Book Summaries

50 Words to Your Dreams Chapter 40 Become by Michael George Knight


Become simply means begin to be. Begin to become the person you envision yourself to be in the future. Don’t fake it till you make it, work at it until you are it. Develop yourself with all your unique talents and gifts that make you who you are. Become the best version of yourself not only for you but for others. Becoming the best version of yourself is the best thing you can do for yourself and the best gift you can give others. Becoming better than your previous self and becoming all that you can be enables others to become all that they can be and on and on growth continues.


Each year you should be shedding your skin of your old self and be morphing into the new you. Like a caterpillar transforming into a butterfly, completely changing from your old self into the new. Life is always becoming, with an ever-new present moment giving us the opportunity to become what we want to be. The present moment being a gift gives you the opportunity to become a better person and walk a different path. Leaving the past behind and forging ahead into the future to become whatever you want to be.



Becoming more than you are so you can fill the cups of others is a core principle in the evolution of the human species. Without the minority of the few becoming more than they are to lift the majority of many to higher heights we wouldn’t have the society we have and enjoy. Becoming more than you are by achieving as much as you can, learning as much as you can to educate others, creating more than you need to give to others, earning more to give more. Everyone benefits when you become more than you are. Nobody benefits when you become less than can be, nobody benefits from poverty, nobody benefits from negativity. The world right now needs more people becoming their very best, chasing and achieving their dreams, filling their cups up to overflow into the lives of others for the betterment of humanity.



  • Aging is an extraordinary process where you become the person you always should have been. (David Bowie)
  • As we become adults, we then seem to tend to choose to associate with those most like us. The weak attract the weak; the poor are most comfortable with the poor; the successful are drawn toward those who are successful; those of optimistic views and attitudes select those of their own What we have become largely determines the kind of people, events, books, and lifestyle that we select. (Jim Rohn)
  • Be soft. Do not let the world make you hard. Do not let pain make you hate. Do not let the bitterness steal your sweetness. (Unknown)
  • Be strong, but not rude. Be kind, but not weak. Be bold, but don’t bully. Be humble, but not shy. Be confident, but not arrogant. (Jim Rohn)
  • Be the best at what you do and the world will beat a path to your door. (Sam Walton)
  • Be the type of person you want to meet. (Unknown)
  • Be who you are. Not who the world wants you to be. (Unknown)
  • Become a possibilitarian. No matter how dark things seem to be or actually are, raise your sights and see possibilities. Always see them, for they’re always there. (Norman Vincent Peale)
  • Become a student of your interests. (David Deangelo)
  • Become curious instead of judgmental. (Abraham Hicks)
  • Before they can ‘have’, they have to ‘be.’ (Robert Kiyosaki)
  • Beware of what you become in pursuit of what you want. Don’t sell out. (Jim Rohn)
  • Don’t let someone else’s opinion of you become your reality. (Les Brown)
  • If you wish the world to become loving and compassionate, become loving and compassionate yourself. If you wish to diminish fear in the world, diminish your own. These are the gifts that you can give. (Gary Zukav)
  • It is the person you become, not the things you achieve, that is most important. (Les Brown)
  • It’s not what we get that makes us valuable it’s what we become. (Jim Rohn)
  • Maybe the journey isn’t so much about becoming anything. Maybe it’s about unbecoming everything that isn’t you so you can be who you were meant to be in the first place. (Unknown)
  • Most of us become what we study. (Robert Kiyosaki)
  • Stop trying to look for the right person and start trying to become the right person. (Unknown)
  • Success comes from knowing that you did your best to become the best that you are capable of becoming. (John Wooden)
  • The only person you are destine to become is the person you decide to be. (Ralph Waldo Emerson)
  • The privilege of a lifetime is to become who you truly are. (Carl Jung)
  • The roots of true achievement, lie in the will to become the best that you can become. (Harold Taylor)
  • The self is only that which it is in the process of becoming. (Kierkegaard)
  • Those who seek a better life must first become a better person. (Jim Rohn)
  • To become different from what we are, we must have some awareness of what we are. (Eric Hoffer)
  • Try not to become a man of success, but rather try to become a man of value. (Albert Einstein)
  • We become what we behold. We shape our tools and then our tools shape us. (Marshall McLuhan)
  • We work to become, not to acquire. (Elbert Hubbard)
  • What you become directly influences what you get. (Jim Rohn)
  • When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be. (Lao Tzu)
  • Who you become in the journey is what matters, it’s not the finish line that’s important it’s the character building that makes you become different. (Unknown)
  • You become what you envision yourself being. (Lewis Howes)
  • You can have more than you’ve got because you can become more than you are. (Jim Rohn)
  • You will become as small as your controlling desire; as great as your dominant aspiration. (James Allen)


That’s a wrap on

50 Words to Your Dreams

Chapter 40: Become

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  • Your innermost sense of self, of who you are, is inseparable from stillness. This is the “I Am” that is deeper than name and form.
  • Stillness is your essential nature. What is stillness? The inner space or awareness in which the words on this page are being perceived and become thoughts. Without that awareness, there would be no perception, no thoughts, no world.
  • See that in the moment of noticing the silence around you, you are not thinking. You are aware, but not thinking.
  • Most people spend their entire life imprisoned within the confines of their own thoughts. They never go beyond a narrow, mind-made, personalized sense of self that is conditioned by the past.
  • Here is a new spiritual practice for you: don’t take your thoughts too seriously.
  • Spiritual awakening is awakening from the dream of thought.
  • The next step in human evolution is to transcend thought. This is now our urgent task. It doesn’t mean not to think anymore, but simply not to be completely identified with thought, possessed by thought.
  • Become at ease with the state of “not knowing.”


  • The ego is the belief behind the separation; it is our core self-concept which says we are separate, autonomous beings.
  • The ego has one need: to stay in business, to confirm itself, to reinforce its reality, to protect itself from God’s Love.
  • The world is not an objective reality; it is only a dream, a projection of our belief in separateness.
  • A law of mind is that mind causes its own experience.
  • We attempt to fill our needs with external things, situations, and events, based on the belief that we are inherently lacking.
  • In our search for happiness, the body is both a means and an end.
  • Forgiveness releases us from our fixation on our separate self and allows our love to flow out to the world.
  • Extending forgiveness to others heals them in mind and body. This is the main sense of the word “miracle.”
  • Forgiveness looks past differences and reveals our underlying sameness.


  • Creativity is the greatest rebellion in existence. If you want to create you have to get rid of all conditioning; otherwise your creativity will be nothing but copying, it will be just a carbon copy. You can be creative only if you are an individual.
  • The creator cannot follow the well trodden path. He has to go alone, he has to be a dropout from the mind, from the collective psychology.
  • Consciousness is being, compassion feeling, creativity is action.
  • Action is always new and fresh like the dewdrops in the morning. And a person who is a person of action is also fresh and young.
  • It is not a question of what you do; it is a question of how you do it. And ultimately it is a question rather you do it or you allow it to happen.
  • Be a passive watcher.
  • The ego is nothing but all the thoughts you have accumulated in the past.
  • One has to become more of the ears and less of the eyes.
  • People go on living in a mental world of their own creation.
  • When you drop the ego, you drop a whole world that you have created around it.
  • You never see that which is, you go on distorting reality
  • In the present moment all past is contained, and in the present moment all future is potential.


  • To play successfully the game of life, we must train the imaging faculty. A person with an imaging faculty trained to image only good, brings into his life “every righteous desire of his heart” – health, wealth, love, friends, perfect self-expression, his highest ideals.
  • Whatever man feels deeply or images clearly, is impressed upon the subconscious mind, and carried out in minutest detail.
  • The object of the game of life is to see clearly one’s good and to obliterate all mental pictures of evil.
  • Man can only receive what he sees himself receiving.
  • Fear attracted the thing and fearlessness removed it.
  • Any inharmony on the external, indicates there is mental inharmony. “As the within, so the without.”
  • Nothing on earth can resist an absolutely non-resistant person. The Chinese say that water is the most powerful element, because it is perfectly non-resistant. It can wear away a rock, and sweep all before it.
  • The robbers of time are the past and the future. Man should bless the past, and forget it, if it keeps him in bondage, and bless the future, knowing it has in store for him endless joys, but live fully in the now.
  • Fear is misdirected energy and must be redirected, or transmuted into Faith.


  • There are 4 steps to intention: Discipline, Wisdom, Love and Surrender.
  • START: What’s one thing that you could be doing now, that is consistent with your higher self, that will have the highest possible benefit in your life?
  • STOP: What’s one thing that you continue to do although you know it’s not consistent with your higher self that if you stopped doing – would have the greatest benefit of your life?
  • 80-90% of our thoughts and actions are habitual.
  • Treat yourself as if you already are what you’d like to become.
  • Walk into situations as if you have already done it. If you want to ‘be this’ – then the only way you are ever going to be that, is if you to start to consistently be that now. Start practicing being who you want now and embrace that.
  • Change the way you look at things, and the things you look at change.
  • You will feel most ‘on purpose’ when you are giving your life away by serving others.
  • Anything can be taken from you, but your last freedom, is your freedom to choose how you respond to this moment.
  • If you want a meaningful life, know your strengths, use them often on something bigger than yourself. Truly give yourself to the world. 


  • Everything is connected, and you can change your world by sheer mental power– from your body to your well-being to the nature of your very spirit.
  • What we think about ourselves becomes the truth for us.
  • We are responsible for everything that is happening to us, since “the thoughts we think and the words we speak create our experiences.”
  • The innermost belief Louise Hay considers the main culprit for everything bad in your life? I’m not good enough!
  • Try shifting your mindset from “I should” to “I could”
  • Turn the negative affirmations into positive ones.
  • Dis-ease can be healed if we are willing to change the way we think and believe and act!
  • Forgiveness Means Letting Go of the Past.
  • Let go of all the hatred.
  • The best way to do this is by forgiving those the anger against whom holds you back.
  • Here’s your mantra:
  • I lovingly forgive and release all of the past. I choose to fill my world with joy. I love and approve of myself.


  • The quality of your life is determined by the quality of your thoughts.
  • There are no mistakes – only lessons. See setbacks as opportunity for personal expansion and growth.
  • When an undesirable thought occupies the focal point of your mind, immediately replace it with a uplifting one.
  • Everything is created twice, first in the mind, and then it is realized in a physical form. We can visualize everything that we want to be, do, or have.
  • The secret of happiness is simple: find out what you truly love to do and then direct all of your energy towards doing it. Once you do this, abundance flows into your life and all your desires are filled with ease and grace.
  • The purpose of life is a life of purpose.
  • Enlightenment comes through the consistent cultivation of your mind, body and soul.
  • Do the things you fear, and the death of fear is certain.
  • By elevating the lives of others, your life reaches its highest dimensions.
  • We are all here for some special reason. Stop being a prisoner of your past. Become the architect of your future.


  • Something I’ve learned is that sharing my deepest truth, no matter how scary it is in the moment, is freedom. My only pain would come from repressing that truth.
  • Anyone who has made a true impact on this planet, at one point, had to step out of the expectation of the people around them and listen to an inner calling that moved them into a place of originality beyond what they had done before.
  • I’m not my past story – in fact, I’m not any story, I’m just this moment, and the more I release those limitations, the more I will begin to open up to possibility and make room for an entirely new perspective on myself to come through.
  • When you step into opportunity, you cut off the fear. When you step into fear, you cut off the opportunity.
  • Listening to the calling within yourself instead of looking for external guidance.
  • Allowing yourself to fully experience every emotion that you feel is the gateway to actual transformation.
  • When we let go of something that is taking up space in our lives, we make room for something else to come in.
  • When your intention beats habit, you win the game of life.
  • We’re always looking for reasons in our external circumstances to prove why we shouldn’t be happy.
  • A leap can be scary, but on the other side of it is growth and new opportunities that you can’t see until you take that leap.
  • The only difference between you and everyone else is the story in your head.
  • When you work for the universe, you’re never unemployed.


