On Your Terms

Stop and think for a moment

Have you ever considered how the things you’ve been learning all your life affect your life? I’m sure many of us take that trip down memory lane from time to time and especially when reminders crop up as we navigate the seas of our lives.

Let’s pop back to early childhood when you started learning that certain family or society rules are sacrosanct. Once you learned those rules, whether right or wrong, they became incorporated into your human existence.

New experiences occur that relate to those rules and without much of a blink, they are reinforced and strengthened. Of course, we might find ways to challenge or even reject some of our early instruction but there are many rules that stay with us throughout life. Some necessary while others hold us back and impede our potential.

Consider also frequent comments or statements you heard from significant people around you.

“No, you can’t do / have that. We have no money”.

I call this one the scarcity statement and it is an important thing I remember from my childhood. Not surprising because my parents were born not long after the second world war when indeed many things were scarce.

Therefore, I grew up with the belief that money and things didn’t come easy no matter how hard we work for them.

Honesty Time

Until I realized that there is more than enough abundance for me to get what I want, I found myself more than once, telling my own children that they couldn’t have something because there wasn’t enough. I was repeating a mantra that I grew up with and recognize today that it’s no better than a weak excuse for not stepping outside my comfort zone to reach for what was needed.

So, what was stopping me from stepping outside that place of safety?

In short, the ego is responsible. You know, that voice in your mind that tells you how you will lose a lot of money if you do something? If you take a risk, it will end badly . . . Need I go on? Of course, the ego takes its nourishment from our life-experiences and the rules we’ve learned from things like the scarcity statement. It does seek to protect but in doing so, it often holds us back too.


For years, I believed that carpentry simply was not a skill I would ever have. I was always great at the theory, but the practical was a different matter.

Where did all that begin?

Well, it started with my woodwork teacher in school. A nice guy whose catchphrase, at least where I was concerned, was, “you’ve made a real pig’s ear of that, son”. It took a long time to realize that he was mistaken and although carpentry doesn’t thrill me, I am now reasonably competent.

Introduced to the mind-opening field of Personal Development in my teens and early career I realized (with respect) that I had the power to live life on my terms and follow my own path. My ego still erupts occasionally but I have developed the skills to keep a lid on it and adjust old beliefs that no longer serve.

Personal Development has enabled me to let go of old ways of thinking and access awareness of what I need and what I do not. It has become so important in my life that I’ve made it part of my business and have stepped out of the box of doing it for somebody else.

But wait!

I’m not part of a “Get Rich Quick Scheme” and I’m definitely not suggesting that you go ahead and fire your boss. What I am suggesting is that you explore your life, look at your belief systems and consider what you might change to make a positive difference. It is a challenging journey but also one that can reward with immense benefits.

So much life-experience and embedded information; Where to begin?

Changing behaviors that you feel no longer serve you is challenging, there’s no doubt about it. The prospect of changing beliefs and behaviors is often alarming when you first start to question those deeply embedded beliefs, thoughts and behavioral patterns.

How can you encourage yourself to do it until a positive change is reached?

Think for a moment about Neil Armstrong’s famous words after he stepped onto the moon, “That’s one small step for a man; a giant leap for mankind”. Now let’s turn that around to suit you.

Take one small step towards changing a behavior or belief that you feel you need to adjust. Each time a related situation crosses your radar, pause and think before acting.

Doing it the same way will only return the same results.

For example. Let’s say you are tempted to berate somebody because you don’t think they have done well. Instead of tearing into them, try asking a question calmly.

“Why do you think that turned out like that”?

Allow them to explore the possibilities and don’t judge, simply support them and allow them to find their own answers. Share what you know but allow them to accept or reject it as fits their current thinking.

This reminds me of the way I was frequently challenged because I never did so well at Mathematics in school. Nobody ever thought to ask me why I thought it was difficult; yet today, I can work with complex statistical formulae relating to psychology.

After you’ve done something differently, celebrate and give yourself a well-earned pat on the back; you deserve it. Tell yourself and evaluate how that small change is part of the giant leaps you’re taking toward making bigger changes in your life. This is the beginning of your new world. Don’t worry if the outcome wasn’t perfect. There is a reason for everything and it’s not all about you. Remember the person you were tempted to berate? Maybe they too have things they need to work at.

Change is rarely instant so, give yourself a break and keep taking those small steps.

Hats off to you for making the decision to reach for your stars.


Positive action will contribute to your success but I make no apologies for saying that we also need to take care of other aspects of our personal development because, like a diamond, success is a multi-faceted thing and all the sides need polishing frequently.


With Positive, Dynamic Solutions, and banishing doubt, all things are possible.

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