“Life takes on meaning when you become motivated, set goals, and charge after them in an unstoppable manner.” – Les Brown

Larry Clockedile writes to say that although he regularly finds “excellent” ideas in ETR that could improve his life, he has yet to get an answer to a question that’s been troubling him: How can he motivate himself to get started?

As a highly educated, university-trained electrical engineer, Larry says he can “see the opportunities present in… real estate, import/export, online, etc.” and that they are present “whether the economy is doing well, poorly, or in between.”

“I recognize this intellectually,” he says. “But what I don’t see in all the opportunities presented in ETR is how to get going. What do I need to do to push myself along?”

Larry has been a subscriber for just a few months, so he doesn’t know that every January we devote the first few weeks of the year to helping our readers set goals and giving them useful tips on how to achieve them. Some of the articles from those issues are being reprinted in a new edition of Confessions of a Multimillionaire, which will be available this spring.

But Larry needn’t wait till then to get motivated. He can read those articles right now by going to the ETR archives and searching through the first couple of weeks of every year.

Better yet, he can read what I have to say today, and then read ETR every Monday during 2008. I’ve set a goal for myself that should be very helpful to anyone in his position. I am going to lay out a new and revised program for accomplishing everything you want to accomplish. Like everything else I have written, it will be based on my own experience and the real-life accomplishments of friends and colleagues. Taken together, it will be a comprehensive program to become healthier, wealthier, wiser, and happier. And you can start working on it today.

Obstacles to Achievement: Why You Can’t Get Started

Larry says he believes part of his problem is that he is not absolutely, 100 percent sure that if he starts working on some specific opportunity he will be successful. How does he get past this obstacle?

The single biggest reason that people fail in life is that they never take effective action. Poverty is a problem, but not an insurmountable one. Countless successful men and women began their lives in poverty. Ignorance is a problem too, but that can be overcome by anyone willing to learn. Indecision and fear (of failure or success) are common obstacles to success. But all of these obstacles can be overcome, easily, by the individual who makes a commitment to take action, to figure out where he wants to go and then set one foot in front of the other in that direction.

Inaction is Larry’s problem – not the fear that he will work on some opportunity that doesn’t materialize!

Successful people don’t sit around waiting for everything to be “100 percent” right or to be “absolutely sure” they will succeed. They assess the odds. And if the odds are reasonably good, they strike out boldly and energetically. They don’t need absolute assurance because they realize life doesn’t provide any.

The cost of failure, successful people know from experience, is very modest compared to the cost of inaction. Failure means you are smarter the next time. Inaction means there is no next time. There is only a lifetime of unhappiness – first of worry and then of regret.

Larry is living in a world of worry now. If he doesn’t take action soon, he will settle into a retirement of regret.

My rule is “Ready, Fire, Aim.” I have written about it many times in ETR, and it is the title of my latest book. As I explain in Chapter 17 of the book:

Ready, Fire, Aim means disregarding most of the obstacles and detours that waylay others. It means finding and following the fastest path to any objective you set for yourself so that time and all the problems time brings with it don’t defeat you. Ready, Fire, Aim achieves more in less time because it puts the correct value on action. It is also a realistic approach, because it acknowledges human imperfection and failure in
an intelligent way. In effect, Ready, Fire, Aim is a way of increasing the success you have in just about anything.”

Key to understanding the Ready, Fire, Aim approach is the principle of accelerated failure. The principle of accelerated failure rests on the recognition that we learn the most – in any enterprise – by making mistakes along the way. The faster we learn the critical mistakes, the sooner we acquire the knowledge we need to succeed. In other words, don’t fear failure… seek it out!

Larry recognizes that any of the opportunities regularly discussed in ETR – real estate, information publishing, Internet marketing, etc. – can be viable avenues for financial success… no matter what the economy is doing. That being the case, what is he waiting for? He’s not going to increase his odds by waiting and worrying. The sooner he gets going, the faster he will make the mistakes he needs to make in order to succeed.

I am very sympathetic to Larry. Many ETR readers are stuck in the same place. His problem is exacerbated by his intelligence. Smart people are good at worrying. They are adept at conjuring up reasons to fear failure and delay action. They are the victims of their own IQs.

Larry has to compensate for this by making a greater effort to ignore his worries and put himself into motion. It really doesn’t matter which opportunity he chooses. He knows he is resourceful enough to succeed at whatever he does. All he has to do is get going. Put one foot in front of the other and start to move.

I am going to make that process easy – not just for Larry but for you, too, if you are in his shoes. I’m going to tell you what you need to do today. And then, once a week for the next 51 weeks, I’m going to tell you what you have to do if you want to become successful – and not just financially but in every area of your life.

If you are willing to take my advice, I am willing to guarantee – 99 percent – that this time next year you will be well on your way to health, wealth, wisdom, and happiness.

Ready? This is what you have to do today: You have to fill out the following pledge and e-mail it to Early to Rise at ReaderFeedback@gmail.com:

Okay, Michael. I am with you. You have committed to creating a master plan that I can use to succeed in 2008. I commit to following that plan without question or complaint for the next 51 weeks. I further commit to keeping a journal on my progress and investing the time and money needed to achieve my goals. At the end of the year, I promise I will write to ETR and explain exactly what I have accomplished.

I hereby pledge_____________________________________________________

Name_____________________________________________________________

Date______________________________________________________________

That’s it! Do it now!

[Ed. Note: You CAN get out of debt… lose 10 pounds… start a profitable business… or achieve any goal you set your mind to. But to accomplish your dreams, you need to get started. Take that first crucial step toward success by signing up for ETR’s Total Success Achievement program today. We’ll provide you with weekly motivational e-mail messages, twice-monthly goal-setting teleseminars, and proven strategies for bypassing common obstacles along the way.] [Ed. Note: Mark Morgan Ford was the creator of Early To Rise. In 2011, Mark retired from ETR and now writes the Palm Beach Letter. His advice, in our opinion, continues to get better and better with every essay, particularly in the controversial ones we have shared today. We encourage you to read everything you can that has been written by Mark.]

Mark Morgan Ford

Mark Morgan Ford was the creator of Early To Rise. In 2011, Mark retired from ETR and now writes the Wealth Builders Club. His advice, in our opinion, continues to get better and better with every essay, particularly in the controversial ones we have shared today. We encourage you to read everything you can that has been written by Mark.