Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Are You Living A Life Worth Living? Part II

By Miriam B. Medina

This is part two of a three-part series examining how many lives have been changed by this recent economic crisis. Part one examined the difficulties associated with living through an economic crisis and the negativity such trauma often causes. In this article, we will explore ways to find inner peace to survive and move on.

To establish peace of mind, we must have a positive mental attitude toward life. One also needs to prepare some problem solving strategy. This plan should be as accurate as possible in order to help you determine your course of action regarding the issue of your worry. However, if, the plan does not successfully perform, then you need to replace it with a new plan. You keep repeating the process until you feel certain that you have found a plan that works. Preparing ahead of time creates confidence in your ability to handle any situation. One thing we can learn from is an ant hill. You probably have seen the ants rushing around in all various directions, moving in and out of the ant hill, bringing in tiny pieces of this and that, seeds and other things, scavenging for food. They all seem to be doing something, don't they? Each ant has his own work to achieve, storing its provisions in summer and gathering its food in the harvest.

Right here is the place where people connect with failure, because of their lack of persistence in creating new plans to take the place of those which fail. There is no waiting for the time to be right, because the time will never be "just right." Make quick and conclusive decisions with all that concerns you. Conserve the energy that you are wasting on worrying. By channeling your energy into practical ways that will help you, it will help you to arrive at workable solutions in dealing with your situation at hand. Like the ants, one needs to plan ahead. Life seems chaotic, but if you have a comprehensive plan, you can always pull things together and survive.

Each new day brings unlimited opportunities. The extent to which we can live a life that is worth living depends on the daily choices we make and in the use of those opportunities. Opportunities can be utilized to our advantage as stepping-stones, helping us to live our lives with meaning, or we can reject them, placing them as stumbling blocks in our path. It's easier to criticize life and blame fate than to live it and create taking advantage of your own opportunities. In this article, I would like to reflect on how these two ways of approach can help or hinder you from living that dream life. In the positive sense, one will find personal growth and fulfillment, while in the negative sense, there is discouragement and failure to obtain. Successful people do not fear failure because they never expect to fail. Although they may be surrounded by skeptics, they do not deviate from the image that they have created for themselves.

Listed below are a few stumbling blocks that can be turned into stepping-stones that will help you to live a life that is worth living.

1. The Stumbling Block of Fear

One of the greatest enemies in life will always be fear. We live in a fear riddled society. The fear of war exists in the mind of the masses, fear of violence running rampart across our nation exists, fear for the financial future of our nation is palpable, and on a personal level, there is fear of failure. Even the people who are considered rich live in fear of losing all that they have. It's remarkably easy to get locked into the present situation and paralyzed by fear, which in turn will freeze whatever potential a person might have. Their whole perspective is limited because they can't think big enough to get past today, or big enough to see where they can go or what they could be a part of. In plain words, they lack the importance of creative visualization. Fear produces resistance. Whenever a problem arises, our first reaction is to introduce all the reasons why it can't be solved. Even when new ideas are presented to us, we automatically exclude them without considering all the options. We become our own worst enemy because of fear. Life is a mirror, and whatever image we show is reflected back to us. So if, you have fear of failure and negative thoughts, you will certainly not produce success.

Taking That Step

Life gives back to us exactly what we believe we can achieve. Moreover, what we are able to accept for ourselves in our own thoughts, as well. No more no less. Remaining in a negative frame of mind will keep you in a powerless state, unable to achieve anything, especially in the area of assuming and maintaining a positive attitude. Every wrong impression that we consider in our minds that are fueled by fear will mirror similar happenings in our life. In order to protect ourselves from the increasing impact of erroneous emotional reactions, we must acquire the ability to manage our feelings. The constant complaining about adverse conditions which we bring, upon ourselves through fear will continue to bring negative outcomes. Having a positive approach to life does not happen overnight, it is a step by step, day by day, continual process that brings about great achievements. It means having a mind-training regimented program in which we replace negative, destructive thoughts with a constructive way of thinking. You don't have to force it or push it, just walk at your own pace, and you will see the difference.

Remaining positive dispels fear and worry. Negative and positive thinking cannot occupy the same space at the same time. You know this is impossible, because one or the other must prevail. Take for example, a snowball. It is small it fits into the palm of your hand. If this snowball rolls down a snow-covered hill, it will collect more and more snow until it develops into an avalanche. That is how fear is. The more we cultivate fear, this fear will evolve into other fears. This will result in destroying our health, producing nervous tension as well as digestive problems, and most of all, it will interfere with finding a feasible solution to the problem at hand.

2. The Stumbling Block of Indecision

This is a critical factor that would hinder any one from living a life that is worth living. For some people making changes may seem easy, while for others, it is extremely difficult. All our wishes and desires can become a reality if we keep them forever before us, without putting obstacles in our way with excuses, of "ifs" and "buts". Indecision creates an unstable condition in a person's mind and body, if people are always asking themselves: "I'm not sure if I should or I shouldn't do this, etc?" On the other hand, saying "this is terrible I just can't make up my mind," they will never get pass first base.

As long as these people are undecided, they are weak and won't be able to move in any direction with full assurance, unless they are guaranteed that the initiative they will take is safe and secure. In the meantime, they are letting tremendous opportunities slip by. If and when these individuals do make a choice, they indulge in fear as to whether or not it was the right decision. No matter what they decide, they will always find a reason as to why that decision was erroneous, subjecting themselves to unnecessary physical and psychological pressure, bemoaning what might have been.

Taking That Step

People who possess a positive mental attitude trust whatever decisions they make, weighing all the pros and cons related to it, considering the consequences and deciding which will result in a better return for them. These individuals of a positive mental attitude are not hindered by self-imposed limitations or fear. They are flexible and have self-direction. Once they make up their mind, they don't fluctuate but take the plunge by moving forward developing their talents to the fullest. The challenge of starting again has forced many individuals to make decisions to the purpose of uprooting their families, leaving behind what is familiar and convenient to them. Because they felt it was the right decision, they were willing to make the sacrifice in search of something entirely new and unknown because they knew that the end-results would be worth it.

In part three of this series, we will examine the final stumbling block that can be turned into a stepping stone that you can use to build a life worth living.

To be continued: Part: III

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