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Not Enough Time for Yoga? Not Enough Time for Travel?

I don’t have enough time to practice yoga!

I don’t have enough time for travel!

I DON’T HAVE ENOUGH TIME!!!!!

Sound like you?

I used to feel the same way. Then one day I read the book The Four Hour Work Week by Tim Ferris and all of my ideas about how I was using my time were thrown out the door! I began to read more and more about time management, effectiveness and productivity and it changed the way that I did everything. Instead of time being something that was difficult to manage or something that was managing me,  it started to become a valuable playing piece in a fun game of life. I learned that it wasn’t that I didn’t have enough time, but that I didn’t know how to use my time wisely. Most importantly, I learned that I didn’t know what I actually wanted to be doing with my time, so it just got lost in activities that I didn’t care about and that weren’t fulfilling.

Now I know that I DO have the time to do what I love to do…and so do YOU! You just need the knowledge about how to manage your time and how to discover the ways in which you really want to be spending your time!

In homage to one of my favorite lifestyle bloggers, Steve Pavlina, I have compiled, designed and edited some of his best uncopyrighted articles into the book On Purpose: Progress, Passion & Prosperity Through Conscious Productivity

I even designed the book with a little larger print so you can easily read it while traveling!

BUY THE BOOK

Make progress in doing what you love

Become conscious of your time habits

Learn how to be truly effective

Support your passion

Take control of your life’s work

Steve Pavlina is one of the most popular & influential self-development writers today. Author of the blog, Personal Development for Smart People at StevePavlina.com, Steve touches the lives of countless people with thousands of articles getting millions of page views each month.

In this book you will find a valuable set of some of Steve’s best articles to help you on your way towards living a life of purpose, through the use of conscious productivity tips, so you can start achieving your life’s goals NOW.

This isn’t just a book about time management – it is a how-to-guide for being an effective, conscious and aware human being.

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How to Reach Your Goals: Part 2

Recently, I had a meeting with a new client about their business and their new web development project. I asked a lot of questions, we sorted all the details out, and the client was happy and excited about the direction. Then  I said, “Great, let’s pick a launch date!” Immediately, my client withdrew.

As always, when starting a new website, the client has quite a bit of work they must do on their part. Every time I start a project with a new client, I hear the same comments:  “It seems overwhelming and I don’t know where to begin,” and (the big nail in the coffin), “I don’t have the time.”

So I told my client we were going to have the project done in a month. They said everything sounds great, but how about we push the date back to 2 months.After all, according to them, they don’t have enough time and they are a procrastinator.

I smiled sweetly, shook my head and said, “No.”

After letting that sink in for a moment, I explained that they have to let go of those self limiting beliefs. They do have the time if it is something they actually want to do, and if they keep going around emphatically stating that they’re a procrastinator then they will continue to limit their potential. I also let them know that if they are a procrastinator then it doesn’t matter if I set the launch date out for 1 month or two, because they are going wait till the last moment to get their tasks done anyway! If we have the launch date 1 month out instead of 2, then they are saving a whole month of wasted time and energy stressing out over the fact that they are procrastinating on the project!

Next, I also promised that I would help make their portion of the project as painless as possible. I let them know that I would break everything up and set a schedule by the week for the tasks that need to be completed and I will give them a new task or two each week so they don’t have to be overwhelmed by everything that needs to be done. Once everything was greed upon, I sent my client an email outlining the details (including our 1 month launch date), and at the end of the email I gave them their first two tasks. I also gave them the date in which they were due by.

I have gone through this same conversation and process with many clients now, and a very interesting thing happens. Once they get over the first hurdle of just starting they often become excited and motivated as they see their reality manifesting. Then they get into a flow, realize they DO have the time and start getting me everything I need in order to fulfill my end of the project.

There are three main hurdle smashers on the road to accomplishment.

Set a goal date

When working towards a goal, if you do not have a goal date, the chances of reaching your goal drops. If your project doesn’t have a goal date then you mind views it as less important, so there is no pressing reason to start acting on it and even less of a motivation to complete it.

Break it down

Once you have set a goal date break down your project into smaller manageable tasks. Pick 1-2 tasks, and set a closer goal date for those. Planning to go to Paris for 2 weeks? Develop a check list for all the things you need to do as your first task.  Pick two things off of the list and give yourself 2 days to accomplish those tasks. Keep that up and the next thing you know you will be stepping off l’avion and onto French soil!

