Thursday, May 31, 2012

How to Recognize and Increase Your Opportunities

Do you feel like the number of opportunities available to you is starting to dwindle? Does it seem like there are fewer and fewer chances for personal and financial growth because things are pushing in all around you?

Is that reality or just your perception?

What if I said that each of us is constantly surrounded by limitless opportunities, but that they often go unrecognized. Do you think that could be true in your case?
What kind of opportunities are you looking for? Do you want to expand your income, find a partner, start a new career, grow your consciousness, or establish some meaningful business or personal contacts? Ask yourself this:

What does opportunity look like?

That is an important question to ask, don’t you think? No matter what kinds of opportunities you are looking for, if you can’t identify them, then they are very likely to sneak past you unnoticed. When seeking opportunity, most people’s search criteria is so narrow in focus that it can essentially blind them to what is right in front of their face. It’s the old “can’t see the forest for the trees” scenario.
At other times, the opportunity itself is hidden from view but there are visible clues that we can follow. In cases like this, we need to recognize and follow the clues that will lead us to the opportunity we are seeking.  When looking for gold, miners don’t expect to find it just laying around on the surface of the ground. So how do they know where to look? They search for clues such as favorable rock formations, or deposits of certain metallic ores. When they find the right clues, then they take a closer look.
Sometimes opportunity is disguised as something else. There’s an old saying that goes like this: “The reason most people fail to recognize opportunity is because it often comes disguised as hard work.”
Whatever the case, if we broaden our parameters a bit, and use a little imagination, we can train ourselves to see opportunities that were previously hidden from our view. Let’s consider where opportunity is most likely to be found.

People are your greatest source of opportunity!

Regardless of what kind of opportunity you are looking for, there is someone, somewhere, who is in a position to help you. If you have a service to offer, there is someone who needs that service. If you have a product to sell, or an order to fill, It doesn’t matter what that product is or what you need to fill your order, somewhere out there are buyers and sellers that can help you.
The kind of opportunity you are seeking really makes no difference. Whether it is in the realm of products, services, guidance, assistance, or knowledge, your quest will end when you find the right person or group of people. People represent your greatest source of opportunities. Let’s take this concept and drill down a little bit more to make sure we understand how to use this resource.

What kind of questions are you asking?

Obviously, finding the right opportunity requires that we ask the right questions. Asking the right questions will ultimately lead us to the right people. This puts an entirely different spin on our search. Now, instead of looking for opportunity directly, we are looking for people. What kind of people? Well, it all depends on the kind of opportunity we are seeking.
If you are looking for employment, then start by looking for people with businesses that are still thriving, even in this economy. Don’t start out looking for the exact position that you would like to have, that’s too specific. If your search is too narrow, you may miss out on an opportunity for an even better position than you anticipated. So find the people whose businesses are thriving and look for a way that you can add value to their business. Be creative, and when you come up with a presentable idea, run it by them. Even if they don’t buy into your idea, they are likely to be impressed enough to offer you something else.
Your goal should be to become a viable asset to your employer by adding value to their business. The more valuable you are to them, the more opportunities will open up for you.

See yourself as a valuable asset

Your self-image will make a huge difference in the type of opportunities you attract to yourself. If you see yourself as a valuable asset, and you present yourself as such, others will see you that way as well. You never ever want to come across as needy or desperate. This is true whether you are looking for a job, a mate, or a business partner. Self-confidence encourages people to have confidence in you. Opportunities come to those who instill confidence.
It can be difficult to come across with self-confidence when you are in urgent need of the right opportunity. For someone who has been out of work for a while, with bills piling up, they may feel desperate. It’s extremely difficult to project the right image while harboring feelings of desperation. This is one of those situations where learning some specific life skills can help to overcome the mentality of scarcity.

Focus on creating opportunity for others

Some of your best opportunities will be born from your desire to create opportunity for others. This has been the driving force of many successful web based businesses. Let’s say that you have written a content rich ebook of incredible value, and you want to share it with as many people as possible. In order to accomplish that, you decide to price it well below the value of its contents. So you have created an opportunity for others to benefit from your hard work very inexpensively. Could you take it a step further?
What if you offered your customers an opportunity to share your book with their friends and earn a 70% commission in the process? Now you have created value and opportunity on two different levels. There is no way to foresee what kind of future opportunities will grow from an arrangement like this. One thing I do know is that this very strategy has launched thousands of successful internet businesses. Creating opportunity attracts even greater opportunities.

