7 Differences Between Religion and Spirituality


7 Differences Between Religion and Spirituality

A lot of people mistake Spirituality for Religion or some mysterious, supernatural occurrence. Some even think of it as a sect but this is because of their lack of knowledge and their fear of being manipulated. If we move past this and try to study and understand what spirituality actually is, we’ll come to a realization that it is nothing mysterious or supernatural nor in any way connected to a sect of any kind. These 7 differences between Religion and Spirituality will help you understand what Spirituality actually is. Religion Makes You Bow – Spirituality Sets You Free Religion tells you to follow an ideology and obey certain rules or you’ll be punished otherwise. Spirituality lets you Follow Your Heart and What You Feel It’s Right. It sets you free to be what you truly are without bowing to anything that doesn’t resonate as right with you nor to anyone because we are all one. It is all up to you to choose what you’ll honor enough to make it divine Religion Shows You Fear – Spirituality Shows You How to Be Brave Religion tells you what to fear and tells you consequences. Spirituality makes you aware of the consequences but doesn’t want you to focus on the fear. It shows you How to Stand Despite Being Afraid, how to move on doing what you feel it’s right despite the consequences that may come. It shows you how to act on love and not on fear, it shows you how to control fear and use the best of it. Religion Tells You The Truth – Spirituality Lets You Discover It Religion tells you what to believe and what is right. Spirituality lets you discover it by yourself and understand it in your own unique way. It lets you Connect With Your Higher Self and see with your own mind what truth is because the truth as a whole is same for each one of us. It lets you believe in your own truth through your own perception of your heart. Religion Separates from Other Religions – Spirituality Unites Them Through our world there are many religions and they all preach that their story is the right story. Spirituality sees the truth in all of them and unites them because the truth is same for all of us despite our differences and uniqueness. It focuses on the quality of the divine message they share and not on the differences in details of the story they speak. Religion Makes You Dependent – Spirituality Makes You Independent If you attend religious events only then you are seen as a religious person and someone who is worthy of happiness. Spirituality shows you that you don’t need or depend on anything to be happy. Happiness is always found deep in ourselves and only we are responsible for it. We are always where we need to be and not just while attending at some events or buildings. Divinity is in us and that is why we are always worthy. Religion Applies Punishment – Spirituality Applies Karma Religion says that if we don’t obey certain rules there is punishment that awaits us which relies on our belief. Spirituality lets us understand that every action has its reaction and realize that the punishment of our actions will be the reaction coming from the actions we set in motion. It relies solely on the fundamental forces of The Universe and it doesn’t need you to believe in that force to be true. Religion Makes You Follow Other Journey – Spirituality Lets You Create Your Own The foundation of one religion is the story it tells about a God or Gods, their journey to enlightenment and the truth they have discovered making you follow their steps. Spirituality lets you Walk Your Own Journey to Enlightenment and discover the truth in your own way following what your heart tells it’s right because the truth is always the same no matter how you get to it. Every religion came by spirituality, by the journey through which one person became God. The details of the story are not important they just help the character discover the truth. The message that shares the truth is what is important, The Divine Code of The Human Heart that resonates harmoniously through each of us. That is why every religion has something true in it, the truth. Source: Life Coach Code via Expanded Consciousness – See more at: http://www.thinkinghumanity.com/2014/11/7-differences-between-religion-and-spirituality.html#sthash.m89dp1BM.48JfR58j.dpuf

8 Signs You’re Meant for Something Bigger on This Planet.


“You are here to enable the divine purpose of the universe to unfold. That is how important you are!” ~ Eckhart Tolle

I’ve known since I was very young that I was destined for big things. I mean really. The first thing I knew I wanted to be when I grew up was the Easter Bunny. And I’m Jewish. Now as you cut through your giggles, here’s what I’m pretty sure I actually meant by that — I knew from very early on that societal constraints, “shoulds”, and rules didn’t really mean anything. I could be and do anything I wanted.

And then I found road blocks; or maybe just the speed bumps of life. I kept reaching for more, but encountered fear, doubt, challenging situations, and naysayers. Thankfully, I never stopped believing. I always knew it was possible to live into the vastness of my visions, and become as big as I wanted. It’s taken time to align the my beliefs with this truth inside of me so that I could live into my knowing, but it’s been worth it.

And I’m definitely not alone. This beautiful planet is crawling with those of us who want to make a difference; who know we are capable of anything. Some of us are there living it fully, some are in the midst of the dance of taking a few steps forward and a couple of steps back (hint: good old self sabotage; something I know well), and others are just beginning to wake up to the realization that this knowing has been inside of them all along, and it’s time to do something about it. But no matter where you are, fear not. Often it’s just the stuff we think gets in our way that’s actually supporting us in getting there! So, to prove it to you, I’ve compiled 8 signs that point out that likelihood that you’re probably meant for something bigger; and that you’re destined to get there.

1. You suck at working for other people.

You’re a born leader and you know it. Or maybe you don’t know it. But either way, you’re just NOT into doing things that aren’t catalyzing big change. You feel stuck working for others. You want freedom, flexibility, creativity, and expansion, and you just don’t feel you can fully achieve that while working for someone else. You know that your vision is worth something, and that getting to apply ALL of your gifts is the only way you’ll be fully satisfied.

