Archives For Growth

You never can tell what a thought will do
In bringing you hate or love –
For thoughts are things, and their airy wings
Are swifter than carrier doves.
They follow the law of the universe –
Each thing creates its kind,
And they speed O’er the track to bring you back
Whatever went out from your mind.

The true understanding of success starts with understanding the power of the subconscious mind. This is what separates the successful from the unsuccessful person.

One person believes they can be successful and the other person believes they can’t be successful.


Why would someone think that they can’t be successful? They may want to be successful, they may complain about why they’re not successful and usually have a number of reasons why they’re not.

I think we can agree that we want to be successful, but if we struggle to find that success, what’s the roadblock?



Come on now, how can I be a roadblock to the success I want. Usually, it’s because of what we think. Sure we tell people we want to be successful but we secretly tell ourselves negative thoughts like;

I’ll start doing that tomorrow.
I just can’t work out in the morning.
No one will like me if I do that.
It takes to much money.
I’m not smart enough for that job or promotion.
I’ll always be overweight.
I’ve never been able to stop smoking.
I can’t leave my job to follow my passion.

These negative thoughts program our subconscious to do what we think. It’s unfortunate that at times these thoughts originate in someone else’s mind and they tell us and in turn, we believe them.

If you believe you can achieve something you will. I know it’s not that easy. Real success is a struggle and you’ll run into obstacles along the way to test your willpower. We know that finding success isn’t easy, and even when you do find it it’s hard to keep.

Let’s put this in a new perspective. I’m sure we’ve all seen the movie or read the story about Aladdin and the Lamp. If you rub the lamp a genie comes out and gives you three wishes. But you need to be careful on how you word that wish because you may get something you say but not mean.

Our subconscious is like that Genie. We first need to find the lamp within our own self and learn how to shine it up. We need to learn how to believe that we can do something we want. Take the negative words out of your thoughts. If you tell yourself you can’t your internal genie is just following orders and is going to give you what you believe.

If you ask someone who has achieved success why they did what they did, I doubt they’ll say, “Because I didn’t think I could.” They may think that it’ll be hard, other people probably told them they couldn’t, but they truly believed that they could accomplish it.

No one thought that a person could run a mile under four minutes until someone did. The paradigm was broken and more people did after that.

A speaker and writer who explains how our paradigms shape us is Bob Proctor and you can watch his video on The Power of Your Subconscious. In Bob’s new book The ABC’s of Success he has a quote in the chapter titled “The Silent Switch” that helps us understand the power we have within us,“Thought is the silent switch that sets in motion man’s destiny.”Basically, we become what we think, just like James Allen laid out in his 1903 classic As a Man Thinketh and said;

Mind is the Master power that moulds and makes,
And Man is Mind, and evermore he takes
The tool of Thought, and, shaping what he wills,
Brings forth a thousand joys, a thousand ills: –
He thinks in secret and it comes to pass:
Environment is but his looking-glass.

If you haven’t had the opportunity to read this short classic I encourage everyone to pick up a copy and for the female readers you can get a different version, As a Woman Thinketh.

Maxwell Malts in his book Psycho-Cybernetics outlines the research he did on the power of the subconscious mind and how it affects your self-image and confidence. He explains the two principles of the subconscious mind. The first one is that the subconscious mind always says “yes” to everything the conscious mind tells it. The second principle states that the subconscious mind always moves in the direction in which the conscious mind points it. Basically what he’s telling us is;

If we think negative thoughts our subconscious is going to give us those negative outcomes. But if we think of positive thoughts, and act on them, we can have a better chance on positive outcomes.

Meditation is another form of tapping into the power of our subconscious mind. I like Amanda Palmer’s quote – “Meditation, especially for people who don’t know very much about it and think it’s this very hippy dippy thing, can really be powerful, terrifying even, as it lifts the rug up on your subconscious and the dust comes flying out.”

Some of us may think more logically and believe all this subconscious stuff is just mystical thinking, think and you shall receive is just wishful thinking, right? But there’s years of research into the value of positive thinking and praying.

