How to become rich in every domain ? – Debra Poneman
DAVID LAROCHE: Hello Achievers! Today, we are in a new city called “Chicago.” I am with an awesome guest, Debra Halperin Poneman. She's a bestselling author. She has written the book Chicken Soup for the Soul, and I will be asking her a lot of questions about that. She's the CEO of Yes to Success, and I'm very glad to be with her today.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Hello! I'm so glad you're here. Welcome to Chicago, the greatest city in the world, I guess, besides Paris.
DAVID LAROCHE: Yes, with Paris. So how are you?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: I am really, really good. I'm just happy to be with you.
DAVID LAROCHE: Cool! Me, too. I'd like you to introduce yourself. Maybe you will do better than I.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Actually, I started the company, Yes to Success, several decades ago; and what happened was, for about ten years of my adult life, I meditated for hours and hours and weeks and weeks and, sometimes, months at a time for eight to ten hours a day in silence. Complete silence—can you imagine that? I didn't talk.
DAVID LAROCHE: Before you created company.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Yes. And for a whole decade, I completely devoted my life to developing that inner silence, that inner peace.
After about ten years, I realized that I had to live in the world and I needed to make a little money. It's nice to think that you could live on silence alone; but, sometimes, you can't.
I needed to make some money. I got a job with some financial company and I went to work for that financial company. I went to a seminar and it was about how to create material prosperity.
I was so blown away because the gentleman who was teaching the seminar was saying (and this was truthfully in the eighties) that the way to create true prosperity was not just by investing wisely but changing your thoughts and changing your energy.
DAVID LAROCHE: To be rich in every domain.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Yes. And what was so great was that with the ten years that I spent meditating in silence, I felt like I had a foundation to build material success. Yet, I didn't want to go out and pound the pavement and be successful by beating other people or “if I win, they would have to lose.”
DAVID LAROCHE: Who was the speaker?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: His name was Chris Serapoulos, but no one has heard from him since. I think he was an angel who just came down so that I could hear that seminar.
The next day, I quit my job at the financial company.
DAVID LAROCHE: Cool. And you said “yes” to success.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: I said “yes” to success, exactly. For about four months, I just studied the great masters like Napoleon Hill and Wallace Wattles and in the science of mind, people like Ernest Holmes.
I realized that there's this whole body of knowledge on how to create success by using energetic principles. And I launched my seminar.
DAVID LAROCHE: You've done a lot of meditation. Today, do you advice to do meditation to succeed in life?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Absolutely!
DAVID LAROCHE: How much meditation should we do?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: I believe that if you don't have something that anchors you to the silent depth of your own being, you are at the mercy of circumstances—like a ship without an anchor. You could get tossed about by any winds, rains, and storms that come into your life. But when you're anchored to the silent depths of your own being…
DAVID LAROCHE: You'd have more strength to accept everything.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: And you know what happens? No matter what happens, you'll never get thrown off course.
DAVID LAROCHE: What is your advice? Do we have to meditate every day? Every week?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: I have meditated twice a day, almost without fail, for over 40 years. So if I could do it, I think everybody could do it.
And there are a lot of wonderful techniques of meditation. I believe that what somebody should learn is something that is steeped in tradition, something that has been around not just a few weeks ago that somebody just thought up and “I'm going to teach a course at a local YMCA.”
No. I believe that people should find something that comes from a tradition. The one that I teach comes from a tradition out of India that's thousands and thousands of years old.
So my recommendation is either to learn meditation through the Art of Living Foundation or from the Transcendental Meditation Organization because both, I know, come from these ancient traditions and they've been time tested for thousands of years.
DAVID LAROCHE: For example, when I do meditation, it's very hard for me because I have a lot of ideas. What do I have to do?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: That's a great question so I'm going to answer it—that you have lots of thoughts.
DAVID LAROCHE: When we meditate, how can we have silence?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: That's why I recommend these particular techniques because the nature of the mind is to always go towards something that's going to give it greater and greater satisfaction.
So if you sitting here talking to me and, all of a sudden, your favorite song comes on the radio, it's very hard to continue talking to me. You’d want to listen to that favorite song.
Or if you hear some conversation and you hear your name and you're trying to focus on what I'm saying, your mind goes to that field of greater pleasure. That's the nature of the mind.
These techniques that I'm recommending allow the mind to effortlessly settle down by using what's called a “mantra.” A mantra is a sound of which the effects are known; and by using this mantra properly, it gives the mind something more pleasurable than anything else. So the mind effortlessly settles down without you trying.
I have a mind that goes a million miles an hour. But when I sit down to meditate, within a few moments…
That's the beauty of the technique.
DAVID LAROCHE: Is the mantra the same for everybody?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: No. You have to learn from a qualified teacher who has spent a long time learning how to teach.
DAVID LAROCHE: Can you teach that today? When you find your mantra, you can meditate everywhere and every time.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Anywhere you can think a thought, you can meditate.
DAVID LAROCHE: Cool. I will try. I will do it.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: I will teach you.
DAVID LAROCHE: Perfect. Thank you very much.
You deal with the law of attraction. I have two questions. I'm interested in your point of view. What is it and how can we activate the law of attraction?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: First of all, I think, lately, people are saying, “Oh, I've tried the law of attraction and it doesn't work.”
It does work. It's a law. It's not a theory of attraction. It's the law of attraction. And the law of attraction is that like attracts like.
Just like a tuning fork, if a tuning fork is tuned to E, it will cause everything in its vicinity to vibrate at E and it will attract to it what is vibrating at E or C or D.
Likewise, because we're all energetic beings and we know everything is energy, if you are vibrating with lack and limitation, “I don't know where my next dollar is coming from; I think I'm going to lose my house; there are no jobs in this city; there's no way that I'm ever going to make enough money to support my family,” you could feel that energy. You're vibrating with that. And you are going to attract into your life exactly what you're vibrating.
So the law of attraction is that like attracts like. The law of attraction is not visualizing “I'm going to be rich,” and then sitting in front of the TV and drinking Diet Coke and eating Cheetos and expecting to be…
DAVID LAROCHE: It doesn't work.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: (laughs) That doesn't work. Cheetos are really good but it doesn't work.
So there are a lot of different things that you can do to align yourself with the vibration of happiness, with the vibration of love, with the vibration of prosperity, and with the vibration success.
There are so many amazing teachers who teach techniques so that you can raise your vibration and then attract those things into your life.
