7 Practices for Leaders to Achieve the Most out of the Day

I periodically review my daily routine (as much routine that I can afford) and examine how I can be more efficient given the current goals and demands in front of me. Sometimes I realize ways that I can tweak what I do to be more effective. Other times, I realize that I may have abandoned best practices (e.g., scheduled time to check e-mails)to go back to easier habits. Nonetheless, I realize certain practices will help anyone to focus effectively and save valuable time and energy. Certain practices include:

1.    Taking a moment to ease into the day by centering. When we take time to center ourselves through meditation, prayer, being still, it gives us time to find peace in the moment, recalibrate our spiritual selves and attempt to align our spiritual selves in a positive way with what we will do for the day.

2.    Carving out 30 minutesEVERY DAY TO review the current day achievements, identify what was expected to get done but hasn’t and plan effectively for the next day. Steven Covey calls this time “Sharpening the Saw.” That is to take some time strategize your life, versus just doing in automatic mode.

3.    This 30 minutes will allow time to prioritize and focus on what is most important for the next day, Steven Covey calls these areas of important focus, “Big Rock.” Sure, we all have about 20 things that we need to get done in a day. However, there are 1-3, that are going to make the difference in our lives, whether they get completed or not.  Identify what those big rocks are going to be for you the next day. What is going to wake you up? This helps you to easily organize your time appropriately and invigorate you with focused energy.

 

4.    Limiting e-mail checks to 3x a day. I know that we all are busy and it may not be possible to only check your e-mail once a day. However, if it is possible at all, limit your e-mail checking from 1-3x daily. I am currently aiming to check my e-mails at 6am, 1130am and 4pm eastern (in case you e-mail me from another time zone J.  This allows me focus my time deeply on important efforts/ big rocks instead of juggling my energy and attention back and forth like a yo- yo. When you are aimed at creating innovative work, it is important to focus and go deep into your work without tedious distractions.

5.    Outsource your appointment setting. If you have a personal assistant, great. If not use an online calendar, like calendly to save time planning meetings.

6.    Make sure that you get some “release” time in the day. For me, this is a physical workout. I take an outside run, do the elliptical machine in the gym or dance. Everyday, we all face tensions, whether we realize them or not. We need to make an effort to release these tensions in the appropriate way for ourselves. For me, its important to sweat out the negative toxins that come from a traffic jam, negative person, busy schedule or other source.

7.    Let go of what others can do close to, just as well or better than you. There are specific gifts and roles that God has given you. If you value your unique gifts then give away as much of other tasks that could be someone else’s gift. Allow them to grow as you grow. This applies to leaders and direct reports or entrepreneurs. Focus on your best gifts to make them brighter and let go of the rest.

Ihope these seven practices are helpful. If so, please share them with others.

www.nextgenpeople.com

7 Characteristics of People of the Lie

At first with hesitation and great contemplation, do I produce this piece of communication. Like other, I was rocked by the shooting incident that occurred in the historical Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina. Like others, my first reaction was to think who is this crazy person who committed such an atrocity??? Then I saw his face, the face of Dylann Roof. I hate to even type the name, however, he is an actual part of the event. When I saw his face or shall I say his eyes, the evil within him, riveted uncontrollably. It immediately brought me to the wisdom delivered by Dr. Scott Peck in “People of the Lie.”

Essentially, Dr. Peck, teaches us that psychology cannot cure all maladies, because some maladies are of the spirit and not of the mind. Psychologists and scientists of other fields are always driven for the logical solution, the mathematical formula for each problem presented. However, in the case of Dylann Roof and many others, sometimes the formula is not so tangible. Sometimes, it take more spiritual effort and seeking to find out how we can truly help such spiritually overturned individuals, if we are of the power to help them at all.

In Dr. Peck’s book, he shares case studies that reflect certain characteristics of these “People of the Lie,” these individuals who are spiritually overturned. These are seven characteristics that are often found in such individuals.

  1. They seek to control others. Dylann Roof wanted to control the saints in the church by killing them with his gun. He wanted to control others by evoking fear due to his terroristic attack. 

  2. They lack empathy. In order to enter a church, a place dedicated to God and falsely pray with those in a meek position, while actually preying on them violently, Dylann Roof lacked empathy for his most immediate and vulnerable neighbors. 

  3. They have a permeating problem linked to negative behavior. Dylann Roof’s life was dedicated to hate. He studied it, conspired with it and made it his lifestyle. 

  4. They strategically plan and calculate their wrongdoing. Dylann Roof planned for, at least months, his violent killing, from which he expected to receive glory. He even shared of his plans with others. 

  5. They are atypical in their ways. There are many good people who are different and unique. However, there are also those who are unique and unique in a bad way. Dylann Roof stands out as someone who wore hate paraphernalia, rebelled against modern day laws and modern day harmony. 

  6. They don’t show remorse. Dylann Roof has not apologized nor reflected any indications of regret for his malicious actions. 

  7. They are not corrected by punishment. Even in his time in jail, Dylan Roof still stands by his atrocious call of duty to raise hell where people of color exist.  Even behind bars, he still believes that his evil, terroristic acts were righteous.

     

7 Steps to Success

7 STEPS TO SUCCESS (Synopsis of message by TD Jakes message)

 

  1. Know where you are going. When you wander aimlessly, you can end up anywhere. The first step to achieving anything is to aim specifically toward it. Otherwise, you might as well spend your time gambling at horrible odds.

    It is important to do target research and understand your target whether it be a professional, spiritual, social, financial or other goal. As the Bible says, Write a vision and make it plain.

    Ask and try to answer important questions such as: what can increase your chances to get there? What success formula’s have worked for others? Is this what God wants? Is this really for me or am I just experiencing envy of someone else? This answer to this last question could make the difference between $1 million and $1,000, an A grade or a C grade, peace or discontent.

  2. Wash your past away. Bishop Jakes says to wash your face. Don’t dwell on the past and its related negativity or fantasies. If you didn’t finish your last marathon- focus on preparing for this one, not the past failure. Don’t dress like the cable delivery guy that you used to be, if your job is now to serve as an office professional. Don’t assume that your past persona, disposition or style does not need to adjust to your new role.

