I love a good motivational speaker. I have some favorites that I listen to every day on my way to the gym, and have an entire bookmarks folder dedicated to motivational links. I seem to find them while I’m scrolling through my Facebook feed, or just browsing the internet. When I agreed to go to a technological conference for work, I didn’t think for an instant I would come across any motivational material.
I was wrong.
The subject matter of the conference was disruptive innovation. There was a guy from Intel, and a handful of entrepreneurs on hand as speakers. As the day progressed I was surprised to hear some similar themes from the entrepreneurs that I’d heard before from my motivational sources.
Success Requires Disruption
Each successful idea from the entrepreneurs on the panel created disruption in their industry. In each instance their inventions challenged the very foundation of the current way of doing things. Sometimes disruption will threaten people’s jobs, and there will be those that want to bury the idea. For example, one of the panelists revealed that the first digital camera was invented in the mid 1970’s by someone that worked at Kodak. The inventor’s superiors buried the idea as it challenged the print film industry that was the bread and butter of Kodak’s business.
As this discussion took place at the conference, it reminded me of something said by my favorite motivational speaker, Eric Thomas. He says that in order to be successful, you have to change your entire mindset from a culture of losing, to a culture of winning.
There Is No Such Thing as Failure
During a question and answer session at the conference, one of the attendees asked the panel of speakers how they deal with innovations that seemed like a good idea, but ultimately failed. The representative from Intel gave an interesting answer, asking the attendee to think about the definition of failure. He went on to state they celebrate their failures, because of the information gained from the experience. He actually had a hard time calling anything a failure, because so much can be learned from them.
Instantly a quote popped into my mind from Michael Jordan, one of the best basketball players of all time:
“I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”
Process over Product
Everyone of the entrepreneurs echoed a similar story. While they obviously gravitate towards products and industries that they are interested in, the product isn’t the most important thing in being successful. The most important ingredient in recipe of being successful is having the correct process. One entrepreneur went through every one of his business ventures, both successful and not so successful. He emphasized that the difference between the idea being a success and not was simply the process. Once he got the process figured out, everything he did succeeded.
Which reminded me of the story of Inky Johnson, who speaks about the importance of the process of being successful. He was a college football player, projected to be a top draft pick, when he suffered an injury that ended his football career. He refused to be let the injury get him down. Using the same process he used to become a successful football player, he applied his skills and dedication to being a motivational speaker.
Eric Thomas, Michael Jordan, the entrepreneurs I listened to at the conference and Inky Johnson all have something in common.
They are all successful people.
Given that fact, it’s not surprising that they share a common philosophy. It’s a philosophy that we can apply to our lives to be successful with our finances.
If you don’t consider yourself successful financially, you have to make a complete paradigm change in your lifestyle. Making little changes, like not buying expensive coffees or buying generic products or cutting your cable are admirable changes. But on their own, they are not enough. You have to completely change the way you think about, and treat your money. If you want life altering results, you have to make life altering changes.
Failure Is Not In Your Vocabulary
Not achieving your goal every single time is fact of life. Just ask Michael Jordan. Do not let the fact that a goal was missed stop you from continuing on your journey. Ask yourself what you can learn from it, utilize that knowledge, get back up, and move on.
When my wife and I were digging ourselves out of debt we tried countless ways of budgeting and discussing our finances. It took us over two years to finally get a process down that worked for us. Imagine if we had given up after the first, second, or even 10th attempt to get it right?
Love The Process
Once you get the process figured out – the never give up, make disruptive changes, learn from your mistakes process – apply that process to everything. Apply it to making a budget, tracking your spending, increasing your income and everything in life. Think about how you want your life to be, and apply the process to every aspect of your existence.
Successful people, from vastly different career tracks, all sharing a similar perspective and following a similar recipe to achieve success. This seems worth paying attention to.
Do you implement these three things into your every day life? If so, do you find they are leading you down the path to success?