Feed Your Focus: Don’t Allow Your Distractions to Destroy Your Destiny ~ Far too many people allow distractions to destroy their destinies. Feed Your Focus & Starve Your Distractions!
Feed Your Focus: Don’t Allow Your Distractions to Destroy Your Destiny
Introduction: The Power of Focus in Achieving Success
In a world filled with constant distractions and competing demands for our attention, mastering the art of focus has become more important than ever. Winning in life requires consistent focus, which is the key to unlocking your true potential and achieving your goals. Distractions can easily derail us from our path, hindering our progress and preventing us from reaching our desired destination. In this article, I will explore the danger of distractions and the impact they can have on our goals. We will also delve into the importance of centering ourselves by knowing our vision and building a compelling vision that demands our attention.
Understanding Distractions and Their Impact on Your Goals
Distractions come in various forms and can manifest in both external and internal ways. External distractions, such as social media, emails, and other people’s demands on our time, can easily divert our attention away from what truly matters. Internal distractions, on the other hand, stem from our own thoughts, emotions, and lack of focus. These distractions can be equally detrimental to our progress.
The danger of distractions is their ability to consume our time, energy, and mental resources. When we allow distractions to take hold, we lose valuable time that could have been spent working toward our goals. Distractions can also disrupt our focus and flow, making it difficult to concentrate and be productive. Ultimately, they can prevent us from achieving the success we desire.
The Danger of Distractions: How They Can Hinder Your Progress
Distractions have the power to derail our progress and keep us from reaching our full potential. When we allow ourselves to be constantly pulled in different directions, we lose sight of our goals and become unfocused. We may start projects but never finish them or constantly switch from one task to another without making any significant progress.
One of the main reasons distractions hinder our progress is that they fragment our attention. Instead of devoting our full focus to one task at a time, we find ourselves multitasking and spreading ourselves too thin. This leads to decreased productivity and subpar results. Additionally, distractions can drain our mental and emotional energy, leaving us feeling exhausted and unmotivated.
To overcome the danger of distractions, it is crucial to center ourselves and regain control of our focus. This starts with knowing our vision and understanding what truly matters to us.
Centering Yourself: The Importance of Knowing Your Vision
In order to stay focused amidst distractions, it is essential to have a clear vision of what we want to achieve. Your vision acts as a guiding light, providing clarity and purpose. It is the driving force that propels you forward, even in the face of distractions and challenges.
To center yourself, take the time to reflect on your values, passions, and long-term goals. What is it that truly matters to you? What do you want to accomplish in your life? By understanding your vision, you can align your actions and decisions with what is truly important to you.
Building a Compelling Vision: Making It Big Enough to Demand Your Attention
A compelling vision is one that is big enough to demand your attention and elicit your best efforts. If your vision isn’t intimidating to you, it is probably insulting to God. Your vision should stretch you beyond your comfort zone and push you to grow and evolve. It should be inspiring and captivating, igniting a fire within you to pursue it relentlessly.
To build a compelling vision, start by imagining your ideal future. What would your life look like if you were living your dreams? What impact would you have on the world? Dare to dream big and set audacious goals that align with your vision. Remember, your vision should be so compelling that it motivates you to overcome any distractions that come your way.
Eliminating Non-Essential Distractions: Getting Rid of What Doesn’t Align with Your Vision
Once you have a clear vision and a compelling goal, it is important to eliminate non-essential distractions that don’t align with your vision. Take a close look at your daily activities, commitments, and relationships. Are they helping you move closer to your goals, or are they holding you back?
If something is not part of your vision, it’s time to eliminate it. This may require making difficult choices and letting go of things that no longer serve you. It could mean decluttering your physical space, simplifying your schedule, or distancing yourself from negative influences. By eliminating non-essential distractions, you create a space for focused action and allow your vision to take center stage.
Going the Distance: The Mindset and Determination Required for Success
In the pursuit of success, it’s not about the advantages you have but about the distance you’re willing to go. The journey toward your destiny requires a mindset of perseverance, determination, and unwavering focus. It’s not enough to simply have a vision; you must be willing to put in the work and go the extra mile.
Prepare yourself mentally for the challenges that may arise along the way. Understand that setbacks and distractions are inevitable, but they should not deter you from your path. Develop a resilient mindset that allows you to bounce back from failures and stay focused on your goals. Remember, it is the distance you are willing to go that will ultimately determine your success.
Tools and Strategies for Maintaining Focus and Eliminating Distractions
Maintaining focus and eliminating distractions requires conscious effort and the use of effective tools and strategies. Here are some techniques that can help you stay on track:
Time blocking: Allocate specific blocks of time for different tasks and activities. This helps you prioritize and stay focused on one task at a time.
Digital detox: Take regular breaks from technology and social media to reduce external distractions and clear your mind.
Mindfulness and meditation: Practice mindfulness and meditation to cultivate a calm and focused state of mind. This can help you stay present and avoid getting caught up in distractions.
Accountability partners: Find someone who can hold you accountable to your goals and vision. Share your progress and challenges with them regularly to stay motivated and focused.
Goal setting and tracking: Set clear goals and track your progress regularly. This keeps you motivated and helps you stay focused on what truly matters.
Conclusion: Embracing Focus as the Key to Unlocking Your Destiny
In conclusion, mastering the art of focus is essential for achieving success and unlocking your true potential. Don’t allow your distractions to destroy your destiny. Understand the danger of distractions and their impact on your goals. Center yourself by knowing your vision and building a compelling vision that demands your attention. Eliminate non-essential distractions and prepare to go the distance. Remember, it’s not about the advantages you have but about the distance you are willing to go. Embrace focus as the key to unlocking your destiny and register for The Mind Unleashed Online Course to develop the capacity to close strong in everything you do.
Differentiating between fantasies, visions and dreams
Visions and dreams are so much more than fantasy or wishful thinking. As human beings, we are blessed with the ability to imagine and envision a future that goes beyond our current reality. However, there is a common misconception that fantasies, visions, and dreams are all the same. In reality, they are distinct concepts that play different roles in our lives.
Understanding fantasies: Definition and characteristics
Fantasies are the product of our imagination, often fueled by our desires and wishes. They are the flights of fancy that allow us to escape reality and indulge in a world of make-believe. Fantasies can be enjoyable and provide temporary relief from the stresses of life, but they lack the substance and depth that visions and dreams possess.
Unlike visions and dreams, fantasies do not have a grounding in reality. They are often detached from the practicalities of life and can be purely escapist in nature. While fantasies can be entertaining and provide a temporary escape, they do not have the power to drive us toward meaningful goals or bring about lasting change.
The Power of Visions: How visions differ from Fantasies
Visions, on the other hand, are powerful mental images of a desired future. They are born out of a deep sense of purpose and are anchored in our core values and beliefs. Visions have a clarity and specificity that fantasies lack. They are not just flights of fancy; they are compelling and inspiring.
A vision is like a guiding star that illuminates our path and gives us direction. It serves as a source of motivation and fuels our actions. Unlike fantasies, visions are not detached from reality. They are grounded in deeply understanding who we are and what we want to achieve. Visions have the power to transform our lives and the lives of those around us.
When I used the term grounded in reality, I didn’t want to infer limitations but the need for an authentic faith that believes to the point that drives meaningful action. Fantasies can become visions and dreams, but they must be anchored in something more grounded than momentary fancy.
Dreams: A glimpse into your subconscious desires
Dreams, in the context of this article, refer to the experiences we have while we sleep. While dreams can sometimes be fantastical and surreal, they also offer us a glimpse into our subconscious desires and fears. Dreams can be a rich source of inspiration and creativity, providing us with insights and ideas that we may not have access to in our waking state.
