Category Archives: TT Mindfulness

Hard Work vs Productivity (and how to be more productive)

Diligence and hard work are not the same as productivity. Only if they are under the auspices of productivity – which above all implies a high degree of clarity about what you want to achieve (clarity regarding ‘ultimate vision’) and an awareness of whether a particular decision and activity you are taking in the direction of your ‘ultimate vision’ – diligence and hard work make sense, because ‘if the ladder is not leaning against the right wall, every step we take just gets us to the wrong place faster.’”

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(Extract from ‘Top 7 Mistakes New Mindfulness Coaches Make (and How to Avoid Them)‘ by Tomislav Tomic)

As soon as you have a tendency for starting your own coaching business, I have no doubt that you are a diligent and hardworking person. As far as I can see in everyday practice, most small entrepreneurs are quite “workaholic” and often act as if they were calibrated to work until they were completely exhausted.

In other words, they often act as if their productivity depends primarily on their diligence and hard work.

However, diligence and hard work are not at the same time a guarantee of productivity. You can work all day, but at the same time, it doesn’t mean that you will achieve the desired business results.

There is a wonderful thought by Stephen Covey that says:

“If the ladder is not leaning against the right wall, every step we take just gets us to the wrong place faster.”

In other words, productivity involves, first and foremost, creating a high level of clarity on the direction we are heading as well as the “ultimate vision” of where we ultimately want to get. And only when it is completely clear to us “where” we want to be (the “ultimate vision”) can we begin to make meaningful plans and strategies that will support our path toward our desired goals. And only then can we judge whether a particular decision or activity leads us in the direction we want to go or not.

“Productivity involves, first and foremost, creating a high level of clarity on the direction we are heading as well as the ‘ultimate vision’ of where we ultimately want to get. And only when it is completely clear to us ‘where’ we want to be (the ‘ultimate vision’) can we begin to make meaningful plans and strategies that will support our path toward our desired goals. And only then can we judge whether a particular decision or activity leads us in the direction we want to go or not.

Without this clarity, your diligence and hard work, by themselves, will not only not be of much use to you, but also can become one of the key factors that will ruin your job, marriage/relationship, social life, health, as well as your entire life enthusiasm.

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Apart from the high level of clarity of the direction in which we are going, the “ultimate vision” where we want to go, productivity requires a high level of our focus, or rather, our complete attention.

We live in the age of information and at every turn, someone or something is trying to “usurp” a portion of our attention. Our attention has become very fragile and we find it difficult to keep focused. Due to the constant “bombardment” with various information from all sides, we have become chronically distracted and absent – which inevitably causes great stress and pressure and general job dissatisfaction and loss of motivation. Scientific research shows that 46,9% of our time at work is spent absent and distracted.

Full attention (which is a necessary prerequisite for strong focus) becomes, as the famous American professor Thomas Davenport says in his famous book, “The Attention Economy,” a new “currency” that we definitely need to invest the time and energy into as it becomes necessary not only as one of the key factors of our productivity but also as a key item for a happy and fulfilling life.[1]

Unfortunately, in the minds of many Mindfulness coaches, the concept of “productive person” is connected to a person who is often absent and distracted, works all day, has no time for him or herself, and is constantly exposed to great stress and pressure. I fear that is the fate of every entrepreneur (including Mindfulness coaches) if he or she doesn’t begin to think in time and reject the dangerous philosophy of “distraction and absence” that many blindly follow.

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In addition, productivity requires clearly defined priorities and plenty of time for creative thinking.

Productivity requires a focus on small details and extremely high flexibility so that we can change our usual direction and way of doing business as soon as we get the smallest signal that there is a better and more efficient option.

Productivity requires enough free time to spend with ourselves and the people who matter to us.

Productivity requires the allocation of time for activities that literally nourish our soul – in the absence of which our life motivation inevitably decreases.

Productivity requires that we have the necessary detachment in our head to think the thought we often think, the emotions we often feel, and activities we often repeat from time to time to analyze from different angles and constantly try to find better and more practical solutions.

