Tag Archives: goals

Merry Christmas From Lifestyle Design With Monica. New Book and New Website!!


Well, Hello to all the special people/ blog readers of Lifestyle Design With Monica!! Long time, no talk, huh??!! 

I can hardly believe how long it’s been since I’ve written a post here, but as you will see, there have been may reasons I haven’t, not one of them being that I’ve stopped writing. At all!! In fact…..

I am just about to release my book, The Weight Loss Mindset!! Promotions and marketing are running high here in the real world and lots of exciting things are happening, which is why I decided it’s about time I returned to my blogging roots and to thank ALL you wonderful people who have read and subscribed to my blog some time ago. So, THANK YOU!!! Without the support of people like you who took the time to read, comment and encourage my writing I may have come as far a I have (so to speak!!).

If you would like to continue to follow my journey (and I would sincerely LOVE you to!!), please drop by my new site, www.theweightlossmindset.com.au to find out more.

My new site will soon have a blog on it too, but even now you can sign up and I will stay in touch via my bulk email service. This will be a great opportunity to learn more about my book and also the newly associated products and services that will eventually be available on my site.

Because YOU are one of my early blog readers, YOU’LL BE THE FIRST TO HEAR!!

In the meantime, I would also like to wish you and your family a beautiful, safe and happy Christmas and New Year. There is so much untapped potential in us all and I wish for YOU, this festive seasons, your own feeling of abundance, success, joy and awakening possiblities in the NEW YEAR.  It truly can be a great one for all of us, if we choose to make it so, no matter what else happens in our lives.

With Much Love, Peace and Happiness,

Monica xxoo

PS To reply to this post, please just leave a comment. I WOUL LOVE TO HEAR WHAT YOU’VE BEEN UP TO, AS WELL. Any successes or recent triumphs you have experienced with you blog or life?  PLEASE SHARE!!

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How To Find Out What’s Driving Your Chosen Endeavour, Plus Easy Ways To Make Purpose and Meaning Your Answer


Have you ever stopped to ponder why you do what you do? Why you are working toward a particular project? Why you follow a particular hobby or passion? Why you do a particular job or parent your kids the way you do?

If it is because you feel excited and purposeful in doing them and that these experiences are creating real meaning and opportunities for you, then my head is nodding and my hands are clapping, ‘cos I love your answers!!!

If, per chance, your response is any of the following, then perhaps there is a  discussion to be explored here.

1) I do what I do, because of the money.

2) I do what I do, because that's what or how my parents did it.

3) I do what I do, because it's what I've done for a long time.
It makes me feel comfortable. Safe. Bored.

4) I do what I do, because that's what most people my age or
 in my peer/social group are doing.

5) I do what I do, because I'm afraid if I made a change,
it might be hard. Or not work out. Or. Something.

My intention in putting these ideas to you is simply to ask you to think. Or maybe to stop thinking in the way you may have been and ask yourself some different questions. Questions like:-

1) What really makes me happy, excited, inspired, gives me energy and purpose? Could I do that instead? Or at least try it?

2) Is what was right for my parents, right for me?

3) Is doing what I’ve always done really working for me? Is it providing a truly fulfilling and purposeful life for me?

4) Are there other people, in my age and peer group, who are doing something great with their lives? Something I admire them for and would like to emulate?

5) Is refusing or choosing not to change or not to stretch myself to learn and experience something outside of my comfort zone really working for me? Perhaps there is some value to had in trying new things and getting out of my comfort zone.  

Life is short. It is also full of possibilities. Established careers, jobs and ‘traditional’ roles don’t have to dictate who you are or what you do. If you’re not satisfied with the way yours is, why not create a new one for yourself using the above questions as a starting point? Maybe you already have?

Maybe you have already explored those questions and moved on, beyond the ‘expected’ role or label society has stamped you with. Or maybe you’d like to.

I love exploring these type of topics and certainly do not profess to have all the answers. Maybe I’ve got it wrong. Maybe there is more I need to know or discover.

What do you think?

Are you purpose driven in your endeavours?

