To say I hated my weight would be a HUGE understatement
I was 21 years old, 6’2” (1.88 meters), and a whopping 137lbs (about 62kg) soaking wet.
And you wouldn't have caught me dead in a pair of shorts.
Did my poor self-image around my body affect other areas of my life?
It sure as hell did.
The area it probably had the most influence on was my dating life. I was lucky if I’d go on 4 dates a year. Back then, I just couldn't believe a woman would want to go on a date with a guy that skinny.
But my weight wasn’t the only area I found myself longing for something better.
At the age of 21, just out of college, I decided to set my degree to the side and focus on starting my own home-based business.
Network marketing, real estate investing, stuffing envelopes, selling products via classified ads in newspapers, you name the business opportunity, I was down to try it.
Fast forward to the age of 23, and you’ll find me sitting in bankruptcy court, over $40,000 in debt, after my 7th attempt at a home-based business went bust.
It didn't matter if it was my weight, my business, or my dating life... no matter what I tried, I just couldn't manage to reach my goals and create the life I wanted on MY terms.
I mean, don’t get me wrong, I knew the things I wanted were possible. I’d seen countless examples of people making great things happen for themselves. I just couldn't see how to make them a reality for me.
“Why them, and not me?” I constantly asked myself that question.
I just couldn’t figure out how to “Throw Sexy” on my goals so that I could have the things I wanted.
Today, My Life is The Opposite of All of That...
I was able to gain 30lbs of muscle in just three months. I was able to go from four dates a year, to as many as four dates a weekend.
And as a home-business entrepreneur, it’s not uncommon for my company to make over $10,000 in any given week.
Which begs the question.
What was the secret?
I BECAME MORE ATTACHED TO THE ACTION THAN THE OUTCOME!
That’s it. That’s the answer!
You have to become more attached to the action than the outcome. But what does that mean?
Let me explain...
You see, the problem with most goals (and goal setting advice) is that it focuses on the end result (the goal). That’s not where to focus should be.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that you shouldn’t be crystal clear about what you want, you ABSOLUTELY should be. What I am saying is that your focus should be on the actions that get you there, not the outcome.
Here’s what I mean…
Let’s pretend you want to lose 50lbs.
If you want to lose 50lbs, what action(s) are you going to have to take?
If you answered “eat right and go to the gym,” you’d be right.
So, if the ACTION you need to take is to “eat right and go to the gym” then the focus should be on that (and not on the scale). If you become attached to the action, then eventually the outcome will take care of itself.
Does that make sense?
If so, great!
If not, let me give you a real life example as to how I learned this, applied it to my dating life, and went from barely having a few dates a year to getting more phone numbers and dates than I knew what to do with.
One evening, around 2006 or 2007, a good friend of mine and I decided to grab a bite to eat before heading out for a night of clubbing.
My friend (we’ll call him “J”) was kind of like Will Smith in the movie “Hitch” (a great movie, by the way). That is to say that he was kind of like an older brother/dating coach for me. When it came to what to do and say when trying to meet women, he was the first person I went to for advice.
While at the restaurant, J turns to me and says…
“OK Devon, I’ll make you a bet. The person who says hi to the most women tonight wins $10.”
“Huh?” I responded, not sure I was hearing him correctly. “I think you mean the person with the most phone numbers gets $10. Right?”
“No,” he said. “To win the bet all you have to do is say hi to a woman, and maybe pay her a nice compliment. That’s it. No phone numbers, dates, or anything like that.”
Still puzzled, I agreed to the bet.
Not 30 seconds after we’d agreed on our wager, our waitress came over and asked to take our drink order.
Before she could even get a word out, I paid her a compliment.
“Hi!” I said. “I love your glasses. 2 Points to you for having super-awesome sexy glasses like me.” I held up my hand to give her a high-five.
She smiled, high-fived me back, thanked me for the compliment, took our drink orders, and left.
I turned to J and asked, “Is that a point for me?”
“Yup,” he said, “point for you.”
We each earned another point or two before we left the restaurant, but when we got to the club, something funny happened…
Either the second or third woman I said hi to at the nightclub actually said hi back, and then asked me how I was enjoying my night.
I was just trying to say hi so that I could get my point total up and win the $10 bet. I wasn’t trying to actually have a conversation with anyone or get any phone numbers.
