Are They Conning You?

To make any kind of successful change in your life you must:

A: Have a mentor who knows the terrain you wish to travel.  Following a mentor who doesn’t know the terrain is like the blind following the blind.

 B: Understand the value of the change to be made.  Unless you truly understand the value that making a change will bring to your life you won’t have any motivation to see the change through.

 C: Be dedicated to making that change.  Without dedication you’ll simply go with what’s easy and never attain the full benefits that a real change can bring you.

Those of you who have college degrees think back to your time in school.  Go through your professors in your mind.  Then ask yourself the following three questions:

1. How SUCCESSFUL were your professors in the industry they claimed to be educating you in

If they weren’t extremely successful in the industry you wished to be in they didn’t know the terrain you wished to travel and it was simply the blind leading the blind. 

A friend of mine who’s a practicing lawyer, who also teaches law and ethics at a college, hates his job and no matter how hard he tries he simply cannot advance in his law career the way he wishes to.  He’s currently teaching students how to be successful lawyers.  How successful do you think they’ll be if they’re being led by a guide who can’t thrive in the terrain through which he’s guiding them?

2. How many of your professors understood the value of change?  Think for a minute about this one.  Were the professors you had effectively growing the scope of their own experience, or were they teaching you about things that other people had done or discovered – or what they had done 20 years ago? 

Teachers who reference experiences they see on TV, in a movies or in books do not themselves understand the value of change.  Their experience is second hand.  And when they teach it to you, it becomes third hand experience.  What kind of events make a greater impact on you: ones that someone else tells you about third hand?  Or ones that you experience yourself first hand?
3. Did your professors help you to become successful and actualized in the industry you wanted to thrive in? 

Unless you are fully actualized in the area you wanted to become educated in—providing you actually recognized the value of the change you needed to make, and were willing to make that change—your degrees failed you. 

Before you decide it’s time to go back to college or send your kids to college ask yourself: Did school make you successful and actualized the first time? 

If your answer is yes, then why do you need to go back again? 

If your answer is no, then why would you continue to sink your precious time and other resources into a system that already failed you once?  If you bought a smart phone and found out that it wouldn’t connect to the web, didn’t text and you couldn’t make any calls on it, would you go just go back to the mobile store and buy another one?

The alternative to college

 1. Is there a way you can find a mentor who has already thrived or is thriving in the terrain  you wish to cross to act as a guide for you? 

 

Student loans are a liability.  They pick your pockets before you ever get a chance to fill them for yourself. Working with a successful mentor who is willing to guide you in exchange for equal value compensation is a way to avoid this trap.  So ask yourself: What can you do to bring value to a mentor’s life that is an equal exchange for his acting as your Sherpa? 

2. Until you truly understand the value that such changes will make in your life you’re likely to lack real motivation. 

This means understanding that you really can become the person you always wished to be: first hand.  That means you have to give up vicarious living.  It’s a lot more work and comes with greater responsibility.  The value: you will become the real deal, empowered, actualized, authentic and able to act as guide to others.  It’s much harder to be a real boy than a wooden one: just ask Pinocchio.  Still he knew it was worth it in the end.

3. College means very little effort and work.  You read a few books, sit in a lecture, take some tests.  But the price is enormous.  It means hungering for the approval of teachers and the constant need for reassurance and grades.  That need for approval and acceptance will spill over into your relationships and effect them.  It also means selling off thousands of hours of your precious time to pay for a degree that comes with no guarantees and is more like a rigged card game than a path to living a full and prosperous life.

Living life first hand demands constant effort and growth. It demands dedicating to yourself, the well being of your family and friends.  It means keeping your oaths and contracts the way the old knights did.  But the fruit that bears in independence, true acceptance and self satisfaction outweigh anything that you could ever get from a grade-point average.

Now, before you think that college is a measure of excellence consider this: if a college flunks you, they lose your money.  If they lose your money, they can’t stay in business.  So, it’s in their best interest to make sure you pass.  No matter what you learn or don’t learn; who you are or want to be. It doesn’t matter.  All that matters is that your tuition keeps coming in.  For as long as they can get it, and during as many times in of your life as they can manage it.

