1. Just show up. Say you want to run a marathon, but have no prior experience. The first step is lacing up you shoes and hitting the pavement. Even if you only make it half a mile on your first training run, you’ll be about 2% closer to your ultimate goal than if you didn’t put in any work at all.
2. Start from the beginning. You don’t just happen to stumble upon the best version of yourself. You need to start from the beginning and take a high number of small steps in order to become what you envision.
3. Recognize that the best version of yourself should be your vision, not anybody else’s. Don’t waste energy trying to live up to what somebody else wants you to be.
4. Stop looking for a secret trick. There is no miraculous shortcut to the better version of yourself.
5. Use Twitter to network. It’s never been easier to get in touch with influential and powerful people. Earlier in my career, I reached out a high-level executive of a company I was interested in. He was hosting an AMA session on Twitter. I asked him for advice about how to get hired for his company, and not only did he reply with some helpful tips, he also connected me with specific people at the company about an open position.
6. Don’t sweat the details. Just make sure that you’re moving in the right general direction. You probably don’t have the knowledge you need today to know the shortest path to your happiness five years from today. But you probably have some idea about how to move in the right direction. Take those steps.
7. Recognize the opportunity at hand. The Internet has fundamentally changed everything. Previously, knowledge was locked away in the minds of industry experts and in the pages of books that you needed to buy or check out from a library. But now, it’s easier than ever to learn new skills. This is essential to becoming the best version of yourself.
8. Write on Medium. Translating your thoughts into written narratives pushes you to think about the ideas in your head at a much deeper level.
9. Don’t count the hours. They don’t matter. Think about the last time you ran on a treadmill. If you looked down at the timer every few seconds, you probably didn’t enjoy your run. In turn, this made it far more difficult to run far.
But what if you took the opposite approach? You plugged in your headphones, lost yourself in the music, and took it one stride at a time….while resisting any temptation to look at the timer at all. If you did this, you probably discovered that you enjoyed the run and made it pretty far. Counting hours just slows you down from reaching your goal.
10. Accept help from other people. Don’t let your pride get in the way. Most successful people needed help along the way, too.