In order to accomplish anything in life you must establish a solid foundation. A politician refers to his core constituents as a base. Bridges and buildings are built on a well-engineered and solid foundation. The Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt has lasted for at least 4,500 years! Psychologically, communication skills and levels also must be firmly established for any type of relationship not just to survive, but also to grow. This applies to both personal and professional relationships. In this chapter we will discuss the tendencies people have to sabotage their lives by the things they do or say, or what they don’t do or say. I introduced the term selfdefeating sequences (SDSs) in my first book, Past Lives— —Future Lives. As I stated in Past Lives——Future Lives:
“Since basically all of my patients present themselves with an array of self-defeating sequences (SDSs), it is critical to remove these blocks before any long-lasting progress can be achieved. Good examples of self-defeating sequences are procrastination, lateness, compulsive spending, alcoholism, over-eating, impatience, etc. One tends to create difficulties in one’s life (and lives) that prevent one from achieving desired goals, whether personal or professional. The self-image (how we perceive ourselves, not how others perceive us) is lowered. The first step in hypnotherapy is to improve this self-image. If you build a house on quicksand, it won’t be around to benefit by appreciation. I have already discussed the use of cassette tapes personally recorded by myself for my patients to help establish a sound and strong psychological foundation.”
Building up the self-image and establishing higher levels of communication is what this chapter is all about. In order to accomplish these all forms of procrastination and other SDSs must be removed.
When I see patients in my Los Angeles office, I assume three factors are present in their psychological profile:
By improving the self-image, the other two factors will be removed. Uncovering the truth about yourself and the universe is one of the first steps in this process:
• Undesirable circumstances in your life result from a masking of the truth.
• Listen to your impulses (subconscious), because they are the truth.
• False beliefs act to hide the truth.
• You must remove from your life anything that causes the truth to be hidden.
Communication is an evolving process. The most important type of communication is that which you establish with your subconscious. The hypnotic exercises presented in the next chapter and throughout this book will assist you in that endeavor. A poor self-image creates vulnerability to fears and this progresses to procrastination and immobilization. Our conscious mind then uses defense mechanisms (rationalization, intellectualization, displacement, sublimation, etc.) to create self-defeating behaviors in order to justify these responses and negative programming.
We can avoid these potential problems and custom design our destiny by employing optimistic thinking (positive mental tapes), affirmations, and visualization techniques. Music can greatly enhance the successful application of these methods. Two additional prerequisites to success are perseverance and faith in yourself. Since procrastination is by far the most common SDS, let us discuss this in detail. I have never worked with a patient (and I have seen over 11,000 individuals in my practice) who was not afflicted with some form of procrastination.
Procrastination is simply avoiding something by putting it off. There are many reasons for this putting off for tomorrow what you could do today. Your rational mind (the defense mechanisms or conscious mind proper) is quite expert at formulating excuses for these delays. What is interesting to note is that most of the activities that are put off represent no real problem once they are begun. It’s the initiation of the chore that is the problem.
Most people delude themselves into thinking they are not compromising their goals by putting something off because they can always do it in the future. This especially applies to dealing with tasks or people that you find difficult or unpleasant. It really boils down to avoidance. Procrastination is simply coal for the avoidance furnace. Boredom is another common aspect of this SDS. Life really is quite interesting, but it is the conscious, freewill choice of many to be bored. Because boredom is characterized by an inability to spend the present in a personally fulfilling way, it becomes one of the negative consequences of procrastination. To deal with this, individuals may devote their time to some hobby or other immediate gratification activity (such as overeating) to eliminate boredom. This becomes a vicious cycle and procrastination is now embedded in their behavior. Don’t complain about the world or your life. If you want something or someone to change, do something about it now. Be a doer, not a whiner, a critic, a hoper nor a wisher. Be empowered. SDSs always result in some form of failure. This may be a failed relationship, business or other desirable goal. There are many ways to fail, and it is important to discuss the manifestations of SDSs. The following are some of these manifestations:
• Lack of self-discipline. This is based on your self- image.
• Indecisiveness. The lack of a decision is itself a decision. The problem is that this type of inaction almost always results in failure.
• Difficulty in relationships with others. The single most important quality in life necessary to succeed in any endeavor is the ability to get along with your fellow human beings.
• Making decisions by simply guessing or applying snap judgments based on emotions, rather than by a conscientious effort of fact gathering.
• Letting your ego or vanity determine your actions.
• Lacking a specific and well-defined game plan.
• Insufficient education, whether formal or other, in the field for which you chose to devote your professional time.
