Dr.Mani blogs about Mark Joyner wisdom!

Dr.Mani blogs on his insights and lessons gained from Mark Joyner's amazingly instructive Atomic Mind Bombs

Saturday, June 24, 2006

How To Find Your True Self

Dr.Mani comments:

The moment I saw the cartoon, I was reminded of a story Joshua Shafran shared as part of his N-POD training program.

He tells it with a slow build up to the climax, and it is definitely more impressive that way, but I'll summarize it for you here.

A guy wants the secret of success. He trudges up a high mountain, overcoming many obstacles, and reaches the 'guru' who lives on top. Asks him the question. The guru doesn't say anything, but beckons to him to follow.

He walks DOWN the mountain, all the way down, and takes the man to a lake. Tells him to bend down close to the water's edge. Then, grabs him by the hair and forces his head under - and holds him down.

The guy is strong, but the sage is stronger. Soon, the guy begins to choke for breath. He struggles and squirms - nothing. Almost about to drown, he fights his way free and gasps for air. The guru watches, speechless.

Few minutes later, the guy recovers, and turns on the old man angrily.

"What the h*ll did you do that for?" he demanded.

"You wanted to know the secret for success, right?" the guru asked.

"Yes, but..."

"Remember how it felt with your head under water? Think about how badly you wanted air. When you want success that badly, you'll get it! That's the secret"

POWERFUL story. In a sense, it changed my life.

Now, to Mark's cartoon.

There's an equally powerful moral. How often do you see (or experience yourself) the paradox of asking for advice, help or validation of something you already know... and pay a stiff price for it... and do it gladly... and be delighted with the result?

Come to think about it, it isn't quite uncommon after all.

Worse, we sometimes let charlatans and clowns brand us with their opinions and judgements - and even accept them as DEFINITIONS of ourselves.

Yes, gullible the guy certainly is - but he's attempting to learn. Hopefully, he'll learn from the experience NOT to keep repeating this behavior. But going by the gleeful expression on his face, he probably will do it again.

Lesson? Learn from ONE mistake. Don't keep repeating it over and over. The obvious is obvious - even without validation or confirmation from a 'guru'.

Stephen Covey uses a nice analogy. It's important to climb to the top of the ladder. But it's even MORE important to make sure the ladder is leaning against the RIGHT wall!

Choose your guru - and only then, climb the mountain and pay your price!

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Thursday, June 22, 2006

Another World

Dr.Mani's comment:

I have a favorite aphorism (of my own creation, I believe):

What YOU Believe Is YOUR Truth

It used to be, earlier, "What you believe IS the truth"... but after a debate with my wife for an hour one summer day many moons ago, I've modified it a little :)

The realization has brought me a LOT of calm and peace in my life, both personal and professional. I went through my twenties, trying anxiously, passionately, desperately to get the world to accept my point of view. I even had a banner across my room reading: "A room with a view... MY point of view!"

I no longer do. I believe it just as passionately, though. Just don't try and convince anyone else that hard any longer!

The blindfolded ignoramuses in the crowd are representative of a herd. "We know it all already. Don't try and tell us we're wrong!"

And the 'crackpot' on the mountain is in an unenviable position of being a front-runner, a 'messiah', a trend-setter, a pack-leader, a... dare I say it?... a Mark Joyner!

Except Mark succeeded in persuading his herd to follow him - not everyone is so lucky (or talented)

On the positive side, though, the majority of the blindfolded crowd ARE watching, listening and hopefully learning. Maybe they'll believe something different after all, about another world - and then, of course, it will become THEIR truth!

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Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Tinted Windows

Dr.Mani's comment:

The Grass Is Greener...

"Tinted Window" - nice title for a book or movie!

It speaks to me in just one way... the grass ALWAYS looks greener from the OTHER side. If only you KNEW!

You see someone you envy. You imagine the joy, luxury, fantastic lifestyle, perfect health, intense ecstasy that floods their very being... and all without knowing what's going on on the other side of the 'tinted window'.

And in reality, if you DID indeed know, you'd probably not want to exchange places with the 'envied rich' or 'famous superstars'. I know I didn't after reading biographies of Michael Jackson and Diego Maradona - even if both are still heroes from my childhood!

From another angle, maybe this is also a wake-up call for us to remove our own 'tinted windows' and replace them with transparent glass. Our prospects would understand us better, so would our customers, shareholders, partners, colleagues, family, friends... Would Enron have happened without the opaque shades? Would Iraq?

Smokescreens may be necessary. But they come with price-tags attached.

And finally, what good is a Rolls with a chauffeur if you can only ride in it with an i.v. dripping into your veins, your eye swollen shut, and your face darkened by a deep frown?

External comforts are only enjoyable if they are accompanied by a free, happy, satisfied soul within. Else, it all becomes worthless. Food for thought, there.

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Sunday, June 18, 2006

The ONLY Choice - Belly!

Dr.Mani's comment:

Wearing my marketer's hat, this cartoon is a masterpiece.

It's symbolic of the USP argument - become the ONLY choice in your prospect's mind.

EVERY other bottle on the shelf looks the same - only ONE brand stands out in the customer's eye.

