I view summer as a springboard; an opportunity to propel yourself to new heights in not only any facet of your life, but also every facet of your life. It is a golden opportunity for elevation. However, it is your decision to take a leap off of that springboard.
During my Spring 2022 semester at UMass Amherst, there was a two week period when my maturation was accelerated to a rate much greater than I had seen in the recent past. When I reflect upon how my actions differed on a day-to-day basis, it may not appear as though anything significant was added, refined, or changed. However, this discreet mentality shift was life changing, and an integral part of my development as a man: take action.
Instead of continually replaying my vision in my mind or imagining where I wish to be, what if I manifested it, and made it my reality? How? By stopping the immature internal dialogue and excuses, eliminating any hindrances to my results, and TAKING ACTION! Start building brick by brick, today. Not when I’m ready, not in x amount of time, not when the perfect opportunity makes itself evident, let’s build and execute this vision right here right now. We are now on a mission, and will remain mission focused, period.
There isn’t anything else to it. It’s simple. It’s a step towards unlocking a more dedicated, disciplined, and mature version of yourself. I realized that people who are ambitious and driven, those who actually create and implement their vision into the world, are merely above allowing anything to hinder their path to success. They don’t even consider not getting it done an option, they just execute. There’s no excuses, blockages, or laziness. They remain mission focused and view the completion of their mission as a must. There are solely results.
Over many phone calls in the past, Brendan and I often discussed the idea of each day being a sprint. We would discuss ways to enable ourselves to sprint all day, every day, and continue to refine our methods for doing so each day. When I say “sprint each day” this isn’t to be taken literally; I’m talking about the concept of embodying a “Done. Next.” mentality in life. This approach was coined by Tim Grover, the trainer of Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, and other superstar athletes, in his book Relentless, my favorite book for mentality development.
This mentality is straightforward. As soon as you finish the first thing on your daily to-do list, you insatiably chase the next thing on it, and the next, and the next, and so forth. You are trying to do each task as expeditiously as possible, while wasting the minimal amount of time between tasks. I must emphasize that we aren’t recklessly chasing a fully checked off list at the expense of obtaining optimal results. We’re getting through the list while building upon our performance and progress from previous days, putting our best foot forward in everything we must do that day.
When you wake up every morning you have been blessed with recharged batteries. You have that juice, that energy inside you that will last all day, it’s just up to you how much of it you’re willing to use. I strive to be so exhausted by everything I do each day that I welcome the thought of going to bed. Not because I want to be relieved of my duties, but rather because I gave 100% in my pursuit to complete them, becoming fully immersed in every task I performed, doing each to the best of my ability. Because I am spent from exerting that energy building something. Because I want a chance to do it again the next day, further developing upon the progress I made today. This day? Done. Next. *Zzzzzz*
Brendan and I also exchanged countless phone calls regarding Mark Manson’s great self-improvement book The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck, which he encouraged me to read. One of the most important takeaways I made from the book is the endless, three part motivation loop. The motivation loop completely upended my views on the source of desire to act upon goals. The loop flows as follows:
What exactly is this saying? Simply put: action leads to motivation. The execution of work to further your progress towards the achievement of your goals, and realization of your vision, provides you the momentum to keep going. Your deliberate action acts as a spark for inspiration, breeding new ideas, and now, this new found inspiration will further motivate you to continue working towards the end goal and thus, your action continues.
When you start to see progress made towards your goals, the motivation to continue is intrinsic. This is why one of the most effective methods to end your habit of procrastination is to sit down and work for five minutes. When that five minutes is up and you have made a small bit of progress, even though it may not be much, you’ve now stirred the pot, and are now naturally searching for ways to continue and get the job done. So after that five minute timer goes off, you’re not going to get up; you’re going to work more.
This concept applies anywhere in life. Once we start, we seldom quit. In fact, the opposite is true; our motivation to keep going grows as our action continues. There is no difference between day two, 200, or 2,000. You’re just building. The only difference is between day one and every day that follows. And that difference is quite subtle: you just started. That was the moment it changed. That moment marked your embarkation on your journey.
Now that you’ve planted and watered the seeds for your project, assignment, job, or plan, it’s just a matter of time before it sprouts. Oftentimes, we don’t even need to designate time to deliberately think about or meditate on new ideas for our endeavors. What I’ve discovered is that just putting in the initial energy into whatever I’m doing will often cause the idea to stick in my subconscious mind and “marinate.” My subconscious will do the idea formulating and problem solving for me and then, all of the sudden, Bing! an idea or solution will pop up in my head; I must emphasize that this occurs because I have overcome that initial activation energy for the task and taken action, not because I just sat around and waited for it. You can have these sudden moments of inspiration or a surge of ideas rush to your mind—action is the catalyst.
I record these ideas in my iPhone notes or my journal to save them for a later time, which enables me to continue turning the wheel and further my progress towards the end goal. Or better yet, I act upon and work with them in the moment if I’m able to, because upon this action, the loop continues.
Stop dreaming, envisioning, and hoping. Start manifesting your unique vision; transfer it from your mind into the physical world.
You wake up every morning with the energy to elevate to new levels.
You are the catalyst.
The dominoes start falling only after you tip the first one.
MTD Blog Writer