ULTIMATE INFLUENCE: YOUR MASTER SYSTEM

“Elementary, my dear Watson …” WITH APOLOGIES TO SIR ARTHUR CONAN DOYLE

One of the things I love most about what I do is the opportunity to unravel the mystery of human behavior and thereby to offer solutions that truly make a difference in the quality of people’s lives. I’m fascinated to probe below the surface to find out the “why” behind a person’s behavior, to discover their core beliefs, questions, metaphors, references and values. Because my forte is being able to produce immediate and measurable results, out of necessity I’ve learned how to quickly locate key leverage points for facilitating change. Every day, I get to live the role of Sherlock Holmes, sleuthing minute details to piece together the jigsaw puzzle of each person’s unique experience—I guess you could say that I’m a very private detective! There are telltale clues to human behavior just as blatant as the smoking gun.

Sometimes the clues are a little more subtle, and it takes further investigation to uncover them. However, as diverse as human behavior is, one of the things that has allowed me to do what I do so successfully is that ultimately it all comes down to certain patterns made up of specific key elements. If you and I have a grasp of these organizing principles, then we are empowered not only to influence people for positive change, but also to understand why they do what they do.

Understanding the Master System that directs all human behavior is as much a science as are chemistry and physics, governed by predictable laws and patterns of action and reaction. You can think of your own Master System—the five components that determine how you evaluate everything that happens in your life—as a kind of Periodic Table, de- tailing the elements of human behavior. Just as all physical matter breaks down to the same basic units, so does the process of human behavior to one who knows what to look for. It’s the combination and structure—how we use these elements—that makes each of us unique. Some mixtures are volatile and produce explosive results. Other combinations neutralize, some catalyze, and some paralyze.

Bombarded as we are with the countless things that happen to us every day, most of us don’t even realize that we have a personal philosophy, much less the power it has to direct our evaluations of what things mean to us. The second section of this book is dedicated to assisting you in taking direct control of your Master System of evaluation—the force that controls the way you feel and what you do every moment of your life.

Understanding the Master System of others allows you to immediately get to the essence of a person, whether it’s your spouse, your child, your boss or business partner, even the people you meet every day. Wouldn’t this be one of the greatest gifts you could ever receive: to be able to know what is driving all the people who are most important to you—including yourself? Wouldn’t it be great to get beyond any upsets or challenges with someone and understand why they’re behaving this way—and then, without judgment, to be able to immediately reconnect with who they really are?

With children, we usually remember that crankiness indicates a need for a nap, rather than a sour disposition. In a marriage, it’s especially important to be able to see through the day-to-day stresses so that you can support each other and nurture the bond that brought you together in the first place. If your spouse is feeling pressure from work, and is venting his or her frustration, it doesn’t mean that your marriage is over, but it’s a sign to be more attentive and to put your focus on supporting this person you love. After all, you wouldn’t judge the stock market based solely on one day when the Dow-Jones Average plunges twenty points. By the same token, you can’t judge a person’s character by one isolated incident. People are not their behaviors.

The key to understanding people is to understand their Master Systems so you can appreciate their individual, systematic way of reasoning. We all have a system or procedure that we go through in order to determine what things mean to us and what we need to do about them in virtually any situation in life. You and I need to remember that different things are important to different people, and they’ll evaluate what’s happening differently based upon their perspective and conditioning.

Imagine playing tennis and hitting a poor serve. From your perspective, you blew it. From your opponent’s perspective, it was a great shot—for him. From the line judge’s perspective, the serve was neither good nor bad; it was simply “in” or “out.” What often happens after hitting a poor shot? People start generalizing —and more often than not, in a disempowering way. “What a terrible serve” becomes “I couldn’t serve today to save my life.” Their next few serves are likely to be equally underwhelming. Then the train of generalization picks up speed, moving from “I couldn’t serve today to save my life” to “I never did have that great a serve” to “I’m really not such a hot tennis player” to “I never seem to be able to master anything” to “I’m a horrible person.” It looks ludicrous here, spelled out in lurid detail, but isn’t this the way it happens in so many areas of our lives? If we fail to take control of our evaluation process, it literally runs wild and sweeps us into the spiraling pattern of self-recrimination.

