Tag Archives: Overcoming Fear

What To Do When You Hate Your Job

Raise your hands if you hate your job.

A Gallup survey from 2011 showed that 71% of employees are either “not engaged” or “actively disengaged” from their work. My wife and I got “engaged” because we loved each other. If we were “actively disengaged” then it would be safe to say that we didn’t love each other. So if 7 out of 10 people are not engaged at work then the obvious conclusion is that most people can’t stand their jobs.

There’s a reason we did not name ourselves Debt To Wealth (although I like that name too). We all know money cannot buy the things your heart truly desires. You can have tremendous wealth and still be completely empty of Life. But what money can buy is freedom. People with wealth have more options than people who do not have wealth.

That’s why I love talking about creating wealth – in my mind it’s the same as creating freedom for people. Freedom to do the things you love. And mostly, freedom to be the person you were created to be.

When we were buried in debt it was the lack of freedom that hurt us the most. I was stuck in a job that I didn’t like because that paycheck was a necessity. Knowing that I had to make a certain amount every month just to pay the minimums, I had very few options. I looked at other jobs from time to time, but starting a new career at the bottom of the ladder would have killed us financially. Because I couldn’t afford a pay cut, I was a slave to a job I couldn’t stand.

Diligence: a Principle and a Promise

So how about you? Hate your job? Burnt out? Feel like the clock is ticking and your true giftings and calling are wasting away?

The Bible says that “Lazy hands make a man poor, but diligent hands bring wealth” (Proverbs 10:4).

In this simple verse God is declaring both a principle for success (diligent hands = wealth) and making you a promise (if you’re diligent you will have wealth). I know there are poor people who work hard, so I’m not saying I understand every dynamic at work here. But you have to admit that you don’t find many lazy people who are wealthy.

Be Thankful For Your Job or Break Out Of It

If you can’t stand your job, the worst thing you can do is to be part of the 71% who disengage.

Jesus taught that those who can be faithful in the small things can be trusted with more. Some of you just need to be faithful with the job you have and trust God for more. My encouragement to you is to develop a heart of gratitude for your job. Put a filter on your mouth and commit to not saying anything negative about your job (easier said than done).

But for some of you, your job is a prison and the warden’s name is Fear. Even though you hate it you stay…rationalizing that you need the money. But deep down you know you’re really too afraid to make the change. My encouragement to you is to write yourself a letter from the future.  Three years from now what are you going to wish you had done? Write a letter to yourself explaining how it feels three years later since making a change. Likewise, write a letter telling yourself about how you would feel in three years if you don’t change.

It has been said that everything we do is either motivated by love or by fear, and we tend to regret any decisions we make out of fear. If you want a life marked by greatness, embrace the discipline of diligence, and pursue only the things that make your heart come alive. Success lives at the crossroads of passion and diligence.

Committed to your success,

-Wesley

Let’s dialogue – what changes do you need to make in response to this post?

Continue reading...

Confidence: The Key to Accomplishment

Helen Keller said, “Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.”

If you think getting out of debt is difficult, try earning a college degree, writing several books, and being a political activist, all while being deaf and blind.  The 2003 edition of the Alabama quarter has Helen’s image on it with the words “Spirit of Courage.” Undoubtedly, there’s a huge connection between confidence and accomplishment.

If you’re deeply in debt, you have surely faced those moments where giving up feels like the only option. I can remember in 2004 going to the local Bank of America branch to ask them if they could cancel several overdraft fees I had received (you have not because you ask not…I had 9 overdraft fees over one weekend, and I was able to get 8 of them cancelled).

After stating how stressed I was about my debt (only $8,000 at the time, mostly school loans), the bank associate reassured me that it really wasn’t that bad and that I was going to make it. It’s amazing how words like that can help you keep going. I still remembered what she said even after Beth & I had accumulated over six figures of unsecured debt.

Confidence = Accomplishment

 I’m convinced that no great accomplishments in life have been achieved without an equal amount of confidence. Your level of confidence literally affects everything you do, from huge decisions like getting married, changing careers, and starting a family, to negotiating a purchase or simply choosing what to wear today. Confidence affects everything.

Confidence equates to emotional stability. Studies have shown that people out-of-whack emotionally spend way more than people who are emotionally on-center (aka, retail therapy).

When you lack confidence in a certain area, it means that you don’t believe in yourself in that area (could be due to lack of experience, fear, past failure in that area, etc). So if you set a goal to be debt free but lack confidence in the area of finances, you will not have the self-discipline needed to reach your goal. You’ll either sabotage yourself somehow or find a way to quit.

