Avoid Self Deception And Work Towards Self Improvement

Get Results: Jim Rohn quotes
Get Results: Jim Rohn quotes

Self-deception is a major barrier to self-improvement, and people may engage in self-deception for a variety of reasons. It’s a complex psychological phenomenon with both adaptive and maladaptive aspects. Here are some reasons why self-deception can occur:

Coping Mechanism

Self-deception can be a coping mechanism to protect ourselves from painful or uncomfortable truths. Facing certain realities may cause emotional distress, so the mind creates a defense mechanism by distorting or denying those truths.

Preserving Self-esteem

People often want to maintain a positive self-image. They may deceive themselves to avoid acknowledging their weaknesses, mistakes, or failures, as this could threaten their self-esteem.

Confirmation Bias

Humans have a natural tendency to seek information that confirms their preexisting beliefs and to ignore or downplay evidence that contradicts them. This can lead to self-deception as individuals selectively perceive and remember information that supports their preferred view of reality.

Biased Perception

Perception is not purely objective; it can be influenced by emotions, personal biases, and desires. This subjectivity can lead to distorted interpretations of reality.

Social Conformity

Sometimes, people adopt beliefs or behaviors to fit into a particular social group or to be accepted by others. This desire for acceptance may lead individuals to deceive themselves about their true feelings or values.

Avoiding Responsibility

Self-deception can be a way to shirk responsibility for one’s actions. By convincing themselves that they are not at fault or that their actions were justified, individuals can avoid feelings of guilt or remorse.


Overestimating one’s abilities or the accuracy of their beliefs can be a form of self-deception. People may deceive themselves into thinking they are more competent or knowledgeable than they truly are.

Emotional Regulation

Sometimes, self-deception can be an attempt to regulate emotions. For example, individuals might convince themselves that a situation is not as bad as it seems to lessen their emotional distress.

What to do about it?

It’s important to be aware of the fact that people, you included, can fool themselves about their strengths and weaknesses. It’s often harder to see fault in yourself, or at least to admit to it, than seeing fault in other people. We often excuse our failings as being down to circumstances, or reasons in the situation, but fail to afford that courtesy to other people, preferring to question the quality of their character or abilities for their mistakes.

You need to separate out your value or worth as a human being, from your competencies,  abilities, and performance. Being a success really doesn’t make you a better person, it just means you’re better at doing a particular thing, or even many things, but that doesn’t make you more valuable as a person. So, let go of the fear of losing your value if you make mistakes or fail. Testing your limits requires stepping outside your competency, and faltering sometimes, it’s part of the process of learning and getting better and extending your comfort zone.

Ultimately, the only way to get better is to fully acknowledge and accept your present weaknesses, biases, and flaws, so you are better able to accurately map out a path forward toward a more capable version of yourself.

Becoming Successful

build character
build character

“Success is not to be pursued; it is to be attracted by the person you become.” -Jim Rohn

This quote by Jim Rohn emphasizes a different perspective on achieving success. Instead of viewing success as something to be actively pursued or chased, it suggests that true success is a natural outcome or consequence of personal growth and development.

In essence, the quote suggests that the key to achieving success lies in becoming the kind of person who naturally attracts success. It places emphasis on self-improvement, character development, and the cultivation of positive traits, habits, and skills.

By focusing on becoming the best version of yourself, you naturally align with the qualities and attributes that lead to success in your chosen field or endeavor. Success becomes a byproduct of your personal growth journey rather than the sole destination of your efforts.

This perspective on success encourages individuals to invest in continuous learning, self-discipline, goal-setting, and a growth mindset. It emphasizes the importance of developing the qualities, values, and attitudes that draw success towards you.

The quote also implies that success is not solely measured by external achievements or material possessions but is also deeply connected to one’s internal qualities and character. It suggests that personal fulfillment and satisfaction come from the process of becoming a better, more accomplished, and purposeful individual.

20 Wise Things To Apply To Your Life


While wisdom is subjective and can vary from person to person, here are 20 general principles that are often considered wise and insightful and that you can apply to your life:

  • Embrace change and adaptability.
  • Practice gratitude and appreciate the present moment.
  • Cultivate self-awareness and personal growth.
  • Foster meaningful relationships and connections.
  • Learn from failures and embrace resilience.
  • Seek balance in all aspects of life.
  • Prioritize your physical and mental well-being.
  • Embrace uncertainty and take calculated risks.
  • Practice empathy and kindness towards others.
  • Pursue lifelong learning and intellectual curiosity.
  • Be authentic and true to yourself.
  • Accept that mistakes are part of the learning process.
  • Choose experiences over material possessions.
  • Embrace diversity and value different perspectives.
  • Practice forgiveness and let go of grudges.
  • Set clear goals and take consistent action towards them.
  • Practice patience and trust the process.
  • Find joy and purpose in meaningful work.
  • Live with integrity and uphold your values.
  • Remember that happiness is a journey, not a destination.

