What is it that stops someone from being truly certain and confident? Why don’t people do the simple things in life that would give them a truly incredible and wonderful life?
The difference between achievement and failure is usually very marginal. A few actions (literally) daily make the difference between $30,000 per year and $50,000 per year. A few more actions (literally) daily make the difference between $50,000 per year and $100,000 per year.
So if it’s this seemingly “easy,” what are the problems and how are they overcome?
What specifically strips people of their personal mastery and complete confidence and how can one counteract these forces?
The Problem in Metaphor: Learning to Be Helpless
Self Confidence erodes as the person feels helpless.
Let’s start at learned helplessness. Learned helplessness is at the root of the erosion of self confidence and much of clinical depression. Learned helplessness is exactly what the words say. It is the result when someone learns (believes) they are helpless.
In the 1600’s very small groups of people migrated from England to…New England and started colonizing a largely uninhabited region of what is now known as the United States. They were almost starting from zero. Next to no food. Next to no clothing. Next to no tools. They had very, very little. And that…having next to nothing…is often the right preparation for personal mastery and tremendous achievement….
They realized that they needed to survive everything the new land had to throw at them. Including the elements which were much different from England. (Much more extreme in heat and cold…winters that would kill many the first few years in America.) But there was no opportunity to learn to be helpless. Passivity and inaction led to certain death.
Every action taken was an action toward creating a town, a harbor, a mill, an iron works company. Every action showed the people that they were indeed far from helpless. They were empowered. They developed an evolving set of skills in the spirit of survival and growing an entire new culture and way of life. An attitude of self sufficiency permeated the culture for over three centuries. Self sufficiency happens on the road to personal mastery. English businesses often invested money in the start up of American enterprise and investments were often paid off handsomely.
Soon there was no need to rely upon the government or a company or much of anyone else for that matter. What they couldn’t produce, early Americans would trade for.
Contrasted with 2005 when Americans are fearful of doing anything that would ensure survival (short or long term) we have as a society largely forgotten our roots and abilities of economic force and power. You hear people complain when they have “unfair competition.” Colonists were faced with seemingly impossible competition and yet intentionally chose that option going into the deal!
People got comfortable. Technology and Industry advanced far faster than evolution.
By the 1920’s life was incredibly “easy.” People became comfortable. Tranquil and that along with world events brought on the Great Depression. Worse? The solution was a new deal…to have Uncle Sam take care of them. The plug had been pulled in the bathtub of strength. In just a few years self confidence became an issue that never existed to any significant degree just 50 years before.
Today? People are afraid.
They have learned to become helpless. They have learned to become dependent on a government for their “retirement” (a very new concept on this planet) and dependent on a company for their “job” singular, instead of learning evolving skills to keep them ahead of the pack. No longer do most know how to evolve and grow. The majority have learned how to stagnate.
Colonial America? No one said, “I’ll strike if you don’t pay me more!” They said, “No one is making candles in this town. This is a perfect chance to make my candles and sell them!”
People found what products and services were in need or want, and, quickly adapted to those needs leaving what they did before.
Recently Economists have spoken the obvious… that people now must become responsible for their own “retirement”… People’s self confidence has utterly eroded…vanished. The idea of someone not demanding benefits from a company or a government is unthinkable. The idea of cessation of creating value because of an age marker has become the norm. How will it change? How will it affect most people when the change comes? It will be a disaster for the majority. Of course it would. And as each generation passes, more and more people will fail to use the skills of survival and achievement that stir within us all but are shut off by dependency.
A lot of Americans have in large part become helpless. They want or demand to be taken care of. To be given something. Or to be given a lot. They feel entitled to live like their ancestors did without putting in the spirit of entrepreneurship and accomplishment that shines from personal mastery.
Now the house of cards crumbles with the erosion of self confidence. Like night follows day…and they follow each other…
It is indeed a recipe for long term disaster…and the political leaders feed upon people’s fears and dependencies with promise of future dependency without cost…to them…only to their children.
In just 60 years Americans have learned to become helpless…and let there be no mistake, it is hard to fight dependency and stand out from the throngs to achieve personal mastery. It is those who achieve personal mastery, who have the confidence to live, thrive, and survive that the dependent-creating leaders want to tax and take from. Quite the opposite of what creates a successful thriving society as America was for 300 years. And it shows how fast things can change on a national level. Shifting from sufficiency, mastery, creativity and stability to illusory dependency. It is a frightening scenario when political leaders castigate in public the achievement of those who generate the ability for all others to have a job…a retirement.
True Personal Mastery Thwarted
Many Politicians seek power through deception. Their personal mastery is illusory because it requires deceit.
Achievement through your skills and abilities…the creation of new ideas, no products, new services, new ways of life, new ways to heal….that is where the future is.
The only people who will make a difference are those who have the confidence to stand up on their own two feet and push away from those who would dangle the false carrot.
Desire for Tranquility
The next problem is overcoming the desire for tranquility.
The desire for tranquility, which is the opposite of the flight/fight response, is an evolutionary need for calm. Unfortunately there is very little calm in a life that has a family that lives on $60,000 per year. The fear of living paycheck to paycheck is very real. There is no business or venture to grow which can become self sustaining. Only dependency.
If the hamster wheel is shipped to China, the individual is lost like a rat in a maze. This person’s ancestors would have laughed mightily at such a bizarre image.
The early Americans were people of great personal mastery. Incredible pride. Strong will. And perhaps not surprisingly … amid the challenges, the deaths of so many in unknown circumstances…a very happy nation.
Today, the person takes their seven hour break each night from work and the person feels “calm.” Like the drug addict gets his fix. But it is a deceptive calm because there a powerful storm to be fought outside. There is no respite, and nothing can go wrong in life or the entire delusion breaks down completely.