“If the Holy Spirit can take over the subconscious with our consent and cooperation, then we have almighty Power working at the basis of our lives, then we can do anything we ought to do, go anywhere we ought to go, and be anything we ought to be.”
~ E. Stanley Jones

Yes praying. This is where science and beliefs intersect. In Dr. Joseph Murphy’s book “The Power of Your Subconscious Mind” he claims that praying will activate the subconscious mind. Most people roaming the earth believe in their own version of G.O.D. (Grand Overall Designer) and pray to the belief that we’ll have a good afterlife. In other words, we’ll be accepted into the kingdom after we leave this physical presence we know as being human. Different beliefs, or religions have their own version of the afterlife, or more commonly known as Heaven in Christianity. We definitely don’t want to go to hell so we try to follow some basic traditions to get us into our version of heaven. Unfortunately for some religions that may be causing harm to people with other beliefs, today viewed as terrorism, in the past known as Crusades.

My question is, why can’t we live our version of Heaven now, why should I focus my prayers on achieving passage through the pearly gates leading to my version of Heaven. We need to BELIEVE that we can achieve our version of Heaven or success now, not after we’re dead.

But here’s where I think the real secret is revealed.

Most of us focus too much on ourselves, our own success to get what we want. We may think “It’s a struggle to achieve success through helping others achieve success, I want it first.”

But as one of our greatest mentors Zig Ziglar said, “If you help enough people get what they want, they’ll help you get what you want.”

The key to living your Heaven on Earth isn’t finding your own success through the expense of others but helping them achieve success so you can achieve significance, through other people’s successes.

Take some time TODAY to think about and write how your desires and passion can help others achieve success. You’ll experience negative thoughts going through this process on why you can’t so reword those thoughts into prayers or positive affirmations on how you can. If you focus and pray on the why and how you’ll awaken your internal Genie or Grand Overall Designer who has the power to help you achieve your vision of success through others by programming your subconscious to give you what you need.

The Gallup organization tracks worker engagement levels and recently reported that it went from 31.7 to 32%. This means 68% of people are disengaged at work, all I can say is WOW.

The majority of the United States employees are not fully engaged and the question starts with why?

Is the work environment that bad, boring, or does the American employee just lack passion for what they do and who is responsible for raising a workers engagement level?

Having went through periods of what I consider as being disengaged from work I started to think how I pulled myself out of that disengaged and unproductive behavior. Here are some tips to consider;

Wake up motivated. You need to do something in the morning that you look forward to getting out of bed for instead of lying there hitting the snooze button time after time. I think the key is to find something to do that adds value to you, exercise, read, journal, pray, plan and/or meditate. Hal Elrod wrote a book called “The Miracle Morning” that encompasses all of those activities in just one hour.

Organize and prioritize your daily tasks. What are the key things you need to get done today? Figure out what the big rocks are and just eat the frog (get the hard stuff done first). I know that if I set deadlines for specific task completion I’ll focus better. If you’re having problems focusing on your work then try out this website that plays great non-verbal music which helps your brain stay more focused on what you’re working on. (Although I’m listening to some blues music as I write this.) Here’s a link to Focus@Will if you’re interested.

Take breaks to reset yourself. Once you finish a task take a break. If you worked on something intensely for 60 minutes then take a break before you tackle your next project. I would recommend at least 5 to 15 minutes. Get up and move around, go for a walk, use the bathroom or get another cup of coffee or glass of water. One of the options with the Focus@Will program is you can set time limits to the music so you know you’re on a time limit and helps you focus because you have a deadline to meet.

Listen to motivating people. As Jim Rohn said, “You’re only as average as the five closest people to you,” which means if you hang out with disengaged and complaining people you may just become one. Find the 32 percent of employees who are engaged and talk with them and make sure you’re putting positive information in your head, not negative. If you feel like you need to stay abreast on the world then do it in the evening instead of hearing about all of the bad things going on and knowing that you have no power to help.

Find a reason why you make a difference. Everyone needs some passion in their life, without it we just become drifters who just accept life. People who know why they make a difference will want to impact those around them. Find out what your passion is and pursue it. If you have to work that boring job do it with enthusiasm because it may be what puts food on the table, but you still need to put food in your soul.

There you have it, I couple of thoughts to help you raise your engagement levels, not only at work, but in your life also.

Thanks for reading,

What are you telling yourself? I never really considered what I was thinking could actually program my subconscious mind to do what I was thinking. I don’t know about you but I can remember thinking of some negative things about myself. Yet when I reflect back at the good things I’ve done, it was a result of first thinking about what I saw the outcome being, and somehow it materialized.

