What if I told you that amongst all the things people try to do to succeed what you really need is one thing to catapult you to success? What if I told you it would only take a few minutes a day?
In less than five minutes I will show you the one thing to catapult you to success and how to add it to your daily routine. If you want proof, look no further than Brad Pitt.
A Different Approach to Sports
You may or may not be familiar with the name Billy Beane. He’s kind of a legend in sports, not because of how he played, but because of something else entirely.
In the movie, Beane becomes general manager of the Oakland A’s. He’s challenged with putting together a winning team as teams like the Yankees hold fat bank accounts to draft almost anyone they wanted while the A’s struggled financially.
Beane comes upon a new strategy: instead of going with gut feelings and biases like most scouts did, he would look at player’s stats and analyze the best players. He met with a great deal of opposition at first, but by the end of the year, the team had set a league record winning 20 straight games in a row. Beane’s methods became the standard other teams used to build strong teams.
When asked about his approach, the real Billy Beane made an apt comparison:
It’s all about evaluating skills and putting a price on them. Thirty years ago, stockbrokers used to buy stock strictly by feel. Let’s put it this way: Anyone in the game with a 401(k) has a choice. They can choose a fund manager who manages their retirement by gut instinct, or one who chooses by research and analysis. I know which way I’d choose.
What This Means for Success
If you want to be successful, you have a choice: you can have a vague sense if you are going in the right direction and doing the right things or you can know.
Successful people know. They have a saying: “what get’s measured gets done”. How does a successful CEO know if the company is selling well? Because she has sales targets and keeps track of sales to know if they are being met.
How does a successful writer know if they are doing well? They have a goal of how many books they will write within a certain period and they keep track of how much they are writing. R.L. Stine, creator of the Goosebumps series and one of the most published authors in history has a goal of writing a certain number of words a day. When he meets that goal he stops writing:
I set a goal for myself every morning. “Today I’m going to write 2500 words”, and I don’t get up until I’ve done it. Maybe I’ll take 15 minutes and have a sandwich, but then I’m back at it. And when I hit my [2,500] words, I quit. It doesn’t matter where I am, where I am in the story, when I hit [2,500] words, I quit.
R.L. Stine, like other highly successful people have found the one thing to catapult you to success, and it’s something everyone can do.
The One Thing to Catapult You To Success
In order to be successful, you need to know where you are. Florence Chadwick was the first woman to swim the English Channel. Yet when trying to swim from Catalina Island to the California mainland, she failed. Fog kept her from knowing where she was, and she stopped just short of the shoreline. Knowing where you are is key to success. Although Chadwick eventually made the swim, her inability to gauge her progress that day kept her from success.
If you want to be successful, the one thing to catapult you to success is keeping track of your progress.. Like the CEO who tracks sales and the author who tracks how many words they’ve written, you need to track the things that matter to you. It’s not enough to say “I’ve written today”. If you know you have 10 days to write 10,000 words, you need to know that you’ve written 1,000 words today.
The key to success is tracking your progress and knowing where you’re going. Driving down the road can seem like progress, but if you’re going in the wrong direction, you’re actually doing more harm than good. Writing 500 words a day is fantastic, but if you want to write a book by the end of next month, you know that 500 is not enough. Goals tell you where you’re going and how quickly you need to get there. Tracking your progress lets you know you’re on track.
Take Action; Keep Track
Before you do anything else today, do these three things:
- Define Your Future: What’s one thing you want to accomplish in life? Write a book? Learn a new language? Create Your Own Business? Whatever it is, write it down. Use the article How to Get Anything You Want in Life if it helps.
- Define Your Steps: If you want to write a book by the end of the year, how many words is that a day? If you want to learn a new language, when do you want to learn it and how many minutes a day is that? If you want to create your own business, how many hours a day do you think it will take?
- Do the Work and Keep Track: Take action every day (or modified action on days off). Keep track of what you do every day. How many words did you write? How many minutes did you spend? How many sales did you make? Keep track. This way you can see if you’re on track or you need to make changes.
The one thing to catapult you to success is simply keeping track of your progress. It’s where many fall short and you can get ahead. Use these three steps to make forward progress and that one thing will make the difference between doing what the average person is doing and doing what highly successful people do.
The time is now: take action; keep track.