THE 3 POWERFUL LESSONS LEARNED FROM MY SELF IMPROVEMENT JOURNEY
Hi, thank you for visiting my blog.
My name is Adel Keita, I’m a software developer, a big fan of motivational quotes and a world traveler. If I’m not crafting new lines of code, I’ll be putting more articles, audio books and audio articles on this blog. You can find me on Facebook, LinkedIn and Quora. You can also join our private club here.
Now, I’d like to share a few things with you. It won’t take long and you may learn from me valuable lessons. I wish I knew all of the things I’m about to share with you before I started my self-improvement journey.
SELF IMPROVEMENT: THE ROAD TO SUCCESS
If you’ve landed here it’s because you’re looking for more than what life currently offers to you. More health, more money, more love, more freedom… Whatever the reason, I really want to empower you to succeed going forward through your self-improvement journey.
There are several things I want to give you that I personally believe are going to keep you out of trouble and help you ensure that you ultimately achieve your life goals. I know the challenges that you’re going to encounter from this point forward. I also know what you need in order to overcome these issues. This is not a classic “About” page. This is really about setting you up for long term success.
You must understand that there are internal challenges that you’re going to encounter that will either sabotage your success or set you up for success. The difference will be how you’ll deal with these things. “Internal” meaning inside your head. There are challenges inside your head you’re going to face along to your road to success. These challenges are going to make or break you. Therefore you’ve got to be prepared for each and every one of these, or else you’re not going to succeed. It’s as simple as that. A sad fact of life is that most people do not succeed in life. Most people do not achieve their life goals. It is an unfortunate fact. But this is the way it is. It is primarily because of these internal challenges that sabotage our every attempt or opportunity to be successful.
I want to tell you what are these challenges and teach you how to stay motivated.
Secondly I want to teach you how to avoid overwhelm. A lot of people encounter overwhelm when they embark on their self improvement or personal development journey. When they do, they start to procrastinate, they don’t get their (home)work done and as a result the wheel falls off and people do not succeed.
Thirdly I want to teach you how to overcome adversity and disappointment. Everything you do in life, regardless of whether it is a business or health related or relationship related (or whatever!), life is designed to expose you to adversity and disappointment. How you react to adversity and overcome disappointment, and specifically how you set yourself up to deal with these issues are going to determine the success that you’re going to have or the success you’re not going to have.
LET’S TALK ABOUT MOTIVATION
I learned a long time ago that the secret to success is to have what is called a “burning desire to succeed”. It was a strange lesson for me to learn that 90% of success has nothing to do with education. This is a big bold statement. But it is actually true. Success has nothing to do with education. It has nothing to do with who you know or what you know. It does however have everything to do with who you are as a person and what you bring to the table.
People who are successful (e.g self made multi-millionaires) have all been through a journey of personal development. You can give people the exact same training, one person will become successful, the other person will not even finish the training.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE?
The difference is a burning desire to succeed or else the lack thereof. Because when you have a burning desire, when you’re completely and utterly motivated to succeed, then nothing will stand in your way. You will not see problems as roadblocks. You will not see problems as things that stop you. You will just see issues to overcome, obstacles to go around, walls that you need to break through or dig a hole under. But you will never see them as things to stop you because you’ve got rocket fuel in your belly. You’ve got a burning desire to succeed!
WHERE DOES A BURNING DESIRE TO SUCCEED COME FROM?
It comes from knowing exactly what your WHY and your WHAT is. This is a deeply ingrained human psychology. Each and every human being on Earth is motivated by two primary drivers.
Driver number one is the desire for pleasure. Driver number two is the desire to avoid pain. We, as human beings, are inspired to take action in order to A) experience pleasure or else B) to avoid pain.
What we need to do is to understand what is the pleasure that you’re seeking, and what is the pain that you’re trying to avoid. Because where these two meet, where these two connect is where your burning desire to succeed comes from. 90% of success is a burning desire in your belly to succeed that fuels you and pushes you past all problems. It makes you relentless in your pursuit of attaining your dreams. That’s what 90% of success is.
You develop that burning desire by having a very clear deep emotional impactful understanding of why you want to achieve your life goals and what the deepest pain you want to avoid is.
I have to admit that it took me some time to find out what I truly wanted. After being graduated in Computer Science, I got a good job, well paid that I had nothing to complain about. But after working for ten years in different companies, I realized that I needed more freedom and working in an office 40 hours per week was not I wanted to do for the rest of my life.
So I started my personal development journey, figuring out what I really wanted to do in this world. This website is a result of this life long project (manifestation).
Now, thanks to my self improvement journey, I got a very clear understanding of what I don’t want my life to become. I can see the road that I don’t want to go down (visualization). I can see not only the way it can destroy my dream life, but I can see very clearly how it is affecting the lives of the people that I love and care about the most. That became my WHAT. All of that became this aching feeling in my belly of what I wanted to avoid. It became all clear to me.