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How Reality Challenged Are You?

Recently, I met a single mother who had no money, no means and was, unfortunately, never really taught her own worth or how to spot opportunities.  She was afraid of people because she was never really given any tools to effectively handle her interactions with them in a way that allowed her to get her needs fulfilled. 

The result: a real lack of confidence.  That lack of confidence left her, sadly, unable to even know where to begin to put her life in balance.  It’s a common and devastating occurrence that no one should have to suffer.  Still, it happens.  And when it does, different people cope in different ways.

To cope she told herself that she was chosen to inspire the world through poetry and her keen spiritual insight. Instead of cultivating the skills she needed to turn her real talents—the ones no one had ever really noticed or encouraged—into something that could provide real value for herself and her daughter, she spent her days writing poetry. Why? It was easy and she didn’t have to rely on anyone else for it.  Plus, she’d convinced herself it was the “divine” thing to do. 

She justified her ‘life’s purpose’ of writing down her feelings in a journal (a method of confession, guilt relief and, in fact, a strategy to nullify some of the very real fear and pain she was grappling with) by telling herself that she’d been called to a higher purpose of “uplifting the human soul and giving people hope.”

But in reality no one really noticed what she was doing because she had no audience.  She and her child fell further into poverty and struggle.  That drove her further inside and she spent her days writing about how alone she was.  That made people avoid her more because she brought them down. But none of that changed her view: inside, she believed this was her divine calling and that she was a raging success inspiring people to greatness.  Even when she couldn’t feed her daughter.

I’ve been watching this sort of thing happen a lot lately.  On social media and with people I meet through the day and in my coaching work.  Some people make statements that show an alarming difference between who they believe they are, how they act and what’s really going on in their lives.

Now, in the last two articles on lying I told you guys all about the primal motivations that people need to have fulfilled before they can feel success, happiness and fulfillment. If you haven’t read those articles I encourage you to read them now.  Up to this point I’ve only told you that humans need these things fulfilled if they’re ever going to feel content and satisfied; and if they can’t get them fulfilled, they lie.  But in this article I’m going to show you just how serious it can get if those motivations are not fulfilled.  It can get really crazy. 

From a mind control perspective there are several what we call “interrogation types”.  Really the ‘types’ are coping strategies.  As I mentioned above, different people cope in different ways.  There are, in fact, all people fall into one or more of these observable coping strategies.  But I guarantee you that there are a lot less of them than you might think.  People are really not as varied as they think they are.  There are actually only nine types or “strategies” that all people fall into. These strategies develop early in life along with such things as the Briggs-Meyers profile. Two of these types are responsible for the sort of discrepancies I spoke of earlier.  They are referred to in mind control circles as: “Self-Centered” and “Reality Challenged”.

Now, before we go on, ask yourself:

  • Have you ever convinced yourself and others that your life was fantastic even though it wasn’t? 
  • Or concocted some incredible story about yourself that was false just to avoid facing what was really going on?
  • Ever project your shortcomings onto someone else so that you could remain blameless and appear to have it all together even though you didn’t?
  • If your life was slipping out of control and your friends, out of concern, came to you and told you what was happening, would you believe them or dismiss them for questioning you?

 

As I outlined in the last two articles people lie for two reasons: 1. We lie when we’re hungry and we can’t get our primal motivations satisfied. 2. We lie when the fact that we can’t feed ourselves is exposed to others.  (See “What Makes You a Liar?” https://gravestomper.wordpress.com/2011/01/21/what-makes-you-a-liar/ and “Are You Lying To Yourself” https://gravestomper.wordpress.com/2011/01/25/what-makes-you-a-liar-part-2/ below.)  But some of us do it so habitually that it degenerates into complete delusion, ie the “self-centered” and “reality challenged” coping strategies. 

The reality challenged type tend to be introverted.  Not all introverts are reality challenged but the reality challenged coping strategy is introverted.  They can be thinking or feeling if you’re looking at their Briggs Meyers profile.  But somewhere in their childhood, for whatever reason, they didn’t think or feel they were significant enough in their outside world and it drove them inside to create a fantasy world where they were more relevant.   The difference between who they are in this inner world and who they are in the outer world is staggeringly different.  Even frightening.