So how are YOU doing? On a scale of 1 to 10, what’s your confidence level? If it’s low, here’s how to improve it.

Confidence is an Inside Job

The Bible teaches that transformation takes place when you renew your mind. (Romans 12:2). If you want to grow in confidence, you have to start with your thinking. Here’s three ways of doing this:

1. Guard Your Thoughts:  Do you just let yourself think on whatever thoughts enter your brain? Paul stated that “we take our thoughts captive and make them obedient to Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5). In Philippians 4, Paul lists several worthy values and then admonishes us to “think on these things.” God would not command this if it were impossible. Clearly we have control over our thoughts and need to take captive negative and defeating thoughts and replace them with truth.

2. Speak Life: If my daughter walked around all day saying “I’m ugly, worthless, and have no future” do you think as a loving father that I would let her continue to say those things? Of course not! Yet how often do we do that to ourselves? At a recent conference I attended, John Maxwell made the statement “the most important person you ever listen to is yourself.” If that’s true, what are you hearing yourself say? Is it uplifting or does it tear you down? If you want to change your life, change the words you say.

“The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.” Proverbs 18:21

3. Control Your Input: Zig Ziglar says “when you change your input, you change your outlook.” So let me ask you, what are you reading? What are you watching? Who are you spending time with? If you want to grow in confidence in any area, read everything you can on that topic. Spend time with people who are uplifting and positive. Turn off the TV for a while. Read biographies of people who have overcome tremendous odds in life; it will build you up to realize that if they can do it, so can you.

“You are the same today that you’ll be five years from now except for two things: the people you meet and the books you read.” Mac McMillan

If you want to make your life count, you have to get serious about this stuff. It matters, and it will make a difference in your life. You were born with a purpose. Don’t waste your life watching sitcoms.

On a surface level this post is about confidence, but to be honest, it’s really about identity, about how you see yourself and who you really believe that you are. 1st John 3:1 says “See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!” You are a child of God. Stop playing small and insignificant and become who you already are.

Committed to your success,

-Wesley

Comments: We respond to 100% of our comments. Which of the three points listed above do you need to focus on right now?

Continue reading...

The Wrong Recipe for Success

I heard a speaker several years ago at a men’s retreat describing the mindset of different age groups. He stated that your twenties are full of dreams and idealism, believing that your dream is just around the corner.

As you get into your thirties, you realize you’re no closer to your dream than you were in your twenties and the idealism begins to fade, and the dreamer dies a little. What he said clicked with me.

I used to think that the recipe for success was “Work Hard + Wait for Permission = Success.”

You know the routine….just show up before everyone, work harder and longer than everyone, and eventually someone with authority will notice and they’ll give you permission to succeed, meaning an opportunity or promotion. This isn’t wrong, if your goal is to work up the corporate ladder.

However, it guarantees you will always be working for someone else’s dream and not your own. You also run the risk of climbing the ladder only to find that it was the wrong one.

I held fast to this mindset through my 20’s, thinking it was just a matter of time before someone recognized the gifting inside me and offered me an opportunity. But as I worked my way into my 30’s I discovered that the “waiting game” held no guarantees, and all of the “offers” were into things disconnected from my purpose and passions. In short, I realized that the only person responsible for fulfilling my purpose was me.

Stop Waiting For Permission

I’ve used this picture of the caged lion before…it resonates with me.  I usually use it to show the feeling of being trapped by debt, but that’s not why it resonates with me. I’m sure you’ve been to a zoo and had the experience of seeing these massively powerful creatures, but you can tell that something is missing. Their captivity has killed something inside; there’s no fight in them, no heart.

Do you ever feel like that? Like you know your life was meant to roar but all you can muster is a feeble cry? So you keep waiting. Waiting for someone to unlock the cage. People come and admire you, speak about your power and your beauty, but it’s with a sadness in their voice. Even though they can’t see the bars, they sense the cage. So they make some nice comments and walk on to the next exhibit.

Here’s what you have to understand about success…about fulfilling your potential. No one can do it for you. Not your parents, not your spouse, not even God. Oh, God is so ready to help you, but he won’t do it for you. But what he has done is given you permission. Now it’s up to you. Do you give yourself permission to succeed? I’m not talking yachts and Ferraris…I’m talking purpose and destiny. As Zig Ziglar said, you were “designed for accomplishment, engineered for success, and endowed with the  seeds of greatness.”

Believe me when I say this – the only limits to your success are the ones you place in front of you. Give yourself permission. Remove the limitations. The world needs what you have.

