It’s My Birthday Bash And I’m Giving You the Presents!

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As I get older, I realize how much more fun it is to give things away on my birthday than it is to get things. I constantly find myself in awe and appreciation that I am able to do what I love, share my gifts with you and get paid for it. That is such an incredible gift for me to be living and experiencing every day of my life that when my birthday comes around I usually feel like giving even more!

Now don’t get me wrong: I LOVE receiving gifts! And hey, if you really want to give ME something, you can get me an Amazon gift certificate so I can I buy some of my favorite things… Books! My Amazon email address is info@edwardmills.com).

My birthday is on Thursday (9/18) and, after the life-changing week I’ve just come through at the Enlightened Warrior Training Camp, I feel like having LOTS of fun this week! And that fun is going to start by giving away some birthday presents to you!

Everyone is going to get some great gifts and offers, but if you act really fast, there are some truly outrageous opportunities available over the next few days.

Remember, the Universe Loves speed.

Throughout the week I’ll be reminding you of the special gifts as well as the super-special birthday offers on other products and events. If you want to take advantage of them, you’ll want to make sure to be at the appropriate webpage ready to go when the time comes!

So here we go!

Gift #1 – Free Brainwave Entrainment CD Download

Between now and Satuerday morning, you can download the complete contents of my CD: An Introduction to Brainwave Entrainment Technology for Personal Growth and Success.

This CD normally costs $16.95, but through Saturday morning at 9:00 am (Pacific Time) you can access it for free!

Brainwave Entrainment technology is a safe and proven tool for enhancing your ability to reach specific brainwave states quickly and easily. If you have not experienced the power of Brainwave Entrainment you will definitely want to grab this one! Make sure you download your Brainwave Entrainment CD before Saturday morning.

Gift #2 – A Free Copy of My Essay On Becoming An Evolutionary Warrior

This essay was my contribution to the award winning, Amazon bestselling anthology Healing the Heart of the World: Harnessing the Power of Intention to Heal Yourself and Your World.

You can download a free PDF version of my essay, On Becoming An Evolutionary Warrior for free.

Gift #3 – Energetics of Attraction Special — PLUS 20 Fast Action Super Special spots!

Next up is the Energetics of Attraction

. The birthday special on this one begins Wednesday morning at 9:00 am (Pacific Time) and runs through Saturday at 9:00 am.

Here’s the deal. Go check out the Energetics of Attraction webpage. But if you’re interested, don’t order yet. Because from 9:00 am on Wednesday morning through 9:00 am on Saturday morning, the special birthday price for this life-changing Digital Learning Course will be just $79.00.

And to make it even more fun and just slightly crazy, if you’re really fast, the first 20 people to place their order on Wednesday morning will pay just $49!

Yes, that’s $100 off the regular price.

It’s my birthday gift to you but you’ll have to be fast to be one of the first 20 people.

Gift #4 – Awakening to Greatness 3-day retreat Special – PLUS 4 Fast Action Super Special spots!

On Thursday the BIG FUN kicks in! You see, I came out of my week at the Enlightened Warrior Training Camp renewed, rejuvenated, and ready to kick my game up a notch or 200!

And I can’t think of a better time to begin that process than my birthday! And the place I’m going to be focusing most of this ramped up energy is on my new Awakening to Greatness 3-Day retreats.

The one-day Awakening to Greatness retreat rocked! But one-day was definitely not enough. So I’ve turned it into a 3-day retreat with the first one coming up on October 10th – 12th at the incredible Granlibakken Resort and Conference Center on the North Shore of beautiful Lake Tahoe.

This 3-day retreat will change your life. The one-day seminar changed a whole bunch of lives and with the new content I’ve added to the weekend course, you’ll go even further!

At this retreat, you’ll uncover your core, limiting belief and have the opportunity to literally step through that belief into a new, empowering belief that will lead you to the life of your dreams. You’ll work hard and go deep at this retreat, but you’ll also meet some truly amazing people, have a ton of fun and you’ll leave on Sunday night ready to share and shine much more of your brilliance out into the world.

