Derek Bly

If you want to make the world a better place, take a look at yourself and make the change.

On the Road Again – MKE Style Week 5

Here it is … Week 5 of the MKE.

Mark has noted that it is about at this point where people either dedicate themselves 100% to the program or opt to leave with no hard feelings. I will be upfront and say that I have decided to join the latter group.

Best wishes to everyone in the MKMMA.

For personal reasons, I am withdrawing from the program. And, no, it has nothing to do with the ‘pay-it-forward’ decision by the group. I laud that idea and support the concept of making the training available to others who may benefit from it through the financial contributions of current participants.

My reasons have nothing to do with this plan. And I will not be discussing my reasons in this blog entry. As noted, it’s personal.

However, I am not leaving feeling any animosity towards the Master Key Mastermind Alliance. Indeed, over the past five weeks, I have learned some extremely valuable concepts that will definitely help me as I move forward in life.

I have known about the use of SMART goals for quite a while. I suspect many of us have. But knowing about the idea and implementing it are two different things. Thanks to the MKMMA, I am committed to implementing the SMART goals strategy into my goal-planning sessions. It’s been a real wake-up call in this regard.

The use of the recipe cards to peg the mind to what we wish to achieve and to accept the small achievements as steps along the way to greater accomplishments is brilliant! No one has ever shared this idea with me before. It is definitely entering my toolbox for self-improvement skills. If you are not in the MKMMA and wonder what the heck I’m talking about, ask and I’ll explain it a bit more.

Basically, it involves using a series of recipe cards to note goals, chores and things you’d like to accomplish, and attaching simple geometric shapes and colours to those things. Then, when you see those colours and shapes when you are out and about, it will trigger your memory and commitment to the associated goals or chores.

It is a tool I see myself using for a long time to come.

One thing I am doing with it is I am creating separate cards for each shape and colour. On those cards, I will note everything that is associated with that specific colour. I think this will help me to better recall and relate each coloured shape to specific goals and promises.

And The Greatest Salesman in the World? What can I say? I’ve known about the book for years. I even had a copy once when I was involved with a network marketing company. But I never used it as it should be used. The MKMMA really opened my eyes to show me what a great resource this book is and I will continue to use it as prescribed in the writings themselves.

If you want to change your life and would like a bit of a guide to help you along the way, I recommend this book. Read it, but do so as it describes and read each scroll multiple times before moving on. It’s in the rereading that so many truths and concepts are finally grasped.

And so I come to the end of my brief involvement with the MKMMA. I have nothing but best wishes for all involved and I believe those who are carrying on will accomplish amazing things in their lives.

This does not mean the end of this blog, however! I will continue to be here, writing and sharing as we all travel through this life together.

Keeping it real!


Staying on Track – MKE Style, Weeks 3 and 4

What? Weeks 3 and 4 together in one blog post? What the heck is that all about?

That’s me with my friend, Judy, and her mom at the Fortune Ones show in Saskatoon last week. I couldn’t say for certain, but I’d bet that, at 90 years of age, Judy’s mom is the oldest person to take in the group’s CD launch tour!

Well, I slipped! I headed out of town for a week to visit with a friend’s elderly mother and the internet access was a little, how shall I put this, sporadic and limited! But it was a great learning experience all the same.

I don’t think I’m alone when I say it is easy to slide back into former habits. Being out of the loop for a week really allowed me to do just that. Hey, I’m not proud of it. I’m just keeping it real. Now I’m back!

Fortunately, this MKE course I’m taking records the Sunday web classes, so it’s possible to catch up if you miss one. I do think live is better, but recordings are better than nothing. And they allow for review of concepts that may require a bit more thought.

That’s a good thing as some of the concepts are beyond what I often considered. The MKE is all about working on the inner self. If I want change in the outer world, it will take work on the inner world to make it authentic.

It’s considerably different than what most of the self-help programs and gurus teach about the power of positive thinking. It’s about digging deep and realizing that my subconscious mind really controls how I think and the choices I make. You think you’ve got ‘free will’? As Mark Januszewski would say, “phugeddaboutit.” There’s no such thing as free will.

