The Secret to Create Success and Change Your Life!
If you take 100 individuals and ask them at adulthood if they planned to be successful 100/100 would eagerly admit they intended to be successful. Statistics show that only 5% of people actually achieve success. I learned this from reading Earl Nightengale’s The Strangest Secret. Most people fail because they conform to the masses, follow the norms of society, and freestyle their way through life. They end up being able to sustain themselves, pay expenses and have money for lifestyle. That isn’t a success… that is what I could call surviving. Successful people live life by design, they created it. Those who claim success aren’t special, gifted, blessed, lucky, or brilliant. They have simply learned that well-planned goals and passion are an unstoppable force that allows you to create the future you want for yourself. Human beings are blessed with self-awareness and the ability to create not only our environments but, also ourselves. We have the ability to literally become whatever we decide, achieve whatever we want to achieve, and learn whatever skills we want. So why is it that so many people end up trapped in a self-inflicted struggle against life, happiness, and finance. It is many things. Ignorance, laziness, conformity, lack of self-confidence, lack of faith, lack of discipline, and fear. No single individual will accomplish any meaningful accomplishment with those attributes leading their existence. So we can look at the opposite of those attributes for the keys to success: Knowledge, ambition, standing out, pride, persistence, discipline, and courage.
But what defines success? simply put, success is progression or the continued growth towards a meaningful goal. Each day a person wakes and begins their day adding meaningful progress to a predetermined goal, that person is a success. Each person who refuses to do that is a failure. There are several questions you have to ask to determine if you are currently a successful person.
- Do I have a 3-year plan?
- Do I know where I am going?
- Do I become a better person each day?
- Do I invest in my personal growth and skills?
- Do I smile when I look at my checking, savings, and investment account balances?
Yea, I know #5 threw you off. However, I would assure that financial performance is a clear indicator of success. The person we become and the things we acquire are the direct reflections of our thoughts. Our bank accounts simply reveal how much thought we place into the realm of financial education. Our bank accounts are positively or negatively correlated to our financial acumen. Most people spend an average of 5 hours per day entertaining themselves, and 0 hours of financial education. At a year’s end that equals 1,825 hours spent in a year on entertaining ourselves and not a single hour of financial education. How a person spends their free time will always reveal what they care about, the same is true of disposable income. That has a compounding impact on a person’s chances to be financially successful. If you don’t have money, income isn’t the problem; it is the lack of financial knowledge that is the true problem. If cure the financial ignorance that will solve the money problem. If anyone wants to be a success and change their life they must live by the following principles.
Step #1: Find Your Why. The key to starting any journey is a burning desire that pushes you forward. You can find your “why” easily! Do you have kids? Having children gives parents a “why” that is almost like a cheat code to motivation. If you don’t have children you can ask the simple question of why do I get up each morning? Why do I work? If I could be, or do anything I wanted and get paid for it, what would it be? These questions open the possibilities of your imagination and help you turn dreams into goals that create a burning desire inside of you.
Step #2: Become a Student. There is an old saying that a person is the same person they are today, 5 years from now + the books they have read during that time. Become a student of the teachings that will aid in the achievement of your goal. If you want to be a carpenter you should read carpentry books in your spare time, seek apprenticeship/mentorship, enroll in trade school, take business classes, network with like-minded peers, read entrepreneurship books, etc. Notice that the list doesn’t merely say go to trade school. Going to a trade school isn’t becoming a student of carpentry, trade school ends and being a student is a lifelong mentorship. Working hard in trade school gets you a job, working hard to develop carpentry mastery in yourself will earn you a fortune.
Step #3: Self-Creation. Recognize that you have the special ability to become whatever you think about! The beauty of this fact is only accelerated if you live in the U.S. We have the privilege of living in a time with the greatest opportunity than any other time in human history. Stop talking about what obstacles are in your way or how your situation is different. We all have life events, taxes, mistakes, and poor choices that have slowed our progression; the key is to stay focused that it is impossible to fail at self-creation. Steven Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective people teaches us to think with the end in mind. He tells us to imagine we are at a funeral and we are walking to a casket at the front of the room when reaching the casket we see ourself. What would we want our friends and family to read in our obituary? That is the person we need to project and become each day.
Step #4: Self-Discipline. Knowledge is not power, the execution of knowledge is power! Everyone knows you need to limit calories and exercise 3-4 times a week for weight loss. But how many people are successful at weight loss? We all know we should save money each time we are paid, but how many people practice paying themselves first? We know we should not yell at our spouse or children, but how many times do we cross this sensitive line? Self-discipline is the clearest sign of maturity and is needed for success at any task. Self-discipline is similar to a muscle, the more you practice it, the easier it becomes to control your impulses. We can refer back to the other steps and improve this muscle by becoming a student, reading a self-discipline book, and placing a “why” behind it.
Step #5: Self-Development. Happiness is achievement, progression, stability, and generosity. Self-development is key to improving happiness and the quality of your life. My favorite quote on self-development is “To do better, we must become better. To have more, we must become more. Don’t wish it were easier, wish you were better. Don’t ask for fewer problems, wish for more skill. If you will change, everything around you will change for the better.” I truly believe this is excellent advice that is one of the keys to success. In self-development, you must model behaviors and habits of those who have what you want! I’m not talking about imitating in a fake and envious way, I’m talking about emulating by actually admiring and practicing the behaviors that took them there, not just copying the stuff they own.
Step #6: Relationships Matter. There is an old saying that says you are the average of your 5 closest friends. I haven’t met a person who disagrees with that statement. Relationships are highly impactful to your success, so in order to grow, you need to place others who share your vision, goals, and values. In choosing a partner to begin a romantic relationship with the same should apply, many people miss the importance of dating wisely. Success is strengthened by a supportive loving partner and destroyed by a dysfunctional relationship.
Notice that all the 6 steps are centered around “Self”, that’s because the secret to your success is you!
Hope this helps you on your journey to a life of success and happiness!