THE GOLDEN PEN
Looking in the mirror, I smiled and said:”I look good today”. My big smile was the signature of my day. I began collecting what I need off my office table starting with my BlackBerry, my wallet, my keys, and finally looked for my MONTBLANC gold plated pen. I was suddenly hit with a feeling of panic. “Where is my pen” I spoke loudly. My wife quickly answered:”I don’t know where your pen is Loay, just look for it”. My frustration level began to increase, and I truly felt horrible at the thought of losing this pen. This was not the first time this happens to me.
Thoughts ran through my head. Instantly, I remembered the day back in 1997 walking into the mall with my friend in Montreal. It was a great day because I just got paid a nice fat check. My aim that day was BIRKS the famous jewellery shop in Montreal. We walked in and I knew exactly what I wanted. The gold plated MONTBLANC pen. The pen was selling for roughly $1,000 tax in. I have looked at this pen so many times every time I used to pass by BIRKS. The thoughts continued to STREAM and I saw myself paying for it. The sales lady cleaned it for me, and placed it in an amazing black box with the MONTBLANC symbol.
We rushed outside the shop with a jolt of energy running through my vain. I have never ever forgotten that day. That day was a special day for the fortification of my ego. It was the day I announced to myself: “I am different”. This pen has been with me for over 12 years now. Back to reality, I was still looking for the pen on the desk, then the dining table, the wash room, beside the phone, in the bed room and finally looked in the inside pocket of the suit I wore the day before and behold, I found it.
The feeling of relief is impossible to describe. During the catastrophe, and I say catastrophe not for the lack of another word but to truly give u an insight into how bad this felt for me, my heart felt as if it’s being squeezed by a giant hulk. It was awful. The relief when I found it however, was equally blissful. This panic episode over the pen happened a few times during the 12 years of owning it and almost every time, the feelings were as intense.
Driving my car to work, I began to think about the experience. How could I, a grown man, an educated man, a father, a husband, and perhaps even an intellectual manifest such feelings of panic over a pen? Then it dawned on me. The pen itself was not what causes these episodes; it was what the pen signified in my mind that triggered such painful experiences. The notion of losing what is associated with the pen.
The pen was the link I created back in 1997 to a mile stone in my life. The experience of purchasing the pen, the intensity of joy I declared as I possessed it, and the amount of personal value I attached to it was so intense that it lived until this present day. Sure, the pen is expensive by any standard, and some may even think that only crazy people would spend so much on a writing tool. However, these very statements by others regarding an object like a pen what drove me to buy it. It is “I” the ego of Loay that is capable of spending such an amount for such an item as simple as a pen.
Many may buy pens for thousands of dollars for reasons of collecting, or an avenue of investing, but still there are those who do it for the very same reason I did it for. It is a declaration of uniqueness, a dressing for the ego to shine, and a statement of power. No wonder ROLEX signifies a successful man.
Great, what now? Well, after contemplating over the facts and the experience, I came to a fantastic revelation. I can create similar intensity to any object I want. I can look at a simple mug and declare to the world with extreme enthusiasm and a loud joyful voice:”This is my lucky MUG” “This MUG is so special that every morning I drink from it, my day will definitely be highly productive one”.
The secret is that I must fool myself and sell myself on the idea. If I repeat these statements long enough, declare these statements to a few people that I know, and talk about my lucky MUG for a few days, then guess what! I will eventually believe it. Yes, the statement will no longer be a declaration of words uttered by a tongue that reflects what the mind is saying. The statement becomes a true ingrained belief inside me.
This is crucial because as we all know, what we believe shapes our lives. Take a look please at your husband, or wife and go back when you first met. Remember how your partner looked back then, and how you felt looking at him or her. Can I ask you a question now? If you are married to a black person why didn’t you marry a white person? If you are married to a white person why didn’t you marry a black person instead? Why not a Chinese? Why not an Arab? And further ask yourself, why did you choose this particular partner and not someone else?