  • We struggle with habit change because we have unrealistic expectations of how things will turn out, how others should be, and how we should be.
  • When our expectations aren’t met, we feel disappointed, frustrated and sad.
  • When we turn from our Mind Movie and embrace reality, we overcome our inner resistance to habit change.
  • The Childish Mind is the part of our mind that complains about how things are, that fears discomfort, that just wants pleasure and comfort, that doesn’t want things to be difficult.
  • Gratitude is a great antidote to resistance that we can practice each day, including when our Childish Mind eventually starts to rebel against doing the habit.
  • Take mistakes in stride, and take the long view that what really matters is not whether you mess up for a day or two, but what you do over weeks and months and years.
  • One of the most difficult tasks we can give to our Childish Mind is letting go of what it really wants, and accepting life as it is, seeing that it’s already enough.
  • Watch [an urge] gently, without judgment or wishing the feeling weren’t there. Treat it like a friend, kindly. And see that this feeling is impermanent, just arises but will pass, like a cloud. This is the whole meditation: just watch with curiosity and kindness, not attaching to the feeling or needing to act on it.


  • If you watch yourself, you will know how mechanically you behave.
  • When you work with nature, nature is alert.
  • Man has a great unconscious hidden in him. The conscious mind is only one-tenth, and the unconscious mind is nine times bigger than the conscious.
  • You are just living in a small corner of your being – the tiny conscious mind. It is as if somebody has a palace and has completely forgotten about the palace and has started living on the porch – and thinks this is all.
  • Man’s ego never wants to accept that there is anything higher than him.
  • The only thing that has to be learned is watchfulness. Watch! Watch every act that you do. Watch every thought that passes in your mind. Watch every desire that takes possession of you.
  • And as you become aware, a miracle starts happening; many things that you used to do before simply disappear.
  • When you are in the present without thinking, you are for the first time spiritual. A new dimension opens – that dimension is awareness.
  • Ego is a false sense of self.
  • Future is pure potentiality, unless it happens, you cannot be certain about it. Past is pure actuality, it has happened. Now nothing can be done about it. Between these two, man stands in the present always thinking of the impossibles.
  • No problem is serious. The moment you say no problem is serious, the problem is almost 99 percent dead.
  • The man of character reacts, the man of consciousness acts.


  • Happiness is determined more by the state of one’s mind than by one’s external conditions, circumstances, or events, at least once one’s basic survival needs are met.
  • Happiness can be achieved through the systematic training of our hearts and minds, through reshaping our attitudes and outlook.
  • Be gentle, not aggressive.
  • Suffering = resistance to change.
  • Don’t fear, avoid or reject suffering; it’s natural and needs to be dealt with.
  • Learn and train to go from negative (anger, hatred, attachment) to positive (love, compassion, forgiveness) emotions.
  • Be determined not to let others make me angry (or suffer), it doesn’t matter what they do or how they treat me. It only matters the result I want (have it clear): peace of mind + reaching my current objective.
  • Meditate on my mind: feel it! Meditate: have NO thoughts but be mindful. Feel my conscience in the NOW (in a neutral state). Breathe.


  • Success in life could be defined as the continued expansion of happiness and the progressive realization of worthy goals. Success is the ability to fulfill your desires with effortless ease.
  • True success is the experience of the miraculous. It is the unfolding of the divinity within us.
  • We are, in our essential state, pure consciousness. Pure consciousness is pure potentiality; it is the field of all possibilities and infinite creativity.
  • The flow of life is nothing other than the harmonious interaction of all the elements and forces that structure the field of existence.
  • Your future is generated by the choices you are making in every moment of your life.
  • Nature’s intelligence functions with effortless ease and abandoned carefreeness. This is the principle of least action, of no resistance.
  • Do Less and accomplish more.
  • Acceptance simply means that you make a commitment: “Today I will accept people, situations, circumstances and events as they occur.” This means I will know that this moment is as it should be, because the whole universe is as it should be.
  • In order to acquire anything in the physical universe, you have to relinquish your attachment to it.
  • We have taken manifestation in physical form to fulfill a purpose. You have a unique talent and a unique way of expressing it.


  • A way of liberation can have no positive definition, it has to be defined by what it is not, as how a sculptor reveals the image by chipping away what it isn’t.
  • We define ourselves by what we have done, what we are feels fleeting, intangible. But what we have done is fixed and final.
  • The Tao is the indefinable, concrete “process” of the world, the Way of life. The word means a way or road, and sometimes “to speak.”
  • The goal is not to reduce the human mind to vacancy, but to bring into play its innate and spontaneous intelligence by using it without forcing it.
  • All forms of Buddhism subscribe to the “middle way,” between the extremes of angels and demon, ascetic and sensualist, and claim that supreme “awakening” or Buddhahood can be attained only from the human state.
  • Names are useful, but we can’t confuse the measure with the world being measured, of identifying money with wealth, fixed convention with fluid reality.
  • You could also say that life is frustration, not suffering. Reality isn’t permanent nor impermanent, it cannot be categorized.
  • The eightfold path of the Buddha’s Dharma, the method or doctrine through which self-frustration comes to an end. Complete View, Complete Understanding, Complete Speech, Complete Action, Complete Vocation, Complete Application, Complete Recollectedness and Complete Contemplation.
  • There is never anything but the present, and if one cannot live there, one cannot live anywhere.
  • Zen has no goal, it is traveling without point, with nowhere to go. To travel is to be alive, but to arrive is to be dead. A world which focuses on destinations, which only cares about getting somewhere as fast as possible, becomes a world without substance.
  • Zen is a liberation from time. If we open our eyes and see clearly, it becomes obvious that there is no other time than this instant, and that the past and future are abstractions without any concrete reality.


  • To recognize one’s own insanity is, of course, the arising of sanity, the beginning of healing and transcendence.
  • The more you make your thoughts (beliefs) into your identity, the more cut off you and from the spiritual dimension within yourself.
  • How spiritual you are has nothing to do with what you believe but everything to do with your state of consciousness.
  • Ego is no more than this: identification with form, which primarily means thought forms.
  • Most people are still completely identified with the incessant stream of mind, of compulsive thinking, most of it repetitive and pointless.
  • Sometimes letting things go is an act of far greater power than defending or hanging on.
  • When you are completely identified with a role, you confuse a pattern of behavior with who you are, and you take yourself very seriously.
  • Give up defining yourself – to yourself or to others.
  • Whenever you interact with people, don’t be there primarily as a function or a role, but as a field of conscious presence.
  • Your personality, which is conditioned by the past, then becomes your prison.
  • The beginning of freedom from the pain-body lies first of all in the realization that you have a pain-body.
  • To be in alignment with what is means to be in a relationship of inner nonresistance with what happens. It means not to label it mentally as good or bad, but to let it be.
  • The most important, the primordial relationship in your life is your relationship with the now, or rather with whatever from the now takes, that is to say, what is or what happens.
  • This too, will pass.


  • Nothing is certain. Life is full of uncertainties, full of surprises – that is its beauty!
  • This very readiness to remain in uncertainty is courage. This very readiness to be in uncertainty is trust. An intelligent person is one who remains alert whatsoever the situation – and responds to it with his whole heart.
  • You cannot be truthful if you are not courageous.
  • To accept the challenge of the unknown, in spite of all fears, is courage.
  • Smile with nature.
  • Mind is nothing but the accumulated past, the memory.
  • Never be an imitator, be always original. Don’t become a carbon copy.
  • The man of understanding dies every moment to the past and is reborn again to the future.
  • So always listen for the unknown. And gather courage to move into the unknown. To grow to your destiny needs great courage, it needs fearlessness.
  • Love is not a relationship. Love is a state of being; it has nothing to do with anybody else.
  • Mediation is just a courage to be silent and alone. Slowly slowly, you start feeling a new quality to yourself, a new aliveness, a new beauty, a new intelligence – which is not borrowed from anybody, which is growing within you.
  • In this world, to be an individual is the greatest courage.
  • Mediation is nothing but the discovery of the inner sense.
  • Meditation should be an inner shrine. Whenever you feel that the world is too much for you, you can move into your shrine. You can have a bath in your inner being.


  • Life is difficult, mainly because the process of confronting and solving problems is painful. The benefit that results may be pleasurable but the process is painful. And since life poses an endless series of problems, life can be painful.
  • Yet it is this process of meeting and solving problems that gives life its meaning. Problems are the cutting edge between failure and success.
  • The key to learning to deal constructively with our problems lies in a system of discipline comprised of four tools. Delaying gratification, acceptance of responsibility, dedication to truth and balance.
  • Problems do not go away. They must be worked through or they remain, forever a barrier to the growth and development of the spirit.
  • Never speak falsehoods, and bear in mind that the act of withholding the truth is always potentially a lie that requires proper weight/attention be given to the significant moral decision involved.
  • Honesty requires self-discipline, which is why many people opt for a life of very limited honesty/openness, hiding themselves and their maps from the world.
  • To live joyously we must also possess the capacity to live in the present and act spontaneously.
  • Self-discipline is a self-enlarging process. For all that is given up, even more is gained. Throughout the whole of life one must continue to learn to live, and what will amaze you even more, throughout life one must learn to die.


  • Fear is a bigger obstacle than the obstacle itself.
  • Any new pursuit requires entering uncharted territory — that’s scary. But with any great risk comes great reward. The experiences you gain in pursuing your dream will make it all worthwhile.
  • What is “true” will always endure.
  • Truth cannot be veiled by smoke and mirrors — it will always stand firm. When you’re searching for the “right” decision, it will be the one that withstands the tests of time and the weight of scrutiny.
  • Gratitude is the practice of finding the good in each day.
  • If you can concentrate always on the present, you’ll be a happy man.
  • Growth, change, and evolution are weaved into the fabric of reality. Becoming a better version of yourself creates a ripple effect that benefits everything around you: your lifestyle, your family, your friends, your community.
  • Be unrealistic. See the world in terms of what you would like to see happen, not what actually does.”
  • The secret of life, though, is to fall seven times and to get up eight times.
  • Focus on your own journey.
  • You can study, read, and listen until you turn blue in the face, but the full experience is when you take action, and let the rubber meet the road. Once you’re done aiming, pull the trigger.


  • We bind ourselves to our desires and desire-ridden actions and suffer from ignorance and delusion, not knowing our true nature and true purpose.
  • The Bhagavad Gita is about human suffering and its resolution through spiritual effort. It brings spirituality to worldly life and suggests how to face the challenges and compulsions of human life with faith and devotion, without becoming lost in egoistic pursuits and selfish actions.
  • Know that you are not the body but the spiritual Self.
  • Stabilize your mind by overcoming desires.
  • Do your duty with detachment, renouncing the doership.
  • True renunciation is renunciation of doership.
  • Acknowledge the presence of God in you and in everything.
  • Surrender to God with devotion.
  • The solution to the problem of suffering is overcoming desires by practising detachment, renunciation, selfless actions, devotional services, equanimity, sameness and discretion.


  • Love is a state of being, not a trip from here to there.
  • Unconditional love really exists in each of us. It is part of our deep inner being. It is not so much an active emotion as a state of being.
  • Paradoxically, we have let go of emotional love to find the soul love that illuminates us from within.
  • Shifting our identification from the ego to the heart-mind is the beginning of individual spiritual work. That pure awareness is the territory of the soul.
  • The quality of the soul is not just awareness, but also love and compassion, peace and wisdom.
  • Love everyone and serve everyone.
  • One way of remembering to stay in the heart is to hang out with other people who are on the same journey.
  • Love with No Object.
  • Know that when you learn to lose yourself, you will reach the beloved.
  • Amid this divine play we seek fulfilment, perfection, flow, freedom, enlightenment, Oneness.
  • The paradox of the One is that when the ego dissolves, there’s an experience but no experiencer.
  • The only thing a man must renounce if he wishes to attain the Supreme Truth is the notion of individuality. Nothing else.
  • Your work is to practice contentment and surrender.
  • When you perceive yourself and others as souls, you bring love, truth, and compassion to your interactions with others. Then you are the mirror of their soul. A soul recognizes another soul.


