It’s easy to let what’s happening in the external world drive our thoughts and behaviors. It’s not always easy to see why we get hooked on assessing, judging, and sorting through the non-stop stream of information coming at us day after day.
As human beings, we are hardwired to survive. It’s built into our DNA. The Drunk Monkey (my nickname for the mind) is designed to protect you from possible suffering, from pain and from discomfort. It’s designed to assess the external environment for threats – real and imagined – and then act accordingly. As a result, it has a tendency to get addicted to the news. And news organizations have figured out that sensationalizing information is the perfect bait to capture the attention of your Drunk Monkey.
The news has no commitment to truth. It has a commitment to making money which means “selling advertising.” The more viewers the news organizations have, the more money these companies make. Clearly, there is a natural pull towards the sensational versus the truth. Blogging has only amplified the problem because of blogging, like this blog, is just someone’s opinion.
“All opinions are vanities and have no intrinsic value and are actually the result of ignorance,” says Dr. David Hawkins in his book The Eye of the I.
So what does someone who wants to feel good and make the best of the current economy do? One place to start is giving up your addiction to the news and your opinion about the news.
When you hyperfocus on what other people are doing or on things out of your control, you move out of your center. You take your attention off fortifying your personal economy, and individual well-being and put it on things that have little or no impact on your life.
While there is value in accessing external factors in the decision-making process, becoming evangelistically opposed to stuff you’ve got no control over is only negatively impacting your own psyche. If you listen to yourself and your friends talk about the news, you will hear yourself and others sharing opinions about things that make no difference regarding issues you have no control over.
Instead, start asking yourself questions like…
- What do I want?
- Where am I going?
- What can I do?
- What actions can I take now?
- Who do I need help from?
- What is a miracle I could take a stand for occurring?
To put your focus on these kinds of questions will make a profound difference in your experience of life AND the results you produce.
To spend time pondering the news and how to fix things you can’t control that might possibly negatively affect you, is the mindset of the victim. (Read that again please).
To spend time espousing your opinion bailouts, stimulus plans, and financial volatility after the fact is completely ridiculous and only done by people committed to being stuck and spreading the illusion that they are not in control of their life. Illusion not truth.
You are the creator of your experience, not the victim of your circumstances. You have the power to mold the circumstances of your life first with your attitude (your perspective) and second with your actions.
So what are you going to focus on?
Originally posted 2009.
Timely, poignant and helpful Matthew. To answer your question, I am committed to focusing on what could be and should be. Where can I make a contribution or lessen the negativity around me. Being intentional about what I think, listen to and see.
Thank you and have a powerful day!
I can only tell you what I’m doing in order to keep myself from being talked down along with the economy.
I have taken reading and studying the habits of those that formed and built businesses in the 1930’s. Even then, chances were taken because it just made sense.
For instance, Mars bought Snickers in 1930. In today’s Wall Street Journal, you can read about a new ad campaign that harkens back to that time.
Living where I live (Newport County, Rhode Island) often teaches me that the solutions we will need in the future often lie in our past. If we concentrate on self rediscovery, we will thrive just as some firms during the 1930’s era were able to thrive.
Well said Matthew. I don’t pay attention to much news anymore. Too negative and all of it is out of my control Besides the news only gives us some sprinkles of information, much of which is not factual or misleading, but packaged in a way that gets people hooked in to watch (the ads!).
I would love to see a new type of televsion where we can each create our own show and then play that! I have some of my show in my mind, but I am not quite focused enough to play it for 30-60 minutes, in super color and fancy lighting and all – heck a feature length movie would be great! Might has well make a holodeck a la Startrek and create our entire life exactly the way we want to live it! (Could we be already doing that in the quantum field but aren’t always conscious of it?) http://www.freshroots.net
While I’m not doing financially well right now, it’s not due to a “news addiction”. In fact, I rarely listen to news broadcasts.
When I hear others repeating what they’ve heard, I shut it out. Like staying away from people with pneumonia. Put on a mask, people! Filter what you’re saying …. you’re spreading germs!
During any given time in the financial history of the nation, no matter how bad, there have always been those who’ve thrived. That’s my intention. Thrival, not survival.
Thanks, Matthew, for being a beacon while we walk together through this mortal journey.
Thanks. You continue to remind me to focus my energy in a proactive and productive way. I know more people will understand the truth of this life view as we move forward.
I think there’s a difference between shoot your mouth off and oppose things based on the my Dad was a Republican and I’m a Republican and therefore, dammit, everything the Dems do is evil sort of opinion vomit and the informed balanced opinion that comes from reading or watching the news, seeking out thought leaders on both sides of the equation, NPR for morning drive time + Rush Limbaugh (in moderation all things are possible) to see what the other side thinks. By the way, I’m a life long registered Independent who had a 99.9% Republican voting record until the last election where I went 97% Democrat.
I think that opinion with out action is the issue so sure, espouse your opinion to the guys on your softball team but don’t rant or dismiss, listen and ask questions. More importantly make your voice heard by collecting and using the email addresses of your local, state and national representatives. Don’t stick your head in the sand and ignore it because you can’t change it. That’s nonsense. Our voice maybe only 1 grain of sand but it may be the grain of sand that keeps the rest of the beach from washing away in the storm (weak analogy, I know but it’s early & I’ve only had 1 cup of coffee).
