Sunday, April 29, 2018

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (Final Summary)

This is a chapter-by-chapter summary of a book by late Stephen R. Covey, writer of the most-effective personal development book, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change (first published 1989). One chapter, one article. Read this summary, buy the book. Grow!

In order to be truly effective, you must fully address yourself first, concentrate on your goals while being proactive and seeking to synergize with others, build relationships and finally having and maintain a balanced lifestyle. Here is a quick revision of the key messages of this book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (click title to read):

#1 Be Proactive and take all the matters in your hands.
#2 Begin With End In Mind by envisioning long-term goals daily.
#3 Put First Things First by organizing your life and focusing on important and not urgent matters.
#4 Think Win-Win and try to create situations of mutual benefits with other people.
#6 Synergize with others for best results and benefits that you couldn’t gain by yourself only.
#7 Sharpen the Saw having and maintaining a balanced life so you can practice all above.

Thank you for reading my short review of this book. I hope you’ll be inspired and – grow!

Be An Highly Effective Person

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People #7 Sharpen The Saw

This is a chapter-by-chapter summary of a book by late Stephen R. Covey, writer of the most-effective personal development book, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change (first published 1989). One chapter, one article. Read this summary, buy the book. Grow!

Suppose you were to come upon your neighbor in his garden working feverishly to saw down a tree. “What are you doing?” you ask. “Can’t you see?” comes the impatient reply, “I’m sowing down this tree.” “You look exhausted!” you exclaim. “How long have you been at it?” “Over five hours,” he returns, “and I’m super tired! This is hard work.” “Well, why you don’t break for a few minutes and sharpen the saw? I’m sure it would go a lot faster and easier,” you inquire. “I don’t have time to sharpen the saw,” the man says emphatically. “I’m too busy sawing!”

Habit 7 is taking time to Sharpen the Saw,” Covey writes. “It surrounds the other habits on the Seven Habits paradigm because it is the habit that makes all the others possible.” He also claims that a person’s nature consists of four (4) dimensions: Physical, Spiritual, Mental, and Social/Emotional. In order to be effective, we must invest some time to renew these dimensions so we can increase our potential in practicing each habit.

Physical Dimension

Focuses on improving your health by exercising your body, eating the right kind of foods, and get sufficient rest and relaxation. This way you develop Habit 1 (Be Proactive) muscles of proactivity. The paradigm of yourselves, your self-esteem, your self-confidence and your integrity will be profoundly affected.

Spiritual Dimension

Focuses on renewing your spirit by providing leadership to your life. This one develops Habit 2 (Begin With End In Mind). It is your core, your center and your commitment to your value system. For example, by reading, meditating or communicating with nature, you feel renewed, strengthened, centered, and recommitted to serve.

Mental Dimension

Focuses on renewing your mental health by continually expanding your mind. This dimension develops Habit 3 (Put First Things First). It is a fact that most of our mental development and study discipline comes through formal education. After it’s finished we don’t explore new subjects and we often become victims of the media and the values taught through them. Wisdom in watching the media requires the effective self-management of Habit 3, which enables you to discriminate and to select the informing, inspiring, and entertaining programs which best serve and express your purpose and values.

Social/Emotional Dimension

Focuses on renewing yourself socially by developing meaningful relationships. This dimension helps you to practice Habit, 4, 5, and 6 (Think Win-Win; Seek First to Understand; Synergize) by interacting with other people, finding win-win solutions to your issues, understanding others and synergizing by finding mutually beneficial third alternatives.

Last but not least, BALANCE is the key. As Covey states, “the self-renewal process must include balanced renewal in all four dimensions of our nature: the physical, the spiritual, the mental, and the social/emotional. Although renewal in each dimension is important, it only becomes optimally effective as we deal with all four dimensions in a wise and balanced way. To neglect any one area negatively impacts the rest.”

Sharpen the Saw! Increase Each Habit Potentials!

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People #6 Synergize

This is a chapter-by-chapter summary of a book by late Stephen R. Covey, writer of the most-effective personal development book, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change (first published 1989). One chapter, one article. Read this summary, buy the book. Grow!

Synergy is the combination of all the other previous habits which gives us the potential of uncovering new possibilities and benefits that we couldn’t gain without it. When we try to accomplish something by ourselves, sometimes it’s very hard, takes too much time or it is just impossible and not worthwhile. However, if we synergize, not only do we have the capability of achieving it, but we can make the most out of it as well.

