The ability to follow through on hard things is perhaps the hardest and most sought after ability in all of humankind.
It seems that anyone can start something; anyone can complete easy things but only a few can consistently follow through on the hard things.
When I say hard things, I refer only to doing things that no one else wants to do or things that very few people are willing to endure.
Reading over TV. Hitting the gym every single day. Studying, planning, crafting, and conniving, even when you don’t have to.
Choosing spartan over luxury.
Choosing pain over comfort.
There is a reason hard things are so hard. No one else wants to do them and only a very few are willing to endure the discipline that it requires.
Mediating is hard as fuck to do, but listen to a Tim Ferriss podcast you’ll notice that all of the most successful people have some sort of mindfulness practice. They do so because they have realized that the ultimate key to success is mastery over oneself
Once you master yourself, then you can master anything.
- Start With Why by Simon Sinek. Sinek is a high riser in the world of Leadership Development and his success is rooted in one simple concept: Start With Why. Once you have a strong Why, then you, your organization, your team, will succeed. The answer to all its future problems and all its future successes will stem from this core belief. I wrote more about the book in post for the Outwork Book Club here and also penned highlighted some of Sinek’s thoughts here.
- The Art of Seduction by Robert Greene. Leadership, at its core is manipulation. Manipulation, at its core is seduction. When it comes to people, themes from different bodies of thought will always find a way to interconnect. Learning the art of seduction is like learning the art of manipulation. It is not best way to think about influence over other people, but all of the ways should be explored. For excellence demands nothing less.
- Patton’s Drive by Alan Axelrod. Some people are born with a destiny for greatness. Without a doubt, one of those people was General George Patton, Jr. “Patton’s Drive” talks of both his upbringing, his time at West Point, and his drive through the Europe that would ultimately propel him into history as one of its most revered stars. Patton was born with an unquenchable thirst for action and victory. He craved the thrill of combat and embraced the rush of winning. He propensity for action was only limited by the timidness of those that outranked him. His genius for war will forever be unmatched, his destiny as a great warrior fulfilled.
- Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World by Jack Weatherford. Genghis Khan is widely considered the greatest strategic commander that has ever lived. Reading the background story of how he came to be was eye opening and is a true narrative of how one’s environment can shape a person. It does not mean that you have to be born into a pack of wolves to be great, but it does mean that you can institute some discipline into your life in order to forge an unconquerable will. Coming from nothing, having been born in the worst of all places, Genghis rose to be the most powerful person in the world. He was not a special warrior and was not particularly gifted in any one thing but he was persistent in all of the things that he did and he was constantly learning and always evolving. A true lesson in his success is to constantly adapt, always improve, and never settle with your current state of being. Only then will you ever possess the ability to become the most recognizable name in all of history.
- Win Forever by Pete Carroll. Carroll has risen to be one of the most successful coaches in the NFL today. Before his rise at Seattle, he turned the USC Trojans into a legacy of champions and he did this by perfecting his Win Forever Philosophy. Built on the premise of competition, its underlying message is to always do things better than they have ever been done before. Not an easy message to send to elite level college athletes and highly priced NFL players but Carroll has managed to consistently convert his players into competition-hungry machines who are highly focused on up’ing their mental games. We now see why Carroll’s teams are always in the hunt and always in the game.
- New World Ronin by Victor Pride. Pride will always be my favorite blogger and his latest book is kind of a culmination of his entire philosophy. The way to succeed is to take matters into your own hands. Start a business and commit to it with a force that cannot be stopped. “To achieve ultimate focus, the state of being “in the zone” or “flow,” you follow the way of always moving forward. The one true way to greatness.” Pride is a strong believer in action and only through action will one ever become self-made and self-paid. The ability to always move forward is inherent to all of us. Anyone can conquer themselves if they choose pain over comfort; if they are willing choose the pain of discipline over the pain of regret.
In Pursuit of Excellence
Like what you read? Put your email in the box below and press GO.