The Energy of Money by Maria Nemeth

The Energy of Money by Maria Nemeth

The Book in a Few Sentences

Money is a powerful force in our lives. This book will transform you relationship to money and life. Deep insights from western and Buddhist psychology with challenging exercises.

The Energy of Money summary

This is my book summary of The Energy of Money by Maria Nemeth. My summary and notes include the key lessons and most important insights from the book.

Introduction

  • Money is an uncomfortable subject for most of us.  Many people would rather talk about their sex lives than about their bank balance.  
  • We love money, and we hate it..  
  • We can’t live with it, and we can’t live without it.  
  • Money can be a source of great joy and creativity, or it can bring frustration and misery, depending on our relationship with it.  
  • And we bring all these doubts and fears, hopes and expectations with us every time we deal with money…in every area of our lives.  
  • Money touches almost every aspect of living: work, leisure time, creative activities, home, family, and spiritual pursuits.  
  • Everything we do and dream of is affected by our relationship with this powerful form of energy.  
  • Whether your dream is to travel around the world, pay for a house, establish a food bank, buy a Corvette, get out from under a mountain of debt, or take a year off to write a novel, that vision is intertwined with the possibilities and pitfalls bound up in the energy of money.  
  • This very discomfort is what makes our relationship with money such fertile ground.  
  • Whatever is potent for us, whatever elicits strong emotions, whatever seems to “hold on to us” in life has the power to bring forth our greatest strengths and most remarkable qualities.  
  • Our relationship with money calls on us to wake up, to see how we are handling all kinds of energy-not only money but time, physical vitality, enjoyment, creativity, and the support of friends-and to use those lessons to enrich every aspect of our lives.  

The Hero’s Journey

  • I have come to see our relationship with money as a hero’s journey.  
  • And we all go through the same basic stages of this journey as we undertake new pursuits and goals throughout our lives: we depart from our familiar routines, lives, or families; we enter into unknown territory where we encounter fears, mysteries, dragons, and mentors; we are initiated into new understandings pursuits, or skills; and, finally, we gain mastery over our newfound skills, ourselves, and our particular part of the world.  
  • The hero’s journey calls on us to bring forth the power of “being,” which Webster’s defines as “the complex of spiritual qualities that constitutes an individual.”
  • The hero strives to bring the qualities of being to whatever he does, including his relationship with money.  
  • The main goal of the hero’s journey is to make your dreams a physical reality-and to learn from all the challenges along the way.  
  • We will lay out the exact route to a powerful relationship with money.  
  • You will see how to bring your goals and dreams into physical reality, and how to ground them in the Life’s Intentions and Standards of Integrity that reflect who you really are.  
  • This journey always began with being willing to look within…

Knowledge + Wisdom = Power

  • Acquiring information and advice about how to manage or invest our money is easy.  
  • The trick is to act on the information, to do something that improves your life and the lives of those you love.  
  • All of my work…has been aimed at giving people the tools both to use all the information and knowledge available, and to access their own inner wisdom--because I believe that knowledge plus wisdom equals power.  

Using the Energy of Money

  • I promise that when you learn to work freely and easily with the energy of money, you life will become what psychologists and counselors call “intentionally” satisfying.  
  • You will know precisely what you want, what brings you joy and meaning, and you will see how to get it with ease.  
  • For example, when you understand you true Life’s Intentions, apply your personal Standards of Integrity, and learn to release the energy of money within your company, you will do business differently and probably with greater success.  
  • You will make the important decisions in your life consciously, never again abandoning your dreams by default because you “can’t afford them.”  
  • I will help you clarify what you really want out of life and give you the tools to act powerfully when you use money to move toward those dreams.  

My Own Story

  • I have since found that this is not an unusual experience, and it’s especially difficult for those who are experts in financial fields.  
  • If their relationship with money is less-than-powerful, they worry that they are frauds.  
  • I spoke with other people who, rather than having a disastrous relationship with money, were simply bored with the tedious predictability of their money lives.  
  • Many of their goals and dreams had been delayed until their lives settled down—one day.  
  • This “someday/one day” mantra had captured their attention and was draining their creative energy.  

The You and Money Course Begins

  • The first question we looked at was how to confront our unconscious beliefs and feelings about money.  
  • What don’t I want to look at regarding me and money?”
  • Repeatedly, we faced the hard choice of telling the truth—or trying to look good.  
  • We found that relief and change came with telling the truth.  
  • …the thought of actually having fun with money while reaching satisfying financial goals seemed like a bad joke.  
  • We discovered that money is so central to our lives that, whether we are rich or poor, we have a relationship with it as soon as we are old enough to count.  
  • Money provides us with security, stability, a way to take care of our families, make a contribution, and have fun.  
  • One woman laughed and said, “My relationship with money is like a one-night stand-here today, gone tomorrow, and it doesn’t even know my name.”
  • “I don’t have enough money” was a common thread running through most of our discussions.  
  • Money was frequently named as the number-one cause of stress.  
  • (In 1996, a Louis Harris and Associates survey for the Lutheran Brotherhood found that one-third of the adults who responded said they have trouble sleeping or relaxing financial obligations included: buying a house, changing careers, having children, and getting married.)
  • …”Just give me more money.  Then things will get better for me.”
  • I even talked with people who questioned whether they had the right to continue living if they couldn’t afford to meet their basic needs.  
  • Others believed that winning the lottery could solve all their problems.  
  • Some worried that their desire for money conflicted with their spiritual beliefs.  
  • Many felt victimized or helpless, as though money were an outside force controlling their lives.  
  • They felt they would never be free of its tyranny.  
  • As each of us looked at our own particular brands of money madness, telling the truth to ourselves and one another, and unusual phenomenon occurred.  
  • We all felt that, suddenly, we had more breathing room in our lives.  
  • What we genuinely wanted in life became more clear.
  • We also gained the fortitude to pursue goals that had seemed impossible.  

Breathing Room

  • “Do I have enough money?” Ask the question aloud to yourself three or four times. Where does your body register a reaction? Maybe in your stomach? In your chest region? At your throat? Not much breathing room, right?
  • Breathing room occurs the moment you get into what I call the observational position.
  • The program you’re about to follow in this book is specifically designed to give you this kind of freedom.
  • Breathing room brings clarity and creativity to your relationship with money.
  • The purpose of this work is for you to discover your own rules, the rules that you’ve always had, the rules that are reflections of your being.
  • When you don’t operate in accordance with those rules, you don’t have any breathing room.
  • …freed themselves from crippling debt, built successful businesses, purchased dream homes, and written screenplays.
  • …deeper sense of purpose in their lives.

The 12 Principles

  • The Energy of Money presents 12 Principles for personal fulfillment.
  • You will uncover the hidden landscape of beliefs, behavior patterns, and habits that underlie and sometimes subvert how you use money and other forms of energy.
  • Each of these 12 Principles is designed to help you access your own inner wisdom, so that you move with ease and clarity toward your goals and dreams.

A Final Word

  • I have found that money is neither spiritual nor nonspiritual.
  • It’s simply energy.
  • It is here to be used wisely, consciously, and with enjoyments.
  • In our culture, there is much discussion of whether you can be on a spiritual path and still have money.
  • Of course you can!
  • The question is: What are you using the money for? Does it further your Life’s intentions? Are you contributing to the lives of others? Does it bring lasting satisfaction, or are you using it for instant gratification because your life is off-kilter?