• Lack of motivation and ambition to improve your condition.
• Poor health due to factors well under your control. Such things as proper exercise, diet, abstinence from drugs and other compulsions are well within your direction.
• Lack of integrity. It doesn’t take long for unethical and illegal behavior to be made known in any industry, but especially in personal relationships.
• Fear of taking calculated risks. Either exercising too much or using too little caution is a formula for disaster.
• Lack of tolerance for the opinions or deficiencies of others. By learning to motivate and improve the performance of others, you will avoid many failures.
• Choosing a field of work that you do not like, and lack of enthusiasm.
• Being a jack-of-all-trades. Become focused and knowledgeable about certain areas. You can always hire or consult with experts in any area.
• Impetuous spending habits.
• Poor selection of business associates. Whether an employer or employee, everyone you surround yourself with in your life is a reflection of yourself.
• Lack of follow-through on goals.
• Cynical and defeatist thinking.
• Poor selection of a mate. Your significant other must be supportive of your goals and in general, compatible with you.
• Insecurities particularly characterized by fears of failure, as well as other fears.
• Inability to separate your personal life from your professional activities. You may succeed in business but one day you will come home to an empty house with a disparaging note on the bathroom mirror.
One must develop perseverance in order to move forward with goals. It is a form of emotional paralysis emanating from anger, frustration or fear that results in a person becoming a victim and simply giving up. Empowered souls persevere without this reaction. The basic theme of a victimizer is to wear down the victim. If put off long enough, over eighty percent of the protesting public will withdraw from the field. Lawyers daily with lawsuits and continuances utilize this technique. When you custom design your own destiny, creative solutions will come to you allowing you to accomplish your goals with minimal involvement of time, energy and money. Naturally, you will have to exercise good judgment to choose your battles. You can’t fight the world and waste precious resources over every little issue in your life. When you raise your consciousness (see chapter 14) the universe will reward you with fewer of these annoying tests. If you persevere and follow up tirelessly, never even entertaining the idea of being put off, then you will almost always emerge not only having reached your goals, but often having far exceeded your initial expectation as well.
As a personal note, I received 48 rejections on the manuscript for my first book, Past Lives——Future Lives, before a publisher accepted it. Shortly afterward a second publisher made an offer. Persistence most definitely pays off.
In order to establish a solid psychological foundation for taking charge of your destiny, you need to make greater use of our six major positive emotions: enthusiasm, hope, desire, love, compassion and faith. In addition, we must eliminate the six major negative emotions: hatred, anger, fear, jealousy, greed and revenge.
We cannot experience a positive and negative emotion at the same time. The exercises given in this chapter and throughout this book will assist you in programming these negative emotions and replacing them with the positive ones.
Fear is a major cause of Self-Defeating Sequences. Psychology has long ago established the fact that fear is merely a state of mind. Clinical experience has taught me that there are six basic fears: ill health, criticism, death, poverty, lost love and old age. The worries of most people commonly arise from fear of poverty, ill health and criticism. Since fears are but a state of mind, we have control over them. The fear of criticism, for example, is a chief cause of procrastination and failure in general due to obsession about what others will do, say or think. The solution is “To thine own self be true.” This may at first appear a selfish philosophy. I have already established the integrity prerequisite for these recommendations. As long as your motives are pure, you need not concern yourselves with the opinions of others. In fact, the more successful and empowered you become, the greater will be the frequency of the jealousy exhibited by other less empowered souls. I refer to this as the PJ (Professional Jealousy) Syndrome. The fear of poverty is sufficient to destroy your chances of attaining any goal. This form of insecurity:
• immobilizes the imagination
• discourages initiative
• supports procrastination
• results in indecision
• undermines enthusiasm
• destroys self-reliance
This fear lays the foundation for failure. It discourages empowerment, leads to insomnia, unhappiness, and invites all sorts of other SDSs. Sometimes we are overcome by feelings of immobilization. These can be panic attacks, severe headaches and other psychosomatic complaints. Most of the time these are simply SDSs meant to fester procrastination. Immobilization is the result of an accumulation of negative emotions. Just like a safety valve installed on a complex piece of machinery we need an outlet for these negative emotions and the stresses of everyday life, or the result is that we become immobilized. Always remember that life is a continuing series of experiences rather than one isolated encounter. This will help you eliminate the tendency to equate your “performance” in anything with your self-worth. Just because a relationship ends or a job is lost doesn’t mean that you are not deserving of happiness and success. Possessing the knowledge and empowerment of your own unlimited potential will allow you to more efficiently custom design your own destiny.
