“It is always with excitement that I wake up in the morning wondering what my intuition will toss up to me, like gifts from the sea.  I work with it and rely on it.  It’s my partner.” – Jonas Salk, developer of the polio vaccine

 “I expect the best, and with God’s help, will attain the best.” – Norman Vincent Peale, American theologian and positivity thinker

 I hope all my readers in the USA had a wonderful Independence Day last week!  I am hard at work on preparations for the Prosperity Summer Camp webinar that begins on July 18.  So, I am providing you with this lightly-edited blog that originally ran two years ago because the very same phenomenon happened at the end of last month too.

I believe it’s worth reminding ourselves that when we give up trying to control the “HOW” for reaching a goal, but instead release it to our subconscious mind AND God/The Universe to collaborate together, they will always come up with the perfect path to success for us.  Then we just have to show our commitment by taking the necessary ACTION on that plan.

August 2, 2015

“The moment you commit and quit holding back, all sorts of unforeseen incidents, meetings, and material assistance will rise up to help you.  The simple act of commitment is a powerful magnet for help.” – Napoleon Hill

Today, I am celebrating the end of a month in which a number of my clients reached their BIGGEST goals through their willingness to be 100% committed to their own success, even when they didn’t know exactly HOW they would get it.

Several achieved a beautiful new Lexus, with the lease 100% paid for by their network marketing company.  A number of newer Leaders reached “Level 5” – the first major leadership level in the company’s pay plan.  In turn, seasoned Leaders who supported them soared to new heights themselves, as the new Leaders became the wind beneath their wings.

I am so impressed by the teamwork I witnessed among my clients – “upline” Leaders and their “downline” leaders actively helped each other to reach their individual goals.  The abundance mentality and camaraderie were inspiring. I want to share with you the key lessons I got from watching them overcome every obstacle that stood in their way, because these are the necessary components for reaching ANY Big Goal you may have:

  • You do not have to know how you are going to reach your Big Goal. You just have to be 100% committed that you WILL. There is no “try.” You are either 100% IN or you might as well sit comfortably on the sidelines and save yourself the effort. To me, the definition of “commitment” is a rock-solid BELIEF that you will reach your Big Goal coupled with a willingness to PERSEVERE in overcoming all obstacles in your path.  The “How” starts to take shape as soon as you demonstrate that you are 100% committed to your Big Goal. That’s when God/The Universe and your own subconscious mind collaborate to connect you to the people, resources and unexpected help to reach it in amazing ways.
  • You must ask for and EXPECT to get help and support. Every Leader I watched reach her Big Goal last month had lots of help from her teammates, friends and family. It can be humbling to ask for help, especially if you are usually the go-to person to whom others look for support.  Even star athletes in individual sports have coaches, trainers, sponsors, family and friends who provide the essential support that lets them do their best and WIN.  Doesn’t it feel good to YOU whenever you help someone else get something they really want?  You have to remember that the same is true for others and allow them the joy of being part of a Team goal that is bigger than themselves!
  • Don’t allow another’s lack of belief to affect yours. An emerging Leader who was running for a Big Goal last month received a scathing email from her well-meaning former boss, telling her she was crazy to be involved in network marketing and inviting her to come back to work for her in the “sane” corporate world. I was so proud of my client. She refused to get defensive or let another person’s perspective make her doubt herself or her dreams. She sent a short message thanking her old boss for her concern, but stating that she loved what she was doing, was successful, and was soon going to be even MORE successful. She went on to quadruple the size of her Team in just 30 days!
  • Watch your language. One of my seasoned Leader clients wisely coached her newer Team members to watch the words they used when talking about their Big Goals. She knew the immense power words have to influence BELIEF.  We literally “brainwash” our subconscious mind — for good OR for bad – through our choice of words. So she constantly reminded her Team members to say, “WHEN I reach my Goal,” instead of “IF I reach my Goal.”   Instead of “I’m no good at sponsoring,” she taught them to say, “I am getting better at sponsoring every day.”
  • Never, never, NEVER give up! Even if you are just a few hours from the deadline to reach your Big Goal, DO NOT mentally throw in the towel! The minute your commitment wavers, the energy of the whole Team flags and the game is lost. One of my clients reached her Level V Leader goal during the last 15 minutes of the month! She never gave up, so her Team didn’t either.  If Plan A didn’t work, they immediately turned to Plan B.  The unexpected blessing that came out of them all pulling together to help their Leader reach her goal was that two of the Team members whose businesses had been dormant for months suddenly revived their enthusiasm and are now back to actively pursuing their own success.

Stronger faith, greater inner strength, a sense of accomplishment, the joy of teamwork, learning to graciously accept help from others – these are the REAL prizes that come from being committed to reaching a Big Goal.  Public recognition, more money, a new car – these are merely the fun little “carrots” that God/The Universe dangles in front of your Ego to lure it out of its comfort zone so you can make the effort to grow and develop into the BEST you can be.  Thank goodness we keep falling for it!

IMPORTANT NOTE: A Cup of Caroll is taking one more Sunday off so that I can complete preparations for my upcoming Prosperity Summer Camp webinar. TUESDAY, you will receive a FINAL promotional email stating that registration is still OPEN through July 17. The six-module course begins on Tuesday evening July 18. I promise you that it going to be interactive, fun and create lots of new prosperity for those who join me! Your friends, family and Teammates are welcome to join the course, as long as there is still room. Please forward that email to them and encourage them to sign up ASAP!

