Secret to Success – Burn Your Boats

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Secret to Success – Burn Your Boats

One of the Secrets to Success at anything in life is to get rid of any potential escape routes you might try to take when the going gets rough.burn-your-boats

If you have a back up plan or a plan B it is too easy to bail out of your plan A (what you really want) when you are hit with challenges or difficulties.

To prevent yourself from taking the easy road and quitting you need to find ways to make continuing on with your plan A more attractive then going back to the safety of what you came from.

So when pushing on towards your goal, focus on why you started this journey. Focus on the rewards once you have achieved your goal.

By focusing on the rewards you can avoid the distraction of thinking about going back to your comfort zone. (Quitting!)

Continued below…

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Burn Your Boats

Most people in the personal development world have heard the tale of the Spanish Explorer Conquistador Hernando Cortez. When he landed in Mexico his men were seriously outnumbered for the battle that was to come.

However Cortez was dedicated to his mission and of achieving his goal.

=> So he got rid of the distractions.

=> He got rid of the Plan B.

=> He got rid of the temptation to get back in the boats and head back to their comforts zone.

He did this by giving the command to burn the boats! Cut off any option of retreat!

=> Failure was not an option!

=> Success was all there was!

=> Distraction of giving up was eliminated.

It was full steam ahead to the achievement of their goals or bust!

You can do the same on any goal you wish to accomplish…

As Will Smith famously said: “have no Plan B as it will only distract from your Plan A.”

Getting rid of any options to escape from your plan creates a tremendous commitment within us to continue pushing on.

will smith plan b quote


Do Not Be Reckless

An interesting thing to note from the story of Cortez is that he said burn the boats… but no where did it say he said to destroy all of their supplies and food.

He very well could have done this and forced his men to win NOW or die, but that would have been reckless.

Burning the boats was strategic and motivational for his men, but destroying their supplies and forcing his men to win now or die would have been beyond foolish and a recipe for failure.

Achieving your goals will still require you to spend time researching, creating a plan and adjusting it as you move forward.

You should press on, but you should not be like the Viking Berserkers who just ran into battle in a crazed mindless fashion, with no plan in place.

Any goal worth achieving will bring with it some risk, but you can minimize this by planning before rushing in and making sure you are properly prepared with the right plan and tools in place to be a success.

a goal without a plan is just a wish

Continued below…


Burn Your Boats but Don’t be Foolish

No risk no reward!

If you want to be a success you will have to take the risks. But taking risks does not mean you have to be foolish, you can take calculated risks.

If your goal is to be self employed, you might feel that quitting your job is just like what Cortez did by burning his ships. Leaving you no option but to succeed in business or starve.

However it is not the same. If you have money saved up to carry you for the next year then yes it may be an option, but if you have no savings or no other source of income to sustain you then it is reckless and it would be like Cortez destroying his food and supplies (which he did not do!)

Do destroy any escape routes, and make sure your reason to push forward motivates you, but plan smartly, and have the resources you require to sustain you while you are on route to achieve your goals.

Remember do not be like the Vikings who just rushed into battle with no plan, be like Cortez who planned, then eliminated any chance of quitting BUT made sure he had the resources and supplies to sustain him and help him to achieve his goal!


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Until Next Time
Make Things Happen!!
Robb Corbett
Robb Corbett Motivation and Success Coach



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