THE PSYCHOLOGY OF ACHIEVEMENT
By: Brian Tracy
Why are some people more successful than others?
There are 6 basic requirements of Success
Why is it that few people can be described as Successful?
We live in the richest and the most abundant society in all of human history and still the vast majority of men and women say that they lead lives of quite desperation. They are unhappy with their work, families, health. They smoke or drink too much, worry about their bills all the time. Less than 5% achieve any real lasting success in their lives and at least 80% of all people reaching retirement age in our society end up flat, broke, penniless dependent upon others for survival.
What are the reasons for this lack of Success?
We are born as the most complex organisms of this universe that we have no directions for getting the most out of ourselves. We spend the most of our lives trying to get the very best out of ourselves and it takes about 30, 40 or 50 years to do this and when we finally figure out we realize that we are in our 50’s or 60’s.
The purpose of this course is to help people get the maximum performance out of them. Starting with
THE LAWS FOR OPERATING THE HUMAN MACHINE
Some basic principles are:
1. Law of Control: says that we feel good about ourselves to the exact degree to which we feel that we are in control of our lives, and that we feel bad about ourselves to the exact degree to which we feel we are controlled by outer circumstances.
It is an essential law in understanding how we function and many psychologists today have come to the conclusion that the degree of control that we feel we have is in direct proportion to the amount of mental health that we have. Psychologists call this internal and external locus of control.
Control begins first of all with our thoughts and that controls our feelings and then leads to how we perform our actions.
2. Law of Accident: Any fact that there is no way that we can control what happens to all of us. Every thing just happens by accident i.e., it’s not what you know, it’s who you know.
A vast majority of us live our lives by this law. People have no goals beyond the short term and thus have no plans. They do not really feel that they are in control of their own destiny and they just think that somehow things will work out right for them. People living by this law can have no sense of control or mental well being.
3. Law of Cause and Effect: For every effect in our lives there is a specific cause. If we do not like the effects it is up to us to enjoy and or change the causes. There is no such thing as an accident.
Everything happens in our lives by law and not by chance and it is our duty to understand the laws to control our destiny. Law of Cause and effect is completely consistent with the law of control.
In addition to law of cause and Effect and Law of Control, there are three other mental laws:
a. Law of Belief: Whatever you believe with feeling becomes your reality. That you are the some total result of all of your belief system.
Our mind works in such a way that it edits out everything that is contrary to what we believe, so having positive experiences indicates that we have confidence or ability in a particular area and vice versa.
b. Law of Expectation: Whatever we expect with confidence becomes our own self fulfilling process. We are continually acting as our own fortune tellers. The three areas where expectations affect our results are:
§ Expectations our parents had of us.
§ Expectations that we have of our children
§ Expectations that we have of ourselves.
c. Law of Attraction: Each human being is a living magnet. We radiate our
thought energy and that we invariably attract into our lives the people and
circumstances that harmonize with our dominant thoughts.
If we wish to attract different people, we have to change the content of our conscious mind.
ATITUDE: A positive mental attitude is an absolutely indispensable prerequisite for success.
§ Attitude comes from our expectations about outcomes.
§ If we expect things to turn out well we have positive attitude and vice versa.
§ What winners have as a habit of doing is manufacturing their own positive expectations in advance of the event.
§ One of the keys to a successful life is to always expect everything to turn out to be a success.
§ Our expectations come from our beliefs about ourselves and the world around us.
§ Our beliefs are based on our self concept which is the controlling factor on our performance.
§ Our self concept is the combination of all the ideas, thoughts, pictures, experiences, and things happened to us in the course of our lives that comes together to form a composite image of our selves to be.
This brings us to two very important mental laws:
The key to success is to take full control of the conscious mind on what we want to accomplish and keep our minds focused on the things we desire rather the things we fear.
PROCESS OF CHANGING OUR THOUGHTS
Every human being is in a continuous state of becoming.
Psychology of becoming says that nobody stays the same for any period of time. We are continually evolving and growing as human beings and more, better, different and that we are always changing in the direction of our ideal self.
Our job in this process is to keep very clearly in our minds the people we would like to be and the goals we want to accomplish.
There are 2 habits of mind that must be clearly avoided:
a. Homeostasis: Condition of clinging to the status coil. It is the unwillingness to let go of the past.
b. Psychosclearosis: It is the hardening of the attitude. A case that sets in when we become rigid in our thinking and we do not allow any kind of change into our lives.
These two prohibit our growth.
It only takes 10 to 20 days to develop new habit parents an we do it by thinking and talking and acting continuously in the manner consistent with the person we would like to be.
There are several techniques to do that:
§ Form a clear mental picture of how we would be and how we would behave with the new characteristics and attributes. There are three methods to accelerate personal development:
i. Affirmation: By using affirmations, our potential is literally unlimited. Affirmations are positive, assertive statements. It brings to an additional law of subconscious activity that whatever the conscious mind believes and accepts, the subconscious mind immediately goes to work to bring our feelings into reality.
