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Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Leadership: The Magic Of Feedback

Many organizations are over managed. Key executives believe in the process of micro managing subordinates and overseeing all activities.

What this business model does is create a lot of busy work but essentially is much less productive.

A real leader understands the importance of feedback. While many shy away from feedback because it can show them things about themselves they don't want to see, it is a very vital part of effective leadership. You can consider leadership as the mirror that lets you see the job you are doing and have done. But don't look at is as judgment, look instead at feedback as a way to better the path towards your eventual goal.

You should be open to regular feedback sessions. Some try to allow feedback on the project at bi-weekly or monthly intervals. That is too long of a time period to wait for something that may need to be addressed much sooner. Often employees are waiting for a chance to talk more about the project and get some response to what they are doing to make sure they are doing the right thing. As a manager you should at the least have weekly meetings to keep up with the progress your group is making, and also help them look at the things they have yet to accomplish and prioritize the list. You may also get some input on better ways to do things from those who have been in the midst of it. In addition to group meetings, you should also offer individual meetings to group members.

You need to always know what your team is doing and that they are working towards the group objective. After all, you are the leader. In the end this project is your responsibility and if things go wrong, you are going to be the one who has to take the blame. You should be able to spot if performance is slipping anywhere in your team and deal with that problem quickly. You need to discover if they just don't want to do the job, or if they are having a problem. That can be done through asking them a lot of open-ended questions so they will eventually let you know the real hold up.

Make sure your group members know you are behind them. Everyone can use a little encouragement once in a while. But also make sure they know you expect to see results. At the end of your meetings, always leave them knowing when the next meeting is going to be. This sets them up to know that they will be expected to show more progress in a certain time period

You need to discipline yourself as a leader to make sure not to become complacent. This is something that happens to many leaders. They after a while become indifferent to the project and don't keep as close an eye on things as they should. This is a recipe for disaster and shows poor leadership to boot. You must meet every week with the group members and always make a list of their goals, assuring they are making progress towards those goals. If you neglect your group members, they may well start to neglect the work they are supposed to be getting done.

About the Author

Harald Anderson is the co-founder of www.artinspires.com a leading online motivational posters gallery. His goal in life is to become the kind of person his dog thinks he is.

Monday, February 11, 2008

7 Ways To Say No Without Feeling Guilty

It's such a small word but so difficult to use sometimes. We seem to use this word so easily with our spouse and children but have a hard time saying it to other people.

So the trick is to figure out how and when to say no. I'm not saying that you should be selfish and never help anybody out. However, most people are running around stressed because they're saying yes to everybody but themselves.

You should only be saying yes when you genuinely want to do something.

You feel excitement at the thought of doing it or it ties in with your life goals or definition of success.

You don't have to have another appointment first in order to say no

If you've planned to have an evening in (bubble bath, reading, TV, whatever…) and you get invited out, this does not automatically mean you have to accept. An appointment with yourself is just as important as one with other people. Value your time! Realise that when you say yes to one thing, you ALWAYS say no to something else.

When this happens, you usually say no to the more important parts of your life - God, family, yourself. For example, you're asked to help out on a committee at your child's school. You could end up so busy with committee work that you deprive your child of quality time. Another example is saying yes to everybody at work collecting money for birthdays, leaving presents, etc, and no to your own financial future.

Don't instinctively say yes. Buy time to think about it first.

Always check your diary first before committing to plans. Or just take a deep breath. Otherwise you end up saying yes to everything and at the end of a hectic period, you're virtually burnt out.

It becomes easier to say yes the more you practice

At first when you have to say no to something or someone, it feels terrible. But it is incredibly empowering when you realize that you made the correct decision in saying no. It is an acquired skill and the more you use your "no" muscle, the stronger it'll get. I promise.

When you say yes and you feel resentment, it means that you should have said no

Learn to listen to your heart. The Bible says that we mustn't give grudgingly or under compulsion, and yet, so many of us do. We say yes, and harbour deep feelings of resentment and bitterness. Nothing good comes from a resentful attitude.

