Short message today from Beijing Airport, en route to the China/Mongolia border.
Study people that have been successful in the way you want to. Figure out what they did.
Modernize their ideas to the present day. This isn't hard, there's tons of underoptimized stuff everywhere.
Draw up something like a plan.
Okay, now - you've got to stick religiously to that plan, even when things suck. If you've drawn up your plan halfway intelligently, it probably includes a lot of serving others, a lot of working hard, and a lot of striving to improve.
Some days this sucks, especially when you have a huge workload and tons of commitments and don't have any idea how you can do them all in time.
Also, very frustrating when you put in 100's of hours and the tangible results move only a little bit.
Keep going. Macro patience - keep moving forwards.
Serve more, work more, strive more.
Eventually it'll catch up with you, and all the external tangible stuff will line up.
There's a long lead time on it, though. I remember Judd Weiss explaining to me how it works in real estate - the higher up the chain you're working, the more money you make - a lot more - but it also takes a lot longer.
The people that work on the huge developments that make multi-millions - these take years and years. If you're working just by the hour, you get your money fast, but you don't get all that much money. Brokers take a little longer to get paid, but still make a fraction. The people that draw up the plans and coordinate huge developments - they work for years without seeing their payday, but then they make millions.
I think everything is usually like that. Build, serve, work, strive. As long as is necessary. Keep going when things are moving slowly. And you get there.
I think that's the value of planning. Draw up your plans intelligently, based on observation and evidence as much as possible. Then, you stick with the plan more than your day to day emotions. Lots of things affect emotions - working and striving and doing a lot isn't always fun. Actually, it sucks sometimes.
And then you break through, and things are going right, and it's glorious. Takes a while. The bigger things you're working on, very likely the longer it takes.
So be it.
Coffee's awesome here in the airport lounge. Really, really good. Off to Mongolia.
First of all, I would like to express my gratitude for the huge value that you deliver through your blog and your newsletter. I often use your advices, striving to become better and more self-disciplined.
I am a junior engineer working within the automotive industry. This is a demanding job and I work at least 45 hours a week. As I want to become independant (i.e. being able to work on my own projects from any place in the world) as soon as possible, I am starting to create my first business (I'm currently researching a niche market).
I have GTD'ed my schedule and eliminated most of worthless activities such as video games, TV shows and compulsive internet browsing.
This illustration is what happens when I mix my metaphors.
The alternate title for this post was "Thoughts Become Words", but then the illustration would have made even less sense.
I've been having a lot of conversations about intention lately. I really think it's important to live deliberately - to live on purpose, not by accident, not to just get swept along. To have dreams, and to pursue them.
But there's a balance. You gotta know what you can control and what you can't, and you have to make your peace with what you can't.