Accountability Challenge Week 46: Play the Confidence Game

Accountability Challenge Week 46: Play the Confidence Game

 Why do some people seem to reach their goals easily, while others struggle?

Often the answer boils down to one thing; confidence, or lack thereof.

We are confident and self-assured life seems easier, the action steps needed to achieve our goals, seem effortless. We have the ability to take more risks and accept the goals that come with successful goal setting. We are in what athletes like to refer to as “the zone”.

However, when we suffer from lack of confidence everything seems more difficult.  We are often unable to motivate ourselves to do what we know how to do and even want to do.

We sabotage even the best intentioned plans to achieve our dreams, and we stop ourselves from moving beyond our current level of success, be it physical, financial, or personal.

The good news is that we all possess the potential to improve our current level of confidence. We possess the ability to improve not just our physical strength and endurance, but more importantly, our emotional strength.

The more confidence we have the better our results are. The less confidence we have, the more we struggle, it’s that simple.

So how do we improve our confidence, (our emotional strength) so we can improve our performance and our results?

One of the best ways to improve our confidence and our results in any area of our lives, to do what we used to do when we were kids: Play a Fun Game:

When we are young all we want to do is play. The favourite question that I get most often from my 9, and 12 year old sons Noah & Jacob is “can you play with me daddy”? or “can we play a game?”

Playing games is fun-life is not supposed to be all serious and stressful-we just tend to make it so.

All you need to play the confidence game is a pen and paper, real or virtual, and a desire to play the game.

Confidence Level

So what are the rules?

Take 10 minutes out of your day to relax. You can do deep breathing exercises, meditation, or just get out of your office and go for a walk around the block. When we are relaxed we are naturally more confident. When we are anxious, and stressed out our confidence wanes.

  • Do Aerobic and anaerobic exercises at least 3 times a week, more often if you really want more confidence.
  • Create a daily Performance Journal. Write between a half and a full page about how your feeling, your successes, your challenges, and what you learned from the exercise of writing.
  • Commit to playing this game every day.
  • Give yourself a reward, or a treat when you play the game. No treat if you don’t play the game.

The more fun you have playing the game, the better you will feel, and the more confidence you will have.

The more confidence you have, the more action you will take, the more action you take, the better the results you will have.

Expect Success,

Mark,

Thought for the week: Confidence is the key to success.  Coach Mark

Coach Mark,

Mark Hudon, CFP™CCS™

Financial Fitness Coach, Certified Cash Flow Specialist™

Creator of The Core Conditioning Program™

 

Accountability Challenge Week 45: The Pain & Gain of Goal Setting

Accountability Challenge Week 45: The Pain & Gain of Goal Setting

It’s quite common to hear the expression “no pain no gain” as it relates to the pursuit of our physical fitness goals, and goals in general.

What this typically means is that in order to achieve a challenge objective we first have to go through a certain amount of hardship or discomfort.

However it is a very natural and common tendency of human behaviour to want to avoid pain at all costs.

One of the biggest reasons that more people don’t achieve their goals in life is that they perceive the pain that they would have to go through to achieve the goal to be greater than the gain from the goal.

So the desire for the avoidance of pain quite often leads us to fall short of our goals.

Let’s look at our goal of completing a marathon, in other words we have a desire to run 42.2 km in an organized running race.

Last week we looked at the payoffs or “gains” around our goal. This week let’s look the perceived “pain” that might prevent us from achieving this goal:

• It’s too hard.
• It’s a long way to run, too long.
• I will have to commit a lot of time and effort to achieve this goal.
• It’s not worth all the pain and suffering
• My body might break down or get injured.
• Running is boring and monotonous
• I’m not cut out for running.
• My spouse will be resentful if I spend all this time away from them and my family.

There are many more manifestations of pain real or otherwise that can prevent us from achieving our goals.

The truth is that if we do have a significant goal, be it a health and fitness goal or a business related goal there is going to be some pain and discomfort that we will have to go through to enjoy the “gain”.

Feel sore or feel sorry

Another important truth is that we can never really avoid pain in life, whether it be achieving a goal that is important to us, or just getting on with our daily lives. Pain and gain are as natural and essential as breathing.

The desire to avoid pain, will only serve to hold us back from enjoying the myriad of the gains that life has to offer. This in turn only serves to perpetuate a vicious cycle of more pain in our lives.

So now the old adage becomes…”no pain, no gain, no gain, more pain”.

I dare you to say that five times fast.