While dreams can be fascinating and offer valuable insights, they are not the same as visions. Dreams are often fleeting and ephemeral, whereas visions are enduring and actionable. It is important to distinguish between the messages that dreams may convey and the power of a vision to drive us toward our goals.
The importance of purpose: Anchoring your vision with your WHY
To turn a vision into reality, it needs to be anchored by a strong sense of purpose. Your vision should be aligned with your values and beliefs, and it should serve a greater purpose beyond your personal desires. Your WHY is what will fuel your actions and keep you motivated when challenges arise. When your why is significant enough, it will provide the impetus for you to press inexorably through any obstacle or residence you encounter along the way.
Having a clear purpose associated with your vision gives it depth and meaning. It enables you to connect with something bigger than yourself and provides a sense of fulfillment and satisfaction. Your vision becomes a driving force that compels you to take action and make a positive impact on the world.
Persistence and perseverance: Going the distance to achieve your vision
One of the key factors that differentiate those who achieve their visions from those who don’t is persistence and perseverance. Many people give up too early when faced with obstacles or setbacks. They lose sight of their vision and succumb to the allure of instant gratification or the comfort of familiarity.
To achieve your vision, you have to be willing to go the distance. You must possess the determination and resilience to overcome challenges and keep moving forward. It may not always be easy, but the rewards that come with realizing your vision are worth the effort.
Embracing discomfort: Pushing past your comfort zone for growth
Growth and transformation rarely happen within the confines of our comfort zone. To turn your vision into reality, you must be prepared to be uncomfortable. Stepping outside of your comfort zone is where the magic happens. It is where you discover new strengths, develop new skills, and expand your horizons.
Embracing discomfort requires a willingness to face uncertainty and take risks. It means being open to new experiences and embracing the unknown. It may feel uncomfortable at first, but as you push past your comfort zone, you will discover a newfound sense of confidence and capability.
Taking calculated risks: Evaluating risks and rewards in pursuit of your vision
Everyone has a certain level of risk aversion; however, you must be willing to take measured risks to gain ground and move toward your destiny. Taking risks is an inherent part of pursuing a vision. However, it is important to take calculated risks rather than reckless ones. Evaluating the risks and rewards associated with your vision allows you to make informed decisions and minimize potential setbacks.
Taking calculated risks requires careful consideration and analysis. It involves weighing the potential benefits against the potential drawbacks. By taking calculated risks, you increase your chances of success while minimizing the likelihood of failure.
Putting in the work: The role of consistent effort in realizing your vision
Having a vision is not enough; it requires consistent effort and hard work to bring it to fruition. Your vision is like a seed that needs to be nurtured and cultivated. It requires consistent action and dedication to make it grow and thrive.
Putting in the work means showing up every day, even when you don’t feel like it. It means being disciplined and committed to taking the necessary steps toward your vision. Consistent effort is what separates those who achieve their visions from those who let them remain as mere fantasies.
The mindset factor: Cultivating a positive state of mind for success
Your mindset plays a crucial role in turning your vision into reality. Cultivating a positive state of mind is essential for success. It involves adopting a growth mindset, embracing challenges as opportunities for growth, and maintaining a positive outlook even in the face of adversity.
A positive mindset enables you to overcome obstacles and setbacks with resilience and determination. It allows you to see setbacks as learning experiences rather than failures. Cultivating a positive state of mind empowers you to stay focused on your vision and navigate the inevitable ups and downs of the journey.
Unwavering belief: Having faith and confidence in your vision
Belief is the fuel that propels your vision forward. To turn your vision into reality, you have to believe beyond doubt. You must have unwavering faith and confidence in your vision, even when others doubt or criticize you.
Belief gives you the strength to persevere when the going gets tough. It fuels your determination and resilience. When you truly believe in your vision, you become unstoppable. Your unwavering belief becomes a magnet that attracts the people, resources, and opportunities needed to bring your vision to life.
Conclusion: Embrace your vision and turn it into reality
In conclusion, it is important to understand the distinction between fantasies, visions, and dreams. Fantasies are enjoyable but lack substance, while visions have the power to transform our lives. Dreams offer glimpses into our subconscious desires but should not be confused with visions.
To turn your vision into reality, anchor it with a strong sense of purpose and be prepared to go the distance. Embrace discomfort, take calculated risks, and put in the consistent effort required. Cultivate a positive state of mind and have an unwavering belief in your vision.
Now is the time to embrace your vision and turn it into reality. Don’t let it remain a mere fantasy. Take action and register for the Mind Unleashed Course, where you can tap into the unfettered power of a liberated mind that has cast off all limiting beliefs. Unleash your potential and make your vision a reality.
The First Step to Positive Transformation is Looking in the Mirror
Positive transformation begins with introspection. Self-awareness is the key to personal growth and transformation. To achieve this, one must take the time to truly understand oneself, including strengths, weaknesses, values, beliefs, and behaviors. This self-awareness forms the foundation for personal growth, providing necessary insights to identify areas needing improvement or transformation.
Looking in the mirror symbolizes self-awareness and acceptance. It encourages individuals to embrace their true selves and avoid the temptation of pretending to be someone they are not. Authenticity is vital for genuine transformation, as it ensures that the changes one undergoes align with their core values and aspirations.
Taking responsibility is crucial for personal transformation. Self-awareness helps individuals take ownership of their lives, enabling them to make conscious choices that align with their goals and values. This article explores the importance of self-awareness and how looking in the mirror can be the first step toward positive transformation.
The Importance of Self-Awareness
Self-awareness is the foundation of personal growth. It involves understanding oneself, including one’s strengths, weaknesses, emotions, values, beliefs, and behaviors. Self-awareness helps individuals identify areas for improvement and transformation, enabling them to make conscious choices that align with their goals and values. Self-awareness also helps individuals build stronger relationships with others, as it enables them to understand and regulate their emotions, communicate more effectively, and empathize with others.
Self-awareness is essential for personal and professional development. It helps individuals identify their unique strengths and talents, enabling them to pursue careers and interests that align with their passions and aspirations. Self-awareness also helps individuals build stronger relationships with colleagues, clients, and customers, as it enables them to communicate more effectively and empathize with others.
Self-awareness is a lifelong process. It requires individuals to be honest with themselves, acknowledge their flaws and shortcomings, and commit to ongoing personal growth and development. Self-awareness also requires individuals to seek feedback from others, as it provides valuable insights into one’s blind spots and areas needing improvement.
Looking in the Mirror
Looking in the mirror is a powerful metaphor for self-awareness. It encourages individuals to look closely at themselves, literally and metaphorically, and embrace their true selves. Looking in the mirror involves accepting one’s strengths and weaknesses, acknowledging one’s flaws and imperfections, and committing to personal growth and development.
Looking in the mirror also involves being honest with oneself. It requires individuals to take ownership of their lives, including their choices, decisions, and behaviors. Looking in the mirror entails acknowledging one’s mistakes and shortcomings, learning from them, and committing to making positive changes in one’s life.
Looking in the mirror is also about authenticity. It involves being true to oneself, avoiding the temptation of pretending to be someone one is not. Authenticity is essential for personal growth and transformation, as it ensures that the changes one undergoes align with one’s core values and aspirations.
The First Step Towards Positive Transformation
Looking in the mirror is the first step toward positive transformation. It involves self-reflection, self-awareness, and self-acceptance. When individuals look in the mirror, they see themselves as they truly are, including their strengths, weaknesses, and imperfections. This self-awareness forms the foundation for personal growth, enabling individuals to identify areas needing improvement and transformation.
Looking in the mirror also involves taking responsibility for one’s life. It requires individuals to acknowledge that they are in control of their lives and that they have the power to make positive changes. When individuals take responsibility for their lives, they become empowered to make conscious choices that align with their goals and values.
