Monday, December 14, 2015

How to Improve Your Mind and Change Your Life

How to Improve Your Mind and Change Your Life

Hello, and thanks for opening this.

I’m thankful for all you’ve been doing this week to help people around you, and to make this world a better place. Keep up the good work.

First, some housekeeping for this week.

You’ve got a new ebook up there in the library and on Amazon, iTunes and everywhere else: The Strangest Secret: How to Think Business Success

So get your copy today, either as a free download because you’re a member, or a low-cost special report. The audio is linked within the ebook, or you may have heard it as a podcast this last week.

We’re still in the middle of a drive to get more people to join our review team. There was a great response last week and we’ve still got a few spots open. This is your chance to vote on the covers, titles, subtitles, layout, and content of everything we publish. You’ll be getting advance copies of everything that comes out, all so you can give your honest feedback, even if its just an attaboy.

I’ve backed off any idea of trying to get three ebooks out each week. This is possible in a very boring, perfect week. But nobody has perfect weeks, especially in the holiday season.

We also want these books to have a chance to get reviews and start showing up better in Amazon’s algorithms.

Currently, I’m averaging just over three podcasts per week and a single ebook. This next week, I have to create my first bundle, which will be the first five books with all their audio. So that may take some time, far more than my usual workload.

If you’re on the review team, look for a copy in your inbox in the middle of this coming week.

Next, I’ve got a couple of things which my muse was nagging me about, and told me to tell you:

– – – –


How to Improve Your Mind and Change Your Life

Anyone can change their mind. Most people do so daily. Some of these changes are hard, others easy.

Most of us have been stuck into mental habits which don’t change easily.

Our habitual thinking is difficult to change, because we’ve been practicing these habits for years and years, every day.

The trick to making major changes is by having an epiphany – which is nothing more than simply changing one of the corner-stone blocks that a habit is built on.

Try this idea on for size: “We become what we think about.”

Consider how that applies to people around you. Do they look like what they’ve been thinking about? Are they run-down and a bit sad? Or are they optimistic and cheerful?

Those are their thoughts at work.

Now try it for yourself. Go and find a mirror. Look directly into your own eyes. Say, “I feel happy, I feel healthy, I feel terrific!”

Even if you don’t put any feeling into it, you’ll feel something different. Now try it again, and pretend to really feel that what you are saying is absolutely true.

Consider that when you walk away from that mirror, you have every chance of being cured of any discomfort you’ve been carrying around.

Consider the idea that by saying this, you might be handed a check for a huge sum of unexpected income.

Go ahead, stand up straight as you can. Really act the part as you say the line. Remember – look deep into your own eyes.

Now that feeling this time was a bit stronger, wasn’t it. You may have even started smiling.

William James, called the father of American psychology, said that a person can change their attitude at any time simply by acting the way they want to feel. The attitude then changes to match the action.

This means that if a person wanted better health, to actually feel terrific at the beginning of every day, they only needed to do this little practice above.

Multi-millionaire W. Clement Stone said this statement daily. He lived to be 100 years old.

If you consider that “We become what we think about” is true, then you will be able to see subtle changes in your life around you as you start corralling your thoughts and begin to control them.

One of the next points you may want to consider is Goals. Do you have one? Most people don’t. Studies have been done of students who graduated high school and then were checked up on a few decades later. Those students who had written goals were found to have achieved them, often within just a few years of graduating. They also had higher salaries on average, and better jobs. The rest were in average jobs and settled into the hum-drum struggle for survival so common these days.

The trick with goals is to set one you know you can make, and then make it. Then set another goal that’s a little higher, and then make it. Go from goal to goal to goal from here on out.

You’ve just become successful.

Earl Nightingale often defined success as “having and following a worthy ideal.” When you set whatever ideal or goal you want to reach, you then start working toward it.

And you are then successful every day from here on out.

Another trick to goals is to write it on a card and review it every morning on waking, and evening just before sleep. This keeps it fresh in your mind. If you want your goal to arrive faster, then also get the feeling of already having achieved that goal. A feeling of satisfaction, of a job well done, of accomplishment.

If you want, you can put it on a second card to carry with you. Review it at lunch, any spare moment.

You just quietly keep your own goal in the front of your mind and work on it every day, and even when you sleep.

The next point to changing your mental habits is to start thinking.

Most people have their thinking on automatic. They don’t exercise their mind unless they have to. Artists and writers and imaginative sorts are this way because they practice thinking every hour of every day. They are always coming up with new approaches to things.

Anyone can learn to do this. It just takes practice.

OK, try this: Go to bed a little earlier, and then get up an hour earlier. Go ahead and take your shower, get dressed, and sit down with your beverage of choice at a table with a legal pad.

Write your goal at the top. Now, start writing ideas which come into your mind of things you could do to achieve that goal.

There are two warnings here:

1. Thinking is hard at first. You get around this by writing down everything that comes into your mind.
2. Most of your ideas won’t be any good. But as you keep writing, you’ll eventually get some really, really good ones.

And that’s the point. The more you think, the better you get at it.

If you can get 20 ideas in an hour, for five days a week, you’ve then created a hundred fresh ideas that week. Free. And you’ll probably find that your thinking carries on through your work day, and you’ll start getting more ideas as you go through your day.

The more ideas you come up with to improve things, the more you’re worth to the company. And the more you’re worth, the more likely someone will reward you for your extra work.

Thinking is profitable.

