A brief search of some of the mans finest quotes soon reveals that not only was he nifty with a piece of chalk, a blackboard and some funny looking symbols, but the dude also knew self development.
1. Insanity Is All Around
“Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”
If Einstein could have just have said ‘Be the change you want to see in the world” before Gandhi he’d have bagged the two most repeated quotes that everybody knows, but few people do a damn thing about. Other than to quote them at other people of course.
If you are stuck in certain areas of your life you should probably hire me to get you unstuck. If you can’t afford to hire me or think I’m a complete idiot, then the next best thing is to start thinking differently.
I’m not the kind of person to quote himself, but if I were I’d say, “Ask more questions, not the same questions more often”.
My guess is your solution to being stuck is to keep asking yourself questions like, “Why am I stuck?”, “Why does this suck?” and “Where the hell are my car keys?”
And the problem with those questions is they are focusing on the problem and not the solution.
I wouldn’t be so bold as to say you’re insane if you keep asking yourself the same questions over and over and expecting different answers, but Einstein would and he was da man!
2. Problem Solving
“We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them”
This is where our Teutonic friend really dives into self development with a passion, because he’s alluding to our good friend – reframing.
Reframing simply means looking at any given situation in a different way so as to open up new opportunities and options. It doesn’t mean to change what we are looking at, but how we look at it.
Have you ever dropped something small like a thumb tack on the floor and not been able to see it? You can look down on the floor for all your worth but you just can’t spot the slippy, spiky, sucker.
But what happens if you get down on your knees and put the side of your head on the floor to look from ground level?
Sure you may impale yourself on it, but presuming you don’t, you will spot it a lot easier than if you were looking down from above.
If you want to know more about reframing, click here and start thinking differently.
3. Add Value
“Try not to become a man of success, but rather try to become a man of value”
It would be nice to think the wild haired one went on to say “and go and buy Brownson’s brilliant life changing book on core values”, but alas I don’t think he was meaning values in that context.
The work Einstein did wasn’t because he had some desperate desire to win a Nobel Prize, earn copious amounts of cold hard cash and have lusty luscious lovelies fawning over him.
No, it was because he wanted to add value to Society first and foremost. It was that that drove him on to greatness.
Sure you can aim to earn lots of money and be lusted after by the opposite sex, but it won’t make you happy in the long run. Yeh, I know you think it will, but you’re wrong, as the long list of celebs who have been through rehab will attest to.
Einstein actually did go on to win a Nobel Prize, earn copious amounts of cold hard cash and have lusty luscious lovelies fawning over him, but that’s not the point so just stfu, ok?
4. Intelligence Is Overrated
“It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer”
I think mega-brain was being a tiny bit humble here because he was quite clever too. However, the point is a valid one, that determination is a massively under-valued character trait.
The history books are full of difference makers who, fortunately for Society, never knew when to give up.
You may not be trying to prove quantum field theory or solve the even trickier conundrum of why filmmakers hire Keanu Reeves, but that doesn’t mean some added determination can’t positively effect your life.
It takes determination and tenacity not to accept the first ‘no’ when asking for a raise, submitting a proposal or asking for a loan to start your own business.
The same goes for quitting smoking, getting fit or losing weight. There’s a reason wo many people struggle with those issues and that’s because they require a lot of determination to push through the tough times.
My own industry is a classic example. To succeed in Life Coaching you have to be very, very, determined because the competition is so intense.
Problems aren’t really problems unless they require a bit of determination to get past them and if you always give up at the first hurdle you’ll spend most of your life looking back thinking, “What if….?”
5. Giving Back
“Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile”
Bertie is on fire with this one and way ahead of the field of positive psychology that would discover this fact decades later.
Helping other people is one of the single greatest sources of happiness for most people. That doesn’t necessarily mean you need to be doing free charity work every day, it may just be that you do a job that helps others.
Doing work that has meaning is so important to people and yet sometimes people are doing just that and don’t even realize it.
They think that you need to be a nurse, teacher, fire-fighter, or any other number of obvious professions to do meaningful work.
No you don’t, you have to look for the meaning in what you already do and keep your focus there.
You could be the check out person in a Supermarket and think that adds no value, and you’d be wrong.
You have the opportunity to effect dozens or even hundreds of peoples lives every day just by giving a genuine warm and unforced smile.
You can also make even more people happy if you administer a swift knee to the testicles of the dude who took 27 items through the 10 check out line.
Be creative in your quest for meaning!
You may not like your job and you may want to get out as soon as you can. That’s ok, but in the meantime look for the value you’re adding and if you’re not adding any, change your attitude and look for how you can make a difference to others.
6. Failure is Feedback
“Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new”
Have you ever heard this quotes or ones similar before? Have you then noticed the type of people who say such things?
How many of them are sleeping underneath the Cross Bronx Expressway by night and pushing a stolen supermarket trolley around with two blind cats and a ghetto blaster that doesn’t work in it by day? Not many, right?
That’s because super successful people are prepared to do the kind of things most people pull back from. They are constantly looking to do the things that most people don’t want to do.
Doing the same ole same ole is easy and your brain loves it.
Trying something new can be scary and lead to a lot of uncertainty, but it can also lead to a lot of happiness if you have the guts to go for it and stop being a spectator of your own life.
So there you have it, I rest my case for Einstein to be entered into the self development Hall of Fame, what do you think?