How To Unlock Your “I-Can-Achieve-Anything” Attitude
A humble guide that goes beyond the buzzwords to explain the importance of attitude when you plan and carry out your projects.
When I was a kid I used to go for long walks in the nature with my father. It was a dry landscape with barely any tree. Once, I was fascinated by three flocks of birds coming from different directions yet heading to the same one.
There was silence for a moment. Then my father said ‘’ Nabil, whenever you see birds from different species following the same course, it means that a source of water is nearby ‘’
His words taught me that whenever the same piece of information arises from diverse sources, chances are, the truth can’t be far off.
My passion for self-growth led me to devour multiple contents from world-class performers and coaches. In hindsight, I had déjà-vu moments regularly.
However, it felt like dealing with scattered pieces of the same puzzle.
This story is my attempt to assemble the scrambles.
Fulfilling a dream boils down to two components: plan and execution.
More often than not, people focus on the approach and the results. We highlight those repeatedly. Thus, they become “obvious” and betray a lack of original thought. Hence, they mutate into a set of non-attractive clichés.
It is because we forget about the hidden player, the glue that holds the pieces together: attitude.
In the following two parts, we are going to get through the standpoints relevant to attitude. I called the ones related to the plan blueprints🔹. As for the execution, it is mainly about daily practices and points of view🔸.
While planning for your goals, your attitude revolves around your perception. The latter shapes the blueprints of your approach.
🔹 Blueprint n°1- Goal-setting
As a wise man who goes by the name of Tony Robbins once said: “Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible”.
In other words, establishing a target is the starting point.
If you don’t have any clear vision of what you want to accomplish. Rest assured, it is no big deal. your first goal could be: “figure out a goal”. Funnily enough, you should know that everyone starts from there.
The main concern remains the “how” part in setting a goal. The way you define your goal shapes your attitude of approaching it.
The key is to center your goals on the only thing that you have control over; yourself.
It enlarges your spectrum of possibilities and frees you from unnecessary obstacles.
For instance, in my writing, I could have aimed at “being published in one of the most successful self-growth publications on Medium”. This goal means that I would reach a large spectrum of readers. As a rookie writer, my numbers would escalate accordingly.
However, it also, means that I am liable to sacrifice my style and curb my content in the process of fitting my text to the accepted formats.
Besides, if my target publication keeps on denying my ideas, chances are, I would end up giving up on my goal.
In that sense, I chose to formulate my goal in the following way: “produce content that serves others and inspire them to get closer to the best version of themselves”.
Consequently, I remain the master of my goal since it only depends on my work. I, also, free myself from being bound to a specific publication, a specific style or a specific platform for that matter.
I browse the publications after finishing my text. I seek a potential fit without impacting my writing. I keep my personal touch.
🔹 Blueprint n°2- You Being You
Achieving a goal is far from being limited to what you do about it. It particularly revolves around who you are. As Emma Watson said “I’m going to do what I want to do. I’m going to be who I really am. I’m going to figure out what that is.”
Put differently, as long as you are faithful to your identity, your actions will make sense to you regardless of your doubts and questions.
The main challenge remains to identify who we are. It is no easy task. Nevertheless, we could hack our way through by tackling the subject from the opposite angle.
We start by figuring out who we are not.
As Mathew McConaughey said in his speech at the Houston University “Decrease your options, don’t do the things that jeopardize who you are”
To continue the previous example about publishing my work, I chose not to sacrifice my individual accent in order to be a part of a renowned publication. I’d rather keep it and spare myself from being forced to be someone else.
That way, I gift myself extra space for rewarding efforts that will help me grow into the writer I am striving to become. Then, if my work happens to be recognized, I could genuinely take the credit.
🔹 Blueprint n°3- Your Vision
To build your vision you need the two previous ingredients: clear goals and being yourself. Vision is the ability to think about or plan the future with imagination, wisdom, and hope.
In my readings, I came across the same lesson twice with Simon Sinek and Annette Simmons. They both told the story of three masons working in a construction site. They were asked about what they were doing.
- The first answered: “I am laying bricks”
- The second said: “I am building a wall”
- The third smiled and yelled: “I am building a cathedral!”
Once you have a meaningful vision from within, the slightest of your actions makes sense. It is an endless source of motivation that ensures that with each step you take comes the decision to take another.
🔹 Blueprint n°4- Your Strategy
Once you identify your north star, you create your own compass. The latter usually points to a far destination.
However, the only immediate action that you can take is moving slightly towards it.
In several interviews, Will Smith recounted a childhood story where his brother and he would spend a couple of hours every day after school building a wall in front of their father’s shop.
After a year and a half, the wall was finally complete. More importantly, Will had learned two things.
