It would appear a good amount of time for establishing new routines and changing the course of your life is 26 weeks. Every week we have progressed and find ourselves at the end of the course ready to tackle whatever life has planned for us.
Unlike other courses I feel ready to not only implement everything we have learnt but also share with anyone who wishes to find a way to permanently change their thinking. Mark and the team have given us more than just some knowledge, I will be forever grateful to them for that!
Knowing that the only activity which our spirit possesses is the power to think and that thought and the spirit must therefore be creative is life changing. It is obvious in a way but I managed to get through 42 years without giving this as much credit as it deserved. Everything must first start with a thought. The pc I’m writing this on, every component within it started as a thought which became reality. Would it be fair to assume that everything in my future must start as a thought? I believe so and cultivating the type of mind which can produce the results I desire has to be a priority.
A mind which is focused on negatives, always looking for the problems and finding them will not produce the future I desire. Just knowing that is life changing and would benefit so many I meet daily. It is very easy to get dragged into a negative mind.
Thankfully it is also very easy to cultivate a positive mind and look for reasons to be grateful and find them. To create a cycle of positivity is so rewarding and I’m sure anyone could do it. The good news is that you don’t need medication you already have it within you and with a little help can find it. More importantly by finding it yourself you will have the methods whenever you need them.
Reading Emerson’s essay on self reliance has opened my consciousness to different ways of thinking over the last couple of weeks. I do find it hard to read Emerson’s work as the language is a challenge to understand sometimes but the messages he conveys are worth the effort.
This passage is a good example.
- ‘It is the harder, because you will always find those who think they know what is your duty better than you know it. It is easy in the world to live after the worlds opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after your own; but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.’
What a great message to remember when we are making decisions about our lives. It is all too easy to follow someone else’s opinions and try to please others with your actions. It is just as easy to think you know the best for others around you and give your opinions to them. We often have opinions about others with little regard for what they may have as a vision for their future. It is true that 95% of those around us don’t have a clear vision with a plan to achieve it but that does not give us the right to impose our thoughts. Wouldn’t it be better to inspire them to form their own independent plan? Or even just know that they have the ability to form their own plan if they wished to?
That would seem to be the difference which I would like to help propagate far and wide. To inform people that they can do well for themselves without influencing them to do it my way. To inspire others to take a positive course towards their own dharma would be the most rewarding way to spend a life on this wonderful planet.
It is true that we all know what our dharma is but for some of us it is buried very deep. I personally didn’t realise that I had one until I understood that we all have that little voice deep inside us that knows so much about what we are and where we are heading. Hearing that voice and giving it the credit that it was due was my first step and although only a small step to some it was massive for me. I had given too much credit to other voices which seemed to know what I should do and how I should do it, they almost always had my best interest at heart but how could they possible now what my dharma was if I didn’t even know myself?
Nothing can bring you peace but yourself.
Desire is possibility seeking expression. I believe it is possible to become rich and this feeds my desire. I find it less intimidating now and I am growing into a person who would feed this desire and allow it to express itself in work and effort.
Some find discomfort in talking about becoming rich and I felt the same until I understood more about becoming rich. I believe that if you don’t feel at ease with something then you will never achieve it as you will be living and thinking in conflict. I believe that it is impossible to reach my highest self without becoming rich. For this reason it would be sinful to not achieve all that I can.
To satisfy my Mind, Body and Soul and achieve my full potential I believe I need riches.
Mind – To satisfy my mind I will need books and time to study them. I will need to travel and feed my mind with different cultures and surroundings. I will also need intellectual recreation which I can satisfy with art, fine foods and objects.
Body – To satisfy my body I need to live fully with freedom from excessive toil. I need to be comfortable with plenty of rest and recreation.
Soul – To satisfy my soul I need love. My soul needs to feel love but also give it and express it. To love is almost a magical force which allows us to fully express ourselves. To be able to give I must first have enough to satisfy myself and to simply accumulate just enough would be wasteful as I would not be able to give.
The above would not be possible without becoming rich.
