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How To Control Your Thoughts, Rebuild Your Brain, and Become a Zen Master

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This is the final installation of a three part series on identifying and eliminating limiting beliefs and ultimately becoming a master of your thoughts. In our first post we learned how to uncover and deconstruct the limiting beliefs that are holding you down. In our second post we revealed four questions to ask yourself to blast away these beliefs and achieve more! Finally, we dive into how you can take back control of your thoughts through a quick daily meditation ritual.

With twenty minutes a day you can drastically change the way you see the world and approach any situation. Meditation is often seen as a sort of “woo-woo” practice however science has proven that a daily meditation practice can help rebuild your brain’s gray matter in as little as eight weeks! On top of that it has been proven to lower blood pressure, help with diet, and reduce tension. In the episode “Unleash The Power Of Meditation” Matt dives into the six phase framework of The Envisioning Method and how you can start reaping these health benefits today.

To begin, find a place you can be completely alone and free from distraction. A place where you can be un-interrupted by the noise of the day for at least twenty minutes. Next, find a position you feel comfortable in and can easily take deep breathes. Matt notes that while lying down may seen like a great position, it is often too easy to fall asleep.

Once you are comfortable, take a few deep breaths and begin to work through each phase individually below:

1. Connection

Take a moment to realize that everything truly is connected. Everything on this planet is made up of organic matter and largely the same thing. Today, you may encounter tense situations, you may meet with someone who intimidates you. Take a deep breath, visualize these situations, and realize there’s no difference between you and them at a base level.

Remember everyone goes through hardships, everyone struggles with their thoughts from time to time. Keeping this view of people and the world will help you find perspective and not be too intimidated or disconnected from the world around you.

“Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” – Marcel Proust

2. Gratitude

Gratitude has been scientifically proven to have health benefits. Not only does it make you an overall happier human but it can also help with sleep and other health issues. Here we want to take a few moments to think on and identify what we are truly grateful for. Gratitude starts from within, begin thinking about your inner workings.

Are you grateful for the type of person you are? For your morals? Values? Your Health? Then begin to move externally. What or who around you are you grateful for? Taking these moments to identify specific things around you that bring you joy will even subconsciously hold them with you throughout your day and increase joy and empathy.

3. Forgiveness

It was Gandhi who once said “Forgiveness is an attribute of the strong. The weak, cannot forgive.” Take a few moments and think about any grudges you may be holding on to however small they may be. Have you been avoiding that friend who stood you up? Stubbornly refusing to reach out to a loved one or friend you feel wronged you?

Realize these negative emotions are there and then begin to let them go. Holding a grudge even subconsciously can have negative impacts on your day to day life. This may not happen all at once, it could take time to completely let things go and heal these wounds but realizing they are there and that they are not good for you is the first step in healing. Remember, forgiving them is not for their benefit, it’s for you! So think hard on it and begin to let grudges go that truly don’t matter.

4. Visualize Your Day

Think about what you have to get done today. Begin visualizing your day from the moment you open your eyes as the best day it could possibly be. You stand up and get moving and things seem to fall into place. You knock out those reports you had been putting off, you deliver your presentation and everyone stands up and claps at the close.

When you walk into that big client meeting you are greeted with handshakes and smiles and your proposal is accepted because you know your clients. Allowing yourself to see your day like this through your thoughts primes you for the best. When you’re thinking about the best possible scenario you’re ignoring the worst case scenario and seeing the potential greatness in your day ahead.

5. Visualize Your Future

What are your goals for the next three years? Do you want a house? A new car? Maybe you want to provide something for your family. Take this time to see into the future that you want. That perfect future where life has dealt you a full house and you’ve achieved your dreams. See this and believe you can make it there and know that through your actions this future will one day be realized.

“The harder you work… and visualize something, the luckier you get.” – Seal

6. Blessing

Now that you’ve taken the time to acknowledge what you are grateful for, begin to forgive the grudges you may be holding, and look into the future and see your perfect day; begin focusing on your breath. Take a few minutes to feel your body relaxed and enjoy some silence with your thoughts. Once you feel completed, stand up and get ready to approach the day with an entirely new perspective, seeing the beauty and potential in every moment.