Looking in the mirror is also about self-acceptance. It involves embracing oneself, flaws and all, and committing to personal growth and development. When individuals accept themselves, they become more confident, resilient, and self-assured, enabling them to overcome obstacles and achieve their goals.
Self-awareness is the key to personal growth and transformation. Looking in the mirror is a powerful metaphor for self-awareness, as it encourages individuals to embrace their true selves, avoid the temptation of pretending to be someone they are not, and commit to personal growth and development. When individuals look in the mirror, they see themselves as they truly are, including their strengths, weaknesses, and imperfections. This self-awareness forms the foundation for personal growth, enabling individuals to identify areas needing improvement and transformation, take responsibility for their lives, and achieve their goals.
A novel human coronavirus, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), was identified in China in December 2019. There is limited support for many of its key epidemiologic features, including the incubation period for clinical disease (coronavirus disease 2019 [COVID-19]), which has important implications for surveillance and control activities.
To estimate the length of the incubation period of COVID-19 and describe its public health implications.
Pooled analysis of confirmed COVID-19 cases reported between 4 January 2020 and 24 February 2020.
News reports and press releases from 50 provinces, regions, and countries outside Wuhan, Hubei province, China.
Persons with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection outside Hubei province, China.
Patient demographic characteristics and dates and times of possible exposure, symptom onset, fever onset, and hospitalization.
There were 181 confirmed cases with identifiable exposure and symptom onset windows to estimate the incubation period of COVID-19. The median incubation period was estimated to be 5.1 days (95% CI, 4.5 to 5.8 days), and 97.5% of those who develop symptoms will do so within 11.5 days (CI, 8.2 to 15.6 days) of infection. These estimates imply that, under conservative assumptions, 101 out of every 10 000 cases (99th percentile, 482) will develop symptoms after 14 days of active monitoring or quarantine.
Publicly reported cases may overrepresent severe cases, the incubation period for which may differ from that of mild cases.
This work provides additional evidence for a median incubation period for COVID-19 of approximately 5 days, similar to SARS. Our results support current proposals for the length of quarantine or active monitoring of persons potentially exposed to SARS-CoV-2, although longer monitoring periods might be justified in extreme cases.
Primary Funding Source:
U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institute of General Medical Sciences, and Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.Go to:
The Incubation Period of COVID-19 From Publicly Reported Confirmed Cases
Using news reports and press releases from provinces, regions, and countries outside Wuhan, Hubei province, China, this analysis estimates the length of the incubation period of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and its public health implications.
In December 2019, a cluster of severe pneumonia cases of unknown cause was reported in Wuhan, Hubei province, China. The initial cluster was epidemiologically linked to a seafood wholesale market in Wuhan, although many of the initial 41 cases were later reported to have no known exposure to the market (1). A novel strain of coronavirus belonging to the same family of viruses that cause severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), as well as the 4 human coronaviruses associated with the common cold, was subsequently isolated from lower respiratory tract samples of 4 cases on 7 January 2020 (2). Infection with the virus, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), can be asymptomatic or can result in mild to severe symptomatic disease (coronavirus disease 2019 [COVID-19]) (3). On 30 January 2020, the World Health Organization declared that the SARS-CoV-2 outbreak constituted a Public Health Emergency of International Concern, and more than 80 000 confirmed cases had been reported worldwide as of 28 February 2020 (4, 5). On 31 January 2020, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that all citizens returning from Hubei province, China, would be subject to mandatory quarantine for up to 14 days (6).
Our current understanding of the incubation period for COVID-19 is limited. An early analysis based on 88 confirmed cases in Chinese provinces outside Wuhan, using data on known travel to and from Wuhan to estimate the exposure interval, indicated a mean incubation period of 6.4 days (95% CI, 5.6 to 7.7 days), with a range of 2.1 to 11.1 days (7). Another analysis based on 158 confirmed cases outside Wuhan estimated a median incubation period of 5.0 days (CI, 4.4 to 5.6 days), with a range of 2 to 14 days (8). These estimates are generally consistent with estimates from 10 confirmed cases in China (mean incubation period, 5.2 days [CI, 4.1 to 7.0 days] ) and from clinical reports of a familial cluster of COVID-19 in which symptom onset occurred 3 to 6 days after assumed exposure in Wuhan (1). These estimates of the incubation period of SARS-CoV-2 are also in line with those of other known human coronaviruses, including SARS (mean, 5 days; range, 2 to 14 days ), MERS (mean, 5 to 7 days; range, 2 to 14 days ), and non-SARS human coronavirus (mean, 3 days; range, 2 to 5 days ).
The incubation period can inform several important public health activities for infectious diseases, including active monitoring, surveillance, control, and modeling. Active monitoring requires potentially exposed persons to contact local health authorities to report their health status every day. Understanding the length of active monitoring needed to limit the risk for missing SARS-CoV-2 infections is necessary for health departments to effectively use limited resources. In this article, we provide estimates of the incubation period of COVID-19 and the number of symptomatic infections missed under different active monitoring scenarios.
We searched for news and public health reports of confirmed COVID-19 cases in areas with no known community transmission, including provinces, regions, and countries outside Hubei. We searched for reports in both English and Chinese and abstracted the data necessary to estimate the incubation period of COVID-19. Two authors independently reviewed the full text of each case report. Discrepancies were resolved by discussion and consensus.
For each case, we recorded the time of possible exposure to SARS-CoV-2, any symptom onset, fever onset, and case detection. The exact time of events was used when possible; otherwise, we defined conservative upper and lower bounds for the possible interval of each event. For most cases, the interval of possible SARS-CoV-2 exposure was defined as the time between the earliest possible arrival to and latest possible departure from Wuhan. For cases without history of travel to Wuhan but with assumed exposure to an infectious person, the interval of possible SARS-CoV-2 exposure was defined as the maximum possible interval of exposure to the infectious person, including time before the infectious person was symptomatic. We allowed for the possibility of continued exposure within known clusters (for example, families traveling together) when the ordering of transmission was unclear. We assumed that exposure always preceded symptom onset. If we were unable to determine the latest exposure time from the available case report, we defined the upper bound of the exposure interval to be the latest possible time of symptom onset. When the earliest possible time of exposure could not be determined, we defined it as 1 December 2019, the date of symptom onset in the first known case (1); we performed a sensitivity analysis for the selection of this universal lower bound. When the earliest possible time of symptom onset could not be determined, we assumed it to be the earliest time of possible exposure. When the latest time of possible symptom onset could not be determined, we assumed it to be the latest time of possible case detection. Data on age, sex, country of residence, and possible exposure route were also collected.
Cases were included in the analysis if we had information on the interval of exposure to SARS-CoV-2 and symptom onset. We estimated the incubation time using a previously described parametric accelerated failure time model (13). For our primary analysis, we assumed that the incubation time follows a log-normal distribution, as seen in other acute respiratory viral infections (12). We fit the model to all observations, as well as to only cases where the patient had fever and only those detected inside or outside mainland China in subset analyses. Finally, we also fit 3 other commonly used incubation period distributions (gamma, Weibull, and Erlang). We estimated median incubation time and important quantiles (2.5th, 25th, 75th, and 97.5th percentiles) along with their bootstrapped CIs for each model.
