There is a key element to success that not all people understand: struggle. Struggle is a key element of getting ahead. It exists in quitting smoking. It exists in losing weight. It exists in getting a promotion. It exists in building a business. It exists in making more money. Any time you look to advance yourself you can bet that struggle will play into the equation at some point.
For Mark Cuban it was living in an apartment with 6 other guys eating ketchup and mustard sandwiches. For some it might be living without pay television, internet and not eating out for a year or more. For others it might involve walking to work instead of driving.
I have joked in the past that anyone can work a home budget of $5000 per month, but it takes talent to live for a couple of weeks on $20. You know you’ve lived the struggle when you can live in a major metro area and have the skills to stretch that 20 bucks to its max!
Most people are afraid of the struggle and they don’t know how to handle it. Which explains why more people don’t reach their personal goals. It’s not laziness. It’s not lack of motivation. It’s not lack of education. It’s fear. They fear the struggle. They fear the ‘what if’ part of success that says ‘what if it doesn’t work out?’.
A few weeks ago, I watched a vlog by Danny at Dream Big, Dream Often that inspired me. I keep thinking about it and have been trying to incorporate it into my life. So I thought I’d share it here, in case you hadn’t seen it.
The main point is simple: Instead of focusing on what you need to stop doing, focus on what you need to start doing.
Danny said, “We don’t have to focus on quitting anything. Just keep doing enough of the right stuff and the negative will not have room in your life.”
The positive changes will eventually push out the negative behaviors.
It’s important to make a plan and stick to it. Here are some ideas:
I believe strongly in visualization. I learned this fact of the universe when I played golf professionally and worked on my pre-shot routine. In golf my sports psychologist worked with me on seeing the shot in my mind before I hit the shot in real-time. I would imagine the height of the shot, the spin, where the ball would land and where the ball would come to rest. And when I was locked-in the ball would often times fly close to the exact path I had visualized in my mind.
If you can see something in your mind, you can hold that something in your hand. In my current role I visualize myself being the top marketing executive. I see myself in meetings with huge companies. I make myself feel the nervousness, excitement and anxiety of big meetings before they happen. I imagine myself experiencing all the perks of being the top dog. I see myself with all of the things that come with being numero uno. I see the office I want to have. I see myself giving presentations to massive corporations. I visualize every aspect of the position I eventually want to attain. In my world I already possess all these things; they just haven’t manifested themselves yet!
If you can see something in your mind, you can hold that something in your hand. There are some people who do not believe in this principle and that is a shame. Every successful person I know practices this principle daily. Top-level athletes. Hollywood actors. Rock stars and musicians. Writers and authors. They all saw themselves being ultra-successful long before they obtained said success.
If you aren’t practicing this principle, then I highly suggest you read a little and educate yourself. It will change your life.
Accountability is something that many of us wish did not exist for obvious reasons. The main reason is that accountability exposes us and makes us vulnerable to others. With this type of exposure and vulnerability, we are granting others access into the very deep and secret areas of our lives. In addition to this, we are also…
Good Monday morning, friends! I pray that the sun is shining wherever you are today. Even if it’s overcast or storming, know that storms don’t last for long. I woke up with a grateful heart and a silly grin on my face this morning. All night long I dreamed about the eclipse. In this dream, I was in charge of purchasing safety glasses for all 1,500 kids in our school. Some might call this a nightmare. I guess that falls under “other duties as assigned.” I started this project months ago and had acquired 1,500 NASA-approved eclipse glasses so that our kids could enjoy this once in a lifetime event. Way to go, Michelle! Right? Wrong. What I realized toward the end of the dream is that I didn’t buy any for the teachers. Epic fail! Can you imagine 1,500 teenagers running around in dark glasses with no supervision? Thank…
About once per week I’ll get an email asking me how I maintain such a positive attitude. And I get enough of these emails to make me believe people view me as being a positive person, although, I don’t view myself as a positive person. The truth is I haven’t always been so positive.
In 2007 I began working for Dick’s Sporting Goods as a PGA Professional. My job was to manage the golf shop staff, keep the shop stocked with the appropriate types of merchandise, inventory and maintain customer service levels. For anyone who has worked retail, this short story should register with you.
I worked that job and dealt with customers throughout the store; there were good days and there were really bad days. And as the years moved forward the really bad days began to outnumber the good days 10 to 1. Customers in retail are vicious. They complain constantly. They drop trash on the floors. They spill things and use merchandise to cover up the spill. They leave used condoms in the fitting rooms. They make messes in the bathrooms that you could never imagine (especially the women’s room!). They scream, yell and blame the staff for ruining their child’s Christmas.
The list goes on and on.
Dealing with the public turned me into a person who didn’t want to be around people outside of work. So I began to resent other humans. I began to hate being around other people. I saw the worst in humanity and expected people to be awful. I became a negative person.
Then came 2013 and my retail career ended. Unfortunately, my negative attitude did not. It would take me another year or more to eventually purge myself of those negative tendencies and find “Danny’ again. It was such hard work. Every day I had to focus on finding the good in people and expecting good things to happen. I had to go through a complete revolution of my mind to exorcise the negative demons.
It was a long fight, but it was worth it. I no longer maintain that nasty, negative attitude and I am happy now that people email me asking how I stay so positive. It’s a great reminder to me that people can change if they want to change.