Americans spend over $11 Billion a year on "self-help" products. But I call it Shelf-Help -- because that's where most of it goes... on the shelf, along with all the other stuff you've bought.
If you're like most of my clients, you've spent anywhere from $5000 to $50,000 in the last few years on "shelf-help". But the REAL question is:
Why, with all this time, money and energy being spent on "self-help," are so few people actually living the life they really want?
Like most vexing problems, to answer this question, we must first ask a deeper question:
What Really Causes Human Behavior?
Here's the simplest answer I've found to that question. It's a simple answer, because I've found (and I'm sure you have, too) that simple solutions lead to the best results.
Picture a balance, like the Scales of Justice in a courtroom.
On one plate, imagine you have Your Why-To's. These are your motives or Reasons Why to do something. On the other plate, Your Why-Not-To's - your Reasons Why Not to do something.
For example, why are you reading this right now? The answer is: because you perceive that there are more Benefits of reading this, than Cost of doing so.
Your perceived Why-To's or Benefits of reading this might include:
- I want to learn what the world's most successful people do, so I can do that in my own life
- So I can stop sabotaging myself
- So I can make more money
- And finally get my foot off the brake
- And this will make me happier, because I can live the life I've always wanted
- And quit this job I hate
- And take more vacations
- And have better relationships
- And lose weight
- And find the love of my life
- And buy a new car
- And a new house
- And get out of debt
- Did I mention I'll finally get my foot off the brake?
And your Why-Not-To's or Cost might include:
- I have a million other things I could be doing right now.
- Who is this guy, and why should I listen to him?
- What if it works for everyone else, but not for me?
- Did I mention all the other things I could be doing right now?
Your mind is like an infinite weighing machine -- every moment, your mind is weighing your perceived Benefit against your perceived Cost of doing any behavior or activity.
Every decision you make is built upon your perceived Why-To's and Why-Not-To's:
- Where you live
- What you wear
- What you eat (and how often you eat it)
- What kind of car you drive
- What you do for work
- What you had for breakfast this morning
In fact, every decision you've ever made was based on your Why-To's and Why-Not-To's: the reasons you thought you should do the thing vs. the reasons you thought you shouldn't do that thing.
In Part 2 of this series, I'll show how your Scales of Success and Iceberg of Consciousness work together to unwittingly sabotage you -- and why they hold the key to getting rid of your head trash and removing your foot from the brake for good.
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Noah St. John, Ph.D. is the #1 bestselling author of The Secret Code of Success: 7 Hidden Steps to More Wealth and Happiness (HarperCollins).
Stephen Covey says, "Noah's Secret Code of Success is about discovering within ourselves what we should have known all along - we are truly powerful beings with unlimited potential."
Noah is the world's most-quoted expert on how to get rid of your head trash. Claim your free book excerpt at SecretCodeBook.com