Using these estimates of the incubation period, we quantified the expected number of undetected symptomatic cases in an active monitoring program, adapting a method detailed by Reich and colleagues (14). We accounted for varying durations of the active monitoring program (1 to 28 days) and individual risk for symptomatic infection (low risk: 1-in-10 000 chance of infection; medium risk: 1-in-1000 chance; high risk: 1-in-100 chance; infected: 1-in-1 chance). For each bootstrapped set of parameter estimates from the log-normal model, we calculated the probability of a symptomatic infection developing after an active monitoring program of a given length for a given risk level. This model conservatively assumes that persons are exposed to SARS-CoV-2 immediately before the active monitoring program and assumes perfect ascertainment of symptomatic cases that develop under active monitoring. We report the mean and 99th percentile of the expected number of undetected symptomatic cases for each active monitoring scenario.
All estimates are based on persons who developed symptoms, and this work makes no inferences about asymptomatic infection with SARS-CoV-2. The analyses were conducted using the coarseDataTools and activemonitr packages in the R statistical programming language, version 3.6.2 (R Foundation for Statistical Computing). All code and data are available at https://github.com/HopkinsIDD/ncov_incubation (release at time of submission at https://zenodo.org/record/3692048) (15).
Role of the Funding Source
The findings and conclusions in this manuscript are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, the National Institute of General Medical Sciences, and the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, preparation of the manuscript, or the decision to submit the manuscript for publication.Go to:
We collected data from 181 cases with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection detected outside Hubei province before 24 February 2020 (Table 1). Of these, 69 (38%) were female, 108 were male (60%), and 4 (2%) were of unknown sex. The median age was 44.5 years (interquartile range, 34.0 to 55.5 years). Cases were collected from 24 countries and regions outside mainland China (n = 108) and 25 provinces within mainland China (n = 73). Most cases (n = 161) had a known recent history of travel to or residence in Wuhan; others had evidence of contact with travelers from Hubei or persons with known infection. Among those who developed symptoms in the community, the median time from symptom onset to hospitalization was 1.2 days (range, 0.2 to 29.9 days) (Figure 1).Open in a separate windowFigure 1.
SARS-CoV-2 exposure (blue), symptom onset (red), and case detection (green) times for 181 confirmed cases.
Shaded regions represent the full possible time intervals for exposure, symptom onset, and case detection; points represent the midpoints of these intervals. SARS-CoV-2 = severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2.
Table 1. Characteristics of Patients With Confirmed COVID-19 Included in This Analysis (n = 181)*
Fitting the log-normal model to all cases, we estimated the median incubation period of COVID-19 to be 5.1 days (CI, 4.5 to 5.8 days) (Figure 2). We estimated that fewer than 2.5% of infected persons will show symptoms within 2.2 days (CI, 1.8 to 2.9 days) of exposure, and symptom onset will occur within 11.5 days (CI, 8.2 to 15.6 days) for 97.5% of infected persons. The estimate of the dispersion parameter was 1.52 (CI, 1.32 to 1.72), and the estimated mean incubation period was 5.5 days.Figure 2.
Cumulative distribution function of the COVID-19 incubation period estimate from the log-normal model.
The estimated median incubation period of COVID-19 was 5.1 days (CI, 4.5 to 5.8 days). We estimated that fewer than 2.5% of infected persons will display symptoms within 2.2 days (CI, 1.8 to 2.9 days) of exposure, whereas symptom onset will occur within 11.5 days (CI, 8.2 to 15.6 days) for 97.5% of infected persons. Horizontal bars represent the 95% CIs of the 2.5th, 50th, and 97.5th percentiles of the incubation period distribution. The estimate of the dispersion parameter is 1.52 (CI, 1.32 to 1.72). COVID-19 = coronavirus disease 2019.
To control for possible bias from symptoms of cough or sore throat, which could have been caused by other more common pathogens, we performed the same analysis on the subset of cases with known time of fever onset (n = 99), using the time from exposure to onset of fever as the incubation time. We estimated the median incubation period to fever onset to be 5.7 days (CI, 4.9 to 6.8 days), with 2.5% of persons experiencing fever within 2.6 days (CI, 2.1 to 3.7 days) and 97.5% having fever within 12.5 days (CI, 8.2 to 17.7 days) of exposure.
Because assumptions about the occurrence of local transmission and therefore the period of possible exposure may be less firm within mainland China, we also analyzed only cases detected outside mainland China (n = 108). The median incubation period for these cases was 5.5 days (CI, 4.4 to 7.0 days), with the 95% range spanning from 2.1 (CI, 1.5 to 3.2) to 14.7 (CI, 7.4 to 22.6) days. Alternatively, persons who left mainland China may represent a subset of persons with longer incubation periods, persons who were able to travel internationally before symptom onset within China, or persons who may have chosen to delay reporting symptoms until they left China. Based on cases detected inside mainland China (n = 73), the median incubation period is 4.8 days (CI, 4.2 to 5.6 days), with a 95% range of 2.5 (CI, 1.9 to 3.5) to 9.2 (CI, 6.4 to 12.5) days. Full results of these sensitivity analyses are presented in Appendix Table 1.
Appendix Table 1. Percentiles of SARS-CoV-2 Incubation Period From Selected Sensitivity Analyses*
We fit other commonly used parameterizations of the incubation period (gamma, Weibull, and Erlang distributions). The incubation period estimates for these alternate parameterizations were similar to those from the log-normal model (Appendix Table 2).
Appendix Table 2. Parameter Estimates for Various Parametric Distributions of the Incubation Period of SARS-CoV-2 Using 181 Confirmed Cases*
Given these estimates of the incubation period, we predicted the number of symptomatic infections we would expect to miss over the course of an active monitoring program. We classified persons as being at high risk if they have a 1-in-100 chance of developing a symptomatic infection after exposure. For an active monitoring program lasting 7 days, the expected number of symptomatic infections missed for every 10 000 high-risk persons monitored is 21.2 (99th percentile, 36.5) (Table 2 and Figure 3). After 14 days, it is highly unlikely that further symptomatic infections would be undetected among high-risk persons (mean, 1.0 undetected infections per 10 000 persons [99th percentile, 4.8]). However, substantial uncertainty remains in the classification of persons as being at “high,” “medium,” or “low” risk for being symptomatic, and this method does not consider the role of asymptomatic infection. We have created an application to estimate the proportion of missed COVID-19 cases across any active monitoring duration up to 100 days and various population risk levels (16).Figure 3.
Proportion of known symptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infections that have yet to develop symptoms, by number of days since infection, using bootstrapped estimates from a log-normal accelerated failure time model.
Table 2. Expected Number of Symptomatic SARS-CoV-2 Infections That Would Be Undetected During Active Monitoring, Given Varying Monitoring Durations and Risks for Symptomatic Infection After Exposure*
We present estimates of the incubation period for the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) that emerged in Wuhan, Hubei province, China, in 2019. We estimated the median incubation period of COVID-19 to be 5.1 days and expect that nearly all infected persons who have symptoms will do so within 12 days of infection. We found that the current period of active monitoring recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (14 days) is well supported by the evidence (6). Symptomatic disease is frequently associated with transmissibility of a pathogen. However, given recent evidence of SARS-CoV-2 transmission by mildly symptomatic and asymptomatic persons (17, 18), we note that time from exposure to onset of infectiousness (latent period) may be shorter than the incubation period estimated here, with important implications for transmission dynamics.
Our results are broadly consistent with other estimates of the incubation period (1, 7–9). Our analysis, which was based on 181 confirmed COVID-19 cases, made more conservative assumptions about the possible window of symptom onset and the potential for continued exposure through transmission clusters outside Wuhan. Of note, the use of fixed times of symptom onset, as used in 3 of the 4 prior analyses, will truncate the incubation period distribution by either decreasing the maximum possible incubation period (if the earliest possible time of symptom onset is used) or increasing the minimum possible incubation period (if the midpoint or latest possible time of symptom onset is used). Therefore, using a symptom onset window more accurately accounts for the full distribution of possible incubation periods.
