Skip this story if you’ve heard it before:
“There was once a farmer who planted his crops. He knew he had good fertile land and was very proud to finish planting so quickly.
As the days rolled on, the farmer began to get very impatient. He would lie in his bed at night and stare at the ceiling. He couldn’t wait for his crops to grow so he could harvest and sell them. His eagerness ate at him every night and disrupted his rest.
As the crops began to grow, small shoots sprung up from the ground. The farmer went out every night and tugged on each and every one of the shoots. He hoped this would help them grow faster. But despite all his efforts, they never did. The crops grew in their own time and when they were supposed to.”
I teach The Game in 9 Principles. The 3rd Principle is called, Reciprocation. I define it like this:
Reciprocation: You must give in order to receive. You cannot get something for nothing and truly call it yours. You must earn the right to have or possess anything in your life.
We live in a world of where we have been taught to seek out instant gratification. Many of us want what we want and we want it now! But nature doesn’t work like that. People are a part of nature and The Game works through people. This means that nature plays an important function in The Game.
Consider this – everything that’s worth something takes time to grow – plants and flowers grow; great art and music takes time to create; even a child must grow 9 months in their mother’s womb.
These are all examples of processes. And these processes unfold in “stages”.
When you’re learning something new, you have stages you go through. Here are 3 basic ones just to keep things simple:
(1) DISCOVERY – AKA the initiation phase
(2) TRIAL & ERROR – AKA the apprentice phase
(3) PROFICIENCY – AKA the “I think I got it now” phase
The Game is a big advocate of knowing yourself first, before you choose to master anything. Why is that? Because you can spend months or years of your life climbing up a ladder just to find out that’s not where you really want to be.
A square (average person without Game) works things backwards. They try to DO and HAVE things so they can feel like they’ve BECOME someone. This is instant gratification thinking and is a very frustrating and rough way to move through life. They’re reaching for goals and aspirations to become what “society” deems is worth something. They never took the time to define themselves – they’re defined by other people.
A Player (a person with Game) works the other way – they BECOME someone first – then they DO what they need to do so they can HAVE what they want.
When a Player finds out who and what they really are then they choose a goal (or life Purpose) for themselves. This puts them into the discovery (initiation) phase. As they gain more knowledge of WHATthey’re doing then they figure out HOW and WHEN to do it. During this time they’re going through the trial and error stage; they’re gaining wisdom.
And finally when everything starts “clicking” they began to come up with their own formulas to bring about the results they want. This is understanding – the proficiency stage.
Here’s the key: If you don’t know what to GIVE, you won't get back what you want to RECEIVE.
You must GIVE in order to RECEIVE – but you have to know what to give. In other words, become first and the rest will start falling in line.
With the mentality of instant gratification you won’t do the necessary work. I see this all the time. Everybody wants more of something – but as soon as the first problem (obstacle/challenge) hits, they start thinking to themselves, ‘Hmm… maybe I’m doing something wrong. I’m not going to make it...’
They don’t get “instant results” so they stop moving in one direction and choose a new one.
Let me tell you this: You cannot get what you want if you’re not giving to receive what you want. As we say in The Game, “If you don’t put anything down, you can’t pick anything up.”
You must take control of your thinking and get out of the “instant gratification” mentality. As I explained earlier, nature DOES NOT work instantly.
“Anything worth something is worth struggling for.”
When I wrote my first book, you know what thoughts came to me? The same thoughts that would come to many of you: “Is anyone really going to read this?”, “Is anyone going to like it?”
These are the same thoughts I had when I wrote my first blog post in 2006. These are similar thoughts I had years ago when I hit the streets attempting to sow my seed of success. And again when I first got in front of an audience to speak.
Although those thoughts crossed my mind, you know what I did? I told them to keep walking. I chose think of possibilities, not limitations. I commanded my mind; I didn’t let my mind command me.
Once I know what I want, I’m willing to discover, learn, make mistakes and fail in order to get it. When I reach the other side, I’m always met with success. I play to win, not sit on the bench and watch.
If you really know what you want, then stay down to get it. Take all your bumps and bruises with a smile and keep going. Effort always pays off; even if you just learn how NOT to do something.
IMPORTANT NOTE: I’ll be taking a week off to finish the last proofing and formatting of my next book, The Mack’s Bible. The blog will return on Wednesday, April 20th.
Always keep it moving! Keep pushing out there – I’m out here pushing right along with you.
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