When we focus on what we have already accomplished throughout our lives, it often becomes easier to continue making progress. Our past experiences become a motivational tool. And once we get a taste of success, we develop an appetite for more.
If there is one thing I’ve learned since studying and practicing personal development, it’s that no matter where you are on this path, it is filled with many success and failures. Growth is rarely a linear process. Instead, it’s dynamic. Sometimes you’re going to see your efforts crumble right in front of your eyes, and other times you’ll see your efforts come to full fruition. Often the better you manage your failures and hold onto your successes, the more motivated you will be to continue further with your endeavors.
For example, one aspect of my life I’ve been trying to improve on is exercising more often. I haven’t become a health nut yet, but I’m starting to see improvement – and it’s motivating me to keep going. In fact, there’s been a couple times over the past month where people have commented on my “more fit” physique. I know I still have a lot more room for improvement, but it’s inspiring to get that kind of external validation because now I know that I’m doing something right.
Another thing I’ve been trying to work on more is making a viable income from The Emotion Machine. I really enjoy writing about these kinds of topics and it’s been my goal over the past two years to try and turn this into a way of making a living. For two years I wrote new content several times a week and experienced very minimal success when it came to making money; I experimented with advertising, affiliate marketing, and even trying to offer my own services, but nothing “clicked” right away. Instead there’s been a lot of trial-and-error involved, and the good news is that I’m finally beginning to see some success – and that too is motivating. I’m not making a living yet (I’m only 22 and still living with my parents), but now I at least have some money to splurge on some new clothes and music equipment. I haven’t had spending money in awhile, so it’s nice to finally look into my bank account and see something there.
Both of these “success stories” aren’t anything spectacular, but I recognize them as part of something that will continue to grow – and there is a power to that perspective.
Before I had any success with health or business, my attitude was much different. I was coming from a place of desperation. Sure, I liked exercising and working on this blog, but a part of me was dependent on seeing immediate results. I fell for the myth of overnight success, and when I wasn’t getting results right away I quickly got frustrated and started doubting myself. Luckily I remained faithful and persistent during these dark times and now I’m beginning to see it finally pay off.
And now that I’m seeing results in these domains of my life, I feel a weight beginning to lift from my shoulders. My desperation has turned into inspiration. Now I know that I can overcome obstacles. Now I know I can experience success if I really work at something. And now I also have some positive history to draw confidence from and continue to build off of.
“The reason people give up so fast is because they tend to look at how far they still have to go instead of how far they have gotten.”
I believe this quote really hits the crux of the message I want to send out right now. Once you begin making progress in your life you should cherish it, no matter how small or minor you think that progress is. Because reaching big goals is really nothing more than reaching a bunch of small goals over and over again. And when we recognize the value of reaching these small goals, we can motivate ourselves to accomplish some tremendous things in the long haul.