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Programming your mind for success | Carrie Green | TEDxManchester

So, I want to get you all involved in my talk today. and we are going to test out a little experiment. but in order for me to do that, I need somebody to come up here and join me on the stage.

So please, can I have a volunteer? Don’t all run at once. So, you can come and join me up here with Ted. We can have a little cup of tea together. Anyone? Come on! You just come up, whoever wants, I am not going to pick anyone. Someone has to come up, and there are volunteers down here, to bring you up onto the stage. Oh, here’s somebody. (Applause) It’s a bit of an obstacle course, I think, but I promise it’s worth it. (Laughter) Poor person. Woo, thank you. What’s your name? Volunteer: Ian. Carrie Green: Ian, thank you so much Ian I have something for you, you just won £20.

There you go, thank you so much, you can go, sit back down now. A big round of applause! (Applause) So, my question to you is this: Why didn’t you volunteer?

What stopped you from coming up here? (Laughter) My guess is that was probably for one of these reasons; Fear. Fear of coming up here in front of nearly 1000 people. It’s pretty damn scary. Or maybe it was fear of the unknown, because you had no idea what I was going to get you to do.

Maybe you thought, “She might ask me to do something I’m not able to do, and I’ll look like a complete prat.” Or maybe it was because of obstacles. There are a lot of obstacles in this room. Maybe you’re at the back, and you just thought, “I’m so far away, it’s dark, there’re a lot of tables in my way, I’ll probably fall over some of them like a fool, and I just can’t do it, it’s too difficult, someone else will have to volunteer for me.” Or maybe it was just lack of motivation. Maybe you just couldn’t be bothered to move and come up here.

But no matter what your reason was, your decision started up here; in your mind. Because the moment I said, “Please, can I have a volunteer?” Thoughts will have started flooding into your mind.

That little voice inside your head would have started talking to you, and maybe for some of you, it was saying, “Oh god, what is this girl going to get us to do? I don’t want to go up there, please, don’t make us do anything really stupid.” And then, maybe for some other people, maybe for some other people you were thinking, maybe down at the front you were like, “Oh gosh, I don’t want to do this, look away, avoid eye contact, avoid eye contact, then she won’t pick me!” And then maybe for some of you the moment I said, “Please, can I have a volunteer?” Maybe, fear, doubts, and worry just flooded through you at the prospect of actually coming up here, of coming up here in front of so many people.

And then, for those of you that did volunteer, you were thinking something entirely different. You were thinking things maybe like, “Oh, she wants a volunteer, I wonder what she’s going to get us to do, how exciting, I’ll do it” Or maybe some of you thought, “Oh my gosh this is really awkward, no one is volunteering, so I’m going to have to step up and do it” But for those of you that didn’t volunteer, you missed out on the chance to win £20. But this experiment isn’t about the money. This experiment demonstrates the power of your mind.

The fact that what is going on up in your head has such a huge impact on the actions that you take, on the decisions you make, and the things that you experience. And it’s not just in silly situations like this, when people miss out amazing opportunities. People are missing out on incredible opportunities all of the time. because of what is going on their head, because they are making bad decisions based off a really bad frame of mind.

You know, those kind of self-limiting thoughts like: “I can’t do that”, “I’m not good enough”, or, “I don’t have the time or the money”. Or maybe it’s that you think, “I can’t be bothered; I’ll just do it tomorrow”. But then, you never do it, and so these wonderful ideas, and these incredible potentials stay locked up inside, and you never do anything with them. and that is exactly what was happening to me a few years ago. It was the summer of 2005, and I had just finished studying my full first year of law at the University of Birmingham. I had completely run out of money, and I was like, what am I going to do? So I started to look around for jobs, and I was looking around and found absolutely nothing appealing.

So, I was looking around for more opportunities, and eventually found this opportunity. It was to start my very own mobile phone unlocking business which basically meant that if you have a mobile phone, and it was locked to a certain network, and say you want to go travelling to Australia and use an Australian sim card, you could come to the website and unlock your phone.