If you or your friends would like your own free subscription to receive this blog three Sundays a month, just go to http://practicalprosperitycoach.com and click on the Prosperity Tips button at the top.

****************** The Gift of Dreams Fulfilled! ********************

I invite you to offer someone you care about a truly unique gift that can change their life — ONE HOUR of Personal Success Coaching!  It is absolutely F*R*E*E* of charge, with no obligation and no strings attached!  And if YOU haven’t coached with me in awhile and would like a “tune up” session please give yourself this gift!

To schedule a F*R*E*E* HOUR of phone coaching that will help clarify your Big Goals and get you into ACTION to make this the BEST year yet, please email me at caroll@practicalprosperitycoach.com or call toll-free 888-503-8145.

 

 

“You need to learn how to select your thoughts just the same way you select your clothes every day. This is a power you can cultivate.  If you want to control things in your life so bad, work on the mind. That’s the only thing you should be trying to control.” – Elizabeth Gilbert

When several of my coaching clients told me they were reading You Are a Bad Ass at Making Money by Jen Sincero and vowed that it was EVEN better than her fabulous You Are a Bad Ass, I immediately ordered a copy. I am SO glad I did!

My autographed copy arrived just in time for me to devour most of it on our long flights to and from Hawaii last month. I am urging you now: RUN, don’t walk, to get this book….IF you are interested in having more financial prosperity in your life.  In fact, if you are interested in having more of ANYTHING in your life.

Really, the only thing I can come up with that doesn’t require money is LOVE. So, if we are honest, what concerns us most is how to create more MONEY in our lives because money is the foundation for having time freedom, dream homes, beautiful cars, the best educational opportunities for our kids, creative pursuits, exciting travel adventures and the ability to fully support our favorite charities and causes.

I truly have not been so impressed with a book about the Law of Attraction (which states that “energy attracts like energy”) since The Power by Rhonda Byrne years ago.  Sincero’s new book is so clear, so easy to understand, and so damn FUNNY, I promise that you will turn the pages quickly and laugh out loud frequently, as I did — and then decide to go back and re-read it and do every exercise in the book.

I have been studying, teaching and striving to fully LIVE the formula for using the power of your mind and energy to create anything you want since I was first introduced to it via the network marketing industry in the mid-1990’s.  They didn’t call it “The Law of Attraction” back then (credit for that goes to Rhonda Byrne and The Secret), but authors have been trying to explain how to use it to make your dreams a reality for several centuries. (Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill was one of the first, and still one of the best, modern books on this topic.)

I have gotten many useful insights and ideas from these scores of books and videos by Master Manifesters over the years, which I have put into practice in my own life.  I have used The Law of Attraction to dig our family out of a deep financial hole from the Great Recession, to find the perfect car, the perfect home and the perfect husband (Yes, Rick, you ARE perfect!).  I have used it to create magical vacation experiences and to survive serious threats to our financial and physical well- being.  I know it is real and I know it works.  Reliably, every time.

I got one very useful NEW insight about the Law of Attraction from Jen Sincero’s latest book (which is filled with jaw-dropping and often funny stories of her and her coaching clients’ triumphs at creating large amounts of money when it looked like they didn’t have a prayer of doing so) about the fact that FEAR is always going to be a factor in manifesting what you want.

If you are pursuing the HOW that is going to get you the money or item you really, really want, you have to realize that you MUST experience some discomfort or even cold sweat FEAR in order to get it.  That doesn’t mean that the How contains a REAL risk to your physical well-being.  It usually indicates that your Ego is terrified that you will either fail and will then be ridiculed or devastated emotionally OR that you will succeed and be overwhelmed by your new power and responsibilities or disliked by those who are jealous of your success.

The FEAR can stop you from having your greatest desire when it is right at your fingertips.  You have to WANT it so much and BELIEVE that you are going to get it so deeply that you are willing to walk through all fear or discomfort and come out the other side.  If you are willing to face your fear and do it anyway, you have a great shot at success.

Jen is great at telling it like it is. I love that she doesn’t sugar-coat this because I know that my own Ego and my coaching clients’ Egos have threatened to sabotage us by trying to convince us that the “risk” is REAL and we should STOP NOW in our pursuit of our Big Dreams. (These fears are called “Limiting Beliefs” for a reason!)  If you follow the steps of the Law of Attraction and if your belief is stronger than your Ego’s fear, I know that it WILL work for you. Reliably, every time.

My own most recent Law of Attraction manifestation experience happened last week:  While Rick and I were out delivering his monthly newsletter to each door in his real estate “farm,” I declared to God/The Universe that, “I am creating that Rick will get at least one new real estate transaction from this newsletter.”  I really BELIEVED it and felt EXCITED to see how God/The Universe would make it happen. (Two musts for using the Law of Attraction to manifest what you want, according to Sincero’s book.)

The following day, which was Memorial Day, Rick and I entered a local restaurant and caught sight of our favorite server in the main dining room. We hadn’t seen “Marie” in quite a few months because she only works weekdays and we usually go there for brunch on Sunday. Also, we arrived at the end of the lunch rush, which was usually the time she went home, so it was a lovely surprise to see her still there. We asked to be seated in her section and Rick ran back to the car to get one of his newsletters, as Marie always likes to guess Rick’s monthly “trivia quiz” for a chance at a gift card.