2. You tend to put things off until you’re really inspired.

So you call yourself a procrastinator. There is such a thing as self sabotaging procrastination, but if you’re meant for something bigger (which, if you’re reading this, I have a sneaking suspicion you are), there will also be times when you believe you must get something done because that’s what you think is going to get you from point A to point B. But what if you actually thrive off of inspiration, versus obligation?You deserve to be able to evaluate which is true for you in each moment. Is fear holding you back from chipping away at your to-do list? Or is it because you’re lacking inspiration. If it’s the latter, trust that doing exactly what you’re inspired to do is leading you to where you need to be. Often that inspiration knows more than we do about what’s really possible.

3. As a kid you thought adults who wore suits and went off to work were crazy.

You’ve always known somewhere deep within you that there was more to life than living a cookie-cutter, safe, pragmatic lifestyle. You knew you could have a bigger impact on the world if you did it your way, and that your way would involve more freedom and flexibility than those crazy adult-types had. And now, whether you’ve fully achieved it yet or not, you know that that feeling you had as a kid is utterly true. You’ve witnessed and felt what it’s like to live just as much on purpose in your flip flops as you have your business suit.

4. You love what you do so much you’d do it for free.

Here’s the irony – you deserve to know your value, and the more you begin to charge your full value for the contribution you’re making to the world, the more value those you serve will actually receive. However, you know you’re on purpose and meant to do big things when you love what you do so much that while you’re doing it money is not even on your mind.

5. You’re an idealist. You see the world at its best, and will stop at nothing to get there.

When I was a kid I used to get called an “idealist” all the time. At first I thought it was a compliment. I’d think “yeah that’s right, it is possible for the world to be that loving and amazing”. Then, toward early adulthood I began to get triggered by the word, as if people were saying that I couldn’t actually achieve that; that the world wasn’t actually supposed to be the amazing place I knew it could be. Now, I could care less what people think or call me. My name is Jordanna, and I am an idealist. By living in my own little world of my vision and my creations, my personal world often actually appears as “ideal” as I know one day the entire world can be. So really, who cares what’s true and what’s not if I’m having fun and serving others while doing it? Being an idealist doesn’t make you crazy, it makes you a creator.

6. You can’t always say how you know things, but sometimes you just “know”.

Visionaries don’t usually get their visions from what’s outside of them or from what the world tells them they should create. They get their visions from an internal drive to create what feels right for them. That “knowing” of what they need to create goes hand in hand with a knowing of all sorts of things. Call it intuition, call it gut feeling, call it spidey senses. If you are meant for something bigger in this world, that knowing will keep speaking up and asking you for what it wants. So really, creating big things is not an option when it’s your destiny. At least, that’s what I’m pretty sure your spidey senses would tell you.

7. You feel things. Big time.

Most of the clients I work with you are meant for big things in the world tend to feel pretty deeply. You may not have been taught that it’s okay to feel. You may have been taught, in fact, that your feelings will get in the way of being awesome. Well, let’s reframe that. Sometimes our feelings are our TRUTH. Your ability to be big, and contribute to the world in a huge way is dependent upon your truth. So allow your feelings to show up, and to guide you to where you need to be. Your creations depend upon it.

8. You’re more frustrated by having too many ideas than you are by not having any at all.

You tend to get inspired easily. In fact, the more awesome your life becomes, the more inspired YOU become. But sometimes it’s a bit of a conundrum. You know you’re meant to create big things, but if you’re not careful you can allow yourself to get stopped up by ALL of the things you want to create, without actually getting anything done. Don’t let this get to you. Be grateful that you’re so full of awesome ideas. If you’re not sure where to start or what to focus on, call upon some support. But don’t let your plethora of visions within your vision get in the way.

“Be not afraid of greatness. Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and others have greatness thrust upon them.” ~ William Shakespeare

And here’s the caveat, I actually believe that we’re all meant for big things if we allow ourselves to listen to the stirring of our soul. When we let go of “perfect timing”, and recognize that “too late” does not exist, it becomes easier to allow that stirring to become a rising up of awesome. I’ve coached 13 year olds and 70+ year olds into living their visions. If they can do it, so can you.

What other signs have you seen show up in your life that are calling you to something bigger?

How to Get out of Your Head and into the Present Moment.


The present moment is filled with joy and happiness. If you are attentive, you will see it.” ~ Thích Nhất Hạnh

Your mind is probably running too much – just like mine is. Sometimes it just worries about the most random things that don’t really matter. Well, here are a few simple practices that you can do easily throughout your day in order to pause your monkey mind and feel the joy of the present moment.

How to Get out of Your Head and into the Present Moment

“Realize deeply that the present moment is all you have. Make the NOW the primary focus of your life.” ~ Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now

1. Walking

Get into your body and feel yourself walking. Walk with 100% attention in your leg muscles. Notice the way your feet roll across the ground. Feel your center of balance moving forward. Walking is actually a repetitive falling forward motion. Embrace your swinging arms and the air softly moving through your hands. Step with purpose. Getting this focused into the simple act of walking will definitely ground you into the present moment.