Expect Success,
Mark,

Thought for the week: When you surround yourself with positive people who believe in you and inspire you, anything is possible”. Elle Crane

 Coach Mark,
Mark Hudon, CFP™, CCS™
Financial Fitness Coach, Certified Cash Flow Specialist™
Creator of The Core Conditioning Program™

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Accountability Challenge Week 44: What is the Payoff?

Accountability Challenge Week 44: What is the Payoff?

One of the most important things that drive us toward the accomplishment of our goals is the benefits or the payoff that we receive by achieving them.

For instance let’s say your goal is to complete a marathon; to run 42.2 km. There are a number of benefits that come to mind when achieve this goal including:

Your fitness level is dramatically improved.

  • Increased self-esteem & confidence
  • Tremendous sense of accomplishment.
  • You become a stronger person-both physically & mentally.
  • Knowledge that anything is possible for you.
  • Admiration and respect of other people.
  • You can now fit into those sexy pair of jeans you’ve been eyeing.
  • Increase energy, focus, discipline
  • You become a positive role model for other-including friends, family & peers-

With all of these great payoffs you would think that nothing would stand in the way of us reaching every important goal we strive for.

However, I’ve also come to realize in my own journey that we not only enjoy payoffs for reaching our goals, we also enjoy payoffs when we fail to achieve or even set our goals. You might want to read that sentence over again. Yes there are payoffs for not reaching your goals.

Ignoring goals

Let’s list some of the payoffs for not reaching/setting our goals:

  • We get to stay within our comfort zone…After all isn’t it better to be “safe than sorry?”
  • We avoid doing something that we perceive to be very difficult.
  • We don’t stand out from the crowd-we don’t draw any attention to ourselves.
  • We can spend the time that we would have been working onour goals with our families or friends, or sitting on the couch.
  • We avoid taking the risk that we won’t be successful in completing our goal.
  • We don’t have to face rejection.
  • We get to keep our own expectations low.
  • We get to hold on to our rationalizations/excuses: “I could have done it if I wanted to-I just didn’t want to”. “I’ll do it when I have more time”.

 So we get to enjoy payoffs for accomplishing our goals and payoffs for not accomplishing our goals.

The question becomes which payoffs will you choose?

Next week we will look at the “costs” of goal setting.

Expect Success,

Coach Mark,

Thought for the week :“ The tragedy in life doesn’t lie in not reaching your goal. It lies in having no goal to reach”. Benjamin Mays

Coach Mark,

Mark Hudon, CFP™CCS™

Financial Fitness Coach, Certified Cash Flow Specialist™

Creator of The Core Conditioning Program™

Accountability Challenge Week 43: Eat That Frog

Accountability Challenge Week 43: Eat That Frog

“Eat a live frog first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day.”   Mark Twain

If you have to eat a frog, don’t look at it for too long.” -Mark Twain

Why do we procrastinate?

When something is difficult/Unpleasant-solution do it now-Eat That Frog.

  • When something is time consuming-break it down into small tasks-Tell yourself that you will work on the task for ten minutes and not more-you will be pleasantly surprised by what happens.
  • When we feel we lack the knowledge or the skills. This could be because you do not want to make mistakes. So, you convince your-self that you must learn before beginning the task.  Tell yourself that “this is easy”. Try it for yourself first. If it really is outside your skill set (which it probably isn’t) ask for help.
  • When we are afraid: Again tell yourself “this is easy”. “I can do this”. One of my favourite questions is to ask myself: “What is the worst thing that can happen if I do this”? List out all the possible outcomes. Odds are that it isn’t life threatening. If that’s the case then the best thing to do is to “Eat That Frog”.

Eat That Frog

More Complex Reasons:

  • Low Frustration tolerance
  • Self-Downing-putting yourself down
  • Perfectionism
  • Anger/Hostility

What we have explained above are just some of the simple reasons why people procrastinate. There are more complicated reasons and we shall explain those to you in the next section. But, the reasons do not matter! What is MOST important is that you know when you are procrastinating. You must be able to understand that you are procrastinating.

Procrastinators are made not born. Procrastination is learned in the family milieu, but not directly. It is one response to an authoritarian parenting style. Having a harsh, controlling father keeps children from developing the ability to regulate themselves, from internalizing their own intentions and then learning to act on them. Procrastination can even be a form of rebellion, one of the few forms available under such circumstances

Is what you’re doing right now tension relieving or goal achieving?

Expect Success,

Mark,

Thought for the week:If you have to eat a frog, don’t look at it for too long.” -Mark Twain

Mark,

Mark Hudon, CFP™CCS™

Financial Fitness Coach, Certified Cash Flow Specialist™

Creator of The Core Conditioning Program™

 

Accountability Challenge Week 42: Focus.

