Skip to content

Not the latest fad or new-age fashion

Mindfulness is not the latest fad or new-age fashion. It’s been around for thousands of years. The scope of this post is not to explore origins, rather, how mindfulness works and what can be done to maintain positive mindful practice.

It’s like a diet in some senses; if you don’t do it, there won’t be any benefits.

I noticed considerable argument surrounding a UK television programme on social media regarding how mindfulness can be used to alleviate problems associated with Attention Deficit / Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Some say it can, some say not. I wonder how many of the “not” camp reside in the pharmaceuticals industry?

So, there you go. I’ve just blown my cover. I am proudly a member of the “yes it can” camp.  But don’t forget what I said; use it or lose it!

That’s a challenge with most children, young adults and adults alike. Generally, we’re brought up not living mindfully. For the greater part of our lives, we react to events. Worrying about what we did or didn’t do in the past and about what the future will bring, or not. Doing that we lose our attachment to the present moment. One of my favourite sayings is, “life is right now, in this moment.” This is mindfulness.

It’s about noticing what is happening right now in this moment.

Having awareness of what your body senses. Feeling emotions in your body, through positive or negative sensations. Noticing what’s happening in your mind.

What happens when you start noticing these experiences?

Awareness of what’s happening around you will enable deeper focus, and attention to your own senses will develop improvement in many aspects of life.

Improved focus can advance sports, educational or musical achievements for example. Any high-achiever will tell you that. Read about how great athletes prepare for a race. It’s not just about being physically fit. Mindfulness can help reach higher examination grades too. We always do better when we pay direct attention to our life-activities.

Noticing what’s happening around you, can help you to calm down when you’re sad, angry or frustrated. Mindfulness helps you deal with difficult emotions and can lift a dark mood. It can even assist recovery from chronic illnesses or addiction. I have my own evidence for that through personal experience which you can read about or listen to elsewhere. We will come to that.

Humans are pretty good at judging and reacting too. Think about it. How often have you seen somebody dive in and take apart a person or group because of something they’ve said or done? Here’s another aspect of mindfulness; without judgement and staying neutral yet maintaining curiosity.

That sounds tricky doesn’t it? It’s not as tough as it sounds but we may be carrying some baggage from our lives that makes it seem difficult at first. Once we parcel that baggage and learn to put it into our experience boxes and move on, it’s not so difficult.

So, if I could show you the space where mindfulness resides, I would point to this great quote from Stephen R. Covey’s bestseller, “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.”

Covey talked about Viktor Frankl, a famous psychiatrist imprisoned in a Nazi concentration camp during WW II

“They could control his entire environment, they could do what they wanted to his body, but Victor Frankl himself was a self-aware being who could look as an observer at his very involvement. His basic identity was intact. He could decide within himself how all of this was going to affect him. Between what happened to him, or the stimulus, and his response to it, was his freedom or power to choose that response.” 

We all have that freedom or power to choose how we respond to any situation the moment it arises. It’s how we respond that matters.

How does mindfulness work?

When someone says something we don’t like to hear, we react. Sometimes we say something and wish to retract it as soon as it’s spoken. Or we are knocked down by the emotion caused by an event.

Mindfulness helps us create space between emotions and actions. We learn to deal with positive and negative experiences more calmly and by making better decisions.

If we are mindful of our thoughts and feelings, we respond positively and, without hurting our own or the feelings of others. Sometimes life packs hard punches. Practising mindfulness gives us the ability to recover faster and move on.

So, mindfulness works with the daily ups and downs of life and can also lead to outstanding results with major events such as chronic illness as I have proved to myself along with countless others.

It wouldn’t be fair to leave you hanging on a statement like that, but I will for now and until I get back to you, I encourage you to seek more information with an open mind. There’s plenty out there.

Additionally, I’m involved with a project called, “Courage To Connect” where you can read about part of my journey into mindful living and those of several other authors. Watch out for more information.

Peace, Love and Light,


This was January Blogged

This is rather short notice but having said that, if you go with this idea, it should take only a couple of minutes to respond.