I know, that sounds suspicious or fantastic, it didn’t really ‘materialize.’ If I hadn’t taken certain steps along the way it wouldn’t have happened. Once again when I think back through the time frame between thinking about what I saw in the future and doing it, I made decisions along the way to increase my knowledge, skills and abilities. At times something inside me just wouldn’t stop turning until I made the decision. I don’t think it was indigestion, I think it was my subconscious screaming at me, “Dude, if you’re going to achieve what you see, you need to do this.” Most of the time these decisions involved massive time commitments and money, but like Dr. John Maxwell says, “You have to give up, to go up.”

Some of the worst kinds of auto-suggestions are handed down to us from those closest to us, aren’t they? How many times have you heard a parent criticize their child and tell them their bad or can’t do something. I know we need to discipline unruly and disrespectful kids, but they are learning that behavior from somewhere, and sometimes I wonder who’s disciplining the ones who are supposed to be setting the example.

If you have a hard time thinking positive thoughts, or getting into the habit of doing it, there are some other options to help fill your subconscious with positivity.

Subliminals are the most common way to have certain habits or lifestyle changes consistently played over and over in your head. You can find hundreds of companies that offer their versions of how to stop smoking, lose weight, be healthier, make money, etc., etc. I admit that I have some of these and haven’t used them all that much.

The other way is with paraliminals which are messages at a frequency you can’t hear but your brain can. They use different types of sounds in the background like ocean waves, rain, or music. There aren’t as many companies that offer paraliminals, and some will even use your own voice. If you go this route make sure you use emotions when you tape your auto-suggestions so you get the most impact.

Don’t want to go through all that? Here are some thoughts;

Follow what is outlined in the chapters Faith and Auto-suggestions. Write out who you see yourself being and then, at a minimum repeat it to yourself in the morning and evening.
Cleanse your environment of negativity. That may be difficult if you have to work with, or even live with a negative person, but maybe they’ll chose to become more positive if they see you doing so.
Turn the news off in the morning. Do we really need to know what’s going on in the world three times a day? I know we need to be kept informed on what is going on in the world, just be careful who you’re getting your information from.
Subscribe to a daily positive and/or your purpose related information. If you want to lose weight or stop smoking, read daily on how unhealthy it is and what you can do to change habits. If you want to be a better leader, listen to a podcast or read daily.
The most important ingredient is,

You have to believe you can be before you will be!

The more I dig into all this self-improvement stuff it all comes down to that. You can have all the processes, techniques, pills, teachers, or money, you may achieve it for a period of time, but your self-image, your internal auto-pilot, will always guide you back to your internal self-image. If you’re self-image isn’t the person who you really want to be, you’ll always fly back to who you really see.

“Nature often holds up a mirror so we can see more clearly the ongoing processes of growth, renewal, and transformation in our lives.” ~Mary Ann Brussat

I really like this quote, especially this time of year when spring is reminding us how something that looks dead comes back to life to be even better than the previous season. I look outside my window now and see the trees and bushes sprouting forth with new life and the grass is turning green. Well except where my two dogs took care of business or dug holes looking for peanuts that the squirrels hid last fall.

The birds are gathering nesting material to bring new lives into the world, the squirrels stop looking for food for a couple of minutes to ‘play’ with their partner.

If spring is the time when nature renews, when is yours?

Is it the same time as nature, when the birds fly back north and the flowers start to bloom? Maybe it’s in the fall when things slow down and it’s time to get ready for winter and learning since you stay inside more?

Maybe you’re happy with who you really are. Is that the way you feel or is that the way you want to feel. Everyone can improve in something or learn something new.

I think that some folks don’t renew because it’s either too hard or, why bother. Is it hard to believe that the reason why we don’t is because we don’t believe we can?

What happens in nature when there’s a devastating disaster like a hurricane, tornado, earthquake or fire? The renewal of life can be seen quickly after a prairie fire, but not after the other disasters. Is it because mankind is affected? How would nature renew itself after these major disasters?

Have you ever had a personal disaster that made you renew yourself? People face disaster all the time. It seems like the ones who embrace it and become better for it are much happier in the long run than those who just keep complaining about why it happened to them.

How do you react after major disasters? How do you renew yourself after encountering problems?

Growth Is Stimulated by Asking Why?

What really makes someone smart? Is it all the classes that they take, all the experiences they have, all the books they read?

© - Fotolia

© – Fotolia

Sure, you need to be exposed to the information in order for you to learn from it.

But I don’t think that information and experiences REALLY makes someone smart. Don’t you first need the desire to learn, and that desire starts with curiosity, doesn’t it?

So what makes a person want to be more curious? In The Law of Curiosity John lists ten ways to cultivate your curiosity;

1. Believe you can be curious – For some people it starts with just wanting to. More people need to understand that the difference between success and failure is curiosity.