2. Look up at the stars

It’s no question that looking into a clear night sky can humble any person. You are a tiny speck on a tiny planet amidst the vast canvas of space. Embrace the night sky with your entire heart and glimpse at the infinite part of you. The universe is just like a mirror. Stare up and look at your awesomeness. You will feel yourself become very present, peaceful, and joyous.

3. Smell a flower

If you see a flower, don’t shrug it off. Appreciate it. Allow the flower to bring you right into the now, out of your head, and into it’s blessed fragrance. I always do this. There is an impulse in me to approach every flower I see. People may give me funny looks, but that’s okay, they don’t know what they’re missing.

4. Take a hot shower

Showers are incredibly refreshing. Having the sensations of flowing hot water run all over your body is a magical sensory experience. Many people take showers without thinking about it – or they are just planning their day ahead. But there is a better way. Get present. Get in your body and feel the uniqueness of the experience. Showers are a great daily meditation (and you will smell good too!).

5. Embrace your art or craft

Whether writing, drawing, painting, playing music, anything! Enjoy it completely and so utterly that your mind is emptied into the presence of your concentration – your flow, into that one creative practice. I do this when I improvise on my ukulele, just feeling the notes flow from my fingers to my ears. No planning, no thinking, no stress. Just music. This is a wonderful way to become present.

6. Exercise or run

Get your blood pumping. Many people I know just love running to clear their head. Start moving your body (notice the theme here – your body brings you into the present in so many ways). Even running for 10 minutes can do wonders for your health, energy levels, and calming the monkey mind. If running isn’t an option, then try doing yoga, lifting weights, or just jumping up and down on your bed for a few minutes. :)

7. Admire nature

Mother Nature is beautiful. Go into nature and let the scenery invade your senses. Often times I like going out into the forest, where I can be surrounded by calmness and being. The trees are not trying hard. They are not worrying. You can sense their peacefulness. Allowing the birds singing to echo in your mind, the leaves rustling in the wind, all of it, bringing you into a meditative state. Nature is divine.

8. Smile at people

You are a people! Smile at yourself. Smile at others. I can not tell you how many times a smile has completely brought me out of my head – out of my own little world – and deeply into the present moment shared with another soul. Sometimes a stranger and I lock eyes, and we smile, and everything else melts away. We don’t know each other at all, but we share something within. We share this moment. And the moment is a joyous place, where smiles are born. Smile at everyone.:)

9. Laugh

Going hand in hand with smiles, go and laugh. Laughter is a wonderful meditation! In fact, there’s lots of people who do “laugher yoga.” What a funny practice. Literally. Whether you’re with friends exchanging silly stories, inside jokes, or watching viral youtube videos (much funner when watching with others) you can laugh your ass off. Try it. I guarantee you won’t be worrying about anything while you’re rolling on the floor with sore abs.

10. Watch kids play

In a non-creepy way please lol. Kids are perfect examples of living without worry. They are so present and they don’t hold back what they say. They question, they wonder, they have a unique and fresh perspective. Look at them play, doing the most random insignificant things that amuse them. Making up games, creating invisible friends, and embracing their imaginations. In many ways, kids are wiser than we are. They haven’t forgotten to have fun. Try being around kids and watch your inner child-like wonder begin to surface.

11. Cloud gazing

If you’re not convinced how awesome clouds are, just sign up for Instagram. Clouds are an ever-shifting entertainment of nature. Sort of like stars, they remind me of my smallness, yet my significance. That I am here to admire their shifting shapes. Looking at clouds has always been an exercise in imagination too. As a kid we always tried to pick out shapes. You may have done this too. Try it out.

12. Pet your cat or dog

Get as present as your cat or dog. They don’t care about anything except dangling shoe strings, red lasers, and tennis balls (or frisbees in my dog Clipper’s case). Animals are so chilled out. They are unconditionally loving and it will rub off on you if you let it. Take a de-stress break, call your animal, and just be with it for a minute. Don’t have any pets? Pet your neighbors. Don’t have neighbors? Go to the animal shelter.

13. Look at your hands

You have fingers! WOAH. And thumbs! Look at your hands and fingers. You are an incredible human body. The mere fact that you can navigate around the world, pick up things, interact, touch and hold others, create things, and express yourself is amazing. Appreciate deeply the fact that you can see and feel yourself. You are alive. Be present with that fact for a moment.

14. Go all in

Go ALL IN to your senses. You can create a burst of clarity by entering your senses completely. It’s like emptying your mind quickly and letting only your senses flood your awareness. It’s not thinking. Stepping back from the labels we paint all over the world and instead seeing everything directly. It’s kind of hard to explain, but imagine being on a diving board, looking into the water below. You’re mind is usually up there on the diving board, looking into the murky water of experience, because everything goes through so many filters and labels. Going all in is a mental dive into the water of your senses. Submerging yourself completely in the now, instead of watching it from above with your mind.

What are your favorite ways to get out of your head and into the present moment?

The Biggest “mistake” Most of Us Make in Life.