Now, here’s the deal: This is an all-inclusive retreat: It includes your lodging Friday and Saturday night. And this is definitely NOT dorm room lodging. The accommodations at Granlibakken are outstanding, and there will just be two of you to a room. The retreat also includes all your meals from Friday dinner through Sunday lunch. And, again, these are not Burger King meal. These are resort quality meals!

The 4-day retreat I just returned from cost me almost $3,000. And, without a doubt, it was worth every single penny. In fact, knowing what I know now, I would have paid 3-times as much for the event!

Awakening to Greatness will be equally transformative!

Now, because this is the first time I’m offering this 3-day event and I want to get the “buzz” going, I’ve already priced this Awakening to Greatness 3-day retreat at an extremely low price of just $997. (If you’ve been to any “all-inclusive” retreats, you know that’s an amazing price).

But for my birthday, I’m going to do something completely crazy! Actually, I think I might have blown a circuit at Warrior Camp or something! Look, I’m totally jazzed about this retreat and I want YOU to be there with us. I’ve been dreaming about and planning for a 3-day event for over 2-years. And now it’s right around the corner.

In my experience, when you begin something new, it’s good to give it a little jump-start, something to get it over that initial inertia and get the momentum going.

My birthday gift to you, will also be that jump-start for this new event.

Here’s the deal: from 9:00am Thursday 9/18 through 9:00am on Saturday 9/20, instead of paying the regular price of $997, you’ll pay just $595!

That’s a savings of over $400! And remember, that includes your lodging Friday and Saturday nights and all of your meals for the entire weekend! Believe me, at that price. I will not be making much money on your attendance at this retreat. But it’s worth it because I know that after you participate, you’re going to want to tell all your friends about it. And that’s how the buzz gets started. And I want there to be some big buzzing going on about this event!

And now for the truly crazy part: The Super Special, fast action offer!

The first 4-people to register, beginning at 9:00 am on Thursday, will pay just $479!

That’s not a typo! The first four people who register on Thursday morning will pay just $479!

That price is actually lower than my hard costs for this retreat. But, like I said, I feel like giving away some gifts for my birthday, and, personally, I can’t think of any better gift than the gift of greatness!

Now, in addition to those 4 super-special priced spots going quickly, I also have to tell you that there are only 17 spaces remaining in this event – which means that only 13 spaces will be  left after those 4 get snatched up. So even if you miss out on the 4 super-special spots, you want to jump on this offer as quickly as you can to make sure you get in at the birthday special pricing.

If you’re interested in the Energetics of Attraction and/or the Awakening to Greatness 3-day retreat you’ll want to bookmark those pages and make sure you’re ready to order at 9:00am on Wednesday and Thursday respectively. Here they are:

The Energetics of Attraction.

Awakening to Greatness 3-day retreat.

7 Ways To Get A Positive Start On The Day

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How do you start your day? Is your first act intentional? Is it a reaction to something? Or is your first act of each completely random?

As a Deliberate Creator, every conscious act matters. And one way to get every day off to a great start is to make your first act of the day intentional. So here are a few suggestions that you might want to consider for your first conscious action of the day.

Smile: You’ll be amazed at how powerful that one act can be at setting the tone for your day. Do it no matter how tired you are, no matter how little sleep you got, no matter how much you’re dreading some aspect of your day. Smile. I love this quote from Thich Nhat Hanh: “Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.” When you think of something that brings you joy, a smile is likely to come naturally. Remember that a smile can brighten a person’s day. And if you wake up with a smile, it just might be your day that gets brighter.

Think of something joyful: Maybe you feel strange putting a smile on your face for no reason. (If you do, stop it!) But one alternative is to think of something that brings you joy and let that thought bring a smile to your face.

Think of your primary intention: What is the single most important intention that you have right now? How would your day change if your first thought upon arising was a positive thought about that intention?

