For this entire year, I have been asked why I have zero goals.
That’s right. You heard right. I write all about personal development and how to be a better version of you and yet I have no goals for this year. You must think I’m a total screw up and a liar / cheat. You must think that I am completely incongruent.
How can you be successful if you have zero goals?
Okay, I left out one important detail. I decided this year to have only one mission and zero goals. Having a single mission means I can be completely focused, rather than get caught up in a blaze of half done goals. See the thing is I would rather achieve one massive, ginormous mission that means the world to me.
I am not interested in doing anything else other than playing life all out and you shouldn’t be either. There’s no point in being mediocre. Mediocre leads to an unfulfilling life and I can’t settle for that. In fact, I can’t settle for second best and you shouldn’t do that either.
Second best leads to regret and that feels like total crap to me. I don’t want to feel like that. The only way I can live the life I want to lead is to be nothing short of inspirational. This means I have to make all of you reading actually take action and execute like you never have before.
“This requires me to go first. This is because leaders go first and they eat their dinner last”
A brief interlude…Tracy Morgan
I’ve just finished listening to a podcast about the famous comedian Tracy Morgan. I’ve never taken him very seriously until the man made me cry like a baby this morning. The man was in a bad car accident and nearly died. He came out the other side having realized what his goal is.
His goal is to love people and show us how to do the same through his comedy. That’s his entire goal. He doesn’t write goal lists or live some crazy morning ritual. His ritual is a single mission and a single goal.
There is something about having a single mission that is so damn motivational in itself. It’s simple and easy to execute on just one thing. We all do such a poor job at trying to juggle multiple balls.
“What if all you needed to do was juggle one ball at a time while taking part in life’s circus”
Through the tears I shed by listening to Tracy be the opposite of funny for a brief moment, I finally understood that our life purpose is our single mission. Our life purpose is that one big mission that we should focus all of our attention on.
As we go through life, our mission can change but our purpose does not. Whatever your mission is and whatever way you find to serve people, you’ll eventually realize that you must love people and show them how to do the same.
Now to be vulnerable
The mission I wanted to achieve this year was to find an amazing woman. I’ve turned down every other offer and every business proposal to do just that. Everyone who knows me knows this mission. It’s written everywhere. It’s spoken about more than one hundred times per day.
If I liked tattoos, I’d probably get it stamped on my arm so I don’t forget it. It’s not easy to admit to the world that I’m trying to find a woman. Generally, people keep this sort of thing behind closed doors and rarely speak about it. It’s a secret mission that shows me that we’re all the same.
So I thought screw it. I’m either going to live what I preach and be honest, otherwise what’s the point?
Why bother writing these words if I’m going to hide behind some corporate mask trying to be someone I’m not. There’s something so freeing about sharing your single mission for the year.
Focus is king
By having one mission for this year, it’s made life crystal clear. When I thought about taking a holiday, I said no. When an opportunity to join a business venture came up, I said no. When I was asked to speak about what I do, I said no.
It’s hard to say no. I’ve found that it’s easier to say no when you have a single mission. You don’t feel regret because you have focused all of your energy on just one thing. I feel that simplicity is so freeing and that’s one of the reasons why I live a minimalistic life.
I want to save my mind for my life’s purpose and not waste thinking capacity on having 101 goals that are not that important to me. This advice might seem counter intuitive to every other self-help blog post, book, video you’ve ever seen. So what? Think about it carefully and it will make sense.
Big goals take enormous energy
Imagine the rejection, negativity, hard work and vulnerability it takes to find a woman for a second. I can tell you that it takes everything you’ve got. If you don’t give it all, then you don’t get the result. This year I knew that I wouldn’t have the energy to achieve my one big mission unless I deleted everything else.
You piss a lot of people off when you do this, but they eventually forgive you. The ones who don’t weren’t your true supporters anyway. The reason I have the energy to deal with so many negative emotions is that I’ve stored up massive reserves, by having no other goals.
The most fatiguing part of having one big mission rather than lots of goals is the decision making that comes with it. Making decisions drains your energy so by not having lots of goals I can concentrate my decision making muscle on only things that are relevant to my mission.
Through the process, I’ve simplified other parts of my life to compound my energy reserves further. I try to have a basic wardrobe, eat similar meals most days, have very few emails, have one place to post my blog articles and so on.
The truth that will set you free
Here it is: you’re distracted, over worked and not focused on what matters to you.
That’s a very harsh thing to say but it’s true. Riding along the highway with just one goal for a year allows you to reset. You may not live this way forever although I think it’s good to try it out on a major goal that seems to escape you continually.
Being true to yourself and forgiving yourself for your past failures will allow you to start fresh. This time, start fresh on a single goal that is a must for you.
When a goal becomes a must, and you’ve diverted all your energy towards it, you’ll see the results you’ve always longed for.
“Take that single mission and slap it over the head until you get the monkey off your back that is distraction and complication”
Narrow down, chunk it down and show us all how to love people. Don’t stop until you get what you want. When you get it, remember to be grateful.
Wish me luck with my mission. Peace. Big, scary world I’m coming for you!
If you want to increase your productivity and learn some more valuable life hacks, then join my private mailing list on timdenning.net
It’s What You Do On A ‘Bad Day’ That Matters.
Last Friday was a bad day for me. I woke up late, missed the gym and didn’t meditate.
None of this was intentional.
I then turned my computer on to do what I do every day: blog. I was not prepared for the whirlwind that followed.
As I opened up my social media channels, there were a lot more than usual, direct messages. I started reading each one and they were from colleagues and friends who wanted to warn me that I had a large amount of hate-fuelled comments on social media. I’m usually pretty good at dealing with hate comments. Not on that day, though — I was having a ‘bad day.’
