The Incredible Power of Taking Risks in Life

There are many ways to change your life for the better. And one simple, yet seemingly scary choice we can make is to be taking more risks in life.

The problem with this path to positive change is that most of us fear taking risks!

may fear rejection, failure and change. We may fear uncertainty.

We think about taking a risk and our innate fight/flight response kicks in.

On top of that, many of us have a warped relationship with fear, where we think fear is bad, and that we should stay away form it.

But actually fear isn’t bad, and neither is risk!

In fact, risk is the very thing that can make us feel alive, and the fear we get with taking risks is just a feeling message to tell us that we’re going outside of our familiar comfort zone.

What’s the worst that could happen?

For many of us, it’s all too easy to get stuck into a routine that provides comfort and safety. But, we have to ask ourselves, are we truly living?

Yes, some risks shouldn’t be taken because the consequences could be disastrous. Howeveyourself. a little bit of discernment, we can take calculated risks that will benefit us regardless of the outcome.

Say for instance, you see an attractive person in a coffee shop, and you want to say hi. What’s the worst that could happen? They’re not interested, but you took that risk which ultimately didn’t hurt you in the end. And doing so likely boosted your courage. So no regrets! It’s all about the attitude you take.

Or there are more serious risks that you could be taking, such as leaving the job you aren’t so thrilled about, or moving to a new country. Again, what is the worse that could happen? If things didn’t work out the way you wanted them to, at least you learnt a lot more about yourself and the world in the process. Plus, you can always go home and go back to the same type of job if you want to!

Risks help to build confidence & open up possibilities

By taking risks, you give yourself permission to try things out, to learn, to fail, to grow and to explore. You get to test your limits and go beyond what you believed was possible. You can to go after the things in life you really want!

By doing this, you naturally build up your self-confidence, growing as a person and opening up a whole new world for yourself.

By taking risks you get better at knowing what you want

Risks helps you to get clear on what you want out of life.

They make you more consciously aware of what is important to you, what you want and don’t want, as part of your planning and decision making process.

Just the level of clarity you get from planning to take a risk helps you to feel more empowered and in control, as the leader of your life and the master of your own destiny.

Risk taking builds self-trust

When you take a risk, you generally do so with awareness after balancing your logic and intuition, to decide what is best for you. By taking action aligned to your own inner compass in this way, you build a level of trust in yourself.

And trusting yourself and knowing when to take action on something you really want only serves to further elevate your self-confidence.

Risks make life exciting and colorful

What would happen if we never took risks?

Life would become monotonous and boring. Nobody wants a boring life, yet it’s such an easy option to resort to, in order to stay safe and in our comfort zones.

It boils down to making a decision.

Although your heart may be racing, and your palms many be sweating, think about what would happen if you didn’t take the chance?

Would you regret the missed opportunity?

We only have this one life, why not stretch yourself to new heights! You never know what could happen… and isn’t that exciting?

Take action starting from today

You don’t need to jump head first into a tonne of risks, but you can practise the art of taking one small risk each day.

It can be as simple as saying hello to someone new, learning a new skill or applying for a new job. Whatever your comfort threshold is, start testing it out each and every day.

Because this is where real growth happens. Ultimately, this risk-taking habit alone will transform your life!

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What Young People Need To Know About Humility

It is a conceit of the young to believe that because something has occurred to them, it is a novel idea, one unknown to previous, plodding generations. This tendency cuts across the board and includes young Christians.

And then they read the classical philosophers… the Church Fathers… the Protestant Reformers… the Enlightenment thinkers… Alexis de Tocqueville and Edmund Burke and The Federalist Papers and Blackstone… Carl F.H. Henry and Herbert Schlossberg and Thomas Oden and Christopher Lasch and Abraham Kuyper and Os Guinness… and biblical exegeses and commentators and historians and scientists whose exacting and exhaustive study open up new vistas of knowledge… and have conversations with serious people who, having reached the age of 40, are a bit more tempered in their approach to life and learning… and real maturity begins.

These comments are more than a bit autobiographical. As a young man (an increasingly distant state of being), my intellectual self-confidence spilled joyously into intellectual pomposity. My mind was a grand world, comprehensive and integrated and satisfied, capable of taking on all comers and informing them of their rightness, wrongness, or simple stupidity.
I am no longer young. Although there are aspects of my youth I miss (supple knees, for example), one I consider with some grief and embarrassment is the intellectual pride I wore as a badge of honor. It was, in reality, a bludgeon of ignorance and injury.

