to be Positive
"I'm an entertainer — and I'm a salesman." Posner says. "I have a few ideas that I enjoy selling. One of them is after you have thoughtfully set goals that are important to you, you must focus on — that is, remind yourself of — the goal every day. That would be daily. Did I mention ... every day?
"Most people don't create their dreams because they forget what their dreams are. Without the daily focus, they get lost."
the Posner Group, offers, according to his card, "motivational programs
to empower individuals and businesses." He gives talks and workshops
for corporate clients, all kinds of groups and organizations, and is a
regular speaker at Canyon Ranch in Lenox.
But he did not always
have his current sunny outlook. During a recent interview at Chocolate
Springs in Lenox, Posner shared his story.
The turning point in Posner's life came the night before his 23rd birthday — June 29, 1976. He was assaulted and badly beaten, a victim of mistaken identity. Posner thought he was going to die, but he heard a voice in his head. The voice said, "Stay calm. Everything will be all right." His assailants left, and Posner did not die. As far as the origin of the voice, "I'm not speculating as to exactly what happened," he says.
"After this happened," Posner says, "for two weeks I was grateful for everything. Then I started going back to my old self. But I liked the optimistic world view. An optimistic world view allows for more happiness and productivity. So I began my search for the information or methods that people use to be more positive."
Posner went to California for 11 years, where he investigated gurus, ashrams and checked into some "human potential movements." He ended up as program director for an all-comedy radio station, and did some stand-up as well. But when the station changed its format to all-Spanish, Posner was laid off.
"I ended up hiring and training salespeople to sell products in military base exchanges. I traveled all over the country — it was like a vision quest, hiring and motivating and teaching people to be positive."
In 1989 Posner moved back to the East Coast with plans to publish a magazine about being positive. "I wanted to teach people to be more positive," Posner says, "because I wanted to learn to be positive." He settled in Berkshire County, staying at the summer home of some friends.
The magazine, The Positive Times, was published quarterly from 1990 through 1995, though it was not profitable.It was during this time that Posner began to develop and promote his workshops and seminars.Posner got his lucky break the day he got a call from Canyon Ranch, inviting him to present his program for the guests. The first talk he gave at Canyon Ranch was called, "Your Brain is a Computer: It's Time for a System Upgrade," in 1994. Since that first talk, he has presented his lectures about 600 times at Canyon Ranch. Sometimes he offers workshops as well as lectures — the most popular is "Ways to Create Miracles in Your Life."
Posner's book, "Attention Late Bloomers," reflects the content of his Canyon Ranch talks. Although the tone of the book is humorous, Posner is serious about the techniques he shares.
"The most violent, darkest thing I ever experienced was the impetus to learn practical optimism and mood management techniques. It's not Pollyanna, pie-in-the-sky optimism. It's practical. If it's not practical, I'm not interested. I'm interested in things that work.
"I talk about these techniques to increase the likelihood of success. There are no guarantees."
Posner says his list of inspirations is extremely varied and eclectic, from "classical works by Norman Vincent Peale and Dale Carnegie to the incredible, focused work ethic of the late Frank Zappa. I find inspiration everywhere — cancer survivors, marathon runners, entrepreneurs, artists and musicians — people who do the seemingly impossible. Most all of them have specific goals and most of them remember them every day — that would be daily.
"I'm big on affirmations.
They remind you. Repeated work with affirmations exercises the subconscious
areas of the mind to help you make choices that result in the manifestation
of that statement — whether a change of habit or change of job or
change of perception."
"If I affirm, 'I am 6 feet tall,' the affirmation may not make me grow 5 and a half inches, but perhaps I will find ways to feel 6 feet tall," Posner says. "Affirmations help you change your perspective, your point of view."
"Attention Late Blomers: You're Right On Time" is Posner's first book. He wrote it, in part, because since he started his career as a speaker and trainer, he says, people have asked him if he has a book. The book is available at Canyon Ranch in Lenox, the Bookloft in Great Barrington, the Red Lion Inn gift shop in Stockbridge, the Purple Plume in Lenox and Bellissimo Dolce in Pittsfield, as well as at www.amazon.com.
"I'm hoping a major publisher will be interested," Posner says. "I'm working on a second book already, called 'Love Changes Everything.' It's the second volume in the 'Late Bloomers' trilogy."
"I think it's a wonderful book — if I didn't, I wouldn't put it out there. So far, the response has been very good."
Posner thinks the timing of his new publication is excellent. "It's a new year," he says. "What do we want to be different? What do we want to improve?
"I'm a motivational entertainer," Posner says. "Not a psychologist, not a doctor. Just a regular guy who really likes to talk about these things."
New Year's resolutions
To make 2007 my best
year yet ... I RESOLVE TO:
to increase the likelihood of your resolutions coming to pass:
P.O. Box 627 Sheffield, MA 01257• 413.441.6361 • 2005-2014©Copyright, Jerry Posner. All Rights Reserved.