The Ramblings of the Titanium Don

Explorations of Conscious Reality Creation and Other Matters

Month: October 2016 (Page 1 of 2)

Positivity: Generosity

Generosity is amazing.

When people give of themselves, whether it is a thing or things or just time, the generosity they present is incredibly positive.

Generosity allows us to work together to build amazing, incredible things.  When we are generous, we are spreading love and light and positivity to others, and I know that for me, at least, it always feels good.

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When a friend offers you somewhere to stay on a trip; when you tip your wait staff at the restaurant better than 20%; when you help jumpstart a stranger’s car or help them change a tire; when you give full-sized candy bars instead of those tiny ones to the kids at Halloween, you both feel good and share that immense positivity.

It doesn’t necessarily cost us anything to be generous.  It can be a gesture of kindness that goes above and beyond simply giving a minimal amount of anything.

You might smile for your friends and acquaintances, but it is generosity to smile kindly at strangers.  Generosity is giving more, and generosity is part of abundance.

When you give, you tell the Universe that you have plenty, and you want to share it.  The Universe responds by giving YOU more, so you can share more.  Like attracts like, and generosity will attract generosity back to you.  Giving from a place of abundance attracts more abundance.

Of course there are times when you are feeling low, when you read about acts of unbelievable selfishness, greed, stinginess and worse.  Generosity, however, is not necessarily material, and the act of being generous to others opens positive energy channels, and will make you feel better.

Generosity shouldn’t feel forced, and it should not be expected, but it should simply be.  Consider how much you appreciate when people are generous to YOU, whether with material or immaterial matters.  Knowing that, you can see that your own generosity will feel good both for yourself, and for whomever you are sharing it with.

Because that’s the best part about being generous.  It is true, two-way positivity.  You both give and receive that good energy from acts of generosity.  That this one act can generate so much positivity makes me wonder why people do not strive to be more generous in their everyday dealings with the world.

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This simple extra action can change anyone’s days for the better.  Doesn’t that sound appealing?

Finding positivity is not hard, it just requires action.  Knowing that being generous can be material or immaterial, grand or small, we can act with greater generosity to build more positivity.  When we are generous with our time, our love, our kindness or our money and things, we make the people we are generous to feel good, and in the process make ourselves feel good, and as such we empower ourselves.  When we feel empowered, we often spread that feeling to others around us, and as such can build more positive feelings.  We can use the positive feelings this generates to dissolve negative feelings.  When we take away negative feelings, we open up space to let in positive feelings, and that is something we can be grateful for.  Gratitude leads to happiness.  Happiness is the ultimate positive attitude.  Positive attitude begets positive energy, and that is always a good thing.

 

This is the one hundred forty-fourth entry of my Positivity series.  It is my hope these weekly messages might help spread positive energies for everyone.  Feel free to share, re-blog and spread the positivity.

In relation to Positivity, check out my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.

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Crossing the Bridges: Of Best Laid Plans

We’re all familiar, I think, with the phrase, “I love it when a plan comes together!”

Conversely, though, nobody is fond of when the plan falls apart.

What do you do when your best laid plans go pfffffffft around you?

As with anything else in life, you have a choice.  You can lament your failed plan, moan about it, whine about it, get upset and angry and kick at the stones along the way…or you can accept the lesson learned (even if you are not quite sure what the lesson is), take a deep breath, and keep moving forward.

One of several plans I had been working on collapsed yesterday.  I wanted to do something large, something a bit out of my comfort zone…but it proved to be too far removed from reality.  I was going to replace my six-year-old car with a new car…but it proved to be too costly for me to do at this time.  I’m a bit bummed, but…it happens.  Deep breath – move forward.

However, because this has been preoccupying my mind a lot lately, other projects have fallen a bit to the wayside.  The time is neigh to reclaim my own existence, and get some things in order.

One of the bigger projects I am working on with my coach is getting myself out there to promote my writing.  Beyond social media, which has its many uses, I want to physically put myself out there to promote my work.

Doing what?  Readings, signings, and overall presentations.

I am a writer.  One of the bigger takeaways from my most recent coaching session was the following:

I need to stop overcomplicating this thing.  

I AM A WRITER.

Here and now, I am working with simplifying things.

Do or do not, there is no try.

So my new mantra this week has been:

HERE AND NOW I AM DOING THIS.

One of the bigger problems (entirely in my head) has been that I see myself as more than one writer.  Primarily, I write fiction and inspirational/philosophical/self-help work.  I have wondered for some time if I should have published myself under more than one name as such.

But it’s more than that.  These are the two primary genres I work in, but the truth is that my writing goes far beyond this.  I also write press releases and business-related articles, I have done search-engine optimization writing, web content work, and even journalism.

