My Blog has moved!

RedBowTie WebsiteHi Everyone!

This is just a quick note, to let you know that my blog has moved to and visit the site, and keep reading my posts!  New and exciting articles will be posted each week!

Thank you to everyone who has supported this blog and my writings over the last 2 years. 

Send your comments and ideas to me on

Your friend in success,

Roy Heeley
Red Bow Tie – Motivation and Coaching


The Importance of Goal Setting

GoalSet01Do you know where you are going?

One of the most effective ways of ensuring that your thinking stays positive is to have goals.

So in the next few articles I will talk about goal setting.


I consider it important to have clear, WRITTEN goals. This in my mind is one of the first steps to greatness. No matter what you want your destination to be, you need a map! No matter how old or young you are, if you are already successful or only now starting out in the great adventure of life, you need to have goals to give you a clear view and direction of where you are headed. Maybe you have already achieved a lot and simply need new goals, or maybe you feel like you have not achieved much if anything at all in your life.  In any of these situations, I will ask of you the same thing “What are your goals and are they written down?”

Today I will share my own story with you to help you see what this has done for me and how it has affected my own journey. I first realised the importance of this quite late in my life, but if not for doing that, I might not even be here writing this to you now.

Shortly after Timothy became my son-in-law he asked me if I had goals and I responded “of course I do!” and he then asked if they were written down. I replied “no, but they are pretty clear in my head.” He felt that I needed to write them down, and fortunately he was pretty persistent about it. I’d say it took me about 6 weeks to eventually concede and actually sit down to start to write them.

When I did the strangest thing happened. I was sitting down writing my first goal and when I had written it to my surprise it was; “I want to live to be 104!” Now that was a big surprise to me! This goal featured nowhere on the mental list that I had mentioned to them a good few weeks back. In fact, if truth be told I did not know it was a goal of mine until I had actually sat down to write them out, in fact until I had finished writing it! This was a goal that the second I sat down to write my goals out on paper was pushed to the front by my sub-conscious. Isn’t that interesting and strange? I had my mental list and that particular goal was not on it, but the second I sat down to write my goals there it was. I wonder what sub-conscious goals you have?

I sat and pondered this turn of events for a little while. Was it really what I wanted? Did I really want to live to be 104 years old? The truth is yes! I really did and really do! This first goal led to some more, because when I shared them with my family, my wife agreed to support me as long as I was going to be healthy and not a grumpy old man. So I added physically and mentally sharp to my goal list. I added another when I shared my goals with my mother, and she concluded that I would need to “make more money” if I was going to want to live comfortably till that age.  After that I continued my written list with all sorts of goals ranging from relationship goals, travel goals and business goals. I also have a number related to personal growth.

Glen McQuirk in his MAP4Life series has a diagram depicting a wheel of life. He has identified 8 aspects of life in which it is necessary to have goals in order to have a balanced life; Family and Relationships, Intellectually, Physical health, Financial Wealth, Career/Business, Social Responsibility, Rest and Restoration and Spiritual. I agree.

Before going further into the “How to’s” and making the tools for doing so available to you in the next article, let me first highlight the benefits with a hope to inspire you to getting started on yours.

Some of the benefits of goal setting are:

  • They give you clear focus and vision
  • Goals help you control your future
  • They assure you a sense of purpose
  • Goals permit you to focus your energy
  • They enable you to be positive in your outlook
  • Goals afford you to be more excited, more motivated and more enthusiastic
  • They are great for your self-image and your energy levels
  • Goals increase desire, passion and motivation
  • They enable you to overcome any difficulty or obstacle
  • They reduce laziness and procrastination
  • Goals make life much more fun and give you direction and certainty

When you see all those benefits it really makes one wonder why we resist and struggle to get them written down. Well I have some ideas about that, and some of them can be found in my book “Freeing Your Mind” and the rest I will be discussing  in the next article, so watch this space.

For now I will leave you with simply the idea in your mind. Let’s call it the spark that is needed to get you going. Think about it, and more importantly ACT on it.