Although our results support current proposals for the length of quarantine or active monitoring of persons potentially exposed to SARS-CoV-2, longer monitoring periods might be justified in extreme cases. Among those who are infected and will develop symptoms, we expect 101 in 10 000 (99th percentile, 482) will do so after the end of a 14-day monitoring period (Table 2 and Figure 3), and our analyses do not preclude this estimate from being higher. Although it is essential to weigh the costs of extending active monitoring or quarantine against the potential or perceived costs of failing to identify a symptomatic case, there may be high-risk scenarios (for example, a health care worker who cared for a COVID-19 patient while not wearing personal protective equipment) where it could be prudent to extend the period of active monitoring.
This analysis has several important limitations. Our data include early case reports, with associated uncertainty in the intervals of exposure and symptom onset. We have used conservative bounds of possible exposure and symptom onset where exact times were not known, but there may be further inaccuracy in these data that we have not considered. We have exclusively considered reported, confirmed cases of COVID-19, which may overrepresent hospitalized persons and others with severe symptoms, although we note that the proportion of mild cases detected has increased as surveillance and monitoring systems have been strengthened. The incubation period for these severe cases may differ from that of less severe or subclinical infections and is not typically an applicable measure for those with asymptomatic infections.
Our model assumes a constant risk for SARS-CoV-2 infection in Wuhan from 1 December 2019 to 30 January 2020, based on the date of symptom onset of the first known case and the last known possible exposure within Wuhan in our data set. This is a simplification of infection risk, given that the outbreak has shifted from a likely common-source outbreak associated with a seafood market to human-to-human transmission. Moreover, phylogenetic analysis of 38 SARS-CoV-2 genomes suggests that the virus may have been circulating before December 2019 (19). To test the sensitivity of our estimates to that assumption, we performed an analysis where cases with unknown lower bounds on exposure were set to 1 December 2018, a full year earlier than in our primary analysis. Changing this assumption had little effect on the estimates of the median (0.2 day longer than for the overall estimate) and the 97.5th quantile (0.1 day longer) of the incubation period. In data sets such as ours, where we have adequate observations with well-defined minimum and maximum possible incubation periods for many cases, extending the universal lower bound has little bearing on the overall estimates.
This work provides additional evidence for a median incubation period for COVID-19 of approximately 5 days, similar to SARS. Assuming infection occurs at the initiation of monitoring, our estimates suggest that 101 out of every 10 000 cases will develop symptoms after 14 days of active monitoring or quarantine. Whether this rate is acceptable depends on the expected risk for infection in the population being monitored and considered judgment about the cost of missing cases (14). Combining these judgments with the estimates presented here can help public health officials to set rational and evidence-based COVID-19 control policies.Go to:
Acknowledgment: The authors thank all who have collected, prepared, and shared data throughout this outbreak. They are particularly grateful to Dr. Kaiyuan Sun, Ms. Jenny Chen, and Dr. Cecile Viboud from the Division of International Epidemiology and Population Studies, Fogarty International Center, National Institutes of Health; Dr. Moritz Kraemer and the open COVID-19 data working group; and the Johns Hopkins Center for Systems Science and Engineering.
Grant Support: By the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (NU2GGH002000), the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (R01 AI135115), the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (R35 GM119582), and the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.
Disclosures: Dr. Lauer reports grants from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention during the conduct of the study. Ms. Grantz reports a grant from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention during the conduct of the study. Dr. Reich reports grants from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences and the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation during the conduct of the study. Dr. Lessler reports a grant from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention during the conduct of the study. Authors not named here have disclosed no conflicts of interest. Disclosures can also be viewed at www.acponline.org/authors/icmje/ConflictOfInterestForms.do?msNum=M20-0504.
Editors’ Disclosures: Christine Laine, MD, MPH, Editor in Chief, reports that her spouse has stock options/holdings with Targeted Diagnostics and Therapeutics. Darren B. Taichman, MD, PhD, Executive Editor, reports that he has no financial relationships or interests to disclose. Cynthia D. Mulrow, MD, MSc, Senior Deputy Editor, reports that she has no relationships or interests to disclose. Jaya K. Rao, MD, MHS, Deputy Editor, reports that she has stock holdings/options in Eli Lilly and Pfizer. Christina C. Wee, MD, MPH, Deputy Editor, reports employment with Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Sankey V. Williams, MD, Deputy Editor, reports that he has no financial relationships or interests to disclose. Yu-Xiao Yang, MD, MSCE, Deputy Editor, reports that he has no financial relationships or interest to disclose.
Corresponding Author: Justin Lessler, PhD, Department of Epidemiology, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, 615 North Wolfe Street, Baltimore, MD 21205; e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Current Author Addresses: Drs. Lauer, Meredith, and Lessler; Ms. Grantz; Ms. Bi; Mr. Jones; and Ms. Zheng: Department of Epidemiology, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, 615 North Wolfe Street, Baltimore, MD 21205.
Dr. Azman: Médecins Sans Frontières, Rue de Lausanne 72, 1202 Genève, Switzerland.
Dr. Reich: Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology, Amherst School of Public Health and Health Sciences, University of Massachusetts, 715 North Pleasant Street, Amherst, MA 01003-9304.
Author Contributions: Conception and design: S.A. Lauer, K.H. Grantz, F.K. Jones, N.G. Reich, J. Lessler.
Analysis and interpretation of the data: S.A. Lauer, K.H. Grantz, Q. Bi, F.K. Jones, N.G. Reich, J. Lessler.
Drafting of the article: S.A. Lauer, K.H. Grantz, Q. Bi, F.K. Jones, A.S. Azman, N.G. Reich.
Critical revision of the article for important intellectual content: Q. Bi, F.K. Jones, A.S. Azman, N.G. Reich, J. Lessler.
Final approval of the article: S.A. Lauer, K.H. Grantz, Q. Bi, F.K. Jones, Q. Zheng, H.R. Meredith, A.S. Azman, N.G. Reich, J. Lessler.
Statistical expertise: Q. Bi, N.G. Reich, J. Lessler.
Collection and assembly of data: S.A. Lauer, K.H. Grantz, Q. Bi, F.K. Jones, Q. Zheng, H.R. Meredith.
This article was published at Annals.org on 10 March 2020.
