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Failure Scripts and Where The Rocks Are

By Frederick Mann, 10/16/2000

Failure Scripts

You've probably heard quite a few "dumb criminal" stories. Here's one I like:

"A man rushed into a bank brandishing a gun intending to intimidate everyone by screaming, "Up with your fucking hands, this is a stickup!" But in his nervousness, it came out, "Up with your sticky hands, this is a fuck up!" After a short pause, tellers, customers and the bank guard began to giggle and the thief was so rattled that he left the bank without carrying out the robbery. The bank now has a plaque on the wall containing the famous phrase (with suitable blank spaces, no doubt)."

You can find it and many others at the "dumb" websites linked to from

When you read such "dumb stories" you might wonder how some people can sometimes act so dumb and stupid!

How about the US Government's so-called "war on drugs?" What useful or worthwhile results does this "war" produce? See Drug War Clock and Drug War Facts. What degree of intelligence, or stupidity is involved here? What about honesty and hypocrisy?

In my opinion, the "drug war" is the result of a kind of "collective failure script." In individuals, failure scripts basically stem from childhood conclusions and decisions. Some of these conclusions and decisions have to do with "not being able to do things right." Many people live their lives (or at least parts of their lives) at the effect of unconscious scripts consisting of all kinds of "do's" and "don't's." About 15 years ago, I read Scripts People Live: Transactional Analysis of Life Scripts by Claude M. Steiner. This helped me considerably to overcome some personal scripts.

Many people (maybe 90% or more) will make relatively little progress with their lives generally unless they learn to overcome the limitations of certain basic unconscious scripts most people suffer from. When you purchase Success Arsenal!(sm), as a bonus you receive the e-book Real 'Secrets' of Success! which addresses these basic unconscious scripts.

Failure scripts are also involved with "psychological reversal" -- see Millionaire Report #6 and Millionaire Report #7.

A failure script is like RIDING A DEAD HORSE. Dakota Sioux tribal wisdom says that, when you discover you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount. However, government often tries other strategies with dead horses, including the following:

  1. Buy a stronger whip.
  2. Change riders.
  3. Declare that, "This is the way we've always ridden this horse."
  4. Appoint a committee to study the horse.
  5. Arrange to visit other sites to see how they ride dead horses.
  6. Increase the standards required to ride dead horses.
  7. Appoint a team to revive the dead horse.
  8. Create a training session to increase our riding ability.
  9. Review the advantages of having dead horses in today's environment.
  10. Change the facts and declare that "This horse is not dead."
  11. Do a cost-analysis study to see if contractors can ride it cheaper.
  12. Hire contractors to ride the dead horse.
  13. Harness several dead horses together for increased speed.
  14. Declare that "No horse is too dead to beat."
  15. Provide additional funding to increase the horse's performance.
  16. Form a brain-storm group to find uses for dead horses.
  17. Publish a SOP on proper utilization of dead horses.
  18. Purchase a new product designed to make dead horses run faster.
  19. Declare the horse is "better and cheaper" dead.
  20. Say this horse was procured with cost as an independent variable.
    And, if all else fails...
  21. Promote the dead horse to a supervisory position.

Consider another example. Someone joins some money-making program. I happen to be his sponsor. I tell him that I sponsor about 10-20 people a month. I also tell him that I've set up a special forum for people in my downline where they can learn how to sponsor people. Suppose after a few weeks this person has sponsored nobody. I tell him that I know and understand certain things about sponsoring that he probably doesn't know and understand and that if he joins the forum he'll have the opportunity to learn some of these things. But this person makes no attempt to avail himself of such a golden opportunity. What failure scripts might inhabit and inhibit his brain?

"Redecision Therapy" can be applied to replace failure scripts with success scripts. See Redecision Therapy as a Process of New Belief Acquisition by John R. McNeel, Ph.D., from which I quote:

"Defiant and Despairing Decisions
That an individual makes an early decision in response to injunctive messages has been cant since the earliest writings on Redecision therapy. However, with the exception of the Don't Exist injunction, there was no effort to assign specific decisions to particular injunctions. Over the past seven years, we have sought to identify representative wording, which captures the essence of each early decision to each injunction. In this process, we made a remarkable observation. Instead of a single decision to an injunction, there are two. The two decisions are very different in character, but each has the effect of bonding the person tightly to the injunctive message. To each injunction there is a defiant decision and a despairing decision."

So there are defiant failure scripts and despairing failure scripts.

I know of two books on Redicision Therapy: Changing Lives Through Redecision Therapy by Mary McClure Goulding and Robert L. Goulding; Redecision Therapy - A Brief, Action-Oriented Approach by Carolyn E. Lennox (Editor).

Where the Rocks Are . . .

There's an old joke about three very devout men who were fishing from a small boat in the middle of a lake. The first man, responding to an urgent call of nature, bowed his head briefly, stepped out of the boat, walked across the surface of the lake and disappeared into the trees on shore, returning a few minutes later. After an hour or so, the second man needed to relieve himself. He stood, engaged in a brief moment of contemplation and walked serenely over the water to a nearby clump of bushes. Following a short absence, he returned to the boat by the same route.