  • You are here to enable the divine purpose of the universe to unfold. That is how important you are.
  • The beginning of freedom is the realization that you are not the possessing entity, the thinker.
  • Become aware of a silent but powerful sense of presence. There is one certain criterion by which you can measure your success in the practice: the degree of peace that you feel within.
  • So the single most vital step on your journey toward enlightenment is this: learn to disidentify from your mind. Every time you create a gap in the stream of mind, the light of your consciousness grows stronger.
  • Pleasure is always derived from something outside you, whereas joy arises from within.
  • Realize deeply that the present moment is all you ever have. Make the now the primary focus of your life.
  • Surrender to what is. Say “yes” to life – and see how life suddenly starts working for you rather than against you.
  • Death is a stripping away of all that is not you. The secret of life is to “die before you die” – and find that there is no death.
  • The present moment is all you ever have. There is never a time when your life is not “this moment”. Is this not a fact.
  • You may find it hard to recognize that time is the cause of your suffering or your problems.
  • Only a surrendered person has spiritual power.
  • If there were no illusion, there would be no enlightenment.” It is through the world and ultimately through you that the unmanifested knows itself.
  • True communication is communion.
  • To offer no resistance to life is to be in state of grace, ease, and lightness.
  • When you surrender to what is and so become fully present, the past ceases to have any power. You do not need it anymore. Presence is the key. The now is the key.

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Wayne Dyer: You’ll See It When You Believe It Book Summary

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Many of us want to transform our lives. We want to feel happier, healthier or more fulfilled. But to achieve this, most of us concentrate on the wrong things. We think we can be healthier simply by hitting the gym, or we can be happier simply by changing our jobs.

These sorts of paths won’t lead you to what you’re really searching for. Instead of looking for happiness from the outside, you need to find it internally – inside your mind. The only way you can truly transform your life is to change the way you think, and the way you understand the universe.


This book summary will show you what you need to do to achieve this kind of transformation. You’ll learn how to let go of all external constraints, stop depending on others, and feel truly fulfilled by what you have and who you are. You’ll also learn:

  • why letting go of things gives you more control;
  • why the universe is like a giant song;
  • why forgiving the people who’ve hurt you gives you more power;
  • what a remote-controlled car has to do with destiny; and
  • why nothing in life is a coincidence.



Have you ever felt desperate to make positive changes in the way you do things? Most people feel this way at some point in their lives. But how exactly can we go about doing this? How can we transform ourselves into who we want to be?

Usually, when we decide to transform ourselves, we start by trying to change our bodies. We imagine that self-improvement starts with living a healthier lifestyle, so we go on diets or start exercising.

When we do this, we neglect an incredibly important part of ourselves: our mind.

You can only truly transform yourself when you realize you’re much more than just your form. Our “form,” or body, is the part of ourselves we can see, touch and smell. It can be detected by our physical senses. But, it’s also only one percent of who we truly are. If each person was only a collection of bones, organs and muscles, then everyone would be the same.


In fact, 99 percent of what makes us who we are can’t be seen or sensed. It exists beyond physical comprehension.


This part of us is our higher consciousness: our feelings, thoughts and mind. If you can concentrate on making positive changes to this part of yourself, the change will be stronger.


Unlike your physical form, there are no restrictions on how much you can change your mind. You can exercise as much as you want, but eventually there will be a limit to how much you can bench press. Your higher consciousness is different, however: you can develop and transform it as much as you’d like.

This means that change is ultimately dependent on you. You’re in control – there are no external barriers at all.



What does your favorite childhood memory have in common with your dream of a perfect future? Well, you experience both of them as thoughts, or images in your mind. In fact, everything you do, believe or experience comes in the form of a thought. Thoughts make us who we are.


When we learn to use our thoughts effectively, we can transform our dreams into reality. Here are some helpful steps you can follow:

First, realize that every single one of your actions is based on a prior thought. What you envision in your brain determines what you’ll do. So concentrate on what you want.

If you constantly think of yourself as being shy in front of crowds, for instance, those thoughts will manifest as shyness in reality. You’ll be afraid of public speaking because you’ll imagine yourself failing.

On the other hand, thinking positively about public speaking will help you. If you imagine yourself as the world’s best public speaker, you won’t be afraid. So strive to visualize your perfect scenario for any situation.

Next, realize that whatever you think of, the ingredients to make it happen exist right here. This is especially challenging because we tend to think our imaginary perfect life exists in another reality. But that perception is invalid. Everything you will ever need for the perfect life is already here, you just need to find out how to use it.

Next, will your thoughts to happen. People often imagine that persistence is what they need to realize their goals, but that’s wrong. What they truly need is willingness.


You need the will to do anything to turn your dream into reality. That might be moving to a new city, quitting your job or leaving your friends. Willingness is all that really matters.

Finally, remember that there’s no such thing as failure if you are willing to try for your dream. So don’t give up.



How many history documentaries have you seen? Probably quite a few. How many of them featured a war? Probably quite a few.

War and conflict are depressingly common themes in human history. Why?

Well, we tend to think of ourselves as individuals separate from everyone else. Therefore, we pursue our selfish, individual goals, which leads to conflict.

Fortunately, there’s another way to live! We have to realize that we aren’t separate individuals – we’re all part of the same whole.

To understand this, consider the way our bodies work. Every person has billions and billions of bacteria on his body. We all have bacteria in our intestines, eyelids, toenails and pancreas, and these bacteria enable us to live.

Even though these bacteria are all different and most of them never interact with each other, they’re all part of one whole: us.


We should think of reality in the same way. Even though we’ll never meet most other people in the world (or other beings in other worlds), we’re all part of the same whole: the universe.


When you understand this, you’ll immediately realize why we need to live harmoniously with each other.

Think of our bodies again: we’re all made of billions of cells. If even just a few of them decided to work against the rest, we’d be in serious trouble. In fact, this is what cancer is. Cancer occurs when rogue cells decide to attack the others.

The world works the same way as the body. If we want to live in the happiest and healthiest environment we can, we must live in harmony. If even just a few people reject this idea, we’ll all be in danger.



How many of us are devoting our lives to something we love? Sadly, hardly any of us. Instead, most of us have jobs that place limitations on what we truly want. We can’t wear our own clothes, or work when we want or where we want.

In short, our freedom is limited. Why do we do this to ourselves?

We do this because most of us live with a scarcity mentality. This means that we concentrate on the things we don’t have enough of.


We often find ourselves thinking, “I’d be happier if only I had more of this…” It could be money, time, opportunities, or anything else.

For example, our perceived scarcity of money is what pushes us into unhappy jobs. We spend our time working at jobs we don’t like because we’re consumed by our fear of not having enough money.

This scarcity mentality doesn’t just stop us from doing what we love – it also limits what we can achieve in life. We’ve already seen how our thoughts determine our actions. If we go through life thinking about not having enough, these thoughts will surely become a reality.

So what’s the alternative? We need to embrace the principle of abundance.


The principle of abundance means that there are no limits to what you can achieve. The universe has no boundaries, and neither does your mind. Anything is possible. You just have to believe it.

It’s difficult to think this way, but there are some things you can do to work towards it:

One such tactic is to show your gratitude for everything. Be thankful for the sun that gives you energy, your friends and family, and the simple fact that you’re alive. When you focus on what you’re deeply thankful for, you’ll realize that there’s actually very little scarcity in your life. You already have everything you need to achieve whatever you want.



When you examine the entirety of human history, one thing will become very clear. Those of us in the West currently have a higher standard of living than anyone else who’s lived before. It’s also higher than most people living today.

This wealth should make us happy, shouldn’t it? Well, it doesn’t, and in fact the opposite is true. Most of us are unhappy and lonely. Why?

Well, our attachment to our possessions is actually disrupting our lives. We become so dependent on certain things that we feel we can’t live without them.

These unhealthy attachments aren’t necessarily always related to material objects. We can be overly attached to other people, money or the past. We can become too attached to anything we feel we need to survive.

This stops us from thinking about the things that really matter. It stops us from living fulfilling lives.

To understand how harmful attachment can be, consider this analogy: when you eat a piece of lettuce, it goes through your digestive system without you controlling or even thinking about the process. Your body absorbs the nutrients and expels the waste, all in perfect harmony.

This same thing happens in society, and the universe at large. Things flow naturally and perfectly.

However, our unhealthy attachments stop this natural flow. It’s part of the flow that things will leave us, and we have to learn to let them go. When we can’t let something go, we disturb the natural rhythm of the universe.

So, stop craving the things you don’t need, and instead, practice detachment. You’ll find yourself flowing through life with much greater ease.



Have you thought about a long lost friend, then suddenly they called you the next day? Maybe it was just a coincidence. But perhaps you also connected on a spiritual level.

The more we let our lives flow, the more we’ll experience this kind of synchronicity.

Synchronicity occurs when your friend calls you after you think of them, when you experience deja vu, or when you run into someone you’ve just had a dream about.

Synchronicity can seem like a random connection between separate events, but it’s not. It’s much more, because everything in the universe happens for a reason.

This phenomenon is difficult to comprehend because we fail to see the links between our thoughts and our reality. So if we experience synchronicity, we often just assume it’s a random coincidence.

It’s much easier to understand connections we see visually. Imagine a child hangs a toy on a piece of string. We understand the connection between the toy and string because we can clearly see it. Connections in synchronicity however, are invisible, so they’re more difficult to make sense of.

Thinking about a remote-controlled car can help you overcome this. We know the car and the controller are connected, even though it’s not physical. The same thing happens with synchronicity: everything is connected, we just don’t see it.

When you accept synchronicity and the interconnectedness of the universe, you’ll realize that everything happens for a reason. The path of universe is already laid out – there is no randomness. Therefore there’s no point in worrying about things you can’t change like your social position, your possessions or your job.



After reading this, you might be thinking you’re well on your way to transforming your life and reaching higher consciousness. There’s still one incredibly important part, however: forgiveness.


We’re constantly putting blame on other people, and it prevents us from reaching our true potential. If you truly want to transform, you have to learn to forgive people instead.

What do you do when someone does something bad to you, or something you don’t like? If you’re like most, you probably get angry. You might hate the person, or blame them for creating a problem in your life.

What do you gain from blaming them? Nothing. In fact, concentrating your negative emotions and thoughts on someone only gives them more power in your life. It stops you from concentrating on what you really want to achieve.

You also need to remember that everything happens for a reason, even painful things. Every bit of pain someone else causes you is a lesson you can learn from.

So, instead of hatred or resentment, show forgiveness to the people who’ve wronged you. You’ll be able to let go of negative thoughts, so you can focus on the thoughts that really matter.

Remember to forgive yourself too. Most of us have done things we regret in life. Maybe we’ve done something that goes against our principles, like lying to a loved one or eating that whole bag of chips. This makes us feel guilty or ashamed.


What does our guilt achieve? Again, nothing. If you beat yourself up about something, you’re only more likely to do it again.

Instead of feeling guilty, forgive yourself. Reassess if what you did matches your values, and move on. Don’t dwell on the past or on your mistakes. Focus on the future instead.



Now that you know the secrets of personal transformation, here are some tips for applying them in your daily life.

First, make an effort to regularly go outside your comfort zone. Be kind to yourself everyday, and view every experience and thought as a learning opportunity. Also, remember to be thankful for what you have and what you are, and remind yourself that you deserve only the best from life.

Meditate. Go to a quiet place, close your eyes and pay attention to your breathing. This will calm your mind and pull you back in the present moment, which is the only moment that truly exists.

You’ll be able to accomplish more when you’re relaxed and free inside. So stop worrying, quiet your mind, and practice trusting your intuition – it’s definitely your best advisor. Just surrender your life to the forces and principles that are always at play in our perfect universe.

Also, commit yourself to forgiving the people you’ve conflicted with. Send them a gift or call them to see how they’re doing. And don’t forget to wish them well!

Accept that abundance is coming towards you when you let things move in their own rhythm. Imagine you have a guardian angel or other loving observer as a part of your consciousness.

Ultimately, just let things happen, and remember that you’re perfect exactly as you are.



The key message in this book:

The universe is perfect. Everything in it is connected, and everything happens for a reason. When you accept this, and learn to flow and forgive, you’ll find harmony with yourself and others. That harmony is part of your higher consciousness – and it will allow you to transform into what you truly want to be.