Productivity demands that we dare to think with our own heads – even when everyone else around us tells us differently – and listen to our own intuition.

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Another important reason why many new Mindfulness coaches identify diligence and hard work with productivity and, in principle, work until they are completely exhausted, is the emotion of USEFULNESS they necessarily begin to feel after consuming the work energy they have available.

However, do not let the emotion of usefulness fool you because it is mostly a mere biochemical process in your brain that does not necessarily have anything to do with productivity. For example, when our brain “estimates” that we are exhausted enough, to protect us from burning out and losing necessary energy supplies, it begins to excrete hormones such as dopamine which first gives us a short-term sense of well-being, and then we begin to feel “useful” – as if we have done something important and need to (read: give yourself the right) “reward” ourselves with rest and relaxation.

Try to do anything to the point of exhausting yourself (for example, building a small drywall, then demolish it, then rebuild it, then break it again… until you are completely exhausted 😊) and then after that you will, thanks to dopamine, feel “useful” and you will have the need to “reward” yourself for your efforts and give yourself the right to rest and relaxation. 

“Try to do anything to the point of exhausting yourself (for example, building a small drywall, then demolish it, then rebuild it, then break it again… until you are completely exhausted) and then after that you will, thanks to dopamine, feel ‘useful’ and you will have the need to ‘reward’ yourself for your efforts and give yourself the right to rest and relaxation.” 

As you can see, this has nothing to do with productivity but with the natural mechanism of self-protection.

So, diligence and hard work are not the same as productivity. Only if they are under the auspices of productivity – which above all implies a high degree of clarity about what you want to achieve (clarity regarding “ultimate vision”) and an awareness of whether a particular decision and activity you are taking in the direction of your “ultimate vision” – diligence and hard work make sense, because “if the ladder is not leaning against the right wall, every step we take just gets us to the wrong place faster.”

“So, diligence and hard work are not the same as productivity. Only if they are under the auspices of productivity – which above all implies a high degree of clarity about what you want to achieve (clarity regarding ‘ultimate vision’) and an awareness of whether a particular decision and activity you are taking in the direction of your ‘ultimate vision’ – diligence and hard work make sense, because ‘if the ladder is not leaning against the right wall, every step we take just gets us to the wrong place faster.’”

(Extract from ‘Top 7 Mistakes New Mindfulness Coaches Make (and How to Avoid Them)‘ by Tomislav Tomic)


[1] The term “Attention Management” is increasingly used in blogs and publications published by Harvard Business School, as well as many other reputed business schools. There are a growing number of companies in the world that regularly provide Mindfulness training for their managers and employees – Volvo, Xerox, Yahoo, Toyota, eBay, IKEA, Deutsche Bank, American Express, Societe Generale, Nike, Google, IBM, Reebok, Starbucks, etc.

Key “Ingredient“ of Effective Communication and Creating Quality Relationships

There’s a saying that says that the quality of our lives depends mostly on how we communicate with others. Personally, I find it unquestionable that communication skills fall into the category of most important skills because without good communication there are no quality relationships, and without quality relationships everything else is empty and futile.

Because of this, from the very beginning of my coaching practice, I began to hold communication workshops on a regular basis. However, watching and analyzing my client’s daily experiences, I would often be accompanied by the feeling that something was missing. In this way, to be honest, I wasn’t overly pleased with the progress with most of them, although I regularly followed the latest trends in the world of NLP and coaching regarding communication skills.

That confronted me with many questions, until at one point I experienced a very interesting experience that literally opened my eyes and helped me to start looking at it quite differently.

While attending an important and rather stressful meeting, for a moment I seemed to be able, while talking to my interlocutor, parallelly look at myself from a completely objective perspective, from which I could clearly see how my unconscious emotional reaction to this stressful situation completely distorted a real picture of the situation I was in. Not that I wasn’t trying to use all the tools and skills I knew, but because of the distorted perception of the situation caused by my unconscious emotional reaction, everything I was trying to do I did to my detriment – and I could clearly observe that.

