BILL HARRIS: Hello. This is Bill Harris, and I want to welcome you to the Masters of the Secret Series. Tonight’s guest is my good friend Jack Canfield. In addition to being one of the stars of the hit DVD movie, The Secret...Jack is the originator and co-creator of the New York Times #1 best-selling book series Chicken Soup for the Soul, which has sold over 100 million copies in 39 languages, the last I heard, but Jack is certainly a lot more than that. He is one of the top self-esteem and success trainers in the world. His new book, The Success Principles, is a runaway best-seller. He does a lot of speaking for corporations and other groups, and the list of major corporations that have had him as a consultant or a speaker is really too long to list here. He has been on Oprah and Fox & Friends, and CNN and countless other television shows and if we gave his whole bio we wouldn’t have time to have a conversation. So, Jack, welcome...I am really happy that you are here today.

JACK CANFIELD: It is always fun to be with you Bill.

BILL HARRIS: Well, thank you for saying that. You know, the first thing that occurs to me as I introduce you, as I have a few times and I just told a few of the things that you have done; the thing that always occurs to me is, and I don’t want to embarrass you by this, but there is something so human and warm about you and so approachable, that it’s almost hard for people to believe that you have had this mega success that you have had. How have you managed to maintain so much humanness in the face of all this success?

JACK CANFIELD: Well, I always say that success or money amplifies who you already are, so if you are someone who is an idiot and you make a lot of money, you can be a really big idiot, but what happened for me was that I spent a lot of time before I was successful working on myself, taking lots of seminars. I think, one year, I think I went to 38 weekend workshops from Gestalt therapy to Transactional Analysis, meditation, yoga, Tai-Chi, you name it and literally did a lot of clearing out of as much of my ego and as much of my self-defeating behaviors, etc., that I could. So, by the time I was successful, I don’t feel like I am any different now than I was when I became successful, other than I have a lot more money and a lot more influence.

BILL HARRIS: Exactly, and you know, that is the same thing that has occurred to me as I have become more successful, is the influence it gives me really gives me an opportunity to do something good for the world and I like being in that position, and I am sure you do too.

JACK CANFIELD: I love it. I mean we give away some years millions, some years hundreds of thousands of dollars to causes that we care about. I am able to open doors and get audiences with people. I remember one year I was invited to speak to all the women members of congress and the state legislatures, and the women governors over in Hawaii. They had a big convention and I said “What do you want me to talk about?” And they said “Whatever you would like us to know.” So I got to give my agenda for the nation to all the female legislators. I mean, what a kick.

BILL HARRIS: Yeah, I know. That reminds me of when I was asked to speak at the United Nations and got to speak to a lot of influential people there. It’s really, and I am amazed, I would imagine you would feel that way too. I don’t feel any different now then when I was making $30,000 a year.

JACK CANFIELD: No, I don’t. I mean, I have a bigger house and more clothes and a nice car and I can take my kids anywhere in the world that I want to take them. We were just talking before we got on this call about how I just spent two weeks in Hawaii in a house on the beach and the year before that we were in Bali and next year we are going to India, and so forth. So, I get to do that kind of thing, which I think is neat. I get to get really great medical care and eat organic foods, and all that. But other than that, life goes on. You have to have some kind of driving vision or purpose that makes you get up in the morning and for me it has always been about empowering other people to live their dreams and then teaching other people how to teach that to others. So, one of my big initiatives is educating educators, teachers, in the high schools and middle schools of America to teach kids to believe in themselves. There is such low self-esteem in so many parts of our country. We have been watching the whole thing that’s been going in Louisiana with the hurricanes and you see so many people at the bottom end of the economic ladder who just don’t feel very empowered and my goal is to continue to help people become empowered so that they can have a future they want.

BILL HARRIS: You know, there have been a number of times in my teaching where I will give an example of some successful person and I get letters back from people saying “Well, yeah, it is okay for you to talk about Napoleon Hill or JACK CANFIELD, or some other super successful person,” but they don’t relate to it somehow. It is like someone that’s really successful is so far away from where they are that it seems unreal to them. So, it’s sort of occurring to me as I say this, that maybe we can do something as we talk here to help bridge that gap for people.

JACK CANFIELD: I know for me that there is a concept in psychology about gradients and if you go too far above gradient, people can’t relate. The example would be if you are making $50,000 a year and someone says I can teach you how to make $100,000, that seems real, but if someone says I can teach you how to make a million, that seems so far away it is hard to believe, but if you are making $500,000 and someone says you can make a million, then it feels real. For me, only 20 years ago, I was making $50,000 a year and then the next year I might have made $60,000 and then $75,000 and then $100,000 and then $140,000 and then $300,000 and $400,000, so it is kind of like watching your own children grow. They do not look like they are getting bigger, but if you see someone you haven’t seen for three years and they go from 11 to 14, they have gained like 2 feet and you can hardly believe they have grown that much. So, what you have to do, is keep looking at what’s in front of you and doing that. When I set out to write a bestselling book, Chicken Soup for the Soul, I didn’t think it was going to sell 8 million copies around the world. thought it might sell a million, which was our goal, and as a result of that, we sold a million and we thought about what about making 4 million? Then, one day we were sitting there and we had sold about 50 million books, and we said let’s sell a billion books. Well, if you had told me let’s sell a billion books when I did the first Chicken Soup book, I would have told you that you were crazy. So, I think the main thing is to keep the horizon ahead of you always a little higher than what you are and keep looking toward that which you want to create and eventually, you find yourself standing on top of a mountain because you took one step at a time.

BILL HARRIS: Yeah, I really relate to that. When I started Centerpointe, I was making about $30,000 a year and I thought wow, if I could make another $30,000 I would really be in clover. And, I wrote out a goal then that was much higher than that, more than 10 times higher than that and my hand was shaking as I wrote it out, because it seemed ridiculous to me, because it was over that gradient. And, things just sort of went little by little until it kind of hit a place where it kind of started to grow geometrically. It took me a little while to get used to the idea that I could really make it really big, and then you and I met in this Strategic Coach that Dan Sullivan has created and Dan floated the idea of making your business 10 times bigger than it was, and when he said that, I said, “Well, yeah, why not?” Whereas, several years before that, it would have just seemed out of reach for me to do something like that.