Always put people ahead of business

It is natural to want to help those that you like and respect. Work at building relationships with people and opportunities will follow. This is the principle behind the success of major social sites like twitter and facebook. It’s about relationships, and relationships are a give-and-take arrangement. Many business opportunities have come from these social sites, but the relationship came first.
The same principles apply to almost every aspect of life. If you are looking for opportunities, focus on establishing relationships and creating value first. Stay open to mutual opportunities and don’t be afraid to be generous. When you look for ways to help others you become a magnet for increased personal opportunities.
So look around, opportunity is knocking – are you willing to open the door and let it in?
Did you discover any hidden opportunities?
Are there untapped resources that came to mind?
Think. Grow. Live!

Roland N. Gilbert
Roland works one-on-one – via phone and face-to-face – and with MasterMind Groups. Through Couples Coaching Roland helps clients communicate better, find the love they want, and create relationships of significance.
Contact Roland at             800-974-3692       or  to determine if coaching is right for you.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The Role of Focus, Filters & Priorities in Our Relationships!

How does a relationship that started out like a whirlwind romance end up being a source of confusion and unhappiness? Is there anything you can do to safeguard that special bond that initially attracted you to one another? What is the quickest way to turn things around and rekindle those special feelings if they seem to be disappearing?
These are just a few of the questions commonly asked by concerned couples feeling the squeeze of increasing stress on their relationship. Have you ever struggled with these or similar issues?
Let’s look at a few reasons why a good relationship can become challenging and what you can do to prevent, or even reverse,  this trend. Considering three specific aspects of our personal perception can help us see the bigger picture and make any adjustments that might seem appropriate.

The role of focus, filters and priorities

How we view our world and the people in it has everything to do with our perception. Regardless of how objective we might think we are, our personal version of reality is heavily influenced by what we focus on, how we filter that information, and the way we set our priorities.
Not only will the settings of these three factors determine our perception, they will also determine how we respond to the world around us. This is especially true in the way we interact in our closest relationships.  Those closest to us are always the ones who see our true colors.

Adjusting your settings for added joy

By making adjustments in our focusfilters and priorities we can literally transform what we bring into a relationship and what we receive from it. So, let’s work with these three components of perception and see how we can tweak them for a richer and more meaningful relationship experience.
1. Adjusting your focus. Remember what you used to focus on when your relationship was new? Remember how much joy that brought you? That’s because focus is the most powerful way to adjust our impression of reality. When your relationship was new you made it a habit to focus on all of your partner’s amazing qualities. No matter what else was going on in your life, being together was so wonderful that you always looked forward to it with eager anticipation and you never allowed the cares of life to dampen your time together.
How about now? Are you still focused on those amazing qualities or has your attention drifted to their faults and shortcomings? When you are together do they still get your undivided attention and admiration or has the stress of life overshadowed the way the two of you interact? See the difference focus makes? So, what can you do about it?
Solution. Make a conscious and consistent effort to recapture the same kind of focus that got your relationship rolling in the first place. Turn your attention to those amazing qualities and away from anything that doesn’t feed your sense of joy and appreciation. If you focus on the positive your perception of, and your response to your partner will shift. In turn, they will respond to you accordingly. Circular Relationships are based on cause and effect. If you change the cause the effect will change also.
2. Adjusting your filters. When you first got to know each other, did you find your partners little "idiosyncrasies" irritating or entertaining? Did you see their unique personality traits as refreshing or strange and in desperate need of refinement? Your view of your partner has always been up to you. You are the one who chooses which filters to look through.
If you are looking through a critical or judgmental filter you will see things that you don’t appreciate. If you are looking through a happy, grateful filter you will readily notice more and more reasons to find delight in your partner’s unique attributes. Your attitude is your filter and a positive attitude based on love and appreciation can filter out many of the little annoyances that might rob you of the joy you both deserve.
Solution. Stick with the filters that you used when your relationship was the most positive part of your life. When you combine a positive focus with a positive attitude it starts a chain reaction that can bring a great sense of joy and satisfaction into your relationship. No matter what happens in other areas of your life, always do your best to greet your mate with a loving, positive, appreciative attitude.
3. Adjusting your priorities. When your relationship was at the "" stage, where was it positioned on your list of priorities? Where is it now? Is it still at the top of the list or have other things been getting top billing lately? When I talk about priorities I am not referring to how your time is divided. I am talking about what is most important to you. Most of us spend more time working than we do interacting with our partner, but which one owns your heart? That’s what defines your priorities.
If our relationship is our top priority we will make time for it and won’t allow the other concerns of life to squeeze the life out of it. And we won’t do this solely out of a sense of responsibility; we’ll do it because we want to. We’ll do it because our relationship means more to us than anything else and because that is where our heart is.
Solution. Take the time to evaluate your true priorities in life and see if your lifestyle supports your relationships position at the top. Don’t make excuses or deceive yourself while evaluating your situation because that will prove costly. If you are not sure, ask your partner, but don’t get all upset if you don’t like their answer. Next, make any needed adjustments to establish your relationship as your number one priority. When both partners know that the relationship comes first it does amazing things to the way they interact with each other. Isn’t that what you both want?