There were just a few massive problems with this; first, I didn’t know much about mobile phones beyond the fact that they made calls and sent texts, let alone mobile phone unlocking. And I had no idea how to build an online business. But the only other opportunity was to sell sweets at Cirque du Soleil. so I was like sell sweets at Cirque du Soleil, or start my own business. So, I went with the idea of starting my own business, it sounded a way more adventurous. So, I got started, and I realised really quickly, that when you don’t have a clue of what to do, the only thing you can do is ask for help, and that is what I did. So, I asked for help and within a few short weeks, I put together probably the world’s worst website.

I discovered Google AdWords as a way to drive traffic to the website, and with a credit card and spending a limit of £30 a day, my business was officially up and running. Then over the next couple of years, when I wasn’t studying for my degree, I was learning how to build this business; I was reading books, I was listening to audio programs, and in my final year, I went to night school to learn more about web development.

I graduated in 2007 with an amazing degree and a business that was flying. And I decided that being an entrepreneur was going to be way more fun than being a lawyer.

So I set my sights high and I decided to build, – to take the business global – to build a successful global business. So, we got a new supplier based in America who can unlock practically every phone under the sun. We redid the website, we expanded the team, we got real good at online marketing, and within a few years, we were receiving over 100 000 hits to the website every month. And we were selling thousands and thousands of codes every single month, and I had reached my goal to build a successful global business. But there was one massive problem. I was miserable. I was running this business predominantly from my home office, where I lived in an apartment; my second bedroom was turned into an office. And I felt completely lonely, totally isolated and lost. Something that I think so many people experience but not very many of us talk about. And I crumbled. I started to question everything and I started to think questions like: What am I doing? What is the point of all of this? The more I thought about those questions, the more confused I felt.

And the more confused I felt, the more these negative thoughts which cloud my mind, the more I began to doubt everything, and worry about everything, and just question everything. And as the months rolled by, I became more and more negative, more and more self-defeatist, and literally, this positive optimistic and “go get it “person that I once was, had just disappeared. I’d become totally negative and self-sabotaging. I’d come up with ideas, I’d shoot them down, I’d talk to myself out of it. Then it got to 2010 and I felt like I was in complete despair. And so I packed my bags and I went travelling to Australia in the hope of having an epiphany. Spent three months traveling around Australia, no epiphany, and I was just like: what am I supposed to do? So then I came back to the UK, and well, even more miserable than before, because all of my problems were still waiting for me, and the weather was rubbish.

Then I was like, “What am I going to do?” So the next few months, I found myself being suffocated by my problems. you know where you feel like you can’t get rid of these doubts and these worries and it was all I’d focus on. I’d come up with ideas, I’d find opportunities, and I’d just talk myself out of it, thinking that I couldn’t do it. And then finally, in 2011, I figured out where I was going wrong. And I believe I was going wrong for two massive reasons: the first reason was that yes, I wanted to be successful, and quite frankly, doesn’t every single person in this room wants to be successful? But mobile phone unlocking was not my dream.

At the time, I was reading this book by Michael Gerber called “The E-Myth”, and in “The E-Myth”, there is a chapter on primary aims. Michael Gerber says: Imagine walking into a room; sat in the room, are your friends and family, and as you walk down the center of the room, you see a box. And as you get to the front of the room you realize that you are in the box, and it’s your funeral. And he says, “What kind of things do you want people to be saying about the kind of life that you lived, about the kind of person that you were, and the kind of things that you achieved?” And I realized, I had no idea.

So there was no wonder that I felt so off track. I had never ever been on track And the second reason why I think went wrong, is because of what was going on up here; what was going on in my head. All these doubts, all these worries, all this self-limiting belief. I came across a quote by Anthony Robbins that said, “Your destiny is determined by the choices you make. Choose now. Choose well.” And I realized that I was responsible for this misery; I was responsible for the fact that I was stuck in a rut.

