How to Love Yourself & Make the World a Better Place in the Process

Have you ever wondered why we find it so easy to love other people yet find it so difficult learning how to love yourself?

how to love yourself

I think it’s because we have been taught that loving ourselves is selfish or conceited in some way. After all, nobody likes a narcissistic person who walks around saying, “I’m so awesome!” all the time, and never seems to care very much about anyone else.  

But there is a huge difference between loving yourself and being a narcissist!

Loving yourself doesn’t mean you think you’re better than everyone else.

It’s simply a matter of recognizing your own good qualities and acknowledging that you are a loveable person and that you are worthy of love.

Because no matter what you’ve been taught to believe, you ARE worthy of love. I want you to understand that at a bone-deep level.

No matter who you are or where you’re at in life, you deserve all the love in the world.

And the most important person you need to receive that love from, more than anyone else, is yourself.

Benefits of Loving Yourself

Here are three powerful reasons why loving yourself is the key to a good life – and why the world needs you to love yourself more now more than ever.

1. It Makes You Happier

Loving yourself is all about acknowledging your positive qualities and being kind to yourself. You spend less time berating yourself for your mistakes and perceived flaws with negative self-talk and more time celebrating your successes and building on your strengths.

And if you’ve been following me for any length of time, you probably know that what you focus on grows.

So when you focus on your successes and your strengths, the more successful and more capable you’ll become!

And of course, that is going to increase your happiness, your satisfaction, and your enjoyment of life.

2. It Makes You Healthier

Because a big part of loving someone is giving them what they need to thrive – mentally, physically, and spiritually. So when you love yourself, what we’re really talking about is practicing self-care and giving yourself what you need to show up in the world as your best self.

3. It Makes the World a Better Place

Because when you show up in the world as your best self, you encourage others to do the same – and it creates a positive ripple effect that impacts the lives of many others.

Not only that – when we love ourselves, we become so much better at loving others. We’re kinder to each other because we’ve learned how to be kind to ourselves. And I think we can all agree that the world today needs a lot more love and kindness in it.

Learn How to Love Yourself

All right, so exactly HOW do you learn how to love yourself?

Here are some tips:

1. Get More Sleep

Most people are chronically sleep deprived, which is a problem – because when you don’t get enough sleep, you’re more likely to get sick, become obese, suffer from depression, develop cancer, and put yourself at risk of a whole host of other health problems as well.

So one of the nicest things you could ever do for yourself is to get the rest you need. I don’t care how much work you have, schedule several nights a week where you are going to go to bed earlier and get at least 8 hours of sleep.

2. Eat Healthier

When you eat healthy food in the amounts your body needs, you have more energy and feel better about yourself. And you’re less likely to become sick. Eat fewer carbs and more protein and vegetables.

3. Get More Exercise

It doesn’t have to be painful or strenuous – it can be as simple as doing yoga, tai chi, some basic calisthenics or going for a daily walk. Physical activity releases endorphins, boosts your energy and mood, increases your emotional resilience and improves your self-esteem.

There are also a number of exercise videos you can buy, pop into your DVD player or your computer and just follow along. The key is to build it into your calendar at a specific time each day.

4. Celebrate Your Success

Take time every week to celebrate your successes and remind yourself what you’re capable of achieving. Not only will it boost your confidence and self-esteem, but it will also motivate you to achieve more success in life. One way to do this is to keep a Victory Log where you write down your successes at the end of each day.

5. Be Gentle With Yourself

No one is perfect. You’re going to make mistakes. Instead of berating yourself for them, use your mistakes as an opportunity to learn something that will help you get better results in the future.

My sixth tip is to take time for yourself. Make sure to give yourself time every week to do something you love. Take a hot bath, read a book, watch a movie, spend time on your favorite hobby, or do something fun with a friend.

Whatever fills your soul with gladness. Because you deserve it.

And because in doing so, you will encourage others to do so as well. Again, put this into your schedule when you are planning your week, and then don’t let anything violate that space.

