Anyone who seriously thinks about making a conscious effort to accomplish more will soon become aware that the task is enormous and neverending. There is so much scope for each of us to increase our knowledge and skills, organize our lives better, work harder, improve our attitudes and elevate our values that the very thought of it is daunting! The first difficulty for most people is to figure out where to start. Some people prefer starting in a small confined area to make a small beginning. Others prefer launching a comprehending life-changing initiative. The problem is that unless the effort is comprehensive it will not generate results and comprehensive efforts are most difficult to begin and maintain. Some people are attracted to high ideals and spiritual truths and want to start off on the highest plateau. The problem here is that most often these lofty ethereal ideas remain just that and do not translate into practical changes to our attitudes, feelings and actions. We think we are doing something valuable and important but find later on that nothing has really changed.
The approach described here starts off at the point where everyone can make a serious effort and achieve significant progress. It starts at the practical physical level with small incremental steps which can be gradually extended until the effort becomes comprehensive at one level. At that point it will immediately begin to generate concrete practical results. Then it can be extended to wider and higher areas.
Increase your energy
Accomplishment depends on energy. The higher the energy, the greater the capacity for accomplishment. Energy is an expression of will. Will depends on aspiration. The higher our aspirations, the greater the energy we generate in our personality. Learn how you can Increase the Energy of your Personality.
Respond to challenges
Every sports coach knows, that we grow when we are challenged to be at our best and exceed ourselves. That challenge may come from life in the form of serious difficulties or great opportunities. It can also come from inside. We can challenge ourselves. The more we mature psychologically, the more we set our own challenges rather than waiting for life to do it for us. Make your external life a conscious means for your psychological progress. Learn how people grow by Converting challenges into opportunities.
Expand your awareness
Growth requires a continuous widening of our mental horizons by expanding our knowledge of the world and of ourselves. Greater knowledge of ourselves is of great value because it helps us believe in our unutilized capacities and makes us aware of the ways in which we can improve ourselves. Greater knowledge of the external world helps us recognize and have faith in the opportunities available to us for higher accomplishment. Most of us have a very narrow and limited conception of what is possible for us to achieve because we rely on the physical aspects of our mind Level 3 which believes in only what has already happened or what we can experience directly with our senses. To grow we must give up the limitations of the physical mind and become aware of the infinite opportunities for progress. Learn how to Expand your awareness.
To perform any act perfectly we require skill. The greater the skill we possess, the lesser the time and effort needed to perform the action and the greater the result achieved. We require a wide range of physical, social, psychological and spiritual Skills for accomplishment and fulfillment.
Aspiration releases energy. Energy is the fuel for accomplishment. When energy is directed toward higher accomplishment, it becomes a Force for progress. But the results achieved by that force, depend on how well the energy is organized. Organization converts force into productive Power. In order for you to make maximum progress psychologically or spiritually, your energies need to be focused on achieving higher goals and your activities and life need to be organized to utilize those energies efficiently and effectively. Organization converts energy into power for accomplishment. The more organized you are, the greater the results you can achieve.
Organize your thoughts, ideas, plans and intentions so that the mind has a clear focus and priorities. Organize your feelings and emotions to endorse and support the goals you have accepted. Organize your actions so that they express your higher objectives in everything you do at every moment.
Learn about the Power of personal organization.
The Secret urges you to think and feel positively about yourself, your goals and life in general. To be positive is to relate to every aspect of your life, every person and every situation with a calm, cheerful attitude. Attitudes are seeds of emotional power that determine how the world responds to us. Whatever comes to us from life reflects our own attitudes. Learn how to read the responses of life and discover the inner keys to Making life respond the way we want it to.
Raise your work values
We challenge ourselves to excel by pursuing high goals. We also do it by pursuing high values. Values are ideals of perfection that we strive to express under the imperfect conditions of life. The higher the values that we are able to express in our actions, the more we grow in capacity for work and capacity for personal fulfillment. Learn more about the importance of Personal values and Work values.
The Secret is a comprehensive method for accomplishing more within your existing capacities. It involves raising your level of aspiration, increasing your awareness of opportunities, thinking and feeling positive, and attuning yourself to the wider field of universal forces so that they can act in your life. Learn more about The Secret and how you can utilize it for Higher Career Accomplishment.
