The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success Book Summary/Notes

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Law of pure potentiality

In our essential state we are pure consciousness, a field of all possibilities and infinite creativity.

Also called the law of unity because life is the unity of one all pervasive spirit.

The experience of the self referral means that our internal reference point is our own spirit, not the objects of our experience.

Object referral means being influenced by objects outside of the self including situations, circumstances, people and things where we are constantly seeking the approval of others. Our thinking and behaviors are always in anticipation of a response. It is therefore fear-based.

It is ran by your ego, always seeking approval and to control life.

The self is free of these things, immune to criticism, unfearful of any challenge and feels beneath no one, humble, superior to no one, because everyone is the same self and spirit in disguises.

To access the law of potentiality you must take breaks to be silent. To meditate, to simply be, to not be on digital media.

Stillness is the first requirement for manifesting your desires, as it lies your connection to the field of pure potentiality that can orchestrate an infinity of details for you.

Only in stillness can you throw a stone (your intention) into the sea of the mind and watch It ripple across the underlying ground of universal consciousness, which connects everything with everything else.

If your mind is turbulent It wouldn’t matter your intentions, they won’t be made aware or manifested.

Another way to access pure potentiality is through practice of non judgement. When you judge you constantly evaluate as right wrong good or bad, label, analyze, etc creating internal turbulence.

This turbulence constricts the flow of energy between you and the field of pure potentiality, squeezing the gap between thoughts and your connection to infinite creativity.

The gap is your connection to the field of pure potentiality, it is a state of pure awareness, that silent space between thoughts, that inner stillness that connects you to true power.

“Today I shall judge nothing that occurs.”

By spending time in nature you gain the sense of unity with all of life. connecting with nature’s intelligence gives you access to pure potentiality.

Law of giving

Everything in life is dynamic and in a constant exchange of giving and receiving, this is how the universes energy flows as well as through us.

When we give unconditionally, the energy behind It increases many times over.

What you want you can receive if you practice doing it for others. If you want joy, love, appreciation, then give It to others and you’ll receive It back.

Give that which you seek!

Always give to people that you encounter, It doesn’t have to be material. It can be a compliment, a silent prayer, showing care, affection, love. Or It can be a flower or a note. As you give, the more confidence you’ll gain in the miraculous effects of the law, leading to receiving more and ability to give more.

Law of karma

Action and the consequence of the action, cause and effect. What you sow is what you reap.

Maximize karmic law by becoming consciously aware of the choices we make in every moment.

We make many choices unconsciously based on our conditioning. We’ve created automatic and predictable reflexes (behaviors) that are triggered by people and circumstances.

We can learn to control these, they are still choices!

Ask yourself “what are the consequences of this choice that I making?”

And “will this choice that I’m making now bring happiness to me and to those around me?”

Spontaneous right action – taking the appropriate action at the right moment that nourishes you and everyone else influenced by the action.

Our hearts can help guide us in our decision making. When you put your focus towards it, It always gives you the right response.

“At times it may not even seem rational but the heart has a computing ability that is far more accurate and far more precise than anything within the limits of rational thought.”

Law of least effort

Based on the fact that nature’s intelligence functions with effortless ease and abandoned carefreeness. No resistance.

When motivated by love, least effort is expended and your energy multiples.

Focusing on your ego, seeking power and control over others or seeking approval from others wastes your energy.

Focusing on your spirit where you’re immune to criticism and unfearful of any challenge, you can harness the power of love and use energy creatively.

Three components to law of least effort

Acceptance – understanding and accepting the present moment and anything that happens in It as is, not as I wish they were.

Responsibility – ability to have a creative response to present situations as they are. To take the moment and transform It to a better situation or thing. Every problem is an opportunity in disguise. Not blaming anyone or anything for my situation (including myself).

Defenselessness – relinquishing the need to convince or persuade others of your point of view. Remaining open to all points of view and not being rigidly attached to any one of them. Gaining access to tons of energy as a result.

Law of intention and desire

Everything is energy and information.

Humans are capable of being consciously aware of this through the nervous system. We can change the energy and information of our own body, and influence our environment to cause things to manifest in it.

Two qualities inherent in consciousness are attention and intention.

Attention energizes, intention transforms.

Whatever you put your attention on will grow stronger in your life. Intention triggers transformation of energy and information, organizing its own fulfillment.

With enough intent, you can command and fulfill your dreams and desires.

Intent is desire without attachment to the outcome.

Desire alone is weak because in most people it’s attention with attachment.

Relinquish your attachment to the outcome/a specific result and live in the wisdom of uncertainty. Enjoy every moment in the journey of life, even if you don’t know the outcome.

Law of detachment

In order to acquire anything in the physical universe you have to relinquish your attachment to It (not your intention or desire to create It).

It’s the unquestioning belief in the power of your true self.

Attachment is based on fear and insecurity.

The source of wealth, of abundance or of anything in the physical world is the self; it is the consciousness that knows how to fill every need.

Everything else (cars, houses, etc) are symbols, which always come and go. Chasing symbols is like settling for the map instead of the territory, it creates anxiety and makes you feel empty inside because you exchange your self for the symbols of your self.

Detachment provides the freedom to create.

Without It we are prisoners to mediocre existence and poverty consciousness (helpless, mundane needs, trivial concerns, seriousness).

In order to have what you want, to have the freedom to create, you must be grounded in the wisdom of uncertainty. This is true wealth consciousness.

Chasing security is a waste of time, it’s an illusion when it’s tied to money.

The search for security and certainty is an attachment to the known, which is our past conditioning.

Uncertainty is the fertile ground of pure creativity and freedom, stepping into the unknown which is the field of all possibilities, always open to the creation of new manifestations.

Without uncertainty and the unknown life is just a stale repetition of outworn memories. You become the victim of the past and your tormentor today is your self left over from yesterday.

Every single problem that you have in your life is the seed of an opportunity for some greater benefit.

Having a goal is good, but allowing uncertainty to play its role enables you access to all possibilities and infinite choices.

Law of dharma (purpose in life)

Deepak told his children from age 4 to never worry about making a living or focusing on doing well in school. He told them to focus on asking themselves how they can serve humanity and what their unique talents are, because they have a unique talent that no one else has and they have a special way of expressing that talent that no one else can.

Three components

1 – Each of us is here to discover our true self, that we are spiritual beings that have taken manifestation in physical form. There is a god in embryo inside of us waiting to be born to express our divinity.

We are not human beings that have occasional spiritual experiences, we are spiritual beings that have occasional human experiences.

2 – express our unique talents. We all have unique talents, or a unique expression of those talents. Something that when you do It you lose track of time, go into timeless awareness.

3 – service to humanity. Ask yourself how can I help all those that I came into contact with? How can I serve?

If money was no concern and I had all the time and money in the world what would I do?

How am I best suited to serve humanity?

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The Four Agreements Book Summary/Notes

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All of our beliefs and rules stem from a system that we never chose.

This domestication process takes place as soon as we are born until we no longer need the guidance from our parents to further confirm our book of law/beliefs.

Even when we know certain parts of it are wrong, they feel safe and we hold on to them, which is why it’s so difficult to make meaningful changes.

We are the only species that pays a thousand times for the same mistake. True justice is paying only once for each mistake, yet due to our memory we constantly remember and overthink and punish ourselves.

Outside and inside world is ruled by fear due to our book of law of beliefs.

We all search for truth because we only believe in the lies we have stored in our mind.

Truth is within us. Our beliefs cloud our vision of seeing the truth.

It’s like a fog, the Toltecs call It mitote, where the fog is so big that we cant see what we really are. In India they call it maya, meaning illusion.

Our biggest fear is taking the risk to be alive and to express what we really are. We’ve learned to Live our lives trying to satisfy other peoples demands. We have learned to live by other people‘s points of view because of the fear of not being accepted and not being good enough for someone else.

