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10-ways-kick-procrastination-habit

A survey (by the University of Chicago) suggested that those who relish challenge are more likely to live up to 10 years longer than those who spend their lives inhibited by timidity. Procrastination is one major manifestation of timidity.

Trying to realize our ambitions, even if we don’t always meet them, is preferable to not having the courage or motivation to take the risk. So not making any resolutions because we fear that we will break them is having a defeatist attitude, as we allow procrastination to become an insidious habit which stops us from leading more fulfilling lives.

The following offers 10 ways to kick the procrastination habit!

1. Personal values development.

Take the time to find out what you really want in life, what your personal values are. Do you want more time, more money, better health, greater self-esteem and confidence, more fulfilling relationships, a different career, set up a business? When we procrastinate it’s often because what we are planning to do is not really aligned with what we truly want. We may be scared of our skills (or perceived lack of) or fear ridicule from others.

2. Make health and high energy levels a priority.

Without good health, we are less likely to have the energy and dynamism needed to make positive changes in our lives and it’s easier (and necessary if you’re very ill) to procrastinate. So ensure that you have a nourishing diet, sleep well, exercise and meditate. Incidentally, it is thought that regular meditation helps delay the worst effects of the aging process.

3. Visualize your life without procrastination.

See and feel the benefits in your life if you didn’t procrastinate. What could you do and achieve? Begin to act as if you’re not a procrastinator. Write down, draw, imagine your life as a film. Use affirmations to help you.

4. Banish the Gremlin.

That little voice which runs on auto in your head – that dismisses any idea that you might have. It says things like “I’m not in the mood” “I don’t have time” “I can’t do this”. Stop running on auto, replace the “should’s” “oughts” “have tos” with “want to” “desire”. You have a choice. Acknowledge your choices and banish the Gremlin. Again, using affirmations can help you replace the Gremlin with more positive alternatives.

5. Overcommitment.

Saying “yes” to everything – often leaves you feeling tired and without the energy to focus on what is most important to you. This leads to procrastination as projects and tasks are dropped. Identify what is most important to you and only focus on those areas which will make the biggest difference to your life. It will enhance your focus and motivation.

6. Set personal and professional goals.

It’s hard to motivate yourself when you don’t have a good idea of what you want to accomplish. So when setting goals think about what you want to achieve in the short term and long term. Techniques for doing so include the SMART strategy. S = Specific M = Measurable A= Action R = Realistic T = Time based. Use goal setting software to help you in goal planning and setting.

7. Prioritize Your Goals.

Develop a plan or schedule to help you reach your goals. In doing so you will begin to identify whether some elements need to be included or enhanced or dropped completely. Also remember to be flexible, revisit your goals regularly and modify or drop if appropriate. Just because a goal is written down doesn’t mean that it is set in stone!

8. Divide and conquer.

Once you’ve prioritized your goals, divide them into smaller chunks. Sometimes we procrastinate because a project seems really large that the scale of it overwhelms us and puts us into a temporary form of paralysis – you don’t know where to start, so you don’t start at all! Approach each project – especially large ones – on a step by step basis.

9. Reward yourself.

Once you start to complete tasks, reward yourself by giving yourself something that you want. So instead of seeing a film before you complete a task, see it afterward and make it a reward for you.

10. Just get started.

No excuses. Don’t wait until you’re “in the mood”. The mood never comes! It is a clever camouflage and a delaying tactic. What you resist persists! Start with what is easiest, so that you experience immediate success, which will give you the fuel and motivation to upgrade and take on larger projects.

Do any of the above and you’ll be well on your way to Kicking the Procrastination Habit. And if you’re procrastinating over doing any of the above:.), then remember that life is the biggest deadline of all! On the other hand, you could join the Designed life Academy for a personalized coaching experience, take a leap of faith now.

Photo by Paulette Wooten on Unsplash
Photo by Paulette Wooten on Unsplash
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creativity-jack-trades

You may be familiar with the saying, “Jack of all trades and master of none.”

Well, I say, “Hooey.” That’s right. In fact, let me say it again. “Hooey.” It is perfectly possible to be a multi-passionate person and do several things well. Many, even. I’m a writer, a mother, a chef, a friend, an entrepreneur. Sometimes not all at the same time, but I do them all, and do them all well. But I think one reason many people can’t do many things well or think other people can’t, is a lack of creativity.