But most of us go around pretty unconsciously.
Just the other day, I was at a café and I asked somebody if they could watch my things for a minute because I was going to run to the restroom. I came back and we struck up a conversation and she said, “You’re very trusting.”
And I said, “Well, why should I not be?”
She said, “I don't trust anybody. I wouldn't trust somebody to watch my things because I always get robbed.”
Hello! I never get robbed.
I don't vibrate that way. I trust people. I trust the universe. I vibrate with “I'm not going to be harmed.” And that's what I draw into my life.
That's just a simple example.
Then, we went on to talk a little bit more and she said, “Oh, I'm a social worker and there are no jobs for social workers. The market is just horrible. What do you think I should do?”
And I said, “Stop saying that there are no jobs for social workers. Obviously, there are some because there are a lot of people out there being social workers.”
Totally unconsciously, she was creating her reality.
The first thing we have to do is to watch our words because on a very fine level of creation, the word and the manifestation of that word are the same.
When you say the word “lack,” you could feel the lack in it. If you say the word “joy,” you could feel the joy in it. “Lack” causes you to contract; “joy” causes you to expand.
On a vibrational level, the actual word holds the vibration of the expression of that thing.
So it's very important that we watch the vibration that we're putting out through our words. That's the first thing.
DAVID LAROCHE: How we speak to ourselves and to others.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Yes.
DAVID LAROCHE: For example, if I say “I am confident,” does it work?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Again, you could say “I'm confident, I'm confident, I'm confident…”
DAVID LAROCHE: So the first step is to choose a word…
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Here's the energy behind it. Here's the thing. When you hear yourself expressing something that shows lack of confidence… I don't think you have any lack of confidence, personally, but, let's say, somebody said something like “I'll never get that job,” and then somebody says, “Oh, be more confident,” they cannot say, “I'm confident, I'm confident.” That's not going to work.
But what they can do is sit down, and they could write out all of the wonderful things about themselves that they know make them deserving of that job: “I'm brilliant. I'm loving. I'm creative. I'm innovative. I'm a good problem solver.”
And the more you put your attention on all of those things, then, your confidence will grow.
Although, as I've said before, the word “confidence” does have a certain vibration, we must also put our attention on those things that will uplift our vibration.
And I think writing down is a powerful tool.
DAVID LAROCHE: Cool. Do you think we have to express the word only in your mind? Or… I don't know how to say that in English.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Outward.
DAVID LAROCHE: Outward, yes.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: I'll tell you something. Do you know who Marci Shimoff is? She wrote Happy for No Reason and Love for No Reason. She didn't write 15 million Chicken Soup books but she sold 15 million Chicken Soup books.
She was one of my students in the early eighties and she is one of the most brilliant women I've ever met. I mean, brilliant, gorgeous, good, and loving. I can't say enough about her.
Out of my three-day seminar, her favorite principle is the Principle of Cancel. “Cancel” is simply when you hear yourself saying something that you don't want to manifest, you say, “Cancel” and then you say what you do want to manifest.
For example, “There are just no good men in Chicago.”
What are you going to draw into yourself? No good men.
“There are so many good men in Chicago. I am so happy I live here.”
And you could feel the difference in the vibration.
DAVID LAROCHE: Yes. Cool.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: And that's it.
DAVID LAROCHE: So the first step is to choose a word; the second step is to say it with good energy; and the third is maybe to write down what you are thinking.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: There's another technique. I would love to share my take on the technique of visualization. Sometimes, people say, “Oh, I visualize and it didn't work.”
Well, again, you can't just visualize money pouring down on you, and then go out and be dishonest and cheat and lie and steal.
No! But you can visualize in the proper way that it's all about raising your vibration. I'll give this example:
When I first started my company in the early eighties, no one had heard of the law of attraction. It was just the domain of the people in the science of the mind and church or religious science. It was almost like a secret cult.
When I learned about the law of attraction, I thought, the world needs to know this, and I want to bring this out to the world.
There are three principles that I use when I started my company. One is, I didn't tell anybody what I was doing until I took significant steps towards the manifestation of my company.
The reason: What is sacred should be kept secret. In English, the word “sacred,” which is holy and secret, comes from the same root.
Your precious ideas of what you're going to do are sacred to you; and if you share with them with people too early, one thing might be that people will tell you, “Ah, that will never work. You won't be good at that.”
We call it the “discouragement committee,” the people who are going to tell you all of the reasons why your idea won't work.
The other thing is, you probably know people who are always talking about what they're going to do and they never do it. Am I right?
DAVID LAROCHE: Yes.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: You know why? They're using up the energy in the telling. If I had a dollar for every person who told me that they were going to write a book, I'd be a millionaire by now. Because when people say, “I'm going to do this, I'm going to do that,” it's like letting the steam out of the kettle.
Keep that steam in the kettle. And then, one day, it's going to have to burst forth as your book.
Remember what I said that the words actually contain the thing itself. So when you say, “I am going to write a book on organic gardening in Alaska,” you say you're going to do that and you tell so many people. On some energetic level, you've already created it.
And when people say, “That's a great idea,” you have the satisfaction—oh, that was a great idea. You don't even have to do it. You've already gotten the praise for it.
So there are many reasons why you don't tell people what you're going to do. Does that make sense?
DAVID LAROCHE: Yes, but do you think we can share a goal with a mentor, for example?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Yes, if there is somebody whom you need to have as a business partner or a mentor.
But, sometimes, you shouldn’t even share your goals with your spouse, with your husband, with your wife, with your parents because, sometimes, they're the ones who will tell you why it's not going to work.
So be very careful with whom you share your very precious goals especially when there are tiny little sprouts that could easily be crushed. Wait until they're strong trees that even if somebody tells you it won't work… well, it is working.
So when I started my company, I didn't tell a soul; and for four months, I kept it a secret.
And then, when it was time, when I had a seminar put together, I looked for a room to do the seminar in and it was in California, at the Santa Monica Public Library. And only when I went and put up the posters, that was when I told people what I was going to do.
And, guess what, people said, “Who’s going to believe a crazy idea that you'd create your world with your thoughts. No one’s going to believe that.”
But the posters were already out.
Another very important principle of success: First of all, don't wait until everything is perfectly in place because there is never going to be a time when everything is perfectly in place. There will always be loose ends. So, loose ends and all, take a step from which there's no turning back.
What I did, I put up the posters. I had a different name back then, Olson; I had many names.
