What if 2020 gets worse?

I think many folks are pining for 2018.

They’d love to wind back the clock a bit to when everything was ‘normal’.

(Read: familiar.)

If that’s you, I don’t blame you. I just hope you weren’t the typical Twitter user of the time, blurting out stuff like:

“OMG 2018 is the WORST. I want it to JUST END already. Three ageing celebrities have died, waaa!”

Those deaths were tragedies, but they weren’t disasters. I called it out for what it was: self-indulgent and dangerous whingeing.

And now, here we are.

2020 has brought us record bushfires, a disease with a rapidly rising death count, financial collapse, mental health eroding lockdowns, and riots.

We’re only halfway through.

And I suspect there’s worse to come.

But don’t blame 2020 for it. Whether 2021 is any better depends, in large measure, on your resilience. If, a few years ago, you dramatised a little sadness around celebrities dying into the worst thing ever…

Well, that was a mistake.

I’m not telling you to ignore or suppress your emotions. If a childhood hero dies, by all means feel sad. Get angry when someone disrespects your rights.

But it’s selfish to exaggerate, indulge and overshare your feelings.

Moping for likes and shares – instead of processing the emotions – made you less resilient. So when real problems reared their heads, you were less able to cope with them. That hurt everyone who relies on you in any way.

Like I say, it was a mistake.

And what do we do with mistakes?

We dust our hands, learn what we can and move on.

If you can’t move on?

If you’re struggling right now, feeling burned out or just that this has taken a lot out of you, it’s tempting to point your finger outwards. The world is on fire right now, so of course you’re not at 100%.

But just because you’re in pain, that doesn’t mean you should suffer.

Some folks crack under pressure. Others find their true strength. The difference isn’t in who they are but how they respond to challenges.

Chances are, you have an outdated and harmful response to challenges. That’s not your fault – who among us was taught how to thrive while our worlds crumble?

But now you’re aware of it, you have the responsibility to let go and embrace something better.

I’ve made part of your unconscious conscious. If you keep running the old, bad patterns, that’s now your choice.

So choose the path that makes you stronger. We all need your strength right now – more than ever.

And it’s easier to make the choice from a blank slate.

You can target the mistakes and unhelpful patterns of the past, resetting them while keeping all your strengths and virtues intact.

It’s like clearing a buggy program to install something better.

And with the Neural Reset, it’s easier than you think:

/appointment

Willpower ain’t the triumph of reason it pretends to be

Let’s say there’s something you want to do, even though you know you shouldn’t.

A classic example: reaching for chocolate.

If you’ve ever struggled with temptation and lost, then you know what it’s like:

You tell yourself you shouldn’t.

Then you tell yourself all sorts of reasons why it’s okay. You’ve worked hard, you deserve it, you’ll do better tomorrow, you’ve exercised, does it really make a difference…?

In the moment, there are so many right-seeming reasons to let go and indulge a little.

When you cave, it seems like a failure of reason – like your emotions or instincts got the better of you. And when you do the disciplined thing and stick to your convictions, it’s like your force of will won out.

This is such a common notion that I don’t think everyone questions it.

And it shows up in the language they use.

They talk about ‘fighting cravings’ and ‘resisting urges’ as if it’s them versus desire.

But if you indulge in more than your average introspection, you realise this isn’t the case.

Your reason, willpower or your sense of self never beats your emotions.

Never.

Whether you’re reigning in your temper or shrugging off an urge, your intellect gets all the credit and deserves none of it.

Consider the chocolate example some more:

You’ve had a long day and you want some. But you also want to stay healthy and slim down a little.

So you have a dilemma – do you resist or go for it?

Well, you decide to resist. But it’s not like your desire is taking your orders right now. You can keep on craving it, even after deciding – even after insisting – you don’t want to.

When you triumph over your baser instinct, it’s not because reason conquered it.

It’s because you know you’ll feel ashamed if you can’t resist some cheap, little temptation.

