In Order To Make Big Changes: Start Small

In Order To Make Big Changes: Start Small

When it comes to changes, most of us want to make big changes and see big results almost instantly. That’s why so many New Years resolutions and even regular goals fail. We only see the big picture and often get lost in all the effort it will take to see those changes.

What we should do however is focus on the little things. If we want to lose 30 pounds we can go on a crash diet that may work for a while only to see those 30 pounds plus some come back when we stop the diet, or we can start small by reaching for a glass of water instead of that soft drink, walking for 10 mins a day or adding more vegetables to our next meal instead of foods high in carbs.

If we want to save money we can get frustrated with the amount  we want to save and how little extra money we feel like we have to put towards that savings, or we can decide to put away an extra $10 here or there, to cancel that subscription to Spotify or to start bringing our lunch to work or cooking at home to save money.

In both scenarios, before you know it, because it didn’t take an extraordinarily amount of effort,  you will be inching towards your goals and likely will have found the motivation to increase your efforts, even more.

Think about the stories we hear of successful basketball players like Kobe Bryant who spend hours in the gym shooting free throws or three pointers just so when they make the “big shot” in the game it’s really just a series of small things that have come together.

Recently I watched a documentary on body builder and 8 time Mr. Olympia Ronnie Coleman. For years he competed, but never won the Mr. Olympia title until one night, just before the show, with hesitancy, but with the urgency of another body builder, broke his routine. He was encouraged to relax, to have a drink and even eat some pizza. He was simply encouraged to not be so serious. The next morning he woke up and won the Mr. Olympia for the first time and he said he believes it was because he was so relaxed and allowed himself to have fun. Something so small ended up changing his life.

We all have changes we want to make and many people do not make those changes because they get lost in the totality of it all. Start small, put one foot forward and then the next. Before you know it you will have reached a goal you may have thought impossible or at least have gotten yourself further than you ever thought you could.

Big Dick Energy

Big Dick Energy

Big Dick Energy (BDE) as the Urban Dictionary defines it is having confidence without cockiness. It apparently originated from Arianna Grande’s deleted tweet which stated that her fiancé has a 10-inch penis and the confidence that goes along with knowing you have a big penis.

Fortunately for most of us who do not have a 10-inch penis, having BDE has nothing to do with penis size or even having a penis at all. The beauty about BDE is that anyone can have it, male or female and practice having it if they don’t already. You can create the kind of BDE that draws people to you and makes them wonder why you have so much confidence. That’s part of the allure of BDE. People don’t know why you are so confident because you’re not cocky. They may make assumptions such as, he must have a big penis or she must be have a ton of money… they have no real idea.

BDE is a quiet confidence in the way you feel and project yourself to the world that others will notice and more importantly, you yourself will begin to feel and believe in.  You don’t need anyone else’s approval to feel good about yourself. Who cares if the people at the party will like you, or note, what’s more important is will you like them?

Having BDE is an aura or a vibe that any man or woman can have. Sometimes being with a certain person can give you BDE or being in touch with who you really are can make you walk with the confidence of a person with BDE.

If you look up BDE on the internet, you will find all kinds of comparisons of celebrities to who has  BDE and who doesn’t, but who cares! Yes, BDE is this new pop culture thing, but really it’s based on old psychology and confidence. What’s more important that if Justin Bieber has BDE or not is that you can create BDE for yourself and use it to boost your confidence at parties, in meetings, at work, in life in general!

For example, there used to be a time when I felt nervous in certain situations, especially at work in big meetings. Before I even heard about BDE, I would start thinking about some of my favorite Mixed Martial Artist, someone like Jon Jones who yes, may be seen as a cocky a-hole, but besides that, he’s the type of guy that exudes confidence.

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I imagined if he was in my shoes, how would he carry himself? Would he be shy? Would he not speak his mind? Hell no, Jon Jones has that BDE! So I pretended I had that same confidence and it positively impacted my work and productivity. Of course I am not Jon Jones. I don’t look like him, I can’t fight like him and I don’t have his money, but that doesn’t mean I can’t borrow from his confidence and use it for my good.