“Debra Olson to give a lecture on saying ‘yes’ to success.”
So I put up the posters, and then when the discouragement committee told me why it wasn’t going to work, it was too late. I had taken a step from which there was no turning back.
These are good principles.
The other thing about visualization which I originally said I was going to tell you is that I didn't close my eyes and visualized, “The room will be full with the Santa Monica Public Library. The room will be full; the room will be full.”
No. What I did was to visualize the room full of people with open hearts and people who were so appreciative of what I was sharing with them; and I felt the joy of being able to serve these people and of being able to give something of value to these people.
In my visualization, when I felt a shift and I felt my heart open and I felt the gratitude for being able to help transform these people’s lives, then, I knew that the visualization was successful.
It's not just “the room will be full, the room will be full.”
Do you see the difference?
DAVID LAROCHE: Yes, I see the difference. It's very interesting that you are getting this gratitude. How can we develop that? I think a lot of people would like to develop that but they don't feel anything when they visualize the earth or the love. They feel nothing. How can they develop gratitude?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: I have a lot to say about gratitude and I really believe in the depths of my heart that gratitude is one of the keys to success, happiness, and prosperity.
DAVID LAROCHE: I think so.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Absolutely! And when people say, “Well, I don't have that much to be grateful for,” I say, “If you are listening to this on a computer, you have more to be grateful for than the huge majority of the other people in this world who, in their wildest dreams, couldn't imagine having a computer.
In their wildest dreams, they couldn't imagine having a roof over their head. In their wildest dreams, they couldn't imagine going into the bathroom and turning a knob and hot water comes out and cold pure water comes out.
Do you see? In their wildest dreams, they couldn't imagine going to the wall switching the switch and the light comes on; and cold air when it's hot out; and warm air when it's cold out.
You think you don't have things to be grateful for?”
If you start being grateful for those little things… it's just like if you give somebody a gift and they say, “Oh, that's nice. Put it over there,” would you want to give them another gift?
But if you give somebody a gift and they say, “Oh my gosh, I love this! How did you know I love this color? How did you know I love this style? Thank you so much.” And their gratitude is overflowing.
The Creator (God, which means the God of your understanding is Christ or Buddha or Krishna or the One God, whatever your idea of God—Allah, whatever) wants to give us everything just like, as parents, we want to give our children everything.
And when my kids say, “Oh, Mommy, thank you so much,” I say, “Take more, take more.”
If – let’s say the word “dinner” – and they say, “Eww, why did you make this again?”
Not that my children would ever say that but if they say, “Why did you make it?” I don't want to say, “Well, tomorrow, I'll make you something better.
And the Creator…
DAVID LAROCHE: …is the same.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: It's not that the Creator needs gratitude, but when you say, “Thank you,” it brings joy to the Creator, and the Creator wants to give you more.
So if you have gratitude every time you turn on the hot and cold water, then, the Creator is going to want to give you more. If you have gratitude for the computer that you're watching this on, the Creator wants to give you more.
Do you know what I do?
I call the Creator, “God.” I say “Thank you, God for everything.”
Last night, somebody made me an amazing business offer. I didn't say, “Well, I deserved that.” I said, “Thank you, God. Thank you.” And then, I'll have an even greater offer.
When I get a parking space in front of where I'm going, I say, “Thank you, God.”
Okay, the God of my own understanding but, guess what, if there are no parking spaces in front of where I'm going and I have to park blocks away, do you know what I do?
DAVID LAROCHE: Thank you, too,
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Thank you, God. Because there's something good in everything; now, I get to have the exercise of walking four blocks which is even a bigger thank you.
It's fun, actually. It opens up your heart. It opens up your receptivity. And then, the Creator just wants to pour more and more into that.
DAVID LAROCHE: We can say that gratitude is a kind of a muscle.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Yes. That's right. You can develop that muscle. It just feels good to give gratitude. You will find that your prosperity and your success will grow and grow through that tool of gratitude.
DAVID LAROCHE: To stay in the same domain, I was watching a video of you and you were talking about how to develop happiness. Do you have some keys and advices to be happier in this life?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Sure, I do, and gratitude at the top of my list.
One time, I was at an event by the great Byron Katie. Byron Katie wrote a book called “Loving What Is.” She's the founder of The Work. And somebody said to her, “What's the difference between what you teach and The Secret?”
She said, “Honey, The Secret teaches that you can have exactly what you want. And I teach that you could want exactly what you have.”
DAVID LAROCHE: That's cool.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: What she is saying there is, “love what is.” A lot of people are having a lot of challenges. I recognize that. People have financial challenges. They have relationship challenges. They have work challenges.
But, you know what, that's what life is about. That's what we came here for. We didn't come here into this planet and incarnate to have life handed to us on a silver platter.
If we were going to come into this playground that we call “life,” and there was nothing to learn, no ways to grow…
DAVID LAROCHE: No challenges.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: We wouldn't have taken a human birth. There would be no reason to be here.
People say, “Well, of course, there would be a reason to be here—to give love and to be loved.”
But, sometimes, even that's a challenge. Sometimes, what we do is we go into a situation like “I don't know if I should be loving to that person because they might not love me back and didn't they once say something mean to me 20 years ago?”
So the challenge is to learn how to give love unconditionally, not because anybody is going to give you anything back.
Sometimes, we get hurt. So, then, we learn how to handle the hurt.
Everything that we do in life, everything that we're given, as you know, is a gift. And instead of thinking, wow, I was loving to that person and they didn't love me back, we look for the gift in it. Maybe the gift is to go into a relationship with only the intent to give and no intent, whatsoever, of “what I can get.”
So maybe that was lesson that we needed to learn when we went in and gave love and we didn't get it back.
Every single thing that we do, we can either choose to complain about it or learn from it. And the lessons that we learn—that's what we came here for.
There's a concept in Kabbalah, the Jewish mystical text, and there's a term and it's a Hebrew word, tikkun, and it means “to correct.”
The theory is that we all came into this life with certain things that we need to correct.
Why does one person come into a lifetime and everything is easy in terms of finances? Money just seems to pour to them. But they have a terrible time with relationship. They're on their fourth or fifth husband or wife. And somebody else has an easy time with relationships but they struggle with money.
We, each, have different tikkuns, different challenges, and things that we need to correct. Some people have a tikkun with anger or they have a problem with being late all the time or lying or being defensive; or maybe they have a problem with weight, with food.