SUPERIOR EVALUATIONS CREATE SUPERIOR LIVES

In modeling the most successful people in our culture, one common denominator I notice without fail is that they make superior evaluations. Think of anyone you consider to be a master of anything, in business, politics, law, the arts, relationships, physical health, spirituality. What has brought them to their personal pinnacle? What has made prosecuting attorney Gerry Spence win almost every case he has taken on in the last fifteen years? Why does Bill Cosby seem to delight his audiences virtually every time he takes the stage? What makes Andrew Lloyd Webber’s music so hauntingly perfect? It all comes down to these people making superior evaluations in their areas of expertise. Spence has honed a superior understanding of what influences human emotion and decision. Cosby has spent years developing key references, beliefs, and rules about how to use anything in his environment as material to make people laugh. Webber’s mastery of melody, orchestration, arrangement, and other elements enables him to write music that touches us at the deepest level.

Consider Wayne Gretzky of the Los Angeles Kings. He has scored more points than anyone in the history of the National Hockey League. What makes him so powerful? Is it because he’s the biggest, strongest, or fastest player in the league? By his own admission, the answer to all three of these questions is no. Yet he was consistently the number-one scorer in the league. When asked what makes him so effective, his response is that while most players skate to where the puck is, he tends to skate to where the puck is going. At any moment in time, his ability to anticipate—to evaluate the velocity of the puck, its direction, the present strategies and physical momentum of the players around him— allows him to place himself in the optimum position for scoring. One of the top money managers in the world is Sir John Templeton, dean of international investing, whose track record for the last fifty jears is unrivaled. A sum of $10,000 invested in the Templeton Growth Fund at its inception in 1954 would be worth $2.2 million today! In order to have him personally work with you on your portfolio, you must invest at minimum of $10 million cash; his top client entrusted him with over $11 billion to invest. What has made Templeton one of the greatest investment advisors of all time? When I asked him this question, he didn’t hesitate a moment. He said, “My ability to evaluate the true value of an investment.” He’s been able to do this despite the vagaries of trends and ‘short-term market fluctuations.

WEALTH IS THE RESULT OF EFFECTIVE EVALUATIONS

Other top investment advisors whom I’ve studied and modeled in the past year include Peter Lynch, Robert Prechter, and Warren Buffet. To help him in his financial evaluations. Buffet employs a powerful metaphor he learned from his friend and mentor Ben Graham: “As a metaphor for looking at market fluctuations, just imagine them as coming from a remarkably accommodating fellow named Mr. Market who’s your partner in private business.. . . Mr. Market’s quotations are anything but [stable]. Why? Well, for the sad-to-say reason that the poor fellow has incurable emotional problems. At times he feels euphoric and we can see only the favorable factors affecting the business, and when he’s in that mood he names a very high buy-sell price because he fears that you’ll snap up his interest and rob him of imminent gains. At other times he’s depressed and he can see nothing but trouble ahead for both the business and the world. On those occasions he’ll name a very low price since he’s terrified that you will unload your interest on him. .. . But like Cinderella at the ball, you must heed one warning or everything will turn into pumpkins and mice. Mr. Market is there to serve you, not to guide you. It is his pocketbook, not his wisdom, that you will find useful. If he shows up someday in a particularly foolish mood, you are free to either ignore him, or take advantage of him, but it will be disastrous if you fall under his influence. Indeed, if you aren’t certain that you understand and can value your business far better than Mr. Market, you don’t belong in the game.” Clearly, Buffet evaluates his investment decisions quite differently from those who are extremely worried when the market crashes or euphoric when it soars. And because he evaluates differently, he produces a different quality of result. If someone is doing better than we are in any area of life, it’s simply because they have a better way of evaluating what things mean and what they should do about it. We must never forget that the impact of our evaluations goes far beyond hockey or finances. How you evaluate what you’re going to eat each night may determine the length and quality of your life. Poor evaluations of how to raise your kids can create the potential for lifelong pain. Failure to understand someone else’s evaluation procedures can destroy a beautiful and loving relationship.