I hate the fact that people say I don’t read the news because that cedes control to those who not only read the news but respond to it with well organized campaigns. We live in a democracy which means that it’s our duty to care and to participate even if we feel that our voice carries no weight. President Obama is President precisely because he used the power of technology to reach out to the hopeless, the disaffected and disenfranchised and gave them a platform for their voices to be heard. For him or against him, he understood better than anybody the power of the single voice to ring out above all others.
Thanks for a thoughtful post and, in general, I agree that we shouldn’t sweat the stuff we can’t control but, sometimes, we should.
This is so true. The news is nothing but negativity and ratings. After going to an elected leadership confrence as a teenager and the news media one of the few people we got to interview. The question we all asked them was why do you always report on the negative things, why not report on the positive. Their comment to us was positive doesn’t make the ratings or money.
I really enjoy this blog and this is so true! Thanks.
Wow…very true, very powerful. I am going to read this to all negative people, clients, friends, agents, evryone!
“Hi coach, thanks for asking me to comment on your blog. Here’s an article that I am in the process of sending out to my sphere. This is a culmination of everything that I have learned from all of you and Thach’s teachings for the last two years!! You caught me at a great time! :)” – Teddy
There is a virus that is adversely affecting the minds of the good American public these days. Would you like to know what that is? It is called the VICTIM MINDSET and the media is doing such a terrific job of fermenting, cementing, and perpetuating this type of destructive mental thought pattern, story and conversation.
Just look at todays headline: “John and Jane decided to live the American Dream instead they got the American Nightmare”. I mean what kind of a double-bind, low-ball, fault-finding statement is that?!? Listen when you finally find that person or entity to blame will it make a difference for you or your situation?!?
By looking for that person or entity to blame are you doing yourself or environment a favor by affirming to yourself how badly you were “mistreated”? It sure helps you to get that last ounce of feint certainty back in your life but at the same time all this does is make you want to stay even longer in that situation so that more people can say “oh look at you poor thing”, and it perpetuates your whole cylce of being a “victim”. Rinse and repeat – now you’re stuck and it never ends!
The reason why America loves to watch and read the news everyday is that it appeals to their ego. It gives them the ammunition to make a cop-out of not being responsible for anything that happens to their life. It is your ego that gets rewarded by all these sympathy points that you get from your family, your friends, the government and everybody else that give you those feelings of validation.
LOOK. Are there people & families that are going thru tough & unfortunate times right now? YES maybe even more that actually deserve it.
As a member of this mature civilized society do these people deserve the help of their government and their fellow men? YES but only if they help themselves as well.
Does the American tax-payer need to feel sorry for them and end up paying for their misfortune?!? I will let you be the judge of that.
WATCH. The only thing that matters at this point is what YOU are doing to move yourself and this country forward. Anything other than that means you are making matters worse and are actually an accessory to keeping everybody else stuck in this muck. Don’t be part of the problem BE THE SOLUTION!
John L Scott Real Estate
4735 NE 4th St.
Renton WA, 98059
Excellent message! Very inspiring and very much needed. Thank you.
I use to work for M(o)-FO a few years ago and always found you AMAZING! You, Bill, and PfUNK transformed me into who I am today. You are right, unfortunately, too many people are allowing the economy, news etc. affect their mind.
I tell people this every single day: You are in charge of creating your own reality. Stop blaming others and start taking responsibility.
Matthew, you’re so right. I don’t watch the news, and I think I live a far happier, more peaceful life. My focus, my question that I ask myself many timess per day is “How can I be even more aware of the unlimited opportunities that surround me in my life right now?”
I’m creating magic and miracles. Following the money, I’m working with attorney negotiated short sales. I don’t get paid a lot for each one, but I’m able to help a lot more homeowners to avoid foreclosure.
Thank you for being such a positive influence for our country RIGHT NOW!
I’m ready for anything..bring it on……I’m smarter….work harder….and more experienced……I will suceed in the market…..even if it disappears! This market is full of opportunities and me and my company are going to take advangage and not only suceed but do better than even in a hot market! Watch us!
Hey Matthew … Thanks for the reminder. I will focus today on my goals and how I can make a difference for those who are around me.
We do have to keep informed about what is going on around us, if only to be knowlegable in talking with our clients and prospects. I do agree that ranting and raving and riding the emotional roller coaster will not help, but only make things worse. It steals our energy, when that energy could be used toward positive measures.
I am an optimist and look forward to improving my business every day.
I completely agree. I turn the news on and watch only the weather or get the weather off thw web. Outside of the we do not watch the news in our house. I make it a practice to not let my son watch the news for those reasons.
I agree that the economy is in the tank, but the crisis is a figment of the media advertising machine. I was a journalism student many years ago and required text was “The News Twisters” the media’s job is to hold a television watcher’s attention until the commercials come on.
But they serve a purpose, there is always truth even in a lie, so they give us hints of what to go research. As to those who are losing a job, having a house foreclosed, this is only an opportunity to be great. When I was 12 years old, my father lost a very lucrative business due to a political act by the town council, they rezoned his block from commercial to residential and put him out of business. He had to let go his 4 employees. For our family it was not the loss of material, we had plenty of that, it was the loss of friends, the people who worked for him were extended family that I took lunch to and ate with during summer days and they remembered my birthdays, etc.
