Personal Power II by Anthony Robbins: Summary & PDF

Personal Power is a month-long transformation program by Tony Robbins.
The idea is that you listen to a recording per day and take action as instructed.
I really enjoyed it.

Personal Power 2: Summary

About The Author: Well, if we need to introduce Tony Robbins, that means you are just starting out with self-help.
Because Tony Robbins is the most popular, and likely most successful, self-help guru in the world.

Success Formula:

  1. Get clear on what you want: you gotta know what you want and what your outcome is
  2. Take action! Do something. Personal power is the ability to take action in spite of fear
  3. See what you’re getting: develop acuity, take feedback on what works
  4. Use a role model

Success is composed of :

  1. Beliefs (core of our performance)
  2. Potential
  3. Actions
  4. Results

Tony Robbins says that potential is unlimited but we only start tapping into it once we believe that we can reach good results.

Once you start believing you can, you will tap much more potential and take a lot more actions and then you will start tapping into a positive look cycle.
You get some great result and your brain goes “see I told you that you would succeed”, and your beliefs grow stronger and you’re in that success cycle.

Tony Robbins says that to get great results when you’re in a downward spiral you can take massive action, and that’s a great way.
Or you can change your beliefs and visualize your results in advance, which will make your actions even more confident and inspired.

The Controlling & Driving Forces of Our Lives

Ton Robbins says people are motivated by 2 forces:

  1. Need to avoid pain (greater motivator in most cases)
  2. Desire to gain pleasure

If you want to control your life and your actions you have to control the motivating forces.
You have to link pain to not doing something and link pleasure in doing it. 

When you learn to change emotional associations to things and behavior of your life (pain and pleasure links), then you control your life.

The author says that if you try to make a change and never happens it’s because your internal association of pain and pleasure haven’t changed.

You want to change something, but because we have strong “wiring” in our brains already in place it’s difficult to change purely out of will.
BUT we have the power to change that.

The basic idea is that the less you use your old neuro association, the more they will atrophy.
And the more you use your new empowering neuro associations, the stronger those links will become.

Use pain and pleasure instead of having pain and pleasure use you. That’s the secret to success, Tony Robbins says. That’s the secret to control life and not having life to control you.

Then Tony Robbins gives us an example we can all relate to: how many times have you seen someone you’re attracted to and whom you would have liked to date but didn’t do anything.
It’s because you associated more pain to walking up and asking for a date than not doing it.

Remember, the resources you need to change anything in your life are within you right now, Tony Robbins says. Right now you have a set of neuro-associations that habitually cause you to not fully use your capability. What you must do is reorganize our neural pathways so that they guide you in the directions you desire.

How to change your neuro associations:

Ton Robbins says we have to believe that we can change right now.
And that WE are responsible for the change.

Get to the point where you believe that something MUST change, that YOU must change, and that you CAN change it.

We’ve already seen the steps in Awaken the Giant Within, but here they are again for simplicity:

  • Step 1 : Decide what you really want and what’s preventing you from having it now

Focus on what you want and clarify to yourself what’s preventing you from having it. Understand what’s the pain you link to changing to a new behavior and what kind of pleasure your current behavior is giving you (or what pain it’s shielding you from).

  • Step 2: Leverage! Associate massive pain not changing and massive pleasure changing

Start thinking and noting down for your own brain’s benefits of all that you are missing by not changing.

Ask yourself question to self-induce pain in not changing. Ask yourself what you’ve missed in the last 5 years with your current sub-standard behavior. Ask what it costed you. Ask how much more you could have today if you had changed earlier. Ask what it’s costing you right now. To you, to the people around you. Ask what it WILL cost you in the next 1, 2 or 3 years.

Another two ideas to get leverage is to make a public commitment that you’re going to change (what Charles de Gaulle did to stop smoking) and personal integrity (ask yourself how your current sub-standard behavior is inconsistent with who you are.

  • Step 3: Interrupt the limiting pattern

Anytime you see yourself leaning against the old pattern, change it immediately.

Change it abruptly and make it as conspicuous as possible. If you can manage to ashame yourself too in the process of changing the pattern you will not only interrupt the patter, but also get leverage at the same time.

  • Step 4: Create a new, empowering alternative and link pleasure to it

Step 4 is critical for long term change.

Your old habit was likely filling a need for you and is also engrained in your brain. Simply erasing it is difficult. You gotta replace with something new.

Ideally you replace with something that gives yo the same pleasurable feeling without the negative effects. Or something that gives you even more pleasure.

