How to get what you want in life

Last week I had a conversation with one of my friends. He was responding to my story about how I quit my corporate job and opened my own business. He said that it seems that my journey to reach my goal was easier and less painful that it is for most other people. I told him that it was not easier but what set me apart is that I was was willing to do what it takes. He asked me why was my “willing to do what it takes” helped me find more success than other people”willingness.”

After some thought I realized that my success has nothing to do with the “willingness” to success. Many people have the will. Many people are willing to do what it takes. But most of them do not actually “do” what it takes. They stop in the willing stage. Of course, it is important to want to do something and to be willing to put in the time and the effort. But the “will” without an “action” will not produce any results. No matter how much we are willing do something, until we actually do it, until we accept the sacrifices that will follow, until we accept the responsibility for our actions, until we overcome any and all barriers in our journey, until we invest time and money into ourselves and our goals, we will forever remain in the wishing stage. We will never achieve our destiny. The goal will remain as an elusive dream, it will stay in the “only if” realm. It will be in the future, it will never become our present. In order to achieve something we must take action.

What is the action? Well it varies, depending on the goal.

For me the action entailed having two time jobs – my full time corporate job and my business. It also entailed education. In order to run my own business I needed to have certain business skills and I also needed to be good at the services I offered. So I signed myself up for classes and studies my art for years all while building my business and supporting myself and my education through my corporate job.

Achieving my goal also required me to make sacrifices. For a number of years I had very little social life. I rarely saw my friends because I was busy working and studying.

I had to give up some of the daily activities that I was used to doing myself. Since my time was limited I ordered fresh fruits and vegetables to be delivered to my home and hired house cleaners to help me save time on cleaning. I gave up clothes shopping at the mall and bought what I needed online.

I also had to become comfortable asking for help and receiving help. I had always been self sufficient and was not used to asking for help. But I knew that I could not go this route alone. So I asked friends to help me with my dog, to come spend time with me at my house instead of going out, to meet me at the gym so I could squeeze in a workout, to pick up things for me at Costco, at farmer’s market and so on.

Now that I am working less, I realize how incredibly hard those years were and how much I had missed out on simple things like going to concerts and hanging out at Whole Foods. But I do not regret any of it. Not even a tiny bit because there’s no better feeling that being free to live my life exactly how I want it to live.

 

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