At that moment, I remembered the research I often refer to on my TT Mindfulness™ workshops, which showed that when we encounter a particular stimulus from an environment that usually creates stress, before an image of the situation we see is created in our brain, it creates an emotion that basically affects the image that will be created in our brain. In other words, our programmed emotional response controls what we will see with our own eyes. That is why it’s said that people make decisions based on emotions, and with logic just justify their choices and decisions. Or, as one of the world’s most famous experts in the field of communication and influence, Dale Carnegie, would often point out in his lectures:

“When dealing with people, keep in mind that you are not dealing with logical, but emotional beings.”

Thanks to the experience above and the numerous literature I have studied thereafter, it is much clearer to me today that AWARENESS OF OUR PROGRAMMED EMOTIONAL REACTION is a key ingredient in effective communication and quality relationships in particular stressful situations. Because for as long as we are not aware of the situations that are triggered in stressful situations and we don’t know how to create the necessary mental detachment from them, we just react and are not able to communicate, and the image created in our brain is completely distorted and unrealistic.

That is why it is important to know that without a sufficient level of emotional awareness and mental detachment from programmed emotional reactions, there is no tool or technique that will, except for minor “cosmetic repairs,” significantly help us improve our communication skills and create deeper, more lasting and better quality private and business relations.

The business world has begun to recognize this fact and there are more and more companies that are organizing trainings on Mindfulness and emotional intelligence. Ikea, Google, Yahoo, Nike are just some of them.

If you are really ambitious and want to become a good communicator, I would recommend that you start working on the most important ingredient in successful communication, which is exactly developing emotional awareness because it depends on whether you will communicate or just respond to your own unconscious emotions that are the result of your deep mental patterns you don’t even know when were created.

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If you would like to learn tools that can help you get started on working directly on programmed emotional reactions so that you can communicate more successfully in your private and business life, learn more about TT MINDFULNESS™ program.

Three Steps to Identify and Remove Your Limiting Beliefs

“If you don’t change your beliefs, your life will be like this forever. Is that good news?” – William Somerset Maugham

Do you know that the average person makes about 35,000 decisions a day? If this sounds amazing, think about the following…

Right now you are making a decision whether to continue reading this article or do something else. In other words, every moment of your life you make individual choices and the total sum of those choices as well as their consequences is what we call OUR REALITY. For this to be even more interesting, neuroscientists say that more than 95 percent of our decisions are made completely unconsciously.

The next question now arises, based on what are you deciding which next choice to choose or what is the thing that most influences the decisions you make. This is where we come to our beliefs, that is, internal programs that govern the vast majority of our daily choices and decisions.

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Our beliefs are like software that allows us to see only content that supports such software on our screen. They create our expectations and manage our reactions. We can have many hopes, aspirations and goals, but the actual steps that we need to achieve them we will only be able to take regularly when we at least partially get rid of precisely those limiting beliefs that do not support the direction we want to go.

Our beliefs are like software that allows us to see only content that supports such software on our screen. They create our expectations and manage our reactions. We can have many hopes, aspirations and goals, but the actual steps that we need to achieve them we will only be able to take regularly when we at least partially get rid of precisely those limiting beliefs that do not support the direction we want to go.

Although we all have many different limiting beliefs, the good news is that most of them are completely irrelevant and there is no need to deal with them at all. Beliefs that make sense are precisely those that automatically activate in us when we begin to take practical steps on a topic that is currently something important to us, and feel that our life or business is stagnant until we make a concrete move on the topic.

How to get rid of such limiting beliefs?

For starters, it is important to be specific and focused on one area of life for a specific period. Or, better yet, just one goal that you see as priority.

Think of a current goal of your own that is extremely important to you and does not suffer any further delays, while at the same time you feel that you are spinning too much in circle and not taking as many practical steps as necessary given the importance of such a goal.

Then ask yourself the following question:

“What should someone deep down believe that, as a result, would behave in the ways I behave in relation to my goal?

