We become what we think about

Earl Nightingale’s famous line, “We become what we think about” heard throughout The Secret Advantage rings true; with caution. Each one of us is born with a unique gift.

MIND BODYThe gift is your inheritance to enjoy all the riches you can think about. Imagination is the starting point of your self esteem. You are in charge of your dreams and your destiny. It doesn’t matter what well meaning people who want to protect you from disappointment say about how tough it is to do what you want.

You can join the long list of naysayers and probably find lots of scientific facts that can create a plausible argument against the fact that you were born with a gift, and that gift is your inheritance, your right, and your destiny.

Do you have doubts about the power of your thinking? Here’s a somewhat scientific experiment to argue the point of your mental powers. According to authors Robert Scaglione and William Cummins, in ” Karate of Okinawa: Building Warrior Spirit”, is one of the most well-known studies on Creative Visualization in sports. Russian scientists compared four groups of Olympic athletes in terms of their training schedules:

  • Group 1 = 100% physical training;
  • Group 2 – 75% physical training with 25% mental training;
  • Group 3 – 50% physical training with 50% mental training;
  • Group 4 – 25% physical training with 75% mental training.

The results; Group 4, with 75% of their time devoted to mental training, performed the best. “The Soviets had discovered that mental images can act as a prelude to muscular impulses.”

Does this mean you can think up anything and it will come true? Here’s the profound truth:

As Earl Nightingale has stated, “We become what we think about.”

However, this is critical, if your thought is not in alignment with your purpose, it will not materialize. Earl teaches this as well in The Secret Advantage.

Once you discover your purpose, there is very little that can stand in your way of success. The other truth is, you will be bombarded by doubters. Every garden that produces magnificent produce does so with great distraction. Weeds grow in every garden. They just do. There’s no answer to why bad things happen. That doesn’t prevent us from weeding the garden, or eliminating the negatives.

Doubters are major weeds. They need to be eliminated. They need to be ignored.

Ignore the skeptics and disbelievers when they shout out, “Where’s the scientific proof.”

Scientific proof stated the Space Shuttle could not possibly fly while the project was only an idea. The Space Shuttle has the aerodynamics of a rock. When it lands, it’s a glider. There’s no engine.

Scientific proof stated the earth was flat, the planets and stars floated through the universe around earth, Thomas Edison could never learn his school studies, and Beethoven’s deafness would end his career as a composer.

This is not brand new untested stuff. You’ve probably heard the famous quote, “Every day, in every way, I’m getting better and better.”

Although it has a contemporary ring, like something from the sixties, it’s been around a while.   Émile Coué, who lived from 1857 to1926, was the guy that dreamed that idea up. He came up with a method of psychotherapy and self-improvement based on optimistic autosuggestion. Coué believed that curing our troubles requires a change in our unconscious thought. Coué relied on the principle that any idea exclusively occupying the mind turns into reality, although only to the extent that the idea is within the realms of possibility. He led the line of thought that calls on positive affirmations such as, “I am healthy,” instead of negativity such as, “I am not well.”

Where do you choose to place your belief? With the long list of loser doubters, or the winners that overcome the weeds in their garden.

Your mind is your master, and at the same time you have control over your master. Your mind is the sun and rain to grow your garden. That same sun and rain will feed the weeds as easily as the fruits of your labor. Your mind directs the sun and rain to focus on the good and not the bad.

Your mind gives you absolute control over what you allow to influence it. You cannot control the weather, the sun, the rain, the economy, the wars, the inevitable bad things that appear. You can control your reaction to those actions. When the rain doesn’t come and the garden begins to wilt, you can water the plants. When disease or famine wipes out the garden, you can start over.

As you walk through the mine field of your life, you can be directed past the detractors. Your steps can be directed around the triggers that ignite the bombs. You can believe in your future, or you can deceive yourself into failure. Your self esteem is up to you.

Choice. The Past. The Future.

Choice requires change.

Janus, Two faced God

That fact is, choice causes a lot of heartburn for most until we take a close look at changing course.  Man’s first flight to the moon was off course most of the way. So how did we get there to take man’s first small step? The scientists back on earth changed course over and over – a little to the right -now a little to the left. You do the same thing driving a car. Then why do we get so uptight over changing course during our journey through our careers?

You have to have the ability to do what you want with the power of free choice and the ability to learn how it is done. Ability must be in alignment with your purpose. If, for example, you want to be the next professional superstar basketball player, it helps to have the physical attributes and athletic ability. If you are shorter than five feet, can’t jump, and hate to run, you are not in alignment. You have to be honest with your reasons as well. Gene Simmons of the rock band Kiss says, “Anybody who picks up a guitar and tells you that there’s some inner message that they’re trying to convey . . . it’s nonsense. They’re not being honest. The reason they’re doing this is they wanna’ get lots of chicks and they don’t want to work for a living.”

