Happy new year beloved!
I know for a fact that this post would receive a decent number of hits if I had uploaded it on the first of January just in time for the “New Year New me” bellends to get their fix but, just to remind you once again: I’m not doing this for the views or, to get you so hyped up in the moment that you become very “passionate” about “dominating your year” because quite frankly, you need to calm your ass down and take a more strategic approach to certain things in your life.With reference to the image above, Ryan Holiday mentioned in his book that: passion (not to be confused with “not caring”) often masks our weaknesses. Passion can be very impatient; wants instant gratification; creates an illusion that we’re “very busy” but yet we can’t show much of our accomplishments and as a youth, I’m inclined to agree with this.
You will find that passion will give you the ability to describe in great details who you want to become and what your success would look like down the line. It might even allow you to provide the time-frame of when you will achieve “that success” but nevertheless, here you are still unable to produce an up to date report of your progress even though you’re “passionate” and forever“busy”. *Eye roll*
Tell me: how can someone be constantly busy and not progress? My friend, passion can be retarded.
Now that I’ve gotten that out of the way, we are 11 days into the New Year and some people might begin to realise that maybe it’s going to take just a little bit more than the mere surge of energy and motivation that they felt on December 31st to accomplish their goals for the new year but nonetheless, I really hope that my message will not get lost or become diluted because I like to keep it real. And, since I prefer to strip away some of the illusions about life on this website, let me start this topic by saying: fuck your dreams: you aren’t going to become the “biggest” or the “bestest” and, there’s a huge probability that your “hard work” might not bring success. It is what it is.
(P.s. click the link above to gain some context rather than getting ‘triggered’ by my statement. Just saying)
Why some of your goals will fail
If we go beyond the whole “New Year New me” frenzy, why is the gym always ridiculously busy during the first week in January but then quietens down half way through the month?
More importantly, why do people keep repeating this trend religiously every single year? It’s because they don’t really know why they’re there to begin with. They think that they do or rather; they’re trying to convince themselves that they do, but deep down, these individuals really don’t know their real purpose behind attending the gym. They’re lost. They lack direction and have no solid foundation but yet, they still find themselves repeating this insane trend every year expecting a different outcome.
Is this any different to what you’re doing with your life?
Let me explain
As human beings, we are creatures of habit and we are easily influenced by emotions. The sad thing is, we have managed to accumulate a lot of bad habits which have made us stuck in a certain mindset of how we do things and, when we get a flash of inspiration (typically after viewing some stupid motivational content online that doesn’t provide any real lasting solutions), we become super passionate, overzealous and impetuous about a goal or idea so much that we decide to pursue it to the full extents of our strengths but shortly after, reality sets in so to speak and we revert to our old habitual ways when we realise that the ‘honeymoon period’ is over.
Your goals fail because you have allowed passion, impetuousness and franticness to become a substitute for purpose, discipline, strength, master and perseverance.
I can relate to the above from past experiences. As a matter of fact, I’m so familiar with that vicious cycle so much that I contemplated quitting this whole business of running a personal development website.
Mentally, physically and financially: 2017 was arguably one of the most challenging years for me so far. I was unemployed for about 4-6 months and I recall sending well over 100 applications and I vividly recall getting rejected without fail. I also went into arrears as I ran out of savings and had to loan money from friends and family to stay afloat. (Where would I be without you guys? <3). Not to mention the back injury I suffered.
However, all of this was nothing in comparison to the internal conflicts and self-doubt that decided to engulf me later on in the year: I started to seriously question whether I truly desired to have 10,000 active web visitors per day or if I was only pursuing this goal just to copy someone that I admire very much.
Here’s the thing: writing, creating and posting consistently isn’t exactly easy especially when one is feeling uninspired. It’s tedious, time consuming and can be really frustrating especially when you’re having a mental block but I already knew all of this from the outset, therefore, I was/should have been mentally prepared for this.
However, it wouldn’t be such a head-fuck at the time if I hadn’t decided to resign indefinitely from a “safe” legal career to do a complete 180 degrees U-turn to take a shot at something that may or may not work out. Oh and let’s not forget being broke and unemployed.
BUT even after all of my trials and tribulations, here I am, still publishing another slightly above average blog post for myself and for you guys.
Failure is an option BUT giving up is not.
I’m not here for sympathy or to compare struggles.