Therefore the person who searches for tranquility finds it for a short while… but obviously it is illusory.
It takes thought and ambition to overcome the inertia that sets in. Just like the person feels temporarily better after eating a jar full of cookies, or smoking a cigarette, they feel better doing nothing when they have an opportunity to create or live a life that is rich. The “feeling” is one that they must defend because they haven’t felt it all day (at work) and they will tell you “I deserve…” and they truly believe the illusion. It’s like living in a magician’s show. Filled with illusions and escapism but only illusion.
The only way for the person to see their way past the overwhelming desire for tranquility is to see how much more tranquility they will get in the long run stacked up against the short paycheck to paycheck breaks.
A question I ask people is, “If you had no income for three months would it make any difference in your life?” The answer needs to be, “no” but less than 1/60 can respond appropriately. The fact is that you are very likely to have times in your life where you have three months or more of zero income. By creating a rich life with rewards you build wealth when you sleep. That is achieving tranquility…at a profit.
It’s funny. Many of the early colonists were petitioned to dig for gold. When they found none, they did something strange to Americans today. They changed their career and lifestyle immediately. They didn’t ask for retraining money from a company to continue to do something that had no value. They simply moved on quickly to the next project. Their success and achievement lay within one person. Themselves. This ability is missing from the mindset of people today and it is a tall barrier to personal mastery.
The next problem that stops individuals from mastery of the self is inability to confront.
Where there is no even minded confrontation, there is no confidence.
Confrontation is uncomfortable and yet it is necessary to cause change. Without change you have erosion. The reason the Chinese can “take” American jobs for pennies on the dollar is because the job value of those American jobs is down to worthless. It requires personal mastery and confidence in the self to move along and recognize when your true value is going down. (In real terms, our value goes down daily unless we move it up faster than inflation.) By constantly self educating and causing new and exciting things to happen in life, you eliminate the need from taking a job from an old Chinese woman by creating a life for your self.
Confrontation doesn’t have to be horrifying. People tend to look at the word as if confrontation were a synonym for war or destruction. I assure you that is what people think. But the fact is that confrontation can be accomplished in most cases with gentleness and kindness and still tell the employee or the boss that you refuse to stagnate. If you don’t learn something new, you become worthless. Without confrontation, the marriage withers, the relationships die, all that is bad that can happen…happens.
When people continuously evolve and intentionally request change, new information, ask for what they want, the opposite happens. Instead of erosion you construct new realities. You become in charge of your life and literally sculpt the landscape of your future.
Replace Bad with Good
The next preclusion of personal mastery is stopping something bad and not replacing it with something good.
For 15 years I’ve had at least a finger in the field of utilizing the power of the mind and hypnosis in one way or another. The people who succeed in getting the most from their minds are not the people who stop smoking or reduce the volume of what they eat. They are the people who stop smoking, reduce how much they eat AND START studying, building, doing something in place of the destructive behaviors.
KEYPOINT: Where you create a void or vacuum, you can expect to see it randomly filled. That will typically cause destruction. (Virtually guaranteed.) The person loses weight and then becomes addicted to drugs or something else because no behavior was put in the void. Never leave a void.
Unfortunately filling a void requires effort. Not much, but it is asking for effort. Energy. The individual doesn’t want to put forth effort, which is one reason the person became overweight in the first place. When you fill the void with constructive behaviors you can literally begin to shape your life physically and emotionally…and intellectually … and in the quality of your life as a sum.
Self Confidence BEGINS with the eradication of old beliefs of dependency and ridding the “feelings” of helplessness. Then taking the void and vacuum that is generated and filling it with construction…building…creation…design…and a desire to constantly change, to always make everything around them better and to better themselves.
That is the genesis of self confidence.
The Three Disciplines
by Kevin Hogan, Psy.D.
- Personal Mastery: Programming Your Mind for The Distinction of Achievement and Success (2 CDs)
- Charisma: Increasing your Personal Magnetism and Leadership Abilities (2 CDs)
- Self-Discipline: Wiring the Core Skill of Achievement Permanently into Your Mind with Self Hypnosis.(2CDs)
Discipline: “training, activity or regimen that develops or improves a skill”.
There are many levels of excellence in life. Personal Mastery is a discipline that is developed over time and with experience; and with the help of the skill of Self-Discipline. The two work together to bring you to a level of excellence. Charisma and personal magnetism allow you to interact with others at a level of excellence and influential elegance that makes you the “go-to” person, the expert, the one in demand. For the first time, the Three Disciplines are offered as a package. 2 high quality digital audio CDs are dedicated to each area, for a total of 6 CDs plus a complete manual to accompany you on your journey:
Personal Mastery: It’s the single trait they all look for. It’s the characteristic women say they most want in a man. It’s the difference between being the best and being everyone else. It’s the trait corporate head hunter’s look for first and most.
Personal Mastery is what differentiates the individual who is truly focused and in charge of their life vs. the person who is pulled and pushed by life’s tides.
Everyone gravitates to the person with self-mastery because they exude certainty and success. They have a plan, a next step and they seamlessly execute their plan. They have the flexibility to change anything in life at any moment. They are the envy of everyone else. They are the go-to person. The person with self-mastery is the person who encompasses the phrase, “personal initiative.” Most importantly, they get results because they make things happen day in and day out.
You feel secure and safe around the person with self-mastery…and now that person can consistently be you or the person you are coaching.
The ability to recognize your strengths and weaknesses is a key characteristic of someone who possesses Personal Mastery. I have identified two broad categories, and 12 key components to Personal Mastery. These will be revealed in this program.