If you want to be successful, to achieve better results, to accomplish your goals, and to live the dream life you always desire, there is only one way to go about it – improve yourself every single day.
Most people get it wrong by thinking that all they need to do to achieve greater success and reach newer heights in life is to achieve more, and the only way to achieve more is to do more. This is totally wrong.
You see, if you want to build a million dollar business, you must first possess the “ability” to discover it, grow it, manage it, and grow the business to reach the million-dollar mark.
And by ability, I mean the mindset, the thinking, the habit, the characters, the traits, and the beliefs to build a million-dollar business.
The same goes for everything you want in life.
If you want to be a professional tennis player, you must first become the person who has the skills, traits, and habits, and then the result will come.
If you want to be a millionaire, you must first acquire the mindset, the thinking, the beliefs, the skills, whatever, that will make you a millionaire.
Most people don’t understand this and they thought that all they need to do to achieve what they want in life is to just work hard. Or as long as they have the blueprint, they will get it. Wrong!
Even if you have the blueprint, after you get there, if you don’t know how to manage it, you will lose it all. Just like people who won the lottery, they become rich overnight, but due to their lack of skills to manage the money and the mindset of a millionaire, they soon spend all their money and become broke once again.
Never let this happen to you.
Be Someone Worthy of Success
I once learned an interesting lesson from Harv Eker, the author who writes Secrets of the Millionaire Mind. Below is the lesson I learned from the book.
Imagine you bring your daughter to the park for a walk. She then sees an ice-cream vendor selling her favorite ice-cream. And as a good father, you buy her a single scoop ice-cream. As she is enjoying the ice-cream, somehow, the entire scoop of ice-cream falls on the ground.
Of course, she cries and asks for another one. And as you are trying to buy her another one, she sees there is a triple scoop and requests for the triple scoop ice-cream.
Now, as a good father, will you buy the triple scoop for her?
At this point, most people will answer NO, but why?
Well, most people will say that she can’t handle a single-scoop ice-cream, what makes her able to handle a triple scoop? If this is how you think, guess what, you are right.
You have to learn how to handle yourself before you can request for more. If you can’t handle $10,000, do you think you can handle $1 million? If you can’t even win your local tennis competition, what makes you think you are able to join and compete at the international level?
This is why self-improvement is important. This is why we need to constantly learn and improve ourselves every day, especially mentally.
In a nutshell, you must learn and improve to become the person worthy of the success you desire.
When you become better, when you have the skills, the mindset, the habits, and the characters, the results you want will come to you. Success will come to you, automatically.
This is why improvement is important in life. And since we’re talking about improvement, here are 10 practices how you can improve yourself each day.
My friend, these are not perfect or must-follow rules, but these practices are what I believe to be powerful and able to change your thinking and your action, and thus, your life.
1. Read a book
One of the most common ways to get better in life is to read a book. I believe you know about this and I don’t have to explain more about it.
However, here is what I want to say. Not all books are created equal. Meaning to say, some books may change your thinking and transform you to become a better person, while some books are less valuable and they can become a time waster.
If you’re reading for fun, it is perfectly alright to read whatever you feel like reading. If you value your time and you want to improve a certain area of your life, do some research before you buy the book and read it.
Here are some of my personal favorite titles you may want to consider:
- Awaken the Giant Within by Anthony Robbins
- The One Thing by Gary Keller
- Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson
- Secrets of the Millionaire Mind by T. Harv Eker
- The 4 Disciplines of Execution by Chris McChesney, Sean Covey, and Jim Huling
- Good to Great by Jim Collins
- Grit by Angela Duckworth
- The Millionaire Fastlane by MJ DeMarco
And one more thing, don’t just read books for the sake of reading. If you are serious about learning and improving, you should take notes and write down the ideas that come to you.
This way, you will learn and understand the concept better. Bill Gates says that he reads with his pen and notebooks to jot down ideas.
I used to read for the sake of reading, but now I will write down ideas as I read along. I will stop, take note, and maybe ponder about the idea before I continue to read again.
The key is in the purpose of your reading. If you are reading for fun, then it is fine. But if you are reading to improve a specific area of your life and you want to do better, read with a pen and write down great ideas that you discover.
2. Approach everything like a newbie
One of the most important keys to improving yourself each day is to approach everything like a newbie, especially when it comes to experiences and unique events in your life.
If you notice, babies are the ones that learn the most and grow the fastest. As we get older, we tend to take things for granted. We never approach thing as “fresh” and we thought that we already know whatever that is coming ahead.
When you treat everything as if you already know the outcomes, you will never have fun enjoying the process.