Or you imagine how great it’ll feel to look amazing on your next date.

Maybe you focus on how bad you sometimes feel after junk food.

You can beat this through hundreds of different mental strategies, all of which have something in common:

You pit one emotion against the other.

Reason doesn’t triumph because reason never enters the fight. It’s less a skilled warrior and more a bureaucrat, hiring mercenaries to fight on their behalf.

Instead of beating yourself up the next time your discipline slips, recognise what really happened.

It wasn’t your failure and it wasn’t even a moment of weakness. You simply picked the wrong emotion to fight for you.

There’s a lot of wisdom in here, if you’re willing to take the time to unpack it.

In the meantime, get started on all the other ways you can improve – and have fun doing it:

/navike

The “I can’t meditate!” meditation technique

Some of you are already seasoned meditation pros.

Others have no interest in it.

But some – and dare I wager, ‘many’ – of you struggled with it.

I get it. When I first started meditating as a teenager, it came easily to me. When I came back to it, a decade or so later, it was hard.

It felt so right at times… yet so unnatural.

My mind wanted to wander immediately.

And the more I tried to focus, the more my consciousness slipped away.

Unfortunate.

Now, I meditate and use self-hypnosis so much I literally crave it. If I go too long without it, the urge to slip into a trance rises when I’m bored.

I had to figure out a lot of stuff to get here.

So when you say “I can’t meditate” and I say I can help you, I mean it.

Here’s a handy technique:

For most of you, the problem comes when your mind won’t play ball. You want to focus but distractions creep into your mind.

Fantasies.

Past experiences, recent and old.

Plans.

Tasks you’ve been neglecting.

Physical sensations, like maybe a twingy back.

And, of course, the ol’ “I’m doing such a great job meditating right now. I can’t wait to brag to the people at the office about this. Especially to Alex – there’s only so much smugness I can take. You know, I should quit and buy a bar. What would I name it…?”

Or the variation on the above where, instead of patting yourself on the back, you yell at yourself for failing to concentrate.

All of these are distractions, no question.

But none of these are failures.

Sure, you set out to focus on your breath and now you’re so far along a train of thought, you can’t see the station anymore.

And that’s fine.

No law says you have to focus on your breathing… so why not focus on your distraction?

As long as you do it mindfully, you’re golden.

That’s my free tip to you… that’s easier said than done.

Want to enter a meditative trance in a way that’s easier done than not done?

Well, you clearly hunger for the buffet of unusual, exotic and down-right useful techniques I teach in Monster Mind Edukaré. It covers meditation and self-hypnosis from ‘go’ to ‘whoa, I never felt that before’.

Start with almost foolproof ways to enter a meditative state of mind.

End with techniques so advanced, monks struggle with them.

The full roadmap, with everything in between, is right here:

/monster

Want to grow stronger but you’re not sure how?

On my website, I give this list of things hypnosis can help with:

  • Weight Loss
  • Quitting Smoking
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Insomnia
  • Tinnitus
  • Addictions
  • Erectile Dysfunction
  • Blushing
  • Chronic Pain
  • Nail Biting
  • Heartbreak
  • Removing Hypnotic Suggestions

It’s quite a list.

And it’s by no means exhaustive.

Just one of the things hypnosis does is you deeply relax. Honestly, that’s a boring side effect – the real stuff is way juicier. But think about everything that relaxation can help with. I mean, the default treatment for any ailment – physical or psychological – is get plenty of rest and keep up your fluids.

I’m not a bartender, so your fluids are up to you.

The rest, though, I can work with.

And when you add the real power of hypnosis to engage, reshape and reprogram your unconscious mind?

Well, then it becomes even more powerful.

So.

Instead of listing every single thing hypnosis can do…

Well, why don’t you ask me?

You can book a consultation with me – online, for maximal convenience. You lay out your thoughts and I’ll let you know if/how I can help. If it’s outside my area of expertise, I’ll at least give you some pointers on where to go.

