Review by Dwayne Williams
“Very few people have hearts of conquerors, those that do will eventually unlock
the secret code and conquer the battle of life.”
This self improvement book tells the story of guy named Alex who’s down on his luck. Divorced, bitter for having been through a string of failed relationships. He’s looking for answers, although he doesn’t know it yet. It’s true, when the student is ready, the teacher will appear. Asked by a friend to attend a charity event in China. He reluctantly agrees. Meets an old wise sage named Yelu Bao Zhi, who happens to be descendent of Yelu Chucai, advisor to famed Mongolian ruler Genghis Khan.
Together they embark on a series of deep conversations stretching over 10 days that will bring clarity to Alex’s thinking and revolutionize his life.
The heart of these talks - the six great desires in life - make up the core of Code of the Conquer. And happens to be responsible for so much misery in everyday life, especially Alex’s. Almost like the 7 deadly sins. The metaphorical trap doors in life. This book explains in detail how to avoid this fate by focusing on 6 key areas in our lives - Power, Relationships, Lust, Action, Knowledge and Energy.
In sum, I believe this is the single BEST lesson in this book:
“I recall,' he [Yelu Bao Zhi] started hesitantly, 'my grandfather sitting me down as young boy and warning me of the battles to come in my life. He was very proud mystical man, who sensed darkness within me. He foretold I had two wolves gnawing away at my heart, it would end in the bloodiest of battles. They would eventually rip each other apart with such ferocity that I would never be the same person again...
...one wolf was full of desire, lust, anger, envy, arrogance, self-pity, false pride, sorrow and regret. The other he said, was full of joy, peace, love, hope, humility, kindness, empathy and truth...
Which wolf would win the fight. As my [dying] grandfather drifted in and out of consciousness I asked. Eventually he whispered, “The one you feed the most.”
I love that story! It encapsulates the nature of man, both good and bad, and the choice that demands an answer from each one of us.
The Code of the Conqueror is a great short story full of timeless wisdom and life lessons from dozens of ancient philosophers and military leaders which even 5000 years later is still relevant in modern life.
Author - Mark Weeks
'Remember that the needs of a happy life are very few.' ~ Marcus Aurelius. So why complicate it!
One of the all time classics, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is a must read on your journey for self-discovery and quest for success.
Knowledge, expertise, and know-how of your chosen profession is paramount to your success, and there is little I can share in improving the tasks you implement every day, you know your business. But, do you truly maintain the correct interpersonal skills with your customers, workforce or family? Is your emotional bank account running in the black or is it deep in the red?
Before Stephen R. Covey reveals the 7 Habits he goes deep within the expectations of implementing the habits, if they are followed diligently.
The key expectations of creating the habits …
He makes it clear, his programme is no quick-fix, it's an evolution; that is, if you're willing to pay the price by learning, teaching and doing. He would have cringed from the overuse of the term 'life hack' these days. There are no shortcuts to self-improvement. There is no quick fix to living your life of purpose.
In much the same tone as Dr. Wayne Dyer's, 'If you change the way you look at things the things you look at change' quote. Covey uses the term of changing 'your paradigm', this slight shift in the way you think about things will have a dramatic effect upon your life.
How are you using your emotional bank account – The Bank Of You PLC? There has been much work on the benefits of the psychological contracts, and if it interests you dig deep, there's plenty of information out there. But for now, Covey's definition of an emotional bank account where we are always making deposits and withdrawals warrants attention day in and day out. It's the only way to get the desired results you want in an effective and positive way.
Every interaction you have has an effect on how others treat you. From the perceptions of your customers, employees, spouse, and children. Imagine every time you are unkind, insensitive, dishonest you are making a withdrawal from 'the bank'. Every time you deliver more than you promise, act kindly and generously you are building up your 'emotional account'.
Of course, there will be times no matter how kind and considerate you are where people will deceive and try to humiliate you. That's their 'account' terminated. But for you, you must continue to build up your account, there's no other way than making lasting goodwill deposits.
The first 3 habits are character related, which start the transformation from dependency to interdependency. The 3 habits after, Covey claims to be centred upon personality habits.
It's interesting to see how Covey formulates the habits and explains how the literature over the past 50 years has become heavily imbued with purely personality traits that can overshadow the character ethics of industry, service, modesty and love. If not used in the right way that is, as 'personality traits' can be used in many manipulative and selfish ways.
Let's dive in, if you wish me to delve deeper in the future just leave a comment below.
Be Proactive: There are two ways to live, we are either reactive, where we complain about circumstances out of our control. What's the point of that. It simply robs you of your energy and vitality. The second way is being proactive, take action only on the things you can control. Even when you can't control everything, you can always control your actions. Act or be acted upon, is a useful reminder.
Begin With The End In Mind: Figure your destination out then work towards it. All of us need to find our purpose and our why? Where do you wish to be in 5 years, 10 years and more specifically 1 year from today.
