Sometime at the end of last semester, a particularly motivated, spunky, swanky friend gifted me a book entitled The Motivation Manifesto. The book is bound in a nice faux leather jacket adorned with gold print, it looks quite serious. And it kind of is. It contains 9 declarations to claim your personal power, each offering a different lesson.
It is definitely one of those books that people read the title and think “okay, this is some hippie, creepy universe, we are all connected by some weird power, bull crap”. And that’s totally valid. A few years ago, I would have looked at this book and never opened it. Anything that even resembles self-help in our society is shunned, but a few years ago, I read a few books that changed my mind.
I was actually a little obsessed with a few of them for a while. Although I have come down from my initial high, the overall themes greatly affected the way I think.
The three books that have had the greatest impact include:
and I now add The Motivation Manifesto.
Every single one of these books is a little out there and many people will probably think they are crazy. (I’m feeling a tad vulnerable talking about them) But, hopefully if you like me enough to read this post, you will give the idea a shot.
I read The Secret and The Seven Laws of Spiritual Success first and they are both about harnessing your thoughts. Understanding why you make those day-to-day decisions, why you make the seemingly big decisions, how you got to where you are and eventually where you’re going.
The Secret is very well-known and MANY people denounce everything that it has to say. And that’s fine. The book is a series of short stories about different peoples’ experiences and a few of them are a tad dramatic, but for the most part they’re good. What most people get from this book is the idea of visualization. The idea is simple, you think about what you want and then you imagine it as a reality and eventually it will happen. Now, this doesn’t mean that you can visualize a red Ferrari in your driveway one night and wake up with said Ferrari the next morning.
But, it does mean that you can visualize a goal and once you have identified what it is you want, you can make actionable life choices to get there. And most people at this point will say, DUH! Of course that’s how life works! But, the themes in all four of these books highlight what most people miss or fixate on that hinders them from reaching their goals. From weight loss, to an unhappy relationship, to finding the right career, visualizing can help you get out of rut OR keep you moving forward.
I would also like to point out that visualizing helped me get BOMB parking spots at the University of San Diego every day and anyone who follows me on snapchat can attest to that ;)
I read The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success next and it expanded on much of what The Secret touched on. The Secret is very surface level and the other books deep digger into the major themes.
Each book has their own individual lessons, but the main theme is that your thoughts, energy and day-to-day actions are what influence your overall happiness. And this is where people start to think I’m crazy and nod their head as they slowly step away from me. I have so many thoughts on this and truly hope that you can get beyond the initial uncomfortableness of it and explore it for yourself.
The Motivation Manifesto
I haven’t told my friend that I’m writing a post about this gift yet because I know for a fact he’s partying in a Parisian club and has to catch a flight before dawn. (He’s going to love that I just shared that)
But regardless, this friend has always embodied what these stories preach. Recently he has gone through an amazing physical transformation and has been documenting his success quite publicly. Something tells me that The Motivation Manifesto pushed him to take control of his life and follow through on his goals. He has many other goals as well, but this is the most obvious at the moment.
There is something that we all wish we could do. Start a business, lose weight, take over the world, consistently write your damn blog…. and this book is about realizing that those goals are VALID and going after them. Relentlessly.
My favorite part of this book was the chapter dedicated solely to motivation. The highlight for me was that you have to extinguish the thought that motivation is a fast moving train that you have to catch at the right time. Motivation certainly is a mindset, but YOU create the mindset. It’s ambition and expectancy that breed motivation.
According to the book, most people have ambitions but lack expectancy. Identify your dreams and goals, then believe that they are tangible. This is how Brendon Burchard, the author of The Motivation Manifesto, believes you can jump on the motivation train.
Everyone loves the motivation quotes that plague Pinterest and Tumblr. You know the ones. The quotes that tell you to follow your dreams and forget what other people think, and I can say with absolute certainty that those quotes derive from books such as these.
I decided to use my rekindled motivation to commit to writing just one more blog post. (And hopefully, a few more after this!)
Since graduating, I have obtained employment (YAY) and am now paid to write a blog. In three months, I wrote 22 blog posts, so really I have no legitimate excuse not to write for my own blog.
I’m feeling very vulnerable right now. It’s one thing to talk about these things, but writing it has been a completely different experience.
I only scraped the surface of what these books have to offer and how they’ve influenced me, but it’s a good start.
Now, I hope that:
- You don't think I am a total psycho and
- You pick up one of these four books for yourself. I suggest The Alchemist first. It’s a story about a boy and his sheep, you’ll like it.