During the process of domestication we form an image of what perfection is in order to try to be good enough, creating an image of how we should be in order to be accepted by everybody.

We don’t fit this image because it’s not real, leading us to rejecting ourselves. We wear social masks to keep others from noticing this.

We punish ourselves endlessly for not being what we believe we should be, all from this flawed belief system.

The more self love you have the less you will abuse yourself.

All of our views and beliefs are agreements that we’ve made with ourself. To live a life of joy and fulfillment you must find the courage to break the agreements that are fear based so you can claim your personal power.

All of our agreements rule our life and build our personality.

By eliminating them, we spend less time and energy focusing on them, leaving us with more time and energy for changing our ways for positive outcome.

1st agreement

Be impeccable with your word

Words are everything

You express your creative power, and manifest everything through It

Dreams, feelings and who you are

You have the ability to use It for good and to help yourself and others, or use It destructively. Your level of self love is directly proportionate to the quality and integrity of your word.

Whenever we hear an opinion and believe it we make an agreement and it becomes part of our belief system.

Gossiping is black magic, poison, a way for us to feel better by seeing someone else feel as badly as we do.

Impeccability of the word can lead you to personal freedom success and abundance, It can take away all fear and transform it into joy and love.

By controlling our emotions, we can gain the necessary personal power essential to change our fear based agreements.

2nd agreement

Don’t take anything personally

Personal importance, taking things personally, is the maximum expression of selfishness because we make the assumption that everything is about me. During the period of our education or our domestication we learn to take everything personally we think we are responsible for everything.

Nothing other people do is because of you. It’s because of themselves. All people live in their own dream in their own mind, they are in a completely different world from the one we live in.

When we take something personally we make the assumption that they know what is in our world and we try to impose our world on there’s.

Even when a situation seems so personal even if others insult you directly it has nothing to do with you. What they say what they do and the opinions they give are according to the agreements they have in their own minds. Their point of view comes from all the programming they received during domestication.

Everyone has their own opinion according to their belief system so nothing they think about you is really about you, it is about them.

You can completely avoid negative emotions by making It a strong habit to not take anything personally.

As you make a habit of not taking anything personally, you won’t need to place your trust in what others do or say. You will only need to trust yourself to make responsible choices.

You are never responsible for the actions of others, you are only responsible for you. When you truly understand this and refuse to take things personally, you can hardly be hurt by the careless comments or actions of others.

3rd agreement

Don’t make assumptions

When we make assumptions, we believe they are the truth.

This leads to misunderstanding and taking things personal, as we defend our assumptions and try to make others wrong.

It is always better to ask questions then to make an assumption because assumptions set us up for suffering.

We only see what we want to see and hear what we want to hear, we don’t perceive things the way they are.

Because we don’t understand something we make an assumption about the meaning and when the truth comes out we find out it was not what we thought it was at all.

The mind constantly seeks to justify everything regardless if the answer is correct, which is why we make assumptions.

Keep yourself from making assumptions by asking questions and keeping communication clear so that you do not need to assume anything because you would then know the truth. Even then don’t assume you know all there is to know about a given situation.

4th agreement

Always do your best

By not trying to do more (depleting energy) or less (resulting in frustration) than your best, you reach a happy medium that can help you from judging yourself.

Your best will change over time and based on the situations and environments that you’re in.

By doing your best, you live intensely. You’re productive, good to yourself and helpful to others. Doing your best is taking the action because you love It, not because you’re expecting a reward.

Most of us do the opposite, resulting in not doing our best.

If you take action without expecting a reward, they will come naturally and in much more abundance than you would’ve imagined.

By taking action you express yourself.

By living in the present and letting go of the past or thoughts of the future, you can be fully alive in the moment.

Letting go of the past means you can enjoy the dream that is happening right now.

Living in the past means always wishing things to be different, living half alive and leading to suffering and self pity.

The first three agreements will only work if you do your best, you cant expect to always be impeccable with your word not take anything personally or never make another assumption, but you can always try your best.

If you do your best always over and over again you will become a master of transformation. Practice makes the master. By doing your best you become a master.

Three masteries to become a Toltec

Mastery of awareness

Aware of who you really are, with all the possibilities.

Mastery of transformation

How to change and be free of domestication.

Mastery of intent/love

What makes transformation of energy possible. It is life itself, unconditional love.

Art of transformation – develop awareness of all the self limiting fear based beliefs that make you unhappy. Changing them and reprogramming your mind by exploring and adopting alternative beliefs.

We are addicted to our ways and beliefs. But just as we built them over years of repetition, we can break them and replace them with new agreements.

Initiation of the dead

By being aware that life isn’t guaranteed and that we only have this present moment, we can discover and realize that it’s a waste of time to worry about what others think and to not be happy and do what we enjoy.

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Earl Nightingale: Lead the Field Book Summary/Notes

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-humans are born with the god-like power to determine their path in life.

-its all about your attitude to guarantee success in life.

-we can control our attitude, and what we present to others is reflected back by them.

-our attitude toward life determines life’s attitude toward us, cause and effect. It must start first with us, not others.

-we get back what we put out.

-our surroundings will always reflect us. Our environment is a mirror of ourselves, our attitude and expectations.

-great attitude = great results, it’s like a magnet. Self generating due-fulfilling prophecy.

-human beings can alter their lives by altering their attitudes and mind.

-Those who are successful expect more good than bad out of life. They expect to succeed more often than they fail, and they do.

-we must be the epitome of and radiate success before we can become successful.

-before you can do something, you need to be something. Act as the person you wish to become.

-treat each person you come in contact with as the most important person on earth.

-don’t allow others negative attitudes to affect you, as they are infectious. Forgive and forget it, rise above it. Life is too short!

-success is the natural progression/realization towards a worthy ideal or goal.

-We are happiest when we are fully engaged in the work we enjoy on the journey towards the goal we establish for ourselves.

-One thing a goal must do is fill us with positive emotion when we think about It. It must be something we want very much to bring about. The more intensely we feel about a goal the more assurity the idea buried deep in our subconscious will direct us along the path to its fulfillment.

-you get rich by enriching others.

-the journey of obtaining a goal is when we are most happy, not when we actually obtain it.

-you become what you think about.

-you can control your thoughts and what you think about by setting a specific goal to focus on. Look at It often and by doing so you’ll send It to your subconscious mind, you’ll begin to visualize yourself already having attained It, turning It into a habit for when you accomplish it move on to the next goal.

-spend an hour each week day writing down your goal and then writing down ideas/ways to achieve or improve what you’re doing to attain it.

-don’t spend time worrying about needless things. Only 8% of your worries are genuine, solve the ones you can.

-we underestimate our abilities, we need to dig deep enough to tap into its potential.

-our rewards in life will match our service. That which you sow so shall you reap. Provide value and you’ll attain all of your goals.

-Integrity to the truth and reasonableness is the key. Least to regret who does most for his community who’s judgement carries the most weight and is most trusted.

-happiness is a by product of performing healthful and successful activities.

-successful people follow independent paths. At some point in their lives they break away from the crowd and start a path of their own. They join a much smaller group of likeminded people, the 5%.

-it’s easier to win in life than to lose or to be average, it’s just a matter of dismantling limited beliefs and discovering your potential that every human has and is capable of tapping into.

-the amount of money we receive will always be in direct ratio with the demand for what we do, our ability to do It and the difficulty of replacing us.

-it’s not your present circumstances which count but the circumstances you make up your mind to achieve that is important. The only limit on your income is you.

-nothing on earth can stand in the way of a plan, backed by persistence and determination.

-figure out each day how to bring more service to the table so that you can reach your financial goals. Have faith in yourself and the quiet firm inner knowledge that you can and will accomplish your goals. Know that the answers you seek will come to you in their own time if you only keep looking for them.

-money is an effect, the cause is valuable service. It cannot be sought directly, it’s a servant/tool, keep It in its place.

