If you don’t want to read it, you can watch this video.
You hear the phrase all the time. “It’s just common sense.” Don’t fall into the…”It’s just common sense trap.” There are many people who will take some information, and really won’t do anything with it because it is simple and easy to digest.
There’s another saying about common sense not being all that common. That’s not the problem. The problem is, it takes an uncommon level of discipline and dedication and strategy to do things that are common sense.
I’ll give you an example. We all know that we should save money. We know this. But based on the statistics and the economy, we know that people don’t save money. Why? It takes a lot of discipline. You are better off having a tremendous amount of discipline and below average to average intelligence than being super intelligent with no discipline.
I mean, I want you to look at your family tree. There are people who may not be super ambitious. They may not be the sharpest knife in the drawer, but they have a home that’s paid off. They have a pension. They grew up in the era when working hard worked. They also learned how to save.
It is not uncommon to come across an elderly person who’s got 20K, 30K, 40K, 50K, or even 100K cash somewhere. Not in their 401K. Not in an investment. I’m talking about actual cash money. Whether the dollar is strong or not, you can go to the bank and pull that money out and spend it to buy stuff. If you have stock or some other investment, you have to liquidate it and this is not immediate cash.
What people need to really figure out is what they want based on their wants and needs and desires instead of what someone else wants for them or what society says they should have. That’s the problem.
Say you are in a bad place based on some bad decisions you made earlier in life. The common-sense trap would have you feeling all types of shame. It will have you feeling crazy. It will have you feeling like a loser or like you are just totally washed out.
Because you did not subscribe to a certain paradigm that was defined for you, you can end up with a lot of pain, guilt and angst over some things you did not really understand. I went through that during my scrub days because I thought…”I’m a certain age, I should be here.” “I’m a certain age so I should have this.” These feelings were all based on parameters that were set up for me.
People say…”You need to be here, or you need to be there, and if you don’t do it, you’re not really a good person. You’re pretty much just floundering through life.”
I felt that way for a while because of the common-sense trap.
I ask myself. Why should I be in school? Why should I go back to school, get a degree in something I’m not really interested in to work for people I don’t like to do something I don’t want to do.
Let’s reframe it. You have to figure out what your wants and desires are before you can act on them. If they don’t fit in to society’s expectations, you’re going to catch a lot of flak.
The flip side of this is if you’re extremely successful, you’re a rebel. Society admires a rebel. You become a folk hero because you bucked the grain and won. But, if you buck the grain and don’t win, then, you’re a loser. It’s a very, very slippery slope.
Part of that is about discipline. How do you develop an uncommon level of discipline? You start small. One of the smallest places you can start is by being consistent with yourself.
How many things have you started but you haven’t finished? When you really think about it, it can be really surprising. For example, when you tell someone you’re going to call them back and you don’t, you are being inconsistent. These inconsistencies create a huge problem.
You will notice a huge change in your life if you start keeping all of your commitments. Learn to say “No.” If you know you can’t do it or you know you don’t want to do it, then don’t do it and move on. I know it sounds really, really simple, but it looms large in the scheme of things.
Start off your day by saying to yourself that you are not going to make promises you can’t keep.
People have asked me how I mad over 500 videos. I made it happen, because I chose to. I don’t watch a lot of TV. When you take TV out of life, you seriously reduce the amount of time you are just sitting there not doing anything. You’ll be amazed at what you can accomplish.
I had a mentor named Carl that I worked with in the lab. If Carl said he was going to do something in 30 minutes, he did it. I used to watch Carl. As soon as something came in, BAM, he was on it. He never got behind because he did the right thing in the beginning.
You have to practice this.
By creating rituals, it presets your day. Script your day. It’s all about consistency.
When I wrote my first book, I worked on it every day for three months. All day. I know this is kind of fanatical, but if you’re not married and don’t have kids, you can do it. Do whatever you can to get as much done in a few months or a few years. By applying that type of focus, you develop a lot of skill sets you can apply to something else. So, even if you fail, you win, which is really awesome.
Dealing with this stuff and being more consistent is just practice and habits.
Now, like I was saying, when I started with the book it was crazy. The first day, I remember sitting there and staring at the blank screen. I typed maybe three sentences. I’m just stuck. The next day, I type six sentences. I’m stuck. Most of the book was written over the last months because I’d never done this before. By sitting there, practicing, practicing, practicing, I was able to do it.
How does that help you? If you start practicing whatever, you can do it. Take little small steps and do it daily. How do you prompt yourself? You have a calendar, a mobile phone. You make appointments with yourself. You have to make it a priority. You have to protect the time.
Taking action is so huge. It should be common sense, but it’s not. It’s very uncommon for people to take action with their dreams and desires.
By working on being consistent in little things, it helps with the big things.
You have an assignment. Say to yourself that you will be consistent. Pick one task you suck at and work on being consistent with that. If it is a big task, break it into little pieces.
Work on it until you work it out.
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