Olive Strachan North West Export Champion 2016
Inspiring Business North West
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Dare to begin achieving your goals

"All glory comes from daring to begin" is an apt quote by Eugene F. Ware because today's blog is all about achievement. And to achieve we need to take action. Often we do nothing because we are paralysed by worry, guilt, pessimism and fear, and we miss an opportunity to shine.

Here are my key tips to tackle the underlying attitudes and thoughts that may hold us back from achieving success:

  1. Understand your potential. Take some time and complete your own personal SWOT analysis. We often do this for organisations, but it also works well for individuals. Look at your personal Strengths and Weaknesses, as well as Opportunities and Threats. Doing this exercise helps me to focus my mind.

  2. Take responsibility. There are always aspects of our lives that we need to take in hand and stop leaving them to other people. Or things that, if we focused on instead of avoiding, would improve our lives considerably. Stop procrastinating, put some time aside and just do it.

  3. Monitor your self-talk. Be kind to yourself - there are many people we encounter daily who make comments that can hurt or crush us, so why do it to yourself? I create my own positive space where I bring together positive and uplifting experiences in my life together with visual reminders. In no time, I am feeling fabulous again.

  4. A sense of humour is so important! I googled 'laughter', and this is what I found (from HelpGuide.org): "Laughter decreases stress hormones and increases immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies. Laughter triggers the release of endorphins, the body's natural feel-good chemicals." I rest my case - find what does it for you and go for it. I often sit at home watching the comedy channels with tears of laughter running down my face. It's the best kind of therapy!

  5. Associate with positive people. There was a great Huffington Post article on why you should surround yourself with good people. People have a significant on your life - according to American entrepreneur and motivational speaker Jim Rohn, "you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with". He describes a good person as someone who inspires you to be a better person, provides you with the motivation to succeed, and cheers you on to success.

  6. Live life with a passion. By this I mean enthusiasm and demonstrating a strong positive emotion. When someone demonstrates passion and enthusiasm, it is contagious! I have used a DVD called FISH in courses on teamwork, customer care and attitude; this DVD has had a positive impact because of the passion, positivity, enthusiasm and fun demonstrated by the staff on the DVD. The 4 key themes are 'choosing your attitude', 'play: make someone's day', and 'be there'.

  7. Finally, have a positive self-image. If there is one key lesson I would want to share with my younger self, it is this: 'other people's opinions shouldn't become your reality'. The only person who can shape your life and achieve your goals is you.

So stop holding back and go forth and succeed. Let me know how you get on!

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