Look at your primary intention: Remember Jack Canfield’s story in The Secret? He taped a “$100,000 bill” to the ceiling above his bed so the first thing he would see every morning would remind him of his primary intention. You can do something similar. Come up with an image, object or phrase that reminds you of your intention and tape it to the ceiling or place it beside your bed. And each morning, make sure your first act is looking at it and feeling it.

Send a positive thought to someone else: Sending a prayer or other positive thought to someone is a wonderful way to start your day. In order to send positive vibes to someone else, your vibration must be positive. So starting your day this way ensures that your vibration will start out positive.

Give thanks for what you have: One of the best ways to empower your day is to begin with gratitude. Instead of allowing your mind to jump to all the stuff you have to get done that day, intentionally guide your mind to focus on and express gratitude for all the wonderful things that you already have.

Say I love you: If you share a bed with a partner (and even if you don’t) one great way to set a positive tone for your day is to say “I love you” to them (or someone else) before you even get out of bed.

These are just a few suggestions. Any one of them will help you set a positive tone for the entire day… If you do it!

Three Simple Steps To Make Right More Right

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A few months ago I wrote about Ho’oponopono and the book Zero Limits: The Secret Hawaiian System for Wealth, Health, Peace, and More by Joe Vitale and Dr. Hew Len. Ho’oponopono is a Hawaiian healing art and, roughly translated means, “To make right,” or “To make right more right!

Ho’oponopono, which, for me, is a logical extension of the Law of Attraction, reminds us that there is right in everything and that everything is right. Or as I like to say, “It’s all good!

Of course it’s not always easy to see the good or the right in all things. And that’s the power and the potential of the Law of Attraction.

Since reading Zero Limits, I’ve been playing with some of the Ho’oponopono tools and thinking about the concept and practice of making right more right. And I’ve found that the process – though not necessarily the practice – of making right more right is quite simple.

In my experience, there are just three steps. Catch it. Zap it. Turn it around.

Here are the three simples steps to making right more right.

1. Catch It:

In this world of contrast there are many opportunities to perceive things as Not Right: From a missed bus to a sprained ankle. From a flat tire to an abusive partner: From a bad cup of coffee to the death of loved one. There will always be people, events, and situations in our lives and in this world that appear to be “not right.” The first step in the process of making right more right is acknowledging when you feel that something is not right.

Far too often we go through our lives without even being aware that we are labeling things not right or bad or wrong. And when we are focused on what is “not right” in our lives or the world around us, it is very difficult to allow more rightness into our life.

As we begin to catch ourselves in the act of labeling something wrong or bad or not right, we have taken the first, and most important step in making right more right.

2. Zap it:

Remember; “it’s all good!” Everything in your life is meant to be there. Everything has a purpose and a reason for being in your life. The good, the indifferent and the not so good.

I suggest you come up with a phrase to remind you that everything is right: Something you can say to yourself in these situations. I use, “It’s all good.” You could use, “This is perfect.” Or, “There is a reason for this.” Or, “Life is good.” Whatever helps you zap the thought that something is bad.

And once you’ve caught your judgment and zapped it, you can…

3. Turn it around:

There are many tools and techniques for accomplishing this second step. But there are just two main modes: Direct and Indirect. In the direct method you confront what you perceive as Not Right head on. In the indirect method you shift your attention to something that you already feel is right. Let’s explore each of these modes a bit more:

The Direct Method:

Lets look at an example: You get a flat tire on the way to work and you catch yourself thinking, “Not now, this is the worst time for a flat tire. I’ve got a big meeting this morning. This sucks!”

In the direct approach you stop and explore all the possible reasons why this could be “right.” So while you’re changing the tire, you start seeking the rightness in the situation.

  • Maybe there’s going to be a big accident up ahead and this is causing me to miss it.M
  • Maybe the meeting is really going to be a big waste of time.
  • Maybe this is a sign that I’m too invested in this job.
  • It’s a beautiful morning and I get to spend an extra 20-minutes outside.
  • Maybe there’s something about changing a tire that I can apply to this project.
  • It’s a good thing that I was driving alone and didn’t have my daughter/son/partner with me.
  • This gives me a chance to stop and breathe a bit.
  • The traffic will probably be lighter by the time I change the tire.

