Somewhere down the line we, as a species, began to think that happiness, success, and the life we dream about, is our right, not an earned privilege. Simply by being born into this world, we should receive what we want; not due to merit, as the result of work, sacrifice, and persistence, but because we, are we. We’re a gift to this world and we should be compensated as such.
The Occupy Movement began with good intentions, but morphed into a beast that held this world view. What began as a call for justice, turned into a war cry for hand-outs, to receive the riches that others worked to earn.
Here’s a fact that only Rocky Balboa could so eloquently convey…
“The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place. And I don’t care how tough you are, it will beat you to your knees and keep you there if you let it. You me or nobody is going to hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard you can hit, it’s about how hard you can get it and keep moving forward; how much you can take and keep moving forward.”
The world is a mean and nasty place. It’s heartless. It doesn’t care if you or I succeed or fail. Sure, there are a lot of good, honest people on this planet who do care, but the world, the majority of the people in it, the system, and our society aren’t as concerned or vested in your life as so many seem to believe they are.
Anything you get in life has to be earned through hard work, sacrifice, and persistence. There’s no such thing as a free ride. It doesn’t exist.
If Success Was Easy, Everyone Would Do It
There’s also a common misconception that being an entrepreneur is an easy road. The age of information has shown us the fruits of labor of the successful, but it rarely shows the tough road taken to that eventual success – a road that few would take if they knew all that it would entail, including the missing guarantee of success that many feel is at the end of every journey.
The road to success is always shared with uncertainty. No one knows that success is at the end of the tunnel, they may have faith – actually, all who are successful have faith – that what they’re doing will turn out alright, but they don’t know.
It’s uncertainty that leads to so many quitting before success is realized. It’s grit that keeps those who are willing to work and persist and evolve, in the game long enough to see their baby, their dream, their creation, fulfilled.
When the majority of “wannabe” entrepreneurs start out on their road to success, they think they’re unique. They believe that them being them is enough to warrant wealth. In this naiveté they become soft. In this dream of an easy American Dream, they fail to develop the toughness that has to come along on an entrepreneurs lonely adventure.
If more would realize that success isn’t easily attained, nor should it be, but earned through long, uncertain, and lonely nights, aided only by an internal toughness and grit that propels a select few to work while others party, drink, and play, many more would be successful in life, not just in business.
The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It is a very mean and nasty place. When they say that only the strong survive in business, and in life, they mean it. This article isn’t meant to deter you from pursuing your dream, it was written to have a completely different effect: to inspire.
Those who read this article see a challenge; a challenge directed at them, and them alone, to fight for the vision, to pursue their dream, and to show themselves, and the world, that they are one of the few who are tough enough, gritty enough, and strong enough to create the life they want, to live the life they want, and to build the vision they have.
Accept the challenge; fight daily, work nightly, and persist. When I said people don’t care whether you succeed or not, I added, at least to their knowledge for a reason…
The world needs you to succeed. It needs your vision to become a reality so you can benefit the rest of humanity. Whether it’s your business that will help others directly, or your story that will inspire others to think big and truly experience all that this beautiful life should offer; your success is needed. So, please, take the challenge, rise up, fight, and persist. The nights will be long, the road will be unforgiving, but you have the grit to push through, to break through, and to succeed.
And while we are at it, here are some Rocky Balboa Picture Quotes to help you weather the storm:
How to Stay Motivated to Achieve Your Goals
Time is the raw material of our lives. How we choose to spend it, shapes our life accordingly. So having the motivation to spend it on achieving goals is crucial to creating a life we want.
What is Motivation?
The Oxford dictionary defines motivation as the desire or willingness to do something – our drive to take action.
Scientifically, motivation has its roots in the dopamine pathways of our brains. When we do something that feels good, that’s dopamine kicking in. Our actions are driven by the desire for that reward (the good feeling).
Author Steven Pressfield describes motivation more practically. He says we hit a point where the pain of not doing something becomes greater than the pain of doing it. He sees motivation as crossing the threshold where it’s easier to take action than it is to be idle. Like choosing to feel awkward while making sales calls over feeling disappointed about a diminishing bank account.
However you choose to think about it, we all want to harness motivation to achieve our goals.
How to Get Motivated
James Clear, the author of Atomic Habits, says that most people misunderstand motivation. They think that motivation is what gets us to take action. In reality, motivation is often the result of action, not the cause of it. Once we start a task, it’s easier to continue making progress. Like Isaac Newton’s first law: objects in motion stay in motion.
