Mental Process for Success
We know that our subconscious mind controls all the vital processes of our body. It does this without any interaction from us. All of these processes are controlled autonomously, most of the time without our being aware of them.
The subconscious mind is also the store house of experience, it has been said that every thing we have passed through in life will be stored somewhere in the subconscious mind. It knows the answers to all of our problems.
It’s simple purpose is to keep us safe and provide us with what we want.
Now this is the thing, it will provide us with what we want. However the problem for most of us, is that we have no real clear vision of what we want. In fact, more often than not. That vision is distorted by events in external life, thus we tend to live in reaction to those events.
This causes massive confusion, so in essence, what happens is our subconscious mind looks at the thoughts we focus on. Referencing the things we think about most often, and finding ways to bring these into our lives. Based on that evaluation, it provides us with the things, it thinks we want. The unfortunate reality of this lays in the fact that what it brings to us, may not necessarily be the results we wanted.
Now the key to actually achieving what we do want, is simply to program our subconscious mind to focus on bringing us those things instead. So how do we do this, the following series of ideas offer some guidance.
1 Whatever is impressed on your subconscious mind is expressed as thoughts, conditions, experiences, and events. Therefore, we should carefully watch all ideas and thoughts entertained in your conscious mind. Make sure the focus is on the things we want to achieve.
2 Thought is action, and according to the law of cause and effect will create a reaction. This reaction will be the automatic response of the subconscious mind to that thought. Watch what you think.
3 All frustration and anxiety is simply due to unfulfilled desires. If the focus is on obstacles, delays, and difficulties, the subconscious mind responds accordingly. Work on the things you do want, and Don’t block your path to achieving them.
4 The ideal time to for suggestion is just prior to sleep. Turn over a specific request to your subconscious mind and it will naturally focus on analysing and providing an answer. More often than not, that answer may come as a quick vision or a vague insight. We must be aware of that, and be ready to act immediately when we recognise it.
5 Keep the conscious mind busy with the expectation of the best, and the subconscious mind will faithfully reproduce those expectations into our reality.
6 Simply imagine the happy outcome or solution to a problem. Experience the thrill of that moment of accomplishment. What you imagine and experience will be accepted as a reality by your subconscious mind. Which will provide insight and suggestions on how to to bring it into being.
The subconscious mind is an incredible piece of kit, however it cannot determine the difference between reality and fantasy. All we need to do is create a strong enough momentum and the subconscious mind will work to deliver the results we desire.
Hope this article has been of interest.
If so please like and comment, all feedback is gratefully appreciated.
All the best
What is time?
The following article examines how we view time. How we interpret time depends very much on the environments we inhabit.
Time Tense: This looks at how we process time, not so much via linear time as measured by a clock. But by our perception of time which is very much ingrained into our psyche.
The Past: Here the focus is on what was. Those people with an interest in history, give a lot of attention to what has happened. There is a sense of feeling and nostalgia for what went before.
The Present: This is where the focus is on what happens now. People who exist in the present are very much aware of what is going on around them Now. There is an acute sense of awareness.
The Future: The focus here is on what could or may happen. People are thinking in concepts or ideas. They use intuition to guide and create working definitions for their future plans.
These are also people who don’t give much thought to or about time.
There is a series of conditions which reflect and play on these concepts.
In that as we move through linear time. When as youngsters our concept of time is very much in the moment. As we mature into adolescent and early adults. The outlook is very much on the future. In early to mid adult life there is a balance between all three states. The further we move along, the more we start to look back.
Time Experience: This examines how we sequence time. As events occur we process them and place them in sequence. When looking at that sequence, we learn to understand the time periods between these events. When we code events in historical time, we create what is in essence an internal time line. There are two ways this is done,
Through Time: This method of evaluation is where we organise memories in a sequenced and structured manner along an internal time line. This gives us the ability to move back and forth along the this sequence, and view events as they are coded.
In Time This approach is more emotionally involved as the experience has a far greater emotional impact. Subjects are completely involved in, and are part of the experience. They exist very much in the present The past is stored behind them and the future stretches before. The timeline is not a structured entity. Experience is located based on emotional content and similarity to other events.
Time Access: This examines how we access memories. Having stored memories, we need to find them again. There are two methods we use to accomplish this.
Sequential Access: This is the Through Time approach, where the memory structure has been formulated as a sequence. Individual events are found by going along that sequence until the required memory is found.
