Saturday, 14 March 2020

Choose your path wisely, and walk it at your own pace

Love goes towards love as strongly as schoolboys go away from their books, wrote Shakespeare in "Romeo and Juliet." Since the 17th century, times have changed only to remain the same. Is the force that moves customers in the direction of their favourite products not somenthing akin to love? Or the force that compels sports fans to watch every game of their favourite team? The same can be said about the pursuit of prosperity and happiness. There are forces that pull individuals towards beneficial results, and forces that are driving them towards self-destruction.

Luckily, men and women of the twenty-first century can benefit from hundreds of years of accumulated experience. History has identified the keys to success in romantic and business endeavours, the keys to achievement in any area of life. It is high time to proclaim that personal growth has rendered Shakespeare's plays obsolete, high time to acknowledge that wisdom has brought success and well-being withing everybody's reach.

Self-inflicted blindness

Theatre may continue to exist as a harmless form of entertainment for summer nights, but when it comes to improving your life, you will be much better served by the teachings of philosphy. Only fools will refuse to adopt proven formulas. Only self-inflicted blindness can prevent people from seeing the truth. Here is my condensed version of the fundamental principles driving self-improvement in the widest sense.

First, you should develop a clear idea of what you want to achieve, or at least, develop a strong sense of direction. An entrepreneur promoting new products or services would be ill-advised to walk around town, trying to convince everybody he meets to make a purchase. In that way, he would be wasting his resources, and making few sales. The most efficient way forward is to focus your attention, energies and material resources on pursuing a definite goal, on advancing in a certain direction.

Efficient salespersons and effective romance seekers are known to establish minimum requirements for their prospects. If you identify your prerequisites in advance, you will be able to discard quickly people who don't hit the mark. You should draw in your mind a sharp picture of your objective. The picture will enable you to concentrate your energies like a laser beam on your best market, your best prospects, your preferred type of romantic partners. Mind you, you don't need to have all the answers before starting on a journey of self-improvement. It is enough if you keep learning with every step you take. Over time, you will figure out exactly what you want.

Relentless progress

Second, you should keep moving forward in a prudent but persistent manner. Do not fear to take initiative, but try to avoid taking foolish steps. Choose your path wisely, and walk it at your own pace. Your circumstances and background are unique. It is no use comparing yourself with other people. What really counts, is that that you identify what you want, and pursue it consistently day by day. Keep advancing relentlessly. Keep learning all you can along the way.

Investors know that the best assets are those that will grow exponentially with little risk. Similarly, on your journey of self-development, you want to avoid situations where you must continuously shift your attention from one goal to the next. Even if you manage to make a decent return on your efforts, the need to reinvent the wheel every day will leave you exhausted. Pursuing big long-term goals is much more inspiring than chasing little victories all the time.

Prosperity in business and happiness in romance will come more easily when there is a strong consistency between message and style, between motivation and presentation. Be unique, exploit your special talents. Effective marketing is about acquiring enthusiastic customers who will tell their friends about the unique experience your products or services are providing. In the case of dating, it is even more important that you underline your uniqueness. Every successful pursuit must follow a pattern of definition and persistence, a pattern of identification and steadiness.


Image: Photograph of classical painting. Photograph taken by John Vespasian, 2019.

For more information about rational living, I refer you to my books

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Here are the links to three audio interviews just published:
  1. John Vespasian interviewed by Nicholas Spohn on "The Spohntrained podcast" about the keys to rational living.
  2. John Vespasian interviewed by Rodney Flowers on "The Game Changer Mentality" about dealing successfully with disruptions.
  3. John Vespasian interviewed by Greg Roedersheimer on "Suburban Folk" about historical examples of people having career success and persevering to find their passion.