  3. Put on a Grand Attitude. As Maya Angelou once said, people don’t necessarily remember what you said or did, but how you make them feel. Bring positivity to your encounters, whether it be your manager, co- worker, spouse or child, come with a grand attitude. You are able to get more from others when you are willing to give more. If you bring joy to your friends, you are more apt to get joy in return. Sure, we all have bad days. However, we also have the option to focus on good or the bad. There will always be both. As TD Jakes says, Everything isn’t right, but everything isn’t wrong either. Make the right choice. Serve others with positive energy and they will likely serve you with the same. 

  4. Prepare for what has not happened yet. It is your job to prepare. If God brings the opportunity, and you’re not prepared, you may forfeit the opportunity. Faith without works can be dead. Do your part. If you want to be a manager, but there are no openings, read best- selling books about management, take a training course. If you want to move to a Spanish- speaking country someday, then learn Spanish. 

  5.  Go to THAT place. Don’t be afraid to move. Bishop TD Jakes says that it is dangerous to stay “overdressed” in the wrong place for too long. He uses the grand example of walking through a hotel lobby full of swimmers and you have on a tuxedo headed to a wedding. If you stand there for too long, you will start getting funny looks. Just as if you stay in a place where you are overqualified for too long, you will get funny looks, be underappreciated and stunt your potential growth. Similarly, if you are looking for a spouse, go where you are likely to find one- golf course, church, dancing? Not likely to be in your living room on the couch, eating popcorn. 

  6.  Be still. Don’t be afraid to wait for God to tell you when you don’t know. It is okay to be a “misfit” for a little while. There may be a time when you have outgrown your current place or are new to your current role. If you feel unsure about moving, give God time to move you to your elevated chapter or to help you adjust and adapt to your new one. Sometimes, waiting is the most powerful.thing that you can do.  

  7. Don’t stand in the light, when it is not your time to shine. Bishop TD Jakes reminds us to know when to “push” and when to not. As when a woman is having a baby, her nurse will tell her when she is pushing too early in order for the woman in labor to reserve her energy for the right time. If it is not your time to be a manager, help your manager to look his/her best. Celebrate the successes of those around you. Then when it is your time to push, give it your all.

                                                          

T.D. Jakes’ full message: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WQcXEckW7B8

Diamond in the Rough

A DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH

Just because its hard doesn’t mean that it’s not God. – Sister Kathy

It’s a blessing to fellowship with other brothers and sisters who are striving to live for God and dedicate all of the actions of their lives to Him. I’m not a morning person, but on this particular Saturday, it was much easier to get up for the 6:00 a.m. prayer service at church. I had been wrestling quite disturbingly with God regarding a particular matter. I believed that He had showed me something that should come to pass. God is never like man, and He will never lie. I thank the Lord that I had known this from my relationship with Him. So I thankfully, by the grace of God, never doubted that. Nonetheless, something that I believe that He had shown me that should have come to pass, all of a sudden, looked as if it would not come to pass. Suddenly, it faced an arresting halt. It was a painful time. My spirit squirmed and squeaked and agonized in this moment. I looked at God with confusion and frustration. I asked Him, why is my spirit still holding on to this thing, when it does not seem as if it will happen? At the prayer meeting, after we all prayed for others and for our wills to be dedicated unto God, we stood around talking to each other. We were mainly discussing the trials of the world and encouraging each other in our own walks with Christ. Without me disclosing any information regarding my current personal spiritual battle, Sister Kathy said in a seemingly random manner, “Just because it’s hard doesn’t mean that it’s not God.” Yes, this should be common sense as some of you who are reading this may be saying. Sometimes we know things in our heads, yet they take a while to travel to our hearts and spirits. A delay from God is not a denial from God. Yes, He is a dynamic God and the things that we do will contribute or take away from His Perfect Will being done in our lives. However, we cannot assume that because we face an obstacle in our God given purpose that we have hit a permanent wall. In fact, quite the opposite is often true. God will use our defeated obstacles to bring glory to His name, and for others to see Him through us and find His love. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds (2 Corinthians 10:4). We should not look at evidence of the flesh, things on this earth in order to decipher what the end will be or what God’s Will is in our lives. He is far greater and more powerful than that. We can be led and can live our lives according to the flesh and what we see in this earth; however, it will grossly limit what we will have. Our divine inheritance, we will not receive, because we will be focused on what’s in our eye’s length, never having the courage to look above and beyond to what God has for us.

The road less traveled, according to a poem by Robert Frost, always appears to be the hardest one to take. It is far more difficult to look for an alternative door than to simply walk through the door in front of us. My mom worked day and night to save money and move us out of the “projects.” For those who do not know, the projects, also known as the ghetto, is an area where subsidized housing exists. The government pays at least partially if not all of the housing costs for the family in a segregated area. What is grossly wrong with projects is that they are always projects set up to fail. In Networking 101, we learn that our networks are very indicative of the success that we will most likely have in this world. In the projects, the networks have no earthly power. It is a place that breeds pessimism, low achievement and subcultural segregation. My mom fought hard to get us out of there. I have to be honest, as her child picking up tremendous responsibility because of her dedication to work. I did not always understand and definitely did not appreciate her efforts at the time. I didn’t understand the “big” deal. I did not know why we needed to move and leave my “friends.” However, I thank God that she saw the bigger picture. I thank God that I got out of the norm that was designed for me—one of teenage pregnancy, welfare living and limiting myself to one or two occupations. When our lives run into situations that God did not create, often we have to fight ten times harder to get out of that situation. Whether God created the situation or not, does not mean that He is not in it because it’s difficult. Sometimes we have to plow through it anyhow. We have to see what the end will be. Others have to be inspired by us plowing through to see what the end will be. I pray that my mom’s courage was an inspiration for someone else; as I pray that our determination is always after God’s Will and ultimately results in His glorification.

Jonah was simply living his life as a prophet in God’s chosen land, Israel, when God called for him to go to Ninevah, an area known as a habitation for the spiritually lost. Jonah did not want to go there. He felt as if he was better than that, (2 Corinthians 10:4). We should not look at evidence of the flesh, things on this earth in order to decipher what the end will be or what God’s Will is in our lives. He is far greater and more powerful than that. We can be led and can live our lives according to the flesh and what we see in this earth; however, it will grossly limit what we will have. Our divine inheritance, we will not receive, because we will be focused on what’s in our eye’s length, never having the courage to look above and beyond to what God has for us.