The reason most people never reach their goals is that they don’t define them, or ever seriously consider them as believable or achievable. Winners can tell you where they are going, what they plan to do along the way, and who will be sharing the adventure with them. – Denis Watley

Focusing on your goals and not your obstacles!

FocusPositive versus Negative Thinking  Series

I am a cyclist and have recently changed from road biking to mountain biking. As you can imagine there are a lot more rocks on the road when I am mountain biking. I have realised that the way to avoid the rocks is to ignore them – to focus on the road ahead. As soon as I give the rock too much attention, I somehow gravitate towards it. My 4×4 instructor buddy tells me that when he is teaching people to drive on 4×4 tracks, he explains to them that if they don’t want to hit the boulders then they must not focus on them or they will be drawn towards them. And so it is with life, what we focus on we are drawn towards. What our thoughts and minds dwell upon consistently is what we become. This is why I mentioned in a previous article that we must choose our trains of thought carefully, and to assist in doing that we must know where we want to go. We must know or destination. We must know what we want.

I think many people’s problem is right there; they don’t know what they want. This is usually due to a few reasons; sometimes they don’t realise they can change what they have, sometimes people feel they don’t deserve anything better and sometimes individuals are just plain stuck in a rut!

I have often asked people to write down some goals. I give them a pen and paper and say write down their goals there and then. Often, very often they can’t do it. This is not good. How can we reach a destination if we have no idea where we are going? We have either no desire to know or simply just a very vague idea of what we want or where we are going.

Okay, so let’s take those 3 reasons why we don’t have goals, that I just mentioned, one at a time.

sometimes individuals don’t realise they can change what they have; This is a common belief and it’s just not true. Anything and everything can be changed, you just have to have the will to do it. Depending on the situation it may take some determination, it may take effort and it will probably take time, but every circumstance can be changed, you just have to believe it can and start changing it.

sometimes people feel that they don’t deserve anything better; this problem is more common than what you might imagine, but look at it objectively. Is anyone that different to you? Is anyone more special than you? There is no one saying you are not special, you don’t deserve to succeed and you are just average, you are never going make it! If there is someone up there telling you anything, he is saying that you are fearfully and wonderfully made, you are very special and he loves you! In fact if there is anyone saying negative things to you and pulling you down it’s probably you. It could possibly also be “Life Sentences” that has you trapped in those thoughts.

But I’m telling you right now you are just as special if not more special than me and I am very special. J Some may have more challenges than others, but no one, absolutely no one deserves to succeed any more that you do.

sometimes people are just plain ‘stuck in a rut.This is probably the most frustrating one for me. I see such wonderfully talented people that have just become complacent and settled into their particular rut. They have made peace with being okay, mundane and average. And I want to say “Wake up! Smell the coffee!” There is a wonderful world out there for you to experience and enjoy. Decide to get out of your rut today!

Once you have dealt with any and all of those issues in your life, you to need to set some goals for yourself. You can then start determining your vision and your purpose. We all have a purpose, and we need to get ourselves to a place where we can determine it.  If you don’t have goals you focus on the wrong stuff, you don’t go anywhere other than around in circles.

You need to decide what you want and resolutely focus on it so that you can get there. Focus, Focus, Focus on what we want and we will get there!

Focus on your potential instead of your limitations” Alan Loy McGinnis

The two track mind and how to control your thinking!

The Positive versus Negative Thinking  Series Continued

One of the biggest revelations to me about the whole positive thinking and self-growth phenomenonRailway Switch was the whole idea that you can control what you think. The concept that the thoughts going on in your mind were controllable was a big surprise to me. To be honest I did not even think about it, I just went merrily and sometimes not so merrily on my way reacting to daily incidents as they happened. I was completely ignorant in that I had a say in what I thought and what emotions where generated and dwelt upon.

I suppose what I thought about my brain was that it was much like my lungs, in that it was just another organ that did its job. I mean nobody told them to breathe, the lungs just carry on day in and day out extracting oxygen in some miraculous way from the air that we breathe in. From that first reaction we had to the little smack on ones bottom that we get from the doctor that delivered us: Slap! – huuuuuhhhh! We breathe, and then we do it, and keep doing it instinctively for the rest of our lives.  No one says little Johnny if you don’t breathe you die! They do tell you a little later on in life that if you breathe in cigarette smoke together with the air it will do bad things to your lungs and your body, but a vast percentage of the population manage to not think about that.

