Thursday, March 29, 2007

Stress and "Happily Ever After"

We hear so much these days about how stress is destroying people's lives... their physical health, their mental health, their relationships, their careers. People 'burn-out' all the time (whether they'd like to admit it or not.) Many times they just want to quit... get out of the rat race... go to a far, far away island where they can live happily ever after.

Where is this land of "Happily Ever After"?

The sad truth is that it exists only in our imagination.

So, where does all this stress in your life come from? I have a suggestion... it comes from one central location... your imagination.

Ok, ok, I can hear you screaming at me already...

  • IS IT MY IMAGINATION ( fill in the blank )?

No, no. That's not what I'm saying. Please let me continue before you get all riled up.

In this world, we are placed under a lot of expectations. Here are just a few:

  • We're expected to work longer, harder, smarter, faster.
  • We're expected to be passionate, caring, thoughtful, gracious with are friends, co-workers and partners.
  • We're expected to 'give back' to our communities, to deserving charities and other good causes.
  • We're expected to be successful, to make a lot of money, to have a lot of friends, to be up-to-date on all the latest news.
  • We're expected to be healthy, "normal" weight, in good physical condition.

Where do these expectations come from and why do we live under them?

I propose that you get out from under the expectations of the world!!

I'm not saying to discard your goals and dreams. Quite the contrary, I believe that you should focus on YOUR goals and dreams, on what YOU aspire to become and not put so much emphasis on what "THEY" say.

Here are some thoughts...

  • What if you were able to realize that your stress was coming from your own mind and its acceptance of the measures of other people?
  • What if you could decide on your own measurement for YOUR success?
Eleanor Roosevelt once said, "No one can make your feel inferior without your permission."

In fact, no one can make you feel any emotion without your permission. No one can make you feel stress without your permission!!

How can that be? Well, it seems that most stress comes from cognitive dissonance. Ok, that's just a fancy expression for the difference between where you currently are and where you think you should be. Here's the best part... YOU control where YOU think YOU should be. You may decide, consciously or unconsciously, to relinquish that control to your boss, your partner, your kids, your parents, or even the collective "they" (whom I still have yet to meet). But the decision and the control is yours and yours alone.

So, if you decide to cling to the expectation that your life should be lived in the "Happily Ever After", you should realize that you will probably miss out on the "Pretty Terrific Now". You see, when you learn to focus on today and learn to use your gifts, your talents, your uniqueness to make YOUR dreams and goals come true, you will find that you already have what it takes to get to where you want to be.

It's amazing how your stress can be reduced when you focus on the "Now" instead of the "could've", "should've", "would've" and the "ought to", "must", "have to" that the world of "Happily Ever After" places you.

Spend some time thinking about YOU and your "Pretty Terrific Now". You can be the master of your thoughts, the master of your imagination and choose to use it for YOUR good instead of 'evil'. :)

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Crabs in a Basket

  • Have you ever noticed that the critics don't criticize the people 'beneath' them?
  • Have you ever noticed anyone trying to knock someone UP onto a pedestal?
  • Do you ever hear anyone saying 'it's crowded at the top'?

I must confess that there were times in my life that I did everything to avoid criticism. I guess you could call me a people-pleaser. I mean, who really wants someone to be upset with them, right?

But our society is all about levels and some people believe that if someone is above them they should try to knock them down. There is another alternative... they could strive to rise up and join them.

I once heard a story that is said to be an old African adage. It goes something like this...

Do you know how to keep a crab in a basket without putting the lid on?

It's simple... put 2 or more crabs in the basket. Once one starts to climb above the other, the lower crab will reach up and pull the rising crab back down.

Now, you don't see crabs displaying this behavior when they are on the beach on the open sand. They only exhibit this behavior when they see one rising above the other. I read an article at in which some people said that it isn't the CRAB'S fault - it's the BASKET'S fault. If the basket had been a flat, unimposing structure, the crabs would never try to defeat each other. One even went on to say, “Keep looking to the top of the basket in order to get out or better yet, we shouldn’t even get into the same basket in the first place.”

Ok, that's an interesting approach. As an athlete, I loved to get into a basket where the players were better than me. I believed that they could help me get better. It appears, however, that some folks see the challenge of multiple crabs in a basket as an unnecessary evil. I mean, wouldn't it be nice if we could all isolate ourselves in our own little baskets. (I think not.) I guess it's a lot easier not to try than to try and fail... that it's a lot easier to stay out of the crowded basket than to realize that someone may have worked longer, harder and smarter to get to the top before you.