Go make it happen!

Use these three keys to unlock and maintain the joy and freshness that comes from a truly meaningful and satisfying relationship. Obviously, you can’t control how your partner acts, but you can give them every reason to respond to your efforts in a way that empowers you both and brings a lot of fresh, new joy into your world.
How do you keep the "freshness" alive in your relationships?
What keys would you add to these three?
Think. Grow. Live!

Roland N. Gilbert
Roland works one-on-one – via phone and face-to-face – and with MasterMind Groups. Through Couples Coaching Roland helps clients communicate better, find the love they want, and create relationships of significance.
Contact Roland at             800-974-3692       or  to determine if coaching is right for you.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Success - Is it Worth the Risk?

Risk-taking is scary for most of us because there is always the potential for loss. We’ve been taught to be careful and avoid taking any unnecessary risks. Instead, we are cautioned to play it safe and just take baby steps toward our dreams.
While this approach does tend to feel safer there are also some serious downsides. For one, you can’t build momentum by holding yourself back. In fact, the longer we hold back, the harder it is to keep moving forward.  Without forward momentum, inertia kicks in until our progress comes to a screeching halt.

The risk factor

Have you ever noticed that most successful people have one thing in common?  Nine times out of ten there was some degree of risk involved in their success. In one way or another, those “successful people” usually feel like they needed to take a chance in order to succeed.
Believe it or not, risk is not such a terrible thing if you view it from the right perspective.  Most people look at it from the perspective of what they stand to lose if it doesn’t work out.  But we also need to ask “what do I stand to gain if it DOES work out?”

Is it worth the risk?

Here’s a simple process to determine which risks might be worth taking. Use the following six criteria to analyze the situation BEFORE you jump in and make a final decision.
1) What do you stand to gain? With any risk, you’ll want to first look at the potential benefits.  Make a list of what you stand to gain from moving forward and include as many details as possible. Consider every possible positive benefit you stand to receive. Make sure to consider the financial, emotional and physical upside. What’s the best case scenario?
2) What are the possible negative consequences? Along with the positive benefits, there are always a few possible negative consequences. That’s why they call it RISK. Make another list of these, again thinking about all the possible things that could go wrong, and what would happen if they did. Could you handle it? What’s the worst case scenario?
3) Balance, balance, balance. Now, compare the two lists and see which one has the strongest likelihood of coming to fruition.  Would the gains be worth the risk?  Would you be able to handle the negative consequences if they did happen?  Are there any options for a middle ground decision that would minimize the risk without derailing the momentum? Should you break it into phases so you have an exit strategy, or should you just go for it with all you’ve got?
4) How realistic are your fears? Take another look at your list of negative consequences and ask yourself how likely they are to happen.  The majority of the time you’ll probably find that your fears don’t have much real substance – they’re just fears.  Evaluate each possibility carefully and determine whether it’s a real threat or an expression of some unrelated fear.
5) Go with your gut. After carefully weighing the pros and cons, you should have a solid sense of whether you should take the risk now, or lay a little more groundwork first.  There is no shame in deciding to hold back if you feel you can’t handle the negative consequences right now!  Remember, you can always re-evaluate the same risk at a later time to see if conditions are more favorable.
6) Now ask yourself – Why? What is your motive for considering this course of action? Is it in harmony with what you know to be right, or is it possible that greed or selfishness might be influencing you? Understanding your own motives will help you get very clear about what you should do. Always move toward the greater good.

