Do you want to become successful?
Here is what you do…
1) Define success for yourself.
I only have three goals in my life:
- I want to be happy.
- I want to eliminate drama out of my life.
- I want everyday to be as smooth as possible.
That’s my simple version of “success”.
I believe everyone else shares these three goals with me too.
But we all are clueless on how to reach them.
And that’s why we listen to all the other opinions around us (in hopes of finding a solution to this dilemma):
“This will make you happy.”
“No, this will.”
“Buy my super slim 5-minute workout fitness ebook and you’ll lose 10 pounds in 30 days!”
(And soon you’ll be happy, have no drama in your life anymore, and everything will be running smoothly?)
They want you to stop thinking and just TRUST that some superficial crap will solve your issues. But soon you’ll learn that happiness cannot be bought and what works for some people might not work for you as well.
And that’s good the way it is.
There are endless paths leading to these three simple goals. But not every one of them fits your unique style.
So you have to find your own.
But even “finding it” is overhyped and overrated:
- “I have to find my passion.”
- “I have to find my mission.”
- “What is my purpose in life?”
All stupid questions with little to no value.
I try to follow a very simple model instead:
A) You define what “success” looks like to YOU.
The focus here lies on the YOU.
Not everyone else’s path will make you reach the three goals for yourself.
Not everyone is meant to be the CEO of a big company. And not everyone WANTS to be the CEO either. Most of us, will crumble under the pressure, grow depressed and frustrated too.
If you are happy and contempt being an employee, why go through the struggle and become an entrepreneur (because there will be a lot of struggle ahead)?
But if you are feeling restless as an employee because you never gave it a real shot, why would you stay either?
B) You question your idea of success (just to be sure).
- Is this really what I want?
- Or is this just something I think I want?
- Have I fallen in love with an idea of what this success can do to my life?
- Have I fallen victim of the “grass is always greener on the other side” syndrome?
- Will this idea of success REALLY make me reach my three simple goals?
- Am I OK with dealing with the bullshit that comes with this path?
- Will I also be happy ALONG the way? While working towards an end goal? Or is this thing just a mean-to-an-end?
C) And then you go for it.
Once you are certain and no longer question (and doubt) yourself that this is something you want to do, you just do it.
You make a decision and you no longer second guess yourself.
Now you start working.
2) Do the thing you love.
People confuse “I don’t feel like doing it” with “this is not what I should be doing with my life”.
Doing something you love makes the first statement irrelevant.
You’ll do it nonetheless. Because you care about it too much. Your procrastination is a sign of RESISTANCE. And you have to fight it each day in order to evolve as an artist.
Read The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles on how to deal with this resistance…
The second statement feels different.
Your work became “empty” all of the sudden.
It doesn’t excite you anymore. The task doesn’t serve your “spiritual advancement” anymore.
And that’s why it’s time to move on.
And get closer to where you need to be in order to keep fulfilling your inner purpose:
“Our outer purpose changes with circumstances and necessarily involves time, whereas our inner purpose remains always the same: It is to be absolutely present in whatever we do and so let our actions be guided and empowered by awareness, the awakened consciousness, rather than controlled by the egoistic mind. We fulfill our destiny and realize our purpose when we awaken to who we are: conscious presence.”
If doing something we love makes us more conscious and present, isn’t it our duty to put more of that out into the world?
3) “But I don’t know what I want to do with my life?”
Use Warren Buffett’s 5/25 rule.
Make a list of the 25 things you want to do in life. Now do the top 5. And NEVER THINK ABOUT THE OTHER 20 EVERY AGAIN.
Else they will take time away from the 5 that are most important to you.
4) Make time for it every day.
At first you will suck big times.
You’ll make all kinds of mistakes. Keep working on your craft every day nonetheless. Put in the time. Eventually you’ll improve.
But it doesn’t matter anyways… because you are doing something you love, right? You are not doing it to reach a final but to enjoy the ride?
Get better at it 1% each day.
5) Document, don’t create.
“But how will people take me seriously when I first start out and have no experience? Do I have to fake it till I make it first?”
God, please no.
Don’t be another loser playing pretend.
Document your learning experience instead. Journal your way of approaching the field:
Try something. Just as an experiment. See what happens when you do this. Be curious.
Write down what you THINK will happen first and then do it.
And after you are done…
Did the things turn out just as you wished it to be?
Write down your experience. I tried this and did that. Now I am here and I feel like this. Because of this that happened.
People will love you for it.
They will appreciate you being their crash-test dummy. The one who is brave enough to actually go for it.
And suddenly you are one step ahead of them.
Because you did something they WISHED they did.
Suddenly you can teach them something.
From your experience.
6) Don’t judge yourself.
As we grow up we become more and more brutal with the way we talk to ourselves (at least I do).
At first we are just little kids exploring the world.
Trying our first steps. Falling down. Crying. And getting back up again. We are slowly getting better each day. We learn to walk our path. And be proud of ourselves.
But as we grow older we somehow lose our patience with ourselves. We forget to value constant efforts and want instant results instead. And because we can never deliver these AMAZING results we hope for ourselves, we grow frustrated and beat ourselves down.
What a stupid behavior to adopt…
And yet we all do it.
What would happen if we just stop doing it?
7) Never compare yourself to others.
They are on a different path.
Stay on yours.
Put extreme focus onto your path and each step you take. Try to remember every detail how you got here. In a couple of years, this will be a great story to share with others.
8) Be faithful.
Higher powers will guide you.
Call me pathetic. Believe it or not. I don’t care. I know this is true for me. And I know this is true for many others:
If you constantly work towards something you deeply care about, the universe gets out of your way.
“Magical” things happen. Opportunities arise. Good things happen. Your angels acknowledge your efforts and approve them. And now support you.
Suddenly you are blessed…
You always were.
9) Say NO more.
As more and more opportunities arise, you will feel tempted to go for them all.
Learn to say no to more things.
I hate saying no to somebody. It feels like disappointing them at the deepest level.
But we have to learn that it’s OK to say no.
“Sorry I can’t do that, I’d rather do that.”
It’s about priority.
And valuing yourself enough to go for yours.
10) Be one in a million.
Even if you feel hopeless and alone on your path, you’ll never be.
Even if you are one in a million, there are soon close to 8000 other people in the world just like you.
It’s your job to find them.
And reach out to them.
As you build your audience and community one thing will happen:
People will reach out to you.
- They might want to give you praise or thank you.
- They might ask for help.
But underneath this little effort lies one certainty:
You solved (or could solve) one of their problems by doing something which comes natural to you.
If you want to become super successful, you have to keep listening to these people and what they care about.
And as soon as you found something which lies within your strengths and also solves a problem these people have, you are onto something.
It can be something simple as entertaining them with your personality and light-heartedness. Or resolving some of their pain through your poetry. Awe-ing them with your art.
Whatever it is you can offer to them.
They’ll love you for it.
As long as you stay true to yourself. And listen to them.
12) Avoid death.
All the things I just wrote are useless when you are not healthy.
Which means: avoid things you know are bad for you. Be a little healthier each day. You can’t get rich from a hospital bed. Or a grave.
People think metabolism changes as we get older. This is not really true. What changes is we sit more. So move more.
13) Legacy over currency.
What does it serve you (or the world) if you make a shit load of money but everybody who know you in your lifetime thinks you are a complete dick?
Now with the internet everything you do will stick around for the rest of time.
Your grand-grand-grand children will be able to look you up.
Make them proud.