There are some really common misconceptions in life and especially in self-help, and I want to kick this off by calling them out.
- The journey matters more than the destination.
- The big goals matter more than the small ones.
- All progress is pretty.
- Failures are setbacks.
Destination > Journey
We collectively spend a lot of time focusing on the journey. Quotes and inspirational speakers really hit this point hard- you have to be present and enjoy the journey- and while I don’t fully disagree, there is another element to this mindset to think about. And that is being married to the destination, the final outcome.
“When you get in your car and turn your GPS on, Google doesn’t tell you where you need to go. You have to determine that. It’s important to understand that you do not have to love the journey, but you do have to be married to the destination. What does that mean? That means that over the course of you trying to get wherever it is in life, there are going to be different roadblocks, tolls, there are going to be flat tires and air conditioners that go out. All of these things that you cannot control. What you can control is how you respond to those things and how well you stay the course- to get that final outcome you’re seeking.” -Casanova Brooks, successful real estate investor and developer, speaker, and stage-4 cancer survivor
Small Goals > Big Goals
The most progress I’ve ever seen in my own life is always when I make small, consistent pivots. When we talk about being married to the destination, I think it’s really important to also take note of this: when we are clear on that destination, it is so much easier to identify small pivots we can make to get there faster. And then it’s also easier to understand, when a day goes downhill or we feel out of control, that we are still making daily progress towards that destination. You aren’t going to fall off or get overwhelmed and give up if you’re taking it step-by-step, versus the whole world at once. Adversity builds character and resilience, but we have to get through the adversity, gather the wisdom, learn the lesson- and this usually happens in small pivots.
Progress > Perfection
Sometimes I think we get caught up in this idea that if it doesn’t look good, we aren’t pivoting in the right direction, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Progress isn’t always pretty. It can be messy, chaotic, heart-wrenching, and even force us to stare down the truth. It’s when we get lost in trying to create something that looks perfect- that we forget to build something that is wonderful. Forget how it looks. Lean into the messy. Use it.
“There have been a lot of things that have gone wrong in my life. A stage-4 cancer diagnosis at the age of 15, losing my two best friends to a drowning accident just a few years prior. For every stint of adversity, we have to understand that these trying times or failures or setbacks, this is where our character is built. The future is always brighter because there are so many exciting unknowns. This has been my mindset.” -Casanova Brooks
Failures = Success
“Success loves speed.” When Casanova said this to me- I paused and thought about momentum and how setbacks or failures actually give us momentum, to pick up speed, and continue moving quickly to our destination. This type of disruption serves those who are willing to pivot into it. As Casanova pointed out during our conversation, there are so many things we cannot control (or avoid) so we have to focus on the things we can control. We can’t avoid failure or setbacks- we would never build up the resilience we need to get to our destination. But we can control our attitude, our effort, and our energy.
“Attitude, effort, energy- this is how we build resilience and manage change. How do you try to give yourself the slight edge? It’s by your energy, effort and attitude because life will happen. It happens to everyone. So you use what you can control to get the same results, faster- because success loves speed. This is my 3-step process to a bulletproof mindset.” -Casanova Brooks
Whenever I have these amazing conversations with these high-energy people, I always ask them to define resilience for me. And Casanova’s definition really blew me away. He told me that resilience is doing what you don’t want to do, when you don’t want to do it, but doing it at the highest level you’re capable of doing it. Wow. I want you to soak in that today- use his energy and words to inspire your own pivots. What an incredible mindset and way of viewing resilience in life. This is the formula we are all looking for- to have good habits and to get up every day and commit to what we need to commit to- so we can speed up on that destination we’ve set.
- Adam Markel, author of The I Love My Life Challenge