Tag Archive

Tag Archives for " Personal Effectiveness "

Personal effectiveness is built by parenting yourself: commit to never stop growing and learning; be mindful of what drives your thoughts and behaviors; consciously choose how you will respond to the world and how we will allow it to influence you.

How to get beyond overwhelm

​How to get beyond overwhelm 

(Approximately a 5 minute read)

little lizard standing alert

Do you put off large or intimidating projects till later, like I do?

You'd really like to get to it, but you keep getting the feeling that it would be better to wait till after ____. (I'm sure you can fill in the blank.)

​Why, when we know a project is important and worthwhile, is it so hard to start on it?

​Its all to do with your lizard brain1 trying to keep you safe. The lizard is constantly on the look-out for possible threats. ​When you picture something important in your life that you want to change / create / develop, your lizard goes on a spree of identifying every potential threat, every little detail that could possibly derail your project.

Result: You feel like it won’t be safe to start, till you know how to deal with Every. Little. Detail.

Is there a way to get around the watch dog? Maybe even put its talents to good use?

​Read the article at PermacultureNews.org

​(This is Part 5 in a Series.)

How to influence your own behavior, in advance

​How to influence your own behavior, in advance

(Approximately a 6 ​minute read)

sad lizard on branch

We all have our best moments, when we’re focused, productive and happy.

And we all have moments where nothing is so compelling as checking our Facebook  feed to compare ourselves with those who are happier and more productive than we are, while absently dipping a spoon into a tub of something sweet and comforting.

Sticking to useful habits and avoiding time-wasters has nothing to do with will power in ​those not-so-​focused moments.

When you're tired and your focus falters, something is going to catch your attention.

It might be something super-compelling (like your Facebook feed), or it might just be something with immediate proximity ​ at eye height or right in your path, (like the junk food at the check-out counter). 

Whatever it is, its going to lure you off the high road, onto the path of least resistance.

The question is not, “Will you be distracted?” but, “What will distract you?” Is there a way to design the path of least resistance so it still leads in the right direction?

Read the article at PermacultureNews.org​​

This is Part 4 of a Series

How to make distractions lead you where you want to go

​How to make distractions lead where you want to go

(Approximately a 6 ​minute read)

​​How can you get to what's important, when ​energy-sapping mess and ​time-wasting distractions keep leading you astray?

​​You ​have important, worthwhile projects you want to work on. B​ut some days ​you struggle ​to motivate yourself to get the washing folded. ​

​Humans are easily distracted from tasks that are important and valid, but that feel difficult or uncomfortable, because there is a lizard on the control panel who is obsessed with comfort and wants immediate gratification.

Every time your focus wavers, your lizard brain seizes its chance to immerse you in ​comfort.

Then you “wake up” a short time later, wondering how you got from ​"I REFUSE to be distracted by those cookies one more time!" 
...to the bottom of the empty cookie jar.

What can we do to work with this, rather than fighting it?

Read the article at PermacultureNews.org

This is Part 3 of a Series

What do Lizards and Procrastination have to do with Your Brain?

​What do Lizards and Procrastination have to do with Your Brain?

(Approximately a ​5 minute read)

grey, pre-historic looking lizard

​This is Part 2 of a Series about the “lizard brain” – made up of the oldest parts of the human brain​ ​that co-exist with our more recently evolved brain regions​.

​The lizard brain ​is 
obsessed with ​safety and comfort​; it ​cannot understand ​that there is a future; ​and ​it ​can completely bypass ​your rational brain when it feels threatened or stressed​.

The lizard brain is responsible for all the procrastination and avoidance behaviors we’re so familiar with – overwhelm, being easily distracted, feeling unmotivated, difficulty prioritizing, seeking comfort in inappropriate ways, and many others.

These are not “weaknesses,” so much as strategies that your lizard brain uses to try to keep you safe and comfortable in the present moment.

​Are there ways to mitigate these apparent human weaknesses, or even turn them into strengths? Read the article at PermacultureNews.org, and find out. 

​​​This is Part 2 of a Series

What do Lizards, Procrastination, and Permaculture principles have to do with Your Brain?

​What do Lizards, Procrastination, and Permaculture principles have to do with Your Brain? 

(Approximately a ​5 minute read)

​Photo​: Christo Goosen, Pexels

​​Did you know there’s a lizard in your brain that’s the source of all your resistance to difficult, boring, intimidating or uncomfortable tasks?  

And that this lizard can be re-trained, using ​Permaculture principles (or just good old natural un-common sense) to work with human nature to ​achieve ​your goals (instead of sabotaging them)?

This Series of articles will show you how.

Here, in Part 1, I’ll explain the human brain structure in very simple terms. We’ll meet the “lizard brain” that lives in the base of your skull and find out what makes it tick. 

By the end of ​this article, you’ll understand why procrastination and avoidance are such frustratingly common human behaviors. ​

Read the article at PermacultureNews.org.

​​This is Part 1 of a Series​.

Re-examining Freedom

​Re-examining Freedom 

(Approximately a ​4 minute read)

​Up until around the time ​we became parents, ​Alain ​and I ​never questioned our assumptions about freedom. ​​

​The story of our time says ​this is ​normal:

  • to ​be chained to debt and to schedules, 
  • to have ​little or no control over where our food originates, 
  • to be walled off from nature, 
  • and to be more connected to ​each other via screens than in person.  

​This post describes how we began to question that story, and to re-examine ​what freedom means to us. 

​(This is Part 3 in a Series about our family's journey towards real and green.)

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Thinking for yourself

​Thinking For Yourself

(Approximately a 6 ​minute read)

Thinking for yourself, to me, means understanding what influences your thoughts, questioning everything, and then making your own informed decisions with consideration for the short AND long-term consequences to yourself and other living beings.

Aside from building more autonomy and self-reliance into your life, ​this kind of thinking​ will help ​dismantle the existing growth-at-all-costs system that relies on consumers who don't think for themselves.

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An Illusion of Independence

​An Illusion of Independence

​(Approximately a 4 minute read)

In the modern world, independent individuals and nuclear families are artificially sustained by a fossil fuel dependent, growth-at-all-costs system that cannot last. 

The ​alternative that most appeals to me is ​a world in which we live interdependently – in direct relationship with each other and with ​the web of life that can sustain us indefinitely, so long as we care for it as the extension of ourselves that it really is. 

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Growing Up – For Adults

​Growing Up - For Adults

​(Approximately a 6 minute read)

Growing up for adults, if you choose to take it on, is choosing never to stop growing.

It's​ what you do if you decide that rather than live a life and think thoughts prescribed ​by the circumstances of your upbringing and by the prevailing cultural norms, you’re going to live a life designed by YOU. ​

(​This post is fine to read on its own. But if you have time for a bit more reading, the post Thinking For Yourself is a good lead in to this one.)

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Expanding Awareness


​Expanding Awareness

(​A 3 to 4 minute read)

​​"​It is no measure of health to be well-adjusted to a profoundly sick society."

— Jiddu Krishnamurti

​The fabric of wholeness that once gave us a sense of purpose and belonging​—connecting us into a web of responsibility, relationships and health among family, community and nature—has come undone.

​In this post, parenthood prompts me to explore this unraveling, and to begin a search for the solutions to it. 

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