Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Nimah I. Nawwab - Another success story

Rising from the mirages of Saudi Arabia

Nimah Ismail Nawwab was born in Malaysia to a Makkan father and mother. An English writer, editor and poet as well as photographer, her interests have led her to venture in various fields and work on diverse projects.

Due to her scholarly father's involvement, Nimah became interested in English literature at an early age. As a high school student she worked on various summer jobs at an oil company. After graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature, Nimah worked in Translation Services for five years then moved to Public Relations.

Her interest in writing on Saudi society, customs, Islam, art, crafts, cuisine and calligraphy has led to numerous articles and essays that have been published in Saudi Arabia and abroad. A few years ago she was commissioned to work on a lengthy project to evaluate a museum quality collection of Saudi artifacts, costumes and jewelry.

Her work has appeared in publications including the Arab News, The Bahrain Tribune and the academic journal Islamic Studies. Nimah has been coordinating the review of Saudi Aramco World magazine, to which she contributes stories and photographs, for the last ten years.

Through the years she has also given presentations on Arabia, wedding customs, Ramadan and women in Saudi Arabia , Women in Islam, in Washington D.C and most recently in Holland on “The Role of Saudi Women in the Media.”

Nimah's interests include photography with an emphasis on portraits, weddings and nature shots in addition to studio photography and developing. She is interested in layout and design of print and websites. In 2001 Nimah headed a task force to develop text and graphic content for a company website.

On a personal level, Nimah has long been interested in Saudi artifacts, Middle Eastern folkloric costumes, silver jewelry, Persian rugs, Nomadic weavings, pottery and Saudi stamps.

Nimah's poems on women, freedom, life in Arabia , wars, death and life, the younger generation and universal issues have been published online and in print. A few poems have been translated into Arabic.

Her poems are part of an English Literature and poetry university and school curriculums.

Writing poetry is another unexpected and exciting venture that began in 2000, after meeting the wonderfully articulate writer, essayist, songwriter and poet Naomi Shihab Nye .

"Studying English Literature and with my fondness for Shakespeare, I never attempted poetry, thinking it beyond me, that it is the forte of the masters such as Shelley, Lord Byron, Keats, Wordsworth and Tennyson. Meeting Naomi with her sense of inner peace, calmness and the way she writes about ordinary people, daily things, even such tiny things as a button or broom, imbuing them with a philosophy of life, made me want to attempt poetry. She is my Inspiration.”

Since then I have been extremely fortunate with supportive family and friends who have read my poems and critiqued them. One of the joys of writing whether prose or poetry is always the readers' feedback and I always appreciate it.”

Nimah has been in contact with poets in the United States and Europe and has begun experimenting with style leading to new attempts in free modern verse and haiku.

After a long standing interest in English and Arabic classic poetry, Nimah has become familiar with modern verse and Polish, Chilean, Latino and African American poets' whose influence has added another dimension to her pieces.

“Venturing into poetry is an exciting and thought-provoking adventure.” said Nimah at a presentation she gave on poetry during a Career Day at Effat College in Jiddah, on the west coast of Arabia . “It is a journey into a dazzling realm of imagery, rhythm, music, style and words, giving us a chance to pause during our everyday lives and to deliberate on the broader issues of humanity.”

One of the other pleasures of poetry has been giving readings at schools and universities. “Meeting students and perking their interest in writing or reading poetry, is a real motivator, makes one feel that connecting with the younger generation and making an impact is the best gift a poet can give back to society.”

She loves animals and enjoys listening to a wide range of eclectic music, traveling, cooking and researching international dishes.

She lives with her family in Dhahran , Saudi Arabia .

Noisy Coins vs Cool Currency Notes

by Saalik Siddikki

Have you ever noticed that if you have a few coins in your pocket they make noise even without your touching them.  Try to walk a little fast or jog and they start rattling in your pocket disrupting your thoughts and making you realize their presence.

Attitude.  Yes, they want you to take them counted.  Attitude of narrow minds, unpolished characters and under-grown personalities.   People with these qualities are hell-raisers who talk loudly, shout casually and argue obdurately over trivial matters merely to make their value realized, for they certainly possess a value like every single coin does.

On the other hand, a bulky pack of ten grand does not create any noise whether you walk fast, jog or jump.  Sometimes you do not even feel its presence but deep somewhere in your subconscious mind you are silently and repeatedly reassured of its value.

