Brainblocks: Overcoming the 7 Hidden Barriers to Success

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9780735205451: Brainblocks: Overcoming the 7 Hidden Barriers to Success

Brainblocks are the mental obstacles that keep people from achieving success, defined as setting, pursuing, and achieving a goal.
              
Managing the brain is the solution to preventing mental blocks from interfering with achieving your goals. And neuropsychologist Dr. Theo Tsaousides gives you the tools to improve:
 
Awareness:

   ·  the seven brainblocks to success (self-doubt, procrastination, impatience, multitasking, rigidity, perfectionism, negativity)
   ·  the characteristic feelings, thoughts, and actions associated with each brainblock
   ·  the brain functions involved in goal-oriented action
   ·  brain glitches and how they create setbacks
   ·  the cost of not removing brainblocks
   ·  the best strategies to remove the blocks
Engagement:

   ·  actively search for brainblocks in your actions, thoughts, and feelings
   ·  recognize and label each brainblock as soon as it is identified
   ·  practice each strategy consistently until it becomes second nature
   ·  track your progress toward a goal
Through these strategies you will learn to overcome these cognitive obstacles and harness the power of the brain to achieve success in any endeavor.

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About the Author:

Theo Tsaousides is a neuropsychologist, clinical researcher, and more recently entrepreneur. He has published scientific articles in prestigious academic journals and has co-authored textbook chapters specializing in assessment and treatment after brain injury. In addition, Dr. Theo has delivered numerous workshops and presentations for professional audiences nationally and internationally. In 2010, he received a $750,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Education to create and run a postdoctoral training program in neuropsychology and rehabilitation research at Mount Sinai. He is the founder of the LEAP Center, whose mission is to promote personal growth, successful performance, and emotional wellness.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

INTRODUCTION

Do you ever wonder why some people accomplish so much in their lives and others keep falling short? What makes some people give up on their goals while others continue to persist? Why some people take forever to start working on their life goals and others need no second reminder?

This book is about you and your goals. It is about the seven main reasons why you haven’t achieved your goals yet. It is about your brainblocks. Your habits of thinking, feeling, and acting that keep you stuck in place, get you off track, and make you move around in circles. You know what they are. You experience them daily. But what you may not know is what causes them. Only by knowing the reasons they exist will you be able to remove them. This book is a journey of discovering the secrets of success hiding inside your brain.

The New Year’s Resolution Conundrum

How often do you come up with brilliant ideas about how to improve your life, how to boost your productivity, how to make more money, how to get a big promotion, how to be more fit and healthy, how to find love, how to help people fulfill their dreams, or simply how to just enjoy life more?

How often do you make promises that you will kick your bad habits and replace them with new ones that will put you on the express lane to success?

How often do you feel ready to make that important decision that will change your life forever?

If you are like most people, you do all that at least once a year! Along with counting down to zero and giving passionate kisses, making new resolutions is the most popular New Year’s tradition. New beginnings, new promises, renewed passion, and high hopes for a better body, a better salary, or a better love life!

But . . . how often do you say: Yes! I did it! I hit the jackpot!

Again, if you are like most people, not often enough. As soon as the New Year’s festivities are over, the resolutions become faint memories. The truth is that most of us fail to achieve the goals we set on New Year’s. We forget, we get stalled, or we give up. Year after year we state the same goals, we make the same promises, and we repeat the same excuses, but we see no results.

Does failing to achieve our goals apply only to our New Year’s resolutions? Or do all our goals have the same fate? Have we been sentenced to living a life without success?

A World Without Success Stories

Regardless of how you define it, success is something all people want. Success comes in many varieties. It can be small or big, daily or lifelong, material or spiritual, humble or grandiose, and noble or lowly. Regardless of its size, scope, or intention, success invariably starts with setting a goal and ends with achieving a goal. But the most important part of success is what lies between setting and achieving your goal. And that is pursuing a goal. That’s what success is: deciding what you want (setting), working to make it happen (pursuing), and checking it off your list (achieving).