It takes a lot of gumption to juggle two small kids, a deadline on an article, a pan of spaghetti, and a friend who wants to talk about a problem at work.

It takes, even more, gumption, and creativity, to juggle five projects, and those same two kids and that same friend.

Sometimes the creativity is required to figure out how you can manage one thing later. “Eric, I know you want to show your new game to me right now, but actually, I’ve been asleep for about an hour. Could we do it in the morning?”

Sometimes the creativity is figuring out how to handle two projects at once. “Hmmm. If I write an article on creativity and writing, I could use it in my writing ezine AND my creativity ezine.

Sometimes the creativity is in finding a sensitive way to say, “I can’t right now.” “Son, I know you want to play badminton. I have an abscessed tooth and can’t move my head. How about Old Maid on the bed instead?”

And sometimes the creativity is just in remembering that these are people, things, and situations you love and want to enjoy, and then going and enjoying them. Let me TEACH YOU how to maximize what you can do.

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash
Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash
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5-great-tips-make-goals-reality

Goals are a great tool for motivation. But if you don’t use them correctly, they can also be a source of frustration. They are only empowering if they are used properly. So how do you make a goal into something that is a benefit for you?

Strategies are important, especially to help you create the type of success you desire and deserve.

Here are five techniques to help you realize good results.

1. Balance: In your life, you will have personal development, personal finance, and other goals. Don’t neglect any of them. It is ok to want things, but don’t forget to balance those pursuits with your own growth as a person. All of these are important so be clear about all of them and make them real for you.

2. Plan Actions: Goals are not items for your to-do list. It is what you are striving for. Plan specific actions that lead you towards your desired results. Use them to provide your compass for those actions. When you plan actions for the day you can easily tell if they’re going to be effective if you have clear goals to compare them against.

3. Share: If you were an archer, would you keep it a secret that you want to hit the bull’s eye? Too many keep their target a secret. Share them with people who will support and encourage you.

4. Write it: Make your goals real by recording them. Put copies of this on index cards and keep copies in the car and in the bathroom and review them regularly. Make them the center of your focus. Don’t just set them and then ignore them. Your goals are like a compass to tell you which way to go. The exciting part is that you get to chose the alignment of your compass.

5. Don’t Give Up: Don’t be afraid to try something, fail and try something else. Take effective and massive action to meet your goals and understand that any true goals will take many steps to achieve. Sometimes you will make a misstep, but that doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with you. Everyone makes mistakes, but it’s only those who abandon their direction who don’t achieve them.

GET STARTED!

Photo by Zachary Nelson on Unsplash
Photo by Zachary Nelson on Unsplash

 

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designed-life-awards-extended-submission-deadline-free-entry

Due to the short submission period and other considerations by the Designed Life team, we are pleased to inform the writing community of the following changes in the designed life contest:

  1. Entry is now absolutely free and we would be making a refund to every writer who has paid. ENTRY IS NOW FREE, writers who have paid previously should send emails to hello@designed.life with their account details and evidence of payment.
  2. We would be extending submissions till 10th May 2017.
  3. The longlist will be out by 30th May 2017 which would be no more than 40 writers, the top 10 would be featured in the June Issue of the CFW EMagazine.
  4. Poetry can be sent in for a chance to win the 20,000 naira cash prize (only), Not more than 25 lines.
  5. Top 20 poets would be listed on the CFW EMagazine June Issue.

The Prizes remain the Same:

50,000 Naira for the First Category Prize (Open to Prose only)

30,000 Naira for the Second Category Prize (Open to Prose only)

20,000 Naira for the Third Category Prize (Open to Poets Only)

 

Note that the CFW EMagazine will not be making any other call for submissions after this for June Issue, so writers who do not send in Entries for the Designed life Contest would not be considered for shortlisting.

ENTRY IS FREE:

The contest will commence on the 30th of May, 2017, Check the Previous publication for how to ENTER YOUR SUBMISSION AND WIN.

ENTRY IS NOW FREE, writers who have paid previously should send emails to hello@designed.life with their account details and evidence of payment.

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Blog

When there is Darkness Within

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when-there-is-darkness-within

The heart is the center of all our existence, it is the power house and source of all that happens to us.

“As a man thinketh, so is he..”