A good technique is to “use” the pleasure from something else and link it to the new behavior. Tony Robbins for example used to link pain in leaving food on his plate. And when he started to link pleasure to pushing the food away he did it when playing a song he loved. He is using the song he loved positive association and started transferring it to pushing the dish away.

Genius.

Another technique is to think about a time you felt strong and powerful and then immediately think about what scares you.

  • Step 5: Condition the new pattern until it’s consistent

Conditioning is the way to make sure a change you create is consistent and lasts long term. The simplest way is to rehearse it again and again with tremendous emotional intensity until a neurological pathway is created.

Do it long enough and it will become conditioned.

A couple good techniques is to imagine it first (your brain can’t tell the difference between something vividly imagined and something actually experienced) and to reinforce it by giving yourself a reward.

  • Step 6: Test it!

Testing is two fold:

  • Imagine yourself in a situation where your old habits would have taken hold. Are you able to resist and go ahead with your new habit?
  • Make sure the new change is consistent with your identity

Neuro associations shaping your life

Tony Robbins invites you to take stock of all the positive and neuro associations in your life and to then address the top 3 negative ones you want to change by following his 6 steps process.

The meaning we associate to our neuro association

The author says the meaning we associate to a given association control our life and behavior.

Tony Robbins gives the example of a rape victim.
Many rape victim will feel violated, or dirty, and constantly keep this dark hole inside.

But what if you completely changed the meaning of it?
What if you told yourself that you’ve been there and now you’re stronger than ever?
What if you could use that experience to help other people in a similar situation?
Or help people in general, by showing how resilient a human being can be?

Those are the kind of empowering questions which can change the meaning of a terrible event and give someone strength and power instead of pain and depression.

Incantations

Incantations is continuously repeating to yourself something you want to be true about yourself.

Brian Tracey, for example, suggests that you repeat daily to yourself “I’m the best, I’m the best, I’m the best”

My note:
Incantations have been proven to be potentially harmful to people with low self-esteem.
Also read pop-psychology and self-help myths.

On another tape, Tony says as a youngster he repeated for hours and full intensity incantations to himself, after which his whole body was shaking.

Exposure therapy to destroy your comfort zone

Please like this website to keep reading this long article:

The idea is that you expose yourself to stimuli which cause anxiety until your brain and mind realize it’s no danger for you.

What happens with social anxiety is your sympathetic nervous system kicks into overdrive and focuses all of your energy on “survival” because it tells your brain/body that you’re in danger. Yes, approaching a hot chick is the same as a car crash or shark attack to your brain/body.

My Note:
in The Talent Code returning Iraqi soldiers suffering from PTSD are given the same stimuli they had in war zones and they are conditioned to stay unreactive.

STATE – changing your state

The ultimate goal is that no matter what happens, you’re gonna stay in a beautiful state.

Tony Robbins believes the success of his life has come down to one basic skill: state management.

On a consistent basis, Tony learned to manage his state and therefore he got himself to break through and take actions when he would have normally done nothing and when very few people around him were able to.

He says he’s done every day, day after day, by doing things that would increase his physical ability changing the way he moves and breathes.

And by consistently and daily conditioning myself to ask the kind of questions and create the kind of focus that moved him in the direction he wanted.

The moment you put yourself in a better state you will see more solutions and you can tell yourself a better story to start a breakthrough and change-plan.

Focus:

What you focus on determines how you feel.

Many people focus on what they don’t have, or on the problems rather than what they have, the solutions and what they can do.

Questions

Ton Robbins says a great way to focus on positive endeavors, is by asking questions.

The quality of the questions you answer yourself determines the way your brain thinks.

While already mentioned in the state section, questions are one of the 5 “master systems’ in Tony’s approach.

You gotta ask with conviction and a sense of certainty and expectation for an answer. And you really have to dig for those answers.

Example: The Man Who Stole From Tony

Tony Robbins had a guy who embezzled from his company. He started raging and screaming “how could he possibly do this to me, how could he have the audacity”.
Then he switched.
Tony loves learning and started asking himself “what can I learn from this”.
What’s funny about this that I didn’t notice. And he really started searching for those answers. And he changed his state.

Questions you can ask yourself:

  • “What are you most happy about right now”  

If nothing then:

  • “What COULD you be happy about if you wanted to be”
  • “I know you don’t, but if you did, if you could, what could you feel happy about”
  • “What about that makes you happy”
  • “How does that make you feel”

Also ask these questions to unhappy people around you and you will see what shift they will bring.

