Wednesday, 19 December 2007

Tackling Subconscious Fears

It is very tough to know what your fears really are.

Sometimes you can figure out logically why it is right for you to go out and earn £100 million or why it is right to have the most passionate relationship ever, but your life won't reflect what you know is logical.

You may find that you have set these goals and have lots of reasons why you want to achieve them, but you still find that you are not producing results that lead you in the direction of the goals.

The reason this happens is because you have beliefs that you are not consciously aware of that prevent you from acting towards these goals. For example, you may really want to be a multimillionaire, but you may feel that generating wealth involves lots of pain, because you might get rejected when you start new relationships with clients or you will have to work really really hard.

But how can you tackle limiting beliefs you are not even aware of?

I have developed two very powerful exercises for overcoming this challenge.

The first one is to take a bird's eye view over your entire life. Take a look at all your actions and decisions up until the present moment. Visualise the key moments in your life and see how your life has progressed. Once you reach the present moment, continue to visualise what will happen as you continue to take similar decisions and actions as you have done in the recent and maybe longer-term past. If you do this as honestly as you can, you can often get a strong idea of where your life is really heading. Sometimes it is easy to begin visualising yourself owning this massive company or helping lots of people, but when you look at the actions you are currently taking you might realise that some of the beliefs that cause you to make the decisions you do will seriously have to change.

Once you have done this exercise ask the following question.

What fears are holding me back from acting towards achieving my goals?

You will probably come up with a list of several fears.

Now take this list and work through each fear finding reasons why the fear is completely flawed or why the fear is not relevant. This may require some creativity but it is definitely worth it.

When doing this also try and visualise why the fears are flawed, because this will make it much more real for your brain.

It may be a good idea to try this exercise several times until you feel deep down that you are not afraid of pursuing your goals any more.

I think what is particularly powerful about these two exercises is that they tackle beliefs that you are not even consciously aware of. This also means that once they are changed you do not have to consciously pump yourself up to take the action you need to to achieve your goals, it should happen automatically because you mind will believe that taking action that will achieve your goals will be fun.

Thursday, 6 December 2007

Creating a Business Idea

So you want to generate financial abundance for yourself and those around you. You plan to do this by going down the entrepreneurial route. There's only one problem - you don't have a business idea.

This is quite a big problem. How can you go out and get rich if you don't have an idea. If you don't have an idea, then you can't make a plan. If you can't make a plan then you can't act. If you can't act then you can't produce any results.

So what is the solution to this problem?

An idea.

All progress stops when you don't have an idea and everything can begin when you have an idea. There is no getting round this.

This means you need to employ every conceivable strategy possible to come up with your idea.

So what is it like to experience an idea? How do you know when you have really stumbled upon a great business idea?

Before you know if you have a great idea you have to be familiar with the industry. You might have a great idea, but someone out there may have already started working on it. Alternatively your idea may not be profitable at all.

So how do we overcome this problem?

If you have an industry which you prefer, then it might be a good idea to start studying that industry. Begin asking yourself questions like "what is missing from this industry?", "what would I really enjoy contributing to this industry?".

Once you start studying an industry you will likely begin finding things that are missing from that industry. You will probably begin to see places you can add value, or areas in which there are companies who have no competition and therefore produce poor products or services. These all represent opportunities.

Another great way of generating ideas is getting out of your current environment and experiencing loads of new things. For example, go travelling, go visit some friends far away, go away to some cottage out in the country somewhere for a week, etc. This will help you get a fresh perspective on how your idea is coming along.

Some important things to note...

Do not use your lack of an idea as an excuse for not generating value. Whatever it is you are doing at the moment to generate value, it is probably worth continuing to do so, unless it compromises you ability to generate your new idea.

Also, do not allow the fact that your "working on idea" to reduce your productivity. Just because you do not have an idea is no excuse for sleeping in until midday and then watching TV until 5 in the evening before you start doing anything. You have to make your actions congruent with that of producing a great idea. You also have to look after yourself in a way that when your idea comes along you are ready to give it 100%.

I've thrown a lot of information out here, so I'll summarise my key points below
-If you want to make a big contribution or increase your wealth substantially you need an idea
-Become aware of what it will feel like when you have this idea. You may already have a good idea, but not realise it
-Explore an industry you like and find out what you might be able to add to this industry
-Get out of your current environment to get a new perspective on your situation
-Get some new experiences under your belt
-Keep generating value for people until you have your idea, unless doing so compromises you generating an idea
-Get your lifestyle to a position where you will be ready to implement your idea the second you think of it

Tuesday, 27 November 2007

Sources of Motivation - Create or Prevent Fulfilment

Recently I have spent a lot of time considering how I want to be motivated. I have also considered what the different types of motivation are and the potential impacts they would have on my life.

From my research and thinking I have come up with two extreme sources of motivation. The concepts themselves are not unique and original, but from what I have found, the way in which I bring them together is.

So, the two extreme sources of motivation are

1. Ensuring your own security / staying alive
2. Providing value for others

The key characteristics of these two sources of motivation are

Ensuring Your Own Security / Staying Alive
-Scarcity mentality
-Based on the belief that there are limited resources and value to go around
-Does not make a person feel great about themselves
-Discourages integrity
-Less likely to produce massive results and unlikely to unlock much of a person's true potential
-Inspired by fear
-It is hard to be proud of the results produced by a lifetime of living this way

Providing Value for Others
-Abundance mentality
-Based on the assumption that a person can easily meet their needs and therefore changes their focus to how they can provide value for others
-Can be massively inspiring and motivating
-Encourages integrity
-Very likely to produce massive results and unlock much more of a person's true potential
-Inspired by love
-A person can be incredibly proud of the results they have produced and how they have lived after a lifetime of living this way
-When taken far enough it easily takes care of what the other source of motivation seeks to achieve

The above are the two extreme sources of motivation a person may have in life. It is rare to find a person whose motivation comes purely from one source. Most people will have a combination of the two.

What can be taken from this is that as a person moves further to the source of their motivation being to provide value to others they generally improve the quality of their lives.

It can be the case that in the short-run the quality of their life suffers slightly. For example, if a person gives up an hourly wage to try and run a toy manufacturing company they will probably suffer financially in the short-run. However, if the way they add value to others is a passion of theirs (in this case manufacturing toys) then it is highly likely that in the long-run they will increase the quality of their life and help others more. It is also true that if they are doing what they are passionate about then they are very likely to feel much better about themselves and therefore in a way the quality of their life has improved anyway.

Moving between these two sources of motivation is not something that is likely to happen overnight. Western culture heavily conditions people to focus on ensuring their own security, such as through the "get a job culture", rather than how they can contribute to others.