What Is the Energy of Money?

  • The successful people do have one learned skill that distinguishes them from those who don’t succeed.  
  • It is this: they have learned how to handle energy.

What Makes People Successful?

  • Successful people know how energy works.  
  • They know how to focus the various kinds of energy—money, time, physical vitality, creativity, among others—to convert their ideas, dreams, and visions into reality.
  • While they may not always be successful in their ventures, in general they have mastered how to use energy, and particularly how to use the energy of money.
  • It is a heroic task to keep moving forward in the face of all the thoughts, feelings, self-judgements, and assessments that we attach to money.
  • It is his or her contribution to others and to the larger world that makes the hero into a hero, for the ultimate task of the hero is to bring knowledge, energy, and power back to the people he or she loves and to share it with them.
  • Each of us has unique talents to contribute to the world, and we make our contribution by turning our individual dreams—the one that truly excite and inspire us—into reality.
  • …you will begin pretty immediately to see that you already have all the qualities and abilities you need to use the energy of money to make your dreams come true.
  • This kind of mastery requires no special talents or intelligence.
  • You don’t even have to rid yourself of fears, doubts, and worries.
  • We are all born with the ability to bring our dreams into reality.

Your Money is Your Life

  • Joseph Campbell said, “Money is congealed energy, and releasing it releases life’s possibilities.”
  • Take out a dollar bill and hold it for a moment. Imagine everywhere this dollar bill has been, and everywhere it will be going.
  • We live in a universe made up of energy and surrounded by energy.
  • This means how you do money is how you do life.
  • Our relationship with money is a metaphor for our relationship with all forms of energy: time, physical vitality, enjoyment, creativity, and the support of friends.
  • When you learn to use money energy, you can use any form of energy with ease.
  • One of the purposes of being human is to wake up and become conscious.
  • As we go through this process, I encourage you to jot down in your notebook any feelings that come up or realizations that you have.

The Money Taboo

  • What is my relationship with money? How well have I used its energy? How is this a mirror for the way I handle other forms of energy in my life?
  • When you know the answers, your path to a fulfilled life will become clearer, as if a knowledgeable, kindly guide had forged ahead of you into the wilderness, clearing a road just for you.
  • …physical reality. In this realm, energy is coalesced into objects that have form, density, and size. You can see, taste, feel, or smell these things.
  • You can measure them and observe that they are subject to the constraints of time and space.
  • One law of this domain is impermanence: things grow, die, and are replaced.
  • …metaphysical reality. In this realm, energy has not been solidified into form. It is free-flowing and unbounded.
  • Elements in metaphysical reality are immune to the law of impermanence.
  • As we experience this realm through our imagination, visions, and intention, we become excited at possibilities that don’t yet exist in physical reality.
  • A Life’s Intention is a direction, aim, or purpose that comes from deep within us.
  • Life’s Intentions are things such as “I want…to be an author, to be a great mom, to be a healer, to be financially successful, to be a successful entrepreneur, to be a contribution to my community.”
  • They bring us closer to physical reality because they “tell” us where we might want to direct our energy.
  • Some of our biggest mistakes in life come when our minds try to make newtonian-like rules about how the metaphysical realm affects the physical.
  • “Rules” such as “If I hold positive thoughts about prosperity, money will just start pouring into my life” are just too simplistic to work.
  • The bottom line is that money exists in the physical domain.
  • Money doesn’t come as the result of thoughts in the metaphysical realm; it comes as the result of actions in the physical domain.
  • Another mistake is to try jumping directly from the realm of Ideas (“Wouldn’t it be great to have a sailboat!”) to the goal of buying a sailboat fulfills.
  • It might be “to be an adventurer,” “to be a master sailor,” or some other Intention.
  • Your Life’s Intentions keep you energized and focused whenever you encounter challenges on the path to your goals.
  • Those of us who “metafizzle” operate under the delusion that there is a cause-and-effect relationship, a linear causality, between what happens in the metaphysical and physical realms.
  • We think, or hope, that if we think positive thoughts, positive things will happen to us in physical reality.
  • The more useful interpretation of the relationship between metaphysical and physical realities is that we can expend efforts in the metaphysical realm to clear ourselves to be available to what can happen in physical reality.
  • Then we have to do the footwork in physical reality.
  • We are all happiest when we are demonstrating in physical reality what we know to be true about ourselves, when we are giving form to our Life’s Intentions in a way that contributes to others.
  • …but these steps are just the beginning of a lifelong process in which these guidelines can help you live the life of your dreams.

Goals: Projecting our Life’s Intentions Into Physical Reality

  • We propel our Life’s Intentions into the physical realm by creating goals.
  • …we use the dictionary definition of a goal: “an area or object toward which play is directed in order to score.”
  • Without goals, our Life’s Intentions remain unfulfilled, and unfulfilled Life’s intentions often result in frustration and resignation.
  • Conversely, our greatest joy comes from achieving goals that have real meaning and heart for us because they are anchored in the metaphysical realm.

Trouble at the Border

  • When you begin to move an idea from the metaphysical realm into physical reality, you must cross the Border between these two very different worlds.
  • And at the Border, the inspiration and fun of the original idea encounters the energy requirement of physical reality.
  • I know something now that I didn’t know then: Trouble at the Border is inevitable.
  • Whenever you bring a creative idea to the Border between metaphysical and physical reality, you will experience this energy shift.
  • Everyone from Da Vince, to Mother Teresa, to your uncle who never put his dreams on the line runs into the heavy, disheartening feeling that what they were about to do was much harder than anticipated, and that it was taking more time, money, or stamina than anyone thought it would.
  • …you may come to see that any distress you experience in the face of difficulty is a measure of your courage as you move outside your comfort zone.
  • It’s a sign of how much you’re stretching beyond your present capacities or place in life.
  • It shows that you are expanding both your skills and your strengths.

Monkey Mind

  • I now call this inner dialogue the Monkey Mind. The concept of Monkey Mind comes from Buddhism, which describes it as a self-criticizing aspect of our mind that swings us from doubt, to worry, and back to doubt.
  • Monkey Mind chatters the most loudly when we threaten to change the status quo—even if the status quo is something we long to leave behind.
  • Monkey Mind is designed to solve problems, to expect danger, and to brace us for trouble.
  • It’s a kind of survival instinct, so it likes the familiar. It doesn’t like change, it doesn’t like to take risks, and it doesn’t appreciate any steps we take toward the Border…
  • Monkey Mind goes crazy when you think about money, and if you doubt this for a moment, notice your internal dialogue as you contemplate the following words: net worth, credit rating, retirement savings, credit-card debt.
  • Successful people have learned not to poke at the beehive.
  • They hear Monkey Mind reminding them daily, even moment to moment, of their doubts, fears, and worries, just like the rest of us.
  • But they recognize that these anxieties are always going to be there when they’re at the Border.
  • They also see that Monkey Mind’s activity is not relevant to who they are or to their aims in life. They focus instead on energizing their goals.

