Having a “Why” for what you’re doing will ignite your quest for a greater purpose in life.
It is the ultimate game-changer that rejuvenates your soul and gives your life meaning. This “Why” informs your direction. Once you have direction, you must back it with habits. From there, you’re ready to take powerful steps forward and begin investing in yourself.
When you make decisions, it’s best to know why you’re doing what you’re doing. When your decisions are informed by clear and educated thought, you’re on the road to success. Clarity breeds confidence and a confident mind is one that is best suited to make decisions. We’re all looking for explosive growth and opportunities that will help us become our best selves.
Sometimes, along the journey, we forget to practice the habits that actually lead to spectacular results. These habits ignite the fuse we all have inside ourselves, providing us with discipline and consistency that is necessary for growth.
Great entrepreneurs and success stories like Steve Jobs, Sara Blakely, Gary Vaynerchuk and LeBron James all are lifelong learners. They have a tremendous vision. That vision propelled them to continue to invest in building their strengths so they could reach the pinnacle of their profession. So, think about this:
Building. Learning. Growing into the vision of yourself you always imagined.
At a high level, this is a winning formula.
I came up with a list of four habits that help you invest in yourself. They’ve helped to form my career as a bestselling author, executive coach and keynote speaker. I’ve seen these habits used in the lives of many successful people I’ve coached and studied. I hope they benefit you.
“Be patient with yourself. Self-growth is tender; it’s holy ground. There’s no greater investment.” ―Dr. Stephen Covey
Always Show Up
The gym I used to go to had a sign at the front that said,
“Showing up is half the battle.”
Corny? Cliche? Maybe.
But think about this — if someone is willing to offer you a seat at the table — an opportunity to do something you love — why in the world wouldn’t you take it? By accepting and committing, you’re already there. By showing up, you are literally investing in yourself. You’re taking action! Never, ever take that for granted. The rest of the battle is up to you.
I think of this in the context of the abundance of resources we have at our fingertips in the modern world. If you want to learn something, there’s simply no stopping you if you have an Internet connection and access to resources at a public library. If you’re willing to “show up”, you will eventually see extraordinary results.
If you don’t show up at all, you’ll always be left guessing, wondering and speculating. Be discerning and wise when it comes to investing in yourself. You don’t want to jump at just anything. But if you research opportunities — or better yet, have them come your way — then GO FOR THEM. Always show up. Always give things a shot.
We’re all entitled to a day off, but for those of us who desire the best of ourselves, we’re not entitled to making up the rules. Or rule. In fact, here’s the simple rule of life that’s been proven time and again:
The people who operate most efficiently, most effectively and with greatest consistency win. It’s that simple.
Highlight this. Print it out and put it over your desk. It’s a habit you must follow if you want to have incredible success.
I’d like to particularly focus on consistency. Consistency and repetition are the sharpest tools in the toolkit of winners. Keep doing. Keep creating and producing. This is what I’d like to call “The Rolling Stones model.” The Rolling Stones became one of the most famous music groups of all time by making a lot of hit songs. That’s a fact.
But you know what else The Rolling Stones did? They produced a lot of mediocre and just so-so songs. A lot. But what do people remember? They remember the hits, the best stuff. And you have to admire their overall body of work because they kept churning out the best work they could. They never stopped. They’re still going!
Keep producing and churning out the best work you can. That may not be viewed as the best work by others. But it’s a heck of a lot better than doing nothing.
Strengthen Your Strengths and Eliminate Your Weaknesses
In a Harvard Business Review article, Bill Barnett shares the importance of developing our strengths and reinforcing what those are in a multitude of ways. First, as a habit, list your strengths. Know what you believe them to be.
But then, seek external validation. Ask others what your strengths are. Think of times that you’ve done something well when others have offered you review or feedback.
Think about the themes you find from your introspection and your peers. Make it a point to build a list of strengths and continue to revisit them.
I also believe in the long-term importance of eliminating your weaknesses.
Every day that I live without reverting back to foolish traps like negative thoughts or repeating mistakes of the past, I feel like I’ve won a huge victory. If life is all about finding ourselves, then we’re far better geared to do this by living with pure intentions and free from pointless distractions and things that detract from who we want to be.
You could become an industry-leader or highly successful businesswoman, but you could also become known for one misstep along the way that ruins you due to bad habits. Look at your weaknesses. Be honest. Remind yourself each day of the things you need to improve and ensure you don’t hurt yourself with one small weakness in a sea of strengths.
Everyday (Life) Education
The most important thing you can know is this: Your education DOES NOT culminate in the public school system, secondary school or even in college. Heck, even at your Master’s degree or doctorate degree ceremony. That’s an old way of thinking and it will lead to you falling behind. Your education continues until the day you leave this earth.
Make it a habit to learn something new every day. Read great books. Learn a new skill. Spend time around successful people and study what they do well. What can you emulate? What new habits can you add to the four that you’ve read here today?
I want to invest in myself each day. Hopefully, you’re willing to do the same. Remember these four:
- Always Show Up
- Keep Creating
- Strengthen your strengths and eliminate your weaknesses
- Everyday Education
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