Does what you do or are striving to do really excite and inspire you?

Is wanting to help improve the lives of others or just reaching out and connecting something you think is a purposeful goal?

What other ways can we inject purpose and meaning into everything we do?

Goal Setting Skills In Action, A Little Revision or The Surprising Power Of Mini Goals


This past week I have been using my time to work toward my BIG goal of getting my book into print. This is no small task and without some sort of plan, realised, I would not find it easy to mobilise myself into action.

So, I set about creating one and now have, what I believe to be, a blueprint for making this book a physical reality.

Along the way however I realised I needed to do a bit of revision in the goal setting area. How had I achieved things in the past, I began to ask? What stratergies had I used when I was losing weight or writing my first ebook?

Since I had actually written extensively about this subject in my ebook, I thought that taking another look at what I had already written about goal setting (in relation to losing weight) might be helpful.

I then thought I might also share this revision with you, so below is a brief extract (edited and reshaped) from Reframe Weight Loss. It is from Chapter 6, Gaining Your Goal Setting Skills. NB The emphasis in the extract is on weight loss goals, but you can substitute your own goals for the weight loss ones and I hope still find some relevance for you.

Start of Extract

Prelude: After discussing my own strategy and then emphasizing the importance  of a goal achieving strategy, I then continue with the following:-

 Chiefly, these strategies were and should be for you:

1. State and express your goal in a positive way. 

2. Be exact!! State exactly when, using a specific date and time that you want to achieve your goal by. A good adage to keep in mind with this strategy is:

3. IT IS IMPORTANT TO TIME YOUR PLAN, BUT ALSO TO PLAN YOUR TIME!

4. Next, write all your goals down on a piece of paper.

5. Place them somewhere where you will see (and review them) often!!

Bite-sized Tasks 

 Okay, so that’s a simple approach to the BIG GOAL. Now, to the real ‘magic’ of goal setting – breaking it down.

It is my belief that no one has ever gotten anything done by sitting and looking only at the BIG PICTURE. That’s not the thing to focus on.

Although it is always important to have that vision alive and vibrant in your mind, it is actually in achieving the many mini goals along the way that is going to get you there. Similar to the BIG GOAL, your mini goals should also have a ‘to be completed by’ date and time. Once again, be precise and be specific.

For  example, your first mini goal may be ‘to lose two kg by the first day of the next month this year. (As I don’t know the exact date that you’re reading this, I’ll let you fill in the more specific month names and year!) After you have a list of all your mini goals, it’s now time to set some even smaller mini goals.

Staying with our mini goal of losing two kg by the first day of the next month, let’s break it down even further. First, two kg in one month is approximately 0.5kg a week.

Great, a much more achievable outcome and one you can ‘see’ clearly and work toward!

From here, the next step is to define the actions and steps you are going to take daily that will get you to that 0.5kg. If you’ve read the preceding chapters of this book, then I think you already know how to do that.

Now however, is the time to get specific. You may end up with about 10 mini tasks that you are going to perform this week, or perhaps a daily ‘to do list’.

Achieving and crossing off these daily tasks will get you to that weekly goal of 0.5kg weight loss.

A review of some of the work we have done so far may assist you in writing these mini tasks. I can set out an example for you of what the first five might look like (they may be familiar to you, as we’ve already touched on them earlier), but it will be up to you to write your own personal and relevant ones. Okay, so maybe something like this:

1. This week, I will continue the exercises I have begun in ‘The Seven-day Plan.’ If I have joined a gym, I will attend three times this week!!

2. For this week, I will only home cook. No takeaway food (this includes snacks and meals).

3.My home cooking will be from my own low-fat recipe book or from my own personal eating plan.

 4. I will replace all my between-meal snacks with fruit, low-fat yoghurt or a low-fat protein smoothie.

 5. I will stay within my calculated ‘calories for weight loss’ and keep an accurate record of everything I eat and drink.

 Important: stay mindful of your mini tasks and remind yourself of them frequently throughout the week.

