The Masters of the Mind
Mini Lesson: Change Your Mindset II

The Masters of the Mind

Mini Lesson: Change Your Mindset II

 

Yesterday you saw my simple advice about how to change your mindset from focusing on how dangerous the world is to a mindset of how most people, even strangers, we interact with daily are for the most part not out to do us harm.

This topic came up from a Masters of the Mind subscriber named Bridget who wrote me about how she’s been conditioned to see people as dangerous & she has a very negative mindset. She also says she watches her thoughts very carefully & can sometimes dismiss the negative programming but it’s very much hit & miss for her and she wants to learn how she can release the negative thoughts and move forward with taking positive actions.

So, this topic hits close to home for me because I struggled with the same problem early in my life and it took some very concentrated effort over time to change my mindset.

I don’t know about Bridget but what kept me trapped in a mindset full of negative thoughts was a matter of focus. Things always seemed the worst when my attention was on what wasn’t working and what I didn’t have.

It was only when I began to deliberately shift my focus onto what was working, what I did have and what I could still do that those negative thoughts would fade away.

So, that’s my advice for you & for Bridget on how to release negative thoughts and to take positive action to move forward. It may sound far too simple but it’s not always easy to do. Focusing on what you can still do is a powerful method to change your mindset.

There’s a quote I read once that basically said:

If you always focus on what you’ve lost

you will be lost—

If you focus on what is still possible

you will find new opportunities

 

So that’s what usually works best for me and I invite you to try using that to change your mindset when you find yourself stuck in negative thoughts and not taking positive action.

As part of my mini lesson Change Your Mindset, I promised to give you my list of the 13 activities I do every day or every week that require me to trust someone else. So, I’m going to take a sip of my favorite Italian sparkling beverage Galvanina Blood Orange, and run down the list for you.

1. Drive 30 minutes to work to the Las Vegas Strip. Take my word for it, this is like a version of The Great Race for the new millenium.  I am amazed every day that my car survives intact. Thankfully some of the drivers in Vegas are transplanted from the midwest and have some driving manners.

2. Turn on lights in my home.  Think about it for a second. I didn’t do any of the electrical wiring (even though I could) so I trusted someone to make sure the wiring was up to code.  I’ve done enough wiring myself to be grateful for lights coming on and the wall not catching on fire when I flip the switch.

3. Eat in a restaurant I:  This could actually qualify as several items. Trust that someone didn’t poison the food.

4. Eat in restaurant II: Trust that they didn’t under cook it and let me get sick eating such food.

5. Eat in restaurant III: Trust they stored it properly so it didn’t start to rot before use.

6. Eat in a restaurant IV: Trust they are actually serving me what I ordered instead of dog food or my cousin Bobby. Really! Everyone tells me my cousin Bobby lives here in Vegas and I’ve yet to find him.

7. Eat in a restaurant IV: Trust they handled it properly so it didn’t become contaminated with some other germs.

8. Use restaurant bathroom.  Speaking of germs!  Trust that I can use their facilities without catching the plague or something the previous restaurant go-er is suffering from.

9.  Use my own bathroom I.  I’m rather happy that complete strangers can be trusted to pipe the sewage to where it’s supposed to go.  Seriously.  When I flush I’m damn glad the sewage isn’t appearing moments later in my yard.

10. Use my own bathroom II.  Equally glad that the strangers in item 8 made sure to pipe the fresh water into the supply lines where it belongs.

11. Use the elevator at work: Let’s see, how often do you personally check the brakes on the elevators you use?  I think you get my point.

12.  Getting my neck adjusted by my chiropractor.  Hey, he could be putting me into a Mayan death grip for all I know.  I trust this guy to adjust my neck and alleviate the pain from a fractured vertebrae.  If he has one bad day where he loses it or mistakenly thinks I’m behind on my account instead of the patient in the next room over, he’s got me in as vulnerable position as there is.  SNAP!

13. Getting a haircut. Dan’s a nice guy but I don’t really know him.  He’s got sufficient forearm strength to shove the scissors through my neck or to give me a Mohawk.

