Review of My Life…2014

2014

Now for the Big One!!!

I wrote about my journey up until then…Oct 2014. I hadn’t written anything for 3 years! And I had just moved to Ecuador, which was a big change for me. I shut down my business in the States (real estate appraising) which I realized was very stressful.  I said I had only posted occasionally, because I felt I didn’t have much to say, but there was still something on the inside that needed to be let out.

I then detailed my journey…how I became disillusioned about the lack of power in the churches I had attended. Fortunately, one of my acquaintances introduced me to Kevin Trudeau… who was teaching the secrets of the rich. That opened my eyes. He said things were intentionally kept from us to protect their power! But that even if we knew about it 90% of us would never use it! Wow!!!

That started a different story and journey for me, which will take more than a lifetime to fulfill!

The first secret I was given was we are all Responsible for where we are in life…and that’s good… because then we can change it. But that’s scary and why 90% of us will not apply this first secret.

Second is about Control, which is related to the first.  It’s about letting ourselves be influenced  and distracted by all the advertising, TV, Facebook and  all the rest of the images, emotions and feelings we let into our life every day. It’s about how we think we “deserve a break,” but that’s really giving our responsibility…our control…to someone else. How many of us let others influence us, and keep us stuck, but inherently know that we are ultimately responsible? What do you think? I think way down deep we all know that we are totally responsible.

I took this knowledge to the people in my church, including the pastors, and received a very lukewarm response. Many wouldn’t even look at the info, and the pastors said it wasn’t “of God.” I thought, what is so “anti-God” about this. It increased the questions and doubts about the “Church,” about how people have twisted what Jesus said.

Then, since the blog was called God Things back then, I wrote how science could explain creation by God wanting to “know Himself.” The theory said that from a point, which coalesced from the Void, a circle was created, or realized. Then more circles were naturally formed. (This is a very simplistic explanation of a very deep, in depth topic.) For more info check out Sacred Geometry. We will explore this much more too.

Since we all started from “a circle,” we are all made up of the same stuff, which is not only a shape, but a vibration…a frequency…another very deep subject we will get into.

Also since we all come from the same thing/place, when we hurt others, we hurt ourselves.

Science and mystics say we are self-aware, meaning we create our own reality….by our perspective and our “stories.”

Back to control….does “giving our lives to Jesus” sound like being responsible or like giving up control.  Jesus never talked about it…but St Paul did…sort of. Just saying…

Once we give our lives to someone else, does it relieve us of responsibility? I have experienced that many, many times…like, don’t worry, Jesus is in control, or the devil is making me do it.  What I did read…more than once… is that the Kingdom of God is within us, and that our works show our Faith.

Summing it up, in order to fulfill our Destiny, and Find Our Dream, we need to focus on 3 things:  There is a Plan, and it is our Responsibility to be in Control of our lives.

Nov 2014

Finding a Healing God” I related God Within Us to healing, and how that makes everything else fall into place.

I stated that we have the energy and ambition to go after what completes and makes us happy.

To know that we are in command of our lives, and, therefore, of our health…and to stay in the present to let ourselves be who we really are, we can access God With Us to fulfill our lives.

Next was “Healing from a God Perspective.”  I said that healing comes from within. We are sick in ourselves, so that’s where healing has to come.

But our mind wants us to think it comes from outside ourselves, which then gives control to something else.

Once we realize that we are Eternal…Perfect and Complete…that Love is the controlling factor, that we can begin to change.

So search within yourself, to Find God, because that is all there is, and that everything is right where it should be.  

“Right where it should be” is a very powerful statement. It says that everything is in order…Perfect! That may be hard to understand, but we don’t need to know how or why. We just need to know it!

Just think about it…if we are part of a perfect Creation, then healing is a part of us, and we need to do is access it!

So visualize it…being part of God…and realize it. Really God is everywhere, everything, throughout time.

In “Mind Control” healing comes from within, and knowing who God is was stated again.

Then the next thing was who is in control.

The Present is all there really is, but our mind is always taking us back into our past and then projecting that into the future. It wants to protect us, which is it role.

But, once we realize that have a Divine Self within us that is really what should direct us, then the mind can do its job, which is making plans, taking care of everyday decisions, and regulating our body.

I call it our True Self, and focusing on that we find our Calling (this was the start of Finding Your Dream…I think.)

It’s not selfish…like getting what I want no matter what happens to other people. It means to ask what is Best for me and all of Creation. That begins to quiet the mind. As an example, have you ever had a new idea, an inspiration? Did it come from your mind, or did it just appear? It came from our True Self communicating with us…and, relating it to healing, it comes from the same place.

So put your mind in second place…where it should be. I am not saying it will be easy, but it is simple!

Just begin to think on God, Creation, and to watch yourself think. Watch your thoughts of fear, guilt and shame come bubbling up, and then…watch them go! They are really not yours. They are just figments and they want to trap you. They want to destroy your control.

Just think of “everything as it should be.” Your mind wants you to believe it should be different…that this situation is not “right,” that someone did us wrong, and that it’s their fault. It tells us that we are right and it’s someone else’s responsibility to fix it.

Remember we are totally responsible for ourselves, and we have everything inside of us to meet any challenge!

Next was a Treatise on “Free Will.” (I write with a lot of ellipses.) Do we really have free will? Well, only if we exercise it…for the right reasons. That is not taking advantage of others, or going for the “bling,” which doesn’t make us happy anyway.

It comes from control…self-control…or a better word would be command. To be in command of our reality is the ultimate free will.

