The Mirror Technique for Releasing the Subconscious
The toughest problem that confronts most people is a lack of money. While I have heard of people finding bundles of $1,000 bills by using this Mind Stuff, I think that money comes as a result of combining Mind Stuff and energized action. Certainly your thought can attract money, and once it appears on the horizon, your thought will lead you to ways and means of acquiring it. While I was in the investment banking business, I knew many people of large means and found that every one of them had a “money consciousness.” They thought wealth, and their coming to possess it was quite similar to my own experience related earlier in this book.
It is always the same technique, no matter what your desires. Get the picture of what you want and keep telling yourself that you’re going to get it. But don’t think it is going to come to you if you merely indulge in a period of watchful waiting. Go to work, always keeping your goal in mind, and start saving. Every dollar you save out of your weekly paycheck is a step nearer to the fortune that is going to be yours. Consider it as such and save as many dollars as you can. The more you save, the faster you will build that fortune.
Then put your savings out at interest, invest them where they will work advantageously for you, not by gambling or playing the market, but in securities of proven worth, in real estate, or in a business of your own. As your investment grows under your money consciousness, you’ll be agreeably surprised to find that the more you have, the more you accumulate. Furthermore, you’ll find it exciting and stimulating. Opportunities for profitable investments will come to you from many unexpected and unknown sources, but don’t make the mistake that many do and follow will-o’-the-wisps; get sound advice before you invest a cent.
I recall one woman and her daughter who in twenty-five years accumulated more than half a million dollars, largely represented by apartment houses and store buildings. The woman’s husband died shortly after World War I, leaving her with a fairly large-sized house. She was at her wits’ end how to support herself and her daughter, who had just finished high school. She had had no previous experience in holding a job or carrying on a business, but she could cook and keep house.
One morning the idea came to her to take in roomers and boarders.
That was the start, and success came rapidly. Within two years she sold the house and the business, realizing a handsome profit, and then bought a much larger house directly across the street from a well-known men’s club, believing that with her high-grade cooking she could get much of the club’s overflow business. She did – and prospered; even though she employed plenty of help, no task was too lowly for her in a rush period.
A retired elderly business man who had taken up his home at her place one day suggested that she open a tea room. He said he would provide the necessary funds to fix up a place. She found the top floor of an office building in the business section and opened the tea room. She herself served as hostess, and her daughter was cashier during rush hours, and at other times helping in the kitchen and directing her employees, she soon made the tea room a favorite eating-place for business men.
That led to her purchase of a beach hotel through a mortgage company, and also to the profitable sale of the tea room.
All of this time she was investing in securities, and before long she had accumulated a nest egg of $25,000, which went as the first payment on a run-down apartment house. Remodeling under her direction made the building remarkably attractive, and under her management it became very popular. With the great results achieved, her reputation came to the attention of an insurance company that owned other apartment houses, and she was offered the management of a number of them on a salary and a percentage basis. As her capital grew, her opportunities to buy apartment houses followed, and the last time I heard of this woman with the “money-consciousness,” she owned not only apartment houses in this particular city, but had also purchased an apartment house at a nearby beach resort. Before, it had operated only during the summer months, but now she has paying customers all year round.
It has long been my observation that a person with a workable idea seldom has any difficulty in getting money to finance themselves. However, they must be thoroughly “sold” on the idea themselves before they can convince others to lend them money. If you contemplate having your own business, think about this and use the science of belief, for you’ll find someone with money who will help you.
Great fortunes are not built in a day, but come as a result of dollars adding themselves to those you already have or to those you earn and save. But if you want a fortune, you must put your mind and energies to work. It will come – just use the magic of believing.