They have a really difficult time maintaining lasting relationships because real relationships make them feel less relevant then they do in their inner fantasy world.  They’re rarely, if ever, aware that their lives are built on lies, because they have no idea that their primal motivations aren’t being met.  In fact, they wouldn’t believe that the sixteen primal motivations have been observed repeatedly for thousands of years and are used to move people all the time by those who know mind control.  To them, things like mind control is a joke, something for kooky conspiracy theorists. Impossible. 

In his world: the reality challenged individual is untouchable.  A master who defies categories.  Unique and  limitless. Even though all outward evidence proves otherwise.  Even though he is a definite and observable type.  Even though he is being moved every day by those who took the time to observe how to move him.

This type has an interesting strategy for dealing with people who question them.  Anyone who questions their fantasy is dubbed an ‘inferior’. They hate it when ‘inferiors’ question them.  The problem is, that ‘inferior’ status is based on the fantasy of who they think/feel they are. So, it sort of dissolves into a simple self-defense reflex: “if you question my greatness you must be inferior.”  And their fantasy is reinforced.

The reality challenged person usually has a “cause”, that is, whatever fantasy she’s running at the moment is the means to an end, whatever end that may be.  Usually it’s something that justifies her fantasies. 

There’s a similar set of strategies that come with those we call the ‘self-centered’ type.  These guys are also introverted too but are driven for outside approval.  They were likely bullied in their lives.  Because others didn’t accept them they went inside to feel love and comfort.  The outside is full of pain and unclean experiences for them so they avoid it and experience everything directly inside. 

They’re really sensitive to criticism and they, like the reality challenged, are also lacking the tools they need to satisfy their primal drivers.  (See “What Kind of a Liar Are You?” below.) To hide this they brag about themselves rather than taking action.   They tell everyone all of the great things they’re going to do or greatly exaggerate the value of what they have done. In the end they do very little but brag.

They are also full of fear and lacking self confidence, but these guys are constantly looking at their environment and ‘editing’ it to cast them in the best possible light.  Again they are not getting those primal motivations fulfilled and so they’re filtering their experiences internally to convince themselves they are.  The result?  They are living a  sort of zombified half-life.  Seeking approval and constantly bragging.  But inside there’s nothing but guilt and shame and fear.

If you asked either type, the reality challenged, or the self-centered if they were happy, they would concoct all sorts of stories about how successful and fulfilled they are even though their actions, their word choice, their body posture and their general state of living will always show you otherwise.

I have a friend who’s father is reality challenged. I’ve watched him ever since I was in my teens. When he was younger it wasn’t as pronounced or noticeable as it is now. When we were kids he held himself up as a successful authority, a physical therapist and effective parent.  We used to see him sit in his living room chair and drink to go inside and feed his fantasy place. 

As he’s gotten older he’s revealed to us what he really believes.  In his inner world he is an inspiration to his children.  A world class physical therapist.  He believes his wife loves him unconditionally and that his mistress would be nothing without him.  He, in fact, wanted to have a child with his mistress because he felt he was such an inspiration to the three adult children he already has.

In reality, he’s a timid man who’s afraid of social interaction.  None of his children live anywhere near him because they don’t particularly like him much. He’s so-so at his work. His wife is happy for the first time in a couple of decades because she just told him to get out of her house: she’s divorcing him.  His mistress has told him she’s really not interested in him anymore. 

My friend has really given up on him because he refuses to accept any facts.  And still,  he feels that he’s the lynch pin of everyone and every life around him; that they all admire and love him very much because he’s such a remarkable example of success. But all you have to do is shake hands with him and immediately you know from his weak grip and how his eyes look downward how much he’s ruled by fear and how much he’s settled in his life.

So, why am I telling you all of this?

First, to further emphasize how important the 16 primal motivations I referred to in the last two articles really are. If you haven’t read those articles yet you should now.

