Tag Archive for procrastination

When You Live With Purpose, You Don’t Have Time To Worry

frog worries with purposeAre you a worrier by nature? Do you spend your time worrying about anything and everything that could go wrong?

I’ve been there and done that. It’s not the most pleasant or most productive use of your time.

When we worry a lot, it tends to paralyze us. We’re too worried about everything including what’s out of our control and what could go wrong. As a result, we don’t get to the important part of taking action, no matter what the goal or activity was.

The tendency to worry goes way down when we embrace living with purpose. When you know exactly what you want and have the passion for going after it, everything becomes clear.

You know what your first step is and then the next one after that. You get to work and start making progress. You keep going and keep working away to make sure you get done what you’ve set out to do.

In the end, you don’t have time to worry about all that small stuff and that’s a very good thing.

Truth is, most worrying is pointless. It uses up brain space and energy that would be much better spent other places. That doesn’t help you much when you’re busy worrying about anything and everything.

What will help you is shifting your focus, your energy, and your passion. Instead, aim them toward something more productive – your purpose.

woman with purose

When you find your purpose and make it an integral part of your life, you’ll be much too busy to worry. The cure to too much worrying then is taking massive action.

Go and do something that aligns with your purpose. It doesn’t matter what it is. Start with something small that feels safe.

Getting that task under your belt will expose unfounded worries you can push through. It also gives you a sense of accomplishment and that in turn builds confidence.

Confidence is another great weapon against the paralyzing effect of worry. Confident people don’t worry.

With each action you take, you become a little more confident and a little less worried. Build on each success and keep working on your self-confidence.

Keep focusing on why the things you do are important to you and why you embraced a particular purpose.

Focusing on how it is helpful to others is another great tool. This will help you push through and start taking action. That, in turn, builds confidence and decreases worries.

Before you know it, you’ll be too busy to worry. You’ll be taking action toward living a purpose driven life.

JohnK 6-21-2017
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Image for overheard and purposeOverheard: The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time. 

                           ~ Mark Twain 

 

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Living With Purpose Makes You A Kinder Person

                                                                                                                                           girl thinking about purpose

You stress out. You work too hard. You run around to meet the latest deadline or pay a stack of bills. No wonder you become less than the nicest person to be around.

What if you changed your focus? What if you lived your life with purpose and intention? Living with purpose makes us kinder…and nicer. Why is that?

 

Living With Purpose Helps You Focus On Others
Living with purpose often includes other people. It’s about those around you as much as about yourself.

We’re social creatures and we like to work with, interact with, and help those around us. When we make those relationships a priority, we take the needs of others into account.

That teaches us empathy and understanding, which in turn makes us nicer and kinder to those around us.

Living With Purpose Takes You Out Of The Competitive Mindset
What if we stopped trying to keep up with everyone around us? Or stopped trying to compete for the highest paying job? Or the biggest car? Or the nicest house?

We would start seeing the signs that life is about much more than outdoing everyone else. Focusing on relationships, experiences, and helping each other out makes us kinder.

The energy we tend to burn on competition gets re-directed.

Living With Purpose Reduces Stress
So now you’re pulling back from the rat race. Instead, you’re embracing meaningful activities and relationships.

You’re becoming happier. And you’ll see that your stress level goes way down.

I don’t know about you, but I’m not the kindest person when I’m stressed out. I find that when I’m more relaxed and fulfilled being kind is a natural state of mind.

Living With Purpose Increases Happiness
It shouldn’t come as a big surprise to you that you’re kinder and nicer to be around when you’re in a good mood. It’s when we’re stressed out, or feeling trapped, mad and angry at the world that we aren’t so much fun to be around.

To recap, living with purpose does quite a few things to make you a kinder, nicer person to be around. If that’s not a great motivator to work towards a more purposeful life, I don’t know what is.

JohnK 6-20-2017
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Guess What? Money And “Stuff” Don’t Make You Happy

In our last post, we looked at the effect of living with purpose on your spiritual health. And we saw how it relates to living a happy and fulfilled life.

