Passed, Not Past, in the Psychology of Shortcuts
There is one intensely important moment you are invited to participate in with a very focused attitude of determination. If you let it pass, you lose more than you may realize, perhaps forever. Grab it, and the rest of your life will be affected positively.
No matter how often you're told, you still believe that your death is in the 'far-flung future,' don't you? Even when we learn of other people dying, by the dozens or the hundreds, we're certain that it'll never be us.
Like most of us, you will be lucky to have seventy-five thousand days in your life. If you're laughing because you think that's a huge amount, count backwards to see how many you've already used up. How old are you? The number of YOUR years times ten is the number of days you have slept, getting remarkably little accomplished.
For thirty or sixty seconds you can consider facts that are supposed to influence your decisions about your life, your health, and how rapidly you can accelerate your own success. The objective of the Psychology of Shortcuts is to consider each one hundred days of your life as one box of opportunities to move to the next rung of your ladder. I prove to move a step up my own ladder at least one to twenty times per day, so there can be no argument about you being able to perform one step up every one hundred days.
Start with facts, and work your decisions around them, instead of around your opinion, which is what you've been doing up until now, and remember, more than eighty percent of all your opinions, possibly even ninety-eighty or ninety-nine of them, are based on nothing but input from other people, which has nothing whatsoever to do with your own personal experience.
Please take it from someone whose brain produces many times per second through no less than fifty thousand
separately critical seconds of every day that reading the previous paragraph repeatedly will increase your intelligence in mere minutes. It is impossible to fail with the shortcuts of masters and millionaires, champions and billionaires. Close your mouth and open your eyes, your ears, your nostrils, and most of all, your mind. Start with fact and work your decisions around those facts.
From the five to eight hundred Americans who will die in this day alone just from being given the wrong medication in hospitals or the 8000 Americans who will die this week from tobacco use, to the unexpected phone calls carrying tragic news of a car crash, heart attack, or some freak accident, let's agree that at some point in time a newspaper will note your passing.
You will be, for the most part, described in a single sentence.
This is a fact worth stopping for, to fully consider. You will be, for the most part, described in a single short sentence when your day comes. Planning for that day in advance is wiser than you have recognized up until this minute. The sweet difference between ignorance and stupidity is that ignorance can be ameliorated in as little as a few seconds, with the simple and easy transfer of information.
Having the intelligence to recognize that you have a starring role reserved in the form of an obituary will effect a sizeable influence on the actual content of that one last mention in the papers. When you recognize this fact, you are better-equipped to be the single largest factor in determining what that sentence will be.
You will be described in glowing terms, or you won't. It's one or the other: you lived with passion and excellence, and others noticed it; or you didn't. Those are the only two possible choices. Not surprisingly, the choice will prove to have been yours. the challenge here is that you still operate under the entirely mistaken impression that your eventual obituary will be determined by what you do next year, or next month, or even the day after tomorrow.
Your perception is not consistent with reality. As Henry Ford said, "You cannot build a reputation based on what you're going to do." There is powerful, life-changing impact in those words for the seven of every one hundred people who understand them. Do you understand? Go ahead, read that sentence again.
Understanding it enables you to boost just about every facet, feature, and aspect of your life, personally, professionally, socially, sexually, financially, and healthwise.
The prolific presence of this critical moment is matched only by the rarity of its use. Make no mistake; it's the defining moment of your life, because it will define and describe who you are and how others view you. You'll surely agree it's a moment you can remember for as long as you live, and the moment which everyone will look back upon and remember most about you. It happens to be the moment that will reveal the actual words of your eventual obituary in one newspaper or another. It's a moment worth thinking about. We'll return to it soon enough.
W. Mitchell survived having his face burned off from a gasoline fire. After 2 years, he was back in the mix, succeeding again. He ran for Lieutenant Governor of Colorado with a button that said, "Vote for me; I won't be just another pretty face."
Then he barely survived a plane crash, which left him paralyzed below the waist….so he let them take off his useless toes to create new fingers (the old ones had also burned off). Now get this…. he got out of the hospital… AND STARTED ALL OVER AGAIN!! Even without the use of his arms and legs he seems to be getting more out of life than, well, than 93 of out every 100 who read these words. He repeatedly identifies the resources he can successfully use in this moment.
You'll undoubtedly nod your head and say, "Yep. Yep. How true. We really can do what we most want in life." You will then return to your daily routine and do about as much today as you did yesterday. As proof, just look at the most recent 100 days of your life, and maybe even the most recent 1000 days of your life, where little has changed in terms of your effort levels.
Almost exactly 7 of every 100 people who read these words, although they usually have limited formal education, are smarter than the other ninety-three. If you're one of the seven, you're smarter because you understand, at a gut level, that if W. Mitchell can look past what he's lost, and focus each day on what he has left, then you can, too, and will. He's got a successful radio show in the Denver area. What are YOU doing today to get ahead? In the words of the great, great James Earl Jones, "Shut up, shut up, SHUT UP!!" If you really knew better, you'd really DO better, wouldn't you? Don't tell us; show us. Better yet, show the most important person on earth, whose face can be found in your bathroom mirror.