I turned off the computer and didn’t respond to anybody. In the same week, I’d been told I was now a LinkedIn Top Voice for 2018.
I should have been celebrating and I didn’t because I didn’t feel worthy. If anything, I wanted to give up there and then. Luckily I didn’t follow through with any of these ideas. I knew it was just noise in my awful day.
I went away to sit on the couch and think about what I’d just read. Without really thinking about what I was going to do for the rest of the day, I began thinking about my team at work. There were several leadership challenges that I had to solve.
One was from a customer that was being abusive to female staff. Another was a rejection I had to deliver to someone that wanted to work with us. The hardest part about delivering the rejection was that I’d already said yes.
Despite the day being bad, I made a fundamental decision — to keep doing what I do and not stop. I said to myself “How can I inspire people while simultaneously solving both these challenges?”
I’m a big believer that it’s not what you say that matters; it’s what you do. Talk is cheap. I came up with a bold plan to address both challenges.
I was going to do something that made me see the good in the people involved.
Even if the people in both situations had let me down, I was going to assume they were still good.
I concocted a plan to help both people and try and show them a more positive way to move forward. If I break down the plan, it was about being an inspiration in both situations.
I didn’t feel like being inspiring.
It was not the day to be inspiring.
But it was the only way I could motivate myself to finish off this bad day and wake up the next morning fresh. It’s funny how a good nights sleep takes away all the pain and negativity from the day before.
So, by the end of the day, I enabled both plans. I set out to release inspiration in both scenarios and that was my only focus. I didn’t look at anymore hate fuelled comments or go near social media.
On that bad day last Friday, my actions helped me keep moving forward and not give up.
It’s not about necessarily seeing the good in your bad day.
I’ve read this sort of advice heaps, but it requires a lot of willpower.
“Using your actions to make the day better rather than trying to think your way out of your bad day seems to be a lot easier to implement”
It’s not about the bad day.
Bad days will happen.
It’s what you do on a bad day that determines if you’ll feel the full effect of all the negativity that can potentially knock you out like a Tsunami that comes your way when all you wanted to do was lay on the beach and soak up some sun.
I’ve learned to find situations during a day that’s not working out well for me, to do something good, and often that’s not something that benefits me. If I was to look at it another way it would be “How do I not focus on my own bad day?”
Trying to make someone else’s day good distracts you from your own bad day.
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This Is How An Ordinary Person Can Make Their Country Better.
Someone asked on the internet how they can make their country better.
They considered themselves ordinary and felt that they had to be someone special to make a difference in their country, India.
Their question made me feel a bit emotional because I can relate. I too have also dreamt of making my country better.
The most common answer to this question is to get involved in politics.
Many of you reading this find politics really boring including me. I’ve learned through my own experience that politics is not the only way you can make your country better.
Here’s how you can make your country better:
Use your voice
When I was faced with the question “How do I make my country better?” I decided to use my voice.
It was this decision that changed everything. I spent every day using my voice to stand for something. I wanted to inspire the world through entrepreneurship and personal development.
So, I started using my voice by posting on LinkedIn. I used my voice and transcribed it into words to tell the citizens of my country what I think they needed to hear.
Using your voice is incredibly scary at first. As soon as you start sharing your thoughts, many people will say nothing. You’ll get almost no feedback. As your voice starts to get louder over time (probably years) the opposite will happen and you’ll attract trolls and critics.
The hardest part about using your voice is having the courage every day to use it and not being obsessed with the outcome.
By using my voice online through blogging and LinkedIn, I managed to get a 35,000 person bank to start talking about my ideas with staff and customers, and I was voted LinkedIn Australia’s Top Voice that year.
Using the power of your voice is the number one way you can change your country.
It’s in your experiences, ideas and thoughts that you can find what it is that can help your country.
In my country, Australia, we are quite well off, but we still lack a positive mindset. Some of us work jobs we hate and we like things that only money can buy. There’s a competition to get the biggest house or the most expensive car.
It’s not a problem everyone in Australia suffers from, but it’s widespread. I believe by using my own voice to inspire people to seek alternatives, I can change my country.
The results thus far suggest I’m well on the way to changing my country.
Changing your country seems like a huge task. It sounds like something only a Nelson Mandela sort of fella can achieve. That’s not true.
A simple understanding of the power of kindness can change your country.
There was this guy I read about online that changed his country by giving out free hugs because he couldn’t run in the local marathon. He embraced his kind nature and ended up impacting millions of people in his country.
Being kind is infectious because we’re wired to do it. When we see one person be kind, we want to do the same.
The problem in my country (and many others) is that we’ve sacrificed kindness for greed.
We’ve let our country’s economy become the most important factor instead of measuring the way we treat people and the ability of a country’s nation to overcome adversity together.
Kindness is so important because every one of our countries will face adversity, and kindness is the solution to that inevitable problem.
Pick up the trash
This one seems even smaller in impact. It’s not.
I found that by picking up the rubbish I saw in places like my apartment lobby, I was able to show myself that I care about my country.
When we care about our country, we choose to make it look beautiful so others can enjoy it. Something simple like picking up the trash can take you a long way towards helping your country.
Every country has an environmental problem and picking up rubbish can help solve it. If we all picked up one piece of trash, then each of our country’s would be a hell of a lot cleaner.
Don’t think you can’t make your country better
A lot of what I’ve learned, by trying to make my own country better, has come from the belief that I can have an impact.
There are so many people who want to do nothing more than complain which wastes time and energy and doesn’t make anyone’s country better.
The way you make your country better is by believing you can and taking one or two small actions to start the process.
The people that change their country believe they can.
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