Then, without thinking too much, start writing down thoughts that come to the surface of your consciousness. They will generally represent precisely the beliefs that most restrict your engagement on the path toward achieving your goal. Once such limiting beliefs “pass” from your unconscious mind to your conscious mind, they will no longer represent the “mechanism” that dominates your decisions, but will only become an option to think about and be able to crucially re-examine.

Once such limiting beliefs “pass” from your unconscious mind to your conscious mind, they will no longer represent the “mechanism” that dominates your decisions, but will only become an option to think about and be able to crucially re-examine.

Take 20 minutes a week for the process and repeat it until you feel that old habits and behaviors no longer have a big impact on your new decisions.

One more thing…

Clients often ask me if it is necessary to have clearly defined goals, that is, whether it is possible to work on getting rid of limiting beliefs without clear goals. My answer is that it is possible, but you’ll need to invest 10 times more time and energy to achieve the same effect.

Why?

Because all your attention will be scattered in different directions and because of the lack of clarity of the direction you want to go, it will be difficult for you to define at all what your limiting beliefs are.

No belief by itself is limiting. It becomes limiting only when we feel it hindering us to reach the goal that really matters to us and that we want to achieve.

© Tomislav Tomić – 2020.

This article is a part of the working script for a program “TT MINDFULNESS™ – BECOME A MINDFULNESS COACH“. Click HERE for more information about the program…

What to Do When Things Change and You Don’t Know How To Proceed

“New beginnings are often disguised as painful endings!” – Lao Tzu

I believe that many times in life or business you found yourself in a situation where it seemed to you that everything that presented your foundation and base for stable functioning suddenly disappeared or “lost” its stability. Then we tend to feel frustrated, desperate and helpless without any hope that we will soon receive good news about our future.

Here is one idea you can try out next time you’re in a similar situation…

Without diminishing your sense of the heaviness of such situations, it is important for you to know that what mostly causes resistance, fear, frustration and helplessness is YOUR INTERPRETATION of yourself, the situation you are in and your position in that situation.

If you pay closer attention to the thoughts you think in such moments, you will quickly notice that you do not think any thoughts at all, but YOUR THOUGHTS THOUGHT THEMSELVES. It is as if there is some artificial intelligence in your mind that is completely USURPING YOUR ATTENTION and constantly analyzing all possible scenarios and options. But, despite its analysis, you see no solution and you feel worse and more helpless. The stated phenomenon in Mindfulness theory is called REACTIVE ATTENTION or REACTIVE MODE.

If you pay closer attention to the thoughts you think in such moments, you will quickly notice that you do not think any thoughts at all, but YOUR THOUGHTS THOUGHT THEMSELVES. It is as if there is some artificial intelligence in your mind that is completely USURPING YOUR ATTENTION and constantly analyzing all possible scenarios and options. But, despite its analysis, you see no solution and you feel worse and more helpless.

The real situation is that it is at these moments that NEW and CREATIVE SOLUTIONS ARE RIGHT IN FRONT OF US and are waiting to be recognized, but since our mind is in the mode of reactive attention, we are unable to identify new solutions that are not in line with our “old” logic.

Well known writer Helen Keller said that whenever one door of happiness closes, the other opens immediately, but we tend to stare at that closed door for so long that we do not recognize the door that just opened for us.

Your most important job in such moments, and before you do anything else, is (1) REMIND itself that you are not quite realistic in your assessment of the situation, that is, you see only a limited aspect of the situation, and (2) CREATE A SPACE in  your mind that will allow you to identify new solutions and move on.

In order to create such a space in your mind, apart from reminding yourself that you are not quite realistic in assessing the situation, three magic words need to be said.

Do you want to hear what this is all about?

The magic words are…

“I DON’T KNOW!”

Once you make it clear to yourself (on your conscious level) that you DON’T KNOW how to go on and DON’T KNOW what needs to be done and persist in that approach long enough, in your mind NEW SPACE will be created that will not be directly influenced by those “thoughts that think themselves” and are driving you crazy and exhaust your energy and will to move on. Words I DON’T KNOW will also activate a research mode in your mind that is much more suited to identify new solutions.