Some may say that you can live in poverty and still be happy, I would agree and have seen it myself in travels both near and far away. It was a remarkable sight in Marrakech when it became obvious that those with the least had pleasant expressions and a life to live. I was not born there, I am here in the UK surrounded by opportunity. The economy is moving towards direct selling and an age of information. I am at the heart of it so to form a desire to just get by would be wasteful and serve no-one but myself.
So there it is, I’m out of the closet and happy to talk about becoming rich. I will not gain riches by taking away from others, I will instead be creative and find riches through building and creating new ways of building value. If I can do this in a way that adds to the whole without taking anything away from others then I be a positive force driving forwards. With this in mind I can be proud of what I achieve and use this as a positive force for those around me.
Self Discovery Challenge
This week we have been set a challenge, it’s massive. My old self is resisting this one but it must surely be the way forward, I mean it would not have been suggested if it was not going to have a big payoff.
The challenge is to sit or at least be quiet and with only oneself for a length of time. To get the maximum benefit from this 3 or 4 days have been suggested. Thankfully for us beginners a day would be a good start with a couple of half days to complement it.
I can think of so many reasons why I can’t do this. I have a family, job and a business to consider. How would I manage to be at one with myself for a whole day? My phone would be full of texts, emails and missed calls and I would miss interactions with my fantastic wife and son. It would be a selfish act and require support from those I love.
The payoff would be insight into me and where I am heading, I would be gaining a connection with my spiritual nature and an understanding of whether I need to make adjustments. Apparently once I have truly quietened my mind I will gain so much more than I can comprehend now as I write this.
I know that this level of thinking and understanding is something I desire and I am adapting my DMP in life to reflect that I need the freedom to do this. Not just once either, I know that this can become part of me and reflecting on life both past and present can allow me to live this life fully. I am excited to know that a day will come when I can be with myself for 3 or 4 days and fully experience life as a result. I’m picturing a Hawaiian beach with no interruptions.
As for now, well I need to discuss this with my wife, unless she reads this post before she comes home from work first. I need to accept compromise to begin with and improve in the future. The fact that this is so hard for me to do is the biggest driving force making me want to do this. How can I have designed a life for myself where taking a day out is so hard to do? I am here with all the stuff I have created and after 42 years on this planet I feel trapped by it.
I am blessed with my fantastic family and we have a plan which is coming into fruition in the next couple of years. The plan allows for us to find ourselves and some time freedom. We can see the results lining up but this serves as a reminder that we must be happy today and not sacrifice today with a hope for a better tomorrow. I know I can make this work and enjoy the process too.
What would the person I intend to become do next?
This month I am reading Scroll 5 from Og Mandino’s book the Greatest Salesman. The message is as the title says, live this day as if it’s your last.
Sounds fun at first but I read on into the chapter before spending all my savings and liquidating my investments. It starts with the message to live today not to just let today drift by without much notice. Good advice as each day is a gift not given to everyone and to waste it should be a crime.
Yesterday and tomorrow can be distracting from today. Reliving failures, dwelling on mistakes does not right them. We can learn from mistakes and then move on, they have served their purpose. Tomorrow can be enjoyed tomorrow, I am as guilty as anyone for letting an upcoming event distract me from today. Wouldn’t it be better to get value from today and then do the same tomorrow too? What if today is my last and I spent it thinking of tomorrow or yesterday and let the last page of my life be blank.
We are surrounded by friends, family and people who all matter. We are encouraged in this chapter to notice them now. I am glad to be reminded of this as I have a fantastic wife, son and family along with great friends and businesses which many would envy. I am truly blessed and to get tangled up in things which don’t matter would distract me from what I have and take me away from appreciating these things. I have seen so many people throw away days and weeks over things which really don’t matter in the long run and I have done it myself but no time for regrets lets learn the lesson and think of it no more.
Being happy is a choice and I make it daily to enjoy this day just in case it’s my last.
Is Multitasking a good thing?
The Stanford Report published on the 24th August 2009 is very interesting reading.