Random Access: This is the In Time approach, where memories can be located simply by jumping from one to another. Memories are connected in ways other than time. As an example a certain smell, may trigger a memory of a specific place, event or person. There is no need to do a logical search through the sequence to find the memory, as experiences are located based on similarity to, or are indirectly linked via sensations and emotions.
Time is many things to many people, however we are all subject to it. Life is a cycle and the concept of time is the means by which it is measured.
The Five shapes of self.
The Five shapes of self examines the identity concept referred to as the Self. Our idea of self is the subject of much debate, and is very much dependent on the context of the beliefs we carry about ourselves. Our social environments shape the ideas we have about the who, the what and the why we are. For this article we are simply looking at the five definitions we use to describe the concept of self.
Self Esteem: Firstly what exactly is self esteem. It is how we value ourselves as individuals.It is an innate quality which we are born with. Through it, the judgements we make are based on our belief of what makes us valuable as a person. For many self esteem is another term for self worth.
Self Worth: This is a personal judgement, based on the value of external factors.Things such as Possessions, wealth and status are used to generate a sense of scale. Which is used as a measure of the value we hold, when compared against others.
Self Confidence: Is not so about how we rate ourselves mentally, it’s more about what we do. Self confidence comes from our ability to both do things, and in getting them done.We have two sides to this coin, there are those with low self confidence and those who are brimming with it.
Those with low self confidence have the tendency to focus on things which they cannot do, as opposed to what they can. This leads to a pessimistic view of their abilities in general, which in turn creates a limiting belief in the options available to them.
Those with high self confidence have a strong sense of identity in what they can do. This offers them a greater outlook on the options and choices available to them. With this comes the realisation, that they may not be able to do everything, but can exercise the choice to choose on what they what want to work on. What they cannot do, they will find someone who can do it for them.
Self Experience: This looks at how we define ourselves as people. Everyone’s concept of themselves is different, and can be identified by those elements we decide as being important. These can be the thoughts we have, the roles we play. Even our physical bodies.
For some the thoughts they have, for others the feelings and choices are how they define importance. There are those who define this by what they do or what they own.
Identifying with external factors can lead to problems. As with the person who identifies with their job, the vacuum that can be created should they lose this job, they ultimately lose their identity.
Self Integrity: As people we have this ideal image of who or what we want to be. In fact there is a tendency to compare our current self with our ideal self image. The closer we can identify our current self with the ideal image. The greater our self integrity becomes. The further away they are, the more internal conflict we experience.
This ideal self image is based on our values of who and what we feel our ideal person is or should be like.
Congruence: These are people who closely match with their ideal self image. Achieving this state has given them a sense of self integrity. Centering themselves around their ideals brings acceptance of who and what they have become and achieved. These accomplishments fuel them forward toward their ideals and the things they want to achieve.
Incongruence: Difference between the ideal and actual self creates conflict. Self acceptance is harder to achieve, as they cannot be who they want to be. This internal conflict creates negative feelings which takes them further away from their ideal self.
These then are the five definitions of self as we know them. Our own internal definition is unique, and will reflect where we are in the process of life.
In essence, We are who and what we make of ourselves.
What are Meta Programs?
As a follow on from the previous article where we looked at distortions, deletions and generalisations. This article looks at the filters we use to process, evaluate and respond to the events we experience in everyday life
Meta Programs are simply a series of filters we use to shape our perception of the world. We are usually not consciously aware of them, as they work at the subconscious level. They are the internal representations of our external experience of reality, and direct our decisions, behaviours, actions and interactions accordingly.
They drive what we pay attention to and how we respond to it. influence
what motivates us, and how we interact with the people around us.
Shape the kind of language that will move us. Set the type of information used to create our goals, the way we make decisions, and the motivation behind them.
In reality they are processes we use to respond to our environment.
There are three levels of meta programming
Primary: Processing information on the daily level.
This is the raw experience we pass through on a daily basis.
Meta: This is where we shape our unique styles of processing and who we are. At this level we filter experience to keep what is relevant to us.
We then use this to form our own interpretations about our world.
Meta Meta: Here we give and create meaning for experience.
At this level we apply emotional context and concepts to these experiences. In so doing create value and attachment, by which we measure the importance of the experience.
There are many meta programs which have been identified and for the scholars amongst you the link below offers access to a series of videos.