I often feel sad that I am letting some of you down because I don’t have enough time in the day to read every blog post that lands in my inbox. Such a pity because there is so much to learn.

For a while, I’ve been thinking about ways to overcome this but I have to accept that I simply can’t read every post that comes my way. So, here’s a plan . . .

If you send me three of your own blog posts consisting of header, a few enticing words with each and the link to the original, I will post them on a monthly digest on the last day of the month. Yes, as I said, rather short notice this month but it shouldn’t take long.

This could be the start of something wonderful for all of us. If it works, I will blog a reminder post close to the end of each month and publish our digest on the last day.

Hope you have a great day.

Namasté, Steve

Directing People To Your Blog

I wrote this post because I needed to learn something about the value of Social Media in my business. There was no ignoring the wealth of expert advice on the topic. The following post is a collection of ideas from several entrepreneurs or businesses and I will be implementing them during the next few weeks. Reporting back in the New Year.

No matter how you are selling books or generating leads, people will check out your Social Media links to see if they like you and what you are offering. If they like what you share, they will follow you and their friends are introduced to you through their posts. In that sense, Facebook is a great platform.

People want to know who they are doing business with, they want to see who you are and what matters to you besides your business. We were born inquisitive and despite our school years where inquisitiveness takes second place to supplying answers, many of us hold onto our inquisitiveness and it needs feeding. Don’t be afraid of stalkers; share your vision, experience, philosophy.

Everything you do on Facebook, your posts and how you present them, matters. People are watching. When you are chatting with people on Facebook, they are checking your profile. Even when you generate leads on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube or Email they will check you out. When you attract a new customer or partner, they will especially look to decide whether to stick with you longer term.

It might be argued that authors need no more than positive reviews to attract people. There are millions of books out there so we need to find a way to stay in the minds of our readers.

If you take a look at the Facebook walls of many home business entrepreneurs, they shout, “I’m an amateur” and put people off, according to sources. I found a few that are indeed questionable and when they post something there is little in return, no comments, likes and shares.

If you work on your Facebook strategy, you can generate sales and make friends along the way. I’ve researched my mistakes and how to avoid them.  In this post I’ll share with you what and how to post on Facebook to increase engagement and direct people to your blog.

Common Mistakes

What not to do. This will be fundamental and common sense for many, but common sense is not always common practice.

Your profile picture—Post a smiling and happy face that is easy to see, because people love to associate with happy people.

People have other images as their picture but, who wants to do business with a chocolate gateau?

2) Your cover photo—Put an image that will show who you are, what you are all about, your personality, your brand, your core message, your slogan, your motto, your lifestyle, social proof.

An image of the products or the company you promote isn’t a positive way forward. Facebook are encouraging that but it shows the world representation of a company. People prejudge and think you want to sell them a product. As we shall see, Facebook is not the platform for sales.

3) Posting links to capture pages and sales pages on the profile—People don’t usually go to Facebook specifically to buy your product. Don’t try to sell on Facebook. The best way to sell on Facebook is to not sell on Facebook. Direct people to your blog instead.

You can occasionally post your link to a capture page where you offer more value, but don’t do it blatantly. Instead, share a story with value and mention the link to your capture page as a, “by the way; if you want to know more . . .”

4) Not completing their profile—this is basic but complete all the information about you; where you live, what you like, etc. Don’t mention the name of the company on your profile.

5) Posting negativity, news, complaining, politics—People want to associate with positive people. If you are going through tough times and challenges, don’t post it on Facebook if you want to grow your business. If you want to attract negativity and get no results, don’t post negative… Share The Love, light and positivity in the world!

Story lines To Share On Facebook

Look at your Facebook profile as your own reality show.

A story line is a motive; a theme of what you post that is similar in nature and gets people to respond.

Once you develop your story lines, you will no longer have to guess what to post on Facebook. You choose from a story line.

Your Lifestyle Pictures

People are attracted to lifestyle and want to see that you are living your dream and having fun. A picture of how you are having fun with the kids in the park on a Monday afternoon will get people wondering how they can do it.