The simplest definition of success:

Setting, pursuing, and achieving your goal

There is a plethora of resources and countless experts out there all intended to inspire and teach people how to set and achieve goals. There is something for everyone in the self-help buffet. Books, videos, podcasts, blogs, webinars, live events, trainings, and coaching on anything imaginable, from how to be rich or healthy to how to be cool or sexy. The self-help industry is like the Costco of good advice.

Despite the abundance of resources, the truth is that most people talk about things they want in life, but relatively few actually set goals, and even fewer achieve them. The proportion of people who successfully achieve their goals is similar across different settings: no more than 10 percent! For example, studies have shown that among all people who set New Year’s resolutions, only 8 percent actually achieve them.1 Two months after the beginning of the year, most of us barely remember what our resolution was!

The same 10 percent success rate is evident in the self-help industry. While this industry generates billions of dollars annually from products and services, statistics show a dismal 10 percent success rate in terms of people achieving their goals.

Imagine the impact on society if only 10 percent of physicians, teachers, urban planners, business owners, or judges were able to achieve their goals. What would this low level of success rate mean for the health, education, livelihood, sustenance, and legal rights of the millions of people they serve?

What if the goals you set for yourself had the same fate? What would your life be like if you could only achieve 10 percent of what you hoped for? What if nine out of ten things you wished to accomplish never happened? My guess is that a 90 percent failure rate of achieving personal, professional, financial, academic, humanitarian, or any other type of goal would very quickly make this world a very depressive, pessimistic, and bitter place to live in.

The Tough Part of Success

There are armies of experts on multiple topics offering hundreds of methods for setting and achieving goals, with promises that range from getting things done to making dreams come true.

I am one of those experts. My job is to help people set and achieve goals. For that reason, I have a big investment in their success. I teach them a broad range of skills and strategies they can use to achieve their goals. I make sure the techniques I choose are tested and proven. What I do is based on science, backed by research, and used in many contexts, including businesses, organizations, medical settings, and schools. I even use these techniques myself to achieve my own goals.

But the truth is that techniques alone don’t work. Regardless of how effective we, the experts, claim them to be and despite the number of testimonials that we can provide to support the power of our methods, the reality is that a large number of people will continue to fail.

And they fail because the most important factor in any success equation is not the method but the person who uses it. The key to success is what you do with what you know. And what you do is entirely controlled by you, not by the experts.

I have worked with hundreds of people with a wide range of goals. Some wanted to be more successful at work. Others wanted to be better at making decisions or wanted to be more loved. And some just wanted to be happier. What has always been true is that some of them are able to accomplish their goals fast and others keep struggling. After many years of observing and learning, I made an important discovery. I realized what is different about the 10 percent of achievers. It isn’t the methods. It isn’t their genes, personalities, education, gender, or upbringing. It is a simple and observable characteristic: They pursue. They work toward what they want. Achievers take action.

Setting a goal is fun and inspiring. It raises your motivation, it gets your spirits high, and it gives you something to look forward to. Promising yourself that you will eat more nutritious foods or that you will look for a more rewarding job or that you will travel more is very stimulating. Achieving a goal is rewarding and exciting. Seeing the results of your labor gives you a sense of satisfaction and fulfillment. But while the experts will show you how to set goals and will keep you pumped by reminding you what it feels like to achieve your goal, no one will tell you much about the most effortful and mundane part of success: pursuing the goal.

Pursuing a goal refers to taking all the steps you need to take to turn your vision into reality. It refers to the little and big tasks you have to do on a daily basis in order to accomplish your goal. It is the way in which you turn an idea into a plan and a plan into action. It is tracking your progress and adjusting your course. Pursuing is taking action. And that’s the part that the 90 percent of nonachievers flunk.

Action is the essential ingredient of success

Action is the essential ingredient of success. Whether your goal is to lose weight, write a book, build your dream home, or find love, the only way to get there is by doing something. Any goal you set requires action. And action starts and stops in the brain.