JACK CANFIELD: Well, as you remember, one of the things that Dan said that really made it believable for me, he said take what you are making now and I think at that time I was making several million dollars a year, and he said go back to when you were making 10 times less, so that would have been $200,000 a year. He said when you were making $200,000 if anyone had told you that you could make 2 million, would you believe him. I said inside, no I wouldn’t have. He said but you did, didn’t you. So, if you couldn’t believe that and you made it, imagine now where you are and multiply that by 10 and realize you can, because you have already done it. You have already done a 10 times multiplier of your income and that made it reasonable to me that I could do that.

BILL HARRIS: Well and that is the way I felt too. I thought, gee I did this once before, I was 10 times less and I did it, and certainly other people have done it. One of the things that I say to myself a lot is if somebody else has done it, it must be doable and if they can do it then I can do it too. That belief has really propelled me a lot of times to create things that at first would have seemed out of reach.

JACK CANFIELD: That is really what happened with us in Chicken Soup for the Soul. Mark and I, when we wrote the first book, we said, “Okay who’s already done what we want to do, which is have a best selling book in the nonfiction world?” And instantly came to mind John Gray with Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus, Scott Peck with The Road Less Traveled, Ken Blanchard with The One-Minute Manager, and you know, we listed about 10 people. Then we said, “Let’s call them up and find out what they did.” We interviewed each one of them for about an hour. They were very gracious to give us their time and we started looking for patterns. One of the patterns is that they did a radio interview every single day for a year. So, we said “If that is what it takes, we will do that.” Scott Peck, whose book The Road Less Traveled, was on the best-seller list for 12 years. I think that is a Guinness Book world record. It was over 600 weeks. What happens is we found out he did three radio interviews every day for a year and then one a day for the next 11 years, every single day, including Sundays. He said, “I am a minister and I go to church on Sunday.” He is a lay-minister, but he said he would still do an interview in the morning or later in the afternoon. So, we said “Okay, if that is what it takes we will do it.” So we did the same thing, and sure enough a year and a half later, our book was number one on the best-seller list.

BILL HARRIS: You know, you have hit on of course, one of the success principles you teach, which is to find other people that have already done what you have done and to model what they have done and that is something that I have always done and it was kind of a revelation to me. I think it was maybe when I was 35 or something where I finally realized that most people don’t do that. It just seemed like common sense to me. When I wanted to become a pilot I went and I found the best flying instructor I could find and tried to figure out the best way to learn to become a pilot. When I wanted to become a musician, I did the same thing. When I wanted to learn how to do marketing, which has been one of the reasons that Centerpointe has been so successful, I found the best marketers and I learned what they had done. Why do you think most people don’t do this? They just don’t know?

JACK CANFIELD: I think there are several things going on. Number one, I think they do not feel like they deserve it. Number two, they probably feel like, “Why would the best person in the world talk to me?” And what I found is that most of the best people in the world are great teachers and they are really magnanimous. There are a few who aren’t and you are going to get rejections, no question, but if it only takes 10 questions to get one yes, why not ask and Mark and I wrote a book called The Aladdin Factor: How To Get Everything You Ask For and basically we found that there are some world-class askers out there and again, we went and interviewed over 50 of them from Mother Teresa, on down to a guy who always buys everything wholesale and never pays retail. We said, “How do you do it?” As a result, we began looking at why don’t people ask and one of the things we came up with is fear of rejection, a sense that you are not worthy and a feeling that you do not deserve to have it. Some of it is conditioning. I am dealing with this with my step-daughter actually right now because she did not grow up with me in her formative years. She is now 11 and she has been with me about the last four years. I said to her the other day, “You know it is time for you to have your own computer.” And she said, “Oh no, I do not want you to waste money on me like that.” I said, “What do you mean?” She said “Well we have a computer in the kitchen.” I told her it was her mom’s computer and you need to do homework now. She is in the 6th grade and they have to type their homework. I said “Sometimes your mom is going to be on the computer and you won’t have access to it and you like to instant message your friends, and you will be able to go to Google and do all the stuff” and she said “Well, I better ask my dad, he might be mad”. I was looking at there is this whole thing that she has grown up with that it is not okay to have the best stuff because I think they couldn’t afford the best stuff, so therefore the fear was in the family that if the kids want the best stuff, we can’t afford it, so you have to learn to settle for second best. After a while, you don’t think you deserve first best.

BILL HARRIS: So, I am assuming that in your self-esteem seminars that you do, you deal with this.

JACK CANFIELD: Yes, we deal with the idea that you deserve to have anything that the universe has to offer, as long as you don’t hurt other people in the process of getting it. I believe it is an abundant universe. I believe there is enough for everybody. I think it needs to be distributed more equally and the reason people hoard, is that they do not think there is enough. So, it goes back to creating the illusion there is not enough, but the fact is we have plenty of everything that is really important. The most important things, you know are not things. It is love, the ability to express your creativity, the opportunity to both give and receive love, to feel confident, to make a difference in the world and to give and receive hugs, and all that. That does not cost any money, but there are also plenty of material things to go around as well.

BILL HARRIS: Well, you know, my view is that the reason that someone would feel undeserving is because in some way they have been traumatized. What you described about your step-daughter’s upbringing is a form of trauma. Being told those things and taught those things and being treated in a way as if you didn’t deserve the best. When people are traumatized, they develop a generalization about the world that it is a dangerous place, or at least a potentially dangerous place and that they have to watch out for that danger in order to avoid it and as you know, when you focus on what you don’t want, what you want to avoid, your brain doesn’t know that you want to avoid it. It just knows that you are focusing on it and then it figures out a way for you to get it and in a way, by her telling you “Don’t spend money on me”, she was doing what she needed to do to try to make that come true in that situation, as it had been in previous situations in her life.

JACK CANFIELD: Absolutely.

BILL HARRIS: So, what exactly do you do in the self-esteem seminar to move people to a place where they do feel deserving? You can’t just tell them “you are deserving” and hope they believe you.

