Hey You, Above water

It’s Lewis a.k.a. Nerd #2.

In Part 1 of this post we covered the first section of notes from Tony Robbins’ “Creating Lasting Change” course that I’ve spent over twelve hours putting together for you.

We opened up the box of The Four Classes of Human Experiences that can lead you to meeting your needs.

Now depending on which experience you choose to indulge in, the vehicle you hitch your wagon to, this is what determines whether you’re fulfilled in the long term or not.

Next we pointed out how everything that people do, they do to meet their needs and how once you know this, you can not only help yourself but you can help other people meet their needs in a better way.

When people find a better way that’s more fulfilling, they can drop their old vehicles – their old short list of habitual behaviors that keep them feeling defeated or dead inside.

Then we ended the last post with this realization . . . 

YOU CAN’T GET YOURSELF OR SOMEONE ELSE TO STOP DOING SOMETHING THAT MEETS THEIR NEEDS. You must get yourself or them to do something else that meets your needs on a higher level.

And now you and I will dissect how to figure out what specifically is stopping you and what the next level behavior is to take on and how to make sure the new empowering behavior meets your needs at a high level so that you become addicted to it.

How To Take Yourself Out Of Zombie Mode

I’m sure you’ve heard somewhere that the majority of us are walking around these incredible brains and that we only use 10%  or so of its capability.

If you ask me we’re not that far ahead of zombies. We think the same thoughts over and over again and we’re creatures of habit who do the same thing over and over and over again hoping for a different result.

And like a zombie, the narrow way we see the world and the rigid actions we take more often than not put our life in danger.

The way to change your perception is to change one of three things – What you Notice, what you Appreciate, or what you Believe – N.A.B.

This means you can look at a situation that you didn’t enjoy before, eating healthy for instance, and change what you associate to it just by changing what you notice, what you decide to appreciate about it and what you believe about it . . . and you can change all of this in an instant.

If there’s anything in your life that you used to hate doing, that you now LOVE to do, one of these three things happened.

What’s crazy is that ANY VEHICLE can meet ALL SIX OF YOUR HUMAN NEEDS (Certainty, Variety, Significance, Love/Connection, Growth and Contribution) if you adopt an effective perception or procedure.

The Strategy For Being Fulfilled Doing ANYTHING

So the question you have to ask yourself is, “Does this vehicle serve me long term to meet my last two needs, “Growth & Contribution”?

Will this vehicle really make me a better person? Is it at the empowering Class 1 or 2 experience level as opposed to a destructive Class 3 or 4?”

Are there things you can become positively addicted to because they’re totally fulfilling and are totally good for you, and totally good for others and that serve the greater good?

So the question isn’t, “Can you be fulfilled?”

It’s about figuring how you can be fulfilled in a way that serves you, others and the greater good over the long term.

This is about consciously designing your life instead of just going along with the zombie patterns that were loaded into you when you were still shitting in your diaper and later on running around with skid marks in your underwear.

There is a pattern of language, physiology, and belief that leads you to seek out certain vehicles.

So what needs to happen is that we need to select a set of emotions that cause us to pick vehicles that really make us happy over the long term. And for this to happen we have to change our patterns of physiology, our language and our beliefs.

Everything you experience, consume, hear, consider, or do is all driven by your unconscious belief about how it’s going to affect your needs.

Your Six Human Needs Are The Driving Force of Any Thought, Feeling, or Emotion You Have

You have a set of beliefs, a set of physiology, a set of language patterns that determine whether doing something is going to meet your needs or not.

If you change this pattern, you can meet all six of these needs with ANYTHING you do.

The key is to pick things that meet all SIX of your human needs which is what ultimately leads to you feeling fulfilled and to growing as a human being.

The first four needs are the FUNDAMENTAL NEEDS. The need for Certainty, Variety, Significance, and Love/Connection must be met.

But the need for Growth and Contribution are the PRIMARY/ESSENTIAL NEEDS. Meeting these final two needs determines whether you’re fulfilled or not.

And how you pursue the first four will determine whether or not you’ll meet these final two needs.

