Aspirations

An Open Letter to Those Who Want to Make a Bigger Difference Right Now – Happiness Article

“In a gentle way, you can shake the world.”—Mahatma Gandhi This short article was inspired by an email we received this morning from a new course student: Dear Marc and Angel, I’m a single mom to two wonderful teenagers, and I’m also a (rather passionate) domestic violence attorney. Although I’ve been told I do a great job on both fronts, I wish to make an even bigger difference. With all that’s going on in society right now, there’s so much…

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One Lesson We Forget in Hard Times – Self Improvement Article

We waste our time waiting for a path to appear. But it never does. Because we forget that paths are made by walking, not waiting. And we forget that there’s absolutely nothing about our present circumstances that prevents us from making progress again, one tiny step at a time. So, let’s cut to the chase today: What we truly need to do is often what we most feel like avoiding. This is a harsh reality, even in our present times.…

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1 Sign it’s Finally Time to Take a Step Forward Again (and How to Get Started) – Happiness Article

If it entertains you now but will actually hurt you someday, it’s a distraction. Don’t settle. Don’t exchange what you need in the long run for what you kinda want at the moment. Study your habits. Determine where your time goes. Delete the toxic distractions. Taking small steps can make a big difference, especially in tough times, but there’s no getting around the fact that taking these steps is often incredibly uncomfortable. That’s why so many people often don’t do…

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5 Ideas You Must Leave Behind to Get Ahead in Life – Happiness Article

If you don’t allow yourself to move past what happened, what was said, what was felt, you will look at your present and future through that same dirty lens. You can never change things by holding on to the existing reality. To get ahead in life, you have to leave some things behind and build a new model for living that makes the existing model obsolete. You must make a firm decision that you’re going to make a change too.…

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5 Year-End Notes to Self that Will Move Your Life Forward in 2020 – Personal Development Article

You are not your bad days. You are not your mistakes. You are not your scars. You are not your past. Be here now, and breathe. Tragedy strikes a woman who isn’t yet old. A minivan traveling toward her on a dark mountain highway hits her car nearly head-on just after sunset. She grips her steering wheel as hard as she can and veers into the rocky mountainside until her car screeches to a halt. The minivan flips onto its…

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7 Hard Things You Should Do for Yourself When You Don’t Feel Good Enough – Personal Development Article

You are enough. You have enough. You do enough. Breathe deep… let go, and just live right now in the moment. Angel and I coach a number of students, 2-on-1 and in small groups — and pretty much every one of them is hard on themselves in some way. There’s this underlying feeling of stress and pain driven by disappointed in themselves, anger at themselves, or constantly believing they are inadequate. Can you relate to this? I think most of…

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10 Little Habits that Wreck Thousands of Lives One Day at a Time – Self Improvement Article

In a culture that seeks quick results, we must learn the beauty of effort, patience, and perseverance. Have you ever told yourself that you’re going to make something happen and then nothing happened? All details aside, it’s because you didn’t have the right habits in place—the little things you do every day that build up to something bigger. Habits define you. All the results in your life come from your daily habits. If you’re out of shape and overweight, you…

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An Open Letter to Those Who Have Lied to Impress Others – Personal Development Article

“Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.”—Thomas Jefferson This article was inspired by a short email we received recently from a new course student: Dear Marc and Angel, In one of your recent emails you asked your students to think about a weakness they’d like to change. Mine is telling lies. Although they’re usually just little lies, I’ve gotten carried away. I lie about things all the darn time mostly to just make myself appear better than…

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An Open Letter to Those Who Have Lied to Impress Others – Happiness Article

“Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.”―Thomas Jefferson This article was inspired by a short email we received recently from a new course student: Dear Marc and Angel, In one of your recent emails you asked your students to think about a weakness they’d like to change. Mine is telling lies. Although they’re usually just little lies, I’ve gotten carried away. I lie about things all the darn time mostly to just make myself appear better than…

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5 Year-End Notes to Self that Will Move Your Life Forward in 2020 – Happiness Article

You are not your bad days. You are not your mistakes. You are not your scars. You are not your past. Be here now, and breathe. Tragedy strikes a woman who isn’t yet old. A minivan traveling toward her on a dark mountain highway hits her car nearly head-on just after sunset. She grips her steering wheel as hard as she can and veers into the rocky mountainside until her car screeches to a halt. The minivan flips onto its…