Here’s another case where by using this science, success followed in rapid order – in less than ten years. A corner druggist went into bankruptcy. The fixtures were owned by the owner of the building, a man of considerable wealth, and most of the stock by a wholesale druggist. A young pharmacist heard about the location, but had no funds with which to proceed. Finally the wholesaler and the landlord got together, and the young fellow sold himself to both of them. The landlord, anxious to keep the place occupied, agreed to finance the young fellow for several months and, with necessary guarantees to the wholesaler, the place was reopened. His wife helped behind the counter and at the fountain, and the business began to grow.
For a long time the young druggist had been interested in a preparation which he thought would help people, but he had never had the funds to finance himself. One day he decided to talk with the owner of the building. So thoroughly did he believe in his plan that he had no trouble in convincing the owner, who organized a company for the young fellow and put up $5,000 to start. For months the preparation was bottled in the basement of the druggist’s rented home during evenings after the store was closed. People began to buy it in increasing quantities, and the business began to expand.
It spread all over the country. Within a few years the landlord was not only paid off, but told me that his profit was better than $50,000. The young fellow’s income was now more than $100,000 a year; he and his company now own the building where he started.
In the midst of the so-called Depression, another man told me a remarkable story. He had been in clerical positions most of his life, but one day found himself on the PA payroll. To get help for some of her troubles, his wife had taken up with a religious organization that insisted upon tithing – that is, upon all members contributing 10 percent of their incomes.
One night his wife prevailed upon this man to accompany her to church, and then “the light hit me,” as he told me. Upon arriving home, “something” led him to search for an old formula which his father had used in preparing a lotion that could be used in all barber and beauty shops. Finding the formula, he began visiting junk shops and scrap piles to gather old bottles, which he took home and washed – and they became the first containers. This man went personally from barbershop to barbershop, from beauty parlor to beauty parlor. So convincing were his stories that before long he gave up his WPA job and opened up a plant of his own. He believed thoroughly that the tithing principle was responsible for his good fortune and for all of the ideas that came to him. His product became widely known throughout the country, but the man no longer supplied the trade personally – wholesalers pushed it, and he had his own sales organization as well. Another illustration of the magic of believing.
Thousands of people, particularly the Mormons, are firm believers in tithing, and, one of our greatest industrialists, who preached religion in his own organization and to outsiders, attributed much of his success to the practice of tithing. Another man who was very successful in the selling of baking machines and equipment credited his success entirely to his tithing. I can’t say whether this giving of one-tenth of their income to the church or to some religious or charitable organization had anything to do with these individuals’ success. But surely these tithers believe thoroughly in the efficacy of their practices, and who is there to say that it doesn’t work for them?
Everything on the material plane is first an idea, a thought in someone’s mind. A person selling a commodity is actually selling an idea – if it’s a machine, what the machine will do; if building material, how it can be used; if food, how nutritious and tasty it will be; and so on endlessly. Every business, every fortune is the outgrowth of an idea, the workings of someone’s imagination followed by action.
For years I watched the progress of the Jantzen Knitting Mills, makers of the famous Jantzen swimming suits. I have seen this manufacturing concern grow from practically nothing but an idea to an organization that circles the globe, and the success story of those behind it rivals any told by Horatio Alger. Several times I discussed this science with J. A. Zehntbauer, president of the company and chairman of its board, and with his permission I quote a letter he wrote to me:
“As you say, some people seem to possess an indefinable something which spurs them on to a successful and happy life, while others apparently work hard but without that something in their characters which brings them satisfaction and success.
“I have never tried systematically to develop this indefinable spirit, but believe it has been developed in my by my parents, and especially by my mother. There were four youngsters in our family, three boys and one girl. She promptly fought our inclination to say, ‘I can’t do this’ or ‘I can’t do that,’ by telling us that of course, we can do anything anyone else can do.