The goal, then, is to be able to evaluate everything in your life in a way that consistently guides you to make choices that produce the results you desire. The challenge is that seldom do we take control of what seems like a complex process. But I’ve developed ways to simplify it so that we can take the helm and begin steering our own evaluation procedures, and therefore our destinies. Here is a brief overview of the five elements of evaluation, some of which you already know, and the rest of which we’ll be covering in the following chapters. Below you’ll find an arrow pointed toward twin targets. This diagram demonstrates how our Master System of evaluation works. Let’s review the five elements one at a time and add each to the diagram as we go.

1) The first element that affects all of your evaluations is the mental and emotional state you’re in while you’re making an evaluation. There are times in your life when somebody can say one thing to you and it will make you cry, while other times the same comment makes you laugh. What’s the difference? It might simply be the state you’re in. When you’re in a fearful, vulnerable state, the crunching of footsteps outside your window in the night, along with the creak of a door opening, will feel and mean something totally different than if you’re in a state of excitement or positive anticipation. Whether you quiver under the sheets or leap out and run to the door with open arms is the result of the evaluations you make about the meaning of these sounds. One major key to making superior evaluations, then, is to make certain that when we’re making decisions about what things mean and what to do, we’re in an extremely resourceful state of mind and emotion rather than in a survival mode.

2) The second building block of our Master System is the questions we ask. Questions create the initial form of our evaluations. Remember, in response to anything that happens in your life, your brain evaluates it by asking, “What is happening? What does this situation mean? Does it mean pain or pleasure? What can I do now to avoid, reduce, or eliminate pain or gain some pleasure?” What determines whether you ask somebody out for a date? Your evaluations are deeply affected by the specific question you ask yourself as you consider approaching this person. If you ask yourself a question like “Wouldn’t it be great to get to know this person?”, you’re likely to feel motivated to approach them. If, however, you habitually ask questions like “What if they reject me? What if they’re offended when I approach them? What if I get hurt?” then obviously these questions will lead you through a set of evaluations that result in your passing up the opportunity to connect with someone you’re truly interested in.

What determines the kind of food you’ll put on your dinner plate also depends on the questions you ask. If when you look at food, you consistently ask the question “What could I eat quickly that would give me an immediate lift?”, the foods you may choose will tend to be heavily processed convenience foods—in layman’s terms, junk. If instead you asked, “What could I have now that would nourish me?”, it’s more likely you’ll pull from such food groups as fruits, juices, vegetables, and salads. The difference between having a Snickers bar on a regular basis or having a glass of fresh-squeezed juice will determine the quality of your physical body, and this has resulted from the way you’ve evaluated. Your habitual questions play a major role in this process.

3) The third element that affects your evaluations is your hierarchy of values. Each of us throughout our lives has learned to value certain emotions more than others. We all want to feel good, i.e., pleasure, and avoid feeling bad, i.e., pain., But our life’s experience has taught each of us a unique coding system for what equals pain and what equals pleasure. This can be found in the guidance system of our values. For example, one person may have learned to link pleasure to the idea of feeling secure, while someone else may have linked pain to the same idea because their family’s obsession with security caused them never to experience a sense of freedom. Some people try to succeed, yet at the same time they avoid rejection at all costs. Can you see how this values conflict might cause a person to feel frustrated or immobilized?

The values you select will shape every decision you make in your life. There are two types of values you’ll learn about in the next chapter: the emotional states of pleasure we’re always trying to move toward—values like love, joy, compassion, and excitement—and the emotional states of pain that we’re trying to avoid or move away from—like humiliation, frustration, depression, and anger. The dynamic created by these two targets will determine the direction of your life.