Energizing Your Goals

  • We all have the ability to connect with that incredible flow and direct it toward whatever we want to accomplish.
  • We are channels that move money and other forms of energy in the direction of our dreams so we can bring them to fruition.
  • The six primary forms of energy that we talk about in this work are:
  • Money
    Time
    Physical vitality
    enjoyment
    Creativity
    Support of friends

Doing Life the Easy Way

  • When I say that success is doing what you said you would do, with ease, people’s faces don’t clench up until I get to “with ease.”
  • “Would it be all right with me if life got easier?”
  • Life is hard when you don’t do what you truly value because you are putting all your energy into trying to get rid of your fears rather than into materializing your dreams.
  • It is when we try to avoid naturally occurring pain or discomfort that life becomes difficult.

Dealing with Discomfort

  • The key to an easy life is to learn to use fear and discomfort as teachers.
  • …everyone’s decision requires that he or she be clear about what his or her choices are, and be willing to face discomfort and analyze its source.

Doing Life with Struggle

  • The opposite of ease is struggle—not, as many think, working hard.
  • You can work hard with ease.
  • The hero’s journey is not about abolishing Monkey Mind, because it will never really go away.
  • It’s always at the Border between metaphysical and physical reality.

Training for Success

  • You cross the Border toward success when you take what I call Authentic Action—even as Monkey Mind continues to whisper in your ear.
  • Authentic Action happens in physical reality, but it is aligned in metaphysical reality with your true nature.
  • Authentic Action moves you closer to your goal—or cleans up a mess like back taxes so that you are free to move toward your goal.
  • Remember, success is doing what you said you would do, with ease.
  • Success shows up only in physical reality, through taking action.
  • Don’t wait until your self-esteem is high enough before you take Authentic Action.
  • When you take Authentic Action, your self-esteem will rise naturally.
  • The work we do together may be challenging or uncomfortable, and it won’t always come at the perfect time for you—when there are no distractions or stress in your life.
  • But if you stick with it and let me coach you in this, you will feel the lightness and relief that come from clearing away the obstacles that have stood between you and your heart’s desire.
  • The energy you’ll unleash as you master each of the 12 Principles is the delight and satisfaction of seeing you dreams come true.

The Hero’s Contribution

  • To complete the hero’s journey, we must awaken to our own power and potential to manage energy.
  • By becoming more conscious of who we truly are and what we truly want in life, and by bringing those powerful metaphysical elements through Authentic Action into physical reality, we will discover our personal mission and simultaneously find happiness, success, and fulfillment.

Part 1: The hero’s Purpose

Principle 1: your Greatest Power Is to Be Willing

  • Being willing could be called the one true and of “being.”
  • It calls forth who you are in your heart and transcends the chattering of Monkey Mind.
  • Being willing is your ticket to a life of creativity, power, and fulfillment.
  • It will change the course of your life.
  • Developmental psychologists point out that “no” is the first word a two-year-old learns to differentiate himself from others, primarily from Mom.
  • Some of us learn later in life to say “no” in an assertive way—and pride ourselves on doing it.
  • But the next phase of development for all of us is learning to say “yes” to whatever is on our plate, and realizing that everything we find in our lives today is here to wake us up.

Willing Vs. Wanting

  • Successful people are willing. I have found that people who are successful are willing to look at the important questions and learn the important lessons that are before them.
  • Such questions might include:
  • What do I really want to do with my life?
    What do I really want to use my money for?
    What are the talents that I want to develop?
  • They are willing to do what they don’t want to do.

Beyond the Psychological Approach

  • Seeing yourself is part of waking up, and that is the first step to mastering the energy of money.

Being Willing Comes First

  • You must be on that journey of your own volition.
  • We need the power to be willing when we look at our relationship with money because money is absolutely pervasive in our lives.
  • So that you get a clearer picture of what I’m talking about, I’d like you to try a short experiment. For one twenty-four-hour period, carry a small notebook, and write down every time you think about money.
  • Include everything: the ads you read in the morning paper, the number of times you hear commercials on radio or TV, the times your attention turns to ads on billboards as you drive down the freeway.
  • Jot down times that you think about your salary or income, the times you sell something to a customer, the times you make a purchase, the thoughts you have about investing.
  • …you can get a sense of how much mental energy you pour into this phenomenon called money.
  • …I felt buffeted, fragmented, and pulled among competing desires and demands.
  • That same scattered feeling, and the confusion it creates, fills our lives unless we take steps to build a powerful and focused relationship with money.
  • Yes, we are crazy about money.

Money Madness

  • As Jacob Needleman, author of Money and the Meaning of Life, says, “We don’t even know what it means to be normal with money.”
  • It is not easy to admit to ourselves that when presented with the question “Do you want joy and fulfillment—or would you prefer money?” We have often calmly answered, “I’ll take the cash.”
  • The central question is this: What exactly do you need to be willing to do in order to transcend money madness and Monkey Mind, and bring your goals and dreams into reality?

The Coaching Model

  • The four steps of the Coaching Model are:
  • Look
    See
    Tell the truth
    Take Authentic Action

Step 1: Look

  • Our own consciousness changes the way we perceive our life and the world around us.
  • In biofeedback, when a person brings her attention to her cold hands with the intention of warming them, blood and energy actually flow to her hands.
  • All I ask is that when your Monkey Mind begins to chatter, you say to it, “Thank you for sharing”—and continue to look.
  • Are you willing to look at how you leak money, despite the onslaught of objections from your Monkey Mind?

Step 2: See

  • To see means to notice, examine, or discern.
  • The act of seeing can bring into the foreground thoughts and actions that have been there all along but that may have been outside your awareness.
  • Whenever you are asked to see some aspect of your relationship with money, Monkey Mind begins to chatter.
  • Where are you conscious about money? Unconscious? What are your personal criteria for financial success? What goals excite you? Write down some of your answers to these questions in your notebook.

Step 3: Tell the Truth

  • To act powerfully with the energy of money, you have to be willing to tell the truth about what you see.
  • Telling the truth is different from being honest.
  • For example, telling the truth might be: “I spend $70 a month on cappuccino and scones before work.” This is not an interpretation or a personal evaluations. It is a fact.
  • Honesty usually does not create breathing room.
  • Looking for the truth, instead of spinning in interpretations, is empowering and will bring you great relief.
  • When you tell the truth, please do so with liberal doses of compassion for yourself.
  • You can only take Authentic Action as a result of genuinely looking, seeing, and telling the truth.

Step 4: Take Authentic Action

  • Authentic Action moves you forward on your hero’s path. It does one of two things:
  • 1. It cleans up a mess, like credit-card debt or other unfinished money business that traps energy.
  • 2. It moves you closer to your goal.
  • All the insight and inspiration in the world means nothing if you don’t take action that brings you closer to your goals and dreams.
  • People who are successful take Authentic Action—purposeful action that moves them toward manifesting their goals.
  • Simple. Yet between telling the truth and taking Authentic Action is Monkey Mind, advising us that we don’t have the time or energy to do anything right now.
  • Are you willing to take action, even if it seems obvious or simple?
  • The good news is that every time you take Authentic Action with money, whatever that action is, you are being financially successful.
  • Financial success is doing what you said you would do with money, with ease.

