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Mental maps 

Original photo by Gordon Johnson from Pixabay


I want you to draw a quick map to your local gas station. Then call a friend that lives nearby and have them draw the same thing. You will find when you compare maps that everyone’s map is a little different, even if they’re drawing the same exact route. Now get out and drive or walk to that station and see how much you missed. Why am I having you do this?

We all operate from our own personal mental map of the world. We are hit with 11 billion bits of information daily, and our prefrontal cortex filters out what it thinks is important and focuses on that and that only. How many things did you eliminate from your map to the gas station? How many things did you put in the wrong place? How many things did you make bigger than they actually were? You see, our brains distort things according to our worldview.

You see our mind filters and labels information based on our beliefs, values, and experiences. Unfortunately, some of these experiences are passed down from generation to generation and are not a part of our own hand-drawn map. The great thing is we can change our maps of reality. We can modify our belief systems, limiting mindsets and values.

Our brains have something called a Reticular Activation System. I like to call Raz. Raz is a bundle of nerves at our brain stem that filters out all the important things around us. The hippocampus labels the situation, and then the Raz seeks out what you have labeled important.

If you don’t believe me, here’s a little game.

  1. Look around the room for 90 seconds and look for everything red.
  2. Close your eyes and try to remember everything in the room that was green.
  3. Open your eyes and see how well you remember the green things surrounding you.

I bet you missed quite a few. Your mind was focused on finding red.

You see, our mind distorts things and eliminates things. How many burgundy things did you see, and you classed them as red? How many pink things did you call red? How many green things did you miss completely? I know this seems simple, but the way our brains work is amazing. If we can figure out how our brains operate, we can hack our systems for success.

The key is to remember everyone has their own original map of the world. And everyone’s map is wrong. We hold the key to rewriting our map. So next time you’re arguing with your spouse, stop and realize their map is different from yours. How can you guys come to a conclusion? Can you find some middle ground that you can agree on and start from there? Perhaps it’s time to rewrite your maps.



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Surviving Christmas with Gratitude:

Transform your chaotic holiday season with this journal and 5 minutes a day!

Not everyone enjoys the holidays. After losing loved ones, it’s hard to continue with the festivities, but it’s vital to learn how to live again. After suffering through trauma, it’s hard to celebrate with a loud and rowdy crowd. Did you know a daily gratitude practice will change your life, both mind, and body?

Studies have proven that our brains literally cannot be fearful, anxious, or stressed and be grateful at the same time. Did you know that? The part of the brain that handles these emotions cannot do both simultaneously. It has to shut one off to open the other. Now you can be anxious and immediately grateful afterward, but you cannot be both at the same time!

What if you reprogrammed your brain to refocus on gratitude and shut off the anxiety during this season?

With a daily gratitude practice, you will do just that!


#christmas #selfhelp #survivingchristmas #lifecoaching #inspiration #motivation #lifecoaching #focus #mindset #tonyrobbins #wherefocusgoesenergyflows #personaldevelopment #depression #anxiety #holiday #mentalmaps

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year: Not Really

Original Image Credit: Image by NoName_13 from Pixabay 


It’s the most wonderful time of the year. You hear it everywhere during the holiday season, but not everyone agrees. It can be one of the most challenging times of the year if you’ve lost loved ones or suffered trauma. 


Change Your Idea of the Perfect Holiday:

Many silently suffer through the end of the year, dreading every party, event, and gathering. Why? It all starts with the mental picture we have of Christmas. We are inundated with a picturesque story of what the holiday “should” be. We suffer when our picture doesn’t match what we think is perfection. Unfortunately, no one tells us that we can change the picture.

Will changing the mental picture bring back our loved ones? No. Will it change our financial status? No. It will change your outlook on life, though. It will change your biochemistry and make you feel better. It will make the holidays seem brighter and more friendly. 

Change of Focus:

What you focus on, you feel. When we focus on the negative, we get more negative hormones, negative emotions, and negative behaviors. The same is true when we force ourselves to focus on the positive things. There are 1,440 minutes in a day. Ten minutes might be bad, but there are another 1,430 minutes left. Will you ruin the rest of the day by focusing on the ten bad moments? It sounds silly, but we do it all the time. 