It is the freedom from our mind that truly makes us free! It is the quieting of our mind…looking at it from the “observer” perspective…which bring us to our True Self.

That brings compassion…accepting that the way they are…and loving the way we are…which will give the ability to change…to US.

Next, the blog title was Treatise on Control. I noticed a lot of grammatical errors in this post. Must not have been in my “right” mind.

Anyway, this is one for us control freaks!

Many of us think that control means, “doing what we want,” and not have anyone “telling us what to do.” But actually, the media, parents, authority figures and those we want to please, really control us more than we know. Also we have incessant thoughts going through our mind all the time. It really comes down to who you listen to.

So to regain command of our lives we need to control the messages. Stop the chatter, the reliving of the past, and the fantasy of the future,

We can start by admitting that we have problems, and that we can’t solve them by ourselves and that we need help…from our Creator…who resides in us. Then once we are honest, we can begin to deal with each issue as it triggers us, which allows us to see ourselves as we truly are…the way God sees us. It returns command and control to us. Now that’s what I like…being in control!!!

In Dec 2014 I wrote 1 post called The Important vs. The Urgent.

It was about Deanie’s (my wife) and my life at the time. I wrote about all the “Urgent” things that were interfering from getting the “Important” things done. The Urgent things were buying a different car, as the one we had was dying. It took 3 weeks to find one and another 10 days to transfer the money. Going to visit Deanie’s sister was another “had to be done.” They were important, but no blog writing or other important things got done.

That’s how life is…full of interruptions…such as today…my computer crashed and I had to start over on this blog post. But we need to stay focused, and get back to our Dream…relentlessly…never giving up…always going on. Seeing the end…feeling it…living it!!!

Review of My Life…2011

2011

The blog was called “God Things” back then, so I wrote a lot about God from a Christian perspective.

The first post was about being recompensed. That all evil must be paid for…and we all know it, because we beat ourselves up for our own evil. We create our own hell, thru our own guilt and shame. Then there is God who saves us from it, which is the most important thing.

Side note: the concept of an ultimate evil or hell is hard to reconcile with the Christian idea of “God.” God is all knowing, everywhere, everything and all powerful. So where is there a place for “no God,” or hell, an interesting puzzle? The idea that God is Ultimate is, by definition, the only Ultimate there is…there can’t be 2 of them…heaven and hell. Otherwise there are 2 Ultimates, and that’s a problem. Anyway we will get into that later. See, I graduated.

Then I wrote about a trying to educate a “fool,” who doesn’t listen. I wonder how many times I haven’t listened…and that makes me a fool! How about you? Let’s get real here!

Next I wrote about a missionary having a crisis of faith in the face of the devastation in Haiti. He had a frank conversation with God, and how he needed to keep his faith. I then questioned how our faith is. Do we blame Him when times are bad…or run to Him to save us… and, otherwise ignore Him. Or do we realize the Faith is rewarded, and, really, there is no other one to turn to… I like that!

Then I talked about how St Paul called the Galatians poor, silly, thoughtless, unreflecting and senseless. Whoa, pretty heavy… Am I, are you the same… with our 1 hour of church, 5 minutes of devotions, and then…what. I said God has many more deeper things for us…actually miracles… to do. I like that too.

Next one was about becoming free of our addiction and constant temptations…that we give in to… and realizing that we are Sons and Daughters of the Most High…and the way to Freedom is having an intimate relationship with Him.

Then I wrote about not having a past…as relating to our sins. God doesn’t remember them, so why should we. We should the person with “no past.”

The next one was a God Thing. He has a purpose for us. I wondered what that might be for me. I then said that all that needs to happen is to “rest in Him,” and that doesn’t seem like a lot of work. I then prayed the prayer of Peace. I feel better!!

Next was how do we get “There?” What, or where is “there” anyway. We all have an idea. Living a good life might be a good goal…but who has ever done that? Then there the thing about being on your path. Well that doesn’t work for psychopaths very well. We are too apt to become deceived…with the best of intentions. Then I said God has the right path and to follow Him will get us there. Brings up a lot of things that we can get into. Such as: how do we know the right path…and if we are getting it from God…and does any creed of religion know the right path…for us? We’ll talk about that.

Next was Where is our Place? Where do we Fit In? Doesn’t it say that we are all part of One Body and we all “fit.” So we are part of The Plan, so we can have confidence and be Free, knowing the Creator is perfect and has a perfect place for us. That’s comforting, and also compelling and exciting!! So we all should get to know the Creator…intimately…overcoming the “I’m such a worm” mentality.

The Gospel of Mark…in the Bible…chronicles many miracles. They have caused much controversy, but they are there. The glaring absence of them in the “Church” is disturbing. Wonder what it would take to get a taste of that again. Again, intimacy and receiving love would make a very great impact.

The Review of My Life….You Should Try It!

I got the inspiration to go over the past few years of my life and see how I have changed. So I went to my blog at VinceSalzer.com and started reviewing the posts.

Then I got the idea to write about them…to “feel” how I felt at the time.

I began to write and was guided to divide it up into sections, by date, to show the progression (I call it “graduating.”) of my life. It is a big writing project, so it will be published in parts. I think it can resonate with you…and if it does, let me know.

First, back then I was a pretty staunch Christian…not so much now….staunch that is. I have been “graduating” from how I believe all my life. My beliefs helped me tremendously…got me thru a devastating divorce…but then I needed more…as I saw that a lot of the teachings I was hearing weren’t making a difference in my life and many of the lives that I saw. So I kept searching… But back to how I thought 5 years ago. It wasn’t all bad.