Exercise: Your Money Autobiography

  • When do you remember first hearing about money? Whom was it from? What was the emotional climate like at that time? When did you first earn money? When did you lose it?
  • Give yourself at least forty minutes for this exercise. You may want to divide the time into ten-minute sections.
  • Write in narrative form, like this: “I first learned about money when I was…”
  • When you’ve finished, give your autobiography a title that pinpoints what you’ve discovered about your relationship with money.
  • Is this title a theme that reflects your relationships with other forms of energy, like love, time, physical vitality, and creativity?
  • If so, what’s similar? What do you notice? Are there issues and themes that keep coming up? Are there events and accomplishments you’re proud of? And are there things you hope no one ever finds out about? What was the most difficult question on this list for you to think about? Why?
  • Remember that any painful material you’ve turned up is pointing you in the direction of what needs to be healed—and we will do plenty of healing in this process.
  • If possible, share what you’ve written with a friend or loved one.

Principle 2: Your Intentions and Integrity harness the Energy of Money

  • When your efforts to prosper reflect who you are and what you’re meant to do in life, you are increasingly powered by joy.

Your True Nature

  • The only thing that keeps us from wanting to know who we are is the fear of who we might be.
  • A teacher once explained to me that we live as though there are three aspects to our being:
  • Who we pretend we are
    Who we are afraid we are
    Who we really are

Who We Pretend We Are

  • This is the face we show to the world, the outermost of the circles.
  • When it comes to money, pretending is expressed in many fascinating ways.
  • It’s not easy to be clear about who we’re pretending to be, because we are the people most affected by the sham as we justify or ignore the truth of certain situations in our lives.

Who We Fear We Are

  • The inner circle represents the person we’re afraid we are.
  • All of us remember money-related incidents we’d rather forget, and things we’ve done that don’t make us proud.
  • As you start to examine this circle, you may discover where you have been deluding yourself.

Who We Really Are

  • Knowing who you really are—what you value and what gives you joy—can help you face whatever discomfort arises on your journey.
  • Don’t let it make you so uncomfortable that you go unconscious.
  • Your true nature exists as potential…
  • The root of “potential’ is “potent,” so to speak of potential is to talk about power.
  • In fact, we never reach our full potential. The formless, immutable nature of potential places it squarely in the metaphysical realm.

Your Standards of Integrity

  • Your heart recognizes and is drawn to people who possess qualities you admire.
  • Your heart warms in response to these qualities because they are inside you.
  • To be moved by a trait in another person, you must have that quality inside yourself as a possibility.
  • When you, yourself, act in accordance with these qualities, you feel a sense of well-being, wholeness, and completeness.
  • You are acting with integrity.
  • The qualities that you are demonstrating are the standards that are most important to you; the standards that, finally, express who you are.

The Integrity Factor

  • The most useful definition I know for integrity is simply “whole and complete.”
  • Integrity, then, is your original condition—who you really are in your heart.

A Caveat

  • There is a downside to knowing what qualities you value most in life.
  • When you know your Standards of Integrity, you have to give up what I call “our cheating little ways” with money—things like cheating on your income-tax returns, or pocketing the difference when a waitress undercharges you, putting in a couple dollars too little when you and your friends are splitting a check.
  • These “petty” acts result in a reduction of energy overall, which is reflected in your personal relationships, health, and creativity.

Exercise: Your Standards of Integrity

  • You will need about forty minutes for this process. Doing it all at once is fine, or you can divide the time over two sessions of about twenty minutes each.

Coming Full Circle With Integrity

  • Who you really are, at your core, is compelled to look at areas in which your integrity is not complete.
  • As you connect with and express your genuine values, your true nature, as you become conscious of who you truly are, you can no longer remain in the dark about your self-limiting ways.
  • It becomes almost impossible to avoid taking the actions that will transform your relationship with the energy of money.
  • Do you notice that your eyes keep returning to the gap in the circle? That’s another part of our wiring. Your eyes are drawn there by the tension of the incompletion.
  • You know in your heart that when you break a promise, you initiate a series of events that drain your power and energy.
  • But the reverse is also true: when you keep your word, you gain strength and energy to realize your dreams.

Extra-Credit Work

  • Within the next forty-eight hours, identify one specific place in your life in which one or more of your Standards of Integrity aren’t present in your relationship with money.
  • “Everybody cheats,” we tell ourselves, “so why should I be the Pollyanna who pays full price?” And sometimes, if we can remain cynical enough or skeptical enough, we don’t have to ask ourselves the hard questions like “isn’t there something I’m here to contribute?”

Virtue and Money

  • There are two ways to use your Standards of Integrity.
  • First, you can let them guide you to seal energy leaks by taking care of unfinished business or taking action to clean up behavior that does not reflect who you are.
  • The second way to apply your Standards of Integrity is by practicing virtue.
  • Virtue is the focused use of energy to achieve results that are within your Standards of integrity.
  • “How would a kind person handle this situation?”
  • When you act with integrity you increase your capacity to bring goals and dreams from the metaphysical into the physical.

Your Life’s Intentions

  • …your Standards of Integrity…are a reflection of your heroic nature.
  • Where do you want to go? How do you discover your goal or destination? How do you discern your most exciting dreams? The answer is in your Life’s Intentions.
  • Exercise: Your Life’s Intentions—A Treasure Hunt
  • You will need your notebook and about forty minutes for this exercise.

Principle 3: Goals Focus Your Money Energy

  • You were designed to create and attain goals.
  • Goals that reflect your nature come from your heart and nurture your spirit.

What Is A Goal?

  • The problem with most “goals” is that they’re not connected to what we really want from life.
  • Hidden in our souls, though, are the dreams that express our life’s purpose and the intentions that lie at our core.
  • …"an area or object toward which play is directed in order to score.”

Getting the fun Back: Goals vs. Tasks

  • We’re happiest when we’re creating what we truly want in life, and going out to get it—authentically, compassionately, and consciously.
  • True goals, unlike the onerous items we put on lists and gear ourselves up to accomplish, are actually meant to bring out a childlike excitement in us.
  • One key for determining whether you have a task or a goal before you is to ask yourself: “Will I be relieved  when it is done?”
  • If the answer is yes, then it is a task, not a goal.
  • When you finish a task, you feel relief. People who are driven in life have learned to strive for relief, mistaking it for joy.
  • When you complete a goal, you feel joy.

The Whim Factor

  • A second question to ask about your goals is: What’s the Whim Factor?
  • Your hero’s journey is enhanced by your ability to create and sustain interest in a genuine goal that takes time to achieve. This will nurture your spirit.
  • The first types of goals—the ones with a high Whim Factor—are Type One goals. They lack meaning…
  • Type Two goals, however, are attached to your Life’s intentions.
  • Type Two goals allow for maximum creativity and fulfillment. You develop meaningful goals by differentiating them from tasks and anchoring them to one or more of your Life’s Intentions.

Creating Powerful Goals

  • A goal is a projection of your Life’s intention into physical reality.
  • It is a promise you make yourself. Powerful goals have five qualities, represented by the acronym SMART.
  • S is for specific. Your power lies in clarity.
  • M is for measurable. Pin down your goals.
  • A is for attainable. A goal needs to be a stretch for you but not impossible. Make the goal worth playing for, yet attainable.
  • R is for relevant. In other words, is it relevant to who you are and what you want to be?
  • …what number do you give your goal on the 1-to-10 “How much do I want it?” Scale? Is it a 10, a must-have? Or a yawning 1? Assign your goal a number right now. If you chose 8 or above, go for it. If the number you picked is below 8-I’m sorry, you need to cross it off the list.
  • Why? Because you don’t really want it. Allow yourself to pick a goal that represents something you want, something that brings you joy.
  • Screen your goal to be sure it’s relevant in these three ways.
  • T is for time-based. You must anchor your goal in time by giving it a date by which it’ll be accomplished.