2. Have a beginner’s mindset – Can you ever learn something new if you already thing you know everything about it?

3. Make why your favorite word – Believe it or not, Thomas Edison was kicked out of school for asking why so many times. (If not we may still be living in the dark)

4. Spend time with other curious people – If the people around you don’t like to ask why, you’ll drive them crazy asking them why.

5. Learn something new every day – Yes, everyday!

6. Partake in the fruit of failure – Why did it fail, why did you fail, why did they fail? If you don’t ask why, do you ever get the answer?

Stop looking for the right answer – Look for a different answer.

8. Get over yourself – If your ego won’t let you admit mistakes you won’t learn from them.

9. Get out of the box – Do what you’re afraid of, do something you’ve never done, learn something new.

10. Enjoy your life – Why wouldn’t you, you have only one, why live it in misery?

It all starts with action, away from activities that leaves you with little imagination.

What are you curious about? If you struggle to answer this then think back when you were a kid.

Once you figure that out ask yourself what can I do to live it?

“Some men see things as they are and ask why. Others dream things that never were and ask why not.”

   ~ George Bernard Shaw


Character Growth Determines the Height of Your Personal Growth

I don’t believe people give much consideration to the level of their own character. LadderThey also wonder why they struggle to improve their life.

What do you think your level of character is? Which one(s) would you not sacrifice?

Is it being honest to others? But you’re not honest with yourself when you sneak that dessert/cigarette/beer, when, “I’m the only one who’ll know.” I’m sorry, if you can’t be honest with yourself, isn’t it hard to be honest with others?

Do you get upset at someone for doing something to you but you’ve done the same thing to them?

Character development doesn’t just happen intentionally, you have to pay attention to your actions, and how those actions affect others. John has a ‘Character Ladder’ that has helped him increase his character height.

Rungs On The Character Ladder 

  1. I will focus on being better on the inside than the outside – Character Matters
  2. I will follow the Golden Rule – People Matter
  3. I will only teach what I believe – Passion Matters
  4. I will value humility above all virtues – Perspective Matters
  5. I will strive to finish well – Faithfulness Matters

Have you ever sat and listened to someone complain why they didn’t get hired for a position? Did you think to yourself, “I can see why the complainer didn’t get the job?” If you failed at something, the first step is to see what you did or didn’t do. People with low character blame others first for what they did not get or do not have.

In which of the following areas do you see the most room for improvement in yourself? How would your life be better if you grew in this area?

  1. Being Humble
  2. Being Teachable
  3. Being Willing to Serve
  4. Being Grateful

The stronger your character, the greater your potential.

“Achievement to most people is something you do… to the higher achiever, it is something you are.”  
~ Doug Firebaugh
      Life is now in session. Are you present?


Growth Doesn’t Just Happen

Is working a 40 hour week your strategy for success? Are you reaching your personal and professional goals?

© luna2631 - Fotolia

© luna2631 – Fotolia

If you’re like me, the answer is a big fat, “NO!”I’ve set goals, some 0f them the same for the last couple of years, and I’ve still haven’t achieved them. Did I make progress every year toward the goal, yes. Could I have done better, yes? We all could probably answer yes to being able to put more effort toward achieving our goals. That is if you set any at all.Why don’t people set goals? Isn’t life full of enough disappointments and why be disappointed in yourself?

Forget the concept of setting goals. Develop growth habits. Not the kind where you go back for thirds at the ‘all you can eat buffet.’ No, I’m talking about going back for the third time to reread a book, head over for the buffet of knowledge at your local library.

Folks, this is one of those books and each Invaluable Law of Growth will challenge you to learn more about yourself and this first chapter on intentionality is a great way to start.

John helps us learn where to start by asking you where your “growth” gaps are by going over eight misconceptions about growth.

The Assumption Gap—“I Assume That I Will Automatically Grow”

  • I wonder if people assume that they will grow or are they just too lazy to take the time and effort to grow.

The Knowledge Gap—“I Don’t Know How To Grow”

  • If you’re reading this then you’re on the right path. Isn’t it strange that after all the years of schooling people think that they are done growing? That’s the structure they think you need to grow when the only structure you need is daily habits.

The Timing Gap—“It’s Not The Right Time To Begin”

  • If this is your philosophy then you’ll never start.

