Monday, July 30, 2012

Be Aware of Your Instincts

In my last post I continued the discussion on our intellectual nature, which I call “The Battleground”. I stated that it is central to how we live out our life in this physical world. What I mean is that we too often unquestionably rely upon the direction it provides us and it’s this unquestioning aspect of our three-part nature that I will discuss here.

We must understand that our intellectual nature in and of itself is error-prone. How many of us have made and followed through on a decision that was based solely on our intellect and contrary to what our instinct told us? And later we regretted that decision shaking our heads and saying, "I should have listened". How many of us know really smart individuals who continually mess up their lives by making dumb decisions? You know there really is a difference between book sense and common sense, don’t you? We just have to know when to apply which.

Our intellect is a valuable tool in specific areas such as: schoolwork or applying specialized knowledge to solve problems. But when it comes to solving life's problems the intellect by itself isn’t enough to get the job done. We need to team it with other aspects of our nature. Allow me to provide an example.

I owned a successful Information Technology company that was recognized by Inc. Magazine and included in their Inc. 500 list of the fastest growing privately held corporations in America. However one year I was having a really tough time and it was touch and go as to whether I could even stay in business. Luckily, we received a subcontract from a major corporation that would provide us enough revenues to pay our expenses but make very little if any profit.

In finalizing the paperwork for this subcontract a question was asked  "Who would pay the payroll and overhead expenses for individuals hired to accomplish the work?" Since I always figured that amount in my bid price I, like I had always done in the past, initially responded that my company would cover these costs. However, something inside me (an instinct) urged me to respond that I expected the prime contractor to cover that cost. So, I followed my gut and changed the answer from my company to theirs. To my surprise the contracting officer accepted this response My profit increased from something negligible to a very substantial amount. This gave me enough working capital to comfortably plan for the following year.

My point is that we should not be so set in our ways that we don't take a few moments to examine why we do what we do if we're not happy when we get where we go. In this case I teamed my intellectual nature with what I call awareness.

I will discuss the subject of awareness in my next post. Until then, here's hoping you live today and every day passionately and with purpose! Thank you and God bless. 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Failure Isn't Always Fatal

In my last post I began putting the pedal to the metal by accelerating my providing of information on how to experience life successfully here and now. I selected the intellect to begin with because it is the most volatile of our 3 natures. I call it "The Battleground", since it's where the fierce fight for control of how we live out our life in the physical world takes place.

I stated that in order for us to live prosperously and peacefully there must be interaction between our spiritual and intellectual natures. This interaction is not religious in nature, but more about balance and growth. We have to recognize that our spiritual nature, like our intellectual one, is immaterial in that it can't be seen or felt.

Our spiritual nature allows us to communicate with the spiritual world, which consists of entities that can help or hinder us in our efforts to live the life we desire. Yes, there are spiritual entities out there that try to influence our core beliefs and attempt to rule us completely. However as a result of free will, which is an integral part of our intellect, we can pick and choose which spiritual entities get to play in our game.

I like to describe our spiritual nature as an internal GPS that provides us with directions towards our goals and ultimate life's purpose. After the destination is input, our GPS obtains advice from different spirits along the way to guide us there safely. Because our goals and destinations usually take years to complete it's important that we keep our spiritual nature strong and properly nourished. And using our intellect to provide the necessary food for successful growth in the spiritual realm does this. We can't expect our GPS to mature and function properly if we keep feeding it the same food we fed it as a child.

For instance, if we find that we are continually failing in one or more aspects of our life (relationships, finances, health, business, etc.) then we might want to take a look at how we keep arriving there. Could it be that unfriendly spirits, influencing us to create negative core beliefs, are impeding us? If so, don’t despair. These spirits will occupy a weakened GPS and lead us to destinations of their choice until we tell them to leave. The beauty of life is that “failure isn't always fatal” and because of free will we can turn our lives around at any instant. However, this won't happen until we become sick and tired of being sick and tired of our continued failures.

We can replace these unfriendly spirits with friendly ones that help us to create positive core beliefs. We can positively use our past failures as teaching points to help others to avoid what we've experienced. You see every dark cloud does have a silver lining. Allow me to close by paraphrasing the poem "Invictus", "It matters not how straight the gate or charged with punishment the scroll, we are the masters of our fate. We are the captains of our souls".

I will continue this subject in my next post. Until then, here's hoping that you live today and every day passionately and with purpose. Thank you and God bless!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Intellect Is Not Enough!

Hello again, and thanks for your interest. In this post we're going to begin to understand what it takes to improve our life physically, spiritually and intellectually. It does not matter if we are in a jail cell or a boardroom. It doesn't matter if we're going through bankruptcy or experiencing great financial success. It doesn't matter if our physical body is deteriorating or we are at the pinnacle of physical fitness. What does matter is that we recognize we have the power to improve our condition and begin experiencing a prosperous and peaceful life right here and right now.

To begin, let us take a look at our intellectual nature. It consists of our conscious and subconscious mind, our will, desires and emotions. Some folks may call this the soul, life force or heart of man. It's not important what it’s called as long as we recognize its existence and that it is distinct from our other natures. Many say that it separates from our physical body during death and continues to exist. Others say that when we die, it dies. I am not here to try to convince you one way or the other. I just want you to understand that it does exist and is separate from our physical and spiritual nature.

I like to call our intellectual nature “The Battleground”. This is the place where all of our mental and emotional distress takes place. And, although it's not physical in nature, that is, it can’t be touched, smelled or seen, it can have a devastating effect on our physical body. As a result, it is not to be completely trusted in and of itself because as easily as it can lead us to unlock the mysteries of the universe it can lead us to wrongly convict someone of a crime they didn't commit.

