Whether you think you can, or think you can’t… you’re right.
Planning ahead whilst still living in the moment can be confusing. Much like riding a skinny, there must be an awareness of where you want to go, consideration of your immediate surroundings and self-awareness; a focus in the moment, and positioning for your trajectory.
Life is like a skinny
Keep your eyes up and try to relax, because if you tense up you’re more likely to make a quick move and send yourself off the side. If you do have to bail, do it with purpose! Pick yourself up, take stock of what went wrong, what you need to do differently, and then try again.
If you’re too focused on foreground, you’ll over-compensate; if you’re too focused on what could happen, you might give up too early. Reacting at the last second is bound to get messy unless you’re confident in yourself and your skills. You never know how the trail will unfold, but you can up your chances of success by setting up your riding line of where you want your bike to be for next set of turns, roots, or hills coming up.
Life is constantly chucking decisions at us; and each decision we make has consequences. All of your cumulative life decisions help determine your well-being. So the quality of your life depends on the quality of the decisions you make in the moment. If we can learn to know ourselves intimately, we can lay the groundwork in each moment, that will make our future selves as safe and successful as possible.
A critical component to future success and happiness isn’t having checkboxes and rules, it’s knowing your values and your abilities—and then to find the right fits for you. If you want to be great in the future, get great at something. Lasting fulfillment comes from having a unique skill set or zest factor. Once you have your talents dialed, your instincts will lead you to unique places. And if you have the courage to follow them, you can even be a trendsetter.
Success, I believe is getting the most fulfilling results for your individual vision and values—and those are up to you. Thus, to make good decisions requires knowing about yourself and is essentially about your weighing values. For example, if you value health and your goal is to be physically fit, yet you ignore the reality that junk food is bad for you, you will not see fulfilling results. The zesty zone in decision-making is to find the short-term pains that enable long-term successes to germinate. Many people drop out long before they get a glimpse of success. An example of this would be launching your own business—at first it’s an uphill battle, with lots of strikes against you and days when you question whether you can do it. Those who keep learning, push through pain, and remaining steadfast in their excellence can rise above and achieve something incredibly rewarding and empowering.
The athlete’s mindset
When you practice, you’re not focusing on what you’re doing well, you’re trying to shore up your deficiencies. As with riding skinnies, the more you can review your performance and work on your skills, the better you’ll get. Life is simply the acquisition of skills—the more you know, the more valuable you will be regardless of the type of career, relationship, sport, etc.
Practicing self awareness and good decision-making is much like mastering golf; with practice you increasingly know which club is best for which shot—when you know yourself, how your personality works, what your values are and what makes you tick, you can skillfully make decisions in the moment that will get you around the course of life.
Don’t forget that failure is part of the process and it’s what will provide you with incredibly valuable lessons. Failure can be viewed as a way you’re tinker with your skills, your trajectories, and your vision.
The skinny on relationships
Fear can keep you safe and it can push you to be better. Like tackling a complicated skinny or rock roll, when you’re undertaking a new relationship, the key is to know yourself—and that comes from hitting the dirt a few times. In dusting yourself off, don’t beat yourself up, simply take away the lessons and discard the rest.
When you approach something that scares you, do an skill assessment, visualize the different lines and determine if the reward is worth the risk—if so, send it! Be bold in your relationships; standing in your authenticity, stating exactly who and what you want, and living your values—that will help you make better moment-to-moment decisions. Most of us are afraid of failure, and we rarely ask, “Would I regret that failure?” If the answer is “no,” then that’s a risk worth taking.
Create routine & habits
What ultimately leads to success for most people is positive habits. A diet plan won’t get you healthy, but building healthy lifestyle habits will. Deciding to write a book won’t make you an author, but dedicating two hours each morning to writing will add up to big wins. Getting married and buying a house won’t lead to happy ever after, but practicing kindness, honesty, and wholeheartedness each day, just might.
Do the most important things in your day before you do anything else. Navigating the trail of life successfully means having a willingness and ability to do the difficult things.
Things to consider
The consensus is often wrong
Be independent thinker. To achieve great success, you have to be right where others are wrong.
You can do a huge amount of work and still be wrong
Do the best you can, with the resources and skills you have.
Do what you want, not what others want
This way, you’ll never feel forced to do anything.
Stress-test your opinions.
You don’t need to always take others advice, but gathering advice and perspectives helps you improve your chances of being right.
Having questions is better than having answers.
Questions is the fastest route to more learning and growth.
Understand if you do X then Y will happen.
The people who really change the world are the ones who see what’s possible and figure out how to make that happen.
The picture of success is BS. The popular picture of success—a glossy photo of an ideal man or woman in business attire, with a bio listing all of their accomplishments like a University degree, 9–5 office career, Homeowner, Married, 2.5 kids—is an inaccurate picture of the typical successful person.
Self-interest benefits society.
Self-interest helps you push yourself to do the difficult things that benefit you and contribute to society.