-it’s good to check and ensure that you haven’t lost the things that money can’t buy.

-a mind stretched by a new idea can never return to its original dimensions.

-write down the top 6 most important things you need to get done, prioritize them in order of most importance. Focus on the first one and only that one until It is completed, and then move on to the next one.

-focus on making this specific day a success, then the next day repeat the same process. We become successful by being a success each and every day.

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Awaken the Giant Within Tony Robbins – Book Summary/Notes

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3 elementary principles to change your life

-raise your standards – change what you demand of yourself. (Write down all the things you no longer accept in your life and tolerate and all the things you aspire to become)

-Change your limiting beliefs – our beliefs are unquestioned commands and control and dictate our potential. Must change our belief system for lasting change. Must develop a sense of certainty that we can and will meet our new standards before we actually do. 

-change your strategy – emulate a role model or someone successful who you admire. Learn what they do, their core beliefs and how they think. 

Knowing isn’t enough, you must take action. 

5 areas of life that impact us most

-emotional mastery 

-physical mastery 

-relationship mastery

-financial mastery

-time mastery 


Our decisions determine our destiny not our conditions or circumstances. 

If you truly decide to, you can do almost anything. You don’t have to do things you don’t like, you can make a decision to change them instantly. 

If you truly commit to taking action once you decide what you want, learn along the way and adjust as needed, you will create the momentum vital for achieving the result. 

3 decisions that control your destiny 

-what to focus on

-what things mean to you

-what to do to create the results you desire (what to do in spite of the challenge that may appear to limit us)

Mastery takes as long as you want It to take. Gain experience quicker by working and doing more, resulting in growing and acquiring the talent faster. 

Must commit to long term results rather than short term fixes, as important as any decision you’ll make in your lifetime. 

The force behind all decisions 

The force for all decisions derive from either avoiding pain or gaining pleasure. By changing what we link pain and pleasure to, we can instantly change our behaviors. 

You don’t do important things because you believe that taking action in the moment would be more painful than just putting It off. 

By linking massive pain to any behavior or emotional pattern, we will avoid indulging in It at all costs. 

Example – if you see first hand how terrible drugs or alcohol are for a person, you will create neuro-associations that prevent you from wanting to do them, linking It to pain. 

Example – people who work out intensely to look better link feelings of pleasure to the pain of physical exertion, converting discomfort of discipline into satisfaction of personal growth. 

To change you must link pain to our old behavior and pleasure to our new behavior and condition it until it’s consistent. Think of something you’d never do and the emotional intensity attached to it, link that to the behavior you want to avoid. 

We all do more to avoid pain than we do to gain pleasure. 

First step to creating change – becoming aware of the power that pain and pleasure exert over every decision and action we take. Understanding the links. 


-write down four actions you need to take that you’ve been putting off

-under each action write down the answer to why haven’t I taken action? In the past what pain have I linked to taking this action? 

-write down all the pleasure you’ve had in the past by indulging in this negative pattern

-write down what It will cost you if you don’t change now. How does that make you feel?

-write down all the pleasure you’ll receive by taking each of these actions right now. Envision all the positive impacts both in the present and in the long term. 


Guiding force on what leads to pain or pleasure.

Whenever something happens in your life your brain asks two questions 

1-will this mean pain or pleasure 

2-what must I do now to avoid pain or gain pleasure 

The answers to these questions are based on our beliefs which are driven by our generalizations about what we’ve learned could lead to pain or pleasure which guide all of our actions and direction and quality of our lives.

Most of our beliefs are generalizations about our past based on our interpretations of painful and pleasurable experiences. 

-we don’t consciously decide what to believe 

-often these beliefs are based on misinterpretations of past experiences 

-once we adopt a brief we forget it’s merely an interpretation 

We begin to treat our beliefs as if they’re realities and we rarely if ever question them. 

Global beliefs – giant beliefs we have about everything in our life (identities, people, work, time, money, life itself)

Beliefs have different levels of emotional certainty and intensity.

3 different types of beliefs

-opinions (easily changed, based on impressions during the moment) 

-beliefs (certainty, from references such as personal experiences, information from other sources, vivid imaginations). 

-convictions (much more emotionally intense feelings than a basic belief. Completely resistant to new input. Willing to take massive action and is extremely

passionate about the belief). 

Create a conviction by 

-starting with a basic belief

-reinforce it by adding new and more powerful references (from books, podcasts, talking to others that are likeminded). The more emotional they are the stronger the conviction becomes 

-find a triggering event or make one (ask questions or put yourself in situations that will create emotional intensity, example – if you want to quit smoking view an x ray of a smokers black lungs). 

-take action (each action strengthens your commitment and raises the level of emotional intensity and conviction) 

Social proof – belief in things because everyone else believes in it. Great way to limit your life. 

Kaizen – continuous improvement in small steps, compounding over the long term into colossal proportions. Essential to use this concept in all facets of our lives. 

Change can be made in an instant. It’s the “getting ready to change” that takes time. 

In order to create long term change we must have the belief that we are responsible for our own change nobody else. 

Responsibility beliefs 

-believe that something must change, not should or ought to.

-we must be the ones to change It/the source of the change, cannot look for someone else to do It or be able to blame.

-must truly believe that we can change it.

Neuro associative conditioning 

-people link more pain to changing than to not. 

-to get true leverage you must ask yourself pain inducing questions such as “what will this cost me if I don’t change?” What will I miss out on in my life if I don’t make the shift?

What is it already costing me mentally emotionally physically financially spiritually?

How will It affect my loved ones? 

-then use pleasure associating questions – if I do change how will that make me feel about myself? What kind of momentum could I create if I change this in my life?

-The key is to get a lot of strong enough reasons why change should be taken immediately. 

To create change you must interrupt patterns. Example – guy who wanted to stop eating chocolate. Tony forced him to eat nothing but chocolate until he got sick of it and began associating (creating new neural pathways) painful sensations to the idea of eating it. 

You must do unexpected things, radically different from what you’ve experienced before. (If you’re upset or depressed jump up and scream at the sky hallelujah my feet don’t stink today! It will shift your attention and change your state and those around you) 

The more outrageous your approach to breaking a pattern the more effective it’ll be. 

You must do It in the moment the pattern is recurring. (Just like when you’re speaking to someone and get distracted and forget where you left off). 

Fixed schedule of reinforcement – small rewards each time you do the new behavior. 

Variable schedule of reinforcement – vary up the rewards so one doesn’t get stagnant and expect It and end up only doing the bare minimum. 

Jackpot – giving more than anticipated results in working harder and hopes of it happening again. 

Must find an empowering alternative that gives you the same pleasure or more from the old behavior. 

Condition it with emotional intensity and repetition until it’s automatic. Then test It to see if It works in your mind. 

Your body leads your emotions. Change your posture, your facial expression, focus on putting your body in pleasurable states consistently. 

Make an effort to laugh and smile more often daily. 

Whatever we focus on determines how we feel. 


Our questions determine our thoughts.

To change the quality of our life we must change our habitual questions. 

Successful people (in any area) ask better questions and as a result get better answers. 

Quality questions create a quality life. 

Questioning our limitations is what tears down the walls in life, all human profess is preceded by new questions. 

The questions you ask will determine where you focus, how you think, feel and what you do. 

It’s not only the questions you ask, but the questions you fail to ask (what’s the worst that can happen if I make this decision) that shape your destiny. 

Questions immediately change what you’re focusing on and therefore how we feel. By focusing on something positive and potentially empowering you will then look for and find references and solutions. If It at first you respond with negativity, but remain persistent with a sense of certainty and expectation in spite of it all, you’ll eventually get the answers you need and deserve. 

By repeatedly asking questions like what am I happy about right now what am I grateful for in my life how can I be happier or more grateful, you’ll come up with the real references that will make you begin to focus on the reasons that do in fact exist for you to feel happy and grateful providing you with a sense of certainty. 

