Author Archives: John

February 10, 2006

Are You Trying to Share Your Now With Your Past?

A situation has come to my attention about someone who has been having problems for a long time trying to insist that other family members go along with how he wants to sort them out. He thinks discussing the mess of the past with others will help everyone with their stress, anxiety and depression, but mostly himself. He has been having a hard time living in the present without including the past.

This is a great example of how many get stuck in the idea that the only way to live fully in life is to go pack into the past and drudge it all up. That the only way to be happy today is to find and identify the ‘nugget’ in the past that seems to be at the root of your problems.

In order to see how personally destructive this is we must clear up some things about our existence and thinking.

First, the only REAL moment in your life is right now. Your future is your projection and your past is your memory.

So, the only way for the past to be a part of your life at this moment is for YOU to bring it here. Something that occurred in the past is not real today, but you can make it real by bringing the thoughts and emotional feeling of it into your thought space today. And through the miracle of your thought power you can choose to feel the same emotional feelings related to something from the past right now in the present. It’ s the most perfect re-enactment.

This is how your emotional pain from the past is brought current. Your past cannot bring itself into the now! Unless you choose to give those memories unlimited power in your life to come up at will and trigger emotional feelings at will.

Now I know that many feel the need to go back and discover the root cause of their pain feeling that this is the only way to alter the way they feel today. This is quite common, but so is the number of people stuck in a place of unhappiness waiting for the cure.

Where actually the only cure is today. How you choose to be and do today. There is a decision you must make, do you choose to live how you can live today or do you keep reliving some particular painful parts of the past?

Why most who think they need to dredge up the past is to ‘know’ why they think and feel as they do now. OK, yes you are a compilation of all of your perceptions linked together throughout your life. Since your perception is all you really have to bring everything into your life with, it influences who you are right now.

However, if you do go back in your past and find what you think is the root cause of particular thoughts and feelings, what then? In order for those thought patterns and attached emotional reactions to not be as they are today you will need to make some personal effort to alter them. They are the result of an initial event plus many other things that have been linked and have influenced your thinking along the way.

So, here is the surprise, just discovering the root cause will not make the thinking habits magically go away, all it does is perhaps relieve your curiosity and wonder about how it all started. You will still need to work on yourself to alter the thought ands behavioral patterns. The thoughts and behavioral patterns can be altered by you either way, so why put your life on hold to search for the one thing you think will make you better, make yourself into what you want anyway.

Some may think I am making this sound too simple. They will say, but I can’t think about any thing else, I can’t function with not knowing. These are valid, but only because you have chosen for them to be. You have chosen to allow them to be in your present moment and have the presence that they do.

What is really going on here is that you are shifting the responsibility of making your life all that it can be today, to something outside of yourself. You are placing the responsibility on the ‘thing’ that is may be the root of your troubling thoughts. “This will fix my life.” It won’t! It will only clarify a question you asked and decided to use as a condition to your happiness.

Even the question itself does not ‘make’ you do or feel anything, you choose to place a condition on it that it must be answered to your satisfaction in order for your life to go on. But, you can also choose differently. The responsibility to live harmoniously in the now is yours.

Why are some people consumed with needing to know about these root beginnings of their troubling thoughts? Because they don’t know what else to do. They think that if I can go back I can undo it all. You can’t, it happened. All you can do to change its influence on you is to change your interpretation of your perception of it. And this can be done right here right now without even knowing the details or knowing if it actually happened.

Other people have made a different choice, to not consider what happened in the past to be the deciding factor in their experience today.

You start by forgiving the past, everything that occurred and everyone in it for what they may have done. And this includes yourself. That’s all, that’s it. It is done, time to live today. Sound too simple? Most of the truths are simple, only us humans figure out debilitating ways to entangle ourselves in contrived complexity. And then stress about it.

I didn’t make this up, if you are involved with a religion, what do they say about forgiveness? But you may not be allowing yourself to fully do it because you have chosen to hold onto the past, and you can’t do both! Why has forgiveness been taught for centuries, because it takes care of these extremely debilitating problems that arise when we don’t.

This is how life works for us humans, whatever thoughts we choose to make our predominant thoughts have the most influence o our now. So, if you choose to think you are troubled today because of your past, you are. If you choose to change those thought and emotional patterns for today, you can do that also.

The only way to make your today any different than yesterday is to think and do things differently.

Sometimes finally discovering that root to your problems actually causes more problems. What if you presently think that maybe a certain person may have done something to you that was traumatic and started the troubling thought pattern. Right now you are worried about this possible truth and anxious about needing to know for sure. Then, say you find out it is true, just as you had thought, the person did something that hurt you. Now what?

Many time people in this position now become very angry with the person because they can, they now know for sure. Now on top of the original problems you had surrounding your suspicion you have deep resentment and anger. Much better, right? No, now you are in a worse situation that still requires you to come to terms with all of it in order to attempt to live in the now.