* Dr. Lauer and Ms. Grantz share first authorship.Go to:
1. Huang C, Wang Y, Li X, et al. Clinical features of patients infected with 2019 novel coronavirus in Wuhan, China. Lancet. 2020;395:497-506. [PMID: 31986264] doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30183-5. [PubMed]2. Zhu N, Zhang D, Wang W, et al; China Novel Coronavirus Investigating and Research Team. A novel coronavirus from patients with pneumonia in China, 2019. N Engl J Med. 2020;382:727-733. [PMID: 31978945] doi:10.1056/NEJMoa2001017. [PMC free article] [PubMed]3. The Novel Coronavirus Pneumonia Emergency Response Epidemiology Team. The Epidemiological Characteristics of an Outbreak of 2019 Novel Coronavirus Diseases (COVID-19)—China, 2020. China CDC Weekly. 2020;2:113-22. [PubMed]4. World Health Organization. Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19): Situation Report – 38. 27 February 2020. Accessed at www.who.int/docs/default-source/coronaviruse/situation-reports/20200227-sitrep-38-covid-19.pdf?sfvrsn=9f98940c_2. on 28 February 2020.5. World Health Organization. Statement on the second meeting of the International Health Regulations (2005) Emergency Committee regarding the outbreak of novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV). 30 January 2020. Accessed at https://www.who.int/news-room/detail/30-01-2020-statement-on-the-second-meeting-of-the-international-health-regulations-(2005)-emergency-committee-regarding-the-outbreak-of-novel-coronavirus-(2019-ncov) on 31 January 2020.6. The White House. Press Briefing by Members of the President’s Coronavirus Task Force. 31 January 2020. Accessed at www.whitehouse.gov/briefings-statements/press-briefing-members-presidents-coronavirus-task-force. on 1 February 2020.7. Backer JA, Klinkenberg D, Wallinga J. Incubation period of 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) infections among travellers from Wuhan, China, 20–28 January 2020. Euro Surveill. 2020;25. [PMID: 32046819] doi:10.2807/1560-7917.ES.2020.25.5.2000062. [PMC free article] [PubMed]8. Linton NM, Kobayashi T, Yang Y, et al. Incubation period and other epidemiological characteristics of 2019 novel coronavirus infections with right truncation: a statistical analysis of publicly available case data. J Clin Med. 2020;9. [PMID: 32079150] doi:10.3390/jcm9020538. [PMC free article] [PubMed]9. Li Q, Guan X, Wu P, et al. Early transmission dynamics in Wuhan, China, of novel coronavirus-infected pneumonia. N Engl J Med. 2020. [PMID: 31995857] doi:10.1056/NEJMoa2001316. [PubMed]10. Varia M, Wilson S, Sarwal S, et al; Hospital Outbreak Investigation Team. Investigation of a nosocomial outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in Toronto, Canada. CMAJ. 2003;169:285-92. [PMID: 12925421] [PMC free article] [PubMed]11. Virlogeux V, Fang VJ, Park M, et al. Comparison of incubation period distribution of human infections with MERS-CoV in South Korea and Saudi Arabia. Sci Rep. 2016;6:35839. [PMID: 27775012] doi:10.1038/srep35839. [PMC free article] [PubMed]12. Lessler J, Reich NG, Brookmeyer R, et al. Incubation periods of acute respiratory viral infections: a systematic review. Lancet Infect Dis. 2009;9:291-300. [PMID: 19393959] doi:10.1016/S1473-3099(09)70069-6. [PMC free article] [PubMed]13. Reich NG, Lessler J, Cummings DA, et al. Estimating incubation period distributions with coarse data. Stat Med. 2009;28:2769-84. [PMID: 19598148] doi:10.1002/sim.3659. [PubMed]14. Reich NG, Lessler J, Varma JK, et al. Quantifying the risk and cost of active monitoring for infectious diseases. Sci Rep. 2018;8:1093. [PMID: 29348656] doi:10.1038/s41598-018-19406-x. [PMC free article] [PubMed]15. Lauer SA, Grantz KH, Bi Q, et al. Estimating the incubation time of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) based on publicly reported cases using coarse data tools. 2020. Accessed at https://github.com/HopkinsIDD/ncov_incubation. on 3 March 2020.16. Determining Durations for Active Monitoring. Accessed at https://iddynamics.jhsph.edu/apps/shiny/activemonitr. on 28 February 2020.17. Chan JF, Yuan S, Kok KH, et al. A familial cluster of pneumonia associated with the 2019 novel coronavirus indicating person-to-person transmission: a study of a family cluster. Lancet. 2020;395:514-523. [PMID: 31986261] doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30154-9. [PubMed]18. Rothe C, Schunk M, Sothmann P, et al. Transmission of 2019-nCoV infection from an asymptomatic contact in Germany [Letter]. N Engl J Med. 2020. [PMID: 32003551] doi:10.1056/NEJMc2001468. [PubMed]19. Genomic epidemiology of novel coronavirus (HCoV-19). 2020. Accessed at https://nextstrain.org/ncov. on 29 January 2020.
3 Power Steps to Overcoming Anxiety ~ Reclaiming Your Life One Step At a Time
First, it is important to understand that everyone experiences
anxiety from time to time, but chronic anxiety that is uncontrollable can severely
damage your quality of life. When most people think of anxiety, they think
about the manner in which it impacts behavior, but what you should know is that
anxiety can also have an adverse impact on your physical health as well.
Before we get to the part where we discuss the steps that
will help you overcome anxiety, it is probably a good idea to gain at least a
limited perspicacity of what anxiety is. Basically, anxiety is a physiological
response to stress that creates a feeling of fear and apprehension about
something that you believe is about to happen. This is actually a good thing
when a person is following you on a dark sidewalk at night, but when it becomes
uncontrollable and irrational, it can wreak havoc on your life.
If you have been struggling with anxiety for more than six
months or you have frequent prolonged episodes, there is a good chance that you
are struggling with an anxiety disorder. More on this later. Sometimes a major
life event can trigger a stress response that leads to anxiety. For instance,
when my wife lost her mother a few years ago, the anticipation of living her
life without her mother and all that entails triggered an anxiety episode.
While this episode was not a result of an anxiety disorder, it had the
potential of emotionally and socially paralyzing her. Fortunately, she decided
to confront it instead of just coping and she was able to overcome it.
The longer someone suffers from anxiety, the greater the
psychological, emotional, and physical implications. Below you will find some
of the common effects of anxiety, which can become more intense with time.
A sense of doom — Anxiety often causes frequent
feelings of impending doom. It is possible that you will also have trouble concentrating
Panic attacks — These panic attacks can be so
severe that they create physiological symptoms, including heart palpitations,
chest pain, and lightheadedness.
Depression — Chronic anxiety (prolonged or
endless bouts with anxiety) can put you at a higher risk of depression. Symptoms
include social withdrawal, loss of interest in activities you once loved, and
feelings of guilt and hopelessness
Headaches — Constant worry and stress often lead
Breathing problems — Anxiety can cause rapid,
shallow breathing and which intensify during a panic attack
Loss of libido — Decreasing sexual desire
Extreme fatigue — Dealing with anxiety can leave
you feeling wiped out and drained (emotionally and physically)
Increase in Blood Pressure — It is common to
experience a rise in blood pressure readings during an anxiety attack.
Pounding heart — The increase in heart rate and intensity.
You can feel like your heart is about to jump out of your body.
This list of symptoms is by no means comprehensive, but it
gives you an idea of how intrusive and pervasive anxiety can be.
Steps to Overcoming Anxiety
It is important to understand that while the following steps
can be very effective for overcoming anxiety, they are not a substitute for
professional intervention for serious anxiety disorders. There is absolutely
nothing wrong with seeking professional help to assist you in getting your
anxiety under control.
Here are three powerful steps that you can take to help reduce
or even totally alleviate uncontrollable anxiety.
Stop censoring what you are about to say or do
in an attempt to make other people comfortable. When you censor your words or
behavior to protect others, you can often put yourself in harm’s way. This is
not a suggestion to be rude or inconsiderate. It is a challenge, to be honest,
and forthcoming about how you feel at any given time. The proclivity to internalize
things can lead to anxiety. Speaking honestly and boldly about your truth will
also help build confidence, which can help you deal with anxiety.
Practice spending time with people who treat you
well. We have a tendency to associate with people who confirm how we feel about
ourselves. This can be a poor practice during times we are struggling in the
area of self-confidence. When you hang around people who treat us well, it can
change how you feel about yourself, your circumstances, and future outcomes.
Treat yourself the way you treat someone you
love. Love is a force that must begin within. Without self-love, you can never
fully experience love in its totality. As you begin to treat yourself like you
love yourself, there will be an emotional shift that will completely change how
you view the world around you. All of a sudden, things that seemed so significant
and threatening won’t scare you as easily. You will see your ability to handle
what comes at you.
Uncontrolled anxiety has serious implications, but the good news is that you are not helpless. You can do something to overcome your bouts with anxiety and live a very productive and fulfilling life.