At first, Marie frowned at the hostess, clearly indicating that she was about to end her shift and didn’t really want any new customers.  But when she saw it was us, she beamed and came rushing over to our table, exclaiming, “This is a sign from the Universe that you are here!”  As Rick handed her his newsletter, she told him that she has finally decided to take action on her longtime dream of selling her condo and moving to Idaho, where her retired father (and co-owner of her condo) now lives.

“I have been torn between using you or my dear friend ‘Linda’ to list my house for sale.  She and I have been friends for years, but she is new to real estate and Dad is urging me to use someone more experienced.  Now, here you are, and I take that as my sign it’s supposed to be YOU!” 

And with that, Rick secured his next client.  It was not exactly the HOW I had envisioned, but that is something Jen Sincero emphasizes we have to give up.  We can’t control HOW God/The Universe chooses to fulfill our desires.  Our job is to be CLEAR about what we want, to BELIEVE it will happen, and to take committed ACTION toward our goals– which inevitably means we have to walk through our fear and do it anyway!

So I have decided to step through one of my own big fears and declare this:  I am offering anyone who reads my blog and their friends, colleagues and loved ones the chance to attend a virtual Law of Attraction Summer Camp that I am creating for July and August.

You send your kids to summer camp to help them stay actively engaged, learn new skills, gain confidence, have fun and make new friends. Why shouldn’t we adults use our summer to do the same AND learn exactly how to manifest anything we want – especially money!

I am offering you and your friends the chance to learn exactly how to do this, as I have been doing in my own life and teaching my coaching clients to do for many years now. We will all read You Are a Bad Ass at Making Money together during the two month course, to get the wonderful foundation in Law of Attraction principles that Jen Sincero provides. During the six one-hour classes, I will teach you even MORE practical applications of her precepts.  I will share with you my very BEST tools, tips and techniques that I have used for over 20 years to “make the Law of Attraction my bitch,” as Jen Sincero would say.  I will do group coaching as part of each session AND hold at least one private phone coaching session with each participant, all included in the very affordable course fee.

The scary part for me?  For the first time ever, I am going to present via a Zoom webinar.  (Participants who don’t want to use Zoom for free can still use the telephone to access the seminar.) Tele-seminars have been my familiar, comfortable format up to now.  And learning new technology is not my strong suit….So this is uncharted territory for me.  I am both scared and excited to stretch and grow my presentation and group coaching skills to make the class as engaging and participatory as possible because I want everyone to actually REACH a Big Goal they have set by the end of the two months (whether financial or otherwise).

If you want to learn to manifest your dreams more easily – reliably, every time – I hope you will join me at a Summer Camp for your wallet!  Let’s support each other to put something at stake for the course, walk through our fears, and prove that we can each manifest a Big Goal by the end of summer 2017!

Stay tuned for more details about the course and how to register in a separate email that will come to you soon.  I hope you will forward it to others and help me spread the word to everyone you know who wants their life to be MORE fulfilling, MORE prosperous, MORE joyful and MORE fun!

If you would like your own free subscription to receive this blog three Sundays a month, just go to my website at http://www.practicalprosperitycoach.com and click on the Prosperity Tips button at the top.

****************** Give the Gift of Dreams Fulfilled! ********************

I invite you to give a friend, colleague or loved one a truly unique gift that can change their life — ONE HOUR of Personal Success Coaching.  It is absolutely F*R*E*E* with no obligation and no strings attached!  You can give this to as many people who will really appreciate it as you wish.  (If you haven’t been in coaching with me for a while, feel free to claim it for YOURSELF, too!)

To schedule a F*R*E*E* HOUR of phone coaching that will help them clarify their Big Goals and get into ACTION to make this their BEST year yet, have them contact me at caroll@practicalprosperitycoach.com  or toll free 888-503-8145 to schedule their session.   

 

“Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it the seed of an equal or greater benefit.” – Napoleon Hill

Spring is around the corner, at last!  I know for many parts of the USA, it may seem like it’s still a long way off.  But the early signs are definitely here in Southern California.

We have had our share of the wettest winter in the state’s history, although my friends in Northern California have been drenched far more than we have.  Our unexpected record rainfall has been a mixed blessing. It pulled California out of a five-year drought, for which we are very grateful.  But, at the same time, it has caused considerable destruction and loss of life, especially up north.

A sign of Spring I always love to see is the tiny green buds on the trees and bushes. New plant life is a reassuring sign that Earth’s cycle of life continues, no matter what.  A few weeks ago, our gardeners pruned all the rose bushes back to what looked like dead stumps — so dry and sad, it was hard to remember the lovely blooms we had enjoyed right through Christmas.  But gardeners know that it is essential to prune rose bushes before Spring comes. The temporary pain of cutting back the branches spurs the plant to put out new green twigs, followed by lush leaves and finally some lovely red and pink buds.

Our lives are full of “pruning times,” too.  We never find them pleasant, and we often resist and struggle against them, but they are just as necessary for our growth and development as for the roses.