These points serve as general wisdom, and individuals may have different interpretations or additional insights based on their own experiences and beliefs. It’s important to reflect on these principles and personalise them to align with your own values and aspirations in life.

Learning New Skill Quickly – The Tim Ferriss Way

Get Results: Knowledge requires learning, comprehension and recall
Get Results: Knowledge requires learning, comprehension and recall

Tim Ferriss, a renowned author, entrepreneur, and podcaster, has shared several teachings and strategies for learning new skills quickly. One of his prominent approaches is outlined in his book “The 4-Hour Chef,” where he applies his principles of rapid skill acquisition to the domain of cooking. Here are some key teachings from Tim Ferriss regarding learning new skills quickly:

  • Deconstruct the Skill: Break down the skill into its fundamental components and identify the 20% of key elements that produce 80% of the desired results. By focusing on the most crucial aspects, you can accelerate your learning curve.
  • Find the Best Learning Resources: Look for the best available resources, including books, online courses, mentors, or experts in the field. Seek out those who have already achieved mastery and learn from their experiences and insights.
  • Apply the Pareto Principle: Prioritize your efforts on the high-value activities that yield the most significant results. Identify the critical few techniques or strategies that offer the most impact and dedicate your time and energy to mastering them.
  • Practice Deliberately: Engage in deliberate practice, which involves focused, intentional, and repetitive practice of specific skills. Break down the skill into smaller components and practice them individually before integrating them into a cohesive whole.
  • Experiment and Iterate: Embrace a mindset of experimentation and iteration. Don’t be afraid to try new approaches, adjust your methods, and learn from your failures. Iterate and refine your techniques based on feedback and results.
  • Utilize Accelerated Learning Techniques: Employ memory techniques such as mnemonics, visualization, or spaced repetition to enhance retention and recall. Find creative ways to make the learning process more engaging and memorable.
  • Practice Active Learning: Actively engage with the material rather than passively consuming it. Take notes, ask questions, and apply the information in real-world contexts. Actively participating in the learning process enhances comprehension and retention.
  • Find Accountability and Feedback: Seek accountability and feedback from others. Join communities or find accountability partners who can provide support, guidance, and constructive criticism. Regularly seek feedback to identify areas for improvement.
  • Embrace Discomfort: Recognize that learning new skills involves stepping out of your comfort zone. Embrace the discomfort and challenges that come with acquiring new knowledge or abilities. Push yourself to take risks and embrace a growth mindset.
  • Time Management and Efficiency: Optimize your learning process by managing your time effectively. Identify the most productive times for learning, eliminate distractions, and adopt efficient learning strategies, such as speed reading or audio learning.

It’s important to note that these teachings are based on Tim Ferriss’s personal experiences and insights. While they may be effective for some individuals, it’s essential to adapt and tailor these strategies to your specific learning style and the skill you aim to acquire. Experimentation and finding what works best for you is key to rapid skill acquisition.

Order, Chaos Interrupts Order, and Response

Get Results: expand comfort zone through discomfort
Get Results: expand comfort zone through discomfort

We, humans, navigate the world using schemas, conceptualisations, and abstractions that help us simplify the world, so we don’t get overwhelmed by its complexity, but that allows us to map the world around us well enough to predict cause-and-effect relationships. What we mustn’t do is mistake the map for the territory.

At a very high abstract level, we often see the following pattern at work…

  • Order – safe space. the world we are familiar with
  • Chaos – is all the unknown territory that surrounds the safe space we inhabit. It’s all the complexity we’re shielded from
  • Chaos interrupts order – inevitably order is invaded by chaos.
  • How to respond – the question is how we respond to the interruption.

Whenever things don’t work out as planned, the car breaks down, the relationship goes down the pan, the business we put so much effort into fails, all these are examples of chaos invading order.

We live our lives on a knife edge, and as the saying goes, it’s not what happens to you, it’s how you deal with it.

We have seen so many films, and read numerous books that reflect these dynamics in action. Here’s a short story, which I hope highlights how this pattern plays out.