And yet I keep creating this more complicated, more involved matter entirely in my own head, rather than just do my thing.  Which is why the above was written.

I am a writer.  It is time to go out there and promote myself in whatever way I can.

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I started to list various libraries, schools, coffeeshops and bookstores where I could possibly go and present my work.  I can do a bit of a talk about being a writer in general, about the self-help/philosophical stuff I compose, and do a reading from my fantasy or Steampunk work.  I can then do signings and hopefully sell some copies of my various works.

I can, if needs be, take a more specialized approach.  If the place where I am presenting wants me to stick to one topic, I can either work with the self-help angled stuff, or the fiction.  Either way, if I can get a foot in the door and get this ball rolling, I can build up more of what I want from my life.

I started with a familiar library.  I made an inquiry while I was there, and have the name of a person I need to reach out to in order to set this up.

This is the next step for me to take.  I want to be not just an author, but a best-selling author, and in order to have any chance of making that happen, I need to take new avenues to get out there, and promote myself to the world.

I believe that my work, be it fiction or non-fiction, is good.  I believe that this is something I can and should make more of for my life.  So I will take the necessary steps in order to get there.

Fine, something I tried to do fell through.  Ok, onwards and forwards.  There are other matters for me to work on, other things I want and need to do to build up my life.  I will take the actions necessary to manifest my dreams.  That is my intent.  That is my plan.

I know this week is a bit rambling and touching on a couple disparate point.  Welcome to my world.  And again, thank you for joining me on this crazy voyage.

Thank you for crossing the bridges between my worlds with me!

 

This is the fifth entry of my personal journey, the Crossing the Bridges series.  My collectively published writing can be found here.

Pathwalking 252

It’s not that there always needs to be a fixed destination.  Life is about the journey, after all, so it is certainly both logical and even necessary that from time to time you walk a path, but the goal is not wholly clear.

Yes, it is important to have an idea, to have a plan.  But sometimes there are days where you just are on the paths, walking along, and though you have an end goal in mind, it is far out of sight.

Like any good TV show with an over-arching plot, there will be episodes where the plot is very clearly being driven forward.  But then, once in a while, they throw one in that just stands alone, but hardly touches the overall plot.

We all have days like this.  Days where we just go.  Doesn’t feel like we’re really moving along, per se, but there you are.

The thing is, this is perfectly normal.  Every single day can be luminous and exciting and full of change and discovery and learning and growing.  But then, some days, you simply be.

That’s the important takeaway here.  I think that as a society we have forgotten how to simply BE.  I mean, just in this moment, this very second sitting here reading these words, just BE.

What does that mean?  That’s the part that has become rather ill-defined, I think.  What does it mean to just be?

First – it means rather than looking back where you came from, or looking ahead to where you are going, you just relish the here-and-now.  Live in the moment, be completely present at this very juncture, and experience what’s going on around you.

We give surprisingly little attention to the here and now.  How often do we coast through our day, focused on deadlines and after-work or after-school plans, or meals, or watching the show later, or even snuggling in bed with a pet or book or loved one?

Where are you, right now as you read this?  What do you feel?  What do you see?  What do you smell?  What are you sensing in your immediate surroundings?  Is this a familiar, regular place where you spend a great deal of your time?  What are you currently thinking?  What are you currently feeling?

It amazes me how easy it is to be caught up in what’s next more than what’s now.  As I am typing out these words, I am playing my favorite Writer’s mix off iTunes.  The allergy med I took hasn’t kicked in yet, so I’m sniffling a bit.  I smell the coffee I brewed.  The sky is getting brighter as the sun is coming up over the trees outside, which are either colorful, or leafless as autumn is winding down.  I am wearing my favorite flannel shirt, which is so very soft.  I am feeling content, contemplative, and empowered as I work.

That was a moment in time where I allowed myself to simply be.  I looked around my desk and the room and soaked it in and relished that moment.  It was nothing profound or earth-shattering, it just was a moment I was being.

Yes, I need to finish this up so I can jump in the shower, get my lunch prepped and head off to work.  I’ll contend with the usual traffic, and I know that there are a number of things on my plate that need to be taken care of throughout the day.  But that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t take time to enjoy moments of just being.

When we become completely conscious of where we ARE, versus getting caught up in where we were and where we need to be or where we are going, we will actually struggle less with stress and anxiety because we better connect with ourselves.  Thinking too much on the past or too far into the future disempowers us, because we allow ourselves to get lost in regrets, concerns, second-guessing actions and choices we have made or are making.