Does it imply then that the more value you possess the more self-contained, self-maintained and self-esteemed you become?  Yes, that is true.  You cannot increase your value through shouts, outbursts and stubbornness.  Never.

Now find a life-size mirror.  Go straight to it.  Stand firmly with full confidence.  Look at yourself, eyes into eyes.  Ask yourself bluntly "where do you like to be placed?"  At the bottom of a nicely erected heap of coins or somewhere in between the high denomination currency notes, roughly stacked?

If you feel that you are still being placed, by the world, under the heap of coins, take the boldest step of your life and refine your qualities, define your characteristics.  First create your worth and then prove it to the world  with a pinch of pure self-esteem that is the essence of your value to others.

Remember, if you do not realize your own value then how can you expect others to understand your worth? Making noise is a healthy activity but not at the cost of your devaluation. Wake up, dozing soul, wake up! Put the best side of you in the window.  If people do not feel up to paying for you, they would certainly appreciate you as we all do while window-shopping.

When we see something of value and are unable to get it, we take pride in telling about it to our friends.  At least be something that valuable.  Make them realize your merits by keeping cool and self-contained like currency notes not by shouting or creating noisy scenes like coins.

The above crap is the afterthought of an SMS message that my Facebook friend Azhar Abbas Azee sent me yesterday ------ "Coins" always make sound but the currency notes are always silent. So, when your value increases, keep yourself "calm and silent".

Monday, June 28, 2010

Never Give Up Quotes

3 Awesome Quotes to Ignite Your Passion to Succeed

Never give up quotes contain powerful words and emotions which can inspire change. These are quotes that have stood the test of time and that have affected the human race profoundly.

If you feel like you're on the verge of defeat or if you feel like there's no hope left, these words will help you get through.
Below are a few never give up quotes that will make even the most cynical person in the world budge.

Never Give Up Quote # 1: "Our greatest glory is not in never falling but in rising every time we fall." - Confucius

Life is not always easy. However, this doesn't mean that we should just roll over and play dead. According to the famous Chinese philosopher and strategist Confucius, success is not measured by the number of accolades we have hanging on our walls, but by the number of times we forced ourselves to get up and try again.

Granted, you'd much rather win than lose, but losing gives you the opportunity to learn something new. It also shows strength in character. And in the long run, having that strength to keep on going is more important.

Never Give Up Quote # 2: "You just can't beat the person who won't give up." - Babe Ruth

Legendary baseball player Babe Ruth sure knows what he's talking about. There are many different kinds of victories in this world. One of them doesn't involve a title and an award. Instead, it involves strength of character and perseverance.

Think of the countries that fought valiantly for their independence. These former colonies didn't win the war from day one. They must have lost more than a few battles and good men before they won back their freedom. Such a situation shows that as long as you keep on trying, you'll never be defeated.

Never Give Up Quote # 3: "When you feel like giving up, remember why you held on for so long in the first place." - Anonymous

This quote is one of the most profound ones I've ever stumbled upon. It tackles one of the most important points of defeat.

Sometimes, we feel like giving up. We feel like enough is enough. This quote doesn't just tell us to get back up on the dance floor, but it reminds us to draw strength from our purpose.

These never give up quotes are all useful guidelines for getting past obstacles. I hope they serve you well.

To help you achieve your dreams and succeed in record time, I'd like to give you FREE instant access to some of the best self-help e-Books worth over $2,355.00! Download them free at

Saturday, June 26, 2010


The operation of my spouse's fractures went on smoothly.

She has been moved out of ICU.

Feels better.

I owe a mountain of gratitude to all who offered their best wishes and prayed for her recovery.

God bless you all with health, happiness, success, peace of mind and prosperity.

Saalik Siddikki (Ahmad Quaderi)

Sunday, June 20, 2010


An Unseen Power Dislodges You From Your Comfort Zone

Last night my friend Nasir invited me over a cup of tea to discuss some personal matters.  The moment I saw him I was struck by the certainty that he was trying to deal with a challenging situation.  He visibly looked grieved, consumed and upset.

While drinking my favourite chocolate tea, he confided to me that he felt as if his self confidence had been completely drained out of him.

