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Book Summary – Awaken the Giant Within: How to Take Immediate Control of Your Mental, Emotional, Physical and Financial Destiny!

We all have unlimited potential in us. Through self-mastery, we can take control of our lives, harness the forces that shape destiny, to have and achieve anything we want in life. This is a detailed action guide by Tony Robbins to show how you can make fundamental and lasting changes to transform your quality of life.  In this free Awaken the Giant Within summary, we’ll give a synopsis of the various tips, tools and techniques from Robbin to awaken the giant within yourself.

Everyone is born with talents and opportunities, and deep inside, we all wish to make a difference. Yet, we often lack the focus and confidence to do so. Here, Robbins acts as your personal coach, sharing his ideas, experiences, and distinctions, with examples and tips to awaken us to our true potential and help us take action.  Let’s look at the some of the powerful ideas in the book:

Part 1: Raising your Standards


Every decision – or lack of it – has consequences. If you don’t decide how you’ll live 10 years from now, you’d have, by default, decided to let circumstances dictate your life. Every successful person (e.g. Mahatma Ghandi, John F Kennedy) had, at some point in their lives, made a major decision. For Robbins, the turning point came 8 years before he wrote the book – he was fat, broke, and decided he had to change his life, and never be less than his best again. In the book, Robbins shares many examples and stories of how a real decision can change everything. Get the key insights – e.g. how your decisions are linked to commitment, action, learning and flexibility – in our full version of Awaken The Giant Within summary.


Everything we do is to avoid pain, or to gain pleasure.  Even if we logically believe that something is good for us in the long term, we may not take action if we believe it’ll bring us short-term pain. Still, all of us have a pain threshold, where the level of pain is so high that we vow never to face it again. The key is to learn to use pain and pleasure to drive our decisions and actions, rather than be controlled by them. We’ll address this in Part 2.

Part 2: Changing your Limiting Beliefs

In the book, Robbins explains the concept of belief systems and limiting beliefs, in great detail. In a nutshell, a belief is basically a “feeling of certainty about something”. A mere idea starts to develop “legs” when we find references or experiences that support it.  The strength of the belief depends on (a) the level of emotional intensity and (b) the number of references.

In our complete 15-page version of Awaken The Giant Within summary, we explain more about belief systems and references (what they are, how they’re formed, and how they affect us etc.).Awaken the Giant Within summary_Belief systems

We are free to interpret references in anyway we want. And, it doesn’t matter if a belief is “true”.  Humans can rationalize anything we wish to believe. What’s more important is if the belief empowers us.


When we do something, our brains create a neural-connection to the associated feeling or behaviour. The more we do it, the more we reinforce the connection. Eventually, it forms a “neural super-highway”, and we do / avoid the behaviour, even when the sensation stops. Conversely, if we stop a response long enough, the pathway weakens. In our full Awaken the Giant Within summary, we elaborate on how this works, and how we sabotage our goals with “false neuro-association” and “mixed neuro-association”.

The good news is, our habitual mental patterns can be changed quickly and permanently, using Neuro-Associative Conditioning (NAC) – This is a 6-step system designed by Robbins to disrupt your disempowering patterns, and establish new, empowering ones that run without constant effort and willpower.  Here are the 6 steps of the NAC:

Awaken the Giant Within summary_NAC_Neuro-Associative Conditioning

Changing your belief systems and limiting beliefs are just the first steps. To truly improve your life, you need to change your strategies.

Part 3: Changing your Strategies


Everything we’ve ever wanted in life (e.g. goals about money, family, career) is to allow us to feel what we want to feel (e.g. loved, respected, happy etc.). Our feelings are our internal compass, to tell us if we are on-course.

Emotional Mastery

In the book, Robbins covers 3 important strategies to master your emotions. Here’s an overview of the 3 strategies. Do get more details from our complete summary:Awaken the Giant Within summary_emotional mastery

The Power of State

Our emotional states are our internal (typically unconscious) reaction to what’s happening around us. You can change your emotional states in 2 ways: by (i) Changing your Physiology (how you use your body), and (ii) Changing your Focus (including what you focus on, and how you focus).

The Power of Questions

Successful people ask better quality questions that empower and lead them to good answers. Questions can instantly shift your focus and feelings, help us to prioritize, and uncover resources and solutions. For example, instead of asking “why am I so upset?”, ask “how can I find joy at the moment?”.

