Tag Archives: success

The difference between achievement and success


success achievement

The difference between achievement and success

Have you ever taken a moment to think about these two terms – achievement and success? There is a difference between achievement and success and the danger comes about when we see the two concepts as one and the same.

I see many clients who are perfectionists and for them, constant achievement equals success. The immense pressure this places upon them creates anxiety and does lead to depression in some cases. This occurs  where clients fail to keep up their strenuous and unrealistic goals to achieve. Sadly, people too hung up and obsessed with achievement only see themselves as worthy and valuable when they are achieving – making money, closing business deals etc They completely miss the point when it comes to looking at their inner characteristics such as tolerance, kindness, being a good partner, father and so on…this gets lost in the obsessive need to achieve.

Achievement does not necessarily mean success. Success can mean different things to different people. Those that are rigid in their thinking and believe success is the act of achieving are more unhappy with themselves and their lives than those who see success in many other areas as well. For well balanced individuals – success is seen as a wider concept. Achievement is only a small element of success. Success can also involve carving out a life that works well for you – whether that’s living on a hut on a beach or just being true to yourself – this type of success will be longer lasting and more fulfilling than a life where success is narrowly defined as achieving. Achievement works on the premise that you must DO something but success doesn’t always involve doing or acting. For me, relaxing and taking time out from a busy schedule is success – working against how we are brainwashed to keep doing and achieving. Sometimes, resisting this is a good thing!

Be careful of your interpretation of achievement and success. Allow yourself to see success in many areas of life, that don’t necessarily have to include achievement.

Mandy X



Four ways to get what you want in life


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Four ways to get what you want in life

  1. Attend to your relationships

It’s never a good idea to stop working on relationships that mean something to you. When we neglect important relationships and stop communicating about the important stuff that keeps us connected – like how we are feeling, what matters most to us and having fun in the relationship and doing things together, we end up detaching over time and one day we realise we don’t even know our partners that well anymore, Don’t let hurts and problems build up!

End hopeless relationships. Stop hanging on to something that no longer meets your needs. I know I have often stayed in relationships far too long – more out of fear of being single and the unfamiliar than anything else. This is never good idea and in hindsight I wish I had ended things sooner.

If the relationship is working at, don’t let conflicts build up. Try not to bottle up anger and resentment as this will kill the love in the relationship over time.

2. Balance priorities versus demands

When you feel overwhelmed, the first thing to do is to reduce or put off low priority demands. Make sure you know what is important and what can be delayed. Chunk down different tasks instead of worrying about everything all at once -that would make anyone feel overwhelmed (and neurotic). Ask for help (I find it hard to do this), others are usually far more happy to help than you realize.

3. Balance the “Wants” and “Shoulds”

Figure out what you truly enjoy doing and want to do as opposed to the things you feel you should do. When life is too full of “shoulds” it can make us resentful, angry and fatigued. Try to keep the two in balance.

Be assertive and get others to take your opinions seriously.

Ask for what you want – got others to do things too.

Learn to say “no” to unwanted requests.

4. Build mastery and self respect

Focus on interacting with others in a way to promotes a feeling of competency and effectiveness, not a feeling of being helpless and overly dependent. Stand up for yourself, your beliefs and opinions; follow your instincts and intuition.

The above are little tips, that if you practise will make a large difference in your life.

Mandy X



Why you must never give up on yourself


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Why you must never give up on yourself

Self sabotage is common and I have witnessed many people give up at the first hurdle that comes their way. They flounder when things don’t go according to plan. Don’t be taken in by the idea of overnight success. Modern media shoves unrealistic airbrushed images at us on a daily basis and if you’re not careful it is easy to be taken in by the perfection we see around us. It is not necessarily the most talented that succeed –  it is the most determined. The world is full of talented people will never make it because talent is no substitute for staying power.

Expect the best for yourself. Basic confidence in yourself will see you through where others fall behind. Being blessed with an inbuilt faith in yourself . Is often the magic ingredient that will take you further than others. When you’re optimistic, it is easier to maintain hope even when there are setbacks and frustrations. Optimism carries you further.

Optimism can be learned. What is your attitude? Ask yourself about lessons that you learned from your parents. Were they positive? What core beliefs do you hold?