“All that was necessary was to tackle the job and keep on trying until it was mastered – and we would then be ready to tackle a bigger job – and to shrink from no job because it was great or unimportant. She was constantly resisting our inclination to complain or growl about anything. When we were in a complaining disposition, she would say, ‘Don’t grumble but think what a privilege it is to live in such a wonderful world. Instead of complaining, brace right up and keep smiling and enjoy the blessings at hand.’ “We have always been exceptionally happy, and I attribute it to the training of our parents. Mother, with her constant training, and Father corroborating her often by saying, ‘Always look on the bright side, never on the dark side of things.’ If one has not been fortunate enough to have the advantages of such influences, I can see it would take a great amount of self-discipline and training to bring one up to the point of view which, you clearly point out, is necessary to get the most out of life. Regardless of one’s present circumstances, I am sure the application of our science would be valuable to them.” In today’s business world, the competition is unusually keen. Naturally, the person best prepared for a certain position is in a far better situation to get it. I do not wish to give the idea that a man with neither education nor experience can step out of a job in an industrial plant and immediately take over the reins of a large corporation simply by using this science of belief. There may be exceptional cases of men doing this, but they are few and far between.
First things always come first, and if an individual feels entitled to a better job and has prepared themselves for it, then the use of this science can get them that job, or one even better.
A well-known executive once said to me, “The difficulty I see with most people seeking employment is that they are so wrapped up in themselves that they make no effort to impress their prospective employer with what they can do to help him, overlooking the fact that the other fellow is only interested in you to the extent that you can help him.” This may appear a cold-blooded attitude to some readers, but in the world of competition, self-interest is a reality that all job-hunters must face.
There is an old saying that if you do not follow your own thoughts, then you will follow the thoughts of the fellow who followed his. It means exactly what it says – it marks the difference between a leader and a follower. Those who don’t think and use their creative abilities are always being given orders by those who do. Unless you are willing to think, you will have to labor physically, and this means you will receive less pay for your work.
Therefore, visualize the kind of job you want. Use your cards and your constant affirmations until belief in your goal becomes a vital part of you, and you feel it in your blood, your bones, and in every tissue of your body. See yourself actually doing the things you visualize, and it will all work out, because every thought held constantly and persistently sooner or later materializes after its kind.
Everyone has taken a vacation trip at sometime or another. Did you ever stop to analyze the mental processes involved? First you got the idea of the trip. Then you decided where you would go.
Shortly you began to visualize yourself in the mountains, at the seashore, or visiting some new city. The vacation turned out as planned because you saw yourself doing it – before the trip actually became a reality. Could anything be clearer? Whatever you want to do, just apply the same principles, and you will get the same successful results.
You will remember the card device, which I explained in detail. Before explaining another device, which I call the mirror technique, let me tell you how I happened to discover this truly wonderful thing and how it can be used to bring quicker and more effective results.
Many years ago, I was the guest of a very wealthy man who owned many patents for logging and sawmill machinery. He invited a number of newspaper publishers, bankers, and industrial leaders to his suite in a prominent hotel to explain a new method he had devised for mill operations.
Liquor flowed freely, and soon the host himself was very much intoxicated.
Just before dinner was served, I saw him stagger into his bedroom and pull himself up abruptly before his dresser. Thinking that I might help him, I followed him to the door of his room. As I stood there, he grabbed the edge of the dresser top with both hands and stared into the mirror, mumbling as a drunken man sometimes does. Then his words began to make sense, and I moved back a little to watch. I heard him say: “John, you old son-of-a-gun, they tried to get you drunk, but you’re going to fool them. You’re sober, you’re sober, cold sober. This is your party, and you’ve got to be sober.”
As he kept repeating these words, while continuing to stare at his reflection in the mirror, I noticed a transfiguration taking place. His body was becoming more erect, the muscles of his face were tightening, and his drunken look was disappearing. The whole performance was over in perhaps five minutes.
In my experience as a newspaper man and a police reporter, I had observed many drunken people, but never had I seen such a rapid change. Not wanting him to know I had observed him, I made for the bathroom. When I got back to the dining room, I found our host at the head of the table. While his face was still a little flushed, to all appearances he was sober. At the end of the dinner he presented a very dramatic and convincing picture of his new plans. Not until long afterward, when I got a better understanding of the power of the subconscious mind, did I understand the science involved in transforming that obviously drunken man into a cold-sober host.