The Power of Vocabulary and Metaphors

Language is a crucial part of culture, and it shapes how we perceive, think, feel, and act. Just by changing the words and labels you put on your emotions, you can change how you feel. Robbin terms this “Transformational Vocabulary”. Words affect how we interpret events around us, and generate an immediate biochemical effect. Metaphors are also very powerful because they bring up strong emotions, imagery and associated frames/ rules. In the book, Robbins covers numerous examples and details of words you can reduce the emotional intensity of negative feelings, heighten positive sensations, or soften your approach, as well as how changes in metaphors change perceptions and frames/ rules. [You can also get a detailed overview from our 15-page book summary].

6 Steps for Mastering your Emotions

In our garden of life, weeds (like negative emotions) will always appear. We shouldn’t ignore them, nor get upset over them. Simply remove the weeds and plant your positive emotions daily so your garden will be healthy and vibrant.

Combining the NAC and using components from the 3 strategies above, Robbins walks us through the 6 steps for mastering our negative emotions. The book details 10 “action signals” and “emotions of power”.


You don’t need to apply everything in the book to transform your life. However, you definitely must take consistent action. In the book, Robbins covers various action steps you can take. Here’s an overview of some of the key areas. For the full action guide, do get full Awaken the Giant Within summary for a detailed outline.

Awaken the Giant Within summary_take action

Defining your Goals

Often, people don’t set goals for fear of failure. Yet, it’s vital to have a crystal-clear focus that you commit to. In the book, Robbins walks you through a detailed goal-setting exercise in 4 areas: (a) Personal Growth, (b) Career/ Business/ Financial, (c) Things to Own/ Do, and (d) Contribution.

Unleashing your Inner Giant

Your goals are a means to an end, a tool to direct your focus and growth. The ultimate goal is to unleash your potential – who you become, and the people you touch along the way. With clarity on your goals, you can now answer this question: “To achieve all that I want, what kind of person must I become?”  The book zooms in further into (a) Your hierarchy of values (so you can make the “right” decisions, and become aware of conflicting values that bring you pain), (b) Changing your rules (so you set yourself up to win, not lose), (c) Aligning your identity with your goals (yes, you’re free to evolve and shape your own identity).

Taking Control of the Master System

Successful people stand out in their field because they’ve gotten enough distinctions, with 5 key building blocks to make great evaluations.

  • The 10-Day Mental Challenge. This exercise helps you to kick off what you’ve learned in the book, to focus all your energy on possible solutions (rather than problems).

Getting the Most from Awaken the Giant Within

In this article, we’ve briefly outlined some of the key insights and strategies you can use to achieve desired change. For more examples, details, and actionable tips to apply these strategies, do get our complete book summary bundle which includes an infographic, 15-page text summary, and a 31-minute audio summary.

Awaken the Giant Within summary - book summary bundle

This book is packed with more than 500 pages of insights, examples, tips, exercises and distinctions, such as:

  • References and examples of well-known personalities like Donald Trump, Mother Theresa, Bill Gates, Mahatma Ghandi, Walt Disney, Warren Buffet, Soichiro Honda, Billy Joel, Robin Williams;
  • Many personal examples of Robbins and his friends/ clients;
  • References to real-life economic/ social issues and scientific research; and
  • A complete 7-Day success program to integrate all the components.

Robbins reinforces the ideas using various perspectives, details and analogies, all of which are important to create the “aha” moment, and to inspire us to action. To get the most from the book, you’ll need to examine the details, and take consistent action. You can purchase the book here, or learn more from

About the Author of Awaken the Giant Within

Awaken the Giant Within: How to Take Immediate Control of Your Mental, Emotional, Physical and Financial Destiny! is written by Tony Robbins–an American businessman, best-selling author, and philanthropist. He’s an authority on the psychology of leadership, negotiations and organizational turnaround, and has served as an advisor to leaders around the world for more than 38 years. He has also created the #1 personal and professional development program of all time, and more than 4 million people have attended his live seminars He has been honored by Accenture as one of the “Top 50 Business Intellectuals in the World”; by Harvard Business Press as one of the “Top 200 Business Gurus”, and he was recently named in the top 50 of Worth Magazine’s 100 most powerful people in global finance.

Awaken the Giant Within Quotes

“Controlled focus is like a laser beam that can cut through anything that seems to be stopping you.”

“Know that it’s your decisions, and not your conditions, that determine your destiny.”

“We’re not driven by the reality, but by our perception of reality.”

“Expand your references, and you’ll immediately expand your life.”

“Nothing in life has any meaning except the meaning you give it.”

“The question is not whether you’re going to have problems, but how you’re going to deal with them when they come up.”

“It’s not only the questions you ask, but the questions you fail to ask, that shape your destiny.”

Click here to download Awaken the Giant Within book summary and infographic

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