We all have different tikkuns.
I know what mine are. I always know what mine are, and I'm still working on them. I like people to like me. It's really hard for me when people don't like me, and it hasn’t served me because I've passed up opportunities. I haven't spoken my truth even though it would have served that person because I wanted them to like me.
So that's my tikkun. But I've got to get down and with it in this lifetime. I've got to be able to speak my truth because that's what I came here to learn.
We all know what our challenges are; we all know what our tikkuns are. I can see from your face. You're thinking, yes, I know what mine are.
When we buck up and we do something like, for me, to speak my truth even if somebody doesn't like me, on the other side is the happiness.
Twisting myself into a pretzel to make people like me is never going to bring me true happiness. But when I am faced with my tikkun and I take some deep breaths into my belly and I say, “Okay, You and me, God, we're going in now,” and I speak my truth, on the other side, that's where the arms of God are waiting to catch me.
DAVID LAROCHE: Can we say that challenges indicate the way and the direction of happiness?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Every challenge is a gift, the greatest gift that you can get. Sometimes, we're really beaten up. The reason we came into this life is to be our true selves—who we really are. Sometimes, we don't even know who we really are because we're so busy being the personality self that we're not.
And, sometimes, when we're really beaten up, we just let go and we can't even be the personality anymore. And that's when the beautiful, true person comes out—the beautiful you, the essence of you, the true you, not the personality.
So that's another gift—these challenges.
DAVID LAROCHE: We have a lot of answers for happiness. I would like to ask you something about fear. I help people on self-confidence. Maybe it helps them to welcome the fear. Do you have some tips and advices to overcome the fear?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Yes, I do. And I'm going to think about this for a second.
The only reason why people have fear is because they don't have trust. They don't have faith. And the trust is that there is a higher power that has only your good in mind.
You see, a lot of times, we have FEAR: False Evidence Appearing Real. Do you know the acronym FEAR?
Usually, the thing that we're afraid of is something that only exists in our mind, and the mind is not our friend because the mind looks for what's wrong.
Actually, the mind separates. The mind sees what's different between you and me. The mind sees what could possibly go wrong. The mind sees why we might not be able to be friends.
What I tell people to do when they are going into a situation that they have some fear around is to move from the mind to the heart and let the heart lead, and this is another great principle. If you want to be happy, let the heart lead because the heart sees why there's nothing to be afraid of.
The heart loves. The heart unifies. The heart sees the beauty. The heart sees the truth.
And if you actually, consciously, and physically move your attention from your head to your heart and allow the heart to lead, I promise you, the fear will dissolve itself.
DAVID LAROCHE: For example, someone has to do public speaking and he's afraid to go out to the stage. What can he do?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: I'll tell you exactly. And I do this because I speak all the time. People have said to me, “You're never afraid, are you?”
No, I'm not. The only reason why a person would be afraid when they are speaking is if they think it's all about them.
How do I look? Will I look stupid? Will people judge me? How’s my hair? Do I have lipstick on my teeth? Am I this? Am I going to get a rating of a 10 from this crowd? Am I going to get rehired again? Will the program director like me?
That will bring fear. Certainly, you'll be shaking when you go out on the stage.
Before I go out, I'll close my eyes and I think, Please God, please speak through me so that I can contribute to the lives of the people in that audience in the ultimate way so that I could serve them, so I could be an instrument to transform their lives. I just want to be hollow and empty. Just speak through me.
That doesn't mean I don't know my speech because I will know my speech but, speak through me, use me as Your instrument, your tool to bring happiness, joy, transformation, and success to the people in my audience.
And when it's not about you, when it's about them, that's when the fear dissolves. But if it's about “How do I look? Are they going to like me?” of course, that's going to make you… because you know what, they might not like you.
DAVID LAROCHE: Maybe I can say, “What can I give to people in doing that?”
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Exactly! What can I give? How can I serve?
And I believe that, right now, we're at a very unique time in creation and I believe that we have ended the time of “what can I get?” If you want to be happy and successful, it can only be based on “how can I serve and what can I give?”
And when you give everything and you serve with all your heart, everything is going to come back to you. That's the law of attraction.
DAVID LAROCHE: What can we give? What are the things we can give?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: What are the things that we can give?
DAVID LAROCHE: Yes. Maybe a lot of people are wondering, I have no money so I can't give money. What can we give?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Yourself. You have yourself which is so much more precious than money. And do you know that whatever you want for your life, just give that. You know this principle. If you want more respect, you can't demand respect. Respect other people.
I believe that everybody is God. Everybody is a manifestation of God. And there's a great quote from Gandhi. Gandhi says, “If you do not see God in the next person you meet, you need look no further.”
And if you want love, don't give love conditionally. Give love unconditionally.
The Creator doesn't differentiate. The Creator doesn't love the head of state any more than the Creator loves the homeless person sleeping on the park bench.
Do you see?
If we can love unconditionally in that same way, we will be like God.
And the beautiful thing is if you want success, if you want prosperity, be more like God because God said the word and the word manifested: “Let there be light.” God created the whole earth just by God’s word, and it manifested.
We can manifest that same way if we become more God-like. And one of the ways that we do that is we see the God in everybody.
DAVID LAROCHE: Cool. I have a lot of questions to ask you. I imagine that you've had struggles in your life. Can you share a part of your story when you had a struggle and how you overcame it?
A lot of people are saying, “Oh, she's successful; he's successful; he had no struggles; it's easy for him or for her; she was lucky.” So it's very amazing to listen to stories. Do you have something to tell?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: I'll tell you two stories. One thing is that when I was very young, I actually had cognition of how the world works. I don't know. I must have been maybe 12 or 13 years old. I wasn’t even in high school yet.
I was in a club with all of the cool girls. One of the things when you're one of the cool girls is that there is an unwritten code that you're exclusive, that you exclude other people and maybe even be a little bit mean. It never felt right to me to be mean but I was kind of caught up in the swirl of being one of the cool girls.
I remember one day when one of the girls who wasn’t as cool came up to our group (we were sitting at lunch) and she said, “I was told that I can be in your club.” Somebody, basically, kind of set her up. So she came over and said, “I heard that I was invited to be in your club.”
She was so excited and her eyes were like “sun.” She was like, “I heard that I was invited to be in your club.”
The other girls who were in the club laughed at her and they said, “Who told you that? You're not cool enough to be in our club?”