BDE is about having an air of confidence and sometimes you have to fake it to you make it. The people around you won’t know any better and soon you’ll start feeling and believing in your BDE too. That BDE will push you out of your comfort zone and you’ll be surprised at all the places it will take you, at all the places you’ve been holding yourself back from. It can help you talk to that person, land that job, or conquer that goal!

8 Bad Habits To Break Right Now

8 Bad Habits To Break Right Now

We all have habits that at one time may have served a purpose, but now are likely getting in our way and stopping us from experiencing the life we deserve to live. Here is a list of my top 8 habits to break right now.

Procrastinating

Most of us have things we want to do or know that we should do, but we continuously put them off. In order to be more successful, we have to do what successful people do and that is to actually get on with it. Successful people get an ideal and they go into action. They don’t wait. It could be anything from looking for a new job to traveling or starting a business.

Start by putting action towards your goals. Start by doing at least one thing a day that will move you closer to your goals. Don’t feel like you have to wait until you have all the answers or you could wait forever.

Living In The Past

We all have regrets. Things we wish we wouldn’t have done or said. Things we wish we hadn’t been through. The thing is, the past doesn’t define us. It’s behind us and there is nothing we can do to change it. Some of the toughest things you’ve ever been through have made you uniquely prepared to face life’s challenges. Use them for your good. Focus on what you can change which is the present. Focus on your present to build the future you desire.

Being Afraid To Ask For Help

Many of us pride ourselves on being independent, not needing anyone for anything. However, there is nothing wrong with asking and receiving help. Asking others for help can help you achieve more while also learning from and building a network of like-minded people. You can learn from both their successes and mistakes. It doesn’t make you any less independent or weaker.It can be in fact what you need to take you to the next level.

Being Around Toxic People

Unfortunately there are some people in our lives who don’t want the best for us. They may consciously or subconsciously sabotage us by being negative, sucking up our energy or secretly hoping for and cheering on our failures and short comings. For the most part, people can be divided into drains and faucets. Drains take up your time and energy without adding to your happiness, growth and success. Removing or at least minimizing the amount of time you spend with toxic people will revitalize you and help you stay on track with your personal goals and needs.

Maintaining Clutter

I confess that often my work and living areas are cluttered and that clutter has a tendency to make me feel overwhelmed. I’ve been working on (at least at work) de-cluttering and keeping everything as minimalist as possible. I try to only touch a piece of paper one time and file it, sign it, get rid of it or whatever needs to be done to get it out of my face. I also try to keep a good agenda and an organized place to keep important papers. By not maintaining a constant clutter, I tend not to get as anxious, to be more productive and to feel overall more positive regarding the workday.

Not Making Time For Yourself

Most of us feel like there’s not enough time in the day to do what we need to do. However, if you really think about it, we can find the time. How often do we say we don’t have time to exercise, but we’ll spend 2 hours watching a television show or an hour on social media sites?

There are 10,080 minutes in a week. If you take away 8 hours a night for sleep, that’s 3,360 minutes. That leaves 6720 minutes. Even if you work a 50 hour work week you still have 3,720 minutes left. Now you have to divide that up as it fits into your life, such as time for commuting, but you can see that we can find the time to do the things we really want to do.

Not Getting Enough Sleep

Many of us take sleep for granted. Some of us actually pride ourselves on how little sleep we can get and still function. I for one am a night owl so getting a decent nights rest has always been a challenge for me.

Not getting enough sleep can create health problems and actually make us less productive and less sharp. When I don’t get enough sleep I am less emotionally resilient to deal with everything I need to deal with at work and at home. I tend to get more anxious during high stress situations and just am not myself. Making sure we get enough sleep is an easy way to make sure we are more prepared for whatever the next day has in store for us.

Not Challenging Negative Thoughts

We have millions of thoughts a day and unfortunately some of them will be negative. Left unchecked and unchallenged, we can begin to believe those negative thoughts. Those thoughts tell us we’re not good enough or we can’t do something. They can tell us lots of things to make us feel small and unsure of ourselves.

