I was first introduced to the basic concept of money and success triggers in Napoleon Hill's classic work, "Think and Grow Rich." In Hill's discussion of his "13 Steps to Riches," he speaks of visualization (step 2) and autosuggestion (step 3). Later, while reading the extraordinary book, "Psycho-Cybernetics: A New Way to Get More Living Out of Life" by Dr. Maxwell Maltz, I rediscovered that the mind will seek out whatever it focuses on most.
I've used these principles for most of my adult life. But like so many other things, we all stray from what we know works. During the last few months, I've gotten away from some of my more productive habits. I don't really know why that happened, but as a result, Ive seen a decline in my income and my personal productivity.
My wake-up call came several weeks ago at a training event we conducted. One of our members mentioned that he had heard me speak about success and creating a money mindset, and how much that talk had meant to him. Hearing that shook me out of my lethargy and awakened me to a number of new possibilities, including a reawakening about the use of success triggers.
Success and money triggers are essentially anything you can do to help your mind refocus on success, wealth and money. These are visual and auditory cues that automatically refocus your mind. Remember, the mind will move toward whatever it focuses on most. So whatever you focus upon is what your mind will give you.
A good example of a negative trigger is the baseball manager who tells his pitcher, "No matter what you do, don't throw him a high fastball." Then on the first pitch, the pitcher throws a high fastball that is then hit out of the park for the game winning home run. Why did the pitcher do that? Because the coach told him to " ... throw a high fastball." The mind doesn't hear the negative. The pitcher's mind heard, "Throw a high fastball," and that's what the mind moved toward.
Napoleon Hill also talks about habits as a tool to success. When one gets into the habit of seeing and hearing moneymaking, time management and success triggers, the only possible outcome is for the mind to move toward making money, managing time and being successful. Your mind can't help it.
An idea I've used for years is to see myself with a lot of money. Try to actually visualize yourself with cash in your hand and/or seeing money all around. I now leave money lying around my home and office. Many of us have a jar or some receptacle where we habitually place loose change. In my office there's a five-gallon water jug labeled "Cameron's College Fund" (Cameron is my six year-old son). After awhile, I'd accumulated a pretty tidy sum in pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters. However, seeing a pile of loose change didn't really have the mental impact I was looking for. So I now leave dollar bills, fives, tens, twenties and hundreds lying around my home.
In my master vanity drawer, there is a little pile of all different denominations of bills. I find the less neat the pile, the better. I always leave a few bucks on my dresser top, on my desk at both home and office. There's usually a few hundred dollars in most of the drawers of my desk.
As I wrote this article, I counted more than 19 money triggers in my office. There's a large poster showing five three-foot tall stacks of cash. The poster's title is "My First Million." I have $1 million bills stuck everywhere in my office. I have $100 bill pens and pencils on my desk.
There are 13 time triggers in my office: seven clocks, including one for each of the four U.S. time zones, two hourglasses, my grandfather's pocket watch and four other clocks and time pieces, some of which are really bizarre in shape and color. All are designed to remind me to use my time wisely.
In terms of success triggers, I have several framed, color pictures of the Bentley Automobile I would like to own. I have pictures of the type of beach house I want. I have awards that I have been given to remind me of past successes. I even have one corkboard full of nothing but testimonials from clients, agents and mortgage professionals thanking me for my help. I have motivational plaques all over the walls, visual reminders of what I want my life to be like.
By far, one of the most successful changes I've put in place is to rework my personal goals. By the way, everybody who is anybody in success coaching suggests - no, insists - that you:
1. Have written goals;
2. Ensure that those goals are specific;
3. Write the goals in the first person;
4. Write them as if the event has already occurred;
5. Be sure that the goals are time sensitive; and
6. Use goals that are quantifiable.
For example, "I want to increase my mortgage business is far too vague; it is not an affirmation and has no time specificity. Rewrite the same goal as, "On or before (specific date), I, (your name), originate (number of loans or dollar amount of loans) each month." This has time specificity, is personal, is an affirmation ("I originate," not "I will originate"), is specific in quantity and can be verified.
Not only have I rewritten my personal goals, I have recorded myself stating my personal goals. In addition, the most important change in goal stating, at least for me, has been the addition of music. We all have songs that motivate us, touch us, get our juices flowing and, just by the very nature of the music, move us toward success. I have a personal collection of songs that do that for me. I've now copied those songs to an audio CD and have added recordings of me stating my goal affirmation. The power of hearing those motivational songs along with my own voice telling my own brain what I have achieved is incredibly powerful. I play the CD in my car on the way into the office. I play it very quietly in the background at the office while doing mindless work. I play it in the mornings while working out and I play it in the evenings before I go to bed.
Just in the first two weeks of doing this, I've seen remarkable changes in my ability to accomplish more during the day. Plus, moneymaking opportunities just seem to be coming out of the woodwork. New concepts for tools to help our company and other mortgage professionals just seem to jump into my mind sometimes without any real preparation or forethought. It is truly remarkable.
I'm going to very strongly recommend that you do some of the same things to create moneymaking, time management and success triggers in your life. My ideas above are by no means the only things you can do. In fact, I'd love to hear some of your success trigger ideas. Tell me what you've found to be tricks you can play on your mind to get you to do what you need to and be as successful as you can be. Please e-mail me your thoughts and ideas. I'll add your thoughts and ideas to those of hundreds of other successful mortgage professionals and we'll all end up with a very useful volume of success ideas. Everyone who sends in a success, moneymaking or time management trigger will receive the compiled book free. Think of the incredible mind power of all of us working together towards success.
Take the time to write your own affirmative goals, and create your very own success triggers. They are easy and inexpensive to do, and the rewards can be truly phenomenal. Until next time, this is Doug "Dr. Doug" Huggins saying, "Those that say 'Money can't make you happy' simply don't know where to shop!"
Doug Huggins is a national mortgage professional success trainer, an expert on working with first-time homebuyers and is president of the Home Ownership Center. He may be reached at (770) 952-1638 or e-mail [email protected].