Success 102: How To Start Your Own Success

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Success 101: What Success Is

Prepare your mind for the journey

  • Remove any excuses that you keep telling yourself
    • “I don’t actually know what to do” – this will come in time, and the best thing to do for now is to expand your worldview
    • “I don’t have money” – it will be difficult, but enough creativity and determination can circumvent the need for money
    • “I don’t have equipment” – other people have equipment, and you can ask them if you can convey your passion to them
    • “I don’t have time” – you can make time if it’s actually important to you
    • “I’m not good enough” – you can become good enough
    • “I don’t have the right credentials/degree/training” – nobody cares as much about qualifications as you think they do
    • “I’m not in the right location” – if it matters to you, it’s worth moving for it
    • “I don’t have the right network/reputation/work history” – with 3-4 hours of intentional work a day, you will have a huge network in weeks
    • “It’s too crazy” – crazy is completely relative, and there are thousands of good stories about what everyone called crazy
    • “I’m not talented/gifted enough” – many of the most successful people in every walk of life are mediocre at best regarding their talents
  • There are some very uncomfortable things you need to realize about yourself
    • You can’t change anything except yourself
      • As much as we all wish for a perfect world, the practical application of those ideas will take hard work that most people will never do
      • If you want to become an agent of change on a grander scale, look at yourself as the template you want to impress on the world
      • Wherever you are, your decisions have taken you there, even if it wasn’t fair to you
        • By being angry at someone, you are giving your will over to them through your obsession with their behavior
          • 99% of the time, the offender doesn’t even remember the offense they committed, even if it was horrible
        • Your decisions are the ultimate power to do anything, and you have to take personal responsibility for what you feel
      • We become what we think about
        • We don’t use our minds near enough because we take it for granted, despite the fact that it is our greatest asset
        • The view we have of ourselves shapes what we inevitably become
    • Your mindset about feelings probably needs to change
      • We are all emotional creatures, and our emotions fuel our desires
        • To link up emotions with desires we want to have, we need to know why we do what we do
        • Therefore, to be successful we have to have our passions deeply connected to it
        • With the right passion behind your goals, you will be do literally anything to achieve the purpose that you’ve devoted yourself to
        • Ironically, many highly successful people never actually learn to appreciate their victory, which is a personal failure of its own
      • Most people don’t know how their feelings work
        • The emotional states of many people are driven by past experiences instead of present or future ones
        • Since the past is unchangeable, this creates a permanent vicious cycle of reinforcing behavior
          • Often, people will forget their behavior in the present purely because they are listening to their memories for guidance
          • If the actions of the past created the present, then the same actions now will create the exact same future
    • You need to believe that you are unlucky
      • You can’t be willing to simply wait for an opportunity to happen
        • You need to go out and make your luck change
        • Walk into every encounter with the assumption that the odds are stacked against you
      • If you feel you are lucky, it can be very easy to feel entitled
        • Expecting good things to happen will lead to large amounts of disappointment
        • You don’t “deserve” anything more than you currently have right now
    • Your ideas are intrinsically useless, and your actions by themselves have no purpose
      • Thoughts and ideas have no value until they turn into actions and execution
      • Doing things to stay busy is a very ineffective approach to life
    • People on their deathbeds consistently have the same regrets:
      • I wish I hadn’t worked so hard
      • I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends
      • I wish I had let myself be happier and had been more reflective
      • I wish I had more courage to express my true self and be what I wanted
      • I wish I had lived a life true to my dreams instead of what others expected of me
  • You can only do it if you are motivated enough to stay through it the whole way
    • Motivation is essentially aligning your actions up to your desires
      • Many people fail by forcing the opposite: trying to line up their desires with their actions
      • To change desires, it requires personal growth, which only comes over weeks, months and years
      • If you’re having a hard time making a worthwhile risk, it’s often caused by over-thinking
        • Most timidity and hesitating comes from exaggerating fears and downplaying benefits
      • To measure how much motivation you have, measure how much you visualize the end result
        • Visualization is seeing and feeling the end result inside your imagination before you even start
        • Every successful person felt the sacrifice that became the finished product was completely worth it, even if they had failed in every other way
    • Negativity and cynicism will come, but they shouldn’t stay
      • If there is a constant stream of negativity in your thoughts, then work on personal happiness before trying to create results
      • e.g. to become a good guitarist, you first need to get over insecurities from being told that you were too uncoordinated to play the guitar
  • You need motivation because of what success requires you to sacrifice
    • Success is made of lots of change
      • You will need to be open-minded to new ideas and options for your problem you want to fix
      • Your ability to adapt on-the-fly will need to improve
    • Most of the time becoming successful is a lonely experience
      • Don’t expect any commendation; you will become personally successful long before anyone else sees results
      • You might make many good friendships, but you will lose a lot of them because you’ve outgrown them
      • You are likely to be constantly misunderstood
      • You will network with lots of associates and won’t have very many friends
      • Get ready for singleness for the rest of your life unless you’re lucky enough to find someone who understands your lifestyle
    • It will take longer than you expect it to
      • The 3 Back-Job Rule: for every job you see, there are 3 jobs hiding behind it
      • The bigger the endeavor, the more possible things will get in the way
      • It might take constant late nights and early mornings to achieve the results you expect
    • You will face opposition from many people around you
      • Society pushes us to be unsuccessful and selfish with the justification that it advances self-interest
      • People will want you to succeed, but often only as much or less than them
      • Family and friends will typically want to feel better about themselves and their own self-invalidating scripts
      • Insecure people don’t want their self-conceit (typically disguised as false humility) to be invalidated
    • You will need to be vulnerable and emotionally available to others despite all of the hardship
      • You’ll need to learn gratitude and appreciation for those people who will still accept you
      • You will have to learn to maintain appropriate behavior in unfamiliar settings
      • Your ability to be tactful despite your desire to fight-or-flee will be tested

