1/1/18   

What is your greatest hope or dream for 2018…Reaching a major/ important goal? Making perhaps a difficult but necessary major life change? Pursuing a passion that’s been too easy to ignore? Finding or taking an important step toward pursuing something purpose driven?

This week, create a vision of what the ideal 2018 would be for you. Set some lofty goals, if you dare, that will make looking back on 2018 this time next year a purely joyous experience. Your best life is simply waiting for you to manifest it.

Happy New Year!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 

1/8/18

Is 2018 the year you will really take your resolutions seriously so that you can reach your most important and perhaps daunting goal(s)?

If so, remind yourself about this one simple truism for reaching goals: When things get difficult, when distractions or setbacks try to pull you in another direction, or when you don’t know what else to do — regroup or keep going, but don’t give up!

It’s a fact that your default position is the status quo; and that’s what keeps you stuck in your comfort zone. In the short term, staying there may feel easier, but the cost of living in that comfortable state of discomfort could be to avoid fulfilling a life changing dream.

Each time you leave your comfort zone, you build emotional muscle, which is simply the ability to fully believe that you can handle adversity or whatever you may be fearing. For example, managing difficult life changes such as divorce or a financial crisis, or facing and resolving a conflict all build emotional muscle. That’s what makes failure and adversity a win-win situation! If you succeed, that’s proof you can do it. But when you don’t succeed, you’ve proven you can handle failure. And that’s emotional muscle you can flex anytime, such as when overcoming some challenge or taking the prudent risks necessary to reach your most difficult, but rewarding goals.

This week, why not take one or more New Year’s resolutions to a new level, by defiantly leaving your comfort zone and taking at least one difficult step toward that goal which is most important to you. No matter how it turns out, your guaranteed result is some of that precious emotional muscle!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for more strategies to build emotional muscle!

 

1/15/18

What is your best life? I try never to miss an opportunity to point out that my definition of that high standard is a life governed by your choices, and nobody else’s.

To the extent that you’re truly living each aspect of your life according to your own choices, you’re empowered to take whatever action is in your long-term best interest―whenever possible and appropriate―as well as to find peace within yourself, when accepting a situation that’s out of your control is your only real option. And there’s no better time than the now to check and measure the degree to which it is your choices that rule your life.

So take some time this week to do something that I have found to be a great exercise for doing this: Think about the areas of your life that could use some change or improvement. In these parts of your life, what choices have you made that have led you to your current circumstances? Are these choices still valid? If not, what new choices are you willing to commit to that can make this situation or part of your life not just good, but outstanding?

Perhaps it’s an easy shift or tweak, one that requires some serious long-term goal planning or something in between. Most importantly — in fact if nothing else— make sure that your new choices empower you, to never forget they are your own, regardless of the outcome!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for more strategies to be living life governed by your choices!

 

1/22/18

Is this the point for you in January where your most ambitious resolutions and goals start to take on, “that was then, this is now” status? Or could they simply use a boost?

Remember that goals — especially your most creative ones — start out as dreams. And dreams are products of our right brain. But to become goals that you’ll reach, your left brain needs to take over. This is the part of you that sets time lines, maps out strategy and answers the essential “Ws”: Who? What?, When? Where? and Why?

So this week, take an elusive goal of yours and make sure you have a clear vision for each of these Ws. If you are having trouble doing this, it’s probably because you’re not clear on the “Why?”, which is practically always the most important of those Ws. It is your “Why?” that provides the key answers regarding your motivation to get to the finish line. Ask yourself, “Is whatever I need to do to accomplish this goal worth the end result?” If the answer is yes, perhaps all you need to get moving on your goal is to write out your most important reasons “why” this is so, and refer to them often, whenever you can use encouragement or you see yourself sliding backwards.

if you cannot establish a highly motivating “why”, now you know the reason for your procrastination; and perhaps a tweak or even a complete reevaluation of the goal or resolution is in order!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for more strategies to reach goals and make life changes!

 

1/29/18

Is there any area of your life where you feel stuck, in a rut, or at an impasse? If so, resist the temptation, for now, to obsess about how you got there or how you’re going to turn things around.

Instead, this week define the rut, impasse or life situation you’re facing right now. It could range from something that’s very minor, to something crucial to you. Then write down exactly what the situation would be if you were no longer stuck, finished with the rut, free of the impasse, and/or the issue were resolved.

Next, try this: Close your eyes and project yourself ahead to a future point in time, where the issue you’ve identified is resolved. Imagine that you have now come through it with flying colors. Take a moment to savor that feeling of victory, success or satisfaction.

Then, as the you of that future time observe what your life “is” like or how it “has” changed. Who are the people in or out of your life? What are the circumstances? What’s different about your life? What is the same? Get a good look in your mind’s eye at the vision of that future moment.

When you open your eyes, as the “you of that time in the future”, write out some notes for the “you of today”, telling yourself exactly how you “were” able to break through your impasse. Lay out for the “you of today” how it “was” done or how you “actually did” it. In doing this exercise, you are using some wisdom that perhaps you did not realize you had at your disposal. If you tried this with a minor issue or situation, next try it with something major.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for more impasse crushing strategies!

 

2/5/18

You may have heard, and perhaps even have hanging on your refrigerator door, some variation of the idea to “live your life as though each day were your last”.

This is a powerful concept, so how about taking a bit of time this week to put it to work! For a moment, simply imagine yourself on that last day of your life – regardless of how many years or decades from now that may be. Look “back” at your life and identify the things that made you happy, that brought you joy, and that were most important to you. Also, look at some of those things that you may have made far more important at the time than they actually “were”. See if you can identify now, what really “was” important. What “were” the things that most “gave” your life meaning?

What constitutes the meaning of our lives, of course, are mainly those things that are passion and purpose driven — to which we are truly committed — as well as the things and people we love, enjoy and are affected by the most. When you’re able to answer these questions for yourself, take some notes. For example, write down what stands out about the most important experiences and relationships of that life you “lead”.

Finally, ask yourself a very important and crucial question: “If I had it all to do over again, what would I do differently?” As you answer this question, know that you are providing yourself with some very important data as to the direction you now want your life to take. This simple reflection exercise can be done often, and will almost certainly keep you on track by refreshing your frame of reference, for how to live your best life.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for more strategies to give you a glimpse of the meaning of your life.

 

2/12/18

In honor of Valentine’s Day, I’ve got a gift for you regardless of your relationship status, with one exception:

If you’re in a new relationship, in love and still enjoying the high that fuels initial passion, you probably know — at least “intellectually” or from past experience— that your delicious dopamine high won’t last forever. But enjoy it while it does…You certainly don’t need help this year for this part of your life!

But if your marriage or love relationship can use a little tweaking or better communication skills, please accept my popular audio program, How To Develop The Ingredients For Staying Together In Your Marriage Or Love Relationship with my compliments. If you’d like to improve your sex life together, give How to Enhance Passion and Sexual Satisfaction in Your Relationship a listen and try the exercises together.

If it’s in trouble,  click here for my complimentary “Can Your Relationship Be Saved?” Assessment Inventory and MP3 audio to help you begin to evaluate your marriage or love relationship right now.

If you’re in the process of ending a marriage or love relationship, let me gift you my popular program: Letting Go of Your Ended Love Relationship.

And if you are not in a relationship this year, whether or not you wish you were, please experience with my compliments: The Single Life, How to Love It With or Without a Relationship. Most importantly, remember that the key to staying out of bad relationships is to be at peace with yourself not being in one, valuing solitude, and really enjoying your own company to the max. This program has been around for over 20 years; and many people have said that ironically, it gave them the attitudes and mindset they most needed to find the right relationship very quickly.

