How to Maximize Your Potential & Love Your Life ? – John Demartini
David Laroche : I would love to focus this interview a lot about youths and teenagers and my first question for you according to you how to help youths or teens to find their own way.
John Demartini Houston : Regardless of age even in a young infant, a child, there is an observation that can be made of what they show interest in. Even a baby laying in the crib is noticing things and avoiding things. So regardless of age in each stage of development each child and/or teenager has what is called a hierarchy of values, a set of priorities that they live their life by and that they make their decisions by. This set of priorities that they have is unique to them and there are some things that they do that they have spontaneously do. They love doing, they're inspired by it. You don't ever have to remind them to do it. They don't need any motivation to do it, no incentives, they just do it. There's other things that they resist and they don't want to do and they're bored and they procrastinate, they hesitate, they frustrate. Identifying what that is regardless of age allows them to be respected as individuals with unique sets of values from parents, teachers or others and identifying what that is and honoring that is the first step. Because as long as we project autocratically authoritatively on what they're supposed to think, believe, focus on etc, we're going to get the natural resistance that everybody has. Even if we came to you and told you how to think and do you would resist it and you'd fight it. So first find out what they're inspired by, that's the wise thing. First find out what their life demonstrates spontaneously that they love. The second thing as a parent is to ask yourself how they're dedicated to that, how is that dedication that they have? How that's serving you as a parent because if you can't see what they're dedicated to serving you you're going to have a natural tendency to want to change it, want to fight it, want to resist it, want to fix it. You are going to think that they're lazy, you're going to throw labels on them because you don't want to try to make them somebody that they're not right now inspired to be. So first find out what it is and ask yourself as a parent how specifically as my son or daughter being dedicated to this action. How is it helping me fulfill what's important to me? So you need to know yourself and know what you're inspired by, what's meaningful to you, what's your goals are not social idealism but what your life's demonstrating is important to you and find out how what they're dedicated is serving you because there's not a mistake in the family dynamic why that child is doing what it's designed to do. Because children are designed to express repressions of parents and they're designed to live out things that they haven't been wounded by in their own family life that haven't loved and they're there to teach them how to love things. So first find out what they're dedicated to and find out how they're serving you as a parent and don't just do it answer one time answer that until you're actually grateful for them being who they are. Because when you're grateful for who they are, the way they are, they turn into who you love, basic principle. Once you do you now just like a customer in a company or an employee in a company if you communicate what you want in terms of what they want, you go further.
David Laroche : It's like speak Chinese to an Englishman.
John Demartini Houston : Otherwise it's like speaking a foreign language. So if a customer if you're smart you will never think about trying to help a customer without first establishing the need and what they're dedicated to, what they want. Once you listen to what they want because telling is not telling it's asking questions you then try to see first of all if what you have to offer will serve that and if you have, you try to word it in such a way where they'll get their values met, their needs met. So whatever you're trying to communicate to the child it's wise to know what the values and priorities of the child are, what their life demonstrates not what they tell you but what their life demonstrates and master the art of communicating what's important to you in terms of what's important to them. If you do, they automatically open up to you because whenever they feel they're getting what they're wanting, they open up, they calm down, they're a different child. I've trained many parents and blown their minds because their teachers and the parents have labeled their kids with disobedient disorder, defiant disorder, attention deficit disorder all these labels and once the parent mastered the art of this exercise and went in there and communicated to the child's values, the child was enormously different and amazingly receptive open to do what the parents would love to do because the parents respected the child to communicate what the parent wanted in terms of the child's values. Now, the child's values is evolving and so the parent has to have enough caring about the child to keep an eye on what that new value is because when it's three to five it may be willing to play with certain little game. Later on, it may be wanting to socialize or may want to start to explore or travel or do things or hang out and party. Whatever it is instead of making it wrong which creates them further into the disobedience care enough to find out how it is and reflect on your own life and remember when you were in that phase and look back at that. When you do that they're receptive and you can take whatever it is that you would love for them to know and you can share it with them or love to do and share with them. They have a century cortex, a motor cortex and whatever you want them to know or to do if you communicate in their values you make that neuroplastically receptive to what you're up to and the child is now more in line with what you do not because they're obedient but because they're inspired to fulfill what is and you've shown them a way to help them do it. If you love them for who they are they turn into who you love, it's a basic principle. Any time you label a child every time I've seen it the parents have had a poor ability to communicate in the child's values because I've gone up that same child just had one the other day. I just had a 16-year-old boy the father's ready to kick him out the house he said, “I'm done. I can't handle this anymore. You're disruptive, disobedient, you're this and label, after label, after label, you're not going to school, you're not doing this, you are not doing.” I sat with him on phone for 42 minutes, found out what he's dedicated to what his life demonstrated found what he's inspired by. His father was wanting another world for him another life for him and I told him and I said I explained to him how he could do that. He was receptive. He was focused, he was there, he was inspired, he had a new strategy. I got a contact back from his father about an hour later, “What did you do?” And I said, “I just helped him fulfill what his dream is.”
