7 Keys To Living A Victorious Life…John Page Burton

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In the game of life, there are WINNERS and there are LOSERS. The last time I checked, the universe doesn’t hand out participation trophies. Sometimes we find ourselves “on a roll” and other times we seem to be in a “downward spiral”. So what is the secret to living VICTORIOUSLY? How can we WIN more than we LOSE?  The dictionary defines VICTORY as “an act of defeating an enemy or opponent in a battle, game or other competition”. For many of us, the battle keeping us from living a VICTORIOUS life is a battle we consistently wage in the 6 inch space between our ears. Our thoughts, programs and mental conditioning prevent many of us from experiencing the truly VICTORIOUS life we deserve.
Let’s take a closer look at the word VICTORY and examine what I believe are 7 keys to what pastor Joel Osteen refers to as “living our best life now”.
VICTORY…..
VIGILANCE.  We must be vigilant in all our efforts and actions. When we take consistent action, we produce consistent results. The key is to do more of what works and less of what doesn’t.  Frustrated people tend to be inconsistent people.
INTUITION. I believe our inner voice is the voice of our creator. Every challenge presents us with an opportunity to make a CHOICE. The CHOICE we make is more empowering when we trust our intuition. We are wise to listen to other points of view but ultimately our decisions and choices must be made by us.
CHARACTER. As stated in the opening sentence, sometimes we win, sometimes we lose. Showing ourselves grace in defeat and exhibiting humility in victory is a true sign of character.
TOLERANCE. We live in a diverse world. We can’t live victoriously if we constantly find ourselves in judgement and disagreement with others. We all have our own set of personal beliefs and values. Living victoriously means that we respect different points of view and learn to separate the other person from their position. This is often referred to as spiritual maturity.
OWNERSHIP. There are three undeniable truths…We ALL make mistakes. We ALL have flaws. We are HUMAN. Our ability to take responsibility for our decisions and subsequent actions (or lack of) is the foundation for victorious living. When we ditch the blame game and embrace personal responsibility, we send a message to the universe that we can be trusted with abundance.
RELATIONSHIPS. Our success in life and business is a  team effort. Parents, spouses, friends and associates have all played an important role in our success. Remember, hermits don’t have anything or anyone to celebrate with. Quality relationships are a cornerstone of victorious living.
YESTERDAY. It’s hard to live victoriously and move into our future if we are always looking in the rear view mirror. I once heard a great quote that stated, “yesterday is history, tomorrow’s a mystery, today is a gift, that is why it is called the present”. Victory is found in the present moment. The next time the past calls, let it go to voicemail, it has nothing new to say.
Here’s to a VICTORIOUS living!

4 Tips For Managing Stress…John Page Burton

“Man, I’m super stressed” was a friends response to my question, “so how’s it going”? He went on to state, “I’m under so much stress at work and it’s killing me”. Obviously, life offers us countless opportunities to experience stress and none of us are immune from its effects. I can’t speak for you, however, if I truly believed that stress was “killing me”, I would make some significant life changes. We all experience “good stress” and “bad stress”. “Bad stress” tends to occur when we are focusing on a past event or we are worrying about something we believe may happen in the future. Bad stress tends to show up when we are concerning ourselves with things out of our control. 

Interestingly, studies have shown that stress is actually healthy for us. For example, my friend Crystal recently ran in her first long distance race. Toward the end of her 6.2 mile run, her body was clearly experiencing stress, her mind was experiencing stress and yet she felt great when she crossed the finish line. Anyone who has “burned the midnight oil” to launch a new business is familiar with what I refer to as “stimulating stress”. Lets look at some of the benefits of “positive stress”.

*Stress boosts brainpower. Stress can actually cause us to think more clearly. Stress can force us to leave “problem mode” and go into “solution mode”. 

*Stress can temporarily increase our immunity. Stress produces extra Interleukins which are the chemicals regulating our immune system.

*Stress can make us more resilient. This is the premise behind the rigorous physical and mental training undertaken by Navy Seals.

*Stress can serve as a motivator for us to win or succeed. For example, it’s the 4th quarter of the Super Bowl, 10 seconds are left in the game, our team is down by 4 and it will take a touchdown to win the game. This was the reality of Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger in Super Bowl XLIII. He completed the pass in the corner of the end zone, game over! Closer to home, how many of us have been under pressure to meet a significant deadline at work, knowing that a potential promotion hangs in the balance? It’s the “bad stress” we need to eliminate or learn to effectively manage. “Bad stress” can cause physical and emotional health challenges. “Good stress” can propel us to greatness!

4 Tips For Managing Stress…

*Minimize “bad stress”. We problem solve from the past, we create in the present. When we begin to experience stress that is related to a past event or circumstance, it’s important to shift our focus to our current reality and intentionally remind ourselves that we can only control what is going on in the present moment. Our Ego loves it when we beat ourselves up! In reference to the past, if we had known better, most of us would have done better. Show yourself some GRACE.

*Seek “positive stress”. It’s important to place ourselves in a position to experience “positive stress”. Working out, volunteering for a challenging project at work or starting our own business are great ways to bring “positive stress” into our lives. FYI… We must be mindful to step away from time to time in order to give our minds and bodies a chance to re-charge. 

*Look for the lesson in every adversity. Regardless of how hard we try, how much we have planned or how much time and money we have invested, none of us are immune from set backs and failure. When we focus on the lesson and what we can take away from the experience, we significantly reduce our stress level. Conversely, when we “beat ourselves up” we are adding additional stress to an already trying situation. Looking for the lesson is a proactive, empowered way of being.

*Stay out of other peoples drama. “Not my monkeys, not my circus” is a Burton family mantra. Don’t get me wrong, I am a compassionate person and desire to lend a helping hand to anyone who is experiencing a temporary challenge. The operative word is “temporary”. When we routinely find ourselves in the middle of other peoples marital, financial or family challenges, it’s time to take a serious look at why we are bringing this added stress into our life? Being “addicted” to drama is an unconscious avoidance strategy. The key is to determine what we are avoiding, address it and refrain from inserting ourselves into other peoples drama in order to feel a sense of significance in our own lives.

The next time you find yourself feeling “stressed out”, do a quick check up from the neck up and identify what type of stress you are experiencing. For example, I am currently experiencing “good stress” as I approach the deadline to publish this article. 

As Always, your comments and feedback are appreciated.

Cheers!

John Page Burton is the author of Wisdom Through Failure (2014) and Knowing Sh#t From Shinola (2015). To learn more visit http://www.johnpageburton.com