This holiday season, turn your focus to the positive and see what happens. Every time that annoying co-worker spews at the mouth turn your focus to something else. Every time that manipulative family member starts, turn your focus. It’s not easy, but it’s effective. 


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Surviving Christmas with Gratitude:

Transform your chaotic holiday season with this journal and 5 minutes a day!

Not everyone enjoys the holidays. After losing loved ones, it’s hard to continue with the festivities, but it’s vital to learn how to live again. After suffering through trauma, it’s hard to celebrate with a loud and rowdy crowd. Did you know a daily gratitude practice will change your life, both mind, and body?

Studies have proven that our brains literally cannot be fearful, anxious, or stressed and be grateful at the same time. Did you know that? The part of the brain that handles these emotions cannot do both simultaneously. It has to shut one off to open the other. Now you can be anxious and immediately grateful afterward, but you cannot be both at the same time!

What if you reprogrammed your brain to refocus on gratitude and shut off the anxiety during this season?

With a daily gratitude practice, you will do just that!


#christmas #selfhelp #survivingchristmas #lifecoaching #inspiration #motivation #lifecoaching #focus #mindset #tonyrobbins #wherefocusgoesenergyflows #personaldevelopment #depression #anxiety #holiday

Frequencies – It’s More than Good Vibes (Monday Motivation)

“We live in an ocean of motion” – Bob Proctor

While things might look solid, they are constantly moving at the atomic level. This includes humans.. Everything has it’s own frequency and vibration. Just like radio waves, human frequencies go up and down. This vibration and frequency can literally affect your health!

Did you know the standard frequency of a human being is between 62-70Mhz? Studies have shown people with a cold vibrate at a lower level of 58Mhz and cancer patients have a frequency of 42Mhz!

Every thought has a frequency of it’s own. Thoughts of fear have a low level and thoughts of Joy have one of the highest levels. What if we could spend more time in the higher levels? How would it change our lives?

Photo credit:  Sérgio Valle Duarte
Music Credit: Scott Holmes https://scottholmesmusic.com/


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Reconnect To Joy (Happiness comes from within)

Image by Myriams-Fotos from Pixabay 

Reconnect to Joy

Ask anyone on the street to define joy, and they might struggle to find a definition. Webster’s dictionary defines it as a feeling of great pleasure and happiness. The second definition is the emotion evoked by well-being, success, or good fortune.

I have a little argument about the second one. While I agree joy is an emotion, I do not believe true joy comes from anything external. If being successful brought you joy, you would never see a celebrity addicted to drugs. If good fortune brought you joy, you would never see a lottery winner lose all their money. So what brings true Joy?

I believe joy is something we create on the inside and express externally. If you wait for some external factor to find joy, what happens if you never win the lottery or become successful? Are you going to be depressed for the rest of your life because you didn’t win the lottery? Perhaps my definition of success is different than most. To be truly successful, you need it in every area of your life; this includes relationships, spirituality, health, and finances.

What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses his soul is an old saying that I love. How many times do we see this happen to aging celebrities? They have based their value on their performance, and when people start forgetting them, they get depressed and start having trouble. Does that mean they weren’t successful? In reality, they have found financial success but never realized it comes from them internally. 

Whether people love you or hate you, you can be successful. You don’t have to have a million followers on Instagram to be considered a success. I worry about this next generation. Society has taught them their value is in their face or body’s beauty. What happens if they have an accident and lose their beauty? What if they live past 25?

It’s time for us to realize joy comes from within. Happiness comes from taking a moment to enjoy the beauty around you. Roses fade every year. Does that mean roses aren’t successful in their growth or their purpose? No. They are beautiful for a short time. So are humans. We may live more than a single season, but if you look back over history, our lives are too short. We need to find joy in the little things daily and not focus so much on the superficial. 

I read a study once that said 20 seconds of deep laughter would double the heart rate as if you had done 3 minutes of an intense rowing exercise. What if we laughed more? What if we took time to enjoy the little things? How many good chemicals could we fill our bodies with by looking for joy daily? Decide today that you will be happy and look for moments of pleasure.