David Laroche : And respect who he is.
John Demartini Houston : And respected who he is. Master that art, you'll see your son do amazing things. Everybody has a hidden genius. Every teenager, child whatever the age has a hidden genius in there and has something inspiring that they want to dedicate that makes a difference in the world. Finding out what that is without judging it is the first step. Learning how to communicate what you feel would be benefit to them but remember as a parent you don't want to project on to the child all your wounds and all your fears because anything you've been wounded about that you feel hurt by that you haven't found the benefits to sometimes you want to protect your child from that. And you think it's caring but it's actually stopping them from reminding you of that fear that you need to break through and you're doing it in the way you think is caring, it's not caring. It's actually projecting your own wounds on the kids. And that's “label caring” by some the perpetrator innocent model psychologist. But the real truth is that child is capable of doing extraordinary things and we do better by exemplifying mastery of their own life than we do by trying to prevent them from going through what our wounds are. So the best thing a parent can do is go do something inspiring and amazing with their life, something that's extraordinary and make a massive contribution and through the mirror neurons to the brain the child will pick it up and say, “I want to do something amazing too.”
David Laroche : Yeah, become a source of inspiration for…
John Demartini Houston : Be a source of inspiration.
David Laroche : For yourself and for your children.
John Demartini Houston : That's it. That's the greatest teacher there is on the planet.
David Laroche : And I have a question also about values, do you think the values change in the life or the order of change or we're born with value, with the same value according to you?
John Demartini Houston : Values definitely change, Maslow in his personality and motivation described a hierarchy of values, a hierarchy of needs. Many have done that not just him but and there's basically the first one the very primary one that all human beings have is oxygen. They want to breathe and if they have asthma that's the highest priority in their life they won't be able to breath. Then water, then food then reproduction, then clothing, then shelter and it goes up from there. Those are basic survival values. Some people in the world if you've been in Africa or Asia and places where they don't even have those things, those are basic essentials that they have to get first. Then once you have shelter and clothing and food and things you tend to want to upgrade it and you want to hold onto it and you want to secure it. So from survival comes security. You want to prevent somebody else from taking it from you. So you want to close your house, you want to protect your goods and stuff so somebody can't steal it because then you're back in survival again. So security comes next. And so anything that a person's in survival going under security they're going to want to secure or anything and accumulate things to make sure that they don't have that anxiety again. The next one is kind of a socialization where you want to interact with other people kind of show off what you've got and influence people with it and have some sort of identity and…
David Laroche : To impress people.