A simple example would be two persons trying to get the apples from a tall tree. Individually they would spend too much energy to get them or maybe it would be impossible due to the height. In that case, if we symbolize each other as 1 then we have 1 = 0 and 1 = 0. On the other hand, if they synergize by one of them carrying the other one on his shoulders they would reach as many apples as they want. In that case, we have 1 + 1 = 2 and more. Much more!

Imagine that even our body uses different substances and they all synergize so they can keep up with constantly satisfying countless biological and vital needs. The power of synergy is immeasurable, like a miracle.

As Covey states: “Synergy is the essence of Principle-Centred Leadership. It is the essence of principle-centered parenting. It catalyzes, unifies, and unleashes the greatest powers within people. All the habits we have covered prepare us to create the miracle of synergy. What is synergy? Simply defined, it means that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. It means that the relationship which the parts have to each other is a part in and of itself. It is not only a part, but the most catalytic, the most empowering, the most unifying, and the most exciting part.”

Two (or More) Is Better than One. Synergize!

Saturday, April 21, 2018

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People #5 Seek First to Understand Then to Be Understood

An effective way to build a Win-Win situation or any type of good relationship with people is to first seek to understand them. In order to do this, you have to improve your listening skills. As Covey states, there are 4 stages of listening:

1. Ignoring
2. Pretending to Listen
3. Attentive Listening
4. Empathic Listening

To reach the 4th level (Emphatic Listening) means that you are inside someone else’s frame of reference by ‘listening’ to their body language, tone, expression, and feelings. This is the first big step for productive communication and interaction.

We often get up to the 3rd stage (Attentive Listening) of listening and we are under the impression that this is always more than enough. Consequently, we have these autobiographical responses:

a) Evaluate    (agree or disagree)
b) Probe        (ask questions from our own frame of reference)
c) Advice       (give counsel based on our own experience)
d) Interpret   (explain people’s actions based on our own motivations)

These responses don’t always reach and satisfy other people’s needs. On the other hand, by listening empathically (4th level), we can get beyond a surface-level, transactional exchange and have a real impact. By deeply understanding other people’s issues and satisfying their needs, then we can move onto being productive and be understood by them too. When we rush in response without understanding first, it’s similar to this:

Suppose you’ve been having trouble with your eyes and you decide to go to an optometrist for help. After briefly listening to your complaint, he takes off his glasses and hands them to you. “Put these on,” he says, “I’ve worn this pair of glasses for 10 years now and they’ve really helped me. I have an extra pair at home; you can wear these.” So, you put them on, but it only makes the problem worse. “This is terrible!” you exclaim. “I can’t see a thing!” “Well, what’s wrong?” he asks. “They work great for me. Try harder.” “I’m trying,” you insist, “Everything is a blur.” “Well, what’s the matter with you? Think positively.” “Okay, I positively can’t see a thing.“Boy, you are ungrateful!” he chides, “And after all, I’ve done to help you!”

What are the chances you’d go back to that optometrist the next time you need help? Not very good, I would imagine. You don’t have much confidence in someone who doesn’t diagnose before he or she prescribes. This is, of course, a symbolic example, nothing that would happen when visiting a doctor, but you get the picture.

Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People #4 Think Win-Win

This is a chapter-by-chapter summary of a book by late Stephen R. Covey, writer of the most-effective personal development book, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change (first published 1989). One chapter, one article. Read this summary, buy the book. Grow!

A person or organization that approaches conflicts with a win-win attitude possesses three vital character traits: 1) Integrity: sticking with your true feelings, values, and commitments
2) Maturity: expressing your ideas and feelings with courage and consideration for the ideas and feelings of others; 3) Abundance Mentality: believing there is plenty for everyone
(Stephen R. Covey)

If achieving your goal requires an interdependent relationship, then the best strategy is the creation of a Win-Win situation. Covey categorizes human interaction with six paradigms:

Both sides win. Agreements, solutions, strategies are meant to be beneficial to both parties.
Win-Lose (I Win, You Lose)
These people always try to get their way, usually taking advantage of the situations or weak personalities.
Lose-Win (I Lose, I Win)
It’s okay,” he says. People with this behavior mainly focus on popularity and social acceptance.
If I lose, you must lose too. When two Win-Lose, people are in the same environment and interact with each other, they both end up losing.
As long as I win, it’s okay. People with this mentality don’t care if other people lose or not. What matters is that they win.
Win-Win or No Deal
If we both don’t win, we just don’t try it.