So, I do not hear this element of what occurs for people when a job is lost or a person has to move. With that said for some this is a time of what Thach referred to as an “On your knees experience.” It is an opportunity to do something differently. Dr. Maxine Mimms and I met with a man whose business is having financial problems, A good man who looked wiped out, he was not seeing the opportunity his name is a good one he has some chits out there and with a new team he will be able to rework things. He actually came up with his own solution, he just needed safe ears and a soft shoulder on which to lay his bruised head. He will figure this out and do well, I am sure of it.
I grew up in a time different than many of the young people who are part of this network. I learned a lesson about wants and needs from a wise mother. I used to not wear the same outfit to school more than once a week. I once told my mother I could not wear something because I had already worn it that week. She asked me this, “What was the girl who sits next to you in math class wearing on Monday? I told her I did not know or remember, she asked of course why then did I think she or anyone would remember what I wore. It is a lesson learned and sustained 50 years later.
This wisdom from my son: Remember you can not foreclose on the heart. Now, some among us will suffer greatly, they might have invested in stocks or property or a dream home, and that is fine, but they did not likewise invest in relationships. So they are broke and alone. Relationships of mutual regard and trust will get a person through most things.
This is a perfect time to look within find your gifts, shine them up and go use them to help others and in the act of helping others thus comes your rewards in various opportunities.
There is beyond dark the dawn, and beyond pain there is joy. For those who practice not getting stuck in the dark while the sun is shining will do this in good and not too good times.
I am off to Kenya on March 12 for a month. I will see poverty beyond the conceptual ability of most who are reading this. But likewise I will see hope in the eyes of Africa’s children and respect the careful care given to a meager meal, and understand where the gratefulness is for having had as an ancestor a slave.
That is a big thing for which to be grateful because it is the most heinous thing done in America to a people; to rip apart families for the purpose of individual and corporate greed. The economy that is collapsing is one built on the backs of poor here at home and abroad around the globe an economy built on individualism and greed. It could not stand forever. We have an opportunity right now today, to see the part we play along with a President without fear, a leader with a vision. The amount of yelling and screaming and by detractors represent those who put the administration in office that bankrupted the entire nation. The causers of the problem seldom bring about the best solutions. I like that President Obama has put the information we need right online for all to see, some will take a look and get their answers, others will just watch the media show and feel bad and be without hope or courage.
I will be gone for a month and not be online except for necessary transmissions. This is a cultural reconnection journey I take every year. A reconnection that after many centuries still presents common cultures that sustain.
I am not interested in what is happening with the politicians, I just want my business keep going. I want to get more business and close more transcations and let the president take care of issues for us.
Matthew, Thank your sharing this blog! I have to honestly say that for this exact reason, I do not subscribe to the daily newspaper, or regularly watch the television news. There are some who say it is ignorance, but I am a much more positive and focused person for it. My days are not consumed with dread (usually someone else’s) because of a sensationaized story I heard. So, back to being focused on my life, family, business, and who I can help in this world.
The press is reporting from a dying paradigm, that there’s not enough good to go around. I choose to believe that a new better world can emerge from the ashes, but it’s our choice what we will create.
I need to focus on what I can control:my attitude and the actions I take to build my business and to keep my life in balance (time for family/friends, keeping healthy, learning, and relaxing)
I agree completely. I have had this view of the news for a very long time. Just think about how much program time is spent on the news. If the advertising dollars were not supporting this, there would not be as much news on TV.
As a result I struggle with this issue; it’s so easy to get hooked. What brings me back to sanity is the phrase someone told me a very long time ago “If you cannot affect the outcome of an event or action you can’t worry about the results. You just need to deal with what’s in front of you.”
As a financial advisor with several licenses under the SEC and various states I, and others like me, are very regulated regarding what we can tell the public or put in our advertising about the economy and about investments. Those in the “news media” are not regulated even when they offer advice because their “advise” is considered merely entertainment by the regulators. That is a very important concept to remember. What you hear in the media is under no obligation to be balanced or accurate. It is primarily entertainment for the masses. People are entertained by a roller coaster ride because it is frightening. People are entertained by good movies because they evoke emotions, not because they are accurate or real. Remember that the next time you listen to the “News”.
That’s for sure! I watch very little of the news, but sometimes it’s right in front of you. I do watch stocks though.
The news people are causing panic and making it worse in people’s minds so they see even more of the bad and not any of the good.
The news people don’t think about the fact that they are here in it with us. Some newspaper companies are going down. If they really cared, even for them selves, they would stop causing the panic.
Many people really believe in Obama. Just today he told people, “now is a good time to buy stocks” and the market is going up last I looked. If he could tell the news companies to all start saying how good the ecomony is getting, everyone would notice good things happening.
I am working on focus.
We do “ponder” the news — with a twist. We look for positive signs and indications, which are often “buried” in the bowls of an article, or, we’ll take a hint from an article and search for more info on it to find positive signs.
We’ll take the positive information we find and email it to our client and business partner lists. Our objective: to help turn the mindset away from fear and loathing as is prevalent in the media.
As an example: New York Times this morning had an article on the stock market that contained the thought: “Over the six months that ended last week, the S.& P. 500 lost 43 percent of its value. There were similar declines during the Great Depression, but since then, the worst six-month performance before the current plunge was a 32 percent fall in 1974 when the world was also in recession.”
Note how the media relates to the Great Depression (and have been doing so since at least last November). This economy poses challenges, but NOTHING like the Great Depression. Also, this was the worst drop in the S&P since then but, what does that really mean? Is the next Great Depression at our doorstep? We believe it will be ONLY if one buys into the negativity and fear that this kind of statement engenders.