6. Believe in Yourself

You are capable of achieving anything you can imagine. The universe will not give you a vision that you can’t make a reality. All you have to do is take one small action after another and you can create any results you want in life.

On a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being high, how much do you love yourself, and what are some of the ways you practice self-care? Let me know in the comments below. Check out my free Guide to Positive Thinking.

positive thinking guide

Structure Actions Around Your Core Genius

Structure Actions Around Your Core Genius When I talk to people who have a hard time achieving goals, one of the most common excuses I hear is “but I don’t have enough time.” If you can’t find extra time to invest in the pursuit of your goals, it’s time to reprioritize your responsibilities.

Successful people know that to achieve their goals and greater levels of accomplishment, they must structure their lives to maximize time spent on their core genius. Your core genius is the one thing that you love to do because it’s effortless and a whole lot of fun. And if you could make money doing it, you’d make it your lifetime’s work.

In most cases, your core genius is directly tied to your passions and life purpose. My core genius lies in the area of teaching, training, coaching and motivating. Another core genius is writing and compiling books. Along with my co-author Mark Victor Hansen, I have written, co-authored, compiled, and edited more than 100 books.

Successful people make their core genius a priority, delegating everything else to the rest of their team. Compare that to other people who go through life doing everything, even the tasks they’re bad at or that could be done more cheaply, better, and faster by someone else. They can’t find the time to focus on their core genius because they fail to delegate even the most menial duties.

When you delegate the grunt work (the things you hate doing or those tasks that are so painful, you end up putting them off), you get to concentrate on what you love to do. You make faster progress on your goals, and you get to enjoy life more.

So why is delegating routine tasks and unwanted projects so difficult for most people?

Surprisingly, most people are afraid of looking wasteful or being judged as being above everyone else. They are afraid to give up control or reluctant to spend the money to pay for help. Deep down, most people simply don’t want to let go.

Others simply have fallen into the habit of doing everything themselves. “It’s too time consuming to explain it to someone,” they say. “I can do it more quickly and better myself anyway.”

Delegate Completely

One of the strategies I use and teach is complete delegation. This means that you delegate a task once and completely, rather than delegating it each time it needs to be done.

When my niece came to stay with us one year while she attended the local community college, we completely delegated the responsibility of grocery shopping to her. We told her she could have unlimited use of our van if she would buy the groceries every week. We provided her with a list of staples that we always wanted in the house (eggs, butter, milk, ketchup, and so on), and her job was to check every week and replace anything that was running low.

In addition, my wife planned meals and let her know which items she wanted for the main courses (fish, chicken, broccoli, avocados, etc). The task was delegated once and saved us hundreds of hours that year that were instead devoted to writing, exercise, family time, and recreation.

Where Do You Spend Your Time?

Most entrepreneurs spend less than 30% of their time focusing on their core genius. In fact, by the time they’ve launched a business, it often seems entrepreneurs are doing everything but the one thing they went into business for in the first place.

Many salespeople, for example, spend more time on account administration than they do on the phone or in the field making sales, when they could hire a part-time administrator to do this time-consuming detail work.

Most female executives spend too much time running their households, when they could easily and inexpensively delegate this task to a cleaning service or part-time mother’s helper, freeing them to focus on their career or spend more quality time with their family.

Don’t let this be your fate. You can trade, barter, pay for and find volunteers to help with almost everything you don’t want to do, leaving you to do what you are best at, and which will ultimately make you the most money and bring you the most happiness.

Become a Con Artist

Strategic Coach Dan Sullivan once stated that all entrepreneurs are really con artists. They get other people to pay them to practice getting better at what they love to do.

Consider speaker Anthony Robbins. People pay him big money to practice his core genius. He’s arranged his life to maximize the amount of time that he is engaged in his core genius. He spends time doing what he loves, and the better he gets, the more money he earns.

Of course, most of us are not quite yet at the level of Tony Robbins. But we can take a cue from his level of focus.

For the next week, take note where you spend your time. What duties do you perform out of habit? Which do you do because you don’t want to take the time to delegate it to someone else? Finally, how much time do you spend on your core genius … and how many more hours could you invest in this area if you delegated some of your responsibilities?