It can also be quite scary to initially make the switch. The most common fear is "if I just focus on adding value to others, then how will I pay the bills and keep my house, etc." The problem with this fear of switching is that it arises specifically because that person is still living with the mindset of being motivated by ensuring their own security. Once they make the leap to the other source of motivation that fear will no longer be relevant. A person will not be able to be motivated by providing value for others while consistently maintaining that thought pattern of fear.

Once a person intellectually recognises the benefits of the being motivated by providing value for others they have to gather enough faith to make the leap from being motivated by security.

I am yet to discover a case where being motivated by security creates a better and more fulfilling life than one motivated by providing value for others. This is one of the key reasons why I believe this theory to be so powerful.

So have a look at your own goals. Why is it that you want those goals? Could the reasons for wanting your goals link with how quickly and efficiently you are acting to achieve them?

Friday, 23 November 2007

Benefits of Tolerating Risk

I have just had another epiphany.

I have just been reading a book written by someone who has become very wealthy, but did not do it in a way that focussed on providing value to other people. I find that by reading perspectives from different people who have become wealthy, it is easier to isolate the core beliefs that are necessary for generating wealth from those which are not. With this information I can more efficiently tackle changing my own beliefs.

So anyway.

I have found that an interesting characteristic the wealthy share is their tolerance to risk. Risk tolerance is very closely related to a person's ability to overcome their fears. As you fear failure less you will be willing to take on more risk. I am beginning to believe that the ability to take on risk (sensibly) is one of the key factors that will in the long term benefit someone financially.

Another interesting thing I have picked up is how tolerance to risk can be applied to other areas, besides finance.

One of these areas is in your social life.

By enjoying risk you will enjoy expressing your true self more in social interactions. You will be more likely to crack jokes amongst people you do not know and you will be more likely to get involved more. This is because both of these things involve risk. Looking back on it now, it is often those friends of mine who are most comfortable with risk who are also the most fearless socially.

Now by being socially fearless they do not necessarily achieve the same outcome that I want to. For example, some socially fearless people I know treat people very harshly and do not feel regret (as far as I can tell). The outcomes they produce that I do like are ones such as being able to enjoy themselves a lot around people they do not know. They are also able to crack more jokes and it takes them much less time to form friendships.

To conclude...

1. Recognise the benefits that an increased tolerance to risk will give you financially and in other areas of your life
2. Find some ways in which you can improve your tolerance to risk
3. Apply it!

Wednesday, 21 November 2007

Create Systems to Make Life Easy

Life should be easy.

One of the things I focus on is to create systems so that I do not need to consciously remind myself to do things or be a certain way. In many ways this is the equivalent of creating long-term permanent change.

I'll explain.

How you act now is how you are naturally. If you find playing computer games fun and have everything set up so you can easily play them then that is part of who you are and will be unless you change it.

Creating a life system is changing your beliefs and environment so that you naturally do things differently and you do not have to think really hard to do them. For example, if you want to earn a living from blogging, then it will be easier for you if you have beliefs that mean you really love blogging. It will also help you if you have all the facilities available to you.

What I try to do is create changes that make results happen for me naturally. For example, when I wanted to get fitter I tried to change my beliefs permanently so that I enjoyed getting fitter and ensured that I had all the equipment and plans for doing so. More specifically, now I have all the running equipment I could want and I focus on the things I enjoy about running. As a result I run almost daily and really enjoy it.

This is one of my examples of creating a "system for living".

What I am trying to get at is that achieving goals should not involve forcing yourself to get up every morning and pressuring yourself to do things every day (not to be confused with not having any pressure to follow through). The ideal way of achieving goals is to have a system that means you don't need to think consciously about it in order to do it. This will allow you to fully embrace the moment or as some people describe being in the "zone" or the "flow state" while still achieving your goals.

Tuesday, 20 November 2007

The Illusionary Epiphany

The illusion of the perfect answer.

This is a state I used to live in almost every day of my life. I remember when I was younger and wanted to "get good with the ladies" I used to come to a question I could not quite answer. For example, it might be something like "what should my outcome be when talking to women?" I would spend hours thinking about it. I would walk around in a state that told me that when I answered this question all my problems would be solved and I would instantly have what I wanted.

As you could guess my problems were never instantly solved. My strong desire for answers did lead to several epiphanies, but not the solution to the bigger problem.

The reason I talk about this is because I still find myself in this highly addictive state. When I am in the frame of mind it is very hard to spot. I probably have some form of it at the moment as I seek my true purpose. My search for it seems to fit all the symptoms. Even now I have convinced myself that this time is different to all those other times. Maybe I will have to relearn the lesson I am trying to teach?

My real point is this...

Don't use waiting for the great epiphany, or answer to all your problems as an excuse not to carry on with your life as it is. Keep challenging yourself to be better. Keep exploring new belief systems. Keep searching for more efficient ways of looking at life and of doing things. Keep working towards the goals you have set at the moment. Keep loving unconditionally. Keep contributing.

Don't let waiting for the illusionary epiphany stop you from living life.

This illusion manifests itself in so many forms, like "I have to create the perfect business plan" or "after I have read this book I will do this" or "after I xxxxx I will achieve this easily".

Don't ask yourself IF you're going through this. Ask yourself WHERE in your life you are experiencing this. When you have done this, ask yourself if it is giving you an excuse to procrastinate on anything. That excuse is no longer valid.

Monday, 19 November 2007

Purpose and Passion ... and Why I Have Been Away

Where have I been?

Tomorrow it will 2 months since my last blog post. What have I been up to?

To say it in as short as possible, I have had a rather large change of lifestyle. I have started studying for a degree at university.

The reason I have not been posting is a combination of reasons. One is that I have been up trying lots of different things out. Another is that I almost forgot about blogging for a while when I was so caught up in the first few weeks just making sure I was registered for everything. Another part of me forgot the joy I receive from blogging and began viewing it as something I "needed" to do, but would never do just for the fun of it.

So why did I start blogging again?

I consider myself at one of the biggest turning points of my life at the moment. I am currently building the foundation for my future career. I have some vague goals set and plan to make them more specific. My biggest hurdle at the moment is finding my true purpose. My key focus at the moment is to find my purpose.

While journalling about what my purpose could be I also explored what some of my passions were. One of these I reminded myself was sharing my beliefs and developments with others, which reignited my passion for blogging again.

So here I am.

So what information can I provide that might be useful for you?

Here are my speculations as it stands.

To achieve fulfilment you must experience a life of overcoming challenge, contribution, love, growth and enjoying how you do it.

Carrying out these different factors come from doing different things.

-Overcoming challenge, growth and contribution comes from setting and achieving goals
-Love comes from aligning with your purpose and developing your beliefs
-Enjoying how you do it comes from completing your goals using an approach that you enjoy

Setting and achieving goals lies very much at the route of this. The key to setting and achieving goals is motivation. This means we need a reason to achieve our goals. There must be a fundamental reason from which all our goals develop. I believe this is comes from our purpose. You can tell when people have this because of the extraordinary things they achieve, such as Tony Robbins. My current aim is to discover a purpose that is so in line with who I am that all my goals seem obvious. My challenge after that is to find the most passionate and enjoyable ways of achieving these goals.

