When you Google “self-help” you get 118 million hits. The Self Help section in any bookstore is usually enormous (as is my own personal library). If you are to believe what you read on the dust- covered jackets of self-help best sellers, all you have to do is read the right book, and you will be able to immediately change whatever you would like to change, and live better, and find the achievements you are seeking.
I remember seeking answers as a little boy, and although I found the ultimate one at the age of ten (more on that in a minute) I’ve been studying various answers for 50 years.
When Shad Helmstetter wrote “What to Say When You Talk to Yourself” back in 1982, it became, and still is, the classic #1 best-selling book on the subject of self-talk. Dr. Helmstetter reveals that after he spent more than twenty years studying the literature of success, “I found a consistent unfulfilled promise – the promise of our success waiting just around the corner.”
“I have learned that I can be hypnotized, processed, or reborn. I know that I can attend seminars which will give me the “answer.” I can become a goal-setter and a “true achiever.” I can learn to organize my day, set my priorities, and accomplish more than I ever dreamed possible. I can learn to “think positively,” be more creative, relate to others and become “centered.” I have learned that success is mine for the taking; all I have to do is accept my destiny of achievement and greatness.”
He then concludes, “And yet, after learning these great and marvelous truths, and some of them are, I would take with a grain of salt anyone’s claim that they can give you the ‘secret of success.” If anyone offers you the moon, don’t buy it.”
The problem is not with the books nor the seminars, or the articles, or the blogs, or with the motivational talks.
Please don’t get me wrong, dear reader. There are a lot of self-help ideas and techniques that are really good. They should work – and some of them do; but most of them don’t keep working, because of something they have overlooked.
That is not the way our brain works!
While the scientific community agrees that the human brain is the most complex organism in the universe. I believe it is also the most powerful. Why? Because everything man has and is accomplishing originates from his brain.
In fact, your own brain is capable of doing any reasonable thing that you would like for it to do.
But you have to know how to treat it! If you treat it right, and give it the right directions, it will do the right thing – it will work for you in the right way. However, when you give it the wrong directions, it will act on those wrong directions; without even being aware of it.
So what did I discover at the tender age of ten?
I discovered the Bible!
More specifically, I discovered a little verse in the Book of Proverbs that opened up the world to me. “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he!” (Proverbs 127:3) These eleven words were written 3,000 years ago, and yet they summarize the discoveries of cognitive psychology which began in the early 1960’s.
“As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he!” hits the psychological nail on the head. In fact, in the last six decades we have learned more about the workings of the human brain than was ever known before.
So there are three principles which not only work in conjunction; they open us up to the changes we want in our lives.
1.Your brain believes everything you tell it…WITHOUT QUESTION!
2.You can change the way you think about yourself!
3.The handle on the way you think about yourself is your self-talk.
When you say, “I’m stuck! I’ll always be this way!” your brain believes you, without question! In addition, it makes sure you stay stuck! That’s one of its jobs! Scary!!!
However, when you say, “Although I’m still making mistakes, I’m still learning, and growing, and changing,” your brain agrees with that just as quickly!
And when you say, “I am changing what I think about myself by changing my self-talk,” your brain agrees with that too. Why? Because that is what you are saying to yourself…about yourself! Not only that, it then looks for ways to think differently. That is also one of its jobs!
Remember this, dear reader. Your ‘old life’ ended when?
One second ago!
So when did your new life begin?
ONE SECOND AGO!
Now do the math; 60 seconds per minute, 60 minutes per hour, 24 hours per day. In one day, you have 86,400 new opportunities for a new life by changing what you are saying to yourself, about yourself, starting now.
All you have to do is take them!
Steven Campbell is the author of “Making Your Mind Magnificent” and conducts “The Winners Circle” every two months at Sonoma Mountain Village in RP. Contact Steven at 480-5007 or go his website at stevenrcampbell.com to ask about his one-day free monthly seminar.