Wonder Words….Leaving Enough Room



Happiness, joyous, satisfied, flourishing, well being

Whilst browsing through an old Franklin Covey diary of mine I found this next little gem of a quotation which really made me smile as it really encapsulates my thoughts about taking the time to do special things in your life. Here are the words…

” Always leave enough room in you life to do something that makes you happy, satisfied or even joyous ” Paul Hawken

For those of you who, like me, are unaware of this gentleman, my research has discovered a man who was labelled ‘the original hippie entrepreneur’ by Fortune Magazine in 2002. In addition to this dubious title, Hawken is an author of 6 best selling books, as well as probably being more well known as an environmentalist,entrepreneur & journalist to boot. He certainly is an interesting character; aged 20, he dedicated his life to sustainability & changing the relationship between businesses & the environment, & was even enlisted by Ben & Jerry’s to examine their ecological impact on the world. To this, I say ‘cool’…not just because of the amazing ice cream, but to a guy with such a great vision in life.

Such great wisdom lies in his words to remind us of that little action step we have to take to make the room to let happiness flood in; after all, there aren’t many better tonics in life. For me,  happiness is right up there with oxygen…and B & J’s Phish Food Ice Cream. Heaven.

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Wonder Words….Facing the Sunshine



Now that the season of sunshine is upon us, the next quotation I wish to share with you seems all the more relevant, especially as I have two variants of a similar thought. The first quotation I always believed to be by Helen Keller, but is actually by an American Poet, essayist and journalist named Walt Whitman; here are his words ~

” Keep your face to the sunshine and the shadows will fall behind you ”                                                                                                                                   ~Walt Whitman

Whitman was born in 1819, and became well known later in his life for his most major work ‘Leaves of Grass‘, which was controversial in its time because of the nature of some of its content, but still gained popularity because of supportive praise from none other than Ralph Waldo Emerson, as well as Henry David Thoreau in later years. Twelve years before his death in 1892, another inspirational writer came into the world – Helen Keller, who writings are perhaps a little more well known, and whose amazing life has been well documented over the years. Despite becoming deaf & blind before the age of two, Keller went on to produce the first of her 12 published books at the age of twelve, as well as her incredible autobiography by the age of 22, which was based on her time at college. Out of all Helen Keller’s work comes one of my favourite quotations:

” Face the sunshine and you cannot see a shadow – Helen Keller”

Although it may simply seem a rewording of Walt Whitman’s quotation, these words resonate with me powerfully simply because of Keller’s lifelong blindness and deafness, & the way her life still managed to blossom, despite the massive challenges that she faced.  Whichever quotation your prefer, I think the essence is the same – if we focus on what we most want in our lives (e.g. success,happiness, greater well-being, enrichment, etc..) more of it is likely to occur in our consciousness, just like a program being set into a heat-seeking missile. The Law of Attraction goes to work for us here, or, as motivational expert Denis Waitley calls it ‘the power of positive self-expectancy’ in his classic work ‘The Psychology of Winning’ After all, everybody wants more of the ‘good stuff’ in life, and uses the same amount of energy to focus on what we don’t want, so we might as well ‘face the sunshine’ instead of the shadows and enjoy the possibility in all that comes our way, hadn’t we..?           I think so.

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Wonder Words….Sticking to It!



sticking to it, sticking to goals, wonder words, Josh Billings, goal setting


I came across an old personal diary a few weeks ago, which I flicked through to see if I could recall any of the events that I’d written on the pages. Apart from bringing back a few fond memories, it also brought my attention to a wonderful quotation or two; this was one of those diaries with a few wise words, quote or quip at the top, & I’d kept this particular diary because it seemed particularly full of some great ‘words of wisdom’.

One of these quotations seemed to jump out at me as I flicked through the pages – coincidentally, it also happened to be on my birthday week. I’ll share it again for you:

” Be like a postage stamp – stick to one thing until you get there – Josh Billings “

I liked it so much that I posted it on Twitter, and quickly found that it also appealed to a great number of other people too, which inspired me to find out a little about it’s author, who at the time was unknown to me. Josh Billings was actually a pen name for an American 19th century humorist named Henry Wheeler Shaw, who after trying a number of different trades, made his living as a journalist under his pen name in the 1850’s. His unusual style involved the heavy use of the slang of the day, as well as dispensing wit and folksy common-sense wisdom.