In which I offer an insight into what they are, and how they work.
The list is not definitive as meta programs are being changed as new information become available.
For ease of reference the meta programs are broken
into a series of categories.
To view them simply click on the page link below
Context and Emotion
When looking at meta programs we need to take into account the circumstances under which experience is generated. As these conditions are unique to each experience. The name for this is context.
Context is important as it provides meaning. It is simply the set of conditions which influence the way we reference information.
Providing a unique set of circumstances which shape our reactions
to an event.
Each event creates a frame of reference that is completely different,
and invokes a specific response.
Everything we do is a response to our environment.
In fact, our internal frame of reference determines how we
react and relate to events from our external world.
A strong state of emotion related to an experience will
also shape the way we react to it and the
meta programs used to process it
In life we get into situations where our reactions are guided.
These moments define how to react under certain conditions. The meta programs used in these moments are specific to that event.
Yet we learn to use those same meta programs when in a
similar situation. So we learn response and re-apply it.
Looking back: This frame of reference is generated from
previously learned response patterns and carried forward through life.
Looking forward: Here you can create the context you want to have. And define the meta programs which will be most effective in helping you bring that context into reality.
Sometimes these contexts are no longer relevant to life as it has become. So they get updated, developed and enhanced until they become a new frame of reference. So how does this change evolve.
Past experience is known to shape our current perspectives.
Context shapes and develops the meta programs used.
To create new meta programs we simply focus on new things we want,
but do not as yet have.
This is one thing we can control. In defining the benefits of obtaining something we want. The process of creating the new context is activated. As by doing, you start to develop new behaviour, seeking out answers and installing new meta processes to filter new information.
In essence we are programming ourselves for transition and change.
We hope this article proved to be of interest.
If so please leave a comment below and share.
Thanks for your visit
Reality from reality
Every day we are faced with multitudes of external experiences
which deluge our senses.
How do we manage to deal with and focus on those which are
important and those which are not. This article looks to explain
how we manage this feat using filters to focus on the essentials
and ignore those events which are not essential to us.
As previously covered all life events are external experiences
which we process, categorise and store in our mind. As that
process takes place we add context to the experience based
on what it means to us. If the event is of importance we
may attach an emotional context to the experience.
If the event is something of a trivial inconvenience.
It will receive less context. In this way we build up our
library of experience, and commit a level of importance to
Some of these events become beliefs and truths, some
become conditions by which we make judgments, whilst the
majority are used to as reference points to make decisions
as we move through daily life. This library is in essence our
entire lifetime of experience and learning.
It forms our personal reality.
Our brain has been proven to be limited in the amount of data
it can process at any one time. In order for it to deal with the
incredible amount of data passing through it each day. It
resorts to a series of filters to control the data flow.
Deletions: The first of these is a bit like the rubbish bin on a computer.
The mind simply deletes the data completely. No attempt is
made to process the data after it has passed beyond that moment
Examples of this may be driving, we have an extreme focus on
what is going on at that moment in time. What went before it
no longer has any relevance and is therefore forgotten. Try to
recall every thing from your last driving experience. Chances
are only things which took on some form of relevance will be
Distortions: Here the input is referenced and compared to our
existing knowledge base, however it is altered in such a way as
to fit in with our concept of what it should mean.
Distortion allows us to create, manipulate, and mould the sensory
data into a unique set of ideals.
Which fit into to our own personal model of the world. Is it one
of the main reasons why different people looking at the same
thing, can hold different perspectives on it. We see the same thing,
yet we interpret what we see in different ways
Generalisations: Here the sensory data is once again compared
to our knowledge base. We then make an evaluation of the
data and categorise the experience under a specific label.
That label is accepted as a fact in our sense of reality.
We do this in an effort to simplify the task of categorising
experience, which helps to us make quick decisions in the future.
Without the ability to generalize, it would become extremely hard t
o make decisions based on facts as we see them.
When taken to the extreme they can be the underlying cause of
for some our most serious behaviour and attitude issues.
These then are the main filters used to control the flow of sensory
data through our minds every second of every day. Without
them we would be overwhelmed with sensory data and be
unable to function as we do.
Hope this article proved interesting
All the best
Order from Chaos
As previously stated we live daily life in the now,
we do however have in place a system which allows
to look forward and view the possibilities.
In this article we’ll be looking to understand how
we receive the information provided by our outside
How we process, interpret and colour that information internally.
