This guest post is by Steve of thecodeofextraordinarychange.com.
I’m a quiet man. Shy in some circumstances. I like my own company and my own time.
Left unchecked, these qualities would be enough to ensure that I lived out the rest of my life as a small man in a tiresome job, never making a difference and never getting noticed by anybody.
But I can’t imagine a worse hell than that. Really, I can’t.
I know that I’ll never leave my fingerprints on the world unless I deliberately engage with it, and I’ll never put my dent in the universe unless I get out there and punch at the edges. You need to leave a trace; you need to affect the world; you need to be in the light.
Here’s how people spend their lives in the shadows without ever being noticed.
1. Don’t pay attention to what matters
The most unhappy people on the planet are those who don’t listen to and don’t pursue what matters to them most. They won’t have set out to be unhappy, they’ll simply have their lives eroded by the continual exclusion of what matters to them in preference of what they think they ought to be doing.
What matters to you is what counts. What matters to you amounts to a hill o’ beans. What matters to you is enough.
You always notice someone who honours, expresses and demonstrates the things that matter most to them.
2. Don’t stick your neck out
Raising your head above the parapet might just get you an arrow right in the kisser. So valuing your face, you decide to stay put, crouched behind the safety of the castle wall and safe from the vicious marauders.
Only thing is, there’s a whole world beyond those walls. A world that needs you to be a part of it and people who want to see you rise. Safety is too high a price to pay for dying a long, slow death.
You always notice someone who stands up when everyone else remains seated.
3. Don’t show any heart
Science and logic are good allies to have these days. Building a high-converting sales page, writing magnetic headlines and creating a solid business plan are all good things to do among many others, but if those things become your sole focus then you’ve already lost.
You become so focused on the cogs, levers and whirring wheels that you lose site of why you switched the contraption on in the first place. You’re so busy operating the machine that the difference it can make becomes forgotten.
You always notice someone who weaves heart, honesty and vulnerability and into their actions.
4. Don’t raise the stakes
There’s no prize for running the three meter sprint. You don’t get an award for writing a dirty limerick. There’s not much point in attempting the perilous trek across your back yard for charity.
The easy stuff is easy; any Tom, Dick, or Harriette can nail it without thinking too hard or risking much of anything. But if there’s nothing at stake for you personally then are you really in the game or just treading water and kidding yourself about the waves you’re making?
You always notice someone who’s willing to risk their world for what they believe.
5. Don’t innovate
When life gives you lemons, what do you do? Do you make lemonade, or do you complain that you really wanted to make a peach cobbler and that the large pile of lemons on your floor is just too yellow and lemony?
If lemonade isn’t your thing, make a lemon meringue pie. Make candied lemons. Make a to-scale model of the Taj Mahal out of the darn things if you want to. You don’t have to do what’s expected or what everyone else does. You can create something wild, unpredictable or unexpected from what you already have.
You always notice someone who builds something surprising from what’s right in front of them.
So. What’s your next move?
Steve is a superstar confidence coach who helps you build an extraordinary life. He also makes a fantastic ragu, and while he can’t promise you a batch he’ll promise to help you put your dent in the universe, which is probably a better deal. Get more of him on Twitter and Facebook.