Setting weekly mini goals is the way to continue, and if at any point even these seem too hard, then take a step back, be realistic and reset some smaller goals; ones that you KNOW without a doubt that you wil.l achieve.

 Gently Raising The Bar

I would like to quickly share with you a simple short story about ‘raising the bar’ that may help clarify for you the effectiveness of ‘mini goals’. It is about a method used in Japan to train children into ‘Ninja Warriors’, and is similar to one that many high jumpers also use to gradually improve their performance. 

For each Ninja child in training a bamboo shoot is planted, and from the very first day that child must jump over it. As it grows and gets higher, the children continue to jump over it on a daily basis. At first, when the bamboo shoot is very low, the task is simple. Then as the canes get a fraction higher each day, the children have to stretch themselves and jump a little higher to succeed. The result however is that they all end up jumping over quite tall canes with surprising ease.

The metaphor for us is clear. Doing just a little bit more, pushing ourselves just a little bit further each day, can amount to huge achievements in our lives, achievements that may not have been possible to attain without a commitment to some smaller daily improvements.

From little things, big things grow!!

I would also just like to add that I have faith that you can find the inspiration (indeed I hope you already have, in this book!!) to achieve each new behaviour, each new habit and each new way to be that you set your mind to. Just like the little Ninja Warriors.”

End Of Extract

That is the extract that I re-read this week and it has helped me to make some progress toward the mini tasks required to achieve my BIG task of publishing my book in print. Just like when I was working toward reaching my weight loss goal (which was a big number of kilos to lose) I am trying not to get overwhelmed with the BIG PICTURE, but rather to focus on the bite sized tasks that are easy and achievable for me on a daily basis.
 But what do you think?
Is this a good way to go about achieving BIG goals?
 
What goal achieving strategies have you employed?
 
Are they effective and do they  make the project (what ever it is) more manageable and achievable for you?
 
Are you working toward some BIG GOAL in your life?
Are there any tips or strategies of your own you can teach us about or add to my list of goal setting strategies?

Blog Renovation Versus Home Renovation: A Case For Both!


Due to circumstances beyond my control, I will not be able to bring you the post I had scheduled for today, which I talked about last week.  Not yet, at least.

And just what are those circumstances, I hear you ask?  In two words – home renovation.  Who knew that could be disruptive?  That it could throw you off balance and tip your semi organised blogging life into slight ..er…disaray?  Nah me.

The Uncomfortable Blogger

Consider this for a minute. One day recently, there I was, steadfastly typing away, unusually and uncomfortably wedged between several towers of furniture, laptop balanced precariously on my knee and the next I was hollering “the internet’s not working!!” only to have it confirmed that “yes, that’s right.  The home office had indeed been guttered and so was the functioning modem and router.” 

I know I should’ve seen it coming. That I should’ve been less absorbed by my musings in cyberspace and a little more ”present” in my real life, but what can I say? I’m a little blogging obsessed, at times. Who isn’t?

When I look more closely at my predicament though I must concede that the several tradesmen standing in my living room that morning had been a pretty big clue that something BIG was about to happen around me. That and perhaps the fact that I was crouched in between most of the furniture in my house, all moved into one corner.

Someone could have spelt it out for me, though, couldn’t they ? 

Something along the lines of “Hey Monica, your home renovation is about to begin and soon you will not only be decluttered and detechnologised but life as you know it will temporarily upended” (said in a nice loud voice, that I could not ignore) would have been helpful.

Therefore, Due To These Unexpected Delays….

Needless to say I am now (after several days of being completely cut off from) back on the net.  This is a temporary concession by the Powers That Run My Life but before the favour runs dry I thought I would jump on here and give you a bit of an update.

So this is it; the ‘weather’ report for The Live, Learn, Achieve, Grow Blog, for the week commencing 10th January, 2011.

This weeks blogging schedule will be slightly delayed due to unprecedented outside interference.  A chance of further disruptions is predicted over several days.  This may continue to cause further changes to my normal blogging programming.  A shame.

So if you’d like to have a read through the archives in the meantime, feel free!!