Morning questions

Ask yourself these 5 morning questions and give two answers each:

  • What am I most excited about?
  • What makes me happy
  • What do I look forward to
  • Who loves me (or who could love me, even if it means getting a puppy)
  • What can i do today to make it a great day

Body

Ton Robbins uses his now famous equation that Emotion = Motion

He says the number one way to change your state is by changing your body.

Change the way you move to feel empowered and in confident.
Change your breathing and your facial expressions.

Emotion = Motion

Breathing

How do you breath when you’re happy, excited, bored…?

Face:

Learn as many facial expression .
Notice when you’re tense you have some tension in your face muscles.

Voice

How do you speak when you’re happy, when you’re euphoric when you’re on top of the world?

Emotion templates:

Write them all down so that you can re-enact them whenever needed

Things You Can Do To Be Happy

Write down all the things you can do or experience that will make you happy.
Every time you need to feel in a specific way, you will have a list of things to do.

For example, a few items on my list are:

  • Listen to great music and jump around
  • A great smoothie
  • Eating great and healthy food
  • Having sex
  • Spending time with a woman I like
  • Spending time with someone I like
  • Calling / texting someone I care about and make them feel great
  • Read
  • Enjoy a sunset with a beer and cigarette
  • …..

Exercise – Negative focuses

What do you focus on that doesn’t help you?

I’m sure you gotta pretty long list here, I know I do :).

Consciously stop focusing on these whenever they come up, and consciously switch to positive ones as soon it will become more and more natural.

Values

Tony Robbins says that your values tell you what you will pay attention to and will determine the kind of person you are.

Values are built from beliefs, which are built from references (more on that below).

There are both values we move towards, and value we reject and wants to move away from.
Your values determine your destiny.  Your values determine what you move towards and what you reject and determine your most likely behaviors.

And it’s very possible you have value conflicts which create self-sabotage (example top value of success and top moving away from value as rejection).

How can you fix this?

Step 1 – awareness
Explore what are your current values.

Ask yourself: what’s most important to me in life? Is it peace of mind, impact, love.. ?

For Tony Robbins, for example, it was: passion, love, freedom, contribution, being able, growth, achievement / accomplishment, happiness, fun, health, creativity.

Step2 – decide
Make a conscious decision about the values you want to live by.

As yourself not “what’s important to me” but “in what order do my values need to be to achieve my ultimate destiny?”

Ask yourself what other values you need to add -Tony Robbins found out intelligence was a big one missing-.

Ask what values you need to eliminate.

Tony Robbins, for example, found out that by constantly focusing on being free he was missing out on the freedom he already had.
So he dropped freedom from the list and consciously decided not to make it an issue anymore.
And suddenly it was amazing the freedom he by dropping it out from the list.

Ask which benefit you get from which values and which cons you get (for example for Tony having passion at the top meant he was burning out).

Tony Robbin’s list changed to: health/vitality ; love/warmth, intelligence, cheerfulness, honesty, passion, gratefulness, fun/happiness, making a difference, learning/growing, achieving, being the best, investing, contribution, creativity.

Tony asked if being happy higher than achievement would suck the wind out of his sails, but it was quite the contrary: he started achieving more by being happy.

My Note:
I did the exact same with freedom.

Freedom was such a big thing for me I felt suffering any time I was doing something that negated my freedom.
Helping a friend? That’s not freedom! Keeping an appointment? Damn, where’s my freedom!

I dropped the freedom-trap by reminding myself that I AM free. I CAN do whatever I want.
I always choose what I’m doing. Being a free man in a free world, freedom is NOT your issue.

Update:

I am not convinced anymore about “having to drop” your values. First, think if you can leverage your values.
Today I went back to valuing freedom instead of considering it a burden. And it helped me launch my business.

See my speech here about it:

Also what you place higher up means you give it more important, so ask yourself how the placement will affect your life. For example ask: how would your capacity to deal with fear, frustration and rejection be affected by placing “courage” high upon your move towards value?

One more note:

Brian Tracey adds that our happiness and self-esteem is heavily dependent on how closely we live to our values.
Our self-esteem is tied to our ideal self, such as the person we want to be, and the way you see yourself at the present time.
Unsuccessful people have no values or sacrifice values for short term gains. You gotta stay true to your values if they are to shape you in any significant way.

Rules

Tony Robbins says that rules are the belief (sense of certainty) about what needs to be fulfilled in order to achieve your various values.

They are generalization you’ve set up for yourself about what has to happen to experience a certain result in your life. They often are in the form of “if… then” statements.