At that time I met a few people who were very successful. They opened my eyes to a whole new world of possibilities in terms of the life I could live. So I started to develop this massive yearning, this deep powerful feeling in the center of my chest of exactly what I wanted to have in my life. Then I started to envision all of the things that I could help my family to achieve as well.
I just became so motivated and so inspired because I had these two opposite forces working on my behalf. I knew exactly what I did not want to happen, and I knew what was on the line if I failed. On the other hand, I knew what I deeply desire in my heart and why I wanted to achieve that. I knew what was on the line if I was able to succeed. I developed this massive burning desire to succeed where those two forces – the positive and negative – connected for me. I became relentless in my pursuit of success, I became unstoppable, late nights, early mornings, I became absolutely relentless. Nobody could stop me, I was single minded. I just had this massive burning desire to succeed.
What you need to stay motivated from this point forward is you have to find out what you absolutely want to achieve in life, before it is too late. What is the pleasure that you want deep down inside? It can’t be some lame one line statement. It has to be something that touches you deep inside your soul, something that gives you an aching feeling in your belly. It can’t just be words. It has to be a powerful magnetic feeling. You have to find what your WHY is, and it has to be descriptive, it has to be visceral, it has to be powerful, it has to hit you in the center of your chest. You have to find what your WHY is, and it has to move you.
Secondly, you have to find out what your WHAT is. What it is the bad thing, the nightmare outcome that you just don’t want to happen? You have to get clear on that. You have to get visceral on that. It has to hit you right in the center of your chest, it has to be something powerful, it has to be something that make you ache inside. It has to burn. You have to get in touch with that.
You have to write down your WHY and your WHAT. It has to keep you awake at night. It has to literally make you ache. That’s how you stay motivated. That’s what’s going to push you forward, that’s what’s going to be the fire in your belly that will move you past problems.
Every successful person has a burning desire to succeed. It is absolutely the foundation of success. If you do not have that, you are going nowhere… fast. This is the number one cause of failure. If you examine all the 99% of people that never achieved their dreams of success, and you break down to the core of their failure, you will find out that they just don’t have a burning desire to succeed. But if you analyze the remaining 1% of people who picked themselves up from the position they were born in and move themselves to greater heights in life, you will find out that the fuel in the tank was a burning desire to succeed. You must have that.
I repeat. You have to get clear on your WHY and you have to get clear on your WHAT. Where those two connect will cause you to become relentless, you will become unstoppable. This is 90% of what you need to succeed.
NOW, LET’S TALK ABOUT OVERWHELM
Usually the reason why we get overwhelmed is that we bite off more than we can chew. We say to ourselves: “I want to build Rome in a day! I want to do everything, and I want to get everything done as fast as humanly possible.” But you know what? You’re a human being. You’re not capable of all of that in one shot. No one is!
You should have an alarm bell that goes off in your head and says: “Okay, I’m overwhelmed!”. That means you’re looking at the situation wrong. You’re not looking at the situation correctly. You have to notice overwhelm when you see it, and you have to deal with it appropriately. Otherwise overwhelm will sabotage your success.
One of the top causes of failures, is overwhelm. When you are overwhelmed, you start procrastinating, you feel depressed, you don’t feel like it’s possible, and you just give up. The minute you feel overwhelmed, you have to put your finger on this feeling and say: “STOP, I’m overwhelmed here!” And you have to look at this issue from a different perspective because your approach is incorrect. You can’t allow yourself to be overwhelmed. It is not that issue is too big, it is not that workload is too huge, it is not that the job is too complicated, it is that you’re looking at the issue wrong. You’re looking at it from a direction that is not serving you.
You need to break down the workload, break down the job, break down the issue. You need to take this elephant that you’re trying to eat in one bite, and you need to cut it up into little bite-sized chewable pieces that are easy for you to digest. Do not try to build Rome in a day. Instead, just lay a single brick. One brick a day, will get you moving towards your life goals.
I want you to get into the habits of taking one single action a day that moves you one step forward. In doing so, you develop a habit of getting things done. I don’t care how big that step is, I don’t care how small that step is, I just care that you take a single step each and every day. I just care that you move. Set yourself up so that each and every day, you just do one thing. One thing that moves you forward, one thing that takes you closer to the attainment of your wants, wishes, dreams, goals, and desires.
Let me tell you one thing: 99% of the people do not move. And that’s why they don’t succeed. They stay in the same place. It is better for you to take a step in the wrong direction than to stand still. If you stand still, you’re not learning, you’re not acquiring knowledge, you’re not acquiring skills, you’re just standing there with a dumb look on your face like a deer in the headlines. You can’t be that. It is better to take a step in the wrong direction than to stand still. At least if you take a step in the wrong direction, you learn, you begin an experience, you maneuver yourself back around to the right direction, but you have to move.