And second, to let you know that there are people out there like this.  Who will lie and deny no matter what evidence you give them that their lives just aren’t working. Who will get angry with you for questioning them.  Who will expect you to conform to their reality even though it is impossible to do so.  Because no matter how unsuccessful, angry, unfulfilled they are…dude, they’re convinced…they got it all figured out!

And whether they know it or not, they’re vulnerable to their lives and minds being hijacked by anyone who wishes to, simply because they’re not managing themselves.

Are You Lying To Yourself?

In the last article I spoke to you guys about why people lie.  Now Let’s take a look at what keeps people lying even though they know it’s doing them and the people around them incredible damage.

I know, it’s a big subject.  And it might be making some of you uncomfortable.  But no one’s judging you…certainly not the Gravestomper, who’s dedicated his life to helping people live happy, secure and fulfilled lives.   So, stick with me. I got your hand…

Lying is sort of an insidious snare.  And it’s true that it may seem impossible to tackle.  You may say, “Corin, everyone lies and it’s such a big problem that there’s just no way to stop it.”  

But if you fall into this group you have to realize: the “everybody” you’re talking about are only unsuccessful people. People who are really safe and secure and those who feel a true sense of love and belonging don’t need to lie because their primal motivators, the ones I spoke about in the last article, are satisfied. They simply don’t need to.

So, let’s think about this for a second.  Wouldn’t you rather be one of those people who’s satisfied and successful rather than one of those who’s hungry and making excuses to cover it up?

Still, there are those of you too who’d like to say, “But I disagree with you, Corin.  A habit like lying can’t be broken.” 

But we all know from news articles and blogs and social media, and from magazines and books and TV that millions of people every year break damaging habits, leave their excuses behind and become part of that group known as “The Successful People”. 

Don’t you think being a member of their group would feel more safe and fulfilling than being part of the ‘excuses’ crowd?  Wouldn’t it be cooler to be part of the family of winners than to always be like that kid with the broken toys who’s got to defend his lousy family, the one that’s always bringing him down, to all his friends?

Look—it’s OK. People in families always emulate the others in their family.  They model what is going on in their environment.  It’s how we learn.  There’s nothing shameful about realizing that your actions are causing you pain. What is shameful is when you learn things like the stuff you’re learning here but choose to ignore them or make excuses for them.  Because then you are choosing to consciously continue to do damage. 

It’s the difference between ignorance and stupidity.  When one is ignorant, he just doesn’t know any better.  But stupidity, is when you have knowledge of something like how to better yourself, but choose NOT to use it.  It’s a side effect of lying.

Let me tell you about a friend of mine who was starting a business.  She’d worked in education for a long time and wanted independence, security and freedom but knew she wasn’t going to find it teaching. 

Three friends of hers wanted to start up a business.  They promised her it would be fun and the money would be rolling in.  All she had to do was make an initial investment and they would do the rest.  She wanted to be part of their group and have the security and status they promised their business would bring her.  It sounded easy and she wanted easy really bad. Bad enough to lie to herself about who she really was and what she really wanted.

When she told me about it I offered to help her with some motivational coaching as a favor. I even offered to bring in a business coach friend of mine who agreed to help her at a major discount in his fee just to make sure she had a solid foundation to start from. 

I sat down with her and showed her what the sixteen primal motivational drivers were and how to discover what her special combination of these motivators was.  I also showed her some other exercises that would help her to really discover what her core values were, so she’d be able to start a business that was based on who she really was and what really ‘moved’ her.

When it became obvious that she’d been ignorant about how these tools are actually used by really successful people, she became intensely uncomfortable and irritable.  When she saw that the tools would really help her but that it might take a bit of time to really work through the process, she started making excuses and finally dismissed the whole concept.  She said her business partners had everything taken care of. That they were geniuses at business and that her interests were covered. 

When I asked her a little more about what her business partners’ backgrounds were she began to lie about what the business really was, who was involved and what the terms of the arrangement would be.  She lied about how much money she’d already put up, about who’d be responsible for the debts and even what her position in the company would be.

