Have you ever wondered how super achievers got so confident and driven? What separates the successful from the unsuccessful? What separates the happy from the unhappy?
These questions intrigued me. I wanted to make some things happen in my life but I wasn’t sure how. Is that you, too?
There was a point in my life where I got tired of feeling insignificant. Are you there yet?
Have you decided that it’s time to make some changes occur in our life?
I’m sure you already know that it’s up to you to make them happen. But, how do you make them? What practical steps can you take?
Keep reading and I’ll reveal to you some life-changing ideas and give you practical steps to take to get you started on your journey.
I’m not the end-all, be-all on all things success. But, I have come through a lot of things ( some of which I reveal below ) and found some things that have worked for me. I hope they help you as much as or more than they have helped me.
Here’s an introduction to what this post is about:
I’m opening the door for you on some interesting times in my life. There are some things that I tell you about myself that I’ve only just admitted to people. You’ll understand why when you get to the second part of this post.
From the start though, I must let you in on something about you that you may have forgotten as you’ve ‘matured’. Don’t let anyone tell you anything different after you read this opening section.
In the end, you’ll get 7 ideas that changed the direction of my life. When you learn these ideas and begin using them in your life, you’ll invite into your future success and happiness that you have only dreamed of having.
It’s possible starting today to direct your life towards that possibility. Let me tell you a little story…
A Superstar in the Making
Average is a place that I became too comfortable with. I guess it was because I never quite felt like I fit in. I travelled all over the place while my father was in the Army.
From city to city we went. I made friends. Said goodbye. Did it again.
I always felt like I was making friends. I got good at fitting in so that I could make them. But, I didn’t quite feel like myself.
I was doing things that you liked. I was saying things the way you said them.
My one saving grace was that I was good at sports. That you couldn’t take away from me. Plus, I was pretty smart. My grades were good. Both of these areas were gifts that my parents made sure I developed.
As far as making friends and being myself it was a different story. Or so I thought.
I thought that I had to be someone different in order for people to like and accept me. Have you ever felt that way? Like you just couldn’t be yourself because of how you thought people would treat you…
Not a fun space to be in. When we finally settled in to a town that I now call my home, I finally began to learn who I was. At least it worked for me at the time.
I was the star athlete. I was the star student. And, I was the class clown.
That’s what it took to be myself. That’s what it took to be noticed. That’s what it took to get looked at by the girls. ( They were important for my image in high school. )
It wasn’t until college that I found out that it really didn’t matter what anyone else thought about me. Get what I’m saying…
It took until I was 18 years old til I figured out that I was good enough just as I was. I wasn’t changing for anyone but myself.
The liberation that came from knowing that I could be me was unbelievable!
I had a teammate in college some years later that would tell me that he liked me because no matter what anyone said about the way I dressed or talked or walked I wasn’t changing.
That’s that confidence that I want to instill in you this week. The sad part of this story is that somewhere along the line I lost that confidence and had to rebuild it. That rebuilding process is what I will reveal to you.
How did I go from drinking gin from coffee cups and smoking every evening to having the confidence to approach any person that I felt inclined to meet?
I give you the steps I took. There isn’t a lot to it. But, you will have to be humble enough to admit there’s room for improvement and you’re the perfect person for the job.
I want you to get rid of the idea that it’s okay to be average. You are not meant to be just average. Set a new standard for yourself and watch the people, places, things, and ideas around your begin to change.
It’s a pruning process. ( Remember the gardening analogy last week. )
Get rid of what doesn’t serve you, keep what does, and grow, grow, grow. You are a superstar in the making!
This is both a passive and active process. We will focus on the active elements. The passive processes will come around based on how much work you actively put in. Let’s get it!
How a Pick Up Artist Changed My Life
I still have the original program that I purchased in the early 2000’s. The author’s name was David D’Angelo. He had written THE book on picking up women.
I preferred what he had versus other programs available at the time for several reasons:
- His goal was to teach men how to catch the woman of his dreams and keep her – most programs that I saw were mostly focused on bedding women
- He taught and taught and taught on the mindset of how to become the man that becomes attractive to women – most programs taught how to manipulate women
- He was genuine about helping men become confident men – most programs were about making money
As I’ve looked back over my life, going through this program was a defining part of who I am today.
I know this doesn’t sound like personal development and I didn’t think that it was as I was going through the process of changing myself into a confident self-assured man. Just hang with me, I’ll show you how this pick up artist changed my life.
I won’t bore you with the pain I went through or the anguish I put myself through as I kept myself stuck in a past relationship. Know that I had not moved on from the past even though it had been years and I had been in several relationships since.
Picking Myself Up
At this point in my life, I had finally decided that it was time to pick myself up. Spending a lot of time blaming yourself and dwelling on missed opportunities will damage your ego.
The longer that you allow it to happen the harder it is to recover.
I was ready to begin my recovery – not from the relationship but from my self-administered torture. One things for sure, almost every one of us has done this to ourselves at some point in our lives.