 How do you reconnect with joy, you might ask.

  •  Learn to say no to those needless obligations.
  •  stop “Shoulding” all over yourself
  •  clear your mental clutter
  •  create a stop-doing list
  •  engage in 15 minutes of Laugh therapy daily
  •  play with your kids and your pets.

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-Synova

Happiness is a Choice, not a Result (Choose Happiness)

Image by AnnemarieDeloo from Pixabay 

When I was battling depression, I found that I had to make a choice every day. I had to choose to get up and be happy or let the darkness overtake me. This happened whether I was taking antidepressants or not. Then I began to study and found this wonderful quote by Ralph Marston.

“Happiness is a choice, not a result. Nothing will make you happy until you choose to be happy.”

As humans, we tend to think we will be happy when something external happens we will be happy. The problem is our happiness comes from the inside. How many celebrities have you seen that have everything money can buy but are still not happy? 

Happiness is not based on our circumstances but rather on our view of those circumstances. Sure, things can be bad around you, but there is something that you can choose to be happy about. 

I was part of a group once that tried to force happiness and positivity on everyone. As soon as you walked into the room, a middle-aged woman wearing too much makeup was in the front, jumping around, trying to motivate the crowd like a defunct cheerleader. Another spastic woman would meet you at the door and slather you will cheer. By the end of the meeting, you’d be exhausted from all the jumping around and chaos. I left one night and told my mother that I thought we had just been to a “Barbie’s On Speed” convention. While their intentions were good, they went about it in the wrong way. 

When I say you can choose happiness, I’m not saying you can never be unhappy. There are going to be bad days in your life. The important thing is what you choose to do with them. I won’t lie to you and say life is full of rainbows and butterflies. My 6th-grade teacher had a horrible saying. When a student would whine about something, she would say, “Well, life’s hard, and then you die.”

What a horrible thing to say to a child! But, in reality it’s kind of true. Life is hard, but you can choose to refocus, be happy, and achieve great things anyway.


“The greatest discovery of every generation is that a human can alter his life by altering his attitude.” – William James


We may not be able to change the situation, but we can always change our mindset about it. 

Image by Daniel Reche from Pixabay 

So how do we choose happiness?

We choose to be happy by refocusing on better and brighter things. You can’t expect to be cheerful when you’re constantly dwelling on the negative things. Find something to be happy about. If you can’t find anything, then watch something happy. 

It’s Thanksgiving as I’m writing this, and last night I was trying to stress out about the company coming over today. My mind started to think about the stress and anxiety of the holiday without all of the loved ones I’ve lost over the last two years. I immediately began to feel depressed, and a headache came on. 

Then I caught myself and said, “No!” 

I turned to counting my blessings and tried to think of everything I could, but it only lasted for a little while. Later the darkness started pressing in again. So, I turned on a stand-up comedy series and laughed my head off. I finally fell into a peaceful sleep and woke up feeling great today. 

What happened? I had turned from negative thoughts to positive ones. An hour of what I call “Laugh-Therapy” filled my system with healthy hormones like dopamine, serotonin, and endorphins. Then I had a good night’s sleep and felt better the next day. Did I get any of the 15 people I’ve lost back? No. Did the situation change at all? No. I just changed because I chose happiness over depression. You can choose to be happy too!


Recommended Reading:

Happiness Is a Choice: New Ways to Enhance Joy and Meaning in Your Life

Whether depression is felt mildly or acutely, temporarily or persistently, it strikes just about everyone at some point. Drs. Minirth and Meier believe, however, that the emotional pain of depression can be overcome and avoided. Drawing from their professional training, counseling experience, and biblical knowledge, they explore the complex relationship between spiritual life and psychological health and then spell out basic steps for recovering from depression and maintaining a happy, fulfilling life.


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Attitude of Gratitude (Monday Motivation)

Image by Deborah Hudson from Pixabay 

Did you know having an attitude of gratitude can literally save your life? It can lower blood pressure, drop your pain levels, and give you better sleep!

