Sunday, May 24, 2009

Faith - The Hardest Walk

The reason that true success is so elusive to so many of us is because the journey there is so damn hard and yet, it's not so hard at all.

It's one thing to have a clear goal to where you want to be in life but it's another thing completely to be able to have and maintain any faith of accomplishing them over the long haul.

According to all religions (that I am aware) and success experts the most fundamental key to success is to be able to believe that you can achieve it. In simpler terms, to have faith.

"Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve." - Napoleon Hill

"I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you." - Matthew 17:20

So if it's just that simple why aren't you rich yet? Simple. Because while we may be able to generate the necessary faith and enthusiasm to start moving towards our goals we simply cannot maintain it. Life always puts roadblocks in our way to discourage us. It's designed that way.

In a dream, if you are aware that you are dreaming, it's a simple matter to dictate the course of the dream. You simple decide 'x' event will happen - and it does. If you are unaware you're dreaming this process is done subconsciously. But a dream is pure thought energy, it's totally ethereal.

In the real world, you can still decide to dictate the course of your life but nothing happens instantly. Which is good, because otherwise every frivolous thought that came across our undisiplined minds would suddenly manifast into reality. That might sound good at first but when you think about it, you quickly realize we wish for a lot of stuff we don't actually want.

In the real world, for desires to become reality you must put them into motion and then maintain confident enthusiasm in their eventual success. However, far too often we either don't take any action at all. If we do, then when things start to look bleak we lose hope, lose steam and allow them to fall by the way side.

Generally speaking, things will always look darkest before the dawn. You can almost, always count on things to go wrong, or at least appear to go wrong. Sometimes things that might seem contrary to our goals must happen in order for our goals to be realized.

Recently, a friend of mine was greatly distressed when she was pressured into quiting her job. It was no secret that she was far more resourceful and productive than her manager. She frequently went over his head to get things done and was always granted her requests because they were sound and would make the company money. While some managers would be thrilled to have a rising star performer on thier teams, some are merely threatened by it. Hers fell into the latter group and had her transferred to another unrelated position under a harsher, stricker manager who immediately began to treat her unsavorably. Feeling like she was trapped in a no-win situation she quit.

This caused her considerable mental diress for obvious financial reasons. However she found work in a lower paying position in a related field which she maintained while she continued to actively persue other oppurtunites. She just landed a senior position with a large west coast company looking to expand into her city. A position and pay scale far superior to the one she had quit.

If she hadn't lost her initial job she would have most likely never been aware of the oppurtunity and also would not have had the breathe of related experience the lower postion afforded her. Now she's grateful for having had to quit that initial job.

Chances are you have had something similar happen to you or someone you know.

When it comes to pursuing our dreams though, these sorts of perceived set-backs cause us to lose faith or at least lose focus and enthusiasm. We tend to focus on what's gone wrong or could go wrong instead of focusing our attention where it needs to be, on our end goal.

This is why faith is so pivital. You need to be able to believe that things will work out when the exact opposite seems to be the case. Logical or 'rational' thinking will always betray you in this way. It will observe the current circumstance and decide that you have lost or are destined to lose. Never be concerned with the current reality, you must remain focused on the reality you are working to create and have faith that whatever must happen, will happen.

Why is life designed this way? To separate the wheat from the chaff.

To be continued...

Thursday, May 21, 2009

The Keys to Success

My daughter has aspirations of being a model and actress. I have no doubt that she can and will succeed in those goals - as long as she continues to apply the 'Keys to Success' I've outlined below.

In taking to her I asked her what she thought would be the two things that were required for success.

Talent - she confidently replied.

No, I answered. How many mediocore actresses and pop stars have you seen succeed when many, many more talented people go undiscovered. Paris Hilton is perhaps the eptimy of this - she lacks any real acting skills and yet has starred in multiple movies, she lacks any kind of singing voice but still has had a hit single. Talent is helpful but not required.

Looks - she offered instead, since obviously Paris and others banked on their looks for success.

Looks certainly do help, especially in beauty crazed North America (Hollywood) but there are a lot of actors and singers - both careers where beauty is coveted - that are not exactly pin-up poster material. Hollywood does a great job of dolling them up but without make-up you would not look twice at them. In other careers, beauty matters far, far less.

Intelligence? - She ventured.

Is Paris Hilton a poster child for Intelligence? Is George W Bush? Neither exactly wows the public their their intellectual prose and yet somehow they have achieved outstanding success.


Her own heartthrob is proof that wealth is not required for Shia LeBeouf came from an extremely poor family to become a headline movie star.

Luck? Contacts?

Again, helpful but no.

In the end, while all of those factors do contribute to success, none of them, in and of themselves, nor any combination of them will ensure success. At least not long lasting meaningful success. People sometimes do stumble into success through the back door and almost without exception soon stumble right back out.

With or without talent, looks, wealth, intelligence, luck or important contacts you will require the following two attributes if you wish to become successful - really truly successful - in any or all areas of your life.


You must have clearly defined goals that you are passionate - to the point of obsession - about.

Anyone and everyone you meet on the street will tell you they wish for 'more money', and most would like a 'better job', they might also long for 'better health' or perhaps they are a very simple person and all they desire in life is 'peace'.

The problem with all of those is threefold.

First - they are only 'wishing'. A wish is meaningless and powerless. It prompts people to spend money on lottery tickets and slot machines in some desperate hope that they'll get lucky. It makes people fall for scams that promise great wealth or health without any hassle. You cannot wish for success and expect it to just appear. You must first decide to have it. And then not settle for less.

Second - It's totally undefined. You want more money? Here's a penny. Not enough? Here's ten dollars. Still not happy? How about a million dollars? Oh, now your happy... but it won't last. Statiscally, the majority of people who win big in the lottery are back to being just as broke, if not moreso, than before within 4 years. The reason for that is because they have no defination of what they truly want out of life or gameplan on how to get it. If they just 'win' it, that lack of understanding and planning prevents them from being able to maintain it.

If you want a better job then what type of career do you really want? How can you possibly make the necessary steps to achieve that without first knowing what position in life you are truly aiming for?

Third - They are not passionate about it. Therefore they are far more content to 'settle' for what they have. It's easier.

The second key to success is:


You must develop the type of faith that keeps you going even when everything seems lost.

Now if you want to have faith in Jesus, or God or Allah or whatever religion you prescribe too, then that's fine. It works! IF you have enough faith to remain at peace throughout troubling times and if, and ONLY IF you actually walk in faith. Far too many people merely pray for something but then do nothing to achieve that which they've asked for or worse pray for it and then actually complain about not having it. As a Pastor friend once so eloquaintly put it - if you're going to ask for rain, start walking with an umbrella. Start to walk towards your goal as if it was already guaranteed.

If your agnostic or an atheist you're not doomed as long as you can cultivate a strong belief that the every essence of the universe can and will work on your behalf. Quantum mechanics proves that energy is constantly flowing into form, through form and out of form. The entire universe is energy in one form or another. Energy that is constantly moving in and out of form, including your form. If you can consistantly focus your energy, your mental energy, passionately, consistantly it will leave an imprint in the fabric of the universe and the universe will move to bring that imprint into reality.

Now you may think that's a load of bunk but if you study any of the greats throughout history, you will find they have this firm conviction. They all had firm faith that the way to success would be revealed to them - in time - and acted accordingly.

"We will either find a way or make one" - Hannibal.