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Fundamentals of Change

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Enjoyed a meaningful experience today. As a faculty member of an outstanding learning and growth organization, iLearningGlobal, I was asked to present a 20-minute “nugget” to an audience of over 120 marketing representatives, most of whom had travelled to Phoenix for this event. I was not the only faculty member who spoke. In fact, I shared the podium with some very strong and well known authors, teachers, and corporate trainers.

Due to the recent death of a neighbor—a cordial, outgoing man with an abiding family commitment, with so much of life still ahead of him, I began my remarks by asking the audience, including myself, to consider the question, “To what degree am I living my life?” I am confident this was not the first time any of us in the room had done some introspection and self-evaluation triggered by some personal event that underscored the brevity and fragility of life. We have all done this before. Truthfully, we do not do this often enough, on our own, without some outside event evoking such a thoughtful pause.

An additional question I posed to them I now pose to you: “When we step back from our life to examine our trends and progress, do we do that with the cognizant awareness that what we are seeing is the print-out of our current mindset and thought trends?” And, if we see something that we would like to improve or change, what thoughts do we think at that moment—what is our governing point of view about how the change needs to come about?

My opinion is that most of us look at what things have to change and what people have to change, and what circumstances have to change, rather than what thoughts and perceptions—what mental habits—do I have to change.

People change from within or they change not at all.

Nothing will fundamentally change in our career, our business or our life unless and until we get to the root cause of our successes and our shortfalls.

Change your name and your image… upgrade your computer and your software… move to a new town or buy a new home… throw out all your old clothes and get a whole new wardrobe… do a make-over to whatever extreme you desire…

But if you fail to upgrade the very software of your mind—how you see yourself, your world, and the opportunities around you—how you connect with your loved ones, friends, and co-workers—how you respond to adversity, set-backs, and disappointments—at best, your improvements will be modest and temporary.

Your thoughts about my thoughts….


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  • Alex Ibarra

    Personal discoveries through introspection are indeed gold nuggets to treasure, but then the quest is still ahead–how to change " the governing point of view" to create lasting and lofty improvements to thought and life. Certain mental habits seem to cling like pit bulls to a nice, juicy leg. Upgrading the mental software is definitely a must. Thanks for the reminder Dennis.

  • Ram Iyer

    Dear Guruji,
    That is brilliant;; You wrote: ‘ what things have to change and what people have to change, and what circumstances have to change, rather than what thoughts and perceptions—what mental habits—do I have to change "
    This reminds me of the follwoing quote attributed Oliver Wendell Holems: ‘ Watch your thoughts, for they become your words; Choose your words, for they become your actions; Understand your actions, for they become your habits; Study your habits, for they become your character; Develop your character, for it becomes your destiny"
    Negative thoughts -> Negative words – Negative actions -> Negative Habits -> Negative character -> Negative Destiny.
    Positive thoughts -> Positive words-> Positive actions -> Positive habits -> Positive character -> Positive destiny.
    Things do not always work out the way we want. Pain is inevitable in life, but suffering is optional ( source unknown from ‘ Chat with God ‘).
    Thank you for your inspirational messages. Let me know if I can be of any help, Good luck with the wonderful messages that you are spreading.

  • Rolando Gill

    I have been studying this idea of identity level change and there are many who recognize the need for it. My concern is that there is not a consensus on how to do it. I like the idea of mimicking others successes. I know that environment and associations play a big part. I also believe that mantras or incantations will help change thoughts and are very important. I am eager to learn more.

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