But she was an attractive girl and seemed nice, so I figured I’d chat with her for a few minutes before heading back to the dance floor and racking up some more points.
But that didn’t happen. Our conversation just flowed.
I ended up talking to her the whole night, getting her phone number, and even scheduling a date with her.
I knew I was going to lose the bet. But I didn’t care. I’d gotten the phone number of a cute girl, and that was worth 10 times the $10 I’d have to give J.
When the end of the night came, I handed J his money. As we hopped in my car and headed back home, J turned to me and said…
“Did you understand the purpose of the bet?”
“I think so,” I said. “I think you wanted me to just say hi to as many women as possible because you knew that eventually one would talk to me.”
“Kinda,” he said, “but not exactly.”
“Here, let me explain,” he continued...
“Devon, we know that in order to get phone numbers and go on dates, we have to approach women and talk to them, right? But we also know that there’s fear in approaching someone you find attractive, right? And what’s that fear called?”
“Approach Anxiety,” I answered.
“Bingo. And why is there fear/approach anxiety when we try to talk to a woman we find attractive?”
“Because we’re scared she’ll reject us, and we’re scared of how we think that rejection will make us feel.”
“Exactly!” he said. “So here’s the dilemma… in order to get a date, you have to approach, but if you approach then you can get rejected, and since we don’t want to get rejected, we don’t approach, so it’s like you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t. Right?"
“Correct,” I said.
“Okay then, let me ask you something. Why did you approach so many women tonight?”
“Because I was trying to win a bet.”
“Were you worried about rejection?” he asked.
“No,” I responded. “I was just trying to win the bet.”
“So, instead of making it your goal to get a phone number, a date, or a kiss, you simply made it your goal to approach. Right?”
“And if your goal is to just approach, then her response is irrelevant, right?”
The light bulb was starting to go off above my head. J continued.
“… and when you just focused on the action of approaching, you ended up getting the phone number, which was the thing that you wanted in the first place… right?”
The light-bulb above my head got so bright it almost exploded.
“HO – LEE – SHIT!!” I exclaimed. “So you’re telling me that if I detach myself from the end result, and just take the damn action I know I’m supposed to take (in this case, approaching), then I’ll end up getting the end result!”
“Yup,” J said with a huge grin on his face. “That’s exactly what I’m trying to tell you – Here’s your $10 back.”
Do You See What Happened in the Story?
I didn’t focus on the GOAL of getting a phone number or a kiss or anything like that. Instead, I just focused on the ACTION, that, if taken long enough, would lead to the goal (whether I wanted it to or not).
Now, apply the same thought process to your life.
Let’s say, for example, you’re a sales person and the “Sexy” you want to throw on your life is making more sales.
Remember when J said to me: “So here’s the dilemma… in order to get a date, you have to approach, but if you approach then you can get rejected, and since we don’t want to get rejected, we don’t approach, so it’s like you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t. Right?”
Well, if you’re a sales-person, just take out the words “date” and “approach” and replace them with “sale” and “make a sales call”.
Now it reads like this…
“So here’s the dilemma… in order to get a sale, you have to make sales calls, but if you make sales calls, then you can get rejected, and since we don’t want to get rejected by potential customers, we don’t make sales calls. So it’s like you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t. Right?”
Does that make sense?
If you know that you need to sell more of a product, then just make your goal to make as many sales calls as you can. Just focus on making more offers (i.e. just asking more people to buy), and it’s likely that more sales will come (whether you want them to or not).
Want to transform your body?
Then focus on the ACTION of just working out daily. Screw what the scale says. The fact of the matter is that your body transforms if you just take the action.
One of the most important parts of making this idea work is to detach yourself from the outcome.
One of the most important parts of making this idea work is to DETACH YOURSELF FROM THE OUTCOME
Seriously, if you’re attached to the outcome, you’ll lose.
In my dating example with J., I had to be DETACHED from getting a phone number. As a matter of fact, I almost had to expect that I wouldn't get the number. The only thing I had to be attached to was saying hi.
If I said hi, then I won!
And if you just take whatever action you know you need to take (while remaining detached from the outcome), then you’ll win too!
Just start taking the action you know you’re supposed to take, and detach yourself from the outcome. Take the action so consistently, that it becomes a habit.
A Personal Invite...
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