Tony Robbins is a self-help coach, motivational speaker, and businessman who went from working as a janitor with no college degree to making millions of dollars.
He has inspired thousands of people with his books, programs, and speeches, and fed millions with his philanthropic efforts.
His book Awaken the Giant Within became one of his most recognized classics. It’s a quick read, and I wanted to share with you the top insights I gained from the book and his teachings to unleash your potential.
1. What You Focus On Expands
Most people focus on the negative in their life. They’re always complaining about the things that have gone wrong or aren’t good.
What you focus on expands, so focus on what you want to achieve one day in your life. Focus on the positive.
Note: A lot of self-help or wealth gurus recommend that the one thing you shouldn’t focus on that is technically positive is money. Rather than money, focus on the value you will bring to others in exchange for the money, and the money will come when you bring that value.
2. Great Results Come From Making A Decision To Change and Committing 100%
Tony says that all change comes from making firm decisions. He emphasizes that “soft decisions” are not the real decisions that he is talking about.
You must make a real decision to commit 100% to doing something. Most people don’t make a firm decision because they still leave all the doors open on some level. This analysis paralysis never pushes them forward.
Like Napoleon Hill or Kevin Planck of Under Armour says, you must commit — burn your Plan B and go in.
To make a decision to be healthy requires you to demolish any doors that open you up to being unhealthy.
Note: I think this is a bit of an extreme approach for Tony and others to suggest. There is a certain level of intensity to committing that unsuccessful people lack, which I completely agree with. However, you can have this intensity but still have an intelligent Plan B similar to how billionaire Michael Dell or the founders of Facebook or Microsoft could have gone back to college or gotten work in the job market if their company failed.
3. Replace Bad Behaviors With Great Ones and Reward Yourself For Even The Smallest Victories
According to the book The Power of Habit, Tony is right.
Science has shown that habits have a standard process of being formed and triggered: a cue or sign, the habit occurring, and then an expected reward.
If you really love eating junk food, it’s because of the reward you get: a pleasant, sweet sensation in your mouth.
Find a way of rewarding yourself in the same or similar way for your victories against eating junk food. For example, Tony played cheerful, celebratory music each time he pushed his plate away when he was full, even if there was still food on there. Perhaps you can find a better reward that works better for you: maybe a healthy food that tastes good like grilled chicken.
4. Understand That We All Move Towards Pleasure and Away From Pain
Tony asserts that every action we have ever taken in our life is a move towards pleasure of some sort and away from pain. He admits it might be a bit of a simplistic concept, but it’s shockingly true for most, if not all, of what we do on a daily basis throughout our life.
You can use this understanding to better move towards where you truly want to go.
If you want to improve your dating life, it’s because you hate the pain of being alone and/or you want the pleasure of the opposite sex in some way (relationships, short-term flings, or something else). If you are at the gym working out, it is because you are taking in the short-term pain of sore muscles for a long-term end result pleasure of looking sexy and impressing women or being able to win competitions or life bigger things or defend yourself for security.
The point is that you can use this to remove bad habits or behaviors or create good ones:
For example, you have identified a bad behavior moving towards pleasure and away from pain such as procrastinating. How can you make this more pleasurable and less painful? Can you make this work you are doing more fun so you don’t procrastinate? Can you remind yourself visually of the long-term results?
5. Visualize Your Dreams Constantly No Matter How Crazy They Are
Tony had some pretty crazy dreams of living in a castle and an office with windows overlooking an entire ocean. He also had dreams of helping many people and speaking on stage.
He visualized all of this and at the time, it seemed pretty preposterous.
Within a decade, he went from working as a janitor with no college education to achieving all of those dreams and more.
6. You Don’t Have To Be Too Specific With Your Goals
While some people aren’t specific enough, others are too caught up about being too specific.
Tony Robbins says that you don’t need to be so specific to the smallest detail. For example, he said that knowing that you want a big mansion with a lawn out front in a tropic climate is enough. You don’t need to go into detail about the specific flowers you want in the yard and the design of the wallpaper.
There seems to be some debate about how specific you should get. Tony recommends specific enough. Others want you to get as specific as possible. I believe, as of right now, that you should be specific enough, and if you already have a very detailed picture of something you want, like the wallpaper, go ahead and add that to your visualization. It will help with visualizing it in more detail and as if it’s already happening so that you can attract it into your life.
A goal that is way too broad is “I want to be rich” or “I want to be happy” or “I want to do good.” How about something more specific, like a numeric amount: “I want $100,000 a year” or “I want to help homeless kids in the southern Indian area get out of poverty.”
Make sure you follow Napoleon Hill’s specific visualization and goal-setting formula as this alone won’t work. Tony Robbins and Brian Tracy go into detail on their own specific process, which is fairly similar. You can find Napoleon Hill’s in his books. I also mention it in this post.
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