Success Secrets And The Catch

December 18, 2008 by  

success secrets

Success secrets – where are they?

Most people think their problem is they don’t know the secret to success.  Whether that success may be about making money, losing weight, or something else, most people are in this thinking habit.  “Those successful people knew something I don’t know.”  Gee, it’s so unfair.

So you do one of the two things:  One, you look for that secret formula.  You look and look everywhere and spend the majority of your energy in looking.  If you are reading this article, or if you are a fan of any other personal development blog, you may be this type.

The second reaction is you just stay where you are sulking – maybe someday you will be lucky enough to bump into that secret.  This doesn’t sound like Yes to Me reader, but you probably know someone like this.

And to both types the answer is: No.  That is NOT your problem.  Your aim is off the target. The real problem is something else.

You already know success secrets

If you really don’t have the basic understanding about the things you want to achieve, there is a point in learning that.  For example, if you want to be in healthy weight, you need to know the basics of nutrition – what carbohydrate, protein, and fat are and what they do in your body.  This knowledge leads to healthy eating plan that you can implement in your life.

However, I highly doubt if this is the case with you – if you are reading this blog, you already know the basics of personal development.  You know what you are supposed to do to achieve your goal of success.  In fact, you probably know a lot of the secrets of success, far beyond the basics.

For example, I just guest posted at Pick The Brain about how you can reinvent yourself by cleaning and decluttering your immediate physical environment.  The article shows a practical 21 day program of how to reinvent yourself outside in.  I tried this action plan myself and had great results.  Now my secret of success (at least one of them) is open to the public – anyone in the world can read it at Pick The Brain anytime.

But have you tried them?

All the tasks in the program are easy to do if you are in normal health.  They include opening the windows (literally), lightening your baggage (again, literally), dumping junks and making rooms for the new  (literally, in your bathroom, bedroom, work area, entrance and living area).

Now do you want to bet how many people would actually complete the 21 day program?  Or even start the program?

Or how about adding healing quality to your everyday drinking water by saying gratitude?  It’s very easy to do, and the potential benefit is huge.  Have you done it?  I did.  And got at least one positive result, as I shared in that article.  But so far I have heard from only two people who are doing this water gratitude practice.  I’m assuming most other readers just read it and haven’t tried it yet.

If you think these success tips are a bit too spiritual, how about Get Clients Now! Program for marketing?  It’s a 28 day program and I think it works great for those of you who have service oriented business.  You need to get the book, but books are so cheap compared to hiring a marketing coach.  And this book, written by an experienced marketing coach, makes it really easy to come up with a customized action plan.  Have you done it?

Or any other success tips, like the Law of Attraction or time management principles, that you read in the book or blog – have you tried it in your life?

How your ego resists the change you want

Let me guess why you don’t implement the action that you think might bring positive changes to your life:

1.    You want reassurance before you do it. You want guarantee it works.  You don’t want to try something until it is 100% guaranteed to work — with theoretical scientific explanation, plenty of case studies, recommendations from authorities, etc.   You are afraid of making mistakes in choosing your options. This excuse work especially well with spiritual development advice.

2.    You have other important things to do. You are busy.  You can’t be bothered to do new things, like saying “thank you” to the water.  Even though that takes only two seconds.  This excuse may go back to excuse #1 that you are too busy to do something that is not proven.

3.    You are afraid of doing it badly and failing it. That would be so embarrassing.  It’s hard to apply this to simple action plan like my 21 day of cleaning up your life, but it’s still possible.  Plus, if you are going to fail after spending your time and energy, what is the point of trying it at all?

4.    You actually love the situation you are in. You don’t want to change really, you just say you want it because that makes you look smart.  Maybe once in awhile, you try something half-heartedly to prove you did something, but again, in all it’s honesty, you really don’t want to change. In short, you are afraid of success.

Now let’s examine each excuse:

1.    What in life is 100% guaranteed? The method that worked perfectly for someone may not work for you. You are different, and your situation is different, the timing is different. So no one ever can give you 100% guarantee for anything.  Therefore, this excuse works always.

I’d like to think you are sincere in your desire to achieve success, however.  You are not using this excuse just to get away from it. You are using this excuse because you are afraid and you want assurance.

What it is is that your ego, who is used to the status quo, is resisting the change. So it spits out this “rational” doubt that prevents you from taking action.

2.    So what is really important? To keep up with your busy life or to progress in achieving your goals?  Do you realize that, when you do achieve your success, your life will change significantly, and many of the things that are important to you now may not be as important?

This is just another excuse your ego use to fight against potential changes and try to stay in the status quo. You may hate your busy yet boring life, but . . . you know it so well, and familiarity may feel comfy.

3.    If you are going to worry too much about what others might think of you, you are going to have a really boring life. When you fail, there will always be people who point it out to your attention, as if you may not know it already, and they will also remember it for the rest of their life and remind you occasionally.  They are also not happy when you succeed by the way.  When you succeed, they will criticize you for any shortcomings they can possibly find.

These are their egos trying to keep you at your current status quo so that they don’t have to feel pressured to change their status quo.  You need to learn how to identify these manipulation techniques.  Don’t let your own ego resonate with theirs.

Regarding your own feeling about failure – this is often said, but really, there is no failure.  It is a learning experience.  If you fail, figure out how and why you failed, and try again.  Life is a process when we view it from the soul level.  And if you think you are too busy for trial and error learning experiences, well – go back to #2.

4.   This is exactly your ego talking. You are really smart and honest if you dug out this excuse from the depth of your awareness.  Usually, the ego utilizes cover-up tactics like #1, 2 or 3, but here, it’s talking straight. Yes, your ego is afraid of the changes, even the positive changes.

