The Four Decisions You Must Make To Succeed

By Seamus Anthony

The fact that you are alive means you already are an incredible success. However, being human, you probably want to be even more successful.

I’m not Bill Gates or whoever, but thinking about how to get what I want, I’ve come to realise there are four decisions that you need to make in order to succeed.

success decisions

1 – Decide what you are going to do:

Seriously, choose something – one thing – not several things. Don’t kid yourself.

I used to give away an ebook called Curly’s Law about doing Just One Thing. The gist was that if you look at the most successful people they are very single-minded. They decided clearly what they wanted and then they bloody well went after it with a sort of mad, one-eyed monomania until the world eventually coughed up what they wanted.

I knew in my heart that this was the best advice, but I was faking it because actually I didn’t know what my one thing was at all.

Actually, I did when I was a boy: I wanted to be an author. Then as a teenager I wanted to be a rock star. That became my One Thing. And it was working brilliantly for a while, but in my mid-twenties, right when my my music career was taking off in a big way, I decided I also wanted to become a writer. And a hospitality entrepreneur. And a…

At that point my career took a dive into a wishy-washy sea of mediocrity.

Truth was I was in a period of searching; I had not yet found the right One Thing for me.

Are you a “slashy”? You know, as in dancer/painter/wedding celebrant or whatever? If you are, I don’t mean to make you feel bad about yourself. Maybe that works for you. But for me, it just doesn’t. I hate it.

To me, no matter which way I strung them together, musician/writer/entrepreneur/web geek/personal development guru is not one thing. They are five things.

Which would be fine – except that I am not an A-type workaholic with boundless energy who can work 20 hours a day, seven days a week. Sorry, just can’t.

I am a finite bundle of resources and in every area of endevour there is so very much to do. There is no chance – zero, none, zip, nada – that I can become a rock star, a bestselling author, the founder of an amazing company, a highly useful coder and the next Tony Robbins all at the same time.

Sounds obvious yet that is precisely what I was trying to do for a long time. But no more.

2 – Decide what needs to be done to make it happen:

Research others who have made it happen. There are no doubt a lot of blogs and podcasts on the topic, no matter how obscure.

Thankfully, I finally broke through that nonsense and came out the other side. I finally resolved on what my One Thing is. And yes, I did have to make a conscious decision.

I decided that my one thing is to become a professional author.

Boom.

That’s not five things. That’s not even two things. It’s one thing.

I am resolved now and I know I am on the right path. So I researched how it is done. You don’t need to reinvent the wheel. I have learned that the single most important thing for an aspiring author to do is (surprise, surprise) to get a few books out. So I am planning on publishing four books this year. I’ve also learned the importance of hiring good editors and cover designers.

3 – Decide if you’re prepared to pay the price:

Honestly assess whether you are prepared to do what it takes to make it happen.

Are you willing to just chase one rabbit? Also, are you are prepared to give up what you need to give up in order to get what you want? There will be something, even if it is just your predilection for sleeping in!

You are probably going to need to get out of your comfort zone. You’re going to need to learn and do things that make your life harder than just staying home to watch HBO shows. You may need to travel. To network. To speak in public. And you will surely need to work your little butt off.

Once you know what needs doing, you then have to seriously consider whether you are prepared to go through the pain that will accompany aspects of the job. I personally doubt that Mick Jagger wakes up every morning and jumps out of bed singing “Hooray! Another 5am flight!”, but he does it.

4 – Decide to start now, where you are, with what you have:

Do it. Do it now.

Plan, start, execute. Persist until it is done. There is so little to write about this point except for this one thing: stop making excuses and do what you can do, now.

Go.

Hi, I’m Seamus Anthony. I am an author and musician from Australia. I also love to meditate, help people get creative, keep fit n’ healthy, read (a lot) and chillax with friends and family. Go get your free E-book by me: “Taming The Monkey Mind”.

4 comments Write a comment

  1. Seems the hardest part is figuring out what the “one thing” is, something that will inspire that kind of dedication. I’m down to two or three “things” after saying “no” a lot over the last few years (probably since around the time I read “Curly’s Law”), but I don’t know if I’m capable of the kind of single-minded determination that would get me down to just one!

    Maybe my answer to decision #3 is … no. I’m too happy with my life as it is (and the plans I already have) to focus down on trying to become *spectacularly* successful in just one area. #8-)

    • And there’s nothing wrong with that – being happy is success. Please note two points also: when I talk about success, I define it very liberally. Writing a song you are proud of to me is success (hell, writing one decent line is success). Also (and I was just wondering if I don’t spell this out enough) my musings on success are often just that, musings, not “I am an incredible success story so ramp up your goosestep and follow me!” … shudder that I should be so vain.

      • Aye, an alternative reading would have been “Step 1: Figure out your personal definition of success.” #8-)

        I think I’m probably a bit of an outlier on the “personal development blog reader” curve, in that I’m already pretty good with how things are. I’d love to be a better musician, lose 15Kg, run up mountains and never get grumpy, but life is pretty good just as it is. If you want something to add to your success folder, when I first started reading Rebel Zen I was in a very dark place, and you had a part in getting me out of there – if you never do anything else, you’re high on my list of awesome guys already. #;-)

        • You are right, I probably should have included that in my list… not too late I suppose…

          That is wonderful to know, that this blog helped you so much. I do have people tell me this now and then and it really means so much to me 🙂 Glad you’re in a good spot!

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