At that moment, I saw the sadness, I saw the light go out of her eyes, I saw her heart sink, and I saw the redness come into her cheeks.
But what happened was I not only saw it but I felt it in my own physiology. And I had this kind of cognition of the world as like a hologram, and I realized that one person’s pain was all of our pain, and that if you cause somebody else pain, you are causing yourself an equal amount of pain.
And it might not be at that moment but it will, in fact, come back to you.
I was just a little girl and it was kind of a big universal experience but, at that moment, I made the commitment to myself that I would never ever consciously cause anybody pain again.
One of the ways that (I didn't know it then) you can do this is when you do move from your head to your heart because your heart never wants to cause anyone pain.
I just had an experience recently where I was going to have to do a project with somebody and I was like, oh, why do I have to do a project with that person? That person is annoying. I had all the reasons why I didn't want to do it with that person.
But those were on my mind and I was going in with, this is going to be hard, this is going to be annoying.
I moved into my heart, opened my heart, had the best experience, and had the best results that we have ever had from one of these types of projects that we were working on. Again, it's all about moving from your head to your heart.
That was one experience that I had in junior high.
I have to be very honest with you. I did not have a lot of challenges in my life, like classical challenges. I had wonderful parents who loved me. We were not wealthy by any stretch but we always had food on the table and we always had enough and extra. And my parents always demonstrated the concept of giving.
My father was very poor when he grew up but he said that even though they only had one chicken for eight people, the parents and the six kids, his mother would always save part of the chicken for the poor man who lived next door. So that was how I was raised.
I think when you know these principles of giving and they're really inculcated in you from a very young age, it makes your path easier as you grow up.
But part of my story, and you might not know this, was that when I started my seminar company, it became bigger and bigger; and within a few short years, it was being taught in many major U.S. cities, seven countries on four continents.
I was on media from coast to coast and I was supposed to have my own daytime TV talk show. I was just about to sign a contract with a major LA producer, and I was going to interview people who were successful and happy on how they created that success. I was about to enter into negotiations with a major publisher to push my Yes to Success book.
And I gave it all up like that [snaps fingers]. One day, I just gave it all up.
I had an infomercial, actually the first infomercial that sold an information product in the eighties and I gave it up when I gave birth to my daughter.
What happened was I took one look at her, really, and I thought, No way I'm going back to work.
I had a new passion. And one of the things I teach people is follow your heart. Your heart will never lead you astray.
And here's another important point: Each of us was put on earth for a God-given purpose. There are people who are waiting for us to touch their lives.
If you take a year off to be with your grandmother while she's passing or if you take two years off to go hold AIDS babies in Uganda or if you take six months off to work on a political campaign (and, in my case, I took 20 years off to be a mom at home), what you were put on earth to do is not going to go away.
As a matter of fact, if you follow your heart, it's the surest path to living what you were put on earth to do.
So I took 20 years off from my career as a speaker and a writer. I gave up all those opportunities because I had to be true to myself.
After I had my baby, I was supposed to give a big program in Singapore. I'll never forget this. The guy called me and said that he heard I had a baby and was I ready to pick a date.
I said, “You know, you're going to have to call me back in 18 years” because I knew that I had a new passion and I had to follow my heart.
So I became a mom at home for 18 years.
DAVID LAROCHE: Do you think, for other women, that’s it's possible to do both?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Yes. I'm not saying that every mother or every father should stay at home. I just knew that I had to follow my heart. And I'm not even saying that your kids will be better off if you stay at home. I have no idea if my kids were better off…
DAVID LAROCHE: But you followed what was important for you, and it's amazing.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Exactly. And here's the story I want to share with you. People say to me, “Did you ever doubt that you made the right decision?”
And I say, “You better believe it. I absolutely doubted that I had made the right decision.”
I remember this one day when my kids were about two and five, and they were particularly not happy that day. I'll never forget it. They wanted to watch television and, usually, I didn't put them in front of the TV. But this was a TV day because nothing was making them happy.
I put them on the couch and I was turning the dial; I was doing a channel check because they wanted to watch the show called “Barney,” the big purple dinosaur.
And as I was doing the channel check, I see Oprah; and just as I was about to turn the dial, I see that Oprah is interviewing one of my students.
This student of mine had a bestselling book, and Oprah was interviewing him about this New York Times bestselling book.
And as I was standing there watching this with these two whiny kids on the couch, this person did a demonstration for Oprah that showed the power of the mind. And it was a demonstration that the person had learned at my seminar. It was actually something that I cognized in a meditation to show the power of the mind.
Now, I'm not criticizing this person because when I stopped teaching my seminars, I said, “Take my information, use it, and teach it. It's public domain. I'm taking a break for 18 years (actually, it turned into 21 when my son was born). The world needs it. It's all yours.”
So there was nothing wrong with this person showing this to Oprah. But Oprah was like, “Oh, my God, this is amazing. This really shows how powerful your mind is. I'm going to use this and show it to my whole staff.” She was like flipping out over this demonstration.
I was knee deep in dirty diapers with these two kids on the couch and here was this person on Oprah. And I burst into tears because, at that moment, I thought that I had ruined my entire life.
Do you understand?
DAVID LAROCHE: Yes.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: I was like [cries]. Of course, it startled my children and they stopped crying. A sure way to get your kids to stop crying is to start crying.
DAVID LAROCHE: That's good advice.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: So I was standing in front of the TV feeling sorry for myself. After a while, my daughter goes, “Mommy.”
I said, “What, sweetheart?”
“What about the popsicles?” I promised that I'd make them orange juice popsicles.
So I said, “Okay,” and I turned on Barney and I went into the kitchen. I had to cut the pity party short because I had to make the popsicles.
I went into the kitchen and I was pouring the orange juice into the molds to make the orange juice popsicles. I was still kind of crying a little bit and I said, “God, why did You make this happen? What did I do? I really blew it.”
And I got this message; it said, “Remember the book.”
So it made me cry more. “Yes, I was supposed to have the bestseller book.”
I say from God the Creator but, really, it comes from inside your higher self. And the voice said, “Not that book.”
And then, I remembered a book that I had read many years ago about a man who had died and then was allowed to come back, and he told the story of what happened after he died.
I'm sure you've probably read some books about people who have passed on and came back.
And I needed to remember this at that moment because when this man died, he said that there was a being of light that met him at the other end of a dark tunnel; and the being of light said to him, “Would you like to see a movie reel of all of the most important moments in your life?” and the man said, “Yes, absolutely.”
