Wayne Roland

Wayne Roland,love,wealth,truth,internal wealth,belief







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 (Passages from Internal Wealth: Basic Insights on Quality Living)

Rough and Tumble
One of the most influential books in my life, in terms of my attitude toward life’s struggles, is The Road Less Traveled, written by M. Scott Peck.  The first three words of the first chapter are “life is difficult.”  Once someone can truly understand and accept this fact, when difficulty comes along, it’s not such a surprise, even though the burden may be great.  Scott’s insight holds that some difficulty is understood to be a natural part of life: without negative there can be no positive.  No dark, no light.  You will experience difficult times in the future -- everyone will.  Scott taught me a lot that year, and I’ve faced some hard times.  Then again, who hasn’t? 
All you have to do is watch the history channel to see that the human experience has been everything but what we ideally term “a good life.”  Western culture tends to paint an image of a good life being a pain-free, never-have-to-work, buy-all-you-want, follow every impulse kind of life.  These are common ideas shared by many, but one problem they create is that many people’s daily lives contain at least some discomfort, daily work, ordinary tasks, and rarely if ever, enough of what they want.  We begin with an idea of what a good life is, but the idea is tied to unrealistic goals for the masses, and the small percentile that achieve the goals are still finding that realizing the idea does not equal happiness, satisfaction, or a meaningful life.
With a subtle shift in attitude, it’s possible and valuable to be both receptive to and accepting of difficulty.  One common alternative is to struggle against it.  Struggling against difficulty tends to compound the tension by doubling the struggle: first there is the difficulty itself, and second, the struggle against it.  To struggle against what’s going on is to struggle against life: your life.  Have you ever done any of these? 
·        Yell out angrily against things that should not have been.
·        Blame someone for what was going on.
·        Lament in self-pity.
·        Wonder why something was happening.
·        Explain, complain, whine; you know the drill.
·        Wish something that was happening, wasn’t happening.
Maybe you can think of a few as well.  The insight here is that, if we want to create more harmony in our lives, doesn’t it make sense that we accept more of what’s in our lives?  My friend Art Sutherland recently said, “How can you appreciate where you are if you haven’t been where you’ve been?”  Struggling against what’s going on can take as much energy out of you as just going through the experience itself.  Complaining that something is inconvenient doesn’t make it any less convenient.  The only place a complaint is useful is if it’s being offered to someone who can solve the problem.  Obsessively wondering why things happen is not useful to defining what, in fact is happening and what your responsibility is in responding to the facts that make up your life.  Lamenting over the chore life is, is destructive to life itself.  (Continues in the book.)




Believing Limits


An insight came to me the other day as I listened to a seminar leader talk about “limiting beliefs.”  Maybe you have heard or read this stuff -- much derived from The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale.


The idea encourages you to become aware of the beliefs that limit you:


·       Negative self-talk.

·       Beliefs that hold you back from growing into your full potential.

·       Ideas that you aren’t worth whatever you deserve.

·       Feelings of inadequacy. 

·       The vague mental thought processes that hold you back, but you may not have fully examined, and may not be aware exist.



The speaker went through an exercise that helps uncover limiting beliefs.  Through becoming aware of them, you try to control them so you can re-create your own reality and go on to have all the things you want.  That’s the idea anyway.


See, I had discovered an important insight relating to belief systems.  They limit us.  We’re all limited in some ways.  We like to think we’re not.  It’s more comfortable to think of your self -- of everything as unlimited.  I found paradox in the idea of “no limits.”  I could see that even the people that have mastered influence over their belief systems are also limited.  Not by limiting beliefs, but by belief itself.  Belief can act as a filter from seeing what’s true -- I had seen this happen in my life and had witnessed it in others.  The stronger conviction you have about something, the harder it is to move you from that position, even with glaring facts that point in the opposite direction.


Breaking the Barriers


I had discovered that even the rare breeds that have:


·        Identified their limiting beliefs

·        Honed their reframing ability to think only positive thoughts

·       Controlled their psychological environment

·       Adapted the idea of “unlimited untapped potential”, and so on…


… are still limited … but fulfill more of their potential to understand when they use observation as a tool with which to measure reality by.  You can look throughout history and find that humankind has used beliefs as the primary system to understand and attempt to control his environment.  With the passing of time, we have learned that our beliefs are often different than reality.


The list of beliefs that have stunted our ability to see simple facts is long, but a few that come to mind are:


  • The world is flat
  • If we were meant to fly we'd have wings
  • Nobody can run a four-minute mile
  • The world's resources are inexhaustible
  • All wolves and birds of prey are vermin
  • Everything is relative
  • If I just get                                 then I'll be happy.