So, I have a few questions for you...

  • Do you ever find yourself being a crab at the bottom of the basket?
  • Do you ever root for someone's failure whom you may think is 'above' you in the basket?
  • Does your mind tell you that if someone is at the top, they must've cheated to get there?
  • Do your thoughts tell you that those at the top of the basket are probably miserable and alone?
  • Do you ever blame circumstances for your location in the basket?
  • Do you find that you avoid attempts to climb out of the basket to avoid the criticism of others?

All of those thoughts are very dangerous and will keep you from RISING above.

Let me ask you a question: what's the best way to cross a minefield?

The answer: follow in the footsteps of someone who has already done it. I say that NOT to discourage you from finding your own way. Instead, I say that to encourage you to embrace those who have gone before you, those who have risen to where you want to be. As you follow in their footsteps you will soon develop your own confidence... the confidence you need to then chart your own course and rise above the criticism of the crabs below.

Don't let your thoughts fall to the bottom of the basket. Rise up and choose to think thoughts that support your success. We have enough negativity in this world and it seems very easy for our minds to go there.

Today, choose to look at those crabs in the basket above you and encourage them to show you the path to the top. Instead of being threatened by their success, you will become a part of it.

Monday, March 19, 2007


Today, I have been procrastinating. Yes, I admit it. Have you ever done that? Probably not, but just in case, let's talk about it. ;-)

  • How often do you know you should do something but just don't?
  • Do you have things that you should be doing but instead you fill your time with meaningless or mindless tasks? (Like today, I deleted some files and defragmented my hard drive instead of making phone calls and setting up appointments.)

In my coaching business, I find that quite a few (ok, all of my clients) have suffered from this deadly disease at one time or another. Why did I say "deadly"? Well, procrastination kills... it kills time. More importantly, it kills YOUR time. That's something that you can never get back.

As Og Mandino says in Scroll V of his extraordinary book "The Greatest Salesman in the World":

I will live this day as if it is my last. I have but one life and life is naught but a measurement of time. When I waste one I destroy the other. If I waste today I destroy the last page of my life. Therefore, each hour of this day will I cherish for it can never return. It cannot be banked today to be withdrawn on the morrow for who can trap the wind?

So, how do we overcome this disease of procrastination? Well, I told you Og's book is extraordinary. Let's take a look at Scrolls IX and V (respectively):

I will act now. My procrastination which has held me back was born of fear and now I recognize this secret mined from the depths of all courageous hearts. Now I know that to conquer fear I must always act without hesitation and the flutters in my heart will vanish. Now I know that action reduces the lion of terror to an ant of equanimity.

I will avoid with fury the killers of time. Procrastination I will destroy with action; doubt I will bury under faith; fear I will dismember with confidence. Where there are idle mouths I will listen not; where there are idle hands I will linger not; where there are idle bodies I will visit not. Henceforth I know that to court idleness is to steal food clothing, and warmth from those I love. I am not a thief. I am a man of love and today is my last chance to prove my love and my greatness. I will live this day as if it is my last.

So, as I write this today. I'm not just writing for you. I'm writing to remind myself that the time I spent procrastinating today was time that I chose to live in fear. All I had to do was chose a different focus in my mind. I could've chosen to focus on action - action cures fear!

I'm betting that tomorrow will be a better day for me. Again I will borrow Og's words:

I will act now. Success will not wait. If I delay she will become betrothed to another and lost to me forever. This is the time. This is the place.

I will live this day as if it is my last. And if it is my last it will be my greatest monument. This day I will make the best day of my life. This day I will drink every minute to its full. I will savor its taste and give thanks. I will maketh every hour count and each minute I will trade only for something of value. I will labor harder than ever before and push my muscles until they cry for relief, and then I will continue. I will make more calls than ever before. I will sell more goods than ever before. I will earn more gold than ever before. Each minute of today will be more fruitful than hours of yesterday. My last must be my best.

I will live this day as if it is my last. And if it is not, I shall fall to my knees and give thanks.

I hope that you make the most of today and are blessed with an even better tomorrow.

If you'd like a copy of Og's book, click this link:

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Team-work OR Team-play?

