Self-help

When Will It Stop?

When will you stop making excuses and start making changes?

When will you stop letting your childhood fears control you and start letting your adult dreams guide you?

When will you stop living in protection and start living in possibility?

When?

The next TLC course is set for March 14-16 in Tarrytown, NY.

People ask me how I have the guts to try things out like Brutal First Impressions or travel without any plans, and the answer is TLC created a safe environment for me to tap into and develop facets of my personality that I didn’t even know were there. Any time I leave my comfort zone, I call on the tools I learned from TLC and suddenly it becomes easy to take risks and live the life I want.

You’re going to sign up for the next course because:

  • You deserve it.
  • You are too smart to keep running into the same problems.
  • You know you have a wealth of potential and you have only begun to tap it.
  • You are curious and you know that sometimes you just need to take a chance.

Stop putting it off. Sign up now.

And if you don’t believe me, here’s what one of the amazing students said about the last course:

It’s hard for me to believe that 5 short months ago I was a very different person. Don’t get me wrong- I was the fun Diane I still am today but my heart was heavy & filled with unspoken anger & bitter disappointments in where my life had been & where it was going.

By all appearances I had an amazing life & was fortunate to have the resources to go places & do what I wanted. But it wasn’t enough for me. I was lacking true happiness in spite of my charmed life. I had a tremendous amount of anger deep inside that had been building for so long it scared me. I never knew when or how it was going to surface. Worst of all, I didn’t know who was going to bear the brunt of my anger. I never felt worthy of true love.

I came to a TLC weekend on the recommendation of a good friend who had been through the course. It took me awhile to commit. I thought I didn’t really need it. How could a weekend with a group of strangers change my life? I knew I was stuck in a pattern of behaviors that were no longer serving me- in fact, they never did. Doing the same thing the same way & expecting different results is pure insanity so I committed to going for the September class in 2013.

It’s impossible to put into words what TLC has done for me. I consider that weekend to be my real “birthday” as my eyes were opened & I discovered a new way to live my life. I have never been happier. People in my life wanted to know what was different about me after that weekend. “You are glowing!” “Did you lose weight?”(my personal favorite!!) “What’s different about you? Did you get a new haircut?” I am excited to share TLC with whomever will listen. But honestly, you need to experience it. It will change your life for the better. I know because it did for me. Thank you to my TLC family & friends for your unconditional love & support. You are all a shining example of the good that is possible in this world. 

1,000 People Bought Me a Pair of Boots

wpid-20130603_113238.jpgA while back, I wrote a post about pinpointing milestones that lead up to a major goal, and rewarding yourself when you achieve those goals. So often we set our sights high, and don’t celebrate all the little steps it takes to reach the final destination.

On a stack of note cards, I wrote out the my short-term goals for my novel and for my blog. Under each goal I wrote the reward I would give myself for achieving that goal. Then I stuck those note cards in a place where I could see them whenever I work.

One of my goals was to have 1,000 email subscribers to my blog. This past Monday, I reached that goal! As my reward I’m buying these pretty little boots I’ve had my eye on for months. Ye haw! I’m going to think of all my awesome readers whenever I wear them 🙂

I cannot thank you enough for reading my posts. It makes my day when I get a notification that someone is following my blog. All I can say is thank you, thank you, thank you! If you happen upon a blog that you like, I suggest you follow it because you have no idea how encouraging that is for a writer.

Now the main question is: what should I reward myself with when I get 5,000 followers?!?

Doggone It, People Like Me

The end of self-help

I’ve always had a hard time doing daily affirmations – especially when I can’t get Stuart Smalley‘s voice out of my head. However, they’re an important part of the Artist’s Way process, so I’ve been waking up early every day and doing them.

The trick is finding the right one. If you keep repeating a line that means nothing to you it’s just boring and meaningless, but when you find the right one it can cause a physical reaction (chills or even dizziness).

My favorite affirmation is: I am a creative, passionate person. Sweet and simple, but very hard to say.