You get the idea. Taking the direct approach can be very effective, but can also be difficult when you find yourself in the middle of a frustrating situation.

The Indirect Method:

This approach can sometimes be easier. With the indirect approach you take your mind off of the current situation and think about something unrelated that is clearly “right” in your mind.

For instance, as you change the tire you think:

  • This morning’s coffee was especially good.
  • That date last night was amazing!
  • I’m really looking forward to my workout at lunch.
  • The sunrise was spectacular this morning.
  • I can’t believe how much I laughed during that movie last night.

When you use the indirect method, the idea is to take your mind off of the situation that is “not right” and ease yourself into a space where you are more connected to rightness.

Sometimes the indirect approach can lead you into the direct approach. By shifting your focus to something positive and unrelated to the present, frustrating, situation, you shift your attention enough that you can then find the “rightness” in the current situation.

But whether or not that happens, by getting yourself into a space where you are acknowledging “Rightness” in your life, you open yourself to More Right.

These three steps – Catch it. Zap it. Turn it around – make for a truly empowering approach to life. And you can begin applying this method immediately, as in right now!

Scan your life for a moment looking for anything that you might consider “wrong” or “bad” or even “not so great.”

When you find something, you’ve just successfully applied the first step: Catch it!

Now, apply the next two steps: Zap it, and Turn it around.

Remember, it’s all good and everything that is in your life is there for a reason.

Find the rightness in everything and you will allow more right to flow easily and naturally into your life.

When you acknowledge the right, you make it more right.

So go ahead: catch it, zap it, turn it around and watch the right become more right!

What I Learned About Gratitude From A Cold And A Little Jumping Spider

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My family and I are back east for the Thanksgiving holiday. And with all the preparation and traveling , I haven’t had a chance to finish an article on gratitude. So I dusted off one of my old Intuitive Life Coaching ezine articles from way back in November of 2004 and put a few new touches on it for you. So here it is,

It’s the season of gratitude, yet last week I found myself in a sea of sickness. I don’t know about you, but I find it very difficult to be grateful when I’m sneezing, coughing, achy and generally feeling rotten.

I did my best to remain positive, reminding myself that I was being given a non- negotiable opportunity to relax and recharge. Still I found myself drawn towards the “woe is me” place with thoughts such as, “This is the worst possible time to be sick,” and “I have way too much to do.”

I even caught myself heading into victim mode, thinking, “Ella got me sick,” as if my one year old daughter had somehow conspired to transmit her sick germs to me. If anyone had conspired, it was me, or more accurately, a wise, unconscious aspect of my mind and body forcing me to take some much needed time off.

Still, it took me a full four days of acute sickness before I was able to stop and allow myself to enjoy the break. Even then it was no inner leap of enlightenment that catalyzed the shift. Rather it was a little jumping spider who had made its home in my car.

On that day, with my wife at work, and my daughter determined not to take a nap even though she was rubbing her eyes, yawning and crying, I decided to use the fool-proof nap-induction method known to parents throughout the western world. We went for a drive!

As soon as we got into the car, I noticed that the little jumping spider who had recently taken up residence was sitting on the edge of the steering wheel. He or she seemed quite content to sit and observe as we zoomed down the straight and narrow.

But then we came to a turn and that spider’s world suddenly and literally turned upside down. That little guy or girl held on for dear life as the wheel spun one way. Then on the way back, Spidey must have thought “I’m outta here,” because it dropped down from a thread in search of more stable ground.

While it was a good idea, it didn’t work out so well when the momentum of the turn flung the little guy right back into the steering wheel with a crash. At that point Spidey decided it would be best to hang on and ride out the storm.