My consultations aren’t free… but they won’t cost you any coin, either. If you sign up with me, I’ll treat the consultation fee as a deposit. If you don’t sign up, simply ask for a refund and you’ve got it.

There’s no risk on you.

I do it this way to filter out some of the time-wasters. Anyone recoiling in horror at that isn’t ready yet.

But if you’ve read this far, you’re probably the sort of person I like to work with.

So sign up for a consultation here – or have a peek at the surprising solutions to some of your biggest challenges here:

/appointment/

You can’t force the simple life

Do you dream of packing it all in and moving to the country?

Maybe somewhere warm, close to the beach?

Somewhere without the internet, maybe even mobile reception?

And somewhere without germ-laden crowds?

I get it. Your enthusiasm for traffic, noise, drab offices, poor circulation and low-grade coffee degrades after the first decade or so.

But…

What if it bores you?

What if you find you like the conveniences of the city?

This is the problem with a sea change. Your wholesome self might embrace it, while your materialistic self struggles against it.

You probably get used to it in time.

Or you might resent the move and head back.

But here’s the thing – your material self lies to you. It says you need things to be happy – that you need 5G internet, fine dining, fashion boutiques and zoos.

Now, there’s nothing wrong with appreciating these things… unless they trap you in a job you hate so you can afford them.

If materialism is your prison, you bust out by focusing the other way. Some folk say this ‘other way’ is the spiritual side of life. That’s a loaded term though – if it works for you, great. If not, think of it as the mental side of things.

You can experience richer joys through training your mind than through any external experience.

No one can take your mind from you.

And when you can appreciate something as simple as a beautiful tree, those things like lavish dinners and high-speed internet become even more satisfying. You simply no longer need them to be happy.

There’s my take on it. Take my take or leave it.

A child can appreciate the simple pleasures. As we grow older, we learn to forget that and to crave possessions and fleeting experiences.

But you can reset that programming, taking your materialistic self back to a simpler time.

That’s one of the possible benefits of the Neural Reset:

/appointment

The ingredients label for placebos

A few days ago, I brought up placebos and how well they can work.

Which is frustrating for medical research but awesome for you. A simple sugar pill could be what you need.

I mentioned they have similar effectiveness to antidepressants – although there isn’t a perfect overlap there. Some folks respond to the real medicine, for a certain definition of real, but not the placebo. For others, it’s the other way round. Or they respond to both.

Take from that what you will.

And I hope one of the things you take from it is not an insight but a parcel of questions:

Why do some folks respond to the placebo and not others?

Can you do anything to enhance your receptiveness to placebos?

I know not everyone wants that second one. Certain ideas around medicine run deep. But the wise among you know how brilliant it would be to get your hands on a cheap, side effect-free treatment for just about anything.

And my answer to that question?

An emphatic yes.

Before we dive in, it pays to remember not all placebos are equal.

Here’s what goes into the top-shelf stuff:

One of the biggest ones is the warmth, caring and competence of the… huh. What do you call someone who gives out placebos? ‘Doctor’ only applies if they meant to medical school and give out pharmaceuticals at some point too. Let’s go with placebomancer, because why not.

One of the biggest ones is the warmth, caring and competence of the placebomancer.

When the subject shares their concerns and feels heard, it’s pleasant.

And that pleasant feeling can mask their discomfort and kickstart their natural healing processes.

The environment also plays a role. If you get a placebo from someone dressed as a mechanic in a dingy apartment, it’ll be less effective than from someone in a lab coat in a clinic.

More invasive placebos work better. An injection is more potent than a pill, and placebo surgery is even better still.

Your state of mind matters. If you expect it to work, it’ll work more effectively.

But here’s where a lot of folks go awry with the placebo:

You don’t need to trick yourself here. Deception isn’t necessary. Sure, it might help… but you don’t need it.