So let’s dig in…

How Fear Keeps Us From Being Honest!

This is a great blog post from Ling Wong on Firepole Marketing.com. It starts talking about honesty, then gets into fear, which keeps us from being honest. Then it tells us how to cure the fear. I like the last point about talking to it…thanking it for protecting me, and then telling it to do something positive…like get out there and do it. Which I am going to do RIGHT NOW!!!

Leave a comment here or on the blog. We’d like to know what you think!

Vince

 

http://www.firepolemarketing.com/honest-copywriting

 

If Honest Marketing is Possible, Why Are We Sucked Into Cookie-Cutter Copywriting?

Close up of pink cookie cutter in doughRecently I came across several blog posts, articles, podcasts, and videos talking about “being honest” and “finding you inner voice” in content creation and marketing communication.

It’s actually refreshing to find posts like these, because many online marketers have a reputation for being sleazy, manipulative, and only after a quick buck.

And it’s true – there are people online who are all of those things. They give everyone a sour taste in their mouths, and they give those of us who are trying to build honest online businesses a bad rap. But despite their sleazy tactics and “buy it now!” marketing copy, it’s all too easy to fall into using that same kind of hype in our own marketing.

Why do we do this? If we want to build trusting, honest, profitable relationships with our clients, why aren’t we doing more of it? Why are most of us still stuck in cutting and pasting sleazy copy from some cookie-cutter templates, then feel “yuck” about it but keep doing it anyway? How can we get off the hamster wheel?

It’s Time to Own Our Vulnerability

To write content that is honest and truthful, we need to own up to our vulnerability – be human, show some emotions (in a constructive way), and be passionate to make meaningful connections.

Putting ourselves out there in such a “straight up” manner requires that we have complete trust in ourselves and our message.

When we take the leap to be raw and upfront, parts of us freak out. We have all been hurt from saying what we mean. We have been rejected for giving voice to what’s true for us. We have been told to shut up. We have been ridiculed for “TMI.”

Those experiences make us feel unsafe to speak our mind, so we hide behind “other people’s stuff” in our content and marketing so we don’t feel the “rejection” when things don’t work.

Our subconscious mind uses fears to keep us from doing things that we *know* we need to do to progress our businesses, leading to what most identify as “self-sabotaging behaviors.”

The key to breaking the cycle of sleazy, cookie-cutter copywriting is to examine these fears and over come them. Or at the very least, to know when they occur, and when they’re interfering with your ability to produce honest marketing!

Exploring the Fear Factor

Fear is part of our human nature. Back in the caveman days, it kicked in when we felt unsafe and was therefore a very handy thing to prevent us from being eaten by the saber-tooth tiger.

However, in the modern days when the feeling of “unsafe” mostly comes from mental and emotional triggers, rather than the physical environment (i.e. we won’t die), fear can hold us back from taking actions that our subconscious mind interprets as “risky” or “unsafe” – such as putting ourselves out there and risk being rejected.

These sorts of unsafe fears are often rooted in experiences from our childhood. For example, a child who touches a hot stove learns not to touch a hot stove again. In the same way, we learn about emotional or mental fears based on how others reaction to our childhood selves.

In order to overcome these fears, we have to get a handle on what they are and how they come about. Below are 6 primary fears I have identified to cause us to sabotage ourselves when we try to put all of ourselves honestly into our communications.

We may not be exhibiting the “extreme” version of these fears. But trust me: we all have them and they do rear their ugly heads as we strive to create authentic, honest relationships with our subscribers.

The Fear of Inadequacy (Not Being Good Enough)

The fear of not being good enough comes from struggling to live up to other people’s expectations as a child. At some point, someone in authority told us or made us believe that we weren’t good enough. This fear can block us from taking risks if we think we won’t be good enough to handle the challenge.

Those driven by this fear tend to stay in the background, as it feels very uncomfortable to step fully into their gifts and messages. This fear can manifest as self-deprecation and self-effacement wherein they diminish their abilities and accomplishments.

Our belief that our own voice isn’t good enough can cause us to think what comes from others (i.e “gurus”) are always better than what we have within ourselves. This fear also makes us hide behind templates and checklists, so if something doesn’t work we don’t have to own up to the failure, which can be interpreted as evidence that we are indeed not good enough (which can be the most scary of all!)

I work with many coaches who hold themselves back from being fully “out there” because of this fear. Some feel they need to take that one more training, or have more certifications or acronyms after their names, before they can claim their expertise and work with clients. This fear has tremendously delayed their progress and the growth of their businesses.

Some would buy a lot of “done-for-you” content without considering how to add their own voice and adapt these materials to support their big message. I have worked with clients who got completely sidetracked by doing the busywork of implementing other people’s stuff but completely abandoned the reason they went into business in the first place!

The Fear of Losing Control

This fear comes from experiencing alternating periods of abuse and neglect in childhood. This fear blocks us from self-acceptance and makes us self-critical.

This fear can be very difficult to recognize from the outside. Those driven by this fear may appear that they “have it all together.” They tend to have tightly managed behaviors, routines and environment, creating the illusion that they are taking charge.

This need for complete control over the environment and outcomes of our actions can hold us back from being honest in our relationships with others – whether it’s personal or business.

Being open and vulnerable in a relationship means two-way communication. Since we can’t control what others may say or do in reaction to our content, putting ourselves out there can mean relinquishing control over how we are perceived.

