us have done it. For example, Oprah ran a marathon a little before I started training for my first marathon, and so I told myself, “If Oprah can do it, so can I!” I was right.

2. He/she can do it, but that doesn’t apply to me.

Just because someone else can do it, doesn’t mean we can, right? We look for reasons they can do it but we can’t — maybe he can be a minimalist because he has no kids, or is a freelancer rather than someone with a real job. Maybe she’s way, way fitter than I am, so she can run a marathon. Maybe she doesn’t have all the obligations I have, or has a supportive spouse, or doesn’t have a crippling health condition. OK, fine, it’s easy to find excuses: but look at all the other people who have worse obstacles than you who’ve done it. I have 6 kids and still managed to change a lot of things in my life. Stories abound of people with disabilities or illnesses who overcame their obstacles to achieve amazing things. Your obstacles can be overcome.

3. I need my ___.

Fill in the blank: I need my coffee, my cheese, my soda, my TV shows, my car, my shoe collection … these are things we convince ourselves we can’t live without, so we can’t make a change like becoming vegan or eating healthier or unschooling our kids or simplifying our lives or going car-free. And I’ve made these excuses myself, but they all turned out to be lies. I didn’t need any of that. The only things you really need are basic food, water, clothing, shelter, and other people for social needs. Everything else is not a real need.

4. Life is meant to be enjoyed.

Sure, I agree with this statement (as many of us would) but the problem is this is used to justify all kinds of crappy behavior. Might as well scarf down those Doritos and Twinkies, because hey, life is meant to be enjoyed, right? No. You can do without junk food and still enjoy life. You can exercise and enjoy it. You can give up pretty much anything and still enjoy life, if you learn to see almost any activity as enjoyable.

5. I need comfort.

This might also be true, but we can push ourselves into more discomfort than we let ourselves believe. We can be a bit cold, instead of needing to be at the perfect comfortable temperature. We can do hard exercise, instead of needing to lay around on the couch. We can write that thing we’ve been procrastinating on — it might be hard, but we can push through that. When our minds seek comfort, don’t let them run — push a little bit outside the comfort zone, and begin to be OK with a bit of discomfort.

6. I don’t know how.

This is also true, but you can learn. Start with a little at a time, and learn how to deal with this new change. Do some research online. Watch some videos. Ask people online how they dealt with it. This is easily overcome with a little effort and practice. In fact, if you do it now, and learn a little at a time, then you’ll be able to do away with this pesky excuse.

7. I can do it later.

Sure, you can always do it later … but your later self will also feel the same way. Why should the later self be more disciplined than your current self? In fact, because you’re allowing yourself to slide now, you’re building a habit of procrastination and actually making is less likely that your future self will be more disciplined. Instead, do it now, unless there’s something more important that you need to do … don’t let yourself slide just because you don’t feel like it.

8. One time won’t hurt.

This is so tempting, because it’s kind of true — one time won’t hurt. Assuming, that is, that it’s only one time. One bite of chocolate cake, one missed workout, one time procrastinating instead of writing. Unfortunately, it’s never actually just one time. One time means your brain now knows it can get away with this excuse, and the next “one time” leads to another, until you’re not actually sticking to something. Make a rule: never ever believe the “one time” excuse. I did this with smoking (“Not One Puff Ever”) and it worked. If you’re going to allow yourself a bite or two of chocolate cake, decide beforehand and build it into your plan (“I will allow myself a fist-sized serving of sweets once every weekend”) and stick to that plan, rather than deciding on the fly, when your resistance is weak.

9. I don’t feel like it.

Well, true. You don’t feel like working hard. Who does? Letting the rule of “I’ll do it when feel like it” dictate your life means you’ll never write that book, never build that business, never create anything great, never have healthy habits. Create a plan that’s doable, and execute it. When the rationalizations like this come up, don’t believe them. Everyone is capable of doing a hard workout even when they’re not in the mood. Everyone can overcome their internal resistance.