Any and all negative emotions only hurt you not the person you relate them to. Your emotions are completely experience by you alone. If you are mad AT someone, feel hatred TOWARDS someone, HOLD disdain or resentment, guess whose body and mind are suffering from the negative energy? You. Here is the interesting point, you are the only one who can turn on an emotion and you are the only one that experiences them. Hmm, So who can change them?

Danger, continuing this WILL be hazardous to your mental and physical health.

This incessant desire to find ‘the’ answer is no different than other forms of striving where we have an insatiable desire to have, do or be something. And just the same as with striving, if we place a CONDITION of its acquisition we are setting ourselves up for failure. Things regularly turn out differently than we may initially desire. Then our conditional response is set into motion, usually not one of pleasure. The trees that survive heavy winds are the more flexible ones!

As I said earlier, why not start right now to forgive anyone who you think may have done something, in case they did. Forgive yourself for being involved, however you may have been. This is the only way to actually relieve the pressure of the emotions you are feeling regarding what may have happened. Even discovering that root event will not relieve the pressure. Forgive and you can begin new and fresh, allowing yourself to be receptive to what your now has in store for you rather than trying to mix the past with the present.

Frankly if something in the past were so potentially painful why would someone want it over a new moment with out it?

From here you can begin to work on the thought patterns and behaviors that are not in line with what you really want ion your life without the burden of constantly refreshing the past. There are many techniques for changing your predominant thoughts to thoughts that are positive and life affirming, such as positive affirmations.

That is another topic but start with a wholesale forgiveness of everything that has happened in your life and everyone that was or may have been involved. This will help you turn your past into memories rather than emotionally charged events you are bringing up to the present.

High self-esteem and great self-confidence are not supported by dwelling on the past, they are boosted by a positive attitude towards your life’s possibilities. The best stress reliever is letting go of the past. Positive thinking is rising above the mire of the past.

For your past – thank it, forgive it and bless it!

For your future – move on, find peace and be happy!

Forgive, learn, grow and live. . .


John Halderman, a writer, speaker, and trainer intent on helping you get real results from your personal growth efforts.

He supports methods, tools, and knowledge that bridge the gap between information and effective results.

If you are ready for the truth about change and growth, get the ‘Effective Personal Development Newsletter’.

Each week, delivered to you, are tools, tips, methods and ideas to alter your perception, all for you to use with your daily actions. =====>

January 28, 2006

Getting upset – why?

I was reminded today as I worked on getting this blog set up, how we can so easily fall prey to our expectations. I found myself getting quite upset with some of the quirks I ran across with the blog software.

There were things I was having difficulty getting set the way I wanted. I got riled about some answers I received as a result of submitting a help request. The answers were not what I wanted to hear because they didn’t conform to what I wanted to hear.

Now, I am the first to stand up for product and service that I think is warranted, but I also know that I must be careful not to set rigid expectations about exactly how everything is carried out.

Going around with this attitude is what so many are perpetually unhappy. Most of the time I do pretty good with this.

If it were my business I could operate it in any way that I see fit, but who am I to set the universal standard of operation and behavior for everyone else?

A Fine Line

There is fine line here between my being justified in expecting a certain level of service with a product and expecting it to be what I deem to be perfect. This is a point of balance we all face in virtually all areas of our life. I got myself to chill out about the situation, and of course I was able to think more clearly and rationally.


At this point I must say that I was assisted in this redirect of my perception when John Keegen the owner of BlogHarbor personally called me on the phone after I had responded to his e-mail reply to my help request. He was concerned that I was unhappy and he wanted to make sure my concerns were addressed completely.

Well we had a good conversation that helped a lot. I have to say that I was impressed that he called me. I don’t know how many times I have been frustrated in the past with getting help with a computer or Internet problem. I bet you could name a few yourself.

I really appreciated his concern for my situation, particularly his desire to actually talk to me to ensure I was satisfied. In my book he gets a gold star for making the effort to provide above average service to his customers.

This is a perfect example of where I could have caught myself earlier in the cycle of getting upset and reevaluate my perspective, allowing me to feel differently. Because it was all in my perspective why I was allowing myself to get upset and I can change it.

This was a reaction supported by an ego-based perception, which has its root in the ego’s concept of ‘I can only be happy when I’m right’. Ultimately, I can and should be happy no matter what is happening with the current situation. It is my choice to choose a better way.


Remember that you have a choice about your perception, attitude, thinking and behavior. Just because your ego has been running things, you don’t have to allow it to continue.


Look for more articles here on self improvement addressing topics like motivation, goal setting, self confidence and living a purpose driven life.

Grow, discover, and thrive,


John Halderman, a writer, speaker, and trainer intent on helping you get real results from your personal growth efforts.

He supports methods, tools, and knowledge that bridge the gap between information and effective results.

If you are ready for the truth about change and growth, get the

‘Effective Personal Development Newsletter’.