When the turbulence ended and we were back on a straight stretch, that spider somehow knew exactly what it needed to do: It headed directly for the center of the steering wheel and sat down smack dab in the middle of the Toyota logo.

When I turned the steering wheel to guide us into the next turn, Spidey just calmly rotated in the opposite direction, easily maintaining his upward-facing orientation.

As I watched Spidey do his thing an image flashed into my mind of one of those amusement park rides where you stand up against a fence as it spins around really fast, so fast that it’s nearly impossible to push, or is it pull, yourself away from the fence.

I realized that’s sort of how I had been feeling in my sickness: dizzily pressed up against a wall, unable to peel myself off. Only unlike at an amusement park, this sickness was an involuntary ride, and it was showing no signs of slowing down.

With Ella soundly asleep now in the back seat, I could pull over and contemplate the lesson in Spidey’s demonstration. I imagined the different experience riding at the outside of that spinning wheel and standing right in the center. And they were very different!

For me, being in the center meant being fully in my sickness, not fighting it, not trying to push myself off of that wall. So all that day and the following day, I acknowledged my gratitude: for the sickness, for Ella, for my wife, for the time off and, of course, for the little jumping spider.

I basked in my sickness, taking naps and baths, sitting for long periods of time doing nothing and just generally loafing. It was wonderful. And the amazing thing is that by the end of that second day I felt great. Certainly not completely better, but my energy level was vibrant and flowing whereas before it had been stagnant and dull.

I believe it was the gratitude that shifted me into the center of that ride. Instead of worrying about all the stuff I was not doing, all the meetings I was missing, and all the money that was not coming in, I was able to stop and accept exactly where I was, and, indeed, acknowledge my gratitude for being there.

Just like that little spider, we get to choose how we experience each moment of our lives. We can enjoy the thrill of riding out at the edge where the momentum of the ride pushes us up against the wall, or we can choose the more stable, yet no less enlivening, ride in the center. Certainly there are times when being on the outer edge is appropriate, and even necessary, but I don’t need to live my life there.

Neither did Spidey.

And neither do you. For many people the holidays can be a whirlwind of too much shopping, cooking, family, parties, eating, traffic, credit cards, and debt.

So this holiday season remember to periodically come back to your center. If you find yourself riding that dizzy edge, stop and take time to acknowledge your gratitude.

No matter how turbulent your life might get, find something to be thankful for and let that gratitude draw you gently back towards your calm, stable center.

I’ve quoted Meister Eckhart before, and I’m sure I’ll do so again, but he stated it so simply and beautifully when he said:

“If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, “thank you,” that would suffice.”

Thank you!

And The Week Two Winners Are…

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In case you’ve just returned from a two-week silent retreat in a cave, August marks the one-year anniversary of the Law of Attraction Blog Carnival, and to celebrate, we’re having a big party here at Evolving Times.

This week we have four winners.

If you didn’t win this week or last week, don’t worry, there are still two weeks left to win a prize, and the best prizes are yet to come!

Again, I used the Research Randomizer Form to pick the winners.

Our first winner comes from the list of talkative folks or top commentors. Char at Casual Keystrokes wins a copy of the book Healing the Heart of the World.

Next, from the folks who are subscribed to the Evolving Times RSS Feed, Bev Brewer wins two books – A Guide to Getting It: Purpose and Passion and A Guide to Getting It: Creative Intelligence, both from Laura Young at the Dragon Slayer’s Guide to Life

From the growing list of incoming linkers, Cardin Lilly of The Optimist Lab wins a copy of Phil Gerbyshak’s book, 10 ways to make it great.

And finally, also from the incoming link list, Aaron Potts of Today Is That Day wins a copy of Simpleology: The Simple Science of Getting What You Want.

Now remember winners, you’re still in the running for a grand prize. But if you do win one of the bigger prizes such as one of the Simpleology packages, the Guerrilla Marketing Toolkit or the Wine Country Weekend Retreat, you’ll have to pass your weekly prize onto someone else. But you probably won’t mind!