You may in fact have a higher calling. We all have inner messages. The challenge is to be in alignment and dream about something that you can do. To be the best, you may have to un-learn some things before taking on the tasks of learning how to be all you can be. The past has a haunting, hypnotic, and habitual grasp on us and must be dealt with. Dr. Tony Campolo, professor emeritus of sociology at Eastern University said, “As important as your past is, and it is important because it brought you to where you are, it is not as important as your vision of what your future is.”

Your degrees, your successes, your failures, your dreams, and your disappointments all pale in comparison to your vision of your future.

Why is it, then, the past weighs so heavy? Ancient civilizations knew the dilemma. Their God, Janus, on the ancient coin had two faces; one to the past, the other to the future. Could it be that hindsight is twenty-twenty and we can clearly see our actions? The present is a challenge since the consequences of our actions are only a guess until we look back.

Abolitionist Frederick Douglass wrote, “We have to deal with the past only as we can make it useful to the present and the future.”

While that makes perfect sense, it’s easier said than done. As we look toward the promise the future may hold, the past tries to hold control over us. That becomes obvious with age, since there’s so much past to go around. Many of us have decades of past events to deal with. It’s true you can’t go back as Thomas Fuller wrote, “Time and words can’t be recalled.” He wrote that in the seventeen-hundreds; proof that we have all struggled with the past for centuries.

My office walls once adorned my trophies like many offices. Finally, it occurred to me that constant physical reminders only aided and abetted the memories that steal away productivity. Now my photos, news articles, plaques and things are either tucked away in boxes, or on walls out of sight. Instead, I spend my time doing what I excelled at in school -staring out the window and day dreaming. The clouds floating across Florida are puffs of the future, a reminder that present actions charge life into dreams, and memories are the masters of mediocrity. No longer will I be slave to past misfortunes.

No longer will the shoulda’ woulda’ coulda’ club be a place for my thoughts. Instead, choose to follow Frederick Douglass’ advice and only use what’s useful from your past. Remember those useful experiences that lay the foundation for your present and future actions. No longer sing the, “Somebody done me wrong” song.

If You Build It, Will They Come?

if you build itThose magical words from the movie, Field of Dreams, make us shiver with delight . If your field of dreams is to build a better website, will they come? Will the great mass of humanity click their way to your ISP and make you rich, famous, and fill your PayPal account with unlimited resources to live the life we want? The truth is, the nine dollar domain name for the website we build and pennies per month do-it-yourself website kit is not the field of dreams for the weak at heart.

The internet is appealing as the one place in business where butts can be pasted to seats with no need to get up, get out, and get to pressing hands. Just close the bedroom door and open up multiple browser windows to social network and tweet your way to stardom. Hey, if it were that easy, everyone would be doing it, right?

Actually, just about everyone is. I cruise my Facebook and LinkedIn accounts each day to keep up with others that may find it interesting. In an earlier article, I mentioned the importance of one of Earl Nightingale’s core principles to become more creative. That point is to reach out to friends to fill the idea bank. Social media is great for this.

So, I mentioned our program, The Secret Advantage and how the core fundamentals for you to build success are available for the small investment of just listening. Hey, get a better life and all you have to do is listen, learn, and live the principles revealed by the one of the best minds on the planet. Great elevator pitch. Then I get an email from the moderator of one of the many social groups warning that ‘pitching’ other members may be offensive, and just imagine what it would cost to reach 58,000 members. I can tell you with some experience that the average cost per thousand in media won’t make anyone rich at a multiple of 58. So, before getting all huffy and high and mighty, just reel it back in a bit and consider the fact that real work has to be done in each and every business. We all have to seize every moment we can to spread the word in any means possible to drive those clicks home. Like the old saying, “One person’s junk is another’s treasure.” Many opportunities are offered in sales pitches. We all get daily doses of ads and commercials to the tune of thousands, and yet we find our way through the myriad filtering out the stuff we have no interest in. Then, there’s the one nugget revealed in a flash of light that answers some need we have.

If we are to survive this thick underbrush of massive clutter, we have to become more and more unique. Years ago the big time advertising gurus proclaimed USP, Unique Selling Position. The battle for your mind way back then was only three TV networks, newspapers, a few billboards, and a handful of  AM radio stations that sputtered out tobacco commercials through the static for the Rolling Stones to sing about, “Can’t be a man cause he doesn’t smoke, same cigarettes as me, I can’t get no satisfaction.”

There’s more clutter today, but we have evolved, we can stand the noise, we are capable of finding our satisfaction. The thought of starting your very own online business is a great field of dreams. The masses may come if you can navigate the data storm and exercise your very own USP for your ISP with precision. It can be done. Build a better website and build a bright future.

Minimum wage for a salary is for chumps.

The maximum salary determines wealth.

I WANT IT ALL We spend time working hard for the money, while politicians kick this minimum wage football around as if it is the answer to raising the standards of living for middle class families. Truth is, the minimum wage never has nor will it be the generator of a better life for anyone. The minimum is a great place to start. Staying there is not a wise choice, so we have to increase our core fundamentals to become more valuable to the market and the companies that allow us to work.