Just start

There are still times when I have a large project ahead of me and I start procrastinating and stressing out about it because it seems like it is going to take more time than I have. When these moment arrive, I remember how easy it is to let go of those stressful thoughts by just starting. I commit to doing one simple task to start the project. Sometimes that task is as small as opening the computer file for the project. I may also give my self a small time limit to work on the project that isn’t overwhelming, like 5 minutes. Often times, when I begin that one simple step of just starting all of that procrastination and stress immediately get transferred into action energy. Once you take those first few moments to just start, you are in the active phase of  goal achievement.

Now that you have gotten past the the seemingly, super gigantic hurdle of just starting, your potential for success dramatically increases.

It is as simple as this: A person who is actively working on their goals is at least 50% closer to achieving them than a person who is not working towards their goals at all!

Whether you are seeking to build a business, perform an unassisted handstand in yoga class, or go on a tour of Europe, stop reading this, and go spend 5 minutes towards fulfilling your dreams.

Oh…and have fun!

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How to Reach Your Goals Part 1

I imagine waking up in the morning around 8am, opening the double doors in my bedroom to a beautiful Italian countryside as a gentle breeze sweeps my face. After standing there for a few quiet moments I start the morning sitting down with my family in our pajamas to eat a fresh fruit breakfast with some local goats milk cheese, eggs from the hen house outside and homemade bread.

Once I have gotten ready for the day, I sit down at my computer which is connected to a high speed and reliable internet service, and uninterrupted, I take care of my business, which consists of projects like this blog, designing and publishing books and web consulting. During this time my son is being home schooled by my partner Derrick.

After about 4 hours of productive working I go meet with my family for lunch and we sit around with a couple of friends, chatting around the outdoor dining table as we eat a light, local and fresh vegetarian lunch. Our friends consist of a friend or two who are also location independent and travelled to Italy with us on our 3 month trip as well as new friends met in Italy.

Then we just sit around and rest for a bit, after all it is a beautiful day outside.

The afternoon consists of family chores in the house and garden, riding the bicycles to the market, doing yoga, reading books (or blogs!), exploring, playing, going swimming or learning Italian individually and as a family.

When a later evening dinner time comes along, family and friends reunite. The outdoor patio is lit up softly and there is a warm glow from the fire pit. There is some slow but funky jazz playing in the background. We eat delicious, and even slightly decadent fresh and local Italian food full of garlic. After dinner we spend time with our guests, talking, singing, dancing and laughing.

Once my son has gone to sleep and our company has gone on their way, Derrick and I spend time together chatting about our day, making plans for home, travel and nights out in Rome or simply enjoying each others company. Then we go to sleep around midnight and sleep peacefully through the night, waking in the morning ready and refreshed to do it all again.

What do you want?

Sit for a moment…and imagine…

What does it feel like? What does it look like? What does it smell like? What does it taste like? What does it sound like? Who is there with you? Write it down and come back to it every day for a few days.

In order to reach any goal you must have clarity about what your goals actually are. I mean real clarity. Be as detailed as possible.

Instead of “I want to be more flexible,” try, “I want to be able to touch my toes and sit in saddle pose for 5 minutes so I can start to alleviate the pain and tension in my legs and low back.”

Instead of “I want to have more money,” try “I want to make $20,000 a month running my own yoga and life design business online, so I can take care of my families health, education and retirment needs while living on a 20 acre property within an hour of my town, and traveling 3-4 times a year to Bali, Italy and Baja.” Just wanting to have more money is not enough, you need to know how much you want and why you want it.

If you are an entrepreneur I highly recommend you read my article: For Those Who Run Their Own Business… or Want to! in order to start gaining clarity about your business.

After you have become clear about your goal, hold it in your mind and stand up. Make sure you aren’t going to run into anything, close your eyes and take a step forward as you inhale deeply through the nose. Imagine that you are stepping into the time and place where you are experiencing what it is that you want. See it, feel it, taste it, smell it and hear it.

The stepping forward and deep inhale ingrains the visualization within in your body memory, which helps to solidify the goal as being more real in your mind. Therefore it is more likely that your conscious and subconscious mind will act in accordance with the achievement of the goal.

