Why ARE you here?

The question, ‘Why am I here?’ causes a truly deep and penetrating exploration.  It can be a tough question to answer.  We think the answer comes from outside ourselves and mistakenly seek it in the eyes of others.
In more uplifting times, their purpose seems more clear perhaps.

In challenging times, people challenge their worth, their essence, their purpose. They might even wonder, “Why me?”

Some even doubt they have a purpose.

I believe we are here for a reason and a couple of questions Martha Beck, columnist for “O” Magazine,  posed are a great place to start the inquiry.

1. How do I want the world to be different because I lived?

2.  How do I want to be different because I lived in the world?

These questions brought to mind a poem I wrote almost 15 years ago after spending an afternoon meditating among the redwoods of northern CA.  It’s a bit long, so I’ll just include a few verses here.

In the depths of the forest, I discover my Soul
Its majesty calls me, beckons my heart
“Come. Sit. Be with me.” Spirit says
“Rejoice in my arms, for you are at home here.”

I still the chatter of my mind, sinking deep into the silence.
Retreating ever inwards, new sensations overcome me.
An orchestra emerges where there was once only absence of noise.
Birds sing to their lovers; a squirrel rushes home with its treasure.

Giant trees surround me, love me, cradle me in their arms
Seducing me with the fragrance of eternal life.
The scents of the centuries carry me back to the recesses of eternity
And forward to futures yet untold.

I dissolve into the tree, merging our Beings
Traveling through time recounting the lessons of life
Engraved in each ring darkened by the memories of the past.

At the center of existence, Now, This Instant is the beginning of Being.
Eternal and timeless, yet immeasurable in its brevity.
This moment of creation reaches forward causing futures unimaginable,
Countless possibilities for potential rings
Drawn by the thoughts and actions of today.

Choices reaching for Providence as tiny branches reach beyond the sun
Toward Infinite Wisdom, both Source and Destination.
Steps ordered in the Word of Spirit fly toward my destiny.
A fearless Life lived in Love and Joy

In the depths of the forest, I discover my Soul
Its majesty calls me, beckons my heart
“Come. Sit. Be with me,” Spirit says
“Rejoice in my arms, for you are at home here.”

What do YOU do to get in touch with yourself and connect with your higher purpose? Let me know.

5 Ways to Blaze a Trail of Traffic to Your Website

Many business owners I speak with are feeling overwhelmed with all there seems to be to do.  They need sot find ways to bring business to them in addition to seeking it out themselves.  Here are some simple ways you can position yourself as an expert, gain credibility, increase traffic to your website and draw people to you!

1. Get on YouTube
Instead of watching other people’s funny videos, create some of yourself sharing tips about your expertise.  Create a You Tube channel and publish away.

(Check out mine, Limitless Dream Leader.) These don’t have to be high quality visually. A flip phone or camera that shoots video will be fine.  It’s the content that establishes you as an expert.

2. Publish articles
There are tons of article directories on the internet. Many publishers of blogs & ezines  like this use other people’s content.  They will scour article directories looking for key topics they think their audience will want. If you’ve written something of interest to them, they will pick up your article.  Make sure you have your website in the ‘resource box’ at the end with a ‘bribe’ to entice them to visit your site and leave their email address so you can build a relationship with them.

3. Optimize your website for search terms your market is looking for
Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to spend a fortune on this.  Take a few minutes and ask yourself, if you were looking for your on the internet and didn’t know it existed, what phrases would you search on?  Those are your keywords.  TIP: relevant multi-word phrases are better than single words (i.e. gluten free bread vs bakery). You might have to find someone to enter them in the proper place on your website, but you can find someone inexpensive on Craigs List or elance.com.

4.  Update the content on your website regularly
Not only will this make you appear ‘current’, but the robots that troll hyperspace looking for interesting sites to recommend in search results won’t visit you much if nothing changes on yours.  Blogs are great for this reason.  If you don’t have one yet, make sure you incorporate it in your website for added traffic.

5. Install Google analytics
It will help you understand where the traffic you get is coming from so you can refine your efforts even further.

There you have it.  Five ideas that won’t cost much to implement but that could make a world of difference to your website visitors…and your bottom line.

How to Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions

The problem with New Year’s Resolutions is that by about Memorial Day, almost 50% of people who made resolutions will have given up on them.  About 30% will have abandoned their resolutions within a mere two weeks of making them.  It’s so bad, that 40% of people don’t even bother making resolutions!

So if you were one of the 60% of people who did declare your intention for the year, here are some tips you can use to support the accomplishment of your goal.

1.  Go public and get support

Tell as many people as possible about your commitment.  Most people are more likely to follow through with commitments when they are made to someone else rather than maintained within the confines of their private mind.  The fear of public ‘humiliation’ will help keep you on the straight and narrow. Tell people whose opinions matter to you, who would be disappointed in you if you backslide and will lovingly tell you to get back on track.

2. Recommit and act daily

Take some positive action in line with your resolution every day.  Put an alarm on your desktop/online/phone calendar that reminds you of an action to take.  Keep a journal of your experiences – whether good or not so good.  The process of reflecting and articulating your thoughts and feelings will keep you focused and aware of your goal.

3.  Change your habits, environment and/of lifestyle

You will probably have to make some additional changes in your daily routine while you are ‘building the muscle’ for your new resolution.   I had to stop hanging out with my two best friends at work when I decided to stop smoking because our daily routine consisted of morning and afternoon breaks on the patio over cigarettes.   I stayed away from that routine while I built my ‘I’m a non-smoker’ muscle.

4. Reward your progress

If you’ve committed to something big, reward yourself along the way as you reach certain milestones.  That will make the road seem shorter and the goal easier to reach.  Treat yourself to something nice. Pamper yourself and applaud your efforts and small wins.  The larger wins will be that much closer.

If you were in the 40% of people who didn’t make a single resolution, it’s not too late.  Use these tips for support on something that does matter to you.  Don’t be afraid.  Take the plunge.

Decide. Commit. Act.

You can do it.