Which buzz words are the most over-hyped in business?

Is it leadership? Empowerment? Synergy? Strategic? How about teamwork?

Today I'm going to pick on teamwork. When I looked up the word "team" in the dictionary, here is some of what I found...

  1. A group on the same side, as in a game.
  2. A group organized to work together: a team of engineers.
  3. A brood or flock.
  4. Two or more draft animals used to pull a vehicle or farm implement. - A vehicle along with the animal or animals harnessed to it. - A group of animals exhibited or performing together, as horses at an equestrian show.
  5. Synonyms: combine, unite, ally, merge.

The word team traces back to thousands of years and literally means "that which draws or pulls".

So, then I looked up "work" and here's what I found...

  1. exertion or effort directed to produce or accomplish something; labor; toil.
  2. to act or operate effectively: The pump will not work. The plan works.
  3. Synonyms: drudgery, labor, toil

It appears to me as if the word "work" isn't needed after "team". A "team" by definition is a group of individuals working together to achieve something.

Mayabe that's why people don't say "It's the power of the teamwork", right? They simply say it's about "the power of the team".

So, who added the "work" onto the end of the word? I think it was someone trying to make up their own buzzword so that they could make money. ;)

When I think of the successful teams that I've been on, it never really seemed like work to me. I was just playing my part. Even when there was a lot of pressure, if I was a) playing on the right team and b) playing the right part, the stress wasn't as great as just one of those things being out of whack.

Work has a negative connotation in our society these days. You've probably heard the saying "If it was supposed to be fun, they wouldn't call it work." So why has someone added the word "work" onto the word "team".

I propose that starting today, you delete the buzzword "teamwork" from your vocabulary. Whether you are a business owner, executive, project manager, director... regardless of your leadership role, look at yourself as a "coach". It is you privilege to get your team to play together to achieve their goal.

I also propose that you look at these two questions:

As a leader, what kind of players do you have on your team?

  • Are they in the right role?
  • Are they even on the right team?

What kind of environment are you setting for your team?

  • Is it one of "teamwork"?
  • Is it one of "teamplay"?

Play: v act or have an effect in a specified way or with a specific effect or outcome; to perform, participate or act; cause to move or operate freely within a bounded space.

The word "play" comes from plega which means "recreation, exercise, any brisk activity". Doesn't that sound much better than "labor, toil, and drudgery"?

I encourage you to take a look at your roles. Are they more like drudgery and labor? Or, are they more like recreation and exercise?

Focus on TEAM PLAY, instead of teamwork. It's easy to do and you are in complete control of doing it - you don't even need your team to accomplish this. Focusing is about YOU and your thoughts. Choose your thoughts and practice replacing teamwork with team play.

You should notice that your stress is eased a bit just by the thought of team play. When you truly believe that your success is dependent more on team play than team work, you will start to create a less stressful environment for your team. When your team feels less stress, they will play better.

"Work" can be fun if you take time to focus on the "play" aspect of performing your tasks. As a leader, you "set the stage" for your team play.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Choose Your Focus carefully

We have all heard that we should focus on the positive... have a positive mental attitude... keep our eyes on the prize. So, what does all that stuff really mean?

Today I want to talk about moving forward. Many times in life we get stuck in a certain spot. I propose that it's because we are not focused on thoughts that will keep us moving forward.

  • How often do you spend time focusing on past failures?
  • How often do you focus on the problems?
  • Do you think about the drama of your daily situations?
  • Do you ever get stuck in the details?

Let's take a look at the 5 "floors" or levels of our focus:

1st floor: Drama

This is the floor that we usually walk in on (if we don't consciously choose to go to the stairs or the elevator). Drama is the place where we talk about the peripheral stories and occurrences in life. We'll hear stories about blunders, mishaps, and other 'tragedies'. These discussions usually contain a great deal of negative emotion including disgust, despair and possibly even grieving about missed opportunities or failed attempts.

2nd floor: Dilemmas

As we take the stairs to the next level, we find dilemmas. Here the focus is on the issues, challenges and problems that impede progress. Emotions associated with this area are usually disempowering, frustration and disappointment. We are focused more on what is wrong with the situation than with what is right.

