We all want the best. We all want to be the best version of ourselves and to live the life of glitz and glamor reserved for the astoundingly successful. But how? There are many paths to success, but few are easy, and none are preordained or built for you to seamlessly trot along and find your treasure.
Success, and the growth that precedes that success is the result of uncomfortable change. You must change, or rather build new habits (and maybe lose a few old ones) in order to better yourself and thus better your life. Although everyone is different, and no one’s path is one and the same, there are a few guidelines you should keep in mind when you are building the life you have always dreamed of:
Make a Life Plan
It sounds so simple, but it’s amazing how few people actually take the time to sit down and plan out where they want to be at various points in their life. If you have no idea of where you’d like to be, how can you possibly objectively assess how you stack up against your goals? Saying “I want to be rich”” is easy. Sitting back and telling yourself you failed—isn’t. That’s why you make the plan. You need a benchmark with which to measure success. It will keep you on track even when life does everything it can to distract you.
That’s not to say the plan is do-or-die. It’s not concretized, and it shouldn’t be concretized. Life is dynamic. You need to be malleable and able to cope with changing circumstances, but need some sort of general path to understand where you are relative to where you were. Otherwise, you may just find that in ten years, you haven’t moved forward at all. The plan ensures this does not happen because it propels you forward even when you’re not entirely sure what the next step is. You know the destination, and that’s enough.
Emulate These Four Characteristics
According to Brendon Burchard, the New York Times bestselling author of “The Charge: Activating the 10 Human Drives That Make You Feel Alive,” he emphasizes four very specific characteristics that will drive growth both at home and in the office: desire, direction, discipline, and distraction radar.
Desire. Fairly self-explanatory, you need to want it. Like, really want it. Not an ambivalent half-hearted shrug while muttering “that would be nice.” No. You need to seriously want it, crave it, live for it. It should keep you up at night. It should be exciting and enthralling. That said, desire is not necessarily a solely natural, inherent emotion. When you recognize the desire within you, even if it’s to a nominal degree, you can build it. Immerse yourself in it, and then direct that newfound passion towards productivity, and watch yourself become someone you never knew you could be.
Direction. Once you want it, know how to get it. This is where you start learning how to get what you want, what steps to take, what lessons to learn, and what the timeline looks like. You have to be willing to step outside of your comfort zone to build yourself. Take a seminar you would normally overlook. Put in the extra time to lay the foundation of your future life. Take the time now to make life worth it later.
Discipline. Consistency. Drive. Motivation. In order to live the life of your dreams, you have to be willing to make pursuing happiness a habit. Stepping outside of your comfort zone cannot be a once-a-month thing. It should be a once-a-week if not a once-a-day thing. Always push yourself. Always take additional classes. Always educate yourself. Make stepping outside of your comfort zone your comfort zone. Become accustomed to the unknown, and you’ll see yourself transcend former limits.
Distraction Radar. This is perhaps even more important than discipline because it allows you to recognize when you are not performing at optimal levels. You need to understand distractions for what they are: distractions. By calling it how you see it, you will be able to sidestep them and proceed forward. It’s far too easy to succumb to the world’s agenda because it’s so present, so right in front of us and so often seemingly insurmountable; but you need to keep one thing in mind: the world doesn’t care about your agenda. You care about your agenda. So act like it. Prioritize your plan.
All you need is to know where you want to go, how to get there, and be willing to put in the work to do so. The life of your dreams should not be confined to your dreams—it should be your reality. Pull the trigger and never look back.