So no matter what’s going on for you this year, make it a Happy Valentine’s Day, and remember that with the right strategies and the will to pursue them, you can be operating at your highest potential in this important area of your life very soon!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 

2/19/18

Whenever you’re feeling stressed remember that the key is how you manage these daunting feelings.

In our daily lives, stress itself is not the problem, distress is. It’s distress that powers anxiety, depression, anger and all the troubling ripple effects – both psychological and physical – that result. And distress is simply the amount of stress you’re feeling over and above that which you are sufficiently managing.

So this week, think about one or two things (or people) in your life that you most associate with stress, and try this very quick and effective two minute exercise: close your eyes and simply breathe in to the count of five and out to the count of five. Do this for twelve times — six breaths per minute for two minutes. (There are even a variety of apps that can time this breathing exercise for you on your smart phone or watch.) Notice the shift you feel in two minutes, then feel free, of course, to increase the length of time you do this.

To eliminate things that distress you altogether, take a thoughtful look at: what needs to be added to or eliminated from your life, the needless pressures and expectations you may be putting on yourself or others around you, and anything else that may be overwhelming you, while giving you little in return. By merely doing these very basic stress management strategies, you’ve taken a giant step toward eliminating toxicity in your life!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here for a complimentary download of my audio program and workbook: How to Manage Your Stress and Make it Work For You — containing 20 strategies for both handling stress on the spot and defeating distress, at its roots.

 

2/26/18

What’s perhaps the most common misperception about operating at your highest potential? I believe it’s the erroneous view that your highest potential is the best you can ever be, do, or achieve on a long-term basis.

This is an incorrect notion, simply because operating at your highest potential is a state of being, not a goal. And you are achieving this standard anytime you resolve to access that zone within yourself — where you are at your best in a given part of your life. The best news is that everything you need to enter this zone is available to you right now.

By definition, your highest potential is your best life – with your relationships, your career or business, spirituality, or any other life area. And usually we access this zone, one part of our life at a time.

This week, ask yourself some simple questions designed to help you take notice of the extent to which you are living your best life. With a specific life area in mind:  Are you motivated by positive passion, enjoyment and what you consider to be your unique purpose? If so, you’re in – or close to—the zone. If not, what would make you answer yes? And perhaps most importantly, what makes you feel best about yourself?

Remember, whether you call it your best life or your highest potential, you are never competing with anyone else! Your only source of true competition is between where you are now versus where you could be.

The extent to which you feel best about yourself, is one of the most reliable ways I know of to be sure that you are internally motivated by passion.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 

 3/5/18

Anger can be one of the most problematic emotions of all. And remember, it’s you who feels the pain when you’re angry! Nelson Mandela -who would know a thing or two about this topic — said it best: Being angry is like drinking poison, then hoping your enemy will be the one who suffers as a result.”

Nevertheless, anger can have one important function your life: it can act as an alarm clock, alerting you to a misfortune, an injustice, a toxic person, or some issue you may be avoiding — perhaps with someone important to you.

So this week or the next time you’re feeling angry, ask yourself, “Will this — whatever you’re angry about – be a problem, issue or in any way important a month from now?” (or use your own custom time frame).  If the answer is yes, take massive action NOW to resolve the situation. If not, let it go. To the extent that you cannot do this, you obviously have more to learn about the situation and how you are personalizing it. Or maybe some forgiveness is in order?

Think of forgiving, not as a gift to the object of your anger, but as a way for you to convert that toxicity within yourself to peace! And never hate your enemies, learn from them – even if it’s how not to be.

Whenever anger is more than simply a passing wake-up call, it’s very

much in your best interest to do whatever it takes to get the message and then let it go! 

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

For more insight and anger management strategies, click here for a complimentary download of my program :Overcoming Your Anger – In the Shortest Time Possible.

 

3/12/18

Take a moment this week for a check on what motivates you.

Whenever I speak on the topic of motivation or coach managers on how

to motivate subordinates, I emphasize that motivation is never a “one

size fits all” process. So whether you’re simply trying to nail down what motivates you or how to motivate someone else in order to be maximally effective, it’s crucial to understand and acknowledge this often overlooked, but determining factor. Is it security? Fitting in? Praise and recognition? Money and other perks? Other external rewards?

Or is it the internal rewards that come from within, such as: Doing what’s fun, what you simply enjoy or what makes you most creative? Pursuing an important cause or mission larger than yourself? A unique combination of these or something or something else entirely?

Motivation that comes from within, as opposed to external rewards is usually the most effective in keeping you on track as well as the longest lasting. This is certainly my own personal experience as well as what I’ve consistently heard from the highest achievers I have worked with throughout the years.  Ironically, when you’re motivated internally, the external rewards characteristically find you with far less effort!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for more motivational insight and strategies!

 

3/19/18

Many people I speak to have a great idea that if manifested would be transformational or life-changing for them. It could be an original innovation of some kind (such as a creative endeavor), a major career move, a new business venture, or even a significant lifestyle or relationship change. We live in a world of infinite possibilities!

It’s always a joy to see a big idea convert to successful results. But no matter how hard you try to convince yourself otherwise, outcome is usually the one factor least under our control. Sadly, the fear of failure to achieve the result you want) is often the culprit that prevents so many great things from even being attempted!

In reality, true failure only occurs under two circumstances: when you fail to learn the lessons or get the message behind an unfavorable outcome — that would boost the probability for success the next time — and when you fail even to make the attemptespecially because of that fear of failure. Of course, the latter is the only way I know to guarantee failure.

So with that haunting idea you’d like to pursue, this week make a commitment to believe in yourself. Take a step — no matter how big or small— toward pursuing it. One word of “caution”, taking the initiative toward pursuing a dream or passion can become habit forming!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here for a complimentary download of my popular audio program: “Making Crucial Choices and Major Life Changes”.

 

 3/26/18

To the extent that your life is powered by passion and purpose, you are most likely to be using your innate gifts to do what internally motivates you.

And motivation that’s internally generated is the most gratifying, reliable and longest lasting for achieving success. It inspires you to do something (such as the work or mission you were born to do), as opposed to being something (such as rich, famous or powerful). The latter, of course, are all external rewards, that come from idealized — yet uncertain — results.

I once coined the light-hearted term, beaholic to describe people who are “addicted” to status. For example, those who strive to be: rich (as opposed to taking the risks and doing the hard work necessary to earn that financial status), famous or powerful (whether or not that status is earned or deserved), a “star” (as opposed to mastering your skills and doing what it takes to optimize the talent you bring to your field), a hero (as opposed to doing something risky to help someone else) or achieve some other enviable status (that leads to the prestige). Yes, it’s a fact that our highest achievers often make things look easy, that are anything but.

In the final analysis, it’s your actions—not your position—that define you. Thus, one of my favorite recommendations is to not ask your kids,” What do you want to be when you grow up?”, but instead ask, “What would you like to do?”! This may sound like splitting hairs, but in my experience, it’s one of those few crucial distinctions that determine long-term success.

This week, take notice of how this simple shift in how you may be defining success, could make a significant difference to some important part of your life.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for more strategies to optimize your unique innate gifts!

 

 4/2/18

Would you like a simple litmus test that you can apply to almost anything in your life to help you determine the degree to which you are operating out of that zone of your highest potential? If so, here are the two best words you might want to refer to often: enjoy and inspire.

 What you enjoy is simply what puts you in joy. And if we could freely pick our emotions, wouldn’t joy practically always be at the top of the list? The feeling of enjoyment is one of the best clues that you are following a passion. So it follows that the best way to pick joy as your default emotion is to devote yourself to whatever you are passionate about as much as possible.

Whenever you’re inspired, you are in spirit. And spirit is the force that guides you to your unique purpose, mission or calling. So think of inspiration as a confirmation that you’re going in the right direction. After all, don’t people who inspire you have an almost magic aura around them that’s hard to ignore?