Questions provide actual reasons to feel the emotion. 

Empowering and important questions to ask ourselves when a problem arises (versus focusing on disempowering questions that limit and prevent you from seeking opportunities clearly) 

-what is great about this problem?

-what is not perfect yet? (Presupposition that things will be perfect in the future, versus thinking negatively) 

-what am I willing to do to make it the way I want it?

-what am I willing to no longer do in order to make it the way I want it?

-how can I enjoy the process while I do what is necessary to make it the way I want it?

By putting yourself in a better state, you can come up with better ways of dealing with challenges. Break the pattern and put yourself in a positive emotional environment. 

What are you happy about? What could you be happy about right now if you want to be? Excited, grateful, committed, loving. 

What’s great about this?

How can I use this? 


The words you habitually choose also affect how you communicate with yourself and therefore what you experience. 

Using emotionally charged words can magically transform your own state or someone else’s. How you think feel and live. They shape our beliefs and impact our actions. 

We unconsciously form habitual favorite words that shape and transform our life experience. We don’t evaluate the impact of these words we’ve grown accustomed to using. 

The problem occurs when we start consistently pouring any form of negative sensation into words, such as furious or depressed, and this word may not accurately reflect actual experience. The moment we place this feeling around our experience the label we put on it becomes our experience. 

Transformational vocabulary – The words that we attach to experience become our experience. Must consciously choose the words we use to describe our emotional states or suffer the penalty of creating greater pain than is warranted or appropriate. Also gives us the power to take negative feelings and lower their intensity and also take positive experiences and life them to greater heights of pleasure and empowerment. 

The way we interpret translate and label experience immediately changes the sensations produced in our nervous systems. Words create a biochemical effect. 

“Words form the thread on which we string our experiences” – Aldous Huxley

We tend to experience the same emotions due to the same words we use to describe the experience we are having. By analyzing our sensations more critically and being more creative in evaluating things we can attach new labels to our experience and change our emotional reality. 

To change our lives and shape our destiny we need to consciously select the words we use and constantly strive to expand our level of choice of words. 

The words we use impact others emotions as well. By adopting someone else’s habitual vocabulary you begin to adopt their emotional patterns as well.

Commonly used old disempowering words (that intensify negative emotion) to change to new empowering words to either lower intensity or break pattern and laugh at. 

Annoyed/irritated/pissed – ruffled, my feathers are a tad bit ruffled

Bullshit – this is utter nonsense, this is blasphemy, this is preposterous 

I feel exhausted/like shit – I feel a little droopy

I’m starving/hungry – my belly is rumbling, I can’t hear over the rumbles in my tummy  

How I respond when asked how are you or how are you doing, how do you feel

Good – change this to – fantastic, exceptional, terrific, spectacular, superb, outstanding, fabulous, awesome, phenomenal


Metaphors are extremely powerful and dictate our beliefs behaviors thoughts feelings and actions. They can severely limit our beliefs and potential, as well as positively impact them. 

Most of the time we never consciously recognize the metaphors that we’ve adopted into habits and therefore believe in and let control our views. 

When you hear someone using a metaphor that places limits, step in and break their pattern and offer a new one. Do this for yourself as well. 


If you constantly dwell over reasons that you don’t do positive things or that your life isn’t the way you want It to be, your brain will comply by providing references to back up these excuses, leading to negative emotions. 

You can effectively use your emotions by understanding that all of them serve you and that negative ones are just a call to action that can serve as a compass to navigate you towards which way to go in life. 

You are the source of all your emotions, you create them. You can feel any way you choose at any moment in time. 

“Your perceptions are controlled by what you focus on and the meaning you interpret from things.”

If you focus on positive improvement, your perception will come from a positive state. 

When something happens, negative or positive, you have the power to decide how you want to interpret It, whether that’s by saying this is good and can help me grow or that It’s bad and allow It to negatively impact your emotional state of mind. 

You can change your perception in a moment by your physiology or by asking yourself a better question. 

Six steps to emotional mastery

Step 1 – identify what you’re really feeling. Question yourself, use transformational vocabulary and recognize your intensity lowers.

Step 2 – acknowledge and appreciate your emotions, knowing they support you.

Step 3 – get curious about the message the emotion is offering you. This allow you to master the emotion, solve the challenge and prevent the same problem from occurring in the future. 

What do I really want to feel?

What would I have to believe in order to feel the way I’ve been feeling?

What am I willing to do to create a solution and handle this right now?

What can I learn from this?

Step 4 – get confident. Recall a past time when you felt this emotion and successfully handled it. What questions did you ask yourself or perceptions did you view through to overcome it previously? 

Step 5 – get certain you can handle this not only today but in the future as well. Visualize yourself handling the situation easily. See hear and feel it. 

Step 6- get excited and take action. 

Negative emotions are just calls to action to switch up your approach/actions and/or to see things from a different perspective. 

The feeling of frustration is a good sign it means that the solution to your problem is within range that you simply have to change your approach in order to achieve it. Realize that frustration is actually your friend. 

Guilt allows you to realize that you violated one of your standards and it can serve its purpose to drive you to hold a higher standard in the future so that you don’t make the same mistake twice. 


Lacking powerful goals leads to lack of drive and energy. 

Stop focusing on making a living as your goal and start designing a life that you want to live! 

Consciously decide on your goals. 

Your current circumstances are far from you reaching your true potential, they’re simply the limited goals you focus on.  

Eustress – positive force of pressure that pushes you to constantly increase the quality of your life and those closest to you. 

Persistence is the way those most successful have succeeded. 

Master system of evaluation

Five components that determine how you evaluate everything that happens in your life.

What things mean and what to do about them. 

1 – mental and emotional state when making an evaluation. 

2 – questions 

3 – hierarchy of values 

4 – beliefs/global beliefs – determine our expectations and often control what we’re even willing to evaluate in the first place. 

5 – reference experiences – we use these past experiences to compare to something present to determine what It means. Which references we choose decides the meaning we take from an experience, how we feel about It and the action we will take. 


Things you place great importance upon

Means and ends

Means values are family and money

Ends are love, happiness, security, freedom

Money is a means to achieve a deeper set of values. 

Most people focus on means when they should focus on their desires which are their ends values. 

Ends values fulfill and make life rich and rewarding. 

Rules – specific beliefs about what has to happen in order for us to feel pleasure or pain. 

The truth is nothing has to happen to feel good. Making a million dollars doesn’t give you pleasure, it’s your rule that says when you hit this mark then I’ll give myself permission to feel good. In that moment when you decide to feel good you’ll send a message to your brain to change your muscle responses, breathing and biochemistry in your nervous system that causes you to feel sensations of pleasure. 

If we structure our lives in a way where our happiness is dependent upon something we cannot control then we will experience pain.

Judge and jury system – our rules are controlling our responses every moment we’re alive. They’ve been set up completely randomly. 

We need to reverse the process of how we are wired so that we make It hard to feel bad and easy to feel good. 

We must design rules so that we are in control and so the outside world is not what determines whether we feel good or bad. 

When you get upset or angry with someone, it’s your rules that upset you not their behavior. 

Your rules are not based on reality, they are arbitrary. Just because you use them and feel strongly about them doesn’t mean they’re the best rules or the right rules. Rules are meant to empower not destroy. 

Anytime a rule gets in the way ask yourself “what’s more important, my relationship or my rules?”

If you have conflicting rules and values you must realize It and then link enough pain to a rule that doesn’t serve you and replace it with a rule that does (ex – if you’re top value is love, yet your rules say that if you get too close you’ll get hurt since you have in the past). 

Threshold rules – must and must never do rules. Absolutely not do. 

Personal standards – should and should never. Willing to break these in short term depending on reasons. 

The more must rules, the more unlivable you make your life, the more stressful and painful. 


The more expanded references, then better understanding we can have as to what’s possible and what we are capable of, regardless of challenges.