I have given the mirror technique to thousands of people, with some very unusual results. Over the years a large number of people came to me for help with their problems. A surprising number were women, and practically all of them started their stories with weeping spells. The first thing I did was to stand them before a full length mirror and have them take a good look at themselves; I made them look into their eyes and tell me what they saw there – crybabies or fighters? Their crying soon ceased, and those cases convinced me that a woman cannot weep while looking at herself in a mirror. Whether pride, shame, or repudiating the idea that they are weaklings stops them short, the fact remains that the tears stop flowing.
Many great orators, preachers, actors, and statesmen have used the mirror technique. According to Drew Pearson, Winston Churchill never made a speech of importance unless he made it before a mirror first. Pearson also declared that Woodrow Wilson employed the same technique. It’s what I call a supercharging method of stepping up the speaker’s subconscious forces so that when he appears before an audience, those forces flow out also and affect the listeners. By using the mirror in rehearsing the speech as you are going to deliver it, you are creating a picture of yourself, your words, the sound of your voice, and your sight of the audience, to which the immediate future is to bring reality. By looking into the mirror, you increase the mental vibrations by which the force and meaning of your words will quickly penetrate to your audience’s subconscious minds.
This mirror technique gives a possible clue to the power and personal magnetism of certain evangelists. I knew Billy Sunday in his heyday and often heard him preach, but in those days, knowing little or nothing about this Mind Stuff, I was puzzled as to how he and other great evangelists were able to influence people to such a remarkable degree.
However, we now have proof that Billy Sunday was versed in the use of the mirror technique; it was given by Eric Sevareid in his book Not So Wild a Dream, published in 1946. Mr. Sevareid tells how he as a young newspaper reporter secured an interview with Billy Sunday:
“He bounded about the hotel room, now peering intently out of the window, with one foot on the sill, now grasping the dressing-table firmly in both hands while lecturing his reflection in the mirror.”
Early on, one of the most outstanding insurance salesmen in America accepted the science of belief. He told me that he never called upon an important prospect without first giving his sales presentation in front of a mirror. His sales were phenomenal.
Every salesman has heard the statement, “If you can convince yourself, you can convince the other fellow” – which is basically true. Every great mass movement in history, from religious to military, has come about through an individual whose flaming belief in their own cause gave them the power to convert thousands of others. A person need not study psychology to know that enthusiasm is contagious and that someone bursting with it can readily transmit it to others. The mirror technique is a simple and effective method by which you can strengthen your belief in your own sales ability and thus intensify the power of your enthusiasm.
Whether we know it or not, we’re all engaged in selling something – if not our wares, then our personalities, services, or ideas. As a matter of fact, all human relationships are based upon selling of one kind or another, and we all engage in it whenever we try to persuade others to our way of thinking. Legally, a contract or agreement is based on a meeting of the minds, and unless you can get the other person to think your way, you do not get very far. But once the minds meet on the major issues, the rest is easy, and the name on the dotted line is but a matter of a few more moments.
When considered in the light of the science given in this book, the mirror technique becomes a master method by which the subconscious mind’s mighty forces can be employed to influence those you’re dealing with. During the “Depression” days, when I was working with many sales organizations to increase their business, I introduced this mirror method with some startling results.
I had mirrors fastened to the inside back doors in all of a pie-baking company’s trucks, so that when the driver-salesmen opened the doors to get their goods for delivery, those mirrors were the first thing they saw. I always admonished each man that before calling on a customer, he should determine how many pies he was going to sell, and then tell himself in the mirror that he would leave that number of pies on his customer’s counter. One driver told me that he had been trying to sell one woman restaurant owner for many months, but she had always refused to buy any pies.