A Goal is A Yes, Not A No

  • There’s one more filter to use as you look at the goals in your life. Ask yourself: Is my goal a positive or a negative?

Exercises for Creating Your Goals

  • The Treasure Map: A Physical Picture of Your Goal
  • One of the most powerful ways I know to focus your energy on your goal is called Treasure Mapping.
  • A Treasure Map is your best effort to create a comprehensive, mental visualization of how your life will look when you have attained your goal.
  • If you look, you’ll find that every goal you create involves the energy of money in some way.

Treasure map Exercise: Mapping Your Goal

Keep Going

  • Continue with the process until you have identified two goals that you are willing to have within one year from now.
  • I encourage you to choose at least one goal that expresses your Life’s Intention to be financially successful.

Part II: identifying the Inner Blocks to Progress

Principle 4: Driven Behavior Wastes Money Energy

  • The next three chapters are about identifying inner blocks to progress.
  • You will learn how to deal with your dragons, so that you can keep moving forward.

Facing Fear

  • If your goals are attempts to get away from fear, you waste a lot of energy trying to get something you don’t really want.
  • Trying to achieve a goal to get away from your fear is qualitatively different from going for something you really enjoy.
  • This chapter will have you look at when and how you run from fear, so that you can channel the energy of money toward what you want.
  • Sometimes we will do whatever it takes to get away from the feeling of fear. Enter, driven behavior.

Driven Behavior: Don’t  Just Do it!

  • We have our lists, our goals, our plans—and to accompany them, we have endless activity. We’re sleep-deprived, exhausted, busier than ever before, and yet our dreams still seem distant.
  • That’s because we can’t reach them by just any kind of action.  
  • In The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying, Sogyal Rinpoche writes that our driven behavior is a type of active laziness that “consists of cramming our lives with compulsive activity, so that there is no time at all to confront the real issues.
  • Our lives seems to live us, to possess their own bizarre momentum, to carry us away. In the end we feel we have no control or choice over them.”
  • “Don’t just do something, sit there!”
  • Your experience of an abundant life is the sum of your authentic choices minus the sum of your driven behavior.

Is It Authentic, Or Am I Driven?

  • How do we distinguish between an authentic choice and one driven by fears and Monkey Mind?
  • First, use the joy filter. Because an authentic choice reflects your Life’s Intentions, it brings you a sense of joy.
  • When you have made an authentic choice, it just seems right, and it’s deeply satisfying.
  • Driven behavior, on the other hand, has three distinguishing characteristics, which we will look at in detailL repetition, limited satisfaction, and perfectionism.
  • Symptom #1: Repetition—Play It Again, Sam
  • What thoughts or behaviors are you repeating, even though you know they don’t serve you?
  • Take notes on how you feel as you look at your repetitive behavior.
  • Remember, this is part of the hero’s journey. We are facing the dark side here, with open eyes.

The Rut Syndrome

  • A rut is a habit or pattern that blocks your progress on a particular path.
  • What specific ruts am I in right now?
  • What reasons do I use for staying this way?
  • What has it cost me to maintain this rut?
  • Symptom #2: Limited Satisfaction: “I’m Too Tired/Worried/Distracted to Enjoy it”
  • Driven behavior is particularly joyless.
  • Return to your notebook and jot down the times you were too hurried, worried, or distracted to enjoy the satisfaction of a job well done.
  • Is your pleasure short-lived? Are you usually focused on the next task?
  • Symptom #3: Perfectionism—“Just One More Finishing Touch…”
  • So we don’t complete projects; we keep on polishing them. If we don’t finish, no one can judge us. We can always say, “But I’m not finished yet!”
  • Perfectionists almost never feel that they’ve done anything well enough.
  • Perfectionism is the just the inability to arrive at closure.
  • It masquerades as virtue, but it’s really most often an excuse for not producing the result.

Driven, Or in the Driver’s Seat?

  • Obsessions are recurring thought patterns that get in the way of doing things with ease, and they’re energy sponges.
  • Compulsions are a little different from obsessive worries.
  • These are acts you must perform again and again to maintain some level of comfort or security, even when these behaviors themselves are tedious or painful.
  • They keep your attention narrowly focused on one fear you must avoid, or one aspect of life you must control.
  • Sorting out these driven behaviors starts with telling the truth about what you think you must have in order to feel secure.

Addictions

  • Driven behavior overheats your mind. You can’t stop thinking about what you must have, or doing what you feel you must to feel free from anxiety or dread.
  • The “medicine” that dulled your symptoms has become the problem rather than the solution.

Gambling: Getting High on Risk

  • Is what I am doing focusing my energy on attaining the life goals that really mean something to me, or is it getting in the way?

Workaholism

  • Interestingly, a study of peak performers several years ago found that no matter what their field, they share a single distinguishing characteristic that sets them apart from everyone else: Peak performers take time for complete rest every day.
  • Rest and play are not the same thing. We tend to get them confused.
  • Rest means letting your body and mind slow down and become replenished. There is no such thing as resting hard.

Telltale Signs

  • A workaholic finds it difficult to develop a personal identity away from the work he or she does.
  • Exercise: Am I or Am I Not a Busyholic?

Principle 5: Scarcity is One of Your Greatest Teachers

What is Scarcity?

  • Dorothy Parker is quoted as saying, “I’ve been rich and I’ve been poor, and rich is better.”
  • Scarcity is one of our deepest fears. It is the mind’s experience of the limits that are a natural part of physical reality.
  • No matter how enlightened or conscious—or rich—we may be, we encounter scarcity, naturally and repeatedly, every day.

Limits Are Part of Physical Reality

  • It could be said that one of the purposes of our lives is to learn how to be masterful with what we have—our limited amounts of time and energy—and to learn to appreciate and respond well to the limits in our lives.
  • And the truth is, the mind goes nuts whenever it comes up against a limit—as it does in nearly every waking moment of our lives.
  • What do you hate most about the thought of not having money in your life? What is the nightmare scenario that keeps you awake when you think about not having enough of that energy?
  • We reach the infinite through living fully in the finite. The infinite is not reached by trying to ignore limits, as many of us try to do.

Is The Monkey Screaming yet?

  • Monkey Mind hates limits because its primary concern is survival.
  • It wants to live forever, and it wants safety and comfort, so when it encounters the fear that time’s running out, or that the bank account is dwindling, it will do anything to keep that fear from getting close enough to look at.
  • On our circuitous route to avoid the dragon, we end up at its door!
  • Monkey Mind has a siege mentality.
    It tells us something almost all of us believe: Amassing more will solve the problem and slay the scarcity monster.
  • If you try to stave off scarcity by amassing more-more objects, more money, even more spiritual practices-the experience of scarcity grows bigger.
  • The purpose of money energy isn’t to add jet fuel to our flight from what deeply frightens us; it’s to take us toward our dreams.
  • The Monkey Mind that chants “more, more, more” is never satisfied.
  • And one of the properties of a condition of life is that when it goes unconfronted, and we try to put more things in between us and the experience of that condition, it only makes that condition bigger.
  • By doing the work here, you may genuinely discover contentment with what you have.