Our take: it might be tough in the stock market, but it could be a whole lot worse. That same article pointed out that, “. . .fourth quarter gross domestic product to show a decline at an annual rate of 6.2 percent, the worst in more than a quarter century.” Quarter of a century = 25 years; that would make this the worst since — 1984; hmmm, a couple of years into the recovery from one of the worst recessions we’ve had in a long time, but again, NOT the Great Depression by any stroke. 1984 Was actually not a bad year, economically.
Long-term thinking says, as was stated by Chris Carman of ActionCoach, “There have been several recessions [in the last 100 years]; they all had one thing in common — they all ended.”
A more succinct example: the rate of home foreclosures in Wisconsin in 2007 was 0.78%. At the end of 2008, the rate was 1.84%. That’s an increase of 1.06% – in percentage points. The media said (in essence): “Wisconsin foreclosures up 235%.” Both statements are true; which way do you want to interpret the numbers? We choose the former as being more accurate and more positive; the ratio of the two is hysterics and distorts the truth negatively. Better yet, we’d look at this as “Over 98% of home mortgages in Wisconsin are current.” One can do the same with unemployment, the stock market, etc.
One cannot “ignore” the media; it’s everywhere. What one can do is choose how we interpret and recognize the facts. The media will blow everything up to “sell,” we choose to maintain/spread hope and long-term thinking.
It’s like watching TV with 300 channels. There is nothing
on, so why watch it. Why surf the channels over and over.
Thank you for your articl
Excellent point and well articulated Matthew! I wish you woud have written this a few months ago when someone very close to me had a SERIOUS BREAKDOWN, ended up in the hospital and worst bc of all the negativity about the economy in the news constantly which made her situation feel even worst. I agree, we shouldn’t ponder the news, only take what we can from it and see how we can strategically use it towards bettering ourselves and others in the process. This is what I intend to do despite the current circumstances, and that is to focus on helping as many people as I can who seem to need help or think they are a victim while continuing to focus on my dreams and vision of commiting to myself and others becoming finanically rich, free, and secure while sharing love, light and luxury to as many people as possible!!!
Thank you again Matthew for your insight and inspiration!
(soon to be EnlighTea.com)
I’m right there with you Matthew! I avoid the sensationalism, have decided to put my nose to the grindstone this year, accept that it’s going to be a challenge and because of that understanding ahead of time, I feel as though I’m breezing through the turmoil. Not that money isn’t tight, and business is slow but I see it as a chance to re-vamp my business and go back to building a strong foundation so when the time comes for people to let go of the fear, I will be in a position to reap the fruits of my labor. I feel that when people talk about the ‘economy and the ‘recession’, they are just regurgitating media influence without understand that our economy is cyclical and has gone through this before, even worse, and it will happen again. That the price of ‘Progress’.
I read the article and I listened to the video on the same page. Both of them were great. I am sharing the article with my parent’s who love to “camp out” in the misery of the world news! I have rarely in my life watched the news or read the newspaper and I love living in what my family calls, non-reality! Since I believe that I create my reality I can always choose to make my “news” awe inspiring or miserable….it’s up to me.
Thank you for sharing the article with me.
This is great. I stopped watching the news. I think a cable channel with you on it would make a world of a difference. For now, this is awesome. I am glad you continue to send me info. thanks. I haven’t opened an email from you in a while, and I finally realize that I was resisting opening up emails from friends and coaches that have helped me open my mind to new possibilities. I want to thank you for not giving up on me. Thanks for making a difference in my life.
Yes, Matthew–your message comes at the perfect time. I am trying to wean myself from my beloved NPR. Listening to the news makes me anxious, spin my wheels, and NOT do the simple actions that will put me on the way to my next sale.
WE have switched to Pandora in our home office, and I am listening to your CDs in my car. I work at home, and need to get out more to my clients and prospects–that’s all there is to it. I need to get out of myself–so true!
Enjoyed my coaching session with Diane Medici, and am finishing up my Letter of Prophecy.
Best to you,
I think it was Mark Twain that said – “If you don’t read the newspaper then you are uninformed, and if you do read the newspaper then you are misinformed”.
Just about the only thing I can really believe on TV anymore is the local weather.
Thanks for the reminder, Matthew. Good stuff
I am going to focus on what I want and all the good things that already exsit in my life. I am sure by doing that and by totally accepting what is; I will receive what I want soon enough.
I grew up in Iran and when I was very young; an Islamic revolution happened which brought religion law enforcement into government. In less than a year; women were forced to cover their hair, their body and not wear make up or nail polish in public places.There were these revolutionary guards all over the city; driving around and pester women and girls about their outfit and why a few strands of their hair was showing from under their head scarf. As a teenager who wanted to look nice and stylish; this was mortifying. I would be stopped by these guards because I was wearing pink outfit instead of black, brown, gray or some other dead color that wasn’t happy. I would argue with these guards all the time and they would give me a even a harder time. On a couple of occasions, I got arressted for refusing to answer their question. They put me through hell; and I ended up apologizing to them anyways. After a while, at age of 17, I realized that things were not going to change as soon as I wanted to. I realized these guards are not going anywhere and it’s not worth my peace of mind to argue with them. So I covered up myself as I was required all the time. I didn’t wear bright nail polish to attract attention, I made sure that not a strand of my hair would show from under my head scarf and if by any chance they stopped me (and they did for riding a bike in public,etc.etc.) I would swallow my pride and simply say: ” I am sorry, it won’t happen again”. As hard as it was to do that; I constantly kept thinking about getting out of Iran. How wonderful it would be to have my life and freedom back again. I kept visualizing myself in the dorm room of the college that I wanted to attend.I used “The Secret” without knowing the secret!!! I had to stay in Iran during that period and the war for a few years, but I got a US visa during a time that US embassies would not issue a visa to any Iranian citizens, especially young ones who would most likely never leave U.S. I did go to Eastern Washington University and had my own dorm room as I had visualized it. Now I am writing a book about it. Can I apply the same rule to my real estate carreer now? Yes. Will I start today? Absolutely. Thank you Matthew for opening my eyes.