JACK CANFIELD: Well, you can go back and as you said, you can find where the original decision gets created. It is usually an event, as you said, that is a traumatic event, a highly emotional event. As you and I know from all the brain research we have done, that when you make a decision, when your brain is flooded with the nutrients and the chemicals that are secreted under a highly emotional charge. Those memories get locked in at a much deeper level. Everyone knows where they were when 9/11 happened, when President Kennedy was shot, etc., because it was such a traumatic event, and then if you get repetition, which we did, we saw those things over and over, if you have a traumatic event and then it is reinforced by your parents, or peers, or whatever over and over, it becomes almost like an unquestioned belief about the world, so we will go back through a process of closed eye processes and help people identify when they made those decisions and then bring in a wise being, which represents the higher consciousness of their own self to re-decide a higher, a better decision, and to also heal that memory. There are a number of things you can do. You can imagine having the ideal parents, we call that resourcing. You know yourself because the brain does not know the difference between a real event and an imagined event, therefore you can actually put new memories in the brain and if you will, crowd out the old negative ones.

BILL HARRIS: Well, my assistant Katie went to your most recent seminar and we almost had to tie her to her chair when she got back to keep her from spending all her time proselytizing to all the other employees about how wonderful you were and how wonderful the training was and she was on cloud 9.

JACK CANFIELD: That is great.

BILL HARRIS: So, I thank you for what you did for her and I am sure you did for the other people too. I know you are still working on more Chicken Soup for the Soul books. I know that is still going on, but other than that, what’s your latest vision for where you want to go?

JACK CANFIELD: I am looking at a couple of things Bill. One is I am exploring with a major television network doing a talk show. It would be a talk show along the lines of an Oprah type show, but we would be focusing primarily on inspiring people and empowering them through the guests that come on to go for their dreams. We might have people on that started a business at home, or the first female NASCAR driver. It will be primarily a female audience in the daytime, so we will focus more on that and we will reach millions of people. Whereas, now when I talk, you know I might talk to an audience of 1, 2, 3, 4 thousand people. This would allow me to talk to millions a day five days a week and just reach more people. The other thing I am doing, I am starting a new division of my company with the training division to go into corporations and do even deeper work than we have been doing up to this time with a number of people that you know, like Marsha Martin and Stewart Emery and so forth. So those are the two big initiatives, and then also we are developing a coaching program. We have an online program we’re developing and we are also developing a tele-coaching course that will probably both be available starting in January. So, those are the big things and then lastly, I am looking at doing a book around the topic of effortless success, you know the idea that we are all working harder than we need to to achieve what we want. It is more about consciousness than it is about effort and it can be more graceful and easier. Those are the big things that are exciting me at the moment.

BILL HARRIS: Well, you know, as you were describing the talk show, for instance, I was thinking that is a pretty big goal. You know, to speak to millions of people and I was sitting at my desk a couple of years ago I guess it was now and thinking, ”Okay, how can I take Centerpointe to the next level? What do I need to do to expand the number of people who know about Holosync® and are using it and benefitting from it?” And, I tend to ask myself a lot of questions. That is the way I get information really. I ask the question and then one way or another, the information comes to me to answer the question. Very quickly after asking that question, I thought what I need to do is get to know all of the big centers of influence, particularly in personal growth, so that they can get on board knowing how wonderful Holosync is and what it does. Well, it was not very long at all before you invited me to be in this Transformational Leadership Council group and several other things like that, some things that Marshall Thurber is doing and some other things came to me, just sort of almost fell into my lap. It is just like you say. It was really an effortless type of thing and since I had that idea, I would say that at least 25 major centers of influence have started using Holosync and promoting it to the people that they are influential around. So, that’s just an example from my life of the way it can be effortless if you know how to focus your mind in the right way.

JACK CANFIELD: That is so true. An example out of my life is when my book, The Success Principles: How To Get From Where You Are To Where You Want To Be came up, I was thinking I need to get national televison exposure, and it either has to be Oprah or The Today Show and that is a one time thing. How do I get constant exposure that goes on over time? Not everyone watches those shows every day. I kept visualizing it, not knowing how. I did not have the money to go out and buy 40 million dollars worth of advertising, but we got, I think about 30 days later, we got an email addressed to info@jackcanfield. com not even to like my name or address. It was Carlton Sheets, who does the “No Money Down Real Estate” programs and he was asking if I would come on and do an introduction for his 20th anniversary infomercial, which he was going to buy $40 million worth of air time to promote. I said, “You betcha”. Because it was going to have me and mention my book and all that stuff and be in markets all over America all the time and creating brand recognition for the book and for myself, and so forth. That one just came out of the blue, we could call it, but the fact is I believe I created that by just simply focusing what I wanted, which was television exposure.

BILL HARRIS: Yeah, the big struggle for me, I am writing an article right now for our next issue of our newsletter, Mind Chatter, and I have taken a few quotes out of some letters people have sent me and I am talking about kind of what I see in each of these people that is causing them to write me about how miserable their life is and in every case, it’s that they are focusing on what they do not want, pretty much automatically on autopilot, and not focusing on what they want, and in some cases, they even claim to not know what they want, so I really continually tell people that I think really the key to everything is what you focus your mind on and most people don’t understand how powerful their mind is and that they are already manifesting exactly what they are focusing on.

JACK CANFIELD: Yeah, as I always say to my students, if you want to know what you are thinking, look at what you are creating around you and what you thought in the past is creating your current reality, and if you want your future to be different, you have to create different thoughts, because what you are currently doing will only produce what you are currently getting and that’s what most people don’t realize. They keep re-creating the same reality over and over and they think they are stuck, but the fact is they are sticking themselves by maintaining the same habits of thought and imagery, and behavior and it’s not easy to change without some kind of external support, because we are basically habit-driven people and we get so habitual we are in a trance and it takes a coach or a book, or a program like Holosync or a training like mine or yours to break people out of that, to kind of almost shake them awake and then give them the tools of repetition that your programs do and my programs do, take them to deeper levels of consciousness where they can think a higher level thought and expose themselves to the deeper creativity that already exists inside of them, but they are numbed out to, so that they can, as you said, create a better life with less effort.

BILL HARRIS: You know, one of the things that I have noticed and I know you have noticed this too is that people will go to a seminar or training and they will leave with “seminar high” and they have the best of intentions then for going out and creating whatever it is that they want, but then within a short period of time, a week or so, their old habit of focusing on what they don’t want most of the time reasserts itself and that whole intention that they had kind of goes away and it seems to me that a good seminar is one in which the seminar leader manages to get the people that are at the seminar to focus on what they want, but a great seminar is one that manages to get people to continue to focus on what they want after they leave and I think that is one of the things about your work that makes it stand head and shoulders higher than a lot of other people, is because I think you are able to do that. Can you give some explanation of how you try to make this more permanent?