If you want to achieve something, you have to believe that it is possible.

Next: Ask yourself: What part of this goal can I start living right now?

We have goals because we are looking to live a certain kind of lifestyle. If that lifestyle seems too far away from where we currently are, it is easy to loose our motivation before we even begin.

In my above visualization there are many things that I can start doing now. For instance I could certainly get up around 8am with my family and have a lovely fresh breakfast together in our pajamas instead of rushing through breakfast and heading off to work. There are may other things I could do as well, but I will start with that.

Find one thing about your visualization that you can work on experiencing right now. Once you are able to do that one thing consistently, doing the rest will start to seem more attainable.

Your goal doesn’t have to be like mine. Maybe you are wanting a promotion, maybe you want to learn a musical instrument, maybe you are looking for a relationship, maybe you want to master the Ashtanga yoga primary series. Whatever your goal is, you can make this technique work for you.

Now the big question is….

Are you really going to follow this tip in order to start fulfilling your dreams or are you going to continue sitting around, wondering how on earth you are going to reach your goals?

To reach your goals you must start performing some kind of action!

In How to Reach Your Goals  Part 2, we will explore how to get past the “starting” hurdle.

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Prosperity vs Poverty Mentality and The Make You or Break You Client

What is poverty mentality?

“I don’t have enough money.”

 “I don’t have enough time.”

“I don’t have enough energy.”
 
Kundalini yoga often deals with such topics as prosperity, abundance, projection and protection and has helped me bring awareness to my poverty mentality. Through this awareness I have been able to begin to overcome it. For me, one aspect of this process is to not just take on any client. I have been working on being conscious of who I take into my business, because clients have a huge impact on time, money AND energy! These days I look for 4 key qualities in a new client: 1. They have a prosperity mentality 2. They respect ideas, processes and time. 3.  They show they are ready for growth and change by intelligently working toward whatever their version of success and happiness is. 4. They fit in with my goals. For instance I only accept clients that allow me to be location independent.
 
When a potential client, who I spoke with over 6 months ago, emailed me on a Friday evening with URGENT in the subject line and asked me if I can meet with them and help them get a website up THAT WEEKEND because the one they built themselves just expired, the answer was – no. 

In the past I would have picked up this kind of reckless work out of desperation. Simply because it was there and gave me a short sighted sense of financial security. It would have been a fear based decision. 

Then it would have sucked the life right out of me.
 
Now I know, that not only do I  have the freedom to choose, but by choosing thoughtfully it is much more likely that a greater outcome will occur for both myself and my clients.  

My approach to building a client base is incredibly different today than it was when I first started.

For one, I no longer market. In fact, I know this sounds crazy, but I don’t even have a website up for my web design services anymore! Now I focus solely on my current client’s needs.

I give them everything I can (with certain understandings set in place). They know that I care very much about their work, as well as my own. They know that when I offer something new to them, that it is something I truly know will support them. And they know that I will be there for them in a consistent and timely manner with a positive attitude.  

There are three keys to success:  Expertise, enthusiasm and reliability.

Expertise means I have the capability to meet my clients needs. Are there other people that have more expertise than me? Sure. A lot, in fact, but I always make sure that my skill level, ability to quickly learn a new skill or my ability to delegate out accordingly, is in line with my clients needs. My clients don’t care if I am the greatest designer in the world as long as I can produce what they are looking for and what will help support them.

Enthusiasm is being excited about what you are doing. When you have enthusiasm for something, you have more energy to accomplish the goal. You are also more likely to continue to learn and to put in the extra effort to really create something special. Enthusiasm shines through and your clients will pick up on that energy.

You  can have all of the experience and enthusiasm in the world, but if you are unreliable, you are doomed. However, what you may lack in both enthusiasm and expertise, you can absolutely make up for in reliability!

Focusing these three keys on my current clients allows for several things to occur:

They stay with me long term, so my income is stable.

Their prosperity grows, which means as they send more work and I earn higher rates and percentages, my prosperity grows as well.

And one of the most important things to occur is that they refer new clients to me.

Once they refer a client to me, instead of immediately taking on that client, I take the time to ask them questions about their business, purpose, direction and budget. Then I spend some time in introspection and decide if they are a client I actually want to have.

Does the client enjoy what they do?