The road less traveled, according to a poem by Robert Frost, always appears to be the hardest one to take. It is far more difficult to look for an alternative door than to simply walk through the door in front of us. My mom worked day and night to save money and move us out of the “projects.” For those who do not know, the projects, also known as the ghetto, is an area where subsidized housing exists. The government pays at least partially if not all of the housing costs for the family in a segregated area. What is grossly wrong with projects is that they are always projects set up to fail. In Networking 101, we learn that our networks are very indicative of the success that we will most likely have in this world. In the projects, the networks have no earthly power. It is a place that breeds pessimism, low achievement and subcultural segregation. My mom fought hard to get us out of there. I have to be honest, as her child picking up tremendous responsibility because of her dedication to work. I did not always understand and definitely did not appreciate her efforts at the time. I didn’t understand the “big” deal. I did not know why we needed to move and leave my “friends.” However, I thank God that she saw the bigger picture. I thank God that I got out of the norm that was designed for me—one of teenage pregnancy, welfare living and limiting myself to one or two occupations. When our lives run into situations that God did not create, often we have to fight ten times harder to get out of that situation. Whether God created the situation or not, does not mean that He is not in it because it’s difficult. Sometimes we have to plow through it anyhow. We have to see what the end will be. Others have to be inspired by us plowing through to see what the end will be. I pray that my mom’s courage was an inspiration for someone else; as I pray that our determination is always after God’s Will and ultimately results in His glorification.

Jonah was simply living his life as a prophet in God’s chosen land, Israel, when God called for him to go to Ninevah, an area known as a habitation for the spiritually lost. Jonah did not want to go there. He felt as if he was better than that, (2 Corinthians 10:4). We should not look at evidence of the flesh, things on this earth in order to decipher what the end will be or what God’s Will is in our lives. He is far greater and more powerful than that. We can be led and can live our lives according to the flesh and what we see in this earth; however, it will grossly limit what we will have. Our divine inheritance, we will not receive, because we will be focused on what’s in our eye’s length, never having the courage to look above and beyond to what God has for us.

The road less traveled, according to a poem by Robert Frost, always appears to be the hardest one to take. It is far more difficult to look for an alternative door than to simply walk through the door in front of us. My mom worked day and night to save money and move us out of the “projects.” For those who do not know, the projects, also known as the ghetto, is an area where subsidized housing exists. The government pays at least partially if not all of the housing costs for the family in a segregated area. What is grossly wrong with projects is that they are always projects set up to fail. In Networking 101, we learn that our networks are very indicative of the success that we will most likely have in this world. In the projects, the networks have no earthly power. It is a place that breeds pessimism, low achievement and subcultural segregation. My mom fought hard to get us out of there. I have to be honest, as her child picking up tremendous responsibility because of her dedication to work. I did not always understand and definitely did not appreciate her efforts at the time. I didn’t understand the “big” deal. I did not know why we needed to move and leave my “friends.” However, I thank God that she saw the bigger picture. I thank God that I got out of the norm that was designed for me—one of teenage pregnancy, welfare living and limiting myself to one or two occupations. When our lives run into situations that God did not create, often we have to fight ten times harder to get out of that situation. Whether God created the situation or not, does not mean that He is not in it because it’s difficult. Sometimes we have to plow through it anyhow. We have to see what the end will be. Others have to be inspired by us plowing through to see what the end will be. I pray that my mom’s courage was an inspiration for someone else; as I pray that our determination is always after God’s Will and ultimately results in His glorification.

Jonah was simply living his life as a prophet in God’s chosen land, Israel, when God called for him to go to Ninevah, an area known as a habitation for the spiritually lost. Jonah did not want to go there. He felt as if he was better than that,

Moving at God's Pace...

Peace is flowing in God’s river …  at His pace … —Dr. Lepora

Have you ever had a moment that you completely surrendered a decision or an act to God? In that moment you said, “God have your way. Have your way.” And you meant it when you said it. When we are able to totally surrender to God, there is a peace that comes over us that surpasses all of our possible understanding (Philippians 4:7). Oftentimes, we may not understand why we are so calm given the perceived severity of a situation. We may not understand why there are no tears falling even though what may be taking place or about to occur is very far from what we had originally planned. When we marry our own calendars, it places us in a painful bind when the days don’t fall the way that we would desire or people do not behave in ways that we would have predicted. There is a Jewish proverb that simply states, “If you want to make God laugh, tell Him your plans.” I don’t know if I would go as far as to say that God is laughing at our plans or desires. In fact, I think that it is quite the contrary. God wants His children to be filled with joy. He wants your desires to be pleased. However, everything is within His order. When we lived with our parents, they wanted us to be happy. I am not so naïve as to say that there are no bad parents out there. However, most parents have one thing in common: they want joy for their children. Our parents are not higher, kinder or more caring than God. God wants joy for us. Yet, just like our parents, God will not force His gifts upon you if you do not want to live in His House and live by His Rules. Yes, God pours grace all over us. Yes, he gives us mercy and lets it rain like water. However, there are often consequences to disobedience: the action and inaction that contradict God’s desires and requests. He has blessed us with self-will and allows us to drive to our own destiny for the most part. Sometimes, God will take His children out of the race before He will let us destroy ourselves spiritually. The spirit is far more powerful, meaningful and important than the body. He will allow His children that He loves dearly to lose their bodies before He allows us to lose our spirits, which is our direct connection to Him. If you box or wrestle with God, you will get hurt. Jacob, God’s wonderful child, wrestled with Him and came out with a permanent limp (Genesis 32:23-30). That is not to say that God will not answer fervent prayers or provide undeserving forgiveness and favor. However, you need to be on God’s side, not against Him. Otherwise, you may not be able to predict the possible consequences. We can ask for many things in God’s name and He will deliver. However, our requests cannot be against His beautiful and perfect will. Once you know what His Perfect Will is or is not, do yourself a favor and acquiesce.

 

P.S. Answer these questions to give yourself some food for thought…

1. When have you had to wait for God to answer your prayers? How did you feel when you received the answer

2. How do you feel when God’s answer is No to a request that you have made?

3. How do you maintain faith in God’s Word while accepting His answer of No?

4. Why is it important to accept God’s answer of No versus changing it to our own answer of Yes?

The Four Types of People Who Influence Your Dreams

  • “There are four types of people with whom we share our dreams: dream doubters, dream keepers, dream haters and dream angels. Before you share a sacred dream that God has given you, be sure to know what type of person, with whom you are choosing to share your dream. Do not take this supernatural gift that God has given you for granted, for you do not know when you will get another.

