3 of the Most Important Things I’ve Learned Since Starting Modest Dragon


It’s been nearly 6 months since the start of Modest Dragon. Two years ago I never thought it would be possible or I would have the drive, will, and guts to start something in this manner that left me open to the world.


A blog is more like a journal. It’s a collection of thoughts, ideas, opinions, knowledge and experiences all grouped up into one bundle. Starting a website and sharing my thoughts and knowledge with the world has not been easy, but it’s damn sure been worth it.


The amount of things I have learned about life, myself and other people from the time I started this website till now have been worth every second.


There are many great lessons I’ve have come to learn since the start of Modest Dragon, I want to explain the top 3 lessons I believe will be of the most value to you. Here are my 3 most important things I’ve learned since starting Modest Dragon.


1) You Have to Open Up





“You are confined only by the walls you build yourself.”


The most daunting thing to me about writing a blog was the aspect of vulnerability. I mean vulnerability in the sense of letting people into my mind and heart regardless of their opinions and reactions towards my views (luckily everyone has been nice about it so far!)

I guess that was a so-called fear or limitation of mine since I can remember. To understand how I got into this way of thinking, I have to take you back in time to when I was younger.


The 20 Pence Thief


The city I have grown up in is a very interesting (to say the least) place. My city is one of the most multi-cultural cities in the UK and because of this it’s sectioned off into different areas where it’s a matter of ‘each to his own.’


I grew up in circles where it wasn’t normal to be open. If you were open you were weak, and being weak made you an easy target.


As a child, I would constantly be in a situation where my friends would be getting mugged in the streets. My earliest recollection of this was when I myself, got robbed at the age of 8, for 20 pence (no bullshit).


I remember walking to the shop down the road with my cousin to get some penny sweets (this was in the days when penny sweets actually cost a penny!)


After buying about 30 pence worth of the little sour coca-cola bottle sweets (remember them? 🙂 ) we headed back towards my house.


As we turned the corner of the street next to my road, we were startled by a man sitting on his bike in the middle of the pavement.


The man was around 20- 25 years old and he was wearing a grey hooded jacket. His hood covered his head, down his face to just over his eyes. All we could see of his face was his mouth.


He had his head tilted slightly back and looked downwards at us; peeping through the gap between his hood and his face.


“How much money have you got?!” he said in a low and deep tone of voice.

Stuttering I replied “errm none.”

“Don’t lie to me!” he replied.


Jumping off his bike in a pissed off manner, he grabbed the handle bars of the cycle and rested it against the side wall. He walked over to me and put his hands in my pockets.


After scavenging around like a hungry vulture, he pulled out the last 20 pence I had (which I was saving to get me a packet of cherry drops, bastard!) and then he said,


 “That will do.”


He jumped back on his bike and rode off down the street. That was my first experience of these mass street robberies that I experienced as a kid.


This continued to be a regular sight as a young boy.


By the time I was in my early teens I had changed. As a misguided youth, I associated with, and became what you could call a hoodlum. I had a chip on my shoulder and I was pissed off at everything and everyone.


Drinking, fighting, and regular police interactions became a normal way of life. My friends and I would look up to characters in movies like ‘Scarface’ and ‘The God Father’ so I bet you can guess what type of circles I was in.


As sad as it seems now when I think back, it is still the same with the kids of today where I live. Most of their parents are working class, honest and hard laboring individuals. Yet the problem still remains the same.


There were many ups and downs during those times and as a result, I closed off to the people around me. I built a barrier around me where it would be very hard for an individual to judge, understand or get to know me.


People never knew the real me, all they knew was the person I had built and forced myself to become through experience.


As I grew older my lifestyle changed, but the mindset of closing off from the world didn’t.


Stepping Out of the Comfort Zone




Then I started Modest Dragon. I took a chance of doing something that for so many years I had conditioned myself not to do. I decided to get out of my comfort zone.


And what happened? The world around me started to change as I did. As I opened up, I learned more about myself and my abilities.


Idea’s, experiences and people entered my life that never would have previously. A lot more opportunities started to arise for me.


Don’t ever be afraid to speak your mind, as long as it doesn’t hurt others. Express yourself and don’t build barriers. When you’re open and honest regardless of what people may think of you, you tend to resonate with people more.


People will trust you more because you’re ‘laying your cards on the table’ and you will find this effect rubbing off on others.


Building character is an aspect of life many people ignore. They become ordinary and like the mass majority. They develop a sort of dull, low-key existence and do you know why? because they think it’s SAFE.