For instance, think about watching a movie this weekend. If you watch the movie from a rational point of view, you will never have much fun. Come on, Spiderman isn’t real and superheroes are just actors. If you think from this point of view, the movies will never be fun.
On the other hand, if you watch the movie as in you are living inside the movie, you will enjoy the most and get the most fun out of it.
The same practice applies when it comes to every area of your life. If you approach everything as a newbie, you will enjoy a lot. You will experience the most. You will have the most fun. And you will get the most out of it.
Thus, be a newbie again. Just like what Steve Jobs said, “Stay hungry, stay foolish.”
3. Make your priorities right
There is no way you can improve yourself without making your priorities right. Think about it, if you want to become a professional tennis player, but all you do is spend time reading, you will never improve your skills.
Even if you are reading books about tennis, you can’t get better by learning through books. Just like you can’t learn how to swim or ride a bicycle by reading a book.
Therefore, you must make sure you are doing the most important things that will make you better each day. Make your priorities right.
Are you doing the things that will move you forward each day? Or are you not?
My friend, a lot of people say that they want to be successful, but the problem is that they are not doing anything that will move them where they want to go.
There is no point dreaming about owning a million-dollar business or enjoy life on the beach of Hawaii with a glass of orange juice, you have to do it and take action. You have to make sure you are doing what is the most important to you that will give you the results.
Daydreaming is not going to get you what you want, but taking action and working on your dreams will.
So, list your priorities. What are the top tasks that will get you to your dreams? Spend the most time on those tasks.
And also list down the things that you will NOT do anymore. For example, you will not watch YouTube or check updates on Facebook from before getting the main tasks done.
Set your priorities right and the right results will come.
4. Follow the Goldilocks Rule
The Goldilocks Rule is one of the most interesting rules that I first learned from James Clear. To make things simple, the rule states that in order to have the motivation to do something, you must make it not too easy or too difficult.
Take tennis as an example, if your opponent is too easy for you and you can win easily, there is nothing for you to learn plus you will not have a strong motivation to play with your opponent.
On the contrary, if your opponent is too strong, you can’t even return the shot, you will lose the motivation to play because the game is too hard and you will learn nothing too.
This is where the Goldilocks Rule comes in. You choose an opponent or a game that is not too difficult or too easy to win. When you have a chance of winning and the task is also challenging to you, but not overly difficult, you will engage more with the task and are more motivated to do it.
Hence, apply the Goldilocks Rule in your learning journey. Make things not too difficult for you to learn or too easy that you learn nothing at all.
For example, if you want to improve your skills in what you do, choose to train with others who have almost similar skill levels as you.
Make your goals not too difficult and not so easy to achieve. As human beings, we have less motivation to do things that are too difficult, and we also don’t want to do things that are too easy either. The same goes for improving yourself.
5. Create a challenge
A challenge is a great way to improve yourself. And by challenge, I mean setting short-term goals.
The similar concept like the Goldilocks Rule applies to a short-term goal. A short-term goal is not too far away that makes you lose focus and motivation, and it is not too short that you can’t see any significant result from achieving it.
This is why setting a short-term goal as a challenge is a remarkable way to improve yourself.
If you are a blogger and you want to become better, you can make the challenge to publish a post every single day, consistently for 30 days.
If you want to lose weight, you can make a challenge by hitting the gym every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and then go for jogging every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. And how about Sunday? You take a rest and read my blog, or read a book if you don’t think it is good enough. Make this challenge for 30 days and then see how it will impact your life.
The majority has long-term goals, but long-term goals are only good in guiding your direction in life, and they are too far away that most people lose track of their focus and motivation somewhere along the journey.
This is why you need to set something short-term as a challenge. Better yet, publicly announce your challenge to put yourself on the line. When you do that, you will feel the pressure and have better commitment to achieve what you have announced.
A short-term challenge can be anything from 30 days to 90 days. Depending on your goals, you can also set them as a weekly challenge.
I personally found that 30 and 90 days goals are the best in inspiring me to go further and to take action.
Of course, when you immerse yourself in a challenge, the progress will grow you and you will improve to become the person you want to be.
6. Measure where you want to improve
The only way you can tell if you are improving is to measure it. And this is what most people don’t do as well.
Before you can measure, you must first decide what you want to improve. So which area do you want to improve? Do you want to have a slim and fit body or do you want more traffic to your website or more subscribers?
Obviously, we can’t measure everything in our lives and there it is not necessary for that. You just need to figure out the area you want to improve and then create a form a measurement to track your performance on the measure that will impact the result you want.
For instance, submitting a guest blog post will impact the traffic to your website. So you can create a measurement to track how many guest blog posts you have published, to which websites, and how are the traffic performing.
