Thursday, December 31, 2009

First Things First or Your Bubble Will Burst

My good friend Sara had this to say to me today, "Dude I am on burn out, don't know why, but it's driving me nuts." So, I replied to her by quoting one of my favorite quotes from the book Conversations With God, "If I do not go within, I go without." I asked her to ponder that for a moment. She then replied, heck no man I am like a robot-no time!" I told her that was the wrong answer. I was joking of course, but serious at the same time. I then read her a quote from Goethe that I live by, "Things which matter the most, must never be at the mercy of things which matter least."

As we continued our conversation, she told me she has been able to handle all her life challenges and stresses for quite a while, until now for some reason. All of a sudden she feels like she is falling apart, totally burning out. She mentioned there must be something wrong with her. In response I told her I didn't think there was anything wrong with her. What I know for certain about Sara though, is she doesn't make a habit of nurturing her inner self much at all, which I encouraged her to make time for, cause the thing is, if you don't take time to nurture yourself, eventually you breakdown, burnout or meltdown, which is never good. That is why you have to make time for self nurturing, self renewal, or returning to the source, the stillness.

Breakdowns happen when we are out of balance. We are 3 part beings (mind, body & soul) and as such, all parts need to be in balance and be nurtured for total, complete health and well being. If not, things go awry, things will definitely malfunction. I think EVERYONE needs some personal alone time. I'm talking about feeding your soul, cultivating positivity in your mind, exercising your body, your passions, doing nurturing things just for you, things that uplift and inspire you such as yoga, exercise, tai chi, journaling, painting, being in nature, writing, gardening and etc.

When you are adhering to a very tight schedule, which includes no "you" time, you will eventually hit a wall of burnout, or have a breakdown of some type. When there is a part of your 3 part being that is neglected, a part that is unfulfilled, this part of you will begin sending signals to your body, soul and mind. If you don't listen, the signals will get louder and louder, until tragedy may strike in one form or another to get your attention, or worse yet, your bubble will burst. Keeping First Things First or Your Bubble Will Burst is definitely a good answer, a good philosophy for taking care of yourself and your needs, so as to be able to help better care for others needs as well. If you neglect your own inner needs, your life will sooner or later fall apart, or you will run into some walls that could have been avoided by returning to balance, harmony, self love and self nurturing. First Things First or Your Bubble Will Burst is more than a nice personal reminder, it is a life strategy that works, I promise you.

Copyright Justin Topik 2009

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Don't Sell Yourself Short

I'm quite certain everyone has sold themselves short at one point or another during their lifetime. We are all guilty of this from time to time. The question is why do we do it? Is it because we don't feel worthy of success or greatness? Regardless of why we do it though, a lot of people, I will even go so far as to say most people settle for less than they deserve. But, YOU don't have to do this. You ought to settle for more, not less than you deserve. Why? because you are worth it. And the world awaits your genius, your talent and your gifts. Anthony Robbins once said, "Life will pay you any price you ask of it." Don't shy away from your personal power, your personal greatness. Find it, embrace it, cherish is, awaken it and allow it to emerge into and color your life experience. Like a lion, stand proud, firm and let your mighty roar shake the earth.

I am convinced everyone has a million dollar idea somewhere inside of them. Everyone has passions, gifts, or some valuable inner resource or commodity to offer this world. And I guarantee you what you have is a lot more valuable than you can probably imagine or comprehend! Sometimes you have to let it out first though, to see how people will respond to it. Like a magician with a plethora of surprises in his bag of tricks, if you don't let your passions, gifts and surprises out of the bag, you'll never know how the world would have responded to you.

People will pay you to do what you truly love to do. I have seen it and observed it in my own life firsthand. One critical thing you must do though, is believe in yourself and believe you are worthy of success first and foremost. You also have to find a way to package your genius, your passion and enthusiasm into a product or service. You have to know what you want in great detail before the universe can deliver it to you... If you could do anything you wanted or be anything you wanted to be, what would you do? what would you be? A lot of people I have asked this question to say, I don't know. But you have absolutely gotta know the answer to this question. You can never reach a port that you cannot see! Get to know yourself, including your gifts, resources and inner latent talents. Here is a question you need to ask yourself: What is it I have in abundance to offer my community and the world? Once you figure out the answer, you will know know what your sacred gift is.

A few years back, I had a really good friend named Ronnie Ryan. My family and I lived on a lake in Tennessee which is where I met him. He had a boat and practically lived on the lake, no joke. That was his passion. Most days in the summer you could find him on the lake. Whenever we were out on the lake with him, he would have us rolling with laughter the entire time. He was like Jeff Foxworthy on the water. And he could navigate that lake better than most fish I'm sure. One time I asked him why he didn't charge people to take them on guided tours and etc. He laughed at me, but I was being serious. I saw a gift and passion, and a gold mine in him. I know many people who would pay for the experience, the joy of being out on the lake with this guy. I know I would have many times. He was clever and a genius in his field of expertise, but he just couldn't see it. Oftentimes, we don't see, appreciate, honor or realize our inner strengths, gifts, and talents, though others can sometimes easily observe them and sometimes have to point them out to us.