Lao Tzu is credited with saying, “If you are depressed you are living in the past.  If you are anxious you are living in the future.  If you are at peace you are living in the present.”   I find that when I take the time to BE, in the present, I get a much better handle on depression and anxiety.  I become truly empowered to see the world around me in this moment, and bask in the glory of being.

I am alive.  I have a job, I have a roof over my head.  I have loved ones and acquaintances and animals to share my being with.  I am not my past, I am not my future, I am me, here and now, as I am.  This is both unbelievably simple to grasp, and yet surprisingly complicated to accept sometimes.

The other cool thing about just being, I find, is this:  Take a moment to look around you.  Really look around your space.  Don’t just use your eyes, use all of your senses.  See if you can find something you have not noticed before.  It doesn’t have to be grand, it could be a splotch on the wall, a color in a print you previously just glanced over, the writing on a pen.  This might be something that has been there all along, for days or weeks or even years, but in the here and now you are finding something new about it.

That is what makes just being so powerful.  When we are present, in the moment, there are unexpected wonders to discover.  When we simply be, we are completely empowered, and we gain insight that will ultimately benefit the paths we are walking.

Do you see how empowering simply ‘being’ can be?

 

GOAL LOG – Week 42:

Diet:  Still going pretty well.  I still need to work on portions, however.

Exercise: Fencing happened three times last week, and I got to the gym twice.

Writing:  Just the three blogs got written.  I really need to give more time to this particular habit.

Meditation:  I meditated only on 3 days, at least 4 minutes each day.

Gratitude: I wrote five things I was grateful for five days last week, and six things once.

 

This is the two-hundred fifty-second entry in my series. These weekly posts are ideas and my personal experiences in walking along the path of life.  I share this journey as part of my desire to make a difference in this world along the way.

Thank you for joining me.  Feel free to re-blog and share.

The first year of Pathwalking, including some expanded ideas, is available here.

If you enjoy Pathwalking, you may also want to read my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.

Positivity: A metaphor for Safety

Even with the safety harness, you don’t want to lose your balance and fall.

I recently did a “treetop” ropes course.  Various obstacles to be crossed, thirty-five feet in the air, including rope bridges and tightropes and other challenging constructs.  You cross the obstacles from platform to platform in a harness on a secure line, but you still don’t want to fall.

It occurs to me, however, that this is an interesting metaphor of our lives.  Even when we fall, we usually have a safety harness to keep us from losing our lives.

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Yes, I know that bad things can happen.  We might go bankrupt, we might be in a serious accident and suffer permanent damage, we might face emotionally crippling situations and be clueless as to how to cope.  But apart from death, we can and will recover from our fall.

I know that this can bring about unwanted changes when it happens.  But if you are here, alive, you are still able to do so very many things.  Even when it all seems bleak and hopeless, you have opportunity to take hold of matters and change them.

Life is full of endless possibilities.  We live in a Universe where we can consciously create our realities, and we can draw into our lives more good than we often realize.  As long as we are alive, we have possibilities, and positivity can allow us to realize innumerable opportunities.

Even when we fall, unless we die, we can still recover.  Maybe not to where we were before, but then when are we ever where we were before?  Life is a flowing river, sometimes fast, sometimes glacially slow.  But it is always flowing, always in motion, always changing.

You are here.  That means that, even if yesterday was horrific, today doesn’t look much better, and tomorrow feels like it may be an even larger pile of suck, it can still be altered.  We will still be caught in the safety harness and survive when we fall.

I know it sometimes feels like we lack that safety harness.  It feels like we will just fall, and fall again, with no end in sight.  But I maintain that so long as we are here, we can seek out positivity to change our personal corners of the world for the better.

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Positivity is ultimately a safety harness.  You can use it to find good in bad situations.  You can employ positivity to turn around negativity, and to arrest your fall.  Positivity can allow us to see that, hey, so long as we are here, we are still able to move from day to day, to grow, to change, to discover new and incredible things within our relatively small understanding of the universe around us.

Even knowing we have the harness, it’s still scary to fall.  But I know that there are more opportunities and possibilities to not just survive, but thrive, and experience ever-more wonders of the world.

Finding positivity is not hard, it just requires action.  Knowing that there is usually a safety harness to catch our fall, as long as we are alive, here on this earth, we can do almost anything.  When we recognize that positivity is part of what will arrest our fall, we can use this to see what we still have even when we experience loss, and thus we empower ourselves.  When we feel empowered, we often spread that feeling to others around us, and as such can build more positive feelings.  We can use the positive feelings this generates to dissolve negative feelings.  When we take away negative feelings, we open up space to let in positive feelings, and that is something we can be grateful for.  Gratitude leads to happiness.  Happiness is the ultimate positive attitude.  Positive attitude begets positive energy, and that is always a good thing.