Then I speculate, I will be fulfilled.

Thursday, 20 September 2007

Commit to Someone Else for a Change

Have you committed to someone to make the change you really want to make?

If you look back at some of the greater things you have achieved in the past you will probably noticed that they were for one of two reasons.

1. You were so incredibly passionate about it so that you didn't need any encouragement in following through on a daily basis.
2. You somehow felt as though you had made a commitment to someone else to achieve your goal and would feel as though you were letting them down if you did not follow through every day and achieve it.

Being passionate about something is an amazing way to achieve a goal you want. Sometimes, however, you may find yourself passionate about a goal, but not so passionate about how you can get there.

This is an instance where it is great to make a commitment to someone else to follow through everyday.

Say for example you want to massively improve your fitness. In order to do so you will have to start doing some form of exercise on almost a daily basis. Now you may be incredibly passionate about transforming your fitness, but hate getting up early in the morning to go for runs.

The solution to this challenging situation is to make the commitment to someone to go on those runs everyday. For example, make the commitment to your family or partner so that you can have more energy when you are with them.

Making a commitment like this works, because deep down you know that going for a run everyday is good for you, but you just don't like the actual process of running.

Another way of looking at making a commitment is that it tips the balance of your pleasure and pain associations in your favour. Before making the commitment you associate more pain to going on a run than pleasure, so you would probably not follow through with the goal you set yourself. However, after making the commitment you associate more pain to not following through, because by not going you will be letting other people down.

One of the great things about making a commitment to someone is that the pressure gets you started on achieving your goals. After a few weeks or months of following through with your goals it starts to become second nature to do it and you no longer need the commitment. As you become more familiar with the process you will probably begin finding ways of enjoying it too.

Monday, 17 September 2007

The Incongruence of Symbols of Wealth

When is it right to purchase a luxury item or symbol of wealth (e.g. a sports car)? How do we know if the purchase of an item is really helping us or conditioning has attached incorrect associations to it?

One of the things that amazes me is how some people purchase luxury items to make themselves feel wealthy, but by doing so they end up significantly reducing their wealth by using a disproportionately large amount of their wealth to pay for it.

The level of advertising and programming that some of society is under has reached a point where people will increase their debt, i.e. take out a loan, to purchase something to make themselves feel more wealthy.

I think it is fascinating how we can be convinced to believe that doing something will help us achieve our goals, when it is so clearly doing the opposite.

So can we ever really justify purchasing a luxury item that we are conditioned to believe will give us feelings of status, prestige and wealth?

I believe we can, but I believe in order to justify doing so in a conscious way our purchases have to come from a different perspective.

I believe it is good to pay for a luxury item, such as a sports car when you have enough money that the difference between purchasing a sports car or a regular car will have an insignificant affect on your total wealth.

I also believe there can be situations where it is appropriate to spend a disproportionately large amount of your wealth on a luxury item, for example on a nice suit, if doing so will allow you to influence people and grow your wealth where if you had not made that investment in that luxury item then it would not have been possible.

A more generalized way of looking at it is this:

There are three key factors to take into account when making a purchase of a luxury item.

1. The quality of the product relative to the price, i.e. is it good value for money?
2. The proportion of your wealth the luxury item represents
3. The affect the luxury item has on other people

By looking at it this way you can hopefully distinguish between the true value the luxury item will add to your life and the feelings of status advertisers may have associated with it. This should enable you to make a purchasing decisions that will create joy for you in both the short and long term.

Sunday, 16 September 2007

Overcoming Fear of Failure

Once you realise that almost anything you want in life is achievable the biggest obstacle you will have to overcome is the fear of failure.

So what is the best way to take on the niggle in the back of your head saying "what if I fail?"

The easiest way I believe to overcome this fear is to look at the situation differently. Once you understand intellectually why facing potential failure is a good thing, it becomes easier to address the more specific fears you have about failure.

I believe the cost of not facing potential failure in some areas of your life is greater than experiencing the actual failure itself.

Take for example the fear of starting your own business and going bankrupt as a result. This is a pretty common fear that keeps most people as employees for all their lives. But what if your worst fears actually came true?

I could not think of many more character building things than overcoming bankruptcy. Furthermore there would be so much to learn about yourself as well as finances by living through the process. Think of some of the great people who have faced bankruptcy and come back, most notably Donald Trump. The people that come back often go on to live lives that are much better than they ever were before. Although bankruptcy destroys all your financial assets it grows your greatest personal asset which is who you are as a person.

I'm not trying to glorify bankruptcy, I am trying to emphasize that our greatest fears are not as bad as they seem. Very often it is worth taking on something where we fear failure, because the real reward comes in who you become as a person by taking on the challenge, not necessarily just the end result.

To summarize all this: You have a choice. You can take on the challenge of achieving what you want most in life, e.g. financial independence, the perfect relationship for you, great health, etc. or you can play it safe and not achieve those things, but not risk losing what you already have. The cost of not taking on the challenge is not only that you will never live to experience the things you truly deserve in life, but you become less of a person, because you will live a life that has been bound by fear.

When you remember that in life all you really have is who you are as a person the choice becomes somewhat easier to make.

Friday, 14 September 2007

Deciding Whether to Listen to Criticism

How do we know whether someone's criticism is helpful or not? When is it in our best interest to listen to someone's criticism?

When receiving criticism always remember the following fact - sharing someone's beliefs comes at the cost of producing the same results as them.

A really common form of criticism in society is the criticism of status. If you obtain status in any area of life, be it through sports, health, finances, contribution, etc. then there will always be some form of criticism.

More often than not, this criticism will come from someone who is producing results that are not as good as yours (often resulting in lower status) or is threatened by the results you are producing.

When you receive a criticism like this you can either carry on whatever it is you are doing or you can do what those who are criticizing you say you should do. However, as was said earlier, if you do what others of lower status say you should do then you will eventually produce the same results as them.

Another way of looking at the choice you have is this: You can either carry on producing the results you do, e.g. healthy body, improving your finances, etc. or you can reduce the quality of results you are producing, e.g. eat less healthily or reduce you financial wellbeing, etc.

You can also look at this situation from the opposite perspective. Say someone who is producing better results than you gives you advice or criticizes you then again you have two choices, but the choices are flipped. You can choose to try out their advice and potentially produce better results like they are or you can ignore the criticism and continue to produce the results that you always have done.

When you look at criticism in this way it makes it much easier to choose whether to listen to it or not. When you have more experience at dealing with criticism the real question you will want to answer becomes "what is the best way to handle the situation when I decide not to listen to someone's criticism?"


Thanks to the following for including this article in
-The Live the Power Unlimited Carnival located at Live the Power

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

Should We Adopt Pseudoscientific Beliefs?