I have seen people giving up on opportunities to share their opinions because they feel that they could not control the comments and feedback posted in response to their content. As a lot of us have learned from the Audience Business Masterclass, guest posting and commenting is an essential part of the audience business building process and this fear can definitely slow down our progress.

The Fear of Change

The fear of not being prepared for changes comes from feeling unprepared for a sudden major change that happened in childhood. This fear can make us resist doing things differently, even if logically we understand why it’s a change for the better.

Those driven by this fear can be very stubborn and set on the way they do things. They are afraid that change will result in disaster.

Standing up for your vision can mean breaking out of the mold and doing things differently. It can mean deviating from the status quo (or what you have been told to be “proven” systems). This can be scary because even if things are not working perfectly, we are surviving, and change introduces the possibility that we will not survive. This means that our caveman brain is gonna fight this one!

Many people I have worked with don’t even know they have this fear because their perspective is so dead-set on one way of doing things. Having someone who plays devil’s advocate and challenge our perspectives can help us cultivate awareness to our resistance – and this is the first step of making positive changes.

The Fear of Not Having Enough

The fear of not having enough comes from being given stuff instead of love in childhood. This fear can block us from contentment and compassion. This drive to have more and more blocks us from feeling much compassion or empathy for others since the focus is on amassing for ourselves.

Those driven by this fear struggle to acquire more of what they seek as an attempt to fill a hole that can never be filled. It is never enough and losing whatever they are seeking (money, attention, love etc.) can be devastating and therefore to be avoided at all costs.

Obviously, the lack of compassion can make it challenging for us to communicate to our audience in a relatable manner. It can hold us back from creating deeper personal connections because of the focus we put on what we want to amass.

This fear also make us stick with the “tried-and true” because what we have achieved so far (with the cookie-cutter stuff) may not be all that we want but that voice in our head may be saying, “What if I don’t follow those ‘templates’ and I lose what I already have?”

The Fear of Being Vulnerable

This fear comes from being criticized or ridiculed in childhood. It can block us from fully opening up and relating to others. It can push us to act as if we know it all, can do it all or bear it all.

Those driven by this fear may avoid asking legitimate questions for fear of looking like they don’t know something. This fear can manifest as arrogance or as becoming “small” so as not to be seen as a way to avoid criticism or ridicule.

To avoid being scrutinized and criticized, we may hide behind exaggerated claims, big words and jargons to “puff up” to avoid being criticized. We stay aloof and avoid connecting deeply so not to be “hurt” – and that is the opposite of building a trusting relationships!

I don’t know about you, but I have definitely seen my share of these “puffing up” behaviors in those bold red headlines and yellow highlighted sales pages. These pages also tend to diminish the readers in an attempt to put the seller on a pedestal.

How do you feel about such copy? They may get you to buy because they pulled the “fear of not good enough” trigger, but do you feel good about it? Do you feel they are making a connection with you? Are they making you buy out of trust?

The Fear of Missing Out

This fear comes from feeling particularly disappointed after not being allowed to do something as a child. This fear results in the feeling that “the grass is always greener” over there and often manifests as impatience.

More and more of us are driven by this fear in this age of instant gratification. We can compare everything and everyone, and this comparison trap makes us not want to miss out on anything that others have. The internet allows us to look around as much as we want. Unfortunately, if we are spending all our time looking at what others have, or what others are doing, we are not focusing on where we want to be heading.

This fear can make us think, “Everyone is following this formula or that template. If I don’t, I am going to miss out.” “Everyone is saying these things, I better do so as well so I don’t lose my customers.” (Hmm, if everyone thinks this way, and sticks to the “what is” even though nobody believes in it… isn’t that twisted?!)

To help my clients get refocused on their goals instead of being afraid of missing out, I put them on three “diets” – the social media diet, the newsletter diet and the group program diet so they can dig out of the comparison trap and start to find their true voice for their actions and communications.

How To Overcome Your Fears

Now that we’ve talked about the six fears that are holding you back from developing honest copywriting – and honest relationships – let’s talk about how to overcome your fears.

First of all, we need to acknowledge that it’s ok, and even human, to have fears. This is not the time to beat yourself up.

Next, you want to cultivate awareness and be intentional in your business and marketing activities. When choosing a certain marketing strategy, be sure that it fuels your big picture, reinforce your uniqueness and is true to how you roll. If you are tempted to use tactics not aligned with your value and how you want to express yourself, then it’s time to see if one or more of these fears are kicking in.

When you know how to identify your fears, they no long have a grip on you. When you become more aware, you cannot do things that don’t serve you.

Below is a 5-minute process to help you deal with your fear from a different perspective. You will be able to address it and move onto doing what you need to do without having one foot on the gas and one foot on the break.

Step #1: Visualize It

Visualize your fear in your body. Where is it? What color is it? What shape is it? What is the texture? Is it big or small? Does it make a sound? Does it move?

(Once, I had a fear that looked like a blue Sponge Bob. Go for it – if it’s something ridiculous, that’s even better because you won’t be able to take it seriously!)

Step #2: Objectify It

See if you can take it out of your body and hold it in your hands. Examine it, see if it shows or tells you anything. By doing steps 1 and 2, you are taking the fear out of your body and identifying it as something outside of you, so you can deal with it from an objective perspective instead of taking it personally.

Step #3: Name It

Now look at this fear – either outside or inside of your body, and say 3 times (aloud or in your head): “This is just my fear of ________.” Naming it heightens the awareness that your feelings and emotions are being triggered by the fear, which is now no longer part of you.

