Have you ever read a sales page with a bunch of “proof”?
(Stupid question, I know – we see it every day.)
Have you ever felt INCREDIBLY DISCOURAGED after seeing all that proof?
(I’ll raise my own hand to that one.)
Perhaps you’ve seen every other person in this “make money online” world making a boat load of money, and you’re still waiting for your first sale… your friends and family tell you to give it up – it’s all a bunch of crooks anyway.
Yet you still see the sales pages and the “proof” of people who are probably LESS qualified than you making tons and tons of money…
Does it conjure up the question, “Why not me?”
There comes a point when you’ve read all the blogs, signed up to all the lists, and read all the materials where you feel like you should have success by now. But hey, look at that guy, he’s making a million dollars, and I’m still…. a failure.
Whether it’s proof of someone making a million dollars, losing 100 pounds, or starting a successful internet marketing business, seeing other people’s success over and over again is motivating at first, until it becomes extremely discouraging, because you haven’t achieved the same success.
For example, I was once at dinner with an extremely successful friend of mine. When he mentioned how much money he had made in the last year (tens of millions), something in my brain said, “You’ll never be good enough to do that.”
(You’re not alone if you’ve ever felt this way, and don’t worry… there is a CURE.)
One of my favorite mentors and speakers is Dan Sullivan, and he calls this feeling “The Gap.”
The Gap is the difference between where you are today and what your “ideal life” is. How many times have you thought that your life isn’t what you thought it would be, or that you feel so far away from being where you want to be? That’s The Gap. And because of The Gap, we often feel discouraged, beat up, and unworthy.
As human beings, we set our sites on our own “ideal life.” It’s different for each person, but we all have a picture of what our ideal is.
The problem with “the ideal” is that it doesn’t really exist – it’s no more real than the end of the horizon – we can “see” it in the distance, but it doesn’t really exist. In fact, the closer we get to it, the farther away it actually gets.
Furthermore, *other people* may see your success and even envy it, but it still feels like failure when compared to “the ideal.”
Dan Sullivan likens this to an olympic runner (which is interesting, as I’m currently training for my first half-marathon), who trains and trains and trains to improve his or her score. He or she has a picture of what it would feel like to win the gold medal…
So after months, perhaps even years, of rigorous training, the runner qualifies, enters the race, and wins the gold medal. All the work has paid off, he or she has achieved the goal, but is still absolutely miserable. Why? Because the ideal doesn’t really exist… and as a result, all the work up to this point feels like a total waste.
Another example is the anorexic young girl – everyone knows she is thin… she is actually too thin. But she is comparing herself to the ideal, so she continues to feel like she is failing… and she spirals further and further…
I’ve experienced this in my own life – I’ve earned a lot of money. I’ve taught other people how to make a lot of money, and some of them have. I’ve met people I never imagined I would meet, including countless millionaires, best selling authors – heck, I even shared a cab ride with Les Brown last December. People look at me as a great success to have achieved such things at a young age, but it always made me feel like more of a failure. The more successful people that I met, the more I felt like a failure. The more product I sold, the more I felt like a chump. In fact, I’ve turned away BIG TIME JV partners in the past simply because I felt unworthy.
Why? Because I was comparing myself to the ideal.
And as a result, every success felt like a failure, because I wasn’t yet at the ideal, and it didn’t matter how many people said otherwise….
Crazy, right? Yet I know that I’m not alone.
We all have people in our lives that we envy because they are living their ideal. But again, the ideal does not exist… and chances are that they feel the same way that you do.
So what’s the cure??
Dan Sullivan puts it simply…
(This made a HUGE difference in my life.)
Instead of comparing ourselves to the ideal, we instead make a *constant intention* to compare ourselves to where we just came from.
He trained just as hard and ran just as many miles… yet it was only good enough for first loser.
But instead of feeling like a failure, he looks back at where he came from – he could barely run 2 miles when he first started training! Look at all that he’s accomplished! What a wonderful experience…
Do you see the difference?
Rather than compare yourself to what your “ideal” may be, you can compare yourself to where you were before, and each little success can actually feel like a success.
Every article that gets a first-page listing on Google, every campaign that is profitable, every affiliate sale, and every new client/customer can feel like a brand new success when compared to where we were BEFORE.
Heck, who would have ever thought that a totally broke high school student, who had no way to pay for college, would ever achieve success from his dorm room and be respected in his industry just for being himself? Hey, my story’s not so lame after all……. but ONLY compared to where I CAME FROM.
You see, if you continue to compare yourself to other people who look like they are living your “ideal,” then you’ll always have that pit in your stomach and the voice in your head that says, “You’re not good enough… and you never will be. You might as well not try.”
(I only know because I’ve been there.)
In this crazy, mixed up “make money online” world of ours, it’s very easy to compare ourselves to those who have already been extremely successful. It’s easy to envy the guy who made a million dollars last year selling other people’s products. But the more that you compare yourself to him, the more miserable you will continue to be.
Here’s how to cure it:
2) Compare it to where you were five years ago. What knowledge have you gained? What skills have you obtained? Even if it’s as simply as understanding the THEORY of search engine optimization, you have acquired specialized knowledge that very few other people in the world have, and that’s a major success.
3) Start making small steps that move you closer to your goals. But even more importantly, realize that every small step is a true success. You won’t be at your ideal, because the ideal doesn’t exist… but you’ll be able to celebrate each step as a contribution to your overall success.
Dan Sullivan says that this major switch in the brain is an absolutely crucial part of your total happiness, and I believe him, because I’ve experienced it.
I’d like to leave you with some wise words from one of my dearest friends and mentors, Travis Sago. We all have people that we admire and respect and strive to be like – Ron Paul and Travis Sago are mine. I’ll get choked up if I talk about what he means to me as a friend.
Listen as he discusses why “you’re already good enough…”