“Your life will not change because you know what to do. It will change when you DO what you know”.   Dr. Robert Anthony

Accountability Challenge Week 42: Focus.

Knowing what you need to do to achieve your goals, and actually going out and doing it are two completely different things.

Most of us (myself included) know what we need to do to get into better shape physically, or financially, or in our relationships but we don’t always do it….do we?

To me personally, this is one of the biggest challenges that I face on a daily basis. I consider myself a goal oriented person, and have successfully completed many BIG goals in my life.

However, I am regularly left with the feeling that I am capable of achieving so much more, particularly when it comes to my business and personal goals. I allow my own negative Power of Resistance (procrastination, avoidance, fear:  e.g. “but what will they think”, self-doubt, worry etc.) to prevent me from moving forward more consistently in the direction of my goals.

What’s the deal here? I mean I have a strong desire to achieve my goals in life and to enjoy more success in my life.

What is it that I (and just by chance you too) need to do differently to enjoy more success in my life, and achieve even more of the goals that are important to me?

The answer came to me….in an email I received today.

The answer is as simple (and as challenging as) focus.

Focus

This is certainly not the first time I have received this life alternating truth-as I mentioned each of us “know” what to do we just don’t do always do it.

The answer came to me from Anne Bachrach, a wonderful Accountability Coach for Financial Advisors and Entrepreneurs that I have referenced in the past.

I thought I would share with you Anne’s 4 steps to Increase the power of your focus.

The challenge will not be reading up on the 4 steps, that’s the easy part. The challenge, and ultimately the reward will come from actually following through on implementing the 4 steps.

After all isn’t this what the power of persistence is really all about?

I look forward to your comments on the article and to being of service to you.

Cheers,

Expect Success,

Mark, Thought for the week: “Your life will not change because you know what to do. It will change when you DO what you know”.      Dr. Robert Anthony

4 Steps to Increase The Power of Your Focus by Anne M. Bachrach

Living your life without practicing The Power of Focus, is like trying to hit the bull’s eye of a target you can’t see.  You can spend hours launching arrows, only to miss the target entirely.  You become exhausted and frustrated when your repeated efforts don’t show the results you are trying to achieve.  This is what it feels like to operate without The Power of Focus.

The Power of Focus is the practice of focusing on the ‘right’ tasks at hand, while minimizing distractions that take your focus away from your goals.  It will improve time management, professional and personal performance, task efficiency, overall life balance, and provide your mind the information it needs to get you to the bull’s eye.

When you focus on the ‘right’ activities that lead to ‘big’ goal achievement, you will succeed.  A client of mine set a goal she was afraid to set because she had never been successful at achieving it before. We brainstormed a list of what we thought were the ‘right’ activities she needed to do in order to achieve this particular goal.  She got focused on these activities, did them, and exceeded her goal!  The same thing can happen for you when you focus on the ‘right’ activities.

Step 1. Create a Long-Term Goal List What are your Long-Term Goals within the next 3-5 years?  Within 10 years?  They can be anything you want – but they must be what you really want.  Your Long-Term Goals should go far beyond your comfort zone and how you would ideally like to see your life.  Asking to retire rich isn’t specific enough – you must include as many details as possible along with the date you would like to achieve each goal.

Step 2. Create a Short-Term Goal List. What are your Short-Term Goals? Within one week?  Within 3 months?  Whatever they are, include specific dates down to the month, day and year.  Prioritize your short-term goals and put the goal that is most important to you at the top of the list.  When you finish the most important things, move them off your list and do the next one, then the next one. It isn’t the one that is the easiest to do and the one with the least amount of discomfort. It is the one that is the most important to do first that will have the biggest impact on your overall success.  Maybe there is a goal you would like to achieve, but you’re not totally convinced you can do it.  How do you know if you don’t try?  The mind is a goal-achieving machine and can help you do more than you think.

Hang your Short- and Long-Term Goals up where you will see them frequently, even many times throughout the day.  Remain mindful of your goals as you go about your day and read them aloud every morning and every evening before going to sleep.  Your goal lists serve two purposes.  First, it uses The Power of Focus to help you concentrate on what you DO want so you can work on making it a reality.  Secondly, they serve as positive reinforcements.  When you can cross off a goal because you achieved it – you feel good!  Then you have room to add new goals.

Step 3. Create a Daily Task List / Prioritized Action List (PAL) At the end of each day, create your Task List for the following day.  Prioritize your tasks in order of importance, with the most important being at the top of the list.  The following day, start with the number one item and work your way down the list.  At the end of the day, you will have completed your tasks with improved organization and efficiency.