Achieving greater success and joy in life starts by identifying your core genius. Delegate everything else so you can focus on what you love to do.

January 2011 Ask Jack Call

Ask Jack Jan 2011Have you ever made a New Year’s resolution or set new goals … only to find that a few weeks later, you can barely remember what you swore you were going to do?

You’re not alone. Most people abandon their New Year’s goals within weeks for one of 3 reasons:

  • They don’t properly set their goals.
  • They don’t have a plan for achieving their goals.
  • They don’t have a system for keeping track of their progress.

I want 2011 to be your best year ever. That’s why we’re going to focus on goal setting during the January Ask Jack Canfield complimentary tele-training, happing this Wednesday, January 5th.

Here are a few of the questions we’ll cover during this free 70-minute training:

  • “I feel like I don’t have enough time to set new goals or actually follow through with them. What should I do?”

 

  • “Is there such a thing as a goal that is too small or too big?” 

 

  • “I am overwhelmed by all of the goals I have. How should I prioritize them?”

 

  • “How do you get a group to work together toward common goals?”

If you want to avoid the common pitfalls that derail most goals and make 2011 a stellar year, tune in Wednesday for my insights and tips on setting and achieving goals. Reserve your place and get call in details.

December Ask Jack Call: Year End Goals Assessment & Homework

Writing in JournalDuring my December Ask Jack Call, Katie asked me the following question: “With the year coming to an end, I am anticipating a fresh start in January. Is there a process to cleanse myself and prepare for setting new goals?” And Nathan asked: “The deadlines for my 2010 goals are approaching, and I feel like I have not achieved much this year. How can I keep myself from feeling discouraged?”

This is a common problem that people who set goals often face at the end of the year. If they don’t achieve all of the goals they have set at the beginning of the year, they feel like they have failed. Their self-esteem takes a hit, they become disheartened and discouraged, their motivation drops, and some people actually become depressed.

The reason is they are focusing on what didn’t happen rather than what did happen. They are focusing on what they lack (certain accomplishments that didn’t happen) rather than on what they have (the things they did experience and accomplish). This is a very subtle mental trap that leads to a host of negative consequences, not the least of which is the attraction of more lack. The key is to acknowledge, appreciate and celebrate what you did accomplish, and then to refocus on the goals that you still want to achieve.

One of the techniques that we use every year in the last session of our Platinum Inner Circle Mastermind Group to focus on all the successes we had during the year is a very detailed “Win List”. Its purpose is to help us focus on all of the wins we had that didn’t necessarily start as a written goal or intention. Too often, we only focus on what we wrote down in January, and fail to appreciate all of the other successes—large and small—that we had during the year.

So here’s the technique. Set aside half an hour and make a list of all the wins you had during the year. Start by listing any goals that you did achieve. Then write down everything you can think of in the following categories:

  • Any wins or progress in the arena of business?
  • Did you stop an old product or develop a new product or product line?
  • Did you identify a new market to focus on?
  • Did you create a new marketing piece or campaign?
  • Did you delegate some task in order to become more productive?  (…including new staff and assistants you now have, such as a housekeeper, executive assistant, gardener, errand runner, babysitter, child care person, or any new system you put in place.)?
  • New technology that you bought, used or learned to use (including mental, emotional or spiritual technology as well as mechanical, electronic and digital technology)?
  • Time spent in nature?
  • Habits developed (meditation, exercise, sleep, gratitude) or overcame (addiction to alcohol, caffeine, sugar, video games, porn, gambling, shopping)?
  • Progress or Accomplishment in:

               -Leadership

               -Presentations or speeches

               -Abilities, skills and competence in certain areas

               -Financial income, investments or debt reduction?

              -Your relationships (business or personal)

              -The area of personal self-development?

             – Positive events (seminars, lectures, concerts, theater, sports) attended?

              -Positive events with your family?

              -Positive events in your house or apartment?

              -Wins on trips and vacation?

              -New positive additions to your life?