By definition a scientific belief is a belief that could potentially be falsified. This means that it must through observation or physical experimentation be possible for the belief to be disproved. For more on this see here.

A term used to describe something that is not disprovable is pseudoscience.

Technically the law of attraction is pseudoscience.

This is because no matter what results are produced in the world the law of attraction can justify it. For example if someone says the law of attraction does not work, because they tried it and they did not become rich, then someone who believes in the LoA can say that that person failed because of their lack of belief in the LoA. No matter what result happens someone can just say that it occurred because the law of attraction was in action, but not used properly. This means there can never be a situation where the law of attraction can be disproved.

Does this mean the LoA is a belief system that we should not adopt?

Not necessarily.

I personally have not yet figured out if the LoA is a belief system that works for me. I believe we have a very direct influence over the results we produce in life and these are directly linked to what we focus on and think about most in life. However, there are part of the LoA that I am less certain about, such as manifesting results over which I have no physical influence.

Having said that, I do not believe that the LoA should not be adopted as a belief just because it is not scientific. I believe this, because although the LoA cannot be falsified, it could still be a useful model for explaining our reality and producing results.

Ultimately I believe what really matters is the affect a belief system has on your life. If you want to live a life full of joy, success and love then I believe it is more important that you choose beliefs that will help you achieve these goals in the long term, than choose beliefs because they have strong scientific backing.

Saturday, 8 September 2007

A Model for Successful Living

Having taken the time to study what successful living is all about I have tried to come up with a very simple model for how the process works.

How one lives successfully is very subjective, but I believe this model is flexible enough to incorporate anyone's opinion of success and the path one must take to achieve it.

The model

1. Assume responsibility for your life

You are the only person responsible for your life in the long-run. It is ultimately how you act and are as a person that causes everything in your life to be how it is. Understanding this concept means you acknowledge that no one else but you has the full potential to take control of your life.

2. Recognize unlimited choice in possibilities and potential

As you accept that you are responsible for everything in your life, e.g. your health, finances, relationships, etc. you realize that you have created all the results you have up until now. This also means that you can create any result you want in the future. When you understand this you understand that you have complete choice over what any area of your life will be like in the future.

3. Decide - what you want/your goals/your future, etc

After realizing that you can choose exactly how to live your life and choose all the results you experience in life then you have to decide exactly what results and experiences you want.

4. Act

You must take action in order to produce the results you want.

5. Measure your results

After producing results from taking action you can now see whether or not you produced the results that you wanted. If you did then you can celebrate and set new goals to challenge yourself. If you did not produce the results you wanted then you need to take action again but in a different way. This process is cyclical until you finally produce the results you want.

The simplicity of this model leaves it open to much interpretation. I therefore believe it is a useful guide, but not a comprehensive answer to successful living. I do, however, believe that the answer to a question like "how do I live successfully?" is easier to figure out when you have some idea of what the answer looks like.

Friday, 7 September 2007

One Day Trial to Beat Procrastination

If you find that you are good at following through on some challenges you set yourself, but consistently procrastinate in other areas of your life then the following "one day trial" strategy may be very helpful for you.

This simple strategy helps overcome the following challenges.

1. It gets you to follow through on the things you usually procrastinate on.
2. It gets you to try a lot harder at the tasks you usually try half-heartedly because you are tired or don't feel like doing them, etc.

The Strategy

1. Make a list of everything you would like to do tomorrow that will help you create a great future and enjoy the process, e.g. exercise, review goals, research and eat healthy foods, research investment opportunities, etc.
2. Decide how long you want to spend on each task. Set a time that will demand high efficiency to complete it in the alloted time.
3. Order your tasks so that you have to do your least favourite and most likely to procrastinate tasks on first. Doing these tasks first will not only make sure you do them, but will also make the other tasks for the day seem a lot easier and give you great momentum for the day.
4. Add up the hours and check you have set a realistic amount of time for the day, not forgetting you might need to eat.

This plan should only be designed for one day. This has a very important affect on your psychology. If you look at it this way you don't have to worry about spending too much energy or worry about trying and failing, because it's only one day. If at the end of the day you don't like that you followed through on all your challenges then you can scrap having one day plans and at least you know not to spend any time feeling bad about not following through because you don't enjoy it anyway.

And that's only assuming that you do not enjoy following through. Imagine if you do enjoy following through on all those things you normally procrastinate on. Think how much a discovery like that could change your life.

I will leave you with the motivational text I had at the top of my one day plan to help me follow through when I first did it.

"Try it for a day 100% and see how it goes – if it changes your life keep it, if it is rubbish, then don’t, but you will only know if you try 100%. This could massively change how you feel about yourself and your ability to produce results, just DO IT."

Wednesday, 5 September 2007

What We Have to Lose By Not Giving

When we give unconditionally, is there more going on than just a trade of resources?

In life all you truly have is who you are and how you feel about yourself. Anything in your external life, e.g. your finances, your social life and relationships, is a result of who you are, not the other way round, at least in the long-term. A challenge in life is learning to accept this situation, because it is in human nature to identify yourself with your external life and hand your responsibility over to it.

So what this means is that how you feel about your life really comes down to who you are as a person. You will probably have your ups and down as your external life gives you knocks and bruises, such as the loss of a loved one or a financial crisis, but all these things are only temporary. The only thing that is really everlasting is who you are as a person.

Understanding this concept is a key difference between being a selfish person and a contributor.

Say you give something externally to someone, e.g. your time, your money, your expertise, it will cost you those things, which can be hard to deal with if you are heavily identified to your external world. However, if you look at the situation in a different way, you see that in return for giving you gain in who you are as a person and how you can feel about yourself and the world. By looking at it this way giving no longer has to be an act in which you lose out.

If you truly understand this it will open yourself up to being able to give more and enjoy it, because you know by helping someone else you are also helping yourself. This is a great way to overcome the scarcity mentality. This is also a great way to look at things for those that always have to ask "what's in it for me?" If that kind of person looks at giving in this way then a previously selfish person can become highly motivated to give.

Another way to think about this is as follows. If you give nothing the other person suffers and your character suffers. If you give something then the other person gains and your character gains. It's lose-lose or win-win, whichever decision you make.

Tuesday, 4 September 2007

Being the World's Greatest ...

What kind of mindset does it take to be successful in any field?

If you focus on a number of people involved in any particular area of expertise (e.g. investing, sport, charity work, fitness, etc) there will a rough group structure as follows.

1. There are people who are terrible at the skill or expertise who try and fail, but never learn. These kind of people do not often stay in a field for a long period of time.
2. There are people who do it for the fun of it, have some success here and there, but don't contribute massively to the field, except for in their sheer numbers.
3. There are the people that do it for a living, e.g. fund managers, professional athletes, etc. These people contribute the most of the 3 groups so far, but they are often not as pro-active in their contribution and commitment as they could be.
4. There are people who commit and dedicate themselves to excellence. They pro-actively set goals to challenge themselves to expand their current skill level and the level of all others, e.g. Warren Buffet, Michael Jordan, Mother Teresa, Lance Armstrong, etc.

