JAM with Mike

Motivation to Start Your Day!

The Direction of Your Dreams

Thursday May 29, 2014 #631

“You will become as small as your controlling desire; as great as your dominant aspiration.” ~James Allen


The speed and the quality of your journey to achievement and success are largely determined by how you spend your time and resources.  It is easy to drift into long periods of doing what gives us comfort and pleasure, which could include excessive TV/internet viewing, overindulgence in comfort foods or alcohol, gambling, gossiping and other negative but fun social behaviors, etc.  These are known as controlling desires, because they pull us into their web of comfort but add no value to our quest for achievement.

But it is up to us to decide to limit or even eliminate these controlling desires by focusing on those actions that pull you toward the positive achievements you aspire to.  When our thoughts are dominated by our dreams, it is easier – but still difficult – to ignore the natural pull toward those activities that waste our time and resources.

Start each day with powerful thoughts of what you want to achieve and both what you must do, and what you must avoid today to move you in the direction of your dreams.


May 31, 2014 Posted by | achievement, intention, Pleasure, Take Action | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Overcoming Challenges

Tuesday May 27, 2014 #630

The superior man makes the difficulty to be overcome his first interest; success comes only later.” ~William Jennings Bryan


People often operate with a “lottery” mentality, meaning that they focus solely on the success they desire – financial, relationship, possessions, etc., without focusing on overcoming the challenges to reach those desires.  It is as though they should be able to get what they want with little or no effort, like buying a $1 lottery ticket expecting to win millions.  No, the people who actually achieve their desired success are those who not only have a vision of what they want, they carefully determine what they must overcome to achieve – learning, training, practice, building relationships, making smart investments in time and money, and more.

What is it you want?  What stands in your way?  What actions are you taking to overcome these obstacles?

May 31, 2014 Posted by | achievement, learning, problem solving, Success, Take Action | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Letting go, to move forward

Thursday May 22, 2014 #629

“Unless you are prepared to give up something valuable you will never be able to truly change at all, because you’ll be forever in the control of things you can’t give up.” ~Andy Law


Change is usually difficult not because of what we want to change to, but rather because of what we must change from.  It is our human nature to resist changing from what we are used to, even if it is something deeply negative, because we find great value in our habits and our current norms.  This is true of abusive relationships, poor eating habits, unfulfilling jobs, and many more benign habits and ways of living our lives.  The true genesis of successful change is recognition of what we must move from, what we must give up, and then a clear vision of what we want to move to.  This can be helped immensely by enlisting a good friend or family member to make the change with you, and/or to help encourage you and keep you on track.

What do you need to change?

May 24, 2014 Posted by | change, Success | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Avoiding Mediocrity

Tuesday May 20, 2014 #628

“There is only one proof of ability, action.” ~Marie Von Ebner Eschenbach


You can have a great CV, an exceptional LinkedIn profile, and a million stories of what you have done and what you can do.  But none of these matter if your actions today do not support the picture of you that you want people to see.  Few people care much for what you have done; they only care about what you will do now.  This requires us to be focused on excellence every day, to never drift assuming people will forgive mediocrity today because of all we’ve done before.  Make it your purpose to demonstrate your abilities through today’s actions – every day.

May 24, 2014 Posted by | Take Action | , , , | Leave a comment

Actions Speak Louder Than Words

Thursday May 15, 2014 #627

“The superior man is modest in his speech, but exceeds in his actions.” ~Confucius


No one wants to be around people who tell us how great they are and all the things they are going to do, but actually do nothing.  We don’t want them as coworkers, bosses, or employees.  Be sure to never be one of these people.  Rather, focus on being the person whose actions tell the story of their greatness.  What you do, not what you say, will indicate to others who you really are.

May 18, 2014 Posted by | Take Action | , , , | Leave a comment

Choosing Joy Over Misery

Tuesday May 13, 2014 #626

 “The trick is in what one emphasizes.  We either make ourselves miserable, or we make ourselves happy.  The amount of work is the same.” ~Carlos Castaneda


I truly believe that our misery and our happiness are almost entirely our own doing.  In a particular moment, outside forces can illicit misery or joy in us.  But after that moment, it is up to us to determine our ongoing sense of being.  Miserable people tend to dismiss moments of joy as aberrations and feelings they do not deserve – and so the feeling doesn’t last.  Joyful people on the other hand tend to dismiss moments of misery as aberrations and feelings they do not wish to maintain – and so they don’t.

The fact is that you do deserve joy and not misery.  All moments are fleeting – both miserable and joyous.  It is up to you to decide what you will hold onto and to anticipate, and what you will dismiss as aberrations and let go.

May 18, 2014 Posted by | Happiness | , , , , | Leave a comment

Facing Challenges

Thursday May 8, 2014 #625

 “Not everything that is faced can be changed but nothing can be changed until it is faced.” ~James Baldwin


Whether it is a challenged relationship, your lack of fitness, an uninspiring job, or a problem in your community, you must face it and do something about it if you want it to change.  There are no guarantees that your efforts will achieve the change you are after, but inactivity assures the status quo.  This is not to say that you must attempt to change everything that bothers you.  But complaining and doing nothing is counterproductive and lazy.  You have two choices when confronted with a problem:  attempt to change it or accept it and move on.

May 11, 2014 Posted by | change, problem solving | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


Tuesday May 6, 2014 #624

 “We always overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years and underestimate the change that will occur in the next ten. Don’t let yourself be lulled into inaction.” ~Bill Gates


Whether changing ourselves, or preparing for changes around us, we do indeed overestimate what can and will change in the short term.  And we typically fail to recognize and prepare for the significant changes that will occur in the longer term.  To battle this tendency, be curious:  study history, listen to experts who attempt to predict future changes, and come to your own conclusions.  Based on your learning, take actions that can best prepare you for the future possibilities.  While predicting the future is haphazard at best, you must make the attempt so that you are less likely to be caught unawares when inevitable changes occur.

May 11, 2014 Posted by | change, Curiosity, learning, Possibility, Take Action | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


Thursday May 1, 2014 #623

“Piglet noticed that even though he had a Very Small Heart, it could hold a rather large amount of Gratitude.”

~A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh


We all have moments of gloom and negativity.  It is part of being human.  However, if you are negative and ill-tempered on a regular basis, it is a choice you have made.  We all know we are at our best when we are feeling and thinking positively.  So how can you break out of a temporary bad mood, or a more tenacious state of negativity?  Begin with gratitude.  By reminding ourselves (or discovering for the first time) of the many people, things and circumstances that make our lives better than they would otherwise be, we begin a path to positivity.  Despite the many challenges we all face, I am certain you have many things to be grateful for.  Just as Piglet can find gratitude in his heart, so can you!

May 3, 2014 Posted by | Gratitude | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Stepping Stones to Success

Tuesday April 29, 2014 #622

“Failure is not the opposite of success, but a stepping stone to success.”  

~Arianna Huffington


There are no easy paths to achieving worthy goals.  Any success worth achieving is going to be difficult.  Of course no one enjoys failing, and initial disappointment is natural.  The trick is to recognize these stumbles as an important part of the journey and allow yourself to learn from them, gaining the wisdom you will need to ultimately achieve your goals.

May 3, 2014 Posted by | achievement, Goal Setting, learning, Success, Wisdom | , , , , , , | Leave a comment