Hopefully though I will see you back here soon for something fresh and different. 

Till then….take care and may I just offer you a little word of advice  if you happen to be planning any many changes around your house. Don’t do it! 

Plan ahead and stay relaxed.

Happy blogging and I hope to talk to you soon,

Mon

 

 

 

 

 

Networking, Fiction Writing and Why I Committed A Cardinal Blogging Sin


As most of you would know, there are a lot of other “cyber tasks” (apart from actually writing blog posts) that fill up a busy bloggers day ie visiting other blogs, editing and emailing guest posts ( my first soon to go up at WriteAnything ), researching ideas, cyber networking and leaving comments on other blogs.

What can I say, I like to keep busy!

Anyhow, due to all of the above, and a few other things I will go into in a moment, this week I happily committed (perhaps not a cardinal, but rather just a venial sin) of ‘reposting’ a previous post.

Personally I don’t think there is anything greatly wrong with that.

After all your readership may have grown over time and what’s wrong with a little resharing of some relevant and perhaps interesting facts about a particular topic?

Nothing Monica, except I’d read it before, I hear you say.

Yes, well, as I am now in the confessional box, I may as well mention to you another significant factor that affected my (blogging and all other aspects of) life last week. It was called CYCLONE YASI.

You’d have thought that the weather gods may have had enough fun with us Queenslanders lately (with the recent floods and all) but apparently that was just a test run. For just weeks later a category 5 cyclone, which had the dubious honour of being the most severe cyclone in our country’s history, began approaching off the coast. 

I don’t wish to turn this post into a news report about the event. I’m sure there have been plenty of them, worldwide. Suffice to say that this second disaster did once again, hit heart and home.

Our relatives in North Queensland experienced a horendous night (but are all safe) and are now enduring the second week of living with no electricity and a diminishing city water supply. Hardship and adversity has also hit the many  (sugar cane, banana and dairy) farming communities for the second time in just a few years, so these guys are all doing it tough. So please keep them all in yours thoughts and prayers. Thank you.

Okay, well apart from sharing this event with you from my own personal perspective, I also wanted to mention a few great writing sites and projects I have recently become aware of. This also involves sharing with you:-

Some Stuff You Didn’t Know About Me

I’ll make these points briefly (because there’s only a few of them!) :-

1) Apart from my own ebook, I also love to write non-fiction.

2) I have written a 50,000 word romance novel (that currently sits at the bottom of my filing cabinet) that one day, I will dust off and send to a publisher!

3) I am always on the lookout for magazine’s and other places, to submit my short stories to.

4) Last year, I had a story accepted for publication in a national parenting magazine;

5) Then, after a few months of back and forth email contact with the magazine’s editor, it was er….non-accepted (with many sincere and genuine apologies from the very lovely editor. I learnt two things from this experience. One was that  these people all work in editorial teams and as such, what one says, doesn’t always go. And two, they are very busy people and subject to constant changing circumstances about which content is appropriate to produce and which isn’t.

Arghh, all a big learning curve for aspiring writers!! Still, I am an optimist and can not feel anything but gratitude for the little bit of ‘foot in the door’ I was permitted (even if that foot is still just a little bruised and sore from it’s experience!!)

Anyhow, this all leads me to explain why I was so excited to discover a project called #FridayFlash, which as you might have guessed by the hashtag usage, is a fantastic, twitter born, opportunity for writers. Basically, this project involves uploading your own fiction each Friday and participating in the online community of writers bought together by @JMStoth.

If you yourself are intersted in joining in with this project you can do so here.

I myself will be uploading stories  (the stories are already written and on my computer files) as soon as a few hitches with my Microsoft office program are fixed!!

So there you have it friends – a confession, a heartache and some new writing ventures, shared. 

 

  

Your Future Hasn’t Been Written Yet or Why Your Next Resolution Maybe Your Best Yet


 

Many of you may remember this scene  from the very popular movie, Back To The Future. In case you’re too young to remember, it was a fictional tale with a great message about possibilities, outcomes, decisions and personal action.

