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Step 1: Focus on the Why and How, Not the What

Embarking on a transformation journey can be daunting, filled with challenges and uncertainties. We all strive for progress, personally or professionally, yet the path ahead may seem unclear. It’s natural to question our direction when progress feels elusive.

Amidst the turbulence, anchoring ourselves in purpose and strategy is crucial. Rather than hastily altering course based on fleeting doubts, we must discern between feelings and facts. Impulsive shifts in direction can lead us further from our desired destination.

Consider this analogy: life resembles sailing. We set sail with a destination in mind, but doubts may arise once we’re adrift in the vast expanse of uncertainty. However, succumbing to panic and changing course impulsively can lead to aimless wandering.

Instead, let’s focus on deliberate actions guided by clarity and intention. Assessing our journey requires a thorough understanding of what truly drives progress. For instance, if seeking career advancement, it’s essential to evaluate the quality of training rather than merely seeking busyness or superficial accolades.

Actual growth stems from meaningful actions that align with our goals and values. Merely accumulating experiences or connections for the sake of it won’t propel us forward. It’s the quality, not the quantity, of our endeavors that ultimately determines our trajectory.

By prioritizing purposeful actions over impulsive movements, we pave the way for meaningful progress. Let’s navigate our paths with wisdom and intentionality, ensuring each step brings us closer to our desired outcomes.

Step 2: Have a Good Strategy

Achieving success is not merely a matter of taking action—it’s about taking the right actions. Consider the analogy of a stockbroker: success isn’t attained by investing in every stock but by strategically selecting those with the highest potential for gain. Similarly, reaching your destination—whether France or any other goal—requires a targeted approach, listening to those with the knowledge to guide you.

Success hinges on aligning several crucial factors: the correct actions with the right people, appropriately executed, at the proper times, and in the right places. While luck may occasionally lead to success, relying solely on chance is akin to banking on winning the lottery—a risky and unreliable strategy for navigating life’s journey.

In pursuit of success, it’s not uncommon to seek guidance from those who have already achieved it. Yet, simplistic advice like ‘just get out there and do stuff’ may fall short of providing meaningful insights. Such counsel often stems from a lack of interest or understanding rather than genuine wisdom.

A closer examination reveals that success is rarely the result of random actions. Instead, it emerges from deliberate and calculated endeavors at the right time and place. Take, for instance, the success stories of industry titans like Bill Gates or McDonald’s. Their achievements weren’t haphazard; they were built on strategic decision-making and meticulous planning. Conversely, numerous examples abound of failure stemming from misguided decisions or ill-advised ventures.

In essence, the path to success is paved with purposeful actions aligned with the needs of your audience or market. Failure to discern or execute these needs can lead to irrelevance and obscurity. Just as a business or product that fails to meet consumer demands is swiftly disregarded, so is an individual who fails to provide value. It’s impossible to know what will be valued, so as successful as Windows and Office have been, you will make some Windows Phones and Zune music players along the way.

To avoid becoming a footnote in the annals of obscurity, it’s essential to prioritize strategic thinking and intentional action. By making informed decisions, collaborating with the right individuals, and seizing opportunities at opportune moments, you can chart a course toward sustainable success, leaving behind the relics of obsolete endeavors. In other words, focus on conscious, deliberate, consistent effort and create an excellent system to measure quality so that you’re constantly creating more and better art.

Step 3: Everything You Want Is Already Owned Or Desired By Someone Else

If you want a job, you must realize someone already works there or wants to. Everything you want belongs to or is desired by someone else, and the only way you’re ever going to get anything is if you can take it from them or get it before they do. When you abandon your training, take yourself out of the transformation process, and only focus on doing rather than doing things well, you can cause more harm to yourself than good. More people might be seeing your art, but it’s not about getting someone to look at it; it’s about getting someone passionate about it. We all only have 24 hours a day and must balance creation and quality assurance because it’s not just about who is better or cheaper; it’s also about who is trusted more and how many others are there to choose from. Make sure what you’re putting out there is worth putting out because people don’t give second chances, and once they have a terrible experience, it’s tough to get them to come back. It is better to waste a year working on your craft and being unknown than to be known but known to be incompetent.