As mentioned above, achieving Paradigm 1 has the biggest positive effects. Paradigms 2-4 have always negative effects in the long run for both sides. However, there are some cases in which Paradigms 2 and 3 may be suitable too, depending on the reality. Paradigm 5 doesn’t always guarantee the success. Paradigm 6 is a very good alternative to Paradigm 1 when it is impossible to reach a mutually beneficial agreement at that time.

Let’s Grow Together. Think Win-Win!

Friday, April 20, 2018

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People #3 Put First Things First

This is a chapter-by-chapter summary of a book by late Stephen R. Covey, writer of the most-effective personal development book, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change (first published 1989). One chapter, one article. Read this summary, buy the book. Grow!

To live a more balanced existence, you have to recognize that not doing everything that comes along is okay. There's no need to overextend yourself. All it takes is realizing that it's all right to say no when necessary and then focus on your highest priorities.”
(Stephen R. Covey)

Habit 3 is the personal fruit, the practical fulfillment of Habits 1 and 2.” What we’ve gained from Habits 1 (Be Proactive) and 2 (Begin With End in Mind) was how to react to our problems, fully understand ourselves and the goal we have in our life. Habit 3 is about learning to manage ourselves effectively by putting first things first in order to achieve that goal. This is what will give birth to a strong ‘Yes’ inside you that will give you the courage to say ‘No’ to other things.

First of all, we should categorize our activities and focus on specific ones. Covey uses Dwight Eisenhower’s tool for that:

Quadrant 1: Important and Urgent (Manage)
such as pressing matters, deadline-driven missions, crises, etc.

Quadrant 2: Important not Urgent (Focus)
like building relationships, planning, recognizing new opportunities, etc.

Quadrant 3: Urgent not Important (Avoid)
such as events that interrupt other events, meetings, etc.

Quadrant 4: Not Important or Urgent (Limit)
like addicted to social media, excessive entertainments, etc.

An effective and proactive person would prioritize dealing with not urgent but at the same time important activities. As a matter of fact, Quadrant 2 has many advantages when it is arranged properly. As long as you effectively keep dealing with it, Quadrant 1 will shrink, making your everyday life easier and less pressured. Quadrant 3, while it’s urgent, it’s not important which means that it’s not a big deal to neglect it. Quadrant 4 is usually for irresponsible individuals to prioritize.

Put First Things First is Very Important – What’s Your Priority?
So important that Covey wrote another book entitled First Things First

Thursday, April 19, 2018

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People #2 Begin With the End In Mind

This is a chapter-by-chapter summary of a book by late Stephen R. Covey, writer of the most-effective personal development book, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change (first published 1989). One chapter, one article. Read this summary, buy the book. Grow!

There are people that struggle to try to achieve something only to end up realizing that what they were doing so long didn’t really have an important meaning in their life. As Covey states: “To Begin with End in Mind means to start with a clear understanding of your destination. It means to know where you’re going so that you better understand where you are now and so that the steps you take are always in the right direction.”

Imagine that you will live your whole remaining life based on the choices and actions you took this far and you attend your own funeral. Would you feel happy or sad about your life? Were your choices, actions or priorities compatible with what you were trying to accomplish in your life? “It’s incredibly easy to get caught up in an activity trap, in the busyness of life, to work harder and harder at climbing the ladder of success only to discover that it’s leaning against the wrong wall.”

It is very important to visualize the “End” in your mind to guide you through your life. For example, if your dream is to become a good doctor and be remembered that you saved as many lives as possible, what’s the point in struggling to become the director of the hospital just for bigger salary, preventing you at the same time from performing more surgeries?

This habit is based on imagination
the ability to envision in your mind what you cannot at present see with your eyes.
Write Your Own Personal Mission Statement, Envision the End in Your Mind!

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People #1 Be Proactive

This is a chapter-by-chapter summary of a book by late Stephen R. Covey, writer of the most-effective personal development book, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change (first published 1989). One chapter, one article. Read this summary, buy the book. Grow!

