Why Christmas? The Message Not The Gift!

Jim Woods, James Woods,  Leadership Speakers, Ken Blanchard, Keynote Speaker, Keynote Speakers, Zig Ziglar

This is the best Christmas I have ever had. Certainly this isn’t officially Christmas … but is it not? You’ll see my point in my reblog of my most successful blog below and how God turned my life around. In July 2015 having planned my life precisely I lost it all in an instant on the way to Ethiopia.  Suffice it to say, I ended up in a homeless shelter in Boise, Idaho. Like many I had unwisely assumed “rock bottom” was a phrase for ne’er do wells. Nature albeit The Divine has a dry sense of humor.

I found myself without family and friends surrounded by people for whom I would have seldom if ever spoken to. This is the moment where I was compelled to step outside my pride to find God. He had already found me. Now, I had to let go and let Him.

Unlike  the people that surrounded me who had succumbed with familiarity to drugs, I had like perhaps you embraced the self medicating effects of selfishness; one upmanship. Unlike the James Stewart character in “It’s a wonderful life” I could not assume this was a dream. Or like Scrooge a case of bad beef. But, that would have wasted a good miracle. For God was performing a great feat. In the end, I see good in people everywhere. My job is to turn Christmas into my life’s act every day for every person. Here is my blog from two years ago. Let me know what you think. Jim

My bedroom was in the far corner of our home facing the cotton fields. During the winter months the stalks now barren appeared to the then 12 year old a haven for dreams and wishes that hid among the shadows. My room was always cold and I always afraid. Mom would retrieve our Christmas tree from underneath her bed. We didn’t have a chimney. In fact none of my friends had a chimney. We collectively discussed how Santa managed to enter our homes. Along with his collaborating with our parents to hand out clothes. Which I wanted as much as a road trip with my sister.

Our Christmas tree, which I have no idea where we happened to acquire it was aluminum. While I was an average student at that time I was pretty sure trees didn’t come in aluminium. Until mom assured me they did. The tree had a reflector of red, blue, orange, and green. When I went to bed I reflected on the excitement among my family and neighbors. As I knelt in my cold room I asked God if He would make Christmas last everyday. In my little mind I can recall reasoning that if Christmas was so great why not do it everyday.

Seemed logical to me. Grandmother who happened to be the spiritual inns keeper of our family said if I asked in faith it would occur. So, I wrote in “Christmas” for everyday of the year on my wall calendar. I was so excited that I wondered why hadn’t any other kid or adult thought of this. I didn’t want presents. Just that good feeling where everyone forgave each other, no one lost their temper. and everyone volunteered to do a little more.

When I slipped into bed, I laid so carefully that I could hear the snow fall on my window sill. matching beat with the beating of my 12 year old heart. There wasn’t a sound in the house. Just my heart and the snow flakes.

The next morning was the day after Christmas.  I leaped out of bed excited to see my handiwork.  Mom slid the tree under her bed. Rudeness prevailed in the neighborhood. Regular programming had ensued on television. No one  emitted “Merry Christmas.”

Posted in Success and Abundance

10 Ways Not To Let Fear Paralyze You

We can make fear a profession or a catapult. None of us are exempt from fear and anxiety. Self esteem is universal despite how we appear externally. Success by any measure has nothing to do with it. Because at some point we will meet our true self.

I saw program on CBS 48 hours of a highly financially successful motivational speaker who orchestrated his own death. He had million dollar. home. Beautiful family. Speaking several times  monthly. Beautiful cars. Yet he had perhaps to no fault of his own the self defeating fears of inadequacy. What does this have to do with procrastination?

We out things off because they are in conflict.

Procrastination is a sign of self doubt. Fear. It is hazardous in relationships and work. At it’s core procrastination is a lack of self efficacy. I suffered from this myself until I took massive steps to overcome it.  I can help you too. 

“It is only when we truly know and understand that we have a limited time on earth – and that we have no way of knowing when our time is up – that we will begin to live each day to the fullest, as if it was the only one we had.” Elizabeth Kubler-Ross 

There are many ways to avoid success in life, but the most sure-fire just might be procrastination. Procrastinators sabotage themselves. They put obstacles in their own path. They actually choose paths that hurt their performance.

Why would people do that?  Neither one is a procrastinator, and both answered my many questions immediately.