The world around us is constantly changing. There are those who view life as single experiences, and others who look upon our world as continuing experiences. The single experience proponents are not happy campers because the evaluate their lives by contrast to the fortunes of others. For them others are lucky and live happy lives, whereas these single-experience types have been unlucky and wind up with unhappy existences. Continuing-experience exponents view life as constantly changeable and therefore something within their control. For them there are always new solutions. Change is welcomed as an exciting challenge. The expression “success is a journey, not a destination” is what they live by.
The tendency to evaluate your life in terms of achievements, trivial or monumental, along the way, destines one to the frustration of always seeking out other destinations. Taking one day at a time and empowering yourself is the way to custom design your future.
Another form of programmed failure revolves around our thought processes. We will deal with consciousness expansion in more detail in chapter 14. For our current discussion let me simply state that failure will result when you develop a failure consciousness. Success will be the reward of those who practice success consciousness. A simple exercise is to change your past assumption of failure to one of success. Expect the best and assume you will succeed in everything you do.
By simple repetition of positive affirmations to your subconscious, you will change the circumstances in your life by attracting success. A thought can actually be converted into material rewards through the application of quantum physics (the new physics). The mechanism is rather complex, but let me simplify it. A thought presented to the subconscious repeatedly is accepted and transformed into its physical equivalent by the most practical means available. This could be attracting a certain person or opportunity into your life that otherwise would have passed you by, had your thoughts been negative. The reverse is also true.
When you add emotions to this equation it speeds up the mechanism. The emotions, or the “feeling” portion of thoughts, are the factors that give thoughts vitality, life, and action. The emotions of faith, love, and sex, when mixed with any thought impulse, give greater action than any of these emotions can do singly.
Since none of us perceives the outside world with complete accuracy, all self-talk is based on distortions and illusions. Our brain interprets the data it receives from our five senses. Just as a newspaper editorial reflects the position of the paper, our mind sees what it wants to see.
We may as well slant this distortion to the positive side. You will find the effects far healthier. Optimistic thinking is characterized by the following paradigms:
Focusing on the present. Always looking on the bright side. Expecting a good thing to happen—always expecting the best. Being positive about the future. See it in terms of what can be done rather than what cannot.
Perceiving all setbacks as learning opportunities and challenges to be overcome. Recalling only positive past events. Viewing all obstacles as temporary and good events as permanent. Attributing good events to your own efforts. Generalizing a positive outcome to your entire life. Statements such as, “My whole life is working great, just as I planned it” can be made following a success.
Optimists eliminate the words “should,” “ought to,” and “must” from their vocabulary. Words such as “want” or “could” are used instead. This removes the burden of guilt and represents an intention upon which you choose to act.
Repeating positive statements known as affirmations represents another method of reprogramming our subconscious. These statements become just as powerful as their negative predecessors over time.
The best way for you to practice affirmations is to create positive statements about yourself and place them in the present tense. Next, set aside a few minutes each day to repeat these statements out loud or to yourself. These statements should be written down. They can be used during visual imagery exercises, meditation or selfhypnosis. Here are some examples:
I am in control of my life.
I am confident and motivated about my ability
I create my own reality.
I can relax at any time I choose.
I deserve success in all my endeavors.
I unconditionally love and accept myself.
I have a calm mind and body.
Music exerts quite an effect upon our behavior. Fast beats make us aroused and alert; slow, quiet music calms and relaxes us; high-pitched music comes across as playful and happy; low-pitched music is associated with serious or sad moods.
Nature sounds can be very soothing, renewing, and relaxing. Sounds emanating from the ocean, the chirping of birds, rain, the wind rustling through trees, the chatter of squirrels, and so on, have a definite effect upon us.
Aerobics classes always use music. Music may facilitate your motivation to exercise, increase endurance, focus your concentration, attend to chores and get in tune with your body. Some upbeat and fast-tempo music makes you feel less tired. I always incorporate music in my hypnosis sessions and on the self-hypnosis and meditation tapes I give my patients.
One way to select music that is best suited to you is to listen to a variety of music styles. At this time, record which types make you feel happy, sad, energized or relaxed. Now begin listening to these pieces when you feel moody and note your responses.
Healing with sound and chanting has been practiced since ancient times. All forms of religion use music in their services. For thousands of years, lullabies have assisted children in falling asleep.
Music that is used in combination with guided imagery facilitates psychological and spiritual growth. Psychosomatic disorders of all types, including headaches, digestive problems, pain, anxiety and depression have been successfully treated with music.