A short story of order and chaos

Once upon a time in the bustling city of Metropolis, there lived a young and ambitious entrepreneur named Alex. Alex had always been captivated by the world of business and dreamed of establishing a successful company of his own. With a relentless determination and an innate ability to organize and strategise, Alex embraced order in his life.

Driven by his passion, Alex meticulously planned every step of his entrepreneurial journey. He diligently researched market trends, analyzed potential risks, and developed a solid business plan. With a clear vision in mind, he began laying the foundations of his company, diligently adhering to his structured approach.

As the business began to take shape, the first few months were marked by remarkable success. Clients were drawn to Alex’s professionalism and meticulous attention to detail. Orders poured in, and the company steadily gained recognition and respect within the industry. Alex’s commitment to order and organisation seemed to be paying off.

However, amidst the triumphant atmosphere, chaos lurked in the shadows, waiting for the opportune moment to strike. Unexpectedly, a major supplier failed to deliver a critical component essential for the production of Alex’s flagship product. Chaos had interrupted his carefully organized operations.

Staring at the obstacle before him, Alex felt a surge of panic. He had meticulously planned for every foreseeable scenario, but this unforeseen disruption threatened to throw everything off balance. In that moment, Alex faced a critical decision—how to respond to the chaos that had disrupted his ordered life.

Instead of succumbing to despair, Alex chose to confront the chaos head-on. He rallied his team, encouraging open communication and brainstorming sessions to find alternative solutions. Alex reached out to other suppliers, forging new partnerships to ensure the uninterrupted flow of materials. The chaos had interrupted his order, but it had also presented an opportunity for growth, innovation, and new relationships.

As time passed, Alex’s response to chaos proved to be a turning point for his business. The experience forced him to think outside the box and embrace flexibility in his approach. He realized that even the most meticulously planned endeavors can be vulnerable to unpredictable disruptions. By adapting to the challenges, He discovered new avenues for improvement and expansion.

In the face of chaos, Alex’s business not only survived but thrived. The company emerged stronger, more resilient, and adaptable. The initial disruption became a catalyst for innovation and propelled Alex’s business to new heights. Through his unwavering determination and ability to respond to chaos, he had transformed his dreams into a resounding success.

Alex’s journey serves as a testament to the power of order and the ability to navigate chaos. By maintaining a strong foundation of organization and planning, he was able to weather unexpected storms and emerge victorious. His story inspires aspiring entrepreneurs to embrace the balance between order and chaos, recognising that it is through chaos that true growth and success can be achieved.

End of story

So it’s important to realise that the #1 order, #2 chaos invading order, #3 response pattern is an intrinsic part of everybody’s lives, and we should not fear it, but embrace the opportunity of growth and improvement it presents us with.

Why You Believe The Things You Believe

Get Results: all decision making is based on beliefs
Get Results: all decision making is based on beliefs

Have you ever considered why you believe the things you believe, what shapes your views, and the things you like or dislike?

Our personality traits are a big influence on our beliefs and preferences. Personality traits are enduring patterns of thoughts, emotions, and behaviors that shape how individuals perceive and interact with the world. These traits can affect our cognitive and emotional processes, leading us to gravitate toward certain beliefs over others.

For example, individuals with a high degree of openness to experience tend to be curious, imaginative, and open-minded. They may be more receptive to unconventional or alternative beliefs, embracing new ideas and perspectives. On the other hand, individuals with a high degree of conscientiousness tend to be organized, disciplined, and value order. They may lean towards more conservative or traditional beliefs, seeking stability and structure.

Moreover, other personality traits such as extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism can also play a role in shaping our beliefs. Extroverted individuals may be more inclined to adopt socially endorsed beliefs and enjoy engaging in discussions and interactions with others. Agreeable individuals, value harmony and cooperation and may be more receptive to beliefs that promote empathy and kindness. Neuroticism, which involves the tendency to experience negative emotions, could influence the types of beliefs that offer comfort or security in the face of uncertainty or anxiety.

While personality traits can contribute to our belief preferences, it’s important to note that they are not the sole determinant. Factors such as upbringing, culture, education, and personal experiences also play significant roles in shaping our beliefs. Human beings are complex, and beliefs are influenced by a multitude of interacting factors.

Learn the Lessons From Different Points Of View

Get Results: self awareness helps you learn
Get Results: self awareness helps you learn

Have you ever wondered why people have such different points of view, particularly with regard to political opinions?

It’s really not the case that “the other side” lacks intelligence, has no morals, or are just loonies.

It really comes down to personality traits – the temperamental inclinations we are born with.