Complete the following sentences:

I am…

Other people are…

The world is…


Complete the above sentences without thinking too much about the answers. What is the tone of your answers? Optimistic or pessimistic?

Complete the following sentences:

These thoughts would really empower me…

What do you need to believe about the world and about yourself that will power you forward?

Watch those core beliefs! If you want to give the best of yourself and achieve your true potential ensure that your core beliefs are sound and objective as possible. Positive core beliefs are brilliant to but stay away from pessimistic core beliefs. You will be living life with cracked foundations if you choose to believe pessimistic things about the world.

Choose core beliefs that promote empowerment and help you to feel you have mastery over the events in your life-and outlook psychologists call “self efficacy”. Albert Bandura, a Stanford Psychologist puts it like this “People’s beliefs about their abilities have a profound effect on those abilities. People who have a sense of self efficacy bounce back from failures; they approach things in terms of how to handle them rather than worrying about what can go wrong”.

Life is better when you’re an optimist. All about being for closing your eyes to the world around you but it is about knowing that you will manage and find a way through. It can take time to grow into the most polished version of yourself. Franklin D. Roosevelt was one of America’s most popular president yet in his early days he was awkward and  not particularly charming. In 1921 he was crippled with polio but he still went on to become a much loved leader. It is never too late succeed.

Obviously something is too much like hard work this is a message in itself. Having the wisdom to know when to cut back or change direction is also important. That aside, if something means enough to you, you have to keep going. You owe it to yourself. This does not mean you have to put daily pressure on yourself but it means you have goals to work towards.

What to do:

Make a list of the things you truly want. Be sure that these goals for you and not ideas other people want for you.

Make a list of small steps that you can take to start achieving these goals. When things don’t go well draw on faith and hope and know that you will find a way through.

Be realistic-remember that success is very rarely linear. When you mess up get back on track. Learn from the failure but never see yourself as a failure.

Lean on others. Try not isolate yourself others are more willing to have the new realise.

Finally watch yourself fulfilling prophecies. Don’t set yourself up to fail. Your abilities are at the mercy of your beliefs. Neither of fixed!

Where there is a will there is a way. You can choose the pace, just keep going in the right direction and believe that you can and will get there.

Mandy X


Love yourself


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Love yourself

Believe it or not, when resilience is called for it is often those who have self belief and love themselves who are more successful than the talented ones. Self belief often wins over talent. I would say that the majority of my clients do not love themselves. In fact, I would say it’s the exception rather than the rule to find someone who has tons of self belief and really likes themselves.

Someone may have all the trappings of success, such as a great job, a wonderful family and financial stability yet they can still feel empty and unhappy because they do not like themselves enough and as result they never really enjoy the fruits of their labour. There is always something missing.

You are far better off if you possess healthy positive feelings about yourself and take pride in who you are than possessing all the riches on the earth.

Many good wonderful people lack self belief and self-love. The beginnings of this self-defeating behaviour often starts in childhood. As a child you don’t have the sophistication to reason and save yourself from any damage you may be experiencing. Critical parents, being bullied at school or an unhealthy home environment can all detract from healthy self-love. Your identity is shaped by the individuals around you and you believe what you’re told.

Parents can be guilty of the most appalling neglect and ignorance when it comes to giving the children healthy self-respect. As adults we have a duty to ourselves to challenge any negative messages that we were given as children and to replace them with more rational alternatives, as well as realise the flaws in our own parents.

I recently worked with a client who had very damaging views about herself and as result her behaviour led to him missing many positive opportunities in her life. On some deeper level she did not believe she deserved any happiness or love. Together we worked on changing her views about herself. Unless you have consciously ‘detoxed’ yourself from negative childhood messages, you may be holding self-defeating and self-limiting beliefs about yourself. Definitely excess baggage that you are free to cast off at any time.

Loving yourself is contagious. The more you love you the more others will too. Appreciate yourself more and talk kindly to yourself as you would a best friend. You came into this world

and you will leave it on your own. At some point in between it makes sense to get comfortable with yourself.

Write down reasons to like yourself and make a list of all your strengths and achievements.

Challenge negative thoughts about yourself, you really do have a choice when it comes to what you want to believe about yourself.

Pamper yourself and see it as a way of honouring you and your life.