It was also a great reminder that destiny is something that in contrast to being predetermined is actually, medetermined. Every choice you make or don’t make (and even not making a choice is a choice), every opportunity you do or do not take up is you, determining your future.

The New Year

One of the most popular dates on the calendar for setting goals is coming…. thoughts, ideas and promises will flood our minds with the intent of being fulfilled. “This time next year”…..will be a popular phrase fervently broadcast after a few drinks. Goals such as losing weight, giving up smoking, getting more exercise, writing more will be everywhere. Then, a month or two later……??? Ah, well, it wasn’t meant to be. It’s not my destiny. I was never meant to do that, anyway. Etc, etc…

The excuse of not being in charge of your future is one that many of us are comfortable to fall back on.

When we take the idea that ‘Our future hasn’t been written yet’ though, things begin to change. We can start to see that really…..anything is possible. We can lose that weight, we can achieve that new goal.  Destiny is not an absolute. It is something we can shape, change and create. If we want to.

Great Scott

Couch potatoes have become marathon runners. Because they wanted to.

Bloggers have become published authors. Because they wanted to.

Penniless people have created wealth. Because they wanted to.

Uneducated people have gone back to school. Because they wanted to.

The essential ingredient of course is motivation. Motivation, desire, hard work and a some would argue, luck.

While all these do play a part, I think the most common element in all these success stories is that, the people creating them, believed in being masters of their own destiny.

When midnight strikes this New Year, why not remind yourself of this truth. It may make all the difference, this time next year……

Over To You…

So, I’d love to hear – do you believe in life being me – determined or predetermined? Is circumstance and your life situation something you can control or shape or is it all ‘going to happen anyway’, regardless of your own decisions or choices?

Do you only set new goals at New Year or do you set them weekly,monthly or even daily? Have you an inspirational story to share about overcoming the odds and achieving what you set out to?

Please do share your thoughts. I really appreciate the value your comments add to the discussion. 🙂

I’d also love to hear what you’re doing to ring in the New Year. I’d share my own plans, but they mostly involve sleep…..such the party animal quiet neighbour that I am!

 

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Move Over Homer Simpson or Finding Happiness Through A Fighting Spirit


Motivational videos, speakers, books, music……it’s all out there! But that’s not where it needs to be, is it?

It needs to be right here, with you now, pushing you along to achieve whatever it is that you’ve set your mind to achieving. Sometimes the afore-mentioned will benefit you, sometimes it’s just not enough.

Sometimes our cynical self who seems to be able to dominate our thinking at will just shuts down our potential.

This sort of thinking, for instance, begins to prevail – “It’s no good, I’ll never change. I’ve tried before and didn’t get anywhere.”  Then we back up those thoughts with ‘evidence’ and memories of past failed attempts.

We convince ourselves. And then it seems like reality and every action (or inaction) that occurs after that is justified. We kind of end up HOMER SIMPSONIZING  ourselves.

But what if we saw those negative thoughts as ‘clever confidence tricksters’ like these guys…..

Bad guys. Con men. Sent to rob you of your goals and ambitions. 

How do you react to them now? Are you going to allow them to ride rough shod over you? Or are you going to fight back?

Okay, so this is all very interesting I hear you say, but how is this little analogy going to help me?  Well, it can bring you a new awareness, for one thing. An awareness that negative thoughts and feelings are just  ‘characters’, part-time ‘players’ in our life script, never to be taken seriously and never to feel threatened by.

Practicing this allows their intensity to fade and lessens their power over you. It changes the mental picture.

If it doesn’t have that effect on you, then maybe just doing this to them will….

The Final Thing

One thing for sure, doing NOTHING won’t change a thing.

It will keep you imprisoned (emotionally) and from that place positive change is very difficult to achieve.

So break down the walls, kick ass and fight back and don’t let that  happy, enthusiastic you wait in the wings any longer!!

He’s getting lonely out there……..

 

So what do you think? Have you ever Homer Simpsonized yourself? Love to have you share your thoughts. 🙂 🙂

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