Overnight Success

In 10 Years

December 14, 2016

It doesn’t matter what other’s are doing. Your success depends on you putting in the work and time, not on wishing you had someone else’s life.

You can become as successful as you want to be. You can become the person you want to be. Set goals, break them down and accomplish them one at a time.

The only person you should be competing against is yourself. As long as you strive to become better every day, there is no limit to the things that you can accomplish.

Star Gazing

We all do this. There is someone out there right now that is doing exactly what you want to be doing. We love these people because they embody the person that we want to be.

They make work seem fun. They make life seem easy. They make it look like they have it all figured out. They make a huge impact wherever they go. What you don’t see, is the hard work and dedication it took to get there.

The truth is, you only see what’s on the outside. You don’t see the countless hours put in over the last several years (decades) that went into the image they portray today. They make it look easy because it is easy for them. It wasn’t always easy, though.

The more time you spend watching and following these people, the more time you waste.

Sure, it’s great to learn from these people; read their books, listen to their advice, use their tactics. But when you spend all of your time wondering why you aren’t as successful as them, you are wasting time that you could be spending on making yourself more successful.

Producer > Consumer

Being a producer is greater than being a consumer. Producers have influence. They plan, gain attention and help people around them. Consumers are reactive. They browse, give attention and are generally selfish.

Up until recently, I was primarily a consumer. I created nothing and consumed everything. Nothing that I was doing was helping people, or even helping me.

There is a clear distinction between successful people and non-successful people.

Successful people are producers. They share their gifts, knowledge, and talents with the world in an exchange of money, attention and influence.

Consumers, on the other hand, don’t share anything. If they do share, it’s something someone else created. They give attention to the successful people in exchange for entertainment and perceived value.

When you are a producer, you can control your future. Your success eventually becomes an exponential realization of the hard work and effort you put forth.

When you are a consumer, your future is controlled by the people that feed you information. Your success is living paycheck to paycheck no matter how hard you worked the week before.

Producers are valuable to everyone. Consumers are valuable to producers. Do you see the difference?

To be successful you must be creating or generating something of value. You must be a producer. A do-er. Not a consumer.

How do you become like those people that you idolize? You put in the work, and you stop wasting time wishing you had a different life. Create and reinvent your own life.

Break It Down

You NEED to make a plan. However, the plan you make does not have to be set in stone. It’s designed to help you create a vision and a path that you can follow.

I’ve found it helpful to have three big plans and several little plans. The three big plans are:

  • A somewhat reasonable but ambitious 1-year plan
  • A pretty crazy 5-year plan
  • An impossible 20-year plan

For the 20 year plan, think about what a lot of money is to you. Now, multiply that by 10, or 100. Can you imagine having that much money? If so, you need to think even bigger.

For example, I want to own 1000 acres of land of my choosing in 15 years. That can cost anywhere from $1 million to $5 million depending on where it is.

I want this purchase to be 10% of my overall wealth, meaning I need to have at least $100 million in the bank. Seems impossible, right?

Having outlandish goals can be daunting for some. You think to yourself, “I’ll never reach those goals. They are too big.” That’s what the smaller goals are for.

Daily (Hourly) Goals

On a daily basis, need to be focused on what is right in front of you — not what’s 5, 10, 20 years in front of you. Your day should be broken into super small pieces that are easy to accomplish and progress you towards your goals for the week.

Your goals for the week should be broken into pieces that progress you towards your goal for the month, and your goals for the month should progress you towards your goal for the year.

When you break it down that small — it doesn’t seem so hard.

For example, I want to make 12 apps next year (one a month). I figure there are at least 24 working days in every month (Mon. — Sat.), which gives me 4 separate 6 day periods to get an app done.

What I would do then, is look at the finished product I want to create. I would break that down into 4 major features — something like design, front-end, back-end, and testing. Then, I would break each of those four categories into 6 groups.

Then, I would break each of those into 2 more groups, since I will be spending 2 hours a day working on it. That makes 48–1-hour tasks that are are super easy to follow and easy to accomplish.

What if you get stuck, or don’t work on a day you are supposed to? No problem! Just bump your next task to the next day. It’s not hard to complete large tasks when you always know what you are supposed to be working on next.

By the way, I am going to be using this tactic next year and I want to design a process around developing and designing a professional app in 48 hours.

Get Data And Use It

Data is super powerful, not only in knowing your progress but in motivating you to keep moving forward. How does it motivate you? It gets you to pay attention.

For weight loss, even though the actual diet of “counting calories” is severely flawed, actually keeping a rough count of your caloric intake will get you to pay attention to what you are eating.

When you pay attention to what you are eating, you realize the simple things you can change that will make drastic impacts on your diet.

For finances, developing a strict budget and cutting costs left and right works for some. But most people just find it too inconvenient and intense. The simple act of paying attention to every transaction that you make can help dramatically.

This is why the “cash” method is pushed hard by budgeters and personal finance gurus. By using cash, you are paying attention to the money that you are spending and you begin to see where all of your money is going.

Data works. When you can see trends and progress (or deterioration) in your goals, you have more control over the tweaks you can make to get to your goals faster or get back on track.

That’s why on my 31-day challenge I have been keeping track of the hours spent, distances run and the number of lines of code I have written. When I pay attention to that data, it lets me make intelligent decisions about how I want to change my routine and habits.

I encourage you to start tracking things in your life. Weight, finances, words written, books read, hours with kids, anything that you want to do better at in life.

Get Better A Little Bit At A Time

When you make a plan to become a little bit better every day, not only is it easy to follow, but it is a sure-fire way to become an overnight success (in 10 years).

It’s the people that put in the work today that control the future. Don’t think you need to completely overhaul your life to become successful. Okay, maybe you do, but you can do it a little bit at a time!

One of my first big successes was getting up early. I didn’t just magically begin to wake up at 4:30 am or 5:30 am. I started with 7:30 am and worked my way backward a half hour each week.

In a month, I was getting up 2 hours earlier than I was just a month before. These two hours are what I needed to being working on the things that I want to become better at. Simple things line that can make a huge impact on your life.

I implore you — even BEG you to get a little bit better one day at a time. I want you to live your best life. I want you to create your own success. Over time, you’ll be shocked at how much you can accomplish and how much influence you have on the direction of your life.