Wednesday, February 23, 2022




“First comes the thought; then organization of that thought into ideas and plans; then transformation of those plans into reality. 
The beginning, as you will observe, is in your imagination.” 
— Napoleon Hill, The Law of Success

I like to keep things as simple as possible, because simple is usually far more effective. Even more importantly, simple is what works best with the slight edge. Remember easy to do, and you won’t stray far from having your hands on the slight edge.

For a goal to come true: You must make it specific, give it a deadline, and write it down. You must look at it every day. You must have a plan to start with.

Step One: Write It Down

The most critical skill for achieving success in any area whatsoever, from sports to high finance, radiant health to fulfilling relationships, is the skill of envisioning. 

Envisioning something simply means having the ability to create a vivid picture of something that hasn’t factually happened yet, and to make that picture so vivid that it feels real.

If your dreams and aspirations are happening in your mind only, that easily winds up being no more than wishful thinking.

“Do or do not — there is no try”

Envisioning means quite literally making something up out of thin air — and making it real. By definition, you can’t do that within the confines of your brain. It needs to become physical; it needs to involve your senses. In other words, you need to write it down. Making pictures of it, which people sometimes call a dream board, is even better. Speaking it out loud to another person is the most powerful of all. But at the very least, write it down. The moment you do, it has started to become real.

Pick a dream that you’d truly, deeply love to have come true. Write it down, describing it in just a few words. Good. Now, let’s have you add two descriptors that will make your dream more concrete: what and when.

First, go back to each dream and add whatever wording you need to make it absolutely specific. For example, if you had a dream to “be financially free,” what does that mean specifically? How much money do you need in the bank or investments, or coming in as annual income, to achieve what you call financial freedom? If there are any other conditions that need to be met (such as “being completely debt-free”), add those in, too.

Now, the second descriptor: when. It’s been said that goals are “dreams with deadlines.” Let’s reshape your dreams into tangible, practical goals by giving them timelines. Go back through each dream and answer the question, “By when?” 

Write your dreams down; make them vivid and specific; give them a concrete timeline for realization; and you’ve taken a giant step toward making them real.

Step Two: Look at It Every Day

The single most compelling reason for writing down your dreams is so you can look at them and read them every day. The reason you need to look at them every day is the same reason you need to keep yourself in the company of positive people: you need to counteract the force of gravity. Or to put a different name to it, the force of mediocrity.

If you don’t keep yourself constantly, repeatedly focused on your destination, you’ll be like a rocket ship without its gyroscope: you’ll simply coast off into the outer space of failure, never coming even remotely close to reaching the moon. Or back to earth again.

the power of regularly, consistently telling and retelling yourself what your goals are.

What we can do — and need to do — is surround ourselves with our own yeses. Surround yourself with messages that tell you that your dreams are real, your dreams are real, your dreams are real. Not only are they possible: they are inevitable. That’s the message your subconscious needs to be soaked in constantly. Having your dreams concretely spelled out, on paper, in the most vivid and specific terms possible, and with a very tangible, concrete timeline, provides you with an “environment of Yes!” for your goals, dreams, and aspirations. And when that nineteen-to-one force of gravity starts leaking in from our subconscious and whispering, “Yeah, but are they really?” we need to respond instantly and without hesitation, Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes!

Here is the amazing thing — and I’ve seen this happen so many times, yet it never ceases to fill me with awe: when you clearly, tangibly set your goals, life has a way of rearranging itself, setting in motion a series of events that you could never have predicted or planned, to get you there. If you just sit there and try to figure it out, it doesn’t happen. But when you surround yourself with the vivid expression of your tangible goals, your subconscious brain goes to work on it — and if you have the right philosophy, the philosophy of the slight edge, then you will come up with the right actions and keep repeating those actions… and a series of events will kick in, including circumstances you could never have dreamed of, that will take you there.

Step Three: Start with a Plan 

You have to start with a plan, but the plan you start with will not be the plan that gets you there.

The point is that you need a plan to start with, the same way you need a penny to start with before anything can double. The way you took your first baby step. The way you furrowed your brows, pursed your lips, and struggled to sound out the first sentence you read.

The power of a plan is not that it will get you there. 
The power of a plan is that it will get you started.

People make the mistake of thinking they need the perfect plan. There is no perfect plan. By definition, there can’t be, because a plan is not getting there — it’s only your jumping-of point. And that’s exactly the reason you need a plan: if you have no jumping-off point, there won’t be any jumping off happening. 

In fact, if you put too much energy into the plan and fuss around trying to make it perfect, you’re likely to squelch all the life, spontaneity, intuition, and joy out of the doing of it. Do the thing, and you shall have the power. Don’t try to figure it all out. If you want twice the success, double your rate of failure. You start with a plan, then go through the process of continuous learning through both study and doing, adjusting all the time like a rocket ship on the way to the moon, off track 97 percent of the time, your gyroscope feeding information to your dream computer to bring you back on track, and continuing on the path of mastery toward your passionately dreamed-for objective. Success is the progressive realization of a worthy ideal.

Keep holding that as your philosophy, and you will generate the attitudes and actions you need to keep progressively realizing a better and better plan. You need a first plan so you can get to your second plan, so you can get to your third plan, so you can get to your fourth plan. Your starting plan is not the plan that will ultimately get you there — but you need it so you have a place to start.

It’s like learning to play music: there are only twelve notes, after all. But to learn it, you need to hear it, and play it, over and over. It’s as vivid an illustration of slight edge success as I’ve ever seen.

Until one is committed there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favour all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamt would have come his way. I have learned a great respect for one of Goethe’s couplets: 
“Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. 
Boldness has genius, power and magic in it!”
- W. H. Murray; The Second Himalayan Expedition

Don’t try to figure out the whole race. Just figure out where to put your foot for the starting line. Just start. Take a bold step onto the path of mastery. The result looks incredibly complex, but it’s not. It never is. It’s always the simple little things that take you there.

Everything you do, every decision you make, is either building your dream or building someone else’s dream. Every single thing you do is either leading you away from the masses — or leading you away with the masses. Every single thing you do is a slight edge decision.

Essential Points from Chapter Sixteen

* There are three simple, essential steps to achieving a goal: Write it down: give it a what (clear description) and a when (timeline). 

* Look at it every day: keep it in your face; soak your subconscious in it. 

*Start with a plan: make the plan simple. The point of the plan is not that it will get you there, but that it will get you started.

Slight Edge | Chapter 15

Slight Edge | Chapter 17

No comments:

Post a Comment