I have worked a lot of dead-end jobs in my life. People end up in dead-end jobs for a lot of reasons. In my case it was because I had a limiting belief that what I really wanted to do was too difficult, or otherwise unattainable.
Millions of people have this same limiting belief, and millions do exactly what I did. They spend countless months, or years expending energy pursuing various other “sensible” options that we wrongly believe we have a greater chance of succeeding at.
This is probably one of the biggest lies we could ever tell ourselves.
Mindset, strategy and action
Not long ago I had the pleasure of watching an Episode of The Paulymath Show, in which Paul Piotrowski talks about his three pillars of success. In brief, those pillars, according to Paul, are mindset, strategy and action.
In a later article Paul mentions that most of us fail to achieve our goals not because of a lack of strategy, or action, but because we lack the proper mindset.
But how can this be?
Usually, we already know the strategy
What is strategy exactly? Well, very simply, strategy is how something is done.
For instance, the strategy for making a sandwich would involve the following steps:
- Slice the bread.
- Apply condiments to the bread, such as butter, mayonnaise or peanut butter.
- If desired, add some meat and veggies.
- Put all together.
There are very few people alive who do not understand the strategy for making a sandwich, but if they were honestly ignorant, or had a craving for something new and unusual, they could easily find directions from any number or sources.
So we can safely say that if someone fails to make a sandwich it is not because they lack the strategy, or know how, but because they have failed to take the action required to make it. Why would they fail to make a sandwich? Maybe they just didn’t want one, maybe they were feeling lazy, maybe they were hoping someone else would do it. In any case, the lack of action is a direct result of their mindset.
What is interesting is that while almost no one would ever claim they didn’t make a sandwich because they didn’t know how, people will make this claim routinely in other aspects of their life.
Not knowing how is a tremendously common, and tremendously versatile excuse for not taking action
Its true sometimes we really do not know how to do something. For instance, I do not know how to repair the engine of my car. But is that truly what stops me from fixing my own vehicle if it breaks down?