Be Proactive is about taking responsibility for your life. You can't keep blaming everything on your parents or grandparents. Proactive people recognize that they are ‘response-able.’ They don't blame genetics, circumstances, conditions, or conditioning for their behavior. They know they choose their behavior
(Stephen R. Covey)

Covey categorizes people into two main groups: the ones that are proactive, and the ones that are reactive:

Proactive people focus their efforts in the Circle of Influence. They work on the things they can do something about. The nature of their energy is positive, enlarging and magnifying, causing their Circle of Influence to increase… Reactive people, on the other hand, focus their efforts in the Circle of Concern. They focus on the weakness of other people, the problems in the environment, and circumstances over which they have no control. Their focus results in blaming and accusing attitudes, reactive language, and increased feelings of victimization. The negative energy generated by that focus, combined with neglect in areas they could do something about, causes their Circle of Influence to shrink.”

So, every one of us has a circle of influence and a circle of concern that both share the same center in our personality. As we encounter each part of the problem, we are to choose on how to react to it. If it is something we can’t fix no matter what, we stop concerning about it and focus on the other parts that we can change.

For example, if we live in a society that is characterized by unemployment, reactive people do nothing at all and being passive to the reality. Proactive people focus on what they can do to improve themselves, create new jobs (or part-time) and be more competitive.

Effective People are Proactive People

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: To Change Effectively, Change Perceptions (Introduction)

This is a chapter-by-chapter summary of a book by late Stephen R. Covey, writer of the most-effective personal development book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change (first published 1989). One chapter, one article. Read this summary, buy the book. Grow!

To change ourselves effectively, we first had to change our perceptions

In order to be effective, you have to focus on changing some important things in yourself
(Stephen R. Covey)

According to Covey, the most importing thing we have to change in ourselves is not our behaviour, but our character and perceptions. Changing our behaviour, which is what most people tend to do when choosing to change themselves, has only brief results. To be effective, we must put an effort into changing the way we see the world around us (perceptions).

Another important thing to mention is that people see other successful people around them and tend to try to become like them in the most effortless and brief way possible. If we really want to achieve our goal we must not focus that much on how long will that take, but firstly focus to change from inside out to be able to attempt it. For example, you can’t really start building a house without building the foundations first.

That’s what The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People will teach you step by step. The first 3 habits emphasize on improving your skills to become independent. The next 3 are focused on taking advantage of teamwork development, interacting with people and become interdependent. The last one is about improving what you’ve already achieved and growing bigger and bigger.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People are:

To Change Effectively, First Change Your Perceptions!

Sunday, April 15, 2018

With Winning In Mind: The Mental Management System (Summary)

This is a chapter-by-chapter summary of a book by Lanny Bassham's With Winning in Mind (2012) series. One chapter, one article. Read this summary, buy the book. Enjoy!

First off, you have to take control over what you picture in your mind. Because whenever you picture something in your mind, you increase the likelihood of that thing happening in the future. You control the picture in your mind (and thus what’s happening in the future) by choosing what you think, talk, and write about.

Text Box: Remember: You reinforce something by thinking, talking, or writing about it. At any given time, you are either picturing something positive or something negative in your mind. You are either thinking, talking, or writing about something positive or you are thinking, talking or writing about something negative. In other words, you are reinforcing certain behaviours. There are two kinds of reinforcement:

#1 Positive Reinforcement (YES!): You reinforce something you did well such as hitting a grand slam, meditating, studying, being nice to someone, or whatever. Reinforcing this positive action makes happening it again in the future more likely.

#2 Negative Reinforcement (Meh!): You reinforce something you did poorly such as missing a shot, wasting time on Facebook, getting in an argument with someone, or whatever. Reinforcing the negative actions makes happening it again in the future more likely (NOT what we’re after!).

How to Use Positive Reinforcement in Your Life (do this more often):

  • Praise, applaud and celebrate yourself
  • Praise, applaud and celebrate others (creates the same mental pictures)
  • Talk about the positive things in your life (what went well in your life?)
  • Get in the habit of catching yourself doing something right (and then praise yourself and tell yourself that “that’s like me” and that you “do this all the time”)

How to STOP using Negative Reinforcement in Your Life (stop doing this):

  • Never whine, bitch or complain
  • Don’t listen to other people whining, bitching or complaining
  • Don’t get angry about your negative actions
  • Don’t think/talk about the negative things in your life

This bottom line is: Stop focusing on the negative. Stop complaining, making excuses, bitching around, or in any other way negatively reinforcing what you don’t want in life. Instead be nice to yourself and others, focus on the positive, talk about the good things in life, and just generally try to reinforce what you want more of in life.

Have A Winning Mindset!

With Winning In Mind: Mental Rehearsal + Reinforcement (Chapter 7)

This is a chapter-by-chapter summary of a book by Lanny Bassham's With Winning in Mind (2012) series. One chapter, one article. Read this summary, buy the book. Enjoy!