So, as you can see there’s ample opportunity for strangers to mess up your day or your life completely if they had any such desire. But more often than not they don’t. This is just scratching the surface.  We haven’t covered your car mechanic, the bank, the dentist, your optometrist, or the nurse drawing your blood.  The list can go on and on. I think you get my point.

Michael

P.S. If anyone knows the quote I cited, please let me know where it’s from so I can quote it accurately to the proper source.  Thank you!

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The Masters of the Mind
Mini Lesson: Change Your Mindset

The Masters of the Mind

Mini Lesson: Change Your Mindset

 

Bridget, a loyal Masters of the Mind reader, sent me an email telling me that she wants to have a positive mindset. But she says she can’t change her mindset because her instincts and conditioning keep telling her that people are dangerous and untrustworthy. Because of these feelings, she has a very negative mindset.

Bridget also says she watches her thoughts very carefully and can sometimes dismiss the negative programming, but it’s very much hit and miss for her. She wants to learn how she can change her mindset, release the negative thoughts and move forward by taking positive actions.

My initial reaction is to wonder if the negative mindset or negative conditioning came from any trauma or abuse. If so, I suggest she seek out professional medical attention regarding those events, as I am not a trained therapist and can only offer my opinion.

That being said, I’m about to show you and Bridget how people who believe that all people are dangerous often forget a few simple things—things that can often help change their mindset from a negative one that sees all people as dangerous to a positive mindset that sees most people as trustworthy and helpful.

Here’s an example for you:

Every day you probably drive past hundreds, if not thousands, of people who are not only strangers but are people you HAVE to trust. In order to drive a car effectively, you have no choice but to trust that all of these other people will not swerve out of their lanes and crash into you.

The same goes for eating dinner at a restaurant where some stranger is handling and preparing your meal. You have to trust them not to poison you or cause you harm by tampering with the food.

Now, these are very extreme examples. But they are also very real examples of how we do live in a big dangerous world where there is ample opportunity to end our lives without even a moment’s notice. Yet, this is also a world where every system on the planet would quickly collapse if we all held onto a negative mindset, believing most people are dangerous and untrustworthy.

So, I encourage you to sit down and write out a list of 10 more activities you do every day or every week that require you to trust someone else to do their job safely.

I think you’ll be surprised at how this will change your mindset and mental focus from looking for danger to a positive mindset of seeing safe interactions with others. This exercise will open up your mind to the fact that you ALREADY ARE placing a huge amount of trust and faith in other people. You’ve just never thought of it that way before!

It’s actually staggering when you sit down and look at your list.

As for Bridget wanting to learn how to release negative thoughts and take positive action…

Be sure to come back tomorrow because you’ll get my answer to that. Plus I’ll give you my list of the 13 activities I do every day or every week that require me to trust someone else.

Michael

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Dan Kennedy – Renegade Millionaire

Dan Kennedy – Renegade Millionaire

Michael D Walker and Dan Kennedy (Renegade Millionaire)

Michael D Walker and Dan Kennedy

I clearly remember the moment when Dan Kennedy, the Renegade Millionaire, entered my life.  It was late 2004, I was browsing the shelves of the business section of the Borders bookstore that was on Decatur & Sahara in Las Vegas.  My eyes locked in on an orange book with the title No B.S. Business Success by Dan Kennedy on the spine.  Pulling the book off the shelf, I popped it open to a page at random and read a Dan Kennedy quote:

Dan Kennedy’s Eternal Truth # 4:

How you deal with failure determines whether or not you ever

get the opportunity to deal with success.

 

I bought the book, took it home and immediately began reading.  To say I was hooked would be an understatement. Soon I was hunting down other Dan Kennedy books and devouring everything I could get my hands on by the man.

So what was it about Dan Kennedy that was resonating with me?

For starters, his “No B.S. Business Success” book was subtitled: “The Ultimate No Holds Barred Kick Butt, Take No Prisoners, Tough and Spirited Guide.”