It is good for young people to have strong views, to foster a muscular curiosity, to have opinions of sufficient iron as to sharpen those of their peers. And there’s nothing like the invigoration of intellectual discovery, to grasp something difficult and understand it for the first time, to internalize a great truth or work through a knotty philosophical or theological problem. These things make one feel alive and construct the very lens through which one views life itself.
Yet in our time, the advent of the internet has enabled myriad bright young people, including bright young Christians, to opine with both dogmatism and profligacy. Had the Internet been around when I was in my 20s, no doubt I would have been one of the blogosphere’s chief users – and offenders.
All Christians can rejoice in the many young believers who are writing so thoughtfully and with such art and frequency. Many young men and women I know are using the web to advance critically important arguments in fresh and clever ways.
Christian faith is blessed by young men and women like these. Older Christians should rejoice that the Lord is raising them up and be sufficiently humble to learn from them. Holding younger Christians in contempt simply because they are young is expressly forbidden by the Word of God (I Timothy 4:12). Such contempt is as much a form of pride as any other kind. Like the corpse of dead Lazarus, it stinks.
My caution is only that in an era when so much is at stake in our culture, and when so many young Christians have been cruelly wounded by the brokenness of their families and the excesses of past sin, younger believers not forget that although their voices are new, the truths they proclaim and issues with which they wrestle are not.
Humility and servanthood are terms I dislike, because I’m so bad at applying them to my own life. Yet one’s utility to the Prince of Life is only as extensive as one’s humility and servant attitude. This does not mean that we cannot be confident in proclaiming the truth; rather, it means we bear always in mind that the truth is His, not ours, and that the ministries we occupy are for Jesus’s sake, not our own.
Charles Spurgeon wrote of his own pride that “it is a miserable, wretched affair.” This echoes in the very heart of my own heart. It should for all Christ-followers. Young, middle-aged, or old, let’s remember that intellectual pride is rank in the nostrils of God, and keep remembering that until the day we see our Redeemer, One Who though existing in the very form of God humbled Himself to the point of dying on an instrument of debasement and cruelty, a wooden cross.
If we want to be worthy servants of the King, whether we are emerging or retiring, let’s begin at, and keep returning to, these eternal truths.

Are We Over- Protecting Our Children?

This post was first posted on Breakpoint.

Maybe you’ve heard that phrase “killing them with kindness”? According to some, that may be what our culture is doing to today’s college students, at least psychologically.

Peter Gray, a research professor at Boston College, sees what he calls “declining student resilience.” At one major university, “emergency calls to counseling had more than doubled over the past five years. Students are increasingly seeking help for, and apparently having emotional crises over, problems of everyday life.”

Gray said that one student felt traumatized because her roommate had called her a nasty name. Two others sought counseling because they’d seen a mouse in their off-campus apartment. They called the police, who, he says, “kindly arrived and set a mousetrap for them.” The Atlantic calls this kind of thing “the coddling of the American mind.”

Many of these emotionally stunted students can’t handle a bad grade, and their professors live in fear of negative student reviews or lawsuits. Or as one director of counseling said, “There has been … a decrease in the ability of many young people to manage the everyday bumps in the road of life.”

What’s going on? Dan Jones, the past president of the Association for University and College Counseling Center Directors, points at parents, saying, “[Students] haven’t developed skills in how to soothe themselves, because their parents have solved all their problems and removed the obstacles. They don’t seem to have as much grit as previous generations.”

In other words, there’s been way too much helicopter parenting!

Cameron Cole, a youth pastor in Alabama, knows that overly protecting our kids isn’t biblical. Pain, after all, is part of spiritual growth. “On Jesus’s way to redeeming the world he encountered betrayal, injustice, torture, violence, condemnation, imprisonment, and alienation,” Cole writes. “How deluded I am when I think an alternate path exists for my child’s ‘hoped for’ service to God’s kingdom. He will not wear the crown … unless he bears a cross.”

Too many kids take the easy path, which is the only path they’ve ever known. They’re afraid to fail so they avoid risk at all costs. But our faith teaches us risky obedience to God, knowing He’s in control.

I’m reminded of this point every time I speak with my friend Naghmeh Abedini, the wife of imprisoned pastor Saeed. Jesus said, “I’m with you always.” And let’s not forget, “Nothing shall be impossible.” So let’s share this bracing perspective with our sons and daughters, and live by it.

