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The “Secret Sauce” of Human Motivation What causes people to do what they do? What causes people to do what they do? 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, habit or activity you can think of. Every decision you make, every habit you form, is built upon your perceived Why-To’s and Why-Not-To’s of doing that thing. These habits include… • The clothes you put on this morning • The food you ate for breakfast – and if you ate breakfast in the first place • How many snacks you’ll eat today and exactly what you eat • Whether you procrastinate at work • Whether you find it hard or easy to finish projects • Whether you are easily distracted or have no trouble concentrating Whether I’m coaching CEOs or consulting for Fortune 500 companies, I’ve never met one human being who doesn’t want to succeed. Yet, we also know that millions of people and organizations have tried everything under the sun to become more successful, but are still not getting the results they want. So, what’s going on here? The Hidden Cause of Habits According to scientific research, your conscious mind makes up less than 10% of your total brain function. That means that the subconscious or unintentional aspect of your mind represents around 90% of your total brain function. Your subconscious is a vast collection of unintentional, habitual thoughts, behaviors, and actions. Therefore, the phrase that best describes the Subconscious mind is NO CHOICE. For example, imagine that you’re sitting in your office and suddenly someone came in and turned off all the lights. Now it’s completely dark and you can’t see anything. What would happen if I then asked you to re-arrange the furniture? How successful would you be at rearranging the furniture in a room with no visible light? The answer is: not very! Now, because you can’t rearrange the furniture in a room where you can’t see anything, does that mean you’re incapable of rearranging furniture? Of course not! You are PERFECTLY capable of rearranging furniture… when you can see what the heck you’re doing! Your subconscious mind is like that dark room. It’s hidden beneath the surface, like the bottom 90% of an iceberg. And when you can’t SEE something, it’s awfully hard to change it! Every human being wants to succeed on the conscious level. But, because your Why- Not-To’s of Success are hidden in your subconscious mind, it’s like you’re driving down the road of life…with one foot on the brake. For example, let’s say you want to drive from New York to Los Angeles. And let’s say you’ve got a nice, reliable car to get you where you want to go. So you start down the highway towards your destination. You’re thinking positive, you’re motivated, and you can’t wait to get there. So you press down really hard on the GAS pedal. But unbeknownst to you, at the same time as you have one foot on the gas, you’ve developed the unconscious habit of driving with your other foot on the BRAKE. So here you are driving down the highway of life, trying to reach Interactive your goal… but you’ve developed the habit of driving with one foot on the BRAKE. How long do you think it’s going to take you to reach your destination? EXACTLY. A looooong, long time. Now, because it’s taking you much longer than you thought it would to reach your destination, you start to search for a way to get there faster with less effort. So you find someone who says they know how to get there, and they say to you: “You know what you need? You should get a more expensive type of GASOLINE! That’s your problem!” So you pull into the gas station and fill your tank with the most expensive, high-octane gasoline you can find, and get back on the highway of life. But, guess what? Because you didn’t change your habit of driving with one foot on the BRAKE, you’re still not making much progress. So someone else comes up to you and says: “You know what you need? You should get a new set of TIRES! Try these REALLY EXPENSIVE tires, that’s your problem!” So you go to the service station, spend MORE money buying the most expensive tires you can find, and get back on the highway. But, you’ve still got the same habit of having one foot on the BRAKE… so you’re still not reaching your destination. Finally, someone says to you, “You know what you need? You should get a new CAR! This car you’re driving isn’t good enough. You should get a REALLY EXPENSIVE sports car, that’s your problem!” So you trade in your nice, reliable car, spend MORE money buying an expensive sports car, and get back on the highway of life. But, even after ALL this time, money and effort, because no one took the time to show you the REAL problem – which is simply the fact that you have developed the habit of driving with one foot on the brake – you end up NOT reaching your goals… and perhaps even giving up on your dream. So let me ask you a question: If buying more expensive gas, more expensive tires, and even a brand new car isn’t going to get you where you want to go, shouldn’t you do whatever it takes to do two things… First, learn why you developed the habit of driving with your foot on the brake in the first place; And second, learn how to replace that very costly habit with a more productive habit that enables you to get you where you want to go faster, easier, and with far less effort. PE By Noah St. John Noah St. John is the best-selling author of The Book of Afformations: Discovering The Missing Piece to Abundant Health, Wealth, Love, and Happiness (Hay House). Noah is famous for inventing Afformations® and creating customized strategies for fast-growing companies and leading organizations around the world. Visit www.noahstjohn.com Blog noahstjohn.com/blog/ Book The Book of Afformations Personal Excellence essentials presented by HR.com | 06.2014 22


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