Growth is a force of nature – not just a mere desire. Everything alive must grow or it dies. For you to be fulfilled, you MUST grow. This isn’t a ‘should’. It is a MUST.

You can have a shit ton of certainty, variety, significance, and a lot of connection but if you don’t feel like you’re becoming more as a person, you will NOT be totally fulfilled.

Think about a time when you achieved an outcome where everyone saw you as significant, they connected with you, you got the variety, and the certainty that came with meeting this goal but something still felt like it was missing.

Maybe this was an instance where you achieved the outcome of getting your degree with the purpose of shutting your parents up, which worked for a short time but not long because they knew they could manipulate you and sooner or later found something else about your life they didn’t approve of and a new outcome to guilt you into.

Or maybe something like this has happened far away in your past…

You got a raise not because you increased the efficiency of a process in the company that saved 1,000’s of man hours or because your sales productivity was 40% better than your previous best but merely because you toughed it out and didn’t get fired for one more year . . . or maybe you landed an account because you betrayed another person, or maybe you’ve reaped praise and rewards for something someone else worked to create.

If any of the above situations have played out in your life, you know the feeling of meeting your first four needs yet feeling that it was a shallow victory.

Think about why someone like the rock star Kurt Cobain would take his life.

He had tons of certainty with the money that flowed to him and certainty he could rock the house.

He had variety that he fueled with drugs but also the variety forced on a musician to top their best and come fresh on their next album.

He was totally significant in the eyes of millions of fans and he could connect with those fans in person or through concert or with colleagues who had respect for them or his girlfriend, etc.

But Tony believes that he didn’t feel like he was growing and it was eating away at him and this is what can erode a sense of connection and your sense of certainty about the value your bring to the world which leads to your significance waning.

You must meet these final two needs or you will pay a price.

When you use drugs in order to feel certain that you can have variety and you’re significant in the eyes of a bunch of burned out dope fiends who are only connected to you because you’re famous and you get them high, it’s pretty much impossible to sustain forward progress.

Yeah, you can have an awesome streak but consistency isn’t in the cards when you’re meeting your 4 essential needs via Class 3 or 4 experiences.

Look at how if you join a gang you’ve got connection and love, significance, variety, certainty, and you even get to experience a little bit of growth if you prove yourself to be a beast and you move up in the ranks to a leadership position.

And if your criminal activity allows you to make money, you’re finally able to contribute to your family and friends by buying them stuff.

Not too hard to see why that lifestyle can be so alluring when it can meet all of these needs.

What Are You Gonna Do For Me If I Do This For You?

In order to experience ultimate fulfillment you must grow as a being and contribute beyond yourself – something beyond getting a return benefit for yourself like people thanking you and praising you or owing you a favor.

When it comes to contribution, the majority of people on the planet aren’t coming from the mindset where they can do it just to do it and not expect something back.

And it doesn’t matter if they’re preacher or a murder for hire mafia hit man or anything in between.

Pretty much every single one of us has been wired to horse trade rather than give freely and leaving this petty tendency behind is part of our own personal Hero’s Journey.

We want to get to the level where we do something purely for the fact that it’s good – not because we think we’ll get a blow job out of it.

Have you ever done something where you didn’t tell anyone you did it, no one knew about it and you did it just because it was the right thing to do and it felt so awesome inside?

Then you’ve experienced first hand how this need is built into your DNA – the need to do the right thing. This is WHY growth and contribution are needs and not merely shoulds.

When you hit these needs on the level of 9’s and 10’s, you end up living a dream life – what Tony calls a Legendary Life.

But most people never live a Legendary Life because they find and then settle for meeting these final two needs at low levels and this leads to them losing their drive and this leads them to the no-man’s land of not being happy but not really being unhappy.

This is the existence that leads you to long for more or to just numb yourself with drugs or alcohol or food or distraction (Facebook/YouTube/TV/etc.) so that you can just coast away from the pain that comes from a lack of fulfillment that comes from not knowing how to win the game of life.

