The mastery of self – the notes and quotes

The mastery of self:

  1. Unconditional love vs. conditional love
  2. Goal settings from the place of unconditional love

As human beings, we have wants and desires. When we become too attached to those desires and wants and they aren’t fulfilled, the result is that we suffer.

Attachment is the action of taking something that is not a part of you and making it a part of you through emotional or energetic investment. The key to realize here is that attachment is not a part of you but you make it so. This also means you can make it not so.

Domestication is the system of control. It’s the way we learn conditional love. An example of domestication: my kid got a bad grade from school. He showed it to me. Coming from conditional love, I would scold him for getting a bad grade. I would tell him that it’s very bad to get a bad grade and that he’s a very bad kid for not doing well in school. He would see my temper and learn that in order to be good, he must get a good grade. The moment he realized that, he’s domesticated. He would do anything to get good grades in order to be a good boy and gain my love. I successfully control him by putting a system of good grades equalling good boy.

When we become so domesticated by or attached to a belief or idea that we can’t let go of it, our choices narrow until any notion of choices is really an illusion. Our beliefs now define us and will dictate our choice. We are no longer the master of our own self.

We can choose to let go in order to be in control. This is real control. Doing so is the mastery of self in action.

“Humans are the only animals on the planet that self-domesticate.”

Self-domestication is the act of accepting ourselves on the condition that we live up to the ideals we have adopted from others without ever considering if those ideals are what we truly want. In other words, we live the life of someone else without even being aware of it. It’s absolutely ok to live up to the ideals we adopt from others as long as we are aware of it and fully choose to do so. The point is the we make a conscious choice.

Attachment does not always come from domestication, but domestication left unchecked always lead to attachment.

The cure for domestication and attachment is unconditional love.

Conditional love only allows us to see what we want to see and domesticates anyone who doesn’t fit our projected image. The keyword of conditional love is “if”. “If you do this, I will give you my love.”

Unconditional love allows us to see other as they truly are: beautiful expression of their greatness.

The mastery of self sees all beings through the eye of unconditional love.

At its core, domestication is a system of control and conditional love is its primary tool.

The key to transform ourselves is to bring unconditional love to all of ourselves, including our fear, enemy….

If we see the world through the eyes of conditional love, we are by definition attempting to control others, imposing our wills so that they conform to the definition of who and what we think they should be. If they don’t agree to our demands, they will receive the punishment of our judgement. However, we are merely punishing them for not following the agreement they never made.

When we see another with the eyes of unconditional love, we are then able to clearly see who is actually in front of us, a living being who is trying to survive and thrive in a world filled with domestication and conditional love. Unconditional love allows us to disagree with the choices or beliefs of others while still respecting their right to have them.

Coming from the place of unconditional love rather than conditional love may still involve doing or saying something that others don’t like; but speaking our truth from a place of love and respect is the mastery of self in action.

When we come from the place of unconditional love, we can have the confidence that whatever action we take is the right one and the outcome of any situation is beyond our control. We can be responsible for what we say but we can not be responsible for what others hear.

The following are direct quotes from the Mastery of Self:


“Not approaching someone you would like to meet or not applying for a position you aspire to have is not the same as when our body acts instinctually, as the former are learned behaviors, rooted in past domestication of “not being good enough.” If left unchecked, attachment to this idea will control you to the point that any choice you think you have is an illusion. A Master of Self cultivates the practice of awareness, and in so doing is conscious of the choices he or she makes so that they are reflective of his or her Authentic Self.”

“Only when we have cultivated the practice of awareness can we know if we are making choices based on what we really want, or if we are making choices based on our domestication and attachments.”

“Choosing the opposite for the sake of the opposite is often dictated by fear, and any choice that is dictated by fear is not a free choice, no matter how well intentioned it may be.”

“The simple act of pausing before making a decision or taking an action, thinking about what you really want in a situation versus what may be an automatic choice, is the first step in breaking the cycle of the automatic.”

“What do I really want right now? ”

“First, by becoming conscious of all the little choices you have throughout the day and by taking a path that is contrary to your usual choice, you will train your mind to observe what is happening in the present moment, rather than wander about as it usually does when it deems a choice is “unimportant.”

“Second, by making different choices with the little things (some of which you may end up preferring over your normal choice), you prepare yourself to answer the question, What do I really want now? when the larger choices arise”

“Third, by making different choices with the little things in your life and discovering the variety of possibilities, you step into the unknown, or the only place where true transformation can occur.”