The thoughts and desire, will and visions we have flow from the heart. Even our speech, the things we say to people and to ourselves come from the heart.

The wellspring of life is from the heart, as a biological entity it is the root of human blood. Life resides in the blood and the heart pumps blood round the body, in other words the heart pumps life.

What About When The Heart is Gloomy

Just like a day when the skies darken, when everything seems to go wrong. Life seems to be function contrary to what is expected. Who do we turn to? What steps do we take to restore the sparkle? 


These are  times that typically occur in our lives, we would seek solitude. There are those times when everyone just seems to be against you, it’s not always the case. 

The First Friend

You need to befriend your heart, tend it like a choice garden. Make it merry and sing rhymes to that beating organ in your chest. No one can please your heart more than you do,  it’s you that started out this journey with it. 

No other custodian for your heart than you, clear out the cobwebs. Clean out the dark corners, open the blinds and let light shine in. 


When there is darkness within, you are the first backup for your heart. Rest assured in the love you have for yourself, build castles in your heart and shield yourself from the angry darts of circumstances, pain and shame. 

Fight that darkness till it retreats. 

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reading-posting-worthy-content-social-media

Are you reading and posting worthy content on social media? 5 tips to switch up your online commentary.

(BPT) – From awards shows to politics and sporting events, the beginning of the year is packed with comment-worthy moments. Many of us take these opportunities to share what we think are the smartest, sharpest and snarkiest takes and project online to our friends and beyond.

But as these major moments happen, are you really posting and reading content that’s worth your smartphone data? Follow this checklist from Straight Talk Wireless to ensure you’re delivering a dose of straight talk when it comes to the hottest trending topics on social media.

1. Politics. We all know social media is the unofficial debate stage and with the recent election, you may have taken a stance yourself. Did you confidently craft your argument or did your post begin with, “Now, I don’t usually post about politics, but…”? If so, take a moment to question why not. Save yourself the long-winded debate with your distant relative and post a picture of a puppy instead.

2. Breakfast grams. Getting ready to post a shot of that delicious breakfast of yours? This one’s easy: don’t. No one really enjoys a photo of a soggy egg sandwich. Use your camera to capture something more meaningful instead – like the group of friends you’re out to eat with.

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3. Sweet talk. Posting about your significant other is like an action movie with too many sequels. The first one was great, but after the second and the third we all just want to move on. Keep the romance to yourselves and save the public displays of affection for anniversaries or birthdays.

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4. Baby photos. Recently welcome a new little bundle of joy to your family? See sweet talk above. We all want to see your little one and gush over a few sporadic photos. But we don’t need a play-by-play of their potty-training conundrums draining our data. Post away when they’re first born and check in with us again for the next holiday.

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5. Celebrity gossip. Debating who wore it best on the red carpet? Losing it over news that your favorite pop artist is having twins? So are a lot of other people. So mix it up. Tap those copywriting or photo editing skills to wow us with your sharpest take or hilarious meme. If a certain actresses’ dress looks like a giant pizza on the red carpet, let us know. We’ll probably agree with you.

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14-year-old-scientist-aims-solve-energy-crisis

The family trip. For most kids it’s a chance to relax, visit a new destination, collect souvenirs, and create stories and memories to share with their friends throughout the year.

For 14-year-old Maanasa Mendu, however, the family trip provided her with a vision of how she needed to change the world.

Mendu’s spur for innovation came during a family trip to India where she witnessed firsthand the energy scarcity experienced in regions of the world far from her native Ohio. The family makes the visit every summer, and during this particular visit, as she experienced persistent blackouts, Mendu knew she had to do something about it.

So she got to work.

With an idea in her head, she found her opportunity to grow and develop it through the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge. The competition challenges students to create an innovation that solves a real-world problem affecting their global, national or local communities.

Nature inspired Mendu to solve the problem of unreliable power. By harnessing wind, solar and rain energy, she created a device that could provide energy in any rural or urban environment. Her early prototypes used recycled soda bottles hanging from a tree. She then attached solar panels like leaves and while these prototypes looked simple, they actually captured energy — as much as 9 volts with her third prototype.