“Because one believes in oneself, one doesn’t try to convince others. Because one is content with oneself, one doesn’t need others’ approval. Because one accepts oneself, the whole world accepts him or her.” ~ Lao Tzu

As a counsellor and wellness coach I regularly I dish out words of wisdom from the clarity I have uncovered over many years of wandering the globe, sitting with masters, facing my shit and investigating life.  Any clarity and wisdom I have uncovered can only ever arise after making a few doozie mistakes.

Believe me I’ve had my fair share of falling over flat on my face… oops! So I want to share one of my biggest oversights. The biggest mistake I have made in my life that has had the most painful impact and has been the biggest lesson.

I wonder if you have made the same mistake?

To be honest I don’t even really like the word mistake. It is a really negative word for such a natural and essential part of life. Mistakes are what help us to navigate our lives. They are a golden opportunity to re-clarify our values and to the test out the results of our thoughts and actions.

So the biggest mistake most of us make in life is… not loving and accepting ourselves as we are.

For most of my childhood and into my twenties I was on a quest to be perfect. I gave it a damn good shot. I lived under a constant pressure to be some-one better than who I was. I wanted to be better, faster, wiser, kinder, prettier, more successful. It was an immense pressure to live under. When I found myself on a spiritual path, the constant measuring tape and criticism was still present. Even my meditation practice was fueled by a striving for perfection.

It was painful. I never measured up against my own unfair and ridiculous expectations of myself. I was addicted to fixing and improving myself.

This changed significantly a few years ago when I met a master in India who stopped me in my tracks. She introduced me to the perfection of my true nature that exists at the core of my being. Finally the perfection that I was striving for was revealed. It was there all along, only overlooked. It is the essential nature of all humans at the core… shining in all its brilliance… yet overlooked by a fixed idea of how things should look on the surface.

Ahhhh the relief!

Finally I could relax into being my imperfect self. I could finally celebrate my annoying tendencies. Every so often I can feel the pressure arise as I feel the weight of expectation but the pain of not measuring up is a great reminder and a signpost to relax back into my delightful imperfection.

Since then life is more like an experiment. I playfully try things out and if they don’t work I go back to the drawing board. The outcomes of my efforts have nothing to do with my self worth, they are merely a playful experiment. Yippee! This is when life really becomes fun!

I love the analogy of the diamond. It is the most precious, valuable and sort after stone in the world. It is created by high pressure and temperature over millions of years. The word diamond comes from a Greek word meaning unbreakable. Every single diamond that has ever been created by nature is flawed.  Diamonds are created with different colours, sizes and clarity. All are beautiful and special just as they are.

Just like us! We are all gorgeous, stunning, brilliant creatures just as we are.  Flaws and all.

One of the biggest gifts that we can give ourselves is to wake up to our true nature and love and adore who we are right now.  So your homework is to look at yourself in the mirror everyday and look into your eyes.  Look all the way to the core. See the perfect sparkle in your eyes and look for the sparkle in others around you.

Go shine dears ones! Sparkle bright. Stop trying to fix yourself and radiate just as you are. Don’t wait until this happens or that happens until you will accept yourself. Whatever you have done, whatever is your particular darkness, you are worthy to have the light burst from the wildly vibrant depths of who you are.

A Modern Glimpse into Ancient Relaxation Practices.


Relaxation techniques such as yoga and meditation have been around for thousands of years. Countless generations have shown us that engaging in these practices can help us live healthier, more balanced lives. But, the question arises: How?
Learn more about The Chopra Center’s signature meditation & yoga retreat Seduction of SpiritHow do these activities – as simple as breathing or even thinking – affect our bodies in such profoundly positive ways? By what internal processes does this occur? As modern science marches steadily ahead, paving the way to understanding the physiologic underpinnings of the mind–body connection, we are beginning to see glimpses of the extraordinary and beautifully complex mechanisms behind the changes our bodies undergo when we meditate, practice yoga, or simply. . . breathe. As a physician and clinician, it is exciting for me to see these unfolding answers to age-old questions.In the last several years, research has emerged suggesting that when we relax, changes occur not only at the cellular level, but also at the most subtle level of our physiology – our genes. Our genetic code, which lies within our DNA, holds all the information necessary to build and maintain our bodies. Although this code is largely unchanged from conception throughout our adult lives, it appears that changes in gene regulation – or when our genes are turned “on” or “off” – are the greatest factor in how our inherited code shapes our health and wellbeing. What science is now showing us is that we can affect our own gene regulation through mind-body relaxation practices.A very recent study that suggests the relaxation response actually changes how our genes express themselves adds more support to what researchers see as a growing body of evidence that giving your mind and body a break can result in some real – and important – health benefits, such as improving energy metabolism and decreasing the aging effects of vascular inflammation.In a nutshell, researchers found that when study participants practiced a relaxation technique such as mindful breathing, meditation or prayer, or yoga, different genes were activated in their bodies than when they were in a neutral or stressful state. Specifically, genes that counteract the damaging effects of stress are activated, and the activity of genes that fuel the anxious “fight-or-flight” reaction are diminished. The relaxation response elicited positive genetic changes affecting mitochondria, the powerhouses that energize the cell. The activity of genes linked to insulin levels, which aid in energy metabolism, also increased. Also noted was a decrease in gene activity related to inflammation, which has been linked to high blood pressure, heart disease, and cancer.The good news is that these positive genetic changes were seen in all the study participants who engaged in relaxation activities. The even better news is that far more pronounced changes were seen in the participants who were long-term practitioners of the relaxation response. The researchers note that this beneficial relaxation response can be attained through many different techniques – meditation, prayer, yoga, or mindfulness, among others – but the differences in techniques were not reflected in the patterns of the gene regulation changes.These findings hearten me as I continue encouraging my patients to engage in the healing practices of the Vedic tradition such as yoga and pranayama (breathing techniques). With this added insight, I know that they will not only feel better, they will be better.

