Author: Michael E. Angier

Our Priorities: Doing What Matters Most

Has this ever happened to you? You’re working on a project and you start to think about another project or task you have on your list. You begin to question if the one you’re working on is the right one and your focus and energy moves away from the task at hand. Not much fun is it? Without good clarity we can’t operate at our best. Without confidence in our plans, we cannot achieve our goals. We live in a complex world. Time was when our choices were easier because they were simply more limited. Today, with so many things to choose from, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. All too often, we avoid making important choices because we don’t want to make a mistake. Sometimes we choose what’s convenient and then second-guess our decision. When we do this we lose valuable time and energy because we’re conflicted. Unless you’re a circus performer, it’s pretty hard to ride more than one horse at the same time. A good coach, consultant or therapist can be invaluable in helping us to gain greater clarity and be confident we’re investing our time and energy in the best way. As we discover our core values, we’re better able to make important choices. As we get clearer on what we want–and why we want it–we can be more effective and gain greater fulfillment. But I’ve...

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Some Thoughts On the Loss of Columbia

My wife and I have only seen one shuttle launch–STS 75 in 1996. It was seven years ago this month and it was Columbia. There have been 32 shuttle launches since then. Unfortunately there have been only 31 landings. The demise of the seven crew members aboard the space shuttle was tragic. The world mourns and our sympathies go out to all the friends and family who knew our brave astronauts. When someone makes a permanent departure from the planet, it’s sad for those left behind. To have such a spectacular accident occur with wreckage strewn across hundreds of...

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Our Self Esteem

A reader from the Middle East wrote to me recently asking how he could improve his low self-image. He said, “it ruins my social and professional life.” He wanted to know what techniques he could employ to solve this lifelong problem. I felt somewhat inadequate in my reply to him and resolved to write about my own struggles to improve self-esteem in hopes that it will be helpful to others. The dictionary says that esteem means, “to regard with respect; to prize, to appreciate. To recognize the quality, significance, or magnitude of, to admire greatly; to value.” I know...

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Kicking The Worry Habit

I grew up on a Vermont farm. After college I bought a farm of my own and operated it for several years. You might be interested to know that I learned the secret to making a small fortune in farming. It’s kind of inside information and I don’t pass it around to just anybody. Ready? Here it is: start out with a large one, and sooner or later, you’ll have a small one. Farmers don’t lead easy lives. The work is hard and the risks are great. They’re dependent on the weather and many other things outside of their control. I used to worry all the time. I worried about livestock disease. I worried about getting bank loans. I worried about the buying price of grain and the selling prices of livestock. I worried about not having enough money. I was unhappy, fatigued and irritable. It had become a disease. And then I read Dale Carnegie’s classic, HOW TO STOP WORRYING AND START LIVING. In doing so, I realized that I was making myself sick with worry and that I could pay a very heavy price. Reading that book may have saved my life. I came to the awareness that worry was like prayer in reverse. When we worry and fret over things, we make them bigger than they really are, as well as attract what we’re fussing over....

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The A-C-T Formula for Change: Acknowledge, Choose and Track

“You can’t change what you don’t acknowledge and it’s hard to change what you don’t measure.” Few people would say they don’t want to make changes in their life. No matter how good things might be going, we want to make them better. And yet, we resist change—sometimes consciously and often unconsciously. We SAY we want to change but we don’t always do what we need to do to make those changes. There are many reasons for this. Today, I’d like to focus on three key reasons why we don’t create the changes we wish to make and how...

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