Numbers 1 to 3 will make up the majority of any field of expertise. Often those in group 4 are the ones that set the boundaries and standards of possibility for the other groups.

So what are some of the mindsets that make group 4 different from the others?

In a way the answer to this is partly what my blog is all about, but I will focus on one specific answer here.

People in group 4 are unique, because they share a different mindset to the people in the other groups. The beliefs they have cause them to act differently to the others which causes them to produce different results.

I like to call the mindset they share as intelligent counter-convention.

What I mean by intelligent is that their beliefs are very well thought out, especially in terms of achieving their outcome. When you hear and read about anyone who is the very top of their field they always seem to have beliefs that are entirely congruent with producing top results.

What I mean by counter-convention is that the beliefs shared by group 4 will often run contrary to those of the rest of the group. If they did not then they would produce similar results to groups 1 to 3.

Warren Buffet, the person to generate most wealth through investing in the world, is a great example of this. When you read about him or watch him speak you get to hear how his beliefs are subtly different from the majority of the investing world. These differences from everyone else are what allows him to consistently beat the stock market indexes.

So what can we learn from all this?

1. If you have well developed beliefs about a particular skill and you are largely criticised for them, do not scrap those beliefs straight away. There are countless examples in history where someone has been criticised initially for doing something and later rewarded for having done it. Groups 1 to 3 will want you to share the same beliefs as them, but this will come at the cost of producing the same results as them.
2. If you are going to copy beliefs from someone, pro-actively choose these beliefs. Copy the beliefs from people who are producing the results you want. If you only want to enter a field for a bit of relaxation, e.g. playing a sport in your free time, then copying beliefs from the world's greatest may not be the best strategy for you.
3. Do not forget that you have a choice of which group you can be a part of.

I cannot think of a successful person in the world who does not exhibit some type of intelligent counter-convention. If you can please tell me. I believe it is an essential factor to rise above the majority and contribute your full potential.


Thanks to the following for including this article in
-The Live the Power Unlimited Carnival located at Live the Power
-The Carnival of Money, Growth and Happiness located at Credit Card Lowdown

Sunday, 2 September 2007

Complaining Up = Responsibility Down

Steve Pavlina posted a very interesting article a few weeks ago about complaining.

What this article really challenged me to think about was the link between complaining and responsibility.

When you complain about something it is like acknowledging that someone or something else is responsible for you and how you feel. If you complain you are saying "I have no power over this situation, but I wish it would change". In the real world significant change in your situation only comes about by your direct action, therefore anything you do otherwise is giving up control over your life.

When you say to yourself that something is outside of your control it is a great excuse to make no effort to change. Only when you accept responsibility for something will you feel compelled to take action to change something if you do not like it.

Complaining is the exact opposite of taking control of a situation. The more you do it the less control you have, over that situation and your life.

Saturday, 1 September 2007

Get Out of That Rut and Find Inspiration

A major tragedy in life is when you get stuck in a rut. When you keep doing something you really do not enjoy.

I had this experience a while ago while working full-time for a company and it really started to get to me. Eventually I realised I had to get myself out of the situation. It was not an easy decision because of all the commitments I had made to the work, but in the context of my life I knew I had no choice but to leave.

I left to travel the other side of the world for a bit and this was one of the most valuable experiences of my life. Leaving that situation allowed me to clear my mind and get a completely new perspective on life.

After returning I found myself invigorated and travelling down a new path towards my chosen destiny. I urge you to make the same changes if you have not already. The inspiration to make these kind of changes are easy to find, but you have to break your habit.

I was walking around our garden yesterday and I was refreshed with a new perspective of where I am at now and where I want to go. Inspiration really is easy to find. You just have to get the courage to break your current pattern so that you can take a more objective look at how your life really is today.

Thursday, 30 August 2007

Small Chunking to Achieve Big Goals

A while ago I set myself some very large goals intending to completely transform my life. After doing so I definately took some steps in the right direction, but I still found myself taking no where near enough action to making them a reality as soon as I would like.

I thought and researched hard about what was holding me back. To summarise all my research and thinking I came to the following conclusions on how best to tackle these monster goals.

I decided to small chunk my goals so that I could eventually reach my larger goals one step at a time. This method is working for me because after completing the first mini-goal I have the foundation for the next mini-goal. Eventually all these mini-goals stack up to achieve the big goals I had set in the first place.

Say you are overweight and you want to lose 2 stone of fat. This would be your large goal. You may know that you should eat less and exercise more but you would probably not have the expertise to get a diet and exercise program to see you through to your final goal. As a result you may make changes to your eating and exercising that do not benefit you much and even if you do make correct changes a lack of belief that what you are doing is helping may cause you to give up before you can even see any benefits from the changes. However, if you set a mini-goal of losing 2 pounds then this would have a completely different affect on your psychology.

Setting smaller mini-goals helps you for the following reasons.

1. It increases your motivation much more if you have doubts of whether or not you can achieve your larger goal. For example, if you are overweight you are more likely to believe that you have the power to lose 2 pounds than 2 stone.
2. It will be easier for you to figure out how to achieve to a smaller goal in something you are unfamiliar with than your large one. Once you have figured out how to get to your first mini-goal you can then figure out how to get to the next and so forth.
3. It gives you confidence, because if you're ever doubtful about achieving your major goal you can always look back at a number of smaller goals you have achieved along the way and remind yourself how far you have come. This would be harder to do if you didn't have the smaller goals to reflect on.
4. You are more likely to take a tiny step out of your comfort zone than one massive bound into a large fear.

This technique is a great way to achieve larger success, because when you small chunk to a small enough level it becomes easy to achieve your next goal. The biggest change this will have on your goal achievement is that psychologically it is much easier to get started. Once you get started you will begin to build up the momentum to carry you through to your final goal and have a path of where you came from to look back on and be proud of.

Wednesday, 29 August 2007

Overcome Belief Barriers to Unconditional Love, Giving and Social Acceptance

While on the road of self-improvement I discover many beliefs of mine that do not help me achieve what I would like to. Some of the most intriguing limiting beliefs that I have are my beliefs about what would happen if I changed certain beliefs. The challenge is that changing these beliefs is the next step towards achieving some of my goals, but part of me still fears that if I adopt them then they will be very damaging to my life. I have listed three beliefs that I believe I am most likely to share with other people below:

Belief 1
If I condition myself to always feel socially accepted then I will lose my sensory acuity to how people react to my actions and I will behave in a way that will cause me to have less social acceptance.

This belief is flawed, because social acceptance is an internal state of which I am in control, so if I condition myself to always feel it then I cannot not feel socially accepted. It is also foolish to assume that, because I feel socially accepted means that I will act in a way that will drive people away from me. If anything I will make more friends and be accepted more, because I will feel more comfortable around people.