That brings me back to thinking. Notice the phrase “we choose not to think about it.”  There it is again – the idea that we can CHOOSE what we think about, it’s all around us, but yet we ignore it. We go on allowing our minds to run amuck, to think whatever it likes with gay abandon. We allow ‘garbage’ into it all the time, ignoring the well know computer term GIGO, which means garbage in garbage out. The garbage I am referring to is gossip, violence and negative news, much of which the majority of us imbibe in generous doses every day.

Well the truth is no matter how much we avoid the issue, the fact is that we can and must not only control what goes into our minds, we can and must control what we think about!

Every train of thought, like a passenger train, takes us somewhere. It has an effect on our ultimate destination, our ultimate destiny. Doesn’t that make you think? Well I hope so! I hope it switches on the proverbial light bulb. I’d like it to generate an ‘ahah’ moment, if you have not had one already. Every thought affects your destiny! The thing is thoughts are not just hap-hazard, or at least they should not be. Each one is linked to another.  It’s a bit like a filing system either in a store room, or on your PC. Each thought or idea you have is linked to or stored with others in the same category. You are watching a game of rugby or football and your team scores a point and you think; “Fantastic, they are good! They are the best! They are going to win! They always win!” You subconsciously access the pictures in your mind of them winning before, pictures of them celebrating, of the paper cannon blasting little streamers into the air, of them posing for photos, laughing and smiling. You retrieve the ‘files’ and think all this in a split second, before going on to watch the next phase of the game.

Now let’s look at a less fun thought. How about something you thought of yesterday like: “Tomorrow is Monday!” now wait before you go off thinking about it, let me add an analogy into the situation and to not mix our metaphors we will stay on track with a train. Okay, imagine your thought is on a track, and you are at a switch. Also take note that you are in fact the person who can switch the lever to change the direction. The question is; which track do you let it go down? This analogy works well on a couple of levels, because sitting in the train one is often oblivious of the swapping of lines – you hear the clickity-clack and there you are heading gloriously unaware off a different direction. In trains of thought the same thing happens; you come to a point when you can go off in any number of directions, you throw the switch and off in the new unconsciously chosen direction you go. Often the decision has an effect on your emotions and can influence your day completely, and to be even more dramatic have ramifications on your entire life.  Am I suggesting that a little thought like; “Tomorrow is Monday!” can have momentous life altering consequences? The answer is “Yes, it can!”.  Just look at two possible directions that this phrase could induce:

  • Scenario 1: “Tomorrow is Monday! Another blue Monday, the start of another tough boring week, five long days to slog through before it’s week-end. I suppose my boss will be as difficult, petty and demanding as ever, picking on me as always….” and on and on these thoughts can go and ad nauseam. By the time you get to work, you don’t even feel like being there. You drag yourself through most of it, push most tasks aside like you did on previous days, because you don’t feel like doing them, and by the end of the day you are so exhausted and irritated that you take it all home with you and bring that same negativity and take it out on your family. (“Blue Monday” is a type of Life Sentence that I say we need to get rid of in my book “Freeing Your Mind” )
  • Scenario 2: “Tomorrow is Monday! Fantastic, now I can get that project finished that I have been working on, I am sure my boss will be pleased and appreciate all the hard work I have put into it. I am sure it will help my company a great deal and be another stepping stone towards achieving a promotion and my ultimate goals in the company.” In this scenario, you come to work with a smile, you breeze through your work, you might even come up with some great new ideas that you share with your boss and before you know it, you have that promotion and you go home and kiss your wife or husband and still have energy to play with the kids!

Obviously I can’t possibly paint your personal scenario into this illustration, but I am sure you can empathise with the different emotions that each scenario would induce as well as the different actions because of it. So it is, with each thought journey you embark on.