For a long time I thought I wasn’t a true artist because when I watched movies about painters they would always attack the canvas like they were driven by an uncontrollable desire to paint. I’ve never had that.

And movies about writers usually show the writer as a depressed, lonely soul (usually an alcoholic) who obsesses over every word while their relationships crumble around them. I’m not like that either.

So at some point in time, I must have decided that if central casting wouldn’t pick me to play a crazy artist I must not be a creative or passionate person. It sounds stupid, but believe me you’ve probably done something similar. The sub-conscious is a strange beast.

I would like you to count how many negative things you tell yourself in one day. Count all the little things like: I’m always losing my keys (I’m absentminded), I can’t believe I ate that whole burrito (I’m out of control), I’m such an idiot (I’m such an idiot). Or it can be bigger things like: I’ll never get that promotion (I’m not good enough), he would never be interested in my (I’m not worthy of the love I want).

You’ll be surprised by how many negative affirmations you tell yourself. Why is it crazy to tell yourself positive things, but absolutely normal to knock yourself down? Why not spend just a little time telling yourself some positive things?

If you’re having trouble finding the right affirmation here’s a great motivational picture to help you:

How to Write a Good Resolution

You might be thinking it’s way too early to think about New Year’s resolutions. Afterall, December is the month of gluttony not self improvement. But taking these last few days to plan your resolution before the Christmas shopping frenzy starts will prevent the last minute, careless resolutions such as:

I’m going to lose weight.

I’m going to be a better friend.

I’m going to start reading more.

What is the problem with these resolutions? Well, how would you ever know if you’re successful? One thing I’ve learned from TLC (the greatest self-improvement course EVER) is that goals need to have the following:

1. Specificity

2. A time frame

3. Objective measurements of success

4. A greater cause (This isn’t always possible, but it’s always more motivating when you can see the bigger purpose of your goal)

Even my cats prefer a well made bed.

Last year I was going to make the resolution of keeping a cleaner apartment. But what does that mean? How will I know if I’m keeping up with my resolution. The apartment can always be cleaner. If I clean the kitchen but I don’t have time to do the bathroom, did I not achieve my goal? Then I remembered the TLC tips. I changed my resolution to: Every day by 10am I’m going to make the bed.

I’ve always been admittedly against making the bed. It seems pointless to waste ten minutes pulling and folding and fluffing when I’m just going to mess it up in a few hours. However, I wanted my bedroom to be a peaceful, inviting place. And since the bed takes up the bulk of my bedroom, just putting it together makes the whole room look better. Once I’m done making the bed I end up picking up the clothes off the floor and straightening out a few things and then in less than 15 minutes the bedroom is clean. Because the goal is so specific, I know that I’m accomplishing my resolution, and because I’ve done it every day for almost a year now, I feel good about myself – and isn’t that what a resolution is all about?

Here are some suggestions to improve the generic goals at the top of the post (in relative order)

1. I’m joining Lucille Roberts on Friday and I’m going to go to the gym at least 3 times a week. My goal is to fit into my old sexy jeans.

2. Every Sunday I’m going to take an hour to call at least one friend and catch up. I will  make a girl’s night out plan once a month.

3. Tomorrow I’m going to post a message on Facebook and ask everyone what their favorite book is. I will pick out the 12 that sound the most interesting and read one each month.

These are specific goals that have a time frame, but they are also flexible and doable. It’s easy to know when you’re being successful. And it’s easier to continue your success when you feel successful.

Now, here’s your turn to share your resolutions. Leave a comment below because I love hearing people’s resolutions! My new resolution is to organize my desk every night before 10 pm. I feel stressed out whenever I look at my messy desk, so I know if I keep this goal I will be more prepared to work in the morning.

p.s. the next TLC workshop is this January 27-29. These workshops are few and far between so it’s important to sign up when they are available. If you’re in the New York area I would definitely suggest going -there’s nothing like it!