How the Biggest Asset Can Become the Biggest Setback

Our brains are wired for success. They are designed to set, pursue, and achieve goals. They all come equipped with a set of mechanisms that enable them to do that. These mechanisms are called cognitive functions, and they are involved in receiving, storing, transforming, and using information from our internal and our external environment. For example, attention is the cognitive function that focuses us on what information is relevant to our goals at any given moment. Should I be listening to the conversation between those two lovebirds sitting at the table next to me or should I stay focused on finishing this paragraph?

Achieving success involves several cognitive functions. Our ability to set intentions, to envision the outcomes, to plan and strategize, to assess risk, to initiate our efforts, to keep track of our progress, to overcome obstacles, and to eventually celebrate our successes are all a result of our cognitive functions. And while all brains come equipped with these functions, not everyone knows how they work or how to use them more efficiently. For example, you are all aware that you can remember things that you have learned in the past, and that the brain function responsible for storing that information is called memory. You also know that sometimes your memory fails and you end up forgetting things. Think about the last time you went grocery shopping. Do you remember which grocery store you went to? Or how many items you bought? What you were wearing? The name of the person at the register? How much you paid? What song was playing as you were checking out? How many of these questions can you answer with 100 percent certainty?

Here is a challenge for you. Next time you go to the grocery store, try to remember the name of the grocery store, the number of items you buy, what clothes you have on, the name of the person at the register, the exact amount of money you need to pay, and what song is playing as you check out. How many of these questions do you think you will be able to answer with 100 percent certainty this time? Clearly, you will remember more than before. What does that mean? That your memory function improved between visits to the grocery store? Doubtful. What it means is that you used your memory function—your brain’s ability to store information—differently the second time. You were actively concentrating, you used memorization techniques, and what was unimportant and forgettable became important and memorable. As a result you were much more successful in retaining the information and answering the questions.

The same is true for all of the brain’s cognitive functions. The more efficiently we use them, the better we are at accomplishing our goals. The less efficiently we use them, the lower our odds of success. Using your memory efficiently means learning and memorizing information in a way that helps you retain what you need to remember in the future, relevant to your goals. If your goal is to answer the grocery store questions listed earlier, you need to pay attention and memorize the answers. You could write them down, record them on your phone, or repeat them in your head until you know them by heart. If your goal is to get a good raise this year, you need to memorize the three salary negotiation techniques you learned at the recent seminar you attended called “How to Make Killer Negotiations” and remember to use them when you have that uncomfortable talk about the raise with your boss.

Brainblocks: How Our Brains Undermine Our Success

Our cognitive functions are subject to glitches. These glitches block our ability to focus, to think creatively, and to make decisions, and as a result, they affect our actions and how we pursue our goals. They create confusion and congestion, and as a result, we stop doing and we start drifting, stalling, or retracting. Our actions become purposeless and ineffective and no longer serve our goals.

Such glitches happen a lot. So often, in fact, that after a while, they not only distort our actions but affect the types of goals we set, the kinds of outcomes we expect, and even the way we think about ourselves and others. We begin attributing successes to good fortune, good genes, or good habits and failures to bad luck, irreversible personality flaws, or poor habits.

What we need to recognize is that how we think and what we do starts and ends in the brain. Personality traits that we traditionally associate with stagnation, inefficiency, failure, and despondency are nothing more than brainblocks: the products of glitches and the consequences of inefficient use of our brains. Brainblocks are the habits of feeling, thinking, and doing created by our brains that block our pursuit of success. And only our brains, or how we use them, can undo them.

Brainblocks are the enemy of action. They turn motivation to inertia, productivity to busywork, and dreamers to languishers. They cause an array of problems, ranging from diminished productivity and strained relationships to serious clinical problems, like depression and anxiety. Slowly and systematically, they end up killing our dreams.