Take some time this week to consciously use this litmus test for identifying – and perhaps even making a list of — the people, places and/or things that trigger joy in you and put you in spirit. And think of what you enjoy and are inspired by as the main ingredients of your highest potential. Most importantly, take a step or two in that revered direction that you’ve identified for yourself!

 Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here for more strategies to recognize what your highest potential (a.k.a. your best life) looks like.

 

4/9/18

As Spring kicks in, that delicious feeling of “spring fever”, which often interrupts your routine to some extent– at least mentally– reminds us to do two things:

  • Take some time for play; “smell the roses”; savor, reflect on, and allow yourself gratitude for wherever your efforts have brought you so far; then perhaps take an inventory of what is working in your life and what is not.
  • Next, shift over to the big For many, Spring is a great time for new beginnings. Perhaps it’s time to take the initiative toward that big idea you’ve been pondering, a lifestyle change, or whatever helps you to optimize that springtime frame of mind.

So this week, allow yourself to embrace both of these springtime gifts: Are you letting yourself become a bit unburdened in order to enjoy the present moment with enough downtime and stress free moments? And is there a new beginning for you, whose time has come? If so, resolve to take at least one or two action steps in the direction of bringing it to fruition. There’s no better way to prolong spring fever, then to ride its energy toward achieving an important long-term goal.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for a complimentary download of my popular and time-tested audio program: Making Crucial Choices and Major Life Changes

 

4/16/18

Many years ago, when I learned how to water ski, my instructor – probably without even realizing it — conveyed to me a dose of invaluable wisdom. This became such an effective affirmation, that I’ve applied it to my own life, and to my work, helping others more times than I can count: When you don’t know what else to do, let go!

Over the years, I have come to regard knowing when to let go, along with the ability to do it, as one of life’s most invaluable coping skills. There are an infinite number of applications for this attitudinal skill. Here are just a few examples:

  • Knowing when to walk away—whether it be from an unworkable relationship, an unfulfilling job or career or a business venture that’s not working
  • Forgiving someone you are painfully angry at, for your own peace of mind
  • In parenting — allowing your children to make their own mistakes and pursue what they are passionate about –which is often the only way they’ll discover the life they were born to live
  • And almost any other unwanted burden or problematic situation you’d like to take off your shoulders

This week, take an inventory of how the art of letting go could be a game changer for you or someone close to you. What can you free yourself of, that can allow you more energy to pursue what’s truly fulfilling, gratifying and/or most important to you? Then take an action step or two to bring it to fruition.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here to learn about some proven strategies for letting go, no matter how difficult it may seem.

 

4/23/18

For many people I’ve worked with over the years –including some of the most gifted among us – their degree of success comes down to one simple question: To what extent are you guided by the actions you initiate, versus what you are merely reacting to?

Here’s a reality I’ve seen played out so many times, that I consider it a truism: Our highest achievers don’t wait for opportunities, they create them.

When you react, you are yielding to fate. But when you act, you are putting your own choices in motion. And it’s the courage to pursue those choices that leads you to your best life.

So here are some questions to contemplate this week:

Suppose for a moment you’ve decided to make a shift from the mode of reacting, to unapologetically taking the actions necessary to achieve your most important goal(s), what opportunities could you create? What would you now do differently? Is there anything stopping you? If the answer to this last question is yes, look each obstacle in the eye, and make a commitment to mow them down one by one.  Chances are, none are truly insurmountable, unless you let them be by yielding to them.

The “power struggles” that exist within yourself, are the easiest to win once you recognize them.  So no matter what you’ve come up with as you ponder these questions, remember: your ability to open that door to optimal personal power is always available to you.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for more strategies to open that personal empowerment door!

 

4/30/18

Whenever you believe you are a victim, you are defining yourself as powerless and without choices. This is why, victimhood can be an extremely toxic state of mind. I would even define it as the opposite of freedom! Still, life sometimes deals cards that are very tough to play or even accept.

So for those occasions whenever you get an attack of victimhood, or feel powerless, here’s one of my favorite Zen truisms that puts the ball right back in your court: “You are free to do whatever you want, you need only face the consequences”. If this sounds too obvious, read on!

In reality, you are always free to think and act out of the box. You are free to take action that shatters your comfort zone. You are even free to take risks that you never would have previously considered. And, on the other hand of course, you are still free to yield and let circumstances or the status quo define you. But just knowing that you have the choice is the most empowering thing of all. And it is your personal power—which is merely an attitude—that can shatter practically any toxic frame of mind.

Of course, there’s no affirmation that can make you immune to the consequences of your actions. But once they are truly your actions, you are a victim no more! This week, put this simple shift in attitude to work for you in an area of your life begging for change, that you may in some way have defined as impossible.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for a complimentary download of my time tested program –

Making Crucial Choices and Major Life Changes

 

 5/7/18

The word “victim” — as I used it in last week’s Insight — triggered such a reaction, that I thought I’d clarify when the definition and reality of being a victim is accurate versus when it’s merely a self-defeating attitude. And most importantly, what to do about it.

Being the victim of a crime, an accident, a medical condition, an act of war or terrorism or a natural disaster are certainly all examples how the term “victim” is accurate. However, it’s how you see you yourself, even in the worst of situations, that determines how much you suffer – at least mentally.

I’ve known many people both personally and professionally that have been survivors of all these things. But those who suffered the most were the ones who saw themselves as powerless to do anything but consider themselves a victim. This results in various degrees of psychological victimhood, which leads to depression, rage, lack of self-confidence and the failure to act (after all: “what’s the use”?).

Yet many survivors of true misfortune, bypass psychological victimhood altogether. What do they have in common? They’ve adopted what was often a horrific situation as part of their purpose or calling. In many cases, working to pass the law, fight the disease, volunteer or help others to address the issue; tapped a source of personal power (as opposed to powerlessness) they never knew they had.  So not only is it possible to make a difference in the world, but even in the worst of times, you have the power to defeat victimhood!

Finally, thanks to those of you who prompted me to clarify this!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for a complimentary download of my audio program:

How to Develop Self-Confidence and a Positive Self Image.

PS: To contact me personally or if there’s ever a specific aspect of reaching your highest potential that you’d like to see me address with a Weekly Insight, simply email me at this address. I value your feedback and try to answer all inquiries personally.

 

 5/14/18  

With the unprecedented bombardment of information and opinions, our constantly being nudged by multiple electronic devices and the seeming inability to be out of reach, enjoying the fruits of solitude — one of my favorite, yet so often underrated and neglected states of being–– seems to be more of a challenge than ever.

This is sad and unfortunate, since solitude enhances creativity (something the most creative people I know universally agree on), freedom (to read, write, draw, compose, dream, recharge, or simply enjoy whatever gratifies your unique desires); and the ability to focus on what you’re uniquely passion about, or to hear a calling that connects you to something larger than yourself.

 Perhaps most importantly, the quiet of solitude puts you in touch with your own thoughts, which – among many things — are the most reliable aspects of your uniqueness. Personally, I find my quiet time for reflection (along with my twice daily meditation practice) to be the best environment for generating new ideas as well as my favorite antidote for stress.  

This week, why not spend some quality alone time, without electronic distractions or other types of meaningless chatter. Warning: If you don’t already do this on a regular basis, it might become habit-forming!

 Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for a complimentary download of my Stress Management audio program!

 

 5/21/18

I hear so often about unrealized dreams and missed goals, that I tend to go right to my arsenal of strategies for taking action steps — no matter how large or small – to encourage people to end inaction and just start moving.

Of course, practically any difficult goal worth pursuing, requires that you make some difficult decisions; and there’s much information out there about decision making skills. But whenever you hit an impasse or find yourself unwilling or unable to make the decision or decisions that will get you moving toward your goal or dream, there’s practically always one stifling factor in the mix: the myth of certainty (that “assures” you there will be no regrets whenever the outcome of your decision is known).