Post a picture with a story of how you went on holiday that you paid for with the money you earned at home. Talk about how much fun you had. Share pictures from your trip and travels, images of the snow you didn’t have to fight through to get to work. It can be so many things but it’s all about your lifestyle!

Inspirational Images & Quotes With Your Unique Stamp

People love to get inspired and motivated to do something in their life. You can save an image of a quote you find or make a new one and then comment with your own thoughts. Be inspired, share a concept or idea and encourage people to think.

Ask questions, engage with them. Ask often for their feedback and thoughts.

Share your unique philosophy, beliefs, attitudes, a story that makes a point, something personal to inspire people.

Your Normal Life

People want to see you are human and real just like them. Share things about your interests and your hobbies. What you are passionate about? Share how you are playing a sport or going to the gym, performing in a band, or running every day.

Share how you are having fun with the family. Share something from your everyday life.

When you are posting images on Facebook write a couple of sentences to describe what you are experiencing and feeling. Don’t just post an image and go.

Stories Of Struggle AND Victory

People resonate and connect with you much more when they hear a story. Your story often comes hand in hand with the next story line which is social proof.

I recently shared a few personal stories and didn’t expect the wonderful responses.

Share a story of your struggle but always at the end share the victory and a happy ending. Don’t just share your struggles, it’s not going to inspire anyone to take any action but feel depressed. Share your frustrations and how you banged your head against the wall trying to work things out. How you didn’t have money to eat . . . Share how you sat for hours in front of the computer making no money, how you couldn’t sleep and burned the midnight oil. Share your feelings as you were going through all of this. The more vivid you can describe the struggle the better.

Then tie it in the breakthrough you had, the victory you experienced, the success you found. There is something you discovered along your journey and now you are willing to share it with people so they may learn.

It doesn’t have to be a victory with major results or success. Any shared positive story helps.

Social Proof

Social proof comes in many forms. It doesn’t have to be about how much money you made. There are other ways to show social proof.

1) Income results—The obvious one is to share how much money you have made, royalties, commissions, sales . . .

Attach a story of struggle to your results, so people know you worked hard for it. They will relate to the struggle and now it’s inspiring.

2) Leads generated—your results can come in the form of how many leads you have generated. There are many people who don’t know how to generate leads and they would love to learn from someone who does.

3) Success of your team—if you have a team and one of them succeeds, congratulate publicly and share the results. People will see that you are a positive leader who helps others get results. It will be flattering to your team member and get them more results.

It can be just welcoming new team members publicly. It can be even the success of people not directly in your team, other authors . . . You can always find inspiring stories.

4) Pictures with leaders–post pictures with great leaders and successful people in your field. It shows that you associate with leaders so you must be a leader too. Their success and credibility will rub off on you.

5) Lifestyle, Holidays and Fun–This is another way of social proof. There are many ways to say that you are successful without saying it. Pictures having fun and a positive lifestyle provides social proof too.

Your likes and comments, the amount of friends you have is also a form social proof, don’t forget that.

Post a video

There is nothing that creates more trust faster than people who didn’t know you before watching you on video.

When you are able to be yourself, be vulnerable, be honest, look directly at the camera and open up your heart, share your message and share who you are; everything changes.

Video will be easier with practice like everything. Keep them short, practice, record and talk for 3 minutes. I’m sure most of us can talk for longer than that!

Videos show you to the world. They allow people to catch up on nonverbal communication, to see who you truly are.

There are so many things you can do with video. You can share all of those story lines. Try writing a script. It’s not as difficult as it seems.

GIVE VALUE, that’s a huge point. Whatever you are posting think about if it will improve someone’s day, uplift and give value.

Bridge To A Blog Post

This is the big one. How do you share your blog posts on Facebook?

Don’t throw a link to a blog post with a featured image and hope people will visit. There is just an image, a title and a few words that represent the first sentences of the blog post. It’s not enough.

You can get better results if you BRIDGE your Facebook post to your blog by sharing a mini post or story. I will be doing exactly that before I post this from my Word document to blog.

You can take a unique angle. An excerpt from the blog, share a story around it, share value and a concept. At the end of the post you can include a link to your blog post!