Step #4: Frame It

With this fear as an object that is separate from you, look at it again and declare 3 times: “I am NOT my fear.” Framing your fear allows you to deal with it from an objective perspective.

Step #5: Have a Chat With It

Then ask the fear: “What do you want to tell me?” Listen. Then ask: “What do you want me to do, and why?” The fear may tell you to do things that it *thinks* will protect you from harm (or at least, something that worked in the past but no longer does) yet does not serve you or what you want to achieve.

Thank your fear, tell it that it’s been heard and you appreciate the concern. But you are a “big boy/girl” now (a lot of our fears came from our childhood) and you are going to go ahead and take the action.

Step #6: Tame It

Repeat your empowering mantra* 3 times, aloud or in your head.

* You will need to come up with an empowering mantra that works for you. You can have multiple mantras based on the different fears you experience. Here are a few examples:

For the Fear of Inadequacy: I know enough and I am good enough as I am right now.

For the Fear of Change: I am confident in my ability to ride the wave of change.

For the Fear of Being Vulnerable: I find strength in my vulnerability. Living my truth frees me from the opinion of others.

Being Honest Doesn’t Mean It’s Easy… But It’s Worth It

Putting your ideas, content and products out there means you will face rejection. “Unsubscribes,” “un-likes,” and “un-follows” are par for the course. But these are good signs  – they indicate you are actually standing up for something that matters!

When your content is honest and personal, you are being vulnerable with your audience in order to establish a relationship with them. And when you care about someone, and want them to understand you, any rejection of that message is going to hurt.

But it doesn’t mean you have to deny the feeling, or hide away from that type of marketing. Because the truth is that no matter how honest you are, some people just won’t connect with you – and that’s ok.  You want to focus on the connections you do make with your readers, and grow those connections into a set of relationships that sustains and grows your business.

There are days when sitting down at the computer and writing your guts out hurts. Lean into it, write, then hit “publish” anyway. That’s what being different from sleazy marketers and turning pro is all about.

Which of the fears listed here is holding you back from being honest and truthful, and fully express yourself in your content and marketing? How does this fear manifest itself in your business? Share your insights and experience in the comments below… I will write back. ;-)

The Value of Being Utterly, Gloriously Wrong

Here’s a good article on learning…by being wrong. Sometimes that’s the only way we grow! You can go to Beyond Wealth to see more…

Friday, February 20, 2015
The Value of Being Utterly, Gloriously Wrong
Alexandar Green

Alexander GreenDear Vince Salzer,

When I took my first job as a stockbroker back in 1985, I was as green as a Granny Smith apple.

Although I was confident that I could make boatloads of money in the market in a short period of time, I quickly got my head handed to me.

Over and over again.

My investment strategy was a completely blinkered market-timing approach. (I was certain I could be in for the rallies and out for the dips.) And while I believed in it heart and soul at the time, it never had any real chance of success. Things never got better for me – or my clients – until the day I recognized that fact.

No one relishes the idea of being utterly and profoundly wrong. But discovering weare can be one of life’s most rewarding experiences.

For reasons of pride, ego, hubris or fear, however, we have trouble accepting this. That means we miss some of the best lessons life has to offer.

After all, when you admit you’re wrong, all you’re essentially saying is that you know more today than you did yesterday.

Yet studies show that we glom onto ideas early and resist letting them go. Psychologists call it “confirmation bias.” That is, we seek evidence that confirms our beliefs and ignore or reinterpret evidence that refutes them.

It’s easy to see how this happens. We all gravitate toward like-minded individuals, listen primarily to those who share our opinions, and read books and articles by writers who confirm our points of view.

But the narrower our sources of information, the more error-prone our thinking becomes. When it comes to puzzling things out, instead of doing the heavy lifting, we take a nifty shortcut: jumping to a conclusion.

In a 1989 study, for example, psychologist Deanna Kuhn found that when subjects were exposed to evidence inconsistent with a theory they preferred, they failed to notice it. When they did recognize the contradictory evidence, they simply reinterpreted it in favor of their preconceived belief.

In a related study, Scientific American columnist Michael Shermers writes that, “Kuhn played an audio recording of an actual murder trial and discovered that instead of evaluating the evidence first and then coming to a conclusion, most subjects concocted a narrative in their mind about what happened, made a decision of guilt or innocence, then riffled through the evidence and picked out what most closely fit the story.”

Knowing this, is it terribly surprising that there have been 325 post-conviction DNA exonerations in the U.S.? Maybe Woody Allen wasn’t kidding when he said he’d hate to leave his fate in the hands of 12 people who weren’t smart enough to get out of jury duty.

In every arena – politics, religion, science, investing – if we look at evidence with an open mind, we have nothing to lose but our ignorance. Our views are more likely to be accurate when we are better informed.

In his book Confessions of a Philosopher, Bryan Magee writes that he became a skilled debater by identifying his opponent’s weak points and then bringing concentrated fire to bear on them, a tactic used by successful polemicists since ancient times.

Yet he was blown away when he discovered that philosopher Karl Popper did just the opposite:

“He sought out his opponent’s case at its strongest and attacked that. Indeed, he would improve it, if he possibly could, before attacking it… He would remove avoidable contradictions or weaknesses, close loopholes, pass over minor deficiencies, let his opponent’s case have the benefit of every possible doubt, and reformulate the most appealing parts of it in the most rigorous, powerful and effective arguments he could find – and then direct his onslaught against it. The outcome, when successful, was devastating. At the end there would be nothing left to say in favor of the opposing case except for tributes and concessions that Popper himself had already made.”

