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Shift: 13 Exercises to Make You Who You Want to Be

Shift: 13 Exercises to Make You Who You Want to Be

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Shift: 13 Exercises to Make You Who You Want to Be

3/5 (22 évaluations)
115 pages
1 heure
Mar 4, 2015


It's not that you're lazy, and its not that you lack motivation. No-you have plenty of motivation, but it always seems to fade away just when you need it. The problem is not that you don't have motivation, it's that that motivation doesn't stick around long enough. So what kind of book is this? It's the kind that takes knowledge and inspiration from motivation specialists and distills it into something easy to understand. Thirteen exercises and seventeen techniques illustrate points to help you take the steps to keep, bring back, or find the motivation you need to make the shift into who you want to be.
Mar 4, 2015

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Shift - Takumi Yamazaki


13 Exercises to Make You Who You Want to Be

by Takumi Yamazaki

Copyright © 2011 by Takumi Yamazaki

One Peace Books

57 Great Jones Street

New York, NY 10012

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the written prior permission of the author.


There are books out there that tell you what to do. They make all sorts of claims about how to be more motivated, how to get more done, how to be a better person. They tell you to do this and that—they teach you the right way to do things.

This is not that kind of book.


to change place or position

—Merriam Webster

It's not that you're lazy, and it's not that you lack motivation. No—you have plenty of motivation, but it always seems to fade away just when you need it most. The problem is not that you don't have motivation, it's that the motivation doesn't stick around long enough.

So what kind of book is this?

It is the kind that takes knowledge and inspiration from motivation specialists (maternity coaches, neurologists, athletes, business consultants, etc.) and distills them into something easy to understand. There are also exercises that will illustrate the points along the way, so please make an effort to complete them as honestly as possible.


Have you ever gotten so excited about something that it's hard to sleep and then awakened in the morning only to realize that it was the dumbest idea you've ever had?

Sometimes we all get that way. Sometimes you get so excited you feel as if you can take on the world. But then you give it a day. You sleep on it. Then when you wake up, you find that it's gone.

This might leave you wondering just how you can get control over your inspiration, your motivation, and your emotions. It's never as easy as you want it to be because motivation is a fickle thing.

Despite how much motivation you had yesterday, today you can't find it no matter how hard you look. You think you have found it, and then it disappears just as quickly.

Sometimes people can give it to you, and sometimes they can take it from you. No matter how hard you try, you can't produce it on demand, and when you finally do get it you may find that you no longer have a need for it.

If you think that motivation is something that will just stay with you forever, you'll soon discover that's not the case. However, when you allow yourself to admit that motivation is a feeling, and that it will pass, you'll find that it is much easier to coax it back when you need it.

Take love for example. Let's say that you fall head head over heels in love with someone, and that you just know that they’re The One because you like them so much.

But what happens when, a few months later, you calm down and realize that they are just another person with faults? That might be the end of the relationship.

Successful relationships are ones in which both partners know that their feelings change with their moods, and with the day.

Everyone knows how hard it can be to win a battle with your mood. You may find yourself committing to a diet—right after you finish the cake on your plate. Or deciding to devote yourself to studying something new, but the TV is just too interesting so you decide to start tomorrow. Your declarations and commitments will never put up much of a fight to the temptations right in front of you.

But your life is just a collection of moments. If these little moments don't go the way you would like them to, your life will never move in the direction you want. As these moments build up, you may start to feel as if no matter how hard you try, your life just isn't going the way you want it to. You may start to feel helplessly out of control. But here's the

thing—everyone is like that. When something good happens, motivation appears. When something bad happens it disappears back to where it came from. Motivation appears and disappears in response to events external to you. If you don't think of something to retain it, and make steps to jump and gain some control over it, motivation will sway in the breeze, unchecked and unprotected.

But you probably know some people who are always full of energy and are always succeeding at everything they try. These people don't let their motivation sway in those external breezes, rather they know how to jump in and bend it to their intention. They know how to control it.

I intend to introduce you to their methods.

Let's start with an easy one.


one's conception of oneself or of one's role

—Merriam-Webster Dictionary

You decide what kind of person you are. Have you ever thought, I'm not that kind of person, That's not like me, or I could never get away with that? When did you decide what type of person you are?