The movie reel was very short. It showed him dancing with his daughter at her wedding. It showed him showing his son how to swing a baseball bat and a few other things.
The man said, “Wait a second. What about when I became an Eagle Scout? What about when I opened the factories in Japan? What about when my company started being traded on the Dow?”
And the being of light said, “All of those moments glorified you. Would you like to see the life of somebody who has also just passed over to this side?”
The man said, “Yes, I would.”
In the book, it said, “These curtains of golden light parted and there sitting on the throne of golden light surrounded by a host of angels was the woman who used to take three buses to get to that man’s house to clean his house.”
And then, the being of light said, “Would you like a movie reel of her life?”
It was an endless reel. It showed her carrying a pot of soup to a sick friend. It showed her cheering at the baseball games not only for her own kid but for the kids whose parents couldn't be there because they had to work just to put food on the table.
It showed her comforting a sad child. It showed her holding her mother’s hand as her mother passed. It showed her greeting people at church, “How are you doing today?” with a big hug and a big smile.
And the being of light said to the man, “When you get here, you find out that the only thing that matters while you're on earth is how much love you give.”
DAVID LAROCHE: Thank you very much for this story.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: And, you know, in the eighties and nineties, we wanted more and more material things. We wanted big houses.
DAVID LAROCHE: That's my question. Do you have some life lessons to use?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Yes. And this is it because, in the different decades, we wanted different things. Do you know that in the fifties, people just wanted a house in the suburbs?
In the nineties, when there was a lot of money being made in the dot.com boom, people wanted big houses and big cars; and they would do anything to get those big houses and big cars.
The one thing that people want now is to find their purpose in life. But I want to caution people: Don't be stressed now about finding your purpose as people were in the nineties about getting their BMW.
Do you see? People think that their purpose is to write the great American novel or be on the cover of Time magazine. I don't know what people want.
But if our purpose is just to have the intention every day to love, give, and to serve, at the end of your life, I promise you'll look back on your life and you will know that it was a life worth living.
Do you see? And you might be thinking, Well, I'm just a clerk at this law office.
No, you're not. You're a light at that law office. If you're watching this YouTube, it's because you want to be better; you want to contribute more; you want to know how to have more and be more and do more.
And to every single one of us, as I say, you have people who are waiting for you to touch their lives. You might think it's some kind of dead-end job, but it's not. You're in that job because you were put there to touch lives, to spread your light, and to spread your love.
So I say that if you want to do something else, if you want to write the great American or French novel, then, be grateful for the job that you have now. And don't go there thinking, I've just got to go to work every so, eventually, I could really live my passion.
No. Put your heart and soul into it. Put your love into it. And what will happen is that the path to some, perhaps, greater thing that you were put on earth to do will open. But it’ll open by, you, loving, giving, and serving exactly where you are now.
DAVID LAROCHE: It's amazing because you shared a lot of things differently than what we had. It's very rich. I love that.
I think Julie would like to ask you two things. Then, I will come back to ask you two last things.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Is it okay so far?
DAVID LAROCHE: Yes. It's great. You make me think a lot. Thank you very much.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: There's one thing I want to add, and I'm going to say this now. There's nothing wrong with having beautiful houses and nice clothing because I love those things. I love having pretty bling. There's nothing wrong with it. As a matter of fact, when you look at somebody who looks great, it uplifts you.
But don't be fooled into thinking that having those things is going to bring you happiness because when you get those things, you're just going to want more.
Happiness comes from gratitude, from being loved, and from giving love. Happiness comes from the inside out. Happiness will never come from the outside in.
And one other thing: Everything that we're given, we're given so that we share it. The way that you're going to get happiness from your house or your car is if you know that you have it, that the Creator gave it to you for the sake of sharing.
I manifested a Mercedes, the exact Mercedes. I went to the Mercedes dealer. I got a picture of the exact navy blue Mercedes that I wanted while I was driving a beat-up Chevy Bel Air. But every time I got in that Chevy Bel Air, I said, “Thank you, God, for this Chevy Bel Air.” And it even had a name. Its name was Shirley. I'd say, “Shirley, I love you. Thank you for getting me…”
And I also used Shirley to take people places and not when it was convenient for me but when it was inconvenient for me.
So if you use what you have for the right reasons, you're going to get more. And, sure enough, actually, a Mercedes, exactly the picture that I had cut out from that Mercedes catalogue when I went to the dealership.
My husband called me one day. He didn't know that I had wanted it, and this was years later. He said, “Honey, would you like a Mercedes?”
I said, “Why do you ask?”
He said, “Because somebody just bought one and, now, they have to go overseas and they want to sell it. I could get a really good price.”
I said what anybody would say, “Well, what color is it?”
And he said, “Well, let me find out.” He called back and he said, “It's navy blue.” It was exactly the Mercedes I had cut up the picture of.
I love those things. But use what you have now for the right reasons, and then you'll get more.
You have maybe a small house and you want a bigger, more beautiful one, let people stay. Give them a place.
You want more time? Give away your time. You want more time with your kids? Give time to other kids. You want time to help your kids with their homework? Help kids whose parents don't have time to help them with their homework because they're working three jobs to put food on the table.
That's how you're going to expand time. Whatever you want, give it away. And you'll always have more.
JULIE: My question is more of a creative question because I'm wondering what each human being can do to make this world a better place to live in. I asked Seth Godin this question and he said that I should first focus on just six people and replicate it.
Let's imagine that six people come to you and the only thing they have in common is that they have the strong will to be the change they wish to see in the world and to be happy and peaceful so as to be a model for their children to create peace and live in harmony.
So these six people come to you and just share want they want but they don't know what to do and where to start. What would you recommend to them?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: What most people don't do is they don't start. We look at the world and the world is so filled with problems, and we think, how can I help these girls in Africa who are subjected to genital mutilation?
That's one of the most horrible things I could think of.
Or these little boys in some countries where they take them away when they're 10 years old and they make them into killing machines.
You see just all kinds of horrible thing happening and it makes you feel helpless.
But you're not helpless because there's a story, again, in Kabbalah, which is the Jewish mystical text where a rabbi says to his students, “Go and get me one of those scales of justice with the two bowls on either side.” And he said to the students, “Now, get equal amounts of sesame seeds and put them on both sides.