And let’s not forget that college students in former generations followed this God of the impossible. In 1886, Dwight L. Moody presided over a meeting of 251 college students in Massachusetts. They came from all over the country, and eventually an interest grew in foreign missions. As ChristianHistory.net reports, one of the students, Robert Wilder, organized a meeting for all of those interested in missions, and 21 young people showed up. He later wrote, “Seldom have I seen an audience under the sway of God’s Spirit as it was that night. The delegates withdrew to their rooms or went out under the great trees to wait on God for guidance.”

When the conference was over, 100 students had committed themselves to become overseas missionaries. It was the start of a movement that saw tens of thousands of people carry the gospel around the globe. Is such a passion still conceivable for us?

Yes! But the key is what I learned in my years of teaching teens and college students: Remove the bubble wrap. And like Moody, encourage them toward a God-sized vision for their lives. Help them see their giftedness and how it relates to the needs in their world, so that they can pursue their role in God’s restoration of all things under the lordship of Christ.
And as their leaders, parents, and mentors we need to give them permission to try . . . and room to fail.

Source: Breakpoint

Clarity Makes Your Dreams Become Your Realities

When you are absolutely clear about what you want, you can then think about your goals most of the time. And the more you think about them, the faster they will materialize in your life.

The process of asking yourself questions about your goals in each part of your life begins to clarify your thinking and make you a more focused and better defined person. As Zig Ziglar says, “You move from being a wandering generality to becoming a meaningful specific.”

Most of all, you reach the point where you can determine your major definite purpose in life. This is the springboard for great achievement and extraordinary accomplishment.

Your major definite purpose will be the topic of the next chapter, and how to achieve it will be the subject of the chapters to come.

Choices To Make Today That You Won’t Regret Tomorrow

1. Fighting for a career you love. You will never regret fighting for the job you really want or struggling to make it happen. It is a choice that will upgrade the quality of your life and give you a better shot at success.

2. Letting go of unrequited love. Or waiting for someone to make up their mind. You will never regret letting them go because you are paving the way for someone else to come in and you are being honest with yourself about the possibilities of being with someone who is not on the same page.

3. Apologizing to someone. You are a human being who is prone to making mistakes-a lot of them. Saying sorry to someone you care about and appreciate is the only way to redeem yourself and try to save the relationship from falling apart. You will never regret patching things up with the people who deserve it.

4. Learning something new. Whatever that may be; a new language, a new course, a new sport or a new meal, you will never regret investing time in a new skill. Learning drives us to be more productive, attentive and gives us the motivation we need to rejuvenate our lives.

5. Taking a break from social media. Unplugging is therapeutic in this ever-busy and chaotic life. Sometimes it’s really crucial for your sanity to take a break from social media and re-shift your focus and energy onto something better and more meaningful.

6. Exercising. The benefits of exercising are not just physical, they are also mental and spiritual. Taking a run or hiking can really help you feel better about yourself and inspire you to think clearly and make more coherent decisions.

7. Expanding your network. Building more relationships and expanding your social circle and your network will open new doors for you and will add value to your personal and professional life. You never know who you’ll be able to connect with and where that connection will lead.

8. Not taking life too seriously. You will not look back and remember the times you cried and the times you broke down. Don’t let pain or sadness drag on for too long. Try to look at the good in every bad and do your best to get over the disappointments quickly so you can be able to enjoy most of your life.

9. Loving yourself. With your flaws, with your quirks, with your mood swings and your eccentric habits. Be kind to yourself and try to love the different parts of you. You will never regret being your biggest fan because you know you can always count on yourself. Also, when you love yourself, you are more likely to find someone who loves you too.

10. Believing that tomorrow is a better day. You will never regret looking on the bright side, or being hopeful, or starting the day with a smile. You will never regret having a positive mentality and an optimistic outlook on life, you are more likely to achieve a positive life this way.

Kids These Days: Generation Z Most Conservative Since WWII

Around the world.

Kids These Days: Generation Z

For at least a decade, Millennials have been stereotyped as lazy, entitled, and stuck on social media. In Nigeria, our President had already tagged us to be lazy youths with no ambition. While that may not be entirely fair, they are notoriously liberal, overwhelmingly supporting left-leaning candidates and favoring policies like nationalized healthcare and same-sex “marriage.”

But Millennials are also getting old—relatively speaking. The first are now reaching the ripe old age of thirty-five! And sometime between 1995 and 2000, the millennial generation ended, or at least stopped being born, and a new generation began.

Members of “Generation Z” are now beginning to graduate high school, and 2016 was the first time any of them were old enough to vote. At seventy million and counting, they’re also about to outnumber their predecessors.

So, what’s so intriguing about this new brood? Well, according to a growing body of research, they may be, by certain measures, the most conservative generation since World War II—more than Millennials, Generation Xers and even the Baby-Boomers.