Where to start? Perfection in small matters
We all know that nothing in life is perfect. We want and often expect others to be perfect, but we tend to rationalize the imperfections in our own lives. If at all we strive to be perfect, it is only on rare occasions which we consider very important or for people we especially want to please. We are not even aware that the effort for perfection, even in small, insignificant matters, releases a tremendous power for higher accomplishment.
Trying to achieve perfection in small routine activities may not seem glamorous or even very important at first glance, but a careful observation of highly successful people and instances of great achievement will quickly reveal that perfection is the key to high accomplishment. You need to only note our own response when people or organizations we interact with fail to meet the test of perfection in small matters. A tiny piece of dirt on a glass or plate is enough or a tiny excess of salt in the food may be enough to make us wish we had never come to that expensive restaurant. A flight attendant forgets to get you the glass of water you requested 30 minutes ago. A person who shakes your hand half-heartedly, greets you as Jerry instead of Jimmy, interrupts in the middle of your sentence, forgets to offer your coffee or to offer you a ride when he is going the same way – one small slip can make the difference between the beginning of lifelong relationship and a non-starter.
These are obvious instances where the connection between accomplishment and perfection is direct. But in most instances, the link is far more subtle and difficult to perceive. We may never know what we have done that made a life changing difference. When Benjamin Franklin was looking for an editor for his newspaper, he invited a prospective candidate to lunch and rejected him at the end of the meal without even asking the man a question regarding his capacities as a journalist. When the man asked why he had been rejected, Franklin replied that it was because the man salted his meat before tasting it. He said he did not want an editor who comes to snap judgments without proper investigation. The head of a small beverage bottling company was awarded a franchise with a multinational soft drink manufacturer over far larger competitors. When he asked the vice president of the multinational why his small firm had been selected, he was told it was because the letter of application, the man had submitted was so well written and did not contain a single error. As the distinguished American architect, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, put it: “God is in the detail.”
Sometimes what we thought was right and appropriate behavior when we expressed it, we later realize it was wrong or inappropriate and a source of embarrassment or regret. We feel justified when we become impatient or lose our temper or suspect someone who later turns out to have acted in the best possible manner. We readily excuse our own indiscretions, but judge other harshly for those committed against us. Often a single tiny incident remains in our memory for years or even decades. Life observes us as carefully as we observe how others treat us and life has a memory that never fails. An unnecessarily loud noise or spoken word, a door left ajar, a tap left running, an object dropped or broken, a misspelled word or incomplete sentence -- each small act has its consequences. A perfect act, no matter how small and insignificant, carries a power far beyond its limited sphere. Perfection in small, routine acts is the pathway to high accomplishment.
Some may regard this approach as too petty. Those who aspire for psychological or spiritual progress may consider it too. But whether your goal is social accomplishment, psychological growth or spiritual development, perfection is an essential foundation and right starting point. If we cannot carry out physical actions perfectly, we can never hope to respond emotionally with the right awareness and sensitivity in our relationships with others or with the intuitive perception required for spiritual progress. Perfection is a spiritual principle. To do anything perfectly is to express the spirit in life and bring the power of spirit into our lives.
But even those who understand and accept the value of perfection, may still shrink from the effort. For the quest for perfection is extremely demanding and ever-present. It cannot be confined to a specific day of the week or small group of people. It applies to all our acts all the time. Of course, we may start anywhere with a small group of acts or a small number of criteria and gradually expand it as we progress. Try this simple procedure:
- Understand and appreciate the importance and power of perfection for higher accomplishment.
- Objectively examine the lives of people around you to observe the enormous scope for perfection.
- Examine your own life with equal objectivity to observe the scope for improving the quality of your acts – no explanations or rationalizations!
- Start with a few criteria for perfection such as cleanliness, orderliness, punctuality, accuracy, absence of errors.
- Compile a list of common types of errors or omissions that you will strive to completely eliminate, such as writing letters and messages without a single spelling error or grammatically imperfect, remembering to turn off lights when you leave each room, returning every object to the place it belongs, completing each task at the appointed time, etc.
- Decide to elevate your actions to be perfect in these areas.
- Observe yourself impartially and evaluate your performance objectively.
- Try to observe the correspondence or relationship between the quality of your actions and the results you achieve.
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