The Cowards Never Started & The Weak Died Along the Way. That Leaves You.
“Precept is a very good thing, but to my thinking an ounce of practical energy is worth any amount of precept without action.” -Theodore Roosevelt
Action is the surest path to achieving your goals, finding meaning, and being successful.
An ounce of practical energy, of doing something, is worth any amount of talk. Anyone can talk. Few people ever do.
Tony Robbins once said:
“People always say, knowledge is power. That’s B.S. There are a lot of knowledgeable people who can’t fight their way out of a paper bag. I say, EXECUTION trumps knowledge every day of the week. Take action!”
In his autobiography, Phil Knight (founder of NIKE) told a story of when his company was on the brink of disaster. He gathered his troops, and said a simple phrase:
“The cowards never started, and the weak died along the way. That leaves us, ladies and gentlemen. Us.”
You are on a high-stakes path right now. If you’re reading this, I know you’re someone who cares about your personal growth and achieving your goals.
You are not like the others. The cowards never started on their journey, and the weak stopped walking this path long ago.
That leaves you.
The good news? You can keep going where others quit. You can press on. You can achieve the goals that most people will never get to experience, because they never started or quit.
All you need is action.
Action Brings Clarity, Focus, and Purpose
“Do you know who you are? Do not ask: act! Action will delineate and define you.” -Thomas Jefferson
In his book The Pocket Guide to Action, author Kyle Eschenroeder wrote, “There’s a kind of listless, restless, low-grade anxiety permeating our society today.” Many people have basically no idea who they are, what they want, or how to get it. They go through their days on autopilot, giving their time and energy to others.
If you don’t know who you are, then act.
If you don’t know what you want, then act.
If you don’t know how to get where you want to go, then act.
Action defines you. Action reveals important knowledge, like who you are and what you stand for.
Many people have it backwards; they think they cannot act until they get clarity, until they figure out who they are and what they want. But the truth is, action brings clarity. By acting — just doing something — you discover what you like & don’t like, want & don’t want.
In his book The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck, NYT-best-selling author Mark Manson wrote:
“Action isn’t just the effect of motivation; it’s also the cause of it.”
Action creates motivation. If you’re wondering what to do, what job to get, what book to read, or what goal to set…
Just do something. It doesn’t quite matter what, as long as you do something. Remember, an ounce of practical energy is worth any amount of talking, dreaming, or wishing. By doing something — taking action — you will get clarity.
You will gain a renewed level of focus.
You will see the next right step to take.
Just by taking that first step.
Every Day You Keep Going, Thousands of Others Quit
Being consistent will make you feel like a loser.
Doing small actions every day usually doesn’t have immediate results. While you’re toiling away, it can feel like the rest of the world is rushing ahead, gaining huge successes and far bigger triumphs than you’ll ever see.
But don’t be fooled; for every day you keep going, thousands of others quit.
Said best-selling author Hal Elrod:
“Repetition can be boring or tedious — which is why so few people ever master anything.”
Talented, attractive, lucky people are everywhere. Everywhere. They’re all over my feed, peppered all throughout my community and friend groups. They’re freaking amazing at this one thing.
But rarely is any one of them a consistent person.
That is why eventually, they will fail.
And that is why you will succeed.
Consistent people are extremely rare. If you can learn to cultivate consistency in your work, you’ll eventually beat any talent, luck, skill, and even quality — just by being consistent.
Consistency will make you feel like a loser. All the time you’ll spend working, trying, failing, trying again, failing again, trying again and failing again will make you think you’re a loser.
You’ll feel like a nobody who sucks and isn’t good for anything and should just quit because you’ll never be good enough.
Remember — an ounce of action is worth any amount of “talk.” Most people talk. Few people take action. The cowards never started, the weak died along the way.
That leaves you, and the action you took today.
Take heart; that little bit of action you did today is more than what 95% of other people did.
Want to Be Happy, Joyous, and Free? Then Do This Immediately.
