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Having a Vision for Your Life is a Moral Obligation

strive to be your best

Jordan Peterson, who is a Canadian clinical psychologist and a professor of psychology at the University of Toronto, has spend considerable time studying the assessment and improvement of personality and performance.

I think it’s safe to say that most, if not all, of today’s leading self-improvement authors say that you should have a plan and work your plan. Or to say it differently, have goals and consistently work towards achieving them.

It’s reinforcing for me to hear Jordan Peterson describe these same ideas, but in his terms.

There is a lot to unpack in this video, but he describes having a vision for your life as a moral obligation and those who succeed are conscientious workers (hard workers). This is a rather lengthy video, but it makes you think of goal setting in a different way.

He talks about a number of related ideas, but to me, they support the idea of achievement = goal setting + hard work.

At the very least it’s a motivating video and is a good way to start your day. Enjoy!

What was your takeaway from the video, and how can you apply these ideas to your life?

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Arnold Schwarzenegger: Rules for Success

Arnold Schwarzenegger, vision success

Achieving a high level of success in one area of your life is challenging enough. But what about Arnold Schwarzenegger who reached the pinnacle in bodybuilding, acting and politics?

When he has something to say about success, we should all take note. He’s known for pithy one-liners in his movie roles, but this video is quite shrewd. After watching it, you realize that his success was no accident. He worked hard, had terrific work habits and stayed focused on what he wanted.

Here are Arnold’s 5 Rules for Success

  1. Have a vision (goal). People don’t become successful by accident. Just as a good boat or airplane won’t reach its destination without a plan, you won’t reach yours without a goal. Pick something that motivates you. Your vision should be strong enough to keep you energized even when the going gets tough.
  2. Be happy when you are doing your work. Arnold had an infectious positive attitude and was happy when working out. Why? Because he knew every rep, every drop of sweat brought him one step closer to his goal, and he couldn’t wait to achieve it.
  3. Set a deadline. Arnold stresses it is important to set a deadline. He says you will never begin if you don’t have a deadline to meet. I’d say this is great advice. For athletes, signing up for an event can be adequate motivation.
  4. Little victories count. Arnold says the little victories are the things that can keep you motivated. It’s true that there are no overnight successes, and that it’s the tally of little victories that ultimately add up to big success.
  5. Use your time wisely. Arnold reminds us that we all have the same 24 hour handicap. He says that after sleeping, we all have 18 hours in each day. He was adamant about not wasting a single hour. Plan each day and keep to your schedule.

And if you need a little pick-me-up, here are some of Arnold’s best movie one-liners.

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We All Start as Beginners

beginners, if it was easy

Videographers turned vloggers Becki and Chris give some great advice to anyone starting out. They say to adjust your expectations and to be okay with being a beginner. Chris says something worth noting, “If it was easy and it didn’t require the work, then everyone would be doing it and there would be nothing special about it.”

People who are remarkable, have built a skill–that likely took years of dedication and commitment. We honor those people because we recognize how hard they had to work to achieve such high levels of skill.

Chris gives advice to beginners, “If you always strive to progress, that’s a healthy way to look at anything.” That’s great to know that everything worth doing takes time and we all start as beginners.

What are you trying to achieve? What will you do today?

If it was easy and it didn’t require the work, then everyone would be doing it and there would be nothing special about it.

chris from youtube vlogers becki and chris
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The Power of Consistency

consistency power to success

Outside my office window is a construction project. It’s been underway for about a year and a half. Every day the work begins at 7 AM. At about 6:45 the crane operators walk up the ladders. Crews below begin organizing and assessing the day’s work ahead.

They work every day. They begin at 7 AM. Every day.

It’s a sizable building 5 or 6 stories high. When the project began it was nothing but a vacant lot and machines used to drive pilings. Kuthunk, kuthunk, kuthunk. The sound of the pile drivers went on for months. Always beginning at 7 AM. Working every day.

The building has been slowly and steadily going up. They still have several months before the building is closed in, but progress is evident. Some days more progress is made than others. Some weeks it seems as though they have built an entire floor. Every day they begin at 7 AM.

It’s remarkable how a building of this size is built. Machinery, men, technology, equipment all come together in a choreograph that has been refined to maximize efficiency. And every day more evidence of their work. If I had traveled for the past year and a half, I may have thought on first sight, “Where did that building come from?”

But I didn’t travel. I was here every day. I see the result of consistent work and the compounding effect of small individual efforts brought together in a modern building.

You hear old sayings like, “You climb a mountain one step at a time.” and “You eat an elephant one bite at a time.” And yes, you build a building one nail at a time, one day at a time.

These sayings drive at the root of success: Consistency and perseverance are the path to success. In the case of this building: work began every day at 7AM.

Michael Phelps claims he swam every day for more than 5 years. Do you have that kind of commitment to achieve your dreams and aspirations?

Do something every day long enough and one day you will achieve your dream. What are your dreams and what sacrifices are you willing to make in order to achieve them?

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Phelps Motivation: 3 underwater highlights

phelps underwater brilliant

Here is some motivation for today.

I don’t know about you, but I get goosebumps every time I see a highlight reel of Michael Phelps. This one is terrific. Here are three thrilling underwaters by Phelps.


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Brain Hack to Cope with the Alarm Clock, and a Bunch of Other Stuff

Getting up in the morning seem like an unbearable chore at time, but Mel Robbins has a brain hack that she claims is a successful remedy to sleeping in.

She calls this hack the 5 second rule and claims it helped her deal with severe anxiety and found out later in life that the method had scientific and biological merits. Since then she has written a best selling book by the same name (The 5 Second Rule) to spread her ideas to people who are stifled by anxiety.

The 5 second rule is simple: When you feel anxious simply count backwards from 5 to 1. A method she admits seems too simple to be true, but is adamant it works.

One simple thing everyone can use the 5 second rule for is getting out of bed when the alarm goes off in the morning. Simply count backwards 5-4-3-2-1 and then after finishing the countdown get out of bed. She says this works because we are wired to act when a countdown is complete. Think of a rocket launch. We all know when the countdown reaches 0 the rocket blasts off, and that’s what you’ll do in the morning after using this technique.

Additionally, the 5 second rule diverts our attention away form the thoughts that are causing our anxiety. She says that it only takes five seconds for our minds to sabotage previous agreements we made with ourselves, so the countdown sidesteps that problem as well.

She says this technique can be used for all sorts of things, especially when faced with uncomfortable situations when we would rather be quiet. Do you want to say something in a difficult negotiation? Simply say to yourself 5-4-3-2-1 and that should give you the courage to deal with the uncomfortable situation.

If it works for getting out of bed in the morning that seems like a win.

Check out her interview with Chase Jarvis.

How can you apply the 5 second rule? What anxiety will you be able to overcome by using it?