The next time you find yourself in a situation where you feel as if everything that formed the basis and foundation for your stable functioning has suddenly disappeared or “lost” its stability, instead of letting yourself to the reactive mind and working hard to “solve your problem”, remind yourself that this “picture presented to you” on the canvas of your mind is not reality but a projection of your “old self.”

Then, with the intention of addressing both yourself and the Intelligence of the Universe or Light or God (whatever seems closer to you) close your eyes and say within yourself:

“I DON’T KNOW! I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DO, BUT I’M WILLING TO RECOGNIZE THE SOLUTION!”

Repeat this “intention” every time you recognize that your mind is becoming reactive and begin to cloud your perception, and in your heart and mind be open to receiving the new because NEW will come!

Eckhart Tolle said: “Some changes look negative on the surface but soon you will realise that SPACE is being created in your life for something new to emerge.”

Some changes look negative on the surface but soon you will realise that SPACE is being created in your life for something new to emerge. – Eckhart Tolle

“I DON’T KNOW! I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DO, BUT I’M WILLING TO RECOGNIZE THE SOLUTION!” – is a phrase that will keep you open to new and wonderful solutions waiting to be received in your life.

“New beginnings are often disguised as painful endings!” – said Lao Tzu, so it is sometimes important to stop trusting your “old” logic and be open to solution that, at first glance, may seem completely ILLOGICAL.

© Tomislav Tomić – 2020.

This article is a part of the working script for a program “TT MINDFULNESS™ – BECOME A MINDFULNESS COACH“. Click HERE for more information about the program…

What is Broken Windows Theory and Why is it Relevant to Your Goals?

Get to know one unusual “theory” that can completely change your mindset to the way you approach your goals…

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In the late 1970s, Stanford psychologist Philip Zombardo decided to conduct an interesting experiment. He parked one car without licence plates with a slightly open hood and an open window in one neighbourhood in New York. He parked the other car in a neighbourhood in Palo Alto, California, but he didn’t remove the license plates or leave the hood and window open – this car seemed to belong to someone and like it was regularly used. It is important to note that both neighbourhoods in which he parked his cars were known for poverty and high crime rates.

The car parked in New York was “visited” the same night by thieves, and after only three days nothing valuable was left in it. The car he parked in Palo Alto remained untouched even after a week.

In order to continue with his experiment, he decided to break the window of an “intact” car parked in Palo Alto with a hammer. With the broken window, the car somehow left an impression of being abandoned. Just hours after he broke the window, thieves stole everything that was valuable in the car.

So, while the car seemed to belong to someone and seemed like it was regularly maintained and used, no one even touched it for a week. As soon as he broke the window, leaving an impression of abandonment, only a few hours after thieves had stolen everything valuable in it.

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This experiment served as the basis for the creation of the so called Broken Windows theory, which boils down to the idea that when light crimes are starting to be IGNORED and NEGLECTED, it creates the impetus and fertile ground for the spread of serious crimes and the development of  “more serious” crime. This theory has proven to be more than effective in practice and its application has led to a reduction of crime rates in various cities across the United States.

Over time, its application, in a slightly modified form, has come to life within the field of personal development so let’s now explore how this theory can help us in the process of personal change.

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No matter how “big” or “distant” the goal or outcome you want to achieve is, the majority of your path to that goal or outcome consists of a multitude of SMALL STEPS to be taken on a daily basis.

Think about it…

You may want to lose 10 kilos. Whichever program or weight loss approach you choose, what will have the most effect on your realization of the outcome (like sustainability of that equipment) is exactly the sum of the small steps you will take on daily basis, such as exercising regularly, eating properly, avoiding certain foods, etc.

You may want to write your first book. You are full of inspiration and feel joy and excitement just by thinking about your book being sold in bookstores. Nevertheless, the success of your outcome will depend mostly on your daily habits and the time you spend on a daily basis to write, study the literature, manage your existing responsibilities more effectively, etc.