              -Positive events in your community?

              -Positive events in your spiritual life (church services, meditation, retreats, rituals)

              -Positive events in regards to letting go (bad habits, negative people, clutter)

              -Wins in Health and Fitness (weight, exercise, cholesterol, sports, endurance)

If you take the time to seriously sit down and make a list of all your wins, planned and unplanned, large and small, this will help you feel much better about your progress.

Appreciation BreathingAppreciation Breathing

I also taught a technique on the call that I learned from the people at the HeartMath Institute. They call it Attitude Breathing™. I like to refer to it as Gratitude Breathing or Appreciation Breathing. I promised I would post the directions for this simple but powerful technique for quickly and effortlessly transforming your state of being into a more peaceful, joyful and creative one. It is impossible to stay in a bad mood (discouragement, resentment, worry, anxiety or fear) if you do this exercise for several minutes. I recommend it as a great way to start your day and as a great exercise to do prior to the “My Wins” Exercise which we just covered above.

Here are the directions:

1.  Focus on your physical heart to help pull your energy and attention out of your mind. Take a slow breath in (I do a slow count of 1-2-3-4-5-6), and imagine the air is flowing into your body through the area of your heart. Then release your breath slowly. As you breathe out, focus on your solar plexus (below the rib cage near the stomach), as this helps with grounding your energies.

2.  Practice Breathing in through the heart and out through the solar plexus of 30 seconds to a minute to help anchor your energy and attention there.

3.  Next, focus on a person, place or thing that you are truly grateful for in your life (really feel the feeling of appreciation as deeply as you can), and then breathe that feeling in through your heart and out through your solar plexus for a minute or more. I find that the longer I do it, the more powerful the effect.

4.  Finally, you can imagine filling your heart like an expanding balloon with the feeling of appreciation, almost as if you were creating a storage tank full of appreciation that you can draw upon as they day goes on. Just imagine that with each breath in, your heart is filling up more and more fully with the feeling of appreciation.

While this exercise is simple, short and easy to do, its effects are very powerful. Stop reading and try it now for a few minutes. Then copy and print these directions. Use them every day until you no longer need to look at the directions.

Homework from my December Ask Jack Call

In order to complete 2010 and prepare for 2011, I am asking you to take the following action steps. This will prepare you for the January Ask Jack Call and the video seminar on Goal Setting that I will be doing as part of our new Jack Canfield Community.

1.  Using the My Wins process described above list 40 wins or accomplishments for the year 2010.

2.  Write down 10 goals that you want to accomplish in 2011. Remember, they don’t have to be huge or monumental, and they can come from any area of your life—job and career, relationships, financial, health and fitness, fun and recreation, travel, personal and spiritual growth, possessions, experiences you want to have, and contribution and service.

3.  List the first three action steps you could take for each of the 10 goals. These do not have to be big or hard, just steps that get you into motion. Preferably these should be steps that are impossible to fail at. For example, if your goal is to learn to play the guitar, three action steps you could take that you could not fail at would be to 1) go to the guitar store or music store, and tell them you are interested in buying a guitar, and would like some guidance on picking the right guitar for your needs. You don’t need to purchase one that day; just get some information. 2) Ask them who a good guitar would be and contact that person to see if they have any available time for a new student and what their fee is for lessons. 3) You could conduct some on-line research about DVD home study courses for guitar lessons. These actions will get you into momentum in the direction of learning to play the guitar.

I hope this gets you off to a good start on completing 2010 and ramping up for 2011. I look forward to seeing you on a future call. Remember, you can always send in a question on any of this by going to www.AskJackCanfield.com.

Have a happy holiday season!

30 Days of Appreciation

reading kidsFor the past month, we have been focusing our attention on our Ask Jack calls and in this website are the topics of Gratitude and Appreciation. As we head into Thanksgiving over the next few weeks, it is especially a time to think about what we are grateful for. Part of the homework for the monthly November Ask Jack call was to appreciate 3 people a day for the next 30 days and notice what that produces internally and externally in your life. You can do it verbally or in writing. Verbally is more impactful for most people, but writing a note of appreciation is also a wonderful way to express your gratitude because people can keep the note and reread many times.

