Repost: How To Achieve More Than You Think You Can

How to achieve more than you think you can, using Justin Timberlake as the perfect example.

Looking at it from the outside, little of how his career has progressed seems to make sense.

JT’s not someone you come across in headlines a whole lot, yet he sits on over 160 awards, a 200 million dollar fortune and one of the most respected reputations in the history of entertainment. At 36 years old, he’s had a globally successful band, four platinum solo albums, starred in the smash hit movies and is considered a fashion icon.

But that’s not what common sense tells us, is it? Though cautions have been added to the famous 10,000-hour rule, the message remains the same: you need lots of deliberate practice and years of time to get good at one thing.

So how can someone like Timberlake switch music styles, industries, even to a completely different skill set, like acting, time and time again, yet still succeed?

What part of the picture are we missing?

Learning To Unlearn

Every lesson in life comes at the expense of unlearning another.

When you learn to be confident, you unlearn to be shy. When you react with humility, you have forgotten your ego. When you’re comfortable taking the risk, you ignore other’s opinions, and so on.

In Chinese philosophy, the idea of Yin and Yang suggests that life consists entirely of dualities. It is only through the completeness of these dualities that we achieve unity. So no matter how contradictory two sides seem, they’re ultimately connected.

For each new piece of knowledge you acquire, you have to let go of an old one. Foggy clouds of ideas make way for facts, which make way for better facts, only to be replaced by new clouds, and so the cycle continues.

What most of us do when we try to improve is resist this cycle. We want every next answer to be the answer to everything. A different diet, a new sleep schedule, a tweak to your marketing — if only we stick to it, it may last us forever. Of course, nothing ever does.

That’s because the underlying skill of acquiring and abandoning knowledge, the unity, lies in change itself. What you’re really learning is how to unlearn.

Justin Timberlake is a master at it.

Smooth in black & white, though that’s not how he thinks.

The Unimportance of Being Right

There is a famous line in a Walt Whitman poem called Song of Myself:

“Do I contradict myself? Very well then, I contradict myself.”

The next time someone accuses you of being inconsistent, say this line. It’ll instantly take the wind out of their sails because you can’t argue with someone who accepts being wrong. Especially without making an attempt to defend themselves.

Most people stumble over this idea because one of our biggest innate desires is to be consistent. Add to that our tendency to spend more time on what we’ve already sunken energy into and you get a high level of resistance to unlearning.

People like Justin Timberlake, however, practice something cryptocurrency expert Nick Szabo calls quantum thought:

“In law school, they teach a very different way of thinking in that you need to take both the defendants and the plaintiffs side of the issue and run down the arguments as if each one of them is true. They contradict each other, of course, or at least the conclusions, and so I compare this to Schrodinger’s cat — maybe it’s alive, maybe it’s dead. Maybe the defendant’s guilty, maybe they’re not, and you have to keep both of these in your mind at once.”

When Justin went from child actor to boyband singer, from solo artist to actor, from show host to comedian, from R&B to Soul, and from commercial star to the voice actor, he was in no way convinced he’d be good at all of those things.

He just managed to hold the possibility of two different truths in his head at the same time. Thanks to this skill, Timberlake is never afraid to be wrong, since he is always free to unlearn one thing for another. He has a frictionless mind.

It’s a mental model he likely acquired at The Mickey Mouse Club.

A Child With A Grown Man’s Work Ethic

Even someone as talented as Justin Timberlake isn’t always right. He bought a golf course for $16 million, only to sell it for $500,000 seven years later, and some of his films were really bad. He works incredibly hard too, which we can’t neglect.“There’s a spelling bee and you have to spell the word ‘CAT.’ One student spells it ‘C-A-T.’ The person got it right. The next person spells it ‘K-A-T.’ That’s wrong.

And so we’ve built a system for ourselves where there is an answer and everything else is not the answer, even when some answers are better than others. So our brains are absent the wiring capable of coming up with an original thought.”

