Personal Development Self Growth Self Improvement

How to live from the inside out

Motivational Quotes

To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream, not only plan, but also believe” – Anatole France.


God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference” – Serenity Prayer


Cease to ask what the morrow will bring forth, and set down as gain each day that Fortune grants” – Horace.


Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift. That is why it is called present” – Unkonwn


Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain.

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“Things may happen to you, but the only things that matter are the things that happen in you” ~ Eric Butterworth. I am not made or unmade by the things that happen to me but by the things that I do, this means that I have learned to live from the inside out. The bible says we shall know them by their fruit, very true indeed. What we manifest outside is as a result of the fullness of the inside. Have you ever wondered how many people care about what people think of them as compared to the number of people who care for them; what they look like; what school they went to; how society has accepted them and where they work?

Most of us have actually forgotten or do not know that we are what we are as a result of what has been planted inside us. Our own life is like a fruit. Do you expect that when you plant say a mango seed you will get an apple tree? Of course not, you can only get the exact type of fruit tree you planted.   The say all growth comes from within. Human beings, just like plants, grow from the inside out. Our personal growth begins with a seed that is planted and nurtured in us. All things being equal, we would all grow and reach the same heights. However, this is not to be so. Even, though all other parameters remain unchanged.

I have below a few things that you may consider to help you live from the inside out.

What do you feed your mind on?
Before we go and discuss what we feed our minds on, you must know and realize that you have a world within. This world within although, invisible its forces are mighty. This inside world of thought and feeling and power; of light and life and beauty is waiting to be discovered and unleashed. You are made or unmade by the things you do and not the things that happen to you. In order to better understand and know how to better live from the inside out you need to know that every thought is a cause and every condition is an effect; for this reason you need to control your thoughts so as to bring forth desirable conditions. Yes there will be challenges along the way, but what world would it be without challenges? The world within is the cause, the world without the effect; to change the effect you must change the cause.

This brings us to a very important daily act and this is the act of reading and feeding your mind with the right stuff. If you are like me and want to succeed in the area of personal development and self growth. You need to feed your mind with the right material. The mind can only be feed through reading, listening and watching the right material. To help you get started with feeding your mind start reading, say 1 book per month. Just ensure that you have drawn up a reading program and stick to it. Studies have shown that non fictional books are rarely read beyond the first chapter. Please improve on this statistic.

There are plenty of materials to be read out there. Just look for what suites you and what will help you grow in the area of your interest. My personal target is to read 1 book per month on top of reading my daily bible verses and magazines of interest, so far so good. I have also greatly reduced on my reading of current affairs as most of it is usually on the negative side. I know that this is one of the best ways to keep my mind focused and fed on the right material. The best time for me to read is in the night and early in the morning. You may also consider reducing the time you spend watching TV. I have noticed that TV is a major source for a lot of negativity. If you are a parent you agree with me that most of the things your kids do or say are as result of what they see on Television.

Your mind creates your reality
Reality starts in your mind “by thought, the thing you want is brought to you, by action you receive it”. As a man thinketh so is he in his heart. As you think, so your life becomes. Changing your attitude and expectations, will sooner or later, change your life accordingly. The biggest player in our daily lives is the mind. We live our lives according to what we think. Studies have shown that what we think comes to pass as reality. To live from the inside out your mind has to be creative. Remember that everything that we see was first conceived and created in the mind. I would be right then to say that your mind creates your reality.

If your mind is full of negative thoughts chances are 9/10 you are living in negativity. If you want to succeed at whatever you are planning to do you must first change your mind and see yourself successful. Let your mind create your reality. If there is one organ in our bodies that is underutilized is the brain. To positively live from the inside out you must allow your mind to create the reality for you. If you believe in your mind that you will be successful at what you are doing then prepare yourself to receive it.
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All things have their origin in the mind, and appearances are the result of thought. Since they are produced by thought, they can be erased by thought. This is how important your mind is. What you think has a direct influence on what surrounds you. It is believed that the mind is capable of attracting that which you harbor in your thoughts. Human beings can form things in there thoughts, and by impressing these thoughts upon formless substance, can cause the things being thought about to be created. If you are a Christian you will agree with me that God “thought” before every creation.