How could you not love a no tap dancing, go for the throat title like that?  Well, Dan Kennedy doesn’t just offer up titles, he delivers provocative, tell it like it is, no nonsense advice on every aspect of building a business.  Better yet, he also doesn’t pull any punches when it comes to building a powerful mindset either.

As I learned more about this Renegade Millionaire, I discovered he is a practitioner of Maxwell Maltz’s “Psycho-Cybernetics“, a classic book on creating a powerful mindset and achieving success. In fact, for a time he owned the rights to Maltz’s works and published a new, updated edition of “Psycho-Cybernetics” in 2001 titled “The New Psycho-Cybernetics.”  By the way, I highly recommend this book.

The more I kept learning about Dan Kennedy, including his mistakes, the more I respected and admired what he’d done in his life.  He didn’t rise to wealth and fame overnight.  He overcame many obstacles, including one I shared: a speech impediment.

He’d suffered from stuttering early in his life, which was something I related to intimately because, as a child, I spent most of my school years not getting to play with my classmates during recess or other fun group activities because I had to go to speech therapy in order to learn how to say the letter “s.”  It took me 5 years of intense concentration and practice before I could do it without being ridiculed. How ironic then that Dan Kennedy overcame stuttering to become one of the top public speakers of his time while I went on to become a top rated radio personality and voice-over talent.

As the list of things we had in common grew longer, I became convinced I had to find a way to work with him somehow.

Just 4 short years later I summoned the courage to contact him and ask him for an interview for a series I was creating called The Masters of the Mind.  Much to my surprise and delight, he granted me an interview which remains one of the highlights of my career.  Later that year, I attended his SuperConference in Nashville, Tennessee where I met with him twice and eventually got my photo taken with him.

I also don’t mind sharing with you that one of my favorite pieces of correspondence I’ve ever received from anyone is a very detailed, single spaced 3 page fax from Dan Kennedy telling me how much he admires me and an offer to spend some time together working on business ideas.  Whether we create something or not is beside the point.  Being invited to do so by my renegade millionaire hero, Dan Kennedy, is what means a lot to me.

I’ll close by giving you 2 free resources for getting a taste of Dan Kennedy yourself. You can click on this blue text to listen to my interview with Dan Kennedy.  Since that is only audio, I also suggest you go watch some free videos he just recorded for his Dan Kennedy’s GameChanger DNA product.

Here’s one last Dan Kennedy quote for you that, while it pertains to selling, also applies to many other aspects of life.

Dan Kennedy’s

#12 No B.S. Truth About Selling

When have you ever heard of anybody

going to see the wise man at the

BOTTOM of the mountain?

 

Thanks for letting me share just a small glimpse of my Dan Kennedy experiences with you.

Michael

 

 

 

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The Masters of the Mind:
Enhance Your Mind Just Before Bed

The Masters of the Mind:

Enhance Your Mind  Just Before Bed

Note: This article was written in a slightly different version for the website www.SuccessRitualsForLife.com and can be accessed at: http://www.successritualsforlife.com/success-rituals-just-before-bed/

One of the most underutilized Masters of the Mind strategies is learning how to enhance your mind with the routine you do every night just before bed.

Successful people understand the importance of having enhanced mind practices or success rituals they do just before bed while those who struggle to achieve their ambitions can often trace a significant amount of their struggles to the self-sabotaging behaviors they indulge in just before bed without enhancing your mind.

Let’s take a look at some typical behaviors many of us have done just before bed for years without realizing the negative effects they were having on us.

For years I used to stay up really late, often watching TV in bed for 30-60 minutes just before bed. Of course, while watching TV I’d find myself wanting a snack so I’d typically wind up eating a snack and even drinking a soda. This was before I learned how horrible soda pop is for you.

As if that weren’t bad enough, I wasn’t considering what messages I was pumping into my brain as I watched whatever crap was on TV. Sometimes it was harmless, like a fun episode of Late Night with David Letterman. But on weekends it’d often be the news, so I was filling my mind with a barrage of negative images ranging from people killing each other to politicians screwing over their own citizens for a few extra dollars to politicians screwing around on their spouses. The news media loves to tell you everything that’s wrong with the world and takes particular delight in telling you every sordid detail as graphically as possible.