I remember looking at my life thinking I am waking up every single day and focusing on my problems. I am waking up every day and giving so much focus and attention to all of these awful thoughts, these doubts, and these worries. I am coming up with ideas and I am shooting them down, I am talking myself out of doing anything whatsoever. And I realized that if I wanted to live an incredible life and achieve amazing things, – and I really did – that I had to get my mind to be on the same wavelength as me.

I realized that I had to figure out what it was that I wanted to achieve; why I was wanted to achieve it, why it actually meant something to me. I had to figure out the kind of person that I needed to become, in order to make it happen. And then, I had to program my mind to make it happen. I had to program my mind for success. And that is exactly what I ended up doing, “Mission Success” began. And so I started this off by thinking about: what do I actually want? And so I looked at my life and I thought, “I love being an entrepreneur, I love coming up with ideas and turning them into reality it is so much fun.” And then looked at my problems and thought, “I feel really lonely and lost as an entrepreneur.” And I looked at them with a different perspective. Rather than feeling bad about it, I thought, “What can I do about it?

There must be other people out there that are in exactly the same position as me.” So I came up with this idea to create the Female Entrepreneur Association, and it sounded so official.

And I was doing it, and I had this massive idea, I would create this global network of thousands of women from all over the world and help to inspire them and connect them and just help to empower them to build successful businesses. But I had no idea, how I was going to do this. Then I was like, “Right, I need to program my mind to make this happen.” So I started by becoming consciously aware of the things I was thinking every day, and whenever I caught myself thinking of something like, “Carrie, who is going to come to this website?

Who are you to give advice to anyone? This is rubbish, this is a ridiculous idea, you’re never going to be able to do it.” Every time I caught myself saying something like that,I would stop myself, and I realized that I had the power to take control over my thoughts rather than letting them control me.

I knew that I could stop myself from thinking these things. And I did, I replaced the negative rubbish annoying thoughts, and told them to shut up, and I replaced them with positive thoughts that were empowering me, thoughts that were actually helping me to move towards my goal. I also started to listen to guided visualization, to program my subconscious mind for success.

And I got really into doing visualizations vividly picturing what I wanted to achieve, seeing it happen, and then feeling it happen, like it was happening right then and there, just like all the top athletes do. I got so clear on what I wanted to make happen, and since then my life has totally changed.

I’ve built one of the largest online networking groups of female entrepreneurs, with over 100 000 women involved.

And then I came up with this crazy idea to launch a digital magazine, which then became the fastest growing digital magazine for female entrepreneurs. When I created it, I made this wish list in my mind of all the people I wanted on the front cover; these best-selling authors, these incredibly successful entrepreneurs. I had no idea how I would make it happen, but I was so convinced it would. I then put their faces on mock-ups of the front cover, printed them off and stuck them on my goal board, and just visualized them being on the front cover; visualized what it would feel like the moment I’d send out an email to my network.

And I could say to them, “Hey everyone, this person’s on the front cover this month, how exciting!” I got so unbelievably clear about what I wanted to do.

People would come up to me and say, “How are you going to make this happen?” I was like, “I don’t know, but I am going to make it happen.” And it did happen, So then I thought, “What other crazy goals could I make happen? What else is possible?” So I set more crazy goals for myself. I was like, “I want to go to Buckingham Palace, I want to go to the House of Lords, I want to speak at the House of Commons.” And I set more crazy goals for myself.

And last year every single one of them happened. And I realized that if I could get my mind to be certain, that I could make something happen, that somehow I would figure out a way, and I always have. Because success is no accident. Living an incredible life is no accident.

You have to do it on purpose. and it starts by knowing exactly what is it that you want to achieve, knowing why you want to achieve it, knowing the kind of person that you need to become in order to make it happen, and then programming your mind to make it happen.

Because you just have one life in which to achieve everything, that you are going to achieve, so you have to act accordingly. Thank you so much.

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