Music enhances relaxation and learning and aids the effectiveness of other conscious-raising techniques. The following music selections may be used to assist in your consciousness raising.
The only real obstacles we have to our growth are our defense mechanisms. These components of our consciousness (conscious mind proper) function to prevent change. To change we must over-come our defense mechanisms.
Bad Luck Only Exists In Your Mind
The concept of the subconscious translating a negative impulse into a physical equivalent is the basis of what is commonly termed “bad luck.” Empowerment is the only and relatively easy way of achieving a solution to overcoming bad luck.
When you program your mind with a poverty mentality (or other form of SDS), misfortunes will occur. Programming works both ways. Positive programming creates an abundance mentality, which will be translated into its physical or monetary equivalent. This sets up a chain of events that eventually creates a state of expectancy or belief, which in turn modifies your own attitudes and actions and results in abundance (a financially lucrative business deal or a fulfilling relationship). The key element in this positive cycle is your belief or faith. This determines your actions and functions as the catalyst that will transform a SDS into an empowerment asset. Expect the best and assume that you will always succeed. Program your subconscious with positive affirmations supplemented by visualization exercises and this method cannot fail.
Which I described how I created my own reality and custom designed my own destiny in reference to the successful completion of my movie for television.
To facilitate this system it is critical that you immediately substitute positive emotions and thoughts for the negative equivalents that dominate and discourage your subconscious. Faith is merely a state of mind and can easily be established by self-hypnosis.
Always have faith in yourself and some form of higher power. Faith is the basis of all miracles and other phenomena that modern science cannot explain. Faith is the starting point for the creation of financial success. The only way to counteract failure is through faith. Faith is the only method through which the power and force of empowerment can be harnessed and used. It is faith that gives the power and action to our thoughts that permits us to custom design our own destiny and eliminates all forms of SDSs.
There is a type of magnetic attraction to these forces. The energy of our soul and of most of our universe is actually electromagnetic radiation. By raising the quality of our electromagnetic radiation (subconscious) through positive programming, we are in effect attracting equally positive circumstances (also manifestations of electromagnetic radiation) into our awareness. Any plan, idea or purpose may be placed in our subconscious through simple repetition of thought (programming). This is one reason why it is advisable to write down your goals and state their purpose. A low self image or host of other SDSs can easily be programmed out and replaced with its positive analog and highly developed powers of faith by this very same approach. Removing Negative Tape You can think of your subconscious mind as a rather complicated computer filled with all sorts of tapes (programming). You can always change the software by turning off the negative tapes. Such negative tapes as, “I’m not smart enough to get that job” can prevent you from obtaining a position you are otherwise qualified for. Only you can initiate this change. The exercises presented in this book must be practiced for this to occur. Reading about them is only a first step; it is not enough. “How do you get to Carnegie Hall? Practice, practice, practice.” Listening for these negatives is the first step. Once you have identified these manifestations of SDSs, you can initiate simple techniques to “head them off at the pass.” You just can’t ignore them or pretend they don’t exist. You must interrupt them, break them apart and destroy them. Utilize such thought-stopping processes as:
• “Get out of here.”
• “I don’t want to listen to that junk anymore.”
• “I don’t have time for negativity.”
One of the most common forms of these negative tapes deals with fostering feelings of hatred. Hate will immobilize your growth. It is a means by which we punish and destroy ourselves for the actions of others.
Vengeance, prejudice and violence are its equally destructive siblings. It is up to you to form the posse that will “run these varmints out of town.”
Lose The Complaints
Empowerment is the theme of this book and my life’s work. An empowered soul does not complain or whine. When I give workshops I always entertain questions from the audience. My classic response to a whining comment from an attendee in a presentation in Southern California is, “I cannot support your remark. We’re in Southern California; the whine country is located in the northern part of this state.” To be truly happy and empowered requires a complete absence of complaining, especially about the things you cannot change. If you cannot change something, it is a fact of life. Go on to some circumstance you can modify. That is growth. Two examples of complaints that are most irritating to others are:
• “I’m just too tired.”
• “I don’t feel well.”
Informing others, including loved ones, of these conditions will not help you. It will only result in abusing them. If you are truly empowered you will want to work out these difficulties yourself.
Complaining encourages self-pity and immobilizes you in your efforts to get on with your life, and to give and receive love in your personal life. This useless activity must be eliminated immediately.
If you truly love others, then you would want to take an active role in removing these factors from your life and empower yourself and others in the process. Since only you can remove the cause and effect of these complaints, do what the Nike commercial instructs, “Just do it.”
