Lately, a message I've