Richard Bandler – cocreator of NLP – tells a story where he gave out placebos. He dressed in a white coat, but told everyone he’s not a doctor. He gave them placebo pills in medicine containers, clearly labelled as such. Even so, the theatre of it all made folks feel amazing.

Sometimes, the ritual of the placebo is all you need.

That’s excellent news, if you can’t afford to hire actors to trick you into taking placebos.

And what’s even better?

With regular hypnosis – either with a caring hypnotist or through self-hypnosis – you can increase your susceptibility to placebos. While at the same time building up resistance to nocebos – placebo’s evil twin, where you think you’ve been harmed and your body goes along with it.

Yes, you can do both with the one process.

Training your mind like this is the ultimate adaptogenic therapy, changing its function to give you what you need.

No more, no less.

So why not experience a little of that right now?

Simply follow this link for a range of hypnosis services – no deception needed to unlock the full power of your mind:

/appointment

I can’t even milk an imaginary cow

A year or two ago, I was on stage at a comedy hypnosis show.

I was a subject, not a hypnotist. I’m always curious to see how other hypnotists operate. Besides, it was fun.

They were lucky to have me – I’m a model subject. Being hypnotised is just like anything else… it gets easier with practice, and I’ve had a lot of that.

So I did all the usual stuff.

I froze in place and let them pose me.

I pretended to be a shirt in a dryer.

And the less said about how I sung Itsy Bitsy Spider as a female opera singer, the better.

But the one suggestion I didn’t respond to was to milk an imaginary cow. Everything before and after that was easier to do than not to do it. But that suggestion, my arms were heavy as if I was under a warm blanket on a cold evening.

Probably because I’d been off dairy for a while by then. It’s not that I had no interest in milking a cow – after all, I had no interest in anything else I did on stage either. But I had made the choice to stay clear of the cow juice.

So even though I was highly suggestable and I knew it was all for fun, my unconscious wouldn’t play ball.

I’m not going to say you can never be hypnotised to do something against your will. ‘Never’ is a strong word.

But your moral compass remains intact, even in a hypnotic trance.

Heck, especially in a hypnotic trance.

For the right kind of hypnosis – the sort that liberates you from your limitations while you feel simply amazing – you’re more in touch with your inner voice.

I’m sure you’re an honourable person and you’ve never acted against your own code… but you’ve seen folks do it.

How do they do it? Usually, they find some way to rationalise it to themselves.

They lie to themselves first, even if no one else is listening.

When you’re in a nice trance and in touch with your unconscious mind, there’s nowhere to hide. You can’t lie to yourself because the part of you that rationalises is out for a break.

Had I not been in a trance on that stage, I would have pretended to milk the cow. I would have gone through the motions. After all, I was the only one resisting and the hypnotist was encouraging me. Being the odd one out was embarrassing.

My rationalising self would have faked it, if only to save face.

My unconscious, though, wanted no part of it, so I didn’t move.

Can you imagine forgetting the need to do what’s expected of you – even for a moment?

I think that’s a big part of why hypnosis can be so healing. You see through your own nonsense – your cow manure, if you will.

So many of your problems are caused by you overthinking things, ignoring your instincts, fighting your virtuous self or betraying your senses. Hypnosis gets passed all that, putting you face to face with what you know is right.

If you’d like to experience this blissful release while you reconnect with yourself, the Neural Reset is the simplest, most powerful approach you’ll probably hear about for a while.

It’s hypnosis without any gimmicks, embarrassment or need to leave your home.

Nothing but pure unconscious experience.

And you can book an appointment here:

/appointment

Ancient and recent proof you can kill ideas

Folks say you can’t kill an idea.

But ideas die all the time, both from natural causes and murder.

An example of ideaicide:

Do you remember back in 2014 or so, what the hot-button political issue was? Sure, groups of all kinds were talking about all the usual stuff. Healthcare, defence, social security, racism, corruption…

But you couldn’t go a day without someone talking about income inequality.

