Joyce Marter Promotional Video

YouTube video

It is such an honor to be with you today. Seeking therapy is not about being crazy or in crisis; I believe we all need it at different points in our lives. I love being a therapist. It’s a deep and profound honor to help people heal, grow, and develop, living a greater life both personally and professionally. As I’ve worked on myself through therapy, meditation, or yoga, I’ve noticed my life expanding. Never would I have imagined that the girl who was afraid to talk in class would be speaking to you today or would have been the therapist on MTV’s “The Real World,” doing group therapy with the roommates.

I’ve put together this presentation for you called “The Psychology of Success.” It outlines principles that I think we can all apply to our lives to live a greater life. I like to think that we are both the author and the protagonist of our own life story, so we can write the middle and the ending. In life, we’re all dealt a different hand of hardships and blessings, and success is about how we play that hand. We need to become conscious of why we do what we do and give ourselves permission to let go of any self-defeating patterns, as we often repeat what’s familiar to us.

I had a client who was married to an alcoholic who was unwilling to get help. She made the brave decision to leave him after being out of the workforce for ten years with three small children. Despite her worries, she tapped into her strengths and blossomed. A year later, she was earning six figures, bought a house, and looked better than ever. Later, she called me and said, “I need a tune-up. My new boyfriend is just like my ex-husband, except he has an Australian accent.” This illustrates the importance of recognizing and changing our patterns.

I love this quote from Wayne Dyer: “Everything you do is based on the choices you make. It’s not your parents, past relationships, job, economy, weather, an argument, or your age that is to blame. You and only you are responsible for every decision and choice you make.” I told my sister Paula that I love Wayne Dyer’s work. She said he was her driver’s ed teacher, which I doubted. After googling him, I found he indeed was her teacher. He started his career as a school counselor and driver’s ed teacher.

I learned that Dyer’s father abandoned him, his siblings, and their mother, leading him to grow up in orphanages and foster homes. Despite his difficult start, he emphasized taking responsibility for one’s life. I love mindfulness practices because they bring attention to the present moment. Across cultures and history, the breath is seen as tying together the mind, body, and spirit. Focusing on our breath can relax our minds, calm our bodies, and bring awareness to the present.

I had a client who was a businessman dealing with anxiety and difficulty sleeping. After discussing mindfulness with him, he canceled his next session and didn’t return for six weeks. When he did, he shared that my advice got him through a tough time. He had been diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer and initially fell into catastrophic thinking. Remembering my advice, he took it one minute at a time, realizing that in the present moment, he was okay. Four years later, he is in remission and healthy. He left me with a beautiful analogy: life is like a record album. If we worry about the past or future, we scratch up our record and miss the music. The present moment is where we hear our song.

Many of us are constrained by the powers of “FUD” – fear, uncertainty, and doubt. Ask yourself, “What would I do if I weren’t afraid?” My friend Randy once asked me about my book, and when I admitted I was stuck, he suggested I talk to his Buddhist monk. The monk turned out to be a Jewish man in Highland Park who had retired from Accenture to focus on his practice. He told me to “weaken the fiction” I was telling myself in my head to be free. We all have egos, but our true essence lies within, and by detaching from ego, we can find true confidence, which is not competitive but celebratory of both ourselves and others.

The power of meditation and mantras can help tap into that deeper part of ourselves. Saying things like “I am loved” and “I am light” can be powerful. A Cherokee grandfather once told his grandson about a battle between two wolves inside him—one representing evil traits and the other good traits. The grandson asked which wolf would win, and the grandfather replied, “The one that you feed.”

Boundaries are essential for us, especially as women. We need to set firm yet permeable boundaries to feel safe while allowing intimacy and connection. Healthy self-esteem lies between being a diva and a doormat, where you respect yourself and others, and communicate assertively.

Prosperity is more than just money. It’s any kind of resources you want to welcome into your life, such as support, opportunities, or friendship. I’ve become fascinated with the psychology of money. In my practice, I noticed clients started earning more money as their self-esteem improved. Beliefs about money often come from our families of origin and can influence our behavior with money.

I encourage you to think about what money means to you. There’s a direct tie between self-esteem and money. When I started my practice, I aimed to make $60,000 a year, while my friend Steve aimed for $100,000. That year, I made $60,000, and Steve made $100,000. This taught me about setting my own ceiling with self-limiting beliefs. By expanding my thinking, I recently sold Urban Balance for more than I ever imagined.

Practicing gratitude attracts positivity. Look at the good parts of your day, even when things are tough. Sometimes hardships are blessings in disguise. A client of mine found profound gratitude and perspective by doing service work in Haiti.

Today, I’ve shared quotes from many thought leaders I admire. I’d like to leave you with my own quote about success: “Success is to live openly, authentically, and lovingly in alignment with the highest good of self and others to the greatest extent possible.” I wish this for all of you. May your minds be conscious, your hearts open, and your spirits dance with joy.

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