First off, the title of the article caught my eye because I typically wonder what person means when they discuss “Success,” so as I read Brent Beshore’s article, “12 Counter-Intuitive Practices for Long-Term Success,” I recognized many parallels with what we’re working to help people accomplish at BoomLife. I want to make sure no one misunderstands something about BoomLife from the beginning, we don’t think we have all the answers, we focus on the questions. After all, if you don’t ask the right questions, you don’t get the right answers, so there is a critical path we need to follow to find real Life-Long Success.
I could tell right away Mr. Beshore is genuine as he cut straight to the core with every sentence in the first paragraph. I feel his first paragraph so succinctly communicates the human condition I’m compelled to place each sentence in its own bullet point so the reader can take the time to consider them separately. I quote:
· “Life is a complex combination of interactions, events, and relationships.”
· “We all chase “success,” but we struggle to define it.”
· “We all want true happiness, but we usually settle for the appearance of it.”
· “We all seek meaning, but we often succumb to doubt.”
I read on. I encourage you to as well. As you go through the 12 points of the article, think about these questions:
1. When you’re receiving criticism, do you ask yourself, “What is this person saying, beyond any inappropriate reason and logic or emotional baggage attached to it, that is true about me?” Or, are you ignoring the gift that is hidden in message because it’s wrapped up in such an unattractive package?
I, personally, have troubles with this one…I tend to focus on the package in the moment and don’t get to the introspection being asked of me until later on, after I’ve refused the gift. Don’t be like me. I’m trying to get better.
2. What value do you give away to the people in your world?
3. Are you a true subject matter expert in your field? Or, do you hide behind on the expert power others have attributed you, based on your credentials, financial status or job title?
Here’s the magic formula for real, genuine specialists: Be. Know. Do. Do you? What do you know? Are you?
4. Are you grateful for the value others create for you through their gifts?
5. Do you have the humility to recognize you don’t control the results? If you don’t get what you want, do you react by blaming or making excuses? Or, do you decide to do what it takes to try again?
6. Do your decisions, actions and behaviors drive toward one simple Life-Long mission? Do your efforts focus on it?
7. Do other people really know who you are? Or, do you communicate in a manner to make sure no one can pin you down so nothing will ever stick to you?
I’m often amazed at the way people look at me when I tell them truths about some of my biggest failures. I was just talking with someone today and I watched his eyebrows as I explained how I’ve burned more than a few relationships because I didn’t recognize that although I was genuinely trying to help those people but they didn’t want it and what I was really doing was trying to pull them outside of their comfort zones. For about a minute, I couldn’t tell if he’d lost his forehead.
8. Do you value yourself? Do you know what you’re willing to die for? Are you willing to live for it? Do you find inspiration in what you feel when you do?
9. Do you think you always need to be able to give the answers because admitting you don’t know is a sign of weakness? Or, do you recognize that trusting others, that the vulnerability of allowing someone else to help you develops the real strength in the relationships with the people in your World?
Leon Hayduchok, the author of Dying to Control- The 21st Century Dilemma, summarized his powerful message like this, "When it comes to personal relationships, there is no greater way to express your commitment or to display your trustworthiness than to devote your life to the people you love."
10. Have you stopped seeking to learn? Or, do you recognize that everything you need to know about continuous improvement was given to you in 8th grade science when you learned how to apply to Scientific Method to challenge every assumption and let the data, the facts you actively sought, help you increase your incomplete understanding?
11. Do you stay nestled deep inside your comfort zone, surrounded by what and whom you know? Or, do you seek to expose yourself to “new people, ideas and experiences?”
Remember, this is a sticking point for us at BoomLife, our mission is “To help other people achieve Life-Long Success.” Don’t come to us if you want everyone or everything else in your life to change, we’ll ruin the relationship by telling you you can’t have it. What do you want?
12. Does uncertainly paralyze you from breaking through the barriers you imagine? Or, do you analyze the situation, assess the risks, take the chance and accept the consequences?
Finally, I'll attempt to summarize with a few sentences intended to be as powerful as Mr. Beshore's:
- Do. Think.
- Accept facts.
- Value Yourself.
- Inspire Yourself.