Monthly Archives: June 2018

If It Doesn’t Suck, It’s Not Worth Doing!

Came across this article by Benjamin P. Hardy that he had originally contributed to in Inc.com. I find that what Mr. Hardy has written is a very insightful article sharing some important truths. Take a read and see for yourself.

Original Hardy article posted on Inc.com

According to psychological research, the anticipation of an event is almost always more emotionally powerful than the event itself.

According to psychological research, the anticipation of an event is almost always more emotionally powerful than the event itself.

The dread of asking your boss for a raise is paralyzing and can last months. Yet, once you get yourself to finally do it, it’s over before you know it. The excitement of attaining some object or objective can become obsessive. Yet, shortly after you obtain your desire, you’re bored and in search of something else. “We buy things to make us happy, and we succeed. But only for a while. New things are exciting to us at first, but then we adapt to them,” says Dr. Thomas Gilovich, Cornell psychologist.

Interestingly, your mind can seduce you so much so that the idea of something becomes more satisfyingthan the thing itself, so you stop at the idea and never make it real. Thus, in his book, Ego is the EnemyRyan Holiday explains that a primary obstacle to success is the idea of success.

It’s so easy to dream.

It’s easy to tell people about your ambitions. It’s easy to create vision boards and write down your goals. It’s easy to stand in front of a mirror and declare affirmations.

And that’s where most people stop.

The very act of dreaming stops you from achieving your dreams.

You’ve played-it out in your mind with such intoxicating detail that you become satisfied enough. You become numbed. And you deceive yourself into believing you’ve actually done something productive.

Consequently, when you attempt the activity itself, you immediately hit a stone wall of resistance. More often than not, you quickly distract yourself from the discomfort with some form of momentary pleasure. Yet, Robert Greene explains in his book, Masterythat you can learn to love this internal resistance. In his words, “You find a kind of perverse pleasure in moving past the pain this might bring.”

How To Get Out Of Your Rut

In his book, Living with a SEALJesse Itzler tells the story of being inspired by a certain Navy SEAL and consequently inviting him to live at Itzler’s home for a month. Itzler admitted being in a personal rut and wanted to shake himself out of his routine.

Day 1: “SEAL” asked Itzler, “How many pull-ups can you do?” Itzler squeaked out eight shaky pull-ups.

“Take 30 seconds and do it again,” SEAL said.30 seconds later, Itzler got on the bar and did six, struggling.

“Take 30 seconds and do it one more time,” SEAL said. 30 seconds later, Itzler got on the bar and did three, at which point his arms were exhausted.

“Alright, we’re not leaving here until you do 100 more,” SEAL stated. Itzler was puzzled. “Alright, we’re gonna be here a long-time. Cause there’s no way I could do 100.” However, Itzler ended-up completing the challenge, doing one pull-up at a time. Thus, SEAL convinced Itzler that he could do way more than he thought he could.

The principle SEAL taught is what he calls the 40% rule – which essentially means people feel maxed-out mentally and physically, and thus stop, when they are at only 40% of their actual capacity. Going past this 40% capacity is when it becomes uncomfortable. Thus, SEAL’s mantra, “If it doesn’t suck, we don’t do it.”

The Power Of Objective-Based Pursuits

“The pain is a kind of challenge your mind presents – will you learn how to focus and move past boredom, or like a child will you succumb to the need for immediate pleasure and distraction?” – Robert Greene

Like Itzler who shattered a mental barrier by completing 100 pull-ups, you too can get out of your rut by pursuing tangible objectives.

The concept is: Do something and don’t stop until it’s complete, no matter how long it takes.

Your goal is to learn how to accomplish hard things without continuously distracting yourself. You want to develop what Greene calls “A perverse pleasure” in experiencing internal conflict, and sitting with it.

This concept is embedded in Crossfit. Unlike most people, who check their smartphones between exercise “sets,” at Crossfit, you have a specific objective and you kill yourself until it’s done.

If it doesn’t suck, we don’t do it.

You can apply this principle to anything and everything. You can do a homework assignment and just do it until it’s complete. You can write an article and stick-to-it until it’s published. You can do 100 pull-ups, or run 5 miles, and go until you’re done. Who cares how long it takes?