Millennials were raised in a time of roaring prosperity, when video cassettes were a bigger influence than digital technology, and many came of age before the age of radical Islamic terror. Gen Z kids, by contrast, are “digital natives.” They’ve never known life without the Internet, and have grown up surrounded by instant access to the world’s harsh realities on their smart phones.

These young people are products of conflict and recession. They can only remember a news cycle “marred by economic stress, rising student debt… and war overseas.” As a result, they’ve taken on what one team of Goldman-Sachs analysts called a “more pragmatic” and conservative outlook on the world.

Of course, generalizations at this stage are very early and very subject to development.

And get this: According to one British study conducted by global consultancy firm, The Guild, almost sixty percent of Gen Z respondents in the U.K. described their views on “same-sex marriage, transgender rights and marijuana legalization” as “conservative” or “moderate,” compared with a whopping 83% of Millennials who called themselves “quite” or “very liberal” on these issues. The Gen Z participants were even ten times more likely than Millennials to dislike tattoos and body piercings!

These are good trends, but these students still need discipleship and catechesis. A tendency toward traditional values, by itself, means nothing unless those who believe in revealed Truth, the Gospel, the natural family, and political and religious liberty step forward and train the next generation to articulate and live out these truths.

What is clear from this emerging data about the young is that they don’t fit neatly into rhetoric about the “right side of history.” As Columbia University sociologist, Musa Al-Gharbi writes, trends like this are deeply troubling for those so recently crowing that the future belonged to one political party.

No one knows what the future holds, except the One Who holds the future! And the fact that so many were apparently wrong about the right side of history is just another reminder that He alone is God, Whom the Psalmist called “faithful throughout all generations.”

Adult Is Not A Verb: Helping Young People Spread Their Wings

News around the world.

It’s been called a lot of things: “Peter Pan Syndrome” or my favorite, “failure to launch,” but whatever the term, the phenomenon is undeniable. A record number of young people today are getting stuck in the transition between childhood and adulthood.

Despite attending college in record numbers, millennials seem to struggle to move on to the next phase of life. Just a decade ago, a healthy majority of young adults were able to successfully fledge. Now, those who’ve managed to leave the nest are a minority.

Of course, the recession and a sluggish job market are factors. Millennials do have tougher career prospects than their parents did. But the economy isn’t the only explanation, and the language young people use to talk about adulthood makes that obvious.

Writing in The Wall Street Journal, Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse announced that Twitter had turned the noun “adult” into a verb. “#Adulting” is what kids post on social media to congratulate themselves for the rather ordinary feats of paying the bills, finishing the laundry, or just getting to work on time.

“I adulted!” goes the saying, as if fulfilling daily responsibilities is somehow above and beyond the call of duty. “Adulting” has become so universally recognized that the American Dialect Society nominated it for the most creative word of 2015.

But the Senator’s most important suggestion? Older generations must start investing in the lives of young adults. Summarizing relevant research in 2013, The Boston Globe reported a staggering statistic: Only a quarter of Americans 60 and older had discussed anything important with anyone under 36 in the previous six months! Exclude relatives and that figure dropped to a mortifying 6 percent. How alien this would have sounded to the Apostle Paul, who in Titus 2 urges older men and older women to teach the younger.

Only by connecting and investing in their lives can we reasonably expect our kids, our grandkids, and their peers to understand that “adult” is not something you do. It’s someone you are.

Dealing with Grief and Finding Hope

Nobody wants to die but want to go to heaven.
Death is inevitable. But death─ sudden or expected─ always brings sorrow and grief to the ones who are left behind. However, life still marches on. It is hard, but we must remember that as humans we have an immense ability to cope with anything that life brings. Although we all have different levels of coping abilities, there are several basic and universal steps to dealing with grief and finding hope again…

Allow The Feelings To Flow: Losing someone you love will conjure all unimaginable emotions within you, sorrow, regret, guilt, pain, grief, heartbreaks, misery, anger, sadness and many more. Feeling these emotions all at once can be extremely difficult. It is quite normal, so let them flow. You do not need to suppress them. Cry all you want. With time and allowing grief to be released, it will become less painful. It is an important process that will help you in dealing with grief and accepting your loss.

Talk About It When You Can: Talking about the death of your loved ones can be a way of remembering them and can help you understand what happened. It will give you the opportunity to start the healing process. Denying the death of a loved one can result in isolation and you pushing away your family and friends.