  1. Twenty percent of people identify themselves as chronic procrastinators. For them procrastination is a lifestyle, albeit a maladaptive one. And it cuts across all domains of their life. They don’t pay bills on time. They miss opportunities for buying tickets to concerts. They don’t cash gift certificates or checks. They file income tax returns late. They leave their Christmas shopping until Christmas eve.
  2. “Procrastination is suicide on the installment plan.” Author Unknown
  3. It’s not trivial, although as a culture we don’t take it seriously as a problem. It represents a profound problem of self-regulation. And there may be more of it in the U.S. than in other countries because we are so nice; we don’t call people on their excuses (“my grandmother died last week”) even when we don’t believe them.
  4. Procrastination is not a problem of time management or of planning. Procrastinators are not different in their ability to estimate time, although they are more optimistic than others. “Telling someone who procrastinates to buy a weekly planner is like telling someone with chronic depression to just cheer up,” insists Dr. Ferrari. Read More
  5. Procrastinators are made not born. Procrastination is learned in the family milieu, but not directly. It is one response to an authoritarian parenting style. Having a harsh, controlling father keeps children from developing the ability to regulate themselves, from internalizing their own intentions and then learning to act on them. Procrastination can even be a form of rebellion, one of the few forms available under such circumstances. What’s more, under those household conditions, procrastinators turn more to friends than to parents for support, and their friends may reinforce procrastination because they tend to be tolerant of their excuses. Get help
  6. Procrastination predicts higher levels of consumption of  those people who drink. Procrastinators drink more than they intend to—a manifestation of generalized problems in self-regulation. That is over and above the effect of avoidant coping styles that underlie procrastination and lead to disengagement via substance abuse.
  7. “The really happy people are those who have broken the chains of procrastination, those who find satisfaction in doing the job at hand. They’re full of eagerness, zest, productivity. You can be, too.”Norman Vincent Peale
  8. Procrastinators tell lies to themselves. Such as, “I’ll feel more like doing this tomorrow.” Or “I work best under pressure.” But in fact they do not get the urge the next day or work best under pressure. In addition, they protect their sense of self by saying “this isn’t important.” Another big lie procrastinators indulge is that time pressure makes them more creative. Unfortunately they do not turn out to be more creative; they only feel that way. They squander their resources.
  9. Procrastinators actively look for distractions, particularly ones that don’t take a lot of commitment on their part. Checking e-mail is almost perfect for this purpose. They distract themselves as a way of regulating their emotions such as fear of failure.
  10. There’s more than one flavor of procrastination. People procrastinate for different reasons. Dr. Ferrari identifies three basic types ofprocrastinators:
    • arousal types, or thrill-seekers, who wait to the last minute for the euphoric rush.
    • avoiders, who may be avoiding fear of failure or even fear of success, but in either case are very concerned with what others think of them; they would rather have others think they lack effort than ability.
    • decisional procrastinators, who cannot make a decision. Not making a decision absolves procrastinators of responsibility for the outcome of events.
  11. There are big costs to procrastination. Health is one. Just over the course of a single academic term, procrastinating college students had such evidence of compromised immune systems as more colds and flu, more gastrointestinal problems. And they had insomnia. In addition, procrastination has a high cost to others as well as oneself; it shifts the burden of responsibilities onto others, who become resentful. Procrastination destroys teamwork in the workplace and private relationships.
  12. Procrastinators can change their behavior—but doing so consumes a lot of psychic energy. And it doesn’t necessarily mean one feels transformed internally. It can be done with highly structured cognitive behavioral therapy.

Adapted from psychologytoday.com

If you aren’t seeing results it makes sense to get help

jim-woods-life-coach-leadership-speaker thumb nailJim Woods is a leadership development consultant and performance coach. His firm creates high performance in individuals and organizations by changing human behavior. For coaching, speaking, training or consulting we invite you to schedule an immediate appointment with Jim by visiting his website. Go> 

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Posted in Courage, Fear

8 Tips For Rebuilding The Fire In Your Relationship


It seems that a truly happy couple is mythical. We see or hear of people we long admired only to discover there are hidden secrets underneath. This need not occur. Of course, as a man divorced after 30 years of marriage I must admit it is the frequent application of the little things that become the big things.

To be perfectly honest, I don’t know if a truly happy couple from the inside out really exists. Most, of you will disagree until you really reflect, appear to be either a form of apathy or anarchy. Neither really care, admitting if at all in quiet recesses. The other, anarchy, is when the man makes most if all the decisions while the significant other remains subservient.

This may sound fatalistic. It isn’t. I’ve made it a point to keenly observe people beyond the obvious. As a perpetual romantic I still believe in happy ever after. Quite a bit in fact. Perhaps, just perhaps, in this age of more communication devices than any other time in history …. the real key is communication. As Covey said, Seek to understand rather than to be understood.

None of us are able to control the way another behaves. We can however control how we respond to any negative behavior. Assuming 100% responsibility for what we are doing in a relationship can immeasurably improve even a stale relationship.

What does it take to be happy in a relationship? Simple, a lack of selfishness and a desire to understand rather than understood. Jim

If you’re working to improve your marriage, here are some habits of happy couples from Psychology Today: 

Cultivate common interests

After the passion settles down, it’s common to realize that you have few interests in common. But don’t minimize the importance of activities you can do together that you both enjoy. If common interests are not present, happy couples develop them.

