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Posts Tagged ‘emotions

UP #1: Is it possible to create something out of nothing?

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Back in summer, I attended a seminar called ‘Breakthrough to Success’ by Chris Howard

Chris Howard's Breakthrough to Success seminar - absolutely fantabulous!

Chris Howard's Breakthrough to Success seminar - absolutely fantabulous!

Source: http://img.diytrade.com/cdimg/846564/7859618/0/1231929571/Breakthrough_to_Success.jpg

(free admission!!). It was a fantastic event, lasting for three days, although, I have to say, when you attend a few more of these seminars with NLP-enabled practitioners, it’ll occur to you that they resonate!! (i.e. most of what they tell you is exactly the same thing…you’d have thought a ventriloquist was pulling the strings! XD)

The aspect that left the greatest impression on me, however, was one of Chris’ trademark sayings (every one of the self-improvement coaches has one):

‘It’s never a question of resources, but of resourcefulness.’

It’s ‘when there’s a will, there’s a way’ all over again, which makes perfect sense. But there are certain implications of this saying that concerned me, similar to what Robert Kiyosaki said, that ‘you don’t need money to make money’. While true to a certain extent, isn’t this conflicting with one of Newton’s universal laws on the conservation of energy (you can’t create more of it, you can only convert it into another form)?

To demonstrate this, let’s put this into application.

Let’s introduce Bob. From a very young age, Bob has lived in poverty with his family, and always aspires to change this situation when he grows up. At school, he always had problems with learning – his style just wasn’t compatible with what teachers wanted, earning him many frowns from teachers and peers as a result. Coupled with having to hear his family argue about finances night after night, he finally decided, into his early teen years, ‘that’s it. That’s enough. I’m going to do something about it.’

What to do next?

What to do next?

Source: http://www.fitnessessentials.ca/images/man_stressed.jpg

Without as much as a single note, he left home.

On his own, he found some part time jobs as a cleaner to sustain his living expenses, as well as taking on odd jobs around the neighbourhood where he rented a single room to live in, but his true aspiration has always been something much larger, much greater than working as a mere cleaner, not that he didn’t enjoy his job now – he had, luckily, found himself an understanding employer to work for. That was – to build an empire of his own.

Years went on without contact from either his family or friends. ’Not that it mattered anyways,’ he thought to himself. As angry as he could have been with his life, the acceptance that the circumstances he found himself in wasn’t ideal kept him progressing and moving on, despite the many challenges in life that he was confronted with. Many times over, he was ‘visited’ by social workers, most of whom he was able to evade on numerous occasions. Surprisingly (and to his relief), they, too, left him well alone in the pursuit of his dreams.

Taking on the challenges of his job at daytime, and studying vigorously at night time from the extra books and courses he bought with spare cash, by the age of 18, he finally felt he knew enough to start pursuing his dream – to build his own business.

Studying late at night

Studying late at night

Source: http://images.google.com/hosted/life/l?imgurl=cef9ef0a875174f2&q=studying%20late%20at%20inght&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dstudying%2Blate%2Bat%2Binght%26hl%3Den%26um%3D1

Over the years, he had experienced enough to become adept at interacting with the occasional customer who would pay attention to him, which, if not by his age restriction, would have earned him a rightful rank as a skilled salesman. Alongside, he also knew that to build a business, he was going to need to use up one thing he worked so hard to build up over the years – leveraging relationships.

Always bearing innate interest for fiddling with computers (he accidentally knocked into a CPU once in the office, rebooting the PC when a manager most needed it, earning him a few credits with his superiors, and sparking off his zeal in computers) Bob decided that he was going to center his business around selling hardware. Darting from bank to bank, he attempted to secure startup capital, however, seeing his age and (lack of) qualifications, each bank manager laughed heartily at him and said, ‘Go back to school, kid!’ Despite that, he persisted, and finally collected financing from the most unlikely avenue – his employer, who turned out to own a VC firm apart from his restaurant.