The third man was amazed and a bit disturbed by what seemed to him to be a challenge to his faith. He was also becoming desperately uncomfortable from the amount of coffee he had consumed that morning. He stood, said a brief but fervent prayer, stepped out of the boat... and went straight to the bottom of the lake. His companions fished him out without comment. The second attempt was no more successful than the first and another, more prayerful try also ended in disaster. As he was being hauled, barely conscious, back into the boat for the third time, the first man said to the second, "Do you think we ought to tell him where the rocks are?"

So how do you find the rocks? You basically observe what works and what doesn't. You observe what others do that works and what they do that doesn't work. You're always on the lookout for something that might work better.

There are also different rocks for different feet. There are basically two kinds of money-making programs:

  1. Those for which you have to risk your time to market and recruit people in order to make money;
  2. Those where you risk your money in order to receive a high return -- see Private Programs.

Unless you're an accomplished marketer, it's most likely a failure script to attempt to market almost anything to your "warm market" (your family, friends, and co-workers). Generally, it works much better to market on the Internet to people you don't know.

For most people with most money-making programs it's also a failure script to attempt to market a program that competes with the thousands of programs others are trying to market to you. Generally, it works much better to do things that attract visitors to your website -- see Reciprocal Links Exchange -- and to promote information and/or programs others can use to improve the marketing of the programs they're trying to market to you. For example, you can tell people that their program looks great and that they may be much more successful in marketing it by using Success Arsenal!(sm) -- "HOW YOU CAN ALSO RECRUIT 10 PEOPLE A DAY FOR YOUR GREAT PROGRAM!"

Another success script is called "reverse marketing" -- you get your own Free-For-All Page (e.g., FFA Net) or Classified Ads Page -- and have people post their links and ads to your Page. You then get the opportunity to thank them for posting to your pages and tell them how they can greatly improve their marketing efforts.

Yet another success script is to create a "community" to market to. You use every opportunity to persuade people to join your email lists and discussion forums. You provide them with valuable information. You interact with them. You establish trust and create relationships. Periodically you market to them.

Numbers Marketing

Here's a message I posted to my forum for people in my Strategic Wealth Institute downline:

The reality is that about 99% of the individuals, who join programs for which their earnings depend on sponsoring others, have little or no idea of how to go about competently sponsoring others and how to become more effective at it.

In the first month since I joined Step 4, I've sponsored 19 individuals. The chances are that most of them, if they don't receive training (or train themselves) on how to sponsor others effectively, will drop out after a few months.

Typically, most people who join money-making programs start with promoting to their "warm market" -- family, friends, coworkers, etc. Generally, they're met with rejection, and after a few attempts they give up.

It's absolutely vital for long-term success that as a Step 4 Member you train yourself on how to effectively sponsor others and continually become more competent at it.

The first step is to set up your personal & websites. You should also get familiar with all the & facilities available to you.

The second step (for most) is to set up a personal, customized website to be used to attract visitors and promote & (and possibly other programs that are complementary to SWI and its aims). Hopefully, there will be one or more people in the forum willing to assist others with this. (Doing so for a fee is just fine!)

It helps to gain an appreciation for the "numbers" involved. In the first month my SWI marketing efforts resulted in about 250 people signing in at 19 of them joined Step 4. That's a 7.6% "conversion ratio," which is phenomenal! Some may drop out before making their first payments, reducing the conversion ratio. Suppose this drops the "conversion ratio" to 5%. That would still be phenomenal.

Suppose that in general, you have to contact about 500 people in order for one to visit your site. This means that in order to sponsor one person into Step 4, you need to contact about 10,000 people!

By understanding such numbers, it becomes very clear what you need to do to succeed. If you want to sponsor one person per month, you need to contact 10,000 people per month. If you want to sponsor one person per day, you need to contact 10,000 people per day.

Fortunately, by using the Internet you can certainly contact 10,000 people with about 30-60 minutes' work. And you can do this without spamming.

There are also effective things to do to your personal website (not your & sites) to automatically attract visitors. You may be able to get 10% of these visitors to also visit your site). This would mean that, on average, for every 200 visitors to your personal site, 20 would visit your site, and one would join Step 4. If the numbers work out this way in practice, you know that you need to get 200 visitors to your website in order to sponsor one person into Step 4.

The "old marketing model" goes more or less like this:

  1. Identify prospects;
  2. Present to them;
  3. Answer questions/handle objections;
  4. Attempt to close them;
  5. Experience a great deal of rejection.

The Internet really lends itself to a "new marketing model" which is much more effective:

  1. Create a website (with a number of presentations) that attracts visitors;
  2. Do things (mostly related to search engines and getting links from other sites to yours) to increase the number of visitors;
  3. Blast promotional messages to thousands or millions every day to drive more visitors to your website;
  4. Test your various marketing efforts (e.g., by using ROIbot);
  5. Some visitors join programs as a result of visiting your website;
  6. Use your website to create a "community" you can market to in future;
  7. Implement automated follow-up systems where necessary;
  8. No need to experience rejection. (In general it's much more effective to present your program(s) to new prospects than attempting to "close" prospects who didn't "buy" from the website.)

When you start receiving 20-30 or more letters every month, with $10 in each, that's a good time to show them to your "warm market." Unless you're a highly skilled marketer, starting with trying to promote to your warm market is almost always a disastrous mistake!

Once you've sponsored people into Step 4, then it's great to get to know them through personal communication, through the SWI conference calls and online chat facilities, or through a forum such as this one.

Upgrade Your Brain

In order to "find the rocks" and "learn to walk on them," you may need to upgrade your brain.

Further Reading

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