Put First Things First: This is where the action starts. You must now identify and plan the necessary tasks. You must focus on what really matters, and not be distracted by the never-ending noise of others or social media. Action, Discipline and Accountability spring to my mind for this habit to become ingrained within your psyche.
Win-Win: The win-win or no deal mentality. It takes integrity to achieve either of these. Consideration for a mutually beneficial solution is the best way forward for us all, and it takes an abundance mentality to realise if you win, there's really no reason why I should lose. This happens to be the attitude I try my best to adopt in all of my business and relationships. Though sometimes your consideration can be taken as a weakness, in these cases protect your downside and walk away.
Seek First to Understand, Then To Be Understood: We can only try to be understood once we understand. Putting yourself into others shoes is critical for building long lasting relationships. Covey believes this will only be achieved through empathic listening. Remember he says empathy and not sympathy!
Synergy: Can sound like an overused cliché. But by leveraging the strength of others we can achieve more. No two minds are the same, we each have something to bring to the table which ultimately creates momentum, it can also create misunderstanding, lethargy and arguments too, that is, if habits #4 & #5 are not followed correctly.
Sharpen The Saw: This is my favourite habit, and one my whole business and life is modelled upon. I prefer using the term holistic self-leadership. It simply means you must make time to focus upon your emotional, spiritual and physical worlds. None of us can function effectively without balancing the 'inner you' and listening to your personal biorhythms. Have you ever been so busy that you don't have the time to fill up the car with fuel? And like your car, if you are not fuelled; mentally, spiritually and physically you will burnout and breakdown.
Today's stressful lifestyles are adding far too many divorces, unhappy children and way too many suicides; I heard the other day every 40 seconds someone in the world has committed suicide, how sad is that? Please make time to sharpen your saw.
Hope my review helps you to get the most out of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
Please leave a comment on your thoughts and sign-up to our newsletter to keep up to date with our discounted offers and approach to life
Until next time:)
A few books to dive into ...
Book: Escape The System.
Author: Joe Barnes
From: Surrey, UK
When I first discovered Escape The System, by Joe Barnes, I thought it was going to be a typical 'How to get rid of a job you hate' instruction manual. Instead, I was very surprised to find something so much deeper than the usual fare.
This book is about how to deprogram yourself from society's conditioning so that you can live life on your terms, follow your dreams and be a change agent in our world. Joe goes to great lengths to explain how 'The System' can keep you from pursuing your dreams and what you can expect if you either submit to it or challenge it.
The System, in this case, is society's laws, customs, guidelines, rules, traditions, best practices, politics and values. Its influence is vast, pervasive, insidious, covering all areas of society (human relations, educational, governmental, religious & corporate institutions, popular culture, fashion, news and current opinion.).
This System demands obedience, conformity and for its authority to go unchallenged. These values are forced fed to us the minute we are born until the moment of our death. It strongly encourages everyone to do the following:
*American Dream: (birth. attend grade school. college. marry. get a big mortgage. buy SUV or minivan. have kids. work 40 years. shop. retire. die.). If you don't follow this path, you risk being labelled as ....... (fill in the blank) and relegated to the fringes of society economically and socially.
*Church: submit completely to God/Jesus/Allah/Buddha/Zeus/Neo/Apollo and you will be allowed in heaven. If not, your non-compliance ensures eternal damnation in the afterlife.
*School: be obedient. truth comes from authority. stay within the lines. be reasonable. memorize this. pass these tests. go to the next level. Or we will label you, flunk you and cast you aside.
*Work: get a good job. be obedient. work long hours. multitask. keep your head down. climb the corporate ladder. retire at 65. receive a gold watch. do otherwise and you will be terminated. and The System and your peers will consider you a loser and/or stupid.
In and of itself there is nothing wrong with following these institutions or their ideals. If that is what you truly desire. The author persuasively argues that we are constantly being sold this pre-package lifestyle throughout our lives complete with 'vanilla' priorities, ideas and opinions. *Spouses sold separately.
So this begs the obvious question. How do we tell if we truly believe something or been sold the beliefs we hold?
This is a great book for those who don't fit in, original thinkers, dreamers, free spirits, visionaries, superheroes, artists, designers and people who want to make the world a better place.
Buy it today and finally escape the system. Click here.
Visit Joe's website www.screwthesystemnow.com
Follow Dwayne on Facebook for all of his latest reviews.
#escapethesystemnow #amazon Joe Barnes
By Dwayne Williams
Most people don't know the Reginald Lewis Story. And those few that do usually focus on how rich he was. In 1992, a year before his death, he was the 246th richest person in America, according to Forbes Magazine.
His real legacy, in my opinion, is that anything is possible if you put your mind to your goals and truly commit yourself to achieving them with action.
As you will see in the paragraphs ahead, he used creativity, moxie and grit to blow past all expectations considering where he started from. Personally, he is one of my all time favourite heroes. I've read 3 books on this man. And he was absolutely magnificent throughout his whole life. There's a lot to cover. So let's get on with it.
