Act like you’ve been there before. For many people, they divide their lives into two categories: before they make it and after they make it.
After they’re a wild success, they’ll donate money to charity, they’ll treat everyone with respect, and they won’t compromise their morals or their integrity just to get ahead or to make a little extra money.
But before they reach the land of makin’ it, well, they might not live up to those ideals.
The reasoning? Well, you do what you gotta do to get by, right? Everyone has to.
Eventually, they think, they’ll change. Once they get to that next level, they’ll start doing things right.
It Doesn’t Work That Way
As much as it sucks to hear it, no, you won’t just suddenly change once you succeed. It’s easy to underestimate how difficult it is to change.
Think of it this way: If you’re unwilling to take a dime out of a dollar and give it to charity, are you really going to take $100,000 out of $1 million?
No. More likely than not, your rationale will just shift from, “I don’t have enough to give” to “I don’t want to lose what I have.”
You’ll have to work like hell to get beyond this mindset, and it’s harder than you might think.
Start beyond this mindset. Whatever your “ideal self” would do, start doing it now instead of waiting until you’re comfortable.
If you promised yourself that you were the type of person that helped people, do it now — even if you don’t really have the money or time.
If you promised yourself that you weren’t going to take on jobs that made you feel like shit about yourself, draw that line in the sand right now, not later.
You are what you do, and by doing things that are below your standard, you increase the likelihood that you become that person permanently.
Flip the script. It starts with pretending like you’re already where you want to be.
It May Hurt In The Short-Term To Act Like You’ve Been There Before
It’s not all fun and games. When you raise your standard before you have the means to do so, it can initially make your life worse.
It might be harder to get a job. You might have less money lying around. You might have to give up certain conveniences.
It’s going to hurt at first. I’m not going to give you any false delusions. That’s the thing about growth. It’s not a pleasant experience most of the time.
That’s why they call them “growing pains” and not “stagnation pains.” You have to reach beyond your current circumstances and pull yourself into the future. It can be painful.
But It Will Help You In The Long-Term
Here’s the thing: Once you start operating under the assumption that you already are where you want to be, a crazy thing will happen: You’ll start to get there.
You raise your standard, and guess what? You start to notice all the opportunities out there that meet your standard, and they weren’t all that much higher than where you currently lived.
When you act like you’ve been there before, many people will trust that you have and treat you as such.
An even crazier thing happens, too. You’ll realize that a large part of makin’ it is in your head. You can have the same amount, but your mindset can make the difference.
That’s why there are so many successful people out there that don’t view themselves as successful. They never conquered their mindset.
Contrary to what you might think, there’s no switch that goes off in your head when you “succeed.” It’s not like once you make X dollars per year and have X amount of respect and have X new cars, you suddenly become a different person with more self-confidence.
Rather, it’s the reverse: Once you have a certain amount of self-confidence and self-belief, you will start manifesting those things in your life.
So, start there. Act like you’ve been there before. Change your mindset.
You’ll be glad that you did.