Don’t neglect yourself-make sure you take good care of yourself. See yourself as fabulous, likeable and utterly lovable!!

I have had to work very hard to undo negative programming from my childhood. I do not believe I would have achieved very much in my life had I allowed all the negative messages to define me. I have forgiven but not forgotten and use my progress in life to reinforce how far I have come. The more I achieve and the more I foster self belief, the greater my power grows. I have refused to allow small mindedness as well as mean-spirited and ignorant adults to affect my life forever. They no longer have this power over me.

Mandy X

Learn how to bounce back

resilience photo

Learn how to bounce back

How resilient aren’t you? Stress, loss, trauma and failure all part of life. It’s not what happens to us but rather how we deal with and respond to events that has a big impact upon our emotional well-being. We can’t choose what happens to us but we can choose how we respond. We can choose our attitude. Life will always be a series of ups and downs so it is essential to cultivate resilience. Life is uncertain and we do not have control over many things that come our way.

Resilience teaches us how to deal with change more effectively and how to recover more quickly from setbacks. Research has shown resilience is influenced by three things:

what we observe and learn during childhood; relationships with others and having a strong inner core (this can come from a religious faith, spirituality or highly effective self belief). There is a term, “post traumatic growth” and this involves the idea that challenges and hardships help us to become stronger. We gain a sense of mastery over past adversities. Each time we succeed we gain more confidence in our abilities.

Resilience has a lot to do with our perceptions. When we are able to see events in a reasonable way whilst maintaining perspective we are better able to cope and manage. If we catastrophise and start to panic we will be a lot less efficient. This does not mean that you have to deny what is happening rather it is about learning to be a realistic optimists. Realistic optimists search for solutions but they do not delude themselves by thinking they are invincible.

After the initial shock/trauma of a difficult event, learn to pause and pull back from the situation. See every challenge as an opportunity to learn and to problem solve. Believe that you can find a way forward and begin to explore the ways…

Have a sense of purpose/goals in your life. See yourself as a working progress-we are all learning new things every day and no one has all the answers. You are just as capable as anyone else being resilient and making it through the tough times. It’s very rarely as basd as you think it is.

Mandy X

Photo by EladeManu

10 Tips of the Super Successful


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10 Tips of the Super Successful

1) Incredible self belief

One of the most critical factors in being successful is the ability to possess unwavering self belief. With self belief a person will try almost anything. Without self belief a project will most likely not even be started. A healthy sense of self acceptance and self approval can make up for a lack in many other areas.

2) They know the difference between what they can and what they cannot control

In life they will always be areas that we can control and areas that are beyond our remit. Other people can never be controlled as much as we would like to think it is possible. Some people spend ages agonising over what other people think and how other people make them feel. Their energy is focused outwardly onto an area where they have little control. This outward focus inevitably leads to a feeling of powerlessness as there is very little we can do to change the behaviour of others without physical force. Even then it is waste energy.

3) They focus on what they can control

We can control what we choose to believe about the world and about ourselves. We can also control how be react to the behaviour of other people around us. Empowering thinking revolves around what we can do as individuals to enhance our lives for the better. This cannot involve hoping that our partner will love us more or that our boss will stop bullying us. Instead it’s a better idea to focus on what we can do to be more lovable or the actions that we can put in place to reduce or stop the bullying. Expecting others to behave the way we want them to is a surefire way to end up frustrated and disappointed.

4) They aren’t afraid to take risks

Super successful people will take risks. Calculated risks needs to be taken at some time in life. Those who play it too safe will end up living a safe, but small life. Taking risks is what life is all about and I know I would rather live a messy adventurous life and look back one day and wonder why I did not experiment a bit more.

5) They are patient and persistent

The super successful understand that the road to ultimate success and achievement is not linear. Success usually takes many years and includes several setbacks. Rarely will you find a super successful person that has achieved it by going from A to B. Most likely it will be a case of going from A to F to C to S to E and so on!

6) They dance to their own tune

Super successful people have a clear idea in their head of what they want to achieve in their lives. This idea is unfettered by what others expect of them and by the pressure that society places upon them. Of course no one is immune to peer pressure and comparisons that they are able to protect the clear vision that they have for themselves. They may stray from the path from time to time that they will never lose their sense of direction their personal sense of self. This attachments to their core characteristics enables super successful people to stick to their guns when everybody else is wavering.