Facing a major health challenge is a type of radical life pruning.  People suddenly faced with the possibility of death or permanent disability and their loved ones quickly discover what REALLY matters in life.  All the “small stuff” they were sweating on a daily basis suddenly feels ridiculously unimportant.  They become laser-focused on a single goal — recovery.  Although it is certainly a painful lesson to endure, many survivors see their health challenge as a blessing that taught them how strong they really are and what truly matters in life. They are grateful for  their newfound faith, inner peace and strength that can never be taken away.

Severe financial challenges can also be seen as a kind of strengthening pruning. I can tell you from experience that when keeping a roof over your head becomes your primary focus, petty obsessions like keeping up with the Joneses and worrying what others think of you become laughable.  Before the Great Recession took two homes and a car from us, I would have spent $100 on some silly luxury item without a second thought. During that time, having $5.00 left in the checking account at the end of the month was cause for celebration.

But five years of struggle to regain our financial health, while painful, also brought my family many blessings. Now, I am more grateful for every dollar that comes to us than I could have ever imagined.  And I am much more aware of the plight of others around me.  When I see a homeless person, I always give them some money and a blessing.  When we learn that someone is struggling to make ends meet, we share what we have with them.  It is second nature to us now to be Go-Givers, and as a result, more prosperity has flowed to our family in the past three years than ever before.  Most importantly, our faith in God/The Universe as the Source of all our good is unshakable.

I am particularly inspired and gratified when I see one of my coaching clients make a positive mental shift after they have been tested by a life pruning such as a serious illness, job loss, divorce or discouragingly slow progress toward a Big Goal.

At the beginning of this month, one of my newer clients told me that she was feeling distressed about the lack of progress she felt she was making in building her networking marketing business.  She had been working diligently and trying to stay positive, but was getting the door slammed in her face at every turn.  She felt stuck and disappointed that “Nothing is coming to fruition.”  (Interesting choice of words, huh?)

I reminded her to use the mindset tools I had taught her to put the Law of Attraction (“energy attracts like energy”) to work connecting her to the right people who will appreciate the opportunity she has to offer. I reminded her that declaring aloud the specific qualities or attributes she needs to embody in order to give her BEST in a given situation will direct her subconscious mind to help her produce the outcomes she desires.

So she chose to state aloud, “I am a patient, unattached, committed Leader.  I am PRICELESS!” That declaration gave her subconscious mind a blueprint for creating the ideal words and right actions that a patient, unattached, committed and priceless Leader would use. Those ideal words and right actions, in turn, will become a bright beacon of positive energy to attract individuals whose energy and desires are a match for hers.

Does that mean it will happen the minute she declares it, or that she won’t have any further setbacks or disappointments during her quest?  Nope.  “Pruning” was still taking place in her belief system, which was necessary in order for her to blossom into the kind of Leader who will attract the quality people she wants on her Team.

A few weeks later, she told me she had been reading more about the Law of Attraction and was doing mental “experiments” to test it out in small ways. She was amazed at what she felt were clear signs that specific, unusual things she focused her mind on were showing up in her life.  Her belief in her ability to attract to her exactly what she wanted was becoming much stronger.  Instead of skeptical, discouraged energy, she was now giving off excited, positive, expecting-the-Best energy. I could see that her internal Belief Switch was about to be thrown, and once it was, I knew she would start to make real progress toward her Big Goals. That’s how it works – first she must BELIEVE it is going to happen for her, and only then will she SEE it become real.

The following day, she sent me this email:

“Just wanted to share something that happened today! This morning I prayed for a new customer to reach out to ME!  This afternoon, someone did!  She was not exactly new; she was one of my very first customers who felt as if the products were way too expensive and she ended up cancelling her account. 

She called me out of the blue and I have to confess that I didn’t recognize her number….I just kept listening to her speak and finally figured out who she was!

Everything that you said to me yesterday hit me. Today, I started to read The Power [by Rhonda Byrne].  Not even 5 minutes into it [the customer called me].

So my conclusion is, I finally Believe what you are telling me, and I am so incredibly happy that I am recognizing it!”

Looks like the pruning phase of her business development may be nearing completion…. I can’t wait to see the wonderful fruit it is going to produce for her!

If you would like your own free subscription to receive this blog three Sundays a month, just go to my website at http://www.practicalprosperitycoach.com and click on the Prosperity Tips button at the top.

****************** The Gift of Dreams Fulfilled! ********************

I invite you to offer someone you care about a truly unique gift that can change their life — ONE HOUR of Personal Success Coaching!  It is absolutely F*R*E*E* of charge, with no obligation and no strings attached!  And if YOU haven’t coached with me in a while and would like a “tune up” session please give yourself this gift!

To schedule a F*R*E*E* HOUR of phone coaching that will help clarify your Big Goals and get you into ACTION to make this the BEST year yet, please email me at caroll@practicalprosperitycoach.com or call toll-free 888-503-8145.

 

“Letting go of limiting beliefs and harmful habits can free up more time and space for life itself.” – from the book Half Full by john Murphy

It’s that time of year.  If you haven’t already started one, you may be planning to go on a “diet” that includes changing your eating habits so you can achieve your weight and fitness goals.

I am right there with you.  I have already lost my “Holiday Five” pounds though cleansing, balanced eating, cutting out desserts and snacks, and getting more exercise. I feel great and I am optimistic that I will be “bathing suit ready” for Rick’s and my 10th wedding anniversary celebration in Hawaii in May.