Be creative and think positively
“To live a creative life we must lose our fear of being wrong” ~ Joseph Chilton Pearce. “The best way to predict the future is to create it” ~ Peter F. Drucker. Being creative and positive will surely enhance the quality of life we live. If you are to successfully live from the inside out then your mind must be both creative and positive. If we take it in the spiritual context man is made in the image and likeness of God. Man is therefore a spiritual being and the spirit possesses the power to think. Thinking is therefore, creative and all form is therefore the result of the thinking process.

No sane person can disassociate themselves from thinking. Thinking is the core activity for every living being. It is therefore very important that you harbour and entertain positive thoughts that will manifest in to positive form. Remember that creativity is imbedded in all humanity. It is entirely up to an individual to tap in and use it constructively. Studies have shown that the mind is always active no matter what you are doing even in sleep. I believe that the quality of your creativeness coupled with your reaction and action will determine the level of your achievement.

All growth is from within. All living creatures grow from the inside out. I therefore challenge you to feed the inner you for perfect growth. Yes will come across challenges and these will only be a test of what we are made of. Success will not come with growth. Prepare yourself to overcome the storm as every after any storm there is calmness. The bible says we shall know them by their fruits. Ask yourself what fruit you carry and remember to always “standout tall and be counted”.

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Who do you think you are?

“You become what you think about” ~ Earl Nightingale. Do not be deceived the title may sound a bit sarcastic, but may be let me rephrase the question; what do you think you are? True to the question many of us do not even know what we think of ourselves. I asked many of my colleagues and friends the same question and the answers I was getting were shocking 90% of them have never even thought about it. This may be true to you. Bob Richards says “you are what you think you are, and I agree with him 100%. You see the world only sees and knows what you give them or rather allow them to see. Your perception of yourself may be different from what the outside world sees.

What you think about yourself may very different from what I think about you. They say all growth is from within and what is seen from outside is the fruit of what is inside. It is therefore very important that you form a very positive identity about yourself and portray it to the world. I will give an example of a married couple. If you portray your spouse, as a bad person to your family that is what they will get. Simply because you “know” them better than your other members of the family and the opposite is true. I have outlined below a few attributes that will help us think about whom we really are and accept what we think we are.

What is your role?
We all have roles to play in our lives and these, change as we go through them. Take your mind back as to when you were still a young person, what was your role then in your family? What did your parents, your brothers and sisters including your peers expect of you? We all start out our roles as sons’ or daughters, sisters’ or brothers then friends, pupils’ employees and the list goes on and on. Compare that to now. You could be married and have children surely your role has definitely changed. This simply shows you the pattern of physical growth and responsibility being taken on by you. I am sure just reading the list of roles above has conjured up some images in your mind of what each of those means to you.

I know you have some kind of perception for each of them. Surely as you grow in your roles you will realise that these roles go with certain behaviours and expectations. These behaviours that you exhibit are what define you. To some they come instinctively to others they have to be instilled. Whatever, the case they are in built before they are shown to the world. The bible says “as a man speaks so is he in his heart”. Your reaction to the outside world is as a result of what you harbour in the inside. What you harbour in the inside is as a result of what you constantly think you are. Let me make things a bit clearer for you by defining what a role is. “This is what you are expected to do or your function”.

The different roles that we take up during our daily lives help us to think reasonably of the part we play in society at large and what is expected of us. Remember that you are part of one big family and each member of the family has distinct roles to play for the betterment of the family. Un fortunately the larger family has broken down and it is up to you and I to be role models. You can only be a better role model if you change your thinking and put on your best behaviours. Your character is largely determined by what you think you are. In fact, they say your thoughts determine what you become. You may have noticed that your role keeps changing during the day. Some may wake as husband sleeping next to your wife, at that time your role is of a husband, next wake up the children and your have a double role of both father and husband and as the day goes on your roles keep on changing and increasing. It is this change in roles that help us interact with society accordingly at large. We mould our children according to what they see us do and portray.

Knowing your identity
Roles may require us to be only a part of ourselves and may require us to be something that we are not. The more we do things the more they become a habit and the more we think in the same way, the more these patterns of thought and behaviour become our identity. The roles we play in life give us strength and confidence. The sad part and truth is that most of us derive our identities from these roles. When you derive your identity from these external roles, our true identity gets forgotten and we believe the lie that we are our roles.

