As Angel and I watched a rerun of the Academy Awards last night, we both noticed an obvious commonality between many of the speeches the winners on stage made when they accepted their awards. If you stripped the details out of each speech, 90% of them boiled down to:
“I am so thankful. My whole life has been leading up to this moment.”
The most interesting thing about this sentiment, in my opinion, is that regardless of a human being’s social status, wealth, age, or unique situation, their whole life has undoubtedly been leading up to every present moment of their life. Think about that for a second. This reality might seem more significant on stage at a high-stakes awards ceremony, but it’s equally significant to all of us. Every single thing you’ve gone through in life – every high, every low, and everything in between – has all led you to the moment you’re experiencing right now.
This means that you are exactly where you need to be to get to where you want to go. It’s just a matter of taking one new step in the right direction, and another, and another.
So, never assume that you’re stuck with the way things are right now. You aren’t.
Things can change if you want them to, at any age. Life changes every single moment, and so can YOU!
The key is to embrace these powerful realities and not procrastinate…
Think about a change you want to make in your life, or a goal you want to achieve.
Then watch this quick video Angel and I recorded for you, and let us ask a simple yet powerful question that just might change your perspective about everything…
Now that you’ve watched the video, and have been slapped with a little healthy perspective, it’s time to revisit that important change or goal of yours, and then face the truth…
How old will you be in 10 years if you don’t do it?
Exactly 10 years older than you are today – the same exact age you’ll be in 10 years if you actually follow through and DO IT!
But instead of feeling proud of the lessons you’ve learned and the progress you’ve made, you’ll feel an inevitable sense of regret that comes from never even trying.
Time will have passed with nothing new to show for it.
You will have grown older, without getting any closer to what you ultimately want.
Let that sink in for a moment.
The Next Step to What You Want
If you’ve been frustrated by the same mediocre results for too long, yet nothing is changing in your life, it’s probably not that you haven’t been given enough answers, but that you’ve been asking yourself the wrong questions.
Remember, it takes a great deal of courage and grit to admit that something needs to change, and a lot more courage and grit still, to accept responsibility for making this change happen. Yes, growth and change may be hard sometimes, but nothing in life is as hard as staying stuck where you don’t belong.
All details aside, when it comes to making a meaningful change in your life – earning a new degree, building a new business, fostering a new relationship, starting a family, becoming more mindful, or any other personal journey that takes time and commitment – you have to start asking yourself the right questions, and then you have to build daily rituals into your life that reinforce your realizations.
What do you want to change or achieve in your life?
How old will you be in 10 years if you don’t do it (and never even try)?
And, perhaps most importantly…
Are you willing to spend a little time every day like many people won’t, so you can spend the rest of your life like many people can’t?
Once you have your mind wrapped around the first two questions, and you’ve decided to say “YES” to the third question, it’s time to start building positive daily rituals into your life so you can finally make real progress.
Because goals don’t make positive changes happen, daily rituals do.
Watch this quick video Angel and I recorded for you, and let us explain…
(Note: Angel and I build small, daily, life-changing rituals with our students in the “Goals and Growth” module of Getting Back to Happy.)
If you’re feeling up to it, we would love to hear from YOU.
Which specific part of this article (or the included videos) resonates with you the most today, and why?
Anything else to share?
Leave a comment below and share your thoughts.
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M&A, I love how such a simple question can be such a powerful affirmation for achieving meaningful goals. For the longest time I was just like the woman you mentioned in the first video who was procrastinating on a dream simply because she felt like it was already too late to achieve it. I think you mentioned that she was a student of yours, and I’m a course student too. Truly, this is the biggest reason I signed up for your Getting Happiness course. I felt completely stagnant and stuck in my life, like something was missing, even though I knew I had plenty to be grateful for. The daily rituals concept you briefly covered in the second video at the bottom of this post is one of the game-changing tools your course provided me. Over the past 10 months, I’ve built and practiced a few daily rituals in both my personal and professional life that have moved me closer to my dream, and closer to my family.
Thank you for continuing to shine your light on me and everyone who needs a little direction or perspective in life.
Barry Sarner says
“One question,” could be the impetus for “one ordinary” life being able to detect “one opportunity” and, deploy it’s resources to move forward with that “one opportunity,” and transform it into “one extraordinary life.” Questions are capable of creating enormous momentum and powerful dynamics if, asked and applied in the right way. Your article showed how “Questions,” a simple “Success Support Tool,” can have such a profound effect on our lives. Great article. Thanks for sharing.