How the results of that process, will be
reflected in the way we manage our states and
relationships in daily life. All experience is captured
through our five senses, the way we interpret and
encode it will work, on the following principles.
Anything that happens to us which is outside of
our being is considered to be a life event.
It is the raw experience, without any element of meaning.
As the event is processed, we begin to add meaning and interpretation.
These meanings and interpretations will be matched
against the catalogue of our past experience.
New experience compared to old experience,
which when matched, becomes an updated version
of the old experience.
As the process of assimilation takes place, we add
labels to the experience in identify and categorise it.
Moving further emotion is added to the experience,
this further reinforces the the identification of our
associations with the experience. These are the way
we feel about the event.
In adding emotions to the mix, there will a reaction to
those emotions. These can be mental or physical
conditions generated in response to the emotions felt.
In the aftermath of the emotional reaction, the event has
been fully processed and understood.
The outcome or result produced will be the way in which
we choose to react to it.
Lets use a practical example to clarify this further.
The life event is lets say a compliment received for a
service you have provided, or something you have done
well. The sequence runs as follows.
Received compliment: The label or meaning applied could
be one of satisfaction and elevated self esteem at having
the quality recognised and appreciated by others.
The Emotions, generated by this could be feelings of
happiness and increased self worth.
The Reaction, may be a more positive outlook towards
those who issued the compliment.
The Outcomes, could manifest themselves in greater
effort and motivation to do things in a more focused
The example may seem a little trivial or small,
but it simply shows, that a life event is literally
anything that happens in our external world.
We process the events in this manner.
In the next section of this article we’ll be looking at how
we use our minds to process the raw data we receive
from our senses.
Hope you enjoyed this article
All the best
Current and preferred states
These are two identifiable conditions which all of us as
human beings experience everyday of our lives.
These contribute to the way we look at, and live life.
The choices we make and how we follow through on them.
Our reactions and results will be measured by the
responses we take on those outcomes.
We all want to improve the quality of life, to achieve those
goals we set. To obtain the things we want. This is a fantastic,
ideal, but it requires work, and lots of it.
We have these two contending sets of ideals. Which can and
do cause internal conflict. This turmoil can distract our minds
to a massive degree. The confusion which results causes constant
shifts in focus as we struggle to steer a path through life.
This leaves two ways in which we deal with life.
Taking direct and positive control over life to create our desired
outcomes. To get what we want. Alternatively, accepting an
unresponsive and passive form of reality. Where the results
we achieve are a reaction to the experiences we have in life.
To be more simplistic, we take what we want from what life
gives us, or we choose to accept what life throws at us.
We live in what is called a state of Current reality.
This is simply where we are now in life.
Our life, work and social circumstances as they are Now.
This is our life experiences, how we define ourselves,
day to day relationships. Our beliefs and how fulfilled
we are as people.
The vast majority of us inhabit our current reality state dealing
with the experiences that life generates for us. This means we stay
at this level of existence, whilst a preferred state vision may exist.
It never gets fully explored or achieved quite simply due to the
pressures of life.
The second state has a powerful draw which pulls our minds
and stretches our imaginations. This is called the Preferred Reality.
It is basically an ideal future state where we would like to be.
It is here where we look to learn and grow, to see who can we
become. What can be achieved, it’s where our visions and goals
reside. Those that do move forward, have made a decision to
take control by deciding what they want from life.
Creating a plan, taking action steps to achieve that plan.
Whilst constructively dealing with the life experiences they
receive along the way. This requires self discipline and effort
to drive the move forwards. For some this is an easy process,
for others it may require an in depth self analysis.
Combined with a desire to make changes, and the drive to
take focused action.
You are simply taking responsibility for getting the things you want
out of life. Not blindly accepting what life thinks you want
It is not an easy thing to accomplish, for most we don’t like change.
Unfortunately change is a constant factor in life. For most of us
buried in the daily world we fail to notice it’s subtle nuances
until something radical hits us and we are forced to adapt to new circumstances.
That is reactive behaviour.
Those that choose to work at and achieve things they want in life
are actively seeking change. It becomes a requirement by which
they measure life. Thus they embrace it, and accept the responsibility
they take in following this way of living. It is creative behaviour.
It requires developing a certain kind of mindset, some
characteristics of which are listed below
Maturity: Stop making excuses for not doing something.
