In my pursuit for startup education and opportunities to add value to others, I managed to land an internship last year, where I am helping to grow the email and social media following of one of the more well-known authorities in the tech and start-up space: Nir Eyal.
It was July 14th when I did my usual morning commute to the 99Gamers office. I always take Caltrain, so I have the luxury of using my laptop on-the-go to do stuff like, well, writing this article.
That day I had an epiphany while reading an article on how content goes viral: people love valuable content.
So, why don’t I connect with some of the top influencers around the world? They all have achieved extraordinary goals, and have valuable insight to teach to those who want the same results that they’ve seen. Since I have ambitious goals and want to share valuable content with others, why not interview them, learn from them, and share my findings?
And so I did. I compiled a list of my desired influencers, and personally got in touch with them through several means: tweets, emails, Product Hunt, and a virtual introduction.
I asked each of them the following question:
If you had only one tip to share to the world on how people can achieve their goals, what is your absolute #1 tip?
Many of them opted to share their time and wisdom with me. I am eternally grateful for their willingness to help, and I’m excited to share their tips with you!
Here is what each of them had to say about how we can achieve our goals:
1. Harrison Barnes (@hbarnes)
Harrison Barnes played college basketball for the University of North Carolina, and is a 2014–2015 NBA champion with the Golden State Warriors.
“Believe in yourself no matter what. When you have a dream there’s only one person who can achieve it — you! Make it happen with your effort, determination and focus. When you combine all of that, things will start to fall into place.”
Even when we feel like giving up, sometimes we need to tell ourselves that we can do it, and trust the process. Dreams don’t come easily. When we embrace the obstacles and failures, but constantly put the hard work in, results only happen from there.
2. Gary Vaynerchuk (@garyvee)
Gary Vaynerchuk is the CEO of VaynerMedia, angel investor, best-selling author of Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook and Crush It!, host of Wine Library TV, and host of a top podcast and YouTube show: The #AskGaryVee Show.
“Stop lying to yourself. Too many people want to dream about who they want to be instead of focusing on learning who they are! Putting yourself in the position to be successful and having the humility to accept that is the key.”
One way to achieve extraordinary results is to put all our focus on our strengths versus our weaknesses. Unfortunately (or fortunately), that means that we need to delegate the things that we think we need to do. Gary Vaynerchuk is a great example of this concept, as he’s built teams around him to handle the work that he knows would be better off in someone else’s hands.
3. Pat Flynn (@PatFlynn)
Pat Flynn is the host of the Smart Passive Income podcast, founder of Green Exam Academy, and upcoming author of Will It Fly? How to Test Your Next Business Idea So You Don’t Waste Your Time and Money
“Ask for help — it’s impossible to do any of this alone, and if you ask any entrepreneur how important relationships and connecting with others is for success, all of them will tell you it’s absolutely crucial. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there, know what you’re not good at, and get help when you need it.”
It’s okay to ask for help. When we accept the fact that the presence and support of others is crucial to keep us pushing through obstacles, we put ourselves in a greater position to not only succeed, but also be as happy as we can be. Our network is very valuable, as Pat asserts.
If we commit to building and nurturing our relationships, as well as genuinely helping others with their own goals, it will naturally come back around in the form them offering a helping hand when we need it the most.
4. Jairek Robbins (@JairekRobbins)
Jairek asserts that we can achieve our goals with 7 simple steps:
1. Know EXACTLY what you want (be specific)
2. Know WHY you want it (identify what’s driving you)
3. Create your massive action plan (model others’ success to speed up your journey)
4. Take crazy amounts of FOCUSED & MASSIVE action!
5. Measure and fine tune your journey
6. Allow diving grace to guide you and handle the rest!
7. CELEBRATE your RESULTS!!!
I definitely felt Jairek’s energy and enthusiasm from the other side of the screen!
One thing that some of us may not realize is that we can only achieve our goals to the best of our abilities if we actually know what it is that we want, and why we want it. The why is especially important, because our passion for what we want and what we do is the fire that keeps us hustling until we achieve our desired results.
Once we know our why, it’s up to us to craft a concrete plan for ourselves, make a commitment to follow through with that plan, learn and improve during the long journey, and constantly give ourselves the permission to step back and reflect on who we’ve become in the process.
Next thing we know, we’ve become somebody who, just a while ago, we were dreaming of becoming.
5. Hal Elrod (@HalElrod)
“The [#1 tip I have is the] quality of your morning success ritual (i.e. ‘The Miracle Morning’), because it determines who you are becoming every single day of your life.”
By no means am I somebody who has achieved the same extraordinary results as everybody else in this article, but I can at least vouch for The Miracle Morning because of what I’ve accomplished ever since I started it.
I’ve done The Miracle Morning routine for over 280 days (as of January 11, 2016). Sure, I’ve missed countless days in between, but after officially implementing this morning routine into my life, I’ve seen game-changing results in everything ranging from my health, to my writing and startup career.
If you’re not where you want to be today, one actionable step you can take is to establish a morning routine. Wake up a little earlier and exercise, read, write, or do anything else. What’s important is that you made the decision to put yourself in a better position to succeed.