Find A Support System: Coping with a loved one’s death is never easy; especially if you are dealing with it alone. You need support coming from your family and friends so that you can find comfort and overcome grief faster. Moreover, while your family and friends can be your greatest source of support for overcoming the death of someone, but it is also advisable that you take advice from professional people when you find all the emotions and pain too hard to handle. Psychologists give professional advice and develop strategies according to your needs to get you through the grieving process.

Understand The Grieving Process: Dealing with grief and bereavement is a process. It is quite important to allow yourself to experience every stage of the grieving process for you to completely heal. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross outlined the five stages of grief in her book titled “On Death and Dying.” These stages are not necessarily experienced in order and some stages can be revisited. These five stages are:

  • Denial: Dealing with death can be overwhelming. It is an incomprehensible experience and you can find it hard to believe that your loved one is gone. You continue to deny that it is not happening and there is no way that your loved one left you.
  • Anger: As you realize the reality of your situation you begin to feel angry. Your anger or fury might be directed to your loved one for leaving you, to the doctors for not doing their job and healing your loved one, to God who took your loved one or even to yourself for maybe not being a better person to your loved one. All of this is quite normal and will pass.
  • Bargaining: It is quite common for an individual to start bargaining or negotiating with a higher power, like God. Do not be surprised or think that you are crazy when you start making deals with God like: “I will be better, just please give him back to me.”
  • Depression: The sorrow and overwhelming sadness you feel after the death of a loved one is normal. It is common to feel that your life will never be the same again. This feeling does not last forever and will pass with time.
  • Acceptance: This stage does not necessarily mean that you accept or come to terms that your loved one is already dead. It does not mean that if you are already at this stage, you will not revisit the other stages above. But rather, it means that the pain and grief of losing someone you love will reduce and become more manageable.

Celebrate Life: You need to mourn the death of your loved ones, but there comes a time when you need to turn from the mourning toward a new stage, of celebrating life again. Understanding that death is inevitable and that we will all die someday will give you an opportunity to live your life to the fullest. Remember that your life does not stop when someone you love passes away. Ask yourself this: “Would he or she be happy seeing me like this forever because they passed?” Cry as much as you need to, but know that your family and friends are still there for you, ready to walk forward and to live life fully with you now. Celebrate the fact that you are living.

Preserve Precious Memories: Someone so special to you might be gone but their memories stay. Keep all photographs, things he or she gave you, or create a memorial like planting a tree to remember your loved one. This will help you keep all the memories you shared together and overcome your loss.

Final Thoughts: It always feels so unfair when someone you love passes away, but that does not mean you have to stop living. God created us, human beings, to be strong and to survive anything. So, grieve as much as you need to, and remember you will be able to stand up and smile again. After all, your loved ones may not have stayed with you, but the memories you have with them will forever stay in your heart.

I can testify to each and every point stated here. I don’t know about you but if you have anyone facing the difficulty of not passing through grief and lack hope. Please share this with them.

Have a blessed day!!!

By: Brian Zeng

    Positive Thinking Versus Positive Knowing

    Many people today talk about the importance of “positive thinking.” Positive thinking is important, But It is not enough. Left undetected and uncontrolled, positive thinking can quickly degenerate into positive wishing and positive hoping.

    Instead of serving as an energy force for inspiration and higher achievement, positive thinking can become little.more than a generally cheerful attitude towards life and whatever happens to you, positive or negative.

    To be focused and effective in goal attainment, positive thinking must translate into “Positive knowing.” You must absolutely know and believe in the depths of your being that you are going to be successful at achieving a particular goal. You must proceed completely without doubt. You must be so resolute and determined, so convinced of you ultimate success, that nothing can stop you.

    Repost: 30 Beautiful Moments In Your Life That You Will Never Forget

    By: Rania Naim

    1. The moment you faced a longtime fear. There is no greater feeling than doing what you were most afraid of and getting through it.

    2. The moment you aced a difficult test. And that awesome feeling you get that you can accomplish anything you put your mind to.

    3. The moment you started driving without supervision and played your favorite music the whole way.

    4. The moment you got your first salary and how you felt that hard work truly pays off.

    5. The moment you made a new friend knowing that you will be friends forever.

    6. The moment your crush told you they liked you and how you couldn’t stop smiling.

    7. The moment you land in your favorite country and how it breathes new life into you.

    8. The moment you rest your head on the pillow after a productive day at work and how it’s bringing you one step close to your goal.

