To a large extent, we verbalise our beliefs and values through language. So if we are not satisfied with what we hear ourselves say, then language will not be the first thing to analyse & fine-tune. The source of these words is somewhere else! – Sachin Sharma

Many people subscribe to the following sentiments. Sometimes attributed to Mahatma Gandhi, or Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu; but it might really have been Frank Outlaw, late President of the Bi-Lo Stores. Where it originates, doesn’t matter.

“Your Beliefs become your Thoughts, Your Thoughts become your Words, Your Words become your Actions, Your Actions become your Habits, Your Habits become your Character (or Values in some cases), Your Character becomes your Destiny.”

I challenge this statement; particularly the sequence, and I suggest the ‘Pyramid of YOU‘.

This pyramid shows how the YOU, the person the world sees, at the very top is made up of 4 quite different elements. Together they stack-up to create a composite, complex, perhaps flawed, but ultimately wonderful human being. It helps explain why you think you are the person you are and why you behave as you do.

The most exciting aspect about this, is that these elements of the pyramid beliefs, rules, values, and language/thoughts, are ALL INTERNAL. They are completely under your control and that itself is empowering. Even sickness or disability are just excuses. See Nick Vujicic for example – The No Legs, No Arms, No Limits guy.

Truthfully, only death as an event from outside yourself can stop you being successful. Even things that go tragically wrong are transitory.

If you really desire success, you can overcome many life experiences such as fires, sickness, accidents, disabilities, deaths of others, etc. IF YOU REALLY WANT TO!

I mean – you can’t change the EVENT, but you CAN control your reaction to it. And the meaning you give to it. And the way you let it control your life. Or NOT!

In a moment, we will explore in detail each of these aspects. Let’s begin with a quick overview of the elements that make up the ‘Pyramid of YOU’

Each part of the pyramid comes from our mind. Each is an interpretation of life from our past and present experiences, and is not real in a physical sense, just an illusion that we have created, held onto and continue to play out in life.

Many people have espoused these ideas; from Shakespeare “There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so!” to “There is no reality, only perception,” which seems to be attributed to Dr. Phil.

If these statements are true, then – ‘There is no failure, only feedback’. It is what we think it is. If something has not achieved the required outcome it is, as Thomas Edison was believed to have said, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”

Beliefs are at the most basic level because we start developing them before we are even aware that they exist. Even before we actually have the language to describe them they are there. They are generated, primarily in early childhood. Usually they come from interactions with the most important people in your life at that time; your parents/guardians. But take note, beliefs are not real, they are what we are certain of. Thoughts. Figments of our imagination.

Rules are made up by us to decide how to handle our beliefs. By extension, rules are not real either. They are instructions to ourselves or standards that we have made up. Thoughts. Figments of our imagination.

Values depend on the lower two segments of the pyramid. Since values are founded on beliefs and rules, these too are what we have decided to hold onto. Values are emotional states which we want to experience, and rules and beliefs influence our ability to experience these. Values are waypoints on the map of our life. But they too are merely thoughts. Figments of our imagination.

Language and thought How we interpret the world and interact with it comes down to language and images that can be processed by our mind.

But what we are saying or thinking is not real. It is just words. Thoughts. Images. Figments of our imagination.

Like an iceberg the world sees only what is above the surface of the ocean; what you present to the world: the YOU (and a small portion of the language segment).

What happens underneath (the significant remaining part of the iceberg) is your beliefs, rules, values and self-talk that determines what or who you actually are – by the way much of the language we refer to here is self talk – which is very important but also hidden.

As well as this, in any given situation, no two people will assign the same beliefs to the same experience.

This is a sample taken from a chapter in the book Success Unlimited. The chapter is written by Colin RochfordClick here to pick up your copy.

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