But even if you are already at your ideal weight, there’s a diet you may need to go on for your mental AND physical health.  This one isn’t about food. It’s about cutting back on negative thoughts and words — a “negativity” fast.

As discussed in my last blog, recent Harvard medical research proves that people who are optimists – defined as expecting eventual good outcomes, even if their present circumstances are challenging – are less likely to die of a number of ailments and more likely to live longer than their pessimistic peers.

Being an optimist requires a steady diet of positive thinking. This is important to remember, because “what we think about, we bring about.”  Whatever you expend your mental and emotional energy focusing on will inevitably grow stronger and more significant in your life.

This week, several of my clients confessed to feeling in a “funk” — mildly depressed, agitated, lethargic, not having the energy to take action on their own Big Goals. The root cause invariably had something to do with words – mostly other people’s words. Habitually spending your precious time around people who constantly complain, blame, gossip, express worry and fear, enumerate their ailments or are just generally crabby can definitely deplete your own positivity reserves.

Nowadays, such Debbie Downers don’t even have to be in your physical presence or on the phone with you. They can bombard you with negativity with the click of a mouse or the swipe of a smart phone.  But here’s the saving grace: They can only steal your sense of peace, joy and optimism if YOU allow it by focusing on them via social media, gossip sites, emails or texts.  YOU  alone decide what you let into your own consciousness — and also what YOU send out to others.

One client said he felt depressed after reading social media posts by people who are rabidly political, with views he feels are ugly and misguided.  But I pointed out that he doesn’t have to expose himself to their rants and he certainly doesn’t have to waste precious time that would be better spent pursuing his own success on trying to persuade them to change their thinking (which is almost always futile, by the way).  If you let yourself get upset and frustrated because you can’t change someone else’s mind, the only one punished is YOU. Your negative emotional reaction to what others say or do is only going to attract more negative people and circumstances to YOU because, as the Law of Attraction states, “energy attracts like energy.”

We should stand up for what we believe is right, of course. But you have to pick your battles in life.  You can’t let every annoying issue or person get you upset or steal precious time you could be spending on your own goals and loved ones. Today, there are seemingly limitless political issues being loudly, angrily “debated” on social media or incessantly spotlighted by the media.

I absolutely believe we need to stay aware and informed about important issues.  I rarely miss a national evening news broadcast and I read a daily newspaper.  But the national news reporting tends to focus on big issues that matter to most of us, not on “gotcha” gossip or minor scandals, at least not to the degree that social media, radio talk shows and local news seem to.  Whenever there is an important issue at stake, I pay attention to the facts; when it’s simply “gotcha” gossip, I don’t waste my time. That’s my “other diet” for the New Year.

I try to heed this quote from my favorite TV minister and positive thinker, Joel Osteen: “Your words are like seeds.  They have creative power.  In the future, we will all eat the fruit of our words.  Our words are going to produce exactly what we’re saying….That’s why we should say things like ‘I am blessed.  I am prosperous.  I am healthy.  I am talented.  I am creative.  I am wise.’ When we do, we are ….sowing good seed.  We are preparing our future for when we arrive.”

Because our words DO have great power, arguing, blaming, complaining, gossiping, mocking others’ opinions and comparing yourself negatively to others are among the common ways we unknowingly sabotage our own happiness and success.  If you allow yourself to be regularly exposed to the negative thoughts and words of others, you are letting weeds take root in your mental garden, and if you react negatively in return, you are watering those weeds. Not the kind of fruit you want to harvest, is it?

But if you take care to think and speak only words that are kind, measured, accurate, non-judgmental, encouraging and helpful, you are planting the seeds for a future crop of joy, fulfillment and success for yourself and lifting the level of discourse for the whole world.

If you would like your own free subscription to receive this blog three Sundays a month, just go to my website at http://www.practicalprosperitycoach.com and click on the Prosperity Tips button at the top.

****************** The Gift of Dreams Fulfilled! ********************

I invite you to offer someone you care about a truly unique gift that can change their life — ONE HOUR of Personal Success Coaching!  It is absolutely F*R*E*E* of charge, with no obligation and no strings attached!  And if YOU haven’t coached with me in awhile and would like a “tune up” session please give yourself this gift!

To schedule a F*R*E*E* HOUR of phone coaching that will help clarify your Big Goals and get you into ACTION to make this the BEST year yet, please email me at caroll@practicalprosperitycoach.com or call toll-free 888-503-8145.

“Each of us can look back upon someone who made a great difference in our lives, someone whose wisdom or simple acts of caring made an impression upon us.  In all likelihood, it was someone who sought no recognition for their deed, other than the joy of knowing that, by their hand, another’s life had been made better.” – Stephan M. Wolf

‘Tis the Season to show heartfelt GRATITUDE for all the good in our lives by doing something to pay that grace forward to those who are less fortunate or who simply need a reason to smile right now.

This past week, my readers told me even MORE great stories about their Pay-it-Forward Challenge results, and I just had to share a few of them with you.  Here is the final installment of your joyful acts of kindness, generosity and caring.  I wish I had room to include every single one!

