What is truly the key towards succeeding in an endeavor undertaken? Is there some sort of special quality bestowed at birth upon those who do well vs. those who do not? Personally I’d say there is no special “quality” about successful individuals. Though there is absolutely a dividing line between succeeding and failing in any area of your life and it’s at once the simplest answer possible and the most difficult to conceive long term.
It isn’t a quality or a personality trait necessarily, but it is frustratingly ingenuous. The answer is consistency. Consistency in action, in thought, in process. There are a plethora of factors that go into “success” as a whole, whatever that means to you, but all of it is shit without consistency.
Consistency above all else is absolutely the key towards success. Now of course if you’re attempting a goal and you perform the wrong actions or moves continuously then you will be bound for failure. But there is no way that you can combine the correct actions again and again and again without realizing your goal. The appropriate gestures combined with consistent work will yield the utmost results, always.
Any time in the past that I have been working towards something; be it some training goal, fat loss, better grades, etc., my success hinged on the fact that I deliberately stuck with the actions of the task at hand for months at a time to get there, almost always with fantastic results. That is the rub with most people, consistency can be boring, it’s not usually glamorous and there’s no crowds cheering you on every day for simply doing the shit you’re supposed to be doing. Yet this mindset absolutely works.
What does consistency require? It takes three things:
- Writing down your goal.
- Discipline over motivation.
- Cutting out habits that distract from the task.
I have believed strongly in writing down goals for a long time. Physically putting pen to paper and looking at it frequently can remind you of the objectives you’ve set for yourself and help to stay on track and focused. Hang it in the open, somewhere you’ll see it daily. Ask yourself every time you read it whether your actions match your dreams.
Motivation is nice, but it doesn’t hold a candle to the bonfire of discipline when it comes to achieving your ambitions. Cool memes on Instagram, catchy t-shirts and slogans, and motivational speeches always feel warm and fuzzy until it comes time to put your head down and do the work. Again, the non-glamorous, day-to-day grinding, relentless toil that is working towards something greater.
The last is always the most difficult part for people. We get emotional about the things, people, or habits in our lives when faced with the idea of separating from destructive forces. Now, this isn’t a call to quit your job, throw away possessions, breakup with your partner, or stop doing things you enjoy necessarily. What this is, is a call to reflect long and hard on the people, habits, and things in your life that are holding you back. Want to eat healthier? Do you find resistance or support from those around you? Want to train harder or more frequently? Do you make time to train or do you just make excuses when you can’t or don’t feel like it?
None of these thoughts should depress you or weigh you down. Moreover they should open your eyes to evaluating what’s important to you and how you want to live. It means being honest with yourself for potentially the first time ever and that can be daunting as fuck. It can be emotionally taxing or terrifying to confront habits, people, or things that hold you back from accomplishing a goal.
Consistency, people. Consistency above all else. When it comes to feeling triumphant in your journey, this is the key to success. You need to stay the course when things become arduous, but if you never make that leap of faith, you’ll never fly anywhere.