I knew he had been through quite rough times recently due to huge losses in business and could not get the moral support from family and friends that he was expecting.

He told me that he had to get his family car repaired positively next day, but he was not feeling confident enough to deal with the mechanic.  The last option was to delay the repair and worsen the already damaged conditions of the car.  In fact, he was left with no clear choice of his own.   

I tried to learn and analyze the reasons for his losing self confidence, but in vain.  He could not present any cogent explanation for that and I was much baffled with his inability to explain things.

I realized that there are times when we do not feel up to doing something though the task is not an impossible one.  A strange state of mind overwhelmingly takes over us and raises a strong blockade to prevent positive action thinking from resisting the onslaught of negative emotions.

I concluded that he was not willing to tell me much about it and asked him to bring paper and a pen and write down the following sentences:
  • See the mechanic
  • Show him the car and discuss the matter
  • Get an estimate of expenses
  • Negotiate and bargain
  • Get the car repaired
He said he did not like the crap and that he had already tried that.  I still took the risk of his getting annoyed and insisted that he should write down the above statements.  He surrendered and did it.

I requested him to go to bed and have a peaceful sleep and to let me know the next day about how he felt.

Today, he called me early in the morning that he had made up his mind to go to the auto-workshop and get the repairs done.  I got the address of the workshop and went to join him.

The repair was going on as usual and he was sitting alone, idle and in deep thoughts and jumped to his feet when he saw me.

My interest was only in learning about what infused self confidence in him.  His shortest possible reply was “The words I wrote”.

The words he wrote pulled him out of his comfort zone and pushed him to take the required action.

The written words always act as a high-octane fuel to drive you towards your goals and convert your lethargic aptitude into action thinking that is the essence of success in life.

My friend did not want to come out of his comfort zone.  The words he wrote on a piece of paper in his own handwriting acted like a magnet and pulled him out.  He told me that he felt like that subconsciously.

I met him late in the evening while he was returning from the workshop with all the damage on his car repaired.  He looked more confident now and I could see a glow of pleasure, gratification and pride that he had achieved his goal, though not a big one.  For him, it surely was.

Whenever you set a goal to achieve, please write it down on a piece of paper with full concentration and focus of mind and see what happens next.  

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Building Self Confidence

By Brigitte Meier

Several similar terms describe the central attribute of a character that decides on the strength of personality and the degree of inner freedom:

    * "self assurance" describes mostly the behaviour. Counterparts are insecure behaviour or shyness.

    * "self confidence" is the mental and emotional state that causes the outer appearance.

    * "charisma" is the effect that those have on others.

Self confidence doesn't mean being perfect or presenting oneself in a perfect way, but realizing and accepting own strengths and weaknesses, using strengths to reach aims and considering weaknesses as challenges, not insurmountable limits.

It can be observed that some children are by nature more actively exploring their environment than others. So possibly self confidence has a genetic foundation.

Still, all experiences that include social interaction, with parents, relatives, friends and classmates, influence the development of self esteem. 

Appreciation has a positive, rejection a negative effect. But unfortunately, it's not that easy.

False or fake appreciation can often be observed with parents and relatives. For example the adoration of even the smallest output of infant creativity, like crude drawings, and other approvals of a child's intelligence and appearance can lead to a situation of over-confidence. Undeserved rejection, on the other hand, like punishing or disregarding a child out of an own bad mood, will confuse it and create insecurity.

Over-confidence, or the belief in own abilities and performance that are not real, can lead to arrogance. This can either turn into insecurity, if the person later realizes the truth, or it turns into an inconsiderate behaviour, which also isn't making life easier. Insecurity or shyness are very common burdens and they tend to create a lot of problems. Aside from lacking social and personal success, the constant fear of the own inferiority creates barriers that are hard to overcome.

So what's the secret of how to give a child a healthy self-confidence?
- Be realistic with appreciation. If you feel you should commend your child for something, consider what would be the ability at its age and then evaluate the outcome. If it deserves appreciation, give it. If you have the feeling that your child is putting to much effort in getting your attention, try to get it back down to reality carefully. Love and appreciation shouldn't be goods that can be bought.

- Don't criticize or reject your child out of a bad mood. If you come home after a stressful day and your kid comes up with a picture, show some interest - it might mean a lot more to it than you think.