  • The dream doubter is someone who looks at you as if you have completely lost your mind and gone bonkers when you share your dream with them. They can explain to you in several different ways and very logically why your dream is not realistic, will not happen and will definitely fail, and they so generously listen. They look at you with dismay for thinking so fantastically and may even shame you for not focusing on reality. These people don’t necessarily mean any harm to you; however, they are of zero benefit to you and may be very harmful to your psyche and ability to maintain the faith and energy that will be required to attain the supernatural dream that God has given you.

  • The dream keeper feels quite neutral about your dream. They don’t know much about what you are saying and aren’t vested either way. You can share your dream with them, but they can’t relate to it. They are listeners and not judgers. They won’t help or hurt your dream. They will simply be there indifferently, whether you do it or not. The dream keeper is the rarest of us all, given that most of us are so subjective that we will go one way or another. The dream keeper does just that, keeps your dream. They don’t help it or destroy it, but keep it in its current state.

  • The dream hater is jealous of you and your dreams, and wants anything except for you to be successful at realizing your dream. Joseph was one of God’s prophets whose father, Isaac, favored him over his brothers. When Joseph shared the actual dreams that God had given him, his brothers attempted to have him killed (Genesis 37:20). Many of us have dream haters in our lives; we ignore that they are dream haters because it’s easier than confronting them or dismissing them from our lives or we simply don’t realize that they are dream haters. The dream hater must be identified early and avoided at all costs. Do NOT share your dream with a dream hater. In fact, the dream hater probably has already attempted to tear down other efforts in your life through mental manipulation, verbal criticism and discouragement or outright sabotage.

  • Sometimes it’s difficult to differentiate between the dream doubter and the dream hater. For the sake of the dreams themselves, you may not need to differentiate. The important thing is to not share your dreams with them. For the sake of your well-being, it is much safer to not associate with the dream hater. The dream hater is riddled with jealousy for what they perceive that you do not deserve or anyone else for that matter. The dream haters find it difficult to be happy or excited for you because they are insecure within themselves. The more that you or anyone else grows or improves the less that they feel that they are worth. For the sake of your safety, mentally, emotionally and possibly even physically, I would advise you to avoid dream haters at all costs.

  • Fortunately, there are dream angels. These are people who are sent by God to help you realize your dreams. You and, maybe, even they may not know why they are helping you the way that they are. Nonetheless, one of the reasons that God has them in your life is to help you realize His dream through you. Sometimes, we are placed in the lives of others as their dream angels. When we are placed to be dream angels, it is our sacred responsibility to honor God with obedience and to help as we have been called to do so. If you are blessed to have a dream angel, don’t take them for granted, love and appreciate them, because you never know when one will come again.

    P.S. Be sure to join the Soul Healing Conference in Calloway Gardens, September, 2015 where I will be speaking about Social Interdependence!

    Best,

    Dr. Lepora

Keep on Movin'

Every time I hear that song by Soul II Soul, “Keep on Moving,” it takes me back about twenty years, although I have no intention of telling my age here. I was a senior in high school, attending a college party with one of my best friends, who was a college freshman at the time and had graduated from Nottingham High school, the same school that I had currently attended. At the time, she loved that song, as I did. So when the song came on, it naturally electrified the room as everyone danced the night away. We were all energized by the very popular hit, but it meant much more to my close friend at the time. She had just lost someone very close to her. Her ex-boyfriend had been shot and killed. It was a drive-by shooting that by the grace of God bypassed his son who ran for cover. I saw her spirit in her eyes as she danced to the song. For anyone not knowing the circumstances, it was simply a dance, another night out for her. Knowing her for years and with our souls being very connected, I saw the pain and anguish that she released in that dance, the energy and courage that it took to make the movements to dance, and the celebration of life that she expressed in that dance.

That is just what success in life is about—keeping on moving. Or as I always say to my little [correction] younger sisters, keep it moving. Life is not going to stop for you. It is not going to stand still and wait until you decide to catch up. It is only by the grace of God that you are still here, so what are you going to do about it? My friend lost a close friend/former boyfriend who left behind a young son. She had the option to continue her mourning in a dark bedroom, continuously complaining, “Woe is me for the life that was lost to me and to his son.” And who would have criticized her for that? I certainly would not have. Next to not having salvation for one’s self and loved ones, I personally do not know a more painful thing than losing the life of someone you love. However, the fact of the matter is that it happens to many of us every single day. In life, we will face many disappointments. Will we let it debilitate us or will we keep it moving in order to make it to the next blessing that God has for our lives. Yes, there is a time to mourn and a time to sulk. However, the more time that you sit on the sidelines means the less time that you have to bask in the sun and the fruitful aspects of your life. The negative disappointments will always be there when you want them. The great thing is so will the blessings. Which will you choose?

 

P.S. Please be sure to answer the questions below to give yourself some food for thought.

1. What disappointments in your life have you overcome? What has helped you to overcome them?

2. Are there any disappointments in your life that you still need to overcome, or let go of?

3. Have you put off taking any steps in life in order to move forward toward a goal, a next chapter in life and/or a next assignment?

Law of Attraction, The Secret or just plain Faith?

In this modern day era, new age genre and phenomenon is the rage. Unbeknownst to us, many ideas that are introduced as new are actually old and repackaged.  Old wine in new bottles, shall we say? Oftentimes, the message is slimmed down to bare bones and/or dangerously diluted.

Specifically, when we study such concepts as the Secret and the Law of Attraction, we are dealing with a concept, a practice that has been dangerously diluted. The Law of Attraction and the Secret states if you want something, simply put your mind to it, dwell and focus upon it and it will come to pass. In other words, maintain unwavering hope, in that "thing."  This is definitely a feel good message. I feel good by that thought. I am sure that it creates instant euphoria for many to hear. In fact, there is even some truth to what they are saying. When we put hope and desire behind outcomes, it does give it desire to happen.

The missing factor in this theory for me, is the importance of God. I don't know if they are taking God "completely" out of the picture. However, they are abandoning the need to consult Him regarding what we need, want, should have. They are abandoning the need to have faith in what God wants. When God's desire is taken out of the picture, chaos is waiting to happen. When God is taken out of the picture, some "dreams" still come true, only to find out that your "dream" is short- lived or maybe even worse a nightmare.

When God is in the picture, we aim for outcomes that He desires, outcome with everlasting peace, the potential of everlasting joy, outcomes that are meaningful.