It’s not our references, but our interpretations of them that determines our beliefs. It’s our perceptions of the experiences. 

How do you use your references? 

Do you consciously interpret them in ways that empower you in ways that support the achievement of your goals?

The way we use our references will determine how we feel because whether something is good or bad is all based on what you’re comparing It to. 


Our sense of certainty about who we are create the boundaries and limits within which we live.

We all will act consistently with our views of who we truly are, whether that view is accurate or not. 

As we develop new beliefs about who we are, our behavior will change to support the new identity. 


Create products or services that Increase the quality of life for customers you serve. Value. 

Ask the question – “how can I add more value to any environment I’m in?”

States to experience daily 

Happiness – when I laugh or make someone else laugh, or help them. When I eat delicious food, spend quality time with loved ones and do activities that I enjoy. 

Motivation – when I read, watch or listen about someone/something inspiring, when I think about ways to grow personally and in business.

Healthy – when I feel like i have lots of energy, when i exercise and eat food that’s good for me. 

Gratefulness – when I prime, when i think about all the good in my life. 

Generous/contribution – when I help others, am kind to others, even small deeds. When I make a positive impact for someone. 

Growth – when I read and learn and educate myself. When I gain more knowledge and insights. 

Goofiness – when I do something silly that puts smiles on others faces or makes them laugh. 

Fulfilled – when I reflect on my life and who I am/have become, have accomplished, my growth and what I’ll continue to accomplish as I grow. 

Engaged – when i give undivided attention to any situation and get into flow state/lose track of time. 

Passionate – when I think about helping or making an impact for others. 

Changing time frames when it comes to things like Stress

Stress comes from focusing on feeling stuck in a particular time frame (I have too much to do right now and not enough time)

By taking control of your focus and moving It to a future time frame (where you can visualize successfully completing or finding resolutions to the tasks), you can gain the resources needed to refocus on the present. 

Refocusing on what you can control in the present is important versus thinking of how stressful the future will be. 

Your experience of time is controlled by your focus. When you do something you enjoy time flies by because you aren’t focusing on time, but when you do something you don’t enjoy and you keep looking at the time it takes forever. 

When you must do things that take a lot of time (errands, working out, etc), kill two birds with one stone by adding another component that will help speed up your perception of time (listen to music, a podcast, etc). 

urgency and importance control our decisions about what to do with our time 

The goal is to set up each day where we spend the majority of It doing things that are important to us rather than urgent. 

Achieve Limitless Success, Happiness and Gratitude

Zero BS on taking Control of your Life. No spam.

MONEY Master the Game Tony Robbins – Book Summary/Notes

-compounding interest – invest 10-20% of income annually. 

-you find bargains at the point of maximum pessimism. When everyone is running one way, that’s the time to run the other. 

-when the market is going down, that’s the time to buy, as “night is not forever” financial winter is a season, and it’s followed by spring. 


-mutual funds – broker fees and hidden fees (commissions, market impacts costs, spread costs, transaction costs, etc) fuck you royally over a lifetime of investing. They make money regardless if you do, they have interest mostly in investing your money into funds that reap the most benefit for them, not you. 

-they promote time weighted returns/average returns, which are bs. Dollar weighted returns/actual returns are the truth. 

96% of actively managed mutual funds fail to beat the market over any sustained period of time. 

-mutual fund companies produce churn and burn mutual funds, and only advertise the good ones to try to recruit you as a client. 

Beat the market essentially means going up against stock indexes which are baskets/lists of stocks (S&P 500 (standard and poors top 500 companies in America, as an example, or Vanguard 500). 

Top guys like Ray Dalio and Warren Buffet recommend only focusing on stock indexes for minimal risk and maximum upside. 

Hedge fund – private fund for high net worth investors. They bet for the market and make money when It goes up, and bet against the market and make money when It goes down. 

From 1993 to 2013 s&p returned averages of 9.28%, while the average mutual fund investor made 2.54%. 

An index fund mimics or matches the market, It doesn’t try to beat It as a whole. 

Asset allocation – diversifying your investments to weather the storm regardless if it’s up or down. 

***low cost index funds – a portfolio of these type of funds is the best approach for a percentage of your investments. Fuck mutual funds.

401k – a retirement account option, similar to an IRA. This is where you can have your mutual funds managed within if you choose so. Fees are excessive. Average person will lose 155k to 401k fees over a lifetime based on annual income of 30k/yr and saving 5% income per year. 

PLUS – since taxes are deferred to a later date (this is for IRAs too), it’s unknown how much the tax rate will be in the future. Which means you could end up paying a shit ton when you decide to return and begin withdrawing from your retirement account. 

Your total annual fees and associated costs should be 1.25% or less on average. Investment advisor fees can be tax deductible.  

-find and hire an independent registered investment advisor (ria) a legal fiduciary. Their fees could be tax deductible based on tax bracket, fees will be less and they have a legal right to have your best interests in mind. – tool to analyze your current accounts/holdings and help give guidance on how to properly set up your asset allocation. 

Creative planning – $50k minimum on assets to invest to use their services. Recommended though. ( – this can help with how to set up a portfolio. 

Key criteria for finding your own fiduciary 

-registered with state or sec as a registered investment advisor

-ensure person/firm is NOT affiliated with a broker dealer (ask for this in writing) 

-does not offer proprietary funds (products/funds creating by the firm, they try to sell you on adding them to your portfolio), you want investment advice, not them selling you investments as well. 

-advisor is compensated on a percentage of your assets under management, NOT for buying mutual funds. Shouldn’t pay more than 1.25% in annual advisory fees for comprehensive financial planning and less than 1% for only portfolio management. 

-NO 12b-1 fees, shareholder service fees, consulting fees or other pay to play fees being paid as compensation. 

-advisor does NOT receive compensation for trading stocks or bonds. 

-ensure your money is held with a reputable third party custodian such as Schwab td ameritrade or fidelity, not with advisor directly. 

-ensure firm has educated and credentialed advisors on board. 

Roth IRA – pay taxes up front, which is better because then you never have to pay fees again (especially once they go up as they always do). But you can only

put a maximum of $5,500 annually, Roth 401k allows $17,500 annually. (Don’t think you can even do a Roth IRA if you make over a certain amount). 

BUT – If you make over $122k/yr, there’s no income limitations on a Roth 401k (although it can be maxed out, not sure what’s the max), which means you can do $17.5k/yr, pay the taxes today and be chillin

Tony is partnered with America’s Best 401k – look into this company

Cash balance plans – need to look into this

Profit sharing plan – need to look into this


-variable annuities – no go. Pretty much just another form of investing in mutual funds, tax deferred, with excess fees. 

Structured notes – a loan to a bank where if the market goes down, you receive 100% of your money back. If the market goes up you get a piece of the upside (plus your money back). 

Important to use a trusted bank (canadians banks are best). 

Market linked CDs – similar to notes but backed by the FDIC. You get a small guaranteed return if market goes up (plus piece of upside). If market goes down you get back your investment plus the small guaranteed return + you had fdic insurance the entire time. Money is typically only tied up 1-2 years where a structured note can be 5-7. 

^^^ Do this through a fiduciary advisor to limit fees. 

Fixed indexed Annuities (FIA) – 100% principal protection guaranteed by insurance company (essential to pick a trustworthy one), same as notes/market linked cds, participate in upside with no downside. Gains are tax deferred or if own within a Roth IRA you don’t pay taxes on returns. Some fia’s offer certain monthly income payments for every dollar you deposit, when you decide to turn it on/trigger It. <—— need to look into more.

Annuity without the annuity – something about paying insurance 1% annual fee for monitoring your portfolio for protection. In the event you run out of money during retirement they will guarantee you an income stream for life. 

Immediate annuities (income insurance) – for those at retirement age or beyond, seeking guaranteed set monthly income in exchange for a lump sum payment up front provided by an insurance company. 

Mortality credits – mentioned but unsure what It is or means. 

