Sep 302013
 

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To listen to this weeks podcast directly from iTunes click here or from Stitcher click here! If you don’t have time to listen now you can always subscribe and get each show absolutely free downloaded to your iPhone or other mobile device! You’re going to get a lot more in the podcast but I want to make sure everyone has access to what I’m about to share with you.

There is a stigma in this society and it’s not just reserved for men. It’s caused us to remain small, feel shame, and I believe ultimately has held us all back from living our dreams. What I’m talking about is asking for help. I’ve worked with many people and they either don’t know how to ask for help or can’t accept it when it’s offered. What’s that all about?

Before I dive in to the topic a little bit in these “Show Notes” I want to give a shout out to an ISA Community Member and her name is Susan Diehl!

Susan is a Personal Fitness Coach who helps others one on one and in group settings. What separates her from other coaches is her her fun-loving and honest compassionate approach to fitness. She also takes a more holistic approach to fitness in that she ties together self-love, compassion, and tons of fun to make getting fit a loving and exciting thing to do. She definitely takes fitness to a whole new “Fun” level. You can check her out on twitter @ThatGirlSaid, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/LaughingFit or on her website at www.beachbodycoach.com/LaughingFit. If you’d like to get an appreciation and a shout out join us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/isimplyam and let me hear from you. I’ll be happy to mention your business or site on the show.

The reason so many of us have trouble asking for and receiving help has everything to do with our acceptance of who we are. If we know and believe we are intelligent, strong, powerful, creative, and enough all on our own than receiving help is a blessing. On the other hand if there’s a deeper part of us that believes we’re not intelligent, not strong, or not enough than asking for or receiving help affirms how dumb, weak, and less than we really are. See how this works?

The reality is we live in Community with others and this is how we flourish! The greatest things in this world might have been imagined by one person but they were created by many. This is why we can’t be expected to do it alone and why it’s at the minimum extremely hard if not impossible to try.

One of the biggest motivators and measures we can put in place to make sure we’re meeting our goals is accountability. So what happens when we don’t incorporate the help of others when following our dreams? We have no one to hold us accountable. We imagine wonderful things happening for us and we might even have a rough outline of how to make those dreams come true. But when no one knows about our dreams we have no accountability. We slip back into our normal routines, make excuses, and those want to’s turn into would have and should have.

Jim Rohn said, “You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.” Who are you spending your time with? Are they complaining about Monday’s and how awful the world is? Surround yourself with like-minded people that will lift you up and not keep you down. We tend to keep company with people that are living a similar life to ourselves. If you want more out of your life but the people closest in your life don’t want that for themselves then what do you think your chances are of actually making that change?

Weekly ISA Challenge:

Step 1: Make a list of the people you spend the most time with.
Step 2: Separate the list into 2 categories. A. The Holder Backers (so technical, I know) and the Supporters.
Step 3: Make a conscious effort to share your hopes, dreams and goals with your Supporters and ask them to hold you accountable. Reduce or limit your time spent with the Holder Backers.
Step 4: Go online, to meetups or workshops to find more Supporters to add to your list.

How You Can Get Mentioned On the Show!

Send me an email with a question and I’ll answer it on next week’s podcast! The topic is on how to make time for things in our life. If you ever find that you’re telling yourself or others that you don’t have time this will be something you won’t want to miss. So send an email to josh@isimply.am with your questions and I’ll mention you (unless you tell me otherwise) and answer your question on the air.

Lastly, in order for the podcast to come up in the iTunes search results I need to have reviews. The show has just started and I don’t have any yet (which is totally expected). Having said that, if the podcast has resonated with you on one level or another please consider taking just a couple of minutes to leave an honest review. Clicking here will take you right to iTunes!

With Gratitude and Appreciation,

Josh_Sig

 

 

Want to live the BEST version of YOU!? Take the FREE 5 Day Self Love Challenge and start living the life you want today!

