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BEATING THE demons The 6 Principles of Self Mastery For Those Who Want to Get More Done

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By Dan Boe Copyright © 2010 by Dan Boe








publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording or otherwise, without prior written permission from Dan Boe, San Diego, CA with the exception of short excerpts






Cover design and graphics by Gabe Gunlock of Gunlock Industries. San Diego, CA

Cover photo of the Lamborghini® shot by Jeremy Cliff and used by permission of Jeremy Cliff © 2010 Chicago, IL 3

Author’s Note I can sum up this book in two words: Self Mastery. Socrates stated that: “The truly free individual is free only to the extent of his own self-mastery, while those who will not govern themselves are condemned to find masters to govern over them."

Self-mastery is whatever you determine it to be for you at this time in your life. For me, it is the ability to catch myself not doing the things that I need to do to get what I want, the ability to stop the rationalizing and justifying, to never have an excuse,


eliminate the chatter in my head that is there to make me feel better when I don’t get my stuff done, to stick to a diet or exercise plan, to take action, to question my own beliefs constantly, to be open to other points of view, 4

to learn why I have the beliefs that I have, to not let others have control over the way I feel about myself, to always get better, and to look







perspective, not from a perspective of “me.”

Self-mastery isn’t a destination, it is a journey.

This book is an invitation to join

me on the journey, achieve a new level of self mastery in your own life, and with it make a difference in the world.

Where did the term, “the demons” come from, you may ask. James Renfro is one of the most insightful people I know, and an excellent salesman.

He was canvassing a

neighborhood one day to help people who may want to sell their house.

I asked how

many doors he knocked on and he said, “I knocked on 141 doors,” and then he asked me, “How many phone calls did you make today?” I responded proudly, “71.” He said, “Wow, how are you able to beat the demons?”


I had never heard that phrase before, but instantly knew exactly what he was talking about.

I responded quickly, “You already

know how to beat the demons! You knocked on 141 doors.”

From that conversation, the

idea for this book was born, and the term “the demons” was instantly defined. (No, James, you are not getting any royalties; write your own book.)

The format for the first part of “Beating the demons” was inspired by a brilliant book that had a positive impact on my life.

When I

read this book, it was like a true friend telling me the painful truth that I needed to hear, but didn’t want to. It will influence my work for the rest of my career.

The book was “The

War of Art” by Steven Pressfield.

I fully

credit Pressfield for the format that the first part of “Beating the demons” fits into.

As you read “Beating the demons”, I invite you to be open to learning something new


about yourself that you can use to propel your life.

Put the ego aside, let down your

defenses, and join me on the journey that I call self-mastery.

Sincerely, Dan ‘go sell something’ Boe



The Invisible Force

I’m at my desk. I am about to make my “cold calls.” These calls are critical to earning my income so that I can have a place to live, food to eat, and money to take care of my family. I have been about to make my calls for 2 hours and 47 minutes now. During this time I have gotten up to get coffee three times, gone to





responded to my email five times,

and and

considered taking off for an early lunch. It is completely illogical to not make these calls. I know that if I dial 39 times, based on past history, I WILL MAKE $1,892.76 TODAY.

Marc (his real name) always makes his calls. He will dial 65 times in one day when he is


prospecting for new clients.

I wonder if he

holds some secret power, or learned a key lesson that I somehow missed in all my business





repeating itself in my mind as I avoid doing the one thing that will bring me the income I need to survive and thrive: How does he get started?

I’m paralyzed, so I call Marc and ask him how he does it. “Marc, what do you do when the phone seems so heavy, and you are having an extremely hard time dialing that first number? How do you overcome that call reluctance?” He says, “I pick up the phone.”

That’s it?

It can’t be that easy?


affirmations first? No pushups to clear your thoughts? No psyching yourself up? Just pick up the phone and dial? It can’t be that easy.


But it is.

Marc knows how to beat the

demons. The same demons that keep us from making







completing that new exercise plan. The same demons that keep us from sticking to that diet keep us from that perfect relationship, and yes, keep us from writing that book.

Everybody loves Marc. I thought it was because he was a good schmoozer, but now I know why everybody loves Marc.


they know that he knows how to beat the demons.

His co-workers know it when he puts up his record sales numbers each month on the board.

His friends know it when he turns

down the offer to play golf on Thursday morning. And his family knows it when all his work is done and he is home by 4:00 p.m.


YES. The ones who beat the demons do not live at the office. The ones who do not beat the demons, stay at the office all night because they feel guilty for the whipping they let the demons give them that day.

You may know somebody like Marc.


may have recognized in somebody else the ability to overcome that invisible force that seems to keep the rest of us down. We call this invisible force: The demons.




What are the demons?

The justification and rationalizing in your head when you are avoiding doing the things that need to get done to achieve your goals? That is the demons hard at work.