So, I’d often find myself just before bed wondering why I was restless and edgy, my mind racing with a million thoughts and not being able to relax and fall asleep.

I’d wake up the next morning feeling terrible, my body begging me to let it sleep longer and my brain trying to figure out why I’d had disturbing dreams. At work, I’d often struggle to get going and a lot of times the quality of my work was nowhere near my best.

Does any of this sound familiar?

Maybe you don’t watch TV just before bed but maybe you spend some time replaying your day in your mind. Maybe you dwell on that argument you had with a friend, relative or co-worker. You find yourself second guessing how you handled that situation with your child. Or in your mind you run through something that didn’t go quite the way you wanted it to. Perhaps you find yourself caught in that loop of thinking about all the things you told yourself you wanted to get done and now just before bed you’re mentally going through your to-do list and feeling disappointed about all the things you didn’t get to cross off your list.

Does any of this sound familiar now?

Doesn’t sound like something you’d do if you deliberately wanted to enhance your mind, now does it?

But these are very common habits.

They are standard routines many of us unconsciously slip into without giving them much thought. And while there is nothing wrong with reflecting on your day and your daily activities, you might want to re-consider when you do this and choose to do it earlier in the day rather than letting it continue to be a ritual just before bed.

Here’s why:

It’s been shown in various research studies that your brain has a tendency to continue with the pattern of thoughts you give it just before bed and continuing on that same train of thought as you start to fall off into sleep. And recent research has shown that the very last thoughts you consciously hold in your mind as you drift off to sleep are repeated approximately 17-19 times before you drop off into deep sleep.

At first glance you might think “So what?” but let’s think about that for a moment.

Whatever thought patterns you hold in your mind just before bed are getting repeated in your brain 17-19 times when your reasoning and judgment are shut off for the night.

In essence, when you are mentally at your most vulnerable, most pliable and suggestible, your brain–for better or worse—is sending your last thoughts deep inside your mind, past all your mental self-defense mechanisms and filters, 17-19 times.

Do you think it might be important for those last thoughts to be thoughts that encourage you  and support you or benefit and help you in some way?  Perhaps thoughts that enhance your mind while you sleep?

We’re talking the equivalent of self-hypnosis and deep, internal personal influence and priming on ourselves.

This is so important that Jim Fannin, the world’s #1 coach of champions, who has coached more champions in sports, business and life than anyone else on earth, teaches how to utilize this information as part of his mental performance training. He’s also the person who taught it to me in his 90 Second Rule program.

So, here’s what I do now as part of my enhanced mind rituals just before bed to take full advantage of this mental technology.

1. I don’t watch TV in bed anymore. In fact, I don’t have a TV in my bedroom at all now. I guard what goes into my mind and removing the news and crappy TV shows from my nightly routine has been a huge positive step.

2. Often just before bed I will read a chapter from a book like Think & Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill or something else that enhances my mind. It might be something I’m studying like the latest brain research or something to do with personal improvement. But I make sure it’s material that is good for me and has a positive impact on my mental state.

3. If I don’t feel like reading something, just before bed I will put in my earbuds and listen to a meditation or hypnosis audio. My primary purpose in doing this is to relax and reduce or eliminate any stress I might still be carrying in my body as I approach the end of my day.

4. The last thing I do before I let myself fall asleep is to mentally focus on one specific thing that will benefit me by being repeated 17-19 times while my mental defenses are down. So one night I might focus on how grateful I am for something. Another night I will mentally rehearse something I’m doing the next day and mentally see myself doing a great job. Some nights, especially if I’ve had a rough day, I’ll simply pick one powerful phrase to repeat to myself, some positive self-talk, my own little success mantra if you will, to make me feel better about myself. It’s not really an affirmation, it’s more a reminder of something I did do right to help put me back on track again.