If we have seen “The Secret”….
If we possess a belief in the law of attraction…..
If we have learned from our own experience what we focus on expands…..
What could anyone possibly hope to gain from the News or Oboma Update?
Until the presidential campaign, my husband and I were media dropouts. We would occasionally listen to news on NPR, because the content is designed for thinking people and aren’t about ‘opinions’ and hype…just direct reporting. At that time, we only used our TV for watching videos. We had no idea what programs were on television and were amused at people who were addicted to them and thought we were ‘wierd’.
We elected to have satellite TV installed so we could watch the campaign speeches, press conferences and interviews.The only problem with that was the commercials that mostly show how addicted Americans are to being ill, overweight, having drama in their lives, and taking prescription drugs. Since we could only get CNN, that was our news source, unless CSPAN carried the speech, etc.
It became very clear that their style of reporting was not designed for critical thinkers, as most of the sound bites were pre-chewed. We mused that their ratings must be determined by how much tension and anxiety the talking heads can produce in their audience. We noticed our own frustration levels increasing at the incendiary and prejudiced reporting. Since the election we rarely watch TV, save an occasional presidential speech. With my son living with us for a couple of months, it is on sometimes for programs he enjoys.
Thanks Matthew for the timely message. I learned the GIGO (garbage in, garbage out) principle decades ago and have developed filters to keep my mind as free from media effluent as possible.
Very well written and expresses exactly what I feel. The news has no obligation to the truth and has fallen into sensationalism T.V. It’s bubble gum for the brain (drunk monkey). Thanks for the re-focus.
We can either be manipulated, or make our own decisions about the world…it all depends upon us! I believe the majority of people choose the path of least resistance…unfortunately for them! Thankfully, there are people like you and other mentors who help others open up to the possibilities of life!
We disconnected our TV from cable over 5 years ago and use it only to view rented movies 2-3 times per month. What a relief! One of the things I do NOT miss the most, is the mass-media-produced “news…” Research has proven that people run a TV virtually 24/7 have a higher level of the “fight or flight” hormones released within their bodies, thereby making them unhealthy and suppressing their immune system, and making them fearful and unable to motivate themselves to be the best they can be…as we all know, this helps strengthen DRUNK MONKEYS!!
What I now do as a substitute, is listen directly to speeches and presentations online, thereby avoiding much of the editing and commercialization, while still gathering current events information. I can still listen/read to specific pundits if I so decide, but it is my choice and it is not permeating the whole household! (I think this makes a big difference!) In addition, I can access “worldwide” news sources, not just US mass-produced shows…
This world is what we make of it, purely and simply. My life has been turned upside down these past 3 months and I am so grateful! With the help of a new business opportunity and a wonderful new friend and mentor, I know that success is mine… I have been concentrating on developing my own health and well-being so I can now develop my own business — on to helping others attain optimal health and well-being and my own financial freedom! YAY!!! (Die DRUNK MONKEY, die!)
Make 2009 beautiful…for yourself and all those around you!!
I love to learn from you. Since the 1st year in my real estate career.
Your book. The articles you wrote. And now you have U-Tube even better.
I will keep learning from you. I’m one of your big fan. Your messages are
the messages that I like to hear or know more.
Thanks a millions,
You’re doing damage to your cause by failing to explain what you mean – this poorly-written article did nothing except berate people for reading the news, or for being people in the first place.
1. “All opinions are vanities and have no intrinsic value and are actually the result of ignorance.” So: every time someone has a thought or an opinion about something, it’s actually ignorance? Then this entire blog post is ignorant from the first to the last word.
2. “To spend time pondering the news and how it might possibly negatively effect you is pathetic and the mindset of the victim.” What about someone who spends time pondering the news and how it might negatively effect EVERYONE, who then writes a long, condescending blog post about how everyone should forsake it? Stick to your own side of the street.
3. Blogging has made some things worse, and other things more accessible – but a blog is just a format, not an action verb. Whether it’s a vetted journalist or a news-gathering citizen, blogs are a way to get information out, just like anything else. If people are allowing themselves to get side-tracked by the news or a blog, then they’re also being sidetracked by Facebook, Twitter, Iphones, Ipods, Myspace, Friendfeed, eating, sleeping, work, a sunny day, financial problems, acne, ANYTHING.
4. “If you are going to feel good and make the best of the current economy, then you are going to have to give up your addiction to the news and your opinion about the news.” So if I want to feel *good* and make the best of the current economy, then I’m going to have to give up what you call ‘my addiction’ to the news (twice daily)? This is such a pile of bullshit. So all of these people feel bad because of the news, and once the news is turned OFF, they’ll feel good again? I will agree, burying your head in the sand is the best way to avoid the problems our nation is facing – or even the problems you’re facing personally – but rarely are the problems gone when you resurface.
