My Turn

Personal Acheivement
Work Book

By E. Cordell Vail and Janice R. Vail

Copyright 1993 by E.Cordell Vail and Janice R. Vail

Just a word about our symbol. We have discovered that it is impossible to separate the different aspects of our lives. Every part is inter-related to the other parts. So the intertwining circles are meant to represent the ten steps presented here and their inter-relationship in our lives.

The purpose of this work book is not to give you detailed information about the seminar but rather to serve as an outline in your home study after. Each line of the work book will help you remember the stories told and information given. You will be expected to take notes yourself on the information you want to remember in detail. You will also need to fill out the forms in the "GOAL SETTING WORK BOOK".

Ten Steps To Winning

Part 1 - I Am Responsible

Part 2 - My Self Esteem

Part 3 - Dominant Thoughts

Part 4 - Desire

Part 5 - Belief

Part 6 - Written Goals

Part 7 - Preparation

Part 8 - Commitment

Part 9 - Persistence

Part 10 - Mentors


Habits are funny things. They drive almost every part of our lives. We often say that bad habits are so easy to form and so hard to break. Why is it so hard for those of us who are very common people to change habits. Why is it so hard for most of us to even set goals alone reach them? It is a well established fact that setting goals will change your life. It will help you reach your dreams. Yet most of us can not do it. Why? I have wondered that for years. I have observed from personal experience and from my observations of other people the fact. It is a fact that most new years resolutions only last until about January 15th. Year after year, I kept asking myself why it was so hard for everyone to change. Why do we want something yet we can not get it? It is like we get stuck in a rut. We plateau out in our life. We stop going some where. We are stuck and we do not seem to be able to get out of the rut. We want to be different. We want to have a better job. We want to go back to school. We want to get into physical shape. We want to quit smoking. We want to loose weight. We want to learn to play the piano. We want to stop being so cranky with our families. Yet we do not seem to be able to do it. It is like some monster has hold of us.

I started to study this phenomena when I was 19 years old. It just baffled me to watch it in myself and in others. I went to seminars. I listened to tapes. I read books. Yet I still could not seem to do it. I was stuck in my rut with everyone else. So after 30 years of trying, I decided I would make it my life's study and not give up until I found the solution. I decided to see if I could not discover why me and millions of other common people like my self have such a hard time changing.

Little by little, I have begun to discover the stumbling blocks. I have interviewed literally hundreds of people. I have spent a great deal of my spare time observing people. Trying to see what we all had in common that made it so hard for us to change. After much hard work. I have discovered the Key. I found it 30 years ago and did not even realize that I had it all along and had even been using it on a limited basis.

The pages of this book will literally change you life, if you will do what it says. If you will take these keys and use them in your life it will change your life, but that you see is the first stumbling block in all of us. The first step is action. We have to be willing to take action. That is what I failed at all those years reading the books, listening to the tapes and going to the seminars. I heard it and I was excited about it, a little. But I never took action. I never followed their plan. Each one had 4 steps to do this or 8 keys for that or 10 sure ways for this. I always listened and then never actually tried it, or tried it with such a half-hearted effort that I gave up almost before I started. I know now that a half-hearted effort is not enough. It is not hard. In fact it is so simple it is stupid. Yet it is so simple it is actually hard. It takes giving of yourself and a little effort. We are so prone to take the easy road. The path of least resistance. We are just as out of shape mentally as we are physically. If it is a little bit hard, most of us avoid it. If you will not take these steps and try them, if you will not devote the small amount of time required, it will be just like all the others you have tried, it will not help you. You will go on for another 30 years just like I did. If you keep right on doing what you have been doing, you will keep right on getting what you have been getting.

You must make a decision. Will it be now? Will you give 10 or 15 minutes a day to this and actually do what I ask you to do? If you will, I can promise you that you can be successful in you marriage. You can be an excellent parent. You can be financially successful. You can find TRUE HAPPINESS and fulfillment in this life that you never dreamed of.

You can have your dreams. In fact if you do what we suggest, you will even start having a few dreams. Do you realize that most people have become so discouraged and in a rut in life that they don't even have dreams anymore. Well you can, and will. So as the olympic athletes say - "Lets go for the gold"!