Saying no comes easier when you are confident in your own capabilities

When you say no firmly and without a groveling apology, it affirms your self-worth and it's a way to stand up for yourself. Men seem to do really well at this but women seem to want to explain everything and apologise while they're saying no.

You don't have to be rude or ugly about it - there are many ways to say no

No can be "I can't help you this time", "I can only do it next month", "that's not my strong suit" or simply "no, thanks".

Make a quality decision this month to look at your schedule and see where you're saying yes to activities or commitments that don't support your goals. Then, work at saying no to them so you can say yes to more important things.

Marcia Francois is a personal life coach and professional organiser who teaches small business owners and other busy people how to have more time, less stress and a more organised and fulfilled life. Visit http://organiseyourbusiness.com for your free Organise your Life e-book and other helpful tips.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

The Eternal Rewards Of Jesus Christ

What does your eternal future hold? For most Christians, the blessed hope is that once the rapture occurs or they depart from this world after death, they will spend eternity in heaven with Jesus Christ. For those who trust in Him, this is true.

However, few Christians realize they will also face judgment before Jesus Christ. Not judgment for our sins, which were cleansed by Christ's blood on the cross. But judgment for our works here on earth. Jesus will hold each of us accountable for the deeds performed in our earthly lives, and although our eternal destiny is never in question, the size and scope of our reward is.

Jesus Christ as the Ultimate Judge

The scriptures are filled with references to the ultimate judgment of our works, yet somehow many Christians have either failed to understand, or have chosen to ignore, what the bible says. Nevertheless, we will be judged. Paul makes this clear in his letter to the Corinthians:

"For we must all stand before Christ to be judged. We will each receive whatever we deserve for the good or evil we have done in this earthly body." 2 Corinthians 5:10 (NLT)

Jesus confirms Paul's assertion, revealing that each of us will be held accountable for every idle word we speak!

"And I tell you this, you must give an account on judgment day for every idle word you speak." Matthew 12:36 (NLT)

Not Everyone Will Have the Same Status in Heaven

This leads us to another myth which has taken hold of the Christian community - that everyone will enjoy equal standing in heaven. This is not true. Although God loves each of us without end, some will be given positions of higher status, authority, and responsibility than others. In the Book of Matthew, Jesus reveals this truth:

"So if you ignore the least commandment and teach others to do the same, you will be called the least in the Kingdom of Heaven. But anyone who obeys God's laws and teaches them will be called great in the Kingdom of Heaven." Matthew 5:19 (NLT)

"But many who seem to be important now will be the least important then, and those who are considered least here will be the greatest then." Matthew 19:30 (NLT)

If everyone is equal in heaven, then how can some be "greatest" while others are "least"? This is not a contradiction, but an indication of the true nature of heaven. Whether or not our earthly deeds are deserving of gain or loss is completely dependent upon what we do in our earthly lives. Heaven will simply be a place where true justice will reign.

Eternal Treasures in Heaven

Jesus, knowing the nature of heaven and the rewards that await us, discouraged us from becoming captives of this world and its fleeting pleasures. Instead, he encouraged us to focus on the accumulation of heavenly treasures:

"Don't store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be." Matthew 6:19-21 (NLT)

Our treasures in heaven are eternal. Why then do so many of us spend a lifetime hoarding earthly treasures - cars, houses, stocks, and bonds - when everyone of us knows they are only temporary in nature? We can't take our earthly treasures to heaven, but we can take our heavenly rewards. And if any doubt persists as to how the treasures of heaven compare to the treasures of this world, listen to what Paul has to say on the subject:

"That is what the Scriptures mean when they say, 'No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.'" 1 Corinthians 2:9 (NLT)

Despite this knowledge, millions aspire to live in earthly mansions, while Jesus continues to prepare for us our own heavenly mansions - eternal abodes that will never catch fire, flood, get termites, or experience any of the headaches of earthly dwellings:

"There is more than enough room in my Father's home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you?" John 14:2 (NLT)

Why then, are so many of us concerned with where we live?