“Knowledge will give you power, but character respect.” Bruce Lee.


You see, building barriers may keep all the unwanted bad out, but on the same token, it also blocks the good from coming in. This good that you block out comes in the form of opportunities, experiences, and people.


Building a barrier in fear of what people may think will impact your character. When you put up a barrier for protection; you also build a mediocre, dull and normal character. This will keep you living in the shadows of a dull and ordinary existence.


“Always be yourself, express yourself and have faith in yourself. Do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it.” Bruce Lee.


2) Thinking Positive and Learn to Think Correctly



“You can’t solve problems using the same kind of thinking you used when you created them.” Albert Einstein.


Changing your thinking will be the best thing you have ever done for yourself. It has been by far my most significant personal achievement. Changing the way you think is not easy.


Thinking positively after years of negative thinking is a very difficult task. However, when you persist in thinking positively it will undoubtedly become a part of you.


Most of us have built up limitations of what we can and can’t do from the people in our environment like friends, family, and teachers. Some of our thinking is hereditary and passed down from generation to generation.


However, this can be changed with persistent action towards the required result. There is a well known universal law that states, ‘Like Attracts Like’ and when you think negatively, you are only attracting negative experiences and people into your own life.


Doing things and thinking in a positive manner draws the attention of others towards you. Naturally, people will want to be around a positive and happy person. A negative person in the workplace is treated like a wasp, no one wants them around!


No one wants to be around a grouchy pessimist.


Pessimism; “a state of mind in which one anticipates undesirable outcomes or believes that the evil or hardships in life outweigh the good or luxuries.”


Being positive involves always trying to see the good from a situation and to make the best of it. It’s having the faith in yourself and your abilities to get things done. Not only will this get you a lot further in your goals and your life, but it will also build unconquerable confidence. Thinking in a positive manner brings you inner happiness and peace.


Keeping poise when times are hard is a trait of many great men and women. They accomplished this by perfecting the mindset of positive thinking. Positivity is something I always try to employ and many things have changed in my life because of it. A life that you WANT to have can only be built upon a foundation of positivity.


The parable of the wise man and foolish man who built houses comes to mind.




The foolish man decided to build his house on the sandy soil where it was easy to access and easy to dig the foundations. In a few short weeks, he was almost finished.

The second man was wise and chose to build his house on a rocky hill, where it was very hard to access and to dig the foundation. He spent many months building his house.

As time passed a huge storm broke upon the houses of these men. After much rain, a flood swept through the valley and the man’s house that was built on the sand was swept away.

However, the second man who had built on the rocky hill was safe. No matter how hard it rained or how fierce the floods were his house remained solid and immovable.


Building on a foundation of negativity is no better than the foolish man that built his house upon the sand.


Thinking correctly and in a positive manner attracts positive circumstances into your life. It leads to new opportunities that would never usually cross your path, and to meeting people you would never usually meet.


You will start to have experiences that you wouldn’t usually have and you will start to learn and do things you never usually would do.


I’m hammering the word USUAL home for a reason. If you want to make a change from the USUAL then you need to think in ways that are UNUSUAL to you.


It’s a pretty simple concept, so simple in fact that most people miss it.


I know this because I did for many years. For example, If you’re fed up with your weight, then you would need to eat foods you wouldn’t usually eat and change the way you usually workout.


To do this you need to change what you have been doing that got you there in the first place. And what has got you there in the first place is a result of your common thinking on the matter at hand.


To change anything physical, it first has to change in your mind. You have to work on your mind more than you work on ANYTHING else.


There is but one thing that is the catalyst to ALL change, without it change will not happen and with it change will come quicker than you could imagine. And do you know what it is? It’s a change of mindset aka thinking.


“If you change your mindset the rest of your life will fall into place”. Lou-Tzu.


Signs have been left along the way from people who have mastered this concept of positive thinking and have gotten all they wanted.


I used to listen to a lot of rap music, (not so much these days) but recently I noticed a line from a track on the radio that grabbed my attention; I never noticed it before. It was from ‘Juicy’ by Notorious BIG. He said,


 ‘Damn right I like the life I live because I went from negative to positive and it’s all good.’


That is a line representing a change of life by the use of thinking correctly. There are hundreds of clues to thinking positive that successful people have left throughout history.


They have been left by people who have turned their lives around by thinking correctly. Keep your attention on this fact and you will notice the clues everywhere.


