What if you could truly divorce yourself from the outcome? Before I get ahead of myself, let me take a step back. My whole life or at least as long as I can remember, I have struggled to be the best. How I measured being the best largely relied on results.
The outcome remains the single biggest indicator of success for most people. Although for years, we have listened to parents and coaches tell us, it’s not whether you win or lose, it’s how you play the game. Do we really believe them?
In every cliche’, there lies wisdom. I have personally struggled with knowing how to strive, how to work tirelessly on a project and not become disappointed when the outcome doesn’t match the output or expectation. So, why when we truly create quality work, when our presentation is on point, when we play full out and the end result doesn’t go our way, why does the outcome become so visibly measurable?
What did Arthur Ashe mean when he said “Success is a journey not a destination. The doing is often more important than the outcome.”
You must begin by doing. In doing, you find fulfillment. In doing you develop skill and passion. The process in which you create mastery never lies in the outcome, it lies within the action of doing.
So what are some simple steps, we as individuals can start with, in an effort to love the doing as much as the outcome. I can’t guarantee it will be easy, but for the rest of your life, it will be worth it.
Step 1. Define your why. Why do you do what you do? You see, when you know your why, you establish a personal ethos of sorts.
Step 2. Don’t try and control the outcome. When you obsess about the result, you are setting yourself up for emptiness. You are relinquishing your power to the finish line. Your power comes from the work, the journey, not the destination. Remember, you live to live not live to die. Imagine if we all focused only on the outcome of our lives, not the full life we lived.
Step 3. Document your journey. I guarantee one of the best things you can do in your life is to journal your journey. There is great joy in finding quiet time and reading your thoughts from six months ago. It’s hard to believe but you won’t remember writing 90% of what you write. This exercise will give you a great appreciation for your journey.
Step 4 is extra credit. Meditate. Each one of us was blessed with intuition and a quiet space within. Tim Ferris, in his book “Tribe of Mentors” says the vast majority of some of the most successful people on this planet mediate. At this stage in the game, we should all know that meditation will greatly improve your chances of embracing the journey and abolishing the emotions tied to outcome.
Embrace the moment, enjoy the journey.
About the Author
Shaun Enders is a Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Transition Staffing Group located in San Diego. Shaun is extremely passionate about recruiting and developing others to bring out the best version of themselves.