    9. The moment your favorite team wins the championship and the euphoria that follows.

    10. The moment you hold the baby of someone close to you, and how innocent and soft you become in that moment.

    11. The moment you stand up for yourself after being quiet and patient for so long.

    12. The moment you get what you’ve been praying for and realizing that the world is not so bad after all.

    13. The moment you realize how loved you are by those around you and how supportive they are.

    14. The moment that your pet welcomes you home every day as if you are the best thing that ever happened to them.

    15. The moment after you’ve had a special conversation with a special someone and immediately feel the growing bond between both of you.

    16. The moment you made someone smile after having a terrible day.

    17. The moment you let go of someone or something that was holding you back and the liberation that came with it.

    18. The moment you make your family happy; whether by being a good student, a good person or just being there for them when they need you.

    19. The moment your friends do something sweet for you and remind you of how much they love you.

    20. The moment you successfully complete a mission: losing weight, being more focused, being more positive…etc.

    21. The moment you are done reading a good book and the inspiration you find in its words.

    22. The moment you prove someone who doubted you wrong and the confidence you gain from it. Learning to believe in yourself more often.

    23. The moment you master one of the hard yoga poses and the strength you feel after.

    24. The moment you decide to be a little bit kinder to yourself and start slowly loving yourself with your imperfections.

    25. The moment you receive a heart-felt thank you for touching someone’s life.

    26. The moment your favorite song comes on when you have been waiting to hear it all day.

    27. The moment you run into an old friend or an acquaintance unexpectedly.

    28. The moment you go to the beach after a long time and the serenity you feel from the sound of the waves and the beauty of the sky.

    29. The moment you finally understand why something happened to you and finally solving that riddle.

    30. The moment of silence when you can truly enjoy your own presence and be grateful for the gift of living no matter how hard or easy your life seems to be.

    How To Write The Best Story Of Your Life

    • Each new day is an opportunity to write a new story; a blank page to start over and begin writing a new chapter. You have pages to fill with your own words. You have sentences to live by and characters to support your story. Make sure you write a story that you love, a story you are proud of, a story your children and grandchildren will want to read over and over again, and make sure you write an authentic one, an original one, a story that reflects your life, your dreams and your desires – not a copy of someone’s life or a story someone else has written for you. Here is how to write the best story of your life.
    • Start by building the right characters. Your characters are the ones that make your story come to life, and they are an integral part of your journey. Pick the right characters, the ones that will stick with you till the end of the story, the ones that will support you when your story is falling apart, the ones who will fill all your pages and chapters, and the ones who will help you write a happy ending.
    • Find the purpose of your story. What are you trying to tell the world? What are you here for? And what story do you want people to read about you? Find a meaning to your story that makes you come alive and inspires you to wake up every day. Find a meaning that keeps your story interesting and keeps you interested , find a meaning to fight for, live for and die for.
    • Don’t let defeat put an end to your story. Every great story has periods of despair, failures and defeats, but this is what makes it even more compelling and this is what makes it even more substantial. This is the climax of your story and the turning point. This is when you start changing and your whole story changes. It now becomes about how you handle defeat, how you rise up after you fall down, and how you change the direction of your life after failure. A victorious ending requires a series of lost battles.
    • Pick an exciting theme. The theme is one of the most fundamental components of your story. Pick a theme that ends each chapter with hope, faith, and a desire to make tomorrow better. A theme that makes your character stronger in every chapter, a theme that makes people root for you and want to see you make it to the end. Pick a positive theme, a humorous tone maybe, or a theme that depicts the strength in struggle and the beauty in vulnerability.
    • Love is the essence of your story. Your story will be very weak without the power of love. You have to write a story of love and passion. Love is what keeps the story moving forward. It could be a lover, a friend, your work, your parents, your children, God or the love of the journey, the love of the unknown, or even your struggle to find love and define it. No matter how you tackle it, love is the crux of your story.
    • Don’t worry so much about the ending. Pay more attention to the details of your story and the way it’s unfolding. The best writers often don’t know how their story will end, they just start writing and the ending comes to them after they’ve shaped the main plot. If you focus too much on the ending, you might miss out on the whole story.
    • Give it a spectacular title. The title is what summarizes your story in a few words. It’s what makes people want to read your story. It’s your choice how you want people to perceive your story. Each day you make a choice as to whether the title ends with a question mark, a period, or an exclamation point.

    Get In Here If You Want Some Motivation Right Now

    Desperate times call for desperate measures.

    You said you needed motivation. I’m going to do what needs to be done to get you in gear. NO EXCUSES.
    Do you want to get off your comfort zone and start producing instead of wallowing in despair, depression, self pity, fear, doubt or whatever is holding you back?

    Are you sick of not getting anything done?

    Let’s DO THIS.