Today we’ll switch gears and talk about things that don’t make you happy.

What doesn’t make you happy is money and more material possessions. In fact, quite the opposite seems to be true.

Now at times a bit of extra cash or more reliable car can decrease your stress and worries. And that does bring a measure of happiness.

But once we have our needs and simple comforts met, something interesting happens.

From there on out, more money and more possessions give us more “stuff” to worry about.

The goal then shouldn’t be to do everything we can to keep up with the Joneses. Instead, what makes us happy is living a purpose driven and meaningful life.

Deep down you already know this. Meaningful experiences trump material gifts anytime.

We remember the fun trips we took as kids. And the great times we had at concerts. A pile of presents under the tree pales in comparison.

There are exceptions. Like the year you got the new bike. But that gift had purpose and meaning behind it.

So boosting happiness and well-being through more money and stuff is not the answer.

Better to first cover the basic needs. Then shift your focus to experiences and relationships. That’s the key to leading a happy and fulfilled life.

Also important is focusing on finding purpose in what we do.

Financial goals are fine. But don’t leave out goals for your relationships and experiences.

Your thoughts might drift toward your next promotion. Or how you’ll afford a new car. But make sure you send your primary thought time and energy to the most important people and things.

Start living with purpose and making a difference. You’ll increase the well-being of people around you.

And you’ll be happier, too.

 

JohnK 6-19-2017
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Image for overheard and purposeOverheard: “God gave us the gift of life; it is up to us to give ourselves the gift of living well.”                      

                       – Voltaire

 

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Living With Purpose Is Good For Your Spiritual Health

Today we look at spiritual health or wellness and the affect living with purpose has on it. Makes no difference which spirituality or religion you follow.

We live in a very diverse society and as a result, some folks will have different beliefs than others. Even within faiths, there are vast differences in beliefs.

believer with purpose

In the end, living with purpose and intention has shown to be beneficial, no matter what your belief.

Having a purpose is a primal human need. We want to feel needed and we need to know that we’re making a difference.

This leaves us feeling fulfilled, happy, and complete. That’s why living with purpose is so important and why it is good for your spiritual health.

The Need To Be Needed
We enjoy it when others need us. We’re prone to sadness and loneliness when we can’t help those around us and make a difference in their lives.

Having a purpose and living with purpose allows us to do that on a regular basis. It fulfills the need to be needed.

The Need To Find Meaning In Life
Another common human desire or need is to find meaning in life. We don’t like to feel like we’re wasting our time here.

Living with purpose gives meaning to each day. That, in turn, makes us feel happier and more fulfilled.

The Need To Have Hope
At the end of the day, even when things seem bad, we need to have hope. Having a purpose means we have a plan and we have something to strive towards.

That’s hope in action.

It is hope that we’ll make a difference. It’s hope that things we’ll make our situation better. And it is hope that we can get ourselves out of the hole we may find ourselves in.

The Need For Values
We also need sound values to live a happy and fulfilled life. Our values are like a compass that guides us along the way.

If you’re a parent, you know how important it is to impart strong values on your children. Without them, they feel lost and insecure.

That can add a lot of stress and unhappiness.

We’re no different as adults. Living our life with purpose by default provides us with a strong set of values to live by.

people with purpose

Living with purpose is good for the mind and spirit. It allows you to live a more fulfilling and happier life and make a difference in the world.

JohnK 6-18-2017
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When You Have A Purpose: You’re Taking Action And Aren’t Afraid Of Failure

racing with purposeWhen you start thinking about and then living with purpose something wonderful happens.

You start taking action.

You start doing things instead of second guessing yourself and procrastinating. You get off the couch and get going on the things you’ve always wanted to do.
 
 
Taking action becomes so much easier when you have a clear purpose. You have an outcome in mind and you know exactly what the next step is that you need to take.

What’s more important, you have big motivation to get it done.

Let’s look at weight loss as an example. You can try to lose some weight and get into shape for months and even years with little success.

Sure, you eat a little better. And you go for a walk every now and then. But because you don’t have an actual purpose, you don’t get far.