However, if you want a microwave quick fix of happiness, you may get some results from the Secret or the Law of Attraction. Just remember the old saying, "Be careful what you wish for."

 

Fight the Real War

Life will have its way with all of us, when there will come a time that we will be at war. We will war with our “enemies,” war with rival classmates, co-workers, siblings or other family. As a nation we war with other nations and races are often found warring against each other.

In recent news, there has been a pattern of videos and social media capturing hasty killings of black men, to soon follow with a lack of justice perceived by many including myself. The quick dismissal of the idea to formally acknowledge any wrongdoing for the killing of Eric Garner, Michael Brown and Trayvon Martin has built up rage and left our society in an uproar. It can be difficult to have peace in a place and time that lacks justice to the eye. The pain can run deep when we see a re-occurring pattern of lives being taken for granted. It leaves many to believe that we are at war.

The immediate response has been to assume that there is a race war going on in this society. That blacks hate whites and whites hate blacks. Is there racial prejudice that leads to many senseless deaths? Absolutely! However, this war is far bigger than one of race. This war is far bigger than even the battle of class and income inferiority. This war is one that lacks ease in visibly identifying the opponent and proponent. This is a war that is ultimately fought and won in the spirit. We may partake in many physical battles, but the spiritual war is the war the ultimately decides the winner.

Many are forgetting about God or wondering where is God in all of this. God’s Word is as true today as it was yesterday. God has told us that vengeance is His. It is up to Him to avenge for His children. Historically, God allowed for mourning families to decide on the justice for a slain family member. However, God wants us to evolve in how He has allowed us to do so. He wants us to be children of forgiveness, children of compassion, to love as He does. It is difficult to live and walk in such an honorable manner in a time of such injustice and pain. However, if we take this war to God’s territory, He will surely make us victorious. When we look at the progress that oppressed Jews have made, the power of their faith in God is apparent. When we look at the progress that Black Americans have made, from being a race forbidden to learn, forbidden to pass down anything to their inheritors to a people have made significant progress including national presidency, we must acknowledge their power of faith in God. We have a long way to go, but we must acknowledge the miraculous way, that we have come.

So my prayer is that you continuously fight the spiritual fight. Continuously pray to God without cease, for His justice, the only justice that is perfect and appropriate. Watch Him be victorious in our lives.

Inventory Your Social Contracts

We all have social contracts. Some of the terms of the contracts are discussed in a straightforward and deliberate manner, while other terms are assumed that agreement has been made with the other parties. Social contracts are the agreements that we make or believe that we make with others regarding how they will treat us and how we will treat them. Social contracts can be made in romantic relationships, friendships, family, work and in business deals. The more types of relationships that you share with the same party/ person, the more terms of expectation, thus greater likelihood of a breach of contract occurring and risking the overall agreement/ or contract.
What am I talking about? For example, In a work scenario, you may have a formal contract with your manager for you to work 40 weeks and for your manager to give you a positive performance evaluation if you perform A, B, and C work duties. What is not written is that you expect your manager to look out for your best interest if a promotional job becomes open outside of your area unbeknownst to you. If you believe that you have performed exceedingly well and your manager does not go above and beyond to help your career grow, you might be offended even though that is not written in the formal contract. It might be your understanding that it was in the social contract. Another example is if a woman is dating a man for two years. They both have discussed marriage very seriously. The woman takes a job in distant city without consulting the man first. He may believe that they were in a social contract to discuss such important details whereas she may not because they did not formally agree to do so. In a friendship, you might perceive someone to be a "friend" and look out for your best interest in a certain manner because you have known someone for several years. Whereas, the other person may not have the same social contract with you to honor the same levels of friendship that you would do so and expect in return. The list goes on, but the bottom line is that we all have relationships that could stand to have expectations clarified. Please do take a peek at the video and consider what social contracts that you currently have in your life that may or may not be clarified.

 

How do you measure your Spiritual Intelligence?

We mostly have heard people talk about mental intelligence. Intelligence that reflects our cognitive ability to do what we want to do. Emotional intelligence has also gained popularity reflecting our emotional state needed in order to accomplish what we want to accomplish. For example, a steady emotional state helps us to stay calm under pressure. Our emotional state is also often reflected in our relationships. How well do we get along with others, especially those different from us? How well can we partner and collaborate with others to produce a successful product or outcome, whether it is at work, church, at home with family or with an organization.

Another form of intelligence is Spiritual Intelligence. Many have talked about different ways to define spiritual intelligence. However, I define Spiritual Intelligence quite simply. Spiritual Intelligence consists of four factors:

1. Our level of desire to hear from God;

2) The work that we contribute to hear from God, how often do we pray, talk to Him? How often do we meditate, listening to Him? How often do we read His Word?

3. How well do we hear from Him? What is our level of accuracy? When we think that He told us to do something, how often are we correct?

4. What is our commitment to action when we hear from Him? How obedient are we?

Our mental intelligence is only as important as our Spiritual Intelligence. Our emotional intelligence is only as significant as our Spiritual Intelligence. How important is it to do something well with great skill and steadiness if it is the wrong thing to do?

P.S.  The desires of our heart and this world are fleeting, whereas whatever comes from God, whatever joy He gives to you- is forever (1 John 2:17).


Seek Authentic Joy

There is one thing that everyone wants- and that is joy! We all say that we want to be happy, when what we really want is joy. Happiness is for the moment with the given situation. Joy is a state of mind, heart and being that we can carry with us anywhere to, and in any situation.

Have you ever wanted something or wanted to go somewhere really badly? You felt as if once I get ____ or go to  ____, I will be so happy. I can’t wait until God gives me this new job or new car, etc… Only to find out that once you get it, it’s not what you expected that it would be or the direct happiness from it is short lived. Next we’re on to the next thing or goal that we desire. Complaining about the other thing that is slightly less annoying than the problem just solved.

Joy is different. Joy is in your belly. It is that appreciation and gratitude that resounds inside. It’s that steady contentment that never goes away no matter how much the people at work annoy you or whatever disappointments may come.

In order to get that real joy, authentic joy we have to look to God when living our lives. A relationship with God allows us to realize that there is someone who is taking care of us and has our back in any situation. A relationship with God will lead us to follow His direction and go after what is good for us. 

A relationship with God gives us peace. Peace in knowing that we are doing what we are supposed to be doing and have what we are supposed to have. Peace is a prerequisite to joy.  We can have happy moments without peace, but we cannot have sustained joy without having peace in knowing that we are on a path that will have eternal meaning vs. a short lived celebration. Only God can provide authentic joy that lasts forever.

