After decades of both humorous and sad failure attempts to fix broken realities I didn’t like in my own and others’ lives, I think I have finally discovered a simple prescription that I wish I had known about years ago. Many needless broken bones, bleeding and bruises could have been prevented. But isn’t that the way of life—you make the mistakes and get the failure lessons first, before you see the success prescription you should have started with? The only benefit I can see in this particular progress sequence is that you appreciate the success more when it does appear. And by then since most of the failures are mostly memories, I guess that works okay.

Here is the simple success formula I have finally discovered which now makes up my own Reality Repair Rx toolbox. This is the most useful, simple 5 % common sense truth I arrived at after years of wading through the other 95% sea of nonsense. This success formula involves alignment with three main things:

PRIMARY PURPOSE

I think the main mistake I have made in my own life was to focus too much on what I felt my general purpose was for being here in life, rather than the particular purpose of a thing I was trying to do right under my nose in the here and now. Having a severe case of ADHD before there were medications to deal with it probably didn’t help out in this matter. Never-the-less, I have finally figured out that it is a good idea to clarify what fundamental purpose you have for doing something, before you gear up to expect certain outcomes and base your choices of actions on those expectations. It simply doesn’t work that way.

In growing older, I have found myself slower to judge the “rightness” of anything, especially in regards to another person’s purpose in doing something, the way he or she goes about doing it, or the expectations and outcome hoped for. Maybe if you have found the right perspective—seeing your primary purpose for doing or not doing something, clearly, and then align your thinking and efforts with that purpose, you are on your way to improvement and success at achieving that purpose. I know that is a circular definition of “success” but many valuable and useful truths are circular. My only caveat to this idea comes form Stephen Covey, “be careful that you don’t reach the top rung of your ladder only to realize you placed the ladder against the wrong building.” Opps!

PROPER PERSPECTIVE

A very hard lesson to learn is that what you see depends upon where (and when) you are doing the looking from; and if you don’t like what you are seeing, change your vantage point in time or place. It’s very hard to see the finish line when you don’t have the proper perspective or viewpoint, to see what your purpose is clearly enough to start aligning thinking, choices and actions with it. When your finish line keeps moving around, you go in too many different conflicting directions chasing your tail like a Tasmanian Devil and getting nowhere in a hurry.

I have come to realize the best life test to force you to learn the lesson of getting the proper perspective, comes during a very uncomfortable hardship or extreme adversity. It is rather easy to be positive, upbeat and optimistic when things are going well, but retaining that outlook when things start going sideways or south is not easy. That is the real test of your character.

We all have our own brick walls to deal with in life and using the right perspective is the only way to get around, under, over or through the maddening, insurmountable obstacle before us. But unfortunately you have to already have the proper perspective to see that! Another famous catch-22 curve ball thrown at us! The best way to crack this paradox is to slow down long enough to study the connection between your present perspective and how you feel about the results you are or aren’t getting. In the words of Dr. Phil, “How is it working for you?”

“P” POINT PRINCIPLES

A long time ago I discovered the useful concept of psychological power points, or “P” Points for short. These are the little things you can do, with strategic timing and placement, to get the biggest results. Common examples are newspaper headlines and book covers, political sound bytes, music or movie clips, teachable moments with good answers to questions, thinking about your own thinking, and careful listening to maximize understanding and assure the best response.

Collecting and applying “P” Point principles helps you get twice as far with half the effort. You really don’t have to reinvent the entire success wheel as there are already plenty of tried and true success clues available from the experts who have survived and thrived past the many failures we all experience, merely for the asking or reading.

Two of the most important “P” Points you can learn and use are: (1) finding and staying focused on your primary purpose, and (2) maneuvering towards the best perspective with rubber band-like flexibility, to see how to carry out your purpose to get the easiest and best results with the least side effects. Of course another valuable “P” Point is to align all your thinking and efforts in applying these other two reality repair tools to get your desired outcome.

Know your primary purpose, get the proper perspective and apply your own “P” Point principles to be more successful in improving your reality repair efforts and results.

William Cottringer, Ph.D. is President of Puget Sound Security in Bellevue, WA., along with being a Sport Psychologist, Business Success Coach, Photographer and Writer living in the mountains of North Bend. He is author of several business and self-development books, including, “You Can Have Your Cheese & Eat It Too” (Executive Excellence), “The Bow-Wow Secrets” (Wisdom Tree), and “Do What Matters Most” and “P” Point Management” (Atlantic Book Publishers). This article is a brief summary of his new book “Reality Repair Rx.” Bill can be reached for comments or questions at (425) 454-5011 or bcottringer@pssp.net

Author's Bio: 

William Cottringer, Ph.D. is President of Puget Sound Security in Bellevue, WA., along with being a Sport Psychologist, Business Success Coach, Photographer and Writer living in the mountains of North Bend. He is author of several business and self-development books, including, “You Can Have Your Cheese & Eat It Too” (Executive Excellence), “The Bow-Wow Secrets” (Wisdom Tree), and “Do What Matters Most” and “P” Point Management” (Atlantic Book Publishers). This article is a brief summary of his new book “Reality Repair Rx.” Bill can be reached for comments or questions at (425) 454-5011 or bcottringer@pssp.net