Everyone compared graphs of this to charts of that. The Occupy movement had stirred up attention and it all settled on this.

Then Trump decided to run for president. Obviously, that’s a tricky issue for any billionaire – but especially that billionaire – to navigate. So, instead, he talked about building ‘a big, beautiful wall’.

Boom. Suddenly the topic du jour was immigration.

Chalk it up to luck or skill, mass manipulation or an idea whose time had come. Either way, the old idea was dead – or at least bleeding out.

Want a more thorough example?

Well, I can’t give one. How could I? If an idea is dead, then I don’t know about it.

But I can point to a delightfully intriguing anti-example, which just so happens to be one of the latest points of political fixation:

China.

If you look at Chinese history, it looks like an endless stream of innovation. The relevant Wikipedia article contains hundreds of inventions – at the top, it mentions the “Four Great Inventions”: paper, compasses, gunpowder and the printing press.

These alone are amazing feats of science – and China invented them in ancient history. What other country can boast a history like that?

Better question: how did they manage that?

Genetic superiority? Unlikely.

A culture that favours innovation? Hardly. Chinese society, then and now, hardly embraces radical and deviant thinking.

I have a theory.

And my theory explains why China invented these things but didn’t, you know, use them.

Not to bring up a sore point for them, but the Century of Humiliation involved an alliance of Western powers carving up China. They did this, in part, thanks to their superior technology. But it was ‘superior’ because European navies had compasses for navigating and plenty of cannons – using, wait for it, gunpowder.

Industrial-age Europe used the same tech invented in ancient China… so how could it possibly be superior?

My theory is simple:

China has, for most of its history, been politically stable. Sure, sure, dynasties ended bloody, they got invaded a few times, then there was that mess with the Cultural Revolution.

But look at any corner of the world over thousands of years. Most other cultures broke down and built up again dozens of times.

Today, the buzzword is ‘disruption!’ Back then, it was ‘stability!’ Industries stayed the same for centuries, in contrast to today’s tech churn, so stability have you an edge.

Because, back then, maybe new inventions came along every few decades, through dumb luck or inspiration.

But without a stable system of trade, that idea wouldn’t leave the village.

And without strong rule of law, that village would soon become fodder for bandits sooner or later.

So a politically sound society could accumulate and share its inventions, whereas other societies would lose them to entropy.

But if it’s too stable, then it’ll struggle to use those inventions.

In Europe, the printing press was a gamechanger. In ancient China, it probably just reinforced the existing game.

Maybe I’m right, maybe not. At best, it’s a partial explanation… though it fits the facts nicely.

(Even if it has horrific implications – most of our good ideas have been lost to time.)

But let’s assume it’s true.

You can be darn sure I’m gonna use this as a metaphor.

It’s a call for you to embrace chaos and routine, because too much of either stifles you.

And a reminder that nothing is permanent.

But the big one?

You have so many great ideas – so many solutions to the challenges you face. But they won’t do you a lick of good by themselves.

Gunpowder as a novelty today is less useful than gunpowder as a weapon a thousand years from now.

Learn how to act on your ideas and instincts. Anything else is like letting foreign imperialists carve their initials on your back.

If you want to know how to get out of your own way, the Neural Reset can help. It takes the anxieties, procrastination and self-doubt, and switches it off.

You can sign up for a session here:

/appointment

The cognitohazard inside this common hypnosis question

Let me begin by saying that cognitohazards are real.

Some of you are already thinking, “LOL, you’ve read too much SCP Foundation”. To which I would say there’s no such thing – that site is awesome.

But most of you are wondering what cognitohazards are.

If you break the term apart, it’s exactly that – something that’s dangerous, even harmful, to think.

Examples of this show up in fiction all the time. I already mentioned the SCP Foundation, where cognitohazards are magical (sorry, ‘anomalous’) images, phrases or entities that kill you if you think about them.

In most fiction, knowing the true name of a demon lets you control them. Sometimes, thinking the name merely summons them.