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The Reticular Activating System and How It Influences Your Behavior and Performance
I am sure we all know people who never seem to get what they say they want out of life. Or, maybe you have a lot of aspirations, but you always seem to be stuck in a particular rut. What you should know is that your mind is the most important and the most powerful force in the universe. In fact, your mind is the genesis (origin) of your destiny (future achievements). You should also know that your mind works in direct harmony with your brain and other neurological functions to create your reality. If you have a perpetual situation in your life, it can, without fail, be traced to your thinking.
One of the major neurological influences on behavior is the Reticular Activating System (RAS), a bundle of neuro-connectors and nerves that connects the brain stem, cerebrum, and cerebellum and mediates your overall level of consciousness. You can view the RAS as the gateway keeper of the data and information that is allowed into your conscious mind.
Your subconscious mind and the non-conscious brain are bombarded with over two to four-billion bits of information per second, far more than your conscious mind can process at any given moment. Your RAS operates as a filter to remove any information that it believes is not important to you at a given time. Your RAS is always at work performing this responsibility.
All your senses, except the sense of smell (which is wired to your brains emotional center), is wired through this network of neuro-receptors that determine what information you will be exposed to at a conscious level. The RAS plays an immense role in controlling the sensory information that you are forced to perceive on a daily basis.
Your sensory organs are feeding billions of bits of information to your brain every second — far more than your conscious mind can process; therefore, your RAS serves as the gatekeeper to your conscious mind — determining what information will be allowed in and what will be kept out. For the next 20 seconds, take the time to really listen and watch to see just how much is going on around you that you never really notice. Now imagine attempting to manage your thoughts if you had to process all that activity every second of the day.
The RAS determines what needs to be funneled into your conscious mind and what can be safely ignored. Being that the reptilian brain, the most ancient part of our brain, is wired for survival, you can imagine that the RAS is highly trained to recognize information that is representative of a threat of harm or death. This type of information will always be given the highest priority. Apart from the sense of smell, all sensory information, including visual stimuli, sound, touch, and taste are processed through the RAS.
The term “reticular” means “net or web-like. So, the RAS is a net-like formation of nerve cells and neuro-receptors that are embedded within the brainstem — lying between the brain and the spinal cord. While the RAS does not play a role in interpreting sensory information, it does play a vital role in categorizing it and filing it away. It also works to activate the entire cerebral cortex — making it more alert and increasing its level of readiness to interpret incoming data, simultaneously preparing the brain to take the appropriate action.
Depending on how the conscious mind interprets a specific bit of information, the RAS will ascribe a level of importance and priority to it, primarily based on the amount of attention you consciously give to it. Because the RAS does not have the capacity to interpret the information, it does not determine what is bad or good, but simply what you give the most attention to. This is why it is important not to focus on things you don’t want or like. While your conscious mind may be able to determine that you don’t want to focus on the negative situations in your marriage, your RAS only notices that you are spending a lot of time thinking or talking about the negative situations in your marriage, it cannot determine that you are actually saying or thinking that you don’t like to focus on it, only that you are, by constantly addressing it and focusing on it.
Whatever you give the most attention to is what your RAS is going to expose you to in the form of supportive data. If you are constantly thinking about the problems in your marriage, your financial struggles, your dead-end job, etc., your RAS is going to give you a heavy dose of what you are focusing on — serving to amplify the negative feelings associated with that current reality.
Your RAS plays a role in almost every decision you make and your habitual behavior. Not only will your RAS help you identify those things that are important to you but it works hard to find information that aligns with what you have placed emphasis on. This ability of the RAS to identify information that is aligned with those things that are important you means that it is your responsibility to make sure that you are giving mental attention to the right things. If it is financial issues that you are looking to rectify, don’t focus on what is wrong, focus on the results that you desire.
“Your mind is always eavesdropping on your self-talk.” ~ Jim Kwik
Your self-talk plays a major role in establishing what your RAS determines as being important to you, subsequently determining the sensory information it will allow into your conscious. If you are constantly saying that you are not good at something, your RAS will constantly expose you to information that will support that belief and influence the behavior around that belief.
The combination of your RAS and your beliefs will shape your behavior and work toward creating the rituals and habits that will determine the results that you get in life. It is important for you to understand that you have the ability to control your performance by controlling your beliefs, thoughts, and self-talk. You will get out of your mind what you feed it consistently, so you may need to change your mental diet. You should focus on the results you want and identify with anything that supports the suggestion that you can have what you desire.
Keep in mind that you don’t get what you want, you get what you are. If you want something that you are not currently getting, you will have to become the person who is capable of producing those results. The thing is that it is always possible to become what is needed if you are feeding your mind the proper diet that supports the development of self-confidence in that area, and the RAS plays a major role in that process, but because it does not have the capacity to interpret data, it needs you to determine what is vital for you and what is not. You determine what is important or vital to you by what you focus on consistently. If you are focusing on the negative side of the equation, the RAS will find everything associated with that negative reality — creating a negative state and a negative environment that serves to perpetuate negative decision making and negative behavior. Conversely, when you focus on the positive, those results that you want for yourself and the elevated standard of excellence that you are holding yourself to, you will send a clear message to your RAS that these are the things that are important to you and you will begin to experience a constant barrage of positive information that will support your personal growth. ~ Rick Wallace, Ph.D., Psy.D.
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Power vs. Outcome: The Unlimited Potential of a Purpose-Driven Life
What I wish to convey here is the idea of developing a clear understanding of what drives your actions. It is immensely important that you, first and foremost, have a lucid perspicacity of why you’re doing something. When you understand why you’re doing something that “why” or your “purpose”that will drive or push you through the difficulties that you will inevitably face —driving you through the challenges, driving you through all of the obstacles that you’re going to face as you move through life. When you have a sense of why you’re doing something you will possess a clarity of the motive. The motivation revealed in your “WHY,” as I call it, will be so strong that the momentum will literally carry you through even the darkest of situations and circumstances.
When you are certain of your “why” and your “why” is so huge that it will be bigger than any moment that you will ever face, you will develop a sense of certainty that is inextricably connected to your destiny that assures you that you will accomplish everything that you have set out to do. You’re going to be successful because when you arrive at these difficult moments you are going to be able to push through them because you going to look at it and your “why,” your purpose is going to be bigger than the pain that you are experiencing at any given moment.
Your “why” is going to be greater than the delay that will sometimes stand in your way. Your “why” is going to be greater than the complex nature of the enigmatic issues that you have to solve to keep moving.
You will consistently find yourself facing challenges but you will find out how to overcome them each and every time when you understand your “why!” When you truly invest in understanding the reason why you are driven to do something — your purpose — when you are determined to become committed to living in that purpose, then anything you face in life will be engaged with the confidence of knowing that you are built for the battle.
When you are driven by purpose, all of the answers to the problems to the problems you will inevitably face will be there and if they’re not there you will create them. Successful people wake up in the morning and they are not looking for someone to do something for them They understand that if there is an opportunity out there they will find it. When successful people wake up in the morning looking for that opportunity that they need to advance their dreams, their causes, their campaigns, and their desires, there is a sense of urgency in finding what they are looking for and they refuse to give up until they find it. If they can’t find it, they have such relentless tenacity associated with what they are doing and the reason why they are doing it that they decide to create the opportunity that they need.
One thing that I learned over the course of my life and that nothing happens in a vacuum. The Universal Law of Cause and Effect are always in play. There are no insignificant moments and there are no coincidences; everything has a cause and everything has a cost. When you understand the cause, you understand where the effect came from and you can now either repeat the cause if you like the effect or change the cause if you desire a different effect. You possess the power to disrupt and change the cause if you don’t like what it is producing. You are never stuck in any situation. Reality is a dynamic force, meaning that it is in constant motion — being shifted by the influences and perceptions of those experiencing it.