Great ambition, motivation, inspiration, vision and various other “drivers” of proactive behavior are often overrated. As much as they can be (and often are) very powerful initiators of the process of change, they will disappear very quickly if we don’t maintain them precisely with little practical steps taken on a daily basis. Jim Rohn, one of the most famous motivational speakers, said: “Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.”

“Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.” – Jim Rohn

Unfortunately, these small steps are often repetitive, with almost no one noticing that you are taking them and sometimes seem insignificant in relation to your ultimate goal or outcome. Sometimes you don’t notice any progress for days or weeks, despite regularly adhering to them. For example, you exercise regularly for several weeks and take care of every meal, without noticing any particular change in your body. Or, you’ve been writing your book for a couple weeks, and after deleting all that seemed superfluous, you realize that you had written only two pages.

But, the point is that these little routine steps that no one sees, or even notices you do, will gradually allow you to identify those crucial (bigger) steps that will visibly push you forward towards your goal or desired change.

However, if you start ignoring and “skipping” these little steps, you will create a TENDENCY TO IGNORE AND SKIP ANY TYPE OF ACTION YOU NEED. That will gradually dampen your motivation and blur your vision. It is very likely that you will eventually give up on your goal or desired change believing that the goal you set for yourself was not for you anyway.

If you start ignoring and “skipping” these little steps, you will create a TENDENCY TO IGNORE AND SKIP ANY TYPE OF ACTION YOU NEED. That will gradually dampen your motivation and blur your vision. It is very likely that you will eventually give up on your goal or desired change believing that the goal you set for yourself was not for you anyway.

Each of those skipped little steps takes you two steps back. Each of your skipped little steps, metaphorically, will act like a car from the above experiment which seemed increasingly neglected. The more your “car” looks “neglected”, the less will be your will to restore it to its optimal condition. Ultimately, it will also result in the people around you who need you to reach the desired goal, unwittingly “smell” that you are frivolous and not sufficiently committed to your goal or outcome and will lose their will to help and push you as much as they can. Let’s be real, why would they waste their time with you if you have not yet defined with yourself how much you really care about what you want? This all happens mostly on the unconscious level, but most of our interactions happen unconsciously anyway.

Once you faithfully keep to the small steps because you don’t want your “car” to seem like it’s being neglected, but you want it to seem like it’s being regularly taken care of and maintained, people will recognize your commitment and have the urge to maximally meet your needs and help you as much as they can and know how to.

There is a principle in Yoga theory that says if you skip meditation one day, you need two days of meditation to get back on the same level.  If you skip meditation for two days, you need four days of meditation to return to the same level. And if you skip meditation for three days, you need nine days of meditation to return to the same level.

“If you skip meditation one day, you need two days of meditation to get back on the same level. If you skip meditation for two days, you need four days of meditation to return to the same level. And if you skip meditation for three days, you need nine days of meditation to return to the same level.”

In short, small steps that are regularly done on a daily or weekly basis are the base of any successful outcome. Lifetime, intensity of your vision, motivation and inspiration depends on them. As soon as you start ignoring and “skipping” those little steps, you will not only feel an increasing tendency to ignore and “skip” them even more, but you will begin to relativize those crucial (bigger) steps that are necessary to accomplish your goal.

The secret to being proactive is not in the big vision, strong motivation or ambition because there is hardly any person who hasn’t felt a strong inspiration or motivation for something at least a couple times in their lives. Unfortunately, without further understanding, visions, inspirations or motivations  often resemble the desired guest who suddenly appears at our door and as soon as we get excited to have it here, it suddenly disappears. The secret to proactivity comes down to (1) understanding the importance of small steps, (2) understanding the dangers of skipping and relativising small steps and (3) understanding the concept for which the name “nonlinear nature of the cumulation of the effect of small steps” in used the context of the TT MINDFULNESS ™ program.

