Recently I picked up a rather old book, from 1987, called “Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway” by Susan Jeffers. I remember hearing years ago of the physical demonstration that she talks about in her book.
During her seminars she would get a volunteer out of her audience and have them hold their arms straight out to the side. She would tell the volunteer to resist with all their strength as she attempted to push down on their arms. “Not once have I succeeded in pushing ….the arms down on my initial trial” she states in her book. She would then tell the volunteer to repeat “I am a weak and unworthy person” ten times and really feel the statement. When trying to push down the arms right after this, she was able to pull both arms down. To prove her point even more, she would again ask the person to repeat ten times the positive statement “I am a strong and worthy person” but this time, she would not be able to budge their arms, even more so than the first time she tried to push them down.
A couple days ago, just before heading out to play in a round robin tennis tourney, I repeated to myself, many times over, (even thought I felt kind of childish doing it) ” I am a very strong tennis player and I am very worthy of winning” and also repeating “I am younger and more fit now than I was a year ago”—and did it ever work! I played 4 rounds of tennis winning each round by a very wide margin!!
Most of what Jeffers had to say was stuff I already knew but I was not doing it anymore. It was like a rebirth doing it again and, wow, does it feel good. The power of positive thinking is pretty amazing. Especially when you remember to use it!
I wanted to mention this book that Craig Horton, who I shared a letter from in my post last week, recommended. It’s a powerful book about mentorship titled “A Game Plan for Life-The Power of Mentoring” by John Wooden and Don Yaeger. Craig considers this one of the most powerful books he’s ever read. He’s not the only one.
The retired basketball player and coach mentored and inspired unknown numbers of people through his work as a coach and through his publications and lectures. In this, his last book, he first focuses on the people who helped foster his values then, through interviews excerpts, he turns the reader’s attention to number of his most successful mentorees, giving us an inside view of the affect good mentoring can have on an individual, not just as athletes but as human beings. Wooden is particularly focused on being successful without having to sacrifice principles. That is a focus I am behind 200%.
I really like Wooden’s philosophies and know you’d get something out of reading this book if you take what he says to heart. You see, how well you live is not purely about the success you have, even though in your mind and actions, it sure seems like it. The real measure of a successful life is how much you improve the lives of others. You can do this by sharing your success—be it monetary, career, personal, emotional, relationship, etc.–with others in ways that help them achieve and fulfill their lives as well.
I received a very kind note about last week’s blog and I wanted to share it with you some of what he said:
What I have always appreciated over the years in our association with each other is that you are always willing to help people grow and be productive in the real estate business even the little guy. Your efforts have never really been about making a lot of money but helping others which is precisely why you made a lot of money in the seminar business and book business because you lived by that philosophy. I have always found that people who are the most successful are very willing to help others. You are one of these people which I deeply appreciate.”
Craig sums up quite well my philosophy about why I do what I do. It’s not about money although I do spend a fair amount of time advising people about how to make money. It really comes down to helping empower people to do what they desire to do with their lives. It could as easily be making great art, getting in shape, or building your own home. I just want people to do with their lives that which fulfills them so they can be proud of what they accomplish and happy with the live they live.
One of the things I also like to encourage is people helping people. This is what I do to help people because it is that one very valuable thing I have that I know can touch lives and make a difference. That is also very fulfilling. Especially on those days when you receive such nice comments and know that what you are doing is truly helping others. Thanks Craig!
This past week, a very influential woman died. She was influential not because she had a direct impact on your life or mine, but because she shaped the life of someone who does have a direct impact on people all over the world–that was Hilary Clinton’s mother, Dorothy Rodham.
It’s truly amazing, when you think that the actions of one person can have affected the entire globe. I am certain Secretary Clinton would not be where she is today if her mother had not been the kind of person she was. Hilary Clinton has said that her mother had taught her to stand up for herself and to stand up for those who needed help. Instilling those values in her daughter is a huge reason why we have this very strong and determined US Secretary of State right now. I doubt Dorothy Rodham thought to herself, as she was raising her kids, “I better make sure they know how to stand up for themselves because some day they may have to do it in front of the whole world.” But the fact that she did has had an effect on our world’s history.
I just wanted you think about that. You never know what kind of effect you are going to have. You affect your kids, colleagues, friends and even strangers you run into and you have no idea how huge or small your influence will be. So consider that what you do, how you impact the people around you, and what you teach those that look up to you may very well have long reaching consequences. Knowing that, don’t you think we all should really concentrate on having a positive, uplifting and encouraging demeanor and when we pass on any bits of wisdom, be sure that we are more likely to push people to do right by those they know and for themselves?
I can think of several people I have meet through the years that affected me greatly including Curtis Carlson and Paul Meyer who I write about in my book, “How to Ignite Your Passion for Living”. My books, this blog, and all the little projects I have going on that aim to help others are a result of the influence of great individuals like these. If you haven’t read about them yet, get the book here and be influenced then go out and influence other is a huge, positive way.