As adults, we spend all of our time in this system, so it’s almost impossible not to fall prey to the same thinking. But when we do, when we resist the process of constantly updating our view of the world, we block our own path.

Children aren’t burdened with this problem yet, because they’re still unfamiliar with the idea that “this is how we do things around here.” As Sir Ken Robinson recalls about the time his son was in the nativity play:

“The three boys came in, four-year-olds with tea towels on their heads, and they put these boxes down, and the first boy said, “I bring you gold.” And the second boy said, “I bring you myrrh.” And the third boy said, “Frank sent this.”

What these things have in common is that kids will take a chance. If they don’t know, they’ll have a go. Am I right? They’re not frightened of being wrong. I don’t mean to say that being wrong is the same thing as being creative. What we doknow is, if you’re not prepared to be wrong, you’ll never come up with anything original.

And by the time they get to be adults, most kids have lost that capacity. They have become frightened of being wrong.”

What we really see when we look at someone of Justin Timberlake’s caliber, is a child with a grown man’s work ethic. Having traversed the long road of unlearning, he reaps the rewards of unencumbered thought: Originality, adaptability, and the courage to exercise both at a second’s notice.

If nobody told you what you can and can’t achieve in a 20-year career, how much would you dare to try?

Chances are you’d act with an open mind and, like Justin Timberlake, embrace the next line in Whitman’s poem:

“I am large, I contain multitudes.”

What a brilliant write-up. I highly acknowledge Niklas Goke for this wonderful piece of work and how his writing has impacted a lot of people including me.

I hope this post touches someone today.

You free to repost, share, and comment.

Photo Credit: Pinterest

Advertisements

Very Important Life Lessons

I want to share with you 4 very important life lessons that were reinforced for me over the 3 hours.

These are truly foundations for our happiness and success.

While I’ve had these reflections individually many times in the past, recently all 4 have culminated together for me and it feels like they’re now written in the cells of my body, singing out to be aligned with and honored!

Okay let’s dive in to the points!!!

VIL 1. Do Only What Resonates

Resonance is a feeling you get, telling you that something is good, aligned, and right for you.

The opposite of resonance is dissonance, meaning you feel something isn’t aligned.

Too many people navigate their lives doing things that do not resonate, in places that are not resonant, with people who don’t resonate with them.

If we make our choices about what we do in life based on our thinking mind alone, we can end up in all sorts of trouble and dissonance like this.

Instead, we need to notice what we feel, what RESONATES when we are making our choices about work, money, relationships, health, lifestyle and more.

VIL 2. Be in a State of Ease

As you go about whatever you do, personally and professionally, it’s all about HOW you do it.

Too often we race around in life in such a hurry to get things done, resisting life, aggrieved by things that bother us, frustrated by unexpected situations and people that seem to distract us from what we would prefer to be experiencing.

We may push ahead and force with strong, intentional energy to “get things done” and achieve our goals, but to what end?

Are we sitting there at the finish line feeling ragged and worn? And/or have we left a trail of issues behind us, paying a price in our health, relationships, finances or lifestyle because of the way we have been operating?

If you want to have a happy life then:

  • Recognize how it feels inside your body when you are at ease – there is a lightness to that feeling, a grace, a flow.
  • Recognize how it feels inside your body when you are pushing, forcing, racing, resisting, stressed and tense – there is a very definite physiological difference to ease!
  • Pay attention in your daily life to what you feel in your body – you will quickly start to notice if you’re operating from a state of ease and grace, or from a state of stress and tension.
  • Use breathing and a mantra to shift yourself back into ease in that moment. e.g Breathe in, “I choose to feel at ease”, breathe out, “All is well and I’m in my flow”

VIL 3. Remember You Can’t Do Everything

Well, technically you can do everything you want (over your lifetime) but you most definitely can’t do it all at once!

