Attracting what you want to attract

If you believe in the so-called Law of Attraction, then you believe that you attract whatever your dominant thoughts are.  This is difficult since we don’t consciously know our dominant thoughts. They happen below the level of conscious thought.

The first step in attracting the desired things, people, and events in our lives is taking inventory of invisible scripts. Things like: “I’m not worthy of…,” “I’m not very good at…” and turning them into scripts that serve you, like: “I deserve to be happy,” and “I learn quickly.”

Changing our dialogue is difficult when our energy is focused on what’s wrong. Life improves when we focus on, believe in, and conjure up the way we want to “feel” when the improvement is made. The same law works against us when we focus on and feel the thing(s) we’re unhappy about.

Recipe for improving competitive skills

Once you know the fundamentals of a sport or craft, you’ll need competitive partners in 3 categories: those that are better than you, those that challenge you, and those you’re better than.

You’ll be forced to up your game and constantly strive by training with better people than you. You’ll reinforce your skill set by challenging yourself with those at your level. And you’ll be able to teach those you’re better than. And teaching reinforces your learning more than anything else.

Mindfulness in simple terms

After years of studying experts and practicing mindfulness meditation, I’ve synthesized some of the wisdom into a few sentences that make it simpler, more understandable, and (I hope) more approachable to those who may be interested but still confused.

  • Mindfulness is simply observing “what it’s like to be you” in this moment.
  • The “you” that is observing thoughts arise is not enhanced by positive thoughts or diminished by negative ones.
  • The true goal is to allow all conscious experiences (in the form of thoughts) to arise without being reactive or judgmental, which builds the muscle allowing us to treat all life events in a non-reactive way.
  • One way to view thoughts is like the weather. We like to think we are the proximate cause of our thoughts, but we’re not. Like the weather, we don’t have much control over them. But we can choose to react, judge, or simply observe what “is.”

A question that gets us through…

Reflecting on important questions is one of the most powerful things we can do to get us through difficult emotional times. The reactive part of us makes us feel like we’ve been the victim of some wrongdoing (and perhaps we have). One great question that forces us to focus on our own accountability is this:

How am I complicit in creating the conditions I say I don’t want? (quote by Jerry Colona)

A new perspective on social anxiety

“It’s not people’s job to show you what’s interesting or great about themselves. It’s your job to find it. This is life, not a sales convention.” – Mark Manson

Mark makes the point that curiosity is one antidote to social anxiety. It’s almost impossible to seek to discover who others are while simultaneously worrying about what they think of us.

My very smart friend Stu tells his children rather than trying to be interesting, be INTERESTED in others. This fosters great relationships. They’ll inevitably find out how interesting and impressive you are.

On communicating better

Unless it’s a revelation for you that “communication is the key” to relationships of any kind, it’s not useful without context on how to communicate in a healthy way.

Here are details on just a few things I’ve learned from my personal communication failures:

  • Fear of consequences or aversion to uncomfortable conversations has led to worse consequences than the discomfort I thought I was protecting (one of my most glaring deficiencies).
  • Body language, tone, and attitude (HOW you say what you say) are as important as the message itself (WHAT you say).
  • A conversation at a time when one or both parties are not the best versions of themselves could be the difference between understanding/growth and a relationship-damaging outcome
  • l must be able to articulate your argument or feelings in a way that makes you feel heard. If I don’t,  you’re not ready to hear what I have to say.  The reverse is also true.

80/20 principle and learning

Most English speakers use roughly 1,000 of the 250,000 English words in the dictionary.  Knowing that a tiny fraction of words will immediately allow you to have functional fluency makes learning English less daunting.

Here are a couple of other examples:

Learning to play just four chords on the guitar or piano will allow you to play hundreds of songs

Of the thousands of exercises and fitness routines, pushing, pulling, and squatting your body weight a few days per week will allow you to strengthen your body and gain muscle/lose fat faster.

What are the few most critical things you can learn/develop to leverage 80% of the results you seek?