Part 1
I Am Responsible

Discouragement is satan's most valuable tool

The chicken story

An inch is a mile when your nose is under water

It is easy to blame some one else. Then we can fail with dignity. But we still failed.

There is only one set of rules in this life.

You can fool some of the people some of the time but not all of the people all of the time. Abraham Lincoln

The devil made me do it.

I had a bad family life when I was young.

I just cant help it.

It is just the nature I was born with.

I am from a dysfunctional family, so I can not possibly win.

My sister got all the good looks, my brother got all the brains, and my father never succeeded at anything and neither did my grand father. So I could not succeed at anything.

Part 2
My Self Esteem

Charity has to be the key to self esteem......

I don't fit in.

No body likes me

I feel more comfortable alone


People loose hope so they just try to get what they can get now.

The way we act is caused by our past experiences and is related to our present actions.

Done long enough it becomes your mind set.

Perpetual squint. The ability to focus beyond the immediate things at hand. The gospel does that for us more than anything else (Vaughn J. Featherstone)

Self esteem is one thing. Changing it is quite another.

We love to be loved

it is important to be important to someone

we want to be worth something to someone

we need to be needed

Do you like yourself?

Love your neighbor as you love yourself was Christ's advice.

Why does "Dress for success work"?

People do not like a growling dog.

When you cry you cry alone, when you laugh the world laughs with you.

Fear of rejection is a major factor.

Some times we are moving 2 steps ahead and them others pull us 3 steps back.

I cant is some times our battle cry.

I feel so unworthy to win.

Get away from people who make you feel stupid. (Before the sun comes up again)

We are like crabs in the basket when we pull others down trying to make ourself better.

Why is negative easier than positive?

Some people seem to feel that as they pull others down it builds the up??

Why do domineering people try to put themselves over on you? Low self esteem?

How working at a menial task but winning made me come back. (Kmart story)

Who ever did not like a little puppy dog.

How do you develop a will to win?????

The horse that wont walk behind another horse (story)

Stress comes from doing less than you can!



Part 3
Dominant Thoughts

For where your treasure is there will your heart be also. (3 Nephi 13:21)

Positive affirmations is the key to changing you dominant thoughts.

Subconscious mind can not tell the difference between real and imagined experiences.

It believes what ever we tell it over and over, good or bad.

Our stomach is very smart. It regurgitates bad food. Our subconscious mind is very gullible. It retains and believes what ever we feed it over and over.

Most people do not ever stop and analyze what their dominant thoughts are.

They honestly could not tell you if you asked them.Yet it is there all the time and is the driving force in their life. We are constantly programming our subconscious mind to believe what we want it to believe good or bad. If we are willing it sit and listen and hear what we are thinking about most of the time, we will see it is our greatest desires and shapes all that we do. Positive or Negative.

Hunger and thrust after righteousness.

If you commit adultery in your heart (subconscious mind) it is the same as if you had done it in you real life.

Every one at school ganging up on someone and telling them they look sick (story)

Part 4

Key to gaining the desire: 1 Nephi 11:1 Nephi desired, believed, pondered, inquired, received.

How can you build desire?

Why don't most people want anything better? Why do we settle for less than we really want?

Ambition is the key! (truck driving school story)

People let their minds get lazy.

Start reading every day. Exercise you mind just like you do you body to stay in shape. You cant be in shape mentally if you are out of shape physically. Physical laziness makes you tired and listless. Kills desire. If your too tired to, you wont have the ambition to.

Meditation every day (Pres. Mc Kay story)

Dare to dream.

Where does a white heat passion for something come from?

Develop your imagination. That is a key. Do you have a book where you write down your ideas? Do you think that you are a smart person? Do you carry a notebook around with you to write inspirational ideas down when they come? Do you expect them to come?

Develop your imagination by thinking. Consider yourself an idea person.

Why do we have bad habits??? we don't care? Expressing rebellion or anger???Punishment is not associated with the deed strong enough?? Touch burn relationship (story)

If someone cut off one of your fingers every time you did it you would stop.

Candy bar now or bike tomorrow immediate gratification theory as grown ups

Necessity is the mother of invention.

it is easier to do if you enjoy it.

spirit of competition helps build desire. We like to win.