John Demartini Houston : Yeah, impress people. And then Maslow said that there's another level
where you're trying to now realize you know what these people are reflections of me and if I help them get what they want I get what I want. So you've gone past security and now you're into past socialization you're now in self-esteem you want to be a leader trying to make a difference on the people. And finally you self actualize and you realize that as Schopenhauer says we become our true self to the degree we make everyone else ourself and that is everything. So we realize that nothing's missing in us, we have everything. We don't have to compare ourselves, we just need to share what's true for us in an inspired way in a way where everybody gets to get what they want in life. So there's a level of it and each one of those levels have different needs and value systems…
David Laroche : And can we say that our values don't change but our focus change because we are building a building?
John Demartini Houston : You're building layer upon layer. It's a strata, it's like sediments in anthropology or archaeology. So these strata grow and every time you fulfill a need there's a slight shift in your needs. There's two evolutionary methods to changing needs. One is called the uniform hypothesis or the gradual hypothesis, one is the punk take cataclysmic hypothesis. One is that if you're living by your highest values and you're feeling self-actualized and you feeling you're inspired by your life then you quickly, resiliently adapt to changing environments based on needs and you're slowly but surely making slight changes on your values. If you're not fulfilled in your highest values and you feel that you've been subordinated and suppressed and you feel that you're injecting values of other people and you feel like you're not fulfilling your life then sometimes you have to have cataclysmic events to make change. That's hitting the bottom as drug addicts do because I always say that addiction is a byproduct of unfulfilled highest values, addictive behavior. Immediate gratification and addictive behavior is a byproduct of unfulfilled highest values. So finding out what those values are, being honest with who you are, not subordinating to social idealisms and authorities around you and you compare yourself to other people thinking they have a better life and living authentically and only comparing your actions to your own dreams allows you to live according to your highest values and gives you permission to do something extraordinary on the planet. When you do you resiliently adapt to changing environments rapidly and you're able to spontaneously and intuitively do with whatever's needed to whoever you're around and you have a great capacity to do leadership capacities and you can handle paradoxes and handle the dualities of life and the pairs of opposites that life is always providing. And this is the mastery and if we limit ourselves as parents and we help children do that, they migrate through their values and change and we're here to learn how to love all the values because all values on the planet are ultimately serving or they wouldn't be there. They would have gone extinct. So learning how to do that allows us to broaden our own horizons and appreciate people from different faiths and cultures and beliefs and morays and traditions and conventions. So the keeping that and helping us grow to realize that we're literally a global being. We are here to learn and love all the parts and see how the parts live. There's a law in political social culture that's called the law of eristic escalation which means that whatever somebody is dedicated to there's somebody dedicated to the opposite, the pairs of opposites are all of the world. And if you can actually handle those pairs
of opposites and know how to negotiate and communicate in all pairs of opposites, you master life you self-actualize. So all the values are moving from a point where it's survival to eventually it's rival and self-actualization and doing what we learn to love ourselves and others. If people had only 24 hours to live in their life they would say, “Thank you. I love you” to the people that contributed to their life and every human being no matter what race, creed, color, age or sex wants to be loved and appreciated for who they are so that's the pinnacle the essence of our existence is, “Thank you. I love you.” So all values eventually lead to the point where there's self-actualizing. The highest value of an individual regardless of age is what is called the telos which is the end in mind which is called the chief aim by Napoleon Hill or the magnificent obsession by Tellifson or the primary objective by others. It is the purpose. It's the most meaningful thing we can do and so each person at any moment in their evolutionary journey always has the highest value and the collection of those throughout their life is their life's journey but at any moment that's the purpose that they dedicate their life to and that child deserves to be honored for that. When I work with education systems in the world in Africa or in India or whatever it is when I help people find out what that is in the child and help link all the curriculums to it and teach the teachers and parents how to communicate and that it's amazing I mean literally amazing what happens to the children. All the labels are gone, the disease are gone, the medications that they get stuck on are gone and these are…
David Laroche : They unleash their power.
John Demartini Houston : Inspired. They unleash their power.
David Laroche : And I would love to know because just before I was talking about a child for example who don't know what he want to do, there are also kind of children they want to do that and that and that and a lot of goals and dreams according to you they have to focus on only one or can they achieve the five goals five dreams?
