My friend, Dr. Philip Humbert, is one of the most insightful writers I know. His current message to his subscribers is a great example of his insight:
This week I reviewed some notes I took at a Seminar with Jim Rohn several years ago, and one of Jim’s many amazing insights jumped out at me. Jim has helped thousands of people reach their goals and I want to share just one of the KEY pieces that impressed me.
I was reminded that success is based on a simple 3-step process:
>>> First — What We See
I’m told that the average American sees over 3000 marketing messages every day. They are everywhere! Fortunately, we have learned to ignore the vast majority of them.
In the same way, at this very moment you are breathing, you are sitting on a chair, and a there are a thousand things going on around you that your brain automatically filters out to let you concentrate. Our ability to “filter” allows us to survive! If we couldn’t do that, we would be over-whelmed and unable to function.
Out of all that “data” around us, we select a few things to notice and care about. We respond to a baby’s cry. We answer a ringing telephone. We focus on our bank statement, our bills, a lover’s touch and so forth, and this is important – high achievers focus on (“see”) things differently than failures!
High achievers literally do not “see” the television programs others find captivating! High achievers “see” opportunities others miss. They “see” solutions others ignore.
What you “see” or focus on determines your destiny.
>>> Second — How We Interpret What We See
Shakespeare observed that nothing is “good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” Most people know the story about the glass that is either “half-full” or “half-empty.” Everything we “see” is interpreted and the only difference is that winners constantly interpret life in ways that work to their advantage.
Where one person interprets a slumping economy as threatening their business, another finds an opportunity for growth. Where one person sees a problem, another seizes opportunity.
Winners view things differently. They grasp solutions, seize opportunities and find reasons for optimism.
>>> Third — What We DO About What We See
Everything comes down to action. Peak performers actually DO get up a bit earlier, stay a bit later, and work harder (and smarter) than other people. In the end, our lives are not created by our intentions but by the results of our daily activities.
Now, it is true that our actions are shaped by many things! Of course painful experiences and mis-fortune and bad luck play a part. Let’s not kid ourselves. But the most important influences on our daily actions are (1) what we see, (2) how we interpret what we see, and (3) how we respond.
The steps to success begin by surrounding ourselves with things that move us forward. Read great books! Listen to great audio programs! Get around smart, talented, creative people! If you see stress and trouble every day, you will be influenced by it. If you see opportunity and optimism, if you see determination and courage and hope, you will inevitably be shaped by these things.
Here are two practical applications of these truths:
1. I no longer subscribe to a daily newspaper. For many years I was addicted to it, but then I noticed that starting my day with 20 minutes of trouble and controversy was not creating the life I wanted. So I took action, canceled our subscription and now I read something more useful.
2. Every week, I work with a personal coach who reminds me of my values and goals. Every year, I attend at least two personal development seminars. I hang out where the GOOD stuff and the GREAT people are!
Invest in your future. Get where the GOOD stuff is!
You can subscribe to Phil’s newsletter at http://www.philiphumbert.com .