I feel it is only appropriate to clear the air and speak about the truth on what determines your failure or success. There is a lot of self-help advice floating around out there. Certain gurus will tell you need to do XYZ in that order to be successful, or you must buy this, try this, move here, etc.
The truth is, the main thing behind all of your bad decisions, why you’re not where you want to be, why you’re not doing what you’d like to be doing. Why you can’t seem to get your act together Is…
There is your answer. (I hope this wasn’t to anticlimactic)
Plainly, simply, to the point, and honest.
The truth hits hard like a seasoned prize fighter, and the truth is YOU are responsible for your life, and you are responsible for what you reflect and get out of it.
Now I am not saying environments or other factors play a role. It would be ignorant to ignore that as well. But the most major shifts, changes, successes or failures come directly from you as an individual, and how healthy your mind and inner world is.
I would argue, as it has been tested in my personal experience and others, that life is lived from the inside out.
In other worlds, your inner world, which consists of your thoughts and beliefs, which then creates your attitudes and perspectives, are what inevitably shape your outer world.
If an individual has negative, dirty, debilitating or any type of disempowering thought about themselves, their progress, or overall life, how is that person going to even move forward?
It will be next to impossible to get anything done, because you won’t believe you will be able to do anything. You will believe nothing is going to work.
And with that attitude, you are right.
When written out like this, it just doesn’t make sense. But many people think the world should work like this.
You are the creator of your life, you just need to begin believing so. And stop believing all the bullshit that pulls you away from that truth.
Below is a quote by a famous Samurai. If you don’t know Miyamoto Musashi, he is somewhat of a legend in the martial arts world. He had his first duel when he was 13 years old and never lost a fight. He was a self-taught Samurai and later wrote a book about his life and his philosophy called “The Book of 5 Rings”. [Link] Here is one of his quotations:
“There is nothing outside of yourself that can ever enable you to get better, stronger, richer, quicker, or smarter. Everything is within. Everything exists. Seek nothing outside of yourself."
This idea is also thrown around a lot in the self-help world, but I feel it is only taken surface level deep on how profound it really is.
If you don’t change on the inside, nothing outside will change either.
People think they’ll become millionaires with a broke attitude.
People think they’ll attain strength from their weak thoughts.
People believe they can get a six pack without developing the internal grit to work out heavily and follow a disciplined diet (or they think that device that pulsates on your stomach will work which is even more comical.)
People want to change yet stay the same simultaneously. They want to maintain their current habits, attitudes and thinking, but they want everything around them to change.
In short, they want the external results without changing anything in the internal world. Not realizing they are intertwined. I have never seen anyone including myself, change for the better holding onto the same thoughts and internal patterns.
It seems like most people are looking for their life coaches or mentors to inject something in them that will give them what they need.Whether that be confidence, money, power, motivation or whatever else they are looking for.
People are still desperately searching for magic pills to fix all their problem. You read one book, have one session with a life coach, go to one conference, buy the 5-minute abs video. And all your problems and go away in an instant. You will get ripped in those 5 minutes as promised, become a millionaire within the month, and achieve all your dreams tomorrow. Businesses and social hustlers are happy to constantly feed you the idea of outward-in change and quick fixes because it sells. But this outward-in approach will never help you achieve the internal shifts that are at the roots of your problems.I hate to tell you this if you’ve been sold on this thinking, but all of this is pure bullshit.
The reason being is that coaches, books, and seminars all show you the way. And some do an excellent job of doing so, but in the end, even when a life coach or book points you in the direction, it is your job to walk that path. And depending on where you are at, how quickly you can let go of old patterns, and your own bullshit, that is what will dictate your progress.
And nobody can do that work but you.
Nobody can make a change within you, but you.
The first thing is understanding this at a deep level; that at the end of the day, Only YOU can change YOU. Some people can help you and act as catalysts for your change, but you will be the one who makes the determining decision.
Not some life coach, not another book, not another seminar, not another vacation, not another spiritual journey, YOU are the one who is responsible for your ultimately deciding direction. To decide if where you’re currently going is right for you, and to pivot as needed.
After getting rid of all the negative crap on the inside(which again, can take some time), you must decide, what do you want to do?Where do you want to go? What makes your soul sing? What do you want to accomplish.And a good thing to point out here is not to focus on what everyone else is doing. If someone else makes it big doing something, that doesn’t mean it’s the only way to be successful. Your path will be different from the next persons.
When it comes to change in the positive direction, it is important to begin monitoring your current influences. Who are you currently listening too? Who is your circle of friends and associates? Who bends your ear the most? What do you absorb in terms of reading and media? What are your hobbies, what is your diet? All these things amount to the person you are today, and inevitably, some or many of these items will need to change if you want to.
“The cost of a thing is the amount of what I will call life which is required to be exchanged for it, immediately or in the long run.”
–Henry David Thoreau
Once your influences are identified, now comes the part to trim them off. Are your current influences, from your daily habits to the people you associate with helping you get where you want to go? If the answer is yes, great, you are likely on the right path. If the answer is not, these items need to be re-evaluated for where they fit into your life.
When you begin to truly change from the inside out, it will not feel “good”. At times it will feel wrong. This is because you have ingrained all your prior patterns so deeply, any deviation from them are going to shock your system. Your mind will essentially try to tell you “This shit is way too new for me, let’s go back, I don’t like this”. This is your 200,000 year old hunter gatherer brain try to keep you safe from what it views as a potential threat to your survival (ie something new). And this is where most people stop.
To continue the path of change, this little troll that lives in our head needs to be confronted repeatedly. With repetition, the kick back from change, slowly quiets down, and the next set of changes will be easier to overcome.
When changing behaviors, your habits are going to change along with it. There are a few fantastic books written on this subject matter, one of my personal favorites is “Tiny Habits” by BJ Fogg. He talks about an idea called the “ability chain”, he says that each habit has the following sticking points that make a habit difficult to implement, time, money, physical effort, mental effort, routine. For example: maybe you want to go to the gym, your personal sticking points in the chain may be finding the time in your busy day, the mental effort it takes to prepare to go.
Fogg’s overall advice for changing habit patterns is to start small. For example, say you want to start implementing processes from “The Davinci Method” [Link ebook Page] to get more done in your day. If you are starting from scratch, your first task should be to simply sit down and begin that side project you’ve been working on. And when you start, only bit off a small chunk, shoot for 15-20 minutes of focused work. Trying to work for 2 hours straight out of the gate may not be the right goal. Not that it is unachievable but setting an achievable goal to start is what you build persistence and keep you coming back.
Well, now that you are rounding out this article, you are free to do what you want. Are you going to go back to your old ways, or are you going to walk away from this article and begin down the path of starting something new? Are you going to keep putting up with all your bullshit? Or will you decide after reading this, enough is enough and it’s time to move in a better direction.
The choice is and always will be yours.