“Happiness does not come from accumulating things or leading a comfortable existence…happiness comes from doing.” -Frank Crane
Too many people are chasing the wrong thing. They think gadgets, status, and admiration will make them happy.
These things are fleeting and cheap. What you can do today is simple:
Just do something.
This action is what will help you become more happy, joyous, and free. A lot of folks mistakenly think they’ll be happy once they don’t have to work anymore. But as James Loehr explained in his book The Power of Full Engagement, exhaustion comes from both underuse and overuse of your energy. Being a couch potato is exhausting after a while.
Want to be happy, joyous, and free?
Then start taking action. Any action. Remember, most people aren’t going to take any important actions today; by doing this, you separate yourself from the majority. Action brings clarity and focus, and reveals what to do next.
All you need to do is a small something, today.
Author William Irvine once wrote:
“People are unhappy in large part because they are confused about what is valuable.”
It’s crazy how wrong people’s values can become. Today, more people value the latest gadget and fashions over what truly matters — their family, their beliefs, and their future.
If you want what you’ve never had, you must do what no one has done. If you come from an environment that is lacking in happiness, joy, and freedom, you need to change. Change comes through action.
The Most Important Lesson I Learned as a Writer
“Success comes through sustained effort. (The key word in that sentence is not ‘effort.’ It’s ‘sustained.’)” -Todd Brison
Being consistent is one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to become.
I’ve been blogging for 5 years now. For the first 4.5 years, no one read my stuff. In 54 months, I’d accumulated a grand total of 178 subscribers.
I wasn’t consistent. I’d write and blog furiously for a few weeks, then lose motivation and disappear entirely. I wouldn’t write for like, 3–4 months. Then, I’d get inspired and write another few posts. Then I’d lose interest and give in to boredom, and stop writing again.
No wonder nobody ever read my stuff!
4 months ago, I finally decided to become consistent. I started publishing every single day, building trust with my readers and honing my craft.
It’s no coincidence that in the last 4 months, I’ve gotten more traffic to my articles than the previous 4.5 years combined. I’ve gained nearly 1,000 more subscribers. My articles are read by thousands of people every day.
I’ve made more money from my blog this week than I’ve made in the past 4 years combined.
This is the reward for being consistent. But consistency will make you feel like a loser, while you’re in it. Just remember — you have to shovel through 10,000 pounds of crap before you strike gold. Most people will never have the consistency to overcome the tedious repetition that long.
There’s a ton of gold down there — are you willing to keep shoveling until you get there?
You Get to Choose Who You Become
“You can’t change your destination overnight, but you can change your direction overnight.” -Jim Rohn
There was once an alcoholic father with twin boys.
Throughout the sons’ lives, their father would beat them, abuse them, and let his alcoholism run wild. Their father’s addiction touched each son deeply.
When the two boys were grown, they led very different lives. One son became an alcoholic himself. When asked about his life, he responded, “My father was an alcoholic, so I didn’t have a choice.” He acted like his abusive father in many ways.
The other son became a highly successful, respectable man. He never drank. When asked about his life, he responded, “My father was an alcoholic, so I didn’t have a choice. I had to change.”
You get to choose who you become. Whatever you’ve been through or however your life looked like before, you get to choose where you’re going.
In his book Good to Great, Jim Collins wrote:
“Greatness is not a function of circumstance. Greatness, it turns out, is largely a matter of conscious choice.”
What do you choose today?
Do you see your circumstances and history and choose greatness?
Or do you see your past and choose laziness and hopelessness?
You can choose to become whatever you want to be. And it all starts with action; taking steps today that get you just a little closer. You’ll gain clarity, focus, happiness, and freedom on the journey.
The cowards never started, and the weak died along the way.
That leaves you.
For every day you keep going, thousands of others quit. That little bit of action you took today is worth any amount of dreaming and “talking” that most people do.
Action isn’t easy, but it’s simple. Best of all, when you take action, you gain clarity and focus. Action creates motivation. The more you do, the more you learn. The more you learn, the brighter your future will be.
Today, choose action. Tomorrow, you’ll be a little closer to an amazing achievement, which is more than most people can say.
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