Let me explain. We often refer to a very easy decision as a “no-brainer”. This usually means — at least at the time — that there is no ambivalence. And no ambivalence means no real decision needs to be made. Even in these situations, you might sometimes fool yourself into believing that the outcome is certain. In reality, of course, the myth of certainty only serves to prevent us from making the important and usually tough decisions that the most consequential aspects of our lives require.

So this week, why not take an inventory of decisions that need to be made, that you may be procrastinating on – whether in your business, career, or the personal/relationship aspects of your life.

Here’s a quick strategy: take the first decision that comes to mind, and pretend for just a moment, that it was a no-brainer. What would your decision be? Now that you know your preference, address each aspect of this decision — one by one— that could hold you back, by pulling you into a murky state of ambivalence. If you stick with this exercise, you should quickly be ready to start considering and then taking action steps. Then watch those impasses melt away, as you consider using this simple drill for the next decision and the next.

 Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for more highly effective decision-making strategies!

 

 5/28/18

Whenever you’re trying to reach an important goal and you hit that metaphorical “wall” that has you doubting your ability to succeed, that’s your clue to switch from problem to solution mode!

Indeed, we often discuss tools and strategies for climbing over or somehow getting through mental barriers. But here’s a tool that can be a “jackhammer” for knocking the “wall” down altogether.

Here is how it works: start with your most challenging goal – the one you may even think is impossible to reach, despite its importance to you. Next, on a scale of 1 to 10 (with 1 being where you are now and 10 being complete success as you now define it), imagine that all the stars, skills and luck – yes luck, which can be thought of as your ability to recognize and step up to the plate when an opportunity arises – are all aligned to perfection. And for the purposes of this exercise, let’s define perfection as succeeding far better then you ever thought you possibly could. For example, on that 1 to 10 scale, imagine hitting a “50” – a grand slam homerun squared, where they can’t even find the ball! What would that look like: A billion-dollar business? Stardom? A marriage or love relationship that exceeds anything you’ve ever even dreamed about?

Then, revisit your goal through the non-starry eyes of realism. Instead of a “50” on that one to 10 scale, take another look at what a “mere” 10 would represent. Notice how much more attainable your challenge now feels. Next, without the restraints your wall represented, think of your grand vision (that “50” on your 1 to 10 scale) perhaps as “phase two”.

But this week, and before that wall — or any of the doubts or fears associated with it — goes back up, pull out all of the stops, and start taking action steps to achieve “phase one”: hitting that 10 (you now know is possible) on your 1 to 10 scale.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for more strategies to reach lofty goals!

  

6/4/18

Anytime you realize that you can use a shot of motivation, remember what motivation is and where it actually resides. I say this because so often I see people looking for motivation in all the wrong places. And the most common misconception is to confuse motivation with reinforcement. External rewards such as money, recognition, approval and even praise (for example) can all be thought of as means for others to provide you reinforcement, for doing what often benefits them. These things feel good and can be extremely important for you to have. But they rarely come with enough “emotional shelf life” to provide genuine or lasting fulfillment.

True motivation comes from within – sometimes, seemingly out of nowhere! It’s fueled by passion, enjoyment, fun, love, excitement, creativity (where wild horses couldn’t pull you away, until the job is done) and a sense of purpose. Most importantly, when you are genuinely motivated, you feel best about yourself. That’s the kind of motivation that not only lasts, but provides gratification, satisfaction, and true commitment—even when you’re facing the most difficult challenges.

So many people over the years have told me, that they “have it all, but aren’t happy”. A lack of this internally driven motivation regarding what’s most important to them, is often the culprit.

This week, why not take a look at what could be most fulfilling to you – that is, trigger the best feelings in you about yourselfregardless of the external rewards. Whatever you come up with, will almost certainly be a reliable vehicle that takes you even closer to your best life!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here to learn about more strategies for optimal motivation!

 

6/11/18

One of our least helpful sources of information is hindsight. Why? Because hindsight usually comes with that tendency to put yourself down and second-guess yourself now, for something you may have done (or not done) previously — before you had certain crucial information that’s available to you now but wasn’t then.

And as I often note, confusing hindsight (not knowing “then” what you know now), with insight (the ability to learn from and thrive on knowledge that often comes to you as a result of mistakes, failures, and other important life experiences – positive or negative) is almost sure to trigger needless pain and self-doubt.

But there is one way that hindsight can also be a valuable decision making and motivational tool, if you see it for what it is, rather than let it distress to you. Try this simple exercise: Pick a fear or anxiety that may be preventing you from moving forward in some part of your life.

Then, reflect on this question, “if I let this fear or anxiety prevent me from taking action or making this decision (for example), what would I be most likely to think or tell myself about it in hindsightat some point in the future —a week, a month, a year, or a decade (you set the time) from now?”

This week, why not apply this daunting question to a goal, dream or action you’d like to manifest, but for the fears or anxieties holding you back. Then proceed — feeling fully in charge — according to the insight that this averted “hindsight” has gifted you.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here for a complimentary download of my time-tested MP3 and workbook: Making Crucial Choices and Major Life Changes!

 

6/18/18

Could you identify something you believe you’re the best in the world at? OK, how about something that you believe you can you do as well or better than anyone you know or know of? I often challenge people to ponder variations of these questions. And it may surprise you to know that with some reflection, practically everyone can come up with something. Try it. Chances are your answer provides you a glimpse into the state of mind that’s your default position, when operating at your highest potential.

But optimal performance, being at your best, and even having a skill you believe you can do better than anyone else alive, should never be confused with being a perfectionist! Perfectionism — the demand that you be perfect — is an impossible standard and therefore, merely a self-defeating attitude. It’s often the culprit behind procrastination, stagnation and the internal forces that undermine your own self-confidence when trying to accomplish your most important missions and goals.

Also, perfectionism can prompt you to negate what you do accomplish – even if it’s outstanding and your absolute best — with the idea that “it’s not good enough”. I’ve often heard this phenomenon referred to as “paralysis of analysis”. Thus, defeating perfectionism and all its ripple effects is one of the best self-confidence builders there is.

This week, why not take a thoughtful look at how perfectionism could be holding you back from starting or completing an important project, taking a prudent risk that helps you exit your comfort zone, or living your best (though remember, not perfect) life!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 For more strategies to defeat perfectionism, click here for a complimentary download of my popular program:

How to Develop Self-Confidence and a Positive Self Image

 

6/25/18

If this is one of your “favorite” mantras: “I don’t have the time”, first let me state an obvious truism: that all of us have the same amount of time. Every one of us has 24 hours every day, 168 hours each week, and 52 weeks each year. This goes for the most accomplished person on earth, as well as the least.

The only difference among people is how this precious amount of time is managed. And precious is the best adjective I can think of to describe our gift this time, because time is the only commodity we can never replace once it’s gone.

In previous Insights, I’ve asked you to imagine what you would do if you had an unlimited amount of money to pursue your passions and dreams. Many have given me the feedback that this question alone, helped them to connect with how they wanted to spend their time.

So this week, let’s just pretend for a moment that you had an unlimited amount of time. Would you use it to research that business you’re thinking of starting? Get the information you need to help you decide whether to go back to school? Start updating your resume, even though there is no urgency? Get more involved with a neglected hobby, sport or avocation you keep telling yourself you’ll get to when you have time? Work on finding the love relationship you desire? Spend more time with your children, friends or other family members? Or simply enjoy some extra solitude?

Have some thing(s) in mind? Now how about moving toward what do you really want to be doing, by making a commitment to manage your irreplaceable time so that you see it as a gift, instead of an obstacle!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here for a complimentary download of my MP3 program:

How To Manage Your Stress And Make It Work For You, to enjoy some highly effective time management strategies.