And then, he said, “If each one of these sesame seeds on this side corresponds to an act of goodness, and on this side corresponds to an act of meanness or hate or jealousy or illwill, at this time in creation, we are at a very delicate time where the earth could go in either direction.”
But what he said is that every act that we do puts a sesame seed either on one side or the other. If this side filled with goodness, love, and caring wins, we will have an age of enlightenment. But if this side wins, the earth could experience an age of destruction. Everything we do either puts a sesame seed on this side or this side.
So don't ever think that any act that you are doing doesn't matter. How do you know that that loving act of kindness when you just held the door for somebody with a baby carriage even though you were running in to your aerobics class but you stopped and you waited and you held that door, that kind of kindness (a sesame seed on that side) was the one that tipped the scale to an age of light? And you did that.
So never feel helpless.
And, every time, there is this light that is hovering the planet and the universe, and it's a light of grace. And just like the sun… if you're black, if you're white, if you're rich, if you're poor—the sun shines the same on everyone.
But you can decide if you want to put up an umbrella and block yourself from the sun or go live underground. But, then, don't complain that there's no sun because there is.
And there's a light of grace. Ee could let more grace into our lives or we can block the grace.
And every time we do an act of kindness, every time we do something that's loving, giving, and serving, we let more grace into our lives.
But we also let more grace onto the planet.
Do you see?
So those people who are on the other side of the world who are suffering and you feel so helpless, do things that let more light in because as more and more of us do more of these acts that bring more light down, that light is going to permeate the planet.
And you don't have to think of a specific way to free those young girls or to free those young boys. Soon, the light is going to be so great that those kinds of horrible atrocities won't even be able to be entertained and it will be because of each one of us is doing the things that let the light in.
JULIE: Thank you. So it starts with everyone doing one’s best to do good acts and to nourish positive energy.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: That's right.
JULIE: I have another question which is about education. Do you an idea on how we could improve education, generally, at school?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: I have two children and they are my teachers. One of the things we need to do is listen to the children more and try to teach them less. The children who are coming on the planet right now are here to teach us. They have innate loving. They have innate knowledge.
But we're so busy teaching them things that they'll never need like physics and calculus and trigonometry.
I know it's supposed to exercise the brain. But, first of all, we should teach them practical things like how to save money, how to balance their checkbooks but also how to be kind, how to be loving, how to be generous, how to serve other people.
It's intra-training into our educational system but… can I share with you some stories about my children?
JULIE: Yes, sure.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: My son’s name is Daniel. When he was 13, he was going on a class trip to Washington, D.C. where a lot of eighth-grade classes from all over the country go for their class trip. My son was so excited about this eighth-grade class trip. He and his friends were just talking about it for weeks and weeks.
Finally, the night before the trip, I went to a parents’ meeting and they told us how much money they should bring and where we should drop the kids off so they could take the bus to the airport. They said there was going to a pool at the hotel so they should bring swim trunks.
And then, they gave out the room assignments. First, they gave all the girls room assignments then the boys.
When they read out the first room, they said, “And Asher will be in the room with Max and Teddy and Duanne.” Those were Daniel’s close friends. And then they said, “The next room will be Jacob, Terence, Kiwan, and Frank.” Those were Daniel’s other good friends.
They read the whole list and no Daniel. As I was about to get up to ask the teacher what was going on, she said, “Oh and Daniel will be in a room with Eric and Eric’s personal aid.”
Now, Eric is an autistic boy. I love Eric. Eric would come over to the house. He's a sweet boy. But I thought that Daniel would be disappointed. I thought that Daniel would want to be with his friends because he had been looking forward to this trip.
I'm not a bad person. I actually used to be a Special Ed teacher. But I just thought, oh, my gosh, how am I going to break this news to Daniel?
I was in the car driving home and I was thinking, How am I going to tell him that he's in the room with Eric and this thirty-something-year-old-guy who’s kind of square.
So I went home, went into the den, and said, “Daniel, guess what, there's a swimming pool at your hotel,” and he said, “Yes, I know, Mom.”
And I said, “And you can bring $50.” I told him he could only bring $25.
“Yes, Mom, I know.”
I said, “And they gave out the room assignments and if you're really disappointed, maybe I could get this changed. But they put you in a room with Eric and Eric’s personal aid.”
And he looked at me and he said, “Mom, are you serious?” I said, “Yes, I'm very serious.”
He said, “No, Mom, they didn't put me in a room with Eric. I asked to be with Eric because Mom, you have to think about it. It's his eighth-grade class trip, too. And I was thinking that if he wasn’t with me, he would end up getting left out.”
So, you see, if we listen to our kids, they have such innate goodness if we don't tell them how to live their lives but watch how they live their lives.
I believe in the educational system. We absolutely have to let the kids teach.
JULIE: It's a very powerful answer. Thank you very much.
DAVID LAROCHE: I have a last question. I have to explain before I ask. My goal is to touch people in a way that they aren’t being touched now. My question is on how to become unhappy.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: How to become unhappy?
DAVID LAROCHE: Yes. I will make a video f the best keys of each interviewee to become unhappy. The goal is to make a funny video to touch people who aren’t being touched by success and happiness.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: I see. That’ll be cute. I want to be really funny. I don't want to say what you would expect. So, this is going to be funny.
DAVID LAROCHE: You can say it seriously.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: I actually know one way.
DAVID LAROCHE: It’s easy.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Okay, but I have to think. I've never been asked that before.
DAVID LAROCHE: Say the opposite of what you were saying before. I think it will work.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: So, should I say, “If you really want to be unhappy, here's what you can do?” Is that what I would say?
DAVID LAROCHE: Yes, perfect.
I have a question for you. It is a very important question because I know it will help a lot of people. I would love to know your advice to become unhappy. I'd love to help people to be that.
Seriously, do you have some advice, please, to become unhappy in this life?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: If you really want to be unhappy…
DAVID LAROCHE: Yes, I want to, and I will try everything to share everything you say.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: The first thing is to never listen to your inner guidance. When it's really clear, the path that your inner self is telling you to take, go the opposite way because we really want to be unhappy.
The universe is always giving us signs and signals and when the universe says, “Go right,” absolutely go left. You're going to be really miserable. It will be a lot of fun.
What else can you do?
Oh, you know what else you could do?
DAVID LAROCHE: Yes, please.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Always speak ill of others. As a matter of fact, you can create neural pathways in your brain because the more you repeat a behavior, you create a neural pathway.