Christ Will Award Us with Crowns

Some of our heavenly treasure will take the form of rewards we receive from Jesus Christ.

"For no one can lay any foundation other than the one we already have - Jesus Christ. Anyone who builds on that foundation may use a variety of materials - gold, silver, jewels, wood, hay, or straw. But on the judgment day, fire will reveal what kind of work each builder has done. The fire will show if a person's work has any value. If the work survives, that builder will receive a reward. But if the work is burned up, the builder will suffer great loss. The builder will be saved, but like someone barely escaping through a wall of flames." 1 Corinthians 3:11-15 (NLT)

For the Christian, belief in Jesus Christ is only a beginning. This is the foundation of our holy existence, and no one can lay a foundation other than Christ. Upon this foundation, we are expected to build a portfolio of works which benefit the Lord. Not one of these works is necessary for our salvation, but if we truly believe in Him, it will be our pleasure to perform such works. On the day of judgment, each work will be tested to see if it has eternal value. Only that which has everlasting value will result in reward.

So how do we know what works will have everlasting value? We must remember it is not our deed alone the Lord will judge, but the motive which caused us to perform the deed in the first place. The Lord, who knows the deepest secrets of our hearts and minds, will know the motives upon which our earthly lives were built. And the only motive which will result in a reward is one that desires glory for Jesus Christ.

Among the many rewards we're eligible to receive, the bible specifically mentions five crowns:

The Crown of Victory

"Don't you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win! All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified." 1 Corinthians 9:25 (NLT)

The prize to which Paul refers is a crown. This crown is reserved for those who, through careful discipline, have overcome the desires of the flesh. Through means of the Holy Spirit, they have managed to gradually wane themselves from the power of the temptations of this world. Just as an athlete trains to perfect his performance in an athletic contest, Christians must train themselves to overcome the desires of the flesh.

If you want to win this crown, make sure to listen to and abide by the Holy Spirit within you. Train yourself so that your every thought, feeling, and action is measured and judged in accordance to God's will for your life.

The Crown of Rejoicing

"Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stay true to the Lord. I love you and long to see you, dear friends, for you are my joy and the crown I receive for my work." Philippians 4:1 (NLT)

"After all, what gives us hope and joy, and what will be our proud reward and crown as we stand before our Lord Jesus when he returns? It is you! Yes, you are our pride and joy." 1 Thessalonians 2:19-20 (NLT)

This crown is reserved for those whose efforts have led to others becoming believers in the Lord Jesus Christ. As Paul states, this crown will be a source of pride and joy for all of eternity, represented not only in the form of a crown, but in the form of actual fellow Christians who will be a source of joy for the Lord for all of eternity.

If you want to win this crown, make sure to share the Gospel of Christ with others whenever God presents an opportunity.

The Crown of Righteousness

"And now the prize awaits me - the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me on the day of his return. And the prize is not just for me but for all who eagerly look forward to his appearing." 2 Timothy 4:8 (NLT)

This crown is reserved for those who eagerly and patiently await the promised return of Jesus Christ. Throughout the scriptures, Jesus encourages us to be good and faithful servants, prepared for the master's return. One day, He will come "like a thief in the night" - unexpectedly - and only those who have lived their lives in daily anticipation of this moment will be awarded this crown.

If you want to win this crown, make sure to live every day of your life with the constant expectation that Christ could return at a moment's notice.

The Crown of Life

"God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him." James 1:12 (NLT)

"Don't be afraid of what you are about to suffer. The devil will throw some of you into prison to test you. You will suffer for ten days. But if you remain faithful even when facing death, I will give you the crown of life." Revelation 2:10 (NLT)

This crown is reserved for those who endure testing, temptation, persecution, suffering, and martyrdom for Jesus Christ. Believing in Christ is not a recipe for carefree living in a world which hates Him. For if the world mocked, ridiculed, and murdered Jesus Himself, then why should His followers expect to avoid suffering? We can not. Some will suffer worse than others, but everyone that remains faithful will receive the crown of life.