So What Prevents Us From Winning The Game?

Simply put – Your habitual patterns of physiology, your patterns of language, and your patterns of beliefs.

Now let’s look deeper at this. Think of something you LOVE to do. This is something you could do ten hours a day – something you could a lot and STILL LOVE IT.

Breathe the way you do when you’re doing this.

Put the look on your face like you do when you’re engaged in this activity.

Is this different than you were a second ago with your physiology – yes or no? Yes.

What do you say to yourself out loud or to yourself when you’re in this state of mind? So part of what is changing your physiology is due to this language.

What do you believe when you’re doing this? What do you believe this makes you feel like? What are certain it’s going to make you feel like?

This activity is probably one in which you experience the state of Flow – a state where it’s effortless – the effort expended matches your skill level and you have fun with it or you kick some ass or both.

And if you think about it, other people probably find this activity hard to do or hard to appreciate at the level you do and there’s probably a ton of people who don’t like to do it and these people are in awe of the discipline that comes so easily to you when it comes to this activity.

Now think of thing that you love to do and on a scale of 1-10 what your level of certainty is that it will make you feel comfortable, make you feel good. Got it? Good.


Now go through each of the six human needs – Certainty, Variety, Significance, Love/Connection, Growth, and Contribution and rate the level at which this activity meets each of those needs on a scale of 1-10 – 10 being the highest level and write down the level at which this activity meets each of these needs.

How many did you score at 8 or above? If it was everyone of them or damn near every one of them, this is why you love it.

Any activity that meets 3-4 of these needs at high levels is going to be something you’re compelled to do. You’ll be driven to indulge in these behaviors.

And any activity that meets all six needs at 7 or above, you’re going to find those are the activities that are effortless to you.

NEXT . . .

Now think of something that you need to get yourself to do but you just don’t do it.

You know you should do it because it’s important but somehow in your mind you don’t make important enough to do.

You want to do it but you just don’t follow through.

This could very well be something you HATE to do – something you’d prefer to hire someone else to do or that feels like a punishment to you. You put this off whenever you can because you absolutely detest it.

Now go through each of the human needs – Certainty, Variety, Significance, Love/Connection, Growth and Contribution and rate the level at which this activity meets each of those needs on a scale of 1-10. GO.

What Did You Learn?

If you love doing something, you love it because you associate in your mind that it meets most of your needs at high levels.

If you avoid doing something it’s because your associations to it as of this moment is the feeling that it restricts you from meeting your needs at high levels.

The difference between someone who is a high performer in any activity and someone who’s shitty, is that the high performer works harder to improve at it because they LOVE IT.

They’ve set up their beliefs to where they Notice, Appreciate, and Believe something about it that you’re not Noticing, Appreciating, and Believing about it.

Or, they have more effective strategy for getting the desired outcome.

The Story of How To Be Your Own Worst Enemy

Here’s a quick example of how this played out in one massively overweight man’s life who Tony knew and felt he should do something to intervene . . .

Tony asked him, “What do you love to do most?”

Fat Boy said, “Eat.”

Tony said, “No kidding. On a scale of 1-10, what’s your level of certainty that eating will give you pleasure?”

Fat Boy said, “Level 15. It brings me total pleasure and total comfort. If I’m stressed and I eat, BAM! I feel great! It’s SO wonderful. It’s such a gift in my life!”

Tony said, “What’s your sense of variety, you don’t really get variety from eating do you?”

Fat Boy said, “ARE YOU KIDDING? LEVEL 20! There’s so many different foods and so many different flavors and so many different places you can eat, they can be prepared in so many different ways,” his eyes lit up and he got super excited.

Tony said, “You gotta be kidding?”

Fat Boy said, “If I ate like YOU then there’d be no variety. That’s why I don’t eat like you!”

We usually have one or two needs that are giving us the biggest surge of pleasure. Variety is one of the top guns for this guy.

Tony said, “What about significance?”

Fat Boy said, “No, I don’t get any significance from eating?”

Tony said, “Wait a second. You won’t even go with me to a salad bar because you’re too snooty about it. You call it a pigs trough.”