JACK CANFIELD: Sure, I think one of the things that we do that’s unusual is that we provide people with a mastermind group, or a set of what we call accountability partners so that as you leave the seminar, it is kind of like everyone makes New Year’s resolutions to exercise. It’s much easier to keep them if you sign up for a gym and you have a partner you are going to go with and a coach you are going to meet when you get there, because

A lot of people feel like there are no options. They have no

alternative scenarios that they can play out and again, we are looking at many people at the bottom end of the socioeconomic ladder, many of whom did not complete school, etc., so we go back to lack of awareness and lack of education. I think it is a great wake up call for society to see how many people really are in that situation.

then you have people saying “come on, lets go, lets get in our suit, lets do 50 pushups”, whatever and you know on our own, we would tend to fall away from that. We teach people how to create and maintain a support system that keeps them focused on their goals. We also teach them a set of habits that we expect them to do for a minimum of 40 days, because research shows if you keep something going for 40 days, you are more than likely to keep it going and then we also encourage them to keep it going for a whole quarter to three months if they really want to be sure, so what happens is, things like the mirror exercise, where every night at the end of the day before they go to bed, they look in the mirror and out loud they talk to themselves and appreciate themselves for everything they did that day. What that does over a 40day period, is it creates a habit of self-affirmation, self-validation, focusing on what you did do rather than what you didn’t do, so it creates some new mental habits. Everyone leaves with a set of affirmations, which they put on 3 x 5 cards or put on their screen saver that they have to read every day. We ask them to do that for an entire year, then once a week they are talking to their mastermind group. I recommend that people hire a coach and study with the best, as you know, and that’s why you and I are both creating coaching programs. One of my friends said that training without coaching is entertainment and I think there is a certain truth in that because a lot of people can relate to going and getting that training high you talked about and then a month later it was like they were never there.

Once we get the breakthrough, we need to sustain it, so it is like teaching a kid. You don’t expect them with one intervention to develop a new habit, like keeping their elbows off the table or chewing with their mouth closed, or going to bed on time, or studying with the radio off, but if you reinforce that over and over and over for days and months, eventually they internalize it and it becomes a habit and what I am looking to do is create what I call habits of success and disciplines of success that become second nature. When you have that and have developed four a year, as Dan Sullivan taught you and I, at the end of 10 years, you have 40 new success habits and you are home free.

BILL HARRIS: Absolutely, and you know this whole idea of holding people by the hand until they really make it a habit is why I answer, you know, you and I have talked before about how many emails I answer and all the people in my online courses have unlimited email access to me and many times in different clothing, they keep asking me the same question and sometimes I have to answer it ten times before they really get the principle I am talking about, and sometimes it is 20 times, but eventually they go “Oh, I get it, I can generalize this to other situations, and I do not have to keep asking this.” So, I agree, I think that is a really important part of this is somehow supporting people while they are in that transition period. I wanted to ask you, I know that one of your mentors was W. Clement Stone, who some people probably recognize that name who are listening, but W. Clement Stone co-wrote a book with Napoleon Hill, Success Through a Positive Mental Attitude and was a multi, multi, multi millionaire. Was he a billionaire?

JACK CANFIELD: Well, when I knew him, he was worth $600 million and that was in his 60s, so if you were to amortize that out today as dollars, he was a billionaire, yes.

BILL HARRIS: In today’s money he certainly was.


BILL HARRIS: So, what was it like being around W. Clement Stone?

JACK CANFIELD: It was quite exciting. He was always positive, I mean to a fault. You just began to question was he normal. But he wasn’t and that was his strength. I mean, he literally believed the world was plotting to do him good. We used to call him an inverse paranoid. Literally. I mean, I think he is the guy who coined the phrase, I have been told this and I believe it, “If life hands you a lemon squeeze it and make lemonade”, which was kind of a more common way of Napoleon Hill’s statement, which was “inside of every negative event is the seed of an equal or greater benefit” and he would always believe that. I mean people came in to rip him off and they would be so...he had a foundation when I worked for him where he gave away a lot of money and some people just came to see if they could scam him for the money and by the time they left, they were so impressed with the idea that he really believed that he thought they could do something legitimate that the would go out and do it and he was a character. He was a genius trainer. He trained people not by words, but by actions, by taking them out, modeling for them what good sales looked like. He was in the insurance industry. He would go in and he would sell someone with a new recruit watching and then he would say, “Okay what did you see me do?” They would tell him and he would say that they missed three things and here is what they are. Next time we go in, just watch for those three things and he would take the person back, have another cup of coffee and say did you see those three things. They would say yes, so they would be walking into the next one and just inside the door, he would say this one is yours and the guy would freak, but he would say come on do it. So, he would do it and probably miss three things and then they would go out for coffee and he would say what did you miss? If they knew, great, if they did not, he would tell them and then he would go and do those three things perfectly for them again. By the end of the day he had a perfect salesmen. They were confident and they knew what to do and he trained hundreds of people that way and built a huge insurance industry and eventually taught his training techniques to others that do it. So, he was truly a gifted genius.

BILL HARRIS: Well that book, Success Through a Positive Mental Attitude was really influential in my life and so when I learned a few years ago that you knew him and worked with him, I have always wanted to ask you a little bit more, any other anecdotes about him that are worth sharing?

JACK CANFIELD: Well, I remember one day, we were in his office and he went over to the side of his desk and he just inadvertently, we thought, knocked a book on the floor. He kept talking and eventually he said “None of you are listening, are you?” and we said no. And he asked, “Why not?” We said, “Because we are wondering if you are going to pick the book up off the floor.” He said, “You have to be very careful about leaving people incomplete. They always want completion.” And I know today in NLP, they talk about closing loops and all that and you can probably speak more effectively about that, but he was kind of a natural psychologist who just understood everything and he was a great philanthropist. He gave away millions and millions of dollars and one of the nice things about working with the foundation is we get a buzz on the phone and someone from the Stone Office would say he just bought 100 tickets to the such and such ball. You are all welcome to go for free if you want, so we went to some of the most amazing events in Chicago for free when I was in my early 20s. I was just amazed. He always, you know you would see him and you would say how are you doing? TERRIFIC!! The only answer that was appropriate was terrific and at first, it felt phoney to me, but after a while, if you say it long enough, things really are terrific, so you have to go through that stage almost of not believing a technique will work until it does and then all of a sudden you go, wow that is not faking it. If you make it, that really works.