Get yourself primed for action

By getting into the habit of evaluating risks in this way, you will empower yourself with the confidence to push through hesitation and move steadily toward a successful outcome. In the long run, confidence and determination will be a huge factor. If you are going to take a risk, getting your mindset right first will maximize your chances for success. That brings us to…
7) Don’t hold anything back! If you decide to go for it, give it your best shot. The first six points were the pre-action phase. Once you launch into action avoid the temptation to second guess your decision. Doing so will only undermine your progress. You’re already in the game, so now it’s time to focus on making things happen.
How are you at assessing risk?
Do you think that risk and success go together?
Think. Grow. Live!
Roland N. Gilbert
Roland works one-on-one – via phone, Skype and face-to-face – and with MasterMind Groups. Through Couples Coaching Roland helps clients communicate better, find the love they want, and create relationships of significance. Contact Roland at            800-974-3692     or to determine if coaching is right for you.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Living by the Law of Consequences!

What if I told you that there is one fundamental law with the power to completely change your reality. Would you be interested? How would you respond if I told you that this fundamental law is easy to understand and implement, regardless of your current circumstances.
If you could radically simplify the whole concept of creating a better reality by making one simple change in the way you run your life, would you be willing to give it a try? Before you say yes, I’d like to tell you a little story.

Don’t expect something for nothing

There was once a poor exchange student who rented a room above a fancy restaurant. Every night as he ate a plain bowl of rice for dinner, he would sit at the top of the stairs and enjoy the wonderful smells coming up from the restaurant below. As he ate, he would savor the aroma and imagine that he was dinning on the delicious delicacies being served down in the restaurant.
When the restaurant owner found out what the exchange student was doing, he took him to court. He wanted the student to pay him for the enjoyment he had derived from the food smells coming from his place of business.
The judge listened intently and then asked the student if he had any change in his pocket. When the young man said yes, the judge asked him to shake his pocket so he could hear the coins rattle. Then the wise judge told the restaurant owner: “The sound of money is sufficient payment for the smell of food.”

What’s the point?

Millions of people have bought into the idea that they can sit around visualizing a better life and that somehow it will manifest. When it doesn’t happen they go searching for the missing secret or a new technique that will make it happen. I am not saying that visualizing isn’t powerful because it is, but visualizing alone is not going to change your life.
You would never expect the smell of food to satisfy your hunger or the sound of money to pay your bills. Visualizing is a great way to get very clear about where you need to focus your attention, but more is needed to produce a meaningful outcome.

The law of consequences is about reality

Like all fundamentals, the law of consequences is based on truth. That means that putting it into practice requires a realistic approach and a willingness to accept personal responsibility for your life. It also means letting go of the fantasy based idea that somehow your world is going to be magically transformed without any effort on your part.
I realize that pie in the sky, fairytale promises of a better life without any effort are popular, but I prefer to deal in reality. How about you? Are you ready to fully embrace a realistic approach to creating a better reality on every level?

What is cause and effect, and the law of consequences?

Simply put, we are talking about cause and effect. The law of consequences states that every result or outcome (effect) happens for a reason (cause). Everything we do produces some kind of outcome and by carefully considering the possible consequences of any action, word, thought, or decision in advance, we can be much more successful at producing the outcome we desire.
Wisdom consists of the anticipation
of consequences.  ~Norman Cousins
Recognition of the law of consequences is fundamental to understanding how we influence our own reality. It can be incredibly empowering to know that everything we do (cause) leads to an outcome (effect), but to benefit from that knowledge we must be willing to accept full responsibility for our behavior.

Let logic be your guide

For some reason there are those who want to complicate things when you start talking about cause and effect, but I’m not one of them. At its most basic level we are simply talking about action and reaction. If we have the foresight to consider how our words and actions will play out, we can make better choices that will have a positive influence on the quality of our life.
Shallow men believe in luck. Strong men believe
in cause and effect. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
Here’s a little exercise that can vastly improve your reality on every level. Before you make a decision, think it through to its logical conclusion. Ask yourself: If I do this is it likely to produce desirable consequences, or is it something I will regret down the road? If you get in the habit of walking your decisions through this simple process before you commit to them, it will change your life.
Is the concept of consequences something you embrace?
Have you ever paid a price for not thinking things through beforehand?
Think. Grow. Live!
Roland N. Gilbert
Roland works one-on-one – via phone, Skype and face-to-face – and with MasterMind Groups. Through Couples Coaching Roland helps clients communicate better, find the love they want, and create relationships of significance. Contact Roland at            800-974-3692     or to determine if coaching is right for you.