The Mistake Gap—“I’m Afraid of Making Mistakes”

  • I think that people who are afraid of making mistakes face one of the six Basic Fears that Napoleon Hill talks about in his book, “Think and Grow Rich.”

The Perfection Gap—“I Have to Find the Best Way Before I Start”

  • This is another one of the six basic fears, criticism, even if it’s your own. It’s also caused by your own self-limiting beliefs and you say to yourself, “I’ll never be able to finish it the way I want.”

The Inspiration Gap—“I Don’t Feel Like Doing It”

  • I know it’s hard to pull yourself away from all of the “good” stuff on television. Why not watch how other people screw their life up instead of learning how to stop screwing your own life up. What are your priorities?

The Comparison Gap—“Others Are Better Than I Am”

  • Why would you want to compare yourself to someone else, they’re on this planet for a different purpose and have different strengths. Instead, think what you can do today to be better tomorrow?

The Expectation Gap—“I Thought It Would Be Easier Than This”

  • The big question is, “What am I willing to sacrifice to grow to my highest potential?” The people who look for the easy road will find themselves back at “START OVER,” in the game of life. Once you realize that success comes with what you do daily, not occasionally, you’ll reach it. (At least that’s what I’m counting on.)

Once you go through these questions you may be asking yourself, “What area do I want to grow in?”

If you can’t answer that question, truthfully, take some time to figure out what your values, strengths, and passions really are. Can you imagine going through 10 years of medical school to realize that the only reason you did it was for the money, not for being passionate about helping others.

Think About:

Which one of your strengths do you want to grow in over the next year?

What sort of actions, (daily/weekly/monthly/yearly) will be required on your part to make sure that the growth happens?

“People are anxious to improve their circumstances but are unwilling to improve themselves; therefore remain bound.”  ~ James Allen, “As a Man Thinketh”

Preparation (growth) + Attitude + Opportunity + Action (doing something about it) = Luck


I think before you go on your growth journey you need to find the right path. Have you ever stood at the crossroads of life and had to choose which direction to take? Which one did you walk down. The easy path, or the one you had to blaze your way through?

© creative soul -1 - Fotolia

© creative soul -1 – Fotolia

People choose different paths because of different beliefs, not only in the external environment, but on what they believe their capabilities are. Some people think that they are unable to do something and can’t change, it’s all they know.I believe there are four different types of growth explorers;The Lawn Chair Explorer.

No I’m not talking about the Lawn Chair Pilotwho tied 45 helium weather balloons to his lawn chair and soared to 15,000 feet and then floated into controlled airspace near Los Angeles International Airport. These are the people who never start the journey. They sit at the crossroads and watch other people go by. They never go beyond the basic level of education required by society, if they even make it that far. They end up working the same job and struggle to advance, or end up depending on the government to take care of them.

Don’t get me wrong, some people find their true passion in life early and if they are happy with what they are doing, then that’s success for them. But some people struggle to find what their true passion is because they don’t leave their comfort zone. If this is the case they end up staying in the mindset of “I don’t know what I don’t know.”

The Easy Path Explorer.

If you took the easy path, the one you knew, howchallenged did you feel? How much did you grow going down the easy path? These folks seem the end up working that job they hate and struggle to make ends meet (been there done that). This would be the majority of the population, they work their eight hours a day and struggle to improve themselves after work. They rely on annual pay increases to maintain their current level of living.

The Lone Explorer.

These are the folks that are not scared to go down the new path, blazing the trail along the way. Entrepreneurs could fall under this category. They start something new and learn along the way. Some may rush into the unknown to fast and end up in quicksand and sank. They struggle and eventually go back to the beginning to start over. You may hear of some people that keep opening new businesses, do they ever grow past the reason why they failed?

The Expedition Explorer.

These people take others on the journey with them. They look for mentors with experience going down the same path. The expedition explorer relies on other people to help them out of the quicksand.  The unknown path and all of its hazards is easier to navigate with the help of others. If you start to blaze the trail with an expedition, other people bring different skills, abilities and experiences so that together you can become great trail blazers.

Your growth journey can be difficult without the help of others. If you don’t reach out to others along your journey you’ll have to face the hazards on your own, and learn from your own mistakes. If you ask the right people the right questions, you can learn from their mistakes.

And remember, don’t set hard goals, sure you need stepping stones that you can reach, but the stones that lead us through the journey of life never end. We just need to be able to grow enough through the journey to conquer the slipper stones that led some to fall into despair and passionless lives.

This month take some time to think about what path you want to take.

“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I – I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.”

~ Robert Frost