In Chase Hughes’ Phrase Seven, the eponymous phrase is a finely tuned psychological weapon – one that drops the listener into a hypersuggestable state. The other phrases are just as dangerous to hear.

If you stretch the definition, then ‘Voldemort’ is a spoken cognitohazard in the last Harry Potter book. Since only his most dangerous enemies call him that, his followers use magic to locate anyone who says it.

And, of course, Lovecraft. Simply knowing anything about Cthulhu or the true nature of reality drives mortals insane.

I know, I know.

Blah blah blah, fiction.

Unless space octopuses and wizards are real, none of that is of any concern.

So let’s talk about some real cognitohazards.

Or rather, let’s talk around them. Talking about them would be foolish.

Buddhism and modern science agree: existence is suffering. The default experience for living creatures, when everything is going well, is happiness and satisfaction, plus fear and pain. To deny this truth is to suppress, ignore and ultimately empower your suffering, which is what makes stoicism one of the most practical philosophies around.

One of the main causes of this suffering is unresolved trauma. When you were young and fragile, you buried your fear, anger, misery and pain because you couldn’t deal with it.

And unless you’ve resolved it since then, it’s still there.

And if you faced this mental damage without proper preparation, it would likely cause a psychotic break. I’m not saying that to be edgy or exaggerate – I mean it literally. A genuine psychological snap, where you lose touch with reality.

In hypnosis circles, we call that an abreaction.

It’s usually temporary and can be a healing process… but it can also be dangerous.

So there’s a thought that’s dangerous to think – your own forgotten pain.

Another example:

A certain online community discusses human thought, rationality, AI and a few related topics. One member came up with a thought experiment and shared it. This wasn’t a horror story, disturbing anecdote or concerning line of research. It was purely hypothetical. Even so, just hearing it gave some members full-blown panic attacks.

And:

Ideas can be dangerous. If a thought goes against your social programming, it can be depressing, aggravating and even painful.

At the extreme end, imagine your people have been brutally enslaved for generations. No one even talks about freedom or rebellion anymore.

Thinking about your freedom is dangerous for all the obvious reasons.

But if you think the only danger comes from your overlords, you don’t understand human nature.

These thoughts attract pain from your fellow slaves… and even your own mental defences.

Thinking too far outside the social norm is unpleasant, which is why all ‘non-conformists’ dress alike. Hipsters, teenaged rebels and goths don’t reject societies – they simple adhere to smaller ones. Truly individual thinking is painful, dangerous and destabilising to your psyche. It’s not impossible, of course, but best done in small doses.

After all, genius and eccentricity tend to correlate…

All of which brings me to the crux of the article.

I’ve been asked a question about hypnosis pretty often.

And every time I hear it, I cringe.

I cringe because the question contains a cognitohazard.

Asking the question – even just thinking it – is harmful.

It won’t kill you or drive you mad, but it does damage.

Damage that can last a lifetime.

Unlike the other cognitohazards in this article, I will get specific here. It’s important that you can name this beast, so you can expunge it from your life.

The common and dangerous question is some variation of:

“My child is a handful/doesn’t sleep/won’t eat their veggies/talks back too often. Can you use hypnosis on them to help with that?”

Often, they say this as a joke. Sometimes it’s serious.

Either way, it’s hazardous to think… and worse to say.

Here’s why:

It’s possible to hypnotise children. But, by some definitions of hypnosis, you don’t need to. Up until their teen years, they’re in a sort of trance all the time.

Heightened suggestibility is one of the main signs. Children don’t so much ‘learn’ as ‘absorb’, believing almost everything they hear.

Just because they argue back (a lot), that doesn’t mean they aren’t learning from everything you say and do.

So if you go around, saying (or even thinking) the normal kids’ stuff they do is a problem that needs fixing… well, you’re teaching them that they’re broken.