Find out what changes you need to make

  • Ask questions you’ve never asked before about literally everything in your life, even the “forbidden” topics
    • Ask dumb or seemingly obvious questions
      • Why do I do (action)?
      • What makes me do (action)?
      • What do I dream about or love doing, and what have I done to keep it from happening?
      • What am I uniquely good at, and how can I more effectively use it?
      • What kinds of skills are needed out there that I know how to do, and where are they needed?
      • What opportunities can I use to expand my worldview or learn what I want to learn?
    • Look at everything you do in your day-to-day life and ask whether it needs to be there
      • Ingrained beliefs, prejudices and assumptions
      • Lines of communication with others
      • Routines and habits that are completely automatic
      • A lack of time, energy or resources to get what you want done
      • “Voids” of time, energy or resources that seem to be wasted
    • It must be out of a desire for the new thing, and not a “purging” of the old one
      • Visualize the goal, not the absence of the problem
        • Follow a passion, not specific numbers to attain
        • Vision will be a heartfelt passion that lingers, not a feeling that is here today and gone in a week
      • Ask yourself what you would like to be remembered for if you were to die one year from today
  • Every successful person is focused more on improving habits than on actually attaining outward successes
    • Though goals are more measurable than habits, they also have many problems
      • It is easier to become discouraged from not meeting goals, while habits aren’t built to be pass/fail
      • Attaining usually leads to an imbalance while habits create balance
        • Results-driven creates so much initiative that it crowds out anything else necessary for wellness
    • Habits come from any routine, and can either destroy or elevate a person to where they will go
      • Ultimately, maintained habits adapt and shape a person’s identity
        • Habits create thoughts and viewpoints
        • Thoughts and viewpoints create emotions
        • Emotions create our mental state
      • Stopping a habit is its own habit, so it’s much better to create a more enjoyable replacement habit instead
  • There are an innumerable number of habits that you can start to become successful
    • Accept and integrate some realities
      • Looking at today and the future is the only periods of time that pay off the most
        • The past is over
        • Beating yourself up for failures accomplishes nothing
        • The most important day is today, since it’s the only day that’s guaranteed
        • Nothing is permanent, including your values, and this is both scary and exciting
        • Archiving and auditing life is never as worthwhile as creating new experiences
        • Every complaint you have today won’t matter in 5 years
      • The following are completely normal, and everyone else suffers from it as well
        • Loneliness
        • Feeling unimportant, underappreciated and disappointed sometimes
        • Losing friends
        • Not everyone liking you
      • Your personal relationships won’t be perfect
        • The right significant other for you will not be perfect and will be difficult
        • You will misjudge people, learn from it and get over it
      • Your decisions and planning will never be perfect
        • Nobody takes you as seriously as you do
        • You will never know enough to take account for every possible risk
        • Making the right decision versus making the best decision often have complicated answers
        • Your contentment is more important than your outward status
        • Being broke is often necessary to becoming wealthy
        • You will never look as good as you want to, and your body will change
    • Learn to be mature with others
      • Stop comparing yourself to everyone else
      • Listen to wisdom from older people
      • Grow stronger in your dealings with others
        • Start caring about doing the right thing more than having approval
        • Stop being passive or pretending you don’t know any better
        • Let respect build itself instead of demanding it
        • Stop being jealous over a date’s platonic friends
        • Reconcile with anyone who hates you or remove grudges
        • Find new friends
        • Avoid unnecessary arguments, such as on the Internet
      • Show sensitivity towards others
        • Learn to be thankful for others in your life
        • Show genuine weakness to someone you can trust
        • Find ways to be agreeable in a disagreement
        • Learn more about your family, especially your children
    • Better yourself
      • Learn to be better with money
      • Stop making excuses, start finding out reasons
      • Do something new and uncomfortable
      • Start a new hobby
      • Enroll in a new learning course
      • Improve a skill
      • Sit down and self-analyze yourself
      • Start an exercising routine
      • Become more productive
      • Read every day
      • Join Toastmasters
      • Start a retirement fund
      • Learn the art of planning ahead, then going with the flow
    • Find new ways to enjoy life
      • Find things to do when bored
      • Write a letter to your future self
      • Decorate your living space or improve your environment
      • Make truthful affirmations and positive statements about yourself
      • Learn a strategy game or play a puzzle like chess or Spacechem
      • Volunteer more often
      • Turn off your television and video games permanently
      • Wake up and get going on days that you don’t feel like it
      • Don’t go to places simply to find a romantic relationship
    • Work on your career
      • Only call off work when it’s a legitimate reason
      • Do actual research
      • Start having some excitement for your career
      • Work as if your college degree or work history doesn’t apply to the situation
      • Find a way to integrate your personal life into your career
      • Get focused and learn to not always be “busy”
Next: Success 103: Get To Changing