“The part of the Mastery of Self is being able to detach from any identity you have acquired”

“As a Master of Self you recognize this, and it allows you to respect the projection of others, especially when doing so is helpful. This is shape-shifting.”

“A shape-shifter is formless because life is formless. Mind you, knowledge creates and gives us form; thus, a mask gives us form in the perception of another.”

“Seeing others through the eyes of unconditional love allows you to make the best decision in the moment as to whether or not to wear a mask, or to shape-shift in their perception. The most important thing is that you be aware when someone is projecting a mask onto you, because then you can make a conscious choice as to what action you will take in each situation.”

“The world around us is virtual; it is all a dream. And in my family’s Toltec tradition, we absolutely insist on creating enjoyable experiences in the Dream. In other words, we like to have fun!”

“That is the trap that the Master of Self avoids, and the way to do so is by loving yourself unconditionally, seeing that you are already perfect in this moment and there is no goal you need to obtain to be worthy of your own love.”

“As a Master of Self, the way out is to remind yourself that you are perfect in this moment and you don’t need to do or achieve anything in order to be complete. ”

“As a Master of Self your priority is to love yourself unconditionally throughout the process of working toward any goal you have set for yourself.”

“Setting goals from a place of unconditional self-love”

“The first step is to remind yourself that this is something you want to do”

“A wonderful benefit of setting goals this way is that when you have unconditional self-love throughout the process, you’ll find that a natural self-confidence grows within you as you move along the path toward your goal’s achievement”

“When you use unconditional self-love as the starting point when setting any goal, you remain aware that perfection is not tied to the end result, but rather the reality of the present moment.”

“You were perfect at the onset and you are perfect now; you are perfect throughout. You are aware the entire time that the end result won’t define you.”

“A Master of Self knows that life will always provide exactly what is needed in the moment.”

“When you live your life from a mindset of trust rather than a place of fear, the result is that you stop trying to force or control the people and situations that are happening around you and instead surrender to whatever life brings.”

“In this case, you can begin to compare yourself to your role model, and use their positive example as a tool to chide or whip yourself for not being more like them. You create conditions on your self-love based on a desire to be like someone else.”

“Another trap related to role models occurs when you mistakenly believe that a single role model or teacher has all of your answers. ”

From: don Miguel Ruiz. “The Mastery of Self

PS: if this article inspires you, don’t wait. Take action immediately. If you want to have a powerful coaching conversation, contact me by sending me an email to

The biggest mistake you might make: assign power, influence, authority to someone with a title

Engineer 1 visits the headquarter office and meets a VP at the elevator. The engineer doesn’t know that this is a VP.

Engineer in a very peaceful and pleasant voice: “Hi, how are you? My name is X. I am visiting from another office. This is my first time here. You must be very lucky to work in this nice office.”

VP: “Thank you. Yes, it’s a nice office. What team are you in?”

Engineer: “I am on team Y.”

VP: “It is a great team. You guys are working on some cool project.”

The elevator comes to a stop and they wish each other well.

Later on, when the engineer find out that he talked to a VP, he hopes that he didn’t say anything stupid.

At the end of the day, the engineer takes the elevator to go home and meets the VP again.

Knowing that he’s in the same elevator with a VP, the engineer becomes very uncomfortable. The VP is friendly like he was in the morning and is glad to see his new friend again. Fear grows inside the engineer. He’s intimidated. He just says “Hi” and couldn’t open his mouth anymore.

It’s the same person this engineer meets in two different circumstances. The engineer lets the title and formal position intimidate him. He’s no longer free like he was in the morning.

This is a common mistake people in workplace make. They assign power and authority to someone’s title. They let titles control how they talk to someone.

A title doesn’t make someone a leader. A position doesn’t make someone a leader. What make someone a leader is influence. Influence is earned. Don’t assign power, influence, authority to someone with a title. More importantly, treat everyone you meet like a human being.

Only genius can… if you want to, you can

An engineer comes to a coach with a burning quest: “coach, I really want to get promoted but I don’t know how. I have been working in the same position for too long.”

The coach: “How strong is your want-to?”

Engineer: “Very strong, coach. I have seen my colleagues getting promoted and I have done much more than they did.”

The coach: “What’s stopping you?”