    The point of this exercise is to give you motivation to do something right now. Don’t just absorb this and continue sitting around procrastinating.

    TAKE ACTION.

    Follow the steps below carefully.

    1. Quit bitching about how tired you are.

    The world doesn’t care.

    And if you’re feeling depressed or down, stop feeling sorry for yourself while you’re at it. It doesn’t matter.

    We all face obstacles. How you deal with those obstacles defines who you are and determines how successful you are in life.

    Did you catch that? It was the secret to life. Seriously.

    Let me say it again.

    We all face obstacles. How you deal with those obstacles defines who you are Jobs

    determines how successful you are in life.

    2. Read the quotes below. If you have a favorite quote or two you always refer to, read that too.

    Some people die at 25 and aren’t buried until 75. – Benjamin Franklin

    Here is the test to find whether your mission on Earth is finished: if you’re alive, it isn’t. – Richard Bach

    Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary. – Steve Jobs

    3. If the motivation you need is to work on building your own business, watch this video.

    I don’t care if you’ve seen it before. Watch it again.

    Be warned, if you’re not working towards being self employed, this video might push you in that direction.

    4. Put a pot of coffee on or get some tea brewing.

    Try a bulletproof coffee if you need an extra kick.

    5. If you haven’t eaten something, eat a little snack now.

    Eat something healthy. Eat some nuts or fruit. Take your vitamins.

    6. Do one of the following three things:

    A) Take a shower, OR

    B) Go for a brisk walk, OR

    C) Call the friend who most lifts you up and makes you feel great after every conversation. Tell him or her that you need a little pep talk. Put a 10 minute limit on the conversation.

    7. If you’re around people right now, go tell one of them how much you appreciate him or her.

    Just say, “hey, I wanted to tell you that I appreciate you because…”

    If you’re not around people, think about something or someone you’re grateful for. Go over the reasons you’re grateful in your mind.

    Gratitude is happiness. Happiness is motivating. Be grateful more often by thinking about who and what you’re happy for, or by telling someone.

    8. If you normally sit down to work, stand up.

    Standing up to work is motivating. It gets the blood flowing.

    9. Turn off email, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and whatever other social procrastination network you’re part of.

    Turn off the TV if it’s on.

    Seriously, TURN THEM OFF.

    10. Now, put on your favorite music playlist.

    Play something that gets you jacked.

    Hint: try the playlist you use at the gym.

    (If you don’t regularly go to the gym or workout otherwise, start doing that tomorrow. You have to be healthy to stay motivated.)

    11. List the top 3 positive outcomes of achieving your task.

    Think about what you’re planning to accomplish today.

    Don’t worry about everything that’s holding you back from accomplishing it. Instead, focus on the positive things that will happen once you get it done.

    For example, if you have homework to do, your list might look like this:

    1) I’ll learn something useful.
    2) I’ll make myself and my teacher proud of what I accomplished.
    3) I’ll get closer to achieving a good grade in the class so I can graduate and move on to doing what I’m really meant to do in life.

    Write down the three things. Don’t skip this part. Make sure you focus on the 3 most important outcomes.

    12. Think about the part of doing this task that you enjoy.

    Most tasks have some enjoyable component to them.

    Focus on what you like about what you have to do, no matter how simple or how small. Enjoy the very act of doing your task for what it’s worth.

    Now here’s the most important part.

    Lock yourself in a room with the thing you need to be doing.

    Don’t leave until you make some progress.

    Put pen to paper, fingers to keyboard, or axe to the grindstone.

    Stop looking for external motivation. Stop letting yourself procrastinate.

    Start going through the motions of making progress. At first it might feel forced, but eventually you’ll get in the groove.

    What to do if this doesn’t work.

    We all have things to do that we really just don’t want to do, but have to for some reason. These are the toughest to find motivation for.

    For these especially difficult situations, I recommend two things.

    First, question whether or not this thing really needs to be done.

    What are the consequences of not doing it? Can you live with the consequences? Is there any way to not do this thing?

    Then, if you still conclude that this thing absolutely has to get done, focus on simply getting past it.

    Imagine the relief of not having this thing on your plate anymore.

    How will that make you feel?

    Dig deep. See how quickly you can possibly do this thing.

    Do it now and move on to stuff you really want to do.

    So guys what do you think about these points from Sparkline? If it’s very important, adopt it and get out of your comfort zone and also feel free to comment on more points or addition.

    Photo credit: Pinterest

    Smart and Simple Ways to Motivate Yourself

    Some days you wake up motivated and ready to go. And some days things feel heavy as you arise and it is hard to get going and find that inner drive.