When you are driven by the outcome you desire, the outcome becomes the most important thing in your life and you risk losing sight of your purpose. More importantly, you risk getting caught up in the chase, which can lead to an abandonment of core values for the sake of achieving the goal. There is nothing inherently wrong with goals, but goals must always remain in the context in order to protect your character — the ultimate reflection of your value system. When you are purpose driven, you are still headed in the same direction, but you are being driven by something with greater purity, your purpose. When I first decided to allow my purpose to drive me instead of the outcomes I was looking for, I took on a mindset that declared, I’m going to start moving in the same direction accomplishing the same things but instead of being focused on myself, I am going to focus on serving and helping others.
What I found when I shifted my paradigms is that I still achieved the desired outcomes, but there was a greater sense of fulfillment and accomplishment because I was making others around me better in the process. You are in control of your destiny, you are the master of your fate, you are the one that has been given the reigns of the direction you are taking a life. There will be all types of external influences that move against you as you progress through life. There will be all types of things that you’re going to encounter, but you have the ability to discern, evaluate, and interpret what these influences and impulses mean and to determine how you will respond to them. They will not control you; you will control them.
When you are purpose-driven, your purpose is immediately, directly, and intimately connected to your identity. What you identify with impacts what you believe, the manner in which you operate and function, and what you do when you face adversity, disappointment, disruption, and delay. When you have a clear sense of what it is you are here for and how you are going to make the world better, you will develop the capacity to effectively engage adversity in a manner that produces consistent and efficacious results.
When you truly understand your purpose, you will immediately abandon the idea that someone owes you something, and you will stop expecting others to do for you what you have the power and gifting to do for yourself. When you start looking inside, you will immediately feel the weight of frustration and disappointment lifted. When you stop placing making other culpable for your current state and embrace your power and capacity to determine your own course and state of existence, a huge weight will be lifted.
As you start to embrace the idea that you are here to offer the world something that will leave it in a better situation than you found it and you consistent look to add value to others, you not only make your situation better, but you make everyone in your periphery better as well.
The awesome idea of purpose is that it is connected to your identity, which reveals that you are a part of a design and if you are a part of design then there is a specific reason that you are here. It further reveals that because you are here for a reason, the provision for the fulfillment of your purpose is at your disposal — you only need to access it and activate it.
When you become aware of your purpose in life, you don’t become frenetic and unglued when things seem out of place or you encounter certain challenges. Your ability to identify with your purpose assures you that if you simply persevere while remaining true to your purpose what you are seeking will manifest itself in time. For this reason, I am able to experience the delay without experiencing discouragement. When you become determined to operate in your purpose, you will find that all of the “outcomes” you are seeking in life will automatically fall in line when you stop worrying about the outcome and start living inline with your purpose. ~ Rick Wallace, Ph.D., Psy.D.
“Your mind is always eavesdropping on your self-talk.” ~ Jim Kwik
Due to the fact that over 90 percent of our behavior and habits are governed by our subconscious mind, it is immensely important that we guard the gates of our subconscious in order to carefully manage what enters in influences our beliefs. Our words and thoughts are immensely powerful in dictating our behavior, and subsequently outlining the path to our destiny.
“Your mind is like a supercomputer and your self-talk is the software you will run!” ~ Unknown
I tell my clients that our minds are the genesis of our destinies and our thoughts are the seeds of our future circumstances. If we fail to properly manage our self-talk, we will literally talk ourselves into a future filled with failure and frustration. What we say about our marriages, parenting, finances, careers and more all impacts how we perform.
Our beliefs dictate our behavior because no one consistently does what they believe will not work, so your beliefs literally set the parameters that determine the effort and energy you invest in any situation, and your effort will have a massive impact on the results you get. And, those results will serve to reinforce the original belief — leading to a continued cycle. These dynamics can be applied in the negative and positive.
If you don’t believe that you can save your marriage, your effort and energy will reflect that and it will be witnessed in the result — ultimately resulting in the substantiation of the original belief that your marriage is beyond saving — culminating in a steady decline in the effort to work on your relationship with your mate. If you believe that there is some force stopping you from achieving wealth — that poverty is your lot in life, it will be reflected in your behavior, energy, and actions — resulting in poor results that reinforce the initial belief — resulting in you living in a constant state of lack.
Conversely, if you believe that you can save your marriage, it will be represented in the amount of effort and action you invest in working on it. The massive action and effort that you invest in saving your marriage will be transformed into corresponding results that reinforce the belief. The reinforced belief will cause you to work even harder building forward momentum as you move toward your goal of a stronger more fulfilling relationship with your spouse. This same principle applies to any area of life.
With all of this being understood, you can easily see why your self-talk is so powerful. Life is about energy and rhythm and when your self-talk is not in alignment with your desires, you consistently disrupt the natural rhythmic expression of your life. When you expel all of the limiting beliefs that are holding you captive, you will find that your rhythm and energy becomes more steady. ~ Rick Wallace, Ph.D., Psy.D.
Dare to be different! One of the saddest things that I witness on a regular basis is people attempting to fit in — trying their hardest to be like everyone else. There is a reason trying to be like everyone else seems so difficult and uncomfortable — you were not designed to be like anyone else on this planet. You are unique in some very important ways that determine your complete makeup as a person.
When you attempt to squeeze into a box that was not designed to hold your massive potential, you force your potential to go dormant and unactualized. You literally squeeze the vastness of your existence into something that is not designed to hold or support it. Dare to be different. Dare to live in the fullness of your design. Dare to become the fullest expression of your potential and purpose. Dare to step outside of the marginal expectations that others have placed on you to live in the effusiveness of your God-given capacity to elevate and become great.
Dare to Be Different!
Your voluminous potential is pregnant with awesome wonders and extraordinary accomplishments, but in order to birth these things, you must be willing to escape the proclivity to bend toward mediocrity for the sake of fitting in. There is nothing honorable about making yourself small in order to make others more comfortable in your presence. There is nothing befitting your purpose and potential about the complacency so common in a culture that is replete with mediocre performers who take solace in being average.
There is nothing respectable about being average. “Average” is a human default reality. If you simply wake up every day and do what everyone else is doing, you will definitely be average. Being average does not require any great effort of focus. It does not require focus and commitment. You can sleep in and be average. You can show up late to work and be average. You can whine and complain and be average, but if you want to experience achieving the level of phenomenal, then you better be prepared to get up earlier than everyone else. You better be prepared to raise your standards higher than others. You better be prepared to spend more alone time with yourself, as you will inherently separate yourself from the pack. Dare to be different.
The people that you look at and admire now are visible to you because they chose to be different. They stand out and tower among most people because they chose to do things differently. If you want to live a life that most people are not able to live, then you have to be willing to do things that most people are not willing to do — dare to be different. ~ Rick Wallace, Ph.D., Psy.D.
While it is important to develop goals, a plan and a strategy to help you in the pursuit of success, there are some internal elements and components that must be in place in order for you plans and strategies to be success in reaching your goals. You can have the best plan in the world. You can work with the best coaches and business strategists that money can buy. However, if you don’t have the internal discipline and organic passion associated with the following rules, success will continue to allude you.
1. Know exactly what you want 2. Work on your gift or genius 3. Accept no excuses from yourself 4. Make sure your value system is in alignment with your goals 5. Grind on G.P. ~ not for goals, but simply because it’s who you are 6. Educate yourself 7. Know your “why” ~ why are you grinding and pushing? 8. Create Boundaries for others and yourself 9. Be authentic and (transparent) 10. Make sure that you want to succeed as bad as you want to breathe