Photo by Grovemade
Here I am, putting all myself in this adventure again and writing my second blog post. I’m incredibly happy about how the first one played out, it went way better than what I was expecting. I’ve received a lot of good feedbacks and messages, so thank you very much, guys! I’ve really enjoyed the whole process. I took some time to write this second article, and that’s because my summer went on a bit strangely, I faced some inner problems and I’ve procrastinated more than what I would like to admit. These inner problems, though, gave me a very good hint for this post. You see, with the time I have developed a very particular approach to the issues of life, and I thought that it could be fun to share it.
As everyone else in the world, my life is filled with problems, issues, and things that are supposed to happen and all of a sudden fall apart. Like most people, I used to see these difficult moments as something negative, but this approach was soon replaced by a more positive one, deciding to focus more on the solution, rather than the problem. I knew, though, that this was still not the right approach, I felt like I was missing something, a small aspect that could have changed my whole game. Eventually, and mostly thanks to my business journey, I came up with a different idea. I started questioning whether the problems were really problems: what if, instead, all those moments were a blessing? What if I could use these situations as opportunities to grow and get closer to my goals?
What if I could actually train in life, like I do in the gym, so that I could become better at it?
It all started with the numerous issues I had to face with Elliot For Water: being late with payments, having to deal with not so positive people, technical issues and many other things. During the process I noticed that every time I was getting through one of these problems, I was actually growing and learning something new, something that eventually would have helped me in future situations! It’s in that moment that I started to think outside the box and to apply in my life the same approach that I had in my business.
I then realized how this “mental trick” would work in every situation, I could learn from literally any problem that I would face, and more often than not those problems were the best thing that could have happened to me. At the beginning of my travel, when I was in front of a situation that would dry my energy out, my first reaction was to get angry or nervous, but in reality those moments were there for me, it’s where I was growing the most and where the universe was teaching me something. The only thing I had to do was to understand it so that I could learn my lesson and use it to grow.
For example, I’m a very impulsive individual, and for this reason I face on a daily basis problems that touches my nerves and tends to make me go bananas. The truth is, those issues are not there to make me freak out, but only to teach me how to stay calm and manage the situation with a relaxed and peaceful mind. In my business, one of the biggest lessons I had was when, due to some technical problems, Elliot For Water shut down completely. In a situation like this I had to learn the hard way how to remain composed and relaxed while solving a huge problem.
The cool thing is that every time I learn a lesson, I feel that I’m ready to move to the next stage of my journey. Moreover, the problems that has just taught me something never appear anymore, or better, they do appear again, but I now know how to manage them and therefore I don’t see them as a problem anymore. At the end of the day it’s all in our mind, just like the young monk in Matrix said, “There Is No Spoon”.
“Do not try and bend the spoon. That’s impossible. Instead, only try to realize the truth.”
“There is no spoon. Then you’ll see, that it is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself.”
Based on this belief I started seeing my life as something where I could work on, just as I train in the gym. All the difficult moments, issues, and proofs that I have to face, are the equivalent of a set of pull-ups, they are moments of pressure and pain that I go through in order to grow and achieve my goals, and by quitting, or not learning how to do the pull-ups correctly, I’ll never be able to move to the next exercise and get that large capitan-america-look-alike back that I want. The same in the business, I know what I want to reach, I know that I will make it to the cover of Forbes, and that I’ll bring water to 1 million people by 2025, but I also know that I won’t be able to do it if I don’t learn how to stay calm and face every situation in the correct way.
If I fail in acting in the right way, I just have to stay grateful for the opportunity I have just received, learn from my mistakes, and be ready for when the next test will be presented again.
By taking this approach I have eventually started being grateful for every test that I’m facing and learn from literally anything that I go through. I now feel that life is a never ending learning process. All I have to do is set my goal, work for it, when something goes wrong learn and adjust, and then go at it again. If you think about it, this is exactly the same approach that any top athlete in the world takes: set a goal, work hard to achieve it and then analyze what they’ve done wrong so that they can improve and do it again. So, if people do it with sports, why can’t I do it in life?
I know that when I talk I make it sounds easy, but it’s not. I still struggle in taking some of these opportunities and applying the lessons I learned and, in fact, I keep facing the same issues over and over again. Even if they are opportunities, problems are obviously difficult to overcome, especially if I have set very high goals. Moreover, the more I go on the harder it will get, just like for top athletes: the further they go and the better they want to become, the harder and most stressful the training will be. It’s quite normal though, isn’t it? Otherwise everyone would be Usain Bolt.
Genuinely speaking, I don’t know if this is the right approach to problems or not, but there is one thing that I do know: since the day I switched my mindset in this direction, problems are definitely way more fun to deal with than what they used to be!
Owner of Elliot For Water: it's just like Google, the difference is, it creates drinking water every time you search! Working on my goals to bring water to 1 million people by 2025. Follow me on elliotsway.com