Code of the Extraordinary Mind

Many people are taught that the world is a certain way and to live within the rules of society. However, social norms and structures can confine us and limit our potential. The Code of the Extraordinary Mind (subtitle: 10 Unconventional Laws to Redefine Your Life and Succeed On Your Own Terms) by Vishen Lakhiani challenges the framework of life and asks you to question things, so that you can live better. This book shares secrets to succeeding such as gratitude, affirmations, self-love, examining your methods for doing things and optimizing your systems to perform better, setting nonnegotiable set points (that you can’t fall below), creating meaningful goals (end goals vs. means goals), finding your calling and establishing a personal mission, the value of forgiveness and methods for meditating that prime you to succeed. The author questions the definition of success by saying, the way we define success usually centers around money and power, which is an inadequate way to define life. Other metrics of success should be added such as well-being, wisdom, wonder, and giving. While this book is motivational and encourages goal setting to succeed, it emphasizes how happiness can’t be tied to goals: life is about the journey and not the destination. Be happy now because then you will enjoy life and a positive attitude is linked to higher performance, which leads to more happiness. At several points in the book, the author asks the reader to ask themselves three questions: (1) What experiences do you want to have in this lifetime? (2) How do you want to grow? (3) How do you want to contribute? And further, in the book, he asks (1) Recall a time when you experienced Heaven on Earth. What was happening? (2) Imagine you have a magic wand and with it you can create Heaven on Earth. What is Heaven on Earth for you? (3) What simple, easy, concrete step(s) will you take in the next twenty-four hours to make Heaven on Earth real? By asking these questions you examine your life and what you want from it. From this, goal setting and daily productivity become nothing more than aligning your day-to-day with your life purpose and mission. Lastly, the author points to a new model for understanding problems in our life: problems are nothing more than a friendly universe whispering in our ear as we hike through life: “Hey, you’re on the wrong path. Check out the view from this angle.” When we refine our mindset and live life in alignment with our interests, we will increase the quality of life for ourselves and others.