John Demartini Houston : Well, in the hierarchy of values numero uno, the number one is the highest and any time you work by the highest values your self-worth goes up, any time you go down to lower values your self-worth goes down. When your self-worth goes down and you feel unfulfilled, you tend to look for immediate gratification you tend to scatter and you tend to try to multitask. But when you find out what's really most meaningful to you and you learn the art of asking how is whatever I'm doing in my life help me fulfill that, you're able to concentrate your energies and master something. That's the pathway to master but that doesn't mean that that one thing can't include many other components and you can master many different sub components inside it and become a polymathic student of life and learn many different things as long as it's focused on one thing. I'm a polymath, I've studied many different disciplines, 287 different disciplines but its main focus is the evolution of awareness and potential and the evolution of human consciousness. So because I focus on that everything I study goes to that, everything I do goes to that.
David Laroche : One focus but you had some accessories to build that?
John Demartini Houston : Yeah, I keep focus for 41 years on this one objective but at the same time I've explored many different fields, many different things. So you're capable of integrating and linking things to the highest value and you can get multiple things done and run I mean Richard Branson runs 300 companies through delegation and integration…
David Laroche : Maybe you focused for example for two years on only one topic and then one is there and then one is there?
John Demartini Houston : Not necessarily, I may be doing it but as long as I link it to one primary objective I can get a lot of information put together. So a person typically who scatters and has becomes a master of nothing and becomes you know they usually dilute themselves unless it's linked to one focus that they can identify that by. Your highest value is your ontological identity so finding out what that highest value is the most important and then if you want to do multiple things link it to it. If you do you can focus on. If you have a bunch of balls in the air and you try to juggle them if you look at any one ball you'll drop the other ones but if you look in the center you can juggle five balls looking at the center and juggle all those together. It's not really multitasking it's single tasking it's just they're all integrated to the task.
David Laroche : Right. I love that . I have a global question to ask you, according to you what is the meaning of the life?
John Demartini Houston : Well, whatever is highest on an individual's values regardless of age at that moment is the most meaningful thing they can do and it's what they project as meaning onto their existence. So universally you won't going to be able to find anyone meaning that lapse it all through the ages of philosophers are trying to find the highest virtue, the highest meaning the highest and ever. But it's individualized but it all collectively integrates to ultimately what inspires the individual on that level. That's the most meaningful thing. Some people it's dedicated to life to raising a family. Some people it's dedicated to social cause, some people it's dedicated to fitness and health and yoga, some people it's dedicated to scholarly research and to finding a solution to a problem in the world. Some are basically wanting to go to space. Whatever's most the highest on their value what inspires them is the most meaningful thing because the teleology which is a study of purpose and meaning is the study of the telos which is the highest value. That is the most meaningful thing you can do and no two people have exactly the same meaning just like no two people have the same vantage point and viewpoint about anything or perception.
David Laroche : And I would like to also have your point of view about something, my question is maybe I will have some results and I will mark it projects for people to have the same results but some of these people can't maybe have the same results, you said just before just some people wants to grow families and also want to have an impact in the world but maybe the people who are in the family wants to have an impact in the world but they can't.