The experiment was conducted to find out how multitaskers were performing so that we could all learn from them and benefit from their gift or skills. We live in a time of constant information and as a result can find ourselves trying to accomplish different things whilst taking in information from different sources. Were multitaskers processing information differently and sifting things better than the rest of us? Were they using their brains better to store details?
The results were opposite to those expected when the research was conducted. This was a shock at first but when they drilled down into the causes it became obvious that those who were training themselves to take in multi sources of information at the same time were in fact loosing out and under performing as a result. Multitaskers were finding it difficult to ignore certain irrelevant details and concentrate on what was required of them in the study. Being unable to filter out what is not relevant to your current goal could result in loosing ground to those who can stay focused. ‘They are suckers for irrelevancy’ said communication Professor Clifford Nass, ‘everything distracts them’.
I can learn a good lesson from this myself and apply it to my life. It is easy to have the TV on or emails open when working on something. I remember myself recently planning a presentation with Facebook open and achieving very little as a result in the 20 minutes involved. I would have done far better with 15 minutes of work followed by 5 minutes of recreation rather than combining the two.
With us living in the information age it would be easy to remember this as the barrage of information is only going one way.
I will no longer be kidding myself that I am a great multitasker and I see the results immediately.
My thinking is forming what I achieve and as much as I want to blame others I cannot deny this.
I am noticing that when my thoughts are in line with the course material that we are studying I can achieve so much more than when my thoughts are wandering away from me. This has led me to ask the question – Why would I let my thoughts wander away from my chosen path?
It would be easy to say that it is the fault of others and they must be the problem. I think that would have been my old response. I can now see that if I don’t feel that I’m achieving it must be me. By taking 100% ownership of the problem I can feel that the solution is 100% within me. Knowing that if I created the problem I can solve it seems small but this has a massive effect on everything, what if I could help other people realise that they have the power if they would take responsibility for the bad then they could create the good they desire.
I have given a lot of quiet thought to this and adjusted my Plan of Action. The original served me well but it feels dated and life/ business have moved on. I’m not sure why I left the old plan in place when reading it was not getting me up and excited. The new PoA is going to be the start then my Definite Major Purpose is next in the firing line, it needs more energy because as we all know if we charge a desire with a strong feeling we will move a mountain to achieve it. Simple really but I guess in the past I would have just let it drift and then give up leaving me with a habit which was mediocre at best.
Doing this brings me to the realisation that I have this now. Knowing the formula for success has enabled me to not only spot the problems but fix them too. This will happen again and again throughout my life and I have it, I have the knowledge and with it the power to be self directed. Is this the new reality we were promised? Will my life be lived with purpose and on purpose? I know it will be as that is what I want and I truly believe I can achieve it so it a done deal I just need to do the work before I claim it.
Is it possible to become 30% more productive with a little extra effort?
This is the possible outcome from a presentation done by Shawn Achor and if you click the link you can see what he says for yourself.
His talk is great fun to watch and I have seen it many times before but only recently experienced what he says for myself. Near the end he talks about 5 things that we can all do you raise our happiness and in turn our productivity.
- Write down 3 things each day that we are grateful for.
- Journal a positive experience from the last 24 hours each day.
- Random acts of kindness.
The power is in doing these consistently for at least 21 days so that they become habit and the results can then become part of you.
The science is there and the 5 steps can be part of our daily routine if we wish to feel the change so why did I not embrace this back when I first heard it? I believe that my conscious mind did not take this on board as I was living a different plan and following a different path. Now things have changed for me and instead of seeing change in others and thinking that I can never change I now know that change in others is proof that I can change and in doing so help as many people along the way as I can.
Why do we need to become happy?
Have you ever had a major goal which you have achieved? It may be a new job, new car, promotion, marriage, new home, etc. During the process of achieving this goal we believed it would change our lives and we could then be happy. Now after the goal has been achieved did it really change your happiness in the long term or have you now moved the goal?
We must give ourselves permission to be happy now and enjoy the journey, if we are not enjoying the process then maybe we are on the wrong journey. We have so much riding on this as it is our life, its not a dress rehearsal and it wont last forever. Waiting for a certain thing before we are happy is a perilous game and the science proves that it is slowing our productivity too.