The Greatest Opportunity In History

In his book, Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World, Cal Newport states the following:

“The ability to perform deep work is becoming increasingly rare at exactly the same time it is becoming increasingly valuable in our economy. As a consequence, the few who cultivate this skill, and then make it the core of their working life, will thrive.”

Without question, we live in the most distracted time in human history. It is almost impossible to remain focused on a single-task for more than a few minutes at a time.

The law of opposites is in affect. With every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. While most of the world is becoming increasingly distracted, a select few are capitalizing on this fact. There is also a widening chasm between the spiritual and secular – where the two used to be synonymous.

Hence, Economist Tyler Cowan has said, “Average is over.” The middle-class is gone. Either you’re among the select few who are thriving, or you’re like most people who are distracted, overweight, and struggling.

The choice is yours.

When something sucks, do you quit? Or do you push-through and eventually enjoy the satisfaction of growth and success?

Anything worth doing is going to suck at the beginning. Anything worth doing is meant to require pain and sacrifice. Herein lies the problem facing America, which originally was built on the moral of impulse control. What once used to be a country filled with people sacrificing momentary pleasure for a better future, the overpowering message of today is live for the moment.

And that’s exactly what people do. They live for this moment. Consequently, when something sucks, or becomes hard, most people quit. Most people indulge themselves in momentary satisfaction at the expense of a better future.

To make matters worse, the twin “truth” of today’s culture is love yourself for who you are. The self-esteem movement of the late 20th century is an enormous contributor to America’s faltering success.

People are taught to love themselves regardless of their performance. Thus, they justify mediocrity. Yet, Asian’s and other immigrant groups who often are considered to have low self-esteem consistently outperform American’s who have high self-esteem.

Unlike in other parts of the world where hard work is seen as a virtue, the repeated phrase in America is: “Don’t work too hard!” Success these days is to get as much as you can for as little work as possible.

In the book, The Triple Package: How Three Unlikely Traits Explain the Rise and Fall of Cultural Groups in AmericaAmy Chua and Jed Rubenfeld explain that most successful people not only control their impulses, but also have an implicit sense of inferiority.

These people may have confidence, yet, they remain unsure of themselves. They have a chip on their shoulder due to being oppressed in some way. So they continuously push themselves, regardless of how successful they become, to prove themselves. They are never satisfied with what they’ve done. They continue to feel inferior.

These very traits are awarded in today’s economy because they are so rare. Again, few people control their impulses, but instead live for the moment. And few people, especially in America, have any sense of inferiority. Rather, most people have bought into the myth that you must first love yourself before you can become successful.

Garbage.

True confidence is earned. It’s earned by succeeding. Not by wishing for success. Meta-analytic research confirms this.

True confidence emerges when you consistently push-through things that suck. The longer you sit with the boredom, pain, and discomfort – and actually create something meaningful, the more confident and successful you will be.

Hence, Ryan Holiday explains in an interview with Lewis Howes: you are rewarded for the work you actually accomplish. Not the promises you make.

Doing the work is hard.

Getting into elite physical condition is brutal.

Building deep and committed relationships is nearly impossible. Most marriages end in divorce.

All of these things “suck,” at least initially, and in-the-moment. However, if it doesn’t suck, it’s not worth doing. And you absolutely can learn to endure the discomfort of the moment to build a life worth having.

If you’re stuck in a rut, like Itzler, challenge yourself to complete specific objectives – no matter how long they take.

Pleasure Vs. Happiness

“A life that doesn’t include hard-won accomplishment and triumph over obstacles may not be a satisfying one. There is something deeply fulfilling – even thrilling – in doing almost anything difficult extremely well. There is a joy and pride that come from pushing yourself to another level or across a new frontier. A life devoted only to the present – to feeling good in the now – is unlikely to deliver real fulfillment. The present moment by itself it too small, too hollow. We all need a future. Something beyond and greater than our own present gratification, at which to aim or feel we’ve contributed.” – The Triple Package

True happiness – joy – is fundamentally different than momentary pleasure. Not to say momentary pleasure is inherently bad. However, it often gets in the way of something more real and lasting.