 

This is the one hundred forty-third entry of my Positivity series.  It is my hope these weekly messages might help spread positive energies for everyone.  Feel free to share, re-blog and spread the positivity.

In relation to Positivity, check out my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.

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Crossing the Bridges: The Illusion of Time

Where does the time go when it’s not around here?

Ever feel like you are always chasing time?  Like no matter what you do, there is seldom enough or it runs out or expires or what-have-you?

Of course, it doesn’t help that time is completely and totally subjective.  The great scientist Albert Einstein famously said, “Time is an illusion.”  Douglas Adams even expanded upon that in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy with “Time is an illusion.  Lunchtime doubly so.”

My point is, time is how we perceive it.  If we think we have enough time, not enough time, or too much time, that is exactly what we will get.

I mentioned in a previous post that I am working with making better use of the time I am awake.  I am working on dividing my time really in four places, between work, writing/editing, exercise, and social and antisocial interactions.

The most fixed aspect of this is work.  I have 8.5 hours of my day, right in the middle, which are applied to my job Monday-Friday.  That’s as straightforward as it gets.

Granted, there is also occasional work for my old job, but that is less frequent and unpredictable.  I don’t feel much need to include time used for it here.

If, as I postulated before, I am awake approximately 18 hours a day…I have between 8 and 9 hours in which to write/edit, exercise and be social/antisocial.

Within all of this is incidental time.  Driving from point ‘a’ to point ‘b’.  Taking a shower or otherwise using the bathroom.  Eating a meal or a snack.  I would hazard a guess that this will in-and-of-itself eat up one to three hours in any given day.  This lessens my non-work time from 8-9 hours down to as little as 5 hours.

This means I have from 5-8 hours a day for the other things, apart from work and incidental time, I want to do.  You are in all probability in the same boat, though your division of time will be unique to you and your interests.

Is it any wonder we find ourselves chasing time?  We can break it down into these bits and pieces, we can focus on having it versus not having it, and it can seem really really overwhelming.  If time is but an illusion, why does it seem so damned real?

This is a new concept I want to work on.  Time.  I don’t want to be the victim of time.  Just like any illusionary or imaginary thing, this is something that should have little to no real bearing on my life.

What am I doing about it?  That’s the question.  What can I do with this?

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First, I am going to work to not discuss matters of time on a day to day basis.  Just like anything in regards to conscious creation, what you focus on is what you get.  If I think about, talk about and explore issues with time and my life, chances are I will continue to have problems finding and making the time I need for things.  This particular essay is an examination of the issue, so as such is not contributory to the problem.

Second, I am going to remain conscious of time – because there are places we have to be and times we have to be there – but I am not going to obsess about it.  I used to run at least 10 minutes late, standard.  When I stopped stressing about this, I ran on time far more frequently.  The thing is, time cannot be ignored, but respecting it is different from obsessing about it.

Third, I am going to work more on simply being in the present.  It is far too easy to think back on old happenings or to give thought to coming attractions.  Our society loves the paradox of nostalgia for the past and planning for the future but gives very little thought to simply being in the here-and-now.  We are always being told to look back or look ahead, but ignore right here, right now.

Lao Tzu is credited with saying, “If you are depressed you are living in the past.  If you are anxious you are living in the future.  If you are at peace you are living in the present.”   I am finding that this is completely true.  So it is my goal to work to live in the here-and-now, in the present, and stop being so concerned with the outcomes of actions from the past and what is going to happen in the future.

I know so many people who deal with depression and anxiety.  I do as well.  I think our perception of time has quite the effect on this.  As such, I am striving now to work with that, instead of against it, to find and create a better world I want for myself.  Doesn’t that sound awesome?

Thank you for crossing the bridges between my worlds with me!

 

This is the fourth entry of my personal journey, the Crossing the Bridges series.  My collectively published writing can be found here.

Pathwalking 251

Consciousness creates reality.

I write that a lot.  Why?  Because this is the truth.

Consciousness creates our reality.  What we concentrate on, give thought and feeling and energy and action to, we create.  We manifest things into our life, and we build or destroy our personal world.

I know that for a lot of people this seems like total BS.  We live in a world that seems to be beyond our control.  We didn’t manifest our debts, our illnesses, the politicians or any of those things.  Except…truthfully…yes we did.

How?  Because when we do not consciously work to manifest, we do so on the subconscious level.  The Universe doesn’t recognize don’t and not and no and other negative statements, it recognizes what you are putting your focus onto.

The Powers-that-be only recognize you are putting thought and feeling into things.  So when you are focusing on negative things, and the things you do not want, unless you consciously work to do otherwise, you are likely to get those negative things in some form or other.