Sep 232013
 

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Everyone knows that diets don’t work but we can’t seem to escape the urge to want to start the latest one. I remember not too long ago some co-workers were talking about a new 7-day “cleanse”. They would tell me how each day was different but they were limited to very specific foods. I think on one day they could only eat bananas. Strange, right? Well, I was curious at the time even though I never wound up actually doing it.

I think what’s exciting about that new diet isn’t so much the diet itself but rather the idea that maybe this will be the thing that will help me lose the weight. I know I’m not alone either because studies show that 90% – 95% of all Americans who go on a diet gain most, if not all the lost weight back in 1 – 5 years! So how do we keep allowing ourselves to live in this vicious cycle?

How many books are out there telling us what we should be eating? Eat this, don’t eat that…eat this at this time but not at that time…combine this food with that food but not that food…and the advice goes on and on.

Interestingly enough though, if I asked you what you “should” be eating to have a healthy life you’d probably respond like everyone else. You’d probably tell me that you should have a good-sized breakfast full of healthy proteins, carbs, and fats. In fact, other than not going longer than 2 to 3 hours between meals/snacks and staying hydrated not much else would change throughout your day. Of course, you’d probably tell me to avoid sugars, processed foods (breads, crackers, chips), and anything with a high glycemic index.

My point is, we all know what we should eat. It’s really not a secret what we should eat to have a healthy and fit body. We all also know exactly what we need to do for exercise as well. If asked, I’m sure you’d tell me that I should go for a 30-minute jog/walk a day. Perhaps you’d tell me to go to the gym, go for a bike ride, or even a swim. Again, we all know exactly what we need to do to exercise.

So why do we keep searching and searching and searching for that right diet that will tell us what to eat and how to work out?

Well, what if we changed our question from “What do I need to eat?” to “Why do I eat?”.

I believe this is where the answer to our health problems lie. I believe when we answer the why and not the what we begin to discover the real culprit to our unhealthy lifestyle. The way I see it, we eat primarily for 3 different reasons. We either eat to nourish our body (ie; we’re hungry), for pleasure (some foods are just enjoyable), and as a means to cope with feelings we don’t want to acknowledge and feel.

I think a healthy lifestyle would include 80% of our “Why” in the nourishment department (eating healthy moderate foods) and the other 20% in the pleasure department (a Caribbean Coconut Gelato is just pleasurable every now and then!). Notice I don’t leave any room here for eating to cope with feelings.

I would venture to say (I know it’s been true for me) that the vast majority of us are eating 80% in the coping department/pleasure department and 20% in the nourishment department. Now there are many of you that read this blog and listen to my podcast who are very conscious of what you put into your body but I know many others are still finding it a challenge. It’s been a challenge for me and it’s something I’m still working on.

I once read a book called Super Brain written by Deepak Chopra and Rudolph Tanzi. I highly recommend you check it out! They had an amazing suggestion in there that you can try at home! It involves the following scenario:

The next time you find yourself going to the kitchen cabinet for something to eat ask yourself how you’re feeling. Are you feeling bored, sad, angry, disappointed, anxious, happy? Notice if you’re actually hungry. Now that you’ve identified the feeling(s) you have, go ahead and eat! This is the part I thought was genius! You’d think they would tell you not to eat, right? Well, the goal is to train your brain to understand WHY you are eating! Eventually, you’ll go to the cabinet, know you’re feeling bored, and make the conscious choice to not become a victim to your feeling.

I genuinely believe if you spend some time this week really becoming aware of your feelings and what actions follow you’ll begin to develop an even deeper understanding into your habits. I know this has worked for me and although I’m not perfect at eating (by far) I’m very aware now of why I do eat. Instead of fooling myself into thinking I’m unhealthy because I don’t know what to eat, I can now find the real answer by answering the why I eat.

Should you choose to accept it, this is your weekly challenge!