 

7/2/18

On behalf of our entire team, let me wish you and yours a Happy and Insightful Independence Day!

Although we are located in the USA, members of our online community can be found in over 100 countries around the world. So no matter where you are, our fondest wish for you is to celebrate your own independence, by acknowledging your freedom to use and enjoy every one of your unique gifts, to create the life you were born to live.

Think of independence as an attitude that inspires your self-determination to think outside of the box, escape from any aspects of your comfort zone that hold you back, and to make your life a trail of joy with your own distinct blend of passion and purpose leading the way.

We encourage you to take some time today (and why not every day for that matter) to reflect — with gratitude — on the unlimited opportunities that exist to reach your highest potential in any and every area of your life!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

And our entire Media Psychology Associates team

 

7/9/18

You’ve probably heard the sage advice routinely given to early career up and comers, to both dress and conduct themselves as though they were now in their next job or at the next rung in the ladder they are climbing. In simple terms, this means act as if you are already thereand sooner than you think—you will be! I’ve heard so many anecdotes suggesting that this simple attitudinal strategy works, that I give it my carte blanc endorsement.

Most importantly and regardless of your stage in life, by conducting yourself as if your goal was accomplished, your dream was in the next phase of manifestation, that daunting problem you’re wrestling with was favorably resolved, the person or people you’re seeking have already shown up in your life, or that the payoff you are working really hard to achieve already has produced even better results than expected; you are creating the mental energy for a best possible outcome.

This week, put this simple psychological shift to work for you. Remember that outcome is the one aspect we can least control, but proceed in your life, as if the results you are seeking were a done deal. If you dare, do this while even allowing yourself to begin working on the next thing that these favorable “results” would lead to. Then notice how much more cooperation and collaboration you get from the universe!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here for more strategies to get you to the next plateau of an important part of your life!

 

7/16/18  

“Parkinson’s Law” is the adage – and perhaps even a truismthat states, “a task expands or contracts to fill the time available for its completion”. For example, if you only have an hour to complete a report, you’ll get it done in an hour. But if you have all day, there’s a good chance it will take all day.

Can you think of something in your work or another part of life where this principle may apply– especially something that’s important and relevant now?

Here’s how Parkinson’s law can work for you: Take a dream or an important goal that you tell yourself you’ll pursue “when you can”. Then, imagine you only had a specified amount of time such as a week or a month to get it done, or this opportunity for success would be gone forever.

This week, why not really get bold with this strategy. Imagine you had only one year – for example — to get that business started, get out of that toxic relationship, finish your degree, get on with your next career move, or relocate to the place where you really want to live — then the window of opportunity closes forever. What would you do differently? How about if you only had one year live? What changes to your life would you make immediately? Or how would you live your life differently?

Questions like this have the power to make you realize how precious time is, and to see the importance of first recognizing, then living your best life! So even if it’s just a few minutes, why not make the time today to take one step — no matter how big or small– in the direction of the life you most desire.

 Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for a complimentary glimpse of your best life!

 

7/23/18

I often ask people who tell me they’re stuck in an issue, problem or situation with no way out, to show me their “wildcard”. What am I talking about? Let me explain or rather ask the question another way: Do you have a reliable excuse holding you back that you tell yourself is insurmountable?

Examples may include: your genes, your childhood, your financial circumstances, your socioeconomic background, relationship status, age, pattern of luck, (even) a debilitating health issue or a life changing loss. Any of these can potentially represent a harsh reality. But chances are, it’s your belief about their effect on you now and how they will limit you in the future, that hold you back and weaken your goals and/or quality of life at least as much and perhaps even more than the reality itself.

Because I’ve seen so many people that seemed to have many of these examples going against them succeed incredibly; and also seen many others who seemed to have it all going for them – money, great health, appearance, for instance, and almost every possible opportunity – fail miserably, I’ve come to an ironclad conclusion that your attitude and determination is by far the most important factor to your success and fulfillment than anything else. And the best news is that regardless of whatever else is going on in your life, your attitude is the one thing that you can change.

So this week, why not make a commitment to identify your wild card — aka, master excuse – that acts as the naysayer whenever you think about taking a step toward your most ambitious (but, of course, possible) dream or at the very least, in the direction of your best life. Then, proceed at first mentally, and then with action steps, as though this excuse were no longer viable.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here for more strategies for living by the attitudes that support success!

 

7/30/18

Occasionally, I’m called “too optimistic”, particularly when I encourage you to build a “no excuse zone” around your perceived limitations. I especially get that feedback when I push some version of an “anything is possible” attitude, such as with last week’s Insight.

For example, let’s say your dream is to be a professional athlete, but you’re in your late 40s. Yes, there is no question that time has passed you by with this specific dream. But you can still blog about your sport, possibly find some kids who would value your coaching, or find a group of like-minded enthusiasts to enjoy some version of it. And this is just one of a countless array of examples.

The reality is, there are very few things you cannot accomplish some fulfilling version of if you merely discard the defeatist “I could never do this” attitude and instead ask, “What is possible?”.

This simple shift can make you immune to the pain of practically any limitation — real or perceived.

So this week, take that daunting dream or goal, you’ve told yourself is impossible and simply ask what part of it is possible? Then imagine someone with your identical realities, paying you an outrageous amount of money to write up a plan that with the right amount of work and determination could be pulled off. When you’re finished, simply put timelines on it and whether you’re talking about starting a business, making a career change, finding the relationship you’re seeking, or virtually anything else, you’ve got a great draft of your roadmap. And in future Insights, we’ll certainly be talking about turning that roadmap into the reality you’re seeking.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here for a complimentary preview of my new online course to help you first identify and then live the life you were born to live.

 

8/6/18

I am at that stage of life where most of my contemporaries talk about retiring or at least drastically cutting back.

Me? I love what I do much too much to retire completely. But have found a subtle thinking shift that’s helped me personally, as well as many others I’ve worked with, to change from practicing what some would call “workaholism”, to finding the best conceivable blend of work, retirement, semi-retirement or optimal involvement.

 

The shift? It’s unbelievably simple but may require that you change a thinking habit. When taking something on that’s new, stop asking, “why not?”.  Instead, ask “why?” Although I believe I relish my work as much as anyone could, I have found myself at times so immersed in things I enjoy work wise, that there was little time left over for avocation, family and friends, and even cherished solitude.

By asking “why” (or “what” something will actually contribute to my life), I find myself enjoying the things I do take on far more, and with time for new activities that once would have been out of the question.

This week, make it a point to ask the “why” question to anything you’re considering. Most importantly, make sure that you are mindfully choosing, rather than automatically letting your default position take over and rule you.

 Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here for more tools to select activities and life options that uniquely fit you.

 

8/13/18

Feeling overwhelmed? As summer begins to wind down and makes way for that time of year when forging ahead becomes more of a priority, this is a great time to inoculate yourself against being overwhelmed.

 Try this simple “mental housecleaning” exercise: Imagine yourself completely dropping all of your roles, obligations and (even!) current relationships. Pretend for a moment that there are absolutely no sacred cows in your life and that you can be literally free of anything and everything that consumes your time and energy. The first time you do this, it may feel a bit farfetched, but give it a try!

Make your imaginary housecleaning as thorough as possible, by making a list of everything you’re leaving behind. When your list is complete, it will be a sort of summary of your present life. Once again, imagine your life without all the roles, people, obligations and other things on your list. Then take a moment to savior this feeling of absolute freedom like you’re “a stranger in town” without a care in the world.

When you have that image, and are ready to move on, it’s time to start your next list. Only in this one, include first who and then what (roles and things) you really want to “put back” into your life as is. When this second list is complete, make one final list. This one will include whatever is on your second list (what you want “back” in your life), of things that cry out for change—major or minor. The purpose of this third list is to recognize what relationships, for example, need some work; what roles you want to be more or less involved with and anything else in your life that can use  some degree of change or fine tuning.