That is a key point. Companies allow us to work for them when they hire us and enter into a contract that states we will show up on time, deliver more than expected, and get raises.

To understand why the minimum wage will never fix our finances, let’s look at the history. In 1961 the wage was increased to $1.15 an hour effective September 1961 and to $1.25 an hour in September 1963. That means the annual minimum salary was $2,373 at $1.15 and hour and way up to $2,580 in 1963.

To put that in perspective, in 1961 the Average Cost of new house was $12,500.00, a new car $2,850.00, a gallon of gas 27 cents, and to bring home the bacon cost 67 cents per pound. Old car.    

Next, consider the Average Income per year $5,315.00; more than twice the minimum wage. Again, this is not the answer to raising the lifestyle for families across America.

In more recent times, 2007 minimum wage of $5.85 has been raised to $7.25 per hour just two years later in 2009. In no way will this pull families up.

So, what’s the answer?

The minimum wage is a starter salary to create opportunities to get a job, perfect a skill, and become valuable. The only way to do that is to master the core fundamentals required by all successful businesses. Minimum wage is great for interns where the major pay is in experience to increase your core values.

Research conducted with top CEO’s and Business Owners revealed the top concerns of the leaders include developing dynamic core competences, focusing on and building human capital, effectively using new technology, engaging in valuable strategies and building new organization structures and culture. That research gave direction and shape to the new program to be based on four core fundamentals. The Secret Advantage, CORE fundamentals for success; Competency, Opportunity, Results, and Effectiveness.

The result is over 21 hours of edited best principles. From there, the program is produced in 64 episodes of approximately 20 minutes each for easy listening and reference. In addition to the audio library, the program includes a half hour video documentary on the lives of Earl Nightingale and Lloyd Conant is included, along with six unedited Earl Nightingale Classic Videos.

If you have to choose between a job or a career, your college education has not worked.

More people today are looking for work instead of pursuing a meaningful purpose.

DECISIONSThe rising cost of college measured by a resulting career has been delivering a failing grade for return on investment leading to mass disappointment. These are not new challenges. It doesn’t matter when the graduation date fell on the calendar. Many that graduated in the summer of love in 1967 are still searching for purpose. Millions today are looking toward the upcoming days of the 21st century with the same question, “What’s the purpose of my life?”

Tough times have always defined people in two ways. There are those who simply give up and settle for whatever wages they can get, and that amount defines their lifestyle. Then there is the other group who see tough times as a time to get motivated to find a career, make changes, and take advantage of ideas that emerge in times of dissatisfaction.

Earl Nightingale lived in a tent city in Los Angeles as a boy. Everything around him pointed to a life where he would be forced to settle for less. He chose a different path. As a young man he found the secret to riches in a book. Inspired with just six words, he grew up to revolutionize the personal development industry with his recording of, The Strangest Secret. The message he taped became the world’s first spoken word recording to sell over a million copies. That was in 1960 when there were no self-help sections in books stores, and no Oprah on TV.  It was this success, and Earl’s national following on over a thousand radio stations, that Lloyd Conant shaped into a new business model. Nightingale Conant has published hundreds of best selling authors and created more millionaires than all personal development experts combined over the company’s fifty-plus years as the world leader in personal development.LLOYD EARL TABLE

Vic Conant took over the company as President and Chairman and led the publishing giant into new media formats to change with the times, but remain true to the concepts that change lives, “I have always believed that thoughts and ideas are our most powerful possessions. An idea can change the way we look at the world and the way we think. Ideas improve every area of our life – career, relationships, personal wealth, and self-confidence.”

Today, Vic has taken on the challenge to find the most relevant messages for today’s growing population that can take advantage of the life work of Earl Nightingale. There are thousands of recordings from his best sellers and radio broadcasts. Over the past year, Earl’s extensive library has been researched and edited into a new release called, The Secret Advantage. In a discussion with Joe Nuckols to create a formula for the program, Joe mentioned, “Today businesses are looking for core fundamentals in the people they hire and promote.”

One idle comment started the engine of the creative process. Research conducted with top CEO’s and Business Owners revealed something in what Joe said. The top concerns of the leaders included developing dynamic core competences, focusing on and building human capital, effectively using new technology, engaging in valuable strategies and building new organization structures and culture. That research gave direction and shape to the new program to be based on four core fundamentals. Joe developed the concept around the acronym, CORE for Competency, Opportunity, Results, and Effectiveness. With this concept in mind, Joe took on the task of becoming a contributing author and producer to find Earl’s best messages to address each of the four core fundamentals.

The result is over 21 hours of edited best principles. From there, the program is produced in 64 episodes of approximately 20 minutes each for easy listening and reference. In addition to the audio library, the program includes a half hour video documentary on the lives of Earl Nightingale and Lloyd Conant is included along with six unedited Earl Nightingale Classic Videos.