5. “To spend time espousing your opinion over tax cuts, presidential spending and banks going under after the fact is completely ridiculous and only done by people committed to being stuck and spreading the illusion that they are not in control of their life. Illusion not truth.” RUDE. Some people are affected by tax cuts, and need to figure out how to make ends meet; some people had money go under because of those banks, or lost their jobs because of ill-advised presidential spending. They don’t need to *wallow* in what happened, but facing those challenges head-on and figuring out solutions does not make those people ‘ridiculous’ or ‘committed to being stuck.’ I can’t believe how condescending this article is, and yet here you have a bunch of comments from people who obviously didn’t READ the damn thing.
I get what you were trying to say. I understand that the economy and today’s problems can be all-consuming, and it’s not healthy to focus on it. I even agree that ‘journalism’ today is skewered, at best, and that people get too caught up in things they can’t control. It happens with the news, family, work, self; there are so many things we can’t control, so why focus on them daily? I get that. But I feel like what you are thinking, writing, and preaching are three very different things. And I don’t think you’re being particularly approachable or nice about it, even though your commenters seem to enjoy jargon-heavy language that swims in a very tight circle and explains next to nothing.
Thanks for that quote from Dr. Hawkins and thanks for being such a great friend and mentor. I was sitting here not knowing quite what so say about the blog, when tears started rolling down my face, thinking about the vast difference you have made in my life.
And then I realized I’d written an entire essay about how much I didn’t like this, so I sort of felt bad. You’re welcome to rip me a new one on my blog – and I do enjoy some of the other articles I’ve read by you. Just so you know.
Really test your focus. Don’t go on a news diet, but focus on the gems of human interest and evolution that are embedded in the reactive, violent, fearful stream of drunk monkey vomit. There’s great news and information out there when it comes to print and online, where we can exercise discernment. When it comes to the electronic media, you can always change the channel or tune in music. I prefer the eloquence of music to the mental whiplash of broadcasters’ mechanical recitation of crime and violence: they’re polluting my brain, so I tune in Bach, Coltrane or the Boss. Soon, I believe, news organizations are going to realize that the ugly triavialities they often dwell upon aren’t news, don’t pertain to human destiny, and are a menace to well-being. I already picture a new breed of news heavily slanted in favor of evolution, innovation and human growth. Section One: the funny pages.
We move towards whatever we focus on! All the bad news has too many people doing all the wrong things. People are scared – some have been truly hurt by the economic downturn -and they need hope and positive action to move out of that realm. Look at the stories of the true survivors – people who have overcome incredible odds in their lives. Replay movies like Will Smith’s “Pursuit of Happyness” and hang on for the ride will end! Thanks, Matt, for all your encouraging messages!
Having lived thru many long down cycles, I’m aware that what goes down, does, in fact, come up. It takes time and patience.
Now for some people watching or reading the news may cause them into the victim mentality. And for those folks, as Dr. Weil suggests, a news holiday can be a good thing. For
others who are emotionally “between the lines” we can choose whether to watch or not watch/read the news.
I think it’s a matter of knowing who you are, where you want to go and how you want to get there. And none of this “knowing” comes easy…but, it is a part of life and maturity and controlling our little drunk monkeys.
I am focused on making sure that folks give our new president his due by at least respecting him enough to refer to him as President Barack Obama or President Obama.
The other thing that my focus is on is being totally grateful for my parents and I am able to help take care of them, when they may need me.
One more thing that my focus is on is creating the right environment in my thought process to take advantage of the next BIG sales opportunity I have, which will OFF THE CHARTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Thanks for your steadfastness and inspiration. The Drunk Monkey is never out of focus. I hope I never forget how drunk he really is!
Is your drunken monkey the mean kind that has to beat everybody up, or the lurching smiling kind that tries to hug everyone and slurs, “I love you guys” then pukes and passes out, only to wake up in a strange place with a sense of gnawing anxiety, a throbbing head, and that pieced-together nightmare of how-did-I-get-here-oh-god-who-is-this-creature-beside-me.
Inquiring monkey minds want to know.
Oh yeah, this post reiterates what cannot sufficiently be iterated in these times of “woe is us,” and that is, c’mon people, there are classier ways of getting your fear on, might I suggest scaring the crap out of yourself by getting out of your comfort zone and taking on something daring like creating community and getting to know your neighbors and looking around for something to improve. Go teach a kid to read or organize a community clean up of garbage.
Thanks Mark for all you do, I’m a fan of your work.
P.S. I hallucinated “Goal Setting” as “Goat Selling.”
Oops sorry I meant to say Thanks Matt and actually get your name right. Apologies.
Superbly said! It is very difficult right now to be amongst many people–I find myself continually saying when hearing the negative words, this isn’t helping the good of any of us. Let’s change the way we are talking to serve us all better. I truly think that some people are addicted to bad news and negative language-it becomes their way of being. I have yet to figure out what the payoffs are. Anyway, thanks for the great blog, Matthew!!
Yes, of course, we make our own reality. Always have…the problem is that
some people actually believe that their reality IS REALITY.
I guess that I’m old enough to not get overwhelmed by all this “crap.” Interesting…but,
how does it really affect me?