BILL HARRIS: Well, I actually have a lot of people who when I talk to them about focusing on what you want, they will write me and say, “I tried this focusing on what I want, but I feel like such a phoney because while I am sitting there thinking about what I want to be, I know that I am a loser and that I am this, and I am that,” and then I get a chance for the second time to explain the principle to them, taking into account that misperception and with the people that stick with me and keep coming back to me with all their objections, pretty soon I cover every objection they can think of and they pretty much don’t have any choice but to start focusing on what they want.

JACK CANFIELD: Right, well you know one of the things that one of my mentors once said is that we give way too much credence to reality. Reality is simply something we created and as long as you realize you are a creator and we are all made in the image of the creator, if you believe any of the great religious texts in the world, then what happens is, the reality we are currently living with is simply one we created, so we get to either focus on that and have more of it, or focus on the reality we want and create that. Most people think that statistics say that 80% of marriages end in divorce, therefore I have an 8 in 10 chance. So, that is what they start to believe and sure enough, they create it, as opposed to saying well that is just a statistic of what got created in the past. I am different, we know more, etc... I am going to create it my way and that is what you do every day, that is what I do every day and it is what all of us that are teaching this stuff do. It is why we are the teachers, because we live it.

BILL HARRIS: It is really a challenge for people when they are going in the direction where they are focusing a lot on what they don’t want and getting it, to believe they are actually doing that and part of that is that they are really unconscious about what they are doing inside that is creating the reality. A lot of what I do is I try to show them that unconscious process so that they can go “oh.” So they start looking inside their own head, and noticing what they are doing and the effect that it has. You know, most people know intellectually that people that have been in personal growth, they know that beliefs manifest themselves in reality. But until someone actually looks inside their own head and watches a belief create a certain reality, they don’t really know it on an experiential level. It is just information and I see people all the time who nod and smile as someone like you or someone like me, or some of the other people we know express a certain basic principle. Then, I see them and the group takes a break and I see them violating them two minutes after they were nodding their head about them.

JACK CANFIELD: Well, you and I know that information is not enough to change behavior and that it takes an experience. That is what Moishe Feldenkrais taught us with his bodywork and when the body and the mind experiences something better, it naturally goes toward that. I mean, if you slept in a heavenly bed in a Westin Hotel, you come home to your crappy bed, you think “I would rather have that other bed.” So, basically, we will tend to move toward that which we have experienced as better. So, I think what I do in my workshops anyway, is to give people seven days of experiencing what it is like to live in a constantly positive, loving, self-affirming, responsibility-taking, goal-seeking, reinforcing environment and as people do that, it begins to become internalized and if we give them the tools to practice, they continue it. I think the other thing that I would say why I love meditation so much, and for years I practiced a form called Vipassana, which is a Buddhist technique of watching not just your thoughts, but any sensation. Wherever your awareness goes, you watch your thoughts for 10 days in a row on a retreat and you become pretty clear that most of it sucks. It is really negative, so you begin to become conscious and intentional about it. Most of us are so out of awareness, we are not even aware we are thinking. So, the concept of meditation day after day, after day and learning to be in the witness position and the observer and then beginning to realize, wait a second, just because a thought comes through, I do not have to get on that boat and go down that river. I can let it go by and I can now choose to think a more conscious thought. One of my teachers says that it’s only, that our highest goal is how we feel. Our feelings are created by our thoughts. So, we are not feeling well, we are not getting what we want and the only question to ask is, “what thought would make me feel better? What thought would take me closer to my goal?”

BILL HARRIS: Yeah, I think awareness is really kind of the bedrock of the whole thing. One of the things that I teach is that you can only create something that does not serve you if you do it unconsciously. If you really watch the creation of something that is harmful to you, watch what you are doing inside to create it. You really cannot finish creating it. So, as long as people stay unconcisous, they can keep doing the same terrible stuff to themselves for their whole life, but once they have that kind of awareness, and Vipassana is certainly one way to do it. People do it in a really accelerated way when they use Holosync every day.

JACK CANFIELD: Oh yeah, you know, I mentioned this was years ago. I use your Holosync tapes now and they are fabulous, but when I started I went to a 10-day retreat and I came out and I could not believe how different my life was.

BILL HARRIS: Oh yeah, Vipassana is great.

JACK CANFIELD: You get letters every day about how different people’s lives are from Holosync. Absolutely.

BILL HARRIS: Yeah, when you pay attention to what is going on in your head, you suddenly begin to make the connections between what is going on in your head and what is being created in reality, and that is big. In fact, I think that is, and I was going to ask you, there are 60 or so success principles that you have in your book, The Success Principles, I was going to ask you what you thought was the most fundamental principle, but I will just say that to me, the most fundamental thing is awareness. Once you have awareness, everything just falls into place.

JACK CANFIELD: No, it’s true. My first chapter is on responsibility. Take 100% responsibility for your life and you are accurate, because I used to teach this, that you can’t take responsibility for that which you are not aware of. In other words, if I am standing on your foot and I am not aware of it, and at some level, I am not going to change my behavior, but as soon as you say “hey, you are standing on my foot,” and I become aware of it, now I have a choice. I didn’t have a choice before. Now I have a choice, either keep standing there or get off. So, people are doing all kinds of self-destructive behaviors. They are not even aware that their thoughts are creating it. They are not aware that certain ways they interact with people make people pull away from them. They are not aware that the way they interact with money makes them have less of it instead of more of it, so every area where you can increase your awareness, you increase choice. That is why I love to read books. I have learned a lot about finances and leadership, things I wasn’t aware of until I read them and then when I reflected on them and applied them to my own life, it made a huge difference.

BILL HARRIS: So, would you say then that this taking total responsibility for what you create is the most fundamental principle?

JACK CANFIELD: Well, you know, I put it in my book first because I think it is, but I would go back and I would have to concede to what you just said, that you have to be aware. If you are not aware you are responsible, then you cannot take responsibility. The first thing is that you have to become aware of these principles. There are universal laws and universal principles that have been codified in religion and have been codified in psychology, N.L.P., you know all the different practices that exist in the world and if you study them and learn them and then you act in accordance with them, I mean just for example, if you save 10% of every dollar you make or are given, you cannot help but end up wealthy, even if you only make $25,000 a year, you will be a millionaire by the time you are 65 if you invested in any even conservative stock market portfolio, or real estate, or whatever. So, that’s something I never learned until I was in my 40’s. No one taught it to me.

