Seven Steps to Success – the Art of Living Retreat Centre
It is always interesting to me to see the differences between successful people who appear to be abundant, fortunate and prosperous and those who seem tired, exhausted and struggle to make ends meet. Successful people know that it’s important to set specific goals, consistently review them, focus on their skills and act on opportunities to achieve their goals. They don’t journey through life reacting to every situation; they steer their course through life and expect good outcomes in spite of what is going on around them.
We all want to be consistent in focusing on our goals but that can be tough when life presents us with unexpected situations. Your boss might ask more of you at work; your children or spouse might need you to be home more often and available to attend important events; you might even feel like you don’t have enough time for yourself to relax, have fun and plan for the future. Before long consistency can seem like an unobtainable dream.
Often in the midst of crisis, competitive pressures and family obligations we can feel overwhelmed and forget to focus our attention on the desired outcomes of our goals rather than the immediate circumstances of our situations. We can listen to the news, read industry reports and hear colleagues who describe probable and dismal outcomes that they say are inevitable. The only way to keep yourself focused on the goals and outcomes that you want to experience is to follow a consistent daily routine that is deliberate in priming your brain for success so that you can achieve the outcomes that you desire.
Since 1982 I have had the privilege of growing six profitable companies in a variety of industries. In that time I’ve learned that the most effective way to keep your goals in the forefront of your thoughts is to wake up 30 minutes earlier each morning to hold a meeting with your inner self.
Treat your morning meeting with your inner self seriously. Hold your meeting in a space that is free of disruptions and create an agenda that you’ll follow. Make sure that you also have the necessary tools available: an uplifting book that describes successes of others achieving their goals, a pen and a notebook for you to write in.
1. Read something that inspires you
Spend five minutes reading something uplifting to put you in a receptive mood. As you read about the successes of others your mind will look for ways to make those kinds of successes familiar and normal for you. Suggested books to read are listed in the back of my book, The Path to Wealth.
2. Write down what you are grateful for
Spend up to 10 minutes writing a gratitude letter. Be grateful for the good things already in your life as well as the things that you hope to have soon. Psychologists agree that gratitude and happiness help you to be more focused and able to solve problems.
Express gratitude for what you have like health, family and employment. Also express gratitude for what you want as though you already have received it: harmonious relationships with family, friends, customers and co-workers and increased sales at work. The subconscious will then be directed to search for ways to help make these goals a reality.
3. Read what you are grateful for out loud
Spend up to five minutes reading your letter out loud with emotion. Studies have shown that when we read something out loud we anchor it into our subconscious which will help us to notice more possibilities to make our statements true. Remember the last time that you were planning to buy a new car? Didn’t you start to see that car on the road everywhere just before you purchased it? Your subconscious was helping you to notice possibilities to make that car yours.
4. Visualise reaching your goals
Spend up to five minutes with your eyes closed imagining what it will be like to have your goals realised. What will you be experiencing and how will you feel? Who will be celebrating with you? As you see yourself in your realised goal you’ll anchor the belief that it can be yours.
Olympic athletes use this technique as part of their training. They see themselves making the shot, winning the competition, celebrating with teammates and family. If you want to win and achieve your goals, see yourself doing so first. Jack Nicklaus, one of the world’s greatest golfers never took a shot, not even in practice, without having a clear in-focus picture of it in his mind first. Author and motivational speaker Earl Nightingale put it perfectly when he said 'Whatever we plant in our subconscious mind and nourish with repetition and emotion will one day become a reality'. He knew that repetition would reap rewards.
At this point you’ve spent 25 to 30 minutes with your inner self establishing your goals and giving your subconscious directions on what to focus on attaining. Now time to get your day started. Your subconscious will begin to do its job.
5. Follow your intuition throughout the day
During each day be on the lookout for leads, intuition, directions and opportunities that will point you in the direction of goal attainment. Some of these leads might not make sense, but as Steve Jobs said 'have the courage to follow your heart and intuition'.
Take a step to do something, call someone who comes to mind out of the blue or follow up on a gut instinct to go to a particular location. I once followed a gut instinct to drive 15 minutes out of my way in Cleveland and ran into a potential customer who later gave me a new contract worth over $400,000. In another example, I had a strong thought about my sister and was led though a series of intuitive directions to have a spot on my leg removed that was later diagnosed as malignant melanoma Clark’s Level 3.
Many famous and successful business people have used intuition as a success tool. Bill Gates said 'Often you have to rely on intuition'. And Oprah Winfrey shares 'I’ve listened to that still small voice of intuition my entire life and the only times that I’ve made mistakes is when I didn’t listen'. All of us have intuition and can learn to recognise it and enable it to show up more often through a daily routine for success.
6. Celebrate your successes
Acknowledge your successes with someone who you value and trust. Celebrating and happiness activate the frontal cortex of your brain which helps you to focus clearly and see more possibilities. Celebrating is a fun part of the process and helps you to gather proof and confidence that your partnership with your inner self is working.
7. Let go of what’s holding you back
Give up anything that could be subconsciously holding you back. If you are angry or feel any resentment toward another or yourself, express it. This may be one of the greatest characteristics of successful people. They release anything that is not consistent with the life they want to live. This can be tough but it is possible.
To start with, commit to saying the following each night before bed: 'I release anyone and anything from my past or present that is not serving me well, whether I remember them or not. And if there is anything that I have done in my past or present that needs to be released, it is now done and everyone is free'. Do this for a minimum of 30 nights and you’ll feel lighter and more at peace as a result. You’ll also be able to notice more possibilities to help you to attain your goals sooner.
Practise these seven steps on a regular basis and enjoy realising your goals in a more consistent and enjoyable way. May you be blessed on your path to all that is good!
In today’s economy it’s more important than ever to clarify your personal and professional goals and commit to a plan that will get you there.
May McCarthy hosts The Path to Wealth at the Art of Living Retreat Centre from 17-19 May 2019.
May McCarthy is the bestselling author of The Path to Wealth: Seven Spiritual Steps for Financial Abundance and a highly successful businessperson since 1982. She has funded and grown companies in a variety of industries and is now an international speaker, radio show host, university lecturer, angel investor and a philanthropist. She serves on business, philanthropic, arts and university boards and her success is founded on the implementation of spiritual principles which underpin all her ventures.
This blog was sent to me by The Art of Living Retreat Centre in North Carolina so I thought it would be good to include it. Original post HERE.