Are you constantly dealing with stressful business situations? Dr. Steve Taubman, author of Buddha in the Trenches, will give you the tools you need to live a more balanced life, free from neurosis and empowered to accomplish your goals.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • How to overcome walls of internal resistance
  • How training your mind is like housebreaking a puppy
  • How a foot cramp changed everything

Dr. Steve Taubman: I had a professional chiropractic practice for 14 years, and at one point, I realized it was time to move on. I was tired of doing what I was doing. It was a very wonderful profession, but for some reason, it wasn’t for me. I ended up selling my practice in a very deliberate, significant change in my life.

I became a stage hypnotist.

I was the official hypnotist for MTV Spring Break.

I always pause and give you a chance to get the visual. I’m out on the beach, I’ve got 2,500 college students, and I’m doing all the things that I would typically do in a hypnosis show.

Two are milking a cow and conducting an orchestra. One guy thinks he’s pregnant, another guy thinks he’s the father. In the midst of all this, I decided to try something new. I took one of my subjects and I said, “When you wake up, three things are going to happen.”

“Number one, you don’t believe you’re hypnotized even though you are. Number two, this is the worst show you’ve ever seen and you are pissed at me. And number three, there’s an invisible wall three feet in front of you.”

“Now, bear in mind I’ve never done this before, this is a brand new experiment in the middle of a very good show.”

I wake everybody up and I say, how’s everyone doing? Everybody says, “We’re great!” and this one guy screams, “You suck!”

Thankfully it was him, right?

The guy says, “This show is terrible.” I say, “Well then leave.” And then the guy gets up and starts taking a few steps forward, then hits the invisible wall. He smacks up against it, and he starts pushing and pushing, and he can’t get any further.

He finally sits back down, crosses his arms, and starts to tap. I say, “What’s the problem?” He says, “Nothing.”

“Are you hypnotized?”

“No.”

“Are you having fun?”

“No.”

“Well then, why don’t you leave?”

He thinks for a minute and finally says, “I’m not going to give you the satisfaction.”

In that moment, I realized something profound. I’ve been studying meditation and have been working on a lot of personal development material for a long time. In that moment, a lot of things came together for me.

We’re All Hypnotized

Steve Taubman: That’s all of us. We all have a place we want to go. A hope, a dream, a desire, a destiny. Something that produces a sense of joy and possibility in our lives. We start moving towards it and then hit our invisible walls.

Our invisible walls are the subconscious, unspoken, unsought of beliefs, attitudes, mental habits, frames that we’ve created for ourselves. Programs that exist inside of us that keep us from moving forward.

Instead of getting where we want to go, we hit this point of resistance. It’s all an inner game. It all has to do with how we’re thinking, how we view ourselves, how our emotions are triggered.

But we don’t usually recognize that we’re responsible for that sudden stop in our momentum. We start pointing our finger outside of ourselves, blaming others.

“We start coming up with excuses, like this guy did, for why we’re not getting to the results we want.”

In a very real way, we’re all hypnotized.

We’ve all been programmed over the course of our lives to live inside of a box. A box made up of our beliefs, of our attitudes, our preconceived notions, our judgments. All of that conspires to keep us the same, to keep us doing things the same way, feeling the same way, reinforcing the same beliefs.

The only hope, the only possibility that we have for arriving where we want to arrive with our souls intact, is to address those walls. Learn what it means to observe and dismantle those invisible walls. It’s an inner game.

It’s self-hypnosis, meditation, gaining a certain level of awareness so that we’re no longer being held back by things that we don’t understand. We’re all affected by that little guy sitting on our shoulder whispering to us.

Change Your Perceptions

Charlie Hoehn: What are some of those invisible walls that those people commonly deal with that are causing their stress?

Steve Taubman: Buddha in the Trenches is about developing unshakable performance under pressure, being able to live under stressful situations and thrive under those conditions.

The very first wall, the very first presumption or notion that most people live with, is that their emotional state is derived by their circumstance.

“Of course I’m stressed out, have you seen the work I’ve got to do, have you seen the volume of my work, have you seen my boss? Have you seen my coworkers? Of course, I’ve got to feel this way!”

The first wall that needs to be dismantled is the notion that you’re powerless to change your attitude, to change your mood, to change how resourceful you can be.

That’s number one. Well beyond the woo-woo, new age kind of pie in the sky attitude, there is such a thing as unconditional happiness. You can walk into difficult situations and maintain mastery and happiness and joy and humor if you arrange your mind in a certain way.

Charlie Hoehn: What are some of the other ones that you mentioned in the book?

Steve Taubman: First and foremost, it’s making that commitment. It is possible that there is no circumstance under which you’re absolutely required to be miserable.

Step two is the idea that we believe that freedom is the right to do whatever you want to do, whenever you want to do it.

“We tend to live our lives in a state of entitlement and freedom that often works against functioning at very high levels.”

Let me give you an example.

You say to yourself, “I’m going to start losing weight.” Let’s go to The Four-Hour Body, (by Tim Ferriss) right? Being more disciplined about what I was eating and keeping track of it and keeping a food diary and becoming mindful about my eating habits. Becoming disciplined, living by a code. Creating a set of actions that are invaluable.

It’s very easy for all of us to say, “I’m going to stop eating chocolate,” and then when we feel like eating chocolate. We say, “I’m going to eat it today because I’ve got freedom.”

Freedom’s a funny thing.

Yeah, you’re free to do whatever you want, but the question is, are you free to not do it?

That’s a huge wall. We’re constantly experiencing an emotion, a longing, a craving. We give in to it because as far as we’re concerned, that’s our birthright. We can do whatever we want to do.

“The way that I dismantle that wall is to say that discipline is freedom.”

If you know in advance that you’ve got Saturday to just cut loose, then it makes it easier to do the right thing Monday through Friday.

In other words, you’re better off eating the wrong thing mindfully than eating the right thing mindlessly.

Let’s take a really heavy example of alcoholism. It’s more than just chocolate or the desire to overeat. It’s a really bad addiction.

Most of us think that an alcoholic is an alcoholic because they drink and that drinking is the addiction. Drinking is really only one piece of the addiction, right? The addiction is a cycle.

You want to drink, so you drink. And then you feel bad about the fact that you drank, and feeling bad pulls you down. Then you think, “Well, if I want to get rid of my negative feelings, I better drink.”

You’re coming from a place of being disempowered all the time. You’re never in control. Even in the part of the cycle when you’re not drinking, you’re still not in control because you’re not in control of the emotion. That emotion becomes the next trigger to drink again.

I’m going to get a lot of pushback from all the Alcoholics Anonymous people, but the reality in my experience is that you break the cycle by first breaking the attachment to guilt.

Stop Worrying

Charlie Hoehn: What about people that say, “It’s my worrying that keeps me on the straight and narrow. It prevents these bad things from happening”?

Steve Taubman: The short answer is that’s complete bullshit. It’s something we’ve sold ourselves.

We’ve sold ourselves the idea that the only way to monitor my own behavior is to be hyper-vigilant, anxiety-ridden, stressed out, and have low self-esteem.

That’s complete nonsense.

As a hypnotist, I am constantly helping people get rid of fears and phobias. The biggest complaint you hear from people is, “If I’m not afraid of snakes then I’m going to get bitten by a snake.”

Of course, it’s not true. I’m not afraid of spiders, but I’m not going to have to go out to get a tarantula in bed with me.

We have the resources, the ability to avoid acting inappropriately without having to bring negative mental energy to the table.

“We don’t have to be hyper vigilant; we don’t have to be worrying. Worrying does you no good at all.”

That’s one of the invisible walls. We don’t even stop to think whether that is logical.

Behind the ability to question your paradigms, these thought processes that are pulling you down to a state of negative emotion and making you less resourceful, behind all of that is the idea that you first have to become more awake.

Charlie Hoehn: How do we do that?

Steve Taubman: Step one is to choose happiness. Make a commitment that you can change your thinking and aspire to a happier perspective.

Step two, live by a code. Create discipline, operate within a framework of morality and consciousness.

Then the third step is to sharpen your focus. Focus is a close cousin to presence.

Waking Up Your Life

Charlie Hoehn: How can you tell if somebody’s sleepwalking through life or if you yourself are sleepwalking?

Steve Taubman: Whether I know that you’re sleepwalking through life is important as whether or not I know I’m sleepwalking through life.

If you’re in a state of emotional turmoil and it’s lasting or it’s repetitive, you’re hypnotized.

When you begin to understand that you have this incredible power that you’ve never really used, then you stop suffering. You just stop. Now, that’s not to say that you don’t feel pain. I think it was Murakami who said that “Pain is mandatory, suffering is optional.”

In every day of every one of our lives, things will irritate us, aggravate us, piss us off, maybe make us feel insecure. Those things are going to happen because we’re all human beings and we’re hardwired to react.

But, the insightful person, the wise person, the enlightened person, the person who is doing this kind of work. What they’ll do is they’ll notice the moment that they fall off that sort of centered point.

The moment that the emotion begins to arise within them and what they do in that moment is very different from what the rest of us do in that moment. The reason that they’re able to do something different in that moment is because they have emotional strength that they’ve developed over a period of time.

Charlie Hoehn: What do they do differently in that moment?

Steve Taubman: Any one of us have been in that situation where we say, “I shouldn’t say anything,” and then you say it. You know it was the wrong thing to do, but you just can’t stop yourself.

“This is very true in high-pressure situations and work situations where your higher is self-battling with your lower self.”

Most of the time, we end up coming to what our emotions tell us rather than what really good critical thinking skills tell us to do.

It’s a question of necessary strength, and necessary strength comes from this third step. Those who meditate are strengthening their ability to take their attention away from the story that they’re telling themselves.

By meditating, what they’re doing is they’re constantly pulling their attention away from whatever’s distracting them.

If I said to you, “I want you to focus your attention on your breath, or I want you to focus your attention on the physical sensations in your body,” there would be about three-second gap between when you start and when your first thought arises.

When your first thought arises, you’ve got a moment of choice. Are you going to go down that path? Are you going to continue to think the thought? Or are you going to think about the fact that you’re thinking the thought and beat yourself up for thinking…which is what most people do when they start meditating.

There’s so much humor in this, really.

There’s a third option and the one that we train ourselves for. When I work with high-level executives or with police who have to learn how to bring their attention back, what I’m teaching them is that as your attention wanders and you notice the thought, be aware that a thought happened, but then bring your attention back to the point of focus.

“That repetition, we like to call bringing the puppy back to the paper.”

To paper train a puppy, it’s going to wander off, and you’ve got to pick it up and bring it back a thousand times before the dog finally gets the idea.

It’s like that with your mind. Strengthening your focus muscles allows you necessary strength. When you’re on the battlefields of life, you have trained yourself to bring your attention back to the physical reality of the moment, rather than to the stories you like to tell yourself that help you get more and more upset.

If you’re finding yourself getting upset, especially if you’re getting upset about the same things over and over again, you’re hypnotized. You’re not awake, you’re not acting in a conscious way.

Charlie Hoehn: Is the goal not only to become more awake but just to be none-agitated by yourself?

Steve Taubman: That’s exactly the reality. You’re less agitated by yourself, your focus is more clearly available to you, so what does that mean?

It means that you’re more efficient, it means you’re a better listener.

“It means that you have greater access to your own creativity; you’re more resourceful about problem-solving.”

You’re more effortless in your movements. And now with all the research that’s out there about mindfulness meditation, we know it also means that you’re smarter.

You’re thickening parts of your cerebral cortex. You’re increasing the relationship between the nerve endings that go from your lateral to your medial cortex.

So when you experience something that feels bad, rather than that nerve connection going from the “I feel bad” to the lateral prefrontal cortex which makes it feel very personal to you, it links up more to the medial cortex which makes it feel more just like something to solve.

It’s a problem to solve, no big deal. You’re more resourceful, you’re more effective and you’re less flappable, less shakable.

Overcoming Anxiety

Charlie Hoehn: How long did it take you to reach this point and what was your personal journey of getting to this state?

Steve Taubman: I was an anxiety-ridden, depressed, low self-esteem mess. I mean, I grew up in a very dysfunctional family. I was bullied as a kid. I had everything you could have that makes life miserable about when you were a kid… glasses, braces, bad skin, bad hair…

One thing that I was always good at was school. I excelled in school and became a physician and ran a very successful chiropractic sports medicine practice. From the outside, my life looked really good. I was very successful, I made a lot of money.

A lot of people could relate to that.

“On the outside, I looked good. On the inside, I was tortured.”

I felt horrible. I would feel that way unless I was perfect. If I had a patient who was getting better really quickly and thought I was amazing.

It’s funny, there’s no physician on the planet who is 100%. If I could successfully help 85% of my patients, that’s pretty good. It still means there’s going to be 15% of people that I haven’t helped. That would keep me up at night. That would make me miserable. It would make me feel bad about myself. I’d feel secret suffering.

That would burn me out. I was forced to start looking at what am I doing to myself? What am I doing inside of my own head? I went through all the typical western psychotherapy and a lot of talk therapy, and none of it really made that much of a difference for me.

Then I discovered this whole area of mindfulness meditation. I started realizing that the answer for me didn’t lie in talking more and telling my story more. It was in being able to get quiet on the inside and be able to sit and witness my own misery, to witness my own discomfort.

In doing that, I started to reframe it.

Not that it all went away all of a sudden. I still get anxious and I still get depressed, but my relationship to it is different. I no longer feel like I am an anxious person or I’m a depressed person. Now it’s just an energy that’s kind of washing over me and past me. Like stormy clouds.

When it’s stormy outside, we have a hard time knowing that if you would get up over those clouds, it would be bright and sunny. We just don’t see it.

“First realize it’s possible to be happy.”

Second, place value on the idea of discipline. And third, strengthen focus to have the mental toughness, the mental strength, the critical intelligence, our critical thinking.

Most of us add to our own misery. We keep throwing logs on the fire by thinking those same thoughts and convincing ourselves that whatever we’re thinking is true when, mostly, what we’re thinking is programs.

The fourth part of this formula, as I outline this in Buddha in the Trenches, if you develop the strength of character and the strength of focus that these tools give you, then you can start leaning into the pressure of life rather than running from the pressure of life.

That there comes a time when something that would have led you to feel miserable and made you go into fight or flight mode…You now can sit with the feeling, allow it to wash over you, allow it to pass by. You start embracing those negative moments instead of running from them.

It’s counterintuitive, because who wants pain? Who wants to feel bad? It’s this idea of leaning into the pressure, leaning into the stress, leaning to the reality of the moment that actually moves us through it more quickly.

Putting Meditation to the Test

Charlie Hoehn: Tell me a story about the first time you remember really leaning into the negative?

Steve Taubman: Sometimes this is an esoteric point, and it’s easier if I could give you an example of it. I did a 10-day silent meditation retreat. That’s hard work.

I’m not suggesting that everybody go out and do a 10-day silent meditation retreat. It’s life-changing and remarkable but it’s hard work, right? What it means is you’re going to sit for 10 days and you’re going to meditate and you’re not going to talk to anybody. You’re not going to watch TV or read a book or make eye contact with anybody. You’re just in your own experience.

“So I’m sitting in this meditation hall. And in the middle of meditating, I get a foot cramp.”

Now, you know what it feels like when you get a foot cramp. It’s excruciating and it usually induces a certain level of panic because you could start feeling it coming. You could feel it kind of making its way toward you and you want to try to stop it and to stretch it out.

If you’re just walking down the street and your foot starts to cramp, you might start jumping up and down or screaming, or you might try to stretch it and notice that that doesn’t really work. It usually requires a certain fanfare.

But when you’re sitting in a silent meditation hall and you get a foot cramp, a lot of those options aren’t open to you anymore. You can’t jump up and start screaming.

You’re supposed to be quiet and motionless. More than that, you’re supposed to be observing the reality that meditation is meant to reveal to you. That everything is impermanent, that things pass of their own accord.

Now, here I am, sitting here with this cramp in my foot. Part of me thinks, “Ouch! What am I going to do?” It hurts. And oh my gosh, what’s going to happen if I let it keep going?

And another part of me says, “Okay well if this meditation stuff is true, then it should be true now in this moment. So let’s see what happens.”

So I said, “Okay, I am not going to resist this cramp. Let’s see what happens. I am going to just lean into it, to embrace it. I’m going to just observe it without adding any fuel to the fire.” Obviously that’s not something that comes naturally to any of us.

I started feeling the cramp getting worse, and I felt the panic growing. But I was in a very meditative state, so I can watch myself panic and I can watch myself going into a deeper cramp.

What I learned from that experience was fascinating. I can now tell you with great authority what happens when you get a cramp. It gets worse, and a little worse, and a little worse, and maybe even a lot worse.

And then it stays at the height of its excruciating-ness for about 30 seconds. Then it releases and starts getting better and better and better. And then it goes away and it’s gone.

That’s something that if you don’t lean into the pain, you would never know.

“You would never let yourself get close enough to that experience.”

Charlie Hoehn: Are you saying that if you lean in rather than running from or avoiding, the pain goes away like a storm?

Steve Taubman: Yeah. I was able to apply that lesson in situations that were more emotionally based rather than physically based and came to realize the same thing.

When you take away the story, when you take away the food that you give that emotion, and you simply lean into it…You simply allow it to be, you kind of embrace it, you have the cathartic experience, and sometimes in a more dispassionate way.

I’ve had that experience where I just deliberately sit with the feeling and take my attention away from the thing that caused the feeling. I put all of my attention on the physical sensation of the feeling. Eventually, you are almost melting it in the warmth of your own observation.

In the book, I tell the story about going to Disney World and seeing this light show at night. They have a big fountain, and it throws out this big spray of water and they project movie images onto the spray of water. They project The Sorcerer’s Apprentice with Mickey Mouse. It is very scary stuff if you are a little kid.

These big looming images of monsters and dancing brooms and the loud music all projected on this giant wall of water.

“But if you were to walk up to that wall of water, you could walk right through it.”

It’s insubstantial. Yet we don’t get close enough to realize how insubstantial it is. We are afraid of our own emotions.

So leaning in is one of the ninja skills that top executives, top athletes, top performers learn to use. Navy Seals say, “Embrace the suck.”

Planning Ahead for Emotional Struggles

Charlie Hoehn: I learned a very similar if not the exact same lesson through improv –constantly having to say yes to whatever is happening and suddenly, life is not nearly as stressful or tense or heavy.

Steve Taubman: I think that improv is probably the most spirituality advancing, non-spiritual practice you can do.

“Welcome to one more of your invisible walls.”

All those things that you say to yourself that stop you from getting close to the discomfort because you don’t know how to lean into the discomfort because you never gained the necessary strength to walk through it…Now you are constantly cowering in the face of something that you don’t need to cower from.

When you step into something like improv, one of the great exercises of improv is yes.

The last part of the formula in my book is “assemble your lifeboats.” It starts with the presumption that everything in life is about necessary strength. You’re either strong enough or you are not strong enough to withstand the situation you are in.

Now, physically we know that. Physically we are all in agreement. We say you know there are some people who are physically strong because they were trained or maybe they were lucky. They grew up that way or they’re genetically predisposed to it. There are some people who are physically strong and other people who are a 90-pound weakling.

The reality is, from an emotional standpoint, most of us are 90-pound weaklings. We are not emotionally intelligent. We are not good at critical thinking, we are not capable of withstanding our own emotions.

“We are not likely to do the right thing if our emotions get the better of us.”

Everything that I have taught up to this point in the book is about gaining necessary strength. However, we have to realize that every one of us live in a continuum. Every one of us are somewhere on a continuum from being very weak to being very strong.

If we are doing our work, we’re gradually gaining strength. But in all likelihood, we are encountering situations that we haven’t yet gained the strength to master.

If I were to ask you to swim the English Channel and you were untrained, chances are, you would drown. If I said swim the English Channel or we are going to put the rest of your family to death, you would give it a good try. But you would be wise to have a lifeboat standing by.

In the same way in our lives, what do we have in place to prevent us from drowning in our own emotions?

“What do we have in place to prevent us from letting tense situations get the better of us until we are finally strong enough?”

What the wise do is they prepare in advance. Smart people, successful people, world-class performers. One thing that they have that most people don’t is that they operate on objective reality. They don’t delude themselves into believing they are better than they are or stronger than they are. So if you are wise, you know that they are probably going to hit some of these walls.

You prepare your lifeboats in advance. Your lifeboats are other people and other systems. One lifeboat might be the kind of friend that knows how to help you move through your emotional turmoil, and that’s not most of your friends unless you are very lucky.

Charlie Hoehn: Do you recommend we stick with certain friends or that we have or how do you go about it?

Steve Taubman: Well, it is a multi-tiered process, I think. I think the more conscious you get, the more conscious people you attract. So if you are doing some meditative and mindfulness work, chances are you are not hanging out on a day to day basis with people who see life like they are victims.

“You’re probably already around people who have a certain level of consciousness.”

So then from there, it just becomes a matter of training your friends.

I talk about this in the book and even given some scripts for this purpose but basically the idea is, “Hey listen, Charlie, sometimes I get in over my head, sometimes I realize that I get self-righteous and angry and insecure, and when that happens, I’m going to be looking for people who can just be a space for me. Just be there while I am being that way and not buy into it. Not tell me I am right, not tell me I am wrong either, just give me a chance to maybe vent.”

The people who are really good at this can almost smile while you are feeling miserable.

If they have that kind of compassion and love and humor, and you can train people to put that in the forefront. Be compassionate, be funny, don’t be afraid to joke with me about it.

My very favorite example is in a movie called Steel Magnolias. Sally Fields plays the mother of Julia Roberts. And Julia Roberts has a disease that ends up killing her.

At one point of the movie, towards the end of the movie when Julia Roberts has died and we’re at the cemetery, Sally Fields is just as upset as a mother could possibly be. She’s screaming and crying and wailing and venting. And with her are Olivia Dukakis and Shirley MacLaine. Now Shirley MacLaine plays this very curmudgeony woman.

Everybody loves her because they know her but she’s a grouch. In the middle of the scene, Sally Fields is like, “I can’t believe this. How could this possibly happen? I am so mad I just want to hit someone. I just want to hit somebody so they could feel as much pain as I feel.”

And Olivia Dukakis grabs a hold of Shirley MacLaine and says, “Here, hit Ouiser!” and Sally Field stops in her tracks in the middle of this wailing, crying, just sloppy painful moment and starts laughing hysterically.

“It’s that magical transformation that is possible when the person who is hearing you out isn’t buying into the grief.”

They know you are sad, they feel your saddest with you. But they’re bigger than that, and they know you are bigger than that, and they are able to help you step out of it.

There’s that and then there’s of course the systems too. I mean sometimes there is nobody around. So you may also design systems for yourself.

When I feel this way, what do I do?

When I feel this way, I listen to an inspiring song. When I feel this way, I find a funny joke on the internet. When I feel this way, I say this mantra to myself. Whatever it is, plan it in advance.

Assemble your lifeboats so that you are not coming up short in those moments when you just don’t have the strength to withstand the emotional onslaught.

Be ready.

How Buddha in the Trenches Principles Affect Businesses

Charlie Hoehn: Can you tell me some of the things that you have seen?

Steve Taubman: This is a soft skill. You know every time you are doing work in the soft skills arena, you’re not measuring the things the same way. I can’t say with certainty that, “We came into this company and they increased their sales by 37%” because I came in at the same time that 10 other things happened.

But we do know from hearing what CEOs say and hearing what entrepreneurs say…You’ll see people who just seem to have shed layers of heaviness and they have a greater sense of humor. Some of the stuff that we now see in companies as a result is less conflict.

“People are more cooperative with one another.”

Some of the long-standing fights stopped, and people start saying, “Let’s bury the hatchet. Let’s start again.” Those are the things that really give me the greatest joy.

I am working with a guy by the name of Steve Sebolt right now. Steve is the founder of an organization called Mental Toughness University. It’s based on critical thinking, emotional intelligence, and mindfulness. He’s been doing it a lot longer than I have. That really speaks to a lot of what we have been talking about today.

He’s got one of the folks from Johnson & Johnson, from Coca-Cola, Glaxo-Smith, Toyota, and many tens of millions of dollars increase in sales while going through these programs. You’re removing things like the addiction to the approval of others or just out and out discouragement.

You can’t overestimate the power of the right mindset. You just can’t.

Steve Taubman’s Recommendations for Authors

Charlie Hoehn: What are some of the things that you would recommend to authors who listen to this, who are just starting out in their speaking career, how can they have a good foundational next 12 months of their speaking career?

Steve Taubman: The first thing is to get right with yourself. Make sure that you are coming from a centered place and you are not getting yourself emotionally exhausted in the process.

Read the Buddha in the Trenches, that’s step one.

Step two is nail your branding. What is it about you that is different? What is it about your message that’s different? Be clear on that.

Step three is, as you make your way out into the world of marketing yourself, realize there are a lot of other people trying to do it at the same time. How do you rise above the clutter?

“Don’t be sending out canned emails to a bunch of people. Personalize your marketing process and find ways in the door.”

Leverage what you have already got.Go to the people that you have already success speaking to and see who they know and who they can introduce you to. Start developing a network of referral partners who are willing to share the value of what you do.

And then find mentors. There’s no question that you’ve got to accelerate your growth, and I have done this and I will continue to do it. I will spend a lot of money working with somebody that I think knows something that I don’t know. That I am not going to find out any other way. They have proprietary information.

The knowledge I’ll gain from that is going to make me so much better at what I do and give me knowledge I never would have had before.

If you are going to spend money, spend your money on growing yourself. Think of it as an investment.

What Buddha in the Trenches Readers Can Apply Today

Charlie Hoehn: What is something they could do today to have some of these principles instilled into their routine?

Dr. Steve Taubman: You’re not necessarily going to be successful at it, but it’s really an experiment. The next time that something occurs, and if you’re like most of us it’s going to happen within the next 24 hours that something is going to be irritating or aggravating to you, I am going to suggest that you welcome that experience.

You could say, “Wow this is exactly what I was looking for. I was looking for a moment where I can sit here and notice with mindfulness what my brain does with this.”

Do I get pulled down the rabbit hole of thought? Do I start to justify?

“Do I feel like a victim or can I bring my attention to the physical sensations in my body and allow myself to feel what anger feels like in my body?”

Be thankful that the feeling arose so that you could have that experience. See what happens. Because you’re not meditating regularly, you don’t have the necessary strength. Chances are you are going to probably get pulled in. You’ll probably going to end up getting angry and screwing up the whole thing. But that’s okay.

In the back of my book, I’ve got an appendix filled with sentence stems. I learned about sentence stems from Nathaniel Brandon, The Art of Consciousness, many years ago. You start a sentence and then start writing stream of thought.

One example might be, “I feel most present when I…” and then you start writing for two minutes straight and you don’t stop and you don’t edit yourself. All of a sudden, you discover things that you don’t even realize that you were thinking bubbled up from your subconscious. Powerful tool.

Connect with Steve Taubman

Charlie Hoehn: What is the best way for our listeners to get in touch with you or just to follow you along your journey?

Dr. Steve Taubman: Well I’ll give you the two easiest things to do right now. One of them is certainly my website. It is my name, stevetaubman.com

And if you join one of the pages, you’ll find that there is a place to put your email address in and your name and then you’ll be on my mailing list. So when I write a blog post or whatnot, you’ll just become a part of my world. So that’s one great way to do it.

By the way, I think you get the first 40 pages of my first book on hypnosis when you join my mailing list. So that is a little thing that we will be able to jump on right away.

Right now we are also suggesting that people join a Facebook group that’s specific to this new book called Unshakable Nation. If you just look through groups on Facebook, Unshakable Nation, you will be made aware when the launch is going to take place.

You might even get a little free snippet of the book. There are a few benefits to that, not the least of which is just the fact that you are part of a community of people who care about the same thing you do.