John Demartini Houston : Okay. That's an important question because as I travel the world to speak and sometimes in front of thousands of people and I ask them, “How many of you want financial independence?” Every hand goes up. I say, “How many have have it?” 99% goes down. I said it isn't interesting that 100% of you have your hands up and only 1% do it, how come? And they go blank. I said, “Let me teach you why and how that occurs and why that's that way.”Because you know what I do is I have them go through and write down on a piece of paper the 10 things they would do if I gave them $10 million right now. What are the 10 things? They'd quickly they write it down in one minute you go, they'll write down 10 things you would do and they quickly rushed down what they would do if they had $10 million. And I said now look at that and turn it to the person next to you and you will notice something. The people that say they want $10 million have just spent their money or what they want to be financially independent they just spent their money. The people who are financially dependent just invested it. So what happens is many people have a fantasy of financial independence but what they do is they imagine themselves spending the money and living the lifestyle. But the people that actually make financial independence are not those people, they're the ones that actually go, “What would I do and investing this money and make sure it's put into appreciables and invested wisely so it's growing instead of spending.” So as long as you have a higher value on spending than saving and investing your values will make sure the second you get money is going to be spent not saved or invested. So many people live in a fantasy and they don't know what the real values are their life is demonstrating to revise but they're injecting fantasies from everybody else that they admire into their life and living vicariously through them as a spectator not a participator. And as long as they do they're going to beat themselves up with what I call the ABCDs of negativity; anger and aggression, blame and betrayal, criticism and challenge, respondent to despair and depression because they are constantly to beat themselves up because they're expecting themselves to live outside their own values. So in order to be financially independent you have to have the values that will lead you there because those values will determine how you see the world, decide in the world and act in the world and if you don't see opportunities you don't decide and don't act in a way that leads you to financial independence it's not going to happen. So many people live in a fantasy about what they think that they want to do but your life demonstrates what you do. So I always not pay attention to what people say I look at what they do.
David Laroche : And do you think everybody can learn that, everybody can learn to become a millionaire or is there only are there only some people who can become a millionaire?
John Demartini Houston : Everybody has the capacity, the potential is always there. Who would actualize that potential would be based on their values. So I have courses on that and what I do in those courses one of them is Where's my Billion? and I basically go in there and I help them identify what their values are now and when they look and find out what they actually are, they go, “Oh gosh, no wonder I'm the way I am. And I go, “Well.” And so in the process they do I say, “Well, that hierarchy of values is leading you to your destiny because your hierarchy of values dictates your destiny. So if you want to change the destiny and become financially independent we're going have to shift some values. And I show them the science of shifting values which is a neuroplastic science of altering the value system in order to get the outcome that you want. And it's essential otherwise that those values any time you set a goal that doesn't match the values or have values that don't match the goals you have unfulfillment. But once they're congruent you have fulfillment.
David Laroche : Yes, it's right.
John Demartini Houston : Any time somebody looks up to you and subordinates to you and think you have something they don't, they'll have a tendency to inject what they think your values are into their life. And they'll subordinate and they'll start moving away from their own highest value and they'll go into try to live by your values and try to mirror and match and try to be somebody they're not. But envy is ignorance and imitation to suicide. And Albert Einstein said, “My contempt for authority made me one.” So he was unwilling to subordinate to people, he was willing to listen to his own voice. I said on the secret when the voice of the vision on the inside is louder than all opinions on the outside you begin to master life. So the willingness to be authentic to yourself is few and far between on the people on the planet because most people minimize themselves because they subordinate themselves to others, expect themselves to live in other values and idealisms and social expectations and they don't give themselves permission to be the genius that they actually are. And that stops people from empowering themselves. So the truth is people can anybody has the capacity to build wealth or to build health or whatever they want but they are going to have to shift their values in order to manifest it.
David Laroche : And there is a price to pay to shift values.
John Demartini Houston : Well, there's only one way to transcend the price that I've seen and it's a very masterful art of seeing that nothing's missing because the very values themselves are derived from voids. If you think you don't have money you search for money. If you think you have no relationship you search for relationship, whatever you think is missing becomes important. So if you can see that nothing's missing by knowing how to ask the right question which I train people in the break to experience in my programs then they realize that the voids are not really there in the first place. That was an illusion of the mind that they had, the senses that they didn't see where they had it. So what I do is I tell people that think they don't have money for instance and I've asked them so everybody has wealth but it's in the form of their highest values. So the wealth may be the way you have a relationship your children. That's worth a fortune and somebody could pay you millions and say, “I wouldn't give up my children for that, it's worth millions”, or they may say spiritual quest and they said, “I'd pay you $1 billion to lose all that spiritual awareness.” “No, I'd keep my spirit awareness more than money.” As long as they value other things more than money, they are going to pay money for those things and they're not going to accumulate wealth. So they have to value money in order accumulate money and they have to have a value of it more than the things that they're now putting their energies and time and money into. So we have to find out what their values are, we have to then find out what their values they say they want and then we have to readjust the values and move in that direction. And in doing so we have to also show them how everything is helping them get that and show them that nothing's ultimately missing it's just in forms they're not honoring and when they do amazing things can happen.