At the center of our intellectual nature is this thing called “free will”. Our free will gives us the ability to choose whatever course of action we desire. It allows us to do so whether or not the course we choose is helpful or harmful to others. However, we must recognize that there are always consequences associated with whatever actions we take.  In case you are asking “How is this information going to help me improve my life?” let me get to the meat of this post.

You may have heard the saying “The mind is a terrible thing to waste”. And that's just my point. Our mind, an integral component of our intellectual nature, is one of the greatest tools that we as human beings have available to us. As a tool it can be used to create works of good or evil. However, as a result of free will, we can allow our minds to be influenced by whatever we choose. This is where our spiritual nature comes in to work hand-in-hand with our intellectual nature.

As stated in earlier posts our intellectual, spiritual and physical natures must interact together in order for us to experience the prosperous and peaceful life that we seek. In my next post I will discuss how our spiritual influences our intellectual nature. Until then here's wishing that you live today and every day passionately and with purpose. Thank you and God bless!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Improve Your Life Here and Now!

Hello, Al Spinks here, and thanks for your interest. You know what? I just don't get it. We live in one of the greatest nations on earth but I feel we're letting that greatness slip away. From an individual perspective, it seems as if we are yielding to a sense of helplessness and hopelessness. It's as if we want others to do for us that which we are very capable of doing for ourselves. We want to become rich, famous and healthy over night but have a tendency to become depressed when that doesn’t happen. We seem to have forgotten that we have to put in work in order to attain anything worthwhile.

In a conversation with my son Michael who is a personal fitness trainer, we discussed how even after an intense workout we are not able to see any significant change in our body the next day. We just put in the work and have faith that over time a proper combination of diet and exercise will produce the desired results. It's a process that works and this process will work for anyone regardless of his or her physical condition. To obtain this better level of fitness all we have to do is start where we are, have a plan and put in the work.

So, if we can gain better fitness by assessing our current physical condition and creating a plan to improve it, don't you think we can do the same thing to gain a better life? All we have to do is assess our current spiritual, intellectual and physical condition and then execute a plan to improve them. We all have inside of us the necessary components to positively change the quality of our life. We just gotta wanna do it and get started right here and right now.

First, we must take responsibility for whatever hand life has dealt us. It's not as hard as you think. As a matter of fact it's kind of easy. As stated in earlier posts, our health, age, circumstances and situations do not matter. All we have to do is want to improve our life and find an impartial coach to show us the way. But before I continue let me share this brief poem with you.

The Man Who Thinks He Can
by Walter D. Wintle

If you think you are beaten, you are;
If you think you dare not, you don't.
If you'd like to win, but think you can't
It's almost a cinch you won't.
If you think you'll lose, you've lost,
For out in the world we find
Success begins with a fellow's will;
It's all in the state of mind.

If you think you're outclassed, you are:
You've got to think high to rise.
You've got to be sure of yourself before
You can ever win a prize.
Life's battles don't always go
To the stronger or faster man,
But soon or late the man who wins
Is the one who thinks he can.

Remember, all you gotta do is believe you can improve your life and you will! What are you waiting on? In my next few posts I will provide information that will assist you in this very worthwhile and rewarding journey. Until then here's wishing that you live today and every day passionately and with purpose. Thank you and God Bless!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Are You Worried Sick?

Hello, and thanks for your interest. If you’ve noticed, my last few series of posts have concentrated on: our intellectual, spiritual and physical nature as well as the importance of our inner voice. It's important to understand that these aspects of our nature do not work independently of each other and in a void. They must all work together as a team in order for us to experience life to the fullest.

In the mid-1900s the medical industry believed that our mind was completely isolated from our body. Doctors treated mental issues separately from physical issues. They did not believe that the mind could affect bodily functions. Since that time there has been a tremendous amount of research, which proves our mind plays an important role in the health of our body.

Now, before you get up in arms and say, “Al thinks all illness is mental in nature.” let me assure you that’s not true. I believe no matter how physically or mentally fit we are it’s possible for us all to be afflicted by illnesses of opportunity. I also believe that a positive outlook on life provides the medicine we need to quickly bounce back from these illnesses. Conversely, I believe that fear, anxiety and worry cause an overwhelming majority of our sickness and diseases. Let me share with you what I mean.

Medical experts are finding that there’s a definite relationship between chronic stress and heart disease. In many cases they have found that long after stressful events have ended many individuals will relive them over and over again in their mind. And as stated in earlier posts, our brain, not being able to distinguish between real and imagined events, signals our bodies to increase the amount of adrenaline in our bloodstream. This prepares us to fight or flee from events that aren’t present. The events may not be present but the effect adrenaline has on our body is real non-the-less.

The Mayo Clinic has determined that long-term activation of the stress-response system  and the subsequent overexposure to adrenaline and other stress hormones  can disrupt almost all our body's processes. This puts us at increased risk of numerous health problems, including: heart disease, sleep problems, digestive problems, depression, obesity, memory impairment, worsening of skin conditions, etc. That’s pretty depressing isn’t it?
I'm sharing this information with you because I care and also know that every cloud has a silver lining. Our silver lining is if our mind had something to do with creating our health problems then it can also be helpful in curing them. It’s never too late and we can begin healing ourselves NOW by using our mind to take direct control over our response to the events, circumstances and situations occurring in our life.  We don't have to wait for or depend on others to do this for us. As soon as we change our minds we will change our lives.
Our age, current health, ethnicity or socio-economic condition does not matter. One day spent in the light of knowing what to do and doing it is better than 1000 days spent in the darkness of ignorance. We’ll explore this subject more in future posts. Until then here’s hoping that you live today and every day passionately and with purpose.
Thank you and God Bless!