Tag-Archive for » practicing self improvement «

Monday, February 01st, 2010 | Author:
You gotta start wherever you are...

You gotta start wherever you are...

Well, it’s starting to come together in detail now… In a previous post (link), I discussed my goals for the program itself, and now I can report on the progress so far.

From a recent comment:

The fact is that people, to be happy, need to understand and accept who they ARE first, and then try to move this state to something compatible. To be a star you don’t have to sell your soul. Helping people, making other persons happy and successful is an alternate way.

Also, don’t be mad at me, but I find it kind of funny that you tell people self help books are not the solution, yet at the same time you plan for one, somehow…

The good news is that he’s right on both counts. He’s exactly on point.

First, I’m not developing a self help book. While it turns out that while I can knock out a killer article, I run out of creativity and charisma way short of a full chapter, let alone book. I’ve tried a few times over the years to take my model of the psyche and turn it into something people can use. Quite frankly, I’ve given up.

Second, my model of the psyche is built on acceptance of who you are today, then working to become who you want to be tomorrow. This core concept that I invented (hahaha) is thousands of years old…. it’s the concept of zen surrender.

Along the way, I’ve done a lot of research and reading and there are three books that stand head and shoulders above the rest. These authors have said what I was trying to say better than I could ever hope to say it myself. Sure, each of them is presenting only a part of what I feel should be the whole, but they overlap each other in material while complementing each other in point of view. Each has a lot to offer to anyone, and taken together they develop a unique synergy, each one building on and contributing to the others.

But as I handed out these books and encouraged people to read them, I had the same experience over and over. People take these magic books, they even read them from cover to cover…. and yet their life doesn’t really improve.

How can this be possible? How? It’s all right there!! Don’t you see?

And yes, they all see. Everyone sees. Everyone understands. They can repeat the material back to me. And yet they remain powerless to take action, to do in their own lives!

So where does that power come from and how can I unlock that power inside them? It comes from doing. What? Hey Einstein, we have a chicken and egg problem here. How can I do if I don’t know how to do?

Well the answer is that you give up your pride, set aside your expectation of doing good… and just do with whatever ability you have today. And you suck at it. But you keep doing it. And then one day you notice HEY! I suck slightly less at this than I did before! This is progress! And you keep at it. Little by little you keep at it.

I often use the analogy of hitting a baseball. You can read all about it, read 10 or 20 or even 30 books about hitting a baseball. Boy, you’ll know everything there is to know about hitting a baseball, and from every possible point of view. But your body on the other hand will have never swung a bat. It will have no muscle memory, no skills, no strength. You will be utterly and completely powerless to unlock this phenomenal power hitting baseball slugging knowledge you have inside you.

See the parallel?

Well we learn these so called life skills the same way we learn to swing a bat. By trial and error. Lots of trials and lots of errors. And a few hits in there along the way. Except a true zen master bats probably bats around .950 in the emotional big league. Me? I’m still working my way up through the minors.

Anyhow, the program takes the work of three great masters, and breaks it down into step by step lessons. The same way you learn to ski, or snowboard, or ride a bike, or swim, or knit, or cook, or really pretty much anything you’ve learned in life.

We start with the fundamentals, simple drills and exercises that seem kinda silly at first. Like stepping into a pitch that’s not even there, and swinging a bat you’re not even holding. And we do them over and over and over. And feel silly as *bleep* while doing them. And then we move on to something a little more advanced, but probably just a silly.

Then one day, we get some sign of progress, some clear sign of empowerment and improvement. That’s when we stop feeling silly and we can fully buy in. And we continue, each drill, each exercise building fundamental skills that we need, then we start putting them together in series and in combination. Follow the ball with your eyes, step into the ball, swing through with your head down, CRACK! follow through fully, and step out smoothly into your run to first base. All smooth, all fluid, all practiced a million times.

... To get to where you want to be.

... To get to where you want to be.

This is our emotional at bat… it all starts to come together, and we start getting base hits, doubles. One day we were thrilled to just make contact with the ball. Now we sometimes smack one over the fence. We can make contact on demand, so we can call a few plays… hit and run, sacrifice fly, and so on.

We can’t imagine how this could ever have been hard! We have a hard time even remembering our first feeble attempts at swinging the bat!

Well here’s a big juicy secret: While very few of us can ever play major league baseball… almost every single one of us has the capacity to step up to the emotional big league. We can all be successful. We can all be happy. We can all find the love of life and the love in life that we deserve.

And that’s what the program is about.

I have all of the units defined, and 35 of them drafted. Of course, writing them down is quick… then writing them down again so they make sense to anyone but me is painfully slow. But it’s looking good for an early spring launch!

If you haven’t done so yet, sign up for the mailing list on the right. You’ll get occasional blog updates, but more important you’ll get news on the program itself.

Any Questions? Any Comments? Post ‘em below!


Tuesday, January 19th, 2010 | Author:

Yes you! Put down that book you are about to buy. Drop those self books out of your
Amazon shopping cart. And listen up.

I bet you already have more than enough self help on your bookshelf to last you a lifetime. Yet there you are still looking to buy more. Why is that?

I’ll tell you why… It’s because as a culture we are conditioned to buy solutions to our problems. Unfortunately, however, the solutions to some problems can’t be bought. The only way for you to get where you want to be in life is to put the principles you find in those books into practice.

And that means stop buying new self help books and focus yourself on implementing the ones you already have. You don’t need to do more reading, what you need is to do more practicing.

So how should you proceed? Well there are many good practice guides available, both online and in your bookstore. OK, so maybe you can buy one more self-help book, but this time, make sure the book has a concrete action plan that you can implement in your life.

Or, you can join my mailing list (it’s over there on the right –>) , and in a few months you’ll be able to participate in my program, “52 Weeks to Success, Love and Happiness.” Just so you know, the program will be free, at least for a while. So you can relax. Your wallet is safe here.

Unlike most online stuff where people just pitch you with some hyped up crap to buy some some crappy half baked e-book and then the forget about you, this program makes a commitment to engage you, work with you, and support your efforts for a full year. It guides you and measures your progress as you put those self help theories, tips, mantras and bromides to actual use in your actual life, where you will get actual results.

This is a life changing program because it enables you to change the way you live your life.

The program will be run in groups where you can discuss the material, but more importantly you can also discuss the challenges you encounter in applying the program in your life in a confidential, supporting environment. It’s an ongoing, rich, dynamic, interactive processs of building the skills you need in to apply any self help lessons in your life.

So put down that self help book, and get started practicing the skills you need to change your life. Start a personal enrichment program today and start making actual changes in your life.