Today I reviewed a wonderful letter of appreciation from Carly Saveraid from Davenport, Iowa, in which she shared her appreciation for the book Chicken Soup for the Soul, which I completed and edited. After you read it, ask yourself, “Is there an author, teacher, co-work, employer, family member, friend or someone else who has positively impacted my life that I can reach out to and share my appreciation to them?”

I invite you to take the 30-day appreciation challenge and actively share your appreciation with at least 3 people a day. Start today as soon as you finish reading this. Make a score card where you can tick off 3 a day for 30 days. I promise you, it will impact you as much as the people you share the appreciation with. Have a great month, and know that I appreciate you for extending the circle of love and appreciation to your family, friends and community.

         Dear Mr. Jack Canfield,

        Books come and go in everyone’s lives. You might read about an adventure, and get so worked up about it, and forget the whole story a few months later. Your heart may get broken along with the main character, but you do not hold that pain with you forever. Chicken Soup for the Soul is not one of these kinds of books. When I read Chicken Soup for the Soul, the stories stick with me. Something someone might say will remind me of a story I once read in the collection. Something I may see will trigger a memory of a story that helped me get through a hard time. When I read Chicken Soup for the Soul, I can relate to many of the stories. I feel a sense of comfort with people that have had similar struggles to mind, and even a sense of hope when I see on the last page that they have overcome their obstacles. It’s so inspiring to read real life stories and realize that there are more important things going on in this world besides my new shirt, my homecoming date, or the latest cell phone. People are changing lives, and having their own changed. The stories in the collection have enlightened me about trials and tribulations, and by reading about them I have learned to cope with my own troubles, and have been changed. All you have to do is listen, and pay attention to someone’s story to learn more about yourself.

        I had a rough year in seventh grade. I didn’t really care about school, I wasn’t getting along with my family, and my friends at school never seemed consistent. It was a difficult time, and I needed to find comfort in some way. I tried many different things. But nothing seemed to comfort me the way reading Chicken Soup for the Soul did. This book taught me lessons that not even the best teachers could teach me. It made me grow up in ways I never knew I could. Just reading and reading about so many different situations, made mine not seem so bad. Little by little, my problems seem to be less and less and things started getting better. By reading about someone that has lost their mom, it would make me appreciate mine more. By reading about a child dying from cancer, it makes me appreciate the health of my body. By reading a detailed story of a homeless person, my life would seem like a blessing. I am grateful that these books have helped me grow as a person.

        These stories focus on inspiring tales of hope in difficult times. From power outages to health scares to financial insecurities, the stories remind me that I need to be thankful for my life, and value my own story.

Ask Jack Call Homework: The Mirror Exercise & Appreciation

The Mirror ExerciseJust as you acknowledge your big successes, you need to acknowledge your small successes, too.  The Mirror Exercise is based on the principle that we all need acknowledgment, but the most important acknowledgment is the acknowledgment we give ourselves.

The Mirror Exercise gives your subconscious mind the positive strokes it needs to pursue further achievements and it helps change any negative beliefs you have toward praise and accomplishment, which puts you in an achieving frame of mind.

Just before going to bed, stand in front of the mirror and appreciate yourself for all that you have accomplished during the day.  Start with a few seconds of looking directly into the eyes of the person in the mirror—your mirror image looking back at you.  Then address yourself by name and begin appreciating yourself out loud for the following things:

  • Any achievements—business, financial, educational, personal, physical, spiritual, or emotional
  • Any personal disciplines you kept—dietary, exercise, reading, meditation, prayer
  • Any temptations that you did not give in to—eating dessert, lying, watching too much TV, staying up too late, drinking too much

Maintain eye contact with yourself throughout the exercise.  When you’re finished appreciating yourself, complete the exercise by continuing to look deep into your own eyes and saying, “I love you.”  Then stand there for another few seconds to really feel the impact of the experience—as if you were the one in the mirror who had just listened to all of this appreciation.  The trick during this last part is to not just turn away from the mirror feeling embarrassed or thinking of yourself or the exercise as stupid or silly.  At the same time, it’s always a good idea to let your family members know that you are doing this so you can be completely alone and uninterupted during this process.