Because success comes with responsibilities.  Once you achieve your ideal weight, you need to maintain it.  Moreover, you no longer can use overweight as the excuse of not having a relationship.  Your status has changed, and that comes with new level of awareness and responsibilities.  Isn’t it easier to just whine how hard it is to lose weight?

I’d like to trust you have the courage to get over this ego’s resistance.  This may take hitting the bottom really hard to realize you really want to succeed.

What is the antidote?

Make it simple.  You can take action even when your ego is screaming its protest.  Get up and open the window.  Go to the fridge, pour some water to the glass, and say thank you.  Each takes less than a minute, and you have the strength to ignore your ego for a minute.

Try and see how you feel.  Once you get used to taking small actions despite the fact you feel your ego’s resistance, you can step up and try taking more ambitious actions.

I know this is harder than it sounds.  The ego is stubborn and sneaky.  It will come back to you again and again to claim its old position.  I’ve dealt with my own ego, and I continue to do so, so I know.  I can say, however, the dealing gets easier as I gain insight and experience about how the ego works.

So what is the catch with success secrets?

Finding success secrets is not that hard.  We live in the information age.  The catch is that, for most of us, the Self who desires success and the ego that likes the lukewarm status quo are split and at conflict against each other.

So you need to learn how to proceed for your highest purpose even when you feel the ego’s resistance.  And this can only be done by implementing what you think may be the success secret.  You don’t learn this by contemplating about the ego, the life purpose, etc.

Now go do something that you think may even remotely improve your life. Cheers ^_^  (Photo by Mike Pedroncelli)

Do you find this blog inspiring?

Please check About page to learn more about this blog and the author, Akemi Gaines.


11 Responses to “Success Secrets And The Catch”

  1. Adrianne - Awareness Blooms on December 18th, 2008 1:15 pm

    Hi Akemi,

    Nice article! It is interesting that just knowing how we can achieve our goals does nothing for us – motivation and inspiration are essential. It is important to understand this and to know how to align our thoughts and energy in a way that gets us clear on whether this or that goal is what we want. Then we will feel inspired (“in Spirit”) – tapped into the perspective of our Spirit, actions become more effortless. I like how you point out common resistances brought up by the mind/ ego – it is so helpful to have an awareness of what is going on with this and that it’s usually all just smoke in mirrors! I agree with you – in my experience taking action anyway can immediately help to transform this.


    Adrianne – Awareness Bloomss last blog post..Breaking Out of My Box

  2. PeaceLoveJoyBliss on December 18th, 2008 3:28 pm

    “The lukewarm status quo.”

    Akemi, I’ve never heard this expression before, but it describes to a T what can happen when we get too comfortable with ourselves and our lives. It reminds me of a baby, cooing without a care in the world, soaking in a lukewarm bath. When the flow is missing from our lives, we can follow the example of the baby when she starts slapping the surface of the lukewarm water with her tiny little hands.


  3. akemi on December 18th, 2008 8:18 pm

    I recently noticed how amazingly difficult simple action can be. Like I said — don’t undermine the trickiness of the ego. It’s fighting for its power seat ;)

    Your analogy is cute. Thank you.

  4. PeaceLoveJoyBliss on December 18th, 2008 10:29 pm

    … don’t undermine the trickiness of the ego. It’s fighting for its power seat … and Akemi, don’t underestimate the trickiness of the ego to have you type “undermine” rather than “underestimate”. In other words, the ego wants you to keep its trickiness so that it can keep its power seat! See how subtle and subversive the human ego can be? Tricky ego *wink*

  5. Why You Resist Change | KillerBlog on December 19th, 2008 8:01 am

    [...] To achieve success, we must change ourselves. Someone once said (and I think it was Puff Daddy or Diddy or whatever his name is now, but I’m not sure) “to change the world, we must first change ourselves”. And that is true. Yes-To-Me-com analyzed why people are afraid of change: [...]

  6. akemi on December 19th, 2008 8:04 am

    OK. So I did it again. This time in the public. Shoot me. ^_^

  7. PeaceLoveJoyBliss on December 19th, 2008 8:30 pm

    Akemi, I can’t shoot you. I don’t have the heart to shoot you. If I kill your ego, what basis would you have to find and/or appreciate the highest within you? If success is really about placing acquisition and improvement in the context of finding your flow, freedom, and fulfillment, wherein lies your basis to know what is lower and higher, lowest and highest, if I shoot your ego dead? ^_^

    Suggestion: keep the ego; cultivate it; love it to death.

  8. Albert | UrbanMonk.Net on December 19th, 2008 9:27 pm

    Heya Akemi!

    #4 really strikes home – and I think most importantly it applies to many internal things as well. I’ve really been noticing that when we get angry and scream and shout, or mope around and feel sorry for ourselves, we secretly have a great payoff for it. Even though we might say we don’t want to feel this way, we (or as you say the ego) secretly gets a big payoff from it.

    Love this post!


  9. akemi on December 19th, 2008 9:59 pm

    I know I have to keep my ego. When things are working harmoniously between my higher consciousness and the ego (the thinking mind), they actually make great team.
    And BTW who can make cute mistakes like I do?

    I agree. We create internal and external dramas for a payoff, to avoid true responsibility.

  10. PeaceLoveJoyBliss on December 20th, 2008 1:51 am

    No one can make cute mistakes like you can, Akemi. I’d go further. No one can make up adorable phrases like you can. You’re a success at both :-)

  11. Carnival of Personal Development Edition #3 | Joyful Days on January 4th, 2009 8:13 pm

    [...] presents Success Secrets And The Catch posted at Yes to [...]