You Can’t Affirm Away Scarcity

  • …one trick Monkey Mind uses to avoid looking at scarcity is to tell us, “If I don’t think about it, maybe it won’t exist.”
  • I remember thinking, “Maybe if I wake up every morning and say to myself, ‘I have enough money. I have enough money,’ it’ll be true.”
  • But the real truth is, affirmations like that don’t work.
  • According to Shakti Gawain, who wrote Creative Visualization, affirmations work best when you use them to affirm the truth about yourself.
  • I have found they fail miserably when you use them to suppress negative thoughts or feelings.
  • Yet everywhere we turn, people are assuring us that positive thinking will make everything all better:
  • Clearly our minds are drawn to the very things we tell them to avoid.
  • …you can control the thoughts you don’t want—if you’re willing to freeze over huge areas of your life experience.
  • When you freeze out the pain, however, you also numb the joy, and your enthusiasm for life.

Let’s Get Real

  • It takes incredible amounts of energy to suppress your thoughts, and that energy would be much better spent in pursuing your dreams.
  • There’s something about looking at what you think is wrong with you—your own personal experience of scarcity—and being willing to see it and tell the truth about it.
  • You get more room to breathe, to soften up a little. You make space for compassion.
  • And when that happens, the people and situations around you often have room to shift, too.

The Deprivation Cycle: “But I Feel So Deprived; Can’t I Just Have A Little More?”

  • So feeling deprived is intimately connected with driven behavior.
  • You get a sense of deprivation when you’ve worked long and hard without a breathers.
  • Depleted, restless, and often lonely, you look for a way to fill up. You need a reward. Spending money offers the best solution.
  • That’s why some of the most effective ads around begin with the words “You deserve.”
  • Instead of having what you deserve, what would it be like for you to simply have what you want?
  • …we’re often not satisfied, because what we really want is rest, time, meaning, and connection with others.
  • That is really what’s most important to us, and that’s what we’re often too depleted to create.
  • Imagine that there is a fire in your home. Your family and any pets get out safely, and you have two minutes to grab some possessions. What do you take?
  • “I’ll Show You Mine If You Show Me Yours”
  • If you want to come face-to-face with one form of scarcity, just compare your financial situation with that of the people around you.

Facing the Shadow

  • Carl Jung, ...“Everyone carries a shadow,” he wrote, “and the less it is embodied in the individual’s conscious life, the blacker and denser it is. At all counts, it forms an unconscious snag, thwarting our most well-meant intentions.”
  • To pinpoint your shadow, ask yourself, “What don’t I want to look at?”
  • Scarcity, along with all the negative feelings we try to hide, is one of our most profound teachers if we are willing to learn its lessons.
  • When we do, life fills with adventures instead of defenses.
  • When you are afraid, look directly into the face of whatever you fear. It’s not necessary to escape the discomfort.
  • Trying to escape the discomfort will only prolong your suffering.
  • Lean into the pain rather than away from it.
  • Are you using the lived energy of your life to create your dreams?

Exercise: Encounter with a Dragon

Principle 6: Transforming Inner Blocks Liberates Money Energy

The Nature of Monkey Mind

  • Once you realize that your Monkey Mind is with you for the duration, you no longer have to fight it, try to run from it, or stay mesmerized in its company.
  • You can relax and stop wasting energy trying to change it.

Dancing with the Monkey

  • It’s easier to separate from Monkey Mind if you can look objectively at the guises it likes to wear.

Symptoms of Monkey Mind

  • Monkey Mind makes you feel locked in place, adamant, tense, as though it’s a matter of survival to maintain your position.

Monkey Mind is Tenacious

  • Monkey Mind is behind our dogged refusal to change our money behavior, even when it’s just not working for us.
  • We’ll persist with behavior that hasn’t rewarded us in years, and we’ll even put a lot of additional energy into justifying why we are “right” about doing it that way.
  • As we proceed on this journey, know that you will rediscover what life is like when it’s clear of money insanity.

You Are Not Your Monkey Mind

  • Your Monkey Mind thoughts about money have nothing to do with your true nature.
  • When you recognize how Monkey Mind works, you minimize the chances of getting off track as you go toward your goals.
  • When you understand Monkey Mind, and know that you are not that chatter, then you have choices. You can then master Trouble at the Border.
  • You free up energy to channel into your goals and dreams.

Exercise: Dancing with Monkey Mind

Your Basic Assumption

  • How does Monkey Mind show up for you? One way is in how it reflects your Basic Assumption.
  • Your Basic Assumption is a fundamental decision you made about life when you were very young, a core conversation about yourself, others, and how life is.
  • You have been gathering evidence for it, or against it, most of your life.
  • We act out our Basic Assumption by either “Being it” or by “being its opposite.” Basic Assumptions are extensions of the fight, flight, or freeze instincts.
  • Your Basic Assumption colors how you see life, and how you live it.
  • Your Basic Assumption is so much a part of the filter through which you see life that you don’t even know the filter is there.
  • …this quote from the I Ching: “Before the beginning of great brilliance, there must be chaos. Before a brilliant person begins something great, they must look foolish to the crowd.”
  • Like a black hole in space that invisibly, but powerfully, changes the orbit of anything that comes near it, our Basic Assumptions exert a force that can tint, warp, and alter our best intentions.
  • Basic Assumptions can make attaining a goal seem impossible and dissipate our resolve.
  • …even as adults, we look through a scared child’s eyes every time we enter unfamiliar territory—as we do whenever we cross the Border between metaphysical and physical reality.
  • And when the unfamiliar territory involves money, our Basic Assumptions become especially potent.

The Startle Response

  • …I have discovered that the Basic Assumption you like least is the one that fits you best.
  • You have a natural aversion for your own Basic Assumptions. You hate it because it’s the idea you’ve used again and again to limit your possibilities.
  • It is your private showstopper. It also reflects the person you’re afraid you are.
  • It is the awful truth about you, your “fatal flaw”—or so you fear.
  • Everyone has a Basic Assumption. It never goes away, and it usually doesn’t change.
  • However, when you see what it is, it often loses its power over you.

…Ram Dass says, “The internal dialogue just doesn’t stay around as long.” It stops impeding your progress.

Seeing the Invisible

  • Our Basic Assumption is invisible to us. We don’t think it, we be it.

Your Basic Assumption’s Tributaries

  • The Basic Assumption expresses itself directly through your body.
  • Exercise: Trials and Tributaries

Part III: Clearing the Path

Principle 7: Releasing old Beliefs Brings Miracles

What Are “Structures of Knowing”?

  • A structure of knowing is a mental model of how things work. It contains all of the thoughts, feelings, opinions, beliefs, attitudes, memories, body sensations, and points of view that surround our present view of something.
  • It organizes everything we know about the world.
  • Structures of knowing filter information for us.
  • We create structures of knowing about everything—what it is to be “successful,” what it means to be a good parent, how the holidays should look, how much money we should have, how to bake a turkey, how to drive a car, what kind of work we should be doing, everything.
  • We especially have structures of knowing about money.

