In these personal improvement notes from Eben Pagan’s Advanced Learning and Teaching Seminar you’ll discover how to make the results you want to have in your life show up automatically without setting goals and without any “The Secret” woo-woo bullshit
It’s Lewis a.k.a. Nerd #2.
One thing you must keep in mind when seeking improvement is that getting feedback is crucial.
Feedback is the key to doing things better.
There’s two approaches to enhancing an area of your life:
1) Keep doing the same thing which intensifies the signal. We are all guilty of doing this in some area of our life. This causes frustration which is natural because you’re often getting worse and worse results.
2) We observe what we’ve done and we modify our behavior in the future based on what we’ve done.
One thing to keep in mind: Teaching and Learning Are Connected
There’s a loop in your mind that connects them to each other and effects both of them – The teacher teaches, the learner learns. The teacher is affected and they change their behavior and teaching style as they get feedback from the learner. The learner learns and gets feedback from the teacher and changes their approach to getting results as well.
And this all fits within a unique paradigm of learning which says . . .
Level 0 Learning is that of merely having an observation . . .
Level 1 Learning is where your behavior actually changes and . . .
Level 2 Learning is where you change you which leads to many of your behaviors changing.
Think about these levels in the context of these examples…
What level of learning did the little boy who cried wolf attain?
Most of the time he was at Level 0 because he kept doing the same thing over and over again and didn’t get it. He got feedback on what he was doing, saw the shifting results but never made a change in his behavior.
Now what about Ebenezer Scrooge? (My dad is 100% convinced Eben is short for Ebenezer hahaha)
Scrooge reached a Level 2 learning because multiple behaviors of his shifted automatically as the result of feedback he received and insights he had. A facilitated multiple angle perspective into the results his behavior was creating was what allowed for this. Once he changed, all of his behaviors changed. This is the kind of lasting transformation that I believe is worthy of pursuing – changing the way you see yourself.
So Level 1 Learning is behavior change. Not “going to change” but actually “changes”. Words matter.
Pro Tip: One way to help Level 1 experiences automatically happen is to go sign up for something where you’re forced to show up and act. One of the guys at the seminar did this by signing up for a Dale Carnegie course and because of them holding him accountable to action all kinds of his public speaking behaviors changed and eventually led to him going from a bumbling idiot to winning the award for the best speaker of the entire class.
One key to success is to see yourself as a person who continually puts themselves in situations where you’re going to be put on the spot to take and action and perform. You want this to become something you just do. Period. You now lust after these experiences.
Most people can’t get themselves to do this because they know by doing this, they’re going to change. So most of us fight with the idea of becoming more and not wanting to leave our old identity behind.
Now Do This (It’d be awesome if you can close your eyes and have someone read the following text to you):
Look back into the past at the old you, at the person who didn’t put yourself in situations that were almost guaranteed to affect transformation. You just haphazardly coasted through life thinking you “got it”, that you could figure some stuff out, when you gain insights, they’ll change your life, the time before you understood what real learning is.
Get a clear picture of what that looks like.
Now look out into your future, down your timeline and see the version of you that sees themselves as the person that as often as possible puts themselves in accountability-action oriented intense situations.
A person that knows that the more of these types of situations that they put themselves in, the more they’re going to change, learn and develop towards their full potential.
Can you see that person?
Now, realize that person can be you now. You don’t have to wait until the future arrives for it to become reality. You can change how you see yourself RIGHT NOW, RIGHT FROM WHERE YOU ARE.
So look out into your future and see that person moving toward you rapidly until they actually just melt into your body. Now notice how you see yourself differently, notice how you can take a different perspective upon yourself, one that facilitates putting yourself in growth situations as often as possible.
When you step into this identity and put yourself in these situations more and more often, you’ll learn more and more about how you learn.
Level 2 causes a chain of behaviors to change because your identity shifts. You change. You become “not you” permanently.
Now think about Viktor Frankl, the man who wrote “Man’s Search For Meaning” based on the transformation he made while being locked away in Nazi concentration camps.
He was a psychiatrist and he observed how he and the people around him were processing this experience in a completely different way and this led to him not only surviving the experience but coming out and creating a whole new school of therapy that revolved around the discovery he made that allowed him to endure a nightmare of an experience.