10. I’m tired.

Yep, me too. I still did my heavy squat workout today. There is truth to needing rest, and resting when you need it (listen to your body) but this is usually the mind trying to weasel out of something uncomfortable. There’s a difference between being exhausted and needing some rest, and being the little tired we all feel every afternoon. Push through the latter.

11. I deserve a reward/break.

We all deserve that tasty treat, or a day off. I’m not saying you shouldn’t give yourself a reward or break. But if you make this rationalization your rule, you’ll always be on a break. You’ll always be giving yourself rewards, and never sticking to the original plan. Here’s what I do instead: I see sticking to my plan as the reward itself. Going on a run isn’t the thing I have to get through to get a reward — the run is the reward.

12. Wouldn’t it be nice to stop?

This again is our mind wanting to run from discomfort, and of course it’s true — it would be nice to stop if you’re pushing into a discomfort zone for too long. The thing is, the implication is that it would be better to stop, because it would be nice … but that’s a lie. It would be easier to stop, but often it’s better to continue pushing. This excuse almost beat me when I tried to run my 50-mile ultramarathon last December, because honestly it would have been much nicer to stop and not finish the race, especially in the last 10 miles or so. I pushed through, and found out I was tougher than I thought.

13. The result you’re going for isn’t important.

If you’re trying to run a marathon, this is phrased like, “It’s not that important that I finish this”. I’ve used this excuse for learning languages (it doesn’t matter if I learn this) or programming or any number of things I wanted to learn. I’ve used it for writing and exercise and eating healthy food. And while the result might not be that important, the truth is that the process is very important. If you stick with a process that will be better for you in the long run, then you will be better off. But if you let yourself go just because you are uncomfortable and at this moment care more for your comfort than the goal you set out for, you’ll have lots of problems. The goal isn’t important, but learning to stick to things when you’re uncomfortable is extremely important.

14. I’m afraid.

Now, this is the most honest excuse there is — most of us don’t want to admit we’re afraid to pursue something difficult. But it’s also a weaselly way out of discomfort — just because you’re afraid doesn’t mean you can’t do something. You can. I’ve done tons of things I’m afraid of — mostly creating things that I was worried I’d fail at. And while the fear sometimes came true — I didn’t do too well sometimes — the act of pushing through the fear was incredibly important and I learned a lot each time.

Awareness & Practice

I’ve used all of these excuses hundreds of times each, so don’t think I’ve overcome them all. And you can use them in the future too. There’s nothing wrong with giving in sometimes.

The key is to learn whether they’re true, and see your pattern. Here’s what I’ve done:

  1. Notice the excuse. It has way more power if it works on you in the background.
  2. Try to have an answer for the excuse beforehand — anticipate it.
  3. If you give in, that’s OK, but recognize that you’re giving in to a lame excuse. Be aware of what you’re doing.
  4. After giving in, see what the results are. Are you happier? Is your life better? Was it worth it giving in to discomfort?
  5. Learn from those results. If you pushed through and are happy about it, remember that. If you gave in to excuses, and didn’t like the result, remember that.

If you consciously practice this process, you’ll get better at recognizing and not believing these lies. And then, bam, you’ve got your mind working for you instead of against you.

More on Self-Limiting Ideas

If you appreciated this discussion of self-limiting ideas, you’ll absolutely love Alan Watts’ The Book: On the Taboo Against Knowing Who You Arewhich refutes what is perhaps the greatest self-limiting idea of all—the idea that you are nothing more than a separate ego in a sack of skin.

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Check out my best selling Amazon book: WHY-DENTITY:17 Practices to Help You Transform Your Mind and Live Your Life’s Purpose – GET IT HERE

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Disclaimer: The techniques, strategies, and suggestions expressed here are intended to be used for educational purposes only.

The author, Drew Canole, and the associated www.fitlife.tv are not rendering medical advice, nor to diagnose, prescribe, or treat any disease, condition, illness, or injury. It is imperative that before beginning any nutrition or exercise program you receive full medical clearance from a licensed physician.

Drew Canole and Fitlife.tv claim no responsibility to any person or entity for any liability, loss, or damage caused or alleged to be caused directly or indirectly as a result of the use, application, or interpretation of the material presented here.