August 30, 2012Last updated on November 5, 2016
I’ve noticed patterns of people doing things one time and quitting.
Shit, I’ve done this myself a ton of times. I even used to wear JNCO jeans for those in the know.
Here’s a few personal examples that come to mind:
Buy Happiness, was a website where people could paypal me a $1 and I would send them a happy letter. That lasted about a week.
CollegeUp.org was a direct knock off of Craigslist for listing items. This was about a month or two, added a ton of features, got some friends to use and it gradually flailed out. You know you are off track when your classifieds sites most popular feature was the hot or not thing we had of women’s pictures.
Jiujitsu. Tucker Max suggested I do this and stop being a pussy, plus my buddy Donald Park is one of the best in the nation. I originally went to Jiujitsu Barra which was the McDonalds of training, #pass.
Donald suggested I go to his gym which I excitedly did. 120 minutes later I was in some of the most pain I’ve felt in a LONG time. I forced myself to go back for the next few weeks. Everyday until the next class I dreaded it. L-I-T-E-R-A-L-L-Y. Eventually, I tucked up my nut sack and accepted that Jiujitsu was not my calling.
Rollerblading. PSYCH! I still love rollerblading.
[Youtube “Aziz Rollerblading”]
There are a ton more but I’ll leave it at that. These are failures and great lessons learned which encouraged me to keep trying other things.
Sometimes you got to know when to hold-em and know when to fold-em.
There have been numerous AppSumo competitors over the 2+ years we’ve been working on the business. A fair amount have folded and gone to the deadpool. Why you ask?
They saw a fad and figured they could “easily” put out a deal and get people to buy.
It is very easy to do that once BUT can you do that for 365 days a year. That’s where it gets hard and most people give up.
Well shit this is a depressing article. What are ways you can get past the one hit wonder and move into some everlasting value.
The secret to make real lasting impacts is three fold:
1- Purpose or the why. Check out Dan Pink’s the why video. This is CRITICAL. I can ensure you that the conviction and meaning when you are doing anything will GUARANTEE you to outlast anyone who’s doing it for an opportunity.
Change and sticking with things is hard. I know. At our peak with Gambit (payments for social games) we were processing $150,000 A DAY. Yea, a shit ton I know. (And NO I’m not as rich as you think. Most rich people get rich in boring ways).
We got banned by Facebook (techcrunch story) and also settled our lawsuit ON THE SAME DAY. Talk about best day ever! It became very clear to me there was no meaning, purpose or commitment I wanted to spend my life doing payments for social games.
At Facebook we had a team meeting where Zuck announced that he was rejecting the $1,000,000,000 offer from Yahoo! and to not mention shit about selling the company. What a fucking statement! It was super clear that the business was not about making money and truly about connecting people (+ stalking).
That was Zuck’s calling in life. Money wouldn’t compromise it.
A great question to ask yourself if there is purpose with what you are doing is: “If someone offered you $25 million for what you are doing would you give it up?”
If you just want money so you can do blah blah then pussy out and go do it. You’ll get true satisfaction when you end up doing your daily work and hobbies on things that wouldn’t give in to that question.
2- Accountability as one of my closest friends Adam Gilbert (also my health coach) would say.
The new app Lift is a great way to do it. Fitbit has my friends on it so they’ll see if I am walking or not. I weigh myself every morning which goes wirelessly to the internet. I’ve even used Google Forms to create accountability.
One of my favorite ways to hold myself accountable is to put it on my calendar. They call me Google-Calendar-Inviter in the AppSumo office. Although this is not true I like to plan things and it helps to be reminded on my calendar. This helps me stay accountable and follow through on new habits I want to form.
Pro tip: Set anything you want to start doing on repeat for 15 minutes a day.
Bonus tip: Check out Steve Pavlina’s article on 30 day challenges. Super helpful!
3- Start small. REALLY fucking small. How small?
I am starting to try out meditation. My new bud Max Simon spent an hour walking me through it, suggested a free iPhone meditation timer, had me read through an awesome pdf and we Skype Video chatted while I did my first session. Instead of signing up for a 10 day silent retreat, I am doing baby steps with just 15 minutes a day for 30 days. (I have tried meditation in the past, but a formal process has been wildly helpful.)
Around New Years everyone commits to some big hairy ass goal. Then a week later they pussy out.
When I committed to being healthy last year I started with Adam just changing my breakfast for a few weeks, then I upped it to improving my lunch, then running once a week. Now I’m regimented throughout the week on 3 runs, 2 weights, 2 yogas and a pretty consistent diet of egg whites & good Bourbon.
So let’s review how you can have sustainable change and make an impact in the world:
1- Setup a goal that is WORTHY of you
2- Create a way and method to stay ACCOUNTABLE
3- Start it off TINY.
What is something you are starting or want to accomplish?