P.S. Before you make any more goals, pray to God to ensure that what you think is best for you truly is.

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Six Ways to Meditate

We often hear people talk about the benefits of Meditation. Meditation is very beneficial:

  • Meditation helps you to receive guidance from God.

  • Meditation calms you and helps to reduce stress.

  • Meditation lowers the risks of many diseases including heart disease and high blood pressure

  • Meditation decreases the impact of ADHD on performance and behavior.

    There are several benefits of meditating. However, we often discuss only one way to meditate.  We often think of someone sitting with their legs crossed and their eyes closed when meditating. This is definitely a good way to meditate; closing the eyes especially helps you to relax, in addition to taking deep breaths.  However, there are other ways to meditate as well.

  1. As mentioned earlier being still in solitude is definitely a beneficial way to meditate and help you to bring peace upon yourself.

  2. You can use God’s Word to meditate. You can select your favorite Bible verse or the Bible verse most appropriate for you in the moment to recite repeatedly in order to remind yourself, increase your faith on it or to call onto God.

  3. You can use music to meditate. Sometimes I’ll meditate on a certain praise song several times. For example, Captain of my ship by Oleta Adams is a beautiful song that reminds me of how beautiful God’s love is and how important it is to keep Him in control of my life. The melody of the song is just as soothing as the words. Music is a very powerful tool in meditation.

  4. You can use your body to meditate. By focusing on every part of your body you can meditate on the feeling in your toes up to the top of your head. This helps you to tune in to yourself. This type of meditation is often used when praying for healing of certain body parts unto God.

  5. You can meditate with movement. Some people couple meditation with Yoga in order to focus on body movements as a way to center the mind and emotions. You can also use walking or running as way to meditate on your movement and center your mind and emotions.

  6. Once you become really advanced, you can meditate doing anything. You can focus on God and being still during any part of your day, whether at work, home or in the grocery store. Meditating is exercising the muscles of your mind, spirit and emotions.

    P.S. Be still and know that He is God. Psalm 46:10

     

The Danger of Multi-Tasking

The Dangers of Multi-Tasking

Often, we think that we are saving time when we multi- task. We see it as being productive, when we really are less effective and successful at what we are doing. We are spreading our efforts across many and taking out the best of all of them.

The other day, I caught myself feeding my baby while watching television and working on the computer, all at the same time. I found my energy feeling tension and confusion and realized that I was doing too much.

When we multi-task, we are telling God that He has not given us enough time to get what we need. Clearly, God has given me all that I need. So I need to be more appreciative of that when allocating my time.   

When we multi-task, we are hurting ourselves.

1. We are cluttering our minds and making it more difficult to hear God’s regular messages to us. We’re saying to God, “We got this.” We take control at doing our millions of things while we drown Him out. 

2. Secondly, we are not enjoying the moment. We need to stop and smell the roses. We cannot do that if we’re speeding by the roses, honking and blasting loud music all at the same time.   I was ashamed when I realized that I was doing so much while feeding my new little one, not taking that moment to enjoy the miracle that God has provided. We must assess what is important for us to do and do it and get rid of the unimportant distractions. In that moment, my baby was hunger so clearly that was the activity of importance. Watching TV and doing whatever on the computer clearly could wait.  

3. We risk making dangerous decisions when we multitask. We think that the hundreds of decisions that we make each day are small decisions, where to eat, what to eat, with whom to eat, what to wear… When we have no idea, in fact, how one “small” decision will become a large decision and lead to something else. They are not small decisions, but in fact quick decisions. That is why it is important to pray without cease, to constantly listen to God for direction. He may tell you not to have lunch with person who may want to do you harm. Or He may tell you to wear yellow on that day because you’re going to meet the love of your life whose favorite color is yellow. When we hear from God often, every message doesn’t make sense to us, nor does it need to do so. However, we need to listen. Multitasking makes that very difficult.

P.S. “It is useless; it is like chasing the wind. It is better to be satisfied with what you have than to always want something else.” Ecclesiastes 6:9

Spiritual Train Tracks

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Spiritual Train Tracks

This whole concept about Spiritual Train Tracks has been on my mind and heart for a long time. Sometimes you look at families and multiple generations and wonder “why can’t they just get IT right?” Or you look at your own family and wonder “why can’t we just get IT right?” Some of us have habits that we have been “trying” to break for years and we simply cannot let go…

For some these are just isolated bad choices and isolated bad actions. For others, there is an inevitable chain that can be seen if we just look closely. If you are like me, you believe that there are few coincidences and far more connected patterns. Some call them generational curses, some call them spiritual strongholds. I call them spiritual train tracks. They’re like train tracks because it is behavior that it automated or almost automated for you. Its things that you do automatically, it comes naturally without making great plans for it. You do them so quickly, perhaps as fast as a moving train, that you it’s hard to stop doing them.

These spiritual train tracks often start with ancestors. In one generation, grandfather drank a bit too much, and “coincidentally” so does the grandson. The mother was entrepreneurial and so are the daughters. The dad was an athletic pro- baseball player and the son is athletic as well, perhaps in basketball.

These “genetic” spiritual train tracks can be positive or negative. They should not be ignored. We should be aware, to what we are normally inclined to do. Does that mean that we should continue to do it? Not necessarily. It obviously depends on the action. However, we should make a conscious intent to do it or not do it. To get off of spiritual train tracks can be very difficult, especially of the intent and desire has already turned into action several times. It can feel literally like jumping off of a fast moving train.

If one wants to get off of particular spiritual train tracks, it has to be a conscious effort with prayer to God for help in the radical change in direction. Some may be delivered instantly from their spiritual train tracks when prayer is rendered, while others may take longer. What we do know is that it has to be a decision made by you… made by me. All life should be lived with conscious intent. Every action is a decision. It is either an active intending decision or a passive decision to let things continue in status quo. By doing nothing or something you are still making a decision. By saying nothing or something you are still making a decision.

So on that note, I recommend that you identify your spiritual train tracks today and make a decision regarding which tracks you are staying on and which ones you are jumping off.

 

Have a blessed one!

