Success is an uphill battle. It’s not easy to achieve, and sure isn’t accessible to the faint of heart.
Success is also a recipe. It’s a series of strategic and sequential actions taken consistently at a 10x effort that will bring you closer to your goal, dream or ambition in life. But if that’s the case, why are so many people giving up on their dreams? Why do so many people settle for less than what they want?
Just a few years ago, I was in that boat. I was depressed and had lost sight of my potential. I didn’t know what I wanted anymore, and sure didn’t know how to achieve anything better (nor did I have the desire).
Eventually, I regained my vision and decided to pursue my definition of success with vigor and relentless persistence.
Here are three things I learned about success and failure along the way:
1. Success is found in the small things
It’s important that you don’t discredit the small steps you are taking towards success. It’s all about perspective. I never discredit any step in the right direction because the small things can equate to massive gains. Small steps are still steps.
What’s one thing you can do differently today that you didn’t do yesterday? Perhaps it’s changing your morning routine, starting a gratitude journal, or writing down your goals at the beginning or end of each day.
It’s about creating habits and laying a solid foundation to build from. If you can’t discipline yourself to do the small things, what makes you think that you’ll be consistent starting out with big things?
2. You’re already more successful than you think
When I sit down with my clients, friends, and family, to talk about success, there is usually a period in the conversation where overwhelm sets in. Success seems like it’s so far away and impossible to achieve. Can you relate?
This usually happens for a couple of reasons.
- You’re paying too much attention to others’ perceived success
- You haven’t clearly defined success for yourself
Merriam-webster dictionary defines success as “a preferred or desired outcome.” What I love about that definition is that you and I both have different ideas about what is preferred or desired. That means that there isn’t one single definition of success that fits everyone. Each of us is unique and have our definition of success.
That also means that there is and will never be a shortage of success for those that take the time to clearly define it for themselves.
For those that do take the time, they begin to realize that many elements of their definition have already been achieved, and therefore, they are already more successful than they thought.
3. Real failure only happens after you quit
Growing up my dad had a poem hanging on the wall titled, “Don’t Quit!” I wish the teenaged Michael would have taken more time to read and internalize the message.
When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,
When the road you’re trudging seems all uphill,
When the funds are low, and the debts are high,
And you want to smile, but you have to sigh,
When care is pressing you down a bit-
Rest if you must, but don’t you quit.
Life is weird with its twists and turns,
As every one of us sometimes learns,
And many a fellow turns about
When he might have won had he stuck it out.
Don’t give up though the pace seems slow –
You may succeed with another blow.
Often the goal is nearer than
It seems to a faint and faltering man;
When he might have captured the victor’s cup;
And he learned too late when the night came down,
How close he was to the golden crown.
Success is failure turned inside out –
The silver tint in the clouds of doubt,
And you never can tell how close you are,
It might be near when it seems so afar;
So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit –
It’s when things seem worst that you MUST NOT QUIT!
Failure isn’t final unless you give up. If you keep going, failure is just another word for learning. The objective then is clear. Learn as fast as you can without giving up.
Success is difficult to achieve, but not impossible. If you’re pursuing something you’re passionate about, the journey can also be fulfilling and enjoyable. If there is one thing I’ve learned over the last few years, it’s that you and I are more powerful than we sometimes give ourselves credit for. You have massive potential, and when you follow a series of strategic 10x actions, you can achieve and live a bigger life than most think is possible.
Don’t Wait. DOMINATE!