Peaks & Valleys by Spencer Johnson: Summary and Notes
Here’s how to get out of a Valley sooner, how to stay on a Peak longer, and
how to have more Peaks and fewer Valleys in our future.
Peaks And Valleys Are Connected in Two Ways:
- The Errors You Make In Today’s Good Times Create Tomorrow’s Bad Times.
- And The Wise Things You Do In Today’s Bad Times Create Tomorrow’s Good Times.
The secret is to truly appreciate and enjoy each time for what it is, while you are living it.
What’s the key to enjoying every situation in our life?
Look for the lessons and be grateful for them.
In fact, gratitude is the key to happiness in any situation.
Peaks Are Moments When You Appreciate What You Have.
Valleys Are Moments When You Long For What Is Missing.
So, if you want to have fewer Valleys, avoid comparisons of others.
The only comparison you should be making it your current self with your future self.
If you enjoy or appreciate what’s good about the moment, you feel more like you are on a Peak.
The Path Out Of The Valley Appears When You Choose To See Things Differently.
Many people don’t realize that they need to be truly prepared if they want to stay on a Peak longer.
I have experienced this so many times throughout my entrepreneurial life of 24 years.
This is such a common issue with entrepreneurs that Darren Hardy wrote a book called The Entrepreneur Rollercoaster.
But it doesn’t have to be as extreme as a roller coaster ride.
You can change your Valley into a Peak when you find and use the good that is hidden in the bad time.
Creativity is formed out of constraints.
Between Peaks there are always Valleys.
How You Manage Your Valley Determines How Soon You Reach Your Next Peak.
If you do not learn in a Valley, you can become discouraged.
If you, scratch that, when you get discouraged, you spend time on a plateau.
Like a healthy heartbeat, your personal Peaks and Valleys are an essential part of a normal, healthy life.
So are the Plateaus, if they are times of healthy rest, when you take stock of what is happening, and pause to think about what to do next.
Like resting 1 day a week or taking vacations, or my favorite, going camping out in nature away from the city.
While it is unhealthy to try to escape by blocking out reality, like having a drink or two a few nights a week, or worse using drugs,
it can often be very healthy to just relax and rest and trust that things will get better.
Because, after a good night’s sleep or a few days’ break, they often do.
How can it be healthy to have ups and downs? How can that be peaceful?
Don’t all the highs and lows make you feel anxious and stressed out?
Only if you go up and down with them.
Once you truly learn to manage your good and bad times, you gain a sense of healthy balance.
To begin with, you become more peaceful once you realize that you are not your Peaks, your ‘good’ times, and you are not your Valleys, your ‘bad’ times.
You Can Have Fewer Bad Times When You Appreciate and Manage Your Good Times Wisely.
How do you manage your good times poorly?
When you were feeling so good, did you perhaps boast a little?
What is the source of a person’s fear?
For most of us, it’s ego.
Your ego can make you arrogant on the Peak and fearful in the Valley.
It keeps you from seeing what is real.
Your ego distorts the truth.
When you are on a Peak, your ego makes you see things as better than they really are.
And when you are in a Valley, your ego makes you see things as worse than they really are.
It makes you think a Peak will last forever, and it makes you fear a Valley will never end.
The Most Common Reason You Leave a Peak Too Soon is Arrogance, Masquerading as Confidence.
The Most Common Reason You Stay in a Valley Too Long is Fear, Masquerading as Comfort.
When you put your ego aside, you are more likely to leave a Valley sooner.
I find the best way to get through a Valley begins with gratitude.
What are you grateful for?
Then take complete ownership for where you are.
It may not be your fault, but it’s still your responsibility.
We at DYB call this principle Above The Line.
This is the same with peaks.
By putting your ego aside and disciplining yourself to remain grateful, this is the key to help you stay on a Peak longer.
Then to get to the next peak, imagine a vision of a future Peak you want to be on that makes good sense to you.
It has to be believable. Because…
—->Beliefs influence your goals,
—>Goals influence your identity,
—>Identity influences your Habits,
—>Habits influences your attitude
—>And attitude determines the altitude of your peaks and valleys.
So, imagine something as big as you can imagine that is also realistic and attainable that you really want.
Imagine how your future Peak will look, sound, smell, taste and feel, until it becomes so real to you that the image of getting there pulls you through your Valley.
A great way to get to your next Peak is to surround yourself with like minded people who are on the same journey as you are.
“In life and in business the person with the fewest blind spots wins.”
– Shane Parrish
Consider these potential mindsets…
Stuck – Uninterested in feedback
Passive – Open to feedback
Proactive – Request feedback
Ambitious – Pay for feedback
That’s why Mastermind Groups are so powerful for expediting growth.
Imagine yourself enjoying your better future in such specific,
believable detail that you soon enjoy doing what takes you there!
Why does being in a Valley have to be so painful?
The Pain In A Valley Can Wake You Up To A Truth You Have Been Ignoring.
Your Mastermind Group will reveal the these to you, kindly.
You are always creating a vision of your future, whether you are aware of it or not—either a fearful vision, or a sensible vision.
And it’s just a question of which vision you follow.
Avoid Believing Things Are Better Than They Really Are When You Are On A Peak – Arrogance masquerading as confidence.
Or Worse Than They Really Are When You Are In A Valley – Fear masquerading as comfort.
Make Reality Your Friend.
A personal peak is a triumph over fear.
You create a peak when you truly follow your vision. Your fear fades and you become more peaceful and successful.
The more humility you learn, the more likely you are to remain on your Peaks longer.
This concludes my summary and notes for Peaks & Valleys by Spencer Johnson.
If you want to see if a Mastermind Group is a good fit for you to help you stay on you to get out of your vally’s faster and stay on yourpeaks longer, let’s get on a strategy call here.