Picture yourself and where you are in your career and life. Now picture the person who has similar innate, raw talent and ability to you but is at a different level; one that you can only dream of. Their achievements leave you in awe and if you were living their life you’d really feel like you had made it.
Make money or make excuses
Now investigate the difference. Dig really deep into the gap between you and them and work out why it’s there.
You might point to differing circumstances. Maybe you think you have more commitments, fewer contacts, or just less luck. Maybe you think they just happened upon the right place at the right time. They probably know the right people too.
Actually, you could be where they are. You have exactly the same number of hours in your day. If you really wanted to, you could turn any disadvantage into something that makes you unique. It could form part of your success story.
I’ve referred to making money but read whatever measure of success you are optimising for. A lifestyle, a certain achievement, a change in the world or another level in your career, life or sport.
As author and podcast host James Altucher said, “there’s always a gap between “what I have now” and “what I would like”. And that gap is all of your excuses.”
Explaining away the gap with excuses ignores the crux of this: that it’s 100% in your control. There is always a way of solving a problem if you think creatively enough. Those people whose lives you aspire to have solved it; so you can too. They had commitments, obligations, setbacks and unlucky times. They chose to succeed in spite of those things, not use them as reasons not to.
World-class performers are constantly trying to better themselves to reach a higher level. They will practice more, they will invite and relish feedback. They will outproduce and outperform and not stop until they can rest satisfied that they are putting out the content and messaging that best reflects the best version of themselves that exists. You can, too. As real estate investor Dave Del Dotto said, “No one ever excused his way to success.”
QUERETARO, MEXICO – NOVEMBER 30: Cristian Calderón #26 of Necaxa celebrates the first scored goal of … [+]
Explaining it all away; pointing to chance or luck-completely misses the opportunity to take inspiration and learn. You’re not fooling anyone, not every yourself. As Benjamin Franklin said, “He that is good for making excuses is seldom good for anything else.” How can you define the gap and turn it into action?
Maybe they just want it more. Maybe their purpose is stronger. Maybe they ignored the distractions you succumbed to. Maybe they just didn’t give up where others did. Whatever it is, that’s the reason for the gap.
There are people with the same abilities as you living more extraordinary lives because they did what you weren’t prepared to. I think about that all the time. Find out what’s in the gap and take the steps to close it. Make money or make excuses.