Actionable advice:

Transform your mind, not your body.

The next time you feel bad about your body, remember that it’s only one percent of who you really are. Concentrate on transforming the remaining 99 percent – your mind – and the transformation will be much more meaningful.

shout out to for doing the written summary

Top 20 Personal Development Books

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  • Success is a stairway, and the elevator is out.
  • Six steps to climb the ladder of success. 1) Self-image 2) Your relationship with others 3) Goals 4) Attitude 5) Work 6) Desire
  • Cultivate a winning self-image
  • There is no free lunch so stop expecting success to just fall in to your lap.
  • If you want to succeed get out there and generate some motion in your business.
  • Day after day and continually learning/improving certainly greatly increases your chances.


  • They themselves are makers of themselves.
  • His character being the complete sum of all his thoughts.
  • Every act of a man springs from the hidden seeds of thought.
  • That man is the master of thought, the moulder of character, and the maker and shaper of condition, environment and destiny.
  • The outer conditions of a person’s life will always be found to be harmoniously related to his inner state.
  • Thought is the foundation of action, life, the manifestation.
  • He who have conquered doubt he has conquered failure.
  • The greatest achievement was the first and for a time a dream.


  • The most valuable result of all education is to make you do the thing you have to do, when it ought to be done, whether you like it or not.
  • Simplicity is the keynote of success in any endeavour.
  • The worst enemy you have…your bad habits.
  • In truth, the only difference between those who have failed and those who have succeeded lies in the difference of their habits. Good habits are the key to all success.
  • I will form good habits and become their slave.
  • I will persist until I succeed.
  • The best-men are not those have waited for chances but who have taken them.
  • Folks who never do any more than they get paid for, never get paid for any more than they do.


  • We become what we think about.
  • As ye sow, so shall ye reap.
  • The establishment of a goal is the key to successful living.
  • Focus on one objective at a time. Like a servo-mechanic, the brain, set on a target, will call into play those mental processes that will bring your efforts to fruition.
  • All growth depends upon activity.
  • Carry a card around with you that says Patience.
  • No one can become rich in any way without serving others.
  • Nothing in the world will take the place of persistence.
  • Give to every person with whom you deal more than you take from him.


  • Your thoughts are your own, uniquely yours to keep, change, share, or contemplate. No one else can get inside your head and have your own thoughts as you experience them. You do indeed control your thoughts, and your brain is your own to use as you so determine.
  • Happiness is an absence of approval-seeking.
  • The best antidote to worry is action.
  • The unknown is where growth resides. Both for civilization and for the individual.
  • Eliminate external references of comparison.
  • Make a decision to live five minutes at a time.
  • Doers do. Critics blame and complain.


  • The moment you have an instinct to act on a goal you must count 5-4-3-2-1 and physically move or your brain will stop you.
  • Courage is the ability to do something that is difficult or scary. Stepping outside of your comfort zone. Sharing your ideas, speaking up, or showing up. Standing firm in your beliefs and values. And some days…getting out of bed.
  • Pushing yourself to take simple actions creates a chain reaction in your confidence and your productivity.
  • Operate with a bias toward action.
  • It’s not the big moves that define our lives; it’s the smallest ones.
  • The difference between people who make their dreams come true and those of us who don’t is just one thing: the courage to start and the discipline to keep going.
  • Productivity can be boiled down to one word—FOCUS.
  • Learn how to manage distractions.


  • Winning’ is taking the talent and potential you were born with, and have since developed, and using it fully toward a goal or purpose that makes you happy.
  • One clear distinction Waitley makes between life’s winners and losers is that winners build good habits that help them succeed while losers retain all their bad habits and are content to live a life with fear and regret.
  • Self-Projection: Make a movie in your head that shows you achieving that goal.
  • To achieve anything of substance you will want goals that are clearly defined.
  • Create SMART Goals: Specific, Measurable, Assignable, Realistic and Time-bound.
  • There are no success hacks. To achieve your goals you will need to build the hard habits. You will need the self-discipline to keep them going… and the self-discipline to start them once again if you happen to fail the first time.
  • The winners will have self talk that helps them strengthen their self-image and self-disciple. The losers are the ones who too listen too frequently to negative self talks.


  • Set targets that are 10X the goals you would ever dream of.
  • In order to go farther than you ever thought possible you must both think and act at levels 10X beyond the norm.
  • You will either work to accomplish your goals and dreams or you’ll be used to accomplish someone else’s goals and dreams.
  • It is your duty to be successful. Do not view success as an option.
  • Money and power follow attention.
  • You have to be obsessed. Nobody has ever accomplished something incredible without obsession.
  • Taking massive actions is the only way to fulfill your true potential.
  • Successful people pay more attention to the goal than to the problem.
  • Commit first, figure out later.
  • You are the sum total of the five people who are closest to you, so surround yourself with great thinkers and doers.


  • Be a student, not merely a follower.
  • Success is no more than the natural consequence of consistently applying the fundamentals of success to life.
  • There are always a half-dozen things that make eighty percent of the difference.
  • Discipline is the foundation on which all success is built. Lack of discipline inevitably leads to failure.
  • A new discipline immediately changes the direction of your life, like a ship turning in mid-ocean and heading toward a new destination.
  • Income rarely exceeds personal development.
  • Don’t spend minor time on major things.
  • Don’t spend major money on minor things, and, conversely, don’t spend minor money on major things.
  • The only way it gets better for you is when you get better.
  • How do I develop an above-average income? The answer is, become an above-average person.


  • Our attitudes shape our future. This is a universal law.
  • Nothing is ever accomplished without work. If I leave you nothing else but the will to work, I will have left you the priceless gift: the joy of work.
  • Identify yourself with a successful image.
  • Definiteness of purpose is the starting point of all achievement. Definiteness of purpose, combined with PMA, is the starting point of all worthwhile achievement.
  • Ask and it shall be given you; seek and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.
  • Direct your thoughts control your emotions and you ordain your destiny.
  • A negative mental attitude is one of the primary causes of failure.
  • Thinking is not creative unless it is followed through with action.
  • It takes only one idea, followed by action, to succeed when others fail.
  • For knowledge doesn’t make you successful, but application of the knowledge will. Action!
  • You are what your habits make you.
  • Anything in life worth having is worth working for.
  • Develop an obsession, a magnificent obsession to help others.


  • Whatever you believe on a conscious level, you’ll impress onto your subconscious mind. Your subconscious doesn’t have the power to choose, it simply takes what you give it, and executes it.
  • By first imaginingsomething in your subconscious, you can give it effect to happen in real life.
  • The principle with which your subconscious mind works is belief. Merely thinking that you’ll be successful is not enough. Not only do you have to wantit, but you need to believe that you are.
  • The difference between a thought and a belief is thefeeling. A thought is just an idea, whereas a belief is a thought with a feeling.
  • Your subconscious is always reproducing according to your habitual mental patterns.
  • Once you repeat something to yourself enough times, you start to believe it’s true.


  • Stop researching every aspect of it and reading all about it and debating the pros and cons of it … Start doing it.
  • Don’t count on motivation. Count on Discipline.
  • The only thing that matters is that you actually do, so DO!
  • You have control over your mind. You just have to assert it.
  • Discipline starts with waking up early.
  • Discipline is about facing your fears so you can conquer them. Discipline means taking the hard road — the uphill road.
  • Discipline can seem like your worst enemy. But in reality it is your best friend. It will take care of you like nothing else can.
  • Question yourself every day.
  • Fight: Go down swinging.
  • The people who are successful decide they are going to be successful. They make that choice.
  • The only thing that matters is that you actually do.


  • There comes a time when you have to drop your burdens in order to fight for yourself and your dreams.
  • You must walk by faith and not by sight.
  • If you summon the courage to go after your dream, life will provide the answers.
  • Wanting something is not enough. You must hunger for it. Your motivation must be absolutely compelling.
  • Many of us go through life with brakes on. The brakes of fear, the brakes of procrastination, the brakes of unworthiness, the brakes of negative thinking.
  • Develop a sense of urgency in your life. Take actions now that will move you toward your goals.
  • You must endure the turbulence of change in order to grow.
  • Life is an ongoing war with insecurities and fears.
  • Process of personal growth involves four stages of increased awareness in the areas of: self-knowledge, self-approval, self-commitment and self-fulfilment.
  • Goals help you channel your energy into action. They place you in charge of your life.
  • Most people take their dreams to the grave with them.
  • If you want to make it happen, you have to be relentless.


  • Success is the ongoing process of striving to become more.
  • You shape your perceptions, or someone shapes them for you.
  • The difference all come down to the way in which we communicate with ourselves and the actions we take.
  • Anything any human being does can modelled. Modelling is the pathway to excellence.
  • If you can change a state, you can change a behavior.
  • To change our own behaviors, we have to start with our own beliefs.
  • Believing it can be done becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
  • Belief in limits, creates limited people.
  • All human behavior revolves around the urge to gain pleasure or avoid pain.
  • Key ingredient of success: the ability to eliminate from your own environment triggers that tend to put you in negative or unreasourceful states, while installing positive ones in yourself and in others.


  • Our main business is not to see what lies dimly at a distance, but to do what lies clearly at hand.
  • Shut the iron doors on the past and the future. Live in Day-tight Compartments.
  • The best possible way to prepare for tomorrow is to concentrate with all your intelligence, all your enthusiasm, on doing today’s work superbly today. That is the only possible way you can prepare for the future.
  • There comes a time when we must decide and act and never look back.
  • The remedy for worry is to get completely occupied doing something constructive.
  • Ninety nine percent of the things I worried about never happened.
  • There is only one way to happiness, and that is to cease worrying about things which are beyond the power of our will.
  • The biggest problem you and I have to deal with-in fact, almost the only problem we have to deal with-is choosing the right thoughts.
  • Let’s not imitate others. Let’s find ourselves and be ourselves.
  • Forget yourself by becoming interested in others. Do every day a good deed that will put a smile of joy on someone’s face.
  • Worry goes when exercise begins.
  • Face the worst that can happen.


  • The great secret of life is the law of attraction.
  • You become what you think about most, but you also attract what you think about most.
  • Your mind is actually shaping the world around you.
  • You are like a human transmission tower, transmitting a frequency with your thoughts. If you want to change anything in your life, change the frequency by changing your thoughts.
  • The first step is to ask. Make a command to the Universe. Let the Universe know what you want. The Universe responds to your thoughts.
  • Step two is believe. Believe that it’s already yours. Have what I love to call unwavering faith. Believing in the unseen.
  • Step three, and the final step in the process, is to receive. Begin to feel wonderful about it. Feel the way you will feel once it arrives. Feel it now.
  • Everyone visualizes whether he knows it or not. Visualizing is the great secret of success.
  • Happier thoughts lead to essentially a happier biochemistry.
  • Man becomes what he thinks about.


  • Your life is like a machine that you can develop, control, and change through your thoughts and beliefs.
  • Whether we realize it or not, each of us carries about with us a mental blueprint or picture of ourselves…It has been built up from our own beliefs about ourselves.
  • Your self-image has developed as a result of your past experiences. You tend to believe this self-image, and live your life based on this belief of yourself.
  • True happiness and satisfaction in life comes from “an adequate and realistic self-image that you can live with.”
  • True happiness and satisfaction in life comes from “an adequate and realistic self-image that you can live with.”
  • Every human being has been literally “engineered for success” by his Creator. Every human being has access to a power greater than himself.”
  • Your thoughts and actions are based on what you imagine as truth.
  • Your physical brain and body functions as a machine which “YOU” operate.
  • Seeing yourself differently will lead to acting differently, and improving yourself.
  • Happiness is learned behavior and thoughts.


