Saying no to everything else

Derek Sivers:

Steven Pressfield called himself an author for years, but he’d never actually finished a book. Eventually, the psychological pain of not finishing kept building until he couldn’t stand it anymore. He decided to finally beat the devil he calls “The Resistance”.

He created a situation with no escape. He rented a cabin, brought his typewriter, and shut off all other options.

He said,

“I didn’t talk to anybody during that year… I didn’t hang out. I just worked. I had a book in mind and I had decided I would finish it or kill myself. I could not run away again, or let people down again, or let myself down again. This was it, do or die.”
After a difficult year of wrestling with those inner demons and avoiding all temptations, he did it. He finished his first book. It wasn’t a success, but it didn’t matter. He had finally beat The Resistance. He went on to write many successful novels.

He told this story in the great book Turning Pro, the third in his series of little books about the creative struggle, including The War of Art and Do the Work. Read all three.

Hell yeah or no” is a filter you can use to decide what’s worth doing. But this is simpler and more serious. This is a decision to stop deciding. It’s one decision, in advance, that the answer to all future distractions is “no” until you finish what you started. It’s saying yes to one thing, and no to absolutely everything else.

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Decide

Steve Pavlina:

If you want to achieve a goal you’ve set, the most crucial part is to DECIDE to manifest it. It doesn’t matter if you feel it’s outside your control to do so. It doesn’t matter if you can’t yet see how you’ll get from A to B. Most of those resources will come online AFTER you’ve made the decision, not before.

If you don’t understand this simple step, then you will waste a lot of time. Step 1 is to decide. Not to ruminate or to ponder or to ask around and see whether or not you can do it. If you want to start your own business, then decide to make it so. If you want to be married and have a family, then decide to attract a mate. If you want to change careers, then decide to do so.

And this bit on cultivating burning desire:

When asked during an interview how he managed to reach the top as a professional bodybuilder and Hollywood actor, Arnold Schwarzenegger replied with a single word, “Drive!” All great success ultimately begins with an idea, but what makes ideas become reality is the fuel of human desire. An idea by itself can give you a temporary feeling of inspiration, but burning desire is what gets you through all the perspiration necessary to overcome the inevitable obstacles along the way.

How committed are you to achieving [your] goals? Under what conditions would you give up? What if you could significantly increase your desire to achieve these goals? What if you wanted them so badly that you knew with absolute certainty that you would absolutely, positively never ever give up? When you are truly 100% committed to reaching your goals, you move from hoping to knowing. If you want something badly enough, then quitting is simply not an option. You either find a way or make one. You pay the price, whatever it takes.

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It’s Your Life

Lewis Howes and Lisa Nichols talk about life, decisions, and abundance:

Nichols: Abundant thinkers think a certain way. And they don’t go around trying to convert you. People like you and I go, let’s open it up to everyone…

Howes: Yeah.

Nichols: … but here’s what I know about the human spirit. It’s that the human spirit has the power of choice. And most people don’t want to choose this kind of thinking because it costs you something.

Howes: What’s the cost?

Nichols: The cost is you got to get up earlier. You get up earlier than the average guy. Your day… What you do in a day is what some people do in a week. What you do in the morning is what some people do in a 12-hour day.

You got to be willing.

What you’re willing to do on your book tour, to get on The New York Times — Some people say, “I got to do all that? I don’t want to do all that.”

Ok, great. Then have your life. You sign up for your life experience.

When I realized that I was the culmination of all my decisions… That’s like straight with no chaser. That’s like getting it with no cookies and milk.

You are a culmination of all your decisions.

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Just Start

Pete Michaud:

You will never figure “everything” out. You will never be able to make everything perfect before you start. Just make a decision and run with it. Figure it out as you go along.

You will never live the life you want by wandering aimlessly through hypothetical scenarios. I’ve tried it, it doesn’t work. I’ve also tried just doing something. That worked.

I implore you: find a quiet place in your mind, identify your desires free of caveats, and make a plan to move toward those desires. Don’t try to plan for all eventualities. That will just prevent action.

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