Magee said it was thrilling to witness. Yet no one reaches this level of understanding without taking the time to thoroughly investigate an opposing view rather than dismissing it out of hand. It takes time to weigh the evidence, consider it and allow for the possibility that we could be mistaken. This is something that most of us – if we’re honest with ourselves – are reluctant to do.

When you bring an open mind to a conflict, one of three things will happen. You will strengthen your existing convictions. You will become more sympathetic to the opposing view. Or you’ll end up smarter today than you were yesterday. (And get a lesson in humility in the bargain.)

That’s why we should never lose our temper in an argument. If you’re right, you don’t need to. If you’re wrong, you can’t afford to.

As the French enlightenment philosopher Voltaire said, “Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is an absurd one.”

Carpe diem,

Alex

Top 4 Ways I Stay Emotionally and Spiritually Healthy

Here’s is a link to staying healthy by Amy Englemark. I also included the blog post. The link will take you to her blog where you can see other things she is writing. She is in the same niche I am…personal coaching in health and success!!

Enjoy

Vince

http://amyenglemark.com/2015/02/18/top-4-ways-stay-emotionally-spiritually-healthy/

 

posted by on Feb 18, 2015

Grab a pen and paper:

Imagine you’re 80.  Ideally, what type of emotional and spiritual health are you experiencing?  Write it down.  What has helped you stay healthy?  How do you feel?  How do you look?  Jot down the first things that come to mind.

Me Personally

I’m always learning.  I thought you might like to know what so that you can take what you want and leave the rest.  There’s more to health than nutrition and exercise.  Most of us desire to feel healthy emotionally, spiritually and mentally as well.  Here are some of the ways I do this.

  • Forgive quickly and steer clear of becoming offended.  If I harbour negative thoughts towards someone I feel uncomfortable and sour inside.  This definately shows up in other ways.
  • Spend time (ideally first thing in the morning) just being still or talking with Jesus. My spiritual quiet time is precious to me.  I savour it like I savour good chocolate or a sunset!  If I offended anyone with this last point, I apologize ahead of time!
  • Choose to seize the day.  Really, who knows if today is our last day.  If it was, how would you live differently?  People in our very own neighbourhoods are struggling with their health.  Why are we immune to death or disease?  Reminding myself of our inevitable death reminds me to not take time for granted.
  • Feel emotions and choose to respond using self control and discretion.  I’m sure you’ve experienced a disagreement with your spouse, kids or co-worker.  This has for sure happened many times in my life.  Emotions are great, even anger.  It’s how you/I choose to express myself when I’m emotionally charged that makes all the difference.

How about you?  What steps are you taking to feel healthier, inside and out?  I’d love you to share them.  The best place to share is over on my facebook page.

Have a healthy day!

Amy

 

Another look at fear!

This is by Paul Rosenberg from Casey Research. It is a very well done treatise on fear, and how we have changed thru the media and and other things. It also gives good solutions, so  read all the through, and make some changes…for the good!

The Way of the 21st Century: Going Nowhere While Very, Very Frightened

We’re 14 years into a new century, which is typically how long it takes for a century’s unique characteristics to show up. The 20th century, for example, looked a lot like the 19th until 1914; from there on it looked a lot different. So I think this is a good time to take a look at our new century and see how it’s shaping up.

I see two particular things that are defining the mainline culture just now. Let’s go with the easy and obvious one first:

The 24-Hour Fear Cycle

Nothing makes humans easier to manipulate than fear. Get a group of Homo sapiens afraid of something and most of them will run wherever you want them to. Unfortunately, all the manipulators of our time know this and are maximizing their use of it.

On top of that, we have a 24-hour news cycle, and nothing rivets eyeballs to screens like fear. Good news, as we all know, doesn’t sell papers.

There have always been bad things happening on Earth. Take the truly horrifying stories that pop up here and there of women killing their own children. Sadly, these have always been with us, but they weren’t blasted on five or ten news channels 24/7. Likewise, horrifying stories from the Middle East or in Africa; these are very definitely nothing new. What’s new is using these stories as tools… tools to make Homo sapiens run to where you want them.

Here’s the reality:

Violent crime is decreasing, and significantly.

Deaths in fires are dropping:

Disaster losses are falling too:

I could go on, but you get the point. Lots of things are getting better in real life, but no one thinks so because everything’s getting worse on TV. Fear works.

One final example: Here’s a list of events from a year that generally inspires no fear in us—1970:

March 6 A bomb being assembled by terrorists explodes, killing three.
April 8 47 children are killed by (peacetime) bombs from a neighboring country.
May 4 Soldiers kill four American college students.
May 8 A huge mob of construction workers in New York attacks protestors.
May 14 Police fire on a crowd at a college, killing two and injuring 12.
June 9 A bomb explodes at New York police headquarters.
July 12 Two canisters of tear gas are thrown into the British House of Commons.
Aug. 7 Terrorists take a judge hostage in California, then kill him.
Sept. 1 An assassination attempt on the King of Jordan.
Sept. 6 Terrorists hijack four airplanes on flights to New York.
Oct. 5 Terrorists kidnap a British diplomat.
Oct. 10 Terrorists kidnap a Canadian Minister. He is found dead a week later.
Nov. 25 Terrorists seize the headquarters of Japan’s defense forces.
Nov. 27 An assassination attempt on the Pope.
Dec. 3 A major government caves and releases five terrorists.
Dec. 4 Spain declares martial law.
Dec. 7 A Swiss ambassador is kidnapped.
Dec. 13 Martial law is declared in Poland.