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5 Ideas You Must Leave Behind to Get Ahead in Life – Personal Development Article

If you don’t allow yourself to move past what happened, what was said, what was felt, you will look at your present and future through that same dirty lens. You can never change things by holding on to the existing reality. To get ahead in life, you have to leave some things behind and build a new model for living that makes the existing model obsolete. You must make a firm decision that you’re going to make a change too.…

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The Life-Changing Magic of Doing One Thing at a Time – Personal Development Article

Be the type of person whose values, priorities, and actions always agree with one another. Why is it that over 50% of our new course students tell us they feel completely overwhelmed and exhausted in their personal and professional lives? The answer may surprise you: It’s not the number of minutes they spend awake and working hard each day that’s the issue—it’s that they often spend 99% of those minutes juggling too many things at once. Be honest… Do you…

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10 Things to Start Telling Yourself on Hard Days – Self Improvement Article

Mental strength is incredibly important. Take care of your mind and the way you speak to yourself. Don’t let negative self-talk weaken you today. Life changes every single day, and so can we. That’s the truth, yet oftentimes we feel hopelessly stuck against our will. Why? Because the changes we seek breed uncertainty, and life can be hard to navigate when we’re uncertain about things. We feel confused and displaced, and we begin filling our gaps of understanding with stories…

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5 Hard Questions that Can Save a Life (and Spare Some Pain) – Happiness Article

We waste our lives waiting for ideal paths to appear in front of us. But they never do. Because we forget that paths are made by walking, not waiting. There’s nothing more disheartening than a perfectly healthy, reasonably affluent human being with the whole world in her hands who’s chronically unhappy and unproductive. There’s really no excuse for it either, yet Marc and I see this phenomenon unfolding every single day—people who choose to be stuck in misery and refuse…

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4 Reasons You Need to Keep Doing Hard Things to Be Happy, Healthy and Successful – Happiness Article

You need to do hard things to be happy, healthy and successful. Because the hard things ultimately build you up and change your life. If you already feel like you’re at the end your rope today with little slack left to hold on to, realize your mind is lying to you. It has imprisoned you by reciting self-defeating stories in your head—stories about your mistakes and what you should have done differently. And you’ve begun to believe that you’re really…

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16 Reasons You’re Succeeding in Life (Even If You Feel Like You’re Losing) – Personal Development Article

A big part of happiness and success is letting go of what you assume your life is supposed to be like right now, and sincerely appreciating it for everything that it is. At times we all feel less than adequate. We feel like we’re running in place, struggling to make even the slightest bit of progress. And while this is a perfectly normal feeling, you have to ultimately break free from it and see yourself and your life in a…

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10 Excuses the Mind Will Tell You Before You Take the Next Step – Self Improvement Article

STARTING NOW: NO shortcuts. NO quick fixes. NO blaming others. NO “I’ll do it tomorrows.” NO MORE EXCUSES! The mind is a wonderful thing. It’s also an excuse-making machine that frequently tries to convince us not to take actions we know are good for us. And this prevents many positive changes from taking place in our lives. I’ve had to learn to watch these excuses very carefully in order to make the positive changes I’ve made in my life: a…

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10 Insanely Popular Ways to Weaken Your Self-Confidence – Self Improvement Article

You can have all the knowledge in the world, but it means nothing without building up the confidence to do something with it. Two decades ago, when the bullies at our high school called her a nerd for being a virgin and a straight-A student, my best friend Sara smiled and confidently said, “Thank you. I’m really proud of it.” She honestly was. What those bullies said never bothered her one bit. And this is just one tiny example of…

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The Most Surprising Thing that Came from NOT Achieving My Dreams – Self Improvement Article

by Emma, creator of Simple Slow & Lovely “It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live.”― J.K. Rowling Dreams and a vision for our future are wonderful things to have. They can inspire us, keep us motivated and help us to do scary things. But what happens when we don’t achieve our dreams? What happens when you wake up in the middle of your life and realize you haven’t done the things you thought or hoped…

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12 Hard Things to Start Doing for Your Happiness – Self Improvement Article

Trust that today’s challenges will be responsible for your future growth. Every day Marc and I work with course students who say all the right things and then do the exact opposite.  They hope to experience growth, but they resist change.  They want less stress, yet they indulge in drama.  They long for better relationships, and then they refuse to trust anyone. In other words, what they say they want, and what they actually do with their time, are hopelessly…