Nonlinear nature of the cumulation of the effect of small steps

There is another interesting phenomenon that is good to keep in mind when talking about the importance of taking small steps as well as the hidden danger of “skipping” them.

When we define our goals and the small steps we take on a daily basis, one part of our mind expects us to see at least a small level of progress with each step we take. This is quite natural to expect because if you are already investing time and energy into something, you want to make sure that the action you have taken at least brought you closer to the desired outcome. Unfortunately, as much as the stated expectation seems logical, linear progression is reserved only for rare cases.

And that is why it is important to keep in mind the following…

For example, if you need 100 days of some activity to reach your goal, feel free to count on about 80 percent of your VISIBLE RESULTS to appear only in the last 20 days (the last 20 percent of the time).

For example, if you need 100 days to complete your book, chances are that 80 percent of your manuscript will be completed in the last 20 days, while you’ll spend the first 80 days experimenting with different ideas, writing and deleting, researching material, etc. – in any case, without any specific visible results that you might show someone and ask that person for their opinion.

If you, for example, need 10 months to start your private business and get your net monthly income equal to your current monthly salary, it is likely that most of the significant results that will most impact your default net monthly income will appear exactly two months before you start earning that kind of income.

This, of course, is not a precise statistic, but merely a tentative idea that indicates that our path to the goal is quite nonlinear. Unfortunately, due to a misunderstanding of this phenomenon, many people prematurely conclude that what they are doing “is not going as they imagined” and give up, often not realizing that they were almost near the realization of their goal.

The point is to prepare yourself in advance to spend on average 80 percent of the time it takes to accomplish a goal by making small, necessary steps that no one will even notice. That’s exactly what differentiates people who go forward from those who constantly go in a circle.

Summary:

  • No matter how “big” or “distant” the goal or outcome you want to achieve is,the majority of your path to that goal or outcome consists of a multitude of SMALL STEPS to be taken on a daily basis.
  • If you start ignoring and “skipping” these little steps, you will create a TENDENCY TO IGNORE AND SKIP ANY TYPE OF ACTION YOU NEED. That will gradually dampen your motivation and blur your vision and cause you to give up on your goals or change you wanted to make.
  • Only regularity in taking small steps on a daily basis has the “superpower” to extend the lifetime of your vision and motivation.
  • Prepare to spend 80 percent of the time it takes to accomplish a goal by making small necessary steps no one will notice. Those visible and significant results will only appear the last 20 percent of the time, just before the desired outcome is realized.

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© Tomislav Tomić – 2020.

This article is a part of the working script for a program “TT MINDFULNESS™ – BECOME A MINDFULNESS COACH“. Click HERE for more information about the program…

What You Need to Know Before You Enroll in Any Mindfulness Course?

There are five basic Mindfulness paths and they differ in terms of purpose and the target group for which each of the methods and approaches are intended  – we will explore this in this article…

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In the last 30 years, a great number of Mindfulness books and articles have been published. On the one hand, to people who are interested in Mindfulness this offers width and the opportunity to explore from many angles, and on the other hand, it is precisely this large amount of information that created ambiguity for many and it is hard for them to have a basic concept on their head which they could continue to explore.

For example, a client who recently took an interest in Mindfulness and did some research on the internet told me that she is very confused with how I write about Mindfulness primarily in the context of personal development and efficiency at work, and some other authors write about Mindfulness as a way to treat depression, while some mention Mindfulness as a method used in some hospitals to prevent or treat post-traumatic stress disorder. Or, if Mindfulness is promoted as something secular, why are there Buddhist monasteries that organize open Mindfulness courses.

The correct answer is that there are several Mindfulness paths and they differ in terms of the purpose and the target group for which particular methods and approaches are intended.

There are several Mindfulness paths and they differ in terms of the purpose and the target group for which particular methods and approaches are intended.

To facilitate your research, I will outline five basic Mindfulness paths below. All of them have a similar starting point, but in theoretical and methodological terms they are quite different as soon as the initial stage is crossed since they serve different purposes. Keep in mind that this is only a framework and informal division of Mindfulness styles and I use it only to make it easier for you to orient yourself in further research.