For example: “I wanna be successful”. Success is the value. How do you know if you’ve reached it? Those are your rules.
The value is the target. The metrics to see if you’ve reached it are the rules.

Rules determine not only whether or not a certain value is met, but also whether we’ll feel good or bad, whether we’ll give ourselves pain or pleasures.

Tony says a great way to make yourself feel better is to have laxer rules.
Many are afraid that we too lax rules or we’ll lose our drive. But Tony says that you don’t need to have ridiculously difficult rules to keep your drive. We certainly want to use the power of goals and the allure of a compelling future, but we must make sure at the bottom of it we have rules to allow us to be happy any time we want.

We want rules that move us to take action, that cause us to feel joy, that cause us to follow through. A bit of push through pain is great, just don’t make it overwhelming.

Rules and values conflict

You can also have conflicting values and rules.
For example, if you were heartbroken your new rule could be “never get too close to someone”, but if you value love… major conflict.

Empowering and disempowering rules

A rules is disempowering if it’s impossible to meet, if it’s outside of your control, or if it gives you only a few ways to feel good and lots of ways to feel bad.

To know if our rules are empowering or disempowering ask yourself “what has to happen for me to feel good in.. “

And remember, the most empowering rule is to enjoy yourself no matter what happens.

Kind of rules

The author says there are two kinds of rules: threshold rules (musts) and standard ones (should).

In a way, it’s better not to have too many must rules or we’ll be shackled.

Example: Managing A Bit Let-Down

Tony was in a resort having high expectations for the eclipse which was going to happen.
But clouds gathered and it was a huge let down for everyone. However, Tony decided he would enjoy his time anyway in spite of clouds. It was possible because had decided that “no matter what happened, we’d find a way to enjoy it”.

Some people say it’s lowering your standards, but it’s actually raising them, because you’ll enjoy in spite of what happens.

Beliefs

Tony Robbins says that beliefs are feelings of certainty about what something means.

2/3 of top athletes are the oldest in their classes so they grow up winning and develop a belief they’re the best.

My Note:
But beliefs can often trump the body.
An experiment allowed a mouse to win fights against bigger opponents by drugging the opponent. Then he was pitched against bigger NON drugged opponents.
The smaller mouse trashed the bigger opponents.

Beliefs are supported by what we call references, which are life experiences. Imagine beliefs as tabletops, and references are the legs of the table.

An idea can become a belief the moment you start linking reinforcing experiences confirming that idea.

If for example, you have an idea you’re sexy, girls telling you-you’re a great lover, a playboy, attractive, etc. , those are reinforcing your idea with experiences and it’s like putting legs underneath that tabletop so you feel certain about it.

Often ideas we have turn into beliefs because we cherry-pick the experiences we will use as legs.

So if you think you’re a failure it’s often a self-reinforcing prophecy because you only register the times you failed and keep behaving as a failure and apply that “I’m a failure” lens to everything in your life.

The good news, of course, is that you can change beliefs and you can develop a belief about anything as long as you find enough references/legs.

Global beliefs are: “people are”, “life is”, “I am..”
Second kind of beliefs are rules are: “if… Then” “if you love me..” “if you respect me..” “if you appreciate me..”.

Tony says that every great achiever he’s ever interviewed had the ability to get themselves to feel certain they could succeed, even though no one before had ever accomplished it.

Belief’s categories

There are three categories of beliefs:

  1. Opinion- something we are relatively certain about. Can be easily changed.
  2. Belief- much stronger because it has more references and emotional attachment.
  3. Conviction- eclipses a belief due to emotional attachment. Identity is based on convictions. To give up a conviction would be to lose your identity.

Tony Robbins says that often the best thing you can do to create mastery in any area of your life is to raise a belief to a conviction. The conviction will then become your identity and drive you to action and push you through obstacles.

Creating a Super Belief

How to create a conviction:

  1. Start with a basic belief
  2. Reinforce your belief by adding new and more powerful references (think about when it happened or make them happen)
  3. Find or create a triggering event.

If you don’t have that belief at all, start conditioning it with the 6 steps on neuro associations and then take action to reinforce it and create new references.

How to change your beliefs

  1. Think what the negative belief is costing you (a staple to change, what it will cost you.. )
  2. Doubt the old belief (question it, find contrary examples, ask how was this belief ridiculous or absurd, was the person I learned it from an expert in this area, where they producing results? )

If you do this right you will soon start doubting the old belief and your mind is then ripe to instill a new one by associating pleasure to it and conditioning it.