Fat Boy said, “Well that’s because I’m a connoisseur.”

Tony said, “Is ‘connoisseur’ an identity that gives you a sense of significance? Significant food in significant places with significant people?”

Fat Boy said, “You got me. Okay it meets my need for significance at a level 10.”

Tony said, “What about connection and love?

Fat Boy said, “Ohhh, 15!”

Tony said, “Connection and love from food?”

Fat Boy said, “I never eat alone. I’m always with people that I really care about. I can be at work and I’m getting stressed out and I go eat with friends or people I work with and I have a wonderful time breaking bread together, you know? I LOVE that! 15.”

Tony said, “What about growth? That seems to be working.”

Fat Boy laughed and said, “Yeah, yeah, yeah but when I am eating with people I care about I’m growing emotionally and spiritually because we talk about ideas that truly matter – significant ideas and we all grow together. I’d give this one a 10.”

Tony said, “Contribution?”

Fat Boy said, “10, because when I’m eating I’m sharing ideas. I’d give this one a 10 too.”

Do You Get Mouth Boners From Seeing Junk Food Expertly Prepared?

It’s not hard to see why this guy eats massive amounts of food on a regular basis.

This insight takes you beyond the traditional idea that he just doesn’t have any will power or the bull shit that obesity runs in his family or any number of excuses people make for being fat asses. 

Eating is a Primary Vehicle for this man to meet his needs and it’s Primary because it meets all 6 needs at high levels.

So the only way he can change this behavior is if he feels that meeting these needs with this vehicle is costing him something he feels also meets his needs at a high level.

This could be the woman he loves most on earth telling him she’s not attracted to his disgusting fat body.

Tony has found that this is the kind of opening leverage that is necessary to jolt someone out of their lazy river of gluttonous, lard ass-ian pleasure.

The only way we change is when we link high levels of pain to our current behavior. But it only works long term when we associate to the change, high levels of pleasure.

But think about Fat Boy.

Why would he not stop? He could probably stand to lose a little bit of love with food meeting his needs on such a high level.

So this could lead to him rationalizing that she doesn’t really love him because if she did, she’d accept him all fat & greasy the way he was. If this is where he put his focus, this encourages him to cling desperately to this primary need that meets all of needs at comforting levels.

Then when he goes through a list of how she meets his needs, she won’t be as certain and predictable for him to feel good all the time as the food is, especially if she is repelled by the thought of being naked with him which is one of the pinnacles of pleasure when in a romantic relationship.

And this guy probably beats himself up because in reality, he’s more in love with food than he is with the idea of being connected with a woman.

The Other Side: HATE

Then Tony said, “Well tell me something you HATE to do.”

Fat Boy said, “That’s easy. Exercise.”

Now think about what an awesomely destructive combination this is.

Love to eat artery clogging, fattening food . . . hate to move to the point of sweating.

Eating food that offers little to no nutritional value is a Class 3 experience – it feels good in the moment, it’s not good for you, it’s not good for others and it doesn’t serve the greater good if a heart attack or diabetes kills him.

Class 1 and Class 2 experiences allow you to meet your needs at pleasant levels over the long term.

Tony said, “What’s your certainty, level 1-10, that exercise will make you feel comfortable or give you pleasure?”

Fat boy said, “Are you kidding me? MINUS 20! It’s painful, that’s why I don’t do it.”

Tony said, “What about variety?”

Fat Boy said, “VARIETY?!? Are you insane? Getting on the treadmill like some sweaty rat going nowhere like an idiot for an hour? There is NO variety! MINUS 30!”

Now think about how those language patterns influence his beliefs about exercise and his ability to experience joy while doing it.

Tony said, “30?”

Fat Boy said, “30!”

Tony said, “We’re only doing a 1-10 scale.”

Fat Boy said, “Trust me, it’s minus 30.”

Now think about which need he got the most reward from when eating. Variety. Which one costs him the most on the exercise scale? Variety.

Tony said, “What about significance?”