I do this “mental housecleaning” exercise often. It’s one of my personal favorites and almost always results in some great insight!

 Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here to enjoy a complimentary download of my time-tested program: Making Crucial Choices and Major Life Changes

 

8/20/18

A listener to one of my audio programs where I talked about creativity, wrote me recently to say – and with a great deal of sadness — that he really wished he could be as creative as he was when he was younger.

The fact is that creativity is a gift that resides within us, that never dies. One of your greatest and most worthwhile life challenges is to discover just what your unique creative gifts may be—art, music, writing, designing, building, or (well you get the idea) — and then fine tune this discovery as much as possible. For example, if you are talent is music: What kind of music? Is composing your talent? Performing? Arranging? Teaching? Your own combination of some or all of these things? And then, determine how much time and energy do you choose to devote to it: Your career? Is it hobby or avocation? Just something to quietly appreciate in your own way? Again, you get the idea.

When engaging in creative endeavors, think of your primary reward as being the process of creating itself. Consider any external rewards, such as money praise or recognition as gravy; and you’re designing the best possible environment to thrive creatively and maximize your talents.

The biggest takeaway is that like any other calling, your creative talents as well as your other innate gifts are a part of you, that simply don’t go away. They can only hide — under the many layers of life’s distractions —unless you commit to using, enjoying and better yet: optimizing them!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here to learn about more strategies for enhancing your creativity.

 

 8/27/18

Whenever you catch yourself allowing your happiness or well-being be to be determined by forces outside of yourself, consider this:

Any happy event, success, victory, or windfall can trig­ger great feelings of joy in you—temporarily. But as you have probably noticed many times, any frame of mind that de­pends on outside factors that you can’t control, simply doesn’t last. Obviously, the problem is that you are always subject to the next life event, and then the next one, and then the one after that.

The good news: Happiness and fulfillment that do not fluctuate with external events are actually a natural part of you, once you discover how to access that zone within you where your life is guided by your unique passions and life purpose. This is your best life, and you have inside of you all you need to be living it right now.  ­

­

How do you get there? First, it bears repeating that it’s natural to have this state of mind. This means that to the extent you’re not organically there already in an important area of your life, something is blocking you. For example; a fear or anxiety, difficulty staying focused, your comfort zone, feeling overwhelmed or it’s perhaps something only you are aware of.

This week, take some time to recognize that/those factor(s) within yourself that need to be addressed, so that your path to this amazing zone is unblocked. Best of all, you have no compe­tition, so there is nobody outside of yourself to stop you, in order to make this shift and be living your best life.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for strategies for entering that zone of your highest potential!

 

9/3/18

If you ever tend to get off track when setting an intention or goal, let me suggest that you consider using Labor Day as a milestone for changing your motivational mindset.

For many, Labor Day symbolizes the last day of “play”, before regrouping and forging ahead with some new project you may be procrastinating on, a bad habit you’re trying to break or a winning habit you’d like to hardwire. But if you’ve noticed a pattern of being really motivated (like with your New Year’s resolutions) but only for a short time before going backwards, it may be time to break that pattern with some new attitudes.

Remember, the first step toward adopting a fresh level of commitment consistent with success, is to make sure you are clear on exactly why you want to complete the project, reach the goal, or change that habit. So ask yourself a few questions, then answer them in detail (beyond one sentence answers). For example: What’s in it for you to put out all this effort? What are the consequences of failure? On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being the highest, how important is it to you that you achieve the results you’re looking for? If you’re not maximally motivated at a 9 or 10, why or why not is that? And what do you need to do to be operating at a motivation level of 10? Stay with this last question until you’ve got the answer that scores a 10.

Now you’re ready to give it all you’ve got! And anytime you find yourself slipping or moving toward procrastination, go right back to the basics: On that 1 to 10 scale, how motivated are you? Motivation is nothing more than an attitude. And never forget, that it’s your attitudes that power your behavior. So this week, start the season, with a new mindset, by applying this principle to something important enough to make a real difference in your life!

 Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for more strategies to enjoy maximum motivation!

 

9/10/18

 Can you think of an extremely common and highly underrated

stressor that can also serve as a reliable alarm clock, while at the same time, a strong signal that it’s time to get motivated? Let me give you my answer — boredom!

Consider this: boredom is often the first sign of burnout at work, or that your marriage your love relationship needs some attention. It can be a signal that there is a void in your life that somehow needs to be filled or that something you used to enjoy with a lot of enthusiasm has mentally morphed into “been there done that” status. Too often, boredom is “remedied” by busyness. But obviously and unfortunately, merely making yourself busy, often serves as little more is than a Band-Aid.

So if you’re aware of feeling bored with a part of your life, take some time this week to see where and how you can replace that low grade downer feeling of boredom with some new or neglected passion. Some of the most successful people I’ve worked with, have even discovered boredom to be the signal that they are burnt out on their own self-gratification! And when this has been the case, it’s generally a signal that some new mission is in order.

Most importantly, when this boredom alarm clock rings, take some time to hear the message. You could be taking the first step toward the best phase of your life!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here for more strategies for connecting with those easy to ignore signals that it’s time to get back on the path to your highest potential!

 

 9/17/18

When asked what powered all the genius it took to manifest his unparalleled litany of world changing inventions and other achievements, Thomas Edison famously replied, “1% inspiration and 99% perspiration”.

In other words: ideas, vision, and the ability to think outside of the box are all great virtues – but hardly enough. It’s taking all that inspiration (or that which puts you “in spirit”, where your innate gifts reside), and doing the hard work to make your vision happen. A common misconception I hear often, is that inspiration alone is (or should be) enough to provide you all the motivation you need to achieve your goal. If this were the case, how would you explain all the unfinished books and dissertations, unfulfilled career change dreams and great business ideas that were never pursued? These are just a few of the infinite examples I could give of unrealized visions.

Take some time this week to identify anything that for you may be coming between inspiration and realizing the results you want. For example, you might want to explore the “usual suspects”: procrastination, fear of failure, and merely giving in to discouragement – that can take on many forms, when you hit a hurdle or two.

Understand that these obstacles are merely attitudes that are within your power to address and change. Then all that’s left, is the hard work that might actually become enjoyable the minute you accept that “perspiration” is really the only barrier between where you are now and where you want to be.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here for more strategies to help you manifest your dream!

 

9/24/18

Do you sometimes feel too busy to enjoy your own company?

As one who has written several books and articles as well as many audio programs on various aspects of relationships – covering virtually all of the issues of being single, part of a couple, in relationship transition, and even one on sexual ecstasy, it may (or may not) surprise you to know that I am often at my best when experiencing solitude.

In addition, for many of the highest achievers I have worked with, solitude remains what I have come to call the most underrated state of mind. Solitude is the best environment for creativity and accessing all aspects of that zone of genius within you. And once you allow yourself to really enjoy and value your solitude, it can become addicting, even if you are happily part of a couple, as I am.

Juggling a busy schedule and multiple roles with things such as children’s activities and even social obligations can be daunting. But maintaining control of your life is a problem that can be tackled if you simply learn and practice some basic time-management skills.  For example, strive to become comfortable with saying no(!) to requests that will pile even more into your already busy life, without giving much back. Most importantly, don’t fall into the trap of believing there are no options, but to feel controlled by, rather than in charge of your life!

This week, take another opportunity to consider what’s truly important to you. Only this time, make every effort to default to solitude wherever you can.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here for more strategies to manage your time and life roles.

 

 10/1/18

If we think of a computer as a metaphor for the mind, our beliefs are what would constitute the operating system. It is our beliefs that create anger in us when someone treats us poorly, make us feel anxious when faced with a difficult challenge, or cause de­pression when we fail at something important.