I know some people will think this is silly but it’s the very same mental success rituals that many of the top Olympic athletes, Major League All-Star baseball players and wealthiest CEO’s in business use just before bed.

The results myself and other outstanding achievers have experienced convinces me that we should always be doing these success rituals just before bed. I’ve even let myself get lazy and stop using them to see what happens. You probably won’t be surprised to learn how easy it is for the old bad habits to come back and start eating away at your success.

You remember your parents or grandparents advising you at different times that you should sleep on it? Well, it turns out there was plenty of wisdom they were sharing with you by giving that advice. Now we have the scientific brain research to help us understand why it’s critical to control the last thing we think about before we fall asleep.

Hope you enjoyed this Masters of the Mind lesson on how to enhance your mind just before bed.

Michael

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Mindset Quotes # 1

The Masters of the Mind

Mindset Quotes #1

mindset quote

Inspiring Mindset Quote on wall @Starbucks © by BetterBizIdeas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve always been a fan of great quotes, whether they be funny quotes, motivational quotes,  inspirational quotes or as you may have guessed…my personal favorite…mindset quotes. The best quotes sum up in just a few words what others take paragraphs or pages to explain.  And while I am an avid reader with a love of language and the written word, sometimes a powerful quote is just what I need to jump start the neurons in my brain and get my mindset back on track.

So today I’d like to give to you mindset snacks in the form of quotes from William James, the Bhagavad-Gita, John Milton’s Paradise Lost, and Spencer W. Kimball.

If you have some favorite mindset quotes you’d like to share, please feel free to post them in the comments below.  I’d love to read them!

Michael

 

“We must deliver ourselves

with the help of our minds…

for one who has conquered the mind,

the mind is the best of friends;

but for the one who has failed to do so,

the mind will remain the greatest enemy.”

— Bhagavad-Gita

 

 

“The mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven..”
John Milton, Paradise Lost

 

 

The greatest discovery of my generation is

that man can alter his life simply by

altering his attitude of mind.

                                                   — William James

 

“Man alone, of all creatures of earth, can change his thought pattern and become the architect of his destiny.” 

Spencer W. Kimball (often attributed to William James)

 

 

 

 

 

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The Masters of the Mind:
Mindset Essentials # 2 Succeed or Fail

The Masters of the Mind

Mindset Essentials # 2: Succeed or Fail

Note: This article was written in a slightly different version for the www.TheSuccessSecrets.net website and can be accessed at: http://www.thesuccesssecrets.net/the-success-secrets-succeed-or-fail/

Previously I’ve written about Mindset Essentials, which are core beliefs, mind habits or key elements of your mental approach which I believe have the greatest impact on your results in life.

Today we’re going to explore The Masters of the Mind’s Mindset Essentials #2: Succeed or Fail.  This is perhaps one of the most underrated ingredients in developing the powers of the mind, so I’d like to explore with you the concept most people have regarding  the word “fail” or “failure“.

Even if you are already considered a success in any area of your life, this is one of those words that your mind often automatically reacts to because of the meaning & significance most of society attaches to this four letter word.

In recent years there has been a troubling trend among Japanese high school students  committing suicide because they did not pass their college entrance exams or were not accepted into a university.   Obviously these students firmly believed in their mind that  getting into the right college was a critical step in their future success.

We don’t have time to go into the societal pressures those students must’ve faced, but it’s a compelling and frightening example of how powerful & influential the meaning of a word can be to a group of people.

But I invite you to consider what meaning you attach to the words succeed or fail.  You have the ability and the power to choose a meaning that impacts you favorably or negatively.

“But you can’t change the meaning of a word!”   I know some of you are thinking this right now.   My own friends & family have argued this point with me.  I am glad they did because it brings up a fantastic opportunity to open up our minds and learn more info to help us with our own personal success secrets.

Wikipedia defines the word “fail” the same as “failure“.  In fact, it just re-directs you from “fail” right to “failure“.  Bless their all inclusive souls.  That act alone–of slapping the words together to be interchangeable–is worthy of a separate blog post.  But let’s keep on track.