You can select an option where if you die prematurely, the insurance company will refund your heirs the same amount you put in (but then you’d get much less amount on your monthly income payments). 

Or you can get an inexpensive term life insurance policy. 

Deferred annuities – you give a lump sum or money over a period of years and instead of immediate income, your returns are reinvested in a tax deferred environment, until you choose to flip the switch on. 

Three types of deferred annuities (need to pick a top insurance provider. Especially one a part of the insurance guaranty association, which essentially guarantees you up to a certain amount of the company goes under). 

1 – deferred income annuity – aka longevity insurance – lump sum deposit today, guaranteed income that kick on at a date much later in life. 

2 – fixed indexed annuity – rate of return is tied to how the stock market does, you get a piece of the upside of the market (typically capped on the amount of gains you get a piece of, sometimes it’s uncapped and they just take a small spread) , with no downside and no possibility of loss. The insurance company takes a part of your principal and invests It by buying “options” on the stock market index. If It goes up, they keep majority of It and give you a piece. If It goes down the options expire and you don’t lose your principal. If you get an FIA within a Roth IRA there’s no tax on gains or lifetime income once you begin to access It. 

3 – hybrid annuity – aka contingent annuity – you keep your capital and invest It in a tax efficient portfolio of low cost index funds, if you run out of money in retirement the insurance company steps in and pays you guaranteed income for rest of your life. Check out the ARIA Retire One product. 

In tax deferred environments, you get charged a 10% fee if you make a withdrawal prior to age 59 and a half. 

Avoid variable annuities. – informational resource on the different annuity product options. 

When you buy a house let’s say 30 year fixed rate mortgage at 6%, fully 80% of your mortgage payments will go towards interest. 

If you buy a home for $1m, you end up paying double, so $2m due to interest payments. In order to stop this insanity, you can prepay your next months principal and cut your 30 yr mortgage to 15 yr by not having to pay all the interest. The next time you write a monthly mortgage check, write a second check for the principal only portion of next months payment. 

When selling outside of a tax deferred account…. Long term capital gains tax – holding investment for a minimum of a year and one day to get a significantly lower tax fee (around 20%) versus selling quick and having to pay larger short term capital gains 

When investing make sure you can at least defer taxes (401k/ira/annuity/defined benefit plan) so that you compound tax free and only pay taxes when you sell, if you cannot invest in a Roth. 

-Look into real estate investment trusts (reits) for Non accredited investors. Owning a Basket of properties around the country. Can be purchased for as little as $25 a share and offers quarterly dividend payments. <——- the 75 year old age segment will grow by 84% between 2010 and 2030, massive demand and not enough supply. Senior housing facilities is a good long term investment opportunity.

Asset allocation

-money market funds 

Diversifying your portfolio amongst different asset classes and across different markets. 

– dollar cost averaging (diversifying across time). It takes out the emotions from investing, whether it’s greed or fear. You pretty much invest on a set schedule, with the same amount of money invested each time. This way the fluctuations and volatility of the market work to increase your gains. (Ex – If a specific stock you own goes down, you end up buying more of It at a lower price). 

Lump sum investing can be more lucrative but also more risky. 

-rebalancing – To be successful you need to rebalance your portfolio at regular intervals. 

If your risk/growth bucket goes up to 75% of all your assets when It needs to be at 60%, you must rebalance by selling some of your assets doing well, and buying underperforming safer assets when their prices are lower for your security bucket, to put the proportions back in balance. 

Beware of taxes when rebalancing if you’re in a tax deferred environment and/or if you’ve owned the assets for less than a year. 

Tax loss harvesting – using losses to maximize net gains, lowering your taxes (not sure on this one). 

Ray Dalio – how the economic machine works –

Ray says if you have 50/50 of your portfolio broken down into stocks and bonds, you really are risking 95% of your portfolio because stocks are way more volatile than bonds (three times more risky/volatile)

To have a balanced portfolio, you must not only divide your money equally, but divide the risk of each investment equally as well. 

You must divide up your money based on how much risk/reward their is, not just in equal amounts of dollars in each type of investment. 

All weather approach – there are four possible types of seasons in the financial world 

1 – higher than expected inflation (rising prices) (commodities/gold, inflation linked bonds (tips))

2 – lower than expected inflation (or deflation) (treasury bonds, stocks) 

3 – higher than expected economic growth (stocks, corporate bonds, commodities/gold)

4 – lower than expected economic growth (treasury bonds, inflation linked bonds (tips))

Since you don’t know when one season will approach, the best strategy is to have 25% of your risk (equally) in each season. This way you’re covered/protected at all times. 

Rays sample portfolio


       – 30% in low cost index funds (like s&p 500 or vanguard)

-long term government bonds

     -15% in intermediate term (7-10 year treasuries)

      -40% in long term (10-25 year treasuries)

This large percentage of your portfolio counters the volatility of the stocks. 


       – 7.5%


        – 7.5%

You always want a piece of your portfolio to do well with accelerated inflation. Although they have high volatility, they counteract for when rapid inflation hurts both stocks and bonds. 

Must rebalance at least annually (can increase tax efficiency if done properly). If one segment does well, you must sell a portion and reallocate back to the original allocation. 

Private placement life insurance (ppli) – aka the rich mans roth but without income or deposit limitations – a type of life insurance policy that is shielded from income tax on gains, as well as the payout upon death. Depending on how it’s set up, you can also withdraw or borrow funds tax free. 

Borrowing is legally deemed a loan, which is not taxable. You can then repay the loan at a future date of your choosing or allow the life insurance proceeds to pay off the loan when you pass away. 

Must be an accredited investor to access PPLI (typical minimum annual deposits of $250k/year at minimum of four years, Net worth of at least $1m not including the value of your primary residence, or income of at least $200k/year for last two years or $300k/year combined with spouse). 

For those unaccredited – there’s TIAA-CREF.

Need to set up a living revocable trust versus a will. This way you avoid probate if you pass away, which is a costly and lengthy procedure of allowing the courts to sort through your assets and make everything public record. 

It also can protect you while alive, unlike a will. If something happens you can have an incapacity clause that allows someone to step in and handle your bills and other affairs. 

Look into Pour over will – even though It requires probate. 

Free living trust template at or legal zoom. 

-warren buffet – keep emotion out of It. Invest in undervalued companies for the long term. 

Paul Tudor Jones – 5 to 1. 200 day average. This way you can be wrong 4 times and still make money. 

Happier: Learn the Secrets to Daily Joy and Lasting Fulfillment Tal Ben-Shahar – Book Summary/Notes

-happiness isn’t a destination, it’s an unlimited resource and a lifelong pursuit. We can always look for new ways to become happier and gain more happiness.

-focus on creating “rituals” versus calling them habits. “Building rituals requires defining very precise behaviors and performing them at very specific times, motivated by deeply held values.”

-when priming – keep the emotions fresh. Imagine what each item means to you and experience the feeling associated with It. 

-happiness/hamburger model – 4 types

Junk food burger – present enjoyment while ignoring potential negative consequences. 

Vegetarian burger – rat race – suffer now for purpose of some anticipated gain. 

Worst burger – doesn’t taste good and no benefits. Nihilism type, doesn’t enjoy the moment or have a sense of future purpose. 

Best burger – best of both worlds both delicious and healthy. Happiness burger. Living secure in the knowledge that the activities that bring them enjoyment in the present will also lead to a fulfilling future. 

Rat racers work hard, don’t enjoy what they do, and have a persistent belief that once they reach a certain destination in life, then they can be happy. 

Our culture reinforces the belief that if we do something good (at work) we will receive something in return (a bonus, raise or promotion), making us focus on the next goal rather than on our present experience. 

We are not rewarded for enjoying the journey itself but for the successful completion of a journey. Society rewards results not processes or journeys. 

We mistake relief for happiness, reinforcing the illusion that simply reaching goals will make us happy. 