Step 1: The next time you go to eat ask yourself how you’re feeling

Step 2: See where in your body you are feeling that feeling

Step 3: Say Hello to the feeling. Acknowledge you are not the feeling.

Step 4: Choose to eat anyway, acknowledging that the feeling is making the choice NOT YOU

I highly encourage you to take 30-minutes and listen to the podcast on this. There’s so much more in the podcast and I really think you’ll find some great value in there. If you do enjoy the podcast I would be forever grateful if you left a written review on iTunes. Doing so will help move the show higher in the search rankings. This will allow others, like yourself to find the show more easily.

With Gratitude and Appreciation,

Josh_Sig

Sep 172013
 

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So perhaps you were a little thrown off by the title. Anyone who appreciates the work of Louise Hay or Dr. Wayne Dyer is going to know there is significant value in affirmations. After all, our thoughts shape our words, our words shape our actions, and our actions shape much of our reality.

Well, the truth is I do think affirmations work but I also believe I have found 3 reasons why they may not be working for you. Let me first mention something though. The reality is, whether you think you’ve been doing affirmations or not is irrelevant. Why would I say this? Because we all affirm ourselves every day.

Thinking to yourself that you’re dumb is an affirmation. Thinking to yourself that you’re an idiot is an affirmation. Thinking to yourself how bad you look is an affirmation. No, these affirmations are not true of course but you are affirming something when you think or say that about yourself.

What we want to do with affirmations is contradict what we’ve been telling ourselves. We want to begin thinking and saying what is true about ourselves. Can you imagine what kind of life you could be living if you truly affirmed how good you were? If you reminded yourself often how smart, creative, and beautiful you were? Just writing this brings me a feeling of confidence that I can go out and do so much more knowing those are my truths!

So if you’ve ever come across someone who thinks that affirmations don’t work you might want to consider the following:

1. It’s likely that you are doing them incorrectly. Sometimes we confuse recognition with appreciation. Appreciation falls in the Affirmation camp. Recognition, while a wonderful thing, is not an affirmation. You see, recognition involves praise for something someone did. You graduated school, you finished writing a book, you landed that great job you’ve always wanted, you finally ran that half-marathon. Those are wonderful achievements and praise/recognition for a job well done goes a long way. However, affirmations are not based on recognition of the accomplishments and achievements you’ve made.

Affirmations are based on appreciations and appreciations are based on your inherent qualities. Those are qualities you were born with and are not dependent on what you do but rather who you are. For example, you are creative, beautiful, thoughtful, intelligent, whole, enough, valuable, etc. So the next time you affirm yourself consider whether it’s a quality or an achievement you are expressing. Achievements come and go but your inherent quality (what you’re made of) stays the same all the time regardless of what you do or don’t do.

2. You are doing them to feel “good”. This is not the point of doing affirmations. We don’t use affirmations to feel certain ways. People say they don’t work because sometimes they don’t “feel better” after saying them. Affirming yourself has nothing to do with how you feel in any given moment. Your thoughts and your feelings are two different things and this is a great time to remind yourself of that.

3. You’re not doing them enough. It’s amazing how often throughout a given day we’re given reminders about what’s “wrong” with us. We need to counter that by doing affirmations daily!

Here’s Your Challenge For The Week:

Step 1: Do it first thing in the morning in front of the mirror or when you go to bed

Step 2: Allow yourself to have whatever thoughts and feelings come up for you. Don’t judge them.

Step 3: This is about changing your starting place so go easy on yourself.

Step 4: When you’re about to give up and stop is right when you’re going to have your breakthrough, so keep going.

For much more, listen to the entire podcast on iTunes and if you feel so compelled I would be forever grateful if you left a written review there as well!

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Want to live the BEST version of YOU!? Take the FREE 5 Day Self Love Challenge and start living the life you want today!