They define the word as “the condition of not meeting a desirable or intended objective” which would be harmless and semi-useful if they stopped there.  But they add in this delightful kicker, “and may be viewed as the opposite of success“.   Yeah, there’s the old kick in the teeth….

But here’s where it gets interesting!  That’s only their definition of the word.   Let’s go to a more traditional, in-depth source: Webster’s Dictionary.

Webster defines the word entirely different:  To fall short, to fade away, to become absent, to become deficient.

There’s multiple definitions including the dreaded “to be unsuccessful” and the dire “to stop functioning normally (the patient’s heart failed).”

And that is more empowering for sure.  But here’s where I argue the gold is for everyone.  This is where I adamantly believe the success secrets are in this word.

Fail” orginates from the Latin word fallere, to deceive or disappoint.

Do you see that?  The word originally meant “to deceive or disappoint”.   Over the centuries it has been used in such ways to take on a meaning it likely was never intended to fulfill.

This is where I firmly agree with great friends & mentors I’ve studied with such as Kevin Hogan, Paula Abdul and Dan Kennedy.

I know, that’s as diverse a group of 3 friends or mentors you’re likely to find anywhere but I love each of them & am grateful for having them in my life.

The cool thing is they each teach in their own unique style to regard failing as just a result, a piece of data for you to make note of as you pick yourself up off the ground and reset your options for your next efforts for taking more shots at what you want to accomplish.

Far too often as I was growing up and even as I went about life in my 20′s & 30′s, people I knew often equated failure as the exact opposite of success; as though the two were light years away from each other.  Such a belief or viewpoint couldn’t be further from the truth I’ve experienced in my life.

I’ve found it to be the exact opposite:

I’ve found that success & whatever you experience that you label as “failure” are linked so closely together they might as well be the heads & tails of the same coin.

They are so close to each other that only a slim edge of perception seperates success from failure.

You’ve heard the stories about someone giving up & some stranger comes along & succeeds right where the other person quit.  Or the stories of someone ready to give up but instead they pushed through their disappointment & suddenly had incredible success soon after stepping past where they had wanted to quit.   Sometimes those are simply motivational speeches but most of those stories are borne from real life experiences where success was within reach even when they had thought they had failed.

I know this has been a long post but I hope it’s made you think and reassess how quickly or carelessly you may or may not throw about the words “fail” or “failure” and what you have them mean and how much power and real estate you grant them inside your heart and your head.  Because when you strip this dangerous word of it’s current meaning you can shift the way you see your life & start to recognize how close you are to the edge of success.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this Mindset Essentials topic and how you’ve lived with the word “fail” throughout your life.

I’ll leave you for now with this piece of Masters of the Mind wisdom:

“We always think of failure as the antithesis of success, but it isn’t.  Success often lies just the other side of failure.”  Leo F. Buscaglia

 

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The Masters of the Mind
Will Smith Quotes on Mindset

The Masters of the Mind:

Will Smith Quotes on Mindset

Three years ago I had the experience of watching Will Smith being interviewed on a TV show.

You ever have those times when you think you know someone from watching their films, listening to their music or reading their books?

But then you see them quoted in interviews that just boggle your mind and make you wonder how that could be the same person whose work you enjoy and if truth be told, you question how this talented person ever became successful in the first place when they couldn’t string two coherent sentences together?

Three years ago I had that experience while watching Will Smith.

But instead of wondering how he ever became so successful, I was blown away by this man, his intense drive and the manner in which he passionately and unapologetically shared his personal philosophy toward life and his powerful mindset toward success.

I found myself wondering why his interviews weren’t mandatory viewing in school.

Rather than trying to describe how Will Smith’s quotes motivated and helped me focus on my Masters of the Mind interview series, I’ll simply quit typing and turn it over to this video collection of  Will Smith quotes and interviews about his mindset and philosophy on success.

“Being realistic is the most commonly traveled road to mediocrity.”