Here’s how I began to break free of the downward spiral I was on…
What David focused on was NLP. He taught his readers how the mind and behavior coordinate – usually they were in sync.
The picture you have of yourself in your mind is generally how you behave in public.
My goal was to find out how what I was doing, saying, and presenting myself affected the women that I was talking to.
Most women like a man that is strong, confident and driven. Did I demonstrate this in my interactions? If not, how do I demonstrate it?
It’s not just women that like strong, confident and driven men. Any person in a leadership role should have these qualities.
QUESTION: What does your behavior say about you? What response does it garner? These are things you must become aware of if you’re want better results.
I had to deconstruct myself so that I could find my weak areas. Then, I began to rebuild myself. I started experimenting with different approaches.
I practiced my smile.
I practiced my eye contact.
I practiced voice inflection.
I paid more attention to the play of patterns and colors in my wardrobe and how my clothing fit me.
I started reading affirmations and reading success stories ( yes, they were focused on picking up women but success stories, none the less ). And, I actively engaged in conversations that I previously would have run from.
The premise behind most of his teaching was this phrase:
Be Cocky and Funny
In retrospect, what he taught was how to communicate with people from a position of confidence and authority.
I learned to listen to what people were saying and look for non-verbal clues. I learned how to quickly build rapport with people.
These core skills have helped me in business, in networking, and in my overall confidence.
A final note on his training, the second part of the phrase he taught was ‘funny’. I thought I was funny but what I noticed was that I was only funny to a certain type of person.
I had to change that so I picked up a book by Herman Melitzer, “Comedy Writing Secrets”. I studied that book and wrote jokes.
I injected some of my own jokes into conversations to test the responses I received. I worked the drills the Melitzer suggested and improved my wittiness.
I learned that it’s alright to make fun of myself. It showed vulnerability and opened the door for whomever I was speaking to to reveal some personal stories.
All of this change took practice and time. But, it was worth it.
We get to our success by working with other people. Knowing who you are and improving upon your strengths and weaknesses in communication will help you to meet and maintain relationships.
A strong network leads to a strong net worth when you have a strong self-worth. Tomorrow we discuss some specific techniques I used to make these changes.
5 Steps for the Beginnings of Your Change
Walking down the street talking to myself, I must have looked like a crazy man. I didn’t care though because I believed in what I was doing.
“I’m cocky and funny and the world loves me because I’m a great man,” I’d say aloud to myself. “I’m beautiful. I’m in charge of my life. I can do all things through Him.”
Each of these phrase were written on slips of paper that I had printed and cut out. Over and over I would go through the slips repeating the phrases with a big smile on my face.
These were my affirmations. They were the beginnings of change for me.
There was a joke told my Richard Pryor featuring a character named ‘Mudbone’. In one skit ‘Mudbone’ spoke about how he only saw the sun on certain days and only for a short amount of time on those days. If you didn’t get up in time then you missed it.
So, the moral to his story was that you didn’t know when you’d see the sun again, you might as well grab a little of the sun and rub it all over your face.
I knew it was a made-up story and probably wasn’t true but I did it anyway.
I’d stretch out my arms with my hands open palms up, pretend as if I was catching some sun rays, and rub them across my face. It felt good.
After practicing my smiles and body language in a mirror, I finally felt confident with how I looked in the mirror. I then set out to present to the world the new and improved Dwight.
I was filled with energy and confidence each night that I went out to the clubs and social gatherings.
Before the end of the night, I would have collected several phone numbers and successfully conversed with several women. It felt good.
Not only did my body language work when approaching women but it helped when I made cold calls to build my real estate business.
I smiled when I called. I smiled when I spoke. I smiled when I shook hands. I smiled when I negotiated.
This little change in my behavior had a phenomenal impact on how I was received. And, it felt good.
There was a book at my desk that I finally read. It was entitled “Success Runs in My Race”. I liked how the book spoke to my inner champion. So, I started looking for more books like it.
Eventually, I found books by Napoleon Hill, Robert Kiyosaki, and Don Juan Casanova. I studied success and confidence and seduction.
All of these stories fed my hunger for personal growth. A whole world opened up to me as I read these stories.
It didn’t matter that I was in my early 20’s. If I wanted to be successful I just had to study the people who had done the things that I wanted to do, learn what they did, and duplicate their actions.
You Are A Victor
As I began to see the changes happening in my life, I accepted the fact that I was in control of not only how people treated me but also the direction of my life.
My actions dictated what I received. My thinking determined my actions. And, my thinking depended on how I interpreted the information I received from my studying, experiments and conversations.
I stopped being a victim and started focusing in on the fact that I could be a victor. When I finally joined an organization called the Enlightened Millionaire Institute created by Robert Allen and Mark Victor Hansen, I saw the light.
This life is about blessing people. The more I seek to bless others the more that God blesses me.