Instead start taking concerted action steps toward
achieving your goals.
Decisiveness: Life is constantly moving and changing. You decide
where you want it to go next.
Consistency: Taking actions which move you forward in a concise
and focussed manner.
Certainty: The depth of self belief that drives you forward towards
achieving the things you want. Not those provided for you.
As can be seen, we live in the now, how we choose to look at life
and the actions we take. Will define what we as
individuals achieve with our lives.
In the next article I’ll look at how we start to make sense
of the information gathered from our senses.
Hope you enjoyed this article
All the best
Procrastination: is cited as the main cause for people
failing to move forward in their lives. It keeps us stuck
in meaningless drudgery, lack of hope and can incapacitate
our minds.That is one hell of a powerful statement which
unfortunately holds true for many people across the globe.
So basically what is it.
It is the selective decision to focus on an activity which we
enjoy, as opposed to doing something which we don’t want to do.
Basically an avoidance tactic whereby we replace an undesired
task, with a different one. We then use the second task as an
excuse to justify not doing the first.
However, putting off important tasks can lead to very serious
stress issues arising at a later time.
For the purpose of this small article we will be looking at how to
recognise procrastination. Some of the symptoms associated
with it. Some exercises on how to break state when in it and finally
some avoidance tactics to help overcome it.
How to recognise procrastination.
We’ll run four scenarios at you and see if you can recognise where
the procrastination comes into play. A brief explanation follows each.
Here you have a schedule which requires you to accomplish a series
of tasks. For some reason you feel extreme anxiety at having to do
the work. So much so that you start to put these tasks to the back
of your work list. You also begin to do anything else that takes your
mind from these tasks. In so doing your sense of anxiety builds up.
Reaching to the point where making any decision to do the tasks
becomes an issue.
What your seeing is a situation where the perceived pressure of the
tasks, produces a stress reaction. This invokes a delay strategy,
which in essence overwhelms the mind to the point where any form
of action becomes almost impossible to take.
In this case we have a task which needs to be done, yet it is
inconvenient as you are doing other things more interesting.
Consequently the task gets buried under a blanket of distractions.
Where it lies either completely forgotten or it re-emerges as a
major issue which needs to be dealt with urgently.
In this situation we are seeing an avoidance strategy, where the
importance of what we are doing now. No matter how trivial the act.
Takes priority over doing the important task.
Here the task has a specific time by which it needs to be done.
But it can wait as there is no rush, so like the previous example
it gets buried under distraction and forgotten. Only this is the one
which re-emerges to bite us hard.
There also the similar situation, which is the goal or task we have
in mind to accomplish. We approach it with all the good intent in
the world. But for whatever reason we never get around to doing it.
We keep putting it off and it finally gets buried.
Here there is a time factor element that creates a false sense
As such the task gets completed but under serious duress,
or it never gets finished and in many cases never gets started.
Here the task has been worked on and in many cases finished.
However the result is never good enough for individual working
on it. So they keep working until satisfied that it meets their
requirements before being considered as done.
Failing to meet those requirements, can induce serious stress
reactions for these types of individuals.
Having high expectations and constantly criticizing your work.
Can actually lead to you never getting anything finished.
There are many things which trigger procrastination. Unfortunately,
some forms of procrastination can be so ingrained that serious
issues can be present, which inhibit the individuals ability to
change. So professional guidance may be needed. The majority
simply involve changing the way we choose to think about the
The following list shows a few reasons why we procrastinate
See if any of the above can be applied to those examples.
Now we recognise and know what procrastination actually. We
can take control of it.
At it’s absolute basic procrastination is simply choices we make.
Choices which can be changed when required.
Now The following techniques show we can break the patterns
which control our tendencies to procrastinate.
In the majority of cases the answer to avoiding procrastination.
Is to simply take action.
The following series of steps is a good place to begin.
Define the task: Look at the task to understand
what needs doing.
Break the task down: Create small segments.
Create an order of Importance: Prioritise each segment.
Set up a timetable: Create a schedule for each segment.
Choose the environment: Set up a location where the
work is to be done.
Select the timespan: Choose the times where you
can do the work.
Reward Yourself: Treat yourself when the job is done.
Looking at our problems in this way dilutes many of the stress
related issues brought about by problem avoidance. In analysing
the problem we give ourselves options on how to deal with it.
The intent is now there to get the task done.