  • If you can determine exactly what it is you want, you can find out how others have achieved it before you. If you then do the same things they have done, you’ll achieve the same results they have.
  • Your future will become limited only by your imagination.
  • Your first job is to create a blueprint, a clear picture of where you are going and what it will look like when you get there.
  • Failing to plan is planning to fail.
  • Your main job, in taking control of your life and your future, is to become the conductor of your own orchestra.
  • How you think about any situation determines how you feel, and your feelings determine your behavior.
  • Self-discipline, self-mastery, self-control all begin with you taking control of your thinking.
  • If you believe it strongly enough, it becomes your reality.
  • You can never rise any higher than your expectations of yourself.
  • Outer world is a reflection of your inner world.
  • To achieve different results, you must become a different person. You must change your goals and ideals for -yourself and develop a new self-image.
  • All improvement in your life begins with an improvement in your mental pictures.
  • Acting the part, walk, talk and act exactly as if you were already the person you desire to be.
  • The starting point of personal liberation is for you to accept complete responsibility for who you are and for everything that you become.


  • All achievement, all earned riches, have their beginning in an idea.
  • One sound idea is all that one needs to achieve success.
  • Truly, “thoughts are things,” and powerful things at that, when they are mixed with definiteness of purpose, persistence, and a burning desire for their translation into riches, or other material objects.
  • Success comes to those who become success conscious.
  • Every person who wins in any undertaking must be willing to burn his ships and cut all sources of retreat.
  • Determine exactly what you intend to give in return for the money you desire. There is no such reality as “something for nothing.
  • Remember, no more effort is required to aim high in life, to demand abundance and prosperity, than is required to accept misery and poverty.
  • Nothing is impossible to the person who backs desire with enduring faith.
  • Faith is the starting point of all accumulation of riches.
  • I know through the principle of auto-suggestion, any desire that I persistently hold in my mind will eventually seek expression through some practical means of attaining the object.
  • Man can create anything which he can imagine.


  • Seek out pain, fall in love with suffering, and transform yourself from weak to strong.
  • Call yourself out!
  • Accountability Mirror. Write all your insecurities, dreams, and goals on Post-Its and tag up your mirror. Whatever your goal, you’ll help to hold yourself accountable for the small steps it will take to get there. Self-improvement takes dedication and self-discipline. The dirty mirror you see every day is going to reveal the truth. Stop ignoring it. Use it to your advantage.
  • The first step on the journey toward a calloused mind is stepping outside your comfort zone on a regular basis.
  • Never forget that all emotional and physical anguish is finite! It all ends eventually.
  • The human body can withstand and accomplish a hell of a lot more than most of us think possible, and that it all begins and ends in the mind.
  • The 40% Rule. most of us give up when we’ve only given around 40 percent of our maximum effort. Even when we feel like we’ve reached our absolute limit, we still have 60 percent more to give!
  • We must remove our governor.
  • We don’t rise to the level of our expectations, we fall to the level of our training.
  • Be uncommon among uncommon.
  • Don’t let your desire for comfort rule you.
  • Take souls.
  • Life is one long imaginary game that has no scoreboard, no referee, and isn’t over until we’re dead and buried.


50 Words to Your Dreams Chapter 38 Fear by Michael George Knight



Fear does not exist outside the human body, it only exist within. It is a natural biological emotion the body releases when it perceives a danger or treat to keep it safe. There is nothing wrong in listening to fear if it is keeping you safe and out of bodily harm. The problem begins when fear is keeping you away from growth and living the life you want.


We tend to internalize mind-made fears about a not-yet existent future we perceive to be painful, such as fear of death, public speaking, heights, what people think of us and even fear of failure. Fearful thoughts and fearful beliefs is one of the biggest difficulties you will have to overcome mentally on your way to personal success. It is time to take note of your fears and get them under your control.



For you to control your future and destiny it is important you work with and grow through fear. Start by first taking note of what your top fears are in life? What scares you the most? What is holding you back living the life you want to live? What fearful thoughts do you repeat to yourself over and over? Make a list of all your fears and get them out of your head.


Now make a decision that you will not be held back any more by these mind-made fear beliefs you have created in your head. Make a conscious effort to start taking action towards the elimination or management of these fears holding you back. By taking action and stepping into your fear you will grow through fear instead of being held back by fear. Realize the thought of fear was worse than the actual fear itself.



The way to kill fear and drive it into a small corner is by acting out our fears until fear loses it grip on you. Our current comfort zone is made up of the things that we were once fearful, afraid or uncomfortable doing in the past. But through repetition and action we build competence and confidence to easily do the things that were once hard and scary. Where there once was fear, now becomes comfort. Growth in life lives on the other side of fear, there is no other way. You cannot sidestep fear, the only option is straight through it. Confront your fears and step into fear and you will realize you had nothing to fear all along.



  • A man who is not afraid is not aggressive, a man who has no sense of fear of any kind is really a free and peaceful man. (Jiddu Krishnamurti)
  • According to psychiatrists, the fear of public speaking is caused by the fear of ostracism, the fear of standing out, the fear of criticism, the fear of being an outcast. The fear of being different prevents most people from seeking new ways to solve their problems. (Robert Kiyosaki)
  • All men have fears, but the brave put down their fears and go forward, sometimes to death and sometimes to victory. Throw down a challenge. (Motto of the King’s Guard in Ancient Greece)
  • As soon as the fear approaches near, attack and destroy it. (Chanakya)
  • Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than exposure. (Helen Keller)
  • Breaking through your fears makes you free. (Spencer Johnson)
  • Change can be scary, but you know what’s scarier? Allowing fear to stop you from growing, evolving, and progressing. (Mandy Hale)
  • Don’t let your fear of what could happen make nothing happen. (Unknown)
  • Everything you want is on the other side of fear. (Jack Canfield)
  • Expose yourself to your deepest fear; after that, fear has no power, and the fear of freedom shrinks and vanishes. You are free. (Jim Morrison)
  • Fear and growth go hand in hand. When you courageously face the thing you fear, you automatically experience the growth you have been seeking. (Sandra Gallagher)
  • Fear defeats more people than any other one thing in the world. (Ralph Waldo Emerson)
  • Fear does not prevent death. It prevents life. (Naguib Mahfouz)
  • Fear has two meaning: Forget everything and run or Face everything and rise. Which will you choose? (Unknown)
  • Fear is a habit; so is self-pity, defeat, anxiety, despair, hopelessness and giving up. Eliminate all of these negative habits with two simple resolves: I can! And I will! (Napoleon Hill)
  • Fear is a natural reaction to moving closer to the truth. (Pema Chodron)
  • Fear is an emotion, and like any mere emotion it can be controlled. I have heard the word fear defined as an acronym: False Expectations Appearing Real. (Les Brown)
  • Fear is an open invitation to trouble whereas faith invites success. (Zig Ziglar)
  • Fear is ignorance. (Ralph Waldo Emerson)
  • Fear is just your judgement of your own thoughts. (Kyle Cease)
  • Fear is like a plague, it’s like a disease and it has its way to infiltrate people’s mind and to cause people to posture in a very unhealthy way and when there is excessive fear then we begin to become the aggressors ourselves. (BT. Swami)
  • Fear is nothing but a wrong belief about you, your situation, or the future. Anxiety is when that wrong belief starts affecting your body. (Unknown)
  • Fear is nothing more than a mental monster you have created, a negative stream of consciousness. (Robin Sharma)
  • Fear is the most powerful of all thoughts with one exception, and that one exception is faith. Faith can always overcome fear. Faith is the one power against which fear cannot stand. Day by day, as you fill your mind with faith, there will automatically master fear. (Norman Vincent Peale)
  • Fear is the most subtle and destructive of all human diseases. Fears kills dreams and hope. (Les Brown)
  • Fear is the reason you sell yourself short and settle for far less than you are capable of. (Brian Tracy)
  • Fear may come true that which one is afraid of. (Viktor E. Frankl)
  • Fear of criticism, failure to create plans and to put them into action, because of what other people will think, do, or say. This enemy belongs at the head of the list, because it generally exists in one’s subconscious mind, where its presence is not recognized. (Napoleon Hill)
  • Fear of loss is greater than the desire for gain. (Zig Ziglar)
  • Fear prevents people from living to their fullest potential. (Marietta Jeager-Lane)
  • Fear sometimes paralyzes you inside. It even keeps you from being honest with yourself and getting help. Don’t let this fear hold you captive in your regret. (Dexter Yager)
  • Fear, doubt and worry is what stop’s you from taking action. These are our greatest obstacles in life. (James Allen)
  • Fears are nothing more than states of mind. One’s state of mind is subject to control and direction. (Napoleon Hill)
  • Fears are product of the subconscious. Every fear has its root. It never goes away till we conquer it. The conquest itself depends on ourselves. The strength lies inside. Conquer the fear. (Unknown)
  • Fears are self-created imaginations which make negative associations of ideas. Fear is your projection about the future in your imagination. (Jack Collis)
  • Feel the fear and do it anyway. (Unknown)
  • For if you fear something continuously you tend to create conditions in your mind propitious to the development of that which you fear. An atmosphere is encouraged in which it can take root and grow. You tend to draw it to yourself. (Norman Vincent Peale)
  • He who fears he will suffer, already suffers because he fears. (Michel De Montaigne)
  • He who has overcome his fears will truly be free. (Aristotle)
  • I believe that anyone can conquer fear by doing the things he fears to do, provided he keeps doing them until he gets a record of successful experience behind him. (Eleanor Roosevelt)
  • I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times. (Bruce Lee)
  • I never lie because I don’t fear anyone. You only lie when you’re afraid. (John Gotti)
  • I recognized that it was excessive fear and self-doubt that were the greatest detractors of personal genius. (Robert Kiyosaki)
  • If you cannot control your fear, it will always have control over you. (Mark Kishon Christopher)
  • Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy. (Dale Carnegie)
  • Indecision crystallizes into doubt, the two blend and become fear. (Napoleon Hill)
  • It is better by noble boldness to run the risk of being subject to half of the evils we anticipate than to remain in cowardly listlessness for fear of what may happen. (Herodotus)
  • It is not death that a man should fear, but he should fear never beginning to live. (Marcus Aurelius)
  • It was a high counsel that I once heard given to a young person. Always do what you are afraid to do. (Ralph Waldo Emerson)
  • Its fear that keeps most people working at a job. (Robert Kiyosaki)
  • Life begins where fear ends. (Osho)
  • Life is an ongoing war with insecurities and fears. (Les Brown)
  • Listen to what you know instead of what you fear. (Richard Bach)
  • Look inward and face the possibility that it is your own fears and doubts that are your biggest roadblocks to success. (Brian Tracy)
  • Most fears cannot withstand the test of careful scrutiny and analysis. When we expose our fears to the light of thoughtful examination they usually just evaporate. (Jack Canfield)
  • Never let the fear of striking out get in your way. (Babe Ruth)
  • Never say never because limits like fears are often just an illusion. (Michael Jordan)
  • Never take counsel of your fears. (Norman Vincent Peale)
  • Nothing diminishes anxiety faster than action. (Walter Anderson)
  • Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to be understood. Now is the time understand more, so that we may fear less. (Marie Curie)
  • Once you become fearless, life becomes limitless. Let go of your fear and go after everything you want. (Unknown)
  • One of the greatest discoveries a man makes, one of his great surprises, is to find he can do what he was afraid he couldn’t do. (Henry Ford)
  • Only when we are no longer afraid do we begin to live (Dorothy Thompson)
  • People fear death even more than pain. It’s strange that they fear death. Life hurts a lot more than death. At the point of death, the pain is over. Yeah, I guess it is a friend. (Jim Morrison)
  • Poise is the deliberate shunting aside of all fears, arising from new and uncontrollable circumstance. (Maxwell Maltz)
  • So, it is not that one must be free from or resist fear but that one must understand the whole nature and structure of fear. Understand it. That means learn about it, watch it, and come directly into contact with it. We are to learn about fear, not how to escape from it, not how to resist it. (Jiddu Krishnamurti)
  • Sometimes to break through fear you got to try a few times. (Unknown)
  • Stop being afraid of what could go wrong, and start being excited of what could go right. (Tony Robbins)
  • Thanks to your fear, for the rest of your life you are likely to be dependent on a wage and an employer. (Robert Kiyosaki)
  • The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure you seek. (Joseph Campbell)
  • The components of anxiety, stress, fear, and anger do not exist independently of you in the world. They simply do not exist in the physical world, even though we talk about them as if they do. (Wayne Dyer)
  • The enemy is fear. We think it is hate, but it is fear. (Mahatma Gandhi)
  • The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time. (Mark Twain)
  • The fear of failure is the greatest single obstacle to success in adult life. (Brian Tracy)
  • The fear of ostracism that causes people to conform and not question commonly accepted opinions or popular trends. (Robert Kiyosaki)
  • The great thing about fear is that it isn’t real. I know that when you are experiencing fear it might feel real, but it actually does not exist in the physical universe. (Grant Cardone)
  • The greatest fear in the world is of the opinions of others. And the moment you are unafraid of the crowd you are no longer a sheep, you become a lion. A great roar arises in your heart, the roar of freedom. (Osho)
  • The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing you will make one. (Elbert Hubbard)
  • The greatest prison people live in is the fear of what other people think. (Unknown)
  • The greatest problem of human life is fear. It is fear that robs us of happiness. It is fear that causes us to settle for far less than we are capable of. It is fear that is the root cause of negative emotions, unhappiness and problems in human relationships. (Brian Tracy)
  • The majority of the fears that we have are not life-and-death fears. And yet we give them more power than they deserve and permit them to govern our lives. (Les Brown)
  • The way to kill fear is by taking action. (Grant Cardone)
  • The whole secret of existence is to have no fear. Never fear what will become of you, depend on no one. Only the moment you reject all help are you freed. (Buddha)
  • Thinking will not overcome fear but action will. ( Clement Stone)
  • We all have a need for a sense of certainty. Most people have tremendous fear of the unknown. Uncertainty implies the potential of having pain strike us. (Anthony Robbins)
  • We must face our fears in order to live fully. You can turn back, but if you want to grow you must be willing to go forward and face your fears again and again and again. (Abraham Maslow)
  • What we fear doing most is usually what we most need to do. (Timothy Ferriss)
  • When you move beyond your fear, you feel free. (Spencer Johnson)
  • You can conquer almost any fear if you will make up your mind to do so. For remember, fear doesn’t exist anywhere except in the mind. (Dale Carnegie)
  • You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing you think you cannot do. (Eleanor Roosevelt)