Will Smith quote from interview on CBS’ The Early Show

 

Remember to always be conscious of what you’re feeding your mind~

Michael

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The Masters of the Mind
Memory Enhancement: Power Naps Part 2

THE MASTERS OF THE MIND

The Great Power Nap Debate of 2011:

Rip Van Winkle versus the Power Rangers!!!

Did he just say power naps again?

Yes, I did.

Mark Hogan of www.coverthypnosis.net commented with a very good question about my previous post about power naps by asking:

“Why do naps of 1 hour or under work better in comparison to say, 1 hour 13 minutes?”

This is a great question and gives me the chance to address a few things about power naps that I didn’t have room to squeeze into my previous post.

Actually for the results I was after; memory consolidation after learning something, coupled with needing an energy boost in the middle of the day, led me to my recommendation of less than 60 minutes because let’s face it, who’s got a job where they can take more than an hour lunch?

But in answer to Mark’s question, actually a power nap longer than an hour is going to have the obvious effect of letting you get into deeper sleep and thus you will feel more groggy upon awakening. Not the ideal effect for the core concept of this blog, which is about mastery of the mind.

However, we shouldn’t be so quick to dismiss the longer power nap.

According to a WebMD article by Jennifer Soong,

“The length of your nap — and the type of sleep you get — helps determine the brain-boosting benefits. The 20-minute power nap — sometimes called the stage 2 nap — is good for alertness and motor learning skills like typing and playing the piano.

What happens if you nap for more than 20 minutes? Research shows longer naps help boost memory and enhance creativity. Slow-wave sleep — napping for approximately 30 to 60 minutes — is good for decision-making skills, such as memorizing vocabulary or recalling directions. Getting rapid eye movement or REM sleep, usually 60 to 90 minutes of napping, plays a key role in making new connections in the brain and solving creative problems.”

Why is this the case?  We don’t know for certain but recent sleep studies at UC Berkeley along with studies from other sleep researchers have shown that memories involving facts live briefly in the hippocampus before being shuttled off to the brain’s prefrontal cortex.

By taking a power nap, in effect we are probably allowing the brain to dump short term memories over into long term memory, thus giving us more room for newer information we want or need to learn while giving us quicker access to the new facts we just downloaded into long term memory.

So, it basically comes down to:

What result do you want from using power naps?

Michael

 

Additional References:

University of California – Berkeley. “Midday nap markedly boosts the brain’s learning capacity.” ScienceDaily, 22 Feb. 2010. Web. 22 Sep. 2011.

 

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The Masters of the Mind
Memory Enhancement: Power Naps

THE MASTERS OF THE MIND

Memory Enhancement: Power Naps

Note: This article was written in a slightly different version for the www.SuccessRitualsForLife.com website and can be accessed at: http://successritualsforlife.com/success-rituals-power-naps/

Did he just say power naps?

Yes, you read that right.

Power naps.

You know the popular saying: “Do what you love and the money will follow?”

Well, as great as that sounds, I have yet to figure out a way to convince anyone to pay me large sums of cash to do one thing I love to do-take power naps.  But in my never ending studying, reading and research, I have learned something rather remarkable about the memory enhancement benefits of taking power naps.

Now you may have heard of Thomas Edison’s infamous power naps where he’d lay down in his lab with a marble or ball bearing in his hand. He’d doze off for a few minutes—until his hand relaxed enough for him to drop the ball—the sound would wake him and he’d resume working on whatever he’d been doing prior to the power nap.

Many people have mistakenly taken this as a sign of eccentricity or just a quirky part of his creative genius but in actuality power naps have been one of the memory enhancements used by several Presidents (John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan & Bill Clinton) as well as Albert Einstein, Napoleon Bonaparte, commercial jet pilots, military pilots and brain scientists.

Power naps are often used to compensate for not getting enough sleep the night before or for helping restore energy when fighting off an illness or stress. But there is a less known advantage to power naps that is not widely taught that you can use to considerable advantage.