    1. Just get started and let the motivation catch up with you. You don’t have to wait for motivation to get started. If you want to work in a consistent way every day then sometimes you just have to get going anyway. And the funny thing is that after I have worked for a while things feel easier and easier and more fun and the motivation catches up with me.

    2. Start small if big leads you to procrastinating. If a project or task feels too big and daunting don’t let that lead you into procrastination. Instead, break it down into small steps and then take just one of them to start moving forward.

    3. Start tiny if a small step still leads you to procrastination. If breaking it down and taking a small step still leads you to procrastinating then go even smaller. Take just a tiny 1-2 minute step forward. That’s it. Because the most important thing is to just get going and to build momentum forward.

    4. Reduce the daily distractions. When you have easily accessible distractions all around you then it becomes hard to focus. So shut the door to your office. Put your smart phone in silent mode at the other end of your work space or home. And use an extension for your browser like StayFocusd to keep yourself on track.

    5. Get accountability from the people in your life. Tell your friends what you will do on social media, via phone or in real life. Ask one or more of them to regularly check up on you and your progress. By doing this you’ll be a lot less likely to try to weasel out of things or give up at the first obstacle.

    6. Get motivation from the people in your life. Spend less time with negative people who always look at the dark or apathetic side of things. And spend more of the time you have now freed up with enthusiastic or motivated people and let their energy flow over to you.

    7. Get the motivation from people you don’t know. Don’t limit yourself to just the motivation you can get from the people closest you. There is a ton of motivating books, podcasts, blogs and success stories out there that you can tap into to up or renew your motivation.

    8. Play music that gives you energy. One of the simplest things I do when I feel low in energy or motivation is to play music that is upbeat and/or inspires me in some way. A break with a few songs or working while listening to them for a while usually works well.

    9. Find the optimism. Pessimism can drain both your motivation and energy. But the positive and constructive way of looking at things can on the other hand energize and recharge your motivation. So when you’re in what looks like a negative situation ask yourself questions like: What’s one thing that’s good about this? And what’s one hidden opportunity here?

    10. Be kind to yourself when you stumble . It’s so easy to fall into the trap of beating yourself when you stumble or fail. But that don’t work that well in my experience. You just feel worse and less motivated. So try this the next time: be kind to yourself, nudge yourself back on the path you were on and take one small step forward.

    11. Be constructive about the failures. To make your setbacks more valuable and less hurtful be constructive about them. When you stumble ask yourself: what is one thing I can learn from this setback? Then keep that lesson in mind and take action on it to improve what you do.

    12. Compare yourself to yourself and see how far you have come. Instead of deflating yourself and your motivation by comparing yourself to others who are so far ahead of you.

    13. Be grateful for what you got. When motivation is running low then it’s easy to start seeing your life and the aspects of it through a negative lens. To put your focus on what you still have and who you are – and to recharge with positivity and motivation – ask yourself a question like: What are 3 things I sometimes take for granted but can be grateful for in my life? My answers would, for example, be a roof over my head, clean water and not having to go hungry.

    14. Reduce your to-do list to just one item. An over-stuffed to-do list can be a real motivation killer. So try reducing your current to-do list to just one item. The one that’s most important to you right now or perhaps the one you’ve been procrastinating on for way too long. Then get started by taking a big, small or tiny step. And have another list tucked away somewhere where you can’t see it with other tasks to do later on.

    15. Don’t forget about the breaks. Few things can in my experience drain the daily motivation like just working non-stop. Instead, work for 45 minutes each hour and use the rest for a break where you eat a snack, get out for some fresh air or do a bit of stretching. You’ll – perhaps somewhat counter-intuitively – get more done in a day and week and do work of higher quality because your energy, focus and motivation will simply last longer.

    16. Adjust your goal size. If a big goal in your life feels overwhelming set a smaller goal to find your motivation again. And if a smaller goal doesn’t seem inspiring try to aim higher and make it bigger goal and see how that affects your motivation.

    17. Take 2 minutes to look back at your successes. Close your eyes and let the memories of your biggest successes – no matter in what part of your life – wash over you. Let those most positive memories boost your motivation.

    18. Reward yourself and celebrate your successes (no matter how big or small they are). If you’re looking forward to a nice reward that you’re getting yourself after you’re done with a task or a project then your motivation tends to go up. If you celebrate a success in some other way by for example by taking 1 minute to appreciate what you did or by telling someone about your success then that also usually recharges motivation and positivity. So dangle those carrots and celebrate to keep your motivation up.