- Keep an eye on the influence your child is receiving from its friends. But if you have a bad feeling, try to talk to your child before you call the offender's parents and ask for a restraining order.

- Don't do things for your child if it's afraid of something. It might be hard sometimes, but how should it learn to be independent if it can always hide behind its parents? Later on, it will lack the confidence that comes from the experience of having to do things on its own.

- Always be there to give advice if required. There's a whole new world of complex social systems out there, and it's easy to get lost. Remember when you were a child probably you can learn a lot from that.

What should you do when you are stuck?

by Yasha

How many times have you heard this statement: "I'm stuck in this job. relationship. addiction. attitude or name it?"

Probably many times!

What do all these statements have in common? Behavior and attitude. If you are repeating over and over again "the same story", repeating the same unsuccessful strategy, making the same mistakes and always getting the same "results", you're stuck in the same mental loop.

This situation arises when you're mentally stuck in a vicious cycle of your own making, revisiting your emotional reaction, worry, fear, or addiction, and you don't how to get out of "the loop". Actually, the loop is in your way of thinking, or more precisely, in your brain. Not an easy position, and obviously you need to change something in your approach in order to get a positive result. The question is: "What should you do when you are stuck in this way?"

Before you start doing anything in terms of resolving the problem(s), you need to relax your mind first! "To relax your mind? What are you talking about?" is probably your reaction. I understand your comment, and I will try to explain why my statement is correct.

The simplest answer, to your surprise, would be the fact that a relaxed mind exists when your body is relaxed, not when you're tense and emotionally stuck. Or, if you like math, the equation is: Relaxed body = relaxed mind.

The very first step in the long journey to find the solution for your stuck position is always to relax your body first. When you let go of bodily tension, you will let go of emotional tension, as well. The more you're stuck, fearful or angry, the more you're tense. The more you're tense, the less you're relaxed when circumstances don't go your way. When you're physically relaxed, the more easily you'll find the solution and the less fearful you'll be.

It doesn't matter if your genes, personality or disorder gives you a predisposition toward the position of "being stuck in life". No, a relaxed mind in a relaxed body always works perfectly well. This is an example of the long-known mind/body connection.

When your body is in a state of relaxation, your mind (brain) is in the same state. A relaxed brain means less fear, worry, anxiety and depression. Only a relaxed brain can think clearly and efficiently.

As we know, stress arises from internal and external factors. When you are stuck, you are mostly under internal stress, which has to do with your attitude (anxiety, fearfulness, overprotection, overachievement or perfectionism). 

Generally speaking, we can say that "you're stuck", not because of external stress (circumstances), but because of your "internal stress" - which is actually your own attitude.

How can you relax your body/mind?

There are so many things you can do to help yourself. When you're stuck in life, try to set your mind on something outside of your fearful thoughts. You need a distraction, and your job is to find out what your way is to distract yourself from the "loop in your brain".

I know it's terribly hard to overcome your own "sick mind's process" (excuse my language!). But, that's the reality; only a healthy mind is not stuck in a worry or an anxiety state. Being stuck in any "permanent worry position" is not a healthy way of living.

If you can select what to think about and how to respond differently to circumstances, it's a good way to start. Try to do that with help from cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). Resources for recovery are both within you, and in the world outside of your own mind and body.

Try to distract yourself from your stuck state of mind and your way of thinking. I mean, if you can take time for your favorite hobby, such as gardening, or creative writing or painting, or playing a musical instrument, you'll help yourself a lot. Any exercise is a wonderful way to relax your body/mind. Try tai chi, yoga, meditation, relaxation responses or visualization.

Volunteering is a good way to distract yourself from your stuck position. In helping others, you're helping yourself. Just keep busy. Anything is better than being "stuck in." You know the fact that "busy minds don't worry". Keep writing your diary! It's a very useful way to calm your mind. If you like walking, especially by the river or by the lake, why don't you try it?

Do you now believe that the statement "Relax your body/mind first" was correct? I hope you do. My intention with this article was to show you this: It doesn't matter what the nature or reason for your current situation is (`stuck in.'), you need to start by relaxing your mind/body connection first.

If necessary, seek outside help from professionals. Life is filled with mystery, and sometimes we cannot understand and measure everything.