Now and then you’ll give in to the urge to snack, get a second helping, or indulge in a cookie. There’s no big reason to get serious about losing weight and there’s no deadline.

a bride with purposeNow let’s pretend for a moment. You’re getting married in nine months and you’ve got to look fantastic on your big day.

You have a dress or suit size in mind and a pretty good idea of how many pounds you have to lose by your wedding day. Bingo! You have a purpose, a goal, and a deadline.
 
 

That’s exactly what it takes to get serious about losing weight.

You start taking massive action. You clean up your diet, cut out the sugar and processed food.

You start working out to tone and reshape your body as you start to drop those pounds. You read up on and learn as much as you can about nutrition and the latest trends in diet and exercise.

The result? You start shedding the pounds. And you’re looking better and better the closer you get to your non-negotiable deadline.
 

That’s the power of putting a purpose into action. It spurs you on and motivates you to do things and make changes.

Having a purpose also keeps you from procrastinating out of a false fear of failure. Does that mean you won’t fail? Of course not.

You may not hit your weight loss goal. And you may cheat and have a doughnut along the way. That’s not the point.                                                                                         success sign with purpose

Even with the occasional stumble, your purpose keeps fueling your progress. You pick yourself up and get right back to it.

Purpose is motivating you.

Not taking action because you think you may fail is no longer an option.

And that’s a pretty big deal.  

 

JohnK 6-17-2017

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Image for overheard and purposeOverheard: “If you love life, don’t waste time, for time is what life is made up of”

                            ~ Bruce Lee 

 

 

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Creating Purposeful And Meaningful Relationships

 

Relationships are a big part of living a more intentional and purpose-driven life.people in reationship

We are social creatures and we need other people around us to feel happy and complete.

That means creating purposeful and meaningful relationships with family, friends, coworkers, and acquaintances.

All relationships are important. But the ones that will have the biggest impact on your own personal life are family and close friends.

That’s your starting point. These are the people who mean the most to you and often the ones you spend a lot of your time with.

Work relationships are also important, they don’t have to be quite as deep and meaningful. As long as you communicate well with your coworkers and boss for example and you get along o.k., you’re good to go.

The stakes go up with your best friend, your spouse, or your grandma. Working to make those relationships more meaningful relationship can have a huge impact.

Be Intentional In Your Relationships
Your starting point in the process is taking a look at where you are right now. and then figuring out where you would like to be.

Do you want a more intimate relationship with your spouse? Do you want to be closer with your kids and have them open up to you? Do you want to have a more relaxed relationship with your book club friends?

Answer those questions and you’re closer to more purposeful and intentional interaction.

Don’t Like Something? Change It
Most relationships aren’t perfect. Some are downright awful. While we can’t change people, we can change our relationship with them.

talking about relationshipsSometimes that means setting boundaries. Sometimes, that may even mean cutting people out of our lives. Most of the time though, it means having open and honest conversations.

Work with the other person to come up with something that works well for both of you. Compromise and put in the effort to improve the relationship the two of you have for the better.

Good Relationships Take Work
Last but not least, I want you to realize that any close relationship takes work. It’s the same for marriage, relationships with your kids, or staying close to your best friend.

If you get lazy and start taking these ties for granted, they’ll wither and die. Don’t let that happen.

Instead, put in the work.

Get up early. Go for a run with your husband. Spend time talking to your kids over dinner instead of plopping down in front of the TV. And make time to hang out with your friends.

Be intentional about your relationships. Do your part to make sure they stay meaningful and strong.

Yes, it takes time and effort, but it’s well worth it.

 

JohnK 6-16-2017

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The Big Benefits Of Traveling The World

Let’s talk about something fun today – traveling the world. Or at least making an effort to travel more and further than you are now.

Not only is it a lot of fun, it’s also good for you and can help you live a more purpose- driven life. Of course if one of your big goals is to travel more and see as much of the world as you can, this is a no-brainer.

schedule for traveling

Traveling may not be one of your ambitions right now. You may be quite comfortable staying in your little corner of the world. But give some thought to exploring the option of travel.