Whether the thoughts you are having is about work, situations at home or with your family, having to study before a test, or before competing in a sporting event. What direction are you going in? Are you gearing up for success, or are you heading for disaster? How are your thoughts influencing the outcome of each situation in your life, as well as your actions and emotions leading up to and during each of these? Are they negative, or are they positive? Are you subconsciously leading yourself down the wrong track every time, not aware of why or how everything seems to keep going wrong? Wouldn’t you want to rather take some control?

With today’s message I want you to remember that you are unconsciously throwing the switch, and you are choosing the track. You are choosing where your thoughts and emotions are leading you, as well as the outcome and destination of everything connected to it. You can, and in fact you must be at all times aware of how each thought path is affecting you, because it’s you and you alone that choose your ultimate destination.

So from now on I am asking that you become more aware of your thoughts, no matter how small or insignificant you may think they are. And even if you notice that you already had a negative thought about any situation or future task, don’t dismay, just don’t keep heading down that path! Nothing can stop you from flipping that switch back again and turning it in your favour. YOU ARE IN CONTROL!

Our destiny changes with our thought; we shall become what we wish to become, do what we wish to do, when our habitual thought corresponds with our desire. Orison Swett Marden

Positive versus Negative Thinking The dilemma of personal growth

Low self image

A lot of people face the problem where their self images are too low to make an effort to improve their self image and bettering their lives! Almost a Catch 22 situation. People just don’t feel good enough about themselves to even get started on the path to self-fulfilment. Deep down one knows there is more to life, but it seems such an effort.  Can it really work for me? Is it just hype or can I really make something of my life?

I want and need you to know and truly believe that it’s not hype, it is true, and you, yes YOU can really be anything you want to be, do anything you want to do and go anywhere you want to go.

The truth is, you reading this article means 2 things:

1) there is a desire to grow within you, and

2) you have already started! Yes you are already on the road to greatness!

This I can work with –the ball is rolling, now all you have to do is roll with it.  But I can’t make you keep going….only you can keep it rolling!

The next thing to do is for you to realise that you are fantastic, you are wonderful, you are everything you want to be – no “but’s”. You must  focus on the good things rather than any perceived bad attributes. Just one or two for a start, if that’s all you can muster. Start seeing and realising that there are some good things going on in your life and put your attentions on them.

Personally I send out a list every work day. I call it “Power Lists”, the lists are designed to help me and you to recognise the strengths that we have. The first list is the “I Am’s” In my case it’s 10 things that I am; “I am happy, I am thoughtful, I am fearfully and wonderfully made”, etc. You need to be writing some down on a daily basis too. If you can’t get to 10, start with 5 or even 3. Quickly write some down now, in eg. “I am a good reader! I am growing!” There we are, the ball is rolling even more. Next write: Some “Grateful’s”: “I am grateful I can read this. I am grateful that I woke up this morning”. If you are not on my daily mailing list already, send me an e-mail on and we will put you on this mailing list, to inspire you keep going with your list every work day. The point of this is to help you see all the good things in your life, and for every negative thought you will be able to counter it with something positive. This also helps you to want to become better in the places where you feel you need to work on and appreciate the fact that you are YOU, you are unique and you are special. There is no one on this earth quite like you, and that in itself is wonderful. We sometimes just focus so much on the negatives that we look clear past all the good things in our life and all the positives.

Another one of the biggest challenges of all this stuff is procrastination – it’s easier to put things off till tomorrow. It just is what it is, and one goes through the motions of life and you let a lot of important stuff (like self-growth) wait till tomorrow or another day! Tomorrow you do the same, and the day after and the day after. A week from now you will have forgotten what you read here because there were so many other things that got piled on top of this that you would not even remember what this was all about in the first place, and you will still be drudging along through the swamp of negativity. No! Make a decision that you won’t. Do something now this very minute to change that. Start you own list! Even if you don’t make one every day, make a list of everything that is positive about you and in your life and put it up on fridge if you want, on the pinboard at your desk, put it in your bible, leave it next to your bedside table to read every night before you go to bed and even in the mornings. If you don’t know where to begin, e-mail me to start receiving my list, so that you will be inspired and reminded to keep doing yours and keep seeing the positives in your own life. Just  do something NOW. Say; “I will not procrastinate, I am a doer, I make things happen. I deserve to work on myself. I deserve to improve my life.”