Source :

Achieving targets

By Talha Tashfeen Qayyum
Life goes on unabated without let or hindrance, be it good or bad.  We grow from infancy to adolescence to youth to middle age and then comes old age and eventual departure. There is no stopping and the vagaries of time are known to all and sundry.

As is known that we need to plan our lives because if we do not have a plan then it is a life devoid of direction, a life tending to go haywire which can lead in any way, a way good or bad. In order to have a direction we require to have a purpose, an aim and an eventual target in mind.

Once we decide what our target in life is and which way we want to move then it becomes a bit easy for us to make plans, to take decisions, to analyze our weaknesses and strengths as then they are all geared towards achieving a certain target.

Planning, working and eventual achievement of this achievement can be difficult, but once you have prepared yourself, done your planning and since everything is now directed in a given direction, things should start falling in place, but do they? No, they don't fall in place as pieces of puzzle, things become complicated and you get frustrated, dejected and stressed as things are not working out the way you had planned. We have all heard the saying " Man proposes, God disposes."

Bearing the above scenario in mind, we have a plan gone berserk; we are lost and are not beginning to lose direction. In all these happenings, beyond our control, we start losing sight of our eventual target, as we get involved in damage controls whereas we should have done and taken care of issues earlier under the surmise of preventive measures, but again, what are we, mere pawns in the wheel of this great universe are.

Given our frustrations, disappointments and stresses, we continue to struggle, we do not give up and we continue trying to make things work according to plan. Here is where we go wrong!

We are ignoring the basic necessity of a plan and this is to make adjustments as you go on. No plan is fool proof, you need to reassess, step back, review and adjust. Or in other words, show flexibility; never ever forget the eventual aim that we started with. If we do not adjust, we will keep on getting frustrated, stressed out and we will start thinking negatively, which will affect all parts of our life, including our personal and family life. The fault lies not with the plan, but with us, as we forget the target, get involved in problem solving and refuse to be flexible and make adjustments.

We should take cue out of the way a river flows. It has a target to fall into the sea from its original point of origin. In order to achieve its aim, it goes around cities, mountains, forests, thus making its own way. If it does not, it will destroy forestation, flood land and make it useless, destroy human life and habitat. The river achieves its aim by being flexible and not by being stubborn and obstinate.

We should act the same way, by being flexible, ready to make adjustments and not to get stuck with a given plan. The aim and target should always be kept in mind because that is the ultimate goal.

This will help us in achieving the end result we desired, whatever they may be and not get stressed, fatigued and frustrated if things do not go according to plan. Let us be innovative, flexible and ready for all eventualities as the ultimate is having your cake and eating it too.

Having said and explained the benefits of being flexible in our planning, I would like to mention here that this trait is a very valuable trait if one can set aside his or her ego. Flexibility can be applied to anything we do in everyday life. I have always tried to be flexible in my life as this was one of the first lessons taught to me by my father when I was still a child. I did not comprehend it in the beginning, nor as I grew up. I was strong willed and felt that the world was at my feet. I was good at everything I did; in studies, in sports, debates etc. at school and high school.
I felt that I could do anything I want, the way I want, but then things started to happen in the opposite of what I had planned and foreseen. This lead to me getting depressed initially, then I decided to fight and more of these helped as I started to get rebellious and argumentative leading to further problems. All this started to affect my personality, behavior and my general outlook, then I returned towards God and suddenly I recalled what my father had told me when I was still a kid; I remembered "Flexibility".

I began to think of ways to get out of my situation, continued and enhanced my contact with God and tried to be flexible and reasonable. As time went by I started to notice my different approaches starting to work and the jigsaw pieces started to fall in place and eventually I sorted out my problems and issues.

Going by hindsight, I now realize that I was wrong in trying to bulldoze my way as I kept coming up against one hurdle after another, leading to stress, depression, rebelliousness. How wrong all that was, I realize now. Had I shown flexibility in the beginning, I would have been spared all the anguish and pressure.

I have learnt my lesson, but the hard way. Let us take cue out of my own personal experiences and move towards making adjustments and being flexible as these will help in achieving our end goals as that is what we strive for and that is what counts in the end.

How to Achieve Targets?

by Rakesh Bawdhankar

Every other day we start reading a self-help book and think that finally! “ Yes finally here is a book that has solutions to all my problems”. You start reading the book with new zest and enthusiasm .Some suggestions in book are something which you can do immediately and you feel happy. But as you progress, difficult things like sticking to your time table, disciplined schedule and blah blah blah start coming. 