Example: Getting Good With People

Let’s say you wanted to get good with people, and you wanted to adopt the belief, “I can learn to get better with and understand people.”

You’d build that up out of all of the references you have in the past for talking well to people, how many guides there are for talking to people, and how great it would feel to finally handle this area of your life.

Then, look for the antithesis you’re feeling right now, that you’re terrible with people and you’ll never get better.
Find as many references that run counter to it, like how you can at least talk to store clerks or make small talk with people, how some people with backgrounds of being shy have evolved to socialites, and imagine finally shaking off this negative label for yourself.

Then, associate massive pain to it with the techniques listed above.

When it becomes too painful to not adopt the belief and too enticing to hold back from adopting it, you’re on the right track.
You’re now motivated enough to take action towards building this idea into a full-blown belief and you’ll find ways to get experience with talking to people. Maybe you’d read guides, talk to strangers, figure out what works and what doesn’t, and keep focusing until the changes stick.

Beliefs You Have

Tony Robbins then encourages you to make a list of all the beliefs you have. Positive ones and negative ones, and then encourages you to start changing the top 3 negative ones you are currently holding.

References

Tony Robbins says that references are all that has happened or that we’ve seen or heard or read or imagined in life.

Their strength depends on the amount of emotion attached to them and the number of similar reference experiences.

References do not necessarily have to be accurate, but they do become accepted as real, regardless.
With enough emotional intensity and repetition, our nervous systems experience something as real, even if it hasn’t occurred yet.

We have countless references for everything, often running contrary to each other. And references build our beliefs not neutrally, but in the way we select them and the meaning we attach to them!

Nothing in life means anything but the meaning you give it, so please give your past events an empowering meaning to build powerful and empowering beliefs. Write down some events you think impacted you negatively, and instead of using it as an excuse to beat yourself up, look for a positive and empowering lesson: there are no tragedies if something good can eventually come of it. We are not our pasts unless we live there.

This is also very well explained in Ryan Holiday’s masterpiece The Obstacle is The Way.

Rituals – The Power Of

Tony Robbins says asks what are some emotions you experience on an ongoing basis.

It’s important to know because we often end up with “patterns”, or set of actions and thoughts we use recurrently. These patterns can make us happy or unhappy, and it’s up to us to use the good ones and discard or change the bad ones.

Disempowering Rituals:

Step one to remove them, is awareness. So ask yourself: what do you need to do to feel bad?
For me, it often used to be “having” to go to work, and this was the loop I’d fall into:

  1. I go to sleep much later than I should (or I take a nap after 8pm)
    2. I am still sleeping when the alarm rings
    3. I am still sleepy, and I feel staying in bed would be amazing
    4. I think it sucks “having” to go to work (work is a duty here, not a potential enrichment)
    5. I stay in bed longer with negative feelings
    6. My face is contracted, my mouth tilted down
    7. I get out of bed… Late
    8. I get the pressure I gotta run because I’m late, fight back the “rushing” urge but it gets even later
    9. I feel like my works sucks, and I translate that dislike towards my boss and the company
    10. I go out of the house, again having to run, and I hate that feeling

Empowering Rituals:

In my case these are some rituals which empower me:

  1. I Push my limits in moving towards a goal I want
  2. I start getting closer and closer, and start loving the struggle
  3. I take a small break, think of myself proudly
  4. I get it done and feel fantastic
  5. I give myself a small reward and it feels 10 times better than normal

Emotions – The Power Of

You can choose which emotions to feel and you should build that still. But at times it’s good to listen to emotions without trying to change them right away because emotions can act as useful messengers.

Tony Robbins says there are four wrong default answer people have for emotions, which are:

  1. avoidance (trying to suppress emotions) ;
  2. denial (pretending “it’s not that bad”) ;
  3. competition (a race to who’s “got it worst”) ;
  4. learning and using (the correct one).

Mastering emotions:

  1. identify what you’re really feeling;
  2. Acknowledge and appreciate: emotions support you, you never want to make your emotions wrong.
  3. Get curious about the message this emotion is offering you. It will help you master your emotions, solve the challenge and prevent the same from occurring again
  4. Get confident you can handle it immediately. Remember of a time you felt similarly and successfully handled it.
  5. Get certain you can handle it in the future as well. Rehearse handling situations where this Action Signal comes up again.
  6. Get excited and take action.