Seth Owen says
I wasn’t going to check my email today, but I’m so pleased I did. The intro and link to this post was sitting right at the top. I loved both videos and the overall message of this post in general. In 10 years I know I will regret putting off the work that’s required to at least test the feasibility of a business idea I’ve had sitting in my head for well over a year now. Today, I’m going to take the first step forward. Thanks for the push.
Therese F. says
Marc and Angel, like Clara mentioned above in her own words, your work has been an incredibly positive vehicle of growth in my life. Your book and digital Think Better 2017 event have allowed me to rediscover a meaningful path in my life and actually progress down it. I have undoubtedly changed the way I think and live over the past couple of months, and I owe you both my gratitude. As it relates to this article, the videos you’ve embedded here are incredible reminders to me, and I love the unscripted candidness of them too. Bravo!
Katherine Tate says
Thank you for each and every article that you write. I look forward to reading them daily.
Patricia Shark says
This is just what I need in my life to help me stop procrastinating and get going to my goals in life that I dream of. I won’t let my age hold me back. I already let go of negative people who put hurt in my heart. If it wasn’t for these generous e mails and this current video I would not have pressed on.But will accomplish my goal. Thank you.
Chuck Schwartz says
What a powerful message…thank you! Today, tomorrow, next week, next year…if we are lucky enough, we will get to experience these gifts…but as you say, the big question is what are we willing to do with that time so that the when we get there we don’t look back and say “I wish……” but instead say “I am grateful for…..”. The difference is growing (and being) conscious of how we spend our time (grateful or indifferent), of what we do with our time (our habits, or lack of habits), and then being conscious of both having had the fortune of both the time and what we did with it….
Anitria Wiggles says
I’m so glad I checked my email during my devotional time, because this article and videos went right along with what I was studying and praying about. I have been dragging my feet about finishing my degree and with this new perspective, I know it’s time to get moving on accomplishing my dreams. It has already been too many years…but your messages showed me that it’s never too late. Thank you!!
Jen R. says
Marc&Angel, very powerful yet simple. If you want what you’ve never had you must do what you’ve never done. One tool I used recently was to write a letter to my younger self. Now, I’m thinking of writing another letter to my older self. I’m an addict in recovery ten years. I was quite older I thought (47) but I’m now 57 regardless. I had to have the willingness. Much of the time I meet much younger people new to recovery and it makes my heart smile. Thanking you in Advance for helping so many. I had to take that first step and have that willingness. A shout out to all my fellow veterans on this Memorial Day and Thank You for your service, jen (xnavygal)
Chuck Boswell says
How can I identify WHAT I REALLY want to do? I know that sounds goofy, but I get tied up in choosing a direction. Thank you for these videos and your positivity.
Thank you! Today’s message was timely and resonated so much with me as I am an older person trying to manage a home on my own and for a while now it has been getting away from me. (At times I feel like I should be on the TV show Hoarders!). And because the dejunking and maintenance seems so overwhelming and daunting, I just shy away from it entirely and distract myself with anything else, and the task continues to grow even larger. But your video is encouraging me to set aside at least 30 minutes per day to tackle the ‘elephant’ and to hang on to the belief that even tho it might not seem like I am making any progress for a long while, eventually I will see the results. This will be my new daily ritual. And you need to know how helpful your insight and encouragement can be, even to people whose working careers are far behind them and who are unlikely to ever attend one of your seminars.
Daisy Ermoza says
My name is Daisy, I am going to a tough divorce now and it took me a long time to take this decision, at least 10 years I’ve been miserable with my life. Some people judge me because I am divorcing a sick man. I am not talking about a disable man, I am talking about a psychological disorder. I felt that life ended for me.
The email newsletter that I receive weekly from Marc and Angel really helped me to look in my situation and to ask the right questions to myself even when I read the few words I get every week it’s like I am eating from my soul.
Wow! I am at this very moment tussling with the ‘but it will take me 10 years’ idea, but I’m 46…and it’s medicine…and I feel ridiculous, but the pull towards it doesn’t quit. I’ve felt crazy resistance (from myself) to even email admissions offices about the possibility at my age. But buoyed by you I will continue a daily ritual of investigation and maybe I’ll even discover alternative paths along the way. This could not have come at a more perfect time. I was drawn to open your email today! Thank you.