Acts of Service

  • One reader’s husband built a 5 ft. by 7 ft. sleigh for their church families to take Christmas portraits with. He is a bit disabled, and she feared he took on more than he could handle, so she pitched in and they finished it on time working side by side.  The children and families loved it and she says it was SO worth the effort they made.
  • My friend’s teenage son attends a private religious school that holds a Christmas tree fundraiser each year. I bought two trees and donated them, since I have an artificial tree.  She and her son delivered all their donated trees to various charities, and she sent me a picture to prove that “my trees” had found a good home at Olive Crest, a home for children in temporary foster care.
  • As she does each year, that same friend got up early and spent her Thanksgiving morning serving dinners to the needy before going to her own Thanksgiving celebration.
  • Several of my readers volunteer at local food pantries, which get a load of donations to distribute this time of year.
  • In the news: A deputy patrolling an industrial section of a Northern California city noticed a young African American man in a hoodie walking along the side of the road at night. It’s not an area where you see many pedestrians, so the officer stopped him to see if something was wrong. He was surprised to learn that the young man was “commuting” on foot seven miles each way to and from his nearby factory job because his car had broken down some time ago and he didn’t have the money to fix it.  The deputy insisted on giving him a ride home and later took up a collection among his fellow officers to buy the young man a bicycle and, eventually, a new car.  Now, the young man rides along with the deputy because he is training to become a peace officer himself.

Acts of Kindness and Compassion

  • A reader wrote an individual message on each of her business partners’ Facebook pages about one special quality she saw in them, such as “Leader,” “Motivated,” “Giver, “ They were surprised and delighted to be acknowledged publically by their Team Leader, not just for their accomplishments, but for their character.
  • A reader said the office secretaries at the school where she teaches “do everything for all of us,” but rarely get the thanks or recognition they deserve. She bought each of them a gift card and put it on their desks anonymously, expressing gratitude for their service on behalf of the entire staff.
  • My reader saw a man digging through the dumpster outside her apartment and put together a little “Care Package” for him, filled with personal hygiene items, a blanket, gloves, a couple of homemade sandwiches and some plastic trash bags for him to use when collecting cans and bottles.

Acts of Giving

  • A reader’s young son took all the money out of his piggy bank and she kicked in some more to buy a Christmas gift for one of his class’s “adopted”children in need. “I love teaching him giving early in life. For a six year old to be so excited to give something to another child he didn’t know was amazing!”
  • One reader who works for a children’s therapy services organization coordinated the staff’s annual drive to provide presents for some needy young clients and their siblings. She collected the donated gifts, bought all the wrapping materials and wrapped the presents. Each of the nine children will receive about 10 gifts apiece, for a very abundant Christmas!
  • One reader has collected about $3,000 worth of design books over the years. He plans to donate them to the arts program of a high school in an underprivileged part of his city.
  • A reader knew a couple who both passed away within the last year, leaving their three college-aged sons with little financial support. She continuously donates half of the proceeds from the sales of her skin care products to their college fund, for as long as they need it.
  • My friend Bob Perks used my reader’s generous donation to create the most lavish Christmas party his local American Legion Post has ever had. He sent pictures of the crowd of vets and their families line dancing and enjoying a huge buffet of wonderful dishes, mostly prepared by Bob himself. A singer and DJ, Bob also provided the musical program and arranged for Elvis and Santa to join in too.

Please don’t STOP spreading the joy when the Holidays end! I hope these stories of creative kindness and generosity will inspire you to continue your personal Gratitude-in-Action program far into the future. In fact, let’s make one of our New Year’s Resolutions  to Pay it Forward every day of the coming year!

PLEASE NOTE:  The blog will take the rest of the year off so I can focus on coaching my wonderful clients and enjoying Christmas activities with my friends and family.  A Cup of Caroll will return with a special New Year’s edition on January 1, 2017!  Until then, I wish you and yours Happy Holidays!

If you would like your own free subscription to receive this blog three Sundays a month, just go to my website at http://www.practicalprosperitycoach.com and click on the Prosperity Tips button at the top.

****************** The Gift of Dreams Fulfilled! ********************

I invite you to offer someone you care about a truly unique gift that can change their life — ONE HOUR of Personal Success Coaching!  It is absolutely F*R*E*E* of charge, with no obligation and no strings attached!  And if YOU haven’t coached with me in awhile and would like a “tune up” session please give yourself this gift!

To schedule a F*R*E*E* HOUR of phone coaching that will help clarify your Big Goals and get you into ACTION on fulfilling them, please email me at caroll@practicalprosperitycoach.com.

 

 

 

“Be a rainbow in someone else’s cloud.” – Maya Angelou

 It’s that special time of the year — time to give thanks for all the good we have been blessed with.  As Thanksgiving fast approaches in the USA, I want to share one simple way for you to make this a truly joyful time, regardless of your present circumstances.

I hope 2016 has been a wonderful year so far for you and yours, as it has been for my family — a year of fulfillment, abundance, adventure and opportunity. But perhaps it hasn’t been so wonderful, as you may have experienced profound loss, a health challenge, financial deprivation or worry that someone you love is grappling with a serious illness or addiction.  My family experienced a very painful loss with the death of our beloved canine companion, Samantha, who passed away in October at age 16.

Whatever you are experiencing, I am confident that you know you are still profoundly blessed. Just living in Western Civilization affords us personal freedoms, security, comfort and economic opportunity far beyond what much of humanity enjoys. Simply having four walls and a roof, potable water, indoor plumbing, electricity and food in the refrigerator makes us look like royalty to billions of people who share our planet.

