“Life is like a combination lock; your job is to find the right numbers, in the right order so you can have anything.”—Brian Tracy
If there’s a book you must read, this is the book, regardless of your age, gender or background. Not to say I have read many self-help books, but I’ve heard the words before; I just never understood them. Like we read textbooks for any subject imaginable, this is a textbook on success.
Jack Canfield, illustrates 25 principles to success, in a simple and easy way to understand. He also gives exercises to carry out and real life examples to deepen understanding. He passes these tools on to others, after having learned and applied them in his own life, creating the successes he has and continues to enjoy. The basic key to success is through cognitive restructuring: changing your thoughts, behaviors and actions, to align with positivity. This will not only attract great things into your life; but, will help you live a happier and fuller life. Jack Canfield stresses that anyone can achieve success in any area of their life (in relationships, in school, in business, at work, achieving personal growth). But, only you can actualize that for you. You have to decide what you want, believe you deserve it, and go after it. You cannot recruit someone else to do the job for you.
I thought it would be difficult to write a review of this book, because I was overwhelmed with so much relevant information that had to be put to practice first. But, using some of the principles of visualization and affirmation, ideas began to flow naturally. I had to keep stopping to find pieces of paper, not for the notes I was taking, but for the ideas that were flowing through.
A Catalogue of A Few Concepts That Spoke Most to Me
- “You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons or the wind, but you can change yourself.” Too often we blame others for the things we don’t like in our lives. Yes, more often than not it is not of our own doing, it’s a situational factor. But, the ultimate responsibility to interpret and act upon that situation lies solemnly on us. It is not these situations that limit us. We limit ourselves from within; through our negative thoughts, behaviors and actions. We must take 100% responsibility; and realize that we are the masters of our own lives; we decide the meaning of our own paintings. The need to stop complaining is essential; we should take responsibility for choosing to stay in these situations or take the risk of creating a better life.
- “Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve.” We can achieve anything we want in life; but, we must believe. Believe not only in yourself, but, the possibility of achieving. Give up phrases that dis-empower you, like ‘I can’t’. And, begin to relate with affirmative ones (self-confidence, self-esteem, self-assurance), which empower you to go after and realize your dreams. While it is reassuring to have someone else believe in you, you must believe in yourself and your dreams, even when no one else does. What you believe, is the most important thing; everything else is secondary.
- “Things may come to those who wait, but only the things left by those who hustle.”— Abraham Lincoln. “If your ship doesn’t come in, swim out to meet it.”— Jonathan Winters. We must take action, despite our fears. Without action nothing is achieved, leaving you in the exact same place that you are. In life there will never be a clearly perfect time to do anything. You have to take the risk, and go after whatever you want, defying all odds. What’s the worst that could happen? You do not lose through failures. Instead, you gain experience, to do better the next time round, getting even closer to your goal. You have to be willing to do both: fail and be afraid. There are a natural part of life. Success takes time, effort, perseverance and patience, as the old saying, ‘good things come to those who wait’. But, you can’t wait for the bus sitting on your cozy couch at home, you have to get out there and find the right bus stop.
- “When you don’t complete the past, you can’t be free to fully embrace it.” We find that most us have a lot of ‘in-completes’ in our lives; we have projects lingering, that we start but never see through; and when we don’t get closure from some people we are left wondering. We can only pay attention to so many things at any given time. Incompleteness has the tendency to take up space, leaving very little to realize opportunities that fulfill our dreams. We are therefore stuck in the past, unable to move forward. To move swiftly on our road to success we must deal with these ‘in-completes’, giving us more energy to focus on what’s important. “If there’s anything new you want in your life, you’ve got to make room for it.”
- “There are two types of people— anchors and motors. You want to lose the anchors and get with the motors because the motors are going somewhere and they’re having more fun. The anchors will just drag you down.”— Wyland. We become like the people who we spend most of our time with. Therefore, we must carefully choose who these people are. Avoid toxic people, who are always pessimistic, always complaining but never doing anything to influence change. You must surround yourself with successful people, possibility thinkers, idealists and visionaries; and you too will be just as extraordinary as they are.
“Believe nothing. No matter where you read it, or who said it, even if I said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.”— Buddha.
The most important thing is to enjoy this journey, called life.