That’s a wrap on

50 Words to Your Dreams

Chapter 38: Fear

Let me know your thoughts on Chapter 38

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Michael Hyatt: Your Best Year Ever Book Summary

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Every year we make New Year’s resolutions, but by February we’ve usually abandoned any efforts toward change – either because they seem impossible to achieve or we’ve simply forgotten about them.

Improving your life isn’t as simple as staring up at a firework-lit sky and whispering a couple of sentences to yourself. Sure, the intent is there, but you also need to follow up on your verbal promises with some solid planning and action.

This is where this book summary come in: Michael Hyatt guides you through the necessary steps to make your New Year’s wish a tangible reality, so you’ll never spend another year regretting all the things you could’ve or should’ve done. Full of historical examples and personal anecdotes from the author, Your Best Year Ever will show you that reaching your goals is never an impossibility.


In this book summary, you’ll discover

  • why it’s good to develop an addiction;
  • the author’s greatest failure; and
  • who was first to run a mile in under four minutes.



Let’s start by picturing where you want to be in 12 months. What do you see? Some of the more common desires are to be free of debt, physically fit, a happy family life, a good relationship, master a hobby and feel spiritually well. The good news is that you can have all of this.

Measuring your progress in ten areas of your life will allow you to see what you need to improve.

These interrelated aspects are mental health, physical health, spirituality, intellectual life, marriage or partnerships, parental life, friendships, job, hobbies and personal finances. These components are key to living a fulfilling life, which is why it’s important to work consistently on improving them.

To begin, rank yourself from zero to ten on each of the aspects previously mentioned. This way you will be able to identify the areas in greatest need of improvement and regularly mark your progress by comparing the results. Moreover, it will give you a clear indication as to where you should be focusing your efforts.

These ten aspects are connected to and influenced by one another, and therefore improvements in one area will most likely result in growth in other areas as well.

For instance, a relaxing home life will allow you to concentrate better at work, while a rich social life will lead to a higher chance of meeting a partner.

Likewise, performing poorly on certain aspects could have negative impacts on other areas too. You may lack energy in the workplace if you’re not physically healthy, while not having any hobbies could negatively affect your marriage.

Working on all these aspects might seem like a daunting task, but the following book summarys will show you how to overcome your worries and devise a practical plan to bring about change in your life.


Most of us lug around a lot of baggage, or mental blocks, that determine what is and isn’t possible for us to achieve.


One such mental block is false assumptions. Humans continuously make assumptions about the world and themselves. These are often wrong and create a barrier to our progression. These assumptions can be thoughts, such as “You’re not the creative type,” “You’re ugly,” “You can’t hold down a job,” or “The recession means nobody will buy your product.” These are almost always self-inflicted and objectively untrue in most cases.

What’s more, we also set up physical barricades with our minds.

Pilots once thought it impossible to fly faster than the speed of sound, and athletes believed that no human could run a mile in under four minutes. The ones that broke through and achieved the seemingly unthinkable are those who dispensed with the negative narrative and went about proving that it was, in fact, possible.

This is the mentality that former United States Air Force general officer Charles Elwood “Chuck” Yeager had when he broke the sound barrier in 1947. In 1954, athlete Roger Bannister also ignored the impossible narrative by running a mile in three minutes and 59 seconds. By dispelling common knowledge about physical limitations, both Yeager and Bannister succeeded where others had failed. Since then, numerous airplanes have broken the sound barrier, and many runners have recorded one-mile runs in under four minutes, now that the perceived limits have been surpassed.

By revising the perceived limits, not only can you improve yourself, but you can even change the world.

In 1963, it was the belief of many that the civil rights movement wouldn’t amount to anything. Most said that non-violent efforts would never achieve change and that racism was far too deeply ingrained in American society for anything to be done about it. Dr. Martin Luther King, however, refused to take these perceived beliefs as undeniable truths and led a peaceful protest march of 200,000 people to Washington, where he gave his famous “I Have a Dream” speech. With this speech, King replaced the taken-for-granted worldview with an alternative perspective – knocking down the mental blocks in many American minds and opening them up to change.


It might’ve been a primary school teacher who told us we’re hopeless at art, or it could’ve been last month’s failed attempt at dieting. Whatever the case, past experiences can contribute to our negative thinking and keep us from moving ahead.

A bad experience in the past can affect our confidence in future circumstances.

A good example of this is comparing the 80% of teenagers who make New Year’s resolutions to the 30% who do so aged 60 and older. This discrepancy is because the older people get, the more failures and setbacks they’ve experienced, and so they are less optimistic about their desires coming true. But this is a false assumption, and you shouldn’t let past experiences affect your actions in the future.

Instead, use those previous failures as useful advice.

The author’s greatest failure occurred when he was working all year for a client – an up-and-coming author working on landing a big publishing deal. Toward the very end of the year, the client stopped taking his calls, and just like that, the author had wasted 12 months on someone who’d decided to go with another publisher at the last minute.

Now, the easy choice would’ve been to give up and look for another job. Instead, the author used what he’d learned over those 12 months to improve his company in a number of ways. For instance, he realized that he should never focus on just one client, and instead spread his net wide. He also learned never to assume that a client would be appreciative of his work. To minimize the risk, he now asks his clients to explain exactly what it is they want out of the partnership.

As important as it is to set future targets for yourself, it’s also critical that the goals you set are attainable. Let’s take a look at how you can achieve this in the next book summary.


Some targets that we set for ourselves are so unrealistic that even the world’s greatest geniuses wouldn’t be able to attain them. On the flip side, sometimes the goals may be so easy that we lose motivation to try and achieve them because so little effort is required.

The key to ensuring high enthusiasm levels is striving for a goal that’s within your capabilities, but one that also requires a reasonable amount of effort.

To set the right goals, you need to find the discomfort zone.


Let’s say you’re planning to write a book. Winning the Nobel Prize for literature is a desirable goal, but it’s also quite unreasonable for a first-time writer. Furthermore, such an ambitious target could prevent you from starting altogether. Conversely, if you set your sights too low and allow yourself to finish your first draft in 6 months, you’ll end up taking too long and probably never get around to finishing. Instead, find a happy medium, which the author calls the discomfort zone. For example, give yourself three months to finish the first draft, and then another three to complete the second.


Setting goals is important, but don’t be delusional.

It’s possible to exceed the discomfort zone and break into the delusional zone, if you’re not careful. Just as an athlete who overtrains will end up pulling a muscle, setting delusional targets will result in you undermining yourself.


One example of this is the automobile company General Motors. In 2002, they set a target to obtain 29% of the US market. This absurdly ambitious goal almost bankrupted the company.

Employees were required to wear badges with the number 29 on their lapels so that they were constantly reminded of the goal. The staff became so fixated on sales numbers that they sold cars with zero-interest loans – costing the company money and affecting its bottom line. It effectively undermined the business and put the 29% target even further out of reach than when they started the initiative. If General Motors had considered it more thoroughly, they would’ve realized that the goal was delusional and this misadventure would’ve been avoided.


Imagine you had to read a long book like the Bible. That’s almost a million words – a rather daunting task. To make this a more attainable goal, break up the task into 20-minute chunks every morning, and you’ll have read the entire Bible in a year.

When you split up mammoth tasks into short-term goals, the rewards can be very satisfying.

Humans get addicted to daily tasks, particularly if they’re done over an extended period of time. This also applies to tasks that were born from the discomfort zone. A task that we enjoy can turn from a stick to a carrot, that is from a punishment to a reward. People who intend to read the Bible might find it daunting at first, but once they get started, they’ll enjoy the spiritual and peaceful moments that accompany the task.

The key action, though, is to work on the task until you become addicted.

Some of you may have heard that it takes 21 days to get addicted to a habit, but some tasks only take a few days before an addiction forms, while more complex ones can take over 200 days. According to researchers from University College London, the average number of days for a task to transition into an addictive habit is 66.

To make it easier to become addicted to a task, you need to introduce rewards into the system. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean buying yourself a new suit once you shed those 20 pounds. Rewards for completing discomfort zone tasks are more like feelings of gratitude and pleasure, and simply noticing your progression toward your long-term goal can be rewarding enough.

You can also increase your enthusiasm levels by turning your task into a game: Tick off a daily task on your calendar, and try to see how many days in a row you can achieve it. Phone apps can be very handy here. The author uses an app where you’re instructed to drink a glass of water before watering a virtual plant. By turning it into a game, the app takes the mundane task of drinking water throughout the day and makes it more enjoyable.


To stick to a task and remain positive, you need to form an emotional attachment to it. In other words, you need to understand why that task makes you a better person.

Start by identifying your main motivations.

Jot down a list of reasons for doing a particular activity, then pick out the strongest points. If your goal is to work out more, some of the reasons could be “I’m sick of being fat,” “I want to prove to myself that I can succeed,” and “Exercise makes me more productive and happy.” It’s important to disregard how other people might value your reasons. What’s most significant is that they resonate with you.

Once that’s done, you need to constantly remind yourself of your main motivations.

Say you find yourself heading to the fridge. In a situation like this, it’s useful to have your list of reasons at hand. As you reach for a snack, remind yourself why you want to be more healthy. Looking at the list will divert your attention away from your temporary desire and prompt you to consider your longer-term, more meaningful targets.


To motivate yourself even further, let your reason define you as a person.

Anders Ericsson, a researcher of psychology at Florida State University, studied the motivation behind the many hours of practice guitarists and other musicians put into honing their craft. He discovered that a crucial element of their dedication was that when they perform well, and their talents receive recognition from their peers, their actions became part of their identity. In other words, identifying as musicians drove them to become better at making music.

This is no surprise, as humans are social beings, and the way we identify ourselves is in relation to others. In the following book summary, you’ll learn how to benefit from this group identification so that you can experience your best year yet.


In addition to identifying your primary motivations, one key factor to living a successful year is having a good group of people around you. This means finding individuals who can support your goals – either those who have the means to see them come to fruition or those on a similar path who can offer encouragement and advice.

