Power – Personal Development for Smart People – by Steve Pavlina summary by Derek Sivers

This is a post of summary by Derek Sivers of a really nice book by Stevel Pavlina available at amazon.com

Read it slowly as there is wisdom.

Power is your ability to consciously and deliberately create the world around you.

No matter your history, the burden of responsibility for your life now rests squarely on your shoulders. Blame can only make you powerless.

No one is coming to rescue you.

If you don’t proactively solve your own problems, they’ll never be solved.

If you want different results, you must go out and create them yourself.

Desire is the fuel of power. Enjoy the progressive fulfillment of your desires through the exercise of your power.

What do you want?
What do you fantasize about?
What do you long for so badly that you can’t stop thinking about it, even if you consider it impossible?
Never deny that you want what you want. When you deny your desires, you fall out of alignment.

You’re completely free to decide what you want.
You don’t need anyone’s permission or approval.
Your choices are yours to make and can never be dictated by others.
You never need to justify what you want.
You want what you want, and that is enough.

Life is constantly asking, “What do you want?”
Answer that question however you wish.

True power only exists in the present.
There is no power in the past. It’s done.
There is no power in the future. It’s only in your imagination.
You have no power to act yesterday or tomorrow.
Whenever you project beyond the present, you make yourself powerless because you’re succumbing to an illusion.

The purpose of goal-setting isn’t to control the future.
The point of goal-setting is to improve the quality of the present.
Ask, “How does setting this goal improve my present reality?”
If it doesn’t, then the goal is pointless.
But if it brings greater clarity, focus, and motivation to your life when you think about it, it’s a keeper.

Set goals that make you feel powerful, motivated, and driven when you focus on them, long before the final outcome is actually achieved. Avoid setting goals that make you feel powerless, stressed, or weak.

When you set a goal that improves your present reality, what does it matter how long it takes to achieve the final outcome? Whether it takes one week or five years is irrelevant. The whole path is fun and enjoyable.

Whenever I focus on an inspiring goal, I feel extremely driven and motivated.

Material goals always de-motivate me.

If you find yourself unmotivated, you’ve set the wrong goals. You need to set goals that are so inspiring to you that you can’t wait to take action.

Self-discipline is the willingness to do what it takes to achieve the results you want regardless of your mood.

When you’re feeling unmotivated, apathetic, bored or lazy, self-discipline provides your second wind and keeps you moving.

Motivation is highest at the beginning of a project. Self-discipline can prevent you from quitting. Motivation starts the race, but self-discipline crosses the finish line.

Self-discipline remains one of the most significant aspects of personal development.

Progressive training requires that once you succeed, you must increase the challenge. If you keep working at the same level, you won’t get much stronger.

The first hour is the rudder of the day. Adopt a disciplined routine for the first waking hour, and you’ll enjoy a highly productive day.

How you expect to use what you have just learnt?

Truth: Personal Development for Smart People – by Steve Pavlina summary by Derek Sivers

This is a post of summary by Derek Sivers of a really nice book by Stevel Pavlina available at amazon.com

Read it slowly as there is wisdom.

 “What seems nasty, painful, evil can become a source of beauty, joy, and strength, if faced with an open mind.” – Henry Miller

Your first commitment must be to discover and accept new truths, no matter how difficult or unpleasant the consequences.

Perception is the most basic aspect of truth. If you want to improve some part of your life, you have to look at it first.

For example, if you want to know how your relationship is doing, you ask yourself, “How do I feel about this relationship? What parts are working well? What parts need improvement?”

You can’t get from point A to point B if you refuse to acknowledge that you’re at point A!

What do you perceive about your life that you’d like to change?
Are there any addictions or destructive habits you’d like to break?

Look around you and notice what you like and dislike about your life.

Prediction is how you learn from experience, enabling you to discover what is true. As you observe any new situation or event, one of two things can happen: either the experience will meet your expectations, or it won’t. When an experience meets your expectations, your mental model of reality remains intact. But when an experience violates your expectations, your mind must update its model of reality to fit the new information. This is how you learn from experience and discover new truths.

If something satisfies all your expectations, you won’t learn anything new. To help you grow, something (this book) must violate your expectations and give you some unexpected “Aha!” moments.

There are two powerful ways you can apply your mind’s predictive powers to accelerate your personal growth:

1. Embrace new experiences that are unlike anything you’ve previously encountered.

You’ll literally become more intelligent. New situations shift your mind into learning mode, which enables you to discover new patterns. The more patterns your mind learns, the better it gets at prediction, and the smarter you become.

Read a book on a topic that’s completely alien to you. Talk to people you’d normally avoid. Visit an unfamiliar city. Stretch beyond the patterns your mind has already learned. In order to grow, you must repeatedly tackle fresh challenges and consider new ideas to give your mind fresh input. If you merely repeat the same experiences, you’ll stagnate, and your mental capacity will atrophy.

If you want to become smarter, you must keep stirring things up.

2. Make conscious deliberate predictions and use those predictions to make better decisions.

Think about where you’re headed and ask yourself, “How do I honestly expect my life to turn out?”

Imagine that a very logical impartial observer examines your situation in detail, and predicts what your life will look like in 20 years, based on your current behavior. What kind of future will this person predict for you?

Positive feelings stem from positive predictions.
When you feel good, your mind is anticipating a positive outcome.
When you feel bad, your mind expects an unfavorable outcome.

The closer your internal model of reality matches actual reality, the more capable you become.

Accept the long-term consequences of your predictions.

Do you accept the truth of where you’ll likely end up?
Are you willing to live with those consequences?

Whatever you fear, you must eventually face.

Don’t deny the truth of the situation.
Never pretend to be happy.

Make your important decisions from the most reasonable thinking you can muster – when you feel alert, clearheaded, and intelligent. Put the decisions in writing and fully commit yourself to them. When you inevitably sink back to lower states and lose sight of the higher perspective, continue to act on those decisions even though you may no longer feel as committed to them.

When you make choices from a place of anger, fear, sadness, or guilt, you cannot be aligned with truth because your predictions will be negatively biased by those lower states.

Positive emotions can make you overly optimistic, encouraging you to take unreasonable risks and to make overaggressive promises that you won’t keep.

Secondary gain is when you temporarily benefit(gain) by embracing falsehood. Lying to get ahead. Etc.

The more you succumb to secondary gain, the phonier you become as a human being.

Instead of abiding friendship and human intimacy, you settle for a sea of casual contacts, none of whom know, accept, and love the real you.

The pursuit of secondary gain leads to persistent dissatisfaction, emptiness, and unhappiness.

Rate the different areas of your life each from 1 to 10:
– Habits & daily routine
– Career & work
– Money & finances
– Health & fitness
– Education
– Social & relationships
– Home & family
– Emotions
– Character & integrity
– Life purpose & contribution
– Spiritual development

Take every rating that isn’t a 9 or 10 and replace it with a 1.

A 7 is what you get when you allow too much falsehood and denial to creep into your life – when you know you don’t have what you want, but you aren’t ready to face up to it yet. A 7 is a comfortable living arrangement instead of a deeply fulfilling relationship.

Look at each part of your life again, and ask yourself:
What do I truly want?
What is my dream, my grand vision?
What is the deep desire I’ve been longing for – the one that I hesitate to admit because I don’t think I can have it?
What path do I most want to experience?

Accept that you want what you want, and stop living in denial of your true desires.

Media fast : For 30 days, no TV, and avoid all newspapers, magazines, online media sources. Unplug yourself completely and see what happens.

How you expect to use what you have just learnt?

Did you think through what are points A and B for you?