Here is an example of what your exercise might sound like:

        Jack, I want to appreciate you for the following things today:  First I want to appreciate you for going to bed on time last night without staying up too late watching TV so that you got up bright and early this morning and you had a really good conversation with Inga.  And then you meditated for twenty minutes before you took a shower.  You helped your office staff get clear on some of the blocks that were holding them back.  You ate a really healthy lunch of soup and salad and you decided to pass on dessert!  You drank 10 glasses of water. And then…let’s see…you finished editing the new additions to the 2011 Train the Trainer Program, and you continued planning for the upcoming workshop in Maui to be held mid month.    And now you are going to bed at a good time again and not staying up all night surfing the Internet.  You were great today.

And one more thing, Jack—I love you!

It’s not unusual to feel silly, embarrassed, like crying, or just generally uncomfortable.  Hang in there.  It gets more fun the more often you do it—and you deserve it!

I also challenge you to appreciate 3 people a day for the next 30 days and notice what the produces internally and externally in your life.  Verbally or in writing, share with 3 people a day how they’ve made a postive impact on your day.  You’ll be amazed by the results.  Have a great month!

A Life Full of Meaning and Joy Can Be Yours

The fastest way to happiness and joy is simple:  Find a way to serve.

Serving OthersBack in 2004 I was honored by the Academy of Achievement for having made a significant contribution to the world. One of the previous recipients who spoke at that event was Ken Behring, the author of Road to Purpose: One Man’s Journey Bringing Hope to Millions and Finding Purpose Along the Way. He was worth about $500 million dollars. During his speech, he told us that his life had gone through four stages. The first stage was about “Stuff.” He though that if he had the right stuff he’d be happy. So he bought the houses, the cars, the boat, the airplane-all of the usual toys-and yet he was not happy.

He described the second stage of his life as the acquisition of “Better Stuff.” He though he’d be happier if he had a better house, a better car, a bigger airplane, and so on. So he bought them. But he still wasn’t happy. Then he figured that maybe he had focused on the wrong stuff, so he embarked on the third stage of his life, which he called “Different Stuff.” This is when he joined with a partner and bought the Seattle Seahawks. He though for sure that if he was the co-owner of a professional football team, he would be happy. But he wasn’t. What to do?

It was at this time that a friend invited ken to join him on his private jet to fly to Europe and hand out wheelchairs to kids who had been born without limbs or who had lost their legs as a result of having stepped on a landmine. Ken accepted the invitation. He said that bringing hope and freedom to these children made him truly happy for the first time in his life. When he returned home, he started the Wheelchair Foundation, which has now given away more than 750,000 wheelchairs to children and adults all over the world.

Ken told us about one of his early trips to give away wheelchairs, when he picked up an eleven-year-old boy in Mexico and gently set him down in a wheelchair. When he went to leave and get another wheelchair for one of the other children, the boy wouldn’t let go of his leg. When Ken turned back around to face him, the boy said through his tears, “Please don’t leave yet. I want to memorize our face, so when we meet again in heaven, I can thank you one more time.” Ken said at that moment he experience pure joy. He later told us, “When I see the happiness in the eyes of the people who get a wheelchair, I feel that this is the greatest thing I have ever achieved in my life.” Contributing to others is the fastest way I know to infuse your life with authentic love and joy.

Finding, Deciding, and Being: On Purpose

Being On Purpose

Living On PurposeI think we are all born with a deep and meaningful purpose that we have to discover. Your purpose is not something you need to make up; it’s already there. You have to uncover it. You can begin to discover your purpose by exploring two things:

  •  1. What do you love to do? 
  •  2. What comes easy to you?

