Gorilla Mindset has been highlighted over 200,000 times, which is a lot of highlighting for a book you can read in two and a half hours, and Kindle offers a feature letting you see the 10 most popular highlights. Why were these passages heavily highlighted?
“To get more out of life, you must get more out of yourself. You must take personal responsibility for your thoughts and emotions. You must stop blaming the system. Your days of looking outside of yourself for answers are gone.
Most people, myself included before learning about mindset, tend to passively accept moods. We just sort of went through life feeling a certain way. Some of us felt bad, others felt good, and that was the way life went. Accepting personal responsibility for your thoughts and emotions is a huge shift.
“Gorilla Mindset shift: I am going to take an active approach to managing my state of mind.”
Of course, accepting personal responsibility for your thoughts and emotions isn’t much help unless you know what to do next.
“Now, imagine you believe the world is abundant. The world is one of endless resources and unlimited potential. What you do matters. Your choices matter. You matter. Each day is a new day full of infinite possibilities.
Shifting from a mindset that resources are scarce and you had better “get yours” to one of long-term planning and goal setting is one that eases your stress and helps keep you focused on your vision.
“Gorilla Mindset shift: Treat yourself like a treasured and trusted friend.”
We don’t treat ourselves well, especially when making mistakes. Sometimes life does suck and may seem like it’s over, but is that what you’d tell a friend? Taking the long view (abundance mindset) and advising yourself as you’d advise a friend are fundamentals to a proper mindset.
“Am I choosing, in this moment, to be the type of person I want to become?”
Checking in regularly ensures that you’re aligning your habits with your visions. What are you doing right now? And will that bring you closer to the vision you have for yourself?
“Imagine your consciousness is the judge or jury, or parent or friend that you must persuade. You want your conscious mind to believe in you. Framing is how your mind perceives whatever situation you are in. Framing is how you choose to think about, and thus perceive, a challenge.”
Framing is how you choose (remember, your thoughts and emotions are your personal responsibility) to view problems. Take a crisis as an example.
We’ve all had a life crisis, where everything seemed to go wrong. Crises, as bad as they seem at the time, are also a focusing agent. What are you afraid of losing most? That shows you your priorities. (Chances are, when you’re going through a crisis, you’re afraid of losing your family and friends, and you realize most of the stuff you cared about didn’t matter, and actually served as a distraction from what you value most.)
Once the crisis has passed, ask yourself if you’re losing focus.
Now that doesn’t mean a crisis is “good.” Let’s be honest. Terrible stuff happens in life. Yet choosing to view an event as terrible is a choice you make. There is no objective truth to how you emotionally interpret a process a situation.
“Gorilla Mindset shift: Reframe the issues. Choose to focus on how the difficulty you’re facing will make you stronger, more intelligent, more emotionally complex, or more resourceful.”
Spiritual growth requires emotional pain. I wish there were another way. It breaks my heart to tell you that you won’t be an emotionally complex, fully-integrated person without trauma.
Nearly every high-achievement person you look up to has been through some screwed up circumstances:
In 1962, the psychologist Victor Goertzel and his wife, Mildred, published a book called “Cradles of Eminence: A Provocative Study of the Childhoods of Over 400 Famous Twentieth-Century Men and Women.” They selected individuals who had had at least two biographies written about them and who had made a positive contribution to society. Their subjects ranged from Louis Armstrong, Frida Kahlo and Marie Curie to Eleanor Roosevelt, Henry Ford and John D. Rockefeller.
The Goertzels found that less than 15% of their famous men and women had been raised in supportive, untroubled homes, with another 10% in a mixed setting. Of the 400, a full 75%—some 300 individuals—had grown up in a family burdened by a severe problem: poverty, abuse, absent parents, alcoholism, serious illness or some other misfortune. “The ‘normal man,’ ” the Goertzels wrote, “is not a likely candidate for the Hall of Fame.”
Successful people lie about the hardships because showing vulnerability is seen as weak. But there’s a good chance the people you’ve read about were abused, had abusive parents, and had an emotional breakdown of some sort.
Thus, if you’re in a bad situation, you can reframe that as an opportunity for personal and spiritual development.
“Gorilla Mindset shift: Check into your body by using self-talk to understand what your body is doing and feeling in the present moment.”
“Gorilla Mindset shift: Walk with a purpose by talking to yourself as you walk, about how you are walking.”
Who reads mindset books? Introverts. Who lives inside our heads and often stumbles around and doesn’t focus on the physical world? Introverts face specific challenges, and Gorilla Mindset shows you how to overcome them.
“There’s no place I’d rather be. There’s no one else I’d rather see.”
Sometimes we do have specific places to be, and when we do, we need to be checked in. I remind myself, “There’s no place else I’d rather be.” Even if it’s not exactly true in the moment, if you must be there, why not tell yourself that?
A bonus story on mindfulness.
I had an amusing lesson on mindfulness a few days ago.
As I was walking my dog, he stopped to go to the bathroom for more times than I had bags. As we were only a block or two away from home, I huffed back annoyed that our walk had been disturbed.
As I grabbed the backs and went back tot he walk, Cyra laughed. Julius my dog laughed. It hit me.
Everyone but me was having a great time. And my problem was? Well my problem was that my planned walk had a detour, but it’s not as if this walk had to take a certain path. That was my own issue. I wasn’t being present, mindful, or in the flow.
Like a lot of people, we become task-orientated so much that we forget that not every task must be done a certain way. If you’re running errands or spending time with your family, there’s no outcome that must be determined. Stay present, be mindful, that’s Gorilla Mindset.