In the end, as we get closer to unwinding the secrets of age-old wisdom, we gain a renewing appreciation for the strength of our healing traditions that integrate into our modern lives and help to keep us whole well into the future.

7 Things Outstanding Leaders Do Differently


“A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves.” ~ Lao Tzu

What makes some people stand out of the ordinary crowd as awesome leaders?

Why do these people live wonderful lives, while the rest just drag themselves from day to day?

Great leaders shape history. Average people just get by. Greatness, however,  is simply a set of different behaviors and habits. You too can become great if you adopt them. Here’s what outstanding leaders do differently and how you can start implementing these habits into your own life.

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1. They have a vision for their future

Outstanding leaders are the captains of their own boat called life. They know that the boat is following their directions and they take on the responsibility for giving those directions. They are the ones shaping the future by having a clear vision and taking 100% responsibility for whatever happens to them..

A man without a vision is like a boat without a destination. It just sails adrift in the middle of the ocean, being at the mercy of tides and waves.

All great leaders have a vision and they pursue that vision with tremendous passion. They know exactly what they want, so they are able to get others to follow them towards their desired outcome.

“Where there is no vision, the people perish.” ~ Proverbs 29:18

2. They stay true to themselves above anything else

Outstanding leaders follow their own inner guidance whenever faced with a decision. They know what’s best for them and they will do whatever they think it’s right, even in the face of adversity.

They speak their truth and they act according to what they feel to be true, even with the risk of offending others. Outstanding leaders are authentic and congruent. That’s how they gain other people’s trust so easily. They aren’t afraid to expose themselves just as they are – with both strengths and weaknesses.

They admit they are human and can make mistakes. They cherish their imperfection and use it as an asset. Above all, they value their individuality and aren’t afraid to show it, even to those who disagree.

Outstanding leaders stay true to themselves, even if others demand compliance. They know they are the only person worth appeasing. They have a very strong inner validation system that guides them, so they don’t need the approval of others.

“Before you are a leader, success is all about growing yourself. When you become a leader, success is all about growing others.” ~ Jack Welch

3. They persevere in the face of obstacles

One of the most important traits of outstanding leaders is their ability to slide over setbacks and rejections. Many outstanding leaders have faced rejections before they managed to get their ideas through. Nonetheless, they persevered and succeeded.

What got them to success was their mindset. They viewed obstacles as challenges and growth opportunities, not as indicators to quit. Instead of stopping them, obstacles had the exact opposite effect: they made them even more determined to succeed and to prove they were right and others were wrong.

Great leaders don’t focus on problems and rejections. Instead, they focus on solutions and what they can learn and do better next time. They don’t take setbacks personally. They know that they are right – their internal validation system tells them that – and they do everything needed to convince the world of that fact.

4. They act with courage despite having fear

Outstanding leaders are admired for their courage. Many people who have displayed great courage have remained in history as heroes.

But what made these people different wasn’t their lack of fear. On the contrary. They felt fear just like any other human being. What set them apart was their ability to feel that fear and act despite having it.

Outstanding people have the same fears, doubts, inner conflicts and mixed emotions like everyone. But they have learned to follow their vision, no matter what they feel. They know they’re taking action for a bigger cause and  that vision inspires them to keep going even in the face of fear.

It’s not that they ignore their fear. In fact, they acknowledge it – since they admit their weaknesses and are confortable with exposing vulnerability – but they do whatever is more important for them and they don’t allow fear to paralyze them to inaction. They use fear as a catalyst that propels them in the desired direction.

5. They anticipate obstacles and find solutions

Outstanding leaders have a plan. They don’t just jump into things unprepared. They carve out a path towards their goal. Furthermore, they attempt to predict what can go wrong on their path, so that they can be prepared for any situation.

But they don’t start thinking of all the things that can work out badly and find ways to counter them. It would consume too much energy and time. Besides, one can thing of a million reasons why things could go wrong. That’s not the purpose.

Outstanding leaders have learned to use their common sense and anticipate challenges. They do that by observing how things work and relate to another. They have a realistic view and avoid over- or underestimating their current circumstances. They don’t get too excited, nor do they become paranoid. They succeed in looking at circumstances, situations and people and seeing them just as they are.

Their ability to think clear and not be limited by beliefs allows them to accurately anticipate obstacles and find solutions in advance.

6. They spend time on things which matter most

Outstanding leaders are very efficient. And they have the exact same 24 hours per day like everyone else does. The difference is in their ability to manage time.