What do these tasks accomplish: by defining the task we are looking
to see what needs to be done. This opens up an understanding of
the task and takes away some of the issues/fears associated with it.
This examination should also reveal any component pieces in the task.
Various aspects which need to be done before the task is complete.
Assign each component a priority of importance.
This defines the order in which each component is done.
Organise a time frame that each part can be done in.
As an example component one will take 15 minutes to complete,
whilst component 2 may take 10 minutes etc.
Choose the workspace where you can get the work done, where
you are comfortable and will receive no interruptions.
Select the times when you want to actually do the work. If you have
a spare half hour do components one and two. Then do the rest
when you can. This way you spread the work over a time period
of your choosing.
Finally when the work has been done and the task completed.
Give yourself a treat for having got the job done. This kind of
approach can produce some seriously positive results. The more
you do the stronger you become.
PURRRR: This is an acronym for a pattern which
works as in a very similar way.
When you have a pressing task that is causing a stress reaction
and are having difficulty in facing it PAUSE
Stop your desire to procrastinate by refusing to act on the URGES.
Think about what you feel tempted to do to avoid the issue.
Slow down, maybe even write it down. REFLECT
It is not unusual for us to have an internal argument
about the course of action to take Use this self talk
to evaluate your options. REASON
Once the results of your self talk have been thoroughly thought
through. Create an action plan on how your going to move
The best laid plans can occasionally falter, in the event
of this occurrence we may need to revisit our
plan and reassess it. REVISION
These are support frameworks you can build up to help with
identifying issues where procrastination takes place.
However there may be times when you find yourself in moments
of procrastination. The following ideas offer a quick and immediate
The 5 minute plan. This is a simple strategy where you simply try
an activity for five minutes only before moving on to another activity.
What tends to happen is once we focus on one task. It expands to
fill our thoughts and actions. Till we either complete it, or get a
sizeable portion of it done.
The second is the DO IT NOW approach. This is simply
being sufficiently self aware and deciding in
the moment to take action to deal with the issue.
In these ways you create an environment which supports you to
make objective decisions, the motivation to get the work done.
Finally the action attitude to get started on the task which needs doing.
Hope this little article is helpful
All the best
When your looking to achieving anything of worth, we tend to
see either the end result or the big picture. These are great as
an initial motivator to either start something, or for keeping us
pursuing it. However what is often lacking is an understanding
of what will need to be done to get there.
In this brief answer I detail the steps I go through when planning,
creating and setting up a project.
Mind hack 1: Decide exactly what is is you want to do.
Then break the task down into smaller steps. These steps help
define the journey and create the milestones you can use to
measure your progress towards achieving your goal.
Mind hack 2: When each stage has been reached allow yourself
time to enjoy that moment. Congratulate yourself for getting to that
spot. This kind of behaviour conditions the subconscious mind to
associate pleasure in achieving.
Mind hack 3: Do one thing at a time, and focus on that until you
complete that task. This instills the sense of self discipline and
tenacity needed to move forward.
Mind hack 4: Be prepared to adapt your strategy, it may be
necessary to change something or deviate the route your taking
in order to achieve the goal.
This gives us the ability to both analyse the goal and create
solutions to obstacles that may get in the way of us moving forward.
Mind hack 5: Use every form of motivation tool, be they
motivational quotes, visualisation, NLP techniques, mantras,
self hypnosis, meditation etc.
This is your journey. Something you want to bring about in your life.
Give yourself every possible chance to make it happen.
I frequently use this quote as a guide.
Think Big, but don’t forget Small
For through Small, you become Big.
The following link will bring you to an article I wrote about the process I
went through in writing and publishing my first book.
Thank you for reading, all the best with whatever you may be doing.
Enjoy the journey.
All the best
What follows here, is the process as it worked for me.
a goal I had always wanted to achieve.
The goal in question, is one that many aspire to. Write a book
and get it published.
Having no idea how to get this done I started by asking myself
lots of questions to clarify the benefits and possible effects that
may occur in the pursuit of this goal, and found none that would
create any issues.
The next point to decide, was what kind of book
The options that came up were things like
Fact or Fiction
Story or Novel
Long or short
Tutorial or Guide
The subject matter was vast, but it was narrowed down to
Whilst going though this procedure, the idea started to take on
it's own identity. The project eventually became something short,
on a specialized subject which I have a familiarity with.
The result was a short format layout with the subject being music.