This means most of the resistance when working on your goals comes right before we start. Since motivation naturally occurs after we start, we need to focus on making starting easier.
4 Ways to Make Starting Easier
1. Schedule it
One reason people can’t get started on things is that they haven’t planned when to do it.
When things aren’t scheduled it’s easier for them to fall by the wayside. You’ll end up hoping motivation falls in your lap or hoping that you’ll muster enough willpower to get it done.
An article in the Guardian said, “If you waste resources trying to decide when or where to work, you’ll impede your capacity to do the work.”
2. Measure something
It’s easy to feel uninspired when you don’t know if you’re making progress or what you’re even working towards. That’s why you need to make your success measurable in some way. Starting is easy when you know exactly how much closer your current actions will bring you to achieving your goal.
3. Extrinsic motivation
This type of motivation is from external factors. It can be either positive or negative. Positive motivation consists of incentives like money, prizes, and grades. Negative motivation consists of deterrents like being fired, having a fight, or being fined. Extrinsic motivation doesn’t work effectively long-term, but it can work well in the short term to get you started on something.
4. Make it public
Keep yourself accountable by telling friends and family your goals, or even sharing them on social media. This makes it easier to start something because you’re pressured to not let others down.
How to Stay Motivated Long Term
When we say we want to feel motivated to do something, we don’t want to be pushed or guilted into doing a task. We want to be so attracted and drawn to the idea that we can’t resist not taking action. That’s why it’s important to build a foundation that will set you up for consistency.
These are 5 techniques that will help you do just that:
1. Stay in your goldilocks zone
The goldilocks zone is when a task is the perfect level of difficulty—not too hard and not too easy. In this zone, we reach peak motivation and focus.
For example, let’s say you’re playing a serious tennis match against a 4-year-old. On this level of difficulty, you’ll quickly become bored and not want to play. Now let’s say you’re playing a serious tennis match against Serena Williams. On this level of difficulty, you’ll quickly become demotivated because the match is too challenging.
The Goldilocks zone is in the middle of that spectrum. You want to face someone with equal skill as you. That way you have a chance to win, but you have to focus and try for it. Adjusting your workload and goals over time to stay within your Goldilocks zone keeps you engaged and motivated long-term.
2. Pursue intrinsically motivated goals
Being intrinsically motivated to achieve a goal is when you want to achieve it for what it is. There are no external factors like a reward or the risk of being fired. The drive behind your actions is coming from within.
For most intrinsic goals we pursue them because they will enrich our lives or bring us closer to fulfillment. That makes these goals extremely sustainable long-term because they directly affect our quality of life and the things we care about.
3. Use “chunking”
Chunking is the technique of breaking down a goal into smaller short-term targets. By doing this you achieve multiple successes in your pursuit of the main goal. This triggers the brain’s reward system and drives you to keep going.
Traditionally, you may set a goal that you expect to achieve in one year. That’s a long time to commit without seeing any results along the way. By chunking your goals into monthly or quarterly targets, you get the consistent positive reinforcement you need to stay motivated long-term.
For example, instead of trying to lose 50 pounds in one year, try to lose 4 pounds every month for 12 months.
4. Be flexible
We’re all victims of circumstance. Things happen along our journey that we can either adjust to or quit because of. That’s why it’s important to have leeway and flexibility when you’re pursuing a goal. If you expect everything to go perfectly, the inevitable failure can make you disengaged and desireless. When you plan for things to go wrong, you make sure you can keep up for the long haul.
5. Pursue your goals in a sustainable fashion
Don’t lose hope when you’re not an overnight success. Overnight successes are the 1%—for the most part, they don’t exist. What we see as an “overnight success” is actually countless hours of work behind the scenes finally hitting a tipping point. Pursuing goals is a story of patience, persistence, and unseen effort.
Don’t compare yourself to others. Comparison is a recipe for a drop in self-confidence and satisfaction. It also cultivates a mindset where you think you haven’t done enough. As a result, you may raise your expectations and put more pressure on yourself.
This is pointless because things worth achieving take time. So we obviously won’t compare to the things around us when starting.
Mastering motivation is a superpower. With that ability at your fingertips, you can accomplish your goals and shape a life you want to live in.
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