Sep 112013
 

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It’s really taken a long time for me to even begin to understand the concept of “getting into the flow”. It’s taken me an equally long time to understand how profound judgement can be and how often we’re doing it. Of course, I still struggle with both of these concepts but they’re becoming more and more clear for me as I continue on my journey.

What do I mean by Flow?

This can be a complex and certainly abstract concept but I’ll do my best to simplify it into terms we can all digest. I even get lost in my own thinking on this one! When I speak of getting into the flow I’m talking about rolling with the punches, accepting things as they are and allowing life to unfold in front of you. It means that some minutes, hours, days, weeks, months, and years of our lives are going to have ups and downs. As you know, life is never static when it comes to intensity, thoughts, and feelings about the circumstances in our lives. People die, we miss a deadline, things don’t go our way, someone decides they don’t like us anymore, our plan for living our dream isn’t unfolding the way we thought it would. These are all examples of situations that happen to all of us. We have two options in any situation that is presented.

Judgment

Look, nothing in the world is good nor bad in and of itself. Your first response to this statement might be, “But Josh that’s not true! getting fired from work is really bad!”. Yet, when you are fired from work you’re just fired from work. In order for you to make a claim that it’s a good or bad thing you have to first compare the outcome of that event against all of your history and then the thoughts and feelings that transpired as a result. Your judgement is based on the knowledge of your experiences and sets you right up to resist. Your history tells you that things should be a certain way and this way (getting fired) is a contradiction. In this case it’s a negative contradiction and you judge it to be a bad thing. As a result all kinds of thoughts and feelings come with it. Perhaps you feel angry, scared, anxious, confused, and sad.  You are likely to stay in a state of constriction. Your muscles tighten up, your body physically gets tighter and consciously you’re more focused. Usually focused to the point of tunnel vision by not allowing opposing thoughts to come in to play.

We judge things because we like to feel safe and we’re scared to death of uncertainty. Judgement allows us to have our own set of rules about what fits into the “good” box and what fits into the “bad” box. If something is judged to be good then we know exactly how to respond and vice versa for bad things. We swear and live by our judgments. Meaning when we say something is bad, it’s bad and there’s no changing our minds. We cling on to that judgement as though it’s eternal truth and don’t try and tell me I’m wrong!

In order to live in that box of bad or even that box of good it means we have to resist the natural flow of life. It means we have to block out the possibilities of certain things. We can’t judge something as being bad but still allow ourselves to see the good that may come of it. This leaves us always resisting life’s ever changing events. Life becomes a constant struggle of “this is good” or “this is bad” or “what do I think about this one?”.

Getting into the flow

Getting into the flow allows you jump on to the wave of life and take that ride! It means you can be open to ALL THINGS that happen knowing they are as they should be. It means you’ll be open to new experiences and opportunities you could have never dreamed of. Possibility is endless and you are safe all along the glorious ride we call life. That’s what living in the flow is and guess what? All animals and plants already live in the flow of life and look how they flourish! A tree doesn’t resist the wind, it bends and flexes with it allowing it to blow through. The wind isn’t good or bad it just is. The Gray Whale doesn’t decide the journey from Mexico to the Arctic is too long it’s along for the ride.

Getting into the flow of life can open up so many possibilities you never thought of previously. Take that example of getting fired. If you responded out of judgement and felt angry, sad, and anxious you’d likely get into a state of desperation. You might immediately start selling valuable possessions, you might try and manipulate others into giving you things, even worse you’re likely going to negatively affect all those around you. Fights with spouses start up, the world around you looks bleak and you have few options. Without the judgement you get to respond without all those feelings weighing you down. No, you might not feel happy but you’ll be open to your future. You’ll look deep inside to think about what you really want and/or should be doing with your career life. Look how many people have started their own businesses as a direct result from losing their “normal” job. Without all that anger and anxiety you won’t be bringing others down and you’ll be allowing of all the great opportunities to be had.

