I recently read a great book titled Die Empty: Unleash Your Best Work Every Day by Todd Henry. It’s an excellent read about achieving your potential and doing work that matters. One section that really stood out to me was what he titled “The 7 Deadly Sins of Mediocrity”. Here’s a very brief summary:
Aimlessness – This is for all the talkers out there. You need to have a goal, and you need to have action. There’s a saying that goes “if you aim at nothing, you’ll hit it every time.”
Boredom – My Pastor says that “success is determined by your daily routine.” It may not always be fun, but you need to stay consistent. You become what you repeatedly do, and you have to put in the practice time before you ever see the stage.
Comfort – If things are easy, you probably need to push yourself more. You don’t gain muscle from going to the gym and lifting what’s comfortable. You have to push yourself until it hurts if you want to see growth.
Delusion – You need to know yourself (which is harder than it sounds). You need to know your limitations and what you’re capable of. This doesn’t mean you can’t grow, but you have to be realistic and start with what you have where you are.
Ego – You’re not as great as you think you are! Don’t be afraid to cut your losses and say “I was wrong” rather than go down with the ship.
Fear – Graveyards are full of people who were too afraid to step out and follow their dreams. Don’t be afraid to say “yes” to opportunities. You might fail, but then again you might not! You might find what you were destined to do.
Guardedness – Don’t close yourself off when you start to see success. A lot of companies work hard to get a competitive advantage and then stagnate because they isolate, trying to protect their intellectual property.
I learned a lot from this book and highly recommend it.
- Talker: one who likes to talk about doing something but never actually does anything (my definition). ↩