We live in a very global and interconnected world. First-hand experience will help you understand this. Which brings us to the first big benefit of traveling the world…

Experience New Cultures
World travel brings you into contact with a whole range of different people. This results in a greater knowledge of different cultures.

It’s fun to try new food. Or go shopping in a very different atmosphere and looking at very different products. You can take a crack at conversation in a foreign language.

All the while you’ll soak up the fact that you’re doing some very common things in not so common ways. And there’s so much to learn from those experiences.

Become More Open Minded
These experiences help you become more open minded. You realize that there is more than one way to do things in most all areas of life.

Chances are you’ll look at cooking, parenting, and even the rhythm of life in very different ways.

And this is only the start. You’ll come across all sorts of new ideas that challenge the way you’ve been thinking about things.

That’s a good thing because it gives you the opportunity to rethink how you’re doing things. You’ll become more intentional and purposeful in what you do.

Get Out Of Your Comfort Zone
The thought of all this may make you a bit uncomfortable. This is a good thing.

Traveling gets you out of your comfort zone. It’s a perfect remedy if you’re stuck in a rut or need some fresh inspiration.

When we stay in our comfort zone, it’s hard to grow and it’s hard to change how we live our lives. Stepping out of that zone to travel and do things that are new, uncomfortable, and challenging is how we grow.

Even if traveling isn’t big on your “to-do” list right now, make it a priority anyway.

Here’s a suggestion. If actual world travel isn’t an option for you right now, do a bit of armchair traveling. You can begin learning more about a country including its culture and language.  

 

JohnK 6-15-2017

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Image for overheard and travelingOverheard: “We do not remember days, we remember moments.

                   ~Cesare Pavese

 

 

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Never Stop Learning: It’s Part of Finding Your Purpose

Boy learning to drawAs children, learning is an important part of our lives. We continue on as young adults through college and learning on the job. But by the time we hit our thirties, many of us stop learning on a regular basis.

We may pick up something new here or there, or learn a new piece of software or equipment at work. For the most part, we’re convinced that we’ve acquired all the knowledge we need in life.

In some ways that’s true. But there’s also wisdom in lifelong learning.

Does this mean that you should go back to school as an adult? That’s one option. But formal education in a school or university setting isn’t the only way we learn. There are lots of advantages to self-learning in a variety of ways.

Lifelong learning keeps your mind strong. It helps you stay up-to-date on technology in a fast paced and ever-changing world. And it improves the quality of your life.

Independent or self-paced learning can take a lot of different forms.

learning to search for purposeYou might decide to read up on a particular course through a variety of Google searches. You can teach yourself a new skill through online articles and YouTube videos.

Listening to audio books is one option. Formal lectures like those available at the “Great Courses” website are another. And of course, there are plenty of online and local courses you can take on all sorts of topics.

Take a workshop, learn a new language, or find a new hobby that requires new skills. There is an almost unlimited amount of knowledge out there that you can learn.

Learning is wonderful because it keeps us curious and our mind active. There’s a lot of pride and confidence that comes out of mastering a new skill or figuring out a tough problem.

Think of learning as a way to exercise your mind. Continued learning helps us understand the world around us, and the people in it better. That, in turn, will make us more compassionate and of course well-informed individuals.

What’s more, self-paced learning is a great way to practice self-motivation. That’s a skill that will come in handy throughout life.

making a learning planThink about what you’re doing already that is part of life-long learning. What are some things you would like to learn?

Start making a short list of knowledge and skill goals and then start tackling them one a time. Could be you’ve always wanted to learn how to knit, or you’re interested in medieval history. Are you interested in building your own computer, or learning how to operate a lathe?

Make a plan and start making life-long learning a habit.

JohnK 6-14-2017

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Embrace Your Hobbies And Interests

Over the past few days, we’ve taken a look at how we spend our time, what we spend it on and what may be sucking time away from us.