President Kimball suggests that we may have plateaued out in our life. Can we get off our plateau?

Part 5

It must be realistic or you wont be able to believe it. You probably cant earn a million this year but you could earn 35 thousand and then double it in 3 years then double it again in 3 years and earn a million in 10 years? that is believable.

It has to be for you or it wont work.

If you don't do it for the right reason, you will soon loose your belief and then your desire.

it wont last

Directly related to self esteem and dominant thoughts.

priorities must effect your belief of what you should do and feel good if you do.

Faith, Family, Friends, Fitness (physical and mental), Finances

Meditation is a key to belief. 1 Nephi 11:1

charity will bring belief in yourself (service to others)

Part 6
Written Goals

Long range

medium range

short range

goals must be quantitative

Did you know that Pres. Clinton and his friends wrote in their year books in high school "see you in the white house? I wonder why he became the President of the United States?

Most of Larry Kings graduating class have become prominent people. It would be interesting to see if some where down the line in these classes of kids if there was not a teacher who taught them to set goals?? Richard Nixon and his class mates at Yale were also goal setters.








Part 7

Sharpen you saw (covey)

this has to be the key to success. It has been in my life.

that which we persist in doing become easier not because the nature of the thing has changed but because our ability to do has increased.

procrastination breeds inaction

lazy mind cured by reading studying listening to tapes going to seminars

knowledge is power

this is the one thing that has helped me build self esteem

Rabbit and the Hair (story)

I have books because it makes people think I am smart, and when they treat me like I am smart it makes me feel smart, so then I act smart to meet their EXPECTATIONS, so then I have a burning desire to study and work hard to meet their expectations, and eventually I do gain knowledge and information that fulfills the expectation.

It is a KEY in life to help your children become good at one thing.

Don't be a jack of all trades and a master at none

You need balance in you life (Jim Hansburgers 5 F's)

Preparation in all areas effects and shapes how you feel. How you feel effects how you think. ambition drives all that you do and accomplish.


Laziness is a power too. It kills ambition.

Necessity and poverty are the mothers of invention

Hard work will carry you way past intelligence

We all have a piano but we don't all play the same music. (Pres. Taylor)

Vicktor Phillips didn't even know he couldn't see when he was little until he got glasses

A willing horse will normally pull most of the load

If we fail to plan we plan to fail

People don't plan to fail they just fail to plan

Part 8

When Cortez landed with his men in America, he burned the ships then said to the men we now have two choices, we can win or we can die. They won.

Chicken and the pig at breakfast (story)

Room 13 on June 13th

Fear of failure is the main stumbling block of commitment.

We tend to forget our past victories and successes. We loose site of our goal.

Walking across plank for $10 is dependent on the height. 20 stories can make quite a difference in the desire for the reward.

We look for sufficient reward with minimal risk

The major cause of man's unhappiness is his willingness to trade the things he wants most for the things he wants now.

Part 9

BYU 1 in 100 chances to graduate (story)

Immigrant dad selling hot dogs, discouraged by college graduate son in depression (story)

Determination to win is the key. How do we get it?

How do you keep motivated once you start? reward?

Need to find sources of inspiration along the way. Look for resources. Delbert Goats' empty bucket example.

Stress can kill persistence and motivation

You have to work with what you have. Start where you are.

That which you persist in doing....

Sharpen your saw

Hard work... there is no substitute.

4 kinds of sign painters (story)

Dependability is a key

Life is like a road. One side is bumpy and the other is smooth. If we decided to take the bumpy side, we may still get there, but it will be a lot harder.

Our action decide which side of the road we travel on.

Mary Lou Retten practiced for 8 hours a day for several years to win the gold metal.

Part 10

Study lives of 10 great people and their attributes of greatness will show up on your screen of life.












Our parents are our main mentors as we grow up.

Monkey see monkey do.

If our family puts us down, we have low self esteem. But they are still our mentors. Especially when young. Girls normally marry someone just like their fathers. Even abusive ones. That is why many women endure as battered wives. They were battered children and to them that is love and security.

Children would rather be beat than ignored.

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