The daily habits of Brian Dickenson really call out for attention. Because his neck muscles no longer transmit instructions from his brain, Brian Dickenson's head is supported by a brace. the only movements he can make are with his facial muscles, which still smile, and with his eyes. A camera in his computer calculates his gaze from the way his eye reflects a beam of infrared light off of a blown-up screen with a keyboard on it. He looks at the keyboard on-screen, and the computer types any letter he looks at for more than half a second.
He became that one in ten thousand struck by Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, known as Lou Gehrig's disease. It destroys nerve cells in the brain & spinal cord, preventing muscles from receiving brain messages. Because it doesn't affect the mind, Brian had to witness the gradual paralysis of his arms and his legs, his ability to swallow, to speak, even to breathe on his own.
He's already passed the point where 95 percent of ALS victims simply choose to stop breathing. But Brian Dickinson has chosen to keep on breathing & to keep on writing. His focus is what brings him to continue working. How does his life, and daily efforts, compare to your own? Answer the inner you who wants to be known for doing something better than others. Don't answer me; answer yourself. How does Brian Dickenson's daily efforts towards excelling at his work compare to yours?
With a lifetime passion and career centered on words, he takes more steps each day than you do. Granted, they're tiny steps. Still adds up to more than yours, doesn't it? He's pursuing his life's passion. It would appear that, in the game of life, this physically paralyzed man is kicking your ass from here to Rhode Island. He simply refuses to quit. His columns are becoming familiar to an ever-growing audience although he battles a most mysterious, lethal disease. Every day he reaches out for one more try. What's your excuse again?
What can we add to this? Details of Christopher Reeves, & his own inspiring story of struggle, determination, and success? the way Vinnie Pazienza took a broken back, and 'permanent paralysis,' stood up, walked… ran… and returned to being a champion professional boxer? Reminders of the teenage girl with polio, & braces…you know, Wilma Rudolph and her gold-medal performances at the 1960 Olympics? The fastest woman in all of history… who wasn't ever supposed to walk, let alone run!
Ricky Henderson broke 2 records: Stole more bases than any other player… and got tagged out (trying to steal bases) more than any other player.
Many baseball players have lifetime totals of 300 strikeouts. Three men, added up together, struck out literally thousands of times: Babe Ruth, Hank Aaron, & Mickey Mantle!! As you may well know, these men also hit the most home runs. Babe Ruth struck out 1330 times for his 713 home runs. Hank Aaron was close behind. Mickey Mantle actually struck out 3 times for every home run he hit!!
Ty Cobb, with 90 broken records, and an amazing lifetime average of .367 was, far and above all others, the greatest hitter of all time, although he only succeeded one time for every three tries!! Think about it.
We know for a fact that the way you spend your minutes is an accurate movie of how you're spending your life. It's the mental movie everyone will play when they get the news that you've moved on to your so-called final reward. How you use your individually precious minutes is how you're now using your life. This and nothing but this will determine the words that make up your obituary.
Who cares what you are capable of doing? Get real.
What we DO care about is what you're willing to do. Today. Now.
We both know that there are people around you who are better at what you do than you are. You may be surprised to learn that most of them will help you get up the ladder, provided you ask for their help, by making sure they see you busting your hump to do your best, and/or actually telling them you want to be more like them and asking if they'd consider being your mentor.
Try remembering that if they're doing it better than you, they know it better than you. Pride goes before the fall, doesn't it? Never in history has a human being succeeded fantastically… alone.
No one. Ever. That equals "never." From Bill Gates and Mahatma Ghandi to Alexander the Great and Michael Jordan, they all had role models, they all had teachers. People who know everything can be taught nothing. Those who stretch their current day's activities to include at least a few minutes of learning to do it better carry enormous advantage over everyone else.
Think about when you personally get to that certain point where you find yourself looking back at the hundreds of individual months that have flown by and you're asking,
Ask more people for what you want,
and ask each person more times.
Be precise in what you ask for, as precisely as you should identify what it is you actually want at the end of it all, and during the effort itself. Even if it's just an hour a week, don't let your life be just getting through the month without going broke and exhausted. Identify something that's worth developing a reputation for, something you'll enjoy having ten months's experience at, then twenty, and a hundred, and beyond. Long before you get to that point, you'll "suddenly" notice that your income has risen repeatedly. Money follows excellence, not the other way around.
Pick up a book, go to a museum, ride a go-cart, identify the career that you would most love to be a role model in. This is the most important day of your life, the only day in which to build your present and future reputation. Seize this day with gusto.
Before you can Carpe Diem, which is Latin for "Seize the Day," do you understand that we first need to Carpe Momentum, which means "Seize the Moment?"
This is the day, and this certainly is the moment… just for you.
Seize it. Grab your life with both hands. Carpe momentum!! Before it has passed. Now!!!
You are assured of an exciting, adventurous life as soon as you simply wake up and say it is so.
We can only move in one direction:
the direction of our most dominant current thought.
Take more control of your life simply by guiding your thoughts to what you most want.
Whether it's the moment you marry the sweetheart of your dreams, or the moment you step in front of camera for your first commercial or starring role, any moment that you're pursuing something with zeal is a moment you'll remember forever. It is also the moment for which you will be remembered.
After all is said and done, this is your life, and it will end someday. Won't you feel so much better about it if you took the road of personal fulfillment, before it has passed forever, starting a new dream, a new goal, a new determined effort that you can work on...
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