1. Motivation Is Bullshit ― Mel Robbins

Wait, but you said.. Scrap what I said. Motivation is garbage! You’re never going to feel like doing something that pushes you out of your comfort zone. If you’re waiting until you feel ready, you’re wasting your time, sweetie. Your brain is intricately designed to protect you from anything that may cause you stress or harm, and so it will go to great lengths to deter you from doing things that make you uncomfortable. We all have moments of genius creativity, but instead of sharing these thoughts, we often hesitate. As soon as we hesitate about something, our brain receives a stress signal. One well-known cognitive phenomenon is the Spotlight Effect which magnifies the risk we feel about being judged by others. For most of us, it’s game over as soon as those feelings of insecurity and anxiety set in. Although your brain’s intentions are noble, you need to show it who’s boss.

Just go for it. It’s now or never.

2. Master Your Strengths ― Gary Vaynerchuk

You are mediocre in a lot of areas of your life ― admit it. I don’t say this to insult you. It’s just the truth. You may be an amazing singer, but a terrible painter. You may be an incredible mathematician, but a horrible cook who can’t even boil pasta. That’s just the way it is. God didn’t give you the ability to do everything with incredible skill, but you do possess specific talents and strengths. Certainly, strive to become competent in the areas that you completely suck in. If you’re ridiculously unorganized, for example, don’t make up sorry excuses to justify it. Be aware of this weakness and consciously make the decision to become more organized since this will reap fruitful benefits in your life. Even more so than becoming competent in areas of weakness, focus intensely on mastering the skills you already excel in. When it comes to building on your natural strengths, you need to have tunnel vision.

Become a freakin’ beast.

3. Change Your State ― Tony Robbins

You, along with every other human being on this planet, has 6 Basic Human Needs: Certainty, Uncertainty, Love, Significance, Growth, and Contribution. We all possess these needs, but in varying degrees. Some of us enjoy routine. We wake up at 7 a.m. sharp, clean the house on Sundays, and only eat at restaurants with which we are familiar. Others hate the routine ― they crave variety and complete unpredictability. We cannot survive off of only one need, and it should go without saying that obsessing about any particular need without balance is detrimental. Most of us, however, focus about 90% of our attention on Significance. This explains why social media is such a huge part of our lives. Now, this is the industry I’m getting into so I’m not promoting the notion that social media is inherently harmful to our mental state. The problem is that we don’t use the platforms that are so influential in our lives to narrow in on the other basic needs. Why not try focusing more on Love, Contribution, or Growth?

Change your state. You may be pleasantly surprised at the well-rounded person you grow to become.

4. Talk Is Cheap ― Ryan Holiday

Sometimes, you need to just shut up and actually make a move. Henry Ford stated, “You can’t build a reputation on what you are going to do.” People love to talk and, moreover, they love to talk about themselves. What’s the best advice you can give a socially awkward person at a dinner party? Ask people about themselves! Open that door, and you’re golden. In the marketing world, there are an endless amount of groups on social media, DMs, and hearts floating around. Engagement plays a significant role in keeping relevant, but it’s the icing on the cake not the whole cake. Don’t tell me you’re writing a book. Write one. Don’t tell me you’re going to start a YouTube channel. Start one. Don’t tell me you’re going to change the world. Change it.

Actions will always speak louder than words.

5. You’re Not A Victim ― Owen Cook

Oh, I’m sorry. Did someone tell you that life was going to be fair? If someone had the gall to tell you that, they have done you a grave injustice. Realistically, I doubt that someone has ever claimed that life is fair because if you live on planet earth, you see oppression, cruelty, and pain all around you. Likewise, you can see respect, compassion, and love. It works both ways, so get the notion out of your head that you’ve been victimized. I’m sure you’ve been wronged in many ways ― we all have! Let’s face it..Our generation has become a group of whiny babies. While some of us actually take action to change the things about ourselves and the world that we don’t fancy, most of us just complain on social media or at a protest and then return to our mediocre lives. I know it sounds harsh, but I promise you that if you start looking at yourself as the only person who controls your emotions, thoughts, and outcomes, you’ll feel freer and more empowered than you ever thought possible.

Take responsibility. Stop playing the victim.

6. The “It’s Already Too Late” Philosophy ― Daniel DiPiazza

Tupac Shakur died when he was just 25 years old. Between 1994 and 1996, he recorded and produced 12 albums, starred in 8 movies, and wrote 2 books of poetry. As I’m sure most of you already know, he wasn’t born into an affluent family with a silver spoon in his mouth. He was a fatherless, impoverished child who was raised by a crack-addicted mother in Harlem, New York. Sounds like a recipe for success, right? Yeah, didn’t think so. So how in the world did he accomplish so much in such a short amount of time? He had a vision. He had guts. In striving to create a strong Black Nationalist Movement in the 1960s, Malcolm X preached to his supporters, “You’ve got to have a ‘Do It Yourself’ philosophy, a ‘Do it Now’ philosophy, an “It’s Already Too Late’ philosophy.” You’re not going to live forever. In fact, not to sound morbid, but you may die tomorrow. Hell, you may die today!

Find a sense of urgency. Find a sense of focus. A vision. You literally don’t have time to waste.

7. Find Better Friends ― Warren Buffett & Bill Gates

You are who your friends are. The company you keep shapes who you are. You are a social creature who is easily influenced, whether you want to believe that or not. Sorry to burst your hipster, nonconformist bubble. We are all influenced by our interactions and environments, both on a macro and micro level. The sooner you realize this, the sooner you can seek out people who make you better. You’ll know who these people are, because they will be the ones challenging your bullshit. They’ll be the ones calling you out on your poor choices, whininess, and procrastination. Wow, these guys sound like real jerks! Relax. They don’t tell you these realities to be jerks ― they tell you to hold you accountable and to build your character. Trust me, I know it can be hurtful to hear critique from loved ones. But, if you can be mature enough to recognize that you aren’t perfect and that you have plenty of areas of self-improvement to work on, you can take it for what it is ― a chance to grow into a better human being. These friends will tell you the truth even when it hurts, but they’ll also be equally generous with the compliments. They will tell you how much they love you, how brilliant you are in that specific skill, and how much you’ve contributed to their personal growth as well.

Complacency and stagnation are killers. Look for friendships that challenge you.

8. Admit That You’re Stupid ― Tom Bilyeu

Most of us look at successful people in awe. We idolize them, looking at them in an extraordinary light because they’ve achieved something unattainable. The very fact that they have obtained it proves that it is attainable. Don’t put them on a pedestal at your own expense. Don’t get me wrong, this doesn’t mean that you can become anything or anyone you want. I’m never going to be the next Beyoncé. It’s just not going to happen. Again, focus your tunnel vision on mastering your strengths instead of your weaknesses. Look up to and seek guidance from people who are where you want to be. Follow the steps they took to get there and don’t be afraid to ask questions even when you think it’s a “stupid question”. Those who ask, receive. If you are too proud to look stupid or be perceived as a failure, you will never succeed. Let me reiterate that even more clearly: If you are more afraid to look stupid than you are driven to learn, you will never succeed. The fear of failure will destroy you.

Change your self-esteem from the person who’s smart and always right to the never-ending learner who’s willing to admit they’re wrong, make the appropriate correction, and give credit where credit is due.