BILL HARRIS: Yeah, the miracle of compounding.

JACK CANFIELD: Exactly. So, there are laws like that, like you know the law of reciprocity, you know, what you give out, you get back. There is a law called probability. The more things you try, the more likely one of them will work. The more books you read, the more likely one of them will change your life. The more of these kind of calls you listen to, the more likely you will hear something that will improve your relationship, so the idea of abundant research, abundant exposure to new ideas increases the probability that something will happen that’s good. So, I mean, there are all of these universal laws that if you know them, and you are aware of them then you can utilize them. If you are not aware of them, then you know, you get the negative benefit if you will. They still work, they just work against you because you are focusing on the negative and so on and so forth.

BILL HARRIS: You know, I would like your thoughts on something else that just occurred to me too. One of the things that happens quite often when you first give people a glimpse of how they are creating their reality, particularly if they are creating something that is unpleasant for them and doing it, you know, chronically, they feel ashamed of themselves. They feel like they are stupid for having done this, or even they go into denial about it because they don’t want to admit that they have been creating it. Somehow, they take the fact that they are creating something negative to be a commentary about who they are as a person, rather than just that they had the wrong strategy.

JACK CANFIELD: Well, when we were growing up, we all learned unfortunately, I think, that when you got caught doing something wrong you got punished and it meant you were a bad person, go to your room, you are grounded for a week, whatever. So, we learn to avoid getting caught and so unfortunately, we have applied that to self-awareness, you know catching ourselves doing self-destructive behavior. I used to do parenting workshops and I used to have to always say in the beginning, “Look, I am going to teach you lots of ways that parents unconsciously destroy the self-esteem of their children and I am going to teach you lots of ways to stop it and I am going to teach you ways to consciously enhance the self-esteem of your child.” You have a choice, you can either feel bad that you have been doing this stuff, or you can celebrate that you are now realizing that you don’t have to do it any more. So, I teach people to celebrate the new awareness and let’s start creating it the way you want it. Don’t beat yourself up for how you used to do it, because I believe that one of my great teachers said once, “You are always doing the best you can with the awareness, skills and resources you have and you always did.” Literally, if you could have done better, you would have, but you were missing some awareness. You were missing some skill. You were missing some resource, but now you have a new awareness, you have a new skill, you have a new resource, so now you can do better and people almost always choose to do better when they can. So, we never blame people for the past, we simply say “you were doing the best you could with the awareness, skills, and resources that you had. Now you have new resources, let’s do better.”

BILL HARRIS: Yeah, you know, I used to always tell people how they were unconsciously creating their reality and then it occurred to me to add that they were creating it unconsciously and unintentionally because no one would intentionally create poverty for themselves or create feeling bad a lot or create being lonely and alone, things like that. No one would intentionally do that.

JACK CANFIELD: No, people are always attempting to do that which they think will make themselves feel better. A gang member on a street in southern LA, who is robbing a 7-11 store is doing it because he thinks it’s going to make him feel better. He is going to have money, he is going to have respect of his gang, etc. The problem is, he does not have the same awareness of ethical training that you and I have. He doesn’t have the same skills that he might have not gotten in school because he was dyslexic or dropped out, or got kicked out, or his parents were coked out, so he has some brain damage, or whatever. In other words, he is doing the best he can to meet basic psychological and physical needs and when we give that child better skills and resources and awarenesses, through education and rehabilitation, they will choose to do better, but we cannot expect them to do better, ourselves or anyone else, unless they have new skills, resources or tools.

BILL HARRIS: Well, and when you look around you in your community, whatever that is in your life and you don’t see very many different options, then perhaps robbing a store looks like one of the better options.

JACK CANFIELD: Yeah, and for some people it may be the only option that presents them with the solution to their problem. Unfortunately, our society is not very good, especially in our inner city and urban schools, in really empowering kids with the tools they need, whether it’s the Holosync awareness or whether it is the kind of things I teach on success principles to give them the skills and resources to actually be able to go out in that world and be effective.

BILL HARRIS: So, tell me a little bit more about this new idea you mentioned earlier for another book.

JACK CANFIELD: Well, we have been talking about it all along, basically I think the power of our mind is so much greater than the mere power of our physical efforts. One person I interviewed recently said every hour of mental work is worth 17 hours of physical labor in terms of producing manifested results in the world. Now, I don’t have a way to validate that statement yet, but a lot of people who are spiritually aware and who have been in this world of manifestation with less effort and so forth, and there are a number of people out there teaching that right now—the law of manifestation, laws of....what do I want to call it?

BILL HARRIS: Abundance?

JACK CANFIELD: Yeah, just prosperity consciousness. All that stuff that basically there seems to be a coherence in the field of theory that this is the way it is. So, one of my great gifts has always been to take things that seem to be a little woo-woo and far out and write them in such a way that the average person living in Iowa, Nebraska, and Oklahoma can relate to it, as well as the people living on the West Coast, so that’s really what I want to do now. I have been applying it to my own life with great success so I want to tell my own story. I want to interview lots of other people, both anecdotally and people who are doing it as their entire life philosophy. Guys you and I know, like Joe Vitale and others. And, to then write it in such a way that the average person can understand it and apply it.

BILL HARRIS: Yeah, I think that is a really important change that needs to happen in the world, is for more people to understand this. There are way too many people that are creating miserable lives for themselves and they don’t really realize that they are doing it. It’s really a shame. You know, looking at this thing in New Orleans, obviously the whole thing is very tragic, but one of the things I am struck by, and this is just a superficial observation that may not even be true, but it is what it kind of looks like seeing it on TV, it looks like a lot of these people don’t feel like...there is no way they can do anything so they are just kind of sitting there waiting to be helped.