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Ce que les gens pensent de Shift

22 évaluations / 10 Avis
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Avis des lecteurs

  • (3/5)
    Simple, simple, simple. Perhaps too simple. Yamazaki's short and easy to follow book is nothing new to anyone familiar with visualization as a self-motivation/preparation tool. Nothing he says will surprise and the book lacks any real resources for such a person. However, if you are new to visualization then this is a pretty good starting point.
  • (4/5)
    I found this book to be very accessible with plenty of practical application. Filled with techniques, exercise and examples, it could inspire someone who is ready to get unstuck, to take action. Many of the exercises are great prompts for journaling. In fact, I keep the book handy for just that purpose.
  • (3/5)
    Life coaching in a book.The book is built around 13 exercises (called 'shifts') that begin by uncovering unconscious beliefs and habits that may be keeping you from fulfilling your goals. You then decide whether they are working for you or against you and finally you focus on clarifying your goals and what you wish to accomplish. Once you are clear on your goals you are then presented with 17 techniques that will feed into your perseverance in order to motivate you to reach your goal.This book is not your typical touchie-feelie self help book. Streamlined and concise, it is a fast paced read; one that would especially appeal to those who normally would find this type of book tedious. The exercises are set up so they can be used either individually of in a group setting making their application especially useful in a business, management or training setting. Others that might find this book useful would be coaches, athletes and financial traders especially in the perseverance aspect. Adequately done although a little on the sparse side for me.
  • (4/5)
    This is a fascinating, slight volume that is easily readable in one sitting. But, do note that you'll want to have pen and paper nearby as they book contains various exercises that warrant some scratch paper. If you're looking to re-frame your thinking, but you feel that self-help or coaching books are too 'woo-woo' for you, you likely will enjoy this book.
  • (2/5)
    Takumi Yamazaki is a popular Japanese motivational speaker with a relentlessly positive attitude. What you think, you will become. If only it was so easy! The 13 exercises in this book require more than a little motivation to complete, I'm afraid. Each is amied at a shift in perspective intended to help the reader become a more proactive person. Fortunately, the book also contains 17 techniques for perseverence. Yamazaki's perspective on what it takes to change is informed by neuroscience, psychology and an Eastern perspective on wholeness. It is written in brief, to-the-point sections with simple line drawings to illustrate central points. While some of the concepts it teaches are complex, each is presented in a straightforward, intuitive style. There is always the question of whether one can use a book as a tool to change oneself. My answer is probably. Where motivation is strong, almost anything can provoke change--a mountaintop retreat, a symphony, a poem, or a self-help book. The key is to pay attention, to focus on how you respond to the world and what the world is telling you in return. Every self-help book worth its ink prompts readers to pay attention. Yamazaki's exercises direct the attention to noticing the difference between who you are and who you would like to be. There is a lot of list-making involved: things that make you happy; things of which you are proud; what you would accomplish if you knew you could succeed; and so on. One of my favorite exercises suggests you write down something you weren't able to do recently; then you are instructed to rewrite it to say that you didn't want to do it and chose not to. Try it. As a workaholic who often makes excuses missing rituals of family life (like dinner), rephrasing my excuses was personally enlightening. If only I would work through all the exercises in the book, no doubt I would be a better person.My advice would be to read this book with a group of self-help minded friends hell bent on self-improvement. Alternatively, it would be a fertile source of personal journal prompts for a weekly writing exercise.
  • (1/5)
    Where I got the book: won from LibraryThing as an Early Reviewers giveaway.As I worked my way through Shift, I kept wondering if Takumi Yamazaki had read The Secret. There are some definite echoes of The Secret in this small tome, Yamazaki's debut in the Western self-help industry (he is, apparently, "a best selling author in Japan").Or maybe he hasn't read The Secret. Maybe this style of self-help philosophy is just in the zeitgeist, a result of a generation that has been told, and told, and told that its wishes can come true.The premise of Shift is that you can, by the power of thought, shift yourself up to where you want to be. Get that promotion, that house, that car (isn't it funny how these books are so often about getting money, as if money really solves problems?) You are impeded from reaching your potential by homeostasis (the idea that things find their own level, i.e. we are all much more comfortable in our comfort zone) and scotoma, which is a blind spot or mental block.Shift is punctuated by little exercises, to be done alone or in groups, mostly in the form of writing down your goals and telling