Then he decided to try the mirror technique. That day he sold her ten pies. At the time he told me his story he was selling her an average of fifteen pies a day.
The mirror technique was used with great effectiveness in insurance companies, financial houses, rubber mills, automobile agencies, cookie manufacturing plants, and many other organizations with salesmen or production operators. In my own old organization, where we had to make a complete about-face to avert disaster, I first used this technique by placing a mirror in a back room of the office where the employees left their hats and overcoats. It was so placed that everyone had to see it when entering or leaving the room. At first I pasted strips of paper with such slogans as “We’re going to win,” “Nothing is impossible to an indefatigable mind,” “We’ve got the guts, let’s prove it,” “Let’s show the world we’re not licked and then go to town,” “How many are you going to sell today?” and a great many others. We later took to using soap to write the slogans directly on the face of the mirror.
Every morning a new slogan appeared, with the sole purpose of convincing our employees that they could get business, even though other firms in the same line were struggling to keep their doors open. Later this setup was augmented by a second mirror alongside the door-frame of the main door to the office, which would always be the last thing the salesmen saw as they left.
Subsequently I placed mirrors alongside calendar frames on the desks of all salesmen and executives. The startling thing about it was that during the worst of the “Depression” days the salesmen – and I mean all of them – trebled and quadrupled their incomes, and they maintained their progress ever since. A number of men whose monthly income probably never exceeded $300 in the best of times now averaged better than $1,000 a month. This may sound incredible, but it’s true. In my files are many letters from executives, salesmen, and others who have testified to the effectiveness of the mirror idea.
Now to outline the technique.
Stand in front of a mirror. It need not be full-length, but it should be large enough so that you can at least see your body from the waist up.
Those of you who have been in the Army know what it means to come to attention – stand fully erect, bring your heels together, pull in your stomach, keep your chest out and your head up. Now breathe deeply three or four times until you feel a sense of power, strength, and determination.
Next, look into the very depths of your eyes, tell yourself that you are going to get what you want – name it aloud so you can see your lips move and hear the words uttered.
Make a regular ritual of it, practice doing it at least twice a day, mornings and evenings – and you will be surprised at the results. You can augment this by writing with soap on the face of the mirror any slogans or key words you wish, so long as they are the key to what you have visualized before and want to see in reality. Within a few days, you will have developed a sense of confidence that you never realized you could build within yourself.
If you are planning to call on an exceptionally tough prospect or are proposing to interview the boss whom you may have previously feared, use the mirror technique and keep it up until you are convinced that you can make the proper presentation without any trepidation. And if you are called upon to make a speech, by all means practice before a mirror. Gesticulate, pound your fist on the palm of your other hand to drive home the arguments – use any other gestures that come naturally to you.
As you stand before the mirror, keep telling yourself that you are going to be an outstanding success and that nothing in this world is going to stop you. Does this sound silly? Don’t forget that every idea presented to the subconscious mind is going to produce its exact counterpart in objective life, and the quicker your subconscious gets the idea, the sooner your wish becomes a picture of power. Certainly it is not good business for you to tell anyone of the devices you employ, because scoffers might ridicule you and shake your confidence, especially if you are just beginning to learn the science.
If you are an executive or sales manager and want to put more push into your entire organization, teach your employees the mirror technique and see that they use it, just as many organizations now do.
Much has been written about the power of the eyes. The eyes are said to be the windows of the soul; they reveal your thoughts. They express you far more than you imagine. They permit others to “get your number,” as the saying goes. You will find, however, that once you start this mirror practice, your eyes will take on a power that you never realized you could develop (something that writers have referred to as a dynamic or fascinating power). This will give you that penetrating gaze that makes others think you are looking into their very souls. Sooner or later will come an intensity to bespeak the intensity of your thought, which people will begin to recognize. Emerson wrote that every man carries in his eye the exact indication of his rank. Remember that your own gradation or position in life is marked by what you carry in your eyes. So develop eyes that bespeak confidence. The mirror will help you.
