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(Why the rich get richer and the poor get poorer)
By Bill Harris, Centerpointe Research
this post I want to examine one nuance of this yearning for a better
quality of life, something that has fascinated me for a number of
could call this, “Why the Rich Get Richer and the Poor Get Poorer,” or
“Learned Helplessness.” Let me explain what I mean.
who hath it shall be given; from he who hath not even what he hath
shall be taken away.”
this law of nature seems cruel in terms of the individual, it is a
powerful and positive survival mechanism when looked at from the point
of view of the whole.
let’s look at this more closely, as it has a significant bearing on
your ability to create a happy, fulfilling life. And, if you happen to
be stuck on the wrong side of this law of nature, understanding it just
might help you to reverse that trend (yes, there is a way to reverse
all of them succeed, however. Some bands end up in the bacterial
equivalent of a desert, while others may find a new bacterial food
who end up stranded in the desert send out chemical messages that say,
in effect, “avoid me.” In this way, resources aren’t wasted on
expeditions to the same desert area.
result, the other bacteria come running (or oozing, or whatever
bacteria do to get around.)
obvious message is that you want to be in the successful group.
are, more of whatever you want and need comes to you. A great deal of
what I teach at Centerpointe is my attempt to show you how to be in
reasons I’ll explain in a moment, I also believe – quite strongly –
that Holosync use increases your ability to be in this
look at a few more examples so you can more clearly see how this
Sapoloski discovered how wild baboons at the lower end of the baboon
pecking order actually create large amounts of hormonal poisons that
kill brain cells, causing their hair to fall out, wiping out their
immune function, and leading to chronic illness.
of course, further decreases their power and status with their baboon
in addition to better chemistry, these winners also end up with better
food, the best living areas, and the most desirable sexual partners.
complaints, anger, body language, facial expressions, and other
negative behaviors actually drive away those who might give them the
care and nurturing they need.
organisms (including human beings) have similar self-destruct
programming that kicks in when that organism is no longer useful to the
as in the examples above, resources flow to those antibodies that
successfully find and deal with invaders, and away from those who
either cannot find invaders that match their particular weapons, or
aren’t able to defeat the invaders they encounter.
that are successful attract resources and increase their numbers at an
incredible speed, while those that fail are robbed of food and the
ability to multiply.
into each system, fairly or unfairly, is a mechanism by which the group
automatically withholds or withdraws resources from individuals who
is more, unsuccessful individuals–through internal, built-in, automatic
self-destruct mechanisms–withhold resources (positive, life-giving
neurochemicals and hormones, for instance, that would cause them to
feel and function better) from themselves!
When humans (or animals) are able to solve a problem they
not only overcome the problem, they also thrive in other ways (some
internal and some external) as a result of having encountered and
successfully dealt with that problem.
other hand, those who cannot solve a problem activate their own
internal self-destruct mechanisms, which can be mental, attitudinal,
emotional, hormonal, or neurochemical.
then create external
social cues that cause their social group to further withhold resources.
the control buttons were discovered by certain of the rats, these
luckier rodents would instantly lunge for the button whenever the
experimenters turned on the juice, ending their own pain and that of
their fellow rats.
rats, even though they received the same number of shocks, and for the
same duration, as the button-pushing rats, became physical wrecks.
Their hair fell out. They developed ulcers. They lost weight.
immune systems failed. Their reflexes atrophied. If given a way to
escape, they were too confused to notice it or too infirm to take
advantage of it.
reminds me of some people who attend very expertly-taught self-help
seminars, but somehow are unable to take advantage of what has been
tremendously helpful to most other people.)
each case, individuals who fail tend to develop this same sort of
learned helplessness which causes external resources to stop flowing to
them and also causes their own body to shut down internal resources. As
a result, they give up.
internal chemical factories churn out what they need in order to be
healthy, clear-minded, and vital. Truly, the rich do get richer while
the poor get poorer.
new and growing field of neuroplasticity indicates that you can change
your internal processes and learn new ways of living and dealing with
existence of brain plasticity means that it is not inevitable that if
you are moving in an unsuccessful direction you have to continue moving
in the same groove until you circle the drain. You do have the power to
step out of a negative, self-destructive spiral.
job, then, is to get on the right side of this flow of resources. It’s
true that if resources tend to flow away from you, there will be a
momentum to overcome if you’re going to pull yourself up by your own
bootstraps and move to the resource-attracting side of the equation.
increases awareness, which is one of the keys to this process.
Because increased awareness allows you to see HOW you’ve been
unconsciously sabotaging yourself.
more important, Holosync stimulates the production of the very same
neurochemicals and hormones made in abundance by those who are
feel-good neurochemicals and hormones are a large part of what makes
life easy for the successful top-of-the-pecking-order types.
ability to stimulate the production of these ”success neurochemicals”
makes it easier to overcome the negative, self-destructive, learned
behavior is generated to a great extent by your internal state (which,
in addition to feelings also includes such things as courage,
persistence, confidence, enthusiasm, and so forth), winners also behave
in a different way.
the resulting successful outcomes generated by these internal states
and external behaviors tend to build on each other because they
generate more feel-good brain chemistry, more self-confidence, and more
positive beliefs, more possibility thinking, more resourceful meanings,
and so on, making each success easier than the last.
winners also find themselves almost magnetically attracted to better,
more resourceful situations, and to kinder, more loving, more helpful
people–whereas those on the other side of the equation (including me,
twenty years ago) tend to attract or be attracted to people who
actually help them fail in various ways and help them feel worse about
finally, the winners’ interpretations of what is happening around
them–in other words, what the events of their life seem to mean
(including what failure and setbacks “mean”)–is different.
See the Centerpointe Research Institute site and click "blog" for rest of transcript - and to listen to his podcast.
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He is a long time student of
contemporary psychology, quantum
mechanical physics, the evolution of non-linear systems (chaos theory)
and the effects of a wide range of neurotechnologies on human change,
evolution and healing.
He is a founding member
of the Transformational Leadership Council started by Chicken Soup for
the Soul author Jack
Canfield, and is founder and director of Centerpointe
see more articles
by Bill Harris
free online course led by Bill Harris: The
Masters of The Secret.
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Related Talent Development Resources articles and pages:
Learned helplessness, mojo and serenity, by Douglas Eby
Meditation and mindfulness articles
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