Viktor not only changed his behavior, not only changed his self-image, but he gained insight into how he and others learned and wrote the script of their life. This is a Level 3 Learning.
And all of these examples are here to help you see how all learning is not equal.
ACTION STEP: Now if you want extra credit and you want to drill this understanding deeper into your consciousness, remember a time in your life when you had a Level 0 Learning, a Level 1 Learning, and a Level 2 Learning.
One awesome test that master level teachers give to their students is they say, “I said it. Now I want you to put it in your words and say it completely differently. And you can put it in a story or a metaphor or an analogy, but make sure it’s delivered completely different so that I know the principle landed on you.”
By doing the exercise above, you’ll be going through this process and because it’s your own life experience you’re tapping into, it should be easier to implement.
Feedback Is King
One of the hardest things to get and give is useful and accurate feedback.
This is a huge challenge in our lives.
We don’t like to ask for it, we don’t like to be criticized, we don’t like to criticize others, we don’t others to think that we think we’re better than them.
And if we give feedback we’re criticizing the person rather than their thinking and their behavior.
It’s not as easy as you wish it’d be to get and give good feedback.
In the book “Flow – The Psychology of Optimal Experience” written by Mihaly Csikzentmihalyi, the author, who is a scientist, spent years trying to figure out what is it that gets us to place where we have unconscious competence and incredible performance flows out of us at and seems almost effortless to the casual observer and ourselves.
This is state of mind where time just flies by and we experience massive enjoyment in the midst of activities where we flow.
Relative to feedback, there’s a model he lays out in this book that can hammer this point home beautifully – a simple way to understand how to put yourself into a Flow state.
Here it is . . .
If the Challenge is too high, but the Skill is too low, you feel anxiety.
If the Skill is high and the Challenge is low you feel boredom.
What happens when the Skill and The Challenge are even? Flow.
The way you change your behavior if you’re experiencing boredom is to increase the level of challenge. If you’re experiencing anxiety, you need to increase your skills.
When you adopt this mindset and you feel anxiety in a certain area of your life, you can quickly realize that you fix this by simply enhancing your skill set in that area of life. You realize the truth that it’s not a “you” problem but rather, it’s a “skill” problem.
If you worry too much, you need a skill that helps you deal with that. If you can’t talk to women, you need a skill to help you deal with that. If there’s always too much month left at the end of the money, you need a skill to help you deal with that.
You, are broken and can be fixed. You’re not junk that is beyond salvage. If you seek to be more valuable, it’s only a matter of increasing skill.
If you let it, this realization can allow you to take complete control of your emotions which govern EVERYTHING you do.
Now if you’re bored and stagnant, it’s all about increasing the level you’re playing at.
No one likes practicing this. They like the easy level, even if it means being bored. Being bored to most people is better than being anxiety-ridden because you’ve placed yourself out of your comfort zone.
How Do You Get Yourself Into The Flow Channel?
How do you set up conditions in your life so that Flow happens automatically?
Eben’s journey to improve his skills so he could achieve more started in place where you might have as well – Goal Setting.
You write down what you want to have show up and visualize it and then you’re unconscious mind and the universe are supposed to go to work on making it happen.
If you’re a serious enough student, you’ve probably seen the magic that can happen as a result of this. I know I have. But there’s another side of this equation.
One of Eben’s mentors introduced him to a book titled, “Stop Setting Goals If You’d Rather Solve Problems ” by Bob Beal. This book revealed to Eben that 80% of people don’t like setting goals but they had zero problem with going about solving problems.
Bob’s research revealed the majority of people were way more motivated to fix a problem than were motivated to set goals.
Eben gauged the crowds opinion on if they preferred to solve problems over setting goals and voila, 80% or so of the room raised their hand.
For forever goal setting has been presented as the only route to getting what you want. Then this book comes along and gives you another perspective saying that if you’re a problem solver, you want to make a list of all the problems that need to be solved in order to achieve a certain outcome and then you can systematically crush those problems and inevitably reach your outcome.