The creative avoidance that turns your plan for constructive work time, into precious time wasted on unproductive menial tasks? That is the demons’ masterpiece.

The distractions we often say that we hate, but secretly really love because they keep us from doing our real work? That is the demons working overtime.


The perfectionist inside of us that declares that no project we are working on is good enough? That is the demons keeping us from finishing that which we start.

The demons hide, but we know they are there every time we set a goal and don’t achieve it.

The demons aim to keep us away from that which we love.

They aim to stop us from

achieving our life’s dream. They aim to stop us from living up to our full potential. They aim to stop us from feeling a sense of accomplishment.

They aim to stop us from

changing the world for the better.



But wait a minute. If I am facing a demon that wants me to fail, but it exists inside of me and inside of you, then let’s look at the following question:


Are the demons real?

I coach Entrepreneurs in business sales. Every time I obtain a new coaching client, I always give them an assignment to increase the amount of outbound calls from the number they are currently making. They will commit to making a specific number of calls by the next coaching session. They will come up with their own heinous consequence if they don’t make the calls. A good example is no skiing for a month if the student really loves skiing.

At the next coaching session,

what do you think was the outcome of the calls? That is right; the calls weren’t made. The consequence is not put there to punish them; the consequence is there so they can see that the demons are real.

The demons are a ceiling to productivity.


The demons tell us that there are limits to how much we can accomplish in a day. These limits are relative to how much we have accomplished in the past, and are not based on our potential. We get done a little more than we usually get done, then start feeling “overwhelmed.”

The demons tell us what we want to hear.

They may tell you that you can cheat on that diet because you will work out tomorrow. Then tomorrow comes and the same voice telling you that you could break the diet because you will work out tomorrow, now tells you that you don’t have to work out today because you can just work out twice as hard the next day.

You broke your diet,

didn’t work out, and completely justified and rationalized it in your head. The demons win.

The demons have an ironic sense of humor.


You have probably heard a story about somebody who wins the lottery and becomes an instant multi millionaire. Oftentimes, less than five years later they are broke and have an even smaller amount than before they won the lottery. Only the demons know that this is their work.

They are an opponent that

doesn’t have any muscles, any weapons, any physical form, and yet they end up kicking our butts again and again.

The demons stop us from helping others beat the demons.

We get used to the way others around us are. This



fine, we

except are


they change




elevate them selves to a higher level. This change can be very uncomfortable for us. It may








unconsciously hold them down to the level we are used to, without even knowing we are 17

doing it!

We do this in the form of subtle

criticizing, openly disapproving, or talking them out of it.

The demons keep us busy, not productive.

The demons get us doing less productive tasks that are called “busy work� instead of the productive money-making activities. The busy work has to be done, but we must categorize busy work and productive tasks accurately, so that we can spend more time in the money making activities. Busy work may be activities such as designing marketing materials and sending out emails.


productive tasks move people forward in the buying process. For most entrepreneurs this usually involves





contact, whether it is in person or over the phone.


The demons aren’t custom made.

We all battle the same demons; it isn’t my demons, or his demons or her demons.


all have to beat “The demons.”

The demons stop us from getting new business.

A great example of this is any type of “cold call” that we commit to making to procure new business.

Making “cold calls” is one

task that goes against all of our body systems that are designed to keep us safe:

First, the outcome is always unknown. We like to be able to predict all outcomes.




inherent to our survival. Cold calls are never predictable.


Second, anything that moves us to a higher level is scary. The higher we go, the farther we have to fall. If we look up








commitment to get to the top, we get scared. There are many times that we have to face this barrier throughout our climb.

The more we climb and the

higher up we get, the more scared we get.

The same is true with business.

The farther up we go, the farther we can fall.

We end up being afraid of


When we are procuring new

business, we are afraid of our success taking us to a higher level. levels are scary. innate



Hence, we have an





Third, we face a fear of moving somebody





process. We sometimes don’t have the


confidence in our abilities to know that when we get a prospect on the phone or in person, that we can move them to pull out their credit card or sign a contract.

Self doubt arises and we

subconsciously sabotage the deal.

We have to fight all these internal fears every day in order to get new business: Whether it is calling new leads, asking for referrals, or closing hot prospects.









We love the distractions. As long as we have distractions







demons. The moment we let the distractions keep us from our work, the demons win.

The demons will paralyze you.


The demons are like a paralyzing dart that you never feel hit you. Once you are hit by it you do nothing. You know what to do, you want to do it, you know the results that will be achieved once you do it, but you are paralyzed.

There are many tools that have been given to us to help beat the demons.

There is a lot of talk about the power of intention, the law of attraction, and the power of positive thinking.

The reason that these

principles work is because they facilitate us in getting our work done.

