Archive for February, 2006

Using music to change your state

Saturday, February 18th, 2006

Feeling down?  Feeling depressed?  Feeling frustrated?  Feeling angry?

You can change how you feel almost instantly by changing your state!  Problem is, many people find it really difficult to change their state because they’re made a habit out of feeling disempowering feelings.

But there is a way to change how you feel and change quickly – through music.  Think about it, is there a piece of music that makes you feel happy, euphoric, excited or empowered?  Chances are that you can identify a stack of tracks that can change your state (and if you can’t think of any music then it’s time to go through you music collection, or failing that a movie that moves you – at worse, take a look at the ads on TV, these are loaded with music designed to move people).

Once you’ve found a few tracks that can change your state then why not give yourself the gift of a mix tape of tracks that uplift you.  Label it and put it on one side until you need to change your state and feel better.  And why not make a few copies of your empowering mix tape (don’t worry, it doesn’t have to be a tape, it can be a CD!) and leave one in the car, one at the office, one in your bedroom …).

Try it – this is a simple way to change your state and change how you feel.

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Make sure you have a water supply at arm’s length – always!

Friday, February 17th, 2006

Never leave getting a drink until you are feeling thirsty.  By then you are dehydrated and you will be operating well below your peak and your concentration levels will be lower than normal (well below peak levels).  The solution is simple – keep water at arm’s length at all times!  Whether you’re in the gym, at the office and in the car, keep a bottle with you nearby.

Remember, your body needs water!  Tea, coffee, milk and cola aren’t the same as water and places additional stresses on your body.

Give your body what it needs.  Give it water!

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Getting to grips with self-negotiation

Monday, February 6th, 2006

Do you procrastinate?

Do you put off tasks that would improve the quality of your life if you did them?

Do you know that you should go to the gym or lose a few pounds but don’t?

All of us occasionally do things that aren’t good for us or put off tasks that we don’t want to do because we can’t face up to them but the thing that I find curious is the way that we go about convincing ourselves to follow a course of action that ultimately isn’t all that good for us.  You might not realize it but you do it through a process of self-negotiation.

A good example is exercise.  Most people know that exercise is good for them and that they should take regular aerobic exercise but few do.  Why?  Because we weasel ourselves out of it.  We start off with the idea that we should exercise daily but almost as soon as we accept this fact we begin to start the self-negotiation process.

“Oh, yes, every day would be good but you really don’t have the time.”

“Yes, that’s right, what was I thinking of.  Every day is a bit over-the-top.  How about five days a week?”

“Yes, that’s good, but even five days a week is a bit much.  I think that three would be be better?”

“Yes, why didn’t I think of that!”

But is doesn’t end there.  Now that people have committed to a watered-down “three days a week” rather than the full-blown “every day” regime there is still room for self-negotiation.

“Should I go exercise today?”

“Hmmm, no.  After all, you’re very busy and also pretty tired.  Why not leave it until tomorrow?”

“Yeah, good idea.  I’ll get around to it tomorrow.”

Then, when tomorrow comes

“Hmmm, I’m not really in the mood to exercise today.”

“No, I can understand why.  Why not give it a miss today and then go Wednesday, Thursday and Friday instead.”


Now you go exercise Wednesday but come Thursday you’re back to negotiating with yourself.

“I’m not going to go today but I will exercise tomorrow, then to make up I’ll exercise four times a week next week instead …”

And so the cycle continues.

While there’s no doubt that you can use self-negotiation in a positive, pro-active way, on the whole we use it as a tool for procrastinating and holding ourselves back.  The good news is that this negative self-negotiation cycle isn’t easy to break.  Usually it’s no more than a bad habit that people have slipped into and just noticing that you do it can be all that you need to break the cycle.

The next time that you are trying to make a change or improvement in your life, be on the lookout for this internal self-negotiation and be careful that it doesn’t throw you off course and hold you back from achieving your goals!

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