Engineer: “I can’t think of anything. Other people got promoted so I don’t think anyone could stop me. Hmm… it might be me who’s stopping myself.”

The coach: “Tell me more.”

Engineer: “[thinking deep]…I do what my boss tells me to do. Sometimes I wanted to go extra miles but there’s always been something got in my way and I allowed it to take me away from going extra miles.”

The coach: “That’s a great insight. What’s next?”

Engineer: “I realize now that my want-to is not strong enough. If my want-to is strong, I would not allow myself to be distracted from my goal. I do know how to get promoted as I have seen how others got promoted. I will work on my want-to.”

The engineer works together with the coach on his want-to and his goal. A few months later, the engineer gets promoted for the outstanding job he’s done. With his insight on want-to vs. how-to, he gets himself different positions, each one is better than the previous one.

If you really want to, you will know how to.

#thesamuraicoach, #lifeisgood#letsgethonest, #letsbehonest

How to raise your self-esteem without paying $1 million and without having $1 billion? The answer will blow your mind.

The two Most Destructive Fears in our life: Fear of Rejection and Fear of Failure.

We learned the following negative habit patterns often from people who are closest to us, which in many case are our parents:

1️⃣ Destructive criticism such as “Dont”, “Stop that”, “Get Away”, …

When children first learned how to walk, parents often shout out “Don’t run or you will fall.” When children first climb high, parents again scream “Don’t climb too high or you will hurt yourself.”

Those destructive criticisms were used to control us. However, those destructive criticisms develop the feeling of “I can’t” and the fear of failure.

2️⃣ Compulsive negative habit pattern was developed when children receive “conditional love”.

Conditional love is such as parents only love their kids when they get good grades or when they behave.

Children respond with: “I have to” please other people. Children who are victims of conditional love grow up being hyper-sensitive to opinions of other people. They can’t do anything without asking other people. They always have to ask others for approval. The compulsive negative habit pattern creates the fear of rejection.

If you suffer from any or both of these fears often, you most likely have low self-esteem.

How to raise your self-esteem?

There are many different methods. One simple method is to repeat “I like myself.”

It works like magic that when you can like yourself, your self-esteem increases and your fears will diminish automatically.

Below is the summary of my own 30-day challenge to raise self-esteem for the group of leaders.


In the next 30 days, I challenge you to say to yourself 10 times “I Like Myself” and post your daily status “I Like Myself” on the group. All it takes is that you will stand in front the mirror, look at yourself, say out loud “I like my self” 10 times, and post a quick status for 30 days in a row.

In 30 days, you will raise your self-esteem. You will love yourself more. As the saying goes, you can’t love others if you don’t love yourself. The more you love yourself, the more you will believe in yourself, the stronger leader you will be.

If you accept the challenge, please post below the first status “I Like Myself”.



I like myself.

After 10 times repeating ‘I like myself’, a strong positive energy flew inside my body. What a great feeling! Enjoy your day!


I Like Myself

My experience again after repeating this sentence 10 times is the strong positive energy flowing through my body, helping me regain my confidence and bringing me back to the state of happiness.

What’s your experience?


I like myself.

Another amazing day with positive flow of energy coming from “I like myself”.


Thoreau: “Most men (and women) lead lives of quiet desperation.”

I certainly lead my life with positive energy and actions.

And it starts with:

I like myself


I Like Myself

As my friend Shark Huang said about this challenge, it feels gooooood. A great feeling of positive energy!

If you haven’t done so, repeat ‘I Like Myself’ loud and clear. You can’t like/love anyone else unless you like yourself.



I like myself.


I like myself.


I like myself.


I like myself.

I like you.


I like myself.

Decision vs. choice

I made a choice to like myself in order to like others. I made a choice to value myself in order to value others. I made a choice to connect with myself in order to connect with others.


I like myself



I like myself

It’s unreasonable to like yourself, most people would say so. To them, they must like others and forget about themselves. However, being reasonable is unreasonable as they can’t value others unless they value themselves. Liking yourself is the path way to like others.

#bebold, #beunreasonable


I like myself.

It’s easy to like myself when I am winning. However, the time that I need to like myself the most is when I encounter difficulty, when I am low, when I fail, when the world turns its back on me. The same is for people I love. They need my love the most when they fail.

Love yourself, my friends! Be with the group. Join the challenge. Participate in the discussion. Show your love. As that’s the true way to love yourself.