3rd floor: Details

As we ascend to the Details 'floor', we notice that the focus is now on doing the activities that must take place on our journey. Most people are very comfortable here because its a practical place. You get to focus on your specific tasks. There is usually low emotion at this level because we're usually doing something that is familiar to us.

4th floor: Design

Up one more level is the Design floor. This is where the planning takes place. This is where we craft the path to get to our dreams, aspirations, and goals. This is the 'thinking' before the 'doing' of the details. There may be some heated discussions at this stage, but it is good to get all the ideas out on the table so that the best path forward is selected. Emotions attached to this phase can be excitement and anticipation.

5th floor: Dream

Finally we get to the top floor where the focus is on the Dream... the "big" picture, the collective vision. From this vantage point we can see possibility and purpose. Our focus is on our aspirations and our goals usually accompanied with the positive emotions of motivation and inspiration.

As leaders, let's ask ourselves a couple of questions?

  • On which floor does most of my thinking take place?
  • On which floor does most of my conversations occur?

Statistics have shown that over 85% of the conversations take place on the 1st through 3rd floors. These are conversations that deal with the minutia, the challenges, and the anecdotal parts of life. While these conversations are interesting, they are not all that useful to moving forward.

I mean, many people can't resist the gossip of the entertainment world. (Is Brittany Spears still in rehab? Has her hair grown back yet?) While that is interesting, it really isn't all that useful to your life.

Take a look at the last conversation you had with your spouse, your co-worker, your child, your friend, your boss. On which 'floor' were you focusing?

  • Were you taking the high road and focusing on your shared dreams or designs?
  • Were you focused on the lower roads of the details, the dilemmas and the drama?

Most of the focus on the lower floors is actually focus on things that you DON'T want. Focusing on what you don't want actually reinforces those thought processes and takes you closer to what you don't want.

Look at it this way... have you ever noticed that when you decide to buy a new car that you see that make and model of car everywhere on the road? Is it just because everyone else had your idea as well? No. It's because your mind has a filter. It can't possibly process every single thing that you see every single day. It would quickly be overloaded. When you decide to get a new car, your brain removes the filter for that car and you are then able to notice it everywhere you look. Your brain works that same way with all of the other things you focus on.

What you choose to focus on, you will see!

DREAMS DESIGN Details Dilemmas Drama

(I'm trying to practice what I preach and not say "Don't focus on the DILEMMAS and DRAMA." Because that would be focusing you on what I don't want you to focus on, which actually makes you focus on it.) ;)

Let me conclude by offering you this advice...

If you're a leader - project manager, parent, pastor, executive, business owner, trainer, educator, etc.:

  • Be conscious of your focus!!
  • Look closely at your focus when talking with your team.
  • Choose to keep most of your conversations at the DREAMS and DESIGN levels. Your team will naturally take care of the DETAILS.

All the best!!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

So you think you've failed? (Part 2)

Ok, last time we borrowed a story from the Bible to talk a little about the fear of failure by giving you an example of a real mess-up by Abraham. Today, we're going to look at another story from the Bible about David.

This time we will go to 2 Samuel. Here is our main character David:

One evening David got up from his bed and walked around on the roof of the palace. From the roof he saw a woman bathing. The woman was very beautiful, and David sent someone to find out about her. The man said, "Isn't this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam and the wife of Uriah the Hittite?" Then David sent messengers to get her. She came to him, and he slept with her. (She had purified herself from her uncleanness.) Then she went back home. The woman conceived and sent word to David, saying, "I am pregnant." (2 Samuel 11:2-5)

Oh dear, we have a little problem here. So much for that "Thou shalt not commit adultery" command, huh? It turns out that David slept with Uriah's wife and got her pregnant. That could be considered a failure on a couple of points, right? But, that's not all! As we read on, we find out that Uriah is a soldier in David's army and is off fighting in a war. So, there is no possibility that Bathsheba's baby could be Uriah's child.

Then, David has an idea... if he could bring Uriah back to town for a night and send him home to his wife, Uriah would surely have relations with Bathsheba and then David would be off the hook. Brilliant! One teeny, tiny problem... Uriah did come to town but he didn't spend the night with his wife.

