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It takes a ridiculous work ethic to…
Do you have a goal? Do you have something that drives you forward? Maybe it’s something you’ve been working towards for several weeks, months or even years. Just maybe you set this goal a while back and it should have already been achieved. So what happened? Why is this goal still out of reach? Why haven’t you achieved it already?
Having goals marks the start of every great journey. There is just so much possibility within each and every goal you set. However, to bring what’s possible into physical reality takes sacrifice.
Every goal requires sacrifice on your part. Without some form of sacrifice there is no goal — there are no possibilities. Just like a seed planted into the ground, your goals need space and room to grow and flourish. It also needs nourishment and time. When it has all these elements it grows and expands in your life. However, without the necessary space, nourishment and time it withers away and dies.
The moment you choose to do something there is an opportunity cost involved. Focusing your energy and resources on one thing means that you are unable to focus on something else. And in that moment you must choose. You must choose what’s more important; what’s most important.
Do you want to achieve this goal? Do you want it badly enough? Or do you prefer to flick on the television set and watch your favorite show? The choice is of course yours to make.
Remind yourself that the moment you flick on that television set you are robbing yourself of an opportunity. You are robbing yourself of an opportunity to work on your goal at that very moment. And time is something that we never get back. We have a limited amount of hours throughout the day. Once that time is gone, it’s gone forever. You will never get that time back again. You have missed an opportunity. You have missed an opportunity to advance your goal forward.
High achievers acknowledge the value of their time, and they use every minute of every day to its fullest. They understand that when pursuing a goal they are working within a competitive landscape. They are competing against others who are also working towards that same end. And sometimes it’s that little extra effort that makes all the difference in the end.
So while the other guy is over-sleeping, they are working; while the other guy is eating, they are working; while the other guy is playing games, they are working; while the other guy is watching television, they are working… and that is why they excel.
These high achievers understand that they must make appropriate sacrifices in order to achieve their goal. Playing games, watching television and over-sleeping are no doubt enjoyable ways to spend one’s time. However, every minute spent on those things is a minute not spent on working towards your goals. It’s the opportunity cost at play here. You cannot have both things — at least not right now.
High achievers enjoy those small fleeting pleasures just like everybody else. However, they sacrifice these pleasures because in the long-term they understand that achieving their goal is more important. They accept the fact that they must sacrifice today in order to live the life they want tomorrow. Over-sleeping, watching television, and playing games is something they can do after they have achieved their goal. But as for now, these small and seemingly insignificant pleasures pale in comparison to the goal they are working towards.
High achievers are not distracted by fleeting pleasures because they understand the bigger picture. They are not caught up in the moment, but rather live life for the long-term — for something that will bring them even greater pleasures in the future. And that’s what keeps them motivated and moving forward. That’s what keeps them disciplined and focused. And that’s exactly what is required to become a high achiever. It’s those little sacrifices you make every day that make all the difference.
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Whenever you’re caught up indulging in those small and insignificant pleasures that pull you away from your goals, ask yourself:
- What value do I gain from indulging in this right now?
- How is indulging in this going to hurt me long-term?
- If I continue this indulgence what could I potentially miss out on in the future?
- What else could I be doing with my time right now?
- What would be a better use of my time?
Yes, of course, rest and recuperate. Allow your body and mind to recover and regenerate. However, be careful not to over-indulge for too long, because every minute wasted is a minute farther away from your goal.
IQ Matrix Maps
Here are links to complementary IQ Matrix posters that go into more depth about this topic:
- Remarkable Work Ethic: Highlights the work ethic we must have to achieve our goals.
- In Pursuit of Excellence: Helps you develop a competitive spirit to get the best from your ability.
- Developing Self-Discipline: Explores the habits required to develop self-discipline.
- Working Smarter: Shows you how to work smarter and not harder.
- The Price of Success: Explores the sacrifices you must make to achieve your goals.