Identi-flagration and Normalcy


If you look, you may find that we set up a system long ago in which beliefs explain facts we don’t understand.  Beliefs were formed to explain the mysteries of life.  Facts have been discovered through observation, and what is not understood is explained, in terms of beliefs.  People in history who have continued observing, then describing facts that went against the grain of common belief have been named lunatics, heretics, and blasphemers.  Many have been tortured, killed, or exiled.  That’s the reward for seeing facts first.  Ironically, facts were here long before men were.  We just decided to interpret and judge them using ideas and beliefs to do so.  One problem is that we attach our identities to our beliefs and ideas.  Anyone who challenges the status quo challenges our identity.  Anyone who challenges our identity is in for a fight. Fight with authority and you’re punished.  So the entitled always win.  Or do they? 


(more on this topic in the book.)


Now a question for you.  What if I told you there are some places in life you may not want to pursue advantage?  The next chapter shows how it can actually be dis-advantageous to seek advantages. Check it out.)


Card Holders - The Disadvantages of Seeking Advantage


If you were asked which side you would rather be on, and the only two choices were advantage or disadvantage, which would you choose?  If you were asked whether advantage was a good or bad thing to have, how would you answer?


Seminar junkies pay thousands to learn about gaining “unfair advantages” in business, where leverage is king and facts are filtered to serve the one who win/wins.  Having the upper hand is alluring, and has its rewards, like money, cars, and clothes.  There’s other stuff, too.  Having a physical advantage has been useful for men to dominate the human species for eons.  Intellectual advantage wins in law, sports, and politics daily.  Using sexuality to sell, no matter what sex, is big business in the land of the Card Holders. 


You can see the drive to gain advantage all around you, and in the attitudes of others.  The desire for and belief in the idea that controlling your life is good, drives each of us to vie for position in every interaction, with every person we meet.  This has its advantages.  Still, for every positive there’s a negative of equal proportion, and believe it or not, there are some disadvantages to seeking advantage, in the complex process of living. 




Let’s take a look …


1.) Invulnerability Averts Connection


Humankind naturally desires a mate to share life with.  If intimacy takes shape between mates, both people must be emotionally vulnerable.  Pain is certain any time we are vulnerable.  The willingness to suffer is rare, and can be an accurate gauge for the depth of your caring; about anything or anyone.  Competence requires identifying what in life is worth suffering for.  Intimacy requires attitudes that cut against the mental grain of those who hold the cards.  Attitudes that are honest and innocent.  Sadly, those of us most internally guarded may stand to gain advantages, or at least avoid being hurt.  Still, impenetrable walls of invulnerability retard the chance to offer and receive bonds with others that are meaningful and enduring.  Advantage won’t keep you warm at night.


2.) Sentiment Peddled As Caring


As children, many of us were trained to be good and have right answers.  For this effort, we expect and sometimes receive approbation. This perpetual approval quest promotes societal pretense.  We all want to be accepted by other people, so we’re always assessing what we should do to create that outcome.  I call them “sposeda’s”; doing all the things you’re ‘sposeda’ do.  I discovered, and maybe you have too, that teaching conformity breeds morality and rebellion.  Most of us have built-in contradictions in our ideas of who we should be, and what we feel entitled to.  Disappointment often pervades daily experience when the facts in our lives contradict comforting ideas… like love, for instance.  


Have you ever had someone tell you they love you but then their actions appeared to be different than your idea of love?  Often love is defined by intentions and feelings.  Feelings are fleeting, and intentions are worthless without follow through.  Follow through is found in actions.  Actions are where you find love, especially when it is inconvenient or painful to act in a caring manner; to nurture life even if it doesn’t nurture us back.  To give focused energy in a relaxed context of warm acceptance, even when being ridiculed, criticized, and condemned.  Sentiment can’t pass that test.  Sentiment is pretend caring.  Caring is observed in behaviors, not words. 


3.) Desire to Win Promotes Deceit


Have you ever worked with someone who had decided, “Failure is not an option?”  We all want to win.  I’ve never met someone who wants to lose.  Have you?  Modeling proven habits and attitudes is center to creating desirable outcomes.  Influencing outcomes is important if you’re going to get what you want.  Everybody’s trying to get what they want.  That’s how we define a happy life.  Trouble is, when advantage even looks like it’s going to swing away from us, we tend to omit, ignore, “forget”, and manipulate facts.  We can even believe in our personal integrity as we pretend we didn’t understand past agreements we made that no longer serve us well.  We can feel entitled to nearly anything and still believe in ideas that contradict our actions, all the while controlling outcomes to our own benefit.  Do you have any experience with this dilemma? (You've read this far and haven't ordered yet?  Contact me and I'll send one more chapter.)



Meanwhile, here's an endorsement from the scientific community...


"Wayne Roland's latest book Internal Wealth, offers an approachable,

positive message for personal change. Drawn from motivational concepts

and humanistic psychology, Internal Wealth is written for the general

reader in a fun yet poignant narrative."


 David T. Pfenninger, Ph.D.

CEO - Performance Assessment Network



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