Outstanding leaders spend most time on those activities which matter to them and bring them greatest fulfillment. Since they have a vision with a plan, they know exactly what to do to make it a reality. So they invest energy in making things happen and in creating a meaningful life.

On the flipside, average people spend time in activities which distract their attention and don’t bring them any long-term gains. They just seek instant gratification and pleasure as much as possible.

Outstanding leaders will often sacrifice short-term pleasure for long term gain, because they know that’s where real happiness comes from. They have learned to delay their gratification,while keeping an eye on the vision and taking massive action which brings them closer to living their dreams.

“Management is about arranging and telling. Leadership is about nurturing and enhancing.” ~ Tom Peters

7. They are constantly improving

Outstanding leaders don’t settle for what they have. They seek to constantly expand themselves, they are continuously learning new skills and developing their abilities. Outstanding leaders are perpetual students and they never get tired of learning.

They also never stop dreaming and setting goals for themselves. They have a permanent vision of how their ideal life looks like and they are always updating this image, as soon as they get close to reaching it.

Outstanding leaders set very high standards for themselves. Whenever they’re close to reaching their goals, they set new ones, so they can keep moving further and further. They are expanding and growing and constantly seeking new challenges to face and new ways to push their comfort zone.

Unlike average people who settle for comfort, outstanding leaders embrace challenges, because they know these are the prerequisites for lasting growth and satisfaction.

“The growth and development of people is the highest calling of leadership.” ~ Harvey Firestone

Your turn

Take one step at a time and make these changes permanent in your life. What will you do starting today to become an outstanding leader? I really want to know what are your thoughts on this.

How To Find and Keep Your Balance.


Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance, order, rhythm and harm. ~Thomas Merton

When our resilience is low it’s often because we’re focussing our energies on one area of our lives over the others – usually some stressful event, work, or a collection of things that are taxing. What goes out of the window are the counter balancers – the things that are soothing, the slow, the easy going, the nourishing.

BALANCEEE

I once had an amazing yoga teacher who would change the focus of her classes each week. We’d never know what each class’s emphasis would be until we got there so there was always an air of excitement and anticipation as to what we’d find.

Sometimes they would be 2 hour, intense workouts that would leave us drenched in sweat with muscles crying out for their Mummy’s.

Other times she would have us do laughing yoga and headstands against the wall like when we were at school.

And at other times the movements would be so gentle, the poses held for so long that it was almost like we were working in slow motion; languid, soothing and elastic.

One thing I remember her talking about was the fact that yoga is all about balance – when we stretch one side of the body we must stretch the other or our muscles will be out of whack. When we’re energetic one day, we must be calm another.

But in our modern lives we don’t get this. We get overwhelmed, run on empty or adrenaline long past the point where every fibre of our bodies is telling us to cool it, take a break, have a rest. We tell ourselves we can’t just yet, we will when we get the chance, once things calm down, as soon as this project’s out of the way, after the holidays, when I’m earning a bit more money ….etc.

We all know what it’s like to have a vacation and immediately fall ill. We know what it’s like to spend our vacations feeling so exhausted we can barely function, or to spend the first week getting into the ‘zone’ of not being on the go all the time, only to spend the second week getting revved up for it again.

If sounds like you then I have news for you – you’re completely out of balance.

Just like in yoga, our minds need periods of activity and calm. We need to feel inspired and totally unplugged at different times. Think of it like an elastic band – if you keep it taut all the time it’s eventually going to snap. But if you stretch and release, stretch and release, it will last a lifetime.

What You Can Do

What are you doing to stay busy that you could drop right now? Be honest with yourself – do the kitchen cupboards need to be washed down every day? Do you need to iron the underwear (I mean, who’d know if you didn’t?) How many calls do you make or emails you write that make no real contribution to you productivity and output?

Here’s another question to ask yourself – if you we suddenly told you were invited onto the Oprah show/Top Gear/X-factor (delete depending on which one rocks your boat the most!) but had to be on a plan by lunchtime tomorrow to get there – what would you drop from your schedule? What could you delegate/postpone/outsource? Of the things you definitely HAD to do, how much more quickly would you get them done if you knew you only had a limited timescale?

What would you do with an extra hour a day?

What would you do if you ONLY had one hour a day? (This will help you get super focused on what’s really essential to you.)

Imagine you’re looking back one year from now. What would you regret not doing more/less of?

Once you have the answers to these questions list 3 things you are GOING TO DO in the next 7 days to get more balance in your life and if you feel comfortable, share them with us in the comment section bellow. It could be doing less housework, spending more time in nature, eating out for dinner once per week so that you’ve some extra time with your family.

Theory is great but if you don’t put some of it into action it’s for nothing – and nothing will change. So choose 3 things, share them with us if you feel comfortable in the comment section bellow, commit to them and regain your equilibrium.

Source: purposefairy.com

Just Thinking about Science Triggers Moral Behavior.


Psychologists find deep connection between scientific method and morality.

