Begin With The End In Mind
Lets get right into it. Begin With The End In Mind. If you get this one habit down it can literally change your whole life. With the power of your imagination it can put your life on a completely different course. If you do this enough, and really practice this habit you will subconsciously make decisions that will put your life in the direction that you want it to go.
To start with I want you try this exercise with no distractions. Carefully use your imagination and picture very vividly that you are getting dressed up to go to a funeral of someone that you have cared deeply about. As you put on your clothes and get cleaned up you build yourself up mentally to what you are about to face. As you get in the car really try to picture the weather outside, closing the door of the car and starting it up. Use your mind to watch this as if it were a movie and you are the star. Driving to the funeral you think of who might be there. You picture all your family, friends that might attend. As you pull into the parking lot you see many other familiar vehicles. Maybe your best friends, maybe your son or daughter, or your parents vehicle.
As you walk in you see the people who are closest to you. The first thing you do is go to the casket to pay your respect and as you approach you see yourself lying in the casket. You realize that this is your funeral.
Right now at that moment you realize that all these people had gathered there for you. As you continue on this journey and vivid mental experience you get to see who is deeply upset, who attends, even what people say about you when standing up and talking about what kind of person you were and what you mean to them. What do your children say? What does your parents say? Picture as perfect as you can what kind of feelings are going on when you hear your closest friend get up and talk about the life you two had. Go through everyone and try to imagine what you would want them to say. Once the exercise is complete take a few notes on what kind of person you want to be to each person that was speaking about you in your mind.
Once Created In The Mind And Next In The Real World
Why is this one of the most important habits of successful people? Because it changes something inside you. See, first things are created in our head. Then if we choose they can be created in the world. Think of the biggest sky scrapers, or the fanciest sports cars. They were just a thought at one time. Someone took the time to bring it in the real world. When this idea of the ultimate end plays out in our head we can work towards having the kind of relationships with the people that we love.
In the last habit we learned that it starts with us. This is right in the core of us. How we want our life to end up. None of us get out of this life without dying.
Les Brown says that things may happen around us, and things may happen to us, but the only thing that matters are the things that happen in us. We need the things that happen in us to be guided by what we want our life to become.
Wonder Generality or Meaningful Specific
Zig Ziglar would say do not be a wondering generality, you should be a meaningful specific. See even though things are created twice not all things are created with a meaning. They are created from a wondering generality mindset.
Tony Robbins gives an example of a baby elephant. This little baby elephant is trained or conditioned from infancy that it can nut pull hard enough on the rope that it is tied up with to get free. From just a baby the elephant is tied up with a rope and on the other end of the rope it is tied to a stake that is driven in the ground. For several weeks the little elephant pulls and tugs on the rope to try and get free, but at some point the elephant decides its pointless, and that it can not break free. Even when the elephant grow to a massive size and would have no trouble at all pulling the stake out of the ground it has already decided that it cant.
See, many of us are the same way. We let other people around us shape our thoughts and our opinions of ourselves instead of creating our own thoughts and directions for our life. If a child is told by his parents that he is poor, and as he grows up kids at school tells him he is poor because of the clothes he wears, then at some point he just decides he is poor. He thinks that way so he is that way. He subconsciously starts making decisions to stay poor. Get a low paying job, say “I cant afford that” instead of “how can I afford that,” say money can’t buy you everything so he can rationalize being poor. This is a prime example of someone that has let other peoples opinion become his reality. When in fact he has tremendous potential to earn as much as anyone else.
Stay tuned for the next article as we continue providing value from this amazing book entitled The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.
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