Am I interested in their work?

Are they offering something to better humanity? Even if it just means they do business in a conscious manner.

Are they kind, personable and communicate clearly?

Are they focused or scattered all over the place?

Do they know what they want?

Do they have an attitude of abundance or are they always looking for a deal from me or express concern about lack of money?

Asking these questions has helped me grow a client base that I truly enjoy working with and who support my purpose.

There are times, of course, when things may change – just like any relationship. Though commitment is important to me, it is not important at any cost. There have been times when I have had to bring a bout an exit from a client relationship. I have consciously let go of potential clients and clients I was in an on going, working relationship with. One of two things always happen. They either go about their way and I am freed up to continue on in joyous prosperity or they actively change their ways and come back as a star client! I have to say, I am amazed at how often the second one happens! Either way it is a win/win for all parties involved in my business.

Before you can begin to put any of this into practice, I highly recommend you take the time to sit down and meditate on your own poverty mentality that may be lurking in the unconscious depths of your mind.

In what ways do you feel you are not good enough?

In what ways do you feel that you are lacking?

What are your views on money, time and energy in relation to yourself and others?

What were the model ideas around money, time and energy that you grew up with?

What is one thing you can implement right now to be more experienced, enthusiastic or reliable?

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Serving Humanity for the Sake of Service While Being Supported by the Universe

Below is an email I sent last week to Steve Pavlina, the uber blogger for “Personal Development for Smart People,” in response to his article Waking Up.

- The Wandering Yogi

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Dear Steve,

Your recent post about Waking Up and being of service to humanity really hit home for me as a yoga teacher. I also think it is so inspiring that you decided to remove the copyrights from your work to share with the world. That is pure love and trust in abundance at it’s finest! 

After reading your blog I laid down on my bed and thought about the ways in which I was not feeling supported by the universe and the ways in which I could be of support more. 

I teach yoga 2 plus times a week and get paid $30 per class, regardless of how many students are in there. There have been times when the studio is full of students and times when it is not. Every time I sit down to teach a class I see how many students are there and I crunch numbers. When things are slow I think to myself “oh good” there are 8 students today”…or “oh no, there are only 3″ and when the studio is busy, the same thing occurs “oh good” there are 22 students today”…or “oh no, there are only 15″ The moment I sit down and crunch those numbers in my head and place a value on my self as a teacher based off of those numbers, is the moment I completely loose touch with my whole reason for being there…to serve the growth of humanity.

So I made the decision to stop teaching these classes for money. Though I am loosing a stable percentage of my income, I am not concerned about lack of prosperity. I know how much I am supported when I am in service. I have experienced that time and time again. I am greatly looking forward to sitting down to teach today for the SOLE purpose of raising consciousness.

Thank you for all of you work.

– Stacy Hayden (The Wandering Yogi)

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After I made this decision I contacted the owner of the studio and  let her know that I am releasing my teacher’s pay back into the universe. It felt great. When I went in to teach the next day I explained to the students what I was doing and why.  I let them know that I had been doing them a disservice by crunching numbers before class and either feeling relieved at the numbers or guilty because of the lack. I explained to them that often because of the financial aspect of being a teacher I would end up not only catering to my ego, but catering to theirs as well. I would be “customer service” sweet when what they really needed was a compassionate kick in the ass, I would cut times on exercises so as to not overload them so they would not get frustrated and would keep coming back versus really giving them the space to have a true experience…the list goes on.

About 3 days later the fear kicked in. Holy crap…I just lost $270 plus a month! Why did I do that? But then I remembered all of the roller coaster feelings that I had wrapped up in being a teacher for my income and it feels refreshing to be released of them. I feel better AND I am supporting the growth of humanity. Can’t beat that!

A few days later I realized another wonderful outcome of this decision. One of my biggest goals is to be “location independent.”  To have a home but to be able to work from anywhere that I want, whenever I want to. One of the things that was stopping me from taking the next big leap is that I would loose a portion of my relied upon income while I was away because it was still attached to my teaching on location. So though I no longer have that particular  income, all of my income now is totally location independent! I just bought myself freedom for a mere $270 a month. Last year…a couple of months ago even, $270 a month felt like everything. Now I have the physical and emotional freedom to replace that money in a way that is more supportive of my life design.

Awesome.