Our thoughts have an ordinate power and not only that our thoughts have a powerful impact on the people around us.
Affirmations have to be couched in 3 P’s:
o Personal: It has to be “I” rather than “you”
o Positive: Instead of saying “I will not smoke” say “I am a non smoker anymore”.
o Present Tense: Instead of saying “I will earn an x number of $ next year, say “I earn x number of $”. Every thing has to be in the present tense.
ii. Visualization: It is the most powerful, single capability that the human being has. It is the ability to form a vivid mental picture of the things that we want to have. Whatever you can picture in your imagination you can accomplish.
iii. Act the part of the person that we would like to be: if we feel in a certain way, we tend to act that way. If we do not feel enthusiastic, we can act our way into feeling that if we pretend to have those characteristics, within a few minutes we will start to feel happy and enthusiastic.
§ The last thing that is in your subconscious before sleeping is the first thing that comes to your mind in the morning.
§ The first hour in the morning is the golden opportunity for reprogramming your subconscious.
§ It is good to read something really inspirational in the first 20 to 30 minutes after waking up.
§ In 21 days you can adopt one positive characteristic in your habit parent that you do not currently have.
§ We are influenced by everything that we see, read or hear. We are surrounded by suggestive environment.
§ The reference that we associate with plays a key role in making or destroying our personality.
§ The key to all of this is self discipline.
§ Live in the now, do not worry about tomorrow and do not think about the past.
§ Continually feed your mind with books, tapes, seminars, courses and rich mental nutrition.
§ The only thing over which one has complete and full control is his thoughts.
4 Techniques to Dramatically Bring about Personality Changes
1. Written Programming Technique: Consists of writing out the goals very clearly in a specific and precise language. The very best time to do this is the first thing in the morning. Change your behavior for the entire day by visualizing the upcoming events of the day and see very clearly how you wish to behave and carry yourself joining those events.
2. Quick Programming Technique: Whenever you think of an upcoming event, flash a clear mental picture in your mind of yourself completely relaxed, calm, and competent and in control in that situation and the actual situation will correspond almost identically to that mental picture. This is called Mental Rehearsal.
Top sales people use this technique prior to every presentation and every proposal.
3. Sports Programming Technique: Entails training athletes to go through their entire sports routine in advance in their mind. The ways to use this technique are:
o Learn the sports so as to understand the performance.
o Sit and lie down, relax deeply and get a clear mental picture of perfect performance.
4. Standard Programming Technique: It can be used to develop new habit parents of thought and action to achieve the goal.
o Write out the goals in present tense, personal affirmations on a paper.
o Take deep breaths and relax
o Read the goal and repeat it for 3 to 5 times.
o Close your eyes and get a clear mental picture of yourself of actually doing the things and enjoying the results.
o The degree of emotion that you create in your mental picture determines the degree to which the subconscious mind is activated to go to work and to bring the goals and objectives into reality.
· It is perhaps the most vital and important skill of all peak performance and high achievements.
· Various studies agree on one single fact that Every peak performing man and woman is an obsessive goal setter, they are motivated by compelling internal goals and surprisingly enough any individual even a person who has not achieved at a high level ever before starts becoming a systematic habitual goal setter and writes, thinks and talks about their goals on an ongoing basis.
· We accomplish more in a short time with goals than it takes us years without them.
· While setting goals, they should be in harmony with each other, not contradictory.
7 Questions to set the goals:
Q1. What are the five things that you value the most in life?
Q2. In 30 seconds or less, write down the three most important goals in your life?
Q3. What would you do if you win a million dollar in the lottery tomorrow?
Q4. What will you do or how would you spend your time if you learn today that you only have 6 months to live?
If the answers of 1, 2 and 4 are contradictory then you should start looking at your goals very closely as these goals should be incorporated in your day to day activities.
Q5. What have you always wanted to do but been afraid to try it?
Q6. In looking back overall the things that you have done in your life, what type of activities, doing what sort of things give you your greatest feelings of importance?
This tells you where your major area of excellence is.
Q7. Imagine that you received one wish from a genie and with this one wish you can accomplish anything in the whole world, what one great thing would you dare to dream if you knew you couldn’t fail?
It is important that you set one objective in your life that you use the methods discussed above to achieve success in one critical goal.
Steps in Goal Setting:
1. The first step in all goal setting is DESIRE, an intense desire or need is the great motivator that impels us towards our goals.
2. The second step is BELIEF, one of the most important elements in goal attainment and you must absolutely belief beyond the shadow of doubt that you have the ability to achieve the goal that you set for yourself.
3. Make your goals challenging and aimed at your next level of attainment. Goals should not be easy or impossible, but they should be challenging.
4. Sit down and make a list of all the advantages that you will enjoy after achieving your goals. The more reasons you have to achieve a goal, the more motivated you will be towards its achievement.