7) They do not allow the “Nay Sayers” to influence them unduly

The super successful are not particularly bothered by what others think of them. They realise that no matter what you do in life there will always be the critics and the supporters. Super successful people get the idea that it is they who have to live their life, not those who judge and tell them how to be. They find it necessary to clear the decks of those that sit in judgement and sometimes even embrace the challenge and the resistance from others.

8) Self-awareness is high

Super successful people know themselves well. How can you be successful if you do not know where your talents lie? Super successful people know where their strengths are as well as what triggers their weaknesses. It is not that they do not have problems like everyone else, they are just good at adjusting and working around them.

9) Possess an open attitude to life

Super successful people don’t mind if others are successful too. They are open minded and embrace others’ fortune. Super successful people have an open-minded attitude to life. It is because they are free to consider all possibilities that they often end up finding their niche. They are happy to learn from others and see failure as a great way to learn.

10) Don’t sweat the small stuff

Bigger picture thinkers tend to do a lot better than those that get caught up in the nitty-gritty of life. Super successful types can easily prioritise and rule out focusing on the small stuff. They are also good at getting jobs done instead of taking ages due to being too perfectionistic.

Anyone can be super successful, they just need to have the right mindset, think big and take action. Small minded people with limiting beliefs guarantee themselves a life that never quite lives up to expectation and as Henry Ford says “Whether you think you can or you can’t – you are probably right”

Mandy X


12 characteristics of self motivated people


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12 characteristics of self motivated people

What gets a person up in the morning, raring to go and eager to get stuck in with their goals and tasks? We are motivated by different things and the key to being motivated is to find your individual ‘hooks’ that propel you forward. Money isn’t a huge motivator for me – I see it as a means to an end. What I really want and what motivates me is the freedom to make choices and have options. There are certain characteristics that self motivated people share however. Cultivate these 12 characteristics of  motivated people and you might just find that reaching your goals becomes that little bit easier…

1) Visionary thinking and purpose. Self motivated people are able to see the bigger picture easily.

2) Optimism abounds and self motivated people participate fully in life.

3) They possess  good self esteem with an attitude of success. They expect to win but can cope with failure as they see it as a learning curve.

4) There is a thirst for challenge and willingness to take risks.

5) Self motivated people are committed to life long learning – there is always more to know and understand.

6) They have endless energy – not just physical but mental and emotional energy as well.

7) Persistent and determined. They don’t give up at the first sign of trouble.

8) Strive for balance in work/play and within themselves – health wise and with their emotions and spirituality.

9) Self motivated people are able to rise above adversity – don’t sweat the small stuff.

10) They engage in searching self reflection. Possess self awareness of their strengths and weaknesses.

11) Sincere self forgiveness. Self motivators are humble and willing to admit when they are wrong.

12) Revelling in success. Self motivators give themselves credit for a job well done.


Mandy X

Photo by opensourceway

successful people

Words successful people never say

successful photo

Words successful people never say

We set ourselves up for failure or success in our minds before we even begin.What we tell ourselves can become a self fulfilling prophecy. More often than not, if we don’t believe that we can we probably can’t. Learning to prime yourself to be in the right frame of mind takes practice. It also takes self awareness and regular monitoring of our inner chatter. We all suffer from self-doubt from time to time-that’s normal. It is when the inner chatter is chronically negative and persistent that we limit our opportunities in life. I love the saying, “you can’t score a goal if you aren’t on the field”. If you engage in self-limiting beliefs, you will have removed yourself from the “field” before you have even considered stepping onto the field. What are you telling yourself that is limiting you? Here are some of the common lines that we tell ourselves:

1) “I can’t”

Why can’t you? Who said that you couldn’t? Sometimes we put a lot of pressure on ourselves to perform and achieve and when we feel that we aren’t up to the job we tell ourselves that we can’t do something. Each and every time we do this we send ourselves a message that disempowers us and makes us retreat even further into our comfort zone. Develop a can-do attitude. Fear being passive and not trying rather than trying and failing. Failure is a wonderful way to learn. It does not mean that there is something wrong with you.