Longtime readers will recall that last year I created a Pay-It-Forward Challenge and invited all to participate. It was such an inspiration to hear from you about the many creative ways you found to help someone else, show them that they are important to you, or simply brighten their day and put a smile on their face. 

Rhonda Byrne, author of The Secret, also wrote a book called The Magic, which asserts that GRATITUDE is the most powerful positive emotion we can feel.  Being grateful for whatever you have now puts the Law of Attraction (“energy attracts like energy”) into action to attract MORE of what you love to you. This book shares many, many ways to rev up your capacity for gratitude and thus attract more good into your life.

But there is a step beyond simply feeling grateful that can make your life overflow with abundance. Putting your gratitude into ACTION demonstrates your commitment and faith that unlimited good is on its way to you from God/The Universe. And Thanksgiving provides the perfect time to go beyond simply saying a special grace at the table. However big or small your current resources, you can actively DO something to bless someone, which will inevitably bless you as well.

Last year during Thanksgiving week, a stranger unexpectedly made my day by paying $5.00 toward my purchase at Starbucks.  It turned my frazzled morning around and put a smile on my face that lasted throughout the day. That simple kindness inspired me to buy a bunch of $5.00 gift cards and begin giving them out every few days to the baristas at the register to distribute to random people in line behind me. It felt even better when it was anonymous.  In fact, it felt so good that I kept it up throughout the rest of the Holidays! 

I can’t wait to repeat this joyful practice again from Thanksgiving through the end of this year. I trust that each of those surprised strangers will also pay it forward to make someone else feel special and cared about. Just think! One $5.00 gift card could create an endless chain of joy and gratitude, one cup at a time!

Your Pay-It-Forward contribution to others’ joy doesn’t have to be expensive. In fact, it doesn’t have to involve money at all. Here are just a few examples:

  • Today, the stranger with a full cart made me smile by letting me go ahead of him in the long checkout line at the supermarket.
  • I took two hours out of my Veterans Day holiday to help a sick friend run errands when she was too weak to drive herself. I enjoyed helping her more than I would have enjoyed the leisure time.
  • Many of my coaching clients are sending Thanksgiving cards this week to surprise their customers and business partners with a heartfelt expression of gratitude for their friendship and support.
  • My friend and fellow-coach, Bob Perks, uses his considerable musical talent to brighten local events as a free singer and DJ. He also prepares and shares meals with his fellow veterans at his American Legion post whenever he can.
  • You could help an older friend or someone who is under the weather to put up their holiday decorations or haul home their Christmas tree.
  • Cover for a colleague at work or babysit someone’s kids while they do their shopping.
  • Donate lightly-used warm clothing to an organization that helps the homeless.
  • Surprise an elderly neighbor with a tin of tea and a plate of homemade holiday treats. Better yet, sit down and listen to them while you enjoy the goodies together.
  • Adopt a pet from your local rescue organization or shelter. If you are not prepared for a lifetime commitment, foster a pet until it can be adopted.

We have been blessed this year financially, too.  If that is also the case with you, I hope you will generously spread the prosperity around a bit. Here are just a few ideas:

  • Surprise a friend on a tight budget with a supermarket gift card that will make their Thanksgiving, Christmas or Hanukkah feast so much brighter.
  • Contribute a little extra to your favorite charity and make a difference for a cause you care about. I love animals, and I especially like to support local rescue organizations that operate on a shoestring, so they can spread their resources further in my community. $25 means far more to them than it does to the big animal welfare organizations, although I try to donate as much as I can to them, too.
  • When you are at the gas station, if you notice someone in an old car with kids in the back, surprise her by paying for a tank of gas.
  • Astonish a homeless person by handing them $10 or $20 instead of spare change.

So here’s my Thanksgiving/Holidays Pay It Forward Challenge for YOU: Take one small, specific action to demonstrate your profound GRATITUDE for all your many blessings. I promise you the joy it gives you will be PRICELESSPlease let me know what you did and I will share all those wonderful ideas in my upcoming blogs.

 PLEASE NOTE: A Cup of Caroll will be taking next weekend off to spend time with my friends and family.  I wish you and yours a joyous and delicious Thanksgiving and look forward to reconnecting with you on Sunday December 4! 

If you would like your own free subscription to receive this blog three Sundays a month, just go to my website at www.practicalprosperitycoach.com and click on the Prosperity Tips button at the top.

****************** The Gift of Dreams Fulfilled! ********************

I invite you to offer someone you care about a truly unique gift that can change their life — ONE HOUR of Personal Success Coaching!  It is absolutely F*R*E*E* of charge, with no obligation and no strings attached!  And if YOU haven’t coached with me in awhile and would like a “tune up” session please give yourself this gift!

To schedule a F*R*E*E* HOUR of phone coaching that will help clarify your Big Goals and get you into ACTION on fulfilling them, please email me at caroll@practicalprosperitycoach.com.

 

“Make it a habit to tell people thank you — To express your appreciation, sincerely and without the expectation of anything in return.  Truly appreciate those around you, and you’ll soon find many others around you.  Truly appreciate life and you’ll find that you have more of it.” – Ralph Marston

[This slightly-edited blog first ran in 2014.  I give this incredibly powerful prosperity tip to all my Personal Success Coaching clients, and I want to share it with YOU, too!]

