How do you know if you’ve truly committed to something? It’s easy to hope for change. You can hope to lose weight or hope to make more money. What if you have no choice? What if someone had a gun to your head and said, “Lose 20 pounds in 12 weeks or you’re dead!” Would you find a way to do it? Damn right you would.

Human beings can achieve extraordinary results under the right circumstances.

In Napoleon Hill’s book, Think and Grow Rich, he shares the story of the burning ships.

A long while ago, a great warrior faced a situation which made it necessary for him to make a decision which insured his success on the battlefield. He was about to send his armies against a powerful foe, whose men outnumbered his own. He loaded his soldiers into boats, sailed to the enemy’s country, unloaded soldiers and equipment, then gave the order to burn the ships that had carried them. Addressing the men before the first battle, he said, “You see the boats going up in smoke. That means that we cannot leave these shores unless we win! We now have no choice—we win—or we perish!”

What happened?

They Won.

In order to succeed, we must learn how to burn our own ships.

We must make it more difficult to fail than to succeed.

How To Burn Your Own Ships

Go Public

If you want to lose weight, go on social media and post a picture of yourself in shorts or a bathing suit (Like my upcoming 30 day fitness challenge). Take a picture of your meals and tell the world that you’re committed to losing weight. I’m sure you’ll stick to your plan knowing that friends and family will be watching. I know it’s intimidating, but that’s the whole point. You’re making it more painful to fail than to succeed.

Bet On Yourself

Stickk.com was co-founded by a Yale professor who concluded that people who put stakes – either their money or their reputation – on the table are far more likely to actually achieve a goal they set for themselves.

First, you set a goal. For example, run 3 times per week. Next, you then select an unbiased referree who will hold you accountable. Finally, you place cash on the line . If you don’t meet your goal, your money is donated to an anti-charity. If you’re a democrat, it can be donated to the Republican party or vice versa.

How’s that for motivation? Do you see how this makes it more painful to fail than to succeed?

What are some ideas you have for commitment? What will you do to truly achieve your goals? Step up and do it.

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