In other words, we started to be more intentional with how we spend our time and what we spend it on. That leaves quite a few hours each week open to new things.

sight seeing hobbies

We’re no longer watching mindless TV shows. Or letting social media draw us in. We have time to do the things we convinced ourselves we didn’t have time for.

Today I want to encourage you to embrace your hobbies and interests. Do you remember having all afternoon, weekends, and school holidays to do what you loved to do?

Without the obligations of adulthood, it’s easy to enjoy a hobby or explore other interests. Adult responsibilities seem to make it tougher to find time for those interests.

We often let go of the things we enjoy doing the most. It’s time to take back that joy and pick up those hobbies and interests again …or even find something new to try.

Hobbies are an important part of living with purpose. They give balance to our lives and allow us to spend some much needed time on something we enjoy.

They help us de-stress and are fun. For example, if you work in front of a computer all day, it can be tough to see the fruits of your labor.

You work hard, but at the end of the day, you don’t see anything that shows what you’ve accomplished. To balance this, consider a hobby like gardening, sewing, knitting, or woodworking.

Spend an hour in the evening on your favorite hobby and you can actually see, feel, and touch the progress you’ve made.

Hobbies can also help us unwind and let go of all the stress and anxiety that has built up over the workday. This, in turn, is good for our health and mental well-being.

picture of painting hobbies

Think about relaxing hobbies like playing music, crafting, painting, or gardening. Those tend to help us sleep better and feel refreshed in the waking hours.

Hobbies also give us a chance to connect with other like-minded individuals. There are classes, groups, clubs, and even guilds for all sorts of different things.

Or you can go your own way and form your own group. Find a few other cycling enthusiasts and organize group rides on the weekends. Start a monthly book club for a chance to discuss your favorite works of fiction with other readers.

Embrace your hobbies and interests and make them part of your everyday life again.

 

JohnK 6-13-2017

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Image for overheard and hobbiesOverheard:  “Notice when your heart leaps up in joyous exuberance…In these moments the voice of your spirit is speaking directly to you.

                                   – Justine Willis Toms

 

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How Much Time Are You Spending On Facebook?

In our last post, we looked at the time lost vegging out in front of the TV or computer.

clock and i phone time killersToday, we tackle another big time thief – social media. Don’t get me wrong, it’s an amazing tool, but it can also be quite distracting.

This is true for Facebook, Pinterest, Tumbler, Instagram. Or the social media platform of your choice.

 
 
The biggest problem with social media is that it’s everywhere. We check in from our computers, tablet, and of course the ever-present smartphone.

We get alerts, we check in when we’re bored, or have a couple of minutes to kill. Before we know it, thirty minutes or more have gone by that we’re not getting back.

Here’s an eye-opening exercise for you. Carry a pen and paper around with you. Use a click counter or an app on your phone and start keeping track of how many times you access social media per day.

Include any and all devices you use and add to the running total even when you’re looking at it “for a second.” It’s a good bet you’ll be a bit shocked by how high that number actually is.

This is one distraction that isn’t usually caught by the time log we talked about in an earlier post. The social media interactions are that quick and frequent.

And no matter how brief your stay on each platform, it all starts to add up and distract you from other things.

How often does Facebook commenting cause you to miss part of a conversation or a funparents time with kids moment with your kids?

Or re-tweeting something, or pinning a fun craft idea that you likely won’t get around to trying?

Is it worth missing all those important little moments in life? Imagine how removing the constant distractions from social media could help you. You would have so much more time and mental energy.

We want to live with intention and do things with purpose. We don’t want to let social media posts tarnish that vision.

I’m not saying that there isn’t a time to use social media, far from it. They’re wonderful tools and great ways to connect with people.

But the downside is that they are so addictive. Don’t believe me?

Here’s another exercise for you. Commit to not using social media at all for 48 hours. Turn off or ignore the alerts on your phone and don’t allow yourself to go to the sites on your computer.

woman thinking timeHow does that feel? Do you miss it? Does it make you nervous or anxious?

It’s time for us to take control over social media instead of letting it control us. What can you change starting today to make that happen?
 
 
 

JohnK 6-12-2017

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