Feeling grateful is my habitual way of being, but that wasn’t always so.

It came from consciously following a daily practice that has greatly increased both my joy and the level of material abundance in my life. When I began it years ago, there was much more fear than gratitude inside of me.

Soon after my wonderful husband Rick and I bought our big expensive Dream Home in late 2006, the national real estate bubble burst with a vengeance.  Our home’s value plummeted by hundreds of thousands of dollars and my Realtor husband’s income evaporated overnight. At the same time, many of my clients had to quit coaching because their incomes also had been decimated by the Great Recession.

For months, I regularly woke up around 3 AM with a cold wave of fear engulfing me as I lay next to my sleeping husband thinking, “What if we lose our house?  Could we end up living in our car like the people on the evening news? Would our friends let us sleep on their couch?  What will happen to our beloved pets?”  I lay there envisioning the Worst Case Scenario in living color until the alarm clock finally went off. Then I would drag myself out of bed and try to put on a happy face for my family and my clients, but inside I was terrified.

Because of my faith and my coaching training, I knew the antidote to fear was to change my thoughts.  So I began to study every book and audio about prosperity that I could get my hands on. The consistent message coming to me from all the Master Manifesters was “Be grateful.”  That seemed like a real stretch, given our bleak circumstances and the predicted length of the Great Recession.

One day, I was watching Oprah interview Sarah Ban Brethnach, the author of Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy.  Sarah recommended that the path to greater abundance started with keeping a Daily Gratitude Journal. Oprah enthusiastically endorsed the practice, saying that it had changed her life.  Well, Oprah was already one of the richest people on the planet, so that got my attention. What could possibly make her life better?

Oprah said that writing down five things she felt grateful for in a Gratitude Journal every day changed her life because it made her notice all the GOOD things in her life, big and small.  On a challenging day when she was feeling discouraged or stressed, she had to really pay attention because she knew she would have to come up with five things that she was thankful for at the end of the day!  Keeping a Daily Gratitude Journal made her aware that we are all so blessed to have a life we often take for granted.

That got me thinking about all that I was taking for granted in my own life: My loving, healthy family and pets, an abundance of material comforts like indoor plumbing, a refrigerator full of food, electricity, a microwave, washer and dryer, clean running water, etc. etc. etc. And most of all, we are blessed with personal freedoms that billions of other people don’t enjoy. I was living a modest middle-class lifestyle that would be considered royalty in most of world!

Then I understood the Prosperity Secret that Oprah knew: All I really needed in my life was more GRATITUDE for what I already have, instead of worrying about what’s lacking. We know that what we focus on expands. I was focusing on lack, so I was attracting more LACK into my life.  If I wanted to experience more PROSPERITY, I needed to focus on all the wonderful blessings I had in my life right NOW!

I started a Daily Gratitude Journal that very day. But I write down 10 things I’m thankful for each day because it’s hard to stop at five! My husband and I also began saying “grace” together before our evening meal, giving thanks to God for the specific blessings we are present to right NOW.

Slowly but surely, with a lot of Divine guidance, we began working through every single financial challenge we faced — settling five years of back taxes, discharging a bankruptcy, recovering from losing one car and two houses. Along the way, our family never missed a meal, paid a bill late or spent one night without our own roof over our heads.

Now, my husband’s real estate business is flourishing again, my coaching practice is nearly full and we are experiencing greater financial abundance and personal happiness today than the day we married nine years ago.

One of the clearest explanations of the very real power of GRATITUDE to create more good in your life is found in Felicia Blanco Searcy’s wonderful book Do Greater Things: Following in Jesus’ Footsteps. She writes: 

“…physicists have shown that there are a multitude of possibilities available to us at any given moment. All options are there at once, waiting for us to decide where we will put our focus, which then determines which possibility will manifest. 

…Gratitude opens us to the possibility that anything can happen.  It increases our capacity to entertain other options even if we can’t begin to see how they might happen.  It gives us a renewed sense of hope and brings our focus back to the possibility that things will turn out well. 

As we focus on what is good in our lives, we bring the favorable possibility out from the shadows into the light of day.  We clothe the desired choice and make it real with our thoughts and feelings.  As we focus on gratitude, or appreciation, we give God the space to bring about other possibilities that are beyond our human understanding or imaginings.” 

If you aren’t keeping a Daily Gratitude Journal, I highly recommend starting yours today. Take it from Oprah (and me), your life will never be the same!

NOTE:  If you would like your own F*R*E*E* subscription to receive A Cup of Caroll three Sundays a month, go to my website at www.practicalprosperitycoach.com then click on the Prosperity Tips button at the top and enter your name and email. This information will be kept 100% confidential and will not be given to anyone else for any other purpose.

****************** Give the Gift of Dreams Fulfilled! ********************

I invite you to give a friend, colleague or loved one a truly unique gift that can change their life — ONE HOUR of Personal Success Coaching.  It is absolutely F*R*E*E* with no obligation and no strings attached!  You can give this to as many people who will really appreciate it as you wish.  (If you haven’t been in coaching with me for a while, feel free to claim it for YOURSELF, too!) 

To schedule a F*R*E*E* HOUR of phone coaching that will help them clarify their Big Goals and get into ACTION to make this their BEST year yet, have them email me at caroll@practicalprosperitycoach.com to schedule their session.