It is easier to consciously create than subconsciously create.  That’s why it takes more time and seems less obvious when we subconsciously create things we don’t actually want.

As a society, we want people to simply go with the flow.  We want to follow the expected patterns and “adult” if we want to have things and be accepted in our community.  This is why we have only two major political parties in the US, because somewhere along the way in our history we just accepted this as being the norm, and unchangeable.  This is why we still have major issues with racism and sexism and other matters of equality in this country…because there are still whole communities who hold onto their way being the only way, the way it has always been, and damn anyone who tries to change it.

Have you ever noticed that more often than not our news and media outlets use sensationalism to get us to read their stories?  They provide us with an outrageous headline to grab our attention, and then more often than not inundate us with vast amounts of negativity.  If you really look at the articles that are produced out there, how many take a negative slant versus a positive one?

What’s my point?  When we allow ourselves to be barraged with these negative messages, and we read and seek more of them out and then share them, we contribute to the group consciousness.  As such, we tend to unwillingly draw matters into our lives that we probably don’t want.

Because we focus largely on huge matters, beyond our own day-to-day lives, we let our subconscious create reality.  I read that report, and it got me really angry.  My friend shared that meme and it made me feel really sad.  All I see is war and devastation and greed, is that all there is in this world?  I am totally selfish if I am not also lacking, right?  Guess what sort of reality this subconscious thinking is going to create?

How do you get clear of the group think?  How do we not let our subconscious create reality?  By being conscious of what we want to create.  We can’t focus on what we don’t want, we need to focus on what we DO want.  We have to change our frequency to shift out of the group conscious and move from subconscious to conscious creation.

Shift our frequency?  The Universe is made entirely of energy.  Everything at its root is energy.  That includes me, you, clouds, planets, galaxies and such.  That’s just the visible stuff.  Beyond that is a world of radio frequencies and infrared light and air and other unseen energies.  All energy vibrates at a frequency.  Like attracts like.  Change the vibration, change the frequency, change what you attract, change the reality you are creating.

I know many people who see this as hooky-spooky bullshit.  I, however, believe, because I have seen too much proof that this is not hokum, that this really is how the universe works, and that consciousness can create reality.

You get that money to cover that problem at the last minute because you put all your intention into getting that money.  You don’t get sick when everyone else gets the flu because you focused on and only saw yourself as being healthy.  You attract a person to you that you want to be intimate with because you focused on feeling what it would be like to be with them.  Conscious effort into our thoughts, feelings and actions really can create our reality.

I would like to challenge you if you disbelieve.  Focus on something small.  I don’t know what, but it should be something believable to you.  Don’t just pay it lip service, don’t approach it with sarcasm and snark.  For example: let’s say you want to find a five dollar bill in an unexpected place.  Well, think about it…feel what it will feel like to find it, imagine and really get grateful for finding it.  You have to believe that it is already in your possession, that you have already found it and that it will simply appear.

Your inner skeptic has to be silenced for this to work.  If you hold onto even the slightest doubt about the notion of consciousness creating your reality, in all likelihood you will prove yourself right.  You won’t create this thing, and you won’t have anything but further proof that this is all a bunch of hippy-dippy crap.

Let me offer you one further challenge.  Why not try conscious reality creation?  If you are not happy with your life, if you are not where you want to be, what harm is there in trying to be conscious of what you manifest?  I know that I prefer to be in the driver’s seat when it comes to MY paths.  So I continue working on conscious creation.

Would you rather take control of your reality and manifestations and create subconsciously or consciously?

 

GOAL LOG – Week 41:

Diet:  Still going pretty well.

Exercise: Fencing happened once last week, and I got to the gym twice.  I also spent a day on the golf course of all things.

Writing:  One day of writing, plus the three blogs.  I really need to up this particular habit.

Meditation:  I meditated only on 2 days, for 7 minutes both times.

Gratitude: I wrote five things I was grateful for five of seven days last week.

I am still adjusting my schedule.  Attempting a new habit/pattern is proving a tad more challenging than anticipated.  Work in progress.

 

This is the two-hundred fifty-first entry in my series. These weekly posts are ideas and my personal experiences in walking along the path of life.  I share this journey as part of my desire to make a difference in this world along the way.

Thank you for joining me.  Feel free to re-blog and share.

The first year of Pathwalking, including some expanded ideas, is available here.

If you enjoy Pathwalking, you may also want to read my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.

Positivity: Combating Lethargy

Some days you wake up, and you are ready to go.

Some days you awaken, and you just don’t want to get out of bed.

There are mornings where it is all about being energized.  Happy, looking forward to the day, ready to face anything that comes your way.