Each week, delivered to you, are tools, tips, methods and ideas to alter your perception, all for you to use with your daily actions. =====>

January 27, 2006

First Post

This first posting will be an introduction

A little about me and what I am doing is in order to start.

The details about my personal story will gradually come out as I blog along here.

Basically I am here because I am now living in support of my purpose. I have known what my purpose is for a little over 13 years now, but had not got allowed myself to make a complete change until recently.

The primary vehicle to support my purpose is the organization I am building called the “Design A Life System”

My intention with this is to actualize effective personal development as a major activity for all people desiring a productive, fulfilling and ever-expanding life experience.

This blog is one of the pieces of the system.

This will be a place for me to share personal growth thoughts and ideas, as well as anything related that I think may be of value to you, in your life.

Some of this will entail exposing you to other resources that are providing something beneficial.

Marketer exposing himself helps you

One of those resources that comes to mind right now is Dr. Joe Vitale. Now his primary business that he is well known for has been in Internet marketing, publicity and copy writing. He can be found at

For this reason he is worth mentioning, as he is one of the people I have watched and studied as I have began to develop an internet presence.

I have a few of his products and they are some of the best available, but I have gained a lot by watching what he is doing. I particularly like his blogging strategy which I may try myself.

Another reason I feel he is worth your attention is his attitude on personal growth. He is one who has been brave enough to ‘come out’ and expose his personal feelings about it.

He has some personal growth products as well that are worth your attention. He has clearly stated that what he practices is based in metaphysics. This is the basis of my teaching as well and actually much of what is called personal development.

Many business people are reluctant to reveal their personal philosophy and beliefs for fear of negative repercussion. I agree with others who have said how refreshing it is that Joe opened up with his beliefs.

Study success to learn how to act

If you are like me, you study successful people, and anything for that matter, for an understanding of what they do. Have you ever noticed how all successful daffodils do the same thing! Yes, I am talking about the flower.

This applies to people as well as daffodils. What are the successful ones doing? What are they thinking? How do they perceive things? And, what is their philosophy?

Your philosophy is a foundational concept that allows you to perceive, think and act in certain ways. All of these parts are important, but if you stop short of taking action, you might just as well stick yourself on a shelf with the rest of the information.

I feel very strongly that personal growth is an activity not just a study. It is so common for many people to just accumulate information and not do anything with it.

It is said that information is power. I say it can be, only when used for a specific purpose.

~~~~~ ~~~ ~~ ~

Once in a while in this blog you may see me refer to something going on in the world as I see it relating to personal growth.

Growth of another ‘bad-boy’ with the Kings

For instance, I live close to Sacramento California and today in the Sacramento Bee, the big news for basketball fans is the trade of long time Kings player favorite Peja Stojakovic getting traded to the Indiana Pacers for ‘baggage laden’ Ron Artest.

Now what is inter sting about this to me is how the Kings, under the tutelage of Kings president of basketball operations, Geoff Petrie have a history of turning around ‘bad-boy’ players.

Chris Webber had a record of physical interaction with his prior teams coach and Jason Williams was generally a handful. They both calmed down and became more professional in their behavior. Are these are not fine examples of personal growth?

Chris Webber became loved by the community. Can they do the same with Ron Artest? Is this a testament to the abilities of coach Adelmen?

I will be watching the Kings new rehab project with interest.

As an aside, it was a bit curious how team owners Gavin and Joe Maloof leaked the trade before it was finalized. I guess they were eager for it to happen. They do want to win and Peja has not had a good game all year.

Gavin Maloof said,”we have a home in Las Vegas, we’re gamblers, we’re going to take a chance on him.” In case you didn’t know, the Maloofs own, with the rest of their family, The Palms Casino in Las Vegas.

Religious divide over telling of history

Another local story that got my attention was how religious leaders were bickering over how certain segments of history should be told.

The California Department of Education had Jewish, Muslim, Christian and Hindu groups getting quite upset with one another over how history will be taught to sixth graders.

Now don’t get me wrong here, of course the way history is taught should be to be as accurate as possible, but I just have to take note that here we have another example of various people, under the name of religion, vehemently disagreeing.

When are we going to figure out that we are all part of the same group here? Continuing to focus on our differences only inflames them. There is a basic selfish mentality behind anyone staking claim to their one interpretation of reality as being the only possible explanation.

Why not seek to find the commonality of our different beliefs? Of course that would entail allowing someone different to be at least partially right. This seems to be a difficult thing for us humans to allow.

That will do for now,

To your growth,


John Halderman, a writer, speaker, and trainer intent on helping you get real results from your personal growth efforts.

He supports methods, tools, and knowledge that bridge the gap between information and effective results.

If you are ready for the truth about change and growth, get the

‘Effective Personal Development Newsletter’.

Each week, delivered to you, are tools, tips, methods and ideas to alter your perception, all for you to use with your daily actions. =====>

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