Vanquishing Worry

Tony Robbins says worry is one of those emotions to stamp out, and you do it as follows:

  1. Think the worst case scenario, accept it, then work to improve the worst case scenario.
  2. Focus on the goal, on what you want, rather than on what can go wrong
  3. Get busy: if you’re busy you ain’t got no time for worry

My Note:
getting busy to “crowd out” worry is NOT a good strategy as that only covers up the issue, as well explained by Brene Brown Daring Greatly.

Rid of Procrastination

Tony Robbins says that an easy way of dealing with procrastination is, well, to procrastinate it.
Put it off.

Here’s a 5 step process:

  1. An easy way of dealing with procrastination is to put it off.
  2. Find out how you create the rituals and put yourself in the state to procrastinate
  3. Don’t tell yourself you “have to do” because that makes your brain rebel. Say you “choose”!
  4. Think of what you’re missing while you procrastinate and think of how great it will be if you moved your ass
  5. Develop the physical habit that as soon as you feel like you’re procrastinating, you MOVE

Anchoring to Success

Tony Robbins says that you are anchoring every time. Any time you are in an intense emotional state, anything that happens around you consistently while you’re in that state gets associate to that feeling.

Negative associations can kill a relationship because you go home and you are angry a few times in a row, then you anchor that feeling to that person.

My Note:
I second and confirm that from first-hand experience.

Create an anchor

Put yourself in an emotional state that you want to anchor in.

Example: Motivation
Think about a time when you were motivated, breath how you were breathing, move like that) and once you’re in state consistently do something unique (example: clap your hands and say yes).

It’s important you create the anchor while you are at the peak of the emotional state, not going up for the peak, nor coming down.
You can create several anchors that will as “buttons” to command your brain.

Collapsing an anchor

You can remove an anchor by collapsing an anchor.

Create a positive anchor similar to the negative one. Example, if I get sad when someone touches my left shoulder, then I create a positive anchor to the right shoulder.

Test the anchor by getting out of state and then back again.
Once the anchor is set, then fire both the positive and negative ones simultaneously.

My Note:
I didn’t personally find anchoring super useful

Switch Patterns

Picture yourself about to start the behavior you want to chance (play with your hair, crack your fingers, get weak in the presence of your boss).

Then create a picture of yourself as the guy you want to be, your ultimate self (confident, great communication, charming, drawing people in, a picture of success).

Take the picture of you taking the action you want to avoid and make it big.
Take the picture of who you want to be and put it behind the first weak picture of you.

Now feel the tension between the two pictures, like a slingshot. Make the picture of you want to be move farther and farther away until it disappears.

Then release and make it come back again exploding right through the weak picture into your mind making a weird noise (woooosch).

Speed is important, the strong picture has to come back strong.

Financial Success

Tony Robbins also has a section on financial success, but I will skip it.

My Note:
I didn’t find the steps or what Tony Robbins said here to be particularly useful, to be honest.
This was before he wrote his Money Master the Game and interviewed true experts like Ray Dalio. He said things like “you can increase your return without increasing your risk”, which makes little sense.

The usefulness for me of this section was:

  • Write down all the negative associations you have linked to money
  • Don’t make money your only and sole priority as that’s the best way to fail at life
  • Develop a belief that no matter what happens you are bigger than anything which can happen to your finances

And of course, the last point he gives is that you should help out people. Receiving is the evidence you’ve given consistently.

Receiving is evidence you’ve given consistently

Overcoming Fear of Failures

Tony Robbins says that failure is impossible.

The only way you can possibly fail is to tell yourself you failed.

Tony Robbins advises to write down what must happen for you feel like a failure and what must happen for you to feel like a success. And then change that.

Your new failure will be quitting and totally giving up. And your new way to feeling successful will be to give it all no matter the situation and no matter the result.

Erasing technique

Worst case scenario you can always “delete” a failure from your mind with the erasing technique.

Just think many times over about the scene of you failing, then start changing it.

Imagine the people around you getting smaller. Growing mickey mouse ears.
Farting or whatever silly stuff you can imagine. Rewind it back quickly, with all the voices unintelligible. Put some weird music as a background.

Be outrageous, do something your brain will not expect it and do it over and over again until you don’t remember it straight anymore.

My Note:
This idea that it’s impossible to fail is weak in my opinion and possibly dangerous.
You want to build yourself into someone who doesn’t ache just because of a failure.
Also read: the antifragile ego.

