Monday, April 16, 2007

Stop Stopping

Have you ever made the same decision more than once?

Are you confused by the question? Let me explain what I mean by that.

For example, you decide that you are going to do something this weekend... let's say that it's go to a seminar. You wake up Saturday - the day of the seminar - and you make another decision (instead of just sticking with the first decision) and decide NOT to go to the seminar. Then, you shower and get dressed and then re-decide that maybe you should go to the seminar. So, you grab a quick breakfast, brush your teeth and notice that the weather is nice, so maybe you won't go to the seminar.

Does this process sound familiar to you? In this example we have made a decision about something 4 times! We did not receive any new data pertaining to the original decision. We just kept making, unmaking and remaking our decision. How can you avoid this quandary, the stress, the wasted time of re-deciding our decisions? Well, stop stopping!

Every time you move onto something, you stop and reassess your feelings. "I don't feel like ________ ." When you made the decision to ________ , you had data at the time that told you that it was a good decision to make. Then, you allowed your moods and feelings to interfere with that decision.

In scroll 6 of Og Mandino's book, The Greatest Salesman in the World, he says:

It is one of nature's tricks, little understood, that each day I awaken with moods that have changed from yesterday. Yesterday's joy will become today's sadness; yet today's sadness will grow into tomorrow's joy. Inside me is a wheel, constantly turning from sadness to joy, from exultation to depression from happiness to melancholy. Like the flowers, today's full bloom of joy will fade and wither into despondency, yet I will remember that as today's dead flower carries the seed of tomorrow's bloom so, too, does today's sadness carry the seed of tomorrow's joy.

If you allow your moods to make your decisions, you will not be focused on the dreams and goals that you set for yourself. Instead, you will focus on the wheel of constantly changing moods and emotions.

When you decide to use your thoughts to control your emotions, you will STOP STOPPING. You will decide to make the decision once and you will immediately notice that it relieves some of the stress in your life.

If we go back to our example, what changed between getting out of bed and getting out of the shower. Only our mood - there was no new data that we acquired while in the shower that would make us change our mind. We must master our thoughts so that we can stop stopping at every change in our mood. As Og puts it...

Today I will be master of my emotions.

And how will I master my emotions so that every day is a happy day, and a productive one? I will learn this secret of the ages: Weak is he who permits his thoughts to control his actions; strong is he who forces his actions to control his thoughts.

Once you make the decision and it's a decision that you made based on information and data that was sound, trustworthy, complete and accurate - stick with that decision. So many times we let our mood keep us from the very thing that we needed to do that day to get closer to success. STOP STOPPING!

Today I will be the master of my emotions. Henceforth I will recognize and identify the mystery of moods in all mankind, and in me. From this moment I am prepared to control whatever personality awakes in me each day. I will master my moods through positive action and when I master my moods I will control my destiny.

  • What is it that you consistently talk yourself out of based on your mood?
  • What is it that you are missing because you STOP after you've already made the decision to GO?
  • Can you imagine what your life would be like if you didn't keep making, unmaking and remaking your decisions?

For the upcoming week, give this a try:

  1. Gather the data needed to make your decisions.
  2. Make your decisions on the actions that you will take.
  3. Stick to that decision unless you receive compelling NEW DATA about your decision.
  4. Avoid factoring your moods and emotions into your decisions.

I believe that you will immediately notice a lower level of stress in your life. You will feel like you are empowered because YOU are in control and not your emotions. You will notice that you get so much more accomplished in relation to the goals that you have set for yourself.

Stopping to reassess a situation based on your mood or emotions is a dangerous habit. Break it by replacing it with a new habit. Start Starting and Keep On Keeping On.

Go on, give it a try! I know I'm going to.

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