Reading further about Josh Billings, I discovered a whole host of wonderful words of wisdom, wit & funny sayings, which I can wholly recommend for those who love a good quote for inspiration, motivation, or or simply as a succinct distillation of profound thought. Sticking to it certainly got my attention because it crystallises the whole idea of goal setting in a single sentence; choose your goal, then commit (stick) to it fully until it meets its final conclusion (gets there) As a success coach, I find this a very powerful analogy, so if I speak to you in the near future, don’t be surprised if you hear some of the great & witty wisdom of Josh Billings. It’s great!



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Wonder Words….Being Pushed

He pushed them and they flew

As a Success Coach, I am often asked what things inspire me. The answer rarely is brief, as people who know me will tell you…I like to give ‘full-value’ responses! The answer will vary from time to time, but among them will always be wisdom from literature; often times, it may only just be a sentence which will powerfully distil a thought or feeling, but which also just resonates with precision at a time when you just might need some clarity or inspiration.

Perhaps my favourite of these is written by a French poet & playwright from the 1800’s, Guillaume Apollinaire, which I strangely first saw in a program for American Illusionist David Copperfield, who features an illusion where he visibly ‘flies’ on stage which looks absolutely amazing. I guess this might be one reason why it has stuck with me for so long. Anyway, I wanted to share these inspirational words with you to enjoy –

” Come to the edge, he said.                                                                                                              They said: We are afraid.                                                                                                                Come to the edge, he said.                                                                                                              They came.                                                                                                                                      He pushed them, and they flew..”

This distils for me very much what I do as a Success Coach for people who want more life success – I push them to become more, to change & move onwards & upwards. Why..?       Because I love to watch them fly.

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Challenge From a Champion – The Home Straight

finish line, winning the race, successful finish, goals

For those of you following my journey from fat to fit, I’m pleased to report on the final ‘sprint’ of my personal race for fitness.

Looking back, it seems like an age has passed since I stepped on those gym scales to reveal a rather unhealthy state of affairs; it was certainly the shock I needed to jolt me into action & get back to a more respectable level of fitness. After all – I’m a Success Coach – I should walk my talk, right..? Well, that’s exactly what I’ve done & I’m quite proud that I have. So, where am I today.?  Here are the stats – dropped over 16lbs within three and a half weeks, reduced my waistline by two inches, seriously flattened my abs, as well as vastly improving my cardiovascular fitness…..not bad for a forty-something.

So, what was the secret to my success..? Was it having a goal? A personal trainer? A determined attitude & focus? Pushing out of my comfort zone? The answer….. In truth, its a mixture of all of the above. Get my butt into gear by starting running three times weekly, combined with personal training sessions from ‘The Champ‘ alternate weeks to lock in those fitness goals, and accepting change to get the results I really wanted. It’s that simple.

However, it doesn’t end there – I’ve decided to continue my journey, as I know the road to success is always ‘under construction’. I’m enjoying the benefits from running, as well as being put through my paces in the gym bi-weekly; not bad for a guy who hated running with a passion. The slight downside is that I need to go shopping now & invest in some new trousers, as a lot of the current ones are very loose! A small price to pay in real terms.

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Setting Up for Success – You Have to Want It!

To succeed at anything, you have to want it…..but a lot of people overlook this simple fact. In addition, when they are confronted about the fact that their actions suggest that they don’t really want to succeed, they get really depressed – they believe that there’s something wrong with them. The good news is there is nothing wrong with them…their desire just needs a tune-up.

You level of ‘want-to’ is totally under your control, but it doesn’t exist by itself – you are in charge of its intensity; you can turn the flame up or down when you want.

Super Coach Steve Chandler talks further about how we can best deal with our ‘internal GPS’ in an inspiring article – read further here

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12 Ways to Make 2011 Your Year of Success

Sometimes we all get a little stuck in life – we set New Year resolutions & they fizzle out after a month – we want to exercise but somehow never seem able to get our butts into gear – we want to make positive changes, but don’t have the time or energy.                       Sound familiar.?

If that describes you in any way, don’t worry – you are not alone – not even close!