Knowing your true identity is of paramount importance in achieving your personal development goals. Your true identity comes from deep within you. Your thoughts and your reaction towards the external world are a true reflection of your identity. I have come to know also that our identity can be seen in our daily roles. Practically speaking we have to play roles to operate effectively in society. It is a requirement that cannot be done away with. But these can dominate our sense of identity to the extent that we feel lost when all is said and done.

The solution is to find a way of playing roles without them becoming our identity. Identity is from within. We need to find an internal source for our identity and not rely on the external one. That is why it is very important that we keep reminding yourself of who you think you are. When we have found our internal source of identity we can then pick up our roles and play them with every confidence. Getting back in touch with who and what you really are, that is, finding yourself, opens up the possibility to play roles and move in and out of them with freedom when you like.

Yourself awareness
Self-awareness is critical to personal development depending upon your definition. You cannot definitely know or start to think about who you are before being aware of yourself. The only way you can be aware of yourself is to take an observatory stance. A state of pure awareness enables you to step outside yourself as it were and to take a look at yourself from the outside as an independent observe, much like a coach does in a coaching relationship. Being outside of yourself system gives you more objectivity to make better judgement of your personality. This then gives you a better understanding on thinking about who you think you are.

Personal awareness is gained by a shift in perspective of observing your thoughts, actions and feelings; observing the world around you, the relationships and people, and giving yourself a break from your self. Get feedback from these observations and write them down. The advantage of self-observation is that you are always with yourself and please endeavour to form an honest opinion about your observations remove feelings and emotions. One of the best ways to observe yourself is when you are playing your daily roles. I have tended to believe that role playing is for the gallery and does not allow us to be our actual selves. Self-awareness will greatly help you know exactly what you think you are.

It may sound funny but many of us have no sense of self-awareness. We just go about doing business as “usual”. Personal success and development requires that we change from our business as usual kind of a person to being self-aware and more positive thinking. If you have a positive attitude towards life most likely you are also living consciously. If you are living consciously you will agree with me that, things do not just happen by chance or lack. You cause things to happen by your thoughts.

Understanding your self
With increased self-awareness comes increased self-knowledge. I have never come across a successful person with very little or no knowledge about themselves. Personal development requires that you are in control of your being and to achieve this you need to understand yourself. How can you handle success if you do not have a clue about yourself? How can you even start to think about who you are before you even have an understanding of yourself? Self-knowledge leads to self-understanding and this gives us choice and freedom.

It offers up the possibility to live spontaneously, in the moment, creatively applying your accumulated wisdom to the situation before you, free of internal conflicts and half measures. Self-understanding will therefore, greatly help you in knowing who you think you are. Take a break and ask your self how much you know and understand yourself. If you have no clue about knowing yourself I suggest you become a student of yourself. Start by appreciating your various roles and have a sense of self awareness. What you are merely doing is aiding your knowledge and thoughts on who you think you are? Personal success therefore, requires that you have an understanding of yourself.

Becoming aware of your own internal processes and in turn gaining knowledge and understanding, naturally leads on to self-acceptance. This is when you now know who you think you are. Accepting yourself leads to greater self-awareness as there is no need to hide parts of yourself, as acceptance is pretty much the opposite of being judgemental. We all have experienced some bad patch of some sort in our lives and some of them we would rather not talk about them. The amazing thing is that the route to personal change and development is by rejecting, modifying or suppressing them. But instead it is in the accepting them that we develop and move on.

Self-acceptance is key element in knowing who we think we are. The only way you can advance in personal development is by accepting whatever, happened to you in the past and learning from them and thereby, moving on. Well I understand that some of us may have experienced life threatening situations but it is more important to accept the reality and move on. It would be wrong to completely deny whatever, happened. But, to actually accept it; get professional counsel if necessary and move on. We hide in these unfortunate circumstances due to fear. In my life I have come to realise that the number one enemy to success is fear. Get fear out of the way and you will have the courage to do.

Self-acceptance can be actualised by knowing what you think you are. There is no success with knowing what you think you are and setting goals and writing down plans to actualise your thoughts. When self-acceptance is attained there is even more freedom and peace of mind. You see in life we as human beings accept people by our own standards instead of accepting them as they are. Most of the time people want to be associated with the affluent in society. Those that we know can give us favours. When you achieve self-acceptance you will accept people for what they are and not who they are.