Just like when we have a headache, when the pain goes away we derive a certain pleasure from the absence of pain but then very quickly adapt and take our physical contentment for granted.

Studies on journaling show that writing about negative as well as positive experiences enhances our levels of mental and physical health. <- Opening Up JW Pennebaker

Studies show that happy individuals are successful in various aspects of life, marriage friendship income work performance and health. Relationship between happiness and success are reciprocal. Happiness brings success and vice versa. Happy people live better and longer. 

Happiness = pleasure (in present benefit) + meaning (in future benefit)

Simply setting goals and even reaching them doesn’t always bring meaning and purpose. Goals we set must be intrinsically meaningful. 

To live a meaningful life we must have a self generated purpose that possesses personal significance rather than one that is dictated by society standards and expectations.

The important thing is that we choose our purpose in accordance with our own values and passions rather than conforming to others expectations.

Mapping your life – spend time writing and reflecting on how your day went to identify important patterns. You can then decide what to eliminate and what to focus more on. 

When making decisions our society makes us focus on material than emotional, as wealth is measurable and emotions/meaning aren’t. Your house or a book is quantifiable, but your feelings for the home or what a book means to you cannot he measured. 

Emotional bankruptcy. Wake up, material wealth doesn’t bring happiness. Think about everybody around you, everybody is looking towards the same place for the same hopeful feelings, but it’s wrong! 

Goals – people who set goals are more likely to succeed then people who do not. having explicit objectives that are challenging and specific with clear timeline and performance criteria leads to better performance – book called building a practically useful theory of goal setting and task motivation Locke and Latham. 

Set concordant goals – goals we pursue out of deep personal conviction or strong interest that are integrated with the self directly from self choice. These goals are chosen from the self stemming from a desire to express rather than from the need to impress. 

Meaning Pleasure Strengths Process – writing down for each to see what you’d enjoy doing most, not what others want for you or doing something just because it’s a strength of yours. 


And seeing overlaps 


To determine what would make you emotionally prosperous versus financially unhappy. 

Happiness boosters – activities lasting anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours that provide us with both meaning and pleasure both future and present benefit. They can inspire motivate and provide energy. 

Appreciative inquiry  – rather than focusing on what doesn’t work this focuses on what has worked or does work. Think about what made you happier in the past and what specifically made you feel good then ask yourself how you can take what you’ve learned from your best past and apply it toward creating a better future.

Imagine you are 110 years old and are able to go back in time to when you were younger and you’re able to have 15 minutes to give yourself advice on how to find more happiness in your life. Think about what you would tell your younger self.

A Guide to the Good Life: The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy William B Irvine – Book Summary/Notes

Negative visualization

thinking about how things could be worse, allowing you to appreciate the present/moment and not take anything for granted, and to make us value whatever we have much more. While also preparing you for when the worst actually happens.

Example being the two fathers with a daughter. One appreciates her daily and gives her constant attention knowing that he could lose her at any moment. The other takes her for granted and doesn’t truly appreciate her in each and every moment. He is set for much more disappointment and unhappiness.

Negative visualization techniques 

-bad things happening in your life

-imagining unfortunate circumstances that happened to others happening to us

-how our ancestors had to live and imagining if we had to live that way

-bad things that happened to us, happening instead to others

Contemplating the impermanence of everything in the world forces us to recognize that anything we do could be the last time we do it, allowing us to do things with significance and intensity.

Hedonic adaptation – a way of living that sucks the joy out of things we once longed for that we now possess/have. Applying negative visualization to losing those things or people in our life can help us not take what we have for granted, appreciate it more as well as enhance our capacity for enjoying our life more.

Also increases the chance of that joy we experience to remain durable, surviving changes in our circumstances.

Dichotomy of control (internalization technique)

setting goals and values based on things that you have complete control over internally, and things that you have some but not complete control over, rather than others that are completely out of your control externally.

Example being setting goals that are easy and obtainable versus ones that most likely will lead to failure, or even if you end up achieving them, you suffered during the process of achieving them.

Things that we have partial control over (like winning a tennis match, or getting a book published), we should set proper internal goals (and no external goals) for these so that we don’t experience disappointment (such as practicing and playing to the best of your ability).

The things which we have no control over at all, should be set/pushed to the side as not worth worrying about at all, saving yourself from unnecessary anxiety.

Fatalism (acceptance of fate and what happens in the past and present is out of our hands/control)

the best way to gain satisfaction is not by working to satisfy whatever desires we find within us but by learning to be satisfied with our life as it is, by learning to be happy with whatever we’ve got.

If you can learn to want whatever it is you already have, you won’t have to work to fulfill your desires in order to gain satisfaction, you will have already been fulfilled.

In the present (this very moment) we have a very important choice with respect to it: we can either spend this moment wishing it could be different, or we can embrace it. If we habitually embrace it, we will enjoy our life.

It’s a waste of time if we worry about past or present events, as we have no control over it.

Self-denial techniques

Voluntary discomfort – 3 benefits
-by taking these acts (choosing to be cold or hungry) we harden ourselves against misfortunes that we may encounter in the future
-builds your confidence and gives you a wider safety/comfort net. It also prevents anxiety, as you won’t be worried about these things for the future
-helps us appreciate what we have

Voluntary denial of pleasure to build your self control. (If you choose to not eat ice cream, you will gain pleasure and praise yourself for your self control).

Mastering this type of self denial and control will allow you to attain the goals of your philosophy of life, which will dramatically increase your chances of living a good life.

Meditation techniques

Every night run through a mental checklist of daily living, and how you responded to events, and how you should’ve responded in accordance to stoic principles.

As you go about your day, play the roles of participant and spectator (create within ourselves a stoic observer who watches us and comments on our attempts to practice stoicism). Examine what you do, our motives for it, and the value of what we are trying to accomplish.

Also, be careful observers of the actions of other people, learn from their mistakes and successes.

Social relations

If you have to deal with or be around someone who gets on your nerves or is annoying you can do a few different things
-think of others who may find you annoying
-realize that the world cannot exist without them
-you getting annoyed only makes things worse than what the person is even doing that’s annoying you
-it is fate that makes them the way they are
-in the big picture we will all be dead soon, don’t let them get to you

You shouldn’t think about or speculate about other people.


-the first strategy is to pause when insulted and consider if what the insulter said is true. If it is, then there is little reason to be upset.
-next strategy is to pause and consider how well informed the insulter is. He may simply be reporting how things seem to him and what he sincerely believes.
-another is to consider the source of the insult and if it is someone you respect and value their opinions. If you do, then their critical remarks shouldn’t upset you.
-just as a dog barking at you may dislike you, you shouldn’t allow other people’s insults to upset you.
-another important strategy is when insulted, we ourselves are the source of any sting that accompanies the insult. If we can convince ourselves that a person has done us no harm by insulting us, his insult will carry no sting. It is up to us whether we get upset or angry from insult.
-respond to insults with self-deprecating humor, versus a counter-insult
-or don’t respond at all, the insulter will be even more upset


-by allowing ourselves to get angry over little things, we take what might have been barely noticeable and transform it into a tranquility shattering state of agitation.
-our anger invariably lasts longer than the damage done to us, making us fools for allowing our peace to be disrupted by minor things.
-using humor in replace of when you get angry or annoyed, can then become a source of amusement from a bad thing or situation.
-think about the impermanence of the world around us and how unimportant whatever your angry about is, and how it doesn’t matter in the big picture.
-a good strategy is to turn our anger into its opposite. Force yourself to think the opposite, a wholesome thought. If you’re angry, think about love. Two opposite thoughts cannot exist in one mind at one time, the wholesome thought will drive out the unwholesome one.
-We should force ourselves to relax our face, soften our voice and slow our pace of walking, allowing our internal state to resemble our external state, removing the anger.
-simply apologizing for angering someone else gives you a calming effect, and prevents you from obsessing over the thing that made you angry. By admitting your mistake, we lessen the chance that we will make them again in the future.
-make yourself a person to be loved by all while you live and missed when you have made your departure. Why experience anti-joy when you have it in your power to experience joy?