I’m still working with clients; planning a garden; going to places…
I actually subscribe to your blog on a RSS…don’t always have time to read it…but it’s
We’re off to Washington DC…my husband is giving a lecture on 3/7 on Lincoln, Slavery and the Civil War…should be interesting. I can’t wait to see the museums on the mall.
Everything is about intent… what exactly is the intent of the news? To inform? To protect? Really it’s an addictive drug that numbs people from the creativeness that becomes their dreams. The plug-in Drug! Did you ever take a look at the commercials that they show around the news? It’s interesting that a lot of the products are targeted towards making you feel better either directly or indirectly with respect to the “everything is going down the crapper” theme plying out in the news… Coincidence? I think not! I also think that people can get a false sense of security from watching the news… they think that if they stay on top of everything, it will somehow help them prevent bad things from happening to them. Instead, they are letting that crap get into their consciousness, and I think are more prone to it becoming their reality. Just my $.02! Great article Matt.
Great article, Matt. I am a Real Estate Broker and I see so many people affected by the bad karma that the news journalists want to pump out for ratings. We live in the greatest Country in this world, and there are so many opportunities out there for people, if they will only open theirs eyes and be thankful for the good things that they have. It’s all in your focus. The Law of Attraction says that whatever you focus on you will get, you attract it. If you focus on the good, good will come your way.
This is why we don’t watch the news at my house.
Great message. This reminds me to look through the front windshield while driving versus trying to drive by looking through the rearview mirror.
Unfortunately our economy is the result of a herd mentality and the majority of the herd is very ignorant of the process of group perception that led to the great depression. It was people panicking and losing faith in the system that led to the run on the banks and the populous opinion that it was all over. We are about to witness a similar response as the population of the USA realizes that the stimulus packages and bailouts are not working and everything they have worked for their entire life is disintegrating before them.
We are in for rough times because of the consequences, unintended, by well meaning politicians that were attempting to open up home ownership and the American dream for American citizens. Unfortunately, many of these citizens were not financially capable of affording the homes they were enticed to purchase. Predatory and greedy mortgage bankers taking advantage of the Government change in regulations exacerbated the process by presenting candidates for mortgages that would fall below normal lending guidelines.
I think that we are not getting it that the Economy has been severely damaged and like your body responds to mistreatment, is about to respond with negative feedback that will be setting us back for years. Our Economy is in a tailspin created by the collapse of the sub-prime mortgage market and this will have ramifications that will reverberate throughout our economy that our grandchildren will be talking about decades from now.
Check out the economic factors on my web site and think about ways to protect yourself because we are at the mercy of the herd instinct and this terrible economic storm is unfortunately our reality until we turn it around. I explain it that way because we are all responsible for the economic outcome. I have faith in the American people and our system and we will turn it around by working together.
Let’s get on with it without recrimination…
Warm regards from,
I do not listen to the news and have consciously “unplugged” from the mass media and collective unconscious.
How have I done this? I have decided to do so, and placed my focus on that which gives me pleasure. What gives me tremendous pleasure is to uplift and inspire others, and be inspired by someone like you, Matthew. I meditate every day, which means for me, I am exercising my awareness, whether its in the midst of a session, when I brush my teeth, or when I take a special time out, to just “be”.
I am thriving! My business has grown during the last two month substantially, in spite of what’s going on around me in the world. You have assisted me in this powerfully!
I am deeply grateful for all your teachings and your commitment to be of service to others.
I affirm a prosperous powerful day for you.
Thank you for touching our lives with a message we know to be true. Collective conscienceness can make change…we must all believe in the possibilities together.
Matthew, thank you for being a beacon of light. Blessings. Deborah.
Years ago, a mentor told me that the subconscious mind is like a computer. “Garbage in, garbage out” is what she used to say. She also used to say, “There are no victims, only willing participants”. This sounds harsh, but at the time she was trying to impress upon me that by taking responsibility for the condition of my mind, the rest will follow.
At the time, this teaching was completely contrary to my way of thinking. After all, who wants to admit that they are not in complete control of their mind? But the fact is: We don’t know what is in our subconscious mind and we never know what is going to rise to the surface.
Certainly, I cannot monitor all my thoughts. This would be exhausting. Don’t take my word for it, try it and see – but I can take responsibility for my thinking. This means that, though I may not have full control of my thoughts, I do have control over they way I view them and react to them. And most of all I do have control of information downloaded in my computer-like – subconscious mind.
In the years that followed, I lost touch with my first mentor. I moved, started a business and embarked on big life changes. With each new change and success, I felt more and more responsible, more and more in control and more and more fearful.
Last year, in the height of business and life chaos, I had a life-changing realization. I could best describe that even with all this training years ago, “a funny thing happened to me on my way to meet Matthew Ferry”; I forgot and lost touch with the power of the mind. Characteristically, I was depressed, overwhelmed and feeling defeated. I was plagued with ideas of shutting my company doors and giving up on it all.
My subconscious monkey mind wants me to feel this way. Though I knew better – after all, I had been taught, life was moving so quickly bad things seemed to be happening every day. This was all I could think of. My mind raced around and around in “problem solving mode” without even realizing I was participating in my misery.
With the very first “Know what your mind is” Matthew statement I heard, I was thunderstruck with the realization that my forgetting about the power of the mind is more evidence of how it all really works.
As soon as I realized how much and how easily I had forgotten, I focused on success tools and motivation. This included shutting of the news. As far as I’m concerned the news is like the bar that the monkey bellies up to for fuel. And the question I found myself asking is: “Why would I want to add to my already fear-based way of thinking?”
