Your Key to a Better Life
Maxwell Maltz
Warm up
Take out a piece of paper. Write down: What sort of person would you like to be in the future? What difficulties are there in front of you? 15 minutes
Key word
self-image Find words or phrases similar in meaning to "self-image" in paragraph
  1. What are the features of one's self-image? Where does such a self-image come from? What is a general attitude towards one's selfimage?
a mental blueprint a picture of oneself one's own conception of the "sort of person I am" a self a conscious gaze at oneself
Features of one's self-image
vague ill-defined not consciously recognizable complete down to the last detail (completely, in every detail) seemingly true unquestionable
Sources of one's self-image
one's past experiences one's successes and failures one's humiliations and triumphs other people's reactions to sb. one's childhood experiences
Attitude towards one's self-image
undoubted blind According to the tone of the author, is our true self-image exactly the same to the one we take for granted? How do you know?
doubtful self-image
Once an idea or a belief about ourselves goes into this picture it becomes "true", as far as we personally are concerned. It is only true to ourselves. Translate the sentence. 对我们自己来说,一旦关于我们自己的某种想法 对我们自己来说, 或信念进入这幅画像,它就成了"真实的" 或信念进入这幅画像,它就成了"真实的". We do not question its validity, but proceed to act upon it just as if it were true. 我们从不怀疑其是否真实可靠,而是依此行事, 我们从不怀疑其是否真实可靠,而是依此行事, 如真的一般. 如真的一般.
What are the two major discoveries concerning self-image? impact changeability
Discovery 1
What do the two cases support in paragraph 4, the "failure type person" and "a victim of injustice"? You will "act like" the sort of person you conceive yourself to be. conceive: imagine; consider conceive of The self-image is a "premise"… a basis; an assumption
Sentence analysis
Because of this our experiences seem to verify, and thereby strengthen our selfimages, and a vicious or a beneficent cycle, as the case may be, is set up. this: the previous sentence verify: prove to be true; confirm a vicious cycle 恶性循环 a beneficent cycle 良性循环 a virtuous cycle
Supporting details
What is the self-image of the schoolboy? What impact does this self-image have on him? What sort of person does the young girl believe herself to be? What proof does she find in her life? Is such "proof" objective and reliable?
Sentence pattern
Because of this objective "proof" it very seldom occurs to a person that his trouble lies in his self-image or his own evaluation of himself. it occurs to sb. that…: one suddenly has an idea or a thought Paraphrase the sentence in English. …a person never realizes there is something wrong with his self-image / the way he looks at himself.
Discovery 2
Changeabilit y
Can people change their wrong self-image? How can they be convinced that their selfimages could be changed? Is it easy to change one's self-image? What is the hardest point?
Sentence analysis
One of the reasons (that) it has seemed so difficult for a person to change his habits, his personality, or his way of life, has been that heretofore nearly all efforts at change have been directed to the circumference of the self, so to speak, rather than to the center. heretofore: up to now; before this time; previously so to speak: if we put it like this 可以说 circumference: 圆周
Sentence understanding
The circumference of the self: external circumstances, for example, some particular habit or character defect, such as "I will be more calm and relaxed in the future." or "This business venture will turn out right for me.", etc. The center of the self: one's self-image People do not work at changing the essential parts of their self-images; instead, they try very hard to change the seemingly relevant issues to their troubles.
What kind of change is needed?
Does "positive thinking" work effectively? What is "positive thinking" compared to? Jesus warned us about the folly of putting a patch of new material upon an old garment, or of putting new wine into old bottles. folly: a stupid act What does the sentence indicate? Incomplete changes do not work at all. People need radical changes of their inappropriate selfimages.
The original lines
Matthew 9:16 and 17 of the New Testament
No man putteth (puts) a piece of new cloth unto an old garment for that which is put in to fill it up taketh (takes) from the garment, and the rent (broken hole) is made worse. Neither do men put new wine into old bottles: else the bottles break, and the wine runneth (runs) out, and the bottles perish: but they put new wine into new bottles, and both were preserved.
Lecky's theory
self-image psychology his interpretation of personality: a system of ideas the center of the system the keystone: self-image, ego ideal, one's conception of oneself
People act on their own ideas from the system with self-image as the center.
Sentence understanding
One of the earliest and most convincing experiments along this line was conducted by the late Prescott Lecky, one of the pioneers in self-image psychology. line: this field of study late: dead; deceased conduct an experiment
On whom did Lecky conduct experiments? Students with learning difficulties. In what way did he help these students? To induce them to change their selfconception / self-definition. How many successful cases are mentioned? And what are they?
The ultimate trouble
They "identified" with their mistakes and failures. identify… with…: associate…with… They associated themselves with their problems. They are the problems. identify with someone eg: He didn't seem to be able to identify with ordinary people.
inadequate self-image
I failed that test. I flunked that subject. Tense!
Focus on the issue in concern as it is. Do not come to a conclusion hastily.
I am a failure. I am a flunk-out.
unclear; not adequately explained; not well marked out vague ill-: badly; inadequately ill-written ill-informed ill-tempered ill-considered
truth or soundness; legal force, being legally binding adj. valid invalid eg: Shocked by the results of the elections, they now want to challenge the validity of the vote. eg: Your return ticket is valid for three months.
conceive concept conception conceivable
conceive sth. / sb. to be conceive of conceive that
other words
synonyms: build, construct, set up verify, prove, bear out fail, flunk
really literally: actually exactly invariably: definitely always



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