It seems clear that getting into the flow can yield us many benefits and open us up to unlimited potential. But how do we do it? It’s so easy to judge and that’s our go-to response for things in our life. I’ve found this is a process and takes a long time. I still judge things and by no means am I perfect! However, I get to be aware when I am judging things and make a conscious decision to stay in that limited and restricted state or open up to my unlimited potential.

Start with the small things. You go to the store to buy something you thought was going to be on sale only to find out it’s not. Say to yourself, “Well that’s interesting!” and make a decision to buy or not based on your financial situation and need for the product. Of course, this is just one simple example but try on that response this week and let me know how it works. Whenever something happens (ie; someone cuts you off, someone criticizes you, etc.) respond by saying, “That’s interesting…”. At first, you may even laugh (which isn’t a horrible thing) but it will help to diffuse what otherwise could have been a charged situation for you.

Let me know in the comments where you got to suspend judgment (“That’s Interesting”) and let me also know what it was like! I want to hear from you all!

With Gratitude and Appreciation,

Josh_Sig

 

 

Want to live the BEST version of YOU!? Take the FREE 5 Day Self Love Challenge and start living the life you want today!

Sep 092013
 

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Welcome to our very first podcast for I Simply Am! I’ve thought long and hard about adding a podcast to the blog. Podcasts are another great way to consume content. Blog posts are great but they require you to be in front of your computer or tablet/iphone with all of your attention on the article for a period of time. Since podcasts are audible you’ll be able to listen to a show on your phone or tablet device while you’re out jogging, driving, or even gardening! Before I move any further I want to explain what a podcast is for those of you who are unfamiliar. Everyone else skip ahead just a bit…

What is a Podcast?

Essentially it’s a digital media file that allows you to listen and/or watch content on your mp3 player, smartphone, iPod, or iPad. The key distinction, however, between a single audio or video file and a podcast is that you can subscribe to a podcast. What does this mean for you? Once a podcast is available (this one should be in the next week or two) in iTunes you can click on a subscribe link and automatically get every episode published.

So what’s in this first episode of The I Simply Am Podcast?

I go over an introduction to the show and let you know about some logistics of the show:

  • The shows are for those looking to answer the question, “Who am I?” and are designed to give you real life tools you can use to live the fullest expression of who you are!
  • The shows will be published once a week on Monday’s (on this blog and soon on iTunes).
  • A unique quality of the show is that I’ll leave you with an exercise or tool you can apply to your own life, every week!
  • The shows will run about 30 minutes in length (unless I’m doing an interview).
  • All show notes will be here on the blog.

Today’s Topic: The Practice of Walking With Fear

In this episode a share a story of a recent experience I had at a weekend Retreat in the California Mountains. I share with you a personal fear of mine and walk you through exactly what happened to me. It could involve being eaten by a wild Mountain Lion so you’ll have to listen to the show to find out!

This Week’s Exercise

Each week I’ll be giving you a step-by-step exercise that you can try on in your own life. Each one will be designed to not only challenge you but to help you make a tangible and positive difference in your life. It’s one thing to talk about love, self awareness, spirituality, and authentic living. It’s a completely different thing to learn new tools and use them so you can see real changes in your life. The following is a 4-step process to practice walking with fear. Listen to the podcast (above) for a more comprehensive overview and the background on these steps.

1. Acknowledge that you are feeling fear but Do Not judge the fear.

2. Accept the fear you are feeling.

3. Allow yourself to have a feeling (fear) and make a choice to respond based on something else.

4.  Grab the hand of your inner child and take the first step.

Once you listen to the show and try out this exercise I want to hear from you! Reach out to me on Facebook or leave a comment on the blog!

Join us next week when we release Episode 2: 3 Reasons Why Affirmations Don’t Work (tip: there’s a twist on this one!).

With Gratitude and Appreciation,

Josh_Sig

 

 

Want to live the BEST version of YOU!? Take the FREE 5 Day Self Love Challenge and start living the life you want today!

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