Vanquishing Rejection

  1. Decide you are not going to allow this limiting emotion to control your life.
  2. get enough leverage on yourself: write down the price you will pay if you don’t control rejection and all the pleasure you will get if you were able to get rid of the fear of rejection
  3. Create a new set of rules for what is rejection (make it tough to feel rejected)
  4. Repeat to yourself that mass rejection equals mass success. You really can’t have success without rejection
  5. Condition yourself to feel great in front of rejection. Feel unstoppable and create an anchor. Now imagine a reaction and fire off the anchor over and over until rejection makes you feel strong. It sounds difficult but it’s actually easy!

Eliminating Self Sabotage

Tony Robbins says that self-sabotage starts because our brain links an often wrong meaning to a certain stimuli.

For example, any time you experience a significant amount of pain or pleasure our brain searches for the causes in 3 ways:

  1. Something that appears to be unique;
  2. Something happening simultaneously ;
  3. Consistency –but we highly generalize about consistency-

Self-sabotage is a positive intent, the brain linked something in the past which it now wrongly associate to pain/pleasure.

Example: curing self-hurt
If someone hurts himself on purpose he probably associates that people care for him when he’s hurt.

So he does it again to get love.

What Tony did with that man who was hurting himself was to make him realize that what he was getting wasn’t really love, but an obligation.
And people were actually hating him for that (he is linking pain to his previous pattern).

And then Tony asked him “what do you feel when you give love”, and the guy understands that giving love means love. And Tony begins installing a new pattern.

My Note:
This was simplistic as self-hurt is often associated to Borderline Personality Disorders (also see: I Hate You Don’t Leave Me and Stop Walking On Eggshells)

If you clearly see a pattern where you are subconsciously self sabotage yourself, then you might be sabotaging yourself.

Mixed neuro associations self-sabotage

Harder to spot is self-sabotage originating from mixed associations.

For example, you might love the money, but at the same time, you link feelings of pain to money.

To find out if you might have self-sabotaging mixed neuro associations, you can list all that you think about something.

The negative associations don’t have to be more in terms of quantity but sometimes are more powerful (ie.: “stress, greed, sleepless nights” are stronger than “security and opportunity” )

Step by step and eliminate self sabotage:

  1. identify a behavior keeping you from your goal (ie.: getting nervous with pretty girls and people around)
  2. ask yourself: what’s the positive intent here, what is my brain trying to give me (shield me from rejection)
  3. get some leverage on yourself (teach your brain that if you don’t change you get more pain)
  4. interrupt the pattern
  5. install new patterns

Confidence

Tony Robbins says that confidence lies in the belief that every person you meet is better at something than you are.

But every person you meet, you’re also superior to them in something else.

And he suggests focussing on what you’ve already done and accomplished.

Confidence is often a question of how you manage your memories.
Go back in your life and think of all the great things you’ve done, or of all the times you think you weren’t gonna do it but you did.

Problem Solving

Tony Robbins applies the Pareto Law here.

He says you should spend 20% of the time on your problem and 80% on the solution.

He suggests coming up with solutions and exploring them deeply.
Ask yourself “what if we do this..” and keep expanding on the options rather than shutting solutions down as they come up. This way you’ll open up more possibilities.

Asking the right questions:
Tony Robbins gives us an amazing example of a time when he went back home, super tired, and almost a hundred important calls had piled up for him to take care of.

So he starts by asking:

  1. What’s great about this (nothing? What COULD be great about it)
    Example: Well, 3-5 years ago Tony would have begged to speak to these guys. They just want me and these are movers and shakers and he can make a difference
  2. What’s not perfect yet (presupposing it’s gonna be perfect)
    Example: I don’t have enough time for my own personal life
  3. What am I willing to do to make it the way I want it (presupposes you want and can do something)
    example: I’m willing to find a way to make these calls cause they deserve an answer and I will change my schedule
  4. What am I willing no longer to do it to make the things the way I want them
    example: I’m willing to no longer complain when I set the thing up. And I’m willing to change things so that more people can take care of my things
  5. How can I do what’s necessary to get this job done and enjoy the process
    example: you own a Jacuzzi, haven’t been there in a while, go outside, bring the laptop there, bring the phone, get in Jacuzzi and have fun calling guys and make fun of them and with them!

Words and expressions for energy

Tony Robbins says that the words and expressions you use, and you how you pronounce them, make a difference in your states.

For example how you call your spouse will change the way you feel about them. Maybe keep “partner” for business and use “lover”, “soulmate” or “better half” for your romantic relationship.

Softners and Intensifiers

Softeners and intensifiers give us a greater degree of precision in our dealings with others, whether it’s a romantic relationship or a business negotiation.

Years ago when Tony thought something was screwed up he’d call the appropriate person and say “I’m really upset” / “I’m really worried about.. “.
That would automatically put the other person into reaction and they’d often become defensive, preventing from finding a solution.