them to other people. It is a 200-page book, but contains an enormous amount of white space because it needs to pad out quite a small amount of writing into an acceptable format for publishing. To this end, it also contains a whole lot of little drawings featuring the guy usually seen symbolizing "Men" on a restroom door. Restroom Man gambols through the book supposedly illustrating the Deep Thoughts contained therein, but I frequently found it hard to make the text square up with the drawings.All this could be a problem of translation; I get the impression that the text was translated fairly closely from the Japanese, instead of being rewritten with a Western audience in mind. In editing non-English speakers it's sometimes necessary to insert an extra sentence here and there to show thinking steps that are left out in the original language; I'm no linguist, but what little contact I've had with Chinese has taught me that a lot more meaning can be derived from context than is possible in English speech. Could be that the same is true for Japanese, and this makes Shift a very easy book to read if you don't pay much attention to logical sequence, but frustrating for those of us who like to dot our i's and cross our t's.The fundamental message of Shift, as far as I could make it out, is similar to The Secret: Think positive and all things are possible. You can make things happen. I also spotted some of the same unfortunate advice: For example, if you want to be rich you should live as if you are rich (which is fine until you realize you just blew a month's salary in a day) and you should hang around with the kind of people you want to be (also an expensive proposition if your goal is to be a multi-millionaire).I felt very sad when I read that if a friend comes to you with a problem, the solution is to say "Oh hey, that should be no problem for you!" and then start chatting about something else. Inother words, you shouldn't really listen to problems, because you should be too busy chatting up successful rich people instead. I'll be sure to do that the next time I see a friend who has cancer or whose husband just dropped dead. Yeah.I've said it before: I have nothing against positive thinking, and nothing against people who are willing to work on their attitude to achieve their goals. I think that having goals is a good thing. But becoming the person you were intended to be goes a whole lot deeper than reading books like Shift. I wouldn't recommend it, even for the sake of seeing the Restroom Man drawings.
  • (3/5)
    I thought this was at times an interesting book, but not very motivating. Some of the exercises made you think, but others didn't seem practical. I would have liked more information about the idea behind the exercises. Overall, the book was OK but the author seemed to gloss over the details that could have made this book better.
  • (4/5)
    I found this book to be very practical and basic. There was no detailed list of things to do but rather some simple things to do that, if applied, could change the life of a person. Also, the images and exercises in the book really tied into what Mr. Yamazaki was trying to communicate. Another plus is the chapters in the book are direct and not lengthy. This allows for reflection which is key in a book of this nature. In fact, to truly benefit from this book, I would suggest a journal or notepad to write down thoughts as each page is read. Overall a good book on success and personal development.
  • (3/5)
    This book was a hard one to rate because it left me with very mixed reactions. I really liked the exercises and, despite my occasional skepticism, found them useful. The end result of doing the exercises was a feeling that the book was one that I would recommend. His writing style is clear and concise. However, he very much glosses over the science and thought behind the exercises. Some of it I was familiar with from other reading, but the book would have been far more valuable - or at least more read - with good footnotes or at the least a good bibliography at the end. Also, while I did in fact find the exercises interesting and thought-provoking, some of his recommendations just did not seem practical. For instance, he urges you to act what you want to be, such as flying first class or staying at a top hotel, all of which seems to assume that your only obstacle is your mindset, not your purse.
  • (4/5)
    The book is an extremely quick read. I read it in two sittings, totaling about 3 hours. Yamazaki explains that in order to make your shift, you need to address three areas: your self-image, your mental homeostasis, and scotoma, or a blind spot. A chapter is spent on each one of these admittedly obscure terms, with explanations and shift exercises (for individuals or groups) to help you in your quest. The next sections discuss coming up with a crazy dream that you'd love to achieve, then working towards it, followed by various techniques to help you persevere to your goal.The book is filled with good ideas that make sense. You may need to take some of them with a grain of salt, but you've probably heard a lot of this before. The book is an amalgam of contemporary self-improvement ideas, even discussing his explanation for the Law of Attraction.It's worth reading, and the exercises can be eye-opening if you do them sincerely. But as with all self-improvement books, they can't do anything on their own. It requires time and effort on your part to follow through with the suggestions to create a shift in your own life.