Wisdom & Life

When I came upon this list of Top 10 Words of Wisdom of Gandhi, I felt there were so many gems within this list, that I should pass it on. Each item unto itself is valuable, together there is an opportunity for life changing energy. Take a moment to review these words of wisdom. Once you get in touch with the topic that is most relevant to or "speaks" to you, then begin your journey to make your selection come true. Find people, resources, experiences, training, classes, or opportunities to engage in the wisdom you choose to pursue.  In 2015, plan to help yourself find a way to build your confidence, self-esteem, to improve the quality of your life, bring purpose and meaning to your existence.

WOOP.......How to turn dreams and your imagination into action

In a recent book by Gabriele Oettingen, titled, Rethinking Positive Thinking, she discusses new research based concepts related to motivational principles for change. Her notion is to focus on change, visualization along with obstacles that may get in your way of achieving your goals. Oettingen applies mental contrasting to three key areas of personal change— becoming healthier, nurturing personal and professional relationships, and performing better at work. She introduces readers to the key phases of mental contrasting using a proven four-step process called WOOP—Wish, Outcome, Obstacle, Plan—and offers advice and exercises on how to best apply this method to daily life. "Through mental contrasting, people in Oettingen’s studies have become significantly more motivated to quit smoking, lose weight, get better grades, sustain fulfilling relationships, and negotiate more effectively in business situations. Whether you are unhappy and struggling with serious problems or you just want to improve, discover, and explore new opportunities, this book will deepen your ideas about human motivation and help you boldly chart a new path ahead." Whatever your endeavor, imagination, visualization, expectations all matter, however, you have to create the structure, discipline and do the work. Imagination without effort is insufficient to achieve success. 

TURN DREAMS INTO ACTION
With additional studies, Oettingen came up with a strategy for turning dreams into action or, when appropriate, new dreams. It goes by the acronym WOOP, standing for:

• Wish: Let yourself dream about a specific wish for your life.
• Outcome: Think about the best thing that could happen as a result.
• Obstacles: Think about the thoughts, behaviors, habits and preconceived notions that might hold you back.
• Plan: Think about when and where an obstacle will occur and make an "if-then" plan: "If obstacle x occurs, then I will perform behavior y." Just click on the WOOP App link to go download it.

Ego......How is it working for you?

Ego means the extent to which one thinks highly of one's self.  Ego is the self-consciousness system is the narrating portion of human consciousness that reflects on one’s thoughts, feelings and actions and inhibits or legitimizes them to one’s self and to others. In this sense, ego is very similar to what is meant by the term identity. What is the purpose of ego? How is it regulated? How do you feel about yourself?
James Stouts describes the ego as follows;
  • The ego is our identity. It is who we believe ourselves to be. It is our reference point, and our "home" in the world.
  • The ego is individuality. As our identity, it sets us apart from our people's identities. To provide our sense of being separate from other people and from the world in general, the ego creates "ego boundaries"; in that separateness, our ego distinguishes itself as being unique.
  • The ego is a center of consciousness. It is an "eye" from which we look at the world.
  • The ego is an executive. It makes decisions. It implements our will.
  • The ego is an organizer. It makes a distinction between the inner world and the outer world, and it notes our perceptions from both. Then, by conceptualizing, labeling, and organizing those perceptions, it tries to make sense of them, and it files them in various contexts, where we can make considerations regarding their "value," potential threat or benefit, etc.
  • The ego is an interface. Just as our physical body is an interface with the physical world, the ego is an interface primarily with the human world of society and individuals. The interface has both an inflow and an outflow:
  • Outflow. The ego is a transformer and interpreter, transmitting ideas from soul into the world of people, in a form, which is understandable and appropriate to those people.
  • Inflow. The ego translates incoming information from the human world such that our daily experiences are comprehensible and meaningful and educational to the Self or soul.
  • The ego is a mediator.
  • It mediates in our inner world. It strives to resolve conflicts among the other parts of the psyche, including the unconscious mind, sub-personalities, and so on. (In Freudian psychology, it is the arbitrator between the id and the superego.
  •  It mediates between this inner world and the outer world of people and circumstances.
You basically have two options in the way you live your life, how to avoid suffering.
  1. You can live a life dedicated to constantly making the ego structure feel good, suffering every time the ego feels bad and being afraid of life because the ego feels so vulnerable.
  2. You can let go of the ego, and live freely in the flow of your life-stream, living your natural expression.
So, what is the answer to preserve  self-esteem and self-worth? Leave your ego at the door when you enter a room to avoid suffering. Keep your ego intact by remaining positive and optimistic. Let your ego be an affirming interface for you to connect with others in 2015.


Alcohol & the Brain

With New Years just around the corner, I don't want to be Debbie Downer, but please check out this article from WebMD in News from HealthDay by Robert Preidt, HealthDay Reporter. Think "moderation" tonight!
Scans: Alcoholism Damages Brain's White Matter. 

Areas tied to decision-making, such as how much to drink, seem most affected, researchers say.  Brain Scans: Alcoholism Damages Brain's White Matter Areas.  

Keane explained in the news release that "alcoholism leads to many brain-related changes and dysfunction that decreases one's ability to function and to heal." And, he added, "The longer you misuse alcohol the greater your chances are of permanent damage. So if you or someone you know needs help to reduce drinking, do it now."