The good thing is they are just thoughts and we can control our thoughts. We need to stop focusing on the negative and focus on the positive. Focus on our strengths and realize that we’re more than our mind. We have a heart, we have a soul. Change your thoughts instead into solution focused, empowering, motivating thoughts that help you crush whatever obstacles are in your way and help you achieve your dreams.

We all have our own personal bad habits and maybe some of these fit you and some don’t. However, the key to personal growth is to be able to self-assess and change whatever needs to be changed in order to keep moving in the direction we desire. So personalize this, make it yours and if you would like to share some bad habits you plan on stopping please leave a comment, I would love to read them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Years Resolutions

IStock-New-YearsIf you are like me, every New Year you make a list of resolutions, a list of behaviors, attitudes and other changes you would like to see in your life, and each year you fail to keep any of them.

I don’t even remember what my New Year’s resolutions were last year, but the top three New Years resolutions are:

  • starting to exercise
  • eating better
  • reducing the use of alcohol, drugs, cigarettes, etc.

I’m pretty sure part of my New Years resolution last year included all of those three things including the reduction of caffeine/diet sodas and I can tell you I didn’t succeed in any of them.

Most people who make New Years resolutions, 75% fail on their first attempt to make changes and most people make more than one goal.

Why do people make New Years resolutions and how successful are they likely to be?

Researchers Mukhopadhyay and Johar (2005) did some research on the psychology of resolutions.

They found that people who believe that self-control is dynamic, unlimited and changing, are more likely to set more than one resolution (i.e., “I can lose weight, stop drinking and go back to school, it just takes willpower.”).

They found out that people who believe that we all have a limited amount of self-control that can’t be changed (i.e., “I’m fat because my mother was fat, I can’t change that” or “I smoke because my father smoked, it’s in our blood”) and those who have little confidence in their ability to carry out their goals (low self-efficacy) do a lot worse on achieving their resolutions.

High self-efficacy correlated to a higher likely hood of a person achieving their New Years resolutions and goals in general.

People with high self-efficacy tend to attribute their failure to achieve something as a lack of effort on their part, while people with low self-efficacy tend to attribute failure to lack of ability.

People who are made to believe that self-control is a fixed or limited resource that they can’t change, made fewer resolutions and gave up on them faster, regardless of their level of self-efficacy.

What does this mean? That if you believe that self-control is an unlimited resource that we all have access to and it can help you with your goals/resolutions, you will do better at achieving them. The more you believe in your own abilities (self-efficacy), the better you will do also.

Setting MORE goals/resolutions also seems to help because you will be more likely to succeed at them, while people who set a small number of goals usually go into it expecting to fail either consciously or unconsciously, and thus create a self-fulfilling prophesy to fail.

Researchers also say having the actual skills to make the changes you want to see in your life is helpful.

If you want to lose weight, do you actually know how? Have you done the research? If you want to save money for example, do the research ahead of time, it will make it easier for you to actually achieve that goal.

Being ready to change also helps of course.calvin-hobbes-new-years-resolutions-572x433

Some people say that they are ready to change, when they really aren’t and then are surprised when they fail at making the change they said they wanted to make.

There’s a whole psychology orientation called Motivational Interviewing that is about preparing people to make changes in their life.

Miller and Marlatt (1998) also suggest to:

  • Have a strong initial commitment to make a change.
  • Have coping strategies to deal with problems that will come up.
  • Keep track of your progress. The more monitoring you do and feedback you get, the better you will do.

Ingredients for setting yourself up for failure:

  • Not thinking about making resolutions until the last minute.
  • Reacting on New Year’s Eve and making your resolutions based on what’s bothering you or is on your mind at the time.
  • Framing your resolutions in absolutes (i.e., “I will never do ‘x’ or ‘y’ again.”).

Good luck with all your New Year’s resolutions. Mine include exercising more, eating better and losing weight. How original, I know, but I am going to use everything I talked about in this post to help me achieve those goals and hopefully you will too.