Belief 2
If I love someone unconditionally I could potentially experience massive amounts of hurt if rejected.

This belief is limiting, because having it causes me to appreciate life much less than if I love unconditionally, even if I do get rejected I will still be living a more enriched life. The real challenge with this belief is realising that I will experience more pain in the long run if I don't love unconditionally.

Belief 3
If I give unconditionally then people will take and take and I will eventually have nothing left.

This belief is flawed because the world works in a way that if you give from your heart you will receive in return and, if done correctly, adding value to people is frequently rewarded in monetary form. Furthermore, once giving unconditionally the true joy in life comes from giving and a scarcity mentality is no longer relevant.

I think beliefs like these are so common because they all at some point require a leap of faith to adopt. In a way they are also a barrier to another way of thinking. Once you adopt the beliefs your world changes and all the doubts you had before are no longer relevant. For example, once you are loving someone unconditionally you no longer fear rejection from them, because what makes you happy is seeing them happy. The difference is that your focus is no longer on yourself.

In order to have the courage to take the leap of faith and adopt these beliefs I feel that a certain level of personal growth is required. I still believe, however, that the best thing a person can do is to look through any beliefs like this and pick them apart like I have above. As you continue to chip away at your limiting beliefs you will eventually experience an epiphany that will cause you to transition to the more resourceful belief and way of thinking.

Tuesday, 28 August 2007

Why People Criticise Self-Improvement

Recently I have been criticised by someone very close to me about reading the amount of self-improvement books that I do. Criticisms from people close to me still come as a shock and I therefore spent some time trying to figure out the exact nature of them. More specifically I answered the following question.

Why do people criticise self-improvement?

1. They see it as you doing something different from them. A lot of people will want you to be the same as them, because this allows them to feel more comfortable.
2. They believe that your desire to improve yourself is an expression of lack and they are helping you.
3. Their criticisms are often an expression of their own sense of lack.
4. They are expressing a form of jealousy.
5. They fear that you will change as a person and they will no longer be able to have fun with you.
6. They are projecting their beliefs on to you - people assume that how they feel about doing something is also how you feel about doing it, for example, if self-improvement to them feels like admitting defeat then they will assume that you feel like you are admitting defeat as well.

So how can understanding criticism help you?

When you understand why someone does something you can make a more informed decision about how to respond. Now if you ever receive a criticism of a similar nature you can quickly decide if this criticism is worth thinking about or if it is really the person criticising expressing their own feelings and problems. This will save you a lot of time spent pondering your own actions feeling unnecessarily bad and hopefully boost your confidence in your actions too.

Monday, 27 August 2007

How Responsibility Transcends the "Life is Unfair" Attitude

How do you deal with "unfair" situations? How do you feel if someone receives something better for doing less work than you? Is it right that you sometimes end up worse off than someone else even though you have better intentions?

When you say that something is unfair it implies that what happens to you is outside of your control. One of the main things I believe self-improvement is about is learning to take more responsibility and control for your life and destiny. The problem with claiming that something is unfair is that is has the complete opposite effect. Even if there are rare instances where you have absolutely no control over your current situation maintaining this attitude in the long term will cause you to relinquish control of your life.

So how can you deal with seemingly unfair situations?

You do everything in your power to try and get what you want. Let's say, for example, you apply for a job and someone who is less qualified than you gets it. This is a situation that you could potentially view as unfair. A good way to react to this situation is to continue to assume responsibility and try different means of getting the job. For example, you could continue to write to the employer expressing your belief of your suitability, you could offer unpaid internship to prove yourself, you could request feedback from interview and improve on the things where they thought you were weak, etc.

From the above example you can see that as long as you continue to assume responsibility there will always be more ways in which to act. Deciding that something is unfair is similar to accepting defeat, because you are saying to yourself that it is no longer up to you to get what you want.

I do, however, believe there are situations when it can be helpful to claim unfairness. It can be helpful to claim unfairness if it will cause you to get the result you want while remaining in line with your values. For example, if you are unfairly descriminated against in a job interview then I believe you can claim unfairness to the government, because this could help you get the job you want.

There are different ways in which the term unfair can be used. I want to be clear that I strongly believe it should be avoided when it becomes an attitude you have that causes you to give up control and responsibility. In my last example using unfairness is acceptable, because it is used to your advantage and you are still taking control of the situation.

Giving up the "life is unfair" attitude is another step you can take to accepting more responsibility for your life.

Thursday, 23 August 2007

How to Beat Procrastination 2

What follows is a technique that I have found very effective for overcoming procrastination. I have already discussed one technique that I apply in this post, however, I believe that goals should be attacked from all angles and therefore the more techniques there are to use the better.

Procrastination arises when you feel doing something will cause you more pain than not doing it. Eventhough you logically know you should do it, you will not follow through with it if you feel like it will cause you pain or struggle.

What you therefore need to do is start seeing the pleasure in that thing that you "have" to do to achieve your goals. This could apply to doing exercise, speed reading practise, making a difficult phone call, etc.

For example, when thinking about exercise most people see the pain of exerting themselves and getting out of the house. The people that enjoy exercising see it as an opportunity to challenge themselves, experience some endorphins, get some fresh air and give themselves more energy for the rest of the day.

It really does come down to how you look at it and believe you will experience it. The actual activity of "going for a run" is not what differs from person to person greatly. It is the perception of it that differs so much.

So how do you change how you look at a certain activity?

What I do first is consciously ask myself the question "where is the fun in this activity?" I ask myself this question in different ways until I come up with the answer. Once I have come up with this answer I make the picture of the fun part of the activity big and bright and really feel the experience. With enough practise this becomes very easy and now I no longer find myself struggling to follow through with these activities, because I want to do them anyway.

If having read this you are thinking "well that sounds like a great exercise, but I really can't be bothered" then ask yourself that question now about following through with this very exercise. Once you enjoy carrying out this exercise you can use it to begin finding the fun in everything else you "should" be doing, but do not really want to do.

If there were a set of key challenges to overcome on the road to success, beating procrastination would be one of them. Enjoy this exercise :)

Wednesday, 22 August 2007

Discover Your Core Beliefs

Sometimes I find that the beliefs that I think and journal about are not always the ones that I act on. I have mentioned this phenomenon in greater detail in this post.

I believe this is a common situation, because a belief that makes sense to us logically will not necessarily govern our actions as much as years of conditioning will.

So how can you know what your real beliefs are if what you talk about is not in line with how you act?

You have to review your past actions and ask "what belief would caused me to do that?"

It's a pretty simple exercise, but the real effectiveness comes in the application of it. Taking the time to compare your intellectual beliefs and your core beliefs will help you to become a more congruent person.