Sitting on our

couch consistently thinking about what we want creates the feelings and emotions that we need as fuel to take the next step. next step is getting our work done.



If you sit on the couch thinking positive thoughts and never take action, they may come take your couch away.

Focusing on what we want, and thinking positive, helps conquer the thoughts of self doubt and fear, so that we start getting our work done. By getting our work done we can attract the life that we want.

The demons capitalize on our fears and self doubt.

As soon as thoughts and feelings of doubt arise the demons are reliably there to say, “Something bad may happen, you better stop.�

The demons capitalize on the physical road blocks that arise every time we set a goal.


As soon as these things arise, the demons are there to say, “Look, you have an excuse; you don’t have to do this anymore.”

The demons capitalize on failure.

As soon as we fail, the demons are there to tell us to quit, that we can’t do it, to give up. And then the justification and rationalization starts on why we can’t do it. We listen to the demons, and they stop us.

The demons capitalize on our fear of looking bad.

According to recent studies in the United States,







speaking. Let’s look at it a little bit deeper. I believe that the reason we have a fear of speaking in public is because of a fear that shows







everywhere we go. It is a paralyzing fear that


keeps us from living up to our full potential. It stops us everywhere in our lives, and in more important situations than just public speaking.

It is the fear of looking bad.

Overcome the fear of looking bad, and you are one step closer to overcoming the demons.

The demons use our own biology against us.

Our brain’s job is to keep us safe.


brain’s job is not to make us successful. Our brain’s job is not to make us happy.


you ever known somebody who had a brain and wasn’t successful? Have you ever known somebody who had a brain and wasn’t happy? Our fears arise from our past experiences, and are not based on our potential. Susan Jeffers wrote a brilliant book called, “Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway,” because she knows that when we act in spite of fear, we elevate ourselves to a higher level and start the journey to achieve that which we are capable of.


The demons are not interested in knocking us to a lower level.

Not because there is a streak of niceness in them.

It is because knocking us to a lower

level isn’t their game.

They are like a trained ninja who knows they have one task at hand, and they are crystal clear on what that task is.

Their goal is to

emphatically and without question stop us from getting to a higher level. Their mission is to keep us the same. They will let us slide to a lower level, but they don’t do anything to facilitate it. And like the grass, we are either growing or dying. So as they target their efforts to keep us the same, we often end up at a lower level.

The only way to not get

knocked down to a lower level is to always be growing.

The demons don’t knock us to a

lower level.

We do that ourselves when we

can’t beat the demons. 26

To truly live is to overcome the demons.

I was stuffing Christmas stockings for my kids when they were 4 and 6 years of age. I was thinking about the magic that the kids would experience when they woke up and saw the wondrous presents seemingly left by a stranger. I looked at the clock and saw that it was 2:00 a.m. I looked over at my mom who was helping me, and said with a sincere smile, “This is living!�

My lovely, caring

wife was missing out. It was Christmas Eve; she was dead asleep, and fully beaten by the demons.

We all share the commonality of having to battle the demons.


We admire those who work hard. We root for the underdog.

We want the person to win

who has to work harder on winning.

Imagine you are watching a competition where two runners are racing. The first is a natural born athlete who never had to work hard to run fast.

The second was born

without great genetics, and has to practice ten times more than his opponent. Which runner do we want to win? Most would choose the second racer because he is more like us.








I can always recognize somebody who has to utilize self discipline to achieve success in his career. When I tell him that the reason he didn’t make his phone calls today is because of the demons, he smiles and says, “Yep, it is because of the demons.�


He may have never heard the term used like that before, but he understands it in an instant.

He has knowledge of fighting the

demons one can only get from experience.

The demons are relentless

The demons are not pesky little critters that need to be stomped out. The demons are an evil force that is relentless in completely destroying you!

They are evil.


underestimate their power.

The demons didn’t stop this book

I hold the information in this book at a very high level. In later chapters we are going to be discussing the meaning of life. I decided that getting the first version out, was more important than getting the book out perfectly



When it went to print, the demons


Small fears keep us from big results!

I had a three page in-depth discussion on this that







communicated as effectively as this one sentence:

Small fears keep us from big






disproportionate results. The demons are not proportional to that which they keep us from. The demons are small in comparison.


little bit of effort on beating the demons can result in a lot of success. We do not have to overcome huge obstacles to get huge results.


Notes on where the demons show up:



How to Overcome the demons: 6 Principles I wake up every morning, put some shorts on and leave for the gym.

There is nothing to

think about, but I know the demons are hard at work to stop me anytime that I start thinking. “Thinking about what?” you may ask. It doesn’t matter what I am thinking about. What I have committed to requires doing, not thinking. So when those thoughts creep in my head: “You didn’t get enough sleep to stay healthy, you need to get to the office to get your work done, you need to rest your muscles from yesterday’s workout,” and so

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