What are the seven brainblocks and how do they undermine your success? In the next few chapters you will learn exactly what they are, how they affect you, what causes them, and how to remove them. You will learn what causes the self-doubt that blocks you from taking action and the procrastination that delays you indefinitely from getting things done. You will learn why impatience makes you rush into action prematurely and how multitasking, despite all the good press it gets, can shatter your focus into a thousand little pieces. You will learn how rigidity renders you blind to opportunities and why perfectionism keeps you far from perfection. You will learn that negativity is the best way to put an end to your dreams. And most important, you will learn what to do to remove these brainblocks and clear your path to success.

Brain Management: Removing the Brainblocks

We have the equipment, we have the abilities; now let’s put them to use and smash our brainblocks. Our brains are powerful, and knowing how to manage them better will resolve a wide range of problems.

Brain management is the ability to use our cognitive functions in the best possible way and prevent the brain glitches from becoming brainblocks. Brain management is essential for success because it aligns our actions with our goals.

Brain management is made up of two parts: awareness and engagement. Awareness means knowing what the brainblocks are, what causes them, how they interfere with goal pursuit, and how to defeat them. Engagement means doing what you n...

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Descripción Prentice Hall Press, United States, 2015. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Brainblocksare the mental obstacles that keep people from achieving success, defined as setting, pursuing, and achieving a goal. Managing the brain is the solution to preventing mental blocks from interfering with achieving your goals. Andneuropsychologist Dr. Theo Tsaousides gives you the tools to improve: Awareness: the seven brainblocks to success (self-doubt, procrastination, impatience, multitasking, rigidity, perfectionism, negativity) the characteristic feelings, thoughts, and actions associated with each brainblock the brain functions involved in goal-oriented action brain glitches and how they create setbacks the cost of not removing brainblocks the best strategies to remove the blocks Engagement: actively search for brainblocks in your actions, thoughts, and feelings recognize and label each brainblock as soon as it is identified practice each strategy consistently until it becomes second nature track your progress toward a goal Through these strategies you will learn to overcome these cognitive obstacles and harness the power of the brain to achieve success in any endeavor. Nº de ref. de la librería ABZ9780735205451

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Descripción Prentice Hall Press, United States, 2015. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Brainblocksare the mental obstacles that keep people from achieving success, defined as setting, pursuing, and achieving a goal. Managing the brain is the solution to preventing mental blocks from interfering with achieving your goals. Andneuropsychologist Dr. Theo Tsaousides gives you the tools to improve: Awareness: the seven brainblocks to success (self-doubt, procrastination, impatience, multitasking, rigidity, perfectionism, negativity) the characteristic feelings, thoughts, and actions associated with each brainblock the brain functions involved in goal-oriented action brain glitches and how they create setbacks the cost of not removing brainblocks the best strategies to remove the blocks Engagement: actively search for brainblocks in your actions, thoughts, and feelings recognize and label each brainblock as soon as it is identified practice each strategy consistently until it becomes second nature track your progress toward a goal Through these strategies you will learn to overcome these cognitive obstacles and harness the power of the brain to achieve success in any endeavor. Nº de ref. de la librería ABZ9780735205451

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Descripción Prentice Hall Press, United States, 2015. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Language: English . This book usually ship within 10-15 business days and we will endeavor to dispatch orders quicker than this where possible. Brand New Book. Brainblocksare the mental obstacles that keep people from achieving success, defined as setting, pursuing, and achieving a goal. Managing the brain is the solution to preventing mental blocks from interfering with achieving your goals. Andneuropsychologist Dr. Theo Tsaousides gives you the tools to improve: Awareness: the seven brainblocks to success (self-doubt, procrastination, impatience, multitasking, rigidity, perfectionism, negativity) the characteristic feelings, thoughts, and actions associated with each brainblock the brain functions involved in goal-oriented action brain glitches and how they create setbacks the cost of not removing brainblocks the best strategies to remove the blocks Engagement: actively search for brainblocks in your actions, thoughts, and feelings recognize and label each brainblock as soon as it is identified practice each strategy consistently until it becomes second nature track your progress toward a goal Through these strategies you will learn to overcome these cognitive obstacles and harness the power of the brain to achieve success in any endeavor. Nº de ref. de la librería BTE9780735205451

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