7 Benefits of Gratitude

We often hear people talk about gratitude. For some, it’s no more than a fluffy sentiment. For me, gratitude is a powerful tool. There are many benefits to experiencing and expressing gratitude. I say, you should always squeeze the lemon juice out of your lemons. We all have lemons in our lives. We all have those bad events, environments, or situations that are less than desirable, to say the least. What is true, however, is that there is good in everything, just as there is lemon juice in every lemon. We have all heard people referencing the phrase, seeing things as a glass half empty or half full. The fact of the matter is that sometimes we see the glass as not half empty or half full. Sometimes we see it as mostly empty or mainly full. Regardless of the situation, there is always a way to identify the blessing in anything.  I want to talk about seven reasons why we should always express gratitude and be thankful. Though, I am sure that there are far more than that. However, I am going to discuss seven of them.

Firstly, gratitude is a gift that you give to yourself. When you are thankful you put a smile on your face, because you are letting the joy inside of you that is connected to the positive that you have received. You can receive something positive but refuse the joy that can come with it. People do it every day. Gratitude allows you to experience that joy. For example, you can have a puppy that has accidents in your house three times a day. You may experience misery from the puppy’s accidents throughout your house as it gets trained. Or you may exercise the power to focus on how cuddly, the puppy is, how loyal the puppy is to you, or how the puppy warns you of danger. You may experience joy thinking about the companionship and security that the puppy provides. However, it is up to you to receive that joy. The same applies to your personal relationships. You can appreciate your spouse and be happy for the companionship that you receive. Or you can only choose to focus on the dishes left in the sink. If you have a loved one who is ill, you can focus on their sickness and their pain or you can focus on the time that you have with them to say whatever you want to say and hear from them whatever they want to say. You can focus on the hugs that you can give them and the warmth that you can provide for each other. Gratitude is a gift of Joy that you choose to give to yourself.

The second reason for gratitude is the gift that you give to others. When someone says “thank you” to you, it makes you feel a certain way. It makes you feel appreciated and sometimes even loved. It validates your actions. It rewards your efforts. That is a gift that you can give to others.

The third reason for gratitude is to receive the lessons that gratitude teaches you. In all bad things there are lessons. In all good things in life, there are lessons as well. We usually only want the good things in life. However, often times when we get the good things in life, we are lazy about learning the lessons that come with them. Sometimes, it takes the bad things for us to accept the lessons that we need to learn. Sometimes the bad things are the only ways that we can experience the best joy possible. For example, when we miss a flight, and spend the night in the airport hotel or even the airport itself, it helps us to appreciate our homes that we often take for granted or our loved ones that we see every day. Gratitude affords us the opportunity to realize that it could have been worse.

The fourth reason for gratitude is to make the world a better place. When you pass gratitude to others, they are your witness of how beautiful that behavior is and they pass it on to someone else. It creates a harmonious chain of love. You teach others how to show love in a simple way. When you are around children, you teach children how to show love in a simple way. Gratitude is one of the easiest ways to reciprocate love and positive feelings.

The fifth reason why gratitude is so important is because it helps you to smell the roses and enjoy life more deeply and more often. When we appreciate what we have, we spend more time with it; we spend more time with them. We stop and smell the beautiful roses in our lives, whether the roses are actual roses made up of different colors, red, yellow and white, or the roses metaphorically represent family members and friends. We appreciate what is in sight; we spend more time enjoying those roses and less time chasing after the wind.

The sixth reason why gratitude is so important is because it helps us to get more in the future.  The more we show our appreciation for gifts that God gives us, the more gifts he wants to give to us. Just as when someone you love shows appreciation for something that you give, you want to give them more, because you know that it makes them happy. So open your arms to more gifts by expressing your gratitude to God today.

The seventh reason that we should express gratitude is because every single breath that we take is a privilege. Not one month, one day, one minute or second is promised to any of us. Just as we celebrate the miracle of a baby being born, we should celebrate every breath that we get to take on this earth. Every breath is a gift from God. We should continuously thank God for the gift of each breath, because we want to continue to receive the gift of breath, which is life.
Please show your gratitude every day. Start your day by giving God thanks. This is the day that the Lord has made. We shall rejoice and be glad in it (Psalm 118:24).

Time v. Energy

There is continuous hoopla about the value of time. Is time all that they say that it is cracked up to be? Is it really that important? After all, we don't talk about time the way that we talked about money? We don't go after time the way that we go after money? I'm here to say that time is absolutely important! If you have time, it enables you to do the things that you want to do and allows you to learn how to do the things that you do not know how to do or, to which you not yet have access. However, energy is vitally important, yet often ignored. Why is energy overlooked so often when it is so important for us to do what we want to do in this life? It is overlooked because time is easier to grasp. We can measure time. We understand that if ask anyone else on this earth, they will agree that one hour equals 60 minutes. They will agree that 60 seconds equals 1 minute. We are simple creatures by nature. By habit, we gravitate to what we can see and measure. We perceive things we see as easier to accept in reality, and therefore easier to control and understand. If we gave ourselves the chance, we would recognize that we have just as much control over our energy and I would argue more control over our energy than we do our time. Our energy comes from many sources. What we choose to entertain in our minds influence our level and power of our energy. What we choose to feel with our emotions or perceive with our senses dictate the strength of our energy. The people who we choose to have relationships with, indirectly influences our energy. Many of us believe that our relationships have a direct influence on our energy. It simply is not true. When someone behaves the way that they choose to behave, there is a moment an intermediate force if you will that we own. And that moment, we choose to have a relationship or not have a relationship with that person. We choose to deem what that person says or does as important or choose to perceive what that person says or does as unimportant. We assess the level of interaction and level of importance that each and every person will have in our lives. Therefore, no relationship has a direct influence on our energy. There is one exception of course, and that is in the instance where your physical world has been controlled and therefore kidnapped by someone else. Now let's get to the importance of energy and why energy is truly so powerful. I can share an instance of one day when I was completing the book, Journey to Authentic Joy; I had so much energy that day. It felt as if I was placing 200 words a minute on that page. As I was working I received a call that contained very bad news from someone close to me. All of a sudden, I felt like the energy that overflowed abundantly from me, had dissipated within seconds. I stopped writing to lie down and thankfully started to pray. I let my flesh and anxiety get the best of me. I woke up that morning as an undefeated warrior to end up weak and frail as a doe preyed upon with a bow and arrow.
I decided to go take a drive in the country, because it's always easier for me to revamp my energy surrounded by God's most natural gifts. As I drove to the most abandoned and desolate rural areas of Georgia, I felt the safest that I could possibly feel. Beautiful tall green trees were everywhere coupled with thick, ever flowing green blades of grass. The sky was a beautiful powder blue with yellow sun rays shining brightly.  The day truly could not have been any more beautiful. I felt as if I could stay there forever. I could not. Or more accurately, I would not. However, what I would do was to bring that peace with me out of those woods. I would decide that I would choose to meditate on God's great gifts on this earth and give less attention to the things I could not control.