So, why did she lie?   Why didn’t she just figure out what her primal motivations were so that she could really start to build a secure life that would make her confidence grow and really fulfill her? Why did she choose, instead, to be dishonest with herself and with everyone around her?

OK, this is big.  REALLY big.  It is so big that I’ve debated long and hard about whether I even want to tell you this.  Because telling you what I’m about to tell you may in fact trigger the very mistake I’m hoping to help you recognize.  Most of you will dismiss it.  Why? You’ll be unable to recognize that you, in fact, are making this very mistake, because this mistake is self-reinforcing.  Its very nature prevents people from recognizing that they are making it.  And most people are so threatened by it that they immediately start making excuses, dismiss it, get angry about it, or run away. 

The fact is this: When my friend learned what the primal motivators were, she couldn’t deny that there was some combination of them she needed to satisfy before she could ever be successful and happy.  And it threatened her trivial pride, preferences and prejudices.  It is one of THEE biggest mistake people make.  They believe they know it all that no one can help them because they’ve got it covered.  And as I said in the last article: we lie for two reasons.  1. We lie when we’re hungry and we can’t get our primal motivations satisfied. 2. We lie when the fact that we can’t feed ourselves is exposed to others.

My friend said she didn’t need any coaching help from me or my successful business coach friend. She stated rather firmly that she had it all figured out.  “My partners know everything about business,” she said.  Then she disappeared from my life for months.

When I finally saw her again she was mortified to admit that it had all blown up on her. That her partners got controlling interest of the business even though she’d put up all the money. That they had asked her to leave the partnership.  That she’d lost thousands and still owed more.  And that they continued to do business irresponsibly while she was still legally responsible for most of their debts. 

She now works an hourly job while she waits for all of this to go through the courts.  She still has no freedom, no security, and she’s wracked with shame.  Still, she won’t even agree to acknowledge there could be any primal motivators that she needs satisfied, and she’s gearing up to do business with some new partners who’ve promise her that a business proposition they have is going to make her very wealthy.

Know anyone who does this?  Who lies to themselves and everyone else over and over again because their petty pride, preferences and biases keep them from ever admitting they aren’t making it no matter how badly they’re faking it?

Here’s the good news.  You don’t have to live this way.  In fact, you owe it to yourself and everyone in your life to NOT live this way.  Lying is much more damaging than the  traditional argument of good versus evil would have you understand.  Because that cause for lying, lack of satisfied primal motivators is a constant, never ending destroyer of your self confidence. (see the first article)

If you want  to learn more about the primal motivators and what they are, go ahead and enter your name and email below.  And I’ll send you a secret link to a video I’ve done that will teach you a little bit about them.  Don’t worry—it won’t cost you anything and you’ll be able to watch it whenever and wherever you want to.  But I’m only going to post the video for a very short time, because I have other projects in the works that really need my attention.  So, if you want to see it, go ahead and get the link now:





Happy easter.

 

Stockholm Syndrome: “A term used to describe a paradoxical psychological phenomenon wherein hostages express adulation and have positive feelings towards their captors” –Wikipedia

This syndrome develops when the following four conditions are present.  It can develop in any relationship where these factors are present between an abuser and a victim:  terrorist/hostage; parent/child; lovers; teacher/student; government/subjects; religion/ followers.

  1. The victim believes he’s in danger.  Weather from an implied or stated threat by the abuser.  The victim also believes that the abuser will carry it out.  This threat is usually accompanied by a prescribed code of behavior that the victim must abide by that determines the level of punishment at the hands of his abuser.  Examples: if you do not prescribe to our group’s code of morality we will humiliate and ostracize you.  Or, if my dinner is not hot, to my liking and on the table when I get home, I will throw it against the wall and make you clean it up right in front of the children.  
  2.  Small kindnesses from the abuser that make the victim believe the abuser’s really not all that bad and  that there is a possibility the situation will get better.  These momentary kindnesses also act as a carrot on a stick that make the victim believe there’s a way to finally win the approval of the abuser.  Examples: the sacrament of penance in which the priest forgives the sinner.  Or, the alcoholic/abusive father who pays for his sons college.  Or, the jealous boyfriend who buys his lover jewelry after hitting her.
  3. Isolation from all outside influence other than that of the abuser.  Example: Everyone outside your religion is out to get you and lead you into shame and eternal suffering.  We are the only chosen people.  Or: if you go out with your friends I will harm them.
  4. The victim really believes there’s nowhere else for him to go. Example: if I leave my religion I will have bad luck for the rest of my life and then go to hell. 