You can take inspirational quotes and tie it into your blog; you can take pictures of your girlfriend with you and tie it somehow to your blog post at the end.

Your blog is your home online that you will invite people to over and over again to read your story, get value from you and become your subscriber. Your job is to get people from Facebook and other social media to your blog.


You can do other things besides from posting on Facebook.

Start conversations with people who are engaging with your posts. When somebody likes or comments on your post, it gives you permission to talk to this person. There are chances that a long term partnership will arise from these conversations.

Comment and like other people’s posts because they will come back to you and often reciprocate too.

You can promote your Facebook posts on other social media sites to drive more friends to you. You can even mail-shoot your email list with a link to your Facebook post.

Always be you and show your leadership and character because that’s what people are attracted to.

If you found value in this post, please add a few comments below and click this link to share

Difficult Roads Lead to Beautiful Destinations

This post must start with a huge THANK YOU. I am overwhelmed by direct messages from wonderful people offering get well wishes after my mishap at the end of October. That thing called ‘human inquisitiveness’ has also prompted this post; people want to know what happened. A brief review follows.

Saturday 28 October 2017. Working with our 19-year-old son, Sasha on a DIY project in the ‘little girls’ bedroom. Ha ha, they are 11 and 13 years. Not little anymore . . .

After a few hours of enjoyable work, I became tired and had an uncomfortable ache from hip to toes in my left leg. Recognising and ignoring it, I blamed the nervous system illness I have had for many years but we decided we had done enough for the day and our stomachs growled. So we packed away the tools.

Sasha gave me an appraising look and told me to go downstairs, he would finish. I didn’t want to quit yet. It’s not that often that we have the time to work together but five-minutes later the pain had increased so intensely I couldn’t stand. I knew then that this wasn’t the regular pain thing.

Helped to bed but not able to remember the journey is an interesting experience that has gone in my ‘notes to include in writing’ file. I was upstairs, then I wasn’t and found myself falling into a very dark place where exquisite pain was the companion. I take morphine to manage daily pain, the regular dose and the boosters had no effect , so I asked for a glass of rum (I don’t drink spirits). It had the desired effect, and I slept for a short while.

On waking, I discovered only one position that didn’t make me want to scream, bite into the pillows . . . but it wasn’t practical; my upper body was at right angles to my legs and there was little space for Sarah to join me in the bed later. It was suggested that an ambulance be called but I didn’t want that because the thought of more fuss and movement was very unappealing. I don’t want to recall the following thirty-six hours until the point where I gave in and agreed that an ambulance was necessary. Nor do I want to revisit the journey from bed to the ambulance. Those guys were great, but they had no magic wands except a powerful ambulance and a siren with blue light to get us through the roadworks joining the main route from home to Carcassonne.

Nobody was expecting Christmas trees while we travelled around the Carcassonne ring road at 120 KPH. Expletives from the driver followed by a thud and scraping sound beneath the vehicle diverted our attention. Recovering his composure, he explained that a car and trailer carrying unfettered Christmas trees had shed part of its load. We were dragging some of it along on the under carriage. After a few radio exchanges he said he wasn’t going to stop, and we carried our new load the remaining four kilometres into the ‘Urgence’ bay.

Colleagues detached the tree and were excited to receive their first Christmas tree of the season which they proudly stood in a corner; standing at over two metres tall. No damage to the ambulance. The triage team, examined and attached three liquids that brought a quick drugged haze and an emergency MRI scan that showed a disk in my lower back had moved into the spinal canal.

Seven long immobile days later, I was transferred to a specialist hospital near Toulouse where on 04 November; a surgeon removed the disk and performed a spinal fusion operation. The next day, I got out of bed and walked. They performed a miracle! The pain in the leg has reduced considerably, but it’s going to be a long road to complete recovery. My usual optimism will take care of that.

That’s the story and one I must say was not enjoyable to relate. Yet look at the positives; the skill and dedication of everybody involved was humbling. The ‘get well wishes’ too have played a great part in recovery.

Back and work now relinking to the positive thread I left behind almost six weeks ago.

%d bloggers like this: