I have just finished reading Think and Grow Rich, the 1937 version, written by Napoleon Hill. This is a must read for anyone who is committed to success in whatever endeavour they choose. Even though his words were written 75 years ago, and some of the English expression seems quaint, the message is timeless.
His words throughout the book have been ringing truths for me at every page turn, but there was one innocuous sentence that lept off the page at me, and took me back to the home in which I grew up and this really made me think about my life and the choices I have made versus those that I saw (and continue to see) being made by my parents – in particular my mother.
“Many people believe that material success is the result of favourable “breaks””. When Napoleon Hill wrote these words, I swear he must have met my mother. This is the thinking that has dominated my mother’s life and her explanation for the outcomes (or lack of) that she has experienced in her life. It has been a life lived based on comparison with others. The idea that perhaps outcomes (and material possessions) of others might be due to more than “breaks” and may even be due to actions they have taken is a foreign concept – to anyone who looks at life through an externally focussed lens.
This blog is not being written as a criticism of my mother, but from a postion where I have taken the learnings from this type of environment and the behaviours I have experienced first hand where I regard them as an incredible gift. Without having experienced this type of thinking, I would not be in a position I am now – one where I know I have received absolute gold.
The reason I believe exposure to this type of thinking is gold, is because I choose to focus on the abundance in my life and everyday an reminded more and more of just how bountiful my life has been and continues to be. I have traded a scarcity and lack focussed mentality for one where I see abundance around me. I have traded a childhood of saving brown paper and bits of string, not being able to tear wrapping off presents because you have to save the paper and reuse it (ultimate fear here was that you reused the paper and gave it back to the person who gave it to you in the first place!) and other habits steeped in Level 1 poverty, survival thinking. I now tear the wrapping from presents, knowing that I have more than enough wrapping paper to go around.
Understanding the Level 1 – survival level of thinking, and taking positive action to move from it is incredibly liberating nd the lessons in moving from lack thinking to abundance thinking has shown me just what it takes to be successful. Lack thinking can never rsult in success. All it can result in is unhappiness, discontent and jealousy and resentment. I choose success and take responsibility to make it happen. I desire it, I demand it and I demand it of myself.
Unlike my mother, and those with Level 1 thinking, I have a burning desire to give value to my clients and my family and a burning desire for success. I realise that it is not going to just turn up – I have to take action – the likelihood of “luck” turning up and dropping a fortune into my lap is extremely remote.
I have a plan – a detailed plan of action based on the wonderful work of the sensational Alice Haemmerle – I can’t thank Alice enough for the gifts that she brings to each room she enters. My 2013 action pan has some seriously BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goals) firmly embedded in them. My vision board has some extraordinary items on it – well beyond my present means but ones which I know I will achieve. Maybe not all in 2013, but who knows??? Again shoot for the stars and you might not get the stars but you will reach the moon.
I have closed my mind to negative thoughts and discouraging influences – they just roll off, if I hear them at all – this is a muscle that I am flexing daily as I encounter beige people – I can do whatever I choose, so I am not listening to those who choose not to share my dreams for whatever reason – it is my dream and that’s fine – I accept that it is an idividual’s choice to play on the field of life, or just sit wishing on the sidelines – I am fortunate that I am surrounded by a group of supportive friends and acquaintances who believe anything is possible – and it is! Their enthusiasm for life, and the journey they are on is a perfect antedote to the beigeness I encounter amongst some of the people I encounter in my daily life or at least Monday – Friday. At effect people, people who live to lay blame anywhere but themselves, playing it safe and not making a decision – these people aren’t even on the sidelines – they are in the back row of the bleechers – success is not something they desire – unless they get a “break” – perhaps this is why they tolerate the environments and mundane jobs they do.
As Napoleon Hill so eloquently puts it – there are 4 keys to success in whatever we do – and we can choose to put them on our keyring, or we can choose to think like my mother and believe that they only turn up for other people.
I wonder how different my mother’s life and those like her (for she is not alone – entitlement thinking, and lack thinking is more common than abundant thinking) if they took off the lens of lack and scarcity and stepped into their own power, took the reigns of their lives and focussed on the abundance instead – I wonder what new and different things they would see. I wonder how their thinking would change and what outcomes they would get if they too accepted that they are 100% responsible for the outcomes they get and that the “break” they are looking for has actually been inside them all along.