Here in America, we are getting close to Thanksgiving, but I’m sad to say gratitude is usually the last thought on our minds. It shouldn’t be that way. We focus on getting ready for family and friends to come over. We focus on cooking and cleaning, and travel plans. But gratitude is the last on the list.

I’ve been working on a new holiday-themed gratitude journal to help those who struggle during the holiday season. I’ll let you all know when it’s available on Amazon. It should be out this week.

You see, when we spend time in gratitude, we literally change our own biochemistry. Every negative thought sends cortisol and adrenaline pouring into our veins. On the other hand, every positive thought sends out good hormones like dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, and endorphins.

  • Dopamine: enhances learning, focus, and motivation
  • Endorphins: triggers feelings of happiness and bliss
  • Oxytocin: empathy hormone makes you feel more connected to the world around you. 
  • Serotonin: regulates attention, behavior, and body temperature

Studies show that people who practice gratitude regularly have 20% more gray matter than those who stay in a constant state of stress. 

“In everything, give thanks…”

It does not say to give thanks FOR everything. It says IN. It means that despite everything going wrong, find something you can be grateful for. Why? It literally changes our biochemistry, our behavior, and our health. I hope you take the time to adopt an attitude of gratitude this holiday season.



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How did I build an author platform so big it attracted the attention of Hollywood?

How did I build an author platform so big it attracted the attention of Hollywood? The new book I’m working on now lays it all out for you. I’m so excited that this book is finally about to be released. I started it two years ago, and then my life turned to chaos, but I’m finishing it now.

It should be released by Monday, November 7th.

[Writer’s Wednesday] Synova Interviews the Creator of Jack the Sack


It’s #WritersWednesday at Synova Ink Publishing and Synova is interviewing the children’s book author Mr. Dee Dee. He’s the creator of the Jack the Sack children’s detective series. This week he reads book one, “The Case of the Missing Shoes.”

Jack the Sack and the Case of the Missing Shoes

This is the story of Detective Jack, who started out being a brown paper sack. One day he decided there was more to life than carrying bread, milk, and eggs. So, he flipped himself over and grew some arms and legs. He jumped off the counter and strolled over to the TV where a detective show called Klumdumbo he did see. Jack the Sack said, “Hey, that’s the life for me.” And, that is how Detective Jack the Sack came to be.

Get Book #1 here: https://amzn.to/3grpdEj


Watch the interview here:


The Power of Meditation (Self Help for the Real World)


Image by John Hain from Pixabay

When most people think of meditation, they think of mystical things, like Buddhist monks in a remote monastery. Nothing can be farther from the truth. Mediation is more than a spiritual practice for religious people. 

Definition: a practice in which a person uses various techniques to train attention and awareness to achieve a mentally clear, emotionally calm, and stable state.

I don’t see religion in there anywhere. Do you? No. So get that out of your head. Another misconception is that you must meditate quietly for an hour. That’s not true, either. You can calm your mind and find quiet peace without taking an hour. What if you got mentally quiet for fifteen minutes a day? 

Benefits of regular meditation practice:

  • Increased energy levels
  • Improved memory & focus
  • Reduced anxiety & stress
  • Lower cortisol levels 
  • Better sleep
  • Increased heart health due to lower stress levels

With those types of benefits, who wouldn’t want to meditate? WebMD says meditation can decrease chronic pain and increase your immunity too. 

Some say meditation is the fountain of youth for the brain. It literally thickens the prefrontal cortex. This part manages the brain’s higher functions. Sara Lazar, a neuroscientist from Harvard Medical School, found that 40 & 50-year-olds who meditate regularly have the same amount of gray matter as 20-year-olds!

Studies show that it only takes 8weeks to change the construct of the brain. That means you can start now, and in a couple of months, your gray matter will see the benefits.


#selfhelpfortherealworld #selflove #selfcare #alexanderthegreat #motivation #love #inspiration #mindfulness #personaldevelopment #selfimprovement #personalgrowth #healing #mindset #lifecoach #meditation #selfdevelopment #quotes #meditation #positivity #success #mentalhealthawareness #spirituality #gordianknot #motivationalquotes #happiness #psychology #selfhelpbooks #life #selfawareness #positivevibes #habits


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