Brain research has shown that when learning something new, the first six hours after you learn or practice the new skill or subject is critical. This is when the initial memory enhancement or memory consolidation takes place whether you’re asleep or awake. But studies show that the memory consolidation and any memory enhancements your brain does with the material is improved dramatically if you take a power nap of one hour or less during those first 6 hours after studying the new material or practicing the new activity you’re learning.

Important Note: More than one hour of a power nap does NOT improve memory enhancement or memory consolidation.

According to an power naps article by Jane E. Brody a NASA scientist’s study indicated that 24 minute power naps significantly improved a pilot’s alertness & performance on trans-Atlantic flights. This closely matches findings I witnessed first-hand in sleep deprivation studies done with U.S. Air Force pilots when I worked in the flight simulation center.

So, how do you use this information on power naps as one of your memory enhancement strategies?

Here’s two simple ways to add power naps as one of your memory enhancement strategies:

1. Anytime you’re feeling low on energy or run down from a lack of sleep, use part of your lunch hour or break time to find a quiet and preferably dark spot to lay down or recline and relax. Set your watch or cell phone alarm for anywhere from 12-52 minutes. Then just focus on your breathing and letting all the tension in your muscles escape your body. Don’t worry about falling asleep. That’s why you set the alarm. Don’t try to force yourself to sleep either. Forcing yourself is counterproductive. Relaxing is the key.

When your alarm goes off, slowly get up and take some long deep breaths and see how you feel.

The first time I did this years ago, I didn’t notice an immediate effect because I was wanting more sleep. But as the afternoon went on, I noticed I was more alert and had an extra reserve of energy that hadn’t been there before the power nap.

2. Any time you’re learning something new, see if you can sneak in a 12-52 minute power nap in the first 6 hours immediately following your study session or practice session, class or whatever learning situation you’re in. This will help your brain consolidate and for your memory, enhance the information better thus giving you an advantage over others trying to learn the same thing.

Cautionary Note:

This does not work with multiple subjects. For instance, if you’re learning to play guitar but between your guitar lesson and your power nap you also decide to take a cooking lesson, your brain will not consolidate the information efficiently. Stick to one topic or one new skill and your new memory enhancement use of power naps will be a major benefit to you.

Michael

 

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The Masters of the Mind
Mindset Essentials # 1: Success is a Choice (via Andy Jenkins)

THE MASTERS OF THE MIND

MINDSET ESSENTIALS # 1:  SUCCESS IS A CHOICE (VIA ANDY JENKINS)

Who’d ever think you’d get great mindset advice from a guy who, last time I saw him in person, was wearing a bronze colored Viking replica helmet (like the kind you see in any opera spoof worth its weight in gold codpieces) and drinking a frosty bottle of beer.

But Andy Jenkins, an Emmy Award winning editor of an Inside the NFL episode featuring Mike Utley, and more recently known for his Video Boss program, recently posted on his blog about a new movie he’s working on called Lovely Molly.

In and of itself that’s kind of cool (ok, it’s really cool news) but what really grabbed my attention was the rest of the words good Ole Cuzin Andy (he spells “cousin” wrong, not me) slapped together into sentences.

First of all, they made a lot of sense.

Secondly, they were dead on target with what I believe about love, life and the eternal pursuit of brunettes and ice cream (i.e. happiness).

Andy Jenkins distills down into one blog post a butt kicking message that not only motivates me but also serves as what I consider to be a Mindset Essential belief you should adopt if you really want to create the life you desire.

That Mindset Essential belief is: Success is a choice.

This is nothing new.

You’ve heard it before.

But you’ve not heard it the way Andy Jenkins says it.

Don’t take my word for it though.

Do yourself a big favor and go read his blog.

Sure, you’ll have to read or scroll down through his movie news and past a video trailer until you see the words “Allow me to come to the point.”

But then you should strap on your own bronze Viking replica helmet because you’re in for a great Mindset Essentials ride with Andy Jenkins.

=> Strap on your Viking helmet and read Andy Jenkins!

If you love it, you can buy me some ice cream next time you see me :)

Michael

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