Decided to sell hardware

Decided to sell hardware

Source: http://www.wired.com/images_blogs/photos/uncategorized/2009/03/17/illuminato_gold_trim_front_edge_pro.jpg

From that point onwards, he quit his part time job, and worked 24/7 on his business with a partner that he found (from the previous business he worked in before). The first month was disastrous. Far from breaking even, they managed to incur huge losses, and were almost left with nothing. The situation steadily deteriorated until the sixth month, when they finally realized they spent too much on products, but not around the infrastructure of the business. Slowly, in redirecting their focus towards their marketing efforts, more customers were visiting the small local store, and sales started to climb up, in their second year in operation, they were able to turn losses into profits.

The path to success

The path to success

Source: http://epicpeople.co.nz/store/images/Group_punching_air.jpg

…I’ll leave the rest to your imagination.

Obviously, I just made that out of the blue, but it’ll serve well as a case study for the purposes of our discussion here.

When Bob grew up, he had nothing other than broken (non-existent) familial ties. When he left home, he went to look for something – namely, a job. In doing that job, he managed to create something else of great value – relationships with his superiors and some customers. In his business, he secured startup capital that he was sure to have gained from the positive ties he maintained with others in the company, earning him recognition from his boss. From the losses they sustained in the first months of operation, they gained experience to turn it around into a profitable business. Do you see how this all comes together?

Bob's 'Gains' Hierarchy

Bob's Hierarchy of 'Gains'

Each layer on top is a resulting spin-off of the bottom layer!! This is just ONE representation of what could be (in this case, from Bob’s story), obviously, but it does help with the visualization of monitoring our gains. The repertoire isn’t lateral. It’s not defined in bullet lists. It’s defined in a hierarchy!!

As you’ll have noticed, I put two big question marks in the bottom layer, because, honestly, I have no idea what this could be. I have speculations, but it’s not enough to become a universal factor of this universal principle.

The bottom layer should be...?

The bottom layer should be...?

Source: http://blog.lib.umn.edu/cehd/insideout/question%20mark.jpg

This could easily have been ‘Knowledge’, since pretty much everything stems from it. You can not have money, but you can’t not have knowledge. Similarly, you need knowledge to talk and enter a conversation, from the basics of linguistics, to pop culture references, and the latest trends (trust me, you don’t want to go underestimating the potency of trends, this could very well become a division (and a mélange) in maths, social psychology and sociology that addressed this field!)

But the factor that ties us together isn’t knowledge, it’s emotions. If the factor that underlies our hierarchies of gains is emotions, it would make perfect sense. Like, for example, the first emotion that we probably receive is love from our nurturing mothers, and accrues from the experiences we’re subjected to throughout infancy. What we receive, or the lack of what we receive, will ultimately deliver what we gain. Emotions are carried in the inflections of our voice, which elicit responses from others, which lead to consequences…you get the idea. Everything, I believe, has an emotional stem because we, as humans are creatures of emotions. Through genuine interaction, the world progresses.

My answer to the question is simply this: no, it’s impossible to create something from nothing, possibly because it contradicts the very scope of our perceptions of nature (that everything is ‘as is’, and no more). The purpose of the hierarchy is to extrapolate from Chris’ saying, and provide it with a tangible scope. It’s true that it’s never a question of resources, but of resourcesfulness, and that you CAN make money with no money – but only if you already have something, and that very something isn’t measured in money. It corresponds with the bottom level of the hierarchy of gains that we’ve demonstrated here today – knowledge (or imagination)(1)and emotions. Fortunately, we all have some experience of acquiring knowledge and undergoing different emotional roller coasters, regardless of our diverse cultural and ethnical backgrounds, and that, alone, is sufficient to form a basis for what we gain in the future.

Broccoli and tiles - what's the connection?

Broccoli and tiles - what's the connection?

Source: http://greenarbytheday.files.wordpress.com/2009/05/broccoli.jpg

If any of this sounds cryptic or crazy, that’s fine. You can blame it on me. My thoughts are usually in disarray. If there’s one day I can’t assimilate a broccoli with the tile of a building outside of my apartment which I’m staring at now, watch out for that impostor…But, for the most part, I’m perfectly sane, thank you very much. XD

Look forward in hearing from you!! XD

Notes

  1. Okay,  Einstein supporters. I know, I know, it’s often the case that ‘Imagination is more important than knowledge’. So very true!!
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