In fact, it describes a lot of us. We’re often too tired after a day of chaos or drudgery to do everything we want to; we’re regularly overwhelmed by all of the things on our to do list & feel swamped & overwhelmed…we can’t seem to to find traction.

But hold on – you can get your life into gear…with a little jump start. The four key facets are:  1) Don’t hang onto or beat your self up over failures or frustrations.  2) Begin by thinking positive & knowing that you can actually change your life. 3) Begin to to take action & move forward, regardless of how small the increment. 4) Build on your successes

If these four steps have caught your attention, there are another ‘ Dirty Dozen’ things you can do to give yourself that little jolt to propel yourself into action and make 2011 your year of success – read them here

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Ten Ways to Make Sure You Fail to Hit Your Goals!

We are already half way through the first month of 2011, and our New Year celebrations seem a distant memory, along with promises we made ourselves to set ‘serious’ goals. If you are focussed, some of those goals & other big resolutions may still be in place, weighing heavily upon our conscience. You know the ones…getting fit, loosing weight, saving more money, etc.,etc. Is it all worth it, we ask.? Perhaps it would be better to shoot ourselves in the foot straight off the bat. With this in mind, here is a taster from 10 top ways to ensure that you fail to reach your goals properly! Manage three of four of these, and you’re on the fast-track to failure – hit all ten & you really might as well not getting out of bed any more!

1) Set Vague GoalsIf you don’t know what “success” looks like, you’re bound to fail. Instead of resolving to loose 40 lbs before your next birthday, simply resolve to ‘get thin’, whatever that means. Instead of resolving to save 10% of your earnings, tell yourself that you just need to “have savings”. Sorted! When your goals are vague and fuzzy, it easier to put off taking action, and impossible to quantify success or failure. If you do manage to make strides towards them, you’ll never really know if you’ve achieved your goal.

2) Have a List longer Than Your Arm – One of the easiest way to fail is to split your attention between dozens of different things. So, don’t pick one or two big, life-changing goals – tackle everything at once. When you inevitably run out of energy & motivation, you’ll only be a few short steps away from total failure. Genius!

3) Don’t Tell Anyone – When you talk about your ambitions, you feel accountable to people. Bad News. By keeping totally quiet about your goals, your a free to fail without anyone knowing. Plus, you have the added bonus of not getting any offers of help or support. Way to go!

So, if you feel like putting the mockers on all of your goals, check out the rest of these essential tips by reading further here

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Achieve Your New Year’s Resolutions

Resolutions, Goals, Achievements, Aims, Vision

Professor Richard Wiseman is a man who writings I always follow with much interest and attention. A few weeks before Christmas, Richard conducted a special study, in conjunction with Change4Life, whereby he monitored a group of people to study the affects of willpower, as opposed to other techniques.

As part of the results of this study, Professor Wiseman has devised a great 10-step guide on how you can best achieve your New Year Resolutions. Here is a small taster:

1) Make only one resolution – Many people make the mistake of trying to achieve too much. The chances of success are greater when people channel their energy into changing just one aspect of their behaviour at a time.

2) Plan ahead – Don’t wait until New Year’s Eve to think about your resolution. Last minute decisions tend to be based on what is on your mind at that time. Instead, take some time out a few days before and reflect upon what you really want to achieve.

3) Avoid previous resolutions – Deciding to re-visit a past resolution sets you up for frustration and disappointment. Choose something new, or approach an old problem in a new way. For example, instead of trying to lose 2 stone in weight, try exercising more.

To read all ten tips, visit Richard’s 59 Seconds blog here

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44 Fab Ways to Make 2012 Your Best Year Yet

Resolutions, Setting Goals, Plans, Dreams

With the New Year nearly upon us, the time is also nigh to look at those resolutions for the things we want to do, be different or simply just to achieve. Although this can be a simple task, many people can find themselves in state of total overwhelm by not knowing where to start, or what things they want to focus on in 2012.

You know – join the gym,  start the diet, get a personal coach, book the dream holiday..the list could be endless. Now, whether you are one of those people or are simply seeking some inspiration in the opportunities that lie before you, what follows is a list of 44 great ideas to enrich your health, wealth & happiness over the coming 365 days. Read more here… Don’t forget to let me know what you plan to change for your best year yet!

(PS – although the article was written for 2011, all the same things apply, so enjoy! )

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