4) The fourth element that makes up your Master System is beliefs. Our global beliefs give us a sense of certainty about how to feel and what to expect from ourselves, from life, and from people; our rules are the beliefs we have about what has to happen for us to feel that our values have been met. For example, some people believe, “If you love me, then you never raise your voice.” This rule will cause this person to evaluate a raised voice as evidence that there is no love in the relationship. This may have no basis in fact, but the rule will dominate the evaluation and therefore that person’s perceptions and experience of what’s true. Other such limiting rules might be ideas like “If you’re successful, then you make millions of dollars” or “If you’re a good parent, then you never have a conflict with your children.”

Our global beliefs determine our expectations and often control what we’re even willing to evaluate in the first place. Together, the force of these beliefs determines when we give ourselves an experience of pain or pleasure, and they are a core element in every evaluation we’ll ever make.

5) The fifth element of your Master System is the hodgepodge of reference experiences you can access from the giant filing cabinet you call your brain. In it, you’ve stored everything you’ve ever experienced in your life—and, for that matter, everything you’ve ever imagined. These references form the raw material that we use to construct our beliefs and guide our decisions. In order to decide what something means to us, we have to compare it to something; for example, is this situation good or bad? Think of the tennis example earlier in this chapter: is it good or bad, compared to what? Is it good compared to what your friends do or have?

Is it bad compared to the worst situation you’ve ever heard of? You have unlimited references you can use in making any decision. Which references you choose will determine the meaning you take from any experience, how you feel about it, and to a certain extent what you’ll do.

Without a doubt, references shape our beliefs and values. Can you see how it would make a difference, for example, if you grew up in an environment where you felt you were consistently being taken advantage of, as opposed to growing up feeling unconditionally loved? How might this color your beliefs or your values, the way you looked at life or people or opportunity?

If, for example, you had learned skydiving when you were sixteen years old, you might develop different values about the idea of adventure than someone who was rejected every time they attempted a new skill, concept, or idea. Masters are often people who just have more references than you do about what leads to success or frustration in any given situation. Clearly, after forty years of investing, John Templeton has more references to assist him in deciding what is an excellent investment than someone who is putting together their, first deal.

Additional references offer us the potential for mastery. Yet, regard- less of our experience or lack thereof, we have unlimited ways to organize our references into beliefs and rules that either empower or disempower us. Each day you and I have the opportunity to take in new references that can help us to bolster our beliefs, refine our values, ask new questions, access the states that propel us in the direction we want to go, and truly shape our destinies for the better.

“Men are wise in proportion, not to their experience, but to their capacity for experience.” GEORGE BERNARD SHAW

Several years ago, I began to hear about the incredible success of a man named Dwayne Chapman in tracking down and capturing felons who had eluded the law for years. Known to most as “Dog,” he has become known as the top bounty hunter in the country. I was fascinated and wanted to meet him and discover what makes him so effective. Dog is a deeply spiritual man whose goal is not only to catch the felon, but also to help him make changes in his life. Where did this desire come from? It came from his own pain.

As a young man. Dog made poor evaluations about whom he chose as friends. Out of his desire to belong to a group, he joined a motorcycle gang, the Devil’s Disciples. One day, in the midst of a drug deal gone bad, a gang member shot and mortally wounded a man at the scene. Panic ensued; the members immediately fled. Although Dog did not commit the murder, in that state there was no line drawn between being an accessory to murder and being the man who actually pulled the trigger. He ended up serving years of hard time, working on a chain gang, in the Texas prison system. Doing time gave him so much pain that he reevaluated his entire philosophy of life. He began to realize that his core beliefs, values, and rules had created his pain. He began to ask himself new questions and to focus on his prison experiences (references) as being the effect of choices he’d made with his previous life philosophy.