I always recommend that when you start on a journey of personal growth that you do not try and do it on your own. You need to tell somebody that you’re going to work on yourself from now on. If possible someone that you can do it together with, someone that will hold you accountable, but at the very least tell someone – if you don’t have anyone else to tell, tell me if you would like I will listen. Also start writing it down in  journal. I believe firmly that we all need a journal , a place where you can document your growth, write down things that are helping you, and things that you need to take note of – Your “I am’s” and also the questions that you might have. This way you can see where you are going, and you can also see how you are progressing and moving forward.

3DBOOKYou probably have some limiting beliefs and Life Sentences and you need to start dealing with those as well. Read my book if you can or at least read my blog. Start looking at other self growth blogs and websites. There is such a wonderful amount of free material out here and of course also things that you can pay for and use. The fact is, you have no excuses. You need to start acting, and start today! The best time to start this journey is now! Don’t put it of another moment.

Albert Einstein’s statement is so relevant here; “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results” Let’s decide to do something different today, NOW! And do it!

Positive versus Negative Thinking – Does negativity pay off?


I wrote in the first article of this series that: People who do not concentrate on the positive things in life have less fun that people who do! And I am sticking by that, although the definition of fun is open for interpretation and discussion. The thing is we don’t do anything in life unless there is a pay-off – unless we are getting something out of it. And what does someone get out of negative thinking you may ask. Well for the life of me I have no idea! J Well that’s not strictly true I have an idea, but it doesn’t make sense to me. My wife would say I was born positive and that’s probably true, but aren’t we all?

Getting back to the pay-off for people who have a negative disposition, I suppose it may be easier. If you have no positive expectations then when things go wrong you are not disappointed. You have no need to worry about them going wrong, because you already know that they will and then of course they don’t just go a little wrong, they go badly wrong. And there’s the gloating aspect; a negative person is always ready and willing to say; “I told you so”.  A negative person doesn’t have to smile or be friendly to the neighbor or the petrol pump attendant or his kids or even his cat. He always “knows” that the economy is bad, the news is bad and even the weather is always either too hot or too cold. And of course why not be negative because you have lots of reason to be. – I’ll not get started on those. You see it does make life a lot simpler and there is lots of “pay-off”!

The problem largely comes down to a topic I touch on in my book “Freeing your Mind” and that is . A negative person will search out and focus on all things negative and a positive person will search out on all things positive. Either way it gets to be a habit. One just needs to realize the bad habit that you are in and change it. Getting rid of bad habits is another subject for a future post, but the mainstay of what will be in that post is that one can’t forever TRY and stop a bad habit, the only way to actually stop a bad habit is to STOP! I have experienced that in most cases when someone is trying to cease to do something and can’t succeed, it is because the person has sub-consciously no intention of stopping, it’s only a conscious thought or decision, but as I said a subject for another post.

In the mean time I re-iterate that consistently selecting, focusing on, thinking and speaking out negatively can be just a habitual train of thought that you have unwittingly fallen into. So you say; “well I don’t do it all the time”, but the point is that even a small amount is detrimental to you. We need in fact to eliminate every bit of negativism in any and every area of our lives. It will take time and effort but ultimately it is a lot more fun and produces far better results. A glass that is half full seems to get fuller or refilled, whereas a half empty glass just gets emptier. Viewing life and the world through rose-coloured glasses is far more fun than doing it through doom and gloomy ones. One tends to become much more optimistic and much more adventurous when you always think you can instead of “knowing” you can’t.

We need to recognize and understand that negativism is poisonous to us and to those around us and we need to desist immediately and fourth-with. As stated there is a form of pay-off and it’s not a beneficial one, it’s not going to get you anywhere – not anywhere worth going anyway. So make a decision today to stop it, do what it takes to change the habit. Start looking out for any and all negative trains of thought or speech patterns. When I am personally changing things like this, I will stop mid-sentence when starting to utter something I shouldn’t. That serves three purposes; it stops negative stuff coming out of my mouth and it re-enforces the decision to stop, i.e. if I can’t finish sentences I need to learn to stop starting them. Thirdly it is also a message to others that I am stopping and they become my accountability partners.