Step 4: Focus On What You Are, Not What You Have

Narrow-mindedness often leads people to prioritize their feelings over their actions. Take, for instance, the scenario where a student dedicates just a month or two to training, expecting immediate results. They put in the effort and invest heavily, but they become disheartened when their progress doesn’t match their expectations. Focused solely on the gap between their current status and aspirations, they gravitate towards environments where minimal achievements are celebrated.

However, thriving in the real world requires more than being a big fish in a small pond. Surrounding oneself with mediocrity only breeds stagnation. It’s akin to the character Joe in Idiocracy—average, unremarkable, lacking in absolute value. Yet, even a modest accomplishment can appear exceptional in a setting devoid of excellence.

So, here’s the question: do you aspire to lead a Fortune 500 company, or are you content with running a lemonade stand in your driveway? If genuine success is your goal, then learning from the best and striving to emulate their excellence is the path forward.

Step 5: Look At Who You’re With

Before engaging with anyone, please take a good look at them. What do they bring to the table? What skills do they possess? Where do they stand in their journey? If you find yourself surrounded by individuals on par with you or even falling short, you’re limiting your potential. After all, nobody can guide you to attain something they lack. Similarly, seeking guidance from those who haven’t ventured where you aim to go is futile. Our surroundings shape us, and we inadvertently diminish our capabilities by choosing environments that offer less

. Remember, learning from those who haven’t tasted success won’t lead you to victory.

Step 6: Anyone Can Give Themself a Title

Anyone can start a podcast, a YouTube channel, or a live show in a bar or restaurant struggling to keep its doors open. Most people do because being honest with themselves about their failures and facing the arduous uphill battle of bettering oneself is painful, difficult, uncertain, risky, and expensive. Even if you do put yourself through all of that, you can still fail.

It’s no surprise that so many people accept failure when faced with that reality. They accept failure but don’t want to take what failure does to their lives, so to avoid the shame; they bury their heads deep within the sand of their delusions. They know they can’t do the job they want, so they create their job, one they can do, and they hire themselves. They put on the charade of being something they aren’t; they pretend to achieve, mislead themselves and others with meaningless titles, and surround themselves with other pretenders, all of whom agree to uphold each other’s charade. “We’re all kings,” they shout, but they have no fortune, land, or power. Their lives are wasted, their days spent being impoverished, irrelevant, and unnecessary.

Step 7: Wisdom Is Shown To Be True By What Results From It

Let’s break it down: If you skip studying, how do you expect to ace the test? If you don’t try to learn the sport, hit the gym, eat well, or practice, how do you wish to come out on top in the game? Sure, you could try to cheat your way through, but let’s face it, that’s not a sustainable strategy. With fierce competition out there, it’s only a matter of time before someone sees through the act. And let’s be real, the only folks you’ll end up fooling are fellow failures. Successful folks? They have a sixth sense for spotting a phony from a mile away.

Step 8: Do As I Do, Have As I Have

My acquaintance is currently engaged in developing an animated pilot for Comedy Central. However, it’s important to note that she didn’t secure this opportunity solely through networking within the local Jacksonville scene, participating in challenges like the 48-hour film competition, or seeking exposure among individuals less advanced than herself.

Instead, she dedicated her time to honing her craft and enhancing her skill set. Through persistent efforts, she focused on continuous improvement and acquiring expertise. She invested significant resources in terms of finances and time to refine her abilities. Moreover, she actively sought mentorship from individuals who excelled in her field.

Furthermore, she deliberately surrounds herself with like-minded, accomplished professionals contributing to her growth and development. This deliberate cultivation of a supportive network has undoubtedly played a pivotal role in her journey towards success.