We all perform roles in life, yet we are not our roles and if we identify too closely with them we may feel safe but only temporarily. The authentic self is the true self underneath all the conditioning that has been acquired through life’s experience. You are what you are and that is ok. You are an original and there is only one you. Knowledge of ourselves is a pre-requisite for real lasting change and for a satisfied contentment with life. Ultimately being in touch with yourself means that; you will be aware of and be able to express your true feelings in an appropriate way as a responsible adult; you will have high levels of self-awareness and you will accept yourself for who you are. I hope and trust that this article has helped you in knowing and that you now can apply it accordingly. “Nurture your mind with great thoughts, for you will never any higher than you think” ~ Benjamin Desraeli. Remember to always “standout tall and be counted”.

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How to keep track of your thoughts

Watch your thoughts; they become words. Watch your words; they become actions. Watch your actions; they become habits. Watch your habits; they become character. Watch your character; it becomes your destiny” ~ Frank Outlaw. The lesson learned from the preceding quote is that you are what you are, because of what you think. Therefore, the thoughts you keep in your mind are of paramount importance to building your character. All character and all habits are formed from your thoughts.

It is therefore, important that as you build your character and as you walk on the road of success your thoughts are in tune with your surrounds. Know that your success is the manifestation of your thoughts. It is what you think you are that, will manifest. If your think you are a failure then that is what you will end up to be; if you think otherwise the exact opposite is what you will be. You are the captain of your soul.

What thoughts are right?
Am sure this is the question you really want answered. It is rather difficult for me to answer this question for you as it is an individual’s choice. I would rather you answer it on your own. I have my own answer and I can rest assure you that it is very different from yours. You see one thing I have learned is that the mind does not decipher wrong or right thoughts. It takes whatever, thoughts you allow in. Wrong or right is decided by you.

If you allow your mind to dwell on wrong thoughts you will yield wrong results, if your mind dwells on the right thoughts be rest assured of the right results. In other words you reap what you sow, if you sow positive thoughts you reap positive results and vice versa. What you are from the inside is what comes out of you. You cannot be a devil inside and be an angel outside. The bible says “You shall know them by their fruits”. A farmer cannot plant an almond seed and expect the seed to grow into a guava tree. I have never seen that myself. Somebody help me if they have.

The decision to decide what thoughts are right depends entirely on what you want to achieve in your life. Your thoughts must be inclined to your achievement. For example if you are aiming to have say $5million dollars in five years’ time; your thoughts must have already seen the $5million dollars. You must have convinced in your thoughts that you already have received and begin to work on how you are going to achieve your target. In this case the thoughts of saving and spending less money would be the right ones. The thoughts of how to raise more money would set you on the right path. It would be detrimental to begin to think that money will come without hard work, perseverance and patience.

How to keep track
If thoughts are so important to our lives and success, it then follows, that there must be a way of keeping track of them. As human beings we are prone to easily push aside good thoughts and never recall them. One of the best ways I use to keep track of my thoughts is to have them written down in a note book. I just don’t understand but I know that there is power in writing down something.

I have written down my life’s purpose and continuously write on how best I can achieve or rather attain it. The main theme does not change but the methods being used to get there keep on improving. The more I write about the methods to be used, the more clearer my destination gets. Don’t just write it down and forget it but, read it daily to keep the thoughts fresh. For me writing is the best method I have devised, if you can think of any other method that’s very good. Please follow it religiously and see what results you will achieve.

Keeping track of your thoughts is very important and should be encouraged. The use of mnemonics is also a one good method that can be utilized. You also need to have some “thought time”. This is the time when you are alone and not disturbed. At this particular time search your mind and focus on your written down life’s purpose. Focus on how best you can move towards your set goals and write down every thought and answer that comes to mind. Keep track of them by reviewing them regularly. Off course some will be done away with as they will be unrealistic but still keep track of your thoughts.

I must emphasize and remind you that everything that is, and has been was first conceived as a thought and transmuted into being.  I believe that even GOD had to think before he spoke of creation. The bible says “as a man thinketh so is he in his heart”. Notice that whatever, you say is first processed as a thought before being said. This is how important your thoughts are. Always think before your act and live conscious of your success. Bye for now and always remember to “standout tall and be counted” by thinking positively.

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