You can achieve almost anything in life…As long as you focus on achieving one thing at a time. It’s a time-tested strategy that’s been shared by many successful people.
Gary Keller and Jay Papasan even wrote a whole book about this simple idea. But don’t let the simplicity of this idea fool you. It’s one of the hardest things to implement in your life.
Last year, I published an article about focusing on one thing called “The Power Of Compounding.” I’ve received dozens of questions about it like, “I get the idea. But I struggle with putting it into practice.”
That’s because we, human beings, are fickle. Our desires are constantly changing. We pursue new things before we finish our old goals.
We’re dealing with an invisible force that is always trying to confuse us. Instead of focusing on one thing at a time, we set multiple goals, and think we can multitask ourselves to achieving them.
How much time should I spend thinking instead of doing? It’s one of the biggest questions I struggle with. One side of me says, “Without doing you will never achieve anything.”
Another side says, “Without thinking things through, you might end up doing the wrong things.”
Thinking by itself is worthless because if you never do anything, what’s the use? And if you only act without thinking, you’ll probably end up in jail or in a ditch. That’s why this topic is so important. But most of us never even consider living by a thinking/doing ratio.
I live by a 20/80 ratio.
Before I explain why that is, and how you can create your own ratio, let’s look at some of the most respected individuals of our time: Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger, two investors who are celebrated for their good decisions and thinking processes.
They are not only thinkers, but they are also successful practitioners.
If you believe that only stupid people make mistakes, you’re as wrong as I was. The truth is that everyone makes mistakes. Smart people admit that. Stupid people do not.
What’s more, the smartest and most successful people in history have made the most mistakes. Are those two things connected? I think so. This Albert Einstein quote says it all:
“Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.”
I used to blame myself for making mistakes in life. I think that’s how our society is. As a kid, you’re punished for making mistakes in school and life. And because of that, we think it’s normal to punish each other as adults.