2) “I should”

Replace “should” with “could”. There are so many demands placed upon us daily and we place a lot of pressure on ourselves to achieve, to be successful, to get things done. Yes, there will always be “should’s” in life but we can choose whether we allow what should be done to dictate how we lead our lives.” Could” offers us a choice. we really do have more choice than we realise. Don’t give in to pressure from others or from what others think. It is your life – live it.

3) “It’s all my fault”

When we blame ourselves for things, it shows personal responsibility.However this can be taken too far. Playing the victim of a martyr and blaming ourselves for everything is not productive and will result in a feeling of hopelessness and low self-esteem. There is very little in life they can be blamed solely on one thing. Usually it is a combination of factors that has caused an end result. Try not to personalise everything and feel guilt over everything. Excessive personalising in a negative way can be an indication of depression. If you find that you are consistently hard on yourself and the rate yourself on a regular basis it might be worth investigating a little further.

4) “It’s all your fault”

Blaming others for everything is not a good idea either. it is an antisocial practice and will lose you many friends. It pays to take personal responsibility for our own actions and to own up if we have played a part in a situation. It’s part of being an adult and it shows emotional maturity.

5) You are more important than I am

I come across many clients who score highly on the “self sacrifice” and “subjugation” scales. Many of them harbour a belief that they need to sacrifice for others in order to be liked and feel worthy.this is a misconception and generally leads to a lack of respect from others. Whilst it is great to be kind and thoughtful, is never a good idea to be a doormat. Remind yourself regularly that you are as important as anyone else and that your opinion matters equally.

6) My opinion doesn’t matter

Perhaps as a child you were instructed to be quiet and do as you’re told. children who are denied the right to an opinion or to express emotions for that matter, learn that they are insignificant. They internalise the repressive environment and become passive. If this was your experience, remind yourself that you are no longer that powerless child and that as an adult you have every right to have your voice heard. An opinion is just that, your view of the world. Express it to all who will listen.

7) My dreams/ wishes/ goals aren’t important

Successful people have healthy self regard. They tend to be assertive in their approach, which means they strive for a “win-win” outcome. It isn’t about having their needs met consistently over other people’s nor is it about the self-sacrifice or subjugation. Successful people believe in themselves, will not be treated badly by others consistently and stay focused on their goals. good people in your life will support you in reaching your goals, those that try to distract you will discourage you probably have their own insecurities. Success reminds the losers of their own failings. Successful people embrace the success of others as well as their own.

8) Staying safe is better than trying new things

Successful people know that in order to grow and learn all about the strengths and weaknesses they must keep trying new things. We all love to live in our comfort zone and sometimes it is necessary to stay there for a while but spending too long in your comfort zone will lead to a lack of confidence in your abilities. I like to call my time outside of my comfort zone as living vertically. When I’m in my comfort zone I am living horizontally. It’s all about balance-horizontal interspersed with vertical.

9) I don’t have a choice

This is an excuse I hear all too often. it’s an easy one to think of as it provides an escape route. It’s absolves us of needing to do anything about the situation.It may work in the short term but in the long term it will drag you down. We all have choices. It may turn out that we have two choose between two options that we don’t particularly like but we still have choices. Instead of seeing choices as scary, view them as empowering.

10) If I fail it means I am a failure

Successful people know the difference between the act of failing and seeing themselves as a failure. There is a huge difference. Let’s define failure first. What is failure to you? In my books, being a failure means giving up completely and not trying at all. Those people that try and fail and get up again have my full respect. Resilience is a wonderful character trait to have. Never see yourself as failure even if you do give up completely for a while. We all were allowed a little bit of downtime. Labelling yourself as a failure is not productive or effective in the least. Stop doing that.

11) Play it safe

Life is inherently risky. Taking calculated risks is part of life and we all need to embrace it. Resistance will just lead to anxiety and stress. I like to see life as an experiment, try new things, see what happens…

Successful people understand that taking risks is necessary. Stop being afraid.

12) I know all there is to know

Blind certainty is a sure sign of ignorance. No one can possibly know all there is to know. Successful people are open to new ideas, new ways of thinking and new information. Instead of having a pre-determined idea, successful people will listen to all sides of the argument before making their mind up. Keep an open mind as there is always more to discover.

Mandy X