The way that we choose to see and use energy is up to us. At any given moment in any given time we have the access and power to greater energy. Our energy is going to dictate what we can do, how clearly we can think, and how quickly we can do what we do. It gives us the ability, speed, and endurance. Our energy will dictate how much we achieve and the level of quality, to which we achieve it.
While there are many elements that have only an indirect influence on our energy, that level of indirect influence can be grand. It is very important that we use whatever power and control that God gives us to manage those indirect influences effectively and be able to optimize our energy level to accomplish what we want to do.
Therefore, choose your relationships wisely. Choose your environments wisely. Choose your activities wisely. Have intention with what you eat and how you exercise. Use intention by gravitating to those people, ideas and places that bring joy and positive energy to you. Use intention by distancing yourself from people, ideas and places that consistently decrease your level of positive energy.
God has ordained you as the captain of your ship. Use the authority that He has given you to paint the most magnificent masterpiece of your life with the colors that are in your palette.

Five Steps to Holistic Renewal

There comes a time, for most of us, many times, when we look at our lives and realize that something is just not right or something needs to be realigned.  We realize that something is missing or we are doing too much of something that is taking too much of our time.  Ultimately, we realize that whatever is wrong, whatever is misaligned, needs to be evaluated and corrected in order for us to fulfill our greatest achievements and efforts in life for today and the subsequent future.  

I want to talk about five steps to obtaining holistic renewal in our lives. There are many elements of our lives that when they are misaligned, they negatively interfere with the other aspects of our lives. The five elements that I want to discuss today include our mind the mental area, our spiritual area and relationship with God, our physical area including what we intake and what we exert also known as diet and exercise, and our social area also known as our relationship with others. If any of these areas are messed up or off- balance it will affect other areas.

Let's talk about the first step. Our mental makeup is considered by most to be the ultimate navigation for everything that we do. I do know that it is a large influence on everything that we do. It is important that the intentions that we have in our minds are aligned with the actions that we take and the decisions that we make. It is important that our energy focus remains consistent with the goals that we have decided in our mind. If we do not take the time, effort, and energy to place intentions in our minds and make decisions regarding those intentions we will be very confused and live very passive, disoriented, unorganized, and possibly dysfunctional and low achieving lives. So the first step in holistic renewal is to review our intentional life goals. If we cannot identify our intentional life goals then that means that we need to develop such intentional goals for our lives, which may include placing intention toward where we are already giving our energy and efforts.  Our intentions should be aligned with how we spend our time and give our energy.

The second step for holistic renewal is to conduct a spiritual inventory of ourselves. We can do this by asking ourselves certain questions and exploring our responses. How is our relationship with God currently? When was the last time that we spoke with him? When was the last time that we listened to God? How often do we speak to God? How often do we listen to God? When was the last that we took the effort to thank God and show our gratitude for what He has given us? Other important questions include: how authentic are we living our lives? Does the way we spend time align with what we claim to be the important priorities in our lives? Do we do what we say is important to do? Do we refrain from doing what we say is important for us not to do? Are we honest with others regarding what is important to us? Regarding what we do? Does our character, our regular habits reflect what we believe that they should reflect? Do we have the right balance in our lives? Are we placing the right value on people and things in our lives, in the right order?

The third step is to take an inventory of our physical intake. That is referring to our diet, what we normally eat. Many people have different rules regarding what they choose to eat on a regular basis. Some people eat whatever and whenever their heart and emotions desire. Some people do not eat meat. Some people do not eat certain types of meat, for example beef or pork. Whatever physical intake/ diet you choose should align with the goals that you choose for your life. For example, if you need eat 500 more calories than your body needs, your goal should be to have a heavier physical package. If you choose to eat 500 fewer calories a day than your body physical makeup needs, then your goal should be to have a physical makeup that is malnourished and lacking full strength and energy. There are health risks when under eating and/or overeating. When we make a decision to do either one, we are saying that we accept the health risks associated with our respective choices.

There are many types of food to eat, including meat protein, non- meat proteins, vegetables, fruit, starches, refined carbohydrates, fiber, milk products and other types of foods. It is important to be aware of how these different types of foods affect our body. There are general benefits and cons to eating any of these and definitely cons to eating too much. Every person's body is different. Therefore, some of our bodies are more sensitive to some of these foods than others. Some of us may even be allergic to some of these foods. It is important to observe and study how your body reacts to these different foods so that you know the best way for you to eat and how much of them. What balance of foods gives you the most energy? What balance of foods gives you the body makeup that is healthy for you?

The fourth step of holistic renewal is taking inventory of our physical exertion. How often do we exercise? Some people need to exercise three times a week. Some people need to exercise five times a week. Some people need to exercise for an hour a day. Some people need to exercise for 30 minutes a day. It is important to exercise and sweat. It helps to build physical strength, energy and endurance; it helps to clean out toxins from our bodies. It also helps us to maintain healthy emotional balance by increasing endorphins that give us positive energy and feelings.

The fifth step to holistic renewal is to review our relationships. What relationships do we currently have in our lives? What are our relationships at home, work environment, church, extended family, friends, and civic organizations? When we think of the people and organizations, with which we have relationships, how do they make us feel? Do they help us to achieve our intentional goals? How important are our relationships to us? Do we contribute and give our best in our relationships? Do we receive appropriately in those relationships? We should be able to rank the importance of our relationships among the individuals and organizations of our lives. When we look at our relationships, we should be able to identify how they can be improved. Is there something that we should do to contribute more? Should we request more from our relationships? We should make the best effort to make our high priority relationships the best.

In completing our five steps of holistic renewal, we must make sure our mental and spiritual goals are aligned. We should review all elements of our lives and make sure that they align with our mental and spiritual goals. We must ensure that our focus and intent is aligned with what we believe that we should be doing. This renewal process is not a once in a lifetime exercise. This renewal process should be reviewed with some regularity. It should definitely be reviewed when you know that your life is not achieving what you believe that it should be achieving. We must make a continuous effort to be in tune with ourselves.