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12 Lies You Subconsciously Believe (That Are Keeping You Stuck) – Self Improvement Article

by Krista, creator of A Life in Progress “I lie to myself all the time. But I never believe me.”― S.E. Hinton Most mornings I wake up drippy with gratitude and delight for this imperfect and beautiful life of mine. I can hardly believe how fortunate I am to connect with women around the world, have space to putter and read, a family to love, and opportunity to use my gifts to encourage and teach on a daily basis. But…

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7 Things to Stop Doing to Yourself When Life Doesn’t Go as Planned – Self Improvement Article

When you stop doing the wrong things, you give the right things a chance to catch up with you. I met a friend at a local coffee shop this morning.  She brought her work laptop along so she could show me some of her latest digital art designs.  As we chatted and scrolled through her artwork, the laptop suddenly started making an unhealthy buzzing noise, then the screen flickered on and off and finally cut off completely.  And as we…

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12 Little Things You Should Know Before Letting Go – Self Improvement Article

(This is an excerpt from the new edition of 1,000 Little Things.) She rarely makes eye contact. Instead, she looks down at the ground. Because the ground is safer. Because unlike people, it expects nothing in return. The ground just accepts her for who she is. As she sits at the bar next to me, she stares down at her vodka tonic, and then the ground, and then her vodka tonic. “Most people don’t get me,” she says. “They ask…

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5 Lessons I Learned from Overcoming the Hardest Days of My Life – Self Improvement Article

The hardest days make us who we are. Full disclosure: I set myself a challenge recently, and I’ve been failing at it. To help motivate a group of course students Angel and I have been working with, I set a goal to exercise for one hour every day for 90 days straight.  I chose this lofty goal because several of these students openly admitted that they struggle with getting to the gym.  And they were inspired by my willingness to…

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How to Stop Feeling Overwhelmed (by Everything on Your Plate) – Personal Development Article

True purpose has no time limit.  True purpose has no deadline.  Don’t stress and overwhelm yourself.  Just do what you can right now. We all have days, weeks, months and—for some—even years of feeling anxious and overwhelmed with the work we have yet to do.  It’s an elusive feeling that aches from deep within.  From the outside, people think you have it all together, but they can’t see what’s going on in your head.  Stress fills your thoughts and emotions…

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3 Easy Things We Say to Avoid the Hard Things We Need to Do – Self Improvement Article

You are the person you believe yourself to be. “This afternoon I received a formal acceptance letter from Yale University, including a full basketball scholarship.  Despite everything my alcoholic father put me through over the years—the hungry, sleepless nights I spent in tears due to their relentless negativity—it didn’t ruin me.  With your coaching and guidance, I’ve worked hard to get out of this mess once and for all, and it’s finally paying off.” That’s the opening paragraph of an…

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1,000 Little Things Happy, Successful People Do Differently – Self Improvement Article

(This is an excerpt from the new edition of 1,000 Little Things.) Millions of people live their entire lives on default settings, never realizing they can customize everything. Don’t be one of them. Don’t settle for the default settings in life. Dare to make edits and improvements. Dare to make your personal growth a top priority. The truth is, you won’t always be a priority to others, and that’s why you need to be a priority to yourself. Learn to…

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20 Tiny Thoughts that Keep Crushing Your Dreams (and Breaking Your Heart) – Self Improvement Article

To a great extent, we make our own life stories by our thoughts. Starting right now, you can decide how you spend your time, whom you socialize with, whom you share your life, money and energy with.  You can pick your words and the tone of voice in which you speak to others.  You can select what you will eat, read and study.  You can choose how you’re going to respond to unfortunate situations when they arise, and whether you…

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Don’t Be Afraid to Do These 10 Hard Things for Yourself

“You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.”―Mae West This morning a close neighborhood friend, Alison, passed away far too early.  While Angel and I have spent most of the day grieving, I’ve also spent this past hour thinking about the fact that our lives are often much shorter than we expect, and that we need to do some pretty darn hard things to maximize our very limited time.  Alison strongly believed in doing the…

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10 Hard Things to Remember When You Feel Like Giving Up

Once upon a time, a young man and woman met, gazed into each other’s eyes, kissed, and knew for certain that they were supposed to be together forever.  In the subsequent days, weeks and months everything fell into place just as they had anticipated.  He was perfect in her eyes, and she was perfect in his. Oh, it’s the majestic harmony of young love!  When two souls who barely know each other believe they know everything that they must know…

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