You suddenly start feeling “ this is not for me” and you go in search of a yet another self-helf book. All in all what you become is a knowledgeable person on self improvement and self-help books ( But off course the one who can’t help oneself)

Dear friends let me assure you that there is no substitute for hard work. Off course it can be replaced by SMART work, But work you must. There is no shortcut to accomplish your task that doesn’t go through the road of hard work.

To make you work in shortest time here are the five simple steps that if followed word to word will lead to accomplishing the task in the most quickest time.

1) Specify the target :- This means specify the work required to be done to the last details. Many times it happens that we do a lot of work regarding achieving a middle of particular tolerance (control limit) when in actual what was required was just adherence to the tolerance. So better know the purpose of the target.

2) Time plan:- Nothing can be achieved without actual time plan. So have a time plan with actual dates for the progression of the partial targets.

3) Taking actions:- Action is the soul of target achievement. So a quick action is to be taken as per the plan. Before taking actions, review various options and then go in for a particular action.

4) Regular follow up:- Once the action is initiated it is very necessary to do regular follow-up and check the progress. If found deviating from the target ,then we should either change the action completely or do the modifications as required.

5) Achieve the target:- By following the above steps we are sure to achieve the target and the most important thing here is to congratulate oneself for the success and always maintain the records of success so that in future too, you can refer them, both for building your confidence and also for use as a ready rekoner.

One final step, Standardization of a system that works for you is the best way to succeed in life, so record keeping of your successes and failures can guide you to develop a system that actually works for you.

So happy Target Accomplishing!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

This is how to teach your baby

A very interesting and positive way of teaching your baby sign language.


The best communicator I have seen so far!

One of the most beautiful baby-communication videos I have seen. The cutest little baby uses every possible gesture of her body to effectively speak out her mind.

Another masterpiece for adults to learn how to communicate!

Watch it repeatedly.

Seeds of Success are sown

Watch this cute little baby how she is arguing with her mother over not eating her baby-food.  Of course, I cannot translate her strongly spoken words but every single movement of her hands, her body gestures and the expressions on her face testify that she is trying hard to communicate with her mom and convey her point of view.

This is what we need in real life to resolve the problems.  The art of communication is what we should learn from this little baby.  God bless her and her parents too who have already sown the seeds of a successful character in her mind.

I love this video!

3 Stress Relief Exercises

Stress is a state of tension, in fact one could replace the word 'stress' by 'tension' a lot of the time. Tension is a natural part of the process of an action: first, one thinks, projects an action and a coil-like energy, tension, is created in order to assist the development of that action. Then, when the result is achieved, that coil is then completely released.

When a tension becomes stress is when one can not complete the process that we started, or when an influence coming from an outside source puts us in a situation that we think, at the time, we can not solve and which creates tension, stress and upset.

At those times when we feel great stress I have found that what appears extreme requires some extreme measures to be taken to release these poisonous sensations from the body-mind.
I would suggest 3 easy ways that are within reach of mostly everyone.

The first is 'Stamping the Feet' - on the ground of course! 

Again I will emphasise deep out-breaths with each stamping movement. 

If you are so inclined and do not have noise problems in your surroundings, you can allow sounds to manifest with each out-breath.

The second is 'Punching'.
Spine straight, 
Stand, feet shoulder-width apart 
Knees bent slightly 
Make fists of both hands and place them just above the hips 
Breathe in 
Punch forward with one fist, breathing out 
Bring back the arm to the hip while breathing in 
Repeat with the other arm. 
If you are feeling angry or frustrated this will not be difficult. In fact it will be almost second nature!

The third is Shaking and Breathing’.
It is simply shaking the body - or rather 'letting shaking happen' - from the legs up, without actually 'doing it', but rather giving in to it. Also, we 'open' the breath by allowing all the in-breath the body needs and above all, letting the out-breath be released fully.
This last point is the most important.
Remain aware of having your feet on the ground!
And also, let the whole body shake while remaining as loose as possible. Do this for a few minutes. When you stop, stay still for a while, with eyes closed, feeling the body sensations.