The best news of all is that what we believe is the one — and sometimes the only — aspect of any situation that is always under our control! The more you realize this and react to life events accordingly, the more your operating system will reflect your choices, rather than the self-defeating assumptions that may have been with you since long before you can remember.

I’ve asked many people in the course of my work, what it is that they attribute their success to. The variety of answers I’ve gotten, could be a book in and of itself. But there’s one that I hear from time to time that’s my hands-on favorite: “it never occurred to me that I wouldn’t be successful”. In other words, without the self-defeating beliefs that may have you telling yourself, for example: “without certain luck, financial status, social standing, a better upbringing, and (since the exhaustive list could also be the length of a book, fill in one or more that talk to you) _________;   this difficult task (goal, dream or vision) is impossible” — the door is open as widely for you as it is for anyone else to achieve massive success.

This week, take some time to recognize how you stand in your own way by telling yourself exactly what you need to hear to hold yourself back. Then, substitute an alternative affirmation: one that will motivate you to see no result, but the success you are striving to manifest!  

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here for proven strategies to hardwire your belief system with attitudes for success!

 

10/8/18

Self-Confidence is the best fuel I know of to pursue your unique passions, to exit a toxic comfort zone, accomplish your most daunting goals, and in fact reach your highest potential in any part of your life.

And self-confidence is merely an attitude that depends on nobody else. Thus, it’s always within your reach. In other words, you can decide this very moment, to default to self-confidence, whenever you need it the most – just as your greatest heroes do in their own way!

Here’s a simple tactic to remove an extremely common obstacle to your self-confidence, whenever you catch yourself measuring your own reality against what you perceive to be the circumstances of someone else: remind yourself that is an invalid comparison. Instead, remember, there’s no better time than moments like this honor your own uniqueness. Putting others on a pedestal or envying them, using hindsight to second-guess yourself, and all forms of self-doubt, are nothing more than self-confidence destroyers.

So this week and anytime you compare yourself to someone else, consider that be a red flag saying stop! In reality, the only comparison you could ever make that’s truly valid is the one between your life as it is now versus what it could be. Think of the latter as an aspect of your highest potential or best life as you now see it!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

For proven strategies to permanently remove obstacles that block your self-confidence, click here for a complimentary download of my time-tested audio program:

How to Develop Self-Confidence and a Positive Self-Image

 

10/15/18

Having quality mentors can be the difference between success and failure! So This week, consider this: If you could have any mentor in the world (either who is alive today or who has ever lived), who would that be? Got it?

Next, take a current dilemma or situation you’re now dealing with. Write a short essay—even a sentence or paragraph—on how that mentor would advise you to resolve your issue. What does your virtual mentor(s) believe about your circumstances that you would be much better off be­lieving? (For example, “this ‘impossible’ goal is not only attainable, but fun to tackle.”) Remember, you can have as many of these “mentors” as you need or want for different aspects of your life!

Most importantly, you can think of your virtual mentors as your strongest self, or even as the escorts, ushering you to your best life — which you can access twenty-four hours a day.

Consider the “advice” they give you to be affirmations you can refer to often or as the need arises. And the way to hardwire an affirmation or new attitude is to do whatever it takes to live by it. Otherwise, an affirmation is merely words. But an affirmation backed by action? That’s real change!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for more highly effective tools to hard wire winning attitude!

 

 10/22/18

A common theme that goes through many of our Weekly Insights, is to identify a goal, mission, dream, vision, calling or purpose; and as long as you are being motivated by your passions — to leave no stone unturned in identifying and relentlessly pursuing the best strategy until you get the results you want.

But sometimes, despite your best efforts and as unfair as it may seem at the time — when persistence doesn’t deliver — consider changing your approach. Perhaps take a time out and as the Beatles would say, “let it be”.

This means fighting the urge to stay on a treadmill that has you running in neutral. Instead, let go of your demand for immediate results and instead, go inside yourself — whether through meditation or however you access the source of your deepest and most reliable wisdom. Step back and take a time out. Then, let the next step find you.

Never think of this as retreating or giving up. In reality, what you’re doing is letting your frustration driven emotions heal, while the creative part of you operates in the background having a chance to explore and imagine new possibilities, and perhaps even a new level of wisdom. Trust that this can lead to anything from a small but game changing tweak to a totally new approach, that has the power to amaze you!

This week, think of a part of your life where you could let go and trust your inner resources to provide an answer, where your conscience efforts may be falling short.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here strategies to access your inner resources!

 

10/29/18

There’s a great Buddhist adage: Worry does not take away tomorrow’s troubles, it only takes away today’s peace”.

Worry is the mental expression of anxiety. And anxiety can be thought of as the fear of some imaginary “catastrophe” (such as ridicule or looking foolish, rejection or failure) — as opposed to a prudent fear of something that can present a real danger (such as physical harm or financial ruin, for example). Remember, no matter how realistic something that triggers your anxiety may seem, unless there is a clearly consequential danger you can define, it’s still imaginary.

Consider this: when you have a real fear inducing situation, you can mobilize into action and use every tool and strategy at your disposal to tackle or avoid it. But imaginary anxiety inducing issues powered by worry, exist only in your thoughts. So they can only be resolved, by changing your thinking and attitudes about them.

That’s why I’ve long said that the best cure for anxiety (the non-medical type, of course), is to ignore it, then proceed as if you were fearless! For example, to overcome the anxiety about speaking in front of a lot of people, ignore the anxiety and make that speech! Each time you do this, your anxiety gets weaker and you get better at speaking. But the opposite is also true: each time you let your anxiety rule (and you decide to stay in the audience instead of the front of the room — to continue with the example), your anxiety gets stronger.

So this week, take any situation in your life that triggers anxiety in you. Next, take a step or two in the direction of defying that “mental bully”, by confronting and doing exactly what it is that most triggers your anxiety.  The steps you take don’t have to be big ones, but no matter how small they are, notice how good it feels to watch your anxiety melt away. Most importantly, make that just the first step in putting anxiety and worry in your rear-view mirror!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here for a complimentary download of my audio program:

Overcoming Your Anxiety, In the Shortest Time Possible

Note: This program has been used by mental health professionals to supplement therapy, for over 25 years!

 

11/5/18

One of the most important skills for operating at your best, is to trade a self-defeating belief about yourself (for example, “I won’t take this risk, because I could never handle failure”) for a winning affirmation, (such as, “I’ll do all I can to succeed, but if I fail, I’ll learn a few valuable lessons to help me do it right, next time”).

Affirmations can be extremely powerful tools for guiding you in the right direction. They are the attitudes you can live by, that are chosen by you to propel you forward. Affirmations can also become your new thinking habits and beliefs, that free you from old patterns, which could be holding you back in any part of your life.

Remember, the key is to act on and live by your chosen affirmations. And in reality, without action steps attached to them, affirmations are just words.

So this week, choose a situation or an area of your life that can use some improvement. Then ask yourself, “what could I believe differently that could guide me to bring about the optimal change or peace of mind I’m seeking?” The answer you come up with is the “first draft” of your much-needed affirmation. Then tweak it until it fits like a glove.

Next, focus on the action steps that your new affirmation (aka chosen attitude) is calling for. What are they? Make a “to do” list, consistent with your affirmation, to achieve the optimal result or success you’re seeking. Going back to our risk-taking example, you might start your affirmation by saying, “I’m out of excuses. Now it’s time to move forward step-by-step.” And remember, the size of your steps is far less important than the fact that you are moving forward!

 Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for proven strategies to make your affirmations life changing tools!

 

 11/12/18

Long before the idea of a comfort zone was even conceptualized, and “self-help” referred to survival — rather than some obscure futuristic concept like reaching your highest potential — the Buddha articulated in one sentence, the foundation for what defines the underlying core of the many thousands of books and countless articles that have since been written on the topic:

“Be open to everything, but attached to nothing.”

