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The 3 Secrets to Achieving Overnight Success

The 3 Secrets to Achieving Overnight Success


    How’d you like to hear about the one way to achieve success faster? Perhaps even overnight.

    In a world filled with on-demand, instant-view, right now results … it’s easy to become impatient and want success today. Of course, most of the suggestions for instant stardom are hype and fluff. But there is actually a simple formula for achieving rapid success.

    Let’s talk about that 3-part formula now.

    First, know where you’re going.

    Before you can have any amount of success, you need to know why you are doing what you’re doing. Only once you have a clear vision of where you’re going and why you’re going there will you understand the best (and fastest) way to get there.

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    I can’t tell you the best way to get to your specific goal, but I can tell you that the fastest way to go nowhere is by not having somewhere in mind.

    Furthermore, when you have a destination that you are moving towards, it becomes easier to embrace the process of getting there. With each step you can see how you’re getting closer and closer to the end goal.

    Second, connect with people who can help you get there.

    When we hear the term “overnight success” we often associate that with someone who has very quickly become an authority or a celebrity in a particular industry or sector.

    But here’s a nifty little secret about success: it’s much easier to connect with authorities and celebrities than it is to become one.

    And when you connect with them, you automatically set yourself up for rapid success because you now have direct access to someone who can help you get to the top. They know the roadmap because they already walked it. Now all you have to do is ask questions about their success and listen carefully.

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    Third, it’s not about who you know, it’s about who knows you.

    It’s easy to think that if you just knew the “right” person or if you just get a recommendation from a key influencer, then the doors would burst open and success would come pouring through.

    And while it is critical to connect with influencers and decision makers (see point 2), the reason why it’s important is because they can show you where to go and what to do. In other words, they don’t do it for you, they simply show you how to do it.

    Given that, you may be wondering, if success is not about who I know, then what’s the key?

    The key is who knows you.

    Connection is what gives meaning to our work. If you want to be successful and if you want your work to matter, then connection is the key.

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    Connections are the foundation of any meaningful work. It doesn’t matter how brilliant you are, how groundbreaking your work is, or how useful your discoveries are … if you don’t connect with someone else, then nobody knows about it. And if nobody knows about what you do, then you can’t make a difference or be successful or change the world.

    This means that, if you’re truly serious about becoming an overnight success (or about achieving any type of success), then you need to commit to learning how to spread your message and your work. In an age where anyone can create content with publishing, writing, videos, podcasts, blogs, social media, and more, it has become critical to develop the skill of capturing attention.

    What you should do now…

    If you’re ready to be successful, then the time is now. There is no need to wait.

    Start by getting very clear about why you do what you do. Know the direction and why you’re going that way.

    Once you know where you want to go, start seeking out people who are already there. The influencers, decision makers, and connectors. Get to know them and they will kindly show you the way to go.

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    Once you know the path, start walking it. And as you do so, realize that your work will only have meaning if others know about it. Become an evangelist for your own goals. No matter what work you do, learn how to share it with others and capture their attention.

    This simple path is the fastest way to overnight success.

    (Photo credit: Man in Wheat Field via Shutterstock)

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    James Clear

    James Clear is the author of Atomic Habits. He shares self-improvement tips based on proven scientific research.

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    Last Updated on November 12, 2020

    15 Reasons Why You Can’t Achieve Your Goals

    15 Reasons Why You Can’t Achieve Your Goals

    The truth about many of our failed goals is that we haven’t achieved them because we didn’t know how to set and accomplish goals effectively, rather than having not had enough willpower, determination, or fortitude. There are strings of mistakes standing in our way of accomplished goals. Fortunately for us, we don’t have to fall victim to these mistakes for 2015. There are many common mistakes we make with setting goals, but there are also surefire ways to fix them too.

    Goal Setting

    1. You make your goals too vague.

    Instead of having a vague goal of “going to the gym,” make your goals specific—something like, “run a mile around the indoor track each morning.”

    2. You have no way of knowing where you are with your goals.

    It’s hard to recognize where you are at reaching your goal if you have no way of measuring where you are with it. Instead, make your goal measurable with questions such as, “how much?” or “how many?” This way, you always know where you stand with your goals.

    3. You make your goals impossible to reach.

    If it’s impossible of reaching, you’re simply not going to reach for it. Sometimes, our past behavior can predict our future behavior, which means if you have no sign of changing a behavior within a week, don’t set a goal that wants to accomplish that. While you can do many things you set your mind to, it’ll be much easier if you realize your capabilities, and judge your goals from there.