I used to think I was consciously making the decisions in my life … that my conscious mind was doing things on a rational, well-thought-out basis. Wrong. The subconscious or ‘subby’ is where it’s at.

All our lives we have had experiences, witnessed events, seen things, been taught, lectured to and guided by others. Through this process, I have come to believe certain things are true about myself. As a result, every decision made is shaped by the subconscious. We’ve all been programmed without even realizing it.

The key to real change lies in de-programming and re-programming the subconscious. It’s kind of like the concept of GIGO (garbage in, garbage out) in computer science. GIGO refers to inputting nonsense or flawed data into a computer. The resulting output can’t help but be flawed or ‘garbage.’

Sadly, the programming the subconscious often receives is of the GIGO variety. Changing that means getting down to the subby level and reprogramming with other information. And that means we do a fair amount of reading and rereading in MKE.

I wasn’t sure about this at first, but I got to thinking … the way I’ve always done things hasn’t always worked well for me. Developing new thought patterns couldn’t hurt!

What I’ve found is reading and rereading a message helps me to better understand. Right now we’re reading Script One from Og Mandino’s The Greatest Salesman in the World. After four or five reads, I started to think, “yeah, yeah. I get it. Can’t we move on?” Then, after seven or eight reads, I started to think, “Hey, I didn’t notice that before.” Once I hit 12 or 14 readings, it’s more like, “Oh, now I’m really starting to get it!” I think that’s when the reprogramming really starts to happen.

In Week 4, part of that reprogramming starts to look at a concept called the Law of Giving and Receiving. Now, some of this seems a bit ‘woo-woo’ to me, but as noted earlier, what I was doing wasn’t always working, so I’m going to open my mind to consider ideas I wouldn’t have in the past.

Basically, giving and receiving is like a flowing stream. When we don’t ‘give’, we dam up the stream and stop the flow. The key, then, is to be open to giving and receiving. But give without expectation of reciprocity. To this end, I am making some promises to myself. These include:

  • I promise to give hope for joy, affluence, kindness and love, consciously with every encounter, regardless of the brevity.
  • I promise to give without expectation of reciprocity, to the channels I enrich because I know I am in the dynamic flow of giving and receiving.

This is kind of easy for me. I’ve always liked giving if it can bring happiness to others. So, I’ve started a project through my Facebook page. I’ve shared the fact that social media is fine, but we’ve lost a more personal touch because of it. Few people receive anything in their physical mailbox anymore beyond bills, flyers and maybe the occasional card for a birthday or at Christmas.

I’ve promised that anyone who sends me their mailing address will receive a card from me to brighten up their day, likely when they least expect it! It’s a small step towards giving, but one I know I will enjoy doing.

It’s been an interesting journey so far. I’m looking forward to Week 5!

Thanks for reading.

Keeping it real!



One Step Forward – MKE Style Week 2

Have you ever noticed that sometimes in life it can feel like for every two steps forward, you take one back? Or maybe it’s one step forward and two back? Hey, I’ve been there! I know what it’s like.

But success – however you personally define it – requires that we do keep pushing forward. How to get beyond those steps backwards is the challenge we all face. Tackling that challenge head-on is why I signed up for the Master Key Experience (MKE).

Did I know what to expect – exactly – when I applied to participate? Heck, no! This was a step of faith for me. Honestly, I cannot recall how I even came to know about the MKE. Somehow, it showed up in my life. I read a bit about it. I viewed some videos with a guy named Mark Januszewski providing an introduction through some training.

Now, I did know about Mark. He had great success in the network marketing industry after stumbling and fumbling about in it for a number of years. He bills himself as ‘the World’s Laziest Networker.’ Don’t be fooled. There is nothing ‘lazy’ about this man. I was aware that he now provided training to others who were struggling with reaching goals in life.

Mark has taken what he learned, what worked for him, and teaches it through the MKE. And if you would bill yourself as ‘lazy’, this might not be for you. It is a six-month-long commitment. It requires reading. And rereading! There are simple writing assignments. There are weekly webinar classes. So, it isn’t exactly a walk in the park. But it’s also not something beyond the abilities of almost anyone who can commit to changing and growing.

