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Smart Questions That Will Super Charge Your Life

Smart Questions That Will Super Charge Your Life

    One of the most effective ways to achieve success is to ask yourself the right questions. When we ask ourselves a question, we always come up with an answer. Ask yourself “Why does this always happen to me,” and you’ll get an answer. But if you ask yourself “How can I have a great day today,” you’ll also get an answer. Which answer is going to empower you more? You got it. So why not ask yourself smart questions that will make you happier, more confident, more powerful, and more successful?

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    The world moves fast, our many interests are constantly being seduced by TV, the Web, and the omnipotent presence of marketing. Here are some questions you can use to keep you on the rails that lead to success.

    How to Use Smart Questions

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    My recommendation is to take your favorite 5-10 questions from this list, write them down and post them near your desk, your bathroom mirror, the visor in your car and on the back of your cellphone. Pretty soon you’ll have them memorized and you’ll find yourself using these questions to filter out the wheat from the chaff.

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    The other way to use these questions is to take one question per day or per week. Write it down on a few yellow stickes and place them where you will see them all day long: by your bed, in the bathroom, in your car, at your desk and so on. Do this and watch the magic unfold!

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    Questions:

    1. What do I want to accomplish today?
    2. What is the most important thing I need to do today? (Do it first!)
    3. Is this the best use of my time right now?
    4. What am I trying to accomplish right now?
    5. What can I cross off my list by deleting or delegating? What is not important?
    6. What can I do right now to take the next leap instead of the next step?
    7. Who can I learn from today?
    8. Who can I thank today?
    9. What am I grateful for?
    10. How can I eliminate distractions right now?
    11. What are my top 3 current goals?
    12. What is most important to me in life?
    13. If the my world was going to end within one year, what would I be doing right now?
    14. What will I do today towards my major goals?
    15. What action can I take instead of worry right now?
    16. Who should I thank today?
    17. Who needs some love today?
    18. How can I be a kinder person today?
    19. How can I have more compassion today?
    20. What can I do right now to release negative energy in a positive way?
    21. What can I do to let go of my anger?
    22. How can I put worry on hold right now?
    23. How can I choose happiness right now?
    24. What can I do to slow down today?
    25. What am I learning right now?
    26. What beneficial routines can I start today?
    27. What will I do, see, explore, or experience today that is new?
    28. How and with whom can I partner today to make 1+1=3?
    29. How can I be more compassionate today?
    30. What will I celebrate today?
    31. Where did I find Joy today?
    32. What did I learn today?
    33. How will I “pay it forward” today?
    34. How will I make today great? How do I define great?
    35. What can I stop holding/clinging to help me break free?
    36. How can I let go with peace?
    37. Who can I help today?
    38. How can I add Peace to the world today?
    39. What’s the most powerful thing I can do right now, today to increase my business?
    40. What have I been avoiding that I can do today?

    What are your favorite empowering questions? Please share!

    K. Stone is author of Life Learning Today, a blog about daily life improvements. A few of her most popular articles are Ultimate Goal Setting Guide, How to Write a Book in 60 Days or Less, Should You Start Your Own Work at Home Business?, and How to Be a Great Salesperson.

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    The Gentle Art of Saying No

    The Gentle Art of Saying No

    No!

    It’s a simple fact that you can never be productive if you take on too many commitments — you simply spread yourself too thin and will not be able to get anything done, at least not well or on time.

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    But requests for your time are coming in all the time — through phone, email, IM or in person. To stay productive, and minimize stress, you have to learn the Gentle Art of Saying No — an art that many people have problems with.

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    What’s so hard about saying no? Well, to start with, it can hurt, anger or disappoint the person you’re saying “no” to, and that’s not usually a fun task. Second, if you hope to work with that person in the future, you’ll want to continue to have a good relationship with that person, and saying “no” in the wrong way can jeopardize that.

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    But it doesn’t have to be difficult or hard on your relationship. Here are the Top 10 tips for learning the Gentle Art of Saying No:

    1. Value your time. Know your commitments, and how valuable your precious time is. Then, when someone asks you to dedicate some of your time to a new commitment, you’ll know that you simply cannot do it. And tell them that: “I just can’t right now … my plate is overloaded as it is.”
    2. Know your priorities. Even if you do have some extra time (which for many of us is rare), is this new commitment really the way you want to spend that time? For myself, I know that more commitments means less time with my wife and kids, who are more important to me than anything.
    3. Practice saying no. Practice makes perfect. Saying “no” as often as you can is a great way to get better at it and more comfortable with saying the word. And sometimes, repeating the word is the only way to get a message through to extremely persistent people. When they keep insisting, just keep saying no. Eventually, they’ll get the message.
    4. Don’t apologize. A common way to start out is “I’m sorry but …” as people think that it sounds more polite. While politeness is important, apologizing just makes it sound weaker. You need to be firm, and unapologetic about guarding your time.
    5. Stop being nice. Again, it’s important to be polite, but being nice by saying yes all the time only hurts you. When you make it easy for people to grab your time (or money), they will continue to do it. But if you erect a wall, they will look for easier targets. Show them that your time is well guarded by being firm and turning down as many requests (that are not on your top priority list) as possible.
    6. Say no to your boss. Sometimes we feel that we have to say yes to our boss — they’re our boss, right? And if we say “no” then we look like we can’t handle the work — at least, that’s the common reasoning. But in fact, it’s the opposite — explain to your boss that by taking on too many commitments, you are weakening your productivity and jeopardizing your existing commitments. If your boss insists that you take on the project, go over your project or task list and ask him/her to re-prioritize, explaining that there’s only so much you can take on at one time.
    7. Pre-empting. It’s often much easier to pre-empt requests than to say “no” to them after the request has been made. If you know that requests are likely to be made, perhaps in a meeting, just say to everyone as soon as you come into the meeting, “Look guys, just to let you know, my week is booked full with some urgent projects and I won’t be able to take on any new requests.”
    8. Get back to you. Instead of providing an answer then and there, it’s often better to tell the person you’ll give their request some thought and get back to them. This will allow you to give it some consideration, and check your commitments and priorities. Then, if you can’t take on the request, simply tell them: “After giving this some thought, and checking my commitments, I won’t be able to accommodate the request at this time.” At least you gave it some consideration.
    9. Maybe later. If this is an option that you’d like to keep open, instead of just shutting the door on the person, it’s often better to just say, “This sounds like an interesting opportunity, but I just don’t have the time at the moment. Perhaps you could check back with me in [give a time frame].” Next time, when they check back with you, you might have some free time on your hands.
    10. It’s not you, it’s me. This classic dating rejection can work in other situations. Don’t be insincere about it, though. Often the person or project is a good one, but it’s just not right for you, at least not at this time. Simply say so — you can compliment the idea, the project, the person, the organization … but say that it’s not the right fit, or it’s not what you’re looking for at this time. Only say this if it’s true — people can sense insincerity.

    Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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