If you want to win this crown, make sure to love Jesus Christ more than you love your own life.

The Crown of Glory

"And now, a word to you who are elders in the churches. I, too, am an elder and a witness to the sufferings of Christ. And I, too, will share in his glory when he is revealed to the whole world. As a fellow elder, I appeal to you: care for the flock that God has entrusted to you. Watch over it willingly, not grudgingly - not for what you will get out of it, but because you are eager to serve God. Don't lord it over the people assigned to your care, but lead them by your own good example. And when the Great Shepherd appears, you will receive a crown of never-ending glory and honor." 1 Peter 5:1-4 (NLT)

This crown is reserved for those who are placed in a position of authority and responsibility in our earthly lives. With others looking to us for leadership by example, this is a task of enormous importance. Such people must exhibit love and humility, carefully watching over those with whom they have been entrusted. Their motives and hearts must be pure, focused on serving God rather than serving themselves. Those who lead others by example will receive a crown of never-ending glory and honor.

If you want to win this crown, make sure to be a good example to others, especially those who look to you for guidance. And be a good and faithful steward of those God has entrusted to your care.

About the Author

Britt Gillette is author of BrittGillette.Com, a website studying the links between bible prophecy and advanced technology. To learn more about bible prophecy and eternal rewards from Jesus Christ, visit his site.

 

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Confidence - 5 Barriers to Building Self Confidence

By Darrell Causey

Confidence is one of the most important traits that you must acquire for success. It is the development of confidence that will help you overcome your fear of public speaking or making presentations. Without confidence, you can not be as effective as you like.

Here are 5 Barriers to developing your self confidence.

Barrier #1 Fear

The number one barrier to having an unstoppable confidence is fear. It might be a fear of failure, a fear rejection or even a fear of success. That's right, you might be afraid of success and all the responsibilities that come because of success.

But most of these fears are imaginary. The only place these fears exist are in your mind. So stop and think about your fears. Are they real or are you afraid of something that hasn't even happened yet? If it hasn't happened yet don't let it stop you from doing the things you need to do. Face your fear head on and take action.

Barrier #2 Worry

The next big barrier to a powerful confidence is worry. You might be worried about being perfect, or about what others think or that you might make a mistake. All of these are caused by spending too much time thinking about you. So, stop thinking about you and start thinking about others who need your message. Once you begin to focus on helping others you stop worrying about you.

Barrier #3 Procrastination

Procrastination will rob you of your confidence by keeping you from being at your best. Every time you leave something to be done at the last minute, it will never be as good as it could have been. If you are going to be at your best you need to determine your priorities and plan your tasks according to your priorities.

Barrier #4 Indecision

The ability to make decisions is a must for building confidence. Indecision in many situations can paralyze you and render you ineffective. You can change this by giving yourself deadlines to make a decision and sticking to it.

Remember you can always change your decision if new information warrants a change, but waiting to make a decision until everything is perfect will immobilize you. The perfect time will never come.

Barrier #5 Doubt

Doubt is probably the under lying problem with the other four barriers. Your fear, worry and indecisiveness comes from your doubt in your own abilities. Why should someone believe in you if you don't?

Acquiring confidence will not be an easy task. It will require patience, work and effort to obtain the confidence needed for your success. But, if you have a strong desire and are willing to make sacrifices you can have unstoppable confidence.

And now I invite you to learn more by clicking through to http://GreatPublicSpeaking.net

Monday, February 4, 2008

Help! I Am Having a Career Transition Crisis!

By Susan L Reid

Have you been waking up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat, panicked about your future, wondering if you're going to be able to make things work out? Is your stomach all tied up in knots? Is your mind racing as you contemplate options, unsure about what to do and where to go from here? Do you find yourself wistfully thinking about the way things were, wondering how you could have it back? If so, then you are in the middle of a career transition crisis.