Personal values

On fame – you shouldn’t care what others opinions are or what they think about you. You shouldn’t try to seek fame or social popularity. Trying to be viewed as favorable or admirable by someone else means having to change who you are to emulate what that persons own values and beliefs are.

On luxurious living – “not needing wealth is more valuable than wealth itself is”

People who live luxurious lifestyles are rarely satisfied, as it whets their appetite for even more luxury.

Natural desires (such as a desire for water when we are thirsty) can be satisfied, unnatural desires cannot. Think twice the next time you want something and are trying to satisfy it/yourself.

The danger of being exposed to a luxurious lifestyle is losing the ability to take delight in the simple things, seriously impairing the ability to enjoy life.

ENJOY the simple things and moments while in the PRESENT.


-periodically contemplating your own death and understanding that your days are numbered, allows you to get the most out of life (versus someone who thinks he will live forever and takes each day for granted, resulting in wasting his days).
-living each day like it’s your last allows you to extract the full value of that day, and the days that follow it.
-no point in fearing death, as it’s a negative emotion that can be avoided and in fact substituted by gratefulness and appreciation of life and what you have.


-if someone close passes away, it is perfectly natural to experience grief. After reflecting on it, you must try to reason it out of existence “is this what the person who died would want you to do? No, they’d want you to be happy. The best way to honor their memory is to leave off grieving and get on with life.”
-The goal is not to eliminate grief but to minimize it.
-“A man is as wretched as he has convinced himself that he is”
-what point is there in being unhappy just because once you were unhappy?

Advice on becoming a stoic

-Do your best to enjoy things that are easily obtainable or can’t be taken from you, such as your character or the idea of simply being alive right now.

-while you enjoy things that can be taken away from you, practice negative visualization so that you prepare for the loss of those things. You need to learn how to enjoy things without feeling entitled to them and without clinging to them, as they can be taken away at any given moment.

-be careful to avoid wanting the best of everything, leading to enjoying a wide range of easily obtainable things.

“To have whatsoever he wishes is in no mans power. It is in every mans power not to wish for what he has not, but cheerfully to employ what comes to him.”

“A boundless joy that is firm and unalterable.” – Seneca, a primary beneficiary of stoicism.

Third Circle Theory Pejman Ghadimi – Book Summary/Notes

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Three circles/potential stages in one’s life

First circle (most people live their entire life in this circle. Low self value) 

-birth – limited to your parents views, thoughts and beliefs.

-settler – complacent, limited, not on an ideal frequency level. 

-dreamer – mid life crisis, trying to catch up due to questions past decisions made. Seeks instant gratification for growth. Bitter and envious of others progress and success. 

They have the ability to change, as there’s so much information out there, but they are too set in their ways. 

Second circle (20% progress to this stage. Introduced to new views that defy your beliefs and behaviors, empower you to Increase awareness if you’re open to It).

-the awakening – exposure to new views. Enables you to gain confidence to pursue interests and not just being limited to what you’re told. 

-the leader – feeling of leading and informing others about the negatives and lies in the world. Others are drawn to your character which amplifies your abilities. 

-the achiever – money is the main motive here. Ability to manipulate others. If you cannot graduate from this stage you won’t be able to define your existence or purpose. 

Third circle (2% graduate to this stage. They have learned their purpose and how to remove themselves from the equation of life. When you choose to not make it about you anymore, you establish a true vision of what the world can be.)

-the vision – see deeper than most, and visualize your view of a better world where you are not the center of It. Enables you to apply importance to your projects regardless of size. Because you see further than most, You don’t fear bringing It to life of the hard work ahead. Once you see this way you can never see any other way again. Your projects become your desires and main priorities and leads to defining your purpose. 

-the purpose – your belief in something greater than yourself, where you allow your mind and emotions to remove themselves from the equation. Money no longer matters and decisions are made for the common good of the vision rather than your desires needs and wants. High levels of energy reveal themselves and allow no obstacles but rather serve up challenges that always have answers and are quickly overcome. The world doesn’t revolve around you but rather in front of you. Fulfillment is felt. 

-the rebirth – mind frees itself of unknown and focuses on the vision. Rebirth is achieved when vision is recognized by all not just those around you. Purpose is define, game of life is mastered. 

Awareness of the theory now allows your subconscious to seek signs to validate it. 

Environment – drive, confidence, that I was the best from my dad. Optimism, affectionate, kindness from my mom. 

As we grow up we learn more by actions than by what is said to us. We look to emulate these actions and turn them into our behaviors. 

Emotional intelligence is essential to taking control of life and your reactions to life. Awareness that your emotions are your weakness will enable you to overcome them. 

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Take Your Time: The Wisdom of Slowing Down Eknath Easwaran – Book Summary/Notes

-give yourself more time by simply waking up earlier in a calm, peaceful and unhurried manner. This helps set the tone/pace for the day.

-simplify your day. Don’t try to do it all, or cram multiple things into one day. Focus on what’s important and give it your full focus/undivided attention.

-what’s important? Put together a list of everything you deem important, then scratch out the things that aren’t necessary or beneficial in your life. Try to stick with only the things left on the list, revisit after a few months and make a new list.

-take time to pause for reflection, observation and original thinking.

-don’t let yourself get hurried. Best way to prepare for stressful situations is to learn to stay calm and pause to think when circumstances are pressuring us to hurry, or find ways to completely escape the situation if possible.

-cultivate patience. Patience is absolutely essential for learning to slow down. You can learn to develop it, just try to be patient every time life challenges us each day.

-slow down your mind. “A mind that is fast is sick. A mind that is slow is sound. A mind that is still is divine.”
The more we slow down the thinking process, the more control we have over our lives. Buddha called this “living intentionally.”
Slowing down is a means to an end, the ultimate goal is living in freedom, free from pressures of hurry and distractions. It means living at the deepest level of our awareness.

-one pointed attention- giving everything you do complete and undivided attention. This helps all aspects of life.
Don’t do multiple things at once, it prevents you from being present and fully aware.
Don’t allow negative emotions to impact or affect your current state of mind, treat them with compassion.
Train your attention to come back to the present when it goes on a train of thought about the past or future

-when you feel driven to act on an impulse, take your time to ask if this is really what is in your best interest.

-likes and dislikes – learn to appreciate your dislikes and give them patience, compassion and your attention/focus

-when you feel you’re getting impatient or want something your way, try to put the other persons comfort and convenience first.

-practice and use your mantram whenever you’re not busy focusing on anything of importance. Apply it when in the heat of the moment or a situation when thoughts and emotions arise. Practice diligently with determination.

The Winner’s Brain Jeff Brown – Book Summary/Notes

Self awareness factor
-pay attention to others facial expressions
Focus factor
-admit when distracted and use a word to get back on track
-pay attention to small details
-yoga/meditation techniques
Emotional balance factor
-keep a detailed emotional journal for a week or two to strengthen your emotional vocabulary.
-start becoming more aware of your own personal emotional baseline, highs and lows.
-broaden your perspective to grow your opportunity radar.
-empathy- the ability to understand and share the feelings of another.
Memory factor 
-do something new once per week (try a new food, learn meaning of a few new words, etc).
Resilience factor
-after a setback, slow down for a moment, take a deep breath, try to find the source of the mistake, once you find it adjust behavior accordingly and move forward.
Adaptability factor
-do yoga and meditate
-become more aware of your thoughts. Imagine them flowing by like water in a stream. You can detach from them and focus on the emotional tone behind them. You’ll start to see the patterns of emotions and actions. Recognizing them is the first step to changing them.
Brain care factor
-exercise often
-eat fish weekly
-eat fruit daily (apples/blueberries)
-drink unfiltered juices (apple juice daily)