You can’t please everyone, you can’t be all things to all people, and you can’t achieve all your goals in one go while also caring for your relationships, health, work and personal life. So you have to make conscious choices about what to give your precious energy to.

I recently read a wonderful book on Essentialism – the art of focusing on what is essential, and not getting distracted by the gazillions of non-essential things that call for one’s attention each day. And my takeaway so far, which is so profound for me, is this…

There will be many good things you can focus on and give your time to. But there are only a small handful of GREAT things. To be most effective and successful, means deciphering the great from the good – saying yes to great, saying no to good…

I’ve previously had a major issue with this, struggling to say no to good things. It’s like we’re wired to say yes to all the good things in life. Good people, good opportunities, good experiences, good ideas. But there are actually many goodies! And we can’t do it all. From experience, trying to do it all leaves you burned out!

So, if you want to be highly effective AND happy, then:

VIL 4. Every Path Has Both Pros and Cons

And here is the very important lesson…

In saying goodbye, I was sobbing with such a deep, deep sadness in my heart. Yet, at the very same time, in every cell of my body as I bawled my eyes out hugging my parents and siblings goodbye, I knew what my intuition was telling me – to continue my path (even though my path leads me away from the physical presence of those I love).

When it comes to having an amazing life, please know that there is no perfect. There is only the choice of living your most soul-aligned path, whatever that looks like in any given moment, and accepting all that it gifts you and teaches you as you flow with it.

So, if you want to go big on your goals, and live the life of your dreams, then:

  • Focus on your inner voice, celebrate the pros of your path, peacefully accept the cons.
  • Such cons will exist with all choices. It’s called opportunity cost. With one path chosen, all other paths are not. But rest assured your soul will always lead you to the life experience you are here on this beautiful earth to have.
  • Leave no room for fear to reside in your mind. Trust yourself and remind yourself regularly of why you make the choices you do and why your goals are important.
  • Keep it real – SOMETIMES THE RIGHT CHOICE AND DIRECTION CAN ALSO BE THE HARDEST. And this, my friends, is the colorful ride that we call life!

Guys don’t get it twisted. Ain’t the writer of this. Lol! As mentioned in my first paragraph, i got motivated just some few hours back reading this beautiful piece that so referred to my life. All credit goes to Bernadette Logue.

The Thirty Second Quiz

The Thirty Seconds Quiz

Don’t bother getting a pen and paper… just read… if you can’t

answer them, just keep going.

1. Name the five wealthiest people in the world.

2. Name the last five Heisman trophy winners.

3. Name the last five winners of the Miss America contest.

4. Name ten people who have won the Nobel or Pulitzer prize.

5. Name the last five Academy Award winners for Best Actor and Actress.

How did you do?

The point is, none of us remembers the headliners of yesterday. These are no second-rate achievers. They’re the best in their fields. But the applause dies. Awards tarnish. Achievements are forgotten. Accolades and certificates are buried with their owners.

Now here’s another quiz. See how you do on this one:

1. Name three teachers who aided your journey through school.

2. Name three friends who helped you through a difficult time.

3. Name five people who have taught you something worth while.

4. Think of a few people who have made you feel appreciated and special.

5. Think of five people you enjoy spending time with.

Easier?

The lesson?

The people who make a difference in your life aren’t the ones with the most credentials, the most money, or the most awards. They’re the ones who care.

Video: Never Be Too Busy For Things That Are More Important Than Your Job

Since I started this blog, my life ain’t been the same, because I know my content one way or the other is helping someone out there. No Regrets losing my old contacts and business partners, my partner now is Jesus, and am overwhelmed!!! He got me through every creeks.

Today I want to share this video that is really going viral on WhatsApp. How much do you value your family to your job? Another lesson I learnt is that family is everything, because you don’t know when next you see them. But in the case where you have a very busy job, schedules, meetings and all. This video is for you!

May God give us the wisdom and strength to always put family first before any other thing.

Please you can share on your platforms roor.