5. Next step is to analyze your position. Analyze where you are right now and measure where you will be after attainment of the goal that you set.
6. Set a deadline. You should know at every step in the way of achieving the goal that how close you are to it.
7. Identify the obstacles that are in the way of achieving the goal. Once you identify and write them down, they become very small.
8. This step is to clearly identify the knowledge you will require in order to accomplish your goal. Any goal may require additional knowledge for its attainment.
9. You should clearly identify the people, groups and organizations whose cooperation and assistance you will need in order to attain your goal. This is an important step and introduces three more laws
a. Law of sowing and reaping: or law of return, which says that whatever you sow also shall you reap. It also says that you only reap as a result of having sown in previous periods.
b. Law of compensation: says that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. While analyzing the people and organization whose assistance is required by us, we have to think what kind of services we can provide them in return.
c. Law of service: In order to achieve any kind of lasting glory or distinction in life, we will have to serve our fellowmen with goods and services that are of value and importance to them.
10. Next step is to take all the details that you have identified in the last three steps and to make a plan. Make a plan which is complete in every detail. Write out all the activities that you will be engaged in, in order to accomplish your goal. After making the plan review and rewrite it over and over again until it is a perfect plan.
11. This step is to get a clear mental visualization and image of your goal as already attained.
12. Finally back your plan with determination and resolve to never give up. The best plan on earth will not work unless you do.
The two things about persistence are:
§ No matter how perfect your plan and how pure your heart is, every single individual who has ever tried to accomplish anything outside the ordinary has suffered setbacks and obstacles over and over again as they have moved towards their goals.
§ Remember that self discipline is persistence in action. Your persistence is your measure of your faith in your self.
Doubling Your Brain Power
Law of Use: it says with any human faculty we either use it or loose it. The
creative faculty however is never totally lost. It goes underground and become a
latent talent or capability of the human mind.
How do we stimulate superconcious creativity?
It is stimulated by one of the following three things
1. Clear specific goals to which we are totally committed.
2. Pressing problems which are extremely important to be resolved.
3. Relevant questions that we ask of ourselves and of other people.
Six techniques for stimulating creativity
Using these techniques will double and triple the quality of results and your effectiveness.
1. Solitude: means going into the silence sitting down perfectly, quietly, still and doing absolutely nothing for 30 to 60 minutes. It’s the most beautiful and powerful way to get answers to our problems. The initial 20 to 25 minutes are the most difficult but then your mind becomes absolutely calm and relaxed. And later at a certain point your mind will begin to flow like a river of ideas and answers to your most pressing problems
2. Deep Relaxation and meditation: Sit very very quietly, close your eyes, breathe deeply and count down from 50 to 1 or 100 to 1 with closed eyes and just completely relax and let your mind go calm. During this period ideas will flow into your mind. After this you will come naturally into full alertness and as you open your eyes the ideas that you were seeking will float into your mind.
3. Surrounding yourself with a natural environment: A passive method that has been used for many years by successful men and women in history.
Going for a walk quietly, sitting by the ocean is one of the most powerful ways. The more close we go to the nature, the more powerfully our mind starts performing.
Another way is to listen to classical music. Laughing and vigorous aerobic exercise also stimulate the super conscious mind.
Three active ways of stimulating the super conscious mind which are taught to executives of large corporations are:
4. Mind Storming (Brain Storming): One of the most powerful techniques for people to find solutions to their problems.
It consists of sitting down quietly with a pad of paper and taking your major problem or goal and writing at the top of the pad in the form of questions and try to write 20 different answers to one question. Also write the opposite of the answers and in the course of writing the answers, may be at 17th, 18th, or sometimes the 20th answer sounds most perfect. The best time to do this is the first thing in the morning. Take at least one answer that you have generated and implement it immediately.
5. Systematic Problem Solving Method: Derives from our research into the characteristics of genius. It says that highly creative men and women have a tendency to approach every problem as though there were a logical, workable solution. They boldly look into the problem and say now what the solution to it is.
The second step is that they control the use of language from negative to positive and clearly define the situation in writing. The next step is that they ask about the possible causes of the situation and itemize them one after the other in a list. After this clearly identify all the possible solutions. Again itemize them all without pre judgment and try to determine what is right before determining what is possible. From this point on they only think about the solutions. After this they make a decision once all possible combinations of solution are analyzed. After this come assigning specific responsibilities to implement the decision and the final underlining point in systematic solution solving is to set a deadline.
6. Brain Storming: The key elements are as follows:
The ideal number of people to do brain storming is 4 to 7.
The ideal time is about 30 to 45 minutes.
The main focus or concentration should be Idea Generation.
The leader should encourage all to contribute as much as possible.
Make the questions for brain storming as specific and clear as possible.
Set a deadline on the session.
Finally according to the author, the purpose of life is to develop loving relationships. The way that we develop loving relationships is by learning to love and accept ourselves unconditionally and totally as valuable human beings. Love only grows by sharing and the more that we give away the more you get back.