Make trust and forgiveness your default mode

If and when they have a disagreement or argument, and if they can’t resolve it, happy couples default to trusting and forgiving rather than distrusting and begrudging.

Focus more on what your partner does right than what he or she does wrong

If you look for things your partner does wrong, you can always find something. If you look for what he or she does right, you can always find something, too. It all depends on what you want to look for. Happy couples accentuate the positive.

Hug each other as soon as you see each other after work

Couples who say hello with a hug keep their skin bathed in the “good touch,” which can inoculate your spirit against anonymity in the world.

… buy some patience and tolerance as each partner sets out each day to battle traffic jams, long lines and other annoyances.

Read Full Article Psychology Today.

Jim Woods, Leadership speaker, Human Resources Consultant, Business Coach

Jim Woods is President of The Jim Woods Group Management Consultants. To hire Jim to speak at your next event click here to visit his website.

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Posted in Change, Personal Achievement, Personal Mastery

The 3 Ways You Can Stay Focused

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Staying focus is a matter of overcoming fear, guilt and unworthiness. A lack of focus can be the result of overwhelming ones self subconsciously with more than one can handle. Implicitly making the plate perpetually full. Here are just a few tips on how you can overcome this form of procrastination.

How do you like to learn?

It’s important to build up your personal work space in a way that best suits you. If you learn best by reading, then ensure you keep a strong to do list within reach to close out the things you need done by that day. If you work better when things are within sight, then compliment that by using color coded tabs and clear containers to stay organized. If you’re like me, and learn best by listening and conversing, then before you go into that interview or meeting, say out loud some of the points you will be raising to yourself so you’re prepared in a way that best suits you.

Related: Click here to read more on hiring Jim as a speaker for your event. 

Related: Six reasons you are afraid to change. Go>

Map out your time and tasks

I can’t stress enough how important this simple, yet so effective function is. Visually map out what needs to be done that day, then write it all out on your to do list.

via 3 Tips To Stay Focused.

​Get Aligned, Get Empowered. Build Confidence, Get Results: Create a Life of Extraordinary Meaning, Purpose and Fulfillment.  Programs to Fit Your Life and Budget.

Jim Woods, Leadership speaker, Human Resources Consultant, Business Coach


Jim Woods is President of The Jim Woods Group Management Consultants. To hire Jim to speeak at your next event click here to visit his website.

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Posted in Personal Achievement

33 Power Quotes By Louise Hay

  1. “I am in the right place, at the right time, doing the right thing.”  Louise L. Hay
  2.  “Every thought we think is creating our future.”  Louise L. Hay