Reginald really became Reginald Lewis in high school. He was star quarterback of the school's football team with a winning record. When he graduated, he earned a football scholarship to Virginia State University, a historically black college in Richmond, Virginia. Where he continued his winning ways. But as fate would have it, he hurt his knee, permanently sidelining his career and ending his scholarship. Depressed. He sulked around for a while before rededicating himself to his studies. Eventually, he shot up to the top of his class academically.
Near the end of his senior year in college, his counsellor informed him of a new 3 month program that Harvard University had for black students to take classes over the summer. The aim of this program was to help them gain experience at a ivy league school and use it to apply to graduate schools. He readily accepted.
He and other top students from black colleges across the nation spent the summer as quasi students of Harvard University. Reginald loved everything about the most prestigious school in the world.
As the program was ending in late August, he confided to a few of his classmates that he was going to Harvard in the fall. They thought he was crazy. Somehow, someway he was determined to get into Harvard Law School. So as his fellow classmates were leaving, he stayed behind and signed up for law school classes along with the incoming regular students that fall.
Reginald was attending classes for a couple of months before Harvard Admissions Department finally caught up with him. A meeting was scheduled. He had a lot of explaining to do. "Why are you still here?" and "Why should we let you stay?" All involved said that he was well prepared for those questions. Opposition melted as he gave very detailed reasons why he belonged at Harvard University. By the end of this meeting, he was invited to stay on by an all white admission committee.
As a result of Reginald Lewis's actions in the fall of 1966, he is the ONLY student in Harvard Law School entire 200 year history, to be accepted into the college WITHOUT filling out an application.
Later when he became a massive success in the business world, he donated $5 million dollars to this law school (the largest single donation at the time). After his death, they named the law school after him - The Reginald F. Lewis International Law Center. He also has a museum dedicated to his life and career at Virginia State University, which he gave a million dollars to.
By Dwayne Williams
I just finished watching Amelia. A biopic of Amelia Earhart (1897-1939), played by Hilary Swank. The first female aviator who broke dozens of records in a era where women just won the right to vote a few years before (1922). She was awesome!
I thought I knew her story, but after watching this movie and doing some online research afterwards, I am blown away not only what she achieved, but how she did it. Check this out:
She flew from Nova Scotia to France (3100 miles) in the dark, during a raging thunderstorm, encountering engine problems along the way, while battling frost build up on her windshield with no copilot or support personnel. She accomplished this feat in a record breaking 14 hours and 26 minutes – twice. All by herself with no radio contact throughout the flight.
In addition to those records, she went on to break numerous transcontinental and transatlantic flight records. Becoming the first woman in history to do so in each case. She was the very definition of girl power long before the term came into being.
Afterwards, she become a global rock star. Everyone on the planet wanted to be seen with her – Presidents, First Ladies, celebrities, kids, especially young girls the world over. Men of that era seemed to be baffled for an explanation for her accomplishments and take charge personality.
Indeed, she was no ordinary woman and could hold her own to anybody who would challenge her. She often told men that she wasn’t the marrying type and had no clue what to do in a kitchen. Her place was in the sky. And no one was going to stop her from “doing what she wants to do”.
Everyone knows that Amelia Earhart disappeared in the Pacific Ocean from our history books. But what really surprise me was that the manner of her death was never in question, despite the conspiracy theories that surfaced over the years. The evidence is crystal clear what happened to her and her onboard navigator, Fred Noonan, in their final moments. The question with no answer is where was the plane when it ran out of fuel, crashed into the ocean and was quickly taken under.
On her last and most ambitious ‘World Flight’, she had to cross the part of the ocean that was 5000 miles across. The only refueling stop was the tiny Howland Island in the middle of the ocean. Earhart’s plane had enough fuel (2500 mile range) to reach this island, but not much more.
Somehow, her onboard navigator, who was a known alcoholic, must have miscalculated the coordinates to this island. The island’s air traffic controller transponder battery was dead from being left on all night. So even though the air traffic control operator heard her calls for directions on the radio, they wouldn’t of been able to locate her in the sky anyway.
They tried sending her a Morse Code Message, she acknowledged it, but couldn’t make sense of it. A large smoky fire was even started on the island to help her navigate her way to it. Nothing worked. They had no idea how close or far away her plane was. For unexplained reasons, her radio wasn’t picking up their voice response to her calls for assistance.
Shortly after her disappearance, the US Government launched the largest search and rescue mission in history up to that time. They didn’t find anything related to her plane. Probably because that area of the ocean was judged to be 2-3 miles deep. Even to this day, science and technology provides no clues to her final resting place, since there is no electronic record to follow.
Amelia Earhart is and will ALWAYS be an American Hero. A 5 star movie for any day of the week!
#ameliaearhart #dvd #biography #iowacitypubliclibrary
Follow Dwayne on Twitter and friend him on Facebook
#URConqueror is the self-development channel of Azuni World and created by Mark Weeks. Our mission in life is to help inspire and motivate people to lead a life of true self-leadership.