Tony Robbins writes here about STRATEGIES, STORY AND STATE and how they work together:
Question: One of the toughest things about chasing the dream is managing the disciplines of persistent action and hopeful patience that are required to ultimately see the vision come to be. This is an area of huge tension. How do dream chasers manage that tension and thrive?
Fulfilling your dreams and your ability to thrive in the areas of your life that matter most can be simplified by breakthroughs—a moment in time when the impossible becomes possible. If anyone wants to thrive in any area of their life, they have to reach a point of breakthrough where they will not settle for anything less than extraordinary in that area. Whether someone wants a breakthrough in their:
- intimate life
- emotional well-being
There are only three areas to break through in order to feel lasting success.
One breakthrough area is your STRATEGIES. I personally live for finding strategies—those shortcuts that help people get more done in less time. What is it that gets some people to succeed while others fail who seem to have equal enthusiasm or passion for the tasks at hand? They have insights, distinctions, and strategies that allow them to achieve more quickly. For example, take someone who was born very poor, without an education, and had emotional and financial challenges but found a way to be highly successful and living an inspired life. I don’t believe that’s lucky—luck is what you do for a day or a week—strategies are what make it consistently happen for decades. A strategy can be found in the simplest or slightest distinction and it can happen in an instant.
As I described above, there are three elements that effect the long-term success or failure of a person and whether they break through or not. For example, there are hundreds or even thousands of strategies out there for losing weight, and frankly most of them are proven to work—if you work them! We’re not hurting for strategies. There are fitness clubs on every street, dieticians, health coaches, training videos, audios, books, etc. Yet 65% of the United States is overweight and 33% is obese, and those numbers are only growing geometrically. I would suggest to you that the problem for most people is not that they don’t have a strategy—it’s that they’re not using a strategy that works for them or acting upon it. Why? Because they have a disempowering STORY.
We all have stories—narratives we tell ourselves about why we can or cannot do or achieve something in our lives. Whether we believe we can or can’t, we’re usually right, because our expectation controls our focus, perceptions, and the way in which we feel and act. When a person succeeds it’s because they have the right strategy, and they found it usually because they have a story that it was possible or they could make it happen. Often people are not losing weight because they have a simple story that says, “I’m big boned.” With that as your core belief system you are never going to find a strategy, and even if you do you won’t follow through on it.
Your story may be true—you may have been through a horrific experience–but that’s not the reason why you can’t have the life you want. For example, you might have had a bad breakup five years ago, but that’s not the reason you haven’t found the passionate and loving relationship you deserve. A disempowering story is one of the things that controls people and makes them stuck in their beliefs.
Most people tell a story in a selective way so they don’t have to ever maximize their effort towards a strategy because they’re afraid they will fail. In order to get out of a story you have to be triggered by hunger and desire—if someone wants something strong enough they will breakthrough the story that’s limiting them.
Of course, whether you have an empowering story or disempowering one is influenced most powerfully by the mental and emotional STATE you’re in at this moment in time. As human beings we all develop emotional patterns—moods—that are mental or emotional states that tend to filter how we look at our lives.
This influences the stories that we make up about who we are, what we’re capable of, or what’s achievable or not. The states we go into most often then become the most powerful filter of all that will determine whether we find the strategies necessary to succeed and whether we come up with a story that will empower us. The big question then becomes, what is it that we can do to change our state of mind when we’re not able to maximize our true potential? One of our greatest scientific discoveries has been that you can change your emotional mood by a radical change in your “physiology.”
For people who are experiencing stress at any given moment, a form of relief can be to simply change your physiology—take a couple of deep breaths. Most people only use 20% of their lung capacity taking small short breaths, but 70% of the body’s toxins can actually be released when taking a full breath! By taking the time to fill your lungs and release you can not only improve your health but also radically decrease the anxiety related to that moment. There are many ways to change your physiology and in our seminars we prove this time after time by taking people who feel depressed and having them make a radical shift. Intuitively we know this can be changed not only by the way we move, but our breath and body temperature as well.
The second thing that affects our state is what we focus on. For example, if you’ve been at a funeral honoring someone you cared about and everyone is in a sad state and afterwards someone shares a story or anecdote about something that person did that was extremely humorous, suddenly everyone goes from tears to laughter. In an instant our states can be changed by what we focus on. What’s wrong is always available—but so is what’s right. Whatever we focus on effects our state and our state then effects the story we have about who we are, what’s life about, what’s possible and what’s not. From that story we will often determine whether or not we will maximize our capabilities and the strategies that will help us achieve what we’re truly after in a sustainable way.
Learning to put yourself in a peak state consistently is one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself and your life. It can transform your stories and give you the strategies to breakthrough. This is a huge focus that we just don’t tell people but what we train people to do with their minds and bodies in an instant, on cue, so they can shift the quality of their performance. Whether it’s a peak performance athlete like Serena Williams, MMA champion Jon Jones, a president of a company, a parent, or someone in prison—if we’re going to shift our life it comes down to these three fundamentals.
Change your strategy, change your result.
Change your story, change your life.
Change your state—you change it all!
Source: How to Create A Breakthrough in Any Area of Your Life: Manage Your Strategies, Your Story and Your State