This is the part where most people run into trouble – they hate making a task list!  And that’s OK, you don’t have to like it – but it is necessary for your success.  Why?  Because successful people practice The Power of Focus every day and a Daily Task List is part of that regiment.  You must be an active participant in your life and take responsibility for those things that you must do.  And it’s easier to do that when your tasks are staring at you in the face!  You can’t conveniently forget about them…You suddenly become accountable for your actions, and knowing that this is all part of the process of becoming successful.

Step 4. Calendar Everything and Honor Thy Calendar Once you have your tasks listed, put all your activities on your calendar.  Determine how much time it takes to do each activity and place them on your calendar.  A good rule of thumb is to add a bit more time to what you think as it may actually take you longer.  If you are like me, I always think I can accomplish more than I actually can in the time allotted.  To prevent you from falling behind or feeling frustrated if you do take longer than you think, just give yourself a bit more time up front. If you complete the activity ahead of schedule, you can easily move on to the next task.

“Calendars never lie. They are 100% accurate and visible indicators of your priorities.” –Tom Peters

The Power of Focus is more than just goal-setting exercises.  It is a process in which you develop a crystal-clear vision of where you want to be, so your goal-achieving machine can make it a reality.  Remember, your subconscious mind is a goal-achieving machine.  It is exactly that – a machine.  It reacts to the information fed to it – no emotion, no judgment.  This works to your advantage or disadvantage.  The subconscious mind doesn’t know how to judge the information it receives, it only reacts to it.  Whatever you feed your mind will become your reality.  This is why practicing The Power of Focus every day is so important.  Focus on your goals, and your subconscious mind will actually support you in taking the right actions to get you to your goals.

When you are living with your goals in mind, your subconscious mind is working to make it a reality.  Practice The Power of Focus in your daily life and give your mind the chance to do what it does best – be a goal-achieving machine. Use the Power of Focus to achieve all your goals and live your dreams!

“Where attention goes, energy flows and results show.” T. Harv Eker Author of Secrets of the Millionaire Mind

Let me know how else I can help you in your goal achievement journey so you can achieve your goals and enjoy a balanced and successful life.

Aim High, The Accountability Coach™ http://www.accountabilitycoach.com/http://www.accountabilitycoach.org/

Mark,

Mark Hudon, CFP™CCS™

Financial Fitness Coach, Certified Cash Flow Specialist™

Creator of The Core Conditioning Program™

Check out our exciting new Website, Radio Show, & Cash Flow Planning tools:

http://financiallyfitforlife.ca/

http://webtalkradio.net/internet-talk-radio/financially-fit-for-life/

http://cashflow-specialist.com/

 

Accountability Challenge Week 41: “Persistence”.

Accountability Challenge Week 41:  “Persistence”.

What does the Power of Persistence mean to you?

I choose to call this 52 week accountability journey that we have been on “the power of persistence”-but what does Persistence really mean?

Here is what the dictionary has to say about it….

Persistence: 

  • Firm or obstinate continuance in a course of action in spite of difficulty or opposition.
  • The continued or prolonged existence of something
  • Insistently repetitive; Indefinitely continuous; Lasting past maturity without falling off;
  • Refusing to give up or let go; persevering obstinately.

Persistence2

 

These definitions are all and true. To be persistent means to keep on keeping on, especially in the face of adversary. However, to me, the full meaning of the word “persistence” goes well beyond these simple definitions.

To me Persistence is a powerful positive force, and state of mind that encompasses all of good that we strive for in our lives. It is from persistence that we gain the strength to pursue our passions, our purpose our potential.

It is from Persistence that we gain the strength, courage and hope to overcome our fears, our doubts our demons, our Resistance.

It is from Persistence that we find the desire, the energy, the focus, the faith to take continual action towards our goals and dreams.

It is from Persistence that we close the gap between our untapped potential and our performance to date.

It is from Persistence that we tap into our authentic selves for perhaps the very first time.

To me Persistence is life! At least the ideal of the potential that exists lies within the heart and soul of each of us.

What does Persistence mean to you?

What will you do today to persist in your goals, dreams, visions, values, passions and purpose?

Expect Success,

Mark,

Thought for the week:  “Persistence is to the character of man as carbon is to steel”   Napoleon Hill

Mark,

Mark Hudon, CFP™CCS™

Financial Fitness Coach, Certified Cash Flow Specialist™

Creator of The Core Conditioning Program™