I’ve been at it for about a week and a half at this point. And I’ve been learning a lot about myself.

One of the reading assignments is a book called The Greatest Salesman in the World by Og Mandino. Don’t let the title fool you. This is about developing the inner mind, the subconscious, to become the best you that you can be. I see it as being a study of how most people are ruled by the conscious mind without ever understanding that it is the subconscious that is really making the decisions in our lives.

As I come to understand this concept, I believe it can make a difference in how I live. But I am a work in progress. The book knows we’re all human. At one point it notes:

“… I have neither the knowledge nor the experience to achieve greatness and already I have stumbled in ignorance and fallen into pools of self-pity.”

Hey, can you relate? I know I can. I’ve splashed around in that pool. I’ve gone wading it in. I’ve even dived deep. But I’ve always climbed back out. The goal now is to understand why I occasionally take the plunge and how to, instead, stay high and dry!

So, I’ve remade I used to keep some short stories here and share some thoughts about things. Now I’m using it to stay accountable to myself and my personal growth.

And you are welcome to check in and see how things are going if you like. I’ll be taking plenty of steps forward and you’re welcome to walk along with me.

Keeping it real.

Breaking out of the Comfort Zone – MKE Style Week 1

“You’re trapped, stuck in a murky dimension; a dimension not only lacking in vision, and dreams but one of sheer mindlessness. It’s a trap so bleak your journey through life has been one of quiet desperation. That’s the signpost up ahead – your stuck in … the Comfort Zone!” (With apologies to Rod Serling.) 

Ah, yes. The Comfort Zone. Such an easy place in which to reside. No challenges. No drive. And no real accomplishments either. Oh, it’s safe, to be sure. You can go along with the crowd. Never make any waves in your life. Just kind of let things go along until you find yourself slip, sliding away.

That’s kind of where I’m at right now. Don’t get me wrong. Things are ‘OK’ in life and I suspect there may actually be some out there who could maybe even envy me a bit. But don’t!

Yes, I took an early retirement – but the package wasn’t anything too terrific. Yes, my summer was busy as a marriage commissioner – but winter is another story. Theoretically, I only have to answer to myself. That can sound sweet, but it means I have a bit of a perfectionist taskmaster as a boss! With this guy, everything has to be ‘just so’ before moving forward.

That means some of the bigger dreams and goals hardly have a chance of seeing the light of day. When you want everything to be perfect before moving ahead, it really does mean you are stuck because nothing is ever really perfect.

And so you find yourself at a certain stage in life where you have a vastly greater number of years behind you than you have ahead. And you realize that maybe you’ve squandered time instead of ever investing it. And you come to understand that the reality is you are trapped in the Comfort Zone.

While life isn’t everything you once hoped for, it’s also not horrible enough to really drive you to change. In 1849, Henry David Thoreau wrote, “The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation.” That nicely sums up the situation leading me to write this blog entry.

Oh, don’t get me wrong. I’m not mired in a quagmire of self-pity or anything like that. I’m simply taking – at long last – a stand against living the rest of my life in a way that does not reflect the best me that I can be. More on that in later entries.

Early in the week of September 17, somehow, someway (I honestly can’t remember how it happened) I came across some information about an online course called The Master Key Experience. I watched a few videos by a fellow named Mark Januszewski. It was like Mark was speaking directly to me!

I was impressed by his obvious passion for the subject and the detailed information shared in those videos. It was simply making sense when I considered where I was in life compared to where I’d once hoped to be. The info and insights spoke to me, so I registered for a six-month course – The Master Key Experience.

I know it’s something I need to move forward. I will admit that for much of my life I put the ‘pro’ in procrastination! Time to get off my butt and shake things up a little. And now that’s the purpose of this blog.

After having it set up for a couple of years and not really doing anything with it, I’m going to use the blog to track my progress over the next six months. Finding purpose for the blog means I’ve already gained something from this commitment.

If you are at all curious to see how things turn out, you’re invited to check back. The goal will be to post once a week about that week in the MKE. I’m going to target having a blog post up by no later than Wednesday of each week.

While I am doing this for myself, I do hope you will be back.

Keeping it real.