    louise hay, motivation, potsitive affirmations

    Image courtesy Louise Hay

  3.  “You have the power to heal your life, and you need to know that. We think so often that we are helpless, but we’re not. We always have the power of our minds…Claim and consciously use your power.”  Louise L. Hay
  4.  “I have never understood the importance of having children memorize battle dates. It seems like such a waste of mental energy. Instead, we could teach them important subjects such as How the Mind Works, How to Handle Finances, How to Invest Money for Financial Security, How to be a Parent, How to Create Good Relationships, and How to Create and Maintain Self-Esteem and Self-Worth. Can you imagine what a whole generation of adults would be like if they had been taught these subjects in school along with their regular curriculum?”  Louise L. Hay, You Can Heal Your Life
  5.  “Love is the great miracle cure. Loving ourselves works miracles in our lives.”  Louise L. Hay
  6.  “I am willing to release the need to be unworthy. I am worthy of the very best in life, and I now lovingly allow myself to accept it”  Louise L. Hay
  7.  “No matter where we live on the planet or how difficult our situation seems to be, we have the ability to overcome and transcend our circumstances.”  Louise L. Hay
  8.  “I say “Out” to every negative thought that comes to my mind. No person, place, or thing has any power over me, for I am the only thinker in my mind. I create my own reality and everyone in it.”  Louise L. Hay
  9.  “When we expand our thinking and beliefs our love flows freely. When we contract we shut ourselves off. Can you remember the last time when you were in love? Your heart went ahhh!! It was such a wonderful feeling. It is the same with loving yourself except that you will never leave once you have your love for yourself. Its with you for the rest of your life, so you want to make it the best relationship that you can have.”  Louise L. Hay
  10. “I have noticed that the Universe loves Gratitude. The more Grateful you are, the more goodies you get”  Louise L. Hay
  11. “You’ve been criticizing yourself for years and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens.”  Louise L. Hay
  12.  “The point of power is always in the present moment.”  Louise L. Hay
  13.  “I will not be distracted by noise, chatter, or setbacks. Patience, commitment, grace, and purpose will guide me.”  Louise L. Hay
  14.  “You are the only person who thinks in your mind! You are the power and authority in your world.”  Louise L. Hay
  15. “I am in the right place at the right time, doing the right thing.”  Louise L. Hay
  16. “Deep at the center of my being there is an infinite well of love.”  Louise L. Hay, You Can Heal Your Life
  17.  “Your unique creative talents and abilities are flowing through you and are being expressed in deeply satisfying ways. Your creativity is always in demand.”  Louise L. Hay
  18.  “I change my life when I change my thinking. Louise L. Hay
  19. I am Light. I am Spirit. Louise L. Hay
  20. I am a wonderful, capable being. Louise L. Hay
  21. And it is time for me to acknowledge that I create my own reality with my thoughts. Louise L. Hay
  22. If I want to change my reality, then it is time for me to change my mind.”  Louise L. Hay
  23. “Your thoughts and beliefs of the past have created this moment, and all the moments up to this moment. What you are now choosing to believe and think and say will create the next moment and the next day and the next month and the next year.”  Louise L. Hay
  24. “If you want to understand your parents more, get them to talk about their own childhood; and if you listen with compassion, you will learn where their fears and rigid patterns come from. Those people who “did all that stuff to you” were just as frightened and scared as you are.”  Louise L. Hay
  25. “How you start your day is how you live your day. How you live your day is how you live your life.” Louise L. Hay
  26.  “It’s what we all wanted when we were children- to be loved and accepted exactly as we were then, not when we got taller or thinner or prettier…and we still want it… but we aren’t going to get it from other people until we can get it from ourselves.”  Louise L. Hay
  27.  “Think thoughts that make you happy. Do things that make you feel good. Be with people who make you feel good. Eat things that make your body feel good. Go at a pace that makes you feel good.”  Louise L. Hay, You Can Heal Your Life
  28. “It is true if you believe it to be true.”  Louise L. Hay
  29. “Well, I believe you created those experiences over and over because they mirrored something you believed about yourself.
  30. It doesn’t really matter how long we have had a problem, or how big it is, or how life-threatening it is. The Point of Power Is Always in the Present Moment” Louise L. Hay
  31. “Each day is a new opportunity. I chose to make this day a great one.”  Louise L. Hay
  32. “If we are willing to do the mental work, almost anything can be healed.”  Louise L. Hay, Heal Your Body A-Z
  33. “Humor and joy contribute to my total well-being.”  Louise L. Hay, Heal Your Body A-Z

via Goodreads

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Posted in Adversity, Change, Courage

Building Rapport to Understand Each Other


Generally. external acceptance is a response of how we view our self. I realize that is perhaps overly simplistic. However, the boomerang effect is what we send out returns. Being accepted is in large part about building rapport.

By Heidi Grant Halvorson 

The uncomfortable truth is that most of us don’t come across the way we intend.  We can’t see ourselves truly objectively, and neither can anyone else. Human beings have a strong tendency to distort other people’s feedback to fit their own views. We know this intellectually, and yet we rarely seem to recognize it as it’s happening.

That can cause you big problems in your personal and professional life. People may not trust you, may not like you, or may not even notice you, as a result of these errors in perception.  If you have ever felt yourself underestimated or misjudged, if you have stepped on toes without meaning to and been called to task for it, if you have wanted to cry out “That’s not fair!” when false and hurtful assumptions have been made about you, I’m here to tell you that you are right.  The way we see one another is far from fair.  In fact, much of this process of perceiving other people isn’t even rational.  It is biased, incomplete, and inflexible.  It is also largely (but not entirely) automatic.

Read full article via We’re All Terrible at Understanding Each Other – HBR.

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Posted in Motivation, Possibility Thinking

5 Best Ways for Your Startup to Beat The Odds

Overcoming failure, being a success, how to be happy, finding a job

Image courtesy Addicted to Success

“When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.” Henry Ford

Pay no attention to the Naysayers

Fear of judgement is one of the great fears of the human existence. All entrepreneurs have been judged by the naysayers and the critics at some point in their journey. Often these people judge you because your success can highlight their failures and so in turn, they want to see you fail. Understand that this is the dark side of humanity and that it’s normal. You can’t be in control of this you just have to be in control of what you do.

Even if you’re onto your third failed startup you should keep going as long as the desire is still there. The average millionaire has gone through eleven different failures, so if you really want it and it’s in your blood, you should go for it! The only real question though is how long do you keep going on the same venture until you move onto the next one? Only you will know when the time is right but don’t quit too early because a lot of entrepreneurs quit just before they are about to hit momentum and then they never get the reward.

Once you’re an entrepreneur there is no going back. For you to go from being an entrepreneur, back to a day job, would be like prison on earth, so keep persisting.

via Addicted 2 Success.

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Posted in Startups

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