I believe you can have a mind full of doubts and worries and still succeed. I believe it’s possible to achieve amazing things in life with a frightened heart and a terrified mind. It’s more than a belief, actually. It’s certain knowledge. I know because I have always been full of doubts and fears. I was doubtful when I enrolled in the Dale Carnegie self-help course that changed my life.
I was afraid of failing when I wrote my first promotion, which resulted in tens of millions of dollars in sales. I am still full of doubts and fears now … whenever I launch a new product or create a new advertising campaign or buy a new investment property. I have managed to be very successful in life without ever developing “the mindset of a champion.”
I have built large, profitable businesses. I have written books. I have produced films. And I have made millions. I have done all of those things and more without any of the positive mentality and courage that so many self-help gurus say is necessary. I’m telling you this in case you are also someone who is full of doubt and fear. I want you to know that you don’t necessarily have to change your “attitude” or embolden your heart to succeed. I tried to change my psyche. I read the books and studied the tapes. I shouted mantras while driving and yelled at myself in the mirror. I did it all but without changing how I felt.
If I had had to wait till my attitude changed, I’d be waiting still. Instead, I decided to ignore my doubts and fears. I made myself a promise that I wouldn’t try to “be” like the Tony Robbinses in the world (much as I would have liked to acquire their confidence) but would focus instead on what they did. I reasoned that if I could muster up just a little bit of courage — just enough to take one small step (the same step successful people took at the same point in their careers), I’d get the same result they did.
If I wanted to write a book, for example, I didn’t wait until I had the mental conviction needed to write the book; I simply pushed myself to write a single page. The next day, I screwed up enough guts to write another page. And so on. I took that approach with everything I did, and what I discovered encouraged me. It didn’t seem to matter whether I believed in myself at all — what mattered was what I was actually doing. I am not the only wimp who has succeeded.
Among the successful men and women I know there are more doubters and cowards than champions. Many of the finest and most successful writers are afraid to voice their thoughts in public and, in private conversations, admit to all kinds of doubts. When it comes time to write, these people have learned to press on with their writing despite their fears — and everything seems to come out wonderfully. I am not attacking Tony Robbins. And I am not saying that having the mindset of a champion isn’t a good thing. It is.
What I’m saying is that in my experience you don’t need that sort of mentality to succeed. You need only to do certain specific things — take actions that successful men took before you — and success will come to you. (That’s why the purpose of ETR — as well as all the self-help products we produce — is to give you specific actions to take that will make you successful.) My confidence is certainly greater now than it ever was before, but it never got better by my trying to make it better. It improved because of my successes.
If you do something long enough and the outcome is good, your mind and heart begin to grow bolder. And that’s why when people meet me today they are surprised when I tell them that at heart I’m a frightened, worried, lazy, and fundamentally insecure coward. That’s the core. But I also have my memory. And my memory tells me that if I do certain things I’ll succeed.