It's a crisis because you're feeling unstable, realizing that you're at a crucial turning point. It's a transition because you're making the passage from one thing to the next and feeling out of control. Nobody likes feeling out of control. This is especially true when making a career transition - either changing from one type of job to another, or moving from being traditionally employed to being a solo preneur.

Transitions are rough. They're hard on your body, spirit, and emotions. They're tough on the people around you, your wallet, and your ego. Major life transitions beat you up, roll you over, and spit you out the other side. Even if you planned your transition ahead of time, had all the kinks ironed out, and had everything lined-up and ready to go, chances are . . . it's still going to be rough.

The good news is that there are things you can do to stabilize your transition. Here are the 10 main things I did to ease my transition from working in the ivory tower of academia to starting up and becoming a successful small business owner.

10 Inner Practices for the Transitioning Soul

1. Allow the process. Big change often feels like death, as if an old part of you must die in order for the new part of you to be born. The birthing of something new requires a deep integration. So allow that to happen. Some things will cease to be. Others will take on a new form.

2. Stay in charge of your happiness. Understand that you determine your happiness - not someone or something outside you.

3. Reach beyond what you fear. Don't go through it. Reach beyond to something greater, something more important than what you fear.

4. Trust that everything in your life is unfolding exactly as it is meant to be. Spend as little time as possible asking why or looking for answers. Trust and know.

5. Make your inner voice the predominant voice you listen to. Turn to others for support. Turn inward for guidance. Not the other way around.

6. Remain unattached to outcome. Fretting about the future or worrying about the past keep you attached. Stop doing both, and you'll be surprised at the number of doors that open, pathways that light up, and possibilities that present themselves to you.

7. Stay connected. Don't allow your fears to multiply by isolating yourself. Remain in contact with family and friends who support your vision, and stay involved with leisure activities that you enjoy.

8. Take good care of yourself with a balanced, healthy lifestyle. Eat nutritious food, exercise regularly, and get plenty of sleep. Weekly massages are terrific at releasing and balancing the body.

9. Meditate and practice T'ai Chi or Chi Qong to center and ground yourself, increase your energy, and sooth your psyche.

10. Avoid jumping into anything new too soon. Go slowly. When your life is disrupted by a transition - even one you initiate - it takes time to adjust to the new reality. Use that time to reflect and think about what is really best for you.

Will doing these ten things make your career transition crisis go away? No. However, they will go a long way toward giving you some breathing room to explore what matters most to you and how you'd like your life to be. Doing these inner practices will help relax the tension in your body, clear away the fog of confusion in your mind, and allow your inner voice to speak to you. Getting in touch with your inner voice and allowing it to guide you will put you back in the driver's seat and turn your career crisis into a career transformation.

Successful Small Business Start Up Coach, Consultant, & Author takes the fear out of starting up businesses by providing value, inspiration, and direction to entrepreneurial women transforming lives and making a difference in the world. Accidental Pren-her™ Blog is where entrepreneurial women come to embrace their Inner Samurai.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

5 Tips for Panic Attacks

By Curtis Dawson

First of all, a panic attack is a sudden intense feeling of fear and discomfort. It happens when something triggers your brain into thinking its in danger than it panics (hence the name "panic attack"). There are a few things you can do to reduce the risk of panic attacks and to help get rid of one you are currently having. It is all about just calming down and relaxing. Here are a few tips you can use to help:

1. Tell yourself to calm down. There is nothing in this world that needs to be rushed. Take a few deep breathes and jump back into reality.

2. A lot of people get panic attacks from obsessive thinking. Try not to think to much because cramming all those thoughts and worries into your head will eventually come out and will most likely be caused by anxiety.

3. Remember that panic attacks are not self-caused. A panic attack is formed from something you fear or are discomforted by. You ARE stronger than this panic attack and you CAN defeat it.