 
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Public opinion towards science has made headlines over the past several years for a variety of reasons — mostly negative. High profile cases of academic dishonesty and disputes over funding have left many questioning the integrity and societal value of basic science, while accusations of politically motivated research fly from left and right. There is little doubt that science is value-laden. Allegiances to theories and ideologies can skew the kinds of hypotheses tested and the methods used to test them. These, however, are errors in theapplication of the method, not the method itself. In other words, it’s possible that public opinion towards science more generally might be relatively unaffected by the misdeeds and biases of individual scientists.  In fact, given the undeniable benefits scientific progress yielded, associations with the process of scientific inquiry may be quite positive.

Researchers at the University of California Santa Barbara set out to test this possibility. They hypothesized that there is a deep-seated perception of science as a moral pursuit — its emphasis on truth-seeking, impartiality and rationality privileges collective well-being above all else. Their new study, published in the journal PLOSOne, argues that the association between science and morality is so ingrained that merely thinking about it can trigger more moral behavior.

The researchers conducted four separate studies to test this. The first sought to establish a simple correlation between the degree to which individuals believed in science and their likelihood of enforcing moral norms when presented with a hypothetical violation. Participants read a vignette of a date-rape and were asked to rate the “wrongness” of the offense before answering a questionnaire measuring their belief in science. Indeed, those reporting greater belief in science condemned the act more harshly.

Of course, a simple correlation is susceptible to multiple alternative explanations. To rule out these possibilities, Studies 2-4 used experimental manipulations to test whether inducing thoughts about science could influence both reported, as well as actual, moral behavior. All made use of a technique called “priming” in which participants are exposed to words relevant to a particular category in order to increase its cognitive accessibility. In other words, showing you words like “logical,” “hypothesis,” “laboratory” and “theory” should make you think about science and any effect the presentation of these words has on subsequent behavior can be attributed to the associations you have with that category.

Participants first completed a word scramble task during which they either had to unscramble some of these science-related words or words that had nothing to do with science. They then either read the date-rape vignette and answered the same questions regarding the severity of that transgression (Study 2), reported the degree to which they intended to perform a variety of altruistic actions over the next month (Study 3), or engaged in a behavioral economics task known as the dictator game (Study 4). In the dictator game the participant is given a sum of money (in this case $5) and told to divide that sum however they please between themselves and an anonymous other participant.  The amount that participants give to the other is taken to be an index of their altruistic motivation.

Across all these different measures, the researchers found consistent results. Simply being primed with science-related thoughts increased a) adherence to moral norms, b) real-life future altruistic intentions, and c) altruistic behavior towards an anonymous other. The conceptual association between science and morality appears strong.

Though this finding replicates across different measures and methods, there’s one variable that might limit the generalizability of the effect. There is some evidence suggesting that attitudes towards science vary across political parties with conservatives having become decreasingly trustworthy of science over the past several decades. Though the researchers did include measures of religiosity in their studies, which did not affect the relationship between science and morality, ideally they would have also controlled for political affiliation. It’s not a stretch to imagine that undergraduate students at the University of Santa Barbara disproportionately represent liberals. If so, the relationship between science and morality found here might be stronger in self-described liberals.

That said, there’s also reason to believe that the general public, liberal or conservative, can draw a distinction between the scientific process and its practitioners. In the same way that people might mistrust politicians but still see nobility in the general organizing principles of our political structure, we could hold charitable views of science independent of how it might be conducted.

These results might seem encouraging, particularly to fans of science. But one possible cost of assigning moral weight to science is the degree to which it distorts the way we respond to research conclusions. When faced with a finding that contradicts a cherished belief (e.g. a new study suggesting that humans have, or have not, contributed to global warming), we are more likely to question the integrity of the practitioner. If science is fundamentally moral, then how could it have arrived at such an offensive conclusion? Blame the messenger.

How can we correct this thought process?  A greater emphasis on, and better understanding of, the method might do the trick. It’s significantly harder to deny the import of challenging findings when you have the tools necessary to evaluate the process by which scientists arrived at their results. That new study on global warming is tougher to dismiss when you know (and care enough to check) that the methods used are sound, regardless of what you think the authors’ motivations might be. In the absence of such knowledge, the virtue assigned to “science” might also be a motivational force for ideological distortion, the precise opposite of impartial truth-seeking.

Source: scientificamerican.com

Are You Thinking Your Way out of Happiness?


Even if happiness forgets you a little bit, never completely forget about it. ~Jacques Prévert

At the age of 5, I sang at the Playboy Club. At 10 years old, I got the part of Lady Macbeth in a school production of Macbeth. Growing up I sang and acted whenever and wherever I could. Performing was what I loved, what I was good at, and what I did… without thinking about it.

Then I grew up enough to learn the art of messing with ones mind. My bullet train to success began to derail as it made pit stops at:

“You’re not that good of a singer.

There are so many talented actresses who never catch a break

The odds are against you.

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You’d better have a back-up plan.”

I had been on the express train until my resident monster squatter hijacked my brain, took the controls and made these pit(y) stops creating self doubts. These doubts created uncertainty in my abilities and dampened my determination to believe in what was possible vs. probable.