When David was told, "Uriah did not go home," he asked him, "Haven't you just come from a distance? Why didn't you go home?" Uriah said to David, "The ark and Israel and Judah are staying in tents, and my master Joab and my lord's men are camped in the open fields. How could I go to my house to eat and drink and lie with my wife? As surely as you live, I will not do such a thing!" Then David said to him, "Stay here one more day, and tomorrow I will send you back." So Uriah remained in Jerusalem that day and the next. At David's invitation, he ate and drank with him, and David made him drunk. But in the evening Uriah went out to sleep on his mat among his master's servants; he did not go home. (2 Samuel 11:10-13)

Ok, just what David needed an honorable soldier in his army. So Uriah didn't do what David had hoped that he'd do. Uriah, being the dedicated soldier that he was, was not going to enjoy the pleasures of home while his comrades were out in the field. So, David had to come up with yet another brilliant idea. He decided to get Uriah all liquored-up so that in his drunkenness he would stumble home and possibly then, Uriah wouldn't know if he had slept with his wife or not. But, David was foiled again! Now what was he going to do? Bathsheba was still pregnant and it couldn't be her husband's child. David had one more plan up his sleeve... (desperate times call for desperate measures, right?)

In the morning David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it with Uriah. In it he wrote, "Put Uriah in the front line where the fighting is fiercest. Then withdraw from him so he will be struck down and die." So while Joab had the city under siege, he put Uriah at a place where he knew the strongest defenders were. When the men of the city came out and fought against Joab, some of the men in David's army fell; moreover, Uriah the Hittite died. (2 Samuel 11:14-17)

Did you catch that? David had Uriah carry a note back to his commander that told the commander to make sure the Uriah died in the next battle. Now there's a picture of audacity for you.

So, it happened as David so ordered and then...

When Uriah's wife heard that her husband was dead, she mourned for him. After the time of mourning was over, David had her brought to his house, and she became his wife and bore him a son. But the thing David had done displeased the LORD. (2 Samuel 11:26-27)

It seems as though David got what he wanted even if he made God mad, right? Well, as the story progresses, we find out that Bathsheba and David's son dies because the Lord was 'displeased'. However, David and Bathsheba did have another son, Solomon, whom God blessed beyond measure. Many experts will tell you that Solomon was the richest and wisest man to ever live on this earth.

As for David... well, in Acts 13:22, God describes David by saying, 'I have found David son of Jesse a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want him to do.' Isn't that the ultimate compliment?! David was a man after God's own heart.

Does that seem at all weird to you? God actually blesses a man who committed adultery? Yep, that's what it says.

So, what can we learn from this story?

  1. Even the best intentioned people fail sometimes - and fail BIG. This is nothing that we should be afraid of. David failed often (just like Abraham in the previous blog entry), but he never gave up.
  2. Failure is not final and can be overcome. David continued to learn and grow and do his very best to serve. He was truly sorry for his mistakes and did his best to make up for them.
  3. What do you have to worry about anyway? It's not like your failure is going to be published in the Bible! So, you live with it for a few days, weeks, years. Look, David's failures are timelessly recorded in the #1 best seller of all of eternity. (And you were worried about what your boss said in that email. ;)

Sometimes our very best isn't good enough in the world's eyes, but it's really all that we have to offer at that time. When you act with pure intentions, it may not always turn out as you expected but you will always have your integrity and you will have strengthened your mind, your heart, your body and your soul.

I want to encourage you to look your fear of failure directly in the eye and realize that it's just one of the thoughts that is in your mind. You can choose at any time to think another thought - try it!

Instead of fearing possible failure, what would you dare to accomplish if you knew you couldn't fail? Go on, give it a try. I promise that if you mess up, it won't be as bad as you imagined AND it won't be published in the Bible for all to see.

(All Bible quotes are from the New International Version.)

Monday, March 05, 2007

So you think you've failed? (Part 1)

As I coach, I am blessed to have the opportunity to connect with people in a deep and meaningful way. I have talked with CEOs, moms, VPs, pastors, business owners, sales professionals, and consultants. One thing that is frequently appears throughout the conversations is the fear of failure.

So, today I wanted to share a story with you. Many of you may recognize it because it is well over 2000 years old. I am hoping that I can give you a new perspective that puts it in a little different light. It's a story from the Bible about a man named Abram.

Here's how it goes from Genesis 12:1-4 of the Bible...

The LORD had said to Abram, "Leave your country, your people and your father's household and go to the land I will show you. "I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you." So Abram left, as the LORD had told him; and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he set out from Haran.

