In today's society, it seems like a lot of men are struggling to find success.
This is especially true when it comes to being a “better man.” It can be tough to know how to act in the modern world and even tougher to figure out how to become a successful professional.
In today's article, I'm breaking out the 5 life lessons that made me the man I am today so you, too, can succeed in your own life, no matter what you may be striving for.
We'll be covering:
- Don't Sweat The Small Stuff
- Always Eat The Frogs First
- A Bird In The Hand Is Worth Two In The Bush
- Manners Maketh Man
- Dress For The Job You Want, Not The One You Have
#1 Don't Sweat The Small Stuff
Throughout every man's life, there are going to be times when the smallest problems seem huge. Whether it be a fight with a friend or a spilled coffee on your new shirt, it's how you react to these problems that define you as a man.
Here's the reality: the best way to deal with small problems is to not sweat them. Worrying and stressing over the little things will only make them seem bigger than they are and overshadow what really matters.
When it comes to assigning focus to your problems, you should imagine that you have a finite ‘cup of care' that empties out when you deal with your problems.
If you spend all your time and energy on small, menial things, you won't have any left over to deal with the more important stuff. So, the next time a small problem comes up in your life, take a step back and ask yourself if it's really worth sweating over.
Chances are, it's not. Better to drain your cup of care on one really important concern than waste it on a bunch of small ones.
So, what's the takeaway?
Remember not to sweat it the next time you're caught up in a small problem. Worrying and stressing over something that doesn't really matter will only make it worse. Instead, try to focus on what's really important and spend your time accordingly.
#2 Always Eat The Frogs First
No, I'm not actually suggesting you sit down to a flog's leg supper. What I am suggesting, however, is that you eat your frogs first.
In other words, start your day by tackling the most difficult tasks on your to-do list (the frogs) before sorting through your easier tasks (the cookie dough ice cream of the task world). Get them out of the way so you can relax and enjoy the rest of your day.
You see, a lot of people make the mistake of starting their day with easy tasks. They think they'll be able to get them out of the way quickly and then move on to the more difficult ones.
The problem with this approach is that it often backfires. The easy tasks tend to take longer than expected, leaving less time for the more difficult ones. This can lead to a lot of unfinished business at the end of the day, which can be stressful and overwhelming.
A better approach is to start your day by eating your frogs first. Get the most difficult tasks out of the way so you can relax and enjoy the rest of your day. Not only will this make your day more productive, but it will also make it less stressful.
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#3 A Bird In The Hand Is Worth Two In The Bush
First frogs and now birds? I hear you – ‘Antonio, this isn't a zoo! I've got real-life problems to contend with here!'
Don't sweat it; these metaphors might seem a bit whacky, but they're perfect for helping you solve your problems.
So, when I say that ‘a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush,' what I mean is that it's better to deal with what you have right now, rather than chasing after things that you may never achieve.
For example, let's say you're considering quitting your job to start your own business. It's a big decision and one that comes with a lot of risks.
You could spend months (or even years) planning and preparing for your new venture, but there's no guarantee that it will actually take off. In the meantime, you're missing out on valuable experience and income by not working.
On the other hand, if you keep that job and work on your business as a side hustle to start off with, you'll have the security of your regular paying job while still affording yourself the time to work on your start-up.
In other words, you're dealing with the bird in your hand (your boring 9-5) to help you catch the two in the bush (becoming your own boss and owning life!)
Sure, sometimes this rule doesn't work out. At the end of the day, some risks are worth taking and can have big payouts as a result. However, more often than not, it's better to play it safe and take things as they come.
#4 Manners Maketh Man
Manners are everything when it comes to success. If you don't have manners, guess what – people won't like you!
In order to be successful in any aspect of your life (be it friendship, family, or business) you've got to have a certain level of social etiquette.
It might seem like a small thing, but making an effort to be polite and well-mannered can make a big difference in how people perceive you.
For example, let's say you're at a networking event and you meet someone who seems really interesting. You start chatting and it quickly becomes apparent that they're rude, interrupting you mid-sentence and talking over you constantly.
What would your impression of this person be? Would you want to continue talking to them or would you move on to someone else?
Now, let's say you meet someone else at the same event who is also interesting. The conversation flows smoothly, and they're genuinely interested in what you have to say.
Which of those guys are you more likely to collaborate with? The answer is obvious – the latter.
The same goes for friendships and family relationships. If you're a rude, self-centered jerk, people are going to have a hard time wanting to be around you. However, if you're polite and considerate, they'll be much more likely to want to spend time with you.
In short, manners maketh man because nice guys actually finish first.
#5 Dress For The Job You Want, Not The One You Have
I saw a picture of Jeff Bezos recently. It was from way back in the 1990s when he first started his online book store ‘Amazon.com'.
At the time, he was unemployed and struggling to pay rent. He'd set up a little office and hand-painted ‘Amazon.com' on the wall of his office in crude black paint. The poor guy had nothing, so you'd think he'd be sitting in cheap sweats while working on his business, right?
Wrong! He's pictured wearing a dress shirt, slacks and shoes. So why is this important?
Well, the way you dress says a lot about how you see yourself. If you dress like a slob, it shows that you don't respect yourself and that you're not taking your work seriously.
On the other hand, if you make an effort to look presentable, it shows that you have self-respect and that you take pride in what you do – even if it's just by painting your company name on a wall!
This lesson has stuck with me throughout my career. No matter what job I had (even when I was working minimum wage jobs), I always made sure to dress well and look presentable.
I remember one instance in particular when I was working as a waiter. It was a slow season, and tips were low, so I decided to save some money by wearing my old clothes to work.
The result? My tips went down even further!
It was then that I realized that how you dress has a direct effect on how successful you are. If you want to be successful, start by dressing for the job you want, not the one you have.
So there you have it – five life lessons that have helped me become a success. Want to learn more about self-improvement? Check out my guide to the most attractive traits women love.