As of now, I actually have a full-time job; I’m not in any real debt and my savings is looking very healthy. (You’d be naive to think that I gave everything up to do this full time on the whim that I’ll go viral and make millions online lol. Don’t be misled- I have a full blown job and I am dealing with my reality on a daily basis!)
The obstacle is the way
Dude, I didn’t just wake up on a random day after “a divine revelation” to stop pursuing a career that would have provided a great safety net to create a website and start blogging…
This wasn’t an impetuous decision on my part. This shit took months and months of hard work and careful planning AND I’m still only 25% into my plan. Saying “I still have such a long way to go” is a massive understatement-I don’t have 10,000 active web visitors per day just yet but I will- it’s just a matter of time.
The thing is: I knew EXACTLY what to expect so, I wasn’t surprised when the novelty of owning a website wore off which then led to me questioning my own resolve when things got a little tough.
Let me keep it real
This was a challenging period because knowing what to expect and actually experiencing it firsthand are two different things but the focal point remains that my mindset was on point. Adopting a stoic mindset definitely helped.
Another thing that helped me is what I’ve already mentioned: before I started this journey, I created a plan and also ensured that I cultivated some great habits at the beginning that would then later help me navigate through some tough times. I would also revert to my “reason why…” to time to keep reminding myself of my purpose. You too can adopt and apply these same principles to anything you’re trying to achieve.
Below are 4 great habits I cultivated along the way (with some evidence):
#1. I Wrote for 15 minutes every day
When my website went live, I made a promise with myself that I will always write for 15 minutes per day. Regardless of how ‘tough’ or shitty my day was, regardless of how exhausted I was from my temporary job at the time (which I was later fired from), I refused to break this agreement with myself.
The purpose of this exercise was to teach me to write when I’m feeling uninspired. Not to wait for the muse to strike before I feel the need to create some content. The result was astonishing: I remember writing over 13,000 words in the first few weeks and below is my current progress:I was diligent with this for a few months because I had to create some discipline. I was laying a solid foundation and, this came in handy when the ‘honeymoon’ phase was over. Not only was I able to produce content “on demand”, I also had so many unpublished quality posts at my disposal for those “rainy days”
#2. Celebrate every little win
This one was necessary to keep my sanity. Celebrating the smallest of wins encouraged me to keep going. Progress, regardless of how small it is generated some motivation for me.
Did you know that I built every, single, thing on this website without any pre-existing knowledge on web design/development?
A year ago, I didn’t even know what a ‘domain name’ or ‘hosting’ was let alone know how to improve my SEO score and drive traffic to my website on a practical level. I lacked real experience and all I had was ‘research’ and ‘theories’ that wasn’t guaranteed to work for me.
A year ago, I installed Google Analytics on my website to measure my progress and more significantly, to ensure that my message was reaching that ONE PERSON that needs to hear it the most, wherever they might be in the world. You can find my quarterly progress report from the inception of this project below and as you will soon discover, although my numbers are not particularly mindblowing, I have much to celebrate:
#3. Maintain a high standard of work
Simply put: I refuse to publish garbage.
I’m a pragmatic perfectionist who understands the need to get things done in a timely manner however, one thing I refuse to do is publish sub-standard content just for the sake of it. I’m so dedicated to this principle that I sometime edit a single blog post well over a hundred times before I upload it simply because I genuinely care about the quality of my work.
#4. Read more and gain knowledge
This blog post contains a lot of references from Ryan Holiday and as such, it would be criminal not to pay proper homage- please buy his books- they are all available via Amazon or on Playbooks/iBooks I believe.
Here are some other great books I will recommend for you guys to add to your regiment. But, it goes without saying that you should take some of the concepts found in these types of literature with levity.You’ll understand what I mean by this when you start reading them:
- The obstacle is the way- Ryan Holiday
- Ego is the enemy- Ryan Holiday
- The four agreements- Don Miguel Ruiz
- The 48 Laws of Power- Robert Greene
- The Rules of Work- Richard Templar
- The Rules of Wealth- Richard Templar
The bottom line
Do not accept the roles that society foists on you.
Become the master of your own identity rather than letting others define it for you.
Choose to re-create yourself and decide to live with a purpose by forging a life vision. Do not become a slave to useless emotions. Replace passion, sluggishness and impetuousness for discipline, perseverance and mastery.
Once again, failure is an option but giving up is unacceptable. That’s an order!
Don’t forget where you found this article and remember to like, comment and share it! #BeSafeTho196