Secret Formula #2

FRIDAY, APRIL 11, 2014

Goals X Faith X Action X Gratitude = Results

The term “Faith” is used in two different senses

1) the belief that your goal is POSSIBLE and APPROPRIATE, and that your efforts will bring you more pleasure and decrease pain.

2) The belief that you have greater resources than those contained within your ego-self. (more…)

Would you rather your dreams be too large, or too small?

The “Secret Formula” part 2: Faith


In the “hero’s journey”, the way through the “dark night of the soul” is called the “Leap of faith.”   It is critical to remember that in the achievement of ANY goal, you will hit a low point.   Absolutely inevitable.  And some times that low point is horrid, bleak, pale, a well of despair.


But if you know ahead of time that this will happen, you can lay in a stock of the antidote: faith.  Now faith, in mythology, is always faith in one of three things:

  1. Faith in yourself
  2. Faith in your companions or mentors
  3. Faith in a higher power.


In the sense of the “Secret Formula”, faith means a belief that regardless of circumstances or appearances, you CAN and SHOULD achieve your goal.  That ultimately, it and the attempts to achieve it will bring more pleasure than pain into your life.


Without this belief, you are paralyzed, regardless of your potential.  You won’t cross the “critical distance line” in sparring (“I”ll just get hit.”).  You won’t ask for that date (“she’ll just say no”).   Modify eating and exercise patterns (why bother?  I’ll just fail like 90% of other people…), or start that business (“90% of all businesses fail within five years…)


Your internal dialogue will trash you.   What you need to move forward is to model the internal dialogue of winners, people who have achieved and reached the goal you achieve.  And you only need to find three.  Just three people who have succeeded at what you want to do, starting from a similar place.  And if you can’t find someone who exactly matches?  Back up and take a more generalized view.  Don’t be quite as specific.


If you can’t find someone who has become a professional pogo-stick clown, study professional clowns, and professional fringe athletes.  You will find some overlaps in their behaviors, beliefs, values.    Concentrate on those to create your own path.


It isn’t that faith conquers everything.  It is that WITHOUT faith, you can accomplish very little.   The idea isn’t to eliminate the possibility of failure, it is to maximize your chances of success.


First, love yourself enough to nurture yourself.  If the world rejects your efforts, or if you fail…you’ve still got you.   You know you’ll cry, and dust yourself off, and go on with life.  If you know you can survive the worst, you are more prepared to throw yourself into the fray again and again.


Someone once asked me: “Steve, your ambitions are so high.  What if you fail?  How will you deal with the disappointment?”


And the answer is simple: I’m not a child any more.  I’m an adult. And adults deal with this stuff, or the children in their lives (and the creative child within them) are not safe.  If at the moment of death I achieved absolute clarity, and saw that my ambitions had outpaced my capacities…who cares? I had a hell of a life.


But…if at the moment of death I saw that I could have accomplished more, been more, shared more, helped more…if only I’d had the faith and courage…THAT would break my heart.


Ultimately, I think we all have to make a choice: would you rather your dreams be too large, or too small.


Every one of us has to make that choice.


I choose faith.




The Power of Faith

The Second TAGR Principle: FAITH

“When you have come to the edge Of all light that you know And are about to drop off into the darkness Of the unknown, Faith is knowing One of two things will happen: There will be something solid to stand on or You will be taught to fly”
Patrick Overton

It should be obvious to anyone who has been with me for a while that the principles of Think And Grow Rich are entwined deeply into every aspect of my life and teaching. The second principle, “Faith” is the same as the eighth principle of the Hero’s Journey. And the same as the second principle of the “Secret Formula.”

Defined as “evidence of thing not seen” this can be interpreted as a spiritual connection, or simply the capacity to believe that things, situations, and people can and will improve.
Any day that you wake up believing that today will be better than yesterday, this week better than last week, this month better than last month…

You will have energy, aliveness, joy, and creativity. The morning you wake up believing your best days are behind you…you will experience depression, fatigue, hopelessness and a shroud of negativity that cloaks your mind like a wet dishrag.

YOU MUST BELIEVE. If you want to find love, change your finances, get into shape, or learn a new skill…you must believe.

This is why desire is so important. You have to want something so badly that you are willing to “buck” the evil, negative voices in your head. The ones that say the past is the best of your life, that men and women are unworthy of trust, that you are broken and finished.

To be specific:

1) In writing, almost everyone I knew and everything around me said I could not have the career I wanted. I committed to writing, finishing, and submitting 100 short stories, and papering my walls with rejection slips, before even considering quitting.

2) In martial arts: I was dealing with so much fear, pain, and negative belief around the arts that it took me NINETEEN YEARS to earn my first black belt. The emotional agony was excruciating. I’d been so hurt and shamed for being small and gentle growing up that my self-image as a weak, defenseless artist was totally at odds with my goal of becoming respected by the men I respected and desired by the women I desired.

3) In love, I made such mistakes in my early life that there was a specific moment, alone in a bare-walls apartment a thousand miles away from my nearest friends and family, I clearly, CLEARLY understood the desire for suicide.

The connection, the way through, the only salvation was faith. In myself. In the world. In my companions. And yes, in a higher power. That spiritual faith works for me. It may not for you. But you will need faith, of some kind, to see you through. Belief that there is more than your self image, more than your current concept. More than what you can touch and taste and hear.

Faith is knowing you’ve been down before, and gotten back up,dammit. You can do this. You MUST do this. That you have accomplished things, despite despair. That there have been other times you felt JUST LIKE THIS, and things improved anyway. You can and must find something within yourself that believes this in order to take action with confidence. Without faith that there is a way out, a way through, we curl up and die.

You MUST give yourself this gift.
You’re the only one who can.