Now, if you haven’t won yet, don’t worry, there are still two-weeks left in the party and the prizes. If you want to be eligible here’s a recap of how to make sure you’re entered:

1. Link to Evolving Times. If you have a blog or website, add a link to the Evolving Times blog, the Law of Attraction Carnival Homepage, the Party Announement, or another post that you want to share with your readers during the month of August and you’ll automatically be entered to win both the weekly prizes and the grand prizes.

To be sure that you’re added to the list, I would encourage you to also send me an email or leave a comment since some incoming links seem to get lost in the shuffle over at Technorati.

You can send an email to contest at evolvingtimes dot com.

If you are linking from a website [non-blog] you must send me an email or leave a comment because Technorati does not track your links. (You only need to link in once to be eligible for the remaining weekly prizes as well as the bigger prizes at the end of the month).

2. Subscribe to the Evolving Times Feed. Everyone who is an active ET feed subscriber will be eligible to win prizes. (Every subscriber will also receive a special link to the Subscriber Bonus Package which includes some great free gifts and special offers). Again, subscribers will be eligible to receive weekly prizes as well as the bigger prizes. At the bottom of your feed you will find special instructions on how to enter.

You can subscribe to the feed here.

3. Leave a comment or lots of them. You may have noticed that I reset the top commenters list in the sidebar. (I’ve also added the do-follow plugin, so every comment you leave from now on will be an active link back to your blog or website). Each week one of the top ten commenters listed in the sidebar will be chosen at random to win one of the weekly prizes. And at the end of August, the top three folks on that list will be bigger winners. So come on and join the conversation

4. Join my Email subscribtion list. In the spirit of inclusiveness – it was pointed out that not everyone knows what an RSS feed is much less how to subscribe – so you can also enter the contest by joining my email list. Just fill out the simple form below, confirm your subscription and you’ll go directly to the Subscriber Bonus Package page in addition to being entered to win one of the other prizes.

 

Name
Email

And, yes, if you haven’t already figured it out, doing more than one of these things DOES increase your chances of winning!

Thanks everyone for joining me here for the party. I hope you’re having as much fun as I am!

[Ed’s Note]  After choosing this week’s winners I discovered that my feed service was wackydoodled (that’s a technical term). A big thank you goes out to Steve Johnson at The Fast Lane, who, in addition to being an excellent personal growth blogger is also a top-notch web developer and troubleshooter. He came to my rescue yesterday and got the feed working again. So if you’re in need of some quality web work go check out Sawtooth Graphics Web Design and get him on the job!

If you tried, and were not able to subscribe during the past few days, I apologize. It’s working now, so get your name into the feed and follow the “secret” instructions at the bottom of your feed posts to enter the contest.

Focus on Debt in 2007 – NOT

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Here’s a great example of why I very rarely read the newspaper anymore. This is the front page of the Press Democrat Business section from yesterday. What do you notice? Think in terms of the Law of Attraction.

Hint: What you focus on expands.

Do you think a newspaper has a certain amount of credibility? Do you think that when a newspaper advises its readers, in BIG BOLD LETTERS, to Focus on debt, that people are going to listen? Yup. And what will the result be?

I’ll give you one guess and in case you forgot, here’s that hint again: What you focus on expands.

If you focus on debt, it’s going to expand in your life.

Now, I’m not suggesting that you ignore your debt. If you’re from the Ostrich school of financial planning, (I was enrolled in that school for a number of years!) I suggest you get your head out of the sand immediately, and take a good look at your financial situation.

But it’s one thing to take a clear, honest look at your finances, it’s another thing to FOCUS on your debt.

I am most definitely suggesting, that you do not FOCUS on your debt. Don’t dwell on it. Don’t allow debt to become a major element in your thinking. And certainly do not allow debt to become a major source of your feelings.

Remember that the Law of Attraction works on feelings. So consider how you feel when you think about your debt. You want to do whatever you can to stay away from those feelings.

