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How to Stay Focused and Be a Professional

This morning I discovered the writings of James Clear, who writes for the Huffington Post. He has his own website The Art of Becoming Better.

I found his posts on staying focused, developing good habits, and “getting on with life” to be quite inspirational.

How to Stay Focused When Working on Your Goals Gets Boring

What’s the difference between the best athletes and everyone else? What do the really successful people do that most people don’t?

Really successful people feel the same boredom and the same lack of motivation that everyone else feels. They don’t have some magic pill that makes them feel ready and inspired every day. But the difference is that the people who stick with their goals don’t let their emotions determine their actions. Top performers still find a way to show up, to work through the boredom, and to embrace the daily practice that is required to achieve their goals.

Fall in love with boredom. Fall in love with repetition and practice. Fall in love with the process of what you do and let the results take care of themselves.

The Difference Between Professionals and Amateurs

It doesn’t matter what you are trying to become better at, if you only do the work when you’re motivated, then you’ll never be consistent enough to become a professional.

The ability to show up everyday, stick to the schedule, and do the work — especially when you don’t feel like it — is so valuable that it is literally all you need to become better 99% of the time.

Professionals stick to the schedule, amateurs let life get in the way. Professionals know what is important to them and work towards it with purpose, amateurs get pulled off course by the urgencies of life.

5 Tips for Overcoming Fear and Self-Doubt

  1. Don’t pick goals where the stakes are low

If you fail inside your comfort zone, it’s not really failure, it’s just maintaining the status quo. If you never feel uncomfortable, then you’re never trying anything new. In other words, feeling stupid is a good thing.

  1. Nobody is rooting for you to fail

Maybe you’ll succeed. Maybe you’ll fail. For the most part, nobody cares one way or the other. This is a good thing! The world is big and you are small, and that means you can chase your dreams with little worry for what people think.

  1. Just because you don’t like where you have to start from doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get started

  2. Stop making uncertain things certain

Who says you’re going to fail? You’re not destined to “miss that lift.” In fact, maybe you’re destined to succeed. Stop acting like failure is certain. It’s not.

  1. The only real failure is not taking any action in the first place

We all deal with feelings of fear, uncertainty and vulnerability. And unfortunately, most of us let those feelings dictate our actions. For this reason, the simple decision to act is often enough to separate you from most people. You don’t need to be great at what you do, you just need to be the one person who actually decides to do it.

You can enjoy a lot of success by doing the things that most people make excuses to avoid.