How many people do you know would like to have their own business? write a book? be famous? travel the world? be rich? (other)?
It’s easy to love the outcome (being rich is better than not being rich).
But, most of the time you’ll spend on the way to achieving the next great thing will be spent struggling. Overnight success is a myth. Struggling is part of it and, makes victory a lot sweeter.
Process is more important than outcome… If process drives outcome, we may not know where we’re going, but we will know we want to be there. – Bruce Mau
You have to love the process more than you love the result. The result is sometimes unclear but, the process is in your face every single day. If you can’t love what you do on the day to day, you just won’t reach your destination.
When you’re in control of your time and your priorities, there’s a lot of traps you have to be aware of. Beyond the traps set by the competition, finance and other people, you have to be aware of the traps you set for yourself.
If you believe that hard work is the path to success then, you’re in for a treat. Being busy may feel like you’re being productive, doing may feel you’ve done good and trying may feel like you gave it your best but, this is merely to appease you.
The real measure of progress is not doing, it’s success. You can have enough work but, you can never have enough success.
You may be satisfied with what you’ve accomplished today (and that’s good) but, you’re never done. It’s not because you feel like you’re getting s*** done that you’re moving forward. Beware.
Today, you could write / build / make something you’ve never done before. You could be anywhere. It could make you millions or make you hugely successful.
Your complete time investment could be: 1 day.
That one thing might have been something you did yesterday or 2 weeks ago but, it didn’t happen because you were thinking about the next thing you had to do…
This is an extreme example but, we live in a world of extremes.
Whatever you decide to do, do it 100%. Doing a few things really well is better than doing a lot of things poorly. Checking things off might make you feel like you’re moving forward but, being busy is not being productive.
What are the pillars of your success? What do you need to be successful?
- A great network?
- Up-front capital?
- Visibility and fame?
- Something else?
Are you thinking strategically in expectation of future goals or are you playing it by ear?
Success, like a house, can be built on great foundations. If your plan depends on luck, you’re not building, you’re hoping.
Once you know your goal, you can figure out what you need in order to achieve it. Maybe your goal this year will be to establish your credibility, next year you’ll work on your client network and the year after you’ll work on generating revenue to build a great consulting business.
The goal is yours but, for stable growth and success, you need to set up stable foundations.
How do we work on that in 2012?
The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. And don’t settle. (Steve Jobs)
How do you find love? Where do you start?
Forget destiny, it may or may not exist. As humans, we’re always better at figuring out what we want/don’t want in retrospect than we are at predicting it.
Be proactive. Systematically trying assumptions allowed me, in less than a year, to figure out that consulting was not for me, large businesses were not for me, freelancing was not for me and so on until I had a crystal clear picture of what I wanted to do for the next 10 years.
Here’s how it went:
- Try something you might like – it’s your first assumption. Be quick; don’t settle if it’s not for you.
- Now, take the part you loved the most about it, and combine it with your next best guess.
- Rinse, wash and repeat until the answer becomes obvious.
Life just got simpler after that.
What can you talk about for hours? What could you see yourself doing if you were filthy rich? What are you passionate about?
What do you do for work? Is it related to one of your passions?
No? Why not? How could you make your day job a little more like the things you’re passionate about?
Some passions are best left as hobbies but, life’s also too short to be working on things that don’t excite you.
If you’re passionate about planes, it doesn’t mean you have to be a pilot. If you’re passionate about music, it doesn’t mean you have to be a musician. There’s plenty of opportunities to work around what passionates you. Think about the ecosystem around your passion; how can you break in? How can you close in on your passions?
To most people, being rich is having at least a million dollars in a bank account. That’s a lot of money but, this is not necessarily what being rich is to you.
Life is obviously not all about money but, this post is. If you want to know how rich “being rich” would be for you, add up the price of everything you’d like to buy.
Car + House + Big screen TV + Travel + …
If you, like me and Tony Hsieh (founder of Zappos), wind up with a pretty short list in front of you, you’ll know that you’re not just trying to be rich (if you even are).
You may like the status, the respect or the independence associated with money but, there’s many ways to address those.
What else do you need money to do for you? You might not even need the mythical million to be “rich”.
It’s not how many times you fall that matters, it’s how many times you get back up.
In life, you can try never to fall… or learn to get back up after a fall.
Things rarely go according to plan; it’s very hard to predict the bumps you’ll hit along the way. Even the best boxers end up falling at some point in their career. If they’ve never learned to fall, getting up won’t be easy.
Ultimately, life is about your ability to bounce back up after a fall. Learn to get up, understand the reasons why you fell and move on faster than most and you’ll be on track to outperform everyone.