So what he learned, even if he felt more intensely, was to say “I’m a little bit concerned about X, can you help me?”.

This lowered his own emotional intensity and conveys that you have fait in that person’s ability.

Expressions and metaphors:

  • rather than “pissed” or “furious”: I’m getting a bit frustrated or peeved. Peeved made Tony laugh and moved him out of an enraged state.
  • to a man who said “they put a gun to our head”, Tony changed his state by breaking his pattern asking “what color is the squirt gun”. Now the gun has become a silly toy.
  • to a guy who said they had put them in a box, he said “I don’t know about you, but I know nobody could ever build a box big enough to hold me”.
  • If you’re drowning in a world of chaos, take a stroll down the shore of tranquility and think a bit before acting.
  • to a woman who said she had baggages Tony said: what if you dropped the baggage.

Sometimes you need the opposite though and expressions can give you the hedge to move:

  • To some parents didn’t feel like they should encroach in their sons’ troubles and Tony wanted to spur them to action. So he said: “there are two bullets to your son’s head right now, one is alcohol and one is drugs, and one of them will eventually kill him”.

That image gave them the strength to move.

Metaphors for life

Tony gives a few great metaphors for life:

  • Life is giving by becoming more
  • Life is a game
  • Life is a dance
  • Life is a gift

Blueprint and Happiness

Tony Robbins says that if you are not feeling satisfied in your life it’s because your blueprint -the idea you have of how your life should be- is not aligned with what your life is right now.

There are 3 ways people cope with that:

  • Blame (themselves or other, and doesn’t fix the problem)
  • Change their life (great approach)
  • Change and rewrite their blueprint (great approach)

My personal challenge to you

Tony ends by saying that if you really wanna master your life :

  1. Master your own mental and emotional state.
  2. Develop compelling reasons to manage your state.
  3. Develop goals to keep your good state.

Anticipate Challenges
Tony says to anticipate the challenges of life and role model how to deal with them.

Some challenges are obvious and fixed. Like death for example. What are your beliefs about death so that you can deal with it. Talk to people who already done it successfully.

Some other challenges for people are turning a certain age, which Tony says it often has to do with a “0” after a number.

Re-evaluate Life
It’s a great idea to re-evaluate your life ever 6 months or year.

Become a Team Player
The secret to life long wealth and happiness is this: become a team player.

Tony says that we will do more for the people we care about than we’d do for ourselves.
If you can find a team of people whom you deeply care for and you can make a difference for them and be a source of power and possibility you will be driven the most.

Every day care deeply, create something new, cooperate with ppl on how to make a difference, commit to being the best and contribute. The dreams of your past will become small confronted to what you will have.
Life is a process, so enjoy it.

You are bigger than anything that can ever happen to you 

I wanna leave you with a great quote Tony uses by John How to spur those people who are scared of dreaming and acting big in case of possible failures:

What a folly to dread the thought of throwing away life at once, yet having no regard by throwing it away by parcels and piecemeals”.

It’s not how long you live, but how!

Live with passion!

tony robbins picture
Photo by Randy Stewart

CONS

On top of my notes above:

  • Law of Attraction

It’s been a while I listened to it, but Tony talks about the law of attraction.

He tells the story of a couple who won the lottery, twice in a row, by acting as if they had already won it.

That’s stuff that I don’t approve of and I would not recommend anyone to follow that path -either the blind belief in the law of attraction or focusing on winning the lottery instead of making through skills and dedication-.

Review

It’s been many years I first listened to it.

And it was one of the very first self-help products I got into. And the first one that “wowed” me.

Back then I thought that “Personal Power 2” was the Sistine Chapel of self-help products.

And I think that I would love it today as well.

You will feel energized as you’ve never felt before at the end of the month.

But motivation for motivation’s sake has little use.
That’s not an issue for this course though, because the content is also top notch.

6 thoughts on “Personal Power II by Anthony Robbins: Summary & PDF”

  1. Hello Lucio,
    Many thanks for your review!!
    I had an older version and I’m wondering whether it’s been updated and edited at all, is the law of attraction/lottery examples been removed or are they still kept in? Because I agree with your opinion.

    1. Hey David, not sure about which version I went through to be honest, but it was quite long.
      So I guess it’s possible there is a shorter version where they cut out a few parts.

  2. Thank you for this superb review! It is so structured and detailed that even having the course I’ll save it for later.

    All the best to you.

Comments are closed.

Processing...