To learn more about the powers of meditation you can listen to the full episode “Unleash The Power Of Meditation”. Learn more about the Envisioning Method and how to live a happier and more fulfilling life with Vishen Lakhiani and others on The Science of Success.

How has meditation changed your life? Leave your thoughts below!

Matt Bodnar, named a “Rising Restaurateur Star” by the National Restaurant Association and a “Strategy Pro” by Restaurant Hospitality Magazine, is a partner at an early stage investment firm Fresh Hospitality where he focuses on deal making and strategy. Bodnar is also the creator and host of "The Science of Success" a #1 New & Noteworthy podcast, with more than 1 Million+ downloads, focused on improving decision-making, understanding psychology, and sharing insights from experts. Bodnar previously worked as an import/export consultant in Nanjing, China and spent several years at Goldman Sachs before returning to his family roots in the hospitality space.

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3 Ways to Take Better Care of Yourself and Live an Optimized Life

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The secret to happiness lies in the way you live your life. People think of happiness as some destination they’ll reach when they’ve accomplished the hundred things on their life to-do list. Happiness is often associated with money, material possessions, or even great relationships. (more…)

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These 7 Daily Resolutions Can Change Your Life

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We all strive to be better every day. Most of us want a new day to bring something new, and we plan for it as well. Of course, the execution is debatable as procrastination is real and it becomes an overwhelming feeling at times. Also, not to forget the customary practice of making resolutions on new year’s eve!  All of us are fascinated by the thought of preparing long lists of resolves to mark the beginning of a new year. Not sure how many people are able to translate these resolutions into functional realities. (more…)

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4 Reasons Why Content Is Pivotal For Mental Health Healing

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One of the most important things for an entrepreneur’s mental health is expressing their feelings, thoughts, and emotions. This is where content creation and writing becomes pivotal. Whether you read something that resonates with you or you write a compelling blog post, the act of expressing yourself through content can help to put a smile on your face and make you feel better about things.

Most entrepreneurs don’t spend as much time taking care of their mental health as they should. Over the course of your career, you will experience a lot of ups and downs; these emotions have the potential to take a toll on your mind and body if you don’t learn to manage them properly.

Here are four reasons why expression through content is pivotal for healing, slowing yourself down, and giving yourself grace when the going gets tough.

1. Content can be a form of self-expression

When you are an entrepreneur, you frequently face feelings of insecurity, doubt, fear, apathy, and exhaustion, just to name a few. Some days it feels like no one is on your business’s side and everyone else has it all figured out. On those days some of us try to look at our website’s analytics to cheer up. 

But an even more freeing task is creating content. You create content to improve your business and reach more people’s lives. But, there is something special that happens when you write with the intention of expressing your thoughts and feelings — you open a door to yourself. 

Content is inherently personal, which means content creators open themselves up when they share their thoughts on a platform. Everything from the title of the post, the keywords they choose to include, and even the content itself helps you to understand who the author of that post truly is. And as an entrepreneur, this can be an important experience because it allows others to empathize with you.

2. Self-reflection will lift you up

As you think through what to write about and how to express yourself, the process of self reflection is a valuable step you need to go through. You’re able to reflect on the blessings you have, assess what you learned from the negative experiences, and create a plan on how to maintain the positive experiences you’ve had. 

There are a few ways that self reflection can help you with mental health healing. The act of reflecting on your experiences helps to create clarity in feelings, thoughts and emotions which will eventually lead into acceptance for what has happened or is happening currently without feeling overwhelmed by it all. This process also leads people towards finding new things they enjoy doing. Self reflection is therapeutic and can be implemented anytime you feel the need to overcome overwhelm.

“Writing in a journal each day allows you to direct your focus to what you accomplished, what you’re grateful for and what you’re committed to doing better tomorrow. Thus, you more deeply enjoy your journey each day.” – Hal Elrod

3. A sense of belonging and camaraderie

It is important to have a support network of people who will listen and understand what you are going through. When you post a blog or upload a video on YouTube, there are others who feel the same way and experience a sense of connection with you.