This got him to the point where he believed he must change his life once and for all. In the years following his release. Dog pursued a number of colorful careers and finally settled on starting a private investigation business. When he was brought before a judge for back child-support payments (payments he’d been unable to make while in prison and in the financially unstable period following his release), the judge offered Dog a money-making opportunity in lieu of a payment he knew would never materialize. He suggested that Dog track down a rapist who had victimized many women in the Denver area. The judge suggested Dog use the distinctions he’d made in prison to assist him in figuring out what this criminal might be doing and where he might be hiding. Although law enforcement officials had tried unsuccessfully to find this rapist for over a year. Dog delivered him within three days!

To say the least, the judge was impressed. This was the start of a brilliant career, and today, more than 3,000 arrests later. Dog has one of the best records in the country, if not the best. He has averaged over 360 arrests a year—essentially one arrest a day. What is the key to his success? Certainly a critical factor is the evaluations he makes. Dog interviews his quarry’s relatives or loved ones, and in a variety of ways he elicits the information he needs. He discovers some of the beliefs, values, and habitual rules of the man or woman he’s pursuing. He now understands their life references, which enables him to think the same way they would and anticipate their moves with uncanny precision. He understands their Master System and his results speak for themselves.

TWO KINDS OF CHANGE

If you and I want to change anything in our lives, it’s invariably one of two things: either how we’re feeling or our behaviors. Certainly we can learn how to change our emotions or feelings within a context. For example, if you feel fearful of being rejected as an actor, I can help you to condition yourself so that you no longer feel fearful. Or we can make the second kind of change: a global change. A metaphor for this might be that if we want to change the way your computer is processing data, I can change the software that you’re using so that when you hit the keys what shows up on the screen is formatted differently. Or if I really want to make a change that will not only affect this type of file, but multiple environments, I can change the computer’s operating system. By changing the Master System, we can change how you’ll interact in a variety of circumstances.

So instead of just conditioning yourself to feel differently about rejection and eliminating the fearful behaviors, you can adopt a new global belief that says, “I am the source of all my emotions. Nothing and no one can change how I feel except me. If I find myself in reaction to anything, I can change it in a moment.” If you truly adopt this belief, not intellectually, but emotionally where you feel it with absolute certainty, can you see how that would eliminate not only your fear of rejection, but also your feelings of anger or frustration or inadequacy?

Suddenly, you become the master of your fate. Or we could change your values, and make your highest value one of contributing. Then, if somebody rejected you, it wouldn’t matter: you’d still want to contribute to them, and through constant contribution, you’d find yourself no longer being rejected by people. You’d also find yourself permeated with a sense of joy and connection that you may never have had before in other areas of your life. Or we can change your conditioned feelings toward smoking by getting you to move health and vitality to the top of your values list. Once that becomes the highest priority of your life, the smoking behavior will disappear, and more importantly, it can be replaced by other behaviors that will support your new value of health and vitality: eating differently, breathing differently, and so on. Both types of changes are valuable.

The focus of the second section of the book is how to create these global changes, where a single shift in one of the five elements of the Master System will powerfully affect the way you think, feel, and behave in multiple areas of your life simultaneously. If you change just one element in your Master System, there are certain evaluations you won’t even consider anymore, certain questions you won’t even ask, certain beliefs the computer won’t even accept. This process of creating a global change can be a powerful force for shaping destiny.

“Take away the cause, and the effect ceases.” MIGUEL DE CERVANTES

There’s a story I love to tell of a fellow standing on the banks of a river. Suddenly, he sees someone caught in the raging current, bounced about on the jagged rocks, and hears him calling for help. He leaps in, pulls the drowning man to safety, gives him mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, attends to the man’s wounds, and calls for medical help. As he’s still catching his breath, he hears two more screams emanating from the river. Again, he jumps in and makes another daring rescue, this time of two young women. Before he even has a chance to think, he hears four more people calling for help. Pretty soon the man is exhausted, having rescued victim after victim, and yet the screams continue. If only he had taken the time to travel a short distance upriver, he could have discovered who was throwing all those people in the water in the first place! He could have saved all his efforts by addressing the problem at its cause rather than its effect.