People are a readily available source of knowledge and experience that we can tap into. They could be a member of a community or a mentor, and many are more than happy to pass on their skills and lessons to those who seek it.

Joining a community is one way to find supportive people to help you with your quest.

For example, people who want to lose weight join dieting groups such as Weight Watchers and are more likely to drop the pounds than those who go it alone.

Similarly, alcohol and drug addicts have a higher chance of staying clean if they go to supportive meetings, such as Alcoholics Anonymous.

According to psychologist Henry Cloud, this is because positivity is contagious. We are more likely to succeed when part of a community due to four key reasons: firstly, we can learn from other group members; secondly, competition within the group helps our performance; third, we are held accountable to the community; and fourth, we motivate and encourage each other.

Another avenue from which we can seek help is through tutoring.

It’s easy to conclude that if we want to improve at the piano, we should hire a piano teacher. If we want to learn Spanish, we should find a language tutor. But when it comes to improving our lives, many of us wouldn’t consider hiring a life coach, or even a fitness instructor.

The author was guilty of this oversight. For a couple of years, he was stuck on a particular level of fitness and didn’t know how to improve. His friend suggested he get a fitness instructor, and since then, not only has he gained new and invaluable advice on different exercise techniques, he also gained a new gym buddy. Through this new avenue of support, he broke his personal records and reached new levels of fitness.

Creating your best year requires individual effort, but it’s equally important to make sure you have a good network supporting you.


The key message in this book summary:

To have the perfect year, you need to take a holistic approach to improving yourself and distribute your efforts equally over ten different aspects. The goals you set for yourself must be realistic and clearly identified so that you have the motivation to change. Finding a strong support group and becoming addicted to daily tasks will also help you achieve a fulfilling life.

Actionable advice:

Express gratitude.

The first thing you should do when you wake up in the morning is take a few minutes to yourself to thank the universe, God, yourself or anyone, for everything that you already have. Say thanks for being healthy, for having people who care about you, for having access to clean water. Being grateful will help keep you positive and hopeful and remind you of the small victories you’ve already made.


Sandra Aamodt: Why Diets Make Us Fat Book Summary


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We’re constantly bombarded with trendy new diets. But whether you decide to become a fruitarian, count calories obsessively or limit yourself to the spartan sustenance of our stone age forebears, you may become disappointed when you realize that few diets give you the results you were hoping for.

While diets can help you shave off a few pounds in the short term, they rarely deliver the goods in the long run. We now have a much better understanding of why this is, thanks to advances in neuroscience, genetics and psychology.

As this book summary will show you, if your goal is to live and eat healthier, then simply focusing on weight loss is not the way to go. So let’s dive into some of the popular myths about diets.

In this book summary, you’ll learn

  • how evolution made gaining weight easier than losing it;
  • why willpower isn’t that important to eating more healthily; and
  • how exercise might one day save your life.



If a woman of average height who weighs 110 pounds lost 30 pounds, most people would agree she was too skinny and possibly malnourished. Yet if a woman who weighs 230 pounds lost 30 pounds, many people would congratulate her for shedding the excess weight.

To society, there’s a big difference in experience between these two women on a diet. Yet to the human brain, these scenarios are interpreted as dangerous: in both cases, the body thinks it’s starving.

Your body has evolved to keep your weight within a defended range; that is, your average weight plus or minus 10 or 15 pounds.

It’s relatively easy to achieve weight changes within your defended range through modifications in diet and exercise. The range itself can also shift, but it’s important to keep in mind that it’s far easier to raise the range than it is to lower it.

So while you can lose weight, once you drop below your defended rangeyour body will work hard to get you back to that level.


Why is this the case? Your brain maintains a highly effective energy-balance system, which automatically keeps your weight in its defended range by keeping the calories you burn close or equal to the calories you consume.


This energy-balance system, however, can easily be upset by the body’s reward system. When you do something that helps you survive – for example, eat a calorie-rich hamburger – your body sends your brain a shot of the feel-good neurotransmitter dopamine.


Such a system was beneficial for our hunter-gatherer ancestors. When they found a stash of honeycomb or made a big kill, for instance, the body’s reward system compelled them to overeat, which made sense for survival, as the next meal might not come for a while.

Today, however, this system doesn’t work in our favor. With constant access to high-fat, sugary foods, we can too easily overeat, which pushes our bodies’ reward system into a feel-good loop.

As a reaction to our overeating, we often put ourselves on diets. Yet, research suggests that if we diet repeatedly, it can cause changes in the brain, making the reward response even stronger, and resulting in even more indulgence.


So is willpower the solution for keeping the body’s reward system at bay amid a world full of sugary temptation?

The idea that a dieter must have a will of steel is a common dieting myth. Yet willpower isn’t suited to battling the constant allure of tasty, calorie-rich treats.

Willpower is good when channeled to achieve short- or medium-term goals, but it’s ineffective at meeting long-term goals.

A short-term goal might span a few hours, days or months, and involve tasks such as cooking a complicated recipe or finishing a work assignment.

Long-term goals, on the other hand, involve repetitive actions over the span of years – so using willpower to fight cravings continually is ineffective, because your willpower will no doubt wane before your dieting goals have been met.

In short, willpower is a finite resource that’s needed to guide many human behaviors. Moreover, once you’ve depleted your store of willpower, it needs time to recharge.

Expending willpower to drag yourself to the gym, for instance, means you’re going to have less of it when you get home and come face-to-face with that leftover chocolate cake.

Willpower has different levels of efficacy for different activities, too. A wide-ranging review of studies found that willpower was the least effective when making decisions about food.

On the other hand, willpower is great at regulating automatic behaviors, otherwise known as habits.


As we’ll explore in the next book summarys, it’s far more effective to form good eating habits than to try and use willpower to fight food cravings.

Once you use up your willpower, you inevitably revert to old habits. Then it’s a matter of whether your habits include going for a jog or finding comfort in a pint of chocolate ice cream.


Has anyone ever made a comment on your weight, insinuating that it wouldn’t hurt if you lost a few pounds? If so, you’ve experienced a form of weight discrimination known as fat shaming.


Fat shaming hinders rather than helps – instead of encouraging people to lose weight, it more often leads to further weight gain and continued unhealthy eating habits.

That’s because people who feel bad about themselves are more likely to binge. They’re also less likely to exercise, since they don’t identify themselves as fit, active individuals.

Children and teenagers are especially vulnerable to fat shaming. A study of 2,500 American girls who were fat shamed found that these girls were twice as likely to gain weight within the next five years than those who weren’t criticized about their weight.

Another result of the pervasiveness of unrealistic body images in the media is mental health issues related to weight.

One study looking at the relationship between body image and media distortions was conducted in Fiji. In the 1970s, few women in this island nation suffered from an eating disorder or dieted; in fact, a full-figured Fijian woman was seen as ideal.

In 1995, researchers examined the impact of the introduction of satellite television to Fiji. They suspected that foreign commercials and TV shows depicting a Western ideal of beauty would somehow affect how local young women saw themselves.

Researchers organized focus groups in the province of Nadroga, first in 1995 with a group of 17-year-old girls, and again in 1998 with another group of girls.

While the girls’ average weight remained steady between the two groups, researchers found that their relationship to food and their bodies had changed dramatically.

In just three years, the number of girls who said they suffered from an eating disorder such as anorexia or bulimia jumped from 13 to 29 percent. The modern Western ideal of slimness had overtaken Fijian culture, with a whopping 74 percent of girls reporting feeling “too large.”


Have you ever noticed how it’s easy to put on weight but difficult to lose it? The reason for this can be traced back hundreds of thousands of years to the first modern humans.

Early humans evolved to cope with famine, which is why our bodies are much better at hanging on to weight than shedding it.

Over some 200,000 years of modern human anatomical development, it’s only in the last century that food has become something that is reliably and regularly available for the majority of people.

Before that, gathering food and evading predators required activities such as hunting and gathering, which made it difficult for early humans to overeat. The constant threat of starvation also meant that the genes that encourage weight loss were essentially undesirable and were gradually filtered out through evolution.

A person’s genetic makeup also plays a large part in their predisposition for obesity, and even the subtlest differences in gene expression can lead to huge variations in weight gain.

A study conducted by Claude Bouchard and Angelo Tremblay, for instance, took pairs of identical and non-identical twins and had them consume an extra 1,000 calories per day for three months.

While the non-identical twin pairs differed in weight gain by as much as 28 pounds and as little as eight, the identical twins gained the same amounts of weight.

In another study that explored weight loss rather than weight gain, a group of identical twins burned 1,000 more calories a day than they normally did for three months. Twin pairs aligned even more closely in weight loss than in weight gain shown in the previous study – again demonstrating the power of genetic makeup when it comes to body weight.

And in a further example of how resistant bodies can be to weight loss, some participants lost just two pounds at the end of three months.

So, if you want to find out how predisposed you are to gaining weight, you can either take a range of expensive genetic tests or look at the waistlines of family members at the next reunion!


Get ready to tune out all the dieticians and health gurus who claim to have found the perfect path to weight loss: the best guide to eating healthily is listening to yourself.

Mindfulness, the practice of staying present in the moment, can help you become a smarter eater.


When applied to food, mindful eating is about being fully aware of the dietary decisions you make and the actions you take concerning food consumption.

Instead of relying on diets and external cues, such as the temptation of junk food at the local convenience store, mindful eating will help you listen to your body’s internal hunger signals.

To know what your body needs, you’ll have to tune into the satiety signals from your energy-balance systemYou can trust it – this internal system has worked for us since the dawn of humanity, long before the emergence of trends such as the Atkins or South Beach diets.


Here are a few techniques to start eating mindfully, which is the natural path to becoming fitter, thinner and less susceptible to eating disorders.

First, sit down for a meal when you’re only moderately hungry. If you’re famished, you’re much more likely to eat too much too fast, and ignore signals from your body.

Second, eat at a slower pace. Put your utensil down between bites and savor the bite in your mouth instead of focusing on the next one.

Finally, eat only when you are completely free from distractions. Instead of checking your phone or sitting at your desk, engage fully with your food to enjoy it.


People often feel healthier after they’ve started dieting and exercising, and often attribute this to the weight loss alone. In truth, weight loss is often just a temporary side effect, because physical activity is what makes you feel truly good.

Regular exercise is a much better indicator of health than weight, because no matter how much people weigh, active people are simply healthier.

Time and time again, studies show that when it comes to predicting early deaths, exercise levels are ten times more indicative than measures of obesity.

The first study to analyze the importance of weight versus exercise was carried out on London transport employees in 1949. British doctor Jeremy Morris collected data from 31,000 men who were either bus drivers or bus conductors.

Predictably, drivers didn’t get much physical activity, as they sat in the driver’s seat most of the time. Conductors, on the other hand, climbed nearly 500 steps a day while collecting fares on London’s double-decker buses.

The studies found that conductors were 30 percent less likely to have a heart attack. Furthermore, the heart attacks they did suffer from were less life-threatening.


But what if being active simply made conductors slimmer and thus healthier? In a clever twist to the study, Morris also compared employees’ waistlines with the potential risk of heart attack.

Indeed, conductors were thinner, but Morris also discovered that even the heaviest conductors were still less likely to suffer a heart attack than were the sedentary drivers.

The fact that a healthy body does not necessarily equal a thin body is especially true for the elderly.

Once you pass the age of 60, it becomes more dangerous to weigh too little than to weigh too much. Older people are more prone to serious illnesses, and a certain level of fat can act as a buffer against debilitating weight loss that can stem from a prolonged illness.

Therefore, to be as healthy as possible, it’s better to focus on exercise over weight loss.


Doing something over and over will soon make that action become second nature. Such a habit is great when it comes to looking both ways before crossing a road, but bad if it means you beeline for the freezer and your favorite ice cream whenever you feel stressed.

So instead of straining your willpower, cultivate positive habits to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Over half the things you do on a regular basis are automatic habits. The more you do something, the harder it is not to do it again. If you build positive habits, you can use your limited willpower for other things.