David Laroche : I have two last questions according to you how to be healthy with food, how do you eat?
John Demartini Houston : Well, my personal regime may not be what's wise for everybody is what I found to be wise for me. I learned from Mahatma Gandhi when I was 18 years old I read the entire memoir series of Mahatma Gandhi. And he did on a daily basis an inventory of everything he ate and how he felt physically, emotionally, etc. So I created a chart when I was 18 years old that basically had the time of the day, liquids, solids, anything I ate, my physical responses, my emotional responses and any insights and I created a chart and I've kept it all these years and I did it and all through the day I did my journal to find out everything I ate, when did I feel it. Did I feel tired, did I feel energized, did I get angry, did I this anything that went on through the day and I looked at the patterns. And I discovered what the patterns were for me. And I then experimented once I had solved the patterns experimented with different foods and different patterns and times of eating and quantity of eating and fasting and everything else to find out what worked what didn't work for me. I did this for two solid years and then unconsciously after that because it became normal I learned about what works for me but I can't say it works for everybody else so I advise people to look within instead of listening to without at all times. Although, there may be some general principles that are wise to follow from the outside.
David Laroche : What do you think for example about milk?
John Demartini Houston : Well, some people in some cultures with some genetic backgrounds do fine with milk and other people, the second they drink milk they get congestion and they start having reactions and things of this nature. But when I went and traced that, I found that many of the people when they were a child when they drank milk they had parenting fighting and yelling and screaming and things and they associated it with it and they started to have allergic reactions and revolting against milk. So what I do is if I see your reactions to food I also make sure it's not just emotional reactions from earlier parts of their life and clear that in many times those foods are fine after that. So you have to discern whether it is a reaction from emotions or it's actually the foods in deciding what's working and not working for you and I had to learn that over time and I did it for myself and now I help my students with that. But there are certain food patterns that have proven pretty standard. Overeating is not wise. If you eat, like there's an old proverb that says, “If you eat to gain energy it's like fighting for peace.” You're not going to get there. So it's wiser to eat light if you want to be enlightened and it's wise to eat light at night because it's not wise to lay down and after eating because it pushes in the stomach and the diaphragm and it blocks it's just the dynamic excursion of the diaphragm which is a dynamo of energy in the body. So it's wise to eat light at night, it's wise to not wait at least if you had devoured a snack it's wise to wait an hour, if you ate a small meal two hours, if it's a big amount of meal three hours and if it's a big meal 4 hours before you lie down or if you do have to go to bed lie down at an angle so you don't end up having the stomach pushed up and the diaphragm will block your energy levels and feel really tired the next day. So there's certain sciences that's basically applied physiology that's common. It's wise to make sure that you have lots of water because you need fluids in your body. It's wise to eat light because if you gain weight and go over the weight you have an increasing probability of diabetes, heart disease, many other concerns but if you eat less your longevity goes up. One of the keys of longevity is basically food restriction and people that fast a little bit or eat very light and little underweight live longer than people that are overweight. So caloric restriction has been known to increase longevity, having a purpose in life it's inspiring too so you eat to live not live to eat is wiser. People are just… I would say that consumerism is a dopamine driven response to an unfulfilled highest value. So people that are unfulfilled they will tend to eat, people that are inspired they don't have time to eat they're too busy doing what they love to do. So fill your day with things that inspire you and eat to live, not live to eat, this is the secret of longevity.