“You can imagine far more than you currently can achieve. If you consistently rehearse what you want to achieve, what you imagine can become reality. Let me give you an example. Back in the 1970s, I was shooting good kneeling scores and began approaching the national record of 396/400. I wanted to set the record at 400, a perfect score. But I had never actually fired a 400, even in training. Nonetheless, I vividly rehearsed shooting the first 100, then another and another. I visualized each of the last ten shots building toward the record. I rehearsed what I knew would happen at that point: I would realize that I was above the record.

“Next, I rehearsed hearing a voice say, ‘That’s OK. I do this all the time.’ then I imagined shooting the final ten easily and saying to myself, ‘Another 400, that’s like me.’ I rehearsed this sequence several times a day for two months. In my first competition since the beginning the rehearsal, I started with a 100 kneeling. My next two targets were also 100s. I began my last series with ten, ten, ten, ten, ten. Only five more to go. Ten. Ten. Ten. Then reality set in. I was above the record. I heard an internal voice say, ‘That’s OK, I do this all the time.’ I shot two additional tens, setting the national record at a perfect 400.”
(Lanny Bassham)

Bassham basically mentally rehearsed shooting a perfect record of 400/400. And when (in his mind) he hit the 400/400 he positively reinforced it by saying, “That’s like me,” and “I do this all the time.” He’s programming his mind and tells it over and over and over again that hitting a perfect 400/400 is “like him” and that he “does it all the time.”

Lanny had never actually shot a 400/400. Not even in training. But of course, he then did it straight away in the next competition after using this mental rehearsal + positive reinforcement technique.

Have A Winning Mindset!

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

With Winning In Mind: Mental Rehearsal (Chapter 6)

This is a chapter-by-chapter summary of a book by Lanny Bassham's With Winning in Mind (2012) series. One chapter, one article. Read this summary, buy the book. Enjoy!

In mental rehearsal you are picturing what you want to see happen before you actually perform. You go over in your mind exactly how you want your performance to be conducted. In rifle, looking through the sights, centring the target, and firing the shot in the ten ring. The more vivid the picture, the better the outcome. The more often you rehearse, the better the chance for success”
(Lanny Bassham)

Mental rehearsal is simply visualizing your performance or behaviour in your mind. You can mentally rehearse giving a speech, shooting free-throw, hitting grand slam, writing an exam, or anything else. The benefits are threefold:

1) You are practicing: Mental rehearsal is mental practice. Maybe it’s not as good as actually practicing, but Lanny says it’s a great substitute when actual training is not possible due to weather, injury, or time limitations.

2) No negative reinforcement: Because you only rehearse good performances, there is no negative reinforcement. It’s 100% purely positive reinforcement (which is almost impossible during actual training).

3) It reduces fear: This is neat. When you’ve been in a stressful situation often, the stress or fear you encounter diminishes over time (Think about the first speech you’ve ever made. I bet you were more nervous than in your 10th speech, right?). Rehearsal reduces fear because it gives you mental experience in a pressure situation. Lanny claims that he’s competed in the Olympic Games twice physically, but thousands of times mentally.

Keep in mind that you mentally rehearse the process of your performance,
NOT the outcome.
Have A Winning Mindset!

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

With Winning In Mind: Catch Yourself Doing Something Right (Chapter 5)

This is a chapter-by-chapter summary of a book by Lanny Bassham's With Winning in Mind (2012) series. One chapter, one article. Read this summary, buy the book. Enjoy!

Stop catching yourself doing things wrong and trying to find out why you are failing. Instead, only think about your successes, never your failures. An example is a golfer. The mentally uninformed golfer hits a good shot and says, ‘Well, I guess I just got lucky that time.’ When he hits a bad shot he says, ‘Why do I always do that?’ The mentally informed golfer hits a bad shot. He knows it is bad, but says, ‘Next time I will hit a better shot.’ Then he hits a good shot and says, ‘That’s a good shot. What did I do right?’ See the difference?
(Lanny Bassham)

Instead of catching ourselves doing something wrong, let’s from now on catch ourselves doing right and improve our chances of repeating that positive behavior in the future. You can catch yourself doing anything right. Be it cleaning your room, studying, reading, meditating, being kind to someone, having fun, practicing something… whatever it is: Catch yourself and pat yourself on the back. Applaud yourself. Better yet, celebrate yourself.