It may also help you to learn more about the beliefs that are guiding your actions. You can then use this valuable information to help determine whether these beliefs are moving you closer or farther away from you goals.

Tuesday, 21 August 2007

The Cost of Indecision

In some area of your life you may be undecided about something. Undecided about whether to commit fully to a relationship, whether to quit your job and start your own business, or whether to give up eating the trashy foods you love, etc.

The reason I find myself in this situation is because I feel that once I make a decision I may live to regret it. I fear a potential feeling of regret therefore I shy away from making the decision.

Recently, however, I have come to look at the situation differently. By looking at in this new way I understand that indecision is in fact setting myself up for greater regret. If I spend my whole life undecided about a major part of my life then I will not be giving my all to it. If I was to regret anything when looking back on my life it would be that I did not give my all to something. I could not imagine more pain than realising that I could have given more, lived life fuller and enjoyed myself more.

As well as everything I have just mentioned is the fact that once a decision on something major is made your life is no longer the same. Points you argued before making the decision are no longer relevant. For example, before committing to a relationship you may fear that you will never have the opportunity to be with anyone else, however, after making that commitment you could probably think of nothing worse than being with someone else.

There are probably more places than one in your life where you are hovering on a big decision. Once you have all the information you can realistically have about a decision you should not spend too long making that decision. Although it may seem difficult, it would be better to say you gave your all to your decision and not succeeded first time, than to live with having never made a decision at all.

Monday, 20 August 2007

Using Sport to Understand Financial Success

After looking back on some of the things that have made me a successful sportsman I have observed many links between sporting and financial success.

Some of these are simple and obvious, but as you look through this list I hope you find at least one little nugget that you can add to your arsenal for tackling financial or indeed sporting success.

Key: Sporting advice (corresponding financial advice)

1. Pick your sport wisely (pick your field of expertise and vehicle for creating financial abundance wisely)
2. Pick your team wisely (surround yourself with good people)
3. Buy equipment that you can get the most out of for your standard, e.g. sticks, clubs, boots, etc (get equipment with a good benefit to cost ratio, e.g quality of computers, speed of internet connection, etc)
4. Get good coaches (get good financial coaches, gurus or educational products)
5. Play above your standard (surround yourself with people achieving better results/earning more money than you)
6. Make friends with players from better teams (e.g build relationships with more successful businessmen)
7. Have your reason to improve be to benefit your team (Have your reason to improve be to benefit your family or someone else)
8. Coach (share your knowledge)
9. Exercise daily (review your accounts daily)
10. Know your goals and review daily (ditto)

Sunday, 19 August 2007

Can You be Too Confident in Your Beliefs?

When are the best times to be close-minded about your beliefs? Can it really be constructive to not acknowledge another person's point of view? Are you making yourself vulnerable by being too open-minded?

Let´s say you become very confident in a particular belief of yours. Often you will stop seeing credibility in any belief but your own. This can have some pretty negative consequences, because there is always the possibility that there is a more resourceful belief out there than your own. If you refuse to acknowledge any new beliefs then you will never allow yourself the opportunity to make use of a better belief.

However, being very confident in your beliefs is a very good way of convincing others of your beliefs. For example, If you're starting a new business and you're looking for financial support, when you speak to investors you are much more likely to receive investment if you are 100% confident that you're business will be successful.

So where do we draw the line? How can we know if we are too confident in our beliefs? Can we even be too confident?

I believe to overcome this challenge we need the flexibility to be both 100% confident in our beliefs and open to new beliefs. I don't, however, believe it is possible to experience these two different states at the same time. What we need to know is when to experience which one.

I believe that if we are teaching others of our beliefs, for example speaking in front of a crowd, or, as earlier, pitching for an investment, then we should be 100% confident in our beliefs.

If I was having a discussion with a friend or with a small group of people then I would be very flexible and open-minded about my beliefs, because this is a great atmosphere in which to challenge and develop my beliefs.

I believe this type of flexibility is the most effective way of making the best of both worlds.

Friday, 17 August 2007

Using Different Advice from Different Gurus

In my last two posts I have talked about the use of immersion to achieve a large goal, such as becoming financially independent.

In order to achieve large goals I believe as many different techniques as possible should be used. So what is another effective technique to achieve a large goal?

As I mentioned in my previous posts different people will offer different advice for achieving the same goal. This happens because people's advice comes from a simplification of their reality. People will therefore produce different advice if they are simplifying different realities.

So what's the best way of tackling this issue?

Try out every one's advice. This is a real simple one, but not necessarily that obvious. If two gurus in an area are offering different advice. Try them both out and measure your results. Then go find another guru and try out his advice. If you continue this process you will eventually achieve your goal, because you will eventually find advice that is most suited to your reality.

How to Use A Successful Person's Common Sense

(This post is easier to understand and apply having read my other post on immersion and success models first.)

I find it interesting when I read about businessmen or women who say they apply a common sense approach to business (or any other area) to produce great results.

The thing I find interesting is that if this "sense" is so common then why aren't more people using it and also producing great results?

I believe that to the individual it will feel very much like they are applying common sense to overcome problems. The issue is that their solutions are common sense in the context of their reality. Common sense in the context of someone else's reality may, however, produce completely different results.

This is why when I hear about someone using a common sense approach I will often want to find out much more about how this person thinks.

How to apply this knowledge ties up well with my other post on immersion and success models. In that post I describe that if you want to achieve an outcome that someone else can, then you need to immerse yourself in the reality of that particular person. Having done that you can then apply their "success model" effectively.

So if you want to produce results using someone's "common sense" you can apply the same principles. You must immerse yourself in that person's reality until your reality becomes much like theirs. Once you share similar realities you too should begin to see the solution to certain challenges as common sense.

Thursday, 16 August 2007

Why Immersion is the Essential Factor to Any Success Model

If you have read a lot on how to achieve any particular skillset then you will probably have come across a lot of different advice.

Some advice is very simple and effective. If, however, you are like me then you will have found that producing the results you want using one piece of advice alone is rarely enough.

One way of explaining this is that the advice comes from the author's "map" of the world or reality. This means that his model (or advice) will make perfect sense in the context of his reality, however, it may not make sense (or at least be as effective) in the context of yours.

This is why when you read a short article with a title like "5 steps to financial abundance", although it could be accurate, it will probably not be enough for you to achieve as larger goal as financial abundance. This is because you are not interpreting the steps from the same context as that of the author's.

In order to effectively copy someone's strategy for achieving a particular outcome it takes more than just listening to a brief description of how they believe it works.

What you really need to do to achieve that outcome is to change your reality to that of someone who has achieved your goal. This takes more than just copying someone's success model, which is by definition only a simplification of reality. In order to achieve your goal you must immerse yourself in the reality of those people who have already achieved it. Ways of doing this include reading many books on your area of interest, studying biographies of those who have achieved what you want and meeting up with these people and discussing in detail the tiny distinctions that allows them to produce their unique results.