Anything worth doing brings a satisfaction that distraction never can. Don’t give into the resistance. Push through the difficulty. That’s where a joy that those who stop will never taste.

Said Geologist James Talmage:

“Happiness leaves no bad after-taste, it is followed by no depressing reaction; it brings no regret, entails no remorse. True happiness is lived over and over again in memory, always with a renewal of the original good; a moment of pleasure may leave a barbed sting, [as] an ever-present source of anguish.”

Read the original article If It Doesn’t Suck here.

 

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Are You Ready To Set Sail?

Have you ever wondered why it always seems that the other guy gets all the breaks?

Or, does it seem like as you put in your effort what one would expect for returns just doesn’t quite make it?

I’ve always thought that if I put in my fair share I certainly should get what I felt I deserved. However, in the end things don’t always work out the way we expect not knowing all that is involved.

For example, let’s say you fixed up a house that you purchased for some renovation, and then would intend to sell off at a higher price to account for the time and material you put in hopefully making a nice profit.

In this example we’ll say that you purchase the home for $150,000. After three years the updates were complete and the house was ready to be sold.

It turns out that the amount you put in to get the house ready for sale over the three-year period was $25,000. Unfortunately, the most that buyers were willing to offer to purchase the house was $165,000.

It turns out that there were more houses available than buyers at that time, therefore giving buyers a greater option to choose from and what to offer when they did wish to buy. At that time is had become a buyers’ market, something that is beyond our control.

A similar situation like this had happen to me recently. My situation was a financial loss in the end, but it did provide many exciting opportunities over those years getting the house ready in the end.

Yesterday I was attending a meeting and the speaker, Chris Brady, shared this statement, “Your ship doesn’t come in until you send one out!”

Although my “ship” didn’t come back overflowing with profit when I sold that house, it did come back chock full of experience, knowledge, memories, opportunities, and more that I would have never been able to obtain had I not sent that ship out when I bought that house and taken the chance initially!

I’ve since been able to move forward to my next opportunity that I would never have considered had I not sent my first “ship” out…

When one is looking to do something more in their life they need to take the first step and see what that life looks like. If we wait for the right thing to come to us we’re going to miss it only because we won’t recognize it not knowing what we’re looking for!

Get up and experience things you want to do. Determine what you what to be doing in life and go do it!

Believe in yourself,

Warren La Duke

Is Someone Knocking At The Door?

Why is it that people always have an opinion to share especially when it has to do with something they know nothing about?

How many times have you been working on a project and a discussion resulted, possibly to explain what was happening, or to work through a problem that showed up, or maybe even just some confusion of what was taking place.

You’re working in your area of expertise, your circle of competence, and are quite confident at what you’re doing and sharing.

However, for one reason or another someone you’re with feels they need to know more and question what you’re doing. So, they rely on their mentor, Google!

Nothing against Google. They have a lot of great information available as a research source, but to learn and grow from your mistakes, knowing how to put behind yesterday’s futility and recognizing today greatness, realizing that someone trusts your judgement and the excitement you feel moving forward making the decision with gusto.

All this and more comes from having a personal mentor behind you. Someone who has decided to teach you how to become the best you that you can be by learning from what they have done.

They are willing to teach you what got them to where they are and where you are not!

As we move forward in our journey we need to know where it is we’re heading, what is our desired result. To get there we should consider achieving various steps of accomplishment that move us closer each time.

With each step this may require learning something new, and potentially a new mentor at each step. This will allow us to tap into the minds of many experts who are willing to teach others about their circle of competence.

You may be the student now, but one day someone may be knocking on your door to learn from you! Then you will be the teacher.

Believe in yourself,

Warren La Duke

Make It Better…

I’m the type of person who when I start a project I must get it right or it haunts me until I go back and fix it. In some of the different personality definitions this is referred to as being a Melancholy.

One thing I had to find out more about is why I am the way I am. So, I did find some information on personalities and the different types that have been identified.

Although my personality is only a portion of what is considered Melancholy, this personality type tends to be a deep thinker, has a preference to be alone, is quiet, and undemanding. They are organized, do not adapt well to new routines or new places. They are serious to the purpose, dedicated, organized, and focused.

This information is shared to you by Florence Littauer in her book Personality Plus.