These events were accepted in 1970. People thought they were sad, but they didn’t panic over them. I don’t think that would be true in this 21st century. We are living in a fear soup, which is being stirred by the overlords of the age. And it’s working for them.

Going Nowhere

There’s a great line in the Bible that says, “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” And that is exactly what we’re being treated to from the mainstream culture right now. This is a second defining characteristic of our new century.

How many of us can answer this question in any positive way?:

Where is Western civilization going?

In this 21st century, we have no vision, no goal, no direction. And that’s a very bad thing.

Lots of modern people want to live healthier and longer, but to what end? So they can eat more fancy food? So they can have sex a few more times? To what great future does that lead?

Millions of 21st-century people want to get rich, but what do they do with their big pile of money? Is it just to look at? To salve their insecurities? To prove their superiority?

Money is a fine tool, a good thing to have, but anyone who thinks it’s going to make them into some kind of superior person has a big surprise coming. The one thing they may get from it is status, but only in the eyes of shallow people.

At one time, the men and women of the West did have goals. At one time, they strove to attain righteousness, to love their neighbors, and to eliminate slavery. (And yes, I’m talking about the early Middle Ages.) Was this universal and perfect? Of course not, but it was quite real and quite effective, no matter what pop history says.

Even during my youth, we had a vision: We were sending men to the moon, then outward from there. However poorly the effort was handled, it was a real goal, and one that positively affected millions of us.

Now there are no goals, no striving, no searching, no becoming. Instead, we have distractions, fears, and stasis.

Humans need goals, and we as a civilization currently have none.

The Current Necessity

So what do we do about this?

The common reflex is to “reform the system,” but I think that’s a tragic mistake. There’s a line from Emerson that goes like this:

We are always getting ready to live, but never living.

And that’s precisely what the usual path will get you. Always “gonna live soon” but never actually living.

“Things will change as soon as we get X out of office.” “They’ll change as soon as we get Y into office.” “As soon as we change the Supreme Court!”

You can chase these rainbows for decades, but it ends up making no real difference. One day you’ll wake up and realize that you’re old and nearing the finish line… and that the system still sucks.

So, I recommend that you dump all of that and get busy changing the world directly. Forget the visionless 21st-century culture and start creating your own vision. Read, learn, choose! And get busy doing.

Without a vision, we stagnate, we walk in circles… we perish.

Don’t live in that trap.

A Free-Man’s Take is written by adventure capitalist, author, and freedom advocate Paul Rosenberg. You can get much more from Paul in his unique monthly newsletter, Free-Man’s Perspective.

On Christianity…

Not sure what to write on this entry. Have been learning lots on just writing anyway, and things will come. Deanie said my higher self is here trying to help me write. It’s been slamming doors and moving things around. So maybe I should listen….

First of all….who are we. We are an everlasting spirit that never dies. That brings up some things about Christianity that I have questions about. If we are a spirit, but we have one life to live, what happened(s) to us before we were born and after we die? We must have had an existence somehow, somewhere. Christianity doesn’t allow for that unless it’s heaven or hell, but how can we be in either place before we were born. How could we “accept Christ” before we were born. No one ever said anything about that. So where were we…in heaven or hell? Does that make any sense?

Another thing, since we are an immortal spirit, what have we been doing for 14 billion years, as scientists, and many other religions, say….or even 6000 years…as Creationists say. We will live forever, but really only has less than 100 years of experience. Doesn’t make sense. There is a story in the Bible where Lazarus, in Abraham’s bosom, (What does that mean, and where is it?) is talking to someone suffering in “hell.” So that means there is experience after death, and it’s a lot longer than life here on Earth. Maybe we should spend some time thinking and researching that!

Maybe that’s why some religions say that we reincarnate, or have many lives. Seems to make sense, since we must be doing something. That could also mean that we could be anywhere in the Universe, wouldn’t it. That would be a “life” too. It just isn’t explained very well, and when there are unanswered questions, we begin to wonder and to research…and learn.

Another question is that is if we don’t accept Christ in this life; we spend the rest of our existence in hell. Wow that’s a long time!  And what does “accepting Christ” mean. Every denomination has a different definition. Some say you have to be “reborn” and some say you have be baptized, go through some sort of training, and be made a “Christian.” So what really is the answer, and do we decide what it takes, or does Christ?? It says in the Bible that our faith is shown by our works. Well, Christians are not doing so good in that area. They have as many or more divorces, and generally have about the same life, as “non Christians.” So, even most of the Christians are not even “saved,”as shown by their works, and are not going to heaven. So that leaves at least 90% of the all the people that ever lived in hell, or are going to be. Doesn’t sound good for God, does it? Looks like the devil is winning. Is that possible? It says not in the Bible….that in the end God wins. That’s not much of a victory, since they can’t ever leave hell! (as evidenced by the Lazarus story..the man in “hell” could not escape. ..Luke 16:19-31.)

And there’s the unanswered question of what if Christ was never preached to them, how will they know. (Romans 10:14) Someone explained it this way. Everyone has a chance to accept Him, because He will appear to them, and then they have to make a decision. Well there goes the need for a church and teaching and living a good life, because for some Hindu, Christ will appear to them and they just have to decide one way or the other. My head hurts from that logic…or illogic!!!