That's why if you go to an aerobics or a zumba class and, at first, you can't do any of the steps but, then, you could do them in your sleep because you've created a neural pathway.
DAVID LAROCHE: Cool. So I can do that to become unhappy.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: So say bad things about people all the time. Say bad things about yourself. Put yourself down and say, “I'm so fat and I'm going to get fatter and I'm so poor; there's this recession and it's going to go into a depression,” and keep saying it over and over, and then, create a neural pathway, and then it will be automatic. And so, your unhappiness will be on autopilot.
DAVID LAROCHE: I have to have good energy to say that because I can say, “I'm unhappy,” and it will work?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: No. Don't say, “I'm unhappy.” It's like when I say to my dog, “You are the ugliest dog in the whole world.” She doesn't know what the word “ugly” is. It's your tone of voice because I could say, “Oh, you're so ugly,” and she’ll get all happy. She thinks I'm saying she's pretty because of my tone.
So when you say “unhappy,” you have to also act it out.
DAVID LAROCHE: Your physiology.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Yes, physical. Scrunch up your face. “Life is SO DIFFICULT! It's so difficult and everything that comes into my life… I only get what I don't want.”
DAVID LAROCHE: That's amazing. Thank you very much. What is your first key?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: There's another one. If you really want to be unhappy and you want to bring really negative energy into your life, do things like watch TV shows… it's okay if you watch something that makes you cry because it's so sweet. But if you want to bring negativity into your life, watch—who killed that person; let's solve this murder mystery; the mass murderer killed 12 people and they found their heads buried under his house.
Be sure to watch those all the time. Then, you'll draw all that energy into your house.
DAVID LAROCHE: Maybe I can make a podcast from that.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: You could get cast in it. They're looking for someone just like you. They want some really cute guy who is a great speaker to be a star of that show. And then, you could be miserable like that. It's such a great idea!
DAVID LAROCHE: Thank you very much. I'm certain that it will help a lot of people.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: I wish I could think of more ways to be unhappy. If I think of more, I'll give you a call.
DAVID LAROCHE: Yes, thank you very much.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Was that okay?
DAVID LAROCHE: Yes.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: But, you know, it's true. People watch these TV shows about people who murder 12 people, and then they bring that vibration into their house—not good.
DAVID LAROCHE: And it's powerful to do this kind of video because it will touch the people.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: I want to say one other thing that you could put on there. In those slasher movies… you know those movies where they cut up people’s heads and there are ghosts in your house and, Ahhh!
You could bring that vibration right into your life, and it could really make you miserable. So go to a lot of movies like that and I promise you…
Oh, and another thing that you could do is when you hear bad news, be sure to tell everyone about it. If a tornado hits or a war breaks out or some natural disaster happens—an earthquake—tell as many people as you can about it. I promise you, you will be so miserable. It will just bring tons of misery into your life.
DAVID LAROCHE: Cool. You're awesome. Thank you very much.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Oh, wow! That was fun.
DAVID LAROCHE: My last question is without me. It is a very short video on success. According to you, what are the key factors of success?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: You know, a lot of people believe that success has to do with reaching a goal: I will be successful WHEN I'm a New York Times bestselling author. I will be successful WHEN I have that big house and that big car. I will be successful WHEN I find my soulmate.
But there's been research done (actually, at Harvard University) that showed that people who set a goal and reached that goal were no more happy than if they set a goal and did not reach a goal.
As a matter of fact, there was research done where they took two groups of people. One group of people found out that they had won millions of dollars in the lottery; and another group of people who had an accident found out that they were going to be in a wheelchair for the rest of their lives.
One year later, what they discovered was that those people had gone back to the same level of happiness and contentment and same level of how successful they felt before those two very different incidents took place.
What I tell people about success is that success truly is a journey and it's not just reaching the destination.
What we need to do in order to be successful is rejoice and celebrate every little success on the way to your goal.
I love goals. I think goals are fantastic. However, we have to realize that the fun is getting to the goal.
As a matter of fact, Ray Kroc who founded McDonald’s was asked when he felt the greatest amount of success. Was it when he saw his first McDonald’s open or when he saw them across the nation and across the world?
And he said, “Oh, I felt the greatest success when I was still sleeping on the park bench and I looked across the park and I saw a hamburger stand and I had the idea of what I was going to do. At that moment, I was so filled with excitement and so filled with the vision of what I was going to create. And, after that, it was just a matter of the implementation.”
Again, remember to enjoy the journey. Don't be so fixated on the goal just as long as you are pursuing a goal that is worthy of you, and a goal that is worthy of you is one that uses your talents.
The Creator didn't give you talents randomly. If you have a musical talent, it's because you're supposed to use that and share it with the world. If you're an excellent speaker, you were given that gift because you are supposed to share it with the world.
If you are good with computers, you were given that gift because you're supposed to share it with the world. If you're good at body work, you were given that because you're supposed to share it with the world.
So use your God-given talents. And every step of the way, notice the fun that you're having. Notice the joy that you're giving to others and know that you are successful as soon as you have the idea of what you're going to do. You don't have to wait to achieve the goal to enjoy success.
Is that good?
DAVID LAROCHE: Yes. It's perfect.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: My answers are way too long because I remember Ray Kroc and ….
DAVID LAROCHE: I would love to ask you a last thing. Can you endorse me or recommend me?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: I would love to.
DAVID LAROCHE: I'm David Laroche.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: When David Laroche contacted me, I went right on to YouTube to see if I could watch one of his videos. And, honestly, I was blown away. I was absolutely amazed not only at what a good speaker he is, very, very funny, absolutely was in command of the audience, but his knowledge was so profound.
He wasn’t just repeating knowledge that he had heard from somebody else. You could tell that David owns what he teaches, and that's why we are going to hear a lot more from David in the years to come. He is going to be one of the leaders in helping the world create success.
DAVID LAROCHE: Cool. Thank you very much.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: It's true. Give me a hug. I was watching you and I was thinking, oh, my gosh.
How old are you?
DAVID LAROCHE: Twenty-four.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Oh, my God! I was watching you and you'd go from one end of the stage to the other end of the stage; and you had all the audience with you. It was amazing. Seriously!
Have you seen him speak live?
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Amazing! And, again, it wasn’t just that you were repeating things. I could tell that you owned it.
DAVID LAROCHE: What you are saying is very important. Maybe we can have a picture.
DEBRA HALPERIN PONEMAN: Yes, I want a picture, too.