Confirming The Power of Words
For many years I (and many others) have been citing the immense power the words we hear and read have–with a tremendous effect on our consciousness. This is one of the reasons, even as a former broadcast journalist, I have suggested watching, listening, or reading the news every day can be harmful to our mental health. Primarily because, in order to build large audiences, news media tends to focus on negative, violent, tragic news. This can tilt one’s view of the world, and even create the attitude, “If the world is so rotten, why should I bother to make it a better place?”
There’s been an uproar in recent days after it was revealed that for one week in 2012, Facebook, without telling anyone, fed positive postings or negative postings only to about 700,000 of its one billion members. The cries of “Invasion of privacy!” have been shouted, but I think there’s some missing of the point here, perhaps due to some widespread paranoia about the influence and data gathering of the large online entities like FB, Google, and Amazon. Yes, they know more about us than they probably should, and this should be regulated to some degree. So far, however, the most evil use this data has been put to is to try to sell us the latest new weight loss fad, etc.
The response to the experiment was then given to researchers at Cornell University, who came to the following conclusion.
“Emotions expressed by others on Facebook influence our own emotions, constituting experimental evidence for massive-scale contagion via social networks.”
In other words, what our FB friends send out has an emotional impact which can lead to a widespread up or down mood. No kidding! As to not telling the people involved, I doubt it would have worked if everyone knew their news feeds and timelines were being tampered with. This is one case where I think the means justifies the means. Apologies have been issued, so it’s time to get a grip and get a life.
I have, over the past few years, unfriended several folks on FB who tended to rant, rave, whine, and pontificate about how terrible the world is. Life is challenging enough without having to put up with an avalanche of negative verbal energy. I sometimes worry about people who don’t have the sense of humor I do. Of course, we feel bad if a close friend is suffering, but we don’t need a play-by-play of every symptom for days on end, so that we have the same emotional reaction as if it were happening to us. I don’t think this is what empathy is supposed to be about.
While I agree there are too many adorable cat photos and videos on FB, no one ever got depressed watching a playful kitten. And don’t get me started in the opposite direction with all the reports of torturing of dogs, cats, and sometimes even people.
What does this have to do with my main topic on this blog, how to have a more prosperous, happier, meaningful and fulfilled life? A lot, as the words we surround ourselves with act as an army of support in our efforts to make life better for ourselves and others. For most people I know, life is basically good. Perhaps this has something to do with the choices I’ve made as to who to bring into my circle. I do this out in the world, and I am trying to do the same on social media. It makes life a lot easier.
Because of who I am and the books I’ve written and philosophy I’ve taught for over 40 years, I do tend to attract hopeful, optimistic, upbeat people into my sphere of influence. I feel blessed this is so. If Facebook’s transgression on our privacy rights helps make more people aware of the importance of this, then I’m all for it.
Getting Ready Is What Determines Success In Any Activity
The Merriam-Webster full definition of foreplay:
: erotic stimulation preceding sexual intercourse
: action or behavior that precedes an event
When I recorded my bestselling Nightingale-Conant cassette program, Moneylove, in 1987, I titled the first segment, Getting Ready For Wealth. I might just as well have called it Prosperity Foreplay. The same components that make for successful sexual foreplay: Intention, Attention, Playfulness, Imagination, Emotion, Commitment–are exactly the same components one needs in any major project or important/successful activity.
I would venture to say that if there were a study of a group of men and women to determine how good they were at sexual foreplay, the ones who didn’t do well in this very common human event would prove to not do well in a number of other areas in their lives. Whether you talk to a chef or a surgeon, you will get the same answer: a lot of determining how it all turns out depends on the prep. Prosperity Prep (which I may have originated right here) involves knowing what you want, deciding how you want to go about getting it, taking action to make it happen. Prosperity Foreplay is all about getting ready to do this.
One aspect of sexual foreplay should be added to this mix: excitement, stimulation, arousal. For your Prosperity Foreplay and Prosperity Prep to bring you all you desire, you need to be excited, stimulated, aroused (fully awake and fully turned on) during your foreplay. Look back on your past ventures and you will find that the most successful ones are those you were really excited about. Passion is the term used a lot in today’s world–finding your passion, living your passion. Well, what leads to successful manifestation and activation of your passion is thoughtful and committed foreplay.
I just received a great compliment today in which a woman said that the original Moneylove cassette album was the biggest factor in her success to date. She ordered the new version of that program in a digital mp3 file and is planning to become a coaching client. However, I beg to differ with her–that audio program is not what led to her success–her statement that she nearly wore out the cassettes listening to them over and over again was the essential comment in her email in terms of what made her successful. She is very good at Prosperity Foreplay, doing it over and over again, realizing that each time you listen to any motivational program that calls for action you are hearing it in a different way. We change so rapidly, that it is almost impossible to get the same exact result every time.
And like sexual foreplay, you can’t be doing it because someone else demands it, or some book or teacher or therapist tells you it has to be done. You must enjoy the process and make it your own. The more you put your energy into getting ready, and the more you enjoy it, the more ready you will be.