Similarly, understanding the Master System allows you to eliminate the cause instead of exhausting yourself fighting the effects. One of the finest programs I ever designed is my three-day Date With Destiny seminar. Instead of the usual 2,000 participants, I limit this program to 200 people. At Date With Destiny, we work together to assist each person to understand exactly how their Master System is set up.

This understanding transforms people: suddenly they understand why they feel the things they feel and do the things they do. They also learn how to change virtually anything in their lives. Most importantly, we then have them design what their Master System needs to be in order for them to achieve their ultimate purpose in life. How can they organize themselves so they can be effortlessly pulled in the direction of their desires rather than be pulled apart by a sense of conflicting values, beliefs, or rules?

Some of the most important questions we ask in this program are “What are the values that are controlling me? How do I know when my values are being met—what are my rules?” Date With Destiny has been attended not only by U.S. senators and congressmen. Fortune 500 CEOs, and movie stars, but also by people from every walk of life. All of us have in common some of the same challenges. How do we deal with disappointment, frustration, failure, and certain events in our environment that we can’t control no matter how successful we become?

The emotions we feel and the actions we take are based on how we evaluate things. And yet, most of us have not set up this system of evaluation for ourselves. The profound changes that people experience in this program in a mere three days are beyond words. People literally change the way they think and the way they feel about their lives in a matter of moments, because they take control of the portion of their brain that controls their experience of life. The changes end up being emotional and even physical as the brain sets new priorities for what’s most important. While this book is not a replacement for Date With Destiny, I want to provide the same foundational tools that we use in that program for your immediate use. With the chapters that follow, you can produce the same kinds of changes in your life starting now.

TEST WHAT YOU’VE LEARNED

To stimulate your thinking about how your Master System works, let me ask you a few provocative questions that should open the floodgates of your thought and help you to identify how different portions of your system are used to make decisions.

ANSWER THE FOLLOWING FOUR QUESTIONS BEFORE YOU READ ON:

1. What is your most treasured memory?

2. If you could end world hunger today by killing one innocent person, would you? Why or why not?

3. If you bumped a red Porsche and scratched it, and no one was around, would you leave a note? Why or why not?

4. If you could earn $10,000 for eating a bowlful of live cockroaches, would you? Why or why not?

Now let’s review how you answered each of these questions. As you look at the diagram of your Master System, which of the five areas of evaluation did you use to answer the first question? Certainly you asked a question of yourself in order to begin to evaluate—you probably repeated the question I asked. The answer, though, was retrieved from your references, wasn’t it? You picked through the myriad experiences you’ve had in your life, and finally selected one as your most treasured memory. Or maybe you failed to select one because you have a belief that says, “All experiences of life are treasured” or “Selecting one over another will be denigrating to some other life experience.” Those beliefs would prevent you from answering the question. You see, our Master System of evaluation not only determines what we evaluate and how we evaluate, but even what we’re willing to evaluate. Let’s review the second question, one that is more intense and which I read in The Book of Questions: If you could end world hunger today by killing one innocent person, would you? When I ask people this question, I usually get a rather intense set of answers. Some people say, “Absolutely,” their rationale being that the lives of the many outweigh the life of an individual. The way they see it, if one person were willing to suffer, and it would end all suffering on earth, the end would justify the means. Others are aghast at this thought. They believe every human life is valuable. That’s also based on a set of beliefs, isn’t it? Others have a global belief that everything in life is exactly as it should be, and that all these people who are starving are getting invaluable lessons for their next incarnation. And some people say, “Yes, I would do it, but I’d take my own life.” It’s interesting how individuals respond with such varying reactions to the same question based on which of the five elements of evaluation they use and the content they’ve stored.