I started following your blog a few years ago in the hopes of learning a means of helping my sister who lives 3000 miles away. She has suffered from and is on medication for a variety of mental illnesses. All your posts really helped me to gradually give her ways of coping with her daily struggles. She now functions at a much higher and happier level than she’s ever experienced. Then, I had a very serious bicycle accident that resulted in numerous injuries and 2 months of hospitalization, the worst being traumatic brain injury. Because of all that I learned from my two angels, Marc and Angel, I approach all my therapy and everything I went through with a positive and determined attitude. I still have a lot of work ahead of me and I have your daily enlightenment to help me. You have helped me so much through this challenge and I thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing your brilliant knowledge with those lucky enough to find your blog.
Tukuru Crowther says
Wow really heart touching, just injected more light to what had long been fighting. Godbless.
Patricia Talbot says
Thank you very much for your articles. I am far away from your country. I always look forward to receiving them. They are of so much help!
I am a 58 year old woman enlightened about the “daily rituals” you speak of in your videos.& have achieved many of the goals I set forth in my life :. I started a gym ritual with an ex-boyfriend in 2013 & moved forward into 2016 with the same 4-5 day ritual adding an organic, whole foods diet and Yoga along the way. I’m in the best shape of my life heading to my 40th high school reunion in June. There is however a “goal” I have long visioned in my life that has very much eluded me – that is to be an entertainer and to play the piano/keyboards. (I already know how to play guitar & sing; I come from a long line of family musicians, ). I was recently given an electronic keyboard, & did some online free lessons BUT…I need professional assistance and keep telling myself I “can’t afford to take piano lessons” in my current budget. For years my excuse was because I “didn’t own a piano and couldn’t afford to buy one”. Now I have the piano but having difficulty sticking to a ritual. The day to day rituals we choose really matter and I know it wholeheartedly .. They get your momentum going 1 step, 1 block, 1 minute, 1 hour, “ONE DAY AT A TIME.”
Just had this discussion with my brother who feels very stuck. Talk about impeccable timing period thanks for your article
Bravo! This is such good, basic information. Focus on the daily rituals. I started following this advice at the beginning of May when I noticed it in one of your emails.. 3 children graduating in the month of May, 2 of them needed help moving, compounded by my oldest having to deal with health issues that restricted his driving. Now suddenly, we have to drive him to and from work each day. 1 hour away. My goal was to stay present in the moment so that I could enjoy each child’s accomplishment to its fullest. I began feeling so unbelievably overwhelmed when I looked at everything we had to accomplish in 1 month. Your advice to just focus on your daily rituals, or as I like to say, work the problem in front of me at the present time, has been truly a blessing! May is almost over. This week will be the hardest, but I am staying focused on the daily rituals and not the “big picture” and….I am happy to say, I have really enjoyed it all! Thank you for all the help and support you offer through your weekly emails! It has really made a difference in my Life
Nicah Caramba says
Hey, Marc and Angel!
Now I’m thinking about my age in 10 years.
I’ll be 31 by then, and you’re right. Life is going to happen anyway, and what could I have done with the time that has passed?
Also, I love that insight about rituals.
Speaking of rituals, I’ve been regularly monitoring my progress in the areas I want to improve in.
I want to be more fit, so weekly I have a workout routine, and then I take the necessary body measurements to check if I’m closer to where I want to be.
I want to be a better speaker and blogger, so every week or so I take the opportunity to stand in front of a crowd whether big or small. I write about what I learn and apply it on my blog, too.
I make sure that something gets accomplished weekly, so that when I look back, I can say that I’ve arrived closer to where I want to be.
Donna Underwood says
My life at this moment is a mess. I’m in therapy, and what you two are doing is what she said for me to try. I told her I didn’t know how. Or where to start, I accidentally found this…I had been looking up something so different. I’m 57. My mom died 9 months ago and we had a bad relationship. There’s other stuff too…and sometimes I don’t know who I am…sometimes I don’t want to be here. There are no coincidences though, synchronicity, I always or had believed in possibilities, but I stopped. When I read your material that belief let me know its and He’s still there. So the journey begins. I’d be lying if I said I was excited I’m terrified. But, here goes.
Telling my self some inconvenient truths, and taking the urgent steps is something I struggle with. But I have learnt that you can only progress when you tell yourself the truth. Thank you.
Great reminder! Thankful for your insight.
I’ll be 47 in ten years time. Blimey! I really don’t want to get to that age and not accomplish the concepts in my head – or at least try some of them. You’ve been my Monday morning source of inspiration yet again guys! Thanks very much!
Really thought provoking and a great insight. Thank you