FEATURE - John Milton Fogg
Well, go ahead. Believe it-- if you must-- or if you really want to. But I have a question for you: What role does belief really play in what you and your people accomplish?
I've been doing a lot of thinking about this business of belief-- the word; real, imagined, and intended.
Like you, I've heard -- and believed-- the wisdom of Napoleon Hill (and famous others): "What ever [you] can conceive and believe, [you] can achieve." Great stuff! All you have to do is believe, and it will come to pass-- or fail, if you don't believe.
You know what I think?
It's a crock. Belief is BS.
I know, I know; belief is required. If you don't believe in your product or believe in your opportunity or believe in the company or this industry, you're sunk, swamped, your success subverted. Belief is all important. Without it, you are doomed. With it, you are set-up for success.
BUT what if belief-- as you/I/we have been taught to understand and define it, is not required? What if belief simply doesn't matter? What then?
Play with me:
How do you define belief?
I've asked this question to hundreds of people. Here's what most of them say:
Belief means trust, as in "I trust this will come to pass. I believe this will be the outcome. I believe this will happen. I expect this will occur." (Whatever this means.) "I believe that's what's going to happen. I know...."
I believe the Redskins will win the Superbowl. (Hardly.)
I believe I will be a "Heavy Hitter" in Network Marketing. (Possible.)
I believe the sun will come up tomorrow. (Very likely.)
Okay, so do this with me-- better yet, do this with someone else: Ask the other person-- or have them ask you-- to state a fact. Let's say, for example, "The Earth is round."
Now ask, "How do you know that?"
They might answer, "Well, I saw that NASA picture."
Cool. You ask again, "How do you know that?"
Already, we're getting into trouble.
"Well... my eyes register the upside down image on the. . . ."
It should take you about one minute of asking "How do you know that?" before you come down to this end-of-the-line position: "I don't know."
Truth is you don't know, and you never will.
So is belief-- the "I know" kind-- really faith?
For some, maybe. I think I have a better definition-- one which will liberate you and empower you.
When you break the word BELIEF down into its parts, you get: BE-- as in to be, or exist. And LIEF-- which comes from: leubh. Important derivatives are: lifelong, furlough, belief, believe, love, libido. To care, desire; love. I. Suffixed form *leubh-o-. LIEF; LEMAN, LIVELONG, from Old English . . . Quack, quack, quack.
Right! Stay with the love part of the definition.
What if: Belief is to be love a thing, something, anything.
I be love my product.
I be love my company.
I be love my vision and goals.
I be love whatever.
You don't have to know for a fact-- because you can't anyway-- that this or that is what's going to happen. You just have to love the possibility of it happening. Really, what if to believe simply meant you were in love with the idea?
Ohhhhh. That's very sexy.
I believe in you-- i.e., I'm in love with the idea of you.
I believe in my product-- I'm in love with my product and the results it can produce.
I believe in my vision, my goals, my affirmations-- I just love them!
To believe is not to know for a fact. To believe is just to love the possibility.
If you know for a fact, there's no room for doubt. If you believe, you can have your doubts, even your fears, and love the possibility anyway.
When I shared this with a group in Australia recently, a woman came up to me at the break with tears in her eyes. She told me she'd never been able to write down her goals in life, because every time she did she was filled with so much doubt about their coming true she couldn't bring herself to read them. She felt, she said, so far out of integrity . . . like she was a liar.
The idea that she didn't have to believe in that old know-for-sure way gave her a new-found freedom. I dare say she be loved the idea.
We know from recent research in cognition that people don't have to believe something to train the mind in positive expectancy. Saying an affirmation over and over again-- even one we don't really think is true-- releases all those beneficial chemicals and electrical impulses associated with emotional states such as joy and happiness. Just plastering a smile on your face dispels negative and unhappy thoughts. You don't have to believe you're happy; just smile and the mind is flooded with happy chemicals, and the bad feelings go away.
I do think ol' Mr. Think and Grow Rich was right on with his What-you-can-believe-you-can-achieve thing. I just think a little shift in the definition of the word believe-- from know to love-- makes it more accessible and powerful.
I don't know that we can really have one peaceful world. And I sure can love the concept.
I don't know that we'll ever get rid of hunger. And I love that idea.
I don't know that we'll ever make Network Marketing a positive household word. And I sure do love the possibility.
It doesn't matter that I have my doubts about these or any other things. It's not important that I can see all the reasons why they wouldn't come true. All I have to do is to love them and keep on loving them. All I have to do is to write them in my journal and include them in my vision and read them every morning and evening and love the possibility. As I do this day after night, I know I'll begin to be love them naturally, without thinking.
I will believe.
What the mind of John believes, he will achieve.
And I believe that's true for you, too.
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Reprinted with permission from Upline, Fogg Feature - November/December 1998, 888-UPLINE-1, http://www.upline.com