(Oh, and is that because of the powerful imagery? The ad conjures a vivid picture in his mind, and he's hoping a glass of booze will get him to exchange places with the pot-bellied slob... but, will it?! )

It could also relate to the power of targeted advertising. Place your ad where the best prospect is likely to view it, and bingo - you'll make the sale!

And as a satirical ad, it might also be aimed at the self-destructive element inherent in many of us - we ask for a drink, knowing we'll get a 'belly' (flabby paunch) if we over-indulge, yet wanting the 'short-term' pleasure fix.

It seems, then, like he's ASKING for the undesirable end-result... naming his poison, so to speak!

The smug smile on the bar-tender's face could also be Mark's subtle kick-in-the-n*ts to unethical vendors who'd sell 'death in a bottle' to gullible buyers - as long as it makes them a buck.

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Friday, June 16, 2006

The Great Mystery

Dr.Mani's comment:

Another multi-dimensional cartoon from Mark!

Looking at the cartoon literally, I got 3 take-aways:

- As parents, teachers and role-models, we like to think of ourselves as the only (or at least dominant) influences on the minds of our wards. But there's a wide, large world of 'instruction' outside our 'zone of influence'... and there's no way to really 'control' it.

- Media (including T.V.) exerts a considerable 'educational' influence on minds, especially young ones. Modelling behavior they see or listen to seems a uniform phenomenon globally among youngsters. Lesson? Surround young minds with positive 'influencing' media.

- Strangely enough, the behavior being modeled is VERY rarely something useful, practical or positive. It's more often bizarre, unusual, worthless posturing... mimicry for the sake of it, and very little else.

But on another level, the message in the cartoon to me was this:

We create an environment conducive to a certain kind of behavior or learning. We foster it, nurture it, encourage it. We fail to put into place any limitations, restrictions or safeguards.

Then, when the natural outcome of such a situation shows up, we act surprised. What did we do to create this result? Or "Where does he learn such stuff?"

From YOU, stupid! (Or what you did / didn't do / created / didn't create)


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Monday, June 12, 2006

Have you seen the cat?

Dr.Mani comments:

Stephen Pierce was once speaking about how some folks viewed an online business from a totally different standpoint than a regular offline business - and often, a very unreal one.

"It's like they want to build a house. They draw up a plan on day 1. And on day 10, they want to see the house all built and ready to move in. Except, there's one little problem here. They don't want to work all week to put their plan into action!"

Stephen might have been speaking about the lady in the cartoon!

She's sitting in a mess, watching a TV program - that's incidentally showing a couple sitting in a neat and clean room (which probably sparked off her line of thinking).

She's dreaming about her home being as neat as the one on the program. That's a good first step.

But she isn't making the slightest effort to start clearing up the clutter.

Planning + Action = Results

Take either of the first 2 components out of the equation, and it gets skewed.

What's more interesting, however, is that Mark's cartoon applies just as aptly to the inside of our HEADS as our homes.

Thinking clearly, keeping thoughts organized and positively oriented, clearing up cluttered and negative feelings, and achieving a success-focus are not difficult. But they will not happen automatically, just because we wish for it.

It requires action. And the kind that doesn't even require getting out of a chair! Mental action. Thought exercises. Brain power usage.

The rewards are just as rich - and visible. They'll even translate into order, cleanliness and positivity in the world around us.

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Sunday, June 11, 2006

Serious Problem - Expand Your Horizons

Dr.Mani's comment:

For some strange reason, this cartoon reminded me of a true story I once read about the way Pentagon staffers go about discussing defence budget and spends.

Surprisingly, the administrative staff (often middle level Government employees) who were charged with the preliminary phase of preparing projected costs for different programs had no difficulty approving expenses of several million dollars for new technology or weapons.

But when it came to discussions about the few bucks per pack of staples or white paper, there were intensely emotional debates, with many arguing that the prices quoted were hugely inflated.

Let's analyze the rationale behind this. The average staffer has absolutely no idea what a missile should cost - and takes the defence expert's opinion without questioning it.

S/he is also almost certainly unfamiliar with what exactly a million bucks is... having never earned or managed such huge amounts.

But everyone knows what the cost of a pack of staples is, or a sheet of white paper. And handling family budgets of a few thousand dollars is within every staffer's realm of experience.

Because these are 'familiar' expenses, staffers felt competent to question the figures - knowledgeably and confidently.

What's this got to do with Mark's 'Serious Problem'?

Well, considering that the message is being viewed from a 'beyond the Earth' perspective, by a 'being' above worldly matters, there's a difference in viewpoints.

What is 'familiar' and 'comfortable' to the 'being' that's viewing/hearing the message is in the realm of the vast unknown to the 'smaller' mind on Earth... who has one pressing immediate concern viz.

"Where's my bag of chips gone?"

Maybe it's not so much an issue of being obsessed with small, trivial, peripheral issues to the neglect of vaster, wider, more universal concerns.

Maybe it's just an issue of IGNORANCE... of not being able to see beyond one's own nose, and sense or grasp the concept of a wider world, a bigger Universe, a limitless Outer Space.

The lesson to me: Expand your horizons. Constantly.

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