While the exception would have a totally strange answer like “that’s all I can muster, or it’s an arranged marriage, or he was the only man to ever ask”. The majority would answer the above questions in a way that reflects their beliefs and their inner assessment tools for choosing a partner. If I took you out of North America, and placed you in Africa for a few years, eventually, you will begin to reshape your thoughts about the so called black man or black woman. In fact as time passes, you will begin to even think contrary to the original beliefs you had growing in a white majority region, and the opposite is true .
We are naturally affected by our environment, and we are subject to the information fed to us as we grew up. Yes there are always exceptions to the rules. However, the unique change becomes main stream only when avenues of social encouragement begins to manifest, and media glorification coupled with the courage of a few brave souls breaking old barriers that these old beliefs begin to change.
Why not begin today by choosing a few declarations that can change your life. If you are facing a dwindling relationship, make a new declaration with extreme enthusiasm.
“MY husband is so handsome that when he walks through the door my hear melts” “I love my wife and can’t imagine life without her” “I live just to look into the eyes of my wife for they are absolutely gorgeous”
Or you can make other declarations when you are facing difficult moments. The tire goes flat in the middle of the highway, make a declaration “This is excellent, I can stop and witness the cars rushing by” or “Wow, I am so excited to change a flat tire I need the exercise”. Declarations no matter how stupid or significant can absolutely change the way you look at life. They may not work immediately, but I assure you as you repeat them and turn the intensity level of your inner convictions, you can create new powerful beliefs that will absolutely change your life.
Try this “I love Monday; Monday is the best day of the week”. I and a friend used to say this statement often in elevators packed with people. I wish you can see their faces. Only when you learn how to break the social norm, you can begin to change. Change comes from within, and enthusiasm leads to action. If you always say to yourself statements like “God I hate where I live” then guess what! You will hate where you live. Until you can achieve higher success and move to a better house, neighbourhood etcetera, why live in misery in the interim? View all phases of your life as an experience meant to help you build your inner fountain of strength and creativity.
Anthony robins spoke about beliefs and before him prophets thousands of years came to fortify certain beliefs. It is your belief system that can lead you to doom or a life of success.
Confused! Do not despair. The lesson is simple; you can become the master of your inner domain by creating new declarations and destroying older ones. In my case, I can only get rid of these episodes once and for all via three avenues:
1. Give the pen away and therefore never go through this again
2. Associate negative or new declarations with the pen
3. Create new and more powerful experiences that would make the pen irrelevant
“Whatever your pen is, you make it so” LR
The key found here can unlock one of the mightiest of your inner mental locks. Inside us all are memories of events that have become too powerful to the point where as they build inside us and continue to grow, our life becomes intolerable.
Go back in the folders of your memory this instant, and pull out a horrible memory that you experienced. Take a minute and look, observe how you react to it. Try to separate yourself from the experience by placing someone else in the memory. And take yourself out of the picture completely. Whatever is happening in this memory is now happening to someone else completely. Whenever your mind pushes to bring you back in the experience, resist and focus on fortifying the presence of the other person. Change the color of the back ground. If this happened in the back yard, take it to the library instead. Now from this point on, every time the memory creeps up on you, take yourself out, and bring that new person in.
Only if you begin to repeat this exercise, and further declare to yourself that this never happened to you that you can truly move on. Others would argue that this is merely an escape, and I would say while you try to accept what has happened, you might want to change your mental image of the incident to reduce the pain.
Further use of this theory can be applied to people that you must interact with via work, family functions, community activities but you have a tremendous dislike for them. Take a moment and think about them. Begin to attach new attributes to them. If someone is extremely boring, add a label to them that they are boring but funny. Repeat the phrase over and over until you cannot think of that person without the phrase “Boring but funny” popping up. This will make meeting that person easier, and please email me when you begin to actually laugh at what they say. Behold, your boring colleague leaped from boring to funny.