How Structures of Knowing Work

  • Structures of knowing aren’t always limiting. They can help us process and handle information—especially when we are young.  
  • But we need to dismantle them in order to mature and progress along the hero’s path of dealing with energy and increasing our power.
  • To have a powerful relationship with money, we need to discover what our structures of knowing are and be willing to let them go if they don’t serve us.

Your Structures of Knowing Money

  • The hero’s task is to become aware of what our structures of knowing are so that we can decide whether or not they are currently useful in our relationship with money.
  • Ironically, being absolutely certain about the correctness of your feelings or opinions is the best signal that you’re being limited by a structure of knowing.

When to Let Go

  • We need to form some lasting paradigms or structures of knowing to make the world make sense.
  • People with neurological disorders don’t have a mental framework for understanding what they see and experience and are continually disoriented.
  • The older you get, the more complex, fine-tuned, and rigid your structures of knowing can become, and the more sophisticated the evidence you muster to support your restrictive view of the world!

Gently But Firmly Prying the Mask Away

  • …Herbert Spencer and quoted in the Alcoholics Anonymous big book: “There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments and which cannot fail to deep a man in everlasting ignorance—that principle is contempt prior to investigation.”

The Twin Dogs: Paradox and Confusion

  • Interesting things happen to your relationship with your mental productions when you dismantle your structures of knowing.
  • You see that it’s not what you know but how you hold what you know that makes the biggest difference between success and ease on the on hand, and frustration on the other.
  • Heroes develop the capacity to sit with paradox and confusion as they occur. They don not jump to premature conclusions.

Where Miracles Live

  • A miracle is an ordinary event that lies outside your current structure of knowing.
  • The potential for miracles is always around us
  • They are hidden from view only by the way we think about the world. A miracle eventually loses its aura of wonder and mystery and takes on a quality of ordinariness.
  • It can even become a habit. But if you can keep stretching your structures of knowing, there will always be another miracle within reach.
  • Exercise: Your Structure of Knowing Money
  • Exercise: Dismantling Through Authentic Action

Becoming En-Lightened

  • Whatever you look, see, and tell the truth about begins to lose its emotional charge.
  • We are clearing away the thoughts, beliefs, and ideas that cloud our ability to see things as they really are.

Principle 8: Forgiveness Unleashes Money Energy

  • When you forgive someone, you dismantle your structures of knowing about him or her. You lay down your weapons and armor and proceed onward. You lighten up.

What We Say About Others

  • Whom would you need to forgive in order to have a powerful relationship with money? Whom do you secretly blame for your misfortunes in life? Whom do you hold responsible for your money problems?

What Is a Characterization?

  • When you form a characterization of another person, you see them through the grid of your assessments and judgements. This produces a two-dimensional experience of them and keeps you from seeing them as fellow humans.
  • Finally, and this happens to all of us, we get to the point of relating only to our characterization, rather than to the person.
  • We don’t want to be around him or her because we cannot tolerate being present with our own negative thoughts and feelings.
  • It is too uncomfortable, mostly because it is not within our Standards of integrity to keep such characterizations alive.
  • It’s not that we don’t like who they are; we don’t like who we are in the presence of that person. Our negativity becomes our burden.
  • As you forgive, you stop the process of being trapped in what you fear and dislike.

Forgiveness: Authentic Action for The Courageous heart

  • The moment you declare you are willing to forgive someone, they are forgiven.

Monkey Mind Needs Time to Catch On

  • If you look at your characterizations of yourself, you will find that ultimately you hold others responsible for your “faults.”
  • One of the oldest spiritual teachings in the world is that as you forgive, you will be forgiven.

Forgiveness Is Your Business

  • Remember that forgiveness does not mean forgetting or rationalizing away what they have done.

The Power To Forgive

  • Forgiveness involves two elements. First, you must forgive someone primarily for his or her sake and only secondarily for yours.
  • Second, you must  be in touch with your characterization of the other person instead of brushing it off or trying to forget it.

Forgiveness Exercises

  • Learning to forgive is an ability that, with practice, will become easier for you.
  • At the same time, you’ll become more and more aware of people whom you have not yet forgiven.
  • This awareness will stick with you until you act upon it and heal the relationship

Principle 9: Making and Keeping Promises Moves You Along Your Path

  • You have the ability to direct this energy intentionally so that you create what you truly want. In doing this, you co-create the dance of energy.

The Joy of keeping Promises

  • A promise is your word, whether spoken or implied, cast forth into physical reality. It’s a covenant you make with the world. It says: This shall be done.
  • When you put your word out before you, you create a gap that can only  be closed when you do what you said you’d do.

Broken Promises

  • When we don’t do what we said we’d do, we’re left with the tension of incompletion. Unfulfilled promises are energy drains because,...we expend more energy keeping open a gap than we do when we resolve it.
  • It saps your power.
  • …the bridge between you and financial miracles is built from the promises you keep.

Clearing the Conduit

  • Incomplete business in your life draws energy because you have to exert force to keep it suspended in an unfinished state.
  • There’s no way you can go full speed ahead when the past is claiming so much of your attention.
  • But when you shift your energy and finish what’s been left undone, amazing things happen.
  • Paying attention to the details, and keeping promises—even the smallest ones—is something successful people do intuitively.

Incomplete Money Business

  • If you want to learn how to deal effectively with large units of energy, you must practice being conscious of the small units. In fact, the more conscious you become, the more you will be drawn to make completions in life.
  • Exercise: Taking Care of Business—An Inventory

Taking Care of The Tough Issues

1. Charging What You’re Worth

  • It’s not unusual for people to tell me that they’re good at what they do, but they just don’t seem to be able to charge what they’re worth.
  • After working through this problem with many people, I’ve come to realize that the crux of the matter is this: If we charge what we’re worth, then wi’ll have to deliver on our promises.
  • But there is something to be said for being paid exactly what you know your work is worth. It causes a special kind of maturity to develop.

2. Negotiating for Money

  • One of the fundamental aspects of negotiation is being willing to tell the truth about what you need. When you do that, and don’t manipulate, you usually get what you want.

3. Loans to and from Friends and Family

  • I’ve found that being unclear about the exact context in which money is borrowed leads to heartache. So if you’re planning to borrow money from someone close to you, write down the details, just as you would if you were borrowing from an institution.

4. Battling with Significant Others About Money

  • Our intimate relationships give us a great chance to confront the way we handle money, and to see how our ways differ from others.

5. Getting Through Family Crises

  • If you find yourself facing the need to handle a parent's estate, I’d like you to hold on to a bit of guidance that has helped many people: don’t negotiate money matters when your family is grieving.

6. Dealing with Kids and Money

  • …there are three things that can absolutely shift what you show and teach your children about money: being consistent, telling the truth, and acting in accordance with your Standards of integrity.

Building the Strength to Dance With Your Goals

  • Please remember that with every Authentic Action you take, and every bit of unfinished business you clear up once and for all, you are unleashing tremendous energy.

Part IV: Staying the Course

Principle 10: Obstacles Can Lead to Breakthroughs

  • Obstacles and surprises are inevitable on the hero’s journey. They’re the sign that you are on the path.