This mirror technique may be used in many different ways, and with very gratifying results. If you have a poor posture, or are slovenly in your walk, you will find that practice before a full-length mirror will work wonders. Your mirror shows you the person others see when they look at you, and you can fashion yourself into any kind of person you would like them to see.
It is said that if you act the part you will become that part, and here again, there is no better way than rehearsing your act before the mirror. Vanity has no part in this science. Consequently, don’t use the mirror in a supercilious manner, but use it to build yourself into the person you wish to be.
If some of the world’s most outstanding men use this mirror technique to build themselves and increase their influence over other people, surely you can use it for your own special requirements.
Much has been written about intuition and hunches. Some psychologists claim that the ideas which come to us intuitively are not something “out of the blue,” but arise as a result of our accumulated knowledge or as echoes of something we may have seen or heard before. That may be true to some extent with chemists, inventors, and others who work by the trial-and-error method, using their prior knowledge and the results of previous experiments. But I believe that by far the greatest number of discoveries, illuminations, and inspired works come direct from the subconscious mind, and are not syntheses of previous knowledge that’s been filed away. Every custom we follow, everything we utilize was first an idea in someone’s mind, and that idea came first in the way of a hunch, an intuitive flash, or call it what you will. So it is wise to heed your own intuitions and to trust them to the end.
Many great leaders, industrialists, and inventors have openly admitted following the hunches that came to them in odd moments of relaxation or in periods when they were engaged in some task other than trying to solve their problems. A good way to prompt your subconscious mind is for you to tackle a problem from all angles consciously. Then some night, just before dropping off to sleep, order your subconscious mind to bring you the answer. You may awaken in the middle of the night, or the answer may come to you upon awakening in the morning or at some odd moment the next day when you are engaged in something quite different. Be quick to grasp it when it comes, and waste no time in following through with it.
You may have a hunch to visit or telephone a certain man. He may be the head of some concern and may well be of great help to you. Because of his position, however, you may fear to make the move; you struggle with your “hunch” on one hand and your fear on the other. Too often, the fear wins. The next time fear or doubt enters your mind, ask yourself this question: “What have I got to lose if I do see him or call him? What harm can it do?” Your fears and doubts can’t answer that question! So obey your hunch without delay.
A word of warning should be given here, however. Many people like to gamble. Some play cards, others bet on the horse or dog races, and many play the stock market. Undoubtedly you have heard people say that now and then they follow their hunches and make a killing. But I urge you not to use your hunches in an endeavor to get something for nothing. There seems to be something fundamentally wrong about it, because most gamblers die broke. Also, beware of hunches that would lead you into untried fields. They may not be intuition at all, but just sudden fanciful longings. The true kind of hunch is always concerned with something already related to you directly or indirectly, and it gives you the idea and the momentum to carry out the necessary action.
I take it for granted that none of my readers will assume this book to be an open-sesame to overnight riches and fame. It is intended only as a key to unlock the door that opens on the road leading to any goal you desire. Certainly it wouldn’t be wise to rush into undertakings far beyond your present capabilities or development. If you would be the head of a great utility concern, naturally you would have to learn the business, just as if you aspired to become head of a huge transportation system. But by using this science, you can learn the various steps that will take you to the top. However, before any program is undertaken, you must have a plan of action. You wouldn’t go to the corner drugstore and just ask for drugs. You’d be specific and name the brand of aspirin you wanted, And so it is with this science – you’ve got to know what you want and be specific about it.
If you have definitely determined what you want and have fixed yourself a goal, then consider yourself extremely fortunate – you have taken the first step that will lead to success! As long as you hold on to the mental picture of your idea and begin to develop it with action, nothing can stop you from succeeding, for the subconscious mind never fails to obey any order given clearly and emphatically.
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