JACK CANFIELD: I think that is true. A lot of people feel like there are no options. They have no alternative scenarios that they can play out and, again, we are looking at many people at the bottom end of the socioeconomic ladder, many of whom did not complete school, etc., so we go back to lack of awareness and lack of education. I think it’s a great wake up call for society to see how many people really are in that situation. We tend to forget about them, drive by their neighborhoods on the super highways and not deal with it, so I agree with you. I think it’s a sad commentary on the state of consciousness of a lot of people and again, I won’t hold them responsible, other than that all of us have to wake up at some point, hopefully, but usually we don’t wake up until someone like a teacher comes into our life, or an event like the hurricane that can be the teacher and say, “Wait a second, maybe we can do a better thing here than what we have been doing.” I also think it is a grand statement about our government’s lack of preparedness, both on the state, local and federal level that we don’t plan for the negative. In other words, you have to have a positive attitude and focus on what you want, but I think you also have to be realistic and say, look let’s not deny that there are going to be category five hurricanes and if it were to happen, how are we going to deal with it. You and I are constantly thinking about what if this happens, then how would we deal with it. If there is an obstacle to overcome, what are our strategies. I mean, you and I learned something from Dan Sullivan called strategy circles, where you anticipate every possible negative scenario and come up with three things to overcome it, so again you focus back on getting to what you want.

BILL HARRIS: Yeah, every time that I do any kind of a project around here at Centerpointe, I and some of the other people here, we sit down and we think of all of the things that can go wrong and some people would see that as focusing on the negative, but as soon as we think of something that could go wrong, we think about how we are going to keep it from going wrong, how we are going to counteract it if it does happen and that keeps a lot of things from getting in the way so that we can go forward toward where we want. Ultimately, we are focused on where we want to go, but we realize that shit happens and if you are not prepared for it, it really can take you out.

JACK CANFIELD: That’s absolutely correct and you do have to have contingency plans and that is what allows you to be masterful.

BILL HARRIS: Well, it is like you said, a lot of these people at the lower end of the ladder are kind of ignored. People do not like to even be reminded that those people exist and those people sort of fall through the cracks. You know, because you have spoken for this group, one of the things dear to my heart is an organization called Self-Enhancement, Inc., which is an organization in Portland, Oregon that helps disadvantaged inner city kids and their motto is “Life Has Options.”

JACK CANFIELD: I like that.

BILL HARRIS: And, that is exactly what they do with these kids. They show them that the small number of options that they see in this ghetto community are not all the options and that the other options that they have never heard about, or if they have heard about, they dismiss them as being impossible for them, they are possible. And then of course as you get more and more people going through a program like they have and coming out the other end, going to college and becoming a doctor or starting a business, or whatever, then other people that are in the pipeline somewhere else, say hey, other people are doing it. It is doable.

JACK CANFIELD: Oh, it is so true and I think that is one of the things if there is anyone listening to this is a parent, one of the reasons I take my kids around the world, every year we go to some other country. Last year I took my 14-year-old son to Spain and to London and France. At the end of that trip, he said “You know, I think I want to live in Paris for a year when I graduate college or graduate from high school.” That option didn’t exist for him until he saw it and so we want to constantly expose our kids to new options. When I was teaching in an all black high school in Chicago back in the 1960s, most of my kids had never been more than three blocks away from their home. They had never been downtown to the loop, downtown Chicago. They literally thought everyone in the world was black, except the people on TV. You know, we used to take them on field trips to the zoo, to downtown, just to get them to see that there are other options available to you. So, we have a responsibility to ourself to take ourselves places we have never been and expose ourselves to new people, new ideas, new cultures, new kinds of music, etc., so we are constantly seeing that we can expand into those arenas.

BILL HARRIS: Absolutely. I couldn’t agree more. You know, the big ah-ha for me in this conversation has been what you said a little bit ago, that you can’t be responsible for something you are unaware of.


BILL HARRIS: To me, I mean I can sort of wangle that around and think, “oh yeah, I have been saying that in another way for a long time,” but the way you said it, it was kind of a new idea to me and I think that’s really a very brilliant statement. I hope you don’t mind if I steal it and teach it to people.

JACK CANFIELD: You can’t steal it because I am giving it to you.

BILL HARRIS: Okay, all right. Well, we are getting pretty close to the end of our time and I was hoping that perhaps you could, since this is what you are best known for, maybe you could end by telling a couple of your more favorite Chicken Soup for the Soul stories.

JACK CANFIELD: Oh sure, let me think for a minute because I had not planned to do it, but I am sure I can come up with something. I will share two stories with you. One about the power of love and the other about the power of believing you can do anything. One of my favorite stories of all time was in the first Chicken Soup for the Soul book and it was called “Puppies for Sale.” It is about a little boy walking through a mall and he sees a sign on a retail store, not a pet store, and it says “Puppies for Sale.” So, he goes inside and asks the owner if he can see the puppies and he asked him how much they are. He says, “Well, I have about six of them and I am selling them from anywhere from 25 to 50 bucks, depending on the dog.” The little boy said “Oh good, can I see them?” So, he said sure and he whistled and out from the back of the store came this dog named Lady with five little tiny balls of fur behind her. The little boy noticed that one of the puppies was limping and he said “What is wrong with that puppy?” He said “Well, that puppy when he was born, we had him examined and his hip socket is malformed and he is never going to be able to run, jump and play like the other puppies.” The little boy said, “That’s the one I want. How much?” He said, “You really do not want that dog.” He said, “No, I really do. How much?” And he said, “Well, if you really want him, I will give him to you free.” He said, “No sir, that dog is worth every bit as much as the other puppies and I will pay full price.” He reaches into his pocket and pulls out $1.87. ”I will give you $1.87 down and I will give you 50 cents a week until I have him paid for.” The owner says “Son, you are not listening. That puppy will never be able to run and jump and play with you like the other puppies.” At that, the little boy reached down and he pulled up his left pant leg all the way up to his knee to reveal a very badly twisted left leg with a big metal brace on it. He looked the owner in the eye and he said “Well, you see mister, I don’t run so well myself and the little puppy is going to need someone who understands.” Now that story, which I just shared with you, I want to share a little wrap around with that. A woman came up to me at a conference about two months ago and said she was a homeless woman living on the street. She was about to commit suicide. She had already picked out the place on the railroad tracks where she was going to kill herself. She was pregnant and she was described by the locals as mentally ill. She was eating out of the dumpster behind the McDonald’s and she walked by a library the day before she was going to kill herself and she said “you know, if there was a solution it might be in a book to my problem.” She went into the library and they were just putting out a table of inspirational books and there was one called Chicken Soup for the Soul. She said “I picked it up and I went over to a table and I started leafing through it and I found ‘Puppies for Sale’ and I started to read it. And she said, “When I finished that story, I broke into tears and I realized that puppy was broken, but it didn’t mean he was not valuable.” She said “I realized I am like that puppy. Just because I am broken, does not mean I am not a valuable person.” She said from that day forward, she decided not to kill herself. She went and got some help. She got off welfare. She now has a house, I believe it is in Cleveland or Columbus, Cincinnati, one of those in Ohio. She actually brings other homeless people into that house and works with them. She is now a professional speaker and she has been on television. So, the healing power of a story is very amazing.