It was no longer about me. It was about we. How can we affect change in this world? Together we are strong. With leadership, we become almost invincible.
EMI taught me the power of consistent work on myself and my business. They also taught me the power of dreaming.
Not just dreaming to be dreaming, but deep, engaging, intense visualizations. I wrote out what I wanted my life to look like and started visualizing my life in detail.
I called them vivid visions. The more you go through these vivid visions in your mind, the more possible a life of prosperity seems.
That my friends was the beginnings of a journey that I continue to travel. It’s one that you can begin today. Here are the 5 steps:
- Affirmations – say them daily and at any point during the day that you need a pick me up
- Attitude – expect to see a little sunshine in your day and when you do grab a little of it
- Acceptance – be happy with who you are and work on projecting that happiness through your smile, your walk, your talk, your presentation
- Aptitude – continue your self-education every day and remain open to new perspectives
- Anticipate – clarify and engage in what your future will look like by spending time visualizing yourself there and visualizing the process of getting there
You don’t need everything. You need consistency. You need a plan. You need a community. You need God. You need a burning desire. And, you need not quit.
The beginnings of your change begin when you change.
2 Final Steps
As you can probably tell, I did a lot of thinking. My mind had to change if I was going to make any lasting improvements. It was easy to believe in something for the moment because it was something new.
You may be in a similar position. Some of these concepts may sound unfamiliar but strangely inspiring. I hope they do because I want to inspire you to start your journey.
Mine has been a long, arduous trek.
I don’t want to fool you into the thinking that just because I was smiling more and feeling good about myself that everything in my life was perfect. Or that I somehow was able to miss any of life’s troubles.
That is not the truth. I found plenty of pain, struggle, disappointments, and failures. However, I also learned that pain doesn’t last.
My struggles meant that I had to get stronger. My disappointments were self-imposed because I was depending on others instead of God.
My failures carried with them success principles that I had to be willing to dig around in the failure to find.
I’ve experimented with going into the muck to pull out some lost souls. I did that too early and found that I wasn’t strong enough to resist the temptations of an easy life and irresponsibility and unaccountability.
That part of my life put me into a lot of trouble.
I met some interesting individuals but almost every one of them is still in the same situation they were in when I met them. Some have some new perspectives on how they can change when they’re ready. I’m proud to have been a part of that.
A few have actually made it out. I thought that I could claim those success stories but, in the end, I was a catalyst.
All change comes from within.
I provided the spark, some fuel, and some tools. That’s fine with me. Before I let you go there are a couple more ideas that I wish to introduce to you…
There are two more pieces to this strategy you must include. The five ideas in the previous section did a number on my thinking. They got me going and kept me motivated.
These final two steps are probably the most important, though. One gets you outcomes to gauge your growth and progress. The other gives you inflows of energy and peace of mind.
Are they opposites? Maybe but they definitely don’t sound like it when you think about the words themselves.
One requires movement. The other requires stillness. One exerts energy. The other builds energy. One thrives on stress. The other submits to tranquility.
The last two ideas are:
- Activity – get up and do something towards achieving what you want to achieve and make adjustments based on your results; no application, no results, no progress
- Appreciation — spend time each day in reflection of your gifts and being grateful for them; you may use prayer, a journal, or any other method that suits you
This list would not have been complete without these final two.
You can do all of the thinking that want to do. You can do all of the learning that you want to do. You can do all of the feel good activities that you want to do.
At the end of the day, if you don’t git up, git out, and do something than you are wasting your time.
Finally, if you ever want to extract the most out of your life and out of these principles then you must learn the art of appreciation. I’m still learning just how far a little appreciation can go.
Spiritually, I get it. Practicing it in all of my affairs is a different matter. I have no problem saying ‘thank you’ or ‘I appreciate it’ when someone has helped me in some way.
The area that I’m learning to show more appreciation is just that show your appreciation through your actions.
Telling God or some person that you’re grateful is one thing. Going out of your way, on occasion, to show them through some unrequited act is a different thing altogether.
Make it a point to periodically do something unexpected for those that you appreciate:
- Send a card with a gift card in it.
- Visit that widowed lady that was your second mother.
- Take your father out to dinner for no reason.
- Send a note and some cookies to your favorite childhood teacher.
- Call an old friend and just talk.
I’m working these types of things into my life. Words are not worthy of the immense feelings of gratitude and emotion that flood through you. Try it for yourself and let me know what happened.
The Wrap Up
Affirmations; Attitude; Acceptance; Aptitude; Anticipate; Activity; and, Appreciate. These are the 7 ideas that changed my life so many years ago. I have since evolved them into life principles.
My understanding of how these ideas affected me and how they have affected those that I have taught them to has expanded my view of how much more we can do when given the right tools.
You will get those tools here on this website. Keep returning for updates and practical tips on how to implement lasting change into your life.
It’s mostly on you. The leftover things God will handle. Click the link below to download your Cheat Sheet from this week’s training.