Fat Boy said, “How can you be significant when you’re a sweaty rat going along on a treadmill? Minus 1o”

He’s using a language pattern in the form of a metaphor that makes exercising on a treadmill much worse than it is. In reality he’s taking something with potential to be a Class 2 experience and making it ugly.

Tony said, “Connection and love?”

Fat Boy said, “Connection and love?!? Zero!”

Tony said, “Growth?”

Fat Boy said, “Eh, if I were to do it, a 2.”

Tony said, “Contribution?”

Fat Boy said, “I guess I’d be contributing. Level 1.”

How Many Times Have You Been Guilty of Saying Something Stupid Like This To Someone You Love . . .

Now having listened to this conversation, consider the absolute train wreck that would ensue by coming up to this guy and saying, “Let’s put you on a diet.”

What that statement is saying to him is, “Let’s take away the only way you know how to be totally fulfilled instantaneously at the ultimate levels and let’s replace it with pain. And oh yeah, diet isn’t enough nearly as effective at getting you to lose weight if you aren’t exercising too so let’s get you on the treadmill as well.”

How much compliance are you gonna get from this guy? How about none.

So what do you do to get this guy to make a life-saving decision?

The first step to making a lasting change is getting awareness.

This session is all about making you aware so that you can start to say,

“I know why I’m doing the stupid shit I do as well as the awesome stuff. I can figure it out now. There’s only six reasons I’m doing a certain behavior. What’s the level of fulfillment I get on each of these on a level of 1-10? And now I know precisely why I’m doing anything.”

When you only have one vehicle that leads to fulfillment, you live in fear.

What happens if that one relationship goes to shit? Your life disappears.

What happens if you get diagnosed with Diabetes? Your life disappears.

What happens if you’re identity is tied up with being a business owner and as a result of your marketing sucking moose cock, Walmart comes to your town and all your former lay down customers choose to give the money they were giving to you, to them? Your life disappears.

The only way to experience fulfillment long term is to have multiple vehicles that deliver you to ecstasy.

Think about it this way, you can’t only have the identity of a mom because someday your definition of what it is to be a mom will not be met because your kids grow up and leave the house.

When everyone is gone, you can’t get the same level of connection with your kids as when they were there every day depending on you for something or the other.

For some women, their primary vehicle for connection and significance and variety and certainty comes from their kids and when the kids leave the nest and they’re out on their own, maybe on another side of the country or the world, all of these needs can’t be met at high levels because even if she talks to them on the phone, that’s not the same as having or all of them under the same roof.

This is why it’s crucial to have more than one identity so that you don’t become the person living in fear, trying to guilt people into giving you attention, or being bitter or whiny or angry towards the people you love because you feel lonely and useless.

In this defeated state of mind it’s easy to retreat to alcohol, drugs, food, or TV to meet your core needs at minimal levels to distract themselves from not feeling fulfilled via growth and contribution.

So help out of this black hole can only come from having an awareness of the consequences of engaging in a particular vehicle/activity/thought.

An awareness of consequence is the most important thing.

Being aware of the belief/pattern isn’t enough. You have to get a level of awareness to where it becomes emotional and you start to feel, not think that this belief pattern, physiology pattern, language pattern is destroying your life.

When you finally associate MASSIVE levels of pain to it, you’ll finally have the motivation to change it and it can only actually change if you’ve come up with an alternative behavior that allows you to feel certain you can meet all your needs on high levels.

Remember that alternatives must be equally or more fulfilling than the past behaviors and then they must acted upon on a consistent/ritualized basis so that they become the new habit.

Now you’ve got a tool you can use to help not only yourself, but also other people find a way to meet their needs in a more fulfilling way.

Go forth and kick some ass with it.

Talk soon,

Lewis LaLanne a.k.a. Note Taking Nerd #2 a.k.a. L.L. Cool Nerd

PS. For even further personal improvement insights into what it takes to pull your head out of your ass as the founder of a business, you must have the notes I took on Tony Robbins Ultimate Business Mastery seminar. Click here to put your hands all over them <—–