BILL HARRIS: Yeah, that’s a great story. It is amazing that you can tell some of these stories without breaking up yourself.

JACK CANFIELD: Well, I used to not be able to tell that story without crying.

BILL HARRIS: You know, I have several stories that I tell and a couple of them are ones that I heard from you and I get choked up telling some of them.

JACK CANFIELD: Well I will share one more with you. It is about a guy named Roger Crawford, who literally was born with what I like to call a bummer of a birthmark. I always precede it with this very funny cartoon where there is this deer with a bull’s eye right in the middle of his chest and the other deer says “bummer of a birthmark, Hal.” Anyway, Roger Crawford was born with one finger on his right hand, a finger and a thumb on his left hand and his left leg had to be amputated from the knee down when he was 11. His parents believe like you and I believe that anything is possible if you believe it. So, they said to Roger, “Nobody can do everything, but everybody can do something. What is the something that you want to do?” He said “Well, I want to play football.” So, his parents got down and they trained him how to play football. He was not going to be the quarterback, but he could definitely tackle and block, so his dad who had played football, taught him all that. He went out for the team and they eventually had to sue the school system to even let him try out. He was so good he made first string defensive end and his goal was that one day he would intercept a pass and run for a touchdown. He practiced after school every day on how to do that. He got good at it, but he never had the opportunity present itself in a game until the next to the last game he ever played, which the quarterback faded back, threw the ball into the flat a little too short and Roger intercepted it and started running toward the goal. He got six yards from his goal when someone grabbed his left leg. Roger said “I pulled, he pulled and my left leg came off because it was a prosthetic device.” He hopped on one foot the final six yards over to the goal. He said “better than the six points was the look on the guy’s face holding my prosthetic leg.” The point being that it doesn’t matter what scenario you have as a current reality. Everyone is saying, “Well you know, I am poor, I am black, or I am born in the south and I am a woman and they are sexist down here,” whatever it might be, the reality is if Roger Crawford can learn to play football and go on with one finger and learn to become a tennis champion by duct taping the racquet to his arm and eventually, he was able with a new graphite racket, to stick one finger in the groove right at the head of the racket and wedge it back with his other hand. He went on to become captain of his high school tennis team and captain of his college team, winning a full scholarship to Loyola Marymount and winning the NCAA championship doubles tournament that year when he was a senior, anybody can do anything. I always say, you hear a story like that and you go “what’s my excuse?” Give it up. You can give me any excuse, blind, quadriplegic and I can give you a story of someone with a similar condition who has gone on and created an incredibly impactful and fulfilling life, so I always just say...I go back to how you started this conversation. You said “if somebody else can do it, it must be doable”. So, we always want to remember to be inspired by people who have gone for it and keep ourselves motivated.

BILL HARRIS: That is another great story. It reminds me of my attorney, Leonard DuBoff, who is blind and not only is he blind, he has a prosthetic right hand and his other hand has two fingers and a thumb. Leonard was in chemistry lab in college and somebody made a mistake and there was an explosion and he lost his sight and all of this sort of stuff. Now, he is one of the top intellectual property attorneys in the world and he has had clients, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City and other really big name clients and his books he has written about intellectual property law are used in most law schools and you would never think that this guy had any kind of a handicap at all. In fact, he loves to tell blind jokes. Do you know why the blind don’t like skydiving?


BILL HARRIS: It scares the hell out of the dogs.

JACK CANFIELD: That is good.

BILL HARRIS: He is a really remarkable guy, but he has every excuse about being on disability of some kind and doing nothing, but he lives in a house in the richest part of Portland and most of his neighbors are professional basketball players.

JACK CANFIELD: On the chance of ending on a politically incorrect note, I will tell you my favorite blind joke. A blind guy walks into Wal-Mart and takes his seeing eye dog and starts spinning him around in the air. One of the help comes over and says “Sir, can I help you?” He says “No, just looking.”

BILL HARRIS: You know, I was actually going to tell that one too. That is my second favorite blind joke.

JACK CANFIELD: There you go.

BILL HARRIS: Leonard also told me that one, except his happened in a bar.


BILL HARRIS: Yeah, he said what are you doing and I am just taking a look around.

JACK CANFIELD: There you go.

BILL HARRIS: So, well Jack, how can somebody get involved with what you are doing if they feel like they want to do that?

JACK CANFIELD: If they want to know more about my books and tapes, and my CD programs and my summer training, which I do every year, they can go to a number of places. They can go to www.jackcanfield.com or they can go to www.successprinciples.com or they can call our 800 number, which is 1-800-2ESTEEM. Our staff will be glad to help you.

BILL HARRIS: I would highly recommend that anyone listening to this go buy a copy of The Success Principles, because it really is the definitive work on how to be successful. It probably contains just about everything that all the other books on success contain and also, I know from having spoken at them and having seen people go through them, that the trainings that you have are absolutely the top of the line. They are the best in the world.

JACK CANFIELD: Well, thank you.

BILL HARRIS: I really do encourage people to take advantage of these resources. Jack, thanks so much for being here today and talking to me. It has really been a lot of fun and I look forward to the next time that I will be with you and I also look forward to the next time that I will be with all the people that are listening.

JACK CANFIELD: Well thank you Bill. It is my pleasure to be with you and my best wishes to everyone on this call.

BILL HARRIS: Take care.

Thank you so much for listening to this conversation with another of the Masters of the Secret. I know this information will help you to master The Secret yourself— the fact that what you focus on is created in reality. To thank you for listening, I have a very special free gift for you. As I’ve worked to master The Secret and implement it in my life, one of the most powerful tools I’ve used is Holosync audio technology, which, when listened to using stereo headphones places the listener in deep states of meditation, literally at the touch of a button. In addition to many mental, emotional, and spiritual benefits, Holosync creates an ability to focus your mind so powerfully that manifesting what you want becomes easy. I’d like to send you a free Holosync CD so you can try it yourself, along with a free Special Report explaining how it works and all the amazing benefits it has created for the nearly 300,000 people who have used it in 173 countries. To get your free Holosync CD, just go to:


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