Mindfulness focused on the health aspect

The first Mindfulness path is focused on the health aspect and its purpose is to help people cope with pain and post-traumatic stress disorders more easily. The most notable author and instructor of this path is former University of Massachusetts medical professor Jonn Kabat Zinn and his umbrella program  Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction. The aforementioned program is most commonly applied in hospitals and as one can imagine, Mindfulness coaches or instructors who are most represented in this path are mostly doctors and various health professionals. By the way, Jon Kabat Zinn is one of the pioneers of Mindfulness in the West and has greatly contributed to the Mindfulness and started being seriously experienced and has explored within scientific circles. Even if you have no health issues and are not interested in this path, I find it advisable to read one of his books. I suggest people attending my  Mindfulness Coach Certification program  to fully study all his books, even if they don’t like them. After all, it’s a classic that anyone who wants to take Mindfulness teaching more seriously should be familiar with.

Mindfulness aimed at treating depression

The second path in the field of Mindfulness is focused on people who have problems with depression. Most of these programs fall into the category of Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy and are a style that combines individual Mindfulness methods and approaches with cognitive behavioral therapy. As this is basically therapy for people suffering from depression or anxiety, this idea of Mindfulness is primarily addressed by psychotherapists and other mental health professionals, and judging by the results of scientific research, this form of therapy is very effective. I find it interesting noting that a two-year postgraduate program called Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy was launched several years ago at the University of Oxford.

Mindfulness that is focused on personal development

The third path in the field of Mindfulness is generally focused on personal development, raising the level of personal energy and improving the quality of life. Often mentioned topics here are developing creativity, goal awareness and setting authentic goals, releasing internal beliefs that block the desired change, creating good and productive habits and constantly living outside the comfort zone. Mindfulness is used as an additional tool to gain mental and emotional agility and to create a sharp focus so that a person can be more focused on its goals and create the desired change. Mindfulness coaches who are most represented in this path are mostly coaches whose work is focused on personal development. Program TT MINDFULNESS™ definitely belongs to this category.

Mindfulness focused on corporate development

The fourth path in the field of Mindfulness is focused primarily on companies with major focus on efficiency, agility and productivity. They are often referred to as the Corporate Based Mindfulness Training. Such programs often combine Mindfulness with various other related methods like NLP, practical neuroscience or emotional intelligence. The best known program in this path is Search Inside Yourself developed by Google. Mindfulness coaches who are most represented in this path are either coaches or HR professionals.

Mindfulness based on Buddhist principles (“Vipassana”)

The fifth path in the field of Mindfulness is tightly connected to traditional Buddhist principles and in relation to the previous four directions which are completely secular or “flirting” with certain universal spiritual and metaphysical principles (depending on the preferences of the author/instructor/coach), this path is primarily focused on Buddhist spirituality. This type of Mindfulness training is mainly conducted by Buddhist monks or people who prefer Buddhist principles and lifestyles. One of the most famous representatives of this style is the Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hahn.

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There is another Mindfulness path that is applied in the schools of certain Japanese and Chinese martial arts, but it is only oral transfer of knowledge so there is no particular need to talk about it.

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I hope that my informal division and framework will facilitate your further exploration of Mindfulness  and help you identify the general path that an author, instructor, program or book belongs to.

So, to the question “Which Mindfulness path is best for me?” The correct answer depends on what you want to get with Mindfulness, in other words what is the main goal underlying your motivation to engage with that method.

The clearer your goal of what you want to achieve with Mindfulness is, the easier it is to identify with the path that currently works best for you and that is worth exploring in more depth.

The clearer your goal of what you want to achieve with Mindfulness is, the easier it is to identify with the path that currently works best for you and that is worth exploring in more depth.

In fact, it is like this with everything, isn’t it?

© Tomislav Tomić – 2020.

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This article is a part of the working script for a program “TT MINDFULNESS™ – BECOME A MINDFULNESS COACH“. Click HERE for more information about the program…