With this point established, the next part of the procedure was to
drill down further with more questions about the subject matter.
What areas of music.
The other things which emerged from this particular interrogation
was about the book format.
Text and Illustrations
What resulted was an illustrated/text exercise and teaching guide
on the caged system for guitar.
As can be seen, the goal has been thoroughly examined and broken
down from a vague idea, to a working concept. But there was much
more work to be done. The next step was to start the research,
getting the content that was relevant. Along with a way to present it.
The subject matter was relatively easy to assemble, as it was
something I had worked with on a regular basis. The fun part would
be imparting my own interpretation of the subject matter.
As the project developed, the more ideas seemed to flow. With the
concept fully mapped, the process of bringing it into being commenced.
As it began to take a physical form, the flow of ideas and options
increased. Things such as form, layout and presentation. the project
began to almost generate it's own momentum.
The entire process was worked in two stages
This initially was writing the text sequences, I used several font
styles before finding one that worked for me. Once this was down,
the challenge was in generating the graphics to support it. I used
several ideas and colour schemes, before deciding on the grey black
Here the design work for the page layouts took place. The goal was
to get the graphics aligned with the text in a manner which made the
book easy to follow. There were many experiments in design and
layout before the final mix of graphics and text were married up
into the draft manuscript.
Once the draft was ready, it was time to leave the project for a while.
The idea being to return and review it with a clear mind. This has to
be done in a subjective manner. Once the material had passed scrutiny,
it was time to design the cover artwork. This was relatively simple as
ideas had already come to mind whilst working on the internal
graphics. Once again, this was tweaked and amended until I was
satisfied with the final result.
The next stage was publishing.
There were three options available, all of which had pros and cons.
My criteria for achieving publication was simple. Finance was at a
premium, and the main consideration was to get the book published.
Option One: Publishing House.
As it transpired this was not even an option for me. It involves sending
a copy of the manuscript to the agent for assessment. Then having to
wait for either an acceptance or rejection notice. If the thing was
rejected, then it would have to be sent elsewhere to go through the
entire process again. This would cost time and money, and as stated
my criteria was publication at minimal cost.
Option Two: Printing company.
Here you take your manuscript to a printers and pay for x number of
copies. Which you then sell via an outlet of your choosing.
Once again this involved considerable expenditure and well outside
of my criteria.
Option Three: Online Publishing
Here the resources of an online publishing site are used. The manuscript
is sent electronically. The site produces a proof copy, which you simply check. If it's acceptable. You publish.
The pros are simple, it's easy to use, and has free publishing and
marketing. No storage of hard copies as these are printed and sent
by the publishing site. Authors get a reduced price on hard copy
Cons: You get paid a small royalty on units sold.
This for me fulfilled the criteria perfectly, and was the option chosen.
That then is how the process worked for me, in making that particular
goal come into being, and I hope it provides some insight into how you
can make your own goals a reality.
That simple fact is, that any process leads to a result. However, is it the desired result. Using the example above, this is something which was applied throughout the project. It is simply a case, of continually
assessing the project to make sure the results achieved are in line
with the project criteria.
If not, the process is amended until the results do match the project
criteria. This is a kind of quality control for your goal.
It worked as follows, the concept for the book was a small text and
graphics exercise book. When creating the content, this was used as the guiding principle. So text and graphics were kept simple and direct.
Content which deviated from the concept was either dropped completely,
or adapted to fit. This way the concept requirement was met in full.
This aspect of the monitoring process allows for changes to be made
inline with the concept. Things happen where the results are not as expected or desired.
Therefore changes may have to be made in order to get the right results.
As an example the original graphic designs were coloured.
This had to change when it was found that the cost of printing the hard copy,would be twice as much as it would be in black and white.
Which would have to be reflected in the retail price of the book.
Making the book at least in my mind far to expensive for what it was.
Therefore the graphics were changed to a black white and grey format
to work better with a black and white layout.
Although this meant a massive amount of work in making the changes,
it illustrates perfectly how outside circumstances can have a bearing on your goal. Flexibility in approach, and monitoring the process, allows
issues to be seen early. It frequently enhances the process by throwing
up ideas which help with solutions to those issues.
At the end of all this, was my desired outcome. I published my book.
Which at this current time is my best selling product.
May I wish you well in your writing efforts and hope this little
article provides some guidance and inspiration on your journey
All the best