- “You don’t build a wall, you lay one brick at a time”.
- “Focus on laying that brick as perfectly as a brick could be laid”.
The idea here is to concentrate on what is in front of you. Being present allows you to tackle your projects by slicing them into tiny steps that you can handle. In fact, you are no longer overwhelmed by the tasks ahead. As intimidating as they get “it is always one brick”.
I tried different analogies to highlight the attitudes to adopt while executing a plan. As I edited my text on multiple occasions, I noticed that the listed attitudes combine perception, imagination, emotions, and action. Therefore, I ended up using art as a pedestal.
🔸 1- The Art of drafting
Jordan Peterson usually asks his students doing a master thesis to “write a bad first draft, do it haphazardly, a bit at a time and badly”. He explains that “it is the most valuable thing because then you have it, you can fix it, iterate and shape it into something valuable”.
The idea here is to surmount the obstacles that hold you up from starting. Having the “draft mentality” allows you to overcome your fear of failing and the social pressure of looking stupid.
It is a draft, so who cares how messy and unsatisfying it could be?
The catch with drafts lies in keeping them as such forever. That is where the next posture comes in handy.
🔸 2- The Art of Scheduling
As Charles Buxton wrote, “You will never find time for anything. If you want time, you must make it”.
A schedule is a time-making machine. Working on your daily calendar allows you to identify slots where you can get things done. Very frequently, “what gets scheduled, gets done” as Michael Hyatt highlights repeatedly.
If you set a realistic schedule and strive to stick to it, at least, a part of the work will be done by the end of the day. Small progress is still progress.
Besides, while setting deadlines, you condition yourself to deliver. From a neuroscientific point of view, you stimulate the reward system in your brain. It is the group of neurons responsible for motivation, pleasure, and self-gratification. You could literally bait your mind out of procrastination by promising yourself a reward after each achievement. It works only if you keep your word though.
🔸 3- The Art of Failing
We tend to think that success is a straight line. It is not. During an interview held in 1890, Thomas Edison quoted that he constructed thousands of theories related to the electric light. Only two experiments were conclusive.
Even for the geniuses, success is a pile of failures on which you climb to reach victory.
As Denzel Washington said in one of his recent speeches “If you are not failing you are not even trying”.
🔸 4- The Art of Continuous Learning
As Jim Kwik said, “If knowledge is power, learning is a superpower”. It is a faculty with endless forms. You could learn from your failures, friends, readings, podcasts, and your own insights.
In the modern world, knowledge is an investment. Your profits come in different forms. For instance, since I started cooking my meals, I have been saving up to 200€ per month. Not only my lunch boxes are healthier, but they are also cost-effective.
Not to mention, being coachable and eager to learn grants you the ability to adapt. It, also, keeps you up to date with the latest developments.
🔸 5- The Art of Trusting Yourself And The Process
At some points, questions will flood your mind. Especially on bad days. You will feel like giving up. Just like the ups, downs are also a part of the game. You can’t avoid them but you can fight them. One way of weakening your doubts and negative thoughts are daily reminders of your vision. It could be meditation, a vision board, Coué method, or journaling. Trusting yourself and the process is a muscle built throughout the repetition.
Keep in mind that each step you take towards success is actually a step of success. As Steve Jobs proclaimed “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward. So, you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.”
🔸 6- The Art of Patience
Getting fast results is one of the main characteristics of our modern society. Nowadays, you are one click away from getting your reservation at a restaurant, booking a ride home and paying your bills. Speeded-up processes became the norm.
Unfortunately, because of this, we tend to forget that many of the good things in life require time. Everyone wants the fruits right away, however, few are those willing to grow the trees.
As Lionel Messi said “I start early and I stay late, day after day year after year. It took me 17 years and 114 days to become an overnight success”
🌀 In Short
Your attitude is what holds together your dreams and your ways of achieving them.
The blueprints and practices listed above incite the sense of adventure.
It is your adventure. So it is up to you to choose the destinations and the roads. Insights like this story are barely maps that give you an overview. The exploration is yours to carry at your own pace. Whatever your destination is, keep in mind Lao Tzu words:
“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.”
📚 Main Sources
► “Impact Theory” hosted by Tom Bilyeu — Podcast
► “The Code Of The Extraordinary Mind” by Vishen Lakhiani — book
► “Innercise” by John Assaraf — book
► “Your Daily Brain” by Garth Sundem — book
► “Homosapiens A Brief History Of Humankind” by Yuval Noah Harari — book
► “21 Lessons Of The 21st Century “ by Yuval Noah Harari — boo
► “12 Rules For Life” by Jordan Peterson — book
► Personal experience