So now there’s two ways to get what you want: Set goals or go out into the future to the desired result, make a list of the obstacles that need to be overcome and then go about steam rolling each of them.
And guess what?
There’s actually a third way. Eben calls it Inevitability Thinking. This compliments both setting goals and solving problems.
Inevitability thinking is about asking the question, “How can I make the outcome that I want inevitable?”
The key to inevitability is in setting up conditions.
So this leads you to asking the question, “How do I set up the conditions so that the outcome that I want to have happen, happens automatically?”
Within the context of setting a goal, it’s entirely on you to fight to make that happen. With inevitability thinking you can set the destination for success and the auto pilot system takes you there.
Think about this in the fitness context. Even if you’ve been active for a couple of years and you’ve got your routine you’re doing, you’re only going to crank out a certain level of effort.
You might have an inkling of what the next level is but you never experience it. But you know god damn well that if you put yourself in a room and under the guidance of a trainer who does know what it looks like, and let them take the steering wheel, that you’re going to grow more than if you were just on your own.
So if you’re serious about taking your fitness to the next level, you find someone who’s a beast and you ask them for their help and the next thing you know you’ve exploded through what you ever thought was possible.
You didn’t set a goal. You haven’t made a list of your problems and set out to solve them. All you’ve done is asked, “What do I have to do to make it inevitable for me to grow to the next level?” And then you set up conditions that made this outcome appear automatically.
And the way to crank this up another notch is to take an interest to your trainer and what he wants to do with his life and you try to identify ways that you can help them as well like I talked about at length here.
There’s a couple ways this mentor could look at you: 1) I’m gonna do what I got paid for and work this guy out. Or… 2) This is someone that’s really going to contribute something to my life so I don’t want to merely go through the motions here. I want this person to be massively impressed with me so they’ll be excited about helping me in return so I’m going to treat them like a VIP.
See the difference?
One way Eben does this in his business is that when putting together teams, he makes sure to put diverse types of people in each one.
He acknowledges that Creative people and Organized people have opposite tendencies and skill sets that when teamed up, complement each other.
Two or more people together are an self-organizing system. Since they’re going to organize anyway, you may as well put some thought into the people you put with each other so that when they do self-organize, they do so in a productive manner.
You want to focus on setting up the conditions so that you win. Automatically. Just by showing up.
Conditions Directly Affect ALL Of The Results That Happen In Your Life
With this in mind, you must remember that everything you’re thinking, every relationship that you’re making, every new experience that you have, every team you build, every new product you launch, every new thing you do is setting the initial conditions that are going to lead to some outcome down the road.
If you stay conscious of this and pay attention to setting up inevitability conditions, you have your desired outcomes start falling into your lap in multiple areas of your life.
1) How can you make it inevitable that you have regular and consistent Level 0 learnings in your life – realizations and “Ahas?
2) How can you make it inevitable that you have regular and consistent Level 1 learnings in your life – individual behavior changes?
3) How can you make it inevitable that you have regular and consistent Level 2 learnings in your life – personal transformation?
Inevitability thinking is about making it so can’t NOT grow.
And keep in mind that starting with conditions outside of you and agreements you make with yourself – joining the army is a an example of setting up a condition that will force you to grow.
Signing up for the Landmark Forum is another because 9 out 10 people who Eben knows who done so have said they walked in the door one way and way out changed for the better and pretty much everyone one of them swear that it’s transformation guaranteed.
So think in terms of mentor, mastermind, physical environments, accountability partners, something that puts pressure on you to perform.
This is ALL about action and NOTHING to do with theory. This is a Get Results Or Die Trying kind of approach. This isn’t about trying or thinking about doing. This is Do or Don’t Do.
So go forth and answer those three questions above.
And as always, if you have questions, hose me down with them in the comments section below, in the orange “Feedback” tab you see on the right there, or send me a personal email.
Lewis LaLanne a.k.a. Note Taking Nerd #2 a.k.a. L.L. Cool Nerd
PS. If you want to discover even more personal improvement actions you can take relative to getting your business out of a rut, you’ll definitely want to get your hands on the notes for Eben Pagan’s Wake Up Productive course which can be found here <—