I like myself.


I like myself.

When I say I like myself, I really like myself and it’s just so. It also takes me to “I love myself”.

Love is the most powerful force and makes one a great leader.

Loving oneself is extremely difficult.
As once you can love yourself authentically, you become the master of your own body, mind, spirit.
You love your own body, every part of it.
You love your own mind, every thoughts in it.
You love your own spirit, everything comes to you from the universe.
You love what it is. You accept the reality as it is.

Once you can love yourself for who you are, you can love others for who they are.

Once you can love others for who they are, you can lead them and add value to them.


I like myself.

I will keep asking because I like myself.

There’s no magic. Even Bill Gates had to knock on 1200 doors and only 11 said yes.

Ask and you shall receive. Ask more and you shall receive. Keep asking and you shall receive.

If you think you are too old to ask, read this article:


I like myself.


I like myself.

A great leadership lesson from old people who do great things.

Since I like myself, it’s never too late to pursue my dream. And it starts NOW, the moment I get the idea of the dream. If you like yourself, start NOW. Read this article if you ever think you are too old to do anything:


I like myself.

It’s selfish to like yourself. That’s what most people would tell you. Well, we are not like most people. We are not even trying to be like most people. We are not even attempting to get people to like us. We are leaders. Leaders being in front will get all criticism first. As leaders see further and go further than the rest, doing things people don’t see nor understand would surely cause people to criticize us. The only way for us to be persistent to keep on keeping on is to like ourselves and believe in our mission.
Like yourself. Love yourself. Liberate yourself from looking good. Free yourself from all the opinions of others. Be the leader.


I like myself

If you really really like yourself, take at least 20 minutes a day to think. Yes, 20 minutes to just think about your goal and how to move closer to your goal day by day. Here’s the method:…/30/20-minutes-that-can-change-your-l…/


I like myself.

Because I like myself, I refuse to be a victim. Because I like my people, I refuse to let them be victims. This is real leadership.

Read more to understand the context of this post at:…/21/why-a-bad-job-is-worse-than-no-job/


I like myself.


I like myself.

On a coaching call with a leader (let’s call him Werner), he wanted to forgive his boss but he couldn’t. Even the thought of forgiving the boss caused him headaches. He had too much of resentment toward his boss because the boss did something damaging to his life (according to the story he told me). Our previous calls helped him not paying attention to any thought about the boss. However, whenever something happened to his life recalling the damage his boss did to him, he felt anger and resentment to his boss.
In other words, he was fine when things were normal. When he felt positive, he had the power to set his boss aside. When he was down, the only thing coming to his mind was the thought of his boss and his anger.
Doing this ‘I like myself’ challenge taught me that the time I need to like myself the most is the time I am down and there’s nothing I could think of liking myself. In other words, I need myself the most when I am down.
Our coaching centered around this that Werner should love himself and the time he should forgive his boss the most is the time when he’s down. I could feel Werner’s calmness and peace of mind once he grasped the concept and put it into practice with his own situation. He went from feeling down to being upbeat and being happy to carry on with his present tasks.


I like myself

Since I like myself, I choose a career that I work with people I admire and respect. I choose a career that I sell to others what I would buy myself.

Three rules for a career:

1) Don’t sell anything you wouldn’t buy yourself.

2) Don’t work for anyone you don’t respect and admire.

3) Work only with people you admire.

CharlieMunger quote 1


I like myself.

This takes real leadership.

The best thing a human being can do is to help another human being know more – Charlie Munger

CharlieMunger quote 8


I like myself.

Enjoy this great quote, my friends.

“Until you know who you are is empty and meaningless, you don’t know anything.” – Werner Erhard

Werner Erhard quote 1.jpg


I like myself.


I like myself.

As Mark Zuckerberg is celebrating his new born August, enjoy this quote.



I like myself.


I like myself.

you can turn off the ☼ sun ☼ but i’m still gonna ☆.:*´¨`*shine*´¨`*:.☆

Smile and shine, my friends.

Congratulations to Marloes Hagels and Torrey Umland for going all out with the “I like myself” challenge! You guys are really awesome.

This 30-day challenge is one of few challenges that the group “Being a Leader” conducts. If you would like to develop your leadership, check the group out.

#thesamuraicoach, #bebold, #beunreasonable, #leadership, #self-esteem, #lifeisgood