I know, I know. I’m not a parent, so that’s easy for me to say. I’m sure you’ve had moments where between the stress, boredom, isolation, irritation and sleep deprivation, you’ve wanted to buy them a one-way bus ticket to anywhere else.

You’re not perfect, so there’s no shame in that.

But there’s no reason to add to it.

I don’t work with children, but I’ve met hypnotists who get great results with them. Things like helping a six-year-old who threw up everything she ate, or a violent four-year-old.

I do work with adults, though.

I see people who, unconsciously, hold themselves back. When they were a child, maybe a guardian or teacher told them they were stupid, hopeless or a burden to their face.

More likely, the adult didn’t have to say it. They acted like it long enough the child picked up on the message.

And never let it go.

I’m not trying to guilt any parent who sometimes wishes their kids were different. For one thing, it’s human nature. For another, any thought that creates needless guilt is, itself, a mild cognitohazard.

But if everyone understood just how much they said to their kids – even without speaking – there’d be much less demand for my services.

Okay, this got deep, dark and heavy.

Let’s switch over to solutions.

If you watch what you say and do, you’re doing better than most.

But how do you get rid of bad mental habits?

The quickest, easiest and most reliable way is the Neural Reset, right here:

/appointment

With apologies to Uncle Ben

You already know Spider-man’s backstory.

Even if you aren’t into superheroes, you know it.

So I’ll take a page from the MCU’s book and skip over that, getting to the good stuff:

I’m not going to say he’s wrong about… you know, his advice. It’s useful if you find yourself with power.

But most of us don’t have superpowers, which makes his advice backwards.

Unless he knew Peter was Spider-man, what he should have said was:

“With great responsibility comes great power.”

What do I mean by that?

Well, take the average schmuck like you or me. There’s something about the world that really bothers them. I’m sure there’s something like that for you – some fixable problem that’s ignored, as if it’s a symptom of our collective madness.

Let’s say, for them, it’s world hunger. That’s something we could solve if we prioritised it, and that keeps our friendly neighbourhood dreamer awake at night.

So, one day, they decide to take responsibility for it.

But what can they do? They’re just one person. They’re rich by global standards, but definitely not by their country’s. Certainly not rich enough to feed the globe.

And it’s not like they have the ear of any kings, CEOs or world leaders.

But they’re not exactly helpless.

They start by raising money for charities. That helps a little, but they know they can do more.

So they work for a charity. Again, that makes a difference… but not enough.

So they travel to some of the poorest, hungriest parts of the world to help directly.

Every person they help is a life saved. Even so, this problem is enormous. A person can do a lot of good like this but it won’t change the system that keeps the problem alive.

They decide to do more.

In their spare time – not that they have much of that – they study.

History – to learn how the problem came to be.

Agriculture – to learn new ways to create life-saving, nutritious food.

Mechanical engineering – to learn how to use what these people have to create what they need.

Economics – to learn what keeps the wealth from flowing here.

Influence and persuasion – to learn how to be heard, not just to speak. Persuading those they help to share their ideas and adopt the solutions. Influencing the powers that be to support what needs supporting.

Entrepreneurship and management – because maybe it takes a business to solve these problems.

This person isn’t learning these for fun. They’re not learning them to impress folks at parties or pad their CV. They’re doing it to end needless suffering they see every day.

Which means they’ll learn them deep.

Deep enough to become powerful.

One person can change the world – but an average person can’t. It takes a powerful constellation of skills and the drive to use them.

You don’t get there by chasing glory, money or power. Those rewards don’t go to the pure of heart, the strong, the ambitious or even necessarily the worthy. They go to those who solve real problems.

Unsolvable problems.

If you’re feeling helpless right now – and I wouldn’t blame you if you are – this is how you feel powerful.

Of course, most folks who take responsibility for the world run into problems.

They give up or burn out.

That’s because they dive in without laying the foundations first. Before you learn anything else, it pays to know your own mind.

How to learn faster, stay focused and keep your sanity.

Here’s how:

/monster

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