3) See Your End Results in Your Imagination First




“My method is different. I do not rush into actual work. When I get a new idea, I start at once building it up in my imagination, and make improvements and operate the device in my mind. When I have gone so far as to embody everything in my invention, every possible improvement I can think of, and when I see no fault anywhere, I put into concrete form from the final product of my brain.” Nikola Tesla.


To my surprise, I have become a reader (due to a change in my thinking, that all books were boring and for geeks). In particular, books on the “New Thought Movement” grab my attention.


The New thought Movement was developed in the early 19th century and it concerns the subjects of metaphysics, positive thinking, the law of attraction, healing, creative visualization, and personal power.


I enjoy reading the works of William Walker Atkinson, Wallace Wattles, Ralph Waldo Emerson and James Allen to name a few.


I have come to understand that our lives are a result of the way we think and our dominant thoughts held in our imagination become our reality.


The reason I have been drawn to the New Thought Movement books is because of the many uncanny experiences I have witnessed in my own life due to some of the principles explained in them; in particular creative visualization.


Here’s one small example.


I once became hooked on carved, wooden walking sticks (I know, I have strange tendencies, what can I say). I’ve always loved art, in particular, wooden carvings. For around 4 months straight  I was looking at carved walking sticks because I really wanted one.


Don’t ask me why, I have no idea. I just thought they looked really cool to add to my collection of odd things. I was constantly searching the net for a particular kind of carving, one that was in my imagination. I was constantly looking at them on my phone, during the day and even at night.


I know my wife probably thought I was a few cards short of a full deck. Hell, even I was starting to think so. After months of thinking of this particular wooden carving and not finding it, I randomly went outside, grabbed a piece of wood and a kitchen knife and I started carving into the wood.


Bear in mind, I had never once carved before in my whole entire life, let alone without any proper tools. I hadn’t the slightest idea of what I was doing. I was carving for hours upon end with this kitchen knife. And after 4 months I ended up with this…




And that was the exact image I had in my imagination. For some reason by some means, the image that was in mind ended up in my hands.


When I break down the steps in meeting that particular goal it comes down to;


5 Basic Principles That Apply to the Attainment of ALL Goals.


1) A Clear Goal

I had a clear goal to get the carving I wanted.


2) A Deep Desire

A deep desire was there for the attainment of the goal in mind. This was evident by me constantly looking at images online during the day and night.


3) Vivid and Constant Imagination of the End Result

I constantly held the thought of exactly what I wanted in my mind. I imagined it vividly.


4) Follow Intuition

I originally had no idea or a plan to how I was going to get it, but little did that matter. First I looked at ones online to see if I could find one like the image in my mind to buy, but I felt no urge to buy any that I saw. Then later, I had the urge to go into the garden and get a stick myself. I simply followed my intuition or inner suggestion.


5) Aggressive Persistent Action Towards its Attainment

I carved for hours upon end. I spent all my free time carving and sanding. Even when I cut my thumb wide open I didn’t give up. My hands were bruised and battered. Sometimes I could not carve for a week, due to the bruising, but as soon as they healed I went back at it.


“Whatever a man can conceive and believe, he can achieve.” Napoleon Hill


This is but one example of the unusual power of creative visualization and there have been many more instances in my life where I have used this one principal of creative visualization unknowingly.


I explained another instance where creative visualization worked to attain a fitness goal I had, in the article that ‘Proof That Visualization Really Works.


I bet if you sit and think about a time when you have gotten something you really wanted, you too will notice that you imagined having it vividly in your mind beforehand.


If you have gotten through this article and are still reading this, I know you have the ability to achieve your goals.


It’s proof that your mind is searching for resources and knowledge to attain your own goals. It has been ‘put to work’. Goals are a journey, So don’t ever give up on them and always hold them in your mind.


Willpower is one of the most important resources you have and that will aid you to the attainment of your goal. You have to trust and believe in yourself.


Forget what others think; that has no significance towards your goals attainment. Our minds are powerful things beyond the measurement of any science.


Science may be able to track and study the brain, but the mind remains a mystery. People who attain their goals and desires simply use their mind differently to the mass of people who ignore its power and use it to think of negative circumstances; which they end up getting.


Whatever you want to do or be, it can be done. Whether it’s to build an awesome physique, be a professional fighter, start a business, or live a better life, anything is achievable.


All you have to do is put your mind to work. The mind is like a muscle, use it or lose it. Train it to think positive, to imagine, to desire intensely and you will find many amazing things happening in your life!


Do you have anything to add to the subject? Let me know your opinions, comments or thoughts by dropping one in the comment section below.


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