There are many different books and courses available one can take to determine their own personality type, all good in their own way, and in the end what you’re learning is pretty much the same information that is being shared by that author. Find someone you’re comfortable with and able to enjoy learning from.

Most importantly get to know your personality type so you’re able to better understand yourself and work with others.

In any working system that we are part of we cannot account for anyone else, we can only account for ourselves. As long as we know the most about what makes us move then we are our own weakest link in that whole system.

Putting ourselves in motion to complete a task we are serious about completing helps us to find out how we can improve ourselves when the moment comes that our task fails. At some point we will want it to fail even if we have succeeded in achieving our initial goal. That way we can still find out where our design can be improved!

Always push ourselves forward to a point where something will break. Now we know what needs to be fixed and how our plan can continue forward.

My experience has shown that many are not willing to look at themselves first when something goes wrong. Who’s in charge, who’s design is this, who wanted this task to go forward, who’s not listening to what’s taking place?

These are only a few of what might be taking place while everything is happening. The point is, we wanted this to happen and we will take responsibility for whatever goes wrong too. So, when it does let’s not worry about any fault, let’s get out and find why it happened and make it better!

Believe in yourself,

Warren La Duke

Oh, The Places We’ll Go!

Who out there enjoys reading? Have you ever picked up a book and the next you know you’ve finished it in what appears to have been no time? Like, you were absorbed into the book and were apart of everything taking place!

I just love to read. Ever since I was a young boy when I could find a good book or any kind of story, really, I’d be sitting to read what it was all about.

Filling my mind with whatever information what being told, the tale that was then transforming my mind to another location, another world, another era…

Oh, how some people can write and then fulfill the minds of others with ideas and pictures of things that one would never believe possible.

Some might think that this is only possible with fiction, science fiction, or romance novels. Believe it or not this is also possible with non-fiction and educational type books as well.

When we find something we enjoy, for example I love to help others who are in financial distress, so I’m always reading books others have written about how to get out of debt or why they should get in debt! Different thoughts and sometimes way different ideas that help me to stay focused too.

This also is one method to maintain my circle of excellence that was mentioned previously, allowing me to stay on top of my game as well.

Learning is an important tool we’ll find to be our most important asset throughout our life. The more we learn the better off we can take ourselves.

It is said that knowledge is power, but that is isn’t completely true. If nothing isn’t done with the knowledge we’ve learned, then it has no value.

To make the most out of anything we acquire we must put it to use! Take that knowledge and do something with it.

Use it! Create ideas, create income, make mistakes, learn from what has now been placed into your mind so that you’re now able to know that it’s there and the information is good and understood.

Here’s where things get good. Because once this information is in our mind and we know how it works, no one can ever, ever, ever take it away from us!

Now we’re talking wisdom. Something you get only when you add time and experience to knowledge.

Believe in yourself,

Warren La Duke

Look Through My Eyes!

I’ve always been the type of person who always wanted things done not only correct, but also done my way! My wife will definitely confirm to that.

But anytime when one takes on a project that involves multiple areas of expertise, something will suffer. What we see through our eyes isn’t always see the same through another’s. So, even though I may feel my way is the correct and right way the next person will disagree! I’m sure you do.

In my last article I discussed how we should focus on our own circle of competency, what it is that we are an expert ourselves at. Whenever we step outside that circle not only is there now a zone of doubt around all that we do just from our lack of knowledge and experience, but we also increase the time factor in all that is done.

Just so we may now be comfortable and think we are confident in what is happening.

This might even require that we must do additional research to find out more information on what needs to be done. Resulting in some trial and error episodes that lead to mistakes and backtracking in what has occurred ending up in additional costs.

Does this sound familiar to anyone? It sure does to me…

By remaining within our own circle of competency and then working with others experienced in the issues located outside our own, this will result in an expert in that area resolving those issues

  • Faster that anything we are capable of
  • The job will be completed with fewer problems
  • The final cost will be less
  • We’ll be much more satisfied with the end results
  • We’re able to remain focused on our own tasks at hand

And when the dust settles we now have another client that to work with on future projects as well as be referenced by them to other clients of theirs.

Believe in yourself,

Warren La Duke