You have to take action every day. Don’t give yourself this monumental challenge to build Rome in a single day. No one can do it! Nobody. We as human beings, we have limitations, we can’t build Rome in a day. Just lay a brick. Take a single step. The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. It is incorrect for you to view the journey as a thousand mile journey. A better way for you to view it, that will get you there a lot faster and with less worry and pain, is from the perspective of: “All you’ve got to do is take one step!” One foot in front of the other. I do not want you to build Rome in a day. Do not set exaggerated expectations. What I’m looking for is momentum and progress. I’m looking to move you along.
If you do not take this advice, overwhelm will overwhelm you. It will stop you, it will sabotage your success, and all of the trainings you took, will all have been for nothing. And they will be dreams that faded into the past. You can’t allow yourself to be overwhelmed. You need to underwhelm yourself. You need to break things down into accomplishable steps that you really can get through.
If you have a big job, don’t look at it as a big job, just literally break it down. If you have a 10 feet wall to paint, just paint 2 feet of the wall today. Paint another 2 feet tomorrow, etc. Do not look at it as one complete job that needs to be done. Break it down. Compartmentalize it, and achieve a little slice of things every single day. It does not matter when you accomplish things, it just matters that you do accomplish things.
You will accomplish things ten times faster by doing a little piece in a day, every day, than you will if you procrastinate This is what 99% of people do: they never accomplish anything at all. Don’t be one of them.
NOW, LET’S TALK ABOUT OVERCOMING ADVERSITY AND DISAPPOINTMENT
First I have to tell you something about failure. Failure is part of the game the same way a ball is part of football. You can’t play football without a ball. You can’t succeed in life without failure. It’s part of the game. It’s literally the lifeblood of the game. You need to reframe failure because failure is not a problem. Failure is a very positive thing.
Everybody thinks failure is that awful thing you must avoid at all time, they are wrong! If you encounter failure, people think that they are losers. Nonsense. Failure is one of the greatest things you could ever ask for. Failure is your mentor and guide. How else are you going to learn if you don’t learn from your mistakes? How would a child learn to walk if he didn’t fall over? You have to understand that things can go wrong, in order to do things the right way.
“I’M THE BEST OF THE BEST, BECAUSE I FAIL MORE THAN THE REST.”
The more you fail, the more successful you ultimately become. It’s the story of Thomas Edison. He tried 10,000 times to invent the light bulb. And he failed 10,000 times. Then he invented the light bulb after 10,000 attempts. Do you think that he was thinking in his own mind that he is such a loser who can’t succeed? That absolutely not what was going in his head. He was learning, he was acquiring knowledge, skills and understanding. He was going through a process of elimination that ultimately led him to the discovery of the light bulb.
WHAT ABOUT DISAPPOINTMENT?
Disappointment is not an external issue that is forced upon you. Disappointment is your reaction to the situation. Disappointment comes when you say to yourself: “I want to build Rome in a day.” Then you realize that it can’t be done and you look at it as a failure. You’ve set yourself with the wrong expectation; an expectation that is so wildly inappropriate that you boxed yourself in to become disappointed. You are responsible for being disappointed or not. You are in control of that. You are in control of whether you set yourself up for disappointment or not.
I want you to follow this advice: do not set inappropriate expectations. Don’t say to yourself: “I want to run a marathon in less than 2 hours by the end of the month”. Just don’t do that. You know that you set yourself up many times in the past for failure. You set unrealistic expectations. When you inevitably will not not achieve them, you will become completely disillusioned, depressed, deflated, demotivated, and you will give up. That’s not the way to succeed. You have to understand that this is harmful. This is going to sabotage your success. You have to do things differently.
I want you to set an expectation that you can absolutely achieve. A simple, accomplishable goal that you can unquestionably achieve. Then when you do achieve that goal, I want you to reward yourself. It could be in the form of a compliment, just say to yourself: “Whoa! I’ve achieved that! High five! Okay, fair enough, it’s not the marathon world record, but I’m moving, I’m taking action, I’m achieving my goals. I’m on the road to success!”
You have to build yourself up in that way. Every successful person does that. You need to realize that you will get there through the power of momentum and consistency. You will achieve your goals if you do things everyday and you stick to this habit. You will get there. If you consistently take one step further, no matter how big or how small, you will get there. You will achieve your life goals.
“YOU NEED TO SET YOURSELF UP FOR SUCCESS, NOT SET YOURSELF UP FOR DISAPPOINTMENT.”
From acorns grow oak trees. If you take care of the small accomplishable goals every single day, success will come to you. Success will be a side effect of you setting small achievable goals that you absolutely do achieve every single day that will get you where you want to be. It’s about building up your self confidence that you are a do-er, that when you set your mind for something, you go after it. So make small achievable goals, then take pride in doing these things every single day, and enjoy your journey. A lot sooner than you would ever imagine, you will be successful, and the lifestyle that you crave and you dream about will be your reality at some stage in the near future.