A reminder:
Let the out-breath be longer than the in-breath and remain aware of the body sensations during these exercises.
These three psycho-physical exercises, consciously using movement and breath to release pent-up energy in the body-mind, can definitely help to let go of the knotted-up tension that prevents one thinking clearly or acting effectively. Therefore using them allows us to then be able to re-assess the situation in a clearer, more appropriate and creative way.

Francoise Bonhoure 
Francoise has found Unique Solutions to Transform Stress into Well-Being and has started a Weekly Newsfeed.

Improving Your Sales Team's Performance

Sales management facing clients with more self assurance

The famous physicist, Marie Curie, once said: "There is nothing in this world we need fear, if we only understand it!" Fear is the greatest obstacle to success in sales. Many sales people who participate in sales training courses confess to fear. It prevents your salespeople from making visits out of the blue, makes it difficult to visit potential clients and robs salespeople of their self-assurance during negotiations.

There are four steps you can take to make your salespeople overcome their, often only latent, fears:

Gaining self-confidence

Goethe said: "Each individual is a miracle of unknown and unrecognised possibilities". Success primarily depends on whether you believe in it. As sales manager, you should consequently set young or inexperienced sales people goals that they can achieve. Goals, which others have managed to achieve and which are therefore clearly attainable. If a salesperson believes they are capable of attaining a certain goal, they are half way there already.

Acquiring product knowledge

Salespeople who are well informed about their product and its uses, naturally enter sales negotiations with self-confidence. They know they are an able and competent negotiating partner for their clients. When a 23 year old pharmaceutical salesperson visits a doctor, they are not just there to sell the doctor something. They are required to be able to assist the doctor in order to learn better methods of treatment.

Building relationships

All really important business relationships are based on friendship. It is, however, a completely normal defensive mechanism to initially have fear of the unknown. If a salesperson is visiting a client for the first time, their adrenalin instinctively increases. If, on the other hand, they are visiting an 'old friend', they will be perfectly relaxed.

Belief in the product

In order to be able to sell a product, the salesperson must be convinced that the world needs this product. Only a few salespeople have such a vision. Most see their work as purely routine and do not want to create something new with different ideas.

Salespeople without ideas accept their working environment as it is, visionary salespeople, on the other hand, influence their working environment. Successful sales people consider that their product will be useful to the customer, making things easier for them, making them a profit and solving their problems. It is from this 'passion' that the sales force draws the energy and powers of influence that are so essential for sales success. Confidence is a characteristic that is encouraged and supported in sales training courses.

Alongside these four fundamental steps: the following tips should help them overcome their fear of clients:

Children who are afraid of mice, rats or spiders are told that these creatures are far more scared of them than they are. The analogy holds good for selling: clients are afraid of being talked into something, being 'outsmarted' by salespeople and of making decisions that they will later regret. They are afraid of being taken in by some psychological trick or being 'hoodwinked' when it comes to price.

It is the duty of the salesperson to alleviate the client's fears. If they focus on doing this, they will find their own fears disappearing.

Admittedly it is not easy to visit a client out of the blue, without prior notification or an appointment. Experienced salespeople even have a meagre success rate with this difficult task: 1 appointment out of 20 calls or 1 successful conclusion of business out of 5 visits. They also recognize, though, that with every telephone call and every appointment, they are edging that one step closer to the next contract.

A sales professional works out how much money each telephone call or visit brings in, irrespective of whether they are immediately successful or not.

There is always a barrier of reservation and suspect between a customer and a sales person. This wall protects the client from making the wrong decision and makes the work of the salesperson very difficult.

There is a parable about this: the sun and the wind were competing with each other as to which of them had the most power over people. A man wearing a thick coat was walking along the road. The wind said: 'I am so strong that I can blow this man's coat away!' The more the wind blew, however, the tighter the man held his coat to himself. The sun, however, showed the man his warmest and friendliest face, which made him take off his thick coat of his own free will.

Only a customer who eagerly and unquestioningly breaks down the wall of distrust will be a good, long-term customer. The most important motto for success is: 'Just do it!You can really only be victorious by actually doing something. And only successful salespeople overcome their fears and acquire self-confidence. It is with this in mind that a key objective of sales training is to build confidence in sales people.

Richard Stone is a Director for Spearhead Training Limited that specialises in running management and sales training courses to improve business performance. Richard provides consultancy advice for numerous world leading companies.