Self-Improvement – Like Peeling an Onion

Self-improvement is more like peeling off layers of limitation than piling on layers of skill.

In my last blog, I talked about how the world tries to define us and how we ultimately let it do its subtle work on us. The result is that we become someone we aren’t, yet we take possession of this person as if it is really us.

The “world” in this case is our family, our friends, the media, researchers and statisticians, the prognosticators, advertisers, politicians, and more. All of these entities has a reason to define us one way or another. If it’s not for profit, it’s for personal gain, greed, self-justification, influence, and so on. Would you ever willingly believe what someone with these intentions is trying to tell you about who you really are?

The answer is obviously “no,” yet you are most likely doing the exact thing you most want to avoid. How can this be? Because the tools of the trade for these entities are really quite convincing – subtlety and time.

Think “hypnosis” or “mesmerism” when considering their subtle nature. Much has been written about the unconscious influence of advertising. One book years ago nailed it with its title, “Subliminal Seduction.” This “under-the-radar” form of influence taps into your mind’s tendencies to associate certain objects and colors with moods and feelings that are intended to drive your actions. You develop a hunger or thirst or desire for a particular product that is being advertised. This process was so powerful and well documented that federal agencies were compelled to limit its practice in advertising. But it’s fundamental principles are still being practiced.

Time is also an agent of change. You may not be affected the first suggestion some party makes about you – e.g., “you are too young to take on this challenge,” “women aren’t made to do this kind of work,” “you don’t have the right credentials to succeed in this business.” You may not be impressed the second or third time you hear it. But after many years and thousands of times, are you so sure it hasn’t changed you?

When people say “you are the product of your environment,” could not this be part of the reason? Over time, and with great subtlety, our consciousness has been molded to the point where it makes us believe that we are someone we are not.

Do you see how this works? Knowing how it works is the first step in taking control of your life. Forewarned is forearmed, the saying goes. It is the process of forearming that we will cover in my next blog.

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Self-Improvement (Part 1) – by Brian Webster

Self-improvement isn’t a matter of acquiring skills we don’t have. It is the process of eliminating the thoughts that make us believe we never had them.

People usually associate self-improvement with acquiring skills and qualities they never have had. Flipping this concept provides an interesting and stimulating perspective that exposes the infinite potential that belongs to each one of us and empowers us to do so much more than we have ever done before.

You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to understand how much an athlete’s attitude impacts his or her performance. A defeatist attitude never wins a competition. A “victory-at-all-costs” attitude can put an athlete or team over the top. Our state of consciousness is the determining factor in everything we do – even to the point of prescribing what we can and can’t do.

The fact is, we all come into this “world of unlimited opportunity” with a personal inventory of unlimited potential. But from the day we make our first appearance on this planet to the day we close the door on this worldly experience, that same world – our family, our friends, the media, researchers and statisticians, the prognosticators – starts to tell us who we are what our prospects for success will be. They tell us, for example, that

  • that we are born into a certain socio-economic stratum that will limit our ability to move ahead
  • that we will have certain physical advantages or disadvantages based on our mother’s or father’s side of the family
  • that there will be fewer jobs and opportunities for us when we graduate from college or grad school based on the direction the economy is moving
  • that there are limits to how much income we will be able to generate in our line of work
  • that we don’t have as many useful connections as the “next guy” and so won’t be able to move ahead as fast in business

The list goes on! There are national databases that know more about you and where you are likely to end up in life than you know about yourself!

Does any of this have any impact on you? You bet it does. Subtly, over time, you hear this drumbeat and, if you’re not actively rejecting it, you are subtly accepting it. We internalize what we hear. And before you realize it, your re-wired consciousness is dictating actions and limitations that conform to the new reality that has been created in your thought.

Is it really you? That’s for the next blog…Part 2

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“Finding The Prosperity Within” Makes TOP 10 Bestseller List!

Finding The Prosperity Within was one of the Top 10 best selling books in the  self-publish world in just its first month of distribution. The results were tabulated by both Outskirts Press – the publishing company that Brian Webster, the author, used to publish his popular book – and Ingram Book Wholesalers, the world’s largest and most trusted distributor of physical and digital content.

Read the announcement here.

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