The resolutions don’t matter, your sticktoitiveness does

stick-to-itiveness (noun)
stick-to-it·​ive·​ness | \stik-ˈtü-ə-tiv-nəs

meaning: dogged perseverance

The last day of any year can mean a lot of things to many of us. For some, it’s the time for reflection and planning, for some its rejuvenation, for some it’s spending time with friends and family, for some its binge-watching the latest and greatest on Netflix, and then there will be some who’ll be hustling their way into the new year! And all of that is totally accepting. So long as it makes you happy.

As of me, it’s the usual — reflection on the days that flew by and planning for all the great opportunities that 2019 has to offer. Or perhaps, what great opportunities I’ll discover and seize control of in the next 365 days. It’s a matter of perspective, really.

Speaking of which, some of my friends believe that a new year is an opportunity to start afresh. And then there are some who swear by the power of new year resolutions. I think it’s baloney to think to start afresh and creating new resolutions are going to fix any of our challenges. (Of course, they know exactly how I feel about these new year rituals.) Our culture is so hungover (no pun intended) on these short-term fixes (that literally lasts anywhere between 7 to 59 days) that we miss out on thinking for the long-term! And that’s exactly what gets in the way of achieving anything worthwhile.

I was listening to one of Robin Sharma’s podcasts earlier today where he mentioned that achieving mastery is the result of obessive focus. It’s what K. Anders Ericsson calls deliberate practice. You intentionally focus on that one thing you want to achieve and never let go until you have. And yes, that’s a massive time commitment ranging from weeks to months to years to even decades.

Do you want to be an influential leader? Well, prepare to study the art and science of leadership and some of the highest performing leaders for the rest of your life. I once heard John Maxwell mention that he’s a student of leadership. And he’s in his 70s and has been inspiring leaders across the world for over 40 years!

Want to be a world-class entreprener? Are you committed to toil away your time to obessess over that idea of yours and making it work? Let me tell you one cold hard fact — the best entreprenuers you know came to be because they were willing to go where everyone else didn’t even dare. And it’s never about having a seed-strategy or that next round of funding. It’s about actually caring about the product or service and ensuring that it sees the light of the day. It’s about making it happen.

Want to be an outstanding athlete? Or perhaps that shed those extra pounds to look and feel fitter and full of energy? Well, you train like an athlete. You take care of yourself by tracking what you eat, start exercising by doing something yourself (like going out for a run) or hire a personal trainer (in the gym) to craft a training program that fits your schedule, and most importantly you pick yourself back up if you fall off the track.

Can you see the pattern? The road to excellence isn’t smooth nor is it fun. And while we know better than to expect quick results, that’s exactly what we hope for anyway. Don’t we?

There’s no big secret for success or high-performance. It’s a simple matter of identifying what you want to do and stick to the damn thing! The annoying bit is that we call it quits mid-way or at the first sign of resistance or obstacle or defeat. The best among us believe in the long-haul and stick with their mission no matter what. And it takes the heart of a warrior to have the courage, humility, and discipline to do the work and keep at it until the mission is accomplished.

Do you want to be great in 2019? STOP fooling yourself with resolutions. Narrow down on that ONE major goal in each area of your life (career, relationships, health, etc.) and work towards it. Every single day. Your job is to keep at it until you achieve them. Period.

Let me guarantee you a couple of things:

  1. It’s easier said than done. I know that. But the only way to achieve anything worthwhile in life is to do the way. There is no way around it.
  2. There will be roadblocks. You’ll have miserable days. You just may fall off the track unexpectedely. All of that is okay as long as you keep moving towards your major goals. Remember, you just need to stick with them.

I can tell from my own experience, sticktoitiveness doesn’t come easy. It’s hard and is often frustrating. But, unfortunately, that’s the only way to get anything significant done in life.

Source: Discipline Equals Freedom Field Manual
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