How about the third question: If you bumped a red Porsche and scratched it, and no one was around, would you leave a note? Some people would say, “Absolutely.” Why? Their highest value is honesty. Other people say, “Absolutely,” but the reason they would do it is that one of the things they avoid most in the world is guilt. Not leaving a note would make them feel guilty, and that’s too painful. Others will say, “I wouldn’t leave a note,” and when asked why they’ll say, “Well, it’s happened to me several times, and nobody left me a note.” So they’re saying they have personal references that made them develop the belief, “Do unto others as they’ve done unto you.”

Here’s the fourth question: If you could earn $10,000 for eating a bowlful of live cockroaches, would you? Invariably I get very few affirmative responses. Why? Most people’s references for cockroaches the images and sensations that they’ve stored in their bodies—are intensely negative. Certainly cockroaches are not something they’d want to put in their systems. But then I raise the ante: How many of you would do it for $100,000? Gradually there is a shift in the room as people begin to raise their hands who previously had said no. Why will they suddenly do it for $100,000? Well, what happened to their evaluation system? Two things: I asked a different question by changing one word, and second, they have a belief that $100,000 could eliminate a lot of pain in their lives, maybe some of the long-term pain that would be more difficult to deal with than the short-term pain of live cockroaches squiggling down their throats.

How about $1 million? How about $10 million? Suddenly the majority of the people in the room are raising their hands. They believe the long-term pleasure that the $10 million would allow them to give to themselves and others would far outweigh the short-term pain. Still, some people would not eat live cockroaches for any amount of money.

When asked why not, they say things like “I could never kill a living thing” or “What goes around comes around.” Other people say, “I kill cockroaches all the time, just because they’re in my way!” One man even said he could eat them easily, and that he would do it for fun, not the money! Why? The reason is that he grew up in a country where cockroaches and other insects are considered a delicacy. Different people have different references and different ways of evaluating things—interesting, isn’t it?

THERE COMES A TIME . . .

As we study these five elements of the Master System, there’s one other theme we need to bear in mind: it’s certainly possible to overevaluate.

Human beings love to analyze things to death. There is a point, however, when we’ve got to stop evaluating and take action. For example, some people make so many evaluations that even a minor decision turns into a major production: maybe they can’t get themselves to exercise regularly as part of their lifestyle. Why? They see it as a major production. The way they “chunk” the experience, the way they look at it, there are so many steps that they’re intimidated.

In order to exercise, they must 1) get up; 2) find some workout wear they don’t look too fat in; 3) pick out the right athletic shoes; 4) pack everything up in their gym bag; 5) schlepp over to the gym; 6) find a parking spot; 7) climb the stairs; 8) sign in; 9) go into the locker room; 10) squeeze into the workout clothes; and 11) finally attend the class, hit the stationary bicycle, and sweat like crazy. And then when they’re done, 12) they have to do all of this again in reverse.

then when they’re done, 12) they have to do all of this again in reverse. Of course, these same people can easily get themselves to go to the beach. They’re ready in a heartbeat! If you ask them why, they’ll tell you, “Well, to go to the beach, you just hop in the car and go!” They don’t stop to evaluate each and every step along the way; they see it as one giant step, evaluating only whether to go or not, not every little detail. Sometimes evaluating too many details can cause us to feel over- loaded or overwhelmed. One of the things we’ll learn here, then, is to put many minor steps together into one big “chunk”—one giant step, if you will—that the minute you take it you’ll get the result that you want.

In this section, we’re going to analyze our evaluation system, put it together in a way that makes sense, and then start using it instead of deliberating about it. As you continue through the next few chapters, realize that you have an opportunity to create leverage on yourself that will produce changes you may never have thought possible before.

So let’s cut right to the chase. I’ll be coaching you on revealing what your present evaluation system is and setting up a new Master System that is consistently empowering. You already know the power of state and questions, so let’s proceed to the third area of evaluations. Let’s look at…

-Tony Robbins

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