When you put time, attention and thoughtfulness into your writing, it is amazing when someone reads what you’ve written and comments on it thanking you or expressing how they resonate with what you’re going through. It’s hard to put into words how powerful it feels when someone who has gone through the same experience and reads your words then reaches out.  There is power in expression but miracles happen when people bond over a similar experience.

4. Library of content to share with more people

It can be very difficult to know what content to share with people as the symptoms of mental health disorders (anxiety, depression, etc.) vary from person to person. But as you accumulate more and more content, this will increase the number of articles or videos available for readers to choose from depending on their specific purpose. It also builds your personal library of resources you’re able to share to different people you encounter or engage directly with.

As chaotic and distracting social media can be, it can also be a beacon of hope with the right content. Many people share viral posts, or content that interest them. Since your content is valuable and personal, the more you share it, the more likely it is to be shared with the right audience.

You never know who is watching (reading)

Your content is speaking to someone and even though they may not be actively engaged, their experiences with your work are impacting them. Think about the last time you watched TV: did everyone in the room have something entertaining to say? 

You never know who’s watching because there’s always somebody reading your posts or viewing your videos-even if they just skim through it briefly. This is why creating content worth consuming is critical, not only to get you out of your funk, but also to serve your audience.  Be authentic and stay true to yourself; make every post count as an opportunity for connection with your best self and for potential readers to bond with you.

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5 Ways To Invest In Yourself and Change Your Life

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Warren Buffett once said, the best investment you can ever make is in yourself. Time and money spent on bettering yourself are never considered a waste. Whether it’s through learning how to make money online, exploring new ways to increase your financial security, or watching TED talks to expand your knowledge. Do not be stingy when it comes to self-improvement because it will definitely pay off in the end. 

Need some ideas to get started on your journey to becoming a better you? Here are 5 ways to invest in yourself and transform your life. 

1. Change Your Self-Concept

Having a negative self-concept can have a tremendous impact on your life. Limiting beliefs and self-doubt are some of the main reasons why many never achieve or attempt to pursue their dreams. Take a moment and think about all the negative thoughts you have repeated to yourself throughout your life. How have these thoughts impacted the way you live life? From now on, create a new self-image by turning these negative thoughts into positive ones and appreciate your good qualities. 

2. Sign Up For An Online Course

If you’ve been wanting to brush up on your Photoshop skills or learn how to code professionally, this is the perfect time to get started. As long as you have a stable internet connection, you can access an endless amount of valuable information online. For example, sites like Coursera and Youtube are both awesome resources for online learning. With a few search strings and clicks, you can find all the information you need. 

“Investing in yourself is the best investment you can make. It will not only improve your life, it will improve the lives of all those around you.” – Robin Sharma

3. Learn From a Mentor

No matter which stage of your life you are currently in, working with a mentor can help you stay motivated and focused on your goals. Not only can they guide you in the right direction, but also transform your vision, provide you with new insights, and connect you with amazing resources. If you’re feeling unmotivated or unsure about what you want to do in life, consider finding a mentor to help you navigate this process. 

4. Start A Side Hustle

The salary from a 9-5 job would rarely allow you to reach your maximum income potential. Why not achieve financial success while pursuing your passion by starting a side hustle? Whether it’s through starting an ecommerce business, freelance writing on the side, or starting a Youtube channel. There are infinite numbers of ways to make money, and there is bound to be one out there that fits your passion and skills. 

5. Nourish Your Body

As many may say, “health is the new wealth”. Without a healthy and functioning body, living a fulfilling and comfortable life becomes difficult. To take care of your body and prioritize your wellbeing, start with small habits such as eating healthier foods and exercising regularly. Bike or walk to work instead of taking the car, and opt for a healthy protein bowl instead of greasy burgers at Burger King. With time, these small habits can make an incredible difference.

Check out the infographic below, to see more ways you can invest in yourself:

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