Committed to your success,

-Wesley

We respond to 100% of our comments! How have you limited your success in the past?

Continue reading...

Why You’re Not Successful

Wow…it is crazy to me how much psycho-babble there is about success on the internet. I buy into some of it, namely that most of us limit ourselves because deep down we don’t believe we can or should succeed…but…there is still a LOT of nonsense out there. The challenge with it is that you can end up feeling like you need a therapist to help you fix your subconscious beliefs before you can be successful…it becomes just one more obstacle on your journey.

While beliefs do play a huge role in a person’s success, there is one word that trumps belief every time: Action. You’ve probably heard someone say something like “I didn’t believe it would work, but I tried it anyway and it did!” So if you get stuck trying to figure out what you believe and why (paralysis by analysis), the best way to get unstuck is by simply taking bold action.

Action always trumps belief. Always.

What is the number one reason why most people are not successful? Lack of Focused Action.

There are several reasons why people don’t take action…most of them go back to the issue of belief – they don’t believe they can succeed, don’t believe they are worthy of success, or don’t believe they have any value to offer the world. The rest of them usually center on the word “fear” – fear of failure, fear of the unknown, fear of succeeding then being exposed for who you “really” are, etc.

“Don’t be afraid, only believe.” – Jesus (Mark 5:36)

Fear and unbelief are siamese twins. Whenever you feel afraid you can always ask yourself, “what lie am I believing?” Likewise, if you’re stuck in the quicksand of unbelief, you can usually figure out why by asking “what am I afraid of right now that is causing me to hesitate?”

It’s Never the Right Time

If you ask people why they don’t take action, most will say “I don’t have time.” This is usually a cop-out. The real reasons for not taking action are either because of fear and unbelief, or it simply isn’t a priority. Either way, let’s be honest and give the true reason for our inaction instead of blaming poor time on everything. Now if you catch yourself saying “I don’t have time,” ask yourself how many hours a day the President has…that should bring you back to reality. The issue isn’t time, but priority.

What is one thing you can take action on right now that will get you closer to being debt-free or help you reach your financial or personal goals? Why haven’t you taken that action yet? Identify exactly what the action is that you need to take, and if you can’t do it immediately, schedule it on your calendar for sometime in the next seven days. The only thing separating you from the success you desire is consistent action in the right direction. Take action today.

Committed to your success,

-Wesley

P.S: We respond to 100% of our comments! What are some reasons you’ve given in the past for not taking action? What is one action you need to take right now?

Continue reading...

How To Kill Your Debt Without Killing Your Spouse

Debt will take a toll on your marriage long before it ever affects your credit. Finance is a numbers game, but we tend to forget there are lives and emotions attached to those numbers.

When your blood pressure starts to rise over issues of money, you should stop and ask yourself, “what’s more important, my budget or my bride? My security or my spouse?”

Money can be an incredibly deep issue, because it is married to your emotions, often showing up in issues of control, security, identity, and desire. So when life is difficult financially, it can really start to weigh on your relationship.

We wrongly place our hope in money, trusting that it will bring us security, and provide for our needs. I personally believe that your level of financial freedom is proportionate to the level of disconnect between your emotions and your money (that’s a powerful thought…don’t miss it!). True financial freedom comes when you can separate your finances from your feelings.

Imagine how free your life would be if the lack of money did not produce fear, and wealth was not connected with feelings of peace and security. What if your level of joy did not rise and fall with your income? What if we could simply trust him to be who he said he is, our Provider? Paul said “My God shall supply all your needs…” Do we believe that?

If you argue about money with your spouse, then it’s time for a divorce. But not with your spouse…rather, with your trust in money instead of in God.

James (don’t forget…this was Jesus’ brother) said “What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.”

It’s time for some soul-searching. Do your arguments with your spouse stem from your own desires, whether that be for control, security, or simply more stuff (because your identity is tied to your possessions)? If so, you need to confess this to your spouse and ask your spouse for forgiveness.

To achieve financial wholeness in a marriage requires teamwork. But sometimes you need a reminder that you and your spouse are on the same team, fighting for each other instead of against each other. Finances are never “his” problem or “her” issue….it’s OUR problem and regardless of who caused it we’re going to work together to overcome it.

Committed to your success,

-Wesley & Beth

P.S. It’s Friday, which means we’re sending out our newsletter today. We always include a short “Date Night” section in the newsletter including tips and questions for you and your spouse to help keep the passion alive in your marriage. Not a member of the DTL community? Sign-up now!

Continue reading...