Stop saying or even thinking this!

Asking things like “why does this always happen to me?” is detrimental to our well-being.  Your subconscious doesn’t understand rhetorical questions and immediately goes to work on answers.

You will only uncover negative answers like “because I’m not worthy” or “because I always make bad decisions”.  Always replace “Why is this happening to me?” with “What is the smartest thing to do next?”

This creates an inclination towards action and automatically bulldozes negativity.  It’s not possible to simultaneously problem-solve and beat yourself up.

Know what you’re buying and selling

Earning a living as an employee is such a common construct that it seems like everyone is trading time for money.  But some businesses and consultants sell outcomes, not time.

When you pay for an outcome, speed is an advantage.  To complain about paying a large sum of money for a job that only took one hour to complete is to totally miss what you’re really paying for: potentially decades of experience that made that one hour possible.

Optimize for how you feel

To manifest the ideal relationship, first list all the qualities that you desire in a person.  Next, burn that list and make a new list of how you want to feel in that relationship.

The cash value of all human connections lies in how both parties feel.  Your actual experience (not someone else’s attributes) dictates the positive mental states that you care about.  You want to FEEL loved, safe, sexy, beautiful, significant, supported, understood, trusted…

The moral? Don’t ask yourself what you want.  Ask how you want to feel when you get it.

Where true motivation comes from

Sparks of inspiration don’t empower us for long.  The meme that inspired you to believe in yourself…that encouraging quote…those won’t affect long-term motivation.  You are motivated by what you believe is possible.

The master variable is Progress.  “Learn to speak Chinese” is a life-long project.  “Learn to introduce myself in Chinese” is a quick win with unmistakable progress that empowers and motivates you to persist.

[FYI: This blog post is the 3×5 card summary of my 1-hour keynote presentation that shows you the science of achievement.]

Control freak?

The road we travel is imperfect.  The terrain is tough, the path is uphill, working against us and making it difficult to move forward.  It’s wise to do all you can – to use influence, hard work, and help from others to find your path.

Too often, people who do this are labeled “control freak”.

What’s smarter: complaining that the entire planet isn’t carpeted or putting on a pair of shoes?  There’s enough outside our control.  It makes sense to control whatever we can, and ignore the “control freak” label.

Throwing away time and money

Imagine having $1,440 and someone stealing $1 from you.  Would you then throw away the other $1,439 in an act of vengeance?

This is exactly what we do when we respond to a one minute insult or upsetting event by letting it affect the rest of the minutes in the day.  Simple math should reveal something obvious…

We shouldn’t waste 99.9% of our time and attention because of the .01% that perturbed us.

Three things you control

1) Your breath
2) Your attitude
3) Your framing – the story you have about the kind of person you are, and why your current circumstances are what they are

No need to wait for permission.  No reason to wait for anything to happen.  Any of these things can be changed in a moment’s notice – by you.  Take back control.