I remember Dr Wayne Dyer saying ‘There is no way to happiness, happiness is the way’ and I now fully understand what he meant.
The Hero’s Journey
We have seen this process played out on the big screens in movies, in our own lives and the lives of others. The reluctant hero gets the call to adventure from within or outside forces and that starts the refusal to take the call. In the movies that refusal is overcome and the journey starts, it would be a short movie if the refusal won!
In our own lives the journey does not always start straight away and sometimes never. For those who do start the journey into the unknown getting as far as the trials or abyss can send them running back to the known. So it would seem that the key is getting past the abyss as nothing will be the same again after we pass this point and the journey will complete in some way.
In my opinion we can break this down into 3 things we need to overcome and if we can solve these then the journey will complete.
- Accepting the call and crossing into the unknown
- Negotiating the Road Of Trials
- Passing the Abyss – Death and Rebirth
1. If we can formulate a plan for getting past the abyss then we will take the call to adventure again and again in the future with confidence and expectation of completing the journey. In fact we will no longer find ourselves reluctant to take the call but instead looking forward to the next journey. So by overcoming 2 and 3 before we start we will have overcome problem 1.
2. The road of trials can be an unwelcoming place if we arrive there alone. Our journey could be weight loss, relationships or maybe business building they all share common threads and will always encounter trials. This is where a plan of action, mentor, desire, etc. will be called upon. Napoleon Hill and many others have given us the tools for this, we just need to use them. Each and everyone of us has the ability to overcome trials as long as we truly believe in the journey we have started and it is in line with our beliefs and authentic selves. Strength in numbers is essential here as a group of like minds are always going to be greater than the sum of their parts.
3. Passing the Abyss will require us to finally let go of our old self and embrace the new. So as before the journey has to be in line with our authentic selves and not a whim or exercise to please others. Death and Rebirth seem a little harsh in this box but in a way we are letting our old self die to make room for the new us. If we cling onto our old self then we can never complete the journey. The popular weight loss journey could be used as an example here. If we still see ourselves as an overweight person who has lost a few pounds then we will inevitably regain the weight. If we truly become a different weight in our head and accept the new reality as our future we will instinctively keep up the exercise and make healthy choices with food. Being continually on a diet is not completing the journey, it is keeping someone else in business but you have not returned to the known world much different from how you left it. This can be applied to self help gurus in all areas of life, if they are not helping you formulate the tools to complete the journey then they may be helping themselves more than you.
This is just my opinion and I’m sure you will form yours about the Hero’s Journey. It makes a great plot line for a film or book but I’m more interested in relating it to my life and those with whom I have the pleasure to meet and work with. We can all be a hero if we wish to and that is a fantastic thing!
Nature’s Greatest Miracle
We have been reading in Og Mandino’s Greatest Salesman this month that we are nature’s greatest miracle (Scroll marked IV).
It is true that none that came before us were the same and this is empowering to me. Having spent a large part of my life trying to imitate others I can now accept that I am unique and that is a good thing. I can place my uniqueness on display and be proud of the difference.
I have always felt a need to separate myself from the herd but there has often been something on a subconscious level dragging me back, until now. Life has got a lot simpler now and I can live with my compass leading me towards my bliss, putting a compass around my neck seemed silly at first but I would be lost without it. Having a purpose in life which is not in line with the average man is ok for me as I’m proud of the difference.
We are surrounded by people attracting various things into their lives and its easy to get caught up in their race. It may be your boss, friend, relative or co-worker and they are attracting results through their thoughts and actions. You may be part of their plan to make themselves feel better or get on but is it helping you towards your bliss? I believe we can make our own way and follow our compass. If we are heading towards our own bliss then we will enjoy the ride and this will set many positive ripples into the lives of others.
I have a purpose and an opportunity to achieve it. As long as I remain true to me then I am happy with the journey. With each victory the next struggle becomes less difficult.
I am nature’s greatest miracle.