You want to focus on cultivating feelings that are nurturing and supportive. You want to spend a lot more time thinking about financial freedom and getting in touch with the feelings of financial freedom.

Your feelings activate the Law of Attraction which is a very powerful ally and guide on your journey towards financial freedom.

When my wife and I set an intention to become debt free, within three-months of our intention a friend offered to loan us enough money to pay off all of our personal credit card debt. (Not an insignificant amount of money).

(For debt consolidation loans from friends and family such as this, I highly recommend Circle Lending).

So how do you get out of debt without focusing on the debt? Here are some suggestions and tools for cultivating positive thoughts and feelings on your way to Financial Freedom… Debt-free is just one little stop along the way!

Set up a workable debt-reduction plan that will work mostly on “autopilot.”

Choose a debt reduction plan that will work for you. I recommend the Debt Reduction Process in Ask And It Is Given. (Dave Ramsey advocates a very similar debt reduction process he calls the debt snowball here).

If you’ve always heard that you should pay down the high-interest debts first and feel like you want to use a high-interest debt first plan, Five Cent Nickel has an entry comparing Dave’s plan to a plan that pays down your high-interest debt first.

Once you have decided on your debt reduction plan, set it up to run on “autopilot.” You’ll know what your monthly payments are for each credit card, so set them up to be paid automatically each month either through ebills or your bank’s online bill paying service. This way, you will spend very little time and energy focusing on your debt each month. Instead, you can use that time and energy to focus on your future financial freedom.

Find statements from all of your credit cards that show a zero balance. (If you don’t have old statements, than use white out to cover up the actual balance and write in 00.00). Post these statements in strategic locations where you will see them on a regular basis.

Create a collage or a vision board with images that reflect how you want to feel about your financial situation. Choose images of people relaxing and enjoying life. Include images of activities you would enjoy doing with the money that is currently going towards your debt payments. Place your collage where you will see it on a daily basis.

Start saving for your financial freedom now! Don’t wait until you’re debt free to begin saving and investing. Remember, what you focus on expands. For more on why this is important, I highly recommend reading this.

Evolving Times: The Year In Review

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In January, Evolving Times will be one-year-old. It’s hard to believe that I’ve been doing this for a full year. Seems like… well, I suppose it actually seems much shorter. The last few months, especially, have just flown by.

I was planning to do a year in review post next week, but Darren’s request for submissions to the latest Problogger group writing project moved this entry up in the queue.

Without a doubt, 2006 has been a transformational year for Evolving Times. Beginning life in January as a place to archive my ezine articles, ET has evolved into a full-fledged blog!

While numbers and stats don’t give a complete picture, they do provide some insight into the journey. So here are a few statistical observations from this year:

I’ve watched the post count grow from the underwhelming beginnings of one entry each in January and February, through a false start in March when I committed to posting one entry a day, to the fairly impressive 39, to me anyway, entries in November. This entry brings the total number of entries on ET to 163! That even surprised me.

When I first discovered Technorati, Evolving Times was ranked around 1,000,000 (yes that’s one-million!) with no incoming links. Now, less than one-year later it’s at around 60,000 with well over 100 incoming links.

Traffic has grown from a start of zero visitors in January to a December that’s on track for more than 4,000 unique visitors. Most of that growth has come since August when something clicked and the pieces fell into place for me and Evolving Times.

A quick look at the archives page shows the growth of the blog in very graphical terms.

The year was really capped off one week ago with Evolving Times’ acceptance into the 9rules network. What a validating way to end the year!

More than numbers and benchmarks, though, this year has been a time for finding and refining my voice as a blogger. Having published an ezine since 2004, it took some time to get my bearings in the blogosphere. Writing a blog is definitely not the same as writing an ezine.

I’m continuing to find what works here in the blogosphere. Sometimes I get it right, and other times… well, I just don’t!

But that’s the beauty of blogging. It’s a place to experiment. If it doesn’t work, you get to try something new the next day – or even the next minute!