4. Panic attacks can be a form of overreacting. Stop overreacting you have nothing to overreact about. Nothing in this world involves overreacting. Take it from me I overreact at the smallest things like when I get home and I see an unknown phone number on my girlfriend's cell phone.

5. A good way to relief stress and anxiety is music. I have heard from a number a people that music can sooth the soul depending on what you listen to. So pop in your greatest hits CD and just sit down and relax. Just remember that nothing is stressful until you make it that way.

Panic Attacks can be a serious problem. Click Here to learn more about Panic Attacks and how to prevent them from reoccurring.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Law Of Attraction Boot Camp

The Law of Attraction has been labeled as part of a New Age movement, and the labelers have said there is no grounding within the Law of Attraction or that it is just a way to escape from the world. They believe that we believe that all one has to do is to lay around and dream and it all shows up on the doorstep.

Nothing could be further from the truth. There is work to be done when applying the Law of Attraction, but the work is worth it.

Here are a few constants when it comes to the Law of Attraction, in no particular order.

Law of Attraction Constant #1: Be specific in what you focus on. Why does it matter? Because the Universe brings you exactly what you desire, or better. If you give the Universe a foggy picture, it will have to fill in the blanks, your desire will be not what you wanted but instead could be a distorted version of it.

Law of Attraction Constant #2: See what you want in the now. If you have a desire that you are focusing on and you see it in the future (Example: You visualize on a particular vacation you want and you see it happening in the future) then it will stay in the future. Visualize like you are living it or having it now. Then the now will become your future.

Law of Attraction Constant #3: Repetition. Visualize everyday. This is important. You want to keep a clear focused image of what you desire going at all times. Each time you visualize, your desire is being directed out into the Universe and the picture and vibration becomes clearer and clearer until the day it is physically before you. Repetition replete with the 'good feeling' emotions will bring you what you desire that much quicker.

Law of Attraction Constant #4: Don't micro manage the Universe. When you live day to day and you think of your desires, make sure you only see the end result of those desires. The how should be left up to the Universe. The Universe knows all of the unknown ways to attract your desire to you. If you visualize but also try to create how it happens, than you are pigeonholing the Universe into just doing it your way. By doing this, it may take much longer for the Universe to match your vibrations. But if you let the how be taken care of by the Universe you can live in the knowledge that your desire is here now.

Law of Attraction Constant #5: Find your purpose, what you enjoy doing, and the money will follow. Most people want to focus on the money, money, money. There is nothing wrong with that, but an easier method (and far more fulfilling method) to acquire money is to learn what your purpose is in life. Discover what you enjoy doing. Ask the question: What would you work at 24-7 and still enjoy? When you find what you believe your calling is, opportunities will come knocking at your door with the requisite financial answers. Find your purpose. The purpose doesn't have to be spiritual in nature; just find what you love to do and could do everyday and make money at it which will allow you to take care of everything you desire in life.

Law of Attraction Constant #6: Living in joy. It's true what they say: Money won't bring you happiness. Be happy first and the money will follow. When you say that you will be happy when you have money, you're implying that only money will make you happy. Live in the joy of life now. Be happy and grateful with your life now. Find small things to be grateful for if you have to. You can live in happiness before your big windfall arrives. And by living in joy now, you are creating a joyous future because all of your 'today' thoughts are creating your future life.

These constants are merely the tip of the iceberg as it pertains to the Law of Attraction. It takes time and some deconstructing of your past, then the reconstruction of your current thoughts to attract what you desire, but it is worth the effort in order to have the life you truly deserve.

Beth and Lee McCain are full time instructors and lecturers in applying the Law of Attraction, or better known as the Secret, in your life to attain whatever you desire. They have a great radio show on Youtube that is both entertaining as well as informative on the subject of the Law of Attraction. Beth and Lee are real people with real answers. For more information, please visit: http://www.bethandleemccain.com