Thursday, June 07, 2007

They Can Smell Your Fear

A few days ago, I got an email from one of my past students, M., who went through my Seven Days To Live Your Dreams workshops last year.  In the email, he wrote:

Hi Phillip,
I was one of the members of your first workshop program. I have a good question for you, maybe you can answer it directly or through the newsletter. What is the difference between having a mouth-watering goal and being desperate for it?

Well, M., first of all I want to congratulate you on keeping up your studies.  A lot of people take workshops and promptly forget about them within a few days or weeks, but here you are six months later, still trying to increase your understanding.  Kudos!

Now, if I were to be flippant, I would have to say that the most important difference between "mouth-watering" desire and "desperation" is that in one case, you're far more likely to get what you want than in the other!

There have been many times in my life where I was desperate for a job, money, or women...  and didn't get them.  On the other hand, there have been many more times where I desired one or more of those things, and got plenty!

The difference is in something I call "leaning" -- a topic we spent quite a bit of time on in my workshop for Owners' Circle members last month.  The basic idea is that your body position actually tells yourself and others how much you need something.  That is, how desperate you really are.

See, the difference between having a mouth-watering goal and being desperate is actually already spelled out in the Code of Owners: "if it feels bad, you're doing it wrong."

Desire feels good because you're thinking about how good it would be to have something.

Desperation feels bad because you're thinking about not having something and being afraid you never will.

And the difference between these two feelings is actually manifested in your physical posture and body language, communicating to everyone around you exactly "where you stand".  It even changes your voice!

And even if other people don't notice your desperation on a conscious level, they start to feel uneasy around you.  You seem less competent, less trustworthy, and less pleasant to be around.

In short...  like a loser.

On the other hand, if you are "open" and "laid back", you will not only be less anxious on the inside, but people will respond better to you on the outside.

Emile Coue (a 19th-century pharmacist who discovered the importance of suggestion in healing), used to say that "when the will and the imagination are in conflict, the imagination always wins".

So, if on the outside you are trying to willpower yourself towards some goal, while on the inside you are imagining all the ways in which you are likely to fail, it is your imagination that will determine your posture, your feelings, and your results.

Now, if you would like to change this, there are several routes you can take.  If, like M., you have the notes and recordings from Seven Days To Live Your Dreams, you will want to review all the parts that talk about the "if it feels bad, you're doing it wrong" principle.

Or, if you are a Full or Associate member of the Circle, then during last month's MindShift training you already heard how to change the "leaning" of your posture so you can instantly turn desperation and "need" into strong, centered confidence.  If you're not currently an Associate or Full member, sign up before my next workshop and download the recording.

Also, the current Life-Changing Secrets CD for all levels of Circle members is "The Secrets of Personal Presence", an interview with special guest Vanessa Bader.  Vanessa is an image consultant (among several other things) who shares quite a lot about body language, approval-seeking behavior, and how our thoughts affect the way other people perceive us.  So if you sign up at a Friend or higher level before the next CD goes out this month, you'll get this CD in the mail.

All in all, there are plenty of tools available to you, depending on your current level of membership.  Feel free to sign up here and get started now.