How long does it take to establish a habit? People often cite 21 days, but this is a minimum. In fact, the time it takes to develop a habit varies from situation to situation, but on average, it takes around two months for an action to become ingrained.

There are steps you can take to ensure good habits are formed successfully.

First, make sure your goal is realistic. Setting unrealistic goals is a surefire way to disappoint yourself and fall off the wagon. Instead of setting a goal to jog five times a week, try resolving to take a walk three times a week.

Second, be consistent. Missing one day isn’t disastrous, but missing a week will throw you off course. One tip for maintaining a routine is to keep a record of the days you’ve completed.

Third, remember that it’s easier to break bad habits by replacing them with positive ones.

All habits involve doing something, so you can’t replace them by doing nothing instead. For example, if you like to snack on salty chips, it won’t be enough to not eat them – instead, try replacing the chips with fresh fruit or nuts.

Remember: when you change your habits, you change your life!


The key message in this book:

Your body is much better at regulating your weight than any diet. If you learn to be responsive to your body’s hunger cues and exercise regularly, you’ll be on the right path toward better health.

Actionable Advice

Select one healthy habit and cultivate it slowly.

Don’t change your diet, exercise regime and television schedule all at the same time; that’s too much of a shock to your limited stores of willpower. If there’s one habit that will improve your life today and for the rest of your days, it’s being physically active!


Sarah Knight: Get Your Sh*t Together Book Summary

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How many times have you told yourself you’re going to do something and then just never followed through? Whether it’s cleaning the house, getting that promotion at work or making a loved one feel special, many of us are guilty of lacking the commitment to achieve the things we want in life. And it’s not just our big goals that we struggle to fulfill – sometimes just getting through our daily routine can feel like a struggle, with not enough time in the day for even basic tasks.

Luckily, there’s a solution to this cycle of ambitious goal-setting, failure and self-loathing. Read this book summary to discover how you can start following through on your promises to yourself. From achieving your weight-loss goals to furthering your career, let’s go on a journey to discover how, with a little strategizing and a dash of focus and commitment, you can achieve your goals.

A polite word of warning before you start, though: as you might have guessed from the title, this book summary contain obscenities.

Read on to discover

  • how to harness the power of negative thinking;
  • why doing nothing can be the best strategy in a crisis; and
  • what career-changing conversation you need to have with your boss.



What’s standing in the way of you achieving your goals and being happy? When we’re challenged to get our proverbial shit together, our response is often “I just don’t know where to begin.” If this sounds familiar, then the first step toward getting your shit together is to consider exactly what your goals are, and when you plan to achieve them.

It’s crucial to be realistic about what you hope to achieve, but many of us set the bar too high when it comes to our goals.

This is problematic because we can’t become winners if we’re constantly holding ourselves to unrealistic standards. Our body goals are a perfect example. If you’re a normal person whose goal is to get in shape and lose some weight, it’s a tad unrealistic to strive to look like gorgeous fitness model Kate Upton. Most likely, you simply don’t have her body type.

So setting a goal of looking like her would be akin to aiming for an unreachable finish line. How discouraging is that? So discouraging, in fact, that it might be enough to make you quit the gym altogether, sit on your couch and mainline cookies rather than working out.

Therefore, get your shit together by ditching your unrealistic goals. Get on track by aiming for realistic progress that will make a difference to your actual life, like losing a few pounds of weight. In other words, don’t set goals based on other people’s measurements – measurements you’re unlikely to match.

Another key step to getting your shit together is to establish a better relationship with time.

If you feel as if you don’t have enough time to meet your goals, you probably have bad time-management skills. Combat this problem by gaining a better understanding of how you actually spend your time. You can do this by timing how long it takes you to fulfill routine tasks, such as having a shower or working out at the gym. Then, use this knowledge to create a realistic weekly schedule that contains all the things you want to do but never seem to have time for, such as learning a new skill. It really is that simple to start getting your shit together.


A big part of getting your shit together is maintaining your valued relationships. To keep our social and family connections ticking over, we need to do things actively to maintain or improve them. One of the most central relationships in our lives is often the one we have with our romantic partner. But the best way to nurture this relationship isn’t necessarily to be as accommodating as possible. Actually, a better way to improve or maintain a great relationship with your significant other is to get competitive with them.

By getting competitive with your partner, we’re not talking about playing a doubles tennis match. Instead, being competitive in this context means competing to be the most loving and thoughtful person in the relationship.

For instance, make it your goal to be the most helpful or the nicest one. Have a competition to see who gives the best present on Valentine’s Day or makes the nicest surprising romantic gesture.

Injecting this loving rivalry into the mix is beneficial whether you’re in the initial throws of passion or have been together for decades already. Once you adopt this winning relationship mind-set, you’ll suddenly find that even the most mundane tasks become a labor of love for your partner. Even disposing of the garbage is now a way to score points in this competition, rather than a chore you find annoying.

And if you want to win big at this loving competition, get organized.

Set some time aside to make a list of all the things you could do for your partner that will bring you serious relationship points. These could be big things, such as romantic trips abroad, provided you have some significant cash at your disposal. But it’s important that your list also contains lots of small loving gestures that require much smaller expenditure too, such as keeping the freezer stocked with their favorite flavor of ice cream.

In fact, small affectionate gestures expressed on a regular basis are much more effective than huge romantic gestures made only occasionally. Why? Because little, daily kindnesses give your partner the impression they’re always on your mind. Conversely, the annual romantic blow-out can sometimes leave your loved one thinking you’re just overcompensating for ignoring them all year!


Getting your professional shit together means different things to different people. For the author, it meant taking the plunge, quitting her job as an editor and starting to work for herself as an author. For many of us, the equivalent might be gaining a promotion or a raise within our current position.

But whatever career path you find yourself on, there are some universally applicable tips for getting your shit together.

When it comes to the world of work, appearing confident – even if on the inside you’re anything but – is crucial if you’re going to win the trust and respect of others.

To project more confidence in the workplace, start by taking a look at your colleagues. Who appears to have their shit together and how do they give off that impression? Your colleagues are probably doing remarkably simple things to signal that they’re capable, confident adults – things like having a cheerful and steady demeanor and managing to wear clean shirts without yesterday’s lunch stains.

Ask yourself, would it be that difficult for you to emulate their confidence and togetherness? Probably not – you just need to keep a smile on your face and do your laundry!


Another important way to get your professional shit together is to ask your boss the right questions.

Namely, ask her what it is you need to do to reach your professional goals. For instance, if your dream is to become a director in your department, then explicitly ask your boss what you would need to do to be considered for such a position. Though this might seem like obvious advice, far too many of us keep quiet. Because we don’t ask the right questions, we end up guessing how to prove to our seniors that we’re ready for more responsibility.

But what do you have to lose by asking directly? Even if your boss replies that there’s nothing you can do and there’s no way for you to progress in the organization, you’ve still learned something valuable. Specifically, you’ve learned there is no future for you in your current job, and you need to find a new one – one where you can progress.



Millions of Americans are overweight and suffering from lifestyle-related illnesses such as type 2 diabetes. Given this, you might assume that this is a nation that cares little about its health and fitness. But you would be mistaken.

In fact, when the author conducted a survey asking people where they felt they most needed help, respondents overwhelmingly talked about their physical health.

So we really do care about our health, it’s just that we don’t know how to get our shit together. How can we change this?

If you need some help when it comes to your physical fitness goals, then try changing how you think about them.

Although everyone lauds the power of positive thinking to help you achieve your aims, the author believes that negativity can be just as powerful. For example, if you hate your body and your excess weight is getting you down, just weigh this negativity with how much you hate the idea of breaking a sweat in the gym. If your negative body image wins out, it’s time to hit the treadmill. After all, it’s better to face the short-term misery of lunges and squats than a lifetime of depression due to hatred of your appearance.

Your physical health goals also don’t need to be radical for them to count toward getting your shit together.

During her youth, the author forced herself to go on long weekend runs and watched countless exercise videos. She was convinced that she needed to be thin. But these days she couldn’t care less if she’s carrying a little extra weight, and has ditched the punishing exercise regimen. But that doesn’t mean she doesn’t have her fitness shit together in her late thirties.

Nowadays she fits a little light stretching into her daily lifestyle. This fits in with her more mature priorities, which include being limber without slavishly devoting herself to exercise.


If you aspire to have your shit truly together, you’ll need to deal with your emotional or mental health issues too. For many of us, that means learning how to cope with anxiety, a common mental health issue. Barring turning to a medical professional for help, there are two simple approaches that can help you deal with your anxiety.

Sometimes the best strategy when dealing with anxiety-inducing situations is to face the situation head-on and rip off that anxiety Band-Aid.

This strategy is helpful when dealing with situations from which it will be impossible to move on without being proactive. For instance, say you are desperate to move out of your current house-share and live on your own, but can’t face telling your housemate that you are moving out. The only way you can get on with your life is to take a deep breath and tell him or her.

You can’t just disappear in the dead of the night without telling them, but neither can you secretly move out and pay rent on two apartments to avoid an awkward conversation. Your anxiety will only go away, and likely be replaced with relief, once you’ve had the conversation you’ve been dreading and moved out.

The second strategy for coping with anxiety is precisely the opposite of the first. Instead of being proactive, consciously decide to do nothing.

In this strategy, you ignore the situation and hope that any problems resolve themselves on their own. This may sound irresponsible, but it’s just sensible hesitation. For instance, if your boss sends you an ambiguous email that spikes your anxiety levels, it’s probably not a good idea to reply immediately or to go charging into their office to ask if you’re going to be fired.

Instead, try sleeping on it. When you return to work after a good night’s sleep, there’s every chance that email will seem perfectly innocuous. And voilà – no panicky response was necessary after all.


What would it take for you to be able to keep your home clean? Although this aspiration might sound straightforward enough, for many of us, it’s only a matter of hours before the dishes start piling up in the kitchen sink, and dirty laundry litters the bedroom floor again. When it comes to being house proud, our best-laid plans quickly go awry.

So how can you get your housekeeping shit together and remain in a perfect state of tidiness?

The first step is to undertake a one-off decluttering session.

Don’t overdo it during this initial tidy-up. You don’t need to engage in a life-transforming purge of everything you own. Instead, you should aim to get your home into enough order so that you wouldn’t be embarrassed if your neighbors showed up unexpectedly.

Once you’re satisfied with your efforts, the next step is to make a plan for the long-term tidiness of your home. To do this, start by separating every cleaning chore you can think of into different categories. For instance, some of these categories could include putting your children’s toys away, folding and ironing laundry, taking the bins out, and vacuuming.

Now that you have divided all your chores into categories, it’s time to commit to getting your shit together by making a pledge to yourself.

Namely, you should commit to undertaking one to two of these categories every other day. By breaking your housework up into bite-size chunks, it will be more manageable, and you won’t feel overwhelmed. Schedule a small amount of time in your busy day to complete a category – when you think about it, you probably don’t need more than 20 or so minutes to get each one done.

Once you’ve integrated this cleaning time into your schedule, you have no excuse not to stick to it. Some tasks, such as vacuuming, may require a little more of your time. But remember that vacuuming every other week for one hour is still going to be easier than adding that hour to another nine hours of other chores you have to do one day, all because you didn’t divide them into daily 20-minute chunks.

So when it comes to getting your cleaning shit together, keep in mind that a little can go a long way.


The key message in this book summary:

So many of us set unrealistic goals for ourselves – goals we have no hope of ever achieving. Instead, take a look at what realistic changes would make a difference in your life. Once you have a realistic goal, break it into manageable tasks and make a small amount of progress every day toward making it happen. Getting your shit together doesn’t need to be difficult, you just need to be consistent.

Actionable advice:

Use your common sense to lose weight.

Losing weight isn’t rocket science. You shouldn’t continue eating whatever, and however much, you like, but neither do you need to eat just lettuce three times a day. To lose weight the sensible way, work out how many fewer calories you need to consume on a daily basis. Science tells us that 3,500 calories are needed to maintain around one pound of weight. Therefore, aim to lose one pound a week by cutting back your food intake by 500 calories a day. Simple – and no rabbit food required.


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