Slow down and enjoy life.
It’s not only the scenery you miss by going too fast
– you also miss the sense of where you are going and why.’
Eddie Cantor

I read a fabulous article in the San Diego Examiner headed ‘use technology to slow down’. The author starts by confirming that we live in a society of speed. So much to do and no time to do it in. He highlights that technology doesn’t really help us, as it helps us do more, go faster and if possible be everywhere. I know that this is true as my business is what has become known as a virtual business – as long as I have my hard-drives and access to a good quality computer and the internet, I can work from anywhere. This means that I never get a break – my colleagues, clients, friends and family all know that they can contact me by phone (mobile/cell) or email at any time and I’ll generally be available.

Reading this article made me stop and think about my own goals for 2011. One of the reasons for moving to the sub-tropical island of Madeira (Portugal) was to allow me to ‘slow down’! Have I put this into practice … not yet, but 2011 is the year that I had previously committed to, in making this change. I’ve been very lucky in the people I have met on my move to the island – Elaine Das Neves Silva and her brother David Silva amongst others. Elaine you have been introduced to already but David is a wonderful guy who over the past few months has really made me appreciate the reasons we make decisions – consciously or unconsciously. David is very intuitive and is now learning how to use his intuition – I call him ‘scary’. I currently rent an office in the hotel complex owned by his family and at the moment he works in the wonderful (and very bad for the diet) coffee shop next door. He is in and out of my office continually from early morning until mid-afternoon (when his ‘shift’ at the coffee shop comes to an end). It’s fabulous but what I truly love about David is that he always knows when I want a cup of tea and as I drink fruit and healthy teas, often which tea I need at that particular time. Although I was aware of his intuitive side, this was truly highlighted to me when he started to make comments as he left the office to go back to the coffee shop … comments that make you stop and think. One day I asked him where these comments come from – where he gets these insights and his response was that they just come to him. What makes him scary is that so far he has always been ‘right’. I realised that one of the reasons I have moved to this particular island is that I can move into the world in which I have always dreamt I would love to be in. So yes for me 2011 is going to be a year of change … a year of achieving one of my dreams!

So how did this article in the San Diego Examiner help me? It made me realise that my preparations for change do include the technology solutions I designed and yes they do work in my favour (ok it helps that I have a technology back-ground, and that I have set my virtual business up using my knowledge of technology).

The secret of achievement is to hold a picture of a successful outcome in the mind.
Thoreau

Going back to the article I published on the 27th September, 2010 titled ‘Dreams are what makes life worth living!’, how many of us have truly achieved our dreams or are on the path to achieve them? I know that research shows that the majority of people give up on their dreams before they decide whether they can or can’t achieve them. So, as I’m doing with 2011 this is your opportunity to truly decide whether you want to achieve your dream or whether you will remain with the life that you currently have.

If you decide that you do want to achieve your dream, then you can make 2011 the year in which you do using the old fashioned methods and modern technology:

  1. Capturing your thoughts. Research shows that we have thousands of thoughts every day. The majority of these are unconscious thoughts and a small number become conscious thoughts. This process is all part of the unconscious (or if you would rather sub-conscious) mind supporting and working with what is stored in it. Therefore these conscious thoughts are important as they are often answers to unasked questions or steps in working towards the goals that we’ve stored in our unconscious mind. So how do you capture your thoughts? There are a couple of very simple options:
    • Carry a journalor notebook and EVERY time you have a thought – capture it! The important piece of information is to capture it as it comes to you.
    • Get your mobile/cell phone and turn on the voice or memo recorder. Just say the thought as it came to you.
    • Get out your laptop, iphone, or other electronic device and type in a note.
    • NB – it is important that whether you are writing, speaking or typing your thought or thoughts that you:
      – do not try and interpret it/them
      – do not try and analysis it/them
      – no thinking about it/them
      – no sugar-coating – this is important, especially when the thought may feel a little negative
      – no judging it/them
      – just write down the thought as it comes to you.
  2. Keep capturing your thoughts until you are able to or truly feel that you should start to review them. It’s for this reason that how ever you select to capture them that they are easy to find.
    • It’s important to capture your thoughts as this released them from your conscious and unconscious mind. You unconscious mind is then able to continue working through the process – the question, the goal, etc.
  3. Review your thoughts. When you are able to (time allows) or you truly feel that you should start to review what you’ve captured:
    • Find a quiet environment where you know you will not be disturbed.
    • With the exception of those who’ve captured their thoughts on their mobile/cell phone, switch all phones off. For those who have captured their thoughts on their mobile/cell phones, turn off the sounds so if it rings you can’t hear it and get distracted.
    • Ensure that everyone who could be a distraction or everything that could be a distraction is told that you need peace and quiet and are not to be disturbed or is turned off.
    • Quietly re-read your thoughts.
      • Where you have a thought that now feels wrong, negative, doesn’t feel as though it will work – cross it off. This is important as it tells your unconscious mind that you don’t want to do this.
      • Where you have a thought that now feels as though you no longer want to achieve it – cross it off. Your unconscious mind can now focus on those things that you do want to achieve.
      • Where you have a thought that really feels as though you want to focus on it – highlight it and then move it into a list of things that you do want to achieve.
  4. Once you’ve worked your way through all your thoughts and have captured those that you want to focus on, put your journal, mobile/cell phone or laptop away and let your unconscious mind focus on the next range of thoughts.

Earl Nightingale said ‘You become what you think about’, so whether you are working towards a goal or not – it is important to truly understand what your thoughts are. Listen to people around you – are they positive or negative people? If they are positive people, what do you think their thoughts are about? If they are negative people, what do you think their thoughts are about? More often than not the thoughts are people are thinking will demonstrate the type of person that they are. So if their thoughts are positive – then their comments and conversations will be positive; but if they are negative they’ll more often be negative comments, like the ‘I can’t do that … ‘ type comment. This was highlighted to me just today when I spoke to a colleague who said ‘it’s not working for us’ and when I questioned the thought process, it became clear that this person hadn’t thought about the positive type statement in line with how things work … so what happens when you stop thinking negatively and start thinking positively? The positive starts to happen and the negative reduces and gradually stops.

Aim at the sun and you may not reach it;
but your arrow will fly far higher than if you had aimed at an object on a level with yourself.

F. Hawes

© 2011 Barbara J. Cormack
First published under Cormack’s Capers in Magna Intuitum