by Darrin Schenck

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by Darrin Schenck

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If you are not familiar with Jim Kwik, you may want to change that. I love his quote regarding how your internal dialog sets the tone for your life. As he says: “If you fight for your limitations, you get the keep them”. I don’t know if that is an original quote or not, but he is the one I heard say it, so I am crediting him. The takeaway from this statement is that whatever you believe, you achieve. If you believe you have a particular trait and that is how your life is, you are fighting to keep that limitation. Sounds odd, but it is very true.
His online learning academy is a mostly free opportunity to change the way you learn, and as a demonstration of the kind of mind power you can develop, he has the crowd during a speech pick 20 two digit numbers and he recalls them about five minutes later. That in and of its is quite impressive, but later he recites them as single digits…backwards. It is seemingly an impossible feat, and that is the point. As he says, he is not doing this to impress you, but impress upon you what is possible. Jim had not one but two head injuries as a child and struggled with reading, recall and memory, and learning in school in general. But he changed his fate, and you can too.
The impetus for his transformation from “a kid with a broken brain” to memory coach was an interesting little side bar to the talk he was giving. He went to dinner as a kid with a large group of people, about 20 people. The waiter was taking everyone’s order without writing it down. He got everything correct, despite the table holding their breath when the food was delivered, assuming there would be errors. Jim was blown away; it was the proof he needed that it could be done, and he likened it to Roger Bannister breaking the four minute mile in 1954. No one on Earth had ever run a sub-four minute mile it until he did. EVER. Once Bannister did it, within the next year dozens of people did it. Literally no one EVER in the history of humankind had ever broken the four minute mile barrier, but once someone did it, others finally believed they could too.
There is a very important lesson in that story; there are VERY few original, unique, never been done before, things left to do. This means that you have the advantage of others leading the way, and you not having to forge the path. Even writing a new phone app or technology software isn’t new to the world. That has been done to death, even if your version is different. The point is, and I have said this before, if ever on the planet, someone with your set of circumstances has done something, you can too. If you have a special set of circumstances in life, you still are not alone. Somewhere among the soon to be 9 billion of us on the planet, there is someone who has dealt with it too.
As my friend Thomas Blackwell says: Watch your language. This clever play on words has a couple of layers to it. He, too, is reminding you to watch what you say to yourself. He is also Mormon, and to the best of my knowledge has not ever uttered a curse word in his life. His message is the same as Kwik’s regarding fighting for your limitations. If you say things like:
  • I am so busy all the time!
  • I always forget stuff
  • I’ve been heavy/skinny/dumb/loud/shy etc. all my life
  • I’m not popular
You get the idea. What that voice in your head whispers in your ear all day long is what you become, or worse, what you stay. Any time you are looking to make a change, it has to start there. You have to change your internal dialog and how you perceive yourself first, and then the behavioral changes will follow. Teach yourself to say things differently; don’t say “I always forget things”. Change that to “on occasion I forget something”, because so does everyone else. If the words slip out of your mouth, “erase” that statement right away by saying “What I meant was sometimes I forget things”. Hear yourself say it differently, and work on believing it. That is how change is made.
Add a little external help by writing sticky notes with positive messages or reminders about the change you want to make. I do this all the time, and I read the message aloud so I can hear myself say it. I also write messages on my bathroom mirror, so that every time I walk into the bathroom I see it, think it, and hear myself say it. Thirty days of this and you will ingrain that new thought.
Don’t let your mind trap you into status quo. Use it to make changes, doing things differently, and getting where you want to go. Its your brain, make it work for you. You don’t have to run a four minute mile, but whatever your version of the four minute mile barrier is, works towards cracking it by chipping away, day by day, and the self talk you listen to. Change that voice in your head to say things like “I can take it” or whatever it is that would move you forward and not hold you back.
Success starts from the inside…

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