Pre-cognitive screening means the world  actually presents itself differently to us, and not that we see the same thing and ignore some aspects and accept others. We don’t see the same things to begin with.

We can only pay attention to a limited set of things at any moment, in terms of their utility to us, and most things go unnoticed. My temperament dictates what I pay attention to, which is likely to be different to what you pay attention to. Sure there’ll be some overlap at times, but often we are seeing very different realities.

There will be some situations and problems which I will be better suited to deal with because of my temperament, and there will be other situations and problems, where you’re temperament will be better.

We each are a broader resource for the other.

We are more effective working together, to solve problems, than each of us are alone.

The battle between the political left and right is a necessary aspect of society because the two opposing forces push and pull against each other, and will probably give us a better version of society than a society under complete influence of one side or the other.

So, it can feel like a lot of effort to deal with the idiosyncrasies of people we don’t naturally agree with, but actually, they may be able to teach us something that doesn’t come easily to us.

It may be better to listen to people with different points of view and ideas, to see what you can learn from them, rather than dismiss them as foolish or idiotic, because you may well be the foolish one.

Maintain an Open Mind to Keep Learning

Get Results: Knowledge requires accurate information
Get Results: Knowledge requires accurate information


Dismissing the opinions of people you don’t agree with is not very intelligent.

Positioning yourself to win an argument closes you off from learning new, possibly important, information.

Holding tightly on to a position means you’re overlooking alternative perspectives, which may significantly improve your knowledge.

Different perspectives can be right or wrong depending on context at different times. Dismissing one approach at the expense of another without full consideration is a lazy, unsophisticated way of thinking, and can be very dangerous.

Open your mind to hear all views, engage in discussion to thrash out ideas in full.

This is the sophisticated, grown up way of finding the best approaches and solutions.

If you can’t debate your point against an alternative, maybe you’ve not fully fleshed it out yet, or maybe it’s just a bad idea.

Better for it to fail early while it’s still just an idea, rather than failing later with real-world consequences, for you and possibly other people.

Get Results: Knowledge, Motivation, Productivity

Get Results: acquire knowledge, be motivated, be productive
Get Results: acquire knowledge, be motivated, be productive

Get results by taking the Hero’s journey, a journey of self-discovery, a journey of looking into the unknown to extract the knowledge that undoubtedly lurks there, updating the map used to orient yourself in the world, making yourself a force to content with, possessing a sharpened mind, an articulate persuasive communication style, which wins over minds without having to resort to tyranny to garner support. This journey of transformation, is both an internal and external process of overcoming, of moving beyond, getting around, of jumping over some limitation, some obstruction, or obstacle, needing to improve in three areas –knowledge, motivation and productivity.

Brand Differentiation: Surprise and Delight Customers

Get Results: branding is the art of differentiation quote graphic
Get Results: branding is the art of differentiation

Are you working in a so-called “dull industry” like insurance, software development, car servicing and the likes? If so, you’ll know it’s difficult to create marketing that is engaging.

These industries aren’t exactly high octane fuelled or sexy, but they are necessary for many individuals and businesses.

So how can you effectively market these services and stand out from the competition, so you’re not seen as another commodity provider?

It’s all about providing something that surprises and delights prospects and customers, over and above what they would normally expect from you.

This could include helping customers discover something that provides value for them. For example, a few years ago a friend of mine, who worked at a car service centre, told me I didn’t have to take my new car to the dealership to have it serviced, in order to maintain the warrantee, and that I could take it anywhere as long as the official parts were used.  Now I didn’t know this was possible at the time, and I actually ended up using the company he worked at to do my next car service, at a big discount. However, I wondered why they didn’t make more of a song and dance about this situation in their marketing material.

So education is one way of surprising and delighting customers, giving them a free taster is another. If you’ve ever visited your local Costco, you’ll have probably seen them giving out free food tasters. This is great for introducing customers to something they haven’t tried before, and everyone loves to get free stuff.  You can also do this remotely, through free trials (great for software) or posting out free samples (merchandisers used to do this quite often).

You can also help prospective customers reframe their perceptions of a service, product, or industry, by offering it differently. For example, maybe provide life insurance that pays back a bonus if not used within a given timeframe. This would shift the perception of life insurance as being a necessary cost, which doesn’t provide any direct benefit to the person paying for the policy, into something that could be considered an investment.

The point is to try to look at your business offerings and figure out ways of giving your customers something that is relevant which will surprise and delight them.

People are curious and like to learn and experience “different” and “new”. Do this on a regular basis and do it well. Delight them and they will more likely come back again and again.