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The doors we open and close each day decide the lives we live.” ~Flora Whittemore

There is no right or wrong in mental, physical and emotional self-improvement: Go for what you feel is doable for you. It is imperative that you choose ideas and methods that you find achievable. Begin with a clear short-term objective and work your way through medium- and long-term objectives.

To give you two examples of different approaches, I want to mention the work of Jack Canfield (co-creator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series) and Barbara De Angelis (who has contributed to the Chicken Soup series and has written such bestsellers as How To Make Love All The Time).

Jack has dedicated his life to studying the principles of success. He is very clear about what he teaches, which is a can-do attitude that starts with an action. His goal is to teach his readers and listeners that they have to do something to begin implementing it.

Barbara De Angelis approaches self-improvement very much through the spiritual side of things. Barbara’s methods include opening up the spiritual connection to the divine and allowing your success to take place by removing the barriers to that success. Both writers have a similar message but use different methods to reach the same goals: contentment, success, happiness.

Self-help also has a physical component. Changes can affect us physically, as you may remember from that break-up that left you without an appetite for weeks. Someone’s attitude can literally “make you sick.” You might feel without any energy or power because your job is draining you.

To find out if you respond well to the human healing touch, you might try a massage. You could try visiting a chiropractor, acupuncturist or acupressure practitioner. The schools of thought are varied, including, for example, the ancient healing forms of Ayurveda (a system of traditional medicine in India, considered an alternate medicine in the west), that focus on what body type you have and how to live in harmony with what works for you. In its easiest form, self-help might simply mean going for a walk at the beach or in your local park to clear your head.

Another way to get started implementing your own self-help tools is to go to your local library and check out its selection of books, video tapes, DVDs or CDs in the self-help section. You can, of course, do the same at the bookstore or spend some time on Amazon.com. Amazon showcases book previews for many of its books. It’s an easy way for you to do some research without spending any money.

The thing is: explore what’s out there. You don’t have to spend a lot of money, but you should invest a bit of time to make sure that you can find what you need to help yo move forward.

Are you already using a method of self-improvement, whether it’s reading, or exercising or following a particular spiritual path? Let me know. I’d love to hear about any and all self-improvement practices. Because your path is our path, and we are on this journey together. Thank you for sharing!

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