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There ae mornings where it is all about the snooze button.  Don’t want to get out of bed.  Don’t want to go to work.  Ready to face nothing and wishing to start over before you even begin.

On the energized days positivity drives you.  On the lack of energy days, it feels like nothing will drive you.

Where do I find positivity on the sluggish days?

This is a particular challenge, and I know I am not alone in experiencing it.  It feels like there is nothing specific coming to mind on which I can focus positivity.  And I want to find things because if I can keep my focus on positivity, my day will ultimately be better than if I focus on nothing or allow negativity to dominate the day.

There are so many little things in our lives that we take for granted.  We are alive.  We are breathing.  Even if they are imperfect we have jobs and electronics and social media and connections with friends and family and pets and coworkers and even complete strangers.  The sun rises in the morning, there are countless adorable videos of cats and other creatures across the internet.   We put food in our bellies, drink coffee and other caffeinated beverages to wake ourselves up, we can turn off the stream of negative messages assaulting us.

Every little bit is a part of the bigger bits.  We get lost in the big pictures of the world, and take for granted and outright neglect the little things that are positive in our everyday lives.  We choose how we let ourselves feel.  So if we are feeling motivated and excited and happy we usually stay there.  If we are sluggish and uncomfortable and displeased we have to decide if we want to allow this to linger, or if we can move past it to see more positive possibilities.

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Take a deep breath.  Watch something funny online.  Meditate.  Scream.  Laugh.  Cry.  Release that lethargic sense in some way or other and make room for better feelings.  We live in a world of endless possibility, and as such endless positivity.  I don’t know about you, but I would rather feel good than feel bad.

Finding positivity is not hard, it just requires action.  Knowing that there are endless little bits and pieces in our lives that are positive, we can give them more attention when we are feeling sluggish and sleepy and low.  When we take actions and put focus on those things, and actively work to overcome lethargy, ultimately we do something to improve our emotional state and as such we empower ourselves.  When we feel empowered, we often spread that feeling to others around us, and as such can build more positive feelings.  We can use the positive feelings this generates to dissolve negative feelings.  When we take away negative feelings, we open up space to let in positive feelings, and that is something we can be grateful for.  Gratitude leads to happiness.  Happiness is the ultimate positive attitude.  Positive attitude begets positive energy, and that is always a good thing.

 

This is the one hundred forty-second entry of my Positivity series.  It is my hope these weekly messages might help spread positive energies for everyone.  Feel free to share, re-blog and spread the positivity.

In relation to Positivity, check out my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.

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Crossing the Bridges: Self Promotion vs Narcissism

There is a fine line between narcissism and self-promotion.

The former is when absolutely everything is all about YOU, and in no way beneficial to anyone else.  A narcissist practically screams, “Look at me! LOOK AT ME!  See the things I am doing?  Pay attention to me!”

The latter is somewhat about you, but it is also about sharing.  There is some benefit for other people.  A self-promoter says, “Hey, I did this thing.  Please take a look at it.  See what I did?  I want to share it with you and please share it with YOUR friends!”

The difficulty here is in working on being a self-promoter while NOT being a narcissist.  I want to work to further myself and my writing and get my name out there, but I am not looking necessarily to put myself out there, because my writing is not all about me.

Whether it is the blogs or the fiction, I write and share because I think what I am saying could be beneficial to others.  In the case of the blogs, this is about sharing situations and ideas that I am pretty certain I am not alone in having.  In the case of the fiction it’s about sharing fun and imaginative worlds, and providing the reader with distraction, entertainment and even some deeper ideas.

While I have my 9-5 day job, I also want to make more of my writing.  I have three posts a week going to my blog, plus the first year of Pathwalking and my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.  Additionally, the first two books of my YA Fantasy series The Source Chronicles, the first book of my Steampunk series The Vapor Rogues, and a standalone homage to Paulo Coelho called Vortex Pilgrimage.

Because I am self-published, I am my own sales and marketing department.  This means that it’s entirely up to me to promote myself.

Now if you know me personally, you know that I can be loud, talkative, sometimes boisterous and (at least I think) funny.  I am also a good listener, and a pretty decent public speaker.  Even the Myers-Briggs test calls me an extrovert (ENTP).

The funny thing is, I am actually rather introverted.  I spend a lot of time inside my own head.  Recently I’ve seen some memes on Facebook about being an Ambivert (both introvert AND extrovert), which is a pretty good description of me.  Because you see – deep down, I am almost painfully shy.

If you know me, you are probably laughing at that.  I don’t SEEM all that shy, do I?  But put me in a room full of strangers and either watch as I gravitate towards ANYONE I know, or a corner I can people-watch but not engage from.