The purpose of these exercises is to increase your awareness of your beliefs about reality. If you can change your beliefs and accept and appreciate what the world presents to you, rather than wasting your life judging, evaluating and stressing yourself, you have completed the first step to your own empowerment and custom designing your own destiny. This next exercise is a simple method for using affirmations and visualizations to effectively alter your belief systems. If you truly allow yourself to accept the belief that you can attain empowerment, then that is the reality you will create. Each individual can choose to focus on and accept whatever beliefs he or she wants.
These exercises are designed to train you in the art of altering your beliefs. Just because in the past you have adopted limiting and self-defeating beliefs doesn’t mean that you can’t change them at any time. It is only through deliberate and stubborn resistance that you will allow the previously accepted beliefs to continue to be a part of your reality. Accept the fact that you can accomplish these time tested techniques. Formulating excuses for not practicing these exercises is part of the old you, and not at all characteristic of an empowered soul. A new future of abundance awaits you as you put your faith in this system, even before you have physical evidence to support it. You will be far better off if you put aside your doubts for now, and proceed to program yourself to a frame of mind that will be conducive to what you want to achieve. You don’t have to completely obliterate your doubts—just put them on the back burner for a while.
Affirmation/visualization exercises are simple and fun to practice. You need only apply them to the new beliefs you have developed for this specific topic. Here is an example of a simple affirmation/visualization exercise. It is best to develop the habit of practicing this exercise at the same time each day. To thoroughly benefit from this approach, I strongly recommend you practice with any relaxation method you have utilized in the past:
Now breathe deeply and systematically relax your body by any method you feel comfortable. Clear your mind of all thoughts and worries. A simple recommendation is to listen to some relaxing New Age music for a few minutes as you clear your mind. Now list a set of positive affirmations and visualizations on a sheet of paper. Start with your first affirmation and begin to speak it, either aloud or in your mind. Say it with a deliberate and confident forcefulness. Believe what you are saying as you say it. During the exercise you are to “pretend” that what you are saying is really true. Keep your focus of attention exclusively on the topic at hand. Repeat the statement over and over and then begin using your visualization. Imagine it as vividly as you can. If you are visualizing some desired thing or situation, imagine that you have already achieved your goal. Allow your imagination free reign during this procedure. During each visualization, see the event leading to abundance actually occurring. Feel the exhilaration and excitement accompanying your success. As an illustration, suppose you are working on changing your beliefs about your ability to make good business decisions. Perceive yourself making a specific business decision and follow it through to illustrate that this was an ethical win win-win approach that resulted in your benefiting significantly financially, while growing spiritually at the same time. Create a feeling of pride and fulfillment to accompany this visualization.
When you have completed your first exercise, proceed with the second, then the third, and so on until you are finished. Some of these topics require only a minute or two on each. Others may take between five and fifteen minutes for a specific area. Anything over fifteen minutes in any one area is unnecessary. Experience will allow you to develop a practical regimen. Never underestimate the potential of this technique because of its simplicity. You are unleashing an ability of spirituality that can be used to literally change the course of your life. You’ve got nothing to lose by giving it a try. It is applicable for conscious creation in any area. When relaxing to do your exercises, realize that spending a few minutes imagining something accomplishes work. When you direct the power of your imagination, you are harnessing the creative forces of nature and putting them to work for you. This is what an empowered person does on a daily basis.
Regular application of the exercises presented in this book is necessary to make the changes in beliefs you so desire. Get into a pattern of daily practice for several weeks. Don’t miss a day. Later on, if you skip a day or two, it won’t matter. Remember to feel free to update and change your exercises whenever you have reached a goal or simply feel like adjusting them.
A further application of your training will be evident in the early stages of your practice sessions. Your defense mechanisms will attempt to distract you from your goals. These methods allow you to examine you beliefs about these attempts to sabotage your efforts and reshape your ideas as needed.
This exercise will assist you in removing limiting beliefs about abundance and focus your subconscious on your vision of becoming an empowered individual. You must recognize that committing yourself to abundance goals means investing a certain amount of your energy in income producing functions.
Devising a game plan with specific goals is necessary for success in this endeavor. Stating simply to yourself “ want to be rich” or “I want to attract my soul mate” is inadequate for realizing these objectives. You must be specific. This book deals with the principle of empowerment. By developing a money consciousness you will accumulate riches. Establishing a love consciousness will bring a soul mate into your life. Focusing on a power consciousness will result in your influence on the world spreading like a California brush fire in July. The choice, as always, is yours.