Mendu used this discovery and her work thus far to enter the Young Scientist Challenge by recording a two-minute video describing the science behind her innovation. Judges evaluated her video based on her creativity, scientific knowledge, persuasiveness and overall presentation, and liked what they saw. Mendu was named a competition finalist and paired with a mentor, 3M senior product development engineer Margaux Mitera, to further develop her project.

For Mendu, the partnership with her 3M mentor ignited myriad new possibilities. “My mentor, Margaux was amazing and I learned so much about the process of innovation working with her. She truly exemplified how collaboration is key to success!” she remembers.

Mitera’s sentiments were mutual. “Maanasa is such a bright, enthusiastic young woman. It was really a pleasure to work with her and help her project grow. I can’t wait to see what she will do in the future.”

With Mitera’s help, Mendu learned the four C’s of science: collaboration, communication, creativity and critical thinking. She was also able to meet with Mitera at the 3M Innovation Center in St. Paul, Minnesota, where each of the finalists arrived on October 16, 2016. Mendu and her fellow finalists all had the opportunity to present their projects before a panel of judges, including 3M scientists. When the competition was over, Mendu’s idea to deliver electricity to impoverished regions earned her the title of America’s Top Young Scientist.

The victory also awarded her $25,000, but Mendu isn’t looking toward the future just yet. She’s still busy in the present, perfecting her design, so she can help impoverished people around the world as soon as possible. “Along the way I have learned so much about the process of innovation,” she says of the project. “Innovation is more than just a lightbulb moment, it’s about being creative, trying new approaches and learning from your mistakes. I’ve began to realize the truth in the saying, “Genius is 1 percent inspiration and 99 percent perspiration.”

Mendu is dedicated to continuing her process of innovation for those who live every day without energy.

The Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge

Mendu won the 2016 Young Scientist Challenge with an idea and a dream. Nominations for the 2017, challenge are still open. To enter, students in grades 5-8 must submit a one- to two-minute video no later than April 19, 2017, describing the science behind their new innovation or solution to solve an everyday problem. The problem could be one experienced half a world away, as was the case with Mendu’s, or it could be one you encounter every day. The only limit to your scientific solution is your own imagination. To learn more about the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge, visit www.youngscientistlab.com/challenge.

Mendu’s innovation works to capture unused wind, solar and rain energy, and turn it into reliable source of energy for developing communities.
Mendu’s innovation works to capture unused wind, solar and rain energy, and turn it into reliable source of energy for developing communities.

 

Article by BPT

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is-it-really-possible-to-learn-any-skill-from-books

Books are the best schools to attend, this school is flexible. It is where the teachers abide by your rules and your success is self-defined.

I have loved music for as long as I can remember, I encountered the hurdle of limited resources and the high cost attached to learning any skill. I love music and it turned out that I could easily understand the basic principles but to get the kind of skills I desired it was obviously going to cost me a lot, this did not stop me. I was about 13 years when I first fell in love with sounds,  I wanted to make the kind of music I heard. So I started asking questions,  despite my secondary school did not teach music. I left for another secondary school and missed out on the new programme that was introduced in my previous school. I was not giving up,  I remember stealing a “rudimentary music” book from my great uncle’s place which I later returned years after.

WHERE TO START: JUST DO IT

I played the “recorder” on my own for a few years and that was the first musical instrument I conquered,  I spent a lot of time browsing lessons online and learnt the seven basic notes of music and started trying out songs I knew in my head till the sounds started making some sense. Fast forward to May 2013,  I had saved up for months to get my saxophone. I felt so cheated that while everyone around me seemed to be getting their own money for something petty,  I had to spend my savings on a saxophone. This did not stop me from buying it and I started playing it that same day.

KEEP THESE IN MIND

I am self-taught when it comes to music and I play the saxophone pretty well but I had help along the way. I believe there is always a way to acquire knowledge even when the right resources, teachers or mentors are not available. Here are a few things I will advice in case you want to learn a skill so much and you are not getting the help you need:

1.  Never ever think of giving up.
2. You will hurt a lot,  you will sacrifice much but you will win.
3. Try out the little you know and practice consistently.
4.  Practice over and over again.
5. Make friends of common interest.
6. Enjoy yourself.

I read a story recently of a boy somewhere in Africa who built a windmill from borrowing library books and this is how electricity came to his village.

Education to me is not about the four walls of a school,  education is there in a corner,  with burning candles,  a passionate heart and desire for something outstanding.

 

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