Amidst these feelings I am working on self-promoting.  Bad enough I am shyer than most people realize, but I also fear being perceived as a narcissist.  I don’t want to cross that line, because, to be completely blunt, narcissists are really annoying.

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It’s one thing to occasionally put the link to all my works on Amazon, and to post to Facebook, Twitter and G+ when I publish my blog posts. The next step is to find local places like bookstores, libraries and coffee shops where I can go and do readings, signings and sales to promote myself.

This presents me with two problems.  I can research and find suitable options.  The challenge is calling them to find out if I can do a reading/signing/sales, and then actually DOING the reading/signing/sales.

Why is calling a challenge?  A lovely combination of my shyness, and some fear of rejection.  Also I am not always comfortable reaching out to people I do not know (again, see shyness).  The actual reading/signing/sales is not so bad, once I get going I will be fine.

I know there are other ways to promote myself out there.  Guest blogging, finding podcasts to work with, teaching classes/workshops on Pathwalking, maybe even starting my own podcast.  I know that if I want to take my writing to the next level I have to break through my comfort zone, and going beyond social media and physically putting myself out there is the nest step I need to take.

I figured out some time ago that being a best-selling author is my ultimate goal.  I have a LOT of novels in my head that aren’t done yet, some in the works, and several that are complete and need to be edited before publishing.   I also think my work would make pretty cool film or TV.

I believe that I can take it further.  I can further promote myself to do this, and it is not an act of narcissism to do so.

I want to live large.  I want to go big.  My goal is to be a best-selling author, and to do that I need to promote myself further, put myself and my works out there and ultimately sell more.  Since I am my own publisher, it’s all on me to do what I can.  Self-promotion is not narcissism.  I can do this.

Thank you for reading my ramblings, and thanks for all your support.  Stay tuned.

Thank you for crossing the bridges between my worlds with me!

Pathwalking 250

Decide to decide.

I cannot tell you how many times in my life I have found myself at some crossroads or other because I refused to decide to decide.

Decision making is only challenging if you choose for it to be so.

For a lot of my life, I was the King of Indecision.  I totally should have bought myself a crown.

When I made the decision to take action for the New Year, nearly five years ago now, it wasn’t just lip service or a soft, easily neglected resolution.  I chose an action, and I took it.  I made a plan, I spelled it out, and I acted upon it.

Creating and maintaining Pathwalking has been one of the best things I have ever done for my life.  I continue to share my journey because, despite bumps and twists and turns and changes of direction along the way, I continue to learn and grow and find more happiness in the life I want to live.

When I was younger, I tended to fear that if I made the wrong decision, I would regret it.  What if I chose to commit to her, and someone better comes along?  What if I move here, but I get a job offer there?  What if I take this job, when I should have taken that job?  And so on and so forth.

As such, I frequently chose not to decide.  I would hmmmm and haw for a while, and then either make no clear decision at all, or wait until the decision was somehow made for me.

I know there are people in this life who do well letting others decide for them.  Or simply going with the flow and not having to choose between many different things.  If you can have and be happy in that sort of life, more power to you.

Because I decided on more than one occasion not to decide, I sometimes have wondered just what I missed out on.  No regrets, per se, just considering the things I could have done but didn’t because I made no choice or didn’t reach a clear decision.

The thing of it is, by-and-large, no decision is permanent.  No decision is so utterly cast in the soul of the universe it cannot be changed.  Of course there are exceptions to this rule.  When you decided to leap off a cliff you can’t reverse the dive.  But apart from that, most decisions, even after they are made, can be altered.

Why does it matter if you decide to decide?  Because no path that is chosen will be tread upon if you don’t decide to traverse it.  I can think about, research, and map out numerous paths for myself.  But until I decide to decide upon a path, it’s nothing more than an idea, and there is no action.

This was why I decided to make New Year’s Actions rather than resolutions.  Resolving is an idea, but acting is a powerful decision.  I can resolve to lose thirty pounds of excess weight all I want.  Until I alter my diet and change my exercise routine or an act combining these plans, all it can be is an idea without purchase.

When we take action, we have generally reached a decision.  We have decided that this thing will happen, and so we act to make it so.

Manifestation, I am frequently pointing out, comes from a combination of thought, feeling and action.  If all I do is think about something but don’t feel it out and act upon it, I go nowhere.  Even if I think about it and feel it out, without action, I am still probably going nowhere.  When I act upon my thoughts and feelings, a decision has been made, and manifestation will be the end result.

It never occurred to me before that decision and action really are one.  Thinking about losing weight then feeling what it will be like to be lighter are all well and good, but until I have decided to take action to make this happen, I will remain exactly where I already am.