So this is why I have been doing much research into what is really “true.” Since we have a long time to live, what is our purpose here on Earth, or wherever else we may be before and after? Since we have God living on the inside of us (The Bible says the Kingdom of God is within us, Luke 17:21.), wouldn’t a better way to think about it is that we are here to learn about realizing more of God in us…and the more we learn, the more God grows within us. God might be “out there,” but what difference does that make since the whole Kingdom is within us! Maybe we should pay more attention to what’s happening inside of us. Maybe should be totally responsible for our lives, and our “salvation.” Maybe we should be aware of who is trying to control us. There are many forces saying, “My religion is the only way to God.,” and they go out and kill all others who don’t “believe.” (All religions have done this.) That’s their definition of Love, because “God is Love.” It’s like they know God better than God does! Some have said, “We create God in our own image,” instead of the other way around!

So Christianity has some holes in it….it can’t answer all the questions, such as….What really gets us into “heaven,”  or 90% of the people in hell…come on!!! These questions have to be answerable, or we walk around in doubt, which is the opposite of faith. That does not work in our lives. We live by faith…having no doubt about our destiny..our “ending.” The questions need to be answered.

The Important vs The Urgent.

This one is about the Important and the Urgent!

Below is what has happened in our lives over the last few weeks. It really shows the difference between the Important and the Urgent.

The Urgent is what constantly is in front of us, that, supposedly has to be done…but does it really. It’s stuff like reading my email, reading posts on FaceBook, watching TV, or fixing our car….all the stuff that seems necessary, and it might be, but keeps us from doing what we really know we should be doing…the Important…like researching and starting that business, exercising, writing your story, or learning something new every day! My Important is to write every day about what I have learned about Healing and God, and how to develop that into a business online, so I can help people heal. It’s sharing what I have with all Creation.

My mentor said today that we always have time to eat and sleep. When we view the Important as that crucial, we will have the time.

So first the Urgent…like car problems, it finally gave out. It went from bearings and brakes, to front suspension, the A/C, a gas line break, which almost started the car on fire, and finally, it starting only when it wanted to!! You thing maybe it was time!! It took 3 weeks of looking at cars to finally decide to buy a new one…a Kia Sportage, something that should last 5 or 6 years. The was urgent and important.

Getting money transferred to buy it has been an experience. One has to have all the account numbers right, and knowing which ones are right is not that easy. So the transfer was delayed, while we try to figure it out. I think we have it now, but have been without a car for over a week. That’s been interesting. We had to depend on friend or relatives and taxis.

Also Ryne and Natasha (my children) came to visit, and attend our wedding reception. And there’s always the mundane things like fixing the house.

This week we went to Deanie’s sister’s home for lunch and a swim in her pool…great fun, but no writing happened. Yesterday we decorated a Christmas tree and made a Christmas scene. It all takes time, and no writing happened again. The Important seems to get pushed back.

The Important…So last night I wrote some in a book that I am writing a chapter in. It’s about half done. The problem is what to write. I consider myself one who tries to say what I need to in as few words as possible (well maybe not, as you can see from this blog entry, ha ha.) So Deanie and I talked about it last night. She stayed up until 230 am and wrote. And this morning, after going for a nice long walk, I sat down and started writing. Now that’s getting to the Important!!!

So I am trying to tell you what life is like “down here.” What I wrote about above has been negative, but, for a reason. Life treats us as we treat it. If we just drift along, Life’s current will drag us down until we feel depressed and worthless. It takes changing our attitude and the way we look at things. One has to focus on one’s calling.

Now for the good part!! I have lost 15 lbs since I have moved here (Deanie says I am too thin!!) I have noticed that the stress here is almost non-existent. The pace here is slower, and it can be frustrating at times, but I am happier and much more content. I have been able to mediate, pray and listen to my inner self. And, most of all, Deanie and I are wonderfully in love. We look into each other’s eyes and just go deep into each other. What a feeling! What a life!

Now that’s Important!!!

So if you have questions, or need help getting to the important and Finding a Healing God, just reply to this post!

Thanks, Vince

Treatise on Control

This is for all of us “Control Freaks.” >)

What does it really mean to be in control. Most people think it’s to satisfy every desire…to not have anyone “telling them what to do.”

But it comes down to “who do you listen to.” I think we all are controlled by something….our income, our family, our upbringing and mostly our mind. It’s the way we think that controls us mostly. So are we really in control of anything?

Yes we are! We created the circumstances we are in. We did. Not anyone else. Again, taking full responsibility. The good thing about this is that we can create the life we want by TAKING CONTROL OF OUR MIND.  You know that little voice (yeah, right, little) that keeps talking to us all the time. That’s the one us control freaks need to master, and that could occupy us for quite a while.

So instead of trying to control our outer environment, how about controlling the inner one. Stop the chatter, stop the going over and over the past, and stop the fantasy of the future.

Start by admitting that you/I have problems that we can’t solve, so we need to be completely honest about them. State them..truthfully, and say I can’t control my guilt, my shame, my anger and the issues those things bring up….like drinking too much, waiting for the weekend, because we hate our job, or our spouse who is always telling us to do stuff, or exposing our faults. Admit them, and then they will respect you for it….and ask for help from them, from God of the Universe which resides in us.

Once we start being honest, we can begin to deal with issue as it manifests. As we let each one go….forgive ourselves, everyone involved and GOD…we can heal. It’s like peeling and onion…never a pleasant job….and it’s layer by layer. The more layers that come off, the more we SEE ourselves, and our power returns. That’s being the best control freak there is!!