Channeling Energy: flying Toward Your Goals, Not Flailing At Them

  • In the process of attaining your goals, you will grow in ways you hadn’t imagined—because any goal worth having lies outside your current structure of knowing.
  • Going for it will expand the framework that holds your current image of yourself. You can’t do things the way you’ve always done them.  
  • It’s easy to bump along before finally taking the steps required to grow into a goal:
  • When you are willing to prepare, and to be shaped by your goals, …you are in for an adventure. You are responding to a dream, created by you and projected forward in time.
  • As you walk toward it, you change. It is a natural and exciting circle of growth.

Running The Obstacle Course

  • The more powerful and knowledgeable you become, the more aware you are of the obstacles on your path. To continue to be powerful, you must clear them away.
  • Still, obstacles are necessary to the hero’s journey. They define your lessons in life.
  • No obstacles, no growth. No growth, no journey.
  • The “Oh Sh—!” Point, or OSP
  • Obstacles are the sign that physical reality is pushing back against your efforts and adding form to the energy of your dream.
  • …In all the years I have coached people, I have noticed that when we hit obstacles, the first factor we sacrifice is the goal, not the plan!
  • Most of us get hooked on our plans, almost addicted to them. We act as though it’s less important to reach our goal than to achieve it in just the way we’ve mapped out for ourselves.
  • Our plans are created out of our mental models about what it will take for us to arrive at our goals.
  • Many plans are flawed from the beginning because, in truth, they are only approximations of reality.
  • Consider the possibility that your plans or strategies for your life are holding you back from getting what you want. You have a picture in your mind of how your journey has to look.
  • People who are successful are willing to be flexible in their strategies. For them, attaining the goal itself is far more important than being right about what it takes to get there.
  • They are willing to be incorrect about their original plans.

Four Guidelines for looking At Obstacles

  • 1. Obstacles and the resultant breakdowns are acknowledgments of you intentions, not invalidations of them.
  • 2. If no obstacles ever appear on the path toward your goals, you may not be challenging yourself.
  • 3. If you experience only obstacles on the path toward your goals, you may be doing things the hard way.
  • Another sign that you may be caught up with reaching your goals the hard way is if you do not ask for support. “I need to do this alone” is one of the most insidious structures of knowing to dismantle.
  • 4. People who are successful consistently choose their goals and intentions over their plans.
  • Your plans will always need to be modified—not your dreams. Grasp this and you have the golden key to success!

Principle 11: Mutual Support increases your Power

  • To a lot of us—especially if we’ve grown up in America—the word hero is synonymous with “rugged individual.”
  • Yet I’ve found that behind every great success is a team of supporters.
  • People who are successful have learned to help others and to be helped.
  • Most of us share the myth that if we accept support we diminish our own achievements and don’t deserve praise for what we have done.

What Is Support, Really?

  • We all exist in an interdependent system. No matter how we feel about it, we’re linked socially, economically, and biologically, like the cells of a giant organism.
  • Given that interdependence, it quickly becomes clear that our greatest success comes when all of us succeed together.
  • Be a rugged individual where it counts, by making your own unique contribution. Then get others to support you in realizing your dreams.

The Benefits Are Mutual

  • When you ask another person for his support, you are actually giving him a gift.
  • You are generously allowing the person to make a significant contribution in your life.
  • …letting others know their value to us is far more precious than any gift you could buy for them.
  • Robert Lewis, a columnist for InfoWorld magazine, suggests this experiment: Next time you have a task or new assignment that puts you in unfamiliar territory, call five people in your company whom you’ve never met, describe your project, and say, “I was told you may have some good insights on how to approach this problem. Can you spare an hour to help me get my thoughts together?”
  • “I guarantee you,” he writes, “at least six of the five will offer more help than you have any right to expect. And when you’re done, they’ll thank you. People want to create value for other people—that’s where self-esteem comes from.”

Being Supportive Isn’t Being Co-Dependent

  • When you’re being co-dependent with another person, you view him or her as needing to be fixed in some way.
  • In other words, you as a “helper” are dependent on his being dependent on you.

Support Means Wholeness

  • In an interdependent relationship you are companions, heroes traveling together but traveling your own paths.

Forming A Success Group

  • As you consider the possibility of being supported by others, you may want to form a group of people with similar intentions.

The Coaching Context: Blueprint For Success

  • 1. What specific qualities am I willing to contribute to the group session today, so that all of us will be successful?
  • 2. Am I willing to dismantle my structures of knowing?
  • 3. Am I willing to use everything that goes on in the group session as a personal lesson for myself?
  • 4. Am I willing to listen to the support of everyone in the group? Even if I do not agree with what they are saying…especially if I do not agree with them?

Principle 12: The Gateway To Abundance Is Gratitude

  • We increase our power by embracing life’s abundance—by saying yes. And we develop our ability to do this by practicing gratitude.

Abundance And The Hero’s journey

  • Prosperity comes when you participate fully in every aspect of your life.
  • You’re not pushing away anything, you’re using everything as an opportunity to wake up and express who you are in your heart.
  • Prosperity occurs now, every time you are willing to be fully present to your life.

The Fine Art of Gratitude

  • The key to growing into your goals is bringing gratefulness to your everyday circumstances, no matter what they may be.

Affirmations: Awakening The Grateful heart

  • One way to kindle gratitude is to practice paying attention to what’s happening in our everyday physical reality.
  • We do this by observing what’s before us and allowing it to be there just as it is
  • The first way to use affirmation is to note and welcome your daily lessons. This is sometimes difficult, because deepest lessons don’t appear beneficial at first glance.
  • The second form affirmation can take is being grateful for the pleasures we receive: a beautiful sunset, a letter from a dear friend, and unexpected raise in salary.

Affirming Your Basic Nature

  • The third form of affirmation I’d like to suggest is affirming the attributes that are inherent in your Standards of Integrity.
  • Just take out your Standards of Integrity, say, “I am willing to be…” and follow this with one of your Standards.
  • Then go on to the next one, and the next. Say the words out loud. See how they feel on your tongue.
  • Repeat them to yourself each night for at least one week. What do you perceive? Is a spark of gratitude present?

Contribution: The Consequence of Gratitude

  • You and I are compensated immediately when we intentionally and generously send energy away to others from ourselves.

Tithing Troubles

  • The act of giving establishes balance and allows energy to flow freely, coming in and going out.
  • When you are balanced you naturally open to the miracles that surround you every moment of your life.
  • You use opportunity. Your energy is free to create. You are open and present in the moment, open to possibilities, and you perceive your life as being blessed.
  • You transmit this blessing to those around you, and you are prosperous.
  • Giving with an expectation of return for our money is a setup for anger and pessimism.

True Giving

  • When people give money in this clear, generous way, they often report a sense of empowerment.

Epilogue

  • …there are many kinds of fools’ gold to be found in life. But when we meet up with the real thing, there will be no doubt in our minds.
  • The true gold we seek gives us peace and clarity.
  • It gives us a sense of freedom and power because we’re no longer in “bondage to passing material things.”
  • Fools’ gold, he said, usually takes the form of material riches, social prominence, power over others, and the gratification of whims.
  • True gold is the sense of a Presence much larger than ourselves, which is the true purpose of our lives.
  • Your greatest lessons are disguised as obstacles.
  • Would it be all right with you if life got easier?
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