CHAPTER 1: Pages 6-9
An excerpt from “Life Code: The New Rules For Winning In The Real World” by Dr. Phil McGraw
Getting What You Want and Keeping What You Get
Secondly, as I said earlier, I plan to give you this new “Life Code,” which is defined by new or, in some cases, improved awareness, skills, and attitudes, not just for surviving, but also for winning and winning big. This “Life Code” is not just for getting what you want but also for keeping what you have worked so hard for, including material things and, even more importantly, a fulfilling and peaceful life. There are endless opportunities and possibilities in our current world, and I hope you’re as passionate and excited about those opportunities as I am.
We really do live in exciting times! But for some reason, our society teaches us things like how to read, how to add and subtract, what chemicals make up what substances, who was President over the past 200+ years, and a lot of other facts — but not how to win and not how to effectively get and keep what you want for yourself and your family. Most people in America have a high-school education, but I have not found many curricula that focus on human nature and why we do what we do and don’t do what we don’t do. You see, those are different skills, skills that require finesse, and are sometimes much harder to describe and teach than a factual formula, for example. But you need this information; we all do. Just because it’s hard to articulate doesn’t make it any less critical to have.
I have spent my professional and personal life studying exactly that and specifically studying success and how to not only have it but how to sustain it. Analyzing what it takes to win and win big in life has been a passion that has defined much of who I am. I have had so much fun doing this that I’m bursting to share it with you. By learning and applying this new “Life Code,” you will not believe how your life can and will change.
Life Is a Game: Be a Player or Be Played
Think about it: If you take flying lessons, you can learn to fly; swimming lessons, you can learn to swim; singing lessons, you can learn to sing. So, why not take winning lessons? Why not figure out what to think, feel, and do in order to get what you want for yourself and your family? We live in a different world, and it requires different skills and knowledge than it did even ten years ago. At the risk of sounding cocky, if you read this book and others don’t, you are going to have a huge “leg up” on the competition. They will be either embracing a mindset that no longer fits our fast-paced, changing world or, more likely, just passively accepting whatever comes their way, maybe good, maybe bad. You, on the other hand, are going to have a well-thought-out, passion-fueled strategy built on the skills and confidence that stem from rolling up your sleeves and learning what others simply don’t know.
You have to start by getting very “real” about who you are, including your strengths and weaknesses, and getting real about how the world really works, both the good and the bad. And it’s a rapidly changing world, so it takes commitment to keep up.
Some experts estimate that we at least double our knowledge base every two years! Technology is the best example. When I was in high school, I had barely even heard of a computer; now we can’t live without them. I used rotary-dial phones, not cell phones. I never saw Pong until college, let alone video games! Kids weren’t one click away from a bottomless pit of pornography and didn’t interact with strangers in some “chat room” on the World Wide Web. Much of what your parents told you about the world simply doesn’t apply anymore or just won’t cut it in this day and time, not because they wanted to mislead you but because it has radically changed since you left the nest. Back then, there was no Internet pounding on you, no transient lifestyle destroying your neighborhood lifestyle, no cable television bombarding you with glamorized sex and violence — and there were, at least seemingly, fewer scammers and exploiters out there seeking to take advantage. You didn’t have all of those influences and factors to contend with, but you do now, and of critical importance, so do your children. Soooo, let’s get current. Let’s get tuned in to what it does take in this day and time to build the life you want.
It isn’t just knowledge or technology that has changed. Yesterday’s rules and expectations about relationships, emotions, and interacting simply don’t apply anymore, at least not like they once did, and those who figure that out and adapt to the current world will have an incredible edge. There are all kinds of people in this world, ranging from the sheltered, naïve, “goody two-shoes” neophytes to the street-smart, savvy, worldly people who are tough and smart. I want that to be you. I want you to be tough and smart when you need to be.
I’ve lived on both sides of that dichotomy, and trust me, being smart and tough is better, way better. But I’m so excited about “powering you up” that I’m getting ahead of myself. Power begins with having a crystal-clear view of reality and what each and every person in your life is driven by. That will take a bit of a “wake-up” call because we typically choose to be blind to such things as why people do what they do. For some reason, it just seems to be human nature to choose to take people at face value. Yes, that blindness is a choice. You might be wearing rose-colored glasses that are distorting your view of what’s really happening around you and to you.
Life Code: The New Rules for Winning in the Real World is published by Bird Street Books, Inc., which is owned by The Doctors’ executive producer.
Copyright © 2012 by Dr. Phil McGraw. Reprinted by permission of Bird Street Books, Inc. All rights reserved.
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