 

We were told we were sinners and that we should be punished.  No amount of “God’s love” or forgiveness nor promise of happiness in the hereafter could ever change that fact.  We were inherently evil we were told.  And we deserved to be punished.  The “One Catholic God” was our father, they said.  And they were his representatives.  To question them meant suffering greater than we could possibly fathom with our tiny minds.  We were in essence, taught, to shut up and take it.  Or else.  We were told this from the time we were infants and dunked into water to wash all the evil away.  Evidently it didn’t take.  Because we were still to be punished daily in school and when we went home to our parents.  The threat was clear to me when I  was seven and ran away from school and they dragged me back and beat me for it.  The brilliance of that one act was lost on them.  The effects of the deed were too precise for words: an arabesque of abuse expertly executed.  In that one act they’d achieved all four steps of the Stockholm Syndrome.  The threat, the isolation, the belief there was nowhere for me to go where they wouldn’t find me and bring me back was sealed: all by age seven.  The kindness came when they stopped beating me and allowed me to live.  Swell bunch of fuckers they were.

Broken by seven I had nine more years within their organization, each one punctuated by their yearly tribute to punishment: easter.  Every ‘good” Friday they would drag us kids into the church and show us something called stations of the cross.  If anyone else carried out such a public performance they’d be arrested for pornography.  Subjecting children to a snuff play.

There they forced us to watch over and over again the abuse, torture and murder of a man.  They called it beautiful. They called it glorious.  They told us it would be our greatest honor to follow in his footsteps.  All of their saints had been murdered brutally too.  Didn’t we want to be saints?  Meanwhile the pastor who was rubbing our faces in this threat was fucking my classmates behind the altar.  No one found out about it until we were all adults. 

Didn’t I want to be an altar boy my parents asked me.  “No.  Never.”

Meanwhile their Pope—unbeknownst to us followers–was beating himself daily with a belt and  covering up little boy rape.

By the time I was in my teens I got my courage back and  tried to run away again.  My father physically stopped me and threatened to have my friends arrested, further reinforcing the isolation while adding a threat to the safety of my loved ones.

He’d also done a good job raising me to believe I needed him to survive.  “You?  Make a living?  No way.” He told me repeatedly from the time I was in junior high.  “You don’t know how to do anything.  You’ll starve. And then you’ll come crawling back to me begging and grateful for what I’ve given you.”

Within the next few months I was broken again, and I settled into my life, numb.  I began defending my family and its religion.  I didn’t know why.  They treated me like shit but I didn’t know there was anywhere else to go. The fear of bad luck and poverty and suffering if I left was consuming.  Until the day I realized my life had been nothing but suffering and bad luck and what did I really have to lose.  By 29 I got far enough away from them to get some perspective on it all.

At 33 I left them and I never looked back.  It took a few years to begin to get myself on track, but by then my luck started to improve, tremendously.  I began to find successes I never could have had in that environment.

I know there are others out there who’ve been through this.  Maybe this won’t hit you now but someday you’ll get a little bit of distance and then, in that quiet moment, I want you to ask yourself: What do you really have to lose?  Your suffering? Your identity as the victim?  There is more.  So much more.

Happy easter is the most absurd phrase I’ve ever heard.  It’s a secret message those with Stockholm Syndrome give each other.  “Yes—life sucks.  Yes, I’ve been fucked and abused and beaten and broken.  And for some strange reason, I’m happy about it.”

Happy images from a recent gravestomp thru a Catholic cemetery

People who are grieving the death of loved ones come upon this painting and believe its beautiful art.

The caption on the window stated that she chose this fate to having sex and she was blessed for it.