Your comments have been a great help to me. When I hear from you, it helps me understand what you want. Sure, I’m writing because I love it, but without you, I might as well be sending these entries out into a vast empty space.

So keep those comments coming. Let me know what you like, what you want more of, and what you could do without.

As we head into 2007, I feel like I’m just starting to hit my stride. I’ve found a posting frequency that feels sustainable. I’ve got a bunch of ideas for Evolving Times including the possibility of adding a blog or two to my corner of the blogosphere. More on that later.

Most of all 2006 has been a year of deep gratitude for all the support, encouragement and assistance I have received during this first year in the blogosphere. It seems that the people who hang out in this leading edge environment are a pretty cool group. I suppose you have to be pretty cool to spend many hours a week writing and sharing your ideas and yourself with the world…all for free!

I am truly looking forward to the continuing evolution of Evolving Times in 2007 and watching the continuing evolution of the blogosphere.

I sure hope you’ll continue to be here with me!

Have A Great Night, Wink Wink

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My wife and I had a date last night. Those of you with kids probably understand the significance of this more than those without! Dates, and especially dates of an intimate nature, are not all that common around here.

Last night, we decided to treat ourselves to a bit of an extra-special, pre-holiday, date night. So our first stop was the Sensuality Shoppe.

Now, I apologize to all of you who think this post is going to reveal the details. It’s not! It’s only going to provide you with a somewhat interesting – to me at least – observation.

As the woman behind the counter handed me our bag of goodies she said, as many clerks, at many other stores do, “Have a great night.”

When we got to the car, I said to my wife, “This is probably one of the few stores where a clerk can say ‘have a great night’ with a high level of confidence that the people really will.”

And we did!

PCA Or Why I Love Coaching

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I love what I do!

It is still a bit amazing to me that I (finally) get to do what I love and get paid for it! It’s taken a lot of years of unlearning to get to this place and it feels great!

I get to work with incredibly intelligent, creative, insightful people. These totally awesome people pay me to encourage, support and inspire them to think bigger about themselves, have more fun and play more fully in the game of life.

But what amazes me even more, is how much I learn from THEM!

Yesterday I had a private coaching session with a client and he told me that he had come up with a new acronym for how he was going to approach his life: PCA.

It stands for Peace, Clarity, & Action.

Wonderful!

As soon as he said it I started seeing this incredibly fluid movement through and between the parts of the triad. Peace, Clarity & Action.

They feed off one another and support each other. If peace is lacking, go for clarity. If clarity is not available, take action, any action. If you’re overwhelmed with too much action, step back into clarity and/or peace.

They flow back and forth in a living, dynamic dance of energy.

Ideally, we want to have all three, Peace, Clarity & Action. But if one is missing, we can focus on another one, knowing that the shift will eventually lead the way back to the center of that triad.

And here’s the best part of this… The next time I travel, as soon as I get close to the airport and start to see PCA Parking lots, I’ll immediately think of Peace, Clarity & Action. And that’s a great thing, because, I don’t know about you, but I tend to cut it a bit close when I’m heading to the airport, and remembering Peace, Clarity & Action will be a very positive thing in that moment.

Learn Gratitude From Every Source

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I just received a wonderful thank you note from a woman that sublets my office Tuesday evenings for her Speaking Circles group. She has taught me so much about gratitude in the past few months.

On Wednesday mornings, when I come in to the office, there is almost always a little note waiting for me with some bit of appreciation. She has left apples from her garden and little pieces of chocolate.

These little gestures of appreciation always enhance my mood and bring a smile to face. It has been a consistent reminder to me of the power of appreciation.

The note she left for me after last night’s group captures the sweetness of her gratitude:

Dear Ed —

How eternally grateful I am to you for your kindness and generosity in sharing your space!

Thank you so very much for supporting me in developing my facilitation skills, but also in making this offering affordable for others. Low rent = low fees!

Many blessings

Sahara

I know that I have a lot to learn about sharing my appreciation. And I am truly grateful to Sahara for being a wonderful model and teacher in the art of appreciation.

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