You have powers you never dreamed of. You can do things you never thought you could do. There are no limitations in what you can do except the limitations of your own mind. ~Darwin P. Kingsley

When we’re younger, we act (or do) first and think later. As we get older, we think, and think, and think, and sometimes never get around to doing. Sometimes it’s because we’re not sure of what it is we want to do, or we’re afraid, or we worry about the ‘how’ it could ever materialize.

You can stay alert to opportunities by being grounded in the wisdom of uncertainty. When your preparedness meets opportunity, the solution will spontaneously appear. ~Deepak Chopra

If you’re worried about ‘how’ it will happen, don’t. Just don’t. When you take a few steps forward every day, you will arrive where you need to be. Also expect that there will be surprises and destinations along the way that you could never have planned for, or imagined. As a performer, I always wished for an additional way to fill my creative tank without being dependent on the seemingly random casting process. While I still have faith that my acting pipeline hasn’t dried up, I would never have guessed that the fuel to top off my tank would be writing.

If you haven’t yet discovered your passion and your vision is blurry, don’t force it. I have found that life’s viewfinder will focus on what it is you are supposed to be doing when it’s time. We want light to be shed on the answer now, but we need to be patient and trust that it is in the darkroom where our picture will develop. Welcome uncertainty. Detach from the outcome.

In detachment lies the wisdom of uncertainty…in the wisdom of uncertainty lies the freedom from our past, from the known, which is the prison of past conditioning. ~Deepak Chopra

Be prepared, and be open for all possibilities. Exciting opportunities await when you are in a mindset to receive them. Do not allow the monster DJ of KFUK radio in your head to control you. These are old beliefs from an old playlist. Don’t copy and paste them to your life now. Go find that file in your playlist labeled something like, “Operation Sabotage” and delete it from your mental hard drive. Thinking can help us move on our way, instead of getting in our way! Begin inputting encouraging, positive data, including all you are grateful for. The results will be astounding.

Source: http://www.purposefairy.com

A Different Approach to Happiness.


Don’t wait around for other people to be happy for you. Any happiness you get you’ve got to make yourself. ~Alice Walker

We have been programmed in many ways to feel that our ability to lead a happy life is dependent on outside influences. Validation of self through others, the accumulation of stuff, conformity to the norm, are just several of the ways in which we anchor what should arise from the inner core and be a part of the fabric of our being to the physical world.

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It is not as if we have not been bombarded by these concepts from the time we are able to comprehend the concept of cause and effect. Through our families, media, advertising, friends, or any other human interaction in which some type of worldly worth is placed on whatever circumstance we are facing, we become conditioned to placing a value on things. We have to have so much money, this type of job, these amounts of savings, this sort of build, a certain look, to a point where the senses are overloaded and we accept this as the way it has to be.

Many of us stay content walking or running in place until a jarring event or circumstance forces us to face and at times question whether we are truly content with our lot in life. Once we are forced off the treadmill, the Universe either nudges or pushes us to seek our own individual path and we then start to become more aware that our happiness can never be of the outside plane, but resides within our individual souls. As a concept itself, happiness has a circular definition completely relative to where you are in your life in a given moment.

When I was furiously arguing with a driver in Honduras on the cusp of a pitch black field to return to a safe place after he indicated we would be picking up a friend of his for the ride,  I was not happy. Once the windshield lit up from the refraction of the red beam attached to a rifle scope which danced between my forehead and that of the driver as it streamed from the “empty” field, I was happy when the car backed up and we sped down the road.

1. Depend only on yourself for happiness

We have to listen to ourselves and we will be guided to do what we need to do. We cannot base any part of our happiness on another person. It is unfair and no one should be placed in that position and have that type of responsibility hoisted on them nor should we want to be with someone who craves this to be their role. We can wish someone happiness, but happiness cannot be forced, manipulated, or faked. We take actions that are thoughtful and mindful because we want to and not out of a sense of obligation.
Only when we have inner peace and a healthy respect and relationship with ourselves, can weattain a sense of happiness that is in balance.

2. Live in the Present Moment

When we spend the energy to reflect on the past, we sometimes get caught up in scenarios which we play out in our heads that are not true or exaggerated truth. If things were really so great, we would still be in situations that were weighing us down and at times sucking the life out of our souls.

A set of unique events brought us each to this exact moment of time and where we are in our lives. We had to undergo constant change and movement in our lives to be the people we are this instant. If you were to change one decision in the past, the present would be completely different That is why if we are unhappy this instant, we have an incredible power to change the course of our lives so that what occurs now impacts the what happens in an hour or tomorrow. If you feel happy in this moment, decisions will be made this instant that either enhance this state of bliss or take you on a different path.

Regardless of where we are, living in the Now and allowing all things and people to just Be, opens the door for the Universe to work her magic for the good of all. The minute we try to force or control the Universe, is when we go out of balance and start spiraling into a state of chaos in our lives. Just Be.
The minute we try to control, we lose control.

3. Embrace Change as an integral part to Happiness

What is exciting about the notion of impermanence is discovering what the change will be and what the now just became. We and everyone in our lives is blessed with the ability to change, to grow to blossom and to live out our bliss. We should embrace our potential and bravely accept the challenges we face which become the vehicles that carry us to who we are to become.

The tip of the iceberg, but a least we see the iceberg…

Source: http://www.purposefairy.com