This is definitely the year to shake things up. We’ve experienced the inauguration of President Donald Trump, a businessman and television personality with no political experience. Last year we witnessed an alarming election cycle, horrifying acts of senseless violence, and millions of homeless refugees in Europe. 2017 is the year where millions of men and women have decided to take action and fight for their rights.
Many people wait for things to happen or let others take action to create change. Do you justify your beliefs by saying either:
“If I work really hard now, then one day soon I can take time off for an overseas trip.”
“I’m working to support my family and when the kids are older I can quit my job to find a better one.”
It is not likely that either will happen unless you’re a man of action. Perhaps you’re waiting for your finances to be more secure, or for the kids to finish school. Whatever reason, it’s time to take these three fearless steps to leverage limitations and step up to success.
Step 1: Kick opinions to the curb.
Everyone is entitled to their opinion. If you don’t ask for their point of view, quietly kick their opinions to the curb. It’s none of your business what other people think. It’s human nature to seek approval but if you stop because of fear, then it’s bad for your well being. Freedom comes when you stop caring what other people think.
Several years ago I worked for a large Australian Securities Exchange-listed firm in Sydney. Some of the duties included writing the daily blog post and updating the news portal. One afternoon, I got the courage to ask my very tall boss about writing our company articles.
The conversation, although positive, took a turn towards dyslexia. In my boss’s opinion, I wouldn’t make a good enough writer because when I was stressed, my dyslexia revealed itself. Dyslexia is the neurological difficulty in reading, writing, or interpreting words, letters, and symbols but has absolutely no affect on intelligence. Feeling crushed, I took on his opinion that I wouldn’t be a good enough writer for one whole day.
Determined not to give in to defeat, I made the conscious decision to be a communications specialist. Every day, I researched and practiced writing exercises before work. I reached my goal through practice, failures and attending weekend workshops. Since then, I write articles, blogs, or opinion pieces every day without fail.
Due to sheer determination — or as my mother calls it “Caria-ism” — I’m a communications specialist. I work with global brands as a copywriter, television host and am now a weekly columnist for The Good Men Project.
If I’d taken on my boss’s opinion, I would be dreaming, hoping, and waiting for a brighter future.
Step 2: Stand up for your rights.
No one knows you better than you. When you’re honest about who you are and your capabilities, it’s easy to achieve goals. Take on one of the 7 Personality Traits of a Game Changer and fight for your rights to success.
The first step seems tricky. The process of what you want will begin to take form as soon as you take action. Make sure you set realistic goals that can be measured.
One of the best goal-setting exercises I use is the SMART mnemonic:
S – Specific (or Significant)
M – Measurable (or Meaningful)
A – Attainable (or Action-Oriented)
R – Relevant (or Rewarding)
T – Time-bound (or Trackable)
Begin with three goals per month—or per year. Leverage your mistakes by learning from them. Harness each mistake as part of the process for growth and development. Growth begins where you can see room for improvement. Every mistake will teach you how to become resilient and more productive.
Step 3: Take action right now.
A friend’s son wanted to join the Air Force at 25 years old, even though most people join between the ages of 17-21. He worked for his family business during the day and at night studied for the pilot’s exams. Everyone told him he wouldn’t make it because of his age.
He passed all the pilots tests because of his maturity and determination. These qualities made him a perfect candidate to join the special forces. After extensive training, he is now one of the top special agents and he loves his career.
Be a man of action and work toward what you really want. Why wait for tomorrow? It doesn’t mean you have to quit your job, despite the daily duties that seem to constrain you. Practice a skill or study your chosen profession. The secret to success is practice, so when opportunities arise you’re ready. You may discover you don’t actually like it, or you can’t do it, or it’s pure fantasy.
The ultimate test of your limits is how far you can get through this year by releasing fear based thoughts about your capabilities. Let go of other people’s opinions of you and believe in yourself. Action opens doors to opportunities. Everything is possible when you focus on it. Success is fundamentally connected with action. You have the power to be a man of action and leverage your limitations to step up to success.
What do you really want to do? Can you spare the time and learn a new craft? What steps will you take? Please comment below.
A version of this article was originally published on TheEWord.com.au and is republished here with the author’s permission.
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