It may be that you are already applying these principles in some parts of your life. I know I do when I play sport, because as I spend more time with team mates who are better than me I adopt their different strategies for producing better results.

The challenge is to take this knowledge and apply it consciously to achieve the goals you want faster than you ever have before.

Wednesday, 15 August 2007

Think Big To Enrich Your Life

I've made a pretty fundamental observation of the most successful and fulfilled people in the world.

This observation is that they all think BIG.

It's so simple but it's something that really makes a big difference.

Thinking on a large scale makes so many daily worries and tiny issues not worth worrying about.

If you were trying to get a unique new message out to millions of people would it ruin your day if you forgot to buy something from the supermarket?

If you were developing a product that could change the lives of millions would you care if someone gave you a nasty look while you were walking around town?

The chances are that you wouldn't, because your big idea eclipses so many of the small challenges of your daily life.

What concept excites you more - earning £10,000 in a year to pay your bills, or earning £10,000,000 to live the life you want to live?

Thinking big solves so many challenges and really enriches your life.

What would you enjoy getting out of bed for - punching numbers into a computer all day or working to touch the lives of millions?

Monday, 6 August 2007

Thank God for Close-Minded People

I hope the following example inspires a positive change in you like it did in me.

I have a friend who is very close-minded about his beliefs and sometimes it frustrates me when he won't listen to my theories. I know in my heart that they are right yet he still won't give me the time of day to discuss them.

Having taken the time to reflect on this experience I have learned that this situation has been very useful for me for two reasons.

One is that it reminds me that my beliefs may in fact be wrong no matter how confident I am about them or how fundamental I believe they are.

Secondly this can be a very useful exercise for developing my beliefs. When I argue with a very close-minded person I find that I am really challenged to justify what I believe in. As I do this I either learn that certain beliefs are horribly wrong or I develop my reasoning to either confirm or produce more accurate beliefs.

It's a win-win situation.

This is one hell of a reframe from when I used to argue with close-minded people and get frustrated when they wouldn't believe what I believed.

Another positive side-effect is that because of this positive outlook I am likely to discuss my beliefs calmly and therefore with greater clarity, making my arguement more persuasive than it would have been before.

Sunday, 5 August 2007

How to Practise What We Preach

I have just finished reading through my journal from several months ago and noticed some very interesting things.

Whilst reading my journal I noticed that I have some very well developed intellectual beliefs about how the world works and how I should act in life. For example, I know that logically nothing makes more sense than dedicating myself to the greater good, yet when I evaluate my current life I see that I am not always living congruently with this belief.

What is going on here?

I believe intellectual models of the world and a person's beliefs can be two seperate entities. This explains how some people act in completely different ways to how they say they act.

This also explains how there are some people who preach different self-help techniques yet apply none of them themselves, or how someone who teaches people how to be wealthy can have their company go bankrupt.

So how can you be sure you're not falling into a similar trap of self-delusion?

This answer is so incredibly simple.

1. Read back on the latest "self-help technique" you preached, wealth building tip you suggested, advice you gave to a friend, journal entry about how you should live, etc.
2. Honestly evaluate whether you are truly living to those words
3. If you're not, then carry out your own advice
4. See what happens
5. If it works then you have the right to preach it and if it doesn't then you've just fine-tuned your model of reality.

I believe carrying out exercises like this are very important. When there is a large gap between our intellectual models of the world and our everyday actions then there is something incongruent about who we are. We are no longer true to ourselves and our quality of being suffers.

Saturday, 4 August 2007

How to Love What You Hate

This is a follow-up from my procrastination post.

The only trouble with the technique I just suggested is - what if you don't like to do what you have to do?

I think that if you don't like to do what you have to do it's because you're coming from an unresourceful perspective that I too find myself getting trapped in sometimes.

Physical exercise is a great example. We all know we should do it, but some of us just don't seem to enjoy it.

The real missing factor here is creativity and challenge.

Anything is enjoyable if we are creative enough and appreciate the challenge in something.

Some people love to exercise because they love the opportunity to beat their last record and grow.

Other people exercise because it's a great opportunity to socialise, for example by joining a sport's team or running club.

You think these guys have to beat themselves up to get out there and exercise?

These guys get annoyed if they miss a workout.

I genuinely believe that everything in life can be made enjoyable. Even if something seems painful, the challenge will help me to grow which I find very enjoyable.

Now the real challenge is conditioning myself to always look at things this way, because it's definately not in the human nature to do so.

Friday, 3 August 2007

How to Beat Procrastination

This is such a simple way of beating procrastination it's laughable.

The other day I wrote a comprehensive plan of things I wanted to do daily. The following day I found myself resisting wanting to follow through with what I had planned. I found this emotion amazing as another part of me knew that I loved to do all the things in my plan. After questioning myself I discovered that I was looking at the plan the wrong way.

Having made the plan I set myself up to feel "I HAVE to do this... and after this I HAVE to do that, etc." This subtle shift in attitude caused me to resist doing the very things I loved. Once I became aware of this it only took a second before I reminded myself that I in fact enjoyed doing these things and began following through with my plan straight away.

My point is that procrastination is caused by a sequence of thoughts. So all you need to do to beat procrastination is to change your thought patterns.

In my case procrastination comes when I feel I NEED to do something. I'm now very aware of this emotion and when I sense it arise I instantly shake myself out of the thought pattern and find genuine reasons why I enjoy what I WANT to do.

Try and recognise your strategy for inducing procrastination and make a real effort to break the habit. Become acutely aware as to when this emotion arises, then instantly destroy it. This is one of the biggies that could change you life.

Thursday, 2 August 2007

You Get What You Feel You Deserve

This is probably one of the simplest and most valuable concepts for producing results in your life.

Have you noticed how some people just seem to get amazing things, sometimes without even trying?

For example there will be that guy who can just walk up to a group of strangers and instantly be their new best friend without doing anything special.

You may also know some people who always have a lot of money yet don't seem that different from you. Or similarly, you may know someone who has the exact same job as you, yet he seems to have much less money than you, even though he never seems to buy anything.

This is for the simple reason that people generate the results that they deep-down feel they deserve. If someone feels they deserve to have a lot of money, then they will find ways of getting it.

Take someone like Donald Trump who clearly feels he deserves billions. If he woke up one day with only millions he would sweat blood until earning his billions back. It may seem like a big challenge, but somehow you just know that he will pull it off.

This is the power of getting what you feel you deserve.

So how can you use this concept?

Find reasons why you deserve what you want.

It's that simple.

If, for example, you want a beautiful and loving girlfriend or wife, find reasons why you deserve one. It's literally as easy as getting a paper and pen and writing the question "why do I deserve this?" and then writing a big list why.

Now repeat this process until in your gut you know it's what you deserve.

If you can't think of anything, then start doing some things that would allow you to feel as though you deserve it.

Give it a try