The more detail you track, the more you can measure and tweak for improvement. The key is to track the measurement that will greatly impact the results you want.
And when you started to measure something, you will see your pattern and if you want to change that pattern, whether to increase or decrease it, you will have to tweak your execution a little.
Remember, the purpose of your measurement is to improve yourself and your performance. And to do that, you must TWEAK something. In other words, you must be willing to change a little bit here and there to get a better outcome.
So don’t be afraid to change.
7. Nourish your body
What does nourishing your body has to do with improving yourself? EVERYTHING!
You see, if you want to perform better and get better results, you must have a better physical shape and health, right? This is why nourishing your body is so important.
Work out and get sweat. Your body is created to move, not to sit in front of the screen for the entire day. So get moving.
When you are healthy, you will have better energy. And when you have more energy, you can perform better and able to focus better.
My friend, being productive is not about sacrificing your sleep and work on your goals for 24 hours a day, you will suffer bad health and illness when you get older. Productivity means having the optimum level of focus to perform the best work for the best result.
And to achieve optimum productivity, you must get enough sleep so that your brain can think creatively and you can work at optimum level. There is no point to work 10 hours when you spend 8 of those hours yawning, feeling tired and sleepy, and can’t focus.
It is always better to get fully rested, and get focused work for a couple of short hours to produce the most result.
So get it right. Nourish your body to maintain optimum health level.
8. Refresh your soul
Once you have nourished your body, you must refresh your soul. So how do you do that? Simple, get close to nature, listen to music, read an inspirational book, practice meditation, build a strong bond with your family and grow your relationships, etc.
When your soul is singing each day, you will automatically improve and do better.
Success starts with your inner self. If you are always feeling stressed and pressured, there is no way you can do better and improve your life.
From time to time, you must refresh your soul by doing things that will make you feel good. Do something that you love such as go hiking, camping, bicycle, visit the museum, cook a delicious meal, play tennis, etc.
Do something that will make you feel refreshed.
9. Network with people who are better than you
This an extremely important practice to improve yourself. You must always network with people who are much better than you.
You may have heard about the famous quote from Jim Rohn, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” Who you mix around with most of the time will shape your destiny.
If you are a parent, you definitely do not want your kids to hang around with “bad kids”, right? And what about yourself? Do you hang around with “bad people” that will pull you down?
Well, the “bad people” I mean are the negative people who always complain, criticize and blame. You definitely don’t want to mix with these people because they will influence you.
At the same time, if you mix with other people who are much better than you, you will become better too. If you are earning $3,000 a month and you mix around with people who are earning $1 million a year, imagine what will happen.
They drive different cars, they live in a bigger house, they talk about business, they talk about investment, and they will definitely talk about business opportunities. And when you revolve around them, you can’t help but think and feel the same.
Eventually, you will want to start your own business, make investments, and then when you have earned the money, you improve your lifestyle.
This is how the people you mix around with most of the time can influence you, tremendously!
Helen Keller once said, “I cried because I had no shoes until I met a man who had no feet.” Perhaps, it can also be changed to, “I’m comfortable because I earn $5,000 a month until I met a man who made $5 million a year.”
Network with people who are better than you. NOW.
10. Envision the success you want
Finally, there is no way you can improve without the use of visualization. If you think that visualization is not working, think about superstar athletes who accomplished amazing results through visualization.
In fact, most successful people dedicate their success to visualization and not just athletes. They first see the results they want in their lives, and then they work tirelessly to achieve them.
Everything you see in this world happens twice, once in someone else’s mind, and once in reality.
The computer you are using, the phone you have, the chair you sit on, the car you drive, and even the coffee you are drinking right now, they were once someone else’s ideas.
When you visualize the ideal life and the improvement you want, your mind will somehow find the difference between your reality and your imagination, and then it works on it to close the gap.
Highly successful people such as Jim Carrey, Michael Phelps, Will Smith, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bruce Lee, Jack Nicklaus, and much, much more are leveraging the power of visualization to achieve the outstanding results they have today.
We all know that improving is extremely important to us and if we want to do better in every area of our lives, we need to commit to improving ourselves.
So where should you start? There are 10 practices and methods listed above. Well, you don’t have to implement and follow exactly. My suggestion is that you just need to start from ONLY one.
If you think that reading is good, make it a habit. Spend at least 30 minutes a day into reading. Choose to read books that will inspire you and make you better in what you do. What if you are already reading books daily? There are 9 other practices you can choose from.
Make it your habit by turning it into a schedule. When improvement becomes your habit, your life will get better each and every day.