If you do these four things, then you can remarkably change your life in a surprisingly short time:

1. Consider “We become what we think about” to be true.

2. Start each day with a positive mental attitude.

3. Decide on a goal and keep this in mind constantly.

4. Practice thinking at the beginning of every day.

You’ve just changed the cornerstone of all your mental habits. As you keep this up, you’ll develop new mental habits which will eventually crowd out older, less optimal ones.

And meanwhile, you’ll feel better each day and have something exciting to work for. You’ll have fresh ideas to try out, that might even get you a bonus or raise in pay.

At least, your life will become more interesting.

– – – –

The second thing to tell you today is about your happiness.

You can be happy all day long, and all night too. But most people don’t set their life up to be this way.

Their life is filled with all sorts of “now I’m supposed to’s” which aren’t necessarily unpleasant, but aren’t the highlight of their day, either.

As a person goes through life, they pretty much create their life the way they think it should be. Then they surround themselves with clothes and cars and houses and what-not, which then constantly remind them of what they think their life should be.

Good or bad, what they experience through their life is more or less exactly how they think things are and should be.

This is whether they know the four points we just covered or not.

But you can use this criteria to make your life a “holiday on Earth” as Earl Nightingale called it.

In the Bible, you can read that “as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.” Also, that “the Kingdom of Heaven is within you.” You’ve also probably seen people who by their actions (or usually, inactions) have made their own lives into a living hell.

These all boil down to that same point: you can control what you think, and you can control how your life turns out. Study after study after study shows that there is no such thing as being permanently poor, or stuck in the middle class, or destined to be rich – just because a person was born to poor parents is not an excuse for staying poor. Factually, some of our most astonishing success stories come from people who started out in this exact scene. Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich is filled with such examples.

In our day, both Bill Gates and Warren Buffett came from decidedly middle-class backgrounds, as did most of the top 20 people on Forbe’s richest people in the U.S. list. Only one person on that top 20 list that I know of was actually born into a well-off family, and he’s also the only one who graduated from any Ivy League university.

Your life is what you make it.

But do you enjoy the process? It’s long been said that the journey is more enjoyable than the end. Kids in the afternoon on Christmas Day are far less enthused than they were the week leading up to it. There is often an emotional let-down once a big goal is achieved.

Of course the answer is to have your next goal ready and waiting, just as authors will be taking notes for their next book while their working on the current one. Immediately after you wrap up a big project, you start on the next.

But the discussion today is whether you are enjoying every single day as much as you can.

You choose your attitude, as we’ve gone over. And you choose your surroundings. You also choose what work you do and what goal you want to achieve.

The question is: do all these choices add up to living a calm, cheerful, expectant life?

You don’t have to be excited constantly or exhilerated. Factually, these will wear you out if you keep them up too long. Exhausted adrenals is how the medico’s describe it.

But a calm, steady approach to whatever you want to accomplish will get you there probably fastest. Like that old parable where the turtle won in a race against the rabbit.

For every decision you have to make about what you’re going to do next, and how you’re going to do it, try answering these two questions:

1. Will this make my life simpler?
2. Will this bring me more peace?

I’m not saying here that you can’t get rich quickly, if that is what you have on your goal list. Or that your riches have to be money. But I do say that whatever you do in life, you can enjoy every day thoroughly as you go through it.

Every day can be rewarding.

Take a look at your surroundings. Would it help you to tidy up every day and put things back where you expect to find them? Would it help you to practice smiling so you could be more cheerful about whatever you have to do next? Are there things on your walls or on your shelves or as decorations which remind you of things that you don’t like? Are what you watch for entertainment or “news” actually making you more inspired or motivated?

Taking actions to improve your surroundings could help you live a better quality life every day. Cutting out those things, or donating unnecessary or useless items out of your life, can help you become less distracted and focus better on your goals.

In your approach to work, are you involved in actions which are more depressing than rewarding? Are you learning daily, or just going through a dull routine? Are you constantly working out ways that your work could be made more efficient? Are you challenging yourself to improve the value you give to others on a daily basis?

The key point to remember is that everything you do should add up to accomplishing your own self-set goal. Every action you take should bring you more peace or satisfaction.

You have indicators of this every day. The feeling of a job well done. The smile on a customer’s or co-worker’s face. And of course, the feeling at the end of a day that you’ve successfully done everything you set out to accomplish that day – and that all those actions were needed and vital and valuable.

People around you appreciate people who are calm, cheeful, and get their jobs done effectively. They like being treated with respect, just as you do. They appreciate kind words and supportive suggestions.

It’s definitely true that we become what we think about. And how we feel about that, is found in the actions we take and how we take them.

Try this out for yourself this coming week. Keep you goal in front of you. Work only at the vital actions you must do in order to achieve that goal. Do all that you can each day and do everything as best you can. Keep as cheerful as you can, by smiling regularly.

By the end of the week, review that week’s work and see how you did. Then you can set your actions for the next week and see if you can improve on what you did the week before.

Your life is up to you, and each day in it can be lived to the fullest. You can have your own heaven on earth by how and what you do while you’re here.

– – – –

Thanks again for opening this email or listening to this week’s podcast.

You are appreciated more than you know. And I thank you for all the help you’ve given me and others this week.

I hope you’ve found some helpful tips you can use.

If you like this email, reply back and let me know. If you like this podcast, leave a review on iTunes or a comment on the show notes. I always answer my emails and work to keep up with the comments.

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Until next week, live your best.

I’ll see you then.


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