There are certain principles, universal laws and undeniable fundamental truths that underpin the existence of all mankind and govern our lives. The truth is, you are not in control of your life’s outcomes. We can and do, however, affect and contribute to our outcomes. Our actions increase the likelihood of certain outcomes although there are no guarantees.
Recognize, understand and flow with the universe’s governing principles
Being cognizant of natural laws and then aligning your actions to flow in tandem with these laws gives you a better chance of achieving a desired end. Our bodies are a system that operates under a series of principles. If you fail to exercise, eat healthy, and visit the doctor regularly, you increase the probability that you will die relatively young. Add smoking to the mix, and you more than double the odds of sickness and an early death. Understanding life’s principles allows you to choose actions that are slanted toward a particular outcome and empowers you to stick with a course of action long term.
Here are 3 principles that drive success
1. Seed time and harvest
This principle encapsulates and runs so much deeper than the “you reap what you sow” cliche. While that is a big part of this principle, it is missing two fundamental keys. The first key is about timing and the second is about work. A 20-year-old college student can procrastinate and put off completing a project until the night before it is due. Then he or she can pull an all nighter and ace the class. They planted seeds by doing the work and reaped the benefit— a good grade. But what about a farmer? It’s the same principle but a farmer has to factor in time and energy. You don’t plant today and reap tomorrow. The procrastinating college student will learn this soon enough.
The second facet of this principle is the issue of expended energy. Herein lies the true fallacy and pitfall of this principle. The college student worked all night and received a benefit. However, this flow is the exception, not the rule. Consider the farmer. He plants seeds, waits and then he receives his crop. However, to truly reap the harvest, the farmer is required to perform additional work. He must go out and physically harvest the crop or it will rot in the field. The same is true for most things in life. You must work and plant the right things but you must also work to enjoy your harvest.
2. Input and outputs coincide but don’t always equal
If you have been alive any length of time, you are painfully aware that the effort you put into something does not always equal the output. Life is not an even exchange and input and outputs are rarely proportional. In the beginning of any new endeavor, input far exceeds output. And then slowly, the inverse begins to happen. Outputs or harvests begin to catch up and then far outpace your input and you don’t have to work as hard as you did initially.
The most important thing to understand about this principle is that input— similar to interest in the financial world— over time, compounds. You must understand that just as it is with financial investments so it is in every other arena. What you invest in matters because it directly affects the type and size of your outcomes. You must invest in things with potential and a high probability of yielding a substantial return on your investment. Input must be targeted, purposeful and consistent. Eventually, your small investments begin slowly growing and then they multiply.
3. Consistency Counts
Your ability to be consistent and to stay on course is critical to delivering positive outcomes. Far too often people get tired and give up too soon. You have to learn to stick with it. You have to be consistent.
Consistency is more important than methodology and trumps occasional sacrifices. Short bursts of effort followed by long periods of rest impede your progress. Be consistent. Consistently keep good company, consistently save, consistently spend wisely, consistently eat healthy, consistently exercise, consistently study and consistently put time, energy and resources into the things you want to grow. Be consistent.
In life, there are no guarantees but you can swing the odds in your favor.