I still oftentimes neglect to make a decision.  I still will look at my options, and waffle between whatever they are, rather than acting upon them and deciding.  Recognizing this tendency in myself, and wanting to effect change in my life, I will consider that when next I might be feeling indecisive about a thing.

We all can choose paths for ourselves.  We all have nearly infinite choices of paths for our lives.  The thing is, we need to decide that we want to walk them for ourselves, rather than allow others to choose for us.

It’s also important to acknowledge that sometimes I will decide wrong.  First, this is perfectly normal.  We all make bad decisions.  The key is that I am deciding.

Even when the decision is wrong, action has been taken.  Now I have the opportunity for a new action, a new decision is made, and I move on.

Life changes.  We change.  That is how nature runs its course.  The thing is, we can decided if we want to curl up in a ball, wish everything remained as it was and await death; or we can just let it happen around us, and not choose for ourselves but just see where the current takes us; or we can grab the wheel and steer this life where and how we want it.

Sometimes not deciding is still a decision…just not a terribly solid one.

Think.  Feel.  Act.  In action, there is decision.  Decision is the difference between choosing and not choosing the lives we most desire to lead.

What decisions do you need to make that you might not be?

 

GOAL LOG – Week 40:

Diet:  Still going well.

Exercise: Fencing happened three days last week, and I got to the gym twice.

Writing:  One day of writing, plus the three blogs

Meditation:  I meditated four days, for a minimum of at least 6 minutes.

Gratitude: I wrote five things I was grateful for five of seven days last week.

 

This is the two-hundred fiftieth entry in my series. These weekly posts are ideas and my personal experiences in walking along the path of life.  I share this journey as part of my desire to make a difference in this world along the way.

Thank you for joining me.  Feel free to re-blog and share.

The first year of Pathwalking, including some expanded ideas, is available here.

If you enjoy Pathwalking, you may also want to read my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.

Positivity: Changing Habits

Habits can be changed.

What is a habit?  A habit is a thing you do regularly, to the point where it is almost involuntary.  You just do it, hardly thinking about it.  It is your way.

Some habits are neutral, like bathing and napping and using the blinker in your car to signal lane changes.  Some are good, like holding doors for people, changing empty toilet paper rolls and picking up litter.  Some are bad, like smoking or always interrupting other people, or throwing a tantrum when you don’t get what you want.

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Any habit you have, though, can be changed.  So if you find that you have a habitual manner that makes you feel bad, or useless, or worthless, or whatever negative feeling it produces – it can be changed.

We often gloss completely over our habits.  These things just are.  Part of our nature.  Things we do on a regular basis.  But when we want to change ourselves, often it is our habits where the process should begin.

Many frequently refer to themselves as creatures of habit.  We develop patters in our day to day activities that get so deeply ingrained in us that they become our habits.  We simply do these things, because they are what we do.  And when it comes time for us to make a change, more often than not a habit is where that change should begin.

How do we identify our habits, and then how do we change them?  First, we have to recognize the things we do by rote, the things that we just…do.  Little to no thought happens, we just do them.

Personal example – I get up in the morning, make coffee, read through social media sites and play some Facebook games.  This has been how I have started my morning for a number of years now.  It’s my habit, this is my pre-work morning routine.

Habit identified – I spend an hour or so online, I have the games I play and read through social media sites while I drink coffee.  This is not necessarily a bad habit, but it is an unproductive one I feel is no longer serving me.

How do I change this habit?  By doing something completely different.  I will get up in the morning, and I will go to the gym.  Instead of an hour online and playing games, I will spend an hour at the gym, improving upon my health and wellbeing.

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This is a somewhat drastic change in habit.  It will be a challenge because it will further effect the rest of my activities for the day.  But I know that changing this habit will make me feel better, kickstart my day, get my blood flowing and build a ton of positivity.

Finding positivity is not hard, it just requires action.  Knowing that habits can be neutral, positive or negative, we can identify habits that don’t serve us and/or bad habits, and change them out for good ones.  When we take actions and change habits that don’t serve us in order to make improvements in our lives, we empower ourselves.  When we feel empowered, we often spread that feeling to others around us, and as such can build more positive feelings.  We can use the positive feelings this generates to dissolve negative feelings.  When we take away negative feelings, we open up space to let in positive feelings, and that is something we can be grateful for.  Gratitude leads to happiness.  Happiness is the ultimate positive attitude.  Positive attitude begets positive energy, and that is always a good thing.

 

This is the one hundred forty-first entry of my Positivity series.  It is my hope these weekly messages might help spread positive energies for everyone.  Feel free to share, re-blog and spread the positivity.

In relation to Positivity, check out my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.

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