I see many men out there as I go about my workday failing to excel, obviously tired and a shadow of their former selves. Some of these men are a complete waste of tremendous potential due to various factors such as upbringing, difficult circumstances or poor decision making.
Life has had its way with them. I can see it in their faces and hear it in their words. How they comport themselves also tells a story. A man’s posture and presence will bleed his character.
Life is difficult, no question about it. The Creator has left us to our own devices as very fallible human beings in a very broken world.
So it seems to me like part of the grand design on this earth, for whatever reason, is for us all to face many challenges in our lifetime; some of them caused by external factors and many of them self-inflicted.
I also believe, however, that we have all been provided with the ability to change our destiny at any given point in time. This is the other side of the double edged sword of free will we have been granted.
Let us discuss how to best utilize this free will and get started in reclaiming all the inherent potential you possess. And yes, I do believe that every man has been designed in a unique and purposeful manner to attain personal excellence in his life.
If you are reading this article and want to break free from your current state of being then rest assured you have everything inside necessary for a stunning level of positive change. The desire to change is proof positive—such is the nature of men.
Make a decision, get started and prepare to live life as it should be.
The Invisible Parallel
There is an invisible parallel between self-development and your success in this life. In other words, you will only go as far as your character allows.
Character and personal development, of course, are largely unseen. They are by definition internal characteristics.
This is why you are going to make a hard stop and begin to excel below the surface. This is where it all starts. You are going to focus on the unseen to eventually realize fantastic intangible and tangible success.
Have the courage to go about the quiet and unseen work. Humble yourself and start fresh.
It is a project you will undertake for the rest of your life. It will be your quiet ascension as you go about each day. You will make a decision, get started immediately and never look back.
What could be more exciting for a man than to make himself the project of his own life? Make the first thing on your mind as you roll out of bed each morning that today is another day to get better. You will pare away every day for the rest of your life. You will not quit and you will never stop.
Believe in yourself. You are a unique individual like no other in the universe; a human being with a singular genetic makeup. You also come equipped with the most incredible invention in the universe – the human mind, equipped with free will.
You will use this free will to excel below the surface.
Discipline is Paramount
But let’s not fool ourselves; you’re not just going to make a decision, roll out of bed tomorrow morning and wake up a Force of Nature. Discipline and determination will need to also become a part of your essence.
There will be no cutting corners from now on because to do so would negate the plan. As the saying goes, you will only be cheating yourself. Think about it for a moment. How well has that worked for you so far?
Change your thinking and consider your behavior even more important when no one else is looking. It does matter when there is no one around to see. Make this a core principle from now on and the path to consistent disciplined living will become easier. Eliminate the discord in your character and always be true to yourself.
The interesting thing about consistent discipline as such, is that the exercise thereof creates more discipline. In other words, the purposeful pursuit of disciplined living will lead to more of the same. It will become a habit, because it feeds on itself.
The energy created through disciplined living will fuel more of the same. Discipline will become a self-fulfilling prophesy in your life.
And the best part is, the habit of discipline will make life easier. The consistent application of life principles will create momentum and momentum is energy.
And you will use that energy to continue the pursuit of your very best.
Another area of discord below the surface that can knock a man off track is a betrayal of his core ethics. Here too discipline is the key. For without the discipline to stay consistent with what he knows is right and wrong, a man will sabotage his progress in the long run.
Deep down every man knows what is proper. He knows what is righteous and good. Over time, if a man is inconsistent with his conscience he will break down and crash. Life and the natural order will eventually get the better of him.
Can a man have tremendous extrinsic success in this world despite improper and shallow behavior? Absolutely, even though it is indeed frustrating to see. But will he be intrinsically successful? My belief is that he will not.
Despite the façade of fantastic external accomplishment, I believe that in the dark of night when all is quiet, he will know that he has sold out and that a terrible price has been paid. And if not, then perhaps he will get his just dues in the next world.
So does a man need to run around “doing good” every day to become his very best? Does he need to convert others to his beliefs or make philanthropy his main purpose in life? No he does not.
What a man does need to do is reflect as deeply as he can on his principles and then remain consistent with them until his last day. He does not need to be perfect, but his intention should be to always do what he knows is right—seen and unseen.
Each man is different and only he will know what his optimal role will be on this earth. Simply becoming the best you can be for its own sake is a worthy purpose. We all have many roles to play in the scheme of things. Some of us will create tremendous good simply by being an example for others as we follow our own pursuits.
If you fall off course, recognize your mistake and redouble the effort to get back on track. A setback will not be used as an excuse to give in. It will be used as a point to reflect on failure, to humble one’s self and improve from there.
Be prepared to have your beliefs challenged as you go about your daily quest of unyielding self-improvement. Both circumstance, results and people will be at play here.
Sometimes, after years of doing everything right, things won’t work out as well as you’d hoped. They might completely fall apart and you might even encounter The Storm. This is the complex and broken world we live in. There are a lot of moving parts and sometimes we will need to adjust and learn before getting things right. It is simply a hard truth.
As I’m sure many of you have experienced, some of the most difficult of all disappointments in a man’s life will very often be people.
Even those closest to you will often disregard years of principled, consistent and caring behavior. This will not be a reflection on you. It is simply the cruel reality of human fallibility, even from those for whom you have given your all.
Accept that fact when it happens and then remain true to what you know is right.
No matter what life throws at you remain consistent with the standards you have set. Tip the scales in your favor by avoiding the self-sabotage of engaging in improper behavior. And realize that circumstance and people will conspire to break your will.
Vow to always remain true to yourself.
Always take pride in the fact that you will not compromise on what is right.
In the end there is not much more that a man can ask of himself.
Excellence in Process
Fantastic results in life are what we all aspire to. To get there, however, a man will also need to aspire to excellence in process to be successful. Very rarely will one decision, one move or one day result in superior accomplishment.
The process of accomplishment is most often the sum total of years and tens of thousands of minute, unimpressive and unseen decisions and actions. But it is these little things over time that will make the difference between the ordinary and the superior.
Many men have the ambition and courage to attempt great things. This is a worthy trait in and of itself. The first step is to dream big. It is only the few, however, that are willing to maintain a high bar over the long term when it comes to the daily grind of achievement and living.
From the moment your feet hit the floor in the morning make it a matter of principle to stand tall and do everything right. Make it a part of your essence to conduct yourself at the highest level regardless of what you are doing.
In each area of your life—work, home, diet, exercise, money, woman, mindset, and education—set your standard high and then match it. Challenge yourself even in the ordinary activities of life to conduct yourself with excellence.
Push yourself to a higher level once your standard becomes easy. Make it a point to always break new ground in some area. Expand your bandwidth and then you will find that what used to be your best will become easy. This is how you will put distance between yourself and the ordinary man.
Keep your ultimate goals in mind but focus on the process each day. Enjoy performing at your best no matter what you are doing.
The end result is that excellence will pervade all that you do. You will enjoy just being you. For doing things right and pursuing excellence is its own reward.
Develop yourself, be disciplined in the unseen, set your principles in armor and conduct yourself at the highest level each day.
Excel below the surface where most men will not and in the end you will live a life that most men cannot.
All the best,