I know it’s counterintuitive,” writes Bassham, “but that’s because our society is seriously messed up. We’re all programmed to focus on the negative, to complain, to make excuses, to behave like little bitches, and to use negative reinforcement. Let’s stop that.” Instead, be nice to yourself and others, focus on the positive, talk about the good things in life, and positively reinforce them.

Have A Winning Mindset!

Monday, April 2, 2018

With Winning In Mind: Negative Reinforcement (Chapter 4)

This is a chapter-by-chapter summary of a book by Lanny Bassham's With Winning in Mind (2012) series. One chapter, one article. Read this summary, buy the book. Enjoy!

Be careful not to complain. I often hear people, in business as well as sport, complaining about their circumstances. Complaining is negative reinforcement. I teach my students not to reinforce a bad shot by getting angry. Do not reinforce a bad day at the office by complaining to your spouse. Remember something that you did well each day instead. Fill your thoughts only with your best performances and you cannot help but be successful!
(Lanny Bassham)

Ugh… negative reinforcement, it’s terrible! Yet, funny enough, it’s what most of us are absolute pros at. Do something right and nobody gives a sh*t (= no positive reinforcement). Do something wrong and people are all over you telling you what a loser you are and bla bla bla (=negative reinforcement). Ourselves, we are often the worst offenders or critics. Somehow we were just never taught to reinforce our good behaviors, but instead, we were taught to get down on us when we did something wrong. Anyway, it’s obvious that we want to reinforce our good behaviors, not our bad ones.

So what are some ways we negatively reinforce our bad behaviors?
  • We talk about our bad performances
  • Someone else talks about our bad performances
  • We complain
  • Someone else complains
  • We get angry at the bad behavior
  • We tell ourselves that we’re idiots for a certain bad behavior

Remember (previous articles): Every time you think, talk or write about a bad performance/ behavior/whatever, you improve the probability of having another bad performance/ behavior/whatever just like it in the future.  

One thing I especially remember about training with them,” says Lanny Bassham about his toughest competitors in shooting, “was that they never talked about their failures in front of me.” If Lone Wigger (World and Olympic Champion) had a problem, he kept it to himself. Jack Writer (World and Olympic Champion) on the other hand was a talker. It was not that Jack bragged on himself (“Although I can understand how those who didn’t know him would think that,” write Bassham), he just liked to talk. His favorite subject was shooting and he was his favorite shooter. No matter how many low scores he shot, Jack would only talk about the high ones. The important lesson here is that Jack never reinforced a bad performance and rarely shot a low score in a big match. On the opposite, Margaret Murdoch (World and Olympic Silver Medallist) rarely talked at all. If she did, it was to compliment others on their performance. “I wonder if she knew that every time she praised another shooter, she also improved her own chances of winning?” reminisced Bassham.

The point is: The top athletes do NOT negatively reinforce their bad performances.
And neither should you.
Have A Winning Mindset!

Sunday, April 1, 2018

With Winning In Mind: Positive Reinforcement (Chapter 3)

This is a chapter-by-chapter summary of a book by Lanny Bassham's With Winning in Mind (2012) series. One chapter, one article. Read this summary, buy the book. Enjoy!

You've done it before and you can do it now. See the positive possibilities. Redirect the substantial energy of your frustration and turn it into positive, effective, unstoppable determination.”
(Ralph Marston)

Remember that the more we think about, talk about, and write about something happening, the higher the probability of that thing happening. When you reinforce a positive behaviour, you increase the likelihood of that behaviour happening again.

Arrived at the summit? Reinforce it.
Just read and meditate the Scripture? Reinforce it.
Had a great study session without being distracted? Reinforce it.
Ate a healthy meal? Reinforce it.
Just exercised? Reinforce it.
Finished a work project? Reinforce it.
Won a game? Reinforce it.

The point is: Whenever you do something beneficial, you want to reinforce it. Because reinforcing it improves the likelihood of that thing happening again. So that begs the question: How do you positively reinforce something? By thinking, talking or writing about it. Here are some ways to do it:

  • Praise Yourself (“I think I did a great job today”)
  • Praise Someone Else (“You absolutely rocked this. Greatly done!”)
  • Write Down 5 Wins at the End of Every Day
  • Talk About Your Good Behaviour/Performance With Your Friends or Family

Once you replace negative thoughts with positive ones,
you'll start having positive results
(Willie Nelson)

Have A Winning Mindset!

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