Realize that we are where we are today because of the actions we’ve taken and decisions we’ve made up to this point. If we want something to change in our life, we have to be that change.
6. Dorie Clark (@dorieclark)
“Don’t take unsolicited feedback — ever.
Too often, we’re trained to listen to everyone’s opinion about what we’re doing or not doing. But the truth is, most advice is outdated (the secret to success is a steady, “safe” job) and is often filtered through other people’s biases or agendas. If you’re doing something innovative or different, it’s especially likely many other people won’t appreciate it or think it’s worthwhile.
Only accept advice from people you trust and whose opinion you seek out. Everyone else, you should ignore.”
Dorie makes an important point that we must understand if we want to put ourselves in a better position to achieve our goals.
The only people we need to take advice from are the people that we would want to switch places with.
I don’t think it’s a bad thing to listen to everyone, but I do think we should pay closer attention to those who have achieved the goals and results that we want for ourselves. Not only can they tell us what to do, they can even tell us what not to do. And it’s those exact pieces of wisdom that helped them get to where they are today.
The takeaway here is for us to seek mentors who embody the qualities and achievements that we want for ourselves. They can be mentors we admire personally, or admire from afar. What truly matters is that we consider following in the footsteps of someone who has already done what we want to do.
7. Peter Voogd (@PeterVoogd23)
Peter Voogd is the best-selling author of 6 Months to 6 Figures, founder of The Game Changers Academy, host of the Young Entrepreneur Lifestyle podcast, and columnist for several publications including The Huffington Post and Entrepreneur Magazine. He also created the Ambition Is Priceless mixtape, and you can get 2 free tracks here.
“Success is a life long journey that expands your awareness, expresses your creative genius, and helps you become the best version of yourself so you can improve the quality of your life and better serve others. The greatest power you can have is knowing your real values and strengths. Clarity is the ultimate power, and if you want results you’ve never had you need to get 100 percent clear on who you are, who you’re not, and what your ideal outcome is. Once you figure out what you want, you must figure out what you’re willing to give up to get what you want.”
There are a lot of similar themes here that have already been stated previously in this article, but for good reason. And I’m glad Peter emphasized on these points.
Once we gain absolute clarity on what we want and why we want it, another thing we need to consider doing is understand the sacrifices we need to make in order to achieve our goals. If our goals are big enough, chances are that we may have to give up some things that mean a lot to us.
And it’s hard to do. Even I can’t sacrifice everything. But the one thing we should keep in mind is that there aren’t very many success stories out there that don’t talk about sacrifice.
When we sacrifice what we don’t need, we give ourselves the ability to focus our time and effort on only the things that we know will matter the most.
What can you sacrifice in your life?
8. Rory Vaden (@rory_vaden)
“Multiply your time by giving yourself the emotional permission to spend time on things today that give you more time tomorrow.”
When we have a huge backlog of things we think we need to do, well, we probably don’t need to do all of them.
The general idea here is that we should consider doing only the things that matter the most to us today, and either purposely procrastinate on what isn’t as important, or delegate what we can have someone else do instead. By doing this, we ensure that we work on what will help us accomplish or do even more tomorrow.
For a more detailed talk on this concept by Rory, feel free to check out his TEDx video on how to multiply your time.
9. Jeff Goins (@JeffGoins)
Jeff Goins is the author of The Art of Work: A Proven Path to Discovering What You Were Meant to Do, host of The Portfolio Life podcast, a speaker, and a consultant for countless writers around the world at his blog.
“Listen to your life. Before you can tell your life what you want to do with it, said Parker Palmer, you need to listen to your life telling you who you are. Activity follows identity. You can’t do what you’re meant to do until you become who you’re meant to be. And that requires you to listen.”
Essentially, we can’t be somebody that we’re not meant to be.
There’s a deeper and more satisfying meaning behind Jeff’s message, which you can read more about in his book, The Art of Work.
When we commit to a long-term project, we later discover whether or not it’s something that is meant to be a part of our lives forever. We either hate it, or we enjoy it. It’s either something we can do, or can’t do.
But once we discover our true feelings about each of our experiences, we can come to understand who we are and who we need to or are meant to be. When we discover who we are and who we need to be, it’s easier to follow the path towards what we want to achieve.
10. Lewis Howes (@LewisHowes)
“Love yourself. There is no greater gift to the world than fully loving and embracing all of you.”
Sometimes, and understandably so, we forget the most important thing during our journey towards achieving our goals: ourselves.
We shouldn’t always have to do something or be someone that we hate. If we were to do that, we become a disservice to not only ourselves, but to those around us. When we don’t live up to the best version of ourselves, we can’t do our best job at giving ourselves and the world what we have to offer.
Trust your gut, trust the process, understand that it’s going to be a long journey, take your inner talents, and do what you know you’re capable of doing.
In the near future, I’ll be getting back in touch with each influencer and see if I can get each of them to expand more on each tip. Feel free to recommend this story and follow me if you found it helpful!
What’s your favorite tip on how we can achieve our goals? Let me know!
Note: Shoutout to my friend Justin Brillo for designing the great cover photo for our article! Be sure to contact him for any design inquiries!