To me it’s like a fork in the road, a decision that boils down to negativity or positively. 6:00 news or coaching and tools for peace and success? Broken down to its simplest form of decision, it’s not hard to choose. With the swirling negativity seeming to be all over, I need every defense I can get. For instance, I am certain that with reminders such as this blog, I’m less likely to forget that my nature, gone unattended is negative and self-defeating.
In conclusion, allow me to report that in an industry so closely tied to the housing market, where everyone is frozen in fear, my company continues to clip along famously. I let go of trying to focus on “how do we project with such uncertainty?” and stepped back in with reacquainting with my subconscious mind. Combating my fear with “Take care of the mind, the rest will follow.” Last years numbers are in, team motivation is up, sales are up, and referrals are up. We finished 4th in the nation in my network of affiliates. This says a lot seeing how three years ago; these same affiliates didn’t even know who I was.
Matthew, my friend, I’m right there with you! – Keep beating your drum. You are heard and deeply appreciated.
Forgive me for my soapbox, but you hit a nerve.
I am eternally grateful to you for picking up where my long-gone, beloved, first mentor left off, by reminding me to take responsibility for the condition of my mind –
Thank you Matthew for your affirmation in your story! As a career coach and recruiter I recently landed from a coast to coast journey as the “silent observer.” In this, I was able to listen to and witness first hand how the state of the economy has effected many. Along the way, I would hear couples sharing their stories with others of what they left behind and what they were doing to recreate their lives. One of the most interesting observations I experienced in this journey, was that the more optimistic people were coupled with optimistic people…sharing and participating together in a plan with a common intention. The pessimistic people were with pessimistic people…and had no plan rather, they saw things as if the sky was falling and the world was coming to an end.
From this I recommend implementing discernment with all that you do and all that you engage with….whether its your relationships with others or the media. You are your own sanctuary…therefore make sure you honor you as such.
The are only two directions positive or negative…there is no longer a middle road. It is up to you to choose what you believe and experience.
To your spirit and success,
We can’t control what happens but we do have control of how we respond. Our economy may be in recession but we have the power of choice. I choose not to participate!
We are the solution, gregg
I think he got close to the mark talking about news organizations being nothing more than greedy corporate machines pandering only to the sponsors with big pockets. The news is not really about the news but about how the one paying their bills feels what ought to be on television that evening and how that particular story ought to be portrayed. Time after time the so-called “competition” (other news stations) will present the same story in exactly the same fashion and in the process, use identical words even. It’s as if newies read from the same script.
While I will never espouse the idea it’s safe to place my head in the sand and ignore what’s going on, I also will agree to say I believe where we focus makes all the difference. The news is good to be aware of, but not to focus on. The questions he presented, what do I want, where do I want to go, what can I do, etc … these are the important questions. The rest tends to be distractions if we let it.
One more question…. How did they train the chimp to hold a pistol like that?
Those who study the mind understand advertisings requirement to do everything to capture, hold and entice the return of the consumers attention. CIA studies used to manipulate the Public in the 1960’s laid the ground work and created a how-to manual for the media that is convoluted and wrong. Correct way thinking teaches to be aware and recognize whatever is fantasy, inaccurate, tempting, etc the moment rubbish is presented. One must learn to recognize when neurons start firing and forming negative thought thereby reducing energy flow throughout the bodys meridian energy paths which weaken the organs and create illness. Did you know specific negative thought affects specific organs? The only cure is to neutralize the negative emotion with the opposite positive emotion… Perhaps Matt will teach this very important information. Those who learned NLP, Body language, Dr. John Diamonds Thymus gland control, negative emotions and positive emotions, etc. etc. certainly understand. Unfortunately not many people have a clue what I am talking about. Matt are you game?
Brooke sent me over to see what you are up to. 🙂
We are thinking the same way. I have not had TV at my house most of my life. I do read online & in publications a lot, though, because I am a very curious person about the world.
I find good news, all the time. My biz partner says I read the news with different eyes.
I have been posting some of my finds on the CNP website, to be a counter voice to what people are bombarded with daily by the media. (Doing penance from my days in TV?)
There are many amazing stories of business success, progress, breakthroughs, achievements, solutions, good partnerships, cool inventions, every single day.
One just needs eyes to see.
I agree with the many who note that headlines are written for gut wrenching impact.
That is the nature of the biz. Just know it. Don’t follow the cheesiest, most simplistic news sources, and you will do better. TV news is geared to a 4th-6th grade level. Hello!!!
It isn’t necessary to limit one’s view to one’s navel, if you know HOW to look around.
My new habit was inspired by your comments during a recent online seminar. Due to some remarks you made, when I do my daily 10/10’s, I now write:
“My life is AMAZING because…” That really gets me going!
Stronger even than “I am thankful because.” More lively and energetic!
I still write the second column, “I am attracting now..” But, want to jazz that up, too.
Thanks for validating my thoughts on the “total uselessness” of listening to negativity , gossip , and watching “Reality T.V.” As I put my focus on Nature, Spirit, and what is Good in life, I have much more appreciation and gratitude for what I do have, and no time to spare on “what others are doing ” or the appearance of chaos, To deal with my own “self” is a full time job, and i have no need to be critical or judgemental of others, as my own “eternal ” life is of “Prime Importance” !! Know thyself, Heal thyself and Be Thyself…