So yes every cloud does have a silver lining and life is a bowl of cherries – let’s always be on the look-out for them. Let’s always look out for all the positive things in life and have more fun!

I leave you today with this quote: “If you don’t like something change it; if you can’t change it, change the way you think about it” – Mary Engelbreit

Positive versus Negative Thinking – Restraining Order


Information about positive thinking, the law of attraction and self-improvement is freely available to any and all who wants to hear it. Lots of people buy books about the topic, attend seminars, motivational talks and even workshops.

After coming back from a particular meeting where I was very well received and my explanation of the “Life Sentence” was very favourable, I asked my wife, who attended the meeting with me “Why do some people still, even after hearing the message that I bring to them, not act on the next step I am offering them and want to get free from it.” Her answer was: “They are so used to the bondage they have lived with for so long, that it does not feel like bondage anymore”.

The problem is she was 100% right! We get so used to the bondage we live in that we don’t even know where we are restrained, it becomes the norm for us. How sad!

I immediately thought of the story of the way that they train the elephants in India. Apparently when they are young, they plant a stake in the ground and tie a strong rope or chain to the elephants back ankle. The rope allows the elephants to move around a bit, and walk a little way, but soon he gets to the end of the rope and then can’t go any further. They do this for a certain amount of time, a week or two perhaps. Obviously the elephant learns that when the stake is planted in the ground he can go a distance, but no further. The remarkable thing is (and the part of the story that is of particular interest to us), is that after the time is up they no longer bother to attach the rope to the elephant. They just plant the stake in the ground and when the elephant walks the same distance that the rope used to limit him to, he stops and doesn’t go any further! He has grown so accustomed to the bondage in his mind that he submits to it even though it’s not there anymore.

Well my message is not quite the same i.e. we have not yet been released, so we cannot go free yet. It does however have some major parallels though and that is; we have grown so accustomed to the bondages that we have made peace with them. We are “happy” to live with them. And off course that is my frustration, not heavy frustration, because I have learned not to get to upset about anything, but yes there is a small measure of frustration. Not because people don’t always act on the message of positive thinking and motivation I bring them, or allow themselves to time to read through the resources I make available to them, but because they have gotten so used to the bondage that they live in that they don’t see the need to do something about it.

When I think about it, I have been there and done that. I too had in prior years not acted on many of the opportunities and resources that were made available to me or that stood before me – ready for me to just take action on it. Of course it was either someone else speaking or resources that were provided by someone else, and it was quite a while ago, but it was the same sentiment; I’m okay, I am doing fine as I am, why do I need to read the ‘The Power of Positive Thinking’ I’ll give it a read some time later in the never, never”. It was only when I saw ‘The Secret’ that I realized that what was going on in my mind was my responsibility! I spent a few years trying to implement the Law of Attraction in my own life and although in some instances I succeeded, I still felt like I was not quite succeeding in all of it. I realized that it was the “Life Sentences” that were controlling what happened in my life and the things I wanted to happen weren’t happening.  This is when I woke up, smelled the coffee and realized that I needed to do something about my thinking. I started to understand that I must DO something about what was going on in my sub-conscious and my conscious mind for that matter.

Come on people don’t stay complacent with the bondages you have. Don’t be satisfied with living with the limits, that bondages and mental baggage you are unwittingly putting upon yourself. Get to understand them, get to a place where you can identify any and every bondage and eliminate them. Get to work on “Freeing Your Mind”.

Just like the elephants we are roaming around in our own little space not realizing that there is a much bigger world out there, and a much bigger life to lead. Let’s take advantage of it, let’s get into action and make use of every opportunity we have.  Let’s not allow “Life Sentences” or anything else to hold us back from getting into action and becoming everything that we can become and achieving so much more than we ever thought possible.

There are things to do and places to go, let’s get free go and do them!