Open any book on the topic of prosperity, and you’ll find that the only way to generate abundance is to remove anything you don’t want in your life to make room for what you do want. Referred to as the ‘Law of Vacuum,’ many apply this to their lives by ceasing any negative thinking, attitudes or beliefs that hold them back. Here are two reasons to consider doing the same.
1. Your beliefs may be barriers. As Vishen Lakhiani explains in his book, The Code of the Extraordinary Mind, not only do certain activities hold us back from doing other things that may be more beneficial, our beliefs can too. For example, many people—myself included, are raised to believe that a person should attend college to land a good job, and then work hard in a regular, full-time role until retirement. The thing is, not everyone is cut out for college. Some people choose to attend a technical school, become an entrepreneur, etc. and bypass college altogether. Sometimes a person knows deep down which path they want to take, but because of their family of origin’s, cultural and/or societal beliefs, they reject their true desires and opt to appease everyone else.
Lakihani states, “You can use consciousness engineering to swap out old beliefs, swap in new ones, and take on new understandings of the world that may serve you better.” By evaluating your belief system, you can decide which ones you want to retire versus those you want to retain—on your own terms. This is essentially reengineering your consciousness to carve your own path to success.
2. Unlearning uncovers new needs. In today’s digital world, we are constantly inundated by a barrage of knowledge we assume makes us smarter. Dom Price, the head of R&D at the software development firm Atlassian, warns, “The acquisition of knowledge is dangerous when you don’t practice it.” Instead, Price argues that the key to success it to understand the importance of ‘unlearning’ which means identifying anything you don’t have time to nurture or isn’t highly beneficial—and letting it go.
Consider, for example, a manager who invests thirty minutes every morning in a stand-up team meeting which was originally scheduled to ensure everyone was aligned on daily critical activities and deliverables. A year later when she begins to evaluate how her time is spent, she concludes that the daily stand-up meeting is now unnecessary and decides holding them on Monday and Thursday will suffice. She therefore gains an hour-and-a-half on a weekly basis to invest in other activities that pay higher dividends.
Apply Dale Carnegie’s 21st Human Relations principle, ‘Throw down a challenge,’ by identifying anything you’re used to doing that you need to stop doing. Doing so will enable you to spend time applying knowledge you’ve learned including learning new skills that will serve your evolved-self much better. Evaluating on a quarterly basis is sufficient to discern what isn’t useful and should be ‘unlearned’ versus what you want to learn.