Ok, now here we have our protagonist, Abram, who was asked by God to go somewhere. God didn't give him directions, He just said that He would show Abram the way. WOW! How trusting of Abram to just pick up everything and go!

So what did Abram do? Let's read a few more verses... (Gen 12:10-16)

Now there was a famine in the land, and Abram went down to Egypt to live there for a while because the famine was severe. As he was about to enter Egypt, he said to his wife Sarai, "I know what a beautiful woman you are. When the Egyptians see you, they will say, 'This is his wife.' Then they will kill me but will let you live. Say you are my sister, so that I will be treated well for your sake and my life will be spared because of you."

When Abram came to Egypt, the Egyptians saw that she was a very beautiful woman. And when Pharaoh's officials saw her, they praised her to Pharaoh, and she was taken into his palace. He treated Abram well for her sake, and Abram acquired sheep and cattle, male and female donkeys, menservants and maidservants, and camels.

CAN YOU BELIEVE IT!?! Abram ran into a little trouble (ok, a famine) and then brokered a deal with his WIFE. He thought they, the Egyptians, would kill him to take his wife, so Abram basically SOLD HIS WIFE to the Pharoah for lots and lots of things. Today we'd call him the lowest of pimps, right?

I mean, he did get all kinds of good stuff for her... today it would've been MP3 players, SUVs, mansions with maids and butlers, HDTV with DVR as well as ca$h - just terrific stuff. I mean, terrific if you don't mind putting a price on your wife.

So then what happened? (Gen 12:17-20)

But the LORD inflicted serious diseases on Pharaoh and his household because of Abram's wife Sarai. So Pharaoh summoned Abram. "What have you done to me?" he said. "Why didn't you tell me she was your wife? Why did you say, 'She is my sister,' so that I took her to be my wife? Now then, here is your wife. Take her and go!" Then Pharaoh gave orders about Abram to his men, and they sent him on his way, with his wife and everything he had.

So God punished the Pharoah because Abram lied to him! Is that whacked? In today's world, we'd look at Abram and call him a real swindler.

In Abram's own eyes, he was a total failure. Here was a good man making a BIG mistake. But, God knew he was trying to do his very best and so Abram (Abraham) was rewarded anyway.

You may think that is the end of the story, but it's not. Look what Abraham did in Genesis 20:1-3.

Now Abraham moved on from there into the region of the Negev and lived between Kadesh and Shur. For a while he stayed in Gerar, and there Abraham said of his wife Sarah, "She is my sister." Then Abimelech king of Gerar sent for Sarah and took her. But God came to Abimelech in a dream one night and said to him, "You are as good as dead because of the woman you have taken; she is a married woman."

Yes, you read that correctly! Abraham (formerly known as Abram) told the king that his wife was his sister. His excuse (see if this sounds familiar):

And Abimelech asked Abraham, "What was your reason for doing this?" Abraham replied, "I said to myself, 'There is surely no fear of God in this place, and they will kill me because of my wife.'

And what happened to Abraham?

Then Abimelech brought sheep and cattle and male and female slaves and gave them to Abraham, and he returned Sarah his wife to him. And Abimelech said, "My land is before you; live wherever you like." To Sarah he said, "I am giving your brother a thousand shekels of silver. This is to cover the offense against you before all who are with you; you are completely vindicated."

So, while Abraham was truly trying to do his best, he sold off his wife TWICE! In exchange for his wife, he received lots of cool stuff. And, even when his beautiful wife was returned to him, he still got to keep all the cool stuff AND more.

My message to you today isn't a religious one. There are 2 points to it:

  1. Don't be afraid to follow your heart - even if you're not quite sure where it leads you. God kept his promise to Abraham even though Abraham messed up a few times. Gen 12:2 "I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing." Gen 22:17-18 "I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of the cities of their enemies, and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me."
  2. In all that you do, do it with integrity, honesty and always give it your best. That doesn't mean that you won't fail - we all do. What it means is that your failure can still be rewarding to you. Abraham's failures were rewarding to him. Now, I'm not suggesting that you try to sell off your spouse - although some of you may think that is a good idea at times. ;) Be true to you - your heart and your soul - and no matter what circumstances may appear, you will not be a failure.

Come on, go do that thing today that you have been fearing. Do it with the best intentions. You can cure your fear of failure by taking action today!