People often ask me how I became successful in a six-year period of time while many of the people I knew did not. The answer is simple: The things I found to be easy to do, they found to be easy not to do.
I found it easy to set the goals that could change my life. They found it easy not to. I found it easy to read the books that could affect my thinking and my ideas. They found that easy not to. I found it easy to attend the classes and the seminars, and to be around other successful people. They said it probably really wouldn’t matter. If I had to sum it up, I would say what I found to be easy to do, they found to be easy not to do. Six years later, I was a millionaire and they were all still blaming the economy, the government, and company policies, yet they neglected to do the basic, easy things.
In fact, the primary reason most people are not doing as well as they could and should, can be summed up in a single word: neglect.
It is not the lack of money—banks are full of money. It is not the lack of opportunity—America, and much of the Free World, continues to offer the most unprecedented and abundant opportunities in the last six thousand years of recorded history. It is not the lack of books—libraries are full of books—and they are free! It is not the schools—the classrooms are full of good teachers. We have plenty of ministers, leaders, counselors and advisors.
Everything we would ever need to become rich and powerful and sophisticated is within our reach. The major reason that so few take advantage of all that we have is simply neglect.
Neglect is like an infection. Left unchecked it will spread throughout our entire system of disciplines and eventually lead to a complete breakdown of a potentially joy-filled and prosperous human life.
Not doing the things we know we should do causes us to feel guilty and guilt leads to an erosion of self-confidence. As our self-confidence diminishes, so does the level of our activity. And as our activity diminishes, our results inevitably decline. And as our results suffer, our attitude begins to weaken. And as our attitude begins the slow shift from positive to negative, our self-confidence diminishes even more… and on and on it goes.
So my suggestion is that when given the choice of “easy to” and “easy not to” that you do not neglect to do the simple, basic, “easy” but potentially life-changing activities and disciplines.