I believe that this is among the Buddha’s most powerful quotes, and in my opinion, nobody has ever said it better. It’s also arguably the most powerful statement ever made about reaching your potential.  So consider making this a core attitude to empower you from now on!

What are you holding on to that no longer enhances your life or serves you, simply because you feel an ungratifying attachment to it? Perhaps, for you, this means to let go of the roles that are not working in your life or are obsolete—that you keep solely because of your attachment to them, the fear of change itself or worry over outcomes that are uncertain (and don’t all outcomes have this in common?)—then trade them for new roles or experiences that awaken and support your unique gifts and passions.

This week, ponder what new risks or experiences may take you to the next level of your journey– that have been all too easy to avoid, up until now. And should you find yourself morphing back to the status quo, ask yourself what’s keeping you attached to it. After thoughtfully exploring these two questions, watch how your perspective shifts.

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for proven strategies to incorporate this great and timeless message from the Buddha into your life!

 

11/19/18

As you celebrate Thanksgiving this year, give some thought to the role of gratitude – which could be the most healing state of mind there is – in your life.

For starters, think of gratitude as the opposite of victimhood, anger, powerless and so many other self-destructive emotional states. Regardless of the loss or setback, when you see yourself as a victim, you forfeit your precious personal power needed to dismantle negative attitudes and end suffering.

On the other hand, gratitude, empowers you to focus on what is present in your life — the positive forces or people around you and even on your life itself — instead of dwelling on the down side or what you don’t have.

 Thus, feelings of gratitude – such as, for surviving a toxic situation or learning and acting on the message behind that situation– have the power to push resentment, depression and anxiety all off of your radar screen. 

We wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving, along with the hope that you’ll resolve to make gratitude a 365 day per year staple in your life!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

And our entire Media Psychology Associates team!

 

11/26/18

I often hear from people who have a groundbreaking idea to pursue, a major life change they’d like to make, or merely some boredom with their comfort zone that’s impossible to ignore.  Yet all too commonly, they find themselves procrastinating or downright avoiding the necessary steps to make change to happen.

Usually, my obvious question is “what’s holding you back”? And although the answer I get is said in an infinite number of ways, practically all roads lead to some variation of fear.

 In most situations, especially the ones that keep you off the path to your best life or highest potential, the truth is that fear is merely a roadblock to all the good things your passions and best desires want to lead you to. So often I hear things like, “I wish I had the courage to________” (and fill in the blanks: start that business, leave an unfulfilling job or relationship, roll out a creative idea that may bring about criticism, or risk rejection by confronting someone with something unpleasant).

Now here is the reality: courage is merely an attitude you can adopt this moment and apply to any part of your life. I would even argue that courage is the default position, that we would naturally apply to just about every aspect of our lives, if only it were not blocked by a fear we somehow learned.

In fact, without the fears that block your courage, you can be as courageous as anyone on earth. Imagine for a moment that you had all the courage you could possibly ever need to make fear a non-factor in your life. What’s a courageous action or two that you would take this week? Then dare to put those action steps on your “to do” list and proceed as though your best life depended on it.

Click here for a complimentary download of my popular audio program: Making Crucial Choices and Major Life Changes.

Note: This program has been used by mental health professionals to supplement therapy, for over 25 years!

 Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 

12/3/18

As the holiday season takes center stage, the word “joy” seems to pop up almost everywhere. And this is a good time to remember how reliable an indicator joy — or enjoyment — is that you’re on the right track in any part of your life you may be focusing on.

Feelings of joy are the best indicators that you are being guided by your positive passions, as opposed to unfulfilling habits, obsolete rules or even needless fears and anxieties. So in addition to trusting joy as a reliable messenger, remember that genuine joy is effortless. In other words, you never have to chase it or buy it.  Simply let it find you.

This week, why not make a special effort to recognize the people, places, and things in your life that trigger in you those effortless feelings of joy!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

 Click here for strategies to connect with joy and peak experience in your life!

 

12/10/18

There is no shortage of reasons why many will say that the holiday season can be highly stressful. But in my experience, they boil down to one word: expectations! Expectations that you put on yourself (e.g., financial, time to get everything done, or social), on others (that they do or come through for you as you expect them to) and even the holiday season itself (that it will be fun and joyous — despite your circumstances this year, such as recovering from a loss or being in a life transition). So beware of your expectations, which – if you think about it — are really premeditated disappointments!

 However, sometimes, your expectations are the only aspect of a situation you can control. And that’s the best news of all! Think about the last time you were angry, anxious or down. Wasn’t there an expectation that wasn’t being met by you, some other person, or a situation/force beyond your control? And without that expectation, what else could possibly have the power to trigger the stress you felt?

 So this week, take a moment to reflect on your expectations regarding the holidays or any part of your life, for that matter, that you experience as stressful or disappointing. Ask yourself, “are my expectations realistic”?   Then resolve to eliminate whatever unrealistic expectations you still have. Never forget that expectations are yours to create, so they are also yours to eliminate. This is an extremely powerful step you can take to eradicate unnecessary stress and all the toxicity that powers it!

 Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

I hope that holiday stress is not a factor in your life this year. But just case it is (or for whatever time of year you might need it), click here for a complimentary download of my time-tested audio program:

How To Manage Your Stress And Make It Work For You

 

 12/17/18

If you’ve followed our Weekly Insights for a while, you may have noticed that one of my favorite exercises –one I do quite often myself – is to imagine detaching from all of your roles, obligations, relationships, and clutter. Thus, “drop out”, by doing a thorough mental house cleaning. Then take a quick, but thoughtful look at each item you choose to mentally “put back” into your life.

As you do this, ask yourself what’s really important? What adds enough to your life that even if you had only one year to live, it would be worth that precious time? What changes need to be made? And is there anything you’re holding onto merely because you’re attached to the status quo?

For many, including myself, the end of the year – in addition, of course, to anytime you’re feeling overwhelmed – is the most powerful time to routinely do this exploration, because motivation to switch gears and move forward proactively, typically starts to germinate then. And that means now.

So consider these last few weeks of the holiday season to be a great time to think about what would help you to become a little lighter, freer and more focused as you prepare to tackle the dreams, goals and upcoming challenges of the New Year!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

Click here for more strategies and tools to leave in 2018 whatever could work against you in 2019!

 

12/24/18

How about a great Holiday present for yourself?

This week, as you enjoy the rest of this holiday season and reflect back on 2018, make sure you savor your triumphs, while striving to continue to let go of anything you’d rather not carry into the New Year. Most importantly, relax and let your passions and desires guide you to your best life. 

 Happy Holidays!

 Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.

And our entire Media Psychology Associates team

 

12/31/18

If you find yourself thinking about New Year’s resolutions, consider this trend that I have observed after four decades of writing and speaking about them on radio, TV and to other audiences: so many have come to regard New Year’s resolutions as a cliché! Then breaking them can be become a source of anguish, a “badge of honor”, a simple non-event or anything in between.

So this year, let’s bypass calling them “resolutions” and instead, substitute a few questions this week about 2019 and the year you would like it to become. For example, what would you most like to achieve? What are some new things you would most like to explore during this New Year? What’s the ongoing issue in your life you would most like to resolve? What’s the most important question you have regarding your life, that you’d like to see answered in 2019?

Jot down your thoughts regarding these questions. Keep them handy (perhaps put them on 3 x 5 cards or in your smart phone) so that you can easily access them whenever they could benefit you the most. Then make it a point to quietly check in with them regularly.

And remember, your best life is simply waiting for you to manifest it!

Happy New Year! 🥂

Michael Broder

And our entire Media Psychology Associates team

We hope you continue to enjoy your Weekly Insights in 2019!

Michael S. Broder, Ph.D.