Of course, it takes work to develop your talents- even the most gifted musician still has to practice-but it should feel natural, like rowing downstream rather than upstream. I love to teach, to write, to coach, to facilitate, to train, and to develop transformational seminars, workshops, and courses. I love to bring other leaders together for conferences and to co-create new approaches to our work.

These things come easy for me. Although I invested many years in learning how to master these skills, I loved every minute of it. In other words, work is required, but suffering is not. If you are struggling and suffering, you are probably not living on purpose.

But what if I am still searching for my purpose?

Let me share with you a quick little exercise from my book The Success Principles that may help you discover your purpose.

First, ask yourself, What are two qualities I most enjoy expressing in the world? Mine are love and joy.

Second, ask yourself, What are two ways I most enjoy expressing these qualities? Mine are inspiring and empowering people. I inspire people with the moving stories that I tell in my seminars and that I write about in my books, and I empower them by teaching them powerful success strategies that they can apply in their own lives.

Once you’ve answered these questions, take a few moments and write a description of what the world would look like if it were operating perfectly according to you. In my perfect world, everybody is living their highest vision where they are doing, being, and having everything they want. Finally, combine all three of the above into one statement, and you will have a clear idea of your purpose. Mine is “inspiring and empowering people to live their highest vision in a context of love and joy.”

Can you share examples of “living on purpose”?

One of my coaching students, Dr. Sudheer Gogte, a successful cardiologist, was struggling to identify his purpose. I suggested another exercise from my book, and asked him to look back over his life and answer the question, When have I felt most fulfilled?

He shared three periods in which he felt the happiest and most fulfilled. First, he told me about a time with his grandfather when he was growing up in India. The second was his experience of playing with his own grandchildren. The third was a time he spent vacationing on a sailboat. When I asked him what was common to all three of these experiences, he told me that it was the sense of freedom that he felt.

Noticing that none of his three experiences related to his profession in medicine, I asked him to tell me about his most fulfilling experiences as a doctor. The incidences he reported were when he had donated his services for free or for a lesser fee than his partners thought he should have charged. He shared about a time when he too a much longer time than usual during an office visit to support and encourage a family who where in fear of losing their father during an impending heart surgery. As we examined his life further, it became apparent that he took very little time for himself. He was always n call, always working late, always overscheduled with little or no free time for self-care. I asked him why this was so. He answered that people could die if he didn’t attend to them. The problem became clear: By attending only to patients and never to himself, he was-in a sense- dying.

The drive this point home, I asked Sudheer what he would do in the following situation: “ A patient comes to you for an operation. If you operate on this patient, you will die. If you don’t operate on him, he will die. It’s him or you. What would you do?” He reflected quietly on this scenario for along time, and the finally he said, “I would choose to live, rather than die myself. It doesn’t make sense to kill myself to save others.” This was a turning point in his life. He later told me that while he still wants to serve people, he now knows he has a right to take care of himself-his mind, his body, and his needs. This cardiologist now places a higher value on doing what truly comes from his heart, not someone else’s.

 


Defining Genuine Success

Defining Genuine Success- Jack CanfieldI think genuine success comes from discovering what you love to do and finding a way to do it so that it serves yourself and others at the same time.  Every one of us was born with a set of unique talents and abilities. W have inborn preferences and natural styles that we need to honor. Some of us are natural leaders; others are happier in support roles. Some are natural salespeople; others are born to be creative in the arts. The trick is to pursue your greatest interests. When you discover your true purpose and develop a vehicle through which you cane express it, you will experience a great sense of success. And if you can find a way to make money doing it at the same time, then all the better.

For me, success is having the ability to create the conditions that allow me to do all of the things I love in every area of my life. I have created a staff, colleagues, offices, the infrastructure, the financial resources, and the time I need to pursue my professional interests and make a huge difference in the world. I have created the family structure and the friends I need to enjoy loving and fulfilling relationships. I have created the time and the resources I need to keep my body nourished, healthy, and fit. I have created the resources I need to surround myself with beautiful art, furniture, and music. I have created the resources and contacts I need to travel comfortably to any place in the world that I want to visit. I have the time and the money to pursue any educational and personal development experience that I want to explore.