10 Powerful Ideas

I wish I knew these 10 years ago

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Now, onto Issue 46.

10 powerful ideas I wish I knew 10 years ago

Over the last 10+ years, I’ve studied hundreds of high-performing people.

  • Athletes

  • Leaders

  • Coaches

  • Creatives

  • Special Forces

  • Entrepreneurs

And many others.

I’m fascinated by what makes them tick. That’s what this newsletter is all about.

Below are 10 powerful ideas I’ve learned that have positively impacted my life.

I hope they do the same for you.

1. Full Benefit

Navy SEALs have a saying.

When something sucks, they say: "Full benefit."

It’s an instant mindset shift.

  • Hiking in pouring rain? Full benefit

  • Lose draft of a project? Full benefit

  • Driving + car breaks down? Full benefit

The lesson is simple and powerful: Every adversity provides an opportunity to improve.

Build patience. Develop resiliency. Refine our craft. Give more attention to our best customers. Something.

In every adversity exists an opportunity.

(Note: there’s a major difference between the kind of adversity I’m referring to and trauma. This mindset may not apply to traumatic experiences. I’m not a therapist or trauma expert and don’t want to suggest there’s a “benefit” to those experiences. Maybe sometimes there is? Truthfully, I don’t know.)

2. Choices > Feelings

University of Alabama football coach Nick Saban uses the phrase “choices over feelings” with his players.

The lesson: We make too many decisions by how we feel and not by what we choose to do.

  • Do I feel like studying?

  • Do I feel like working out?

  • Do I feel like making calls?

  • Do I feel like eating healthy?

  • Do I feel like working on this project?

Elite performers prioritize choices over feelings.

They do what they choose to do.

Not what they "feel" like doing.

3. The Inner Scorecard

Warren Buffett lives by a framework called The Inner Scorecard.

There are two general ways to measure success:

  • Outer Scorecard

  • Inner Scorecard

The Outer Scorecard is based on things like:

  • titles

  • money

  • accolades

The Inner Scorecard is based on things like:

  • Values

  • Principles

  • Standards

  • Excellence

  • Commitment

The most powerful way to maximize your potential — AND to achieve the best results — is to develop and live by your Inner Scorecard.

4. Remember Tomorrow

Jesse Itzler is an accomplished entrepreneur, author, speaker, endurance athlete and all-around wonderful human being.

He has a motto I love: “remember tomorrow.”

Amidst struggle, remember how you’ll feel tomorrow.

  • When you’re tired

  • When you want to quit

  • When you’re frustrated

  • When you feel defeated

  • When you doubt yourself

Remember tomorrow.

You'll feel proud and accomplished that you carried on.

5. Winners Make the Most Mistakes

Legendary UCLA men’s basketball coach John Wooden used to say:

“Winners make the most mistakes.”

It’s a great reminder that you will make mistakes when you choose to live life in the arena instead of on the sidelines.

The arena is where success is created.

If you want to live mistake-free, live on the sidelines. Take no risks, play it safe and accept average.

But if you want to win, enter the arena with courage and embrace the mistakes you’ll make — and learn from — along the way.

6. F.E.A.R.

Fear cripples people.

  • Fear of failure

  • Fear of risk

  • Fear of success

  • Fear of judgment

  • Fear of embarrassment

But most of the time, fear exists only in our minds. It’s not real.

The acronym F.E.A.R. stands for False Evidence Appearing Real.

Our mind and emotions trick us. They make us believe our feelings are the truth.

But that’s not necessarily the case.

Combat fear with logic. Ask:

  • What are the facts?

  • What’s the worst case?

Calm, rational logic defeats fear.

7. The Infection of Success

Success is a moment in time. It’s achieved, and then it goes.

It’s not a continuum that repeats in perpetuity.

Some believe success simply repeats itself, but that’s wrong.

When you believe this, you’ve fallen victim to the “infection” of success, as legendary NBA coach Pat Riley calls it.

The truth is, success must be continuously earned.

The past does not guarantee the future.

Learn from the past, but don’t live in it.

8. Consistency > Intensity

When building habits or beginning new projects or goals, most people prioritize intensity.

Prioritizing intensity looks like this:

  • Read 2 books / month

  • Never eat sugar again

  • Go to the gym 5x / week

  • Write for 3 hours per day

  • Save every dollar beyond living expenses

It’s almost never sustainable.

You will come out in a blaze for a short time, and then fade away.

Instead, prioritize consistency.

Do something small every day, and then slowly build up your capacity.

Consistency, over long periods of time, wins.

9. Big Talkers and Little Doers

Most people can be categorized in two buckets:

  • Those who talk about what they will do

  • Those who just do it

Some people say a lot and do little. Others say little and do a lot.

Don't be a big talker and a little doer.

Take all that time, energy and attention away from making proclamations, and channel it into action instead.

(I suppose there’s a third group: those who say a lot and then back it up. If you want to talk the talk, make sure you also walk the walk!)

10. Character Creates Longevity

Talent and ability may get you to the top.

However, character is required to stay there.

Character is defined as the “mental and moral qualities distinctive to an individual.”

Said another way: Who are you?

Are you someone who relies on talent and coasts?

Or are you someone who does the diligent work to continually improve?

It’s easy to relax after after experiencing some success.

Have the self-discipline to stay the course.


To recap:

  • F.E.A.R.

  • Full Benefit

  • Choices > Feelings

  • The Inner Scorecard

  • Remember Tomorrow

  • Consistency > Intensity

  • The Infection of Success

  • Big Talkers and Little Doers

  • Character Creates Longevity

  • Winners Make the Most Mistakes

These are 10 powerful ideas that have impacted by life.

I hope they do the same for you.

I’d love to hear from you

What’s your biggest takeaway from this issue?

Reply to this email and let me know.

I personally read every email.

Thanks for reading.

See you next Sunday.