How to succeed at absolutely anything

You probably haven’t heard these words in a long time – probably not since you were at school, and almost definitely not from anyone apart from your parents or teachers. They are such sacred, underused words, that I’m going to give them their very own line, in big, bold letters:

YOU CAN DO ANYTHING YOU SET YOUR MIND TO

Good – glad we got that out of the way. I’m guessing years of sitting at a desk, cynicism, bad experiences and jealous peers have long since beaten that sentiment out of you, but believing it is the first step to success. Now, do you want to know how you can make that true for you?

Sara Gibbs - floral dress - Darling Lovely Life blog

Don’t hang on to a great idea forever – do something about it

How to succeed at absolutely anything

Put down the research and go for it

Planning is great, but there’s such a thing as too much planning. The author who spends months planning their novel but never writes a word. The would-be traveller who spends years dreaming of their trip but never takes it. You get the picture.

Good planning is good sense, but too much planning is just procrastination. There’s no such thing as planning to perfection and if you’re waiting for something to be perfect before you dive in head first, I PROMISE you that you’ll be waiting forever.

Too much planning could even be a sign that you’re afraid! So make a plan, by all means, but know when it’s time to put down the pen and start living your dream.

Matches in stone hands - how to succeed at absolutely anything - Darling Lovely Life blog

The matches are in your hands – are you brave enough to start the fire?

Get confident, stupid

Ah, I never miss an opportunity to quote The Simpsons, but it’s true. Be confident in what you’re doing. If you start something expecting to fail, you’ll probably prove yourself right somehow. I know how scary it is to set yourself up for disappointment, but tell yourself that disappointment and failure are not options. Every morning, look in the mirror, look yourself in the eye and give yourself an affirmation – you’re on the right path and you ARE good enough to succeed at it.

Think about Madonna – no offence, Madonna fans, but Madonna is by no means the best singer in the world. Does that mean she isn’t good enough to be a global superstar? Hell to the no! She’s frickin’ MADONNA! What got her there?

She got confident, stupid!

Be tenacious, persistent, consistent and realise you’re on a journey

Some very talented people never get anywhere because they give up when the going gets tough. Your new blog hasn’t taken off? Or hasn’t taken off yet? Nobody will ever hire you? Or the right person hasn’t found you yet? You’ll never make any money? Or you’re yet to turn a profit?

Yet is a great word (although if you say it too many times, it starts to sound weird – yet, yet, yet… well, you get the picture) – it means that a hurdle is not the end of the road, it’s just a hold up. If you can see over that hurdle (and see that there are plenty more ahead) and jump it with courage and self belief, then you’ll never fail.

Half of the challenge is having the confidence to keep going at all costs. To try another angle when nobody responds to that press release, to contact people and ask to work with them, to submit work and submit it again. Like a certain JK Rowling whose manuscript was rejected and rejected and rejected. Did that deter her? Nope. And now she’s one of the richest women in the world so *raspberries*.

Death Valley USA - Darling Lovely Life blog

If you give up at every hurdle you won’t get much past the first step

As they say down under, put in the hard yards

Yeah, yeah, you’re probably thinking “shurdup about that bloody novel already” but here’s one last novel analogy for ya. I’m writing a novel and my first draft sucks. It’s not a finished novel, it reads like a five year old all riled up on sugar managed to somehow steal my laptop and brain dump a story.

But that’s just it, now comes the time for the hard work. Now comes the time to recraft every sentence, because I had to get the ideas down somehow they aren’t expressed in the best way.

That’s OK! Your new venture might not be perfect YET but it is a process and if you give up because it wasn’t inherently amazing right off the bat then you’ve failed before you even started. If it’s not there yet, work, work and work some more until it is.

Celebrate your successes, large and small

If you’re starting to feel overwhelmed by the enormity of the task in front of you, take your time and set small tasks that you can reach and feel great about.

Then CELEBRATE. I can’t stress this enough – your journey to success is a journey – celebrate every little milestone and reward yourself for your hard work. You deserve it.

So, are we all going to go out and conquer the world now? Good – and repeat after me: YOU CAN DO ANYTHING YOU SET YOUR MIND TO

3 Comments on How to succeed at absolutely anything

  1. Marcy | Cotton and Cream
    March 13, 2014 at 5:17 am (4 years ago)

    Great advice as always. I’ve finally found the courage to change direction and follow my heart. Starting over with a new name will be hard work but if we don’t try we’ll never know what might have been x

    Reply
  2. lisa nicholas
    March 18, 2014 at 11:24 am (4 years ago)

    Love this and so true – and yes you can do anything if you set your mind to it! xx

    Reply

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