We hold so tightly to security and what we think is guaranteed in this life, without realizing nothing is 100% secure, 100% guaranteed. So why not take some chances, because here is the deal, you have a gift, a present if you will, to offer the world. Don't you dare let your lights burn out before you get a chance to shine. Don't die with the music still in you screaming to get out. Let out your glorious melodies. Make a glorious noise with your life... In life as in any game, you win some, you lose some, but you gotta just keep playing the game! Don't Sell Yourself Short. Nobody wins by you living little. Find and fulfill your destiny. Live your life the way you intend to live it.

Copyright Justin Topik 2009

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Moving Forward

Sometimes unforeseen tragedy strikes. It is an inevitable part of the human experience. It may cause you to shrink back, your heart becoming frozen for a time. Yet, everyone knows you can't have the warming, gentle sun, without the harsh, bitter cold. Winter is just as much a necessary part of the full spectrum as are all the other integral seasons, though it can be intense, grueling and piercing to the core. Winter is sort of like death. You know it's coming, but you are never fully prepared for it when it arrives. The problems or challenges we face can be just like winter too. They can be excruciating and trying to bear, but like any season, they too will pass and soon new life will be blossoming with amazing color and divine fragrance everywhere.

Life is an experience. It is not suppose to be sweet, happy, vivacious, warm and flavorful all the time. If it was, then we would never be able to appreciate all the various parts and pieces that make up the whole human experience. You have to know sorrow before you can appreciate joy. We are here to grow, to develop, to learn patience, suffering and to experience joy, sorrow, death, new life and revival.

After the storm, after getting knocked off your high horse, comes a time for letting go, letting God and moving on! This can be painful and involves taking steps through your fear, hurt, anger and pain. It is a natural human tendency to hold onto hurtful feelings, the way it could have, or the way you think it should have been. But the truth is, life is change and eventually comes a season for Moving Forward, a time for opening the door to a new beginning, a time for taking steps toward a new reality. This is something you have to consciously decide. And it is absolutely necessary. If you don't decide to let go and move on, you will stay trapped in your fear, anger and confusion. This step involves forgiveness and compassion toward those who may have seriously wounded you. The choice to forgive is not always easy, but it is the better, more conscious choice and necessary for moving on.

Moving Forward is taking the first steps that you know must be taken in order to change a situation. I am not saying it is always pleasant, but it is something you've gotta do if you're gonna make a new reality for yourself. It's a positive step in the right direction. And when you are taking positive steps in a positive direction, you're bound to get somewhere, someday. Moving Forward is about embracing hope for a brighter tomorrow. It is about trusting and having faith that there may be a bigger picture that you cannot see, waiting to unfold before you, or that there may be a light about to turn on, just waiting to illumine the way before you. Moving Forward and walking through that door is about trust and faith, knowing that the steps you are about to take may not be easy, but trusting you have spirit's tender embrace calming, sheltering and guiding you. It is about choosing the path of inner peace and serenity, instead of anger and hostility. My friend, now is the time for Moving Forward, start moving...

Copyright Justin Topik 2009

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Personal Responsibility=Personal Power

Personal power starts in a few areas of your life and trickles down. It has sort of a snowball effect. It picks up momentum and strength as it moves along. When you take responsibility for your health and well being for example, you soon find other areas of your life improving as well, such as your home becoming more organized and tidy, your finances staying in order and your relationships flowing more smoothly.

I recently came across something very applicable to this topic by an unknown author. It is called:

The 3 R's

  1. Respect for self
  2. Respect for others
  3. Responsibility for all of your actions

By consciously following this model, you are bound to achieve more personal power. There are many ways you can achieve and boost your personal power though. These include: positive self talk, or talking yourself up, sticking with your commitments, becoming more competent and self confident in your skills, trades, or fields of endeavor, focusing on your strengths, your own unique gifts and talents, and also by discarding any self-defeating habits, beliefs, or attitudes you may carry around with you.

You have the power right now to take control of your life and destiny. There is a flower ready, desirous, and willing to bud from the green sprouts in the recesses of your innermost being right now. There is only one thing standing in its way though, and that is fear. Personal power is often synonymous with fear, because deep down inside, we know that personal power takes responsibility. Lets face it, whatever we wanna create, we are responsible for it. That word (responsibility) scares the hell out of most people. I think that is what many people are afraid of, deciding what they want, committing to seeing something through, and then going for it. This requires breaking through our own barriers of laziness, fear of not being good enough, etc. There are many reasons to not try, to not take responsibility for your life and destiny, but I promise you if you don't, you will be led to a field of thorns, instead of a lush meadow flowing with milk, honey and the sweet nectar of life. It's your choice. It's always your choice.

In all my years of studying personal power, success and life mastery, I have come up with my own definition of personal power. So here goes...

Definition of Personal Power

by Justin Topik

"It is taking responsibility for your life and what you want to create, finding courage within you to take some positive steps in a direction you would like to go in. It's the ability to get yourself to take action and to follow through, knowing your mission, vision and purpose. It is feeling assertive, empowered and in control of your life and destiny, knowing what you want and going for it, regardless of any outer circumstances. It is also getting beyond any excuses you seem to come up with. Bottom line, Personal Responsibility=Personal Power. It always has and it always will. Personal power without responsibility is like a hot air balloon without hot air!"

Copyright Justin Topik 2009