Many of us may struggle with applying some of the things found in The Catalyst of Confidence. That is to say that we struggle with the process of incorporating the lessons into our daily lives. To be sure, we ought to struggle with such things. If we didn't, it's likely that we wouldn't need to change in the first place. One of the more common objections from those who struggle is “I just can't remember to do all this stuff!” Now, no doubt we can say that there is a lot of “stuff” in the book. There are numerous topics, quotes, and questions, and though the chapters are quite condensed, the combination of these things jointly pressing upon us can definitely be overwhelming. So what can a person do who finds it difficult to remember to do “all this stuff”?
It is worth pointing out that this objection includes the word “do” which of course implies action. A given person struggles with remembering to do something. That is, they struggle with remembering to put something they intellectually know into functional practice or action. Now this obviously suggests that they already “intellectually know” what it is they are forgetting to do, they just simply forget to do it. At this point, because they already “know” what they ought to be doing, but forget to do it, we can safely say that a large portion of their battle has already been fought. It is true that the process of application is more difficult, but application cannot happen if a given person doesn't know what it is they need to apply.
Here are some suggestions for those who struggle with “remembering to do” something.
The most common reason people forget to do something—anything for that matter—is because they do not keep it before them. Say at 9:00 A.M. on a given day I were to call my barber and make an appointment to get my hair cut on the same day at 1:00 P.M. In order for me to remember-to-do such a thing, that is, physically go to the location of my barber at the proper time, I must remind myself off and on throughout the morning that I have committed myself to do so. Through this process of reminding-myself-off-and-on-throughout-the-morning I keep the object of my action before me. In other words, I keep it relatively fresh in my conscious mind which naturally helps prevent my forgetting it, which in turn enables me to walk in and greet my barber promptly at 1:00 P.M. that day.
But let us say that at 9:00 A.M. on a given day when I call my barber and make an appointment to get my hair cut, rather than making it for the same day, I make it for five days in advance. Now in order for me to remember-to-do that which I have committed myself to do, I must go about reminding-myself-off-and-on, not for a mere four hours prior, but for a full five days prior to my appointment. Of course it is possible to do this mentally—some people have extraordinary memories and can do so without much conscious effort. But speaking for myself (who tends to forget things of this nature very easily), I would need to work out a basic system for reminding-myself-off-and-on. So what can I do?
Again, the goal here is to “keep the object of that which I have committed myself to do” before me, that is to say, fresh in my conscious mind. In order to do this, I must consider the things I do on a regular basis. For instance, I spend a great deal of time at my desk, particularly on my computer. Knowing this about myself, I decide to take a small blank 3x5 card, fold it in half and proceed to write “hair cut on such-and-such day/time.” I then place the card with the note-side facing me, on my desk beneath my computer monitor, where it is readily visible and where I will see it often. The simple act of keeping this message before me where I will see it often enables me to keep the knowledge of my appointment fresh in my mind and thus allows me to remember my commitment.
Now a person may object, saying that they do not have the convenience to do what I have described. But what I have described can be accomplished through a variety of different ways. Consider taking the same 3x5 card with the written note and, instead of my placing it upon my desk, I opt to place the same note-card in my pants pocket next to my spare change. Whenever I delve into my pocket to pick out a quarter or a nickel or what not, I encounter the note, which serves to remind me of my future commitment and thus enables me to keep it before me and in my conscious mind. Likewise, I could choose to somehow attach the note to my key chain and whenever I use my keys, to unlock a door or drive my car, I am thus reminding myself, again, of my future commitment. In this way, I have developed a system which allows me to remind-myself-off-and-on to keep my appointment.
This same process may be utilized to remind oneself to do nearly anything.
In Lesson III: Goals and Dreams we find the five-step process through which all objectives are realized. The first step is naturally to define what it is that we want to accomplish. But the very next step is to focus on that which we have defined. In other words, without consistent focus, that is, without keeping our objective before us, without keeping it fresh our conscious mind, we will likely forget it and thus fail to accomplish it. If you wish to do something (including remembering to do it), you must focus on it consistently over time.
Another tip which should be of help is to avoid attempting to apply everything at once. Rather, focus on doing or applying one thing at a time, and after you have developed the habit of doing it, move on to something else, and so forth. Attempting to apply “everything at once” will likely result in abject frustration and disdain for the information provided.