    4. You only list your long-term goals.

    Long-term goals tend to fizzle out because we’re stuck on the larger view rather than what we need to accomplish in the here and now to get there. Instead, list out all the short-term goals involved with your long-term goal. For instance, if you want to seek a publisher for a book you’ve written, your short-term goals might involve your marketing your writing and writing for more magazines in order to accomplished your goal of publishing. By listing out the short-term goals involved with your long-term goal, you’ll focus more on doing what’s in front of you.

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    5. You write your goals as negative statements.

    It’s hard to reach a goal that’s worded as, “don’t fall into this stupid trap.” That’s not inspiring, and when you’re first starting out, you need inspiration to stay committed to your goal. Instead, make your goals positive statements, such as, “Be a friend who says yes more” rather than, “Stop being an idiot to your friends.”

    6. You leave your goals in your head.

    Don’t keep your goals stuck in your head. Write them down somewhere and keep them visible. It’s a way making your goals real and holding yourself accountable for achieving them.

    Achieving Goals

    7. You only focus on achieving one goal at a time, and you struggle each time.

    In order to keep achieving your goals, one right after the others, you need to build the healthy habits to do so. For instance, if you want to write a book, developing a habit of writing each morning. If you want to lose weight and eventually run a marathon, develop a habit of running each morning. Focus on buildign habits, and your other goals in the future will come easier.

    Studies show that it takes about 66 days on average to change or develop a habit.[1] If you focus on forming one habit every 66 days, that’ll get you closer to accomplishing your goals, and you’ll also build the capability to achieve more and more goals later on with the help of your newly formed habits.

    8. You live in an environment that doesn’t support your goals.

    Gary Keller and Jay Papasan in their book, The One Thing, state that environments are made up of people and places. They state that these two factors must line up to support your goals. Otherwise, they would cause friction to your goals. So make sure the people who surround you and your location both add something to your goals rather than take away from them.

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    9. You get stuck on the end result with your goals.

    James Clear brilliantly suggests that our focus should be on the systems we implement to reach our goals rather than the actual end result. For instance, if you’re trying to be healthier with your diet, focus more on sticking to your diet plan rather than on your desired end result. It’ll keep you more concentrated on what’s right in front of you rather than what’s up in the sky.

    Keeping Motivated

    10. You get discouraged with your mess-ups.

    When I wake up each morning, I focus all my effort in building a small-win for myself. Why? Because we need confidence and momentum if we want to keep plowing through the obstacles of accomplishing our goals. Starting my day with small wins helps me forget what mess-ups I had yesterday, and be able to reset.

    Your win can be as small as getting out of bed to writing a paragraph in your book. Whatever the case may be, highlight the victories when they come along, and don’t pay much attention to whatever mess-ups happened yesterday.

    11. You downplay your wins.

    When a win comes along, don’t downplay it or be too humble about it. Instead, make it a big deal. Celebrate each time you get closer to your goal with either a party or quality time doing what you love.

    12. You get discouraged by all the work you have to do for your goals.

    What happens when you focus on everything that’s in front of you is that you can lose sight of the big picture—what you’re actually doing this for and why you want to achieve it. By learning how to filter the big picture through your every day small goals, you’ll be able to keep your motivation for the long haul. Never let go of the big picture.

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    13. You waste your downtime.

    When I take a break, I usually fill my downtime with activities that further me toward my goals. For instance, I listen to podcasts about writing or entrepreneurship during my lunch times. This keeps my mind focused on the goal, and also utilizes my downtime with motivation to keep trying for my goals.

    Wondering what you can do during your downtime? Here’re 20 Productive Ways to Use the Time.

    14. You have no system of accountability.

    If you announce your goal publicly, or promise to offer something to people, those people suddenly depend on your accomplishment. They are suddenly concerned for your goals, and help make sure you achieve them. Don’t see this as a burden. Instead, use it to fuel your hard work. Have people depend on you and you’ll be motivated to not let them down.

    15. You fall victim to all your negative behaviors you’re trying to avoid with your goals.

    Instead of making a “to-do” list, make a list of all the behaviors, patterns, and thinking you need to avoid if you ever want to reach your goal. For instance, you might want to chart down, “avoid Netflix” or “don’t think negatively about my capability.” By doing this, you’ll have a visible reminder of all the behavior you need to avoid in order to accomplish your goals. But make sure you balance this list out with your goals listed as positive statements.

    How To Stop Failing Your Goal?

    If you want to stop failing your goal and finally reach it, don’t miss these actionable tips explained by Jade in this episode of The Lifehack Show:

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    Bottom Line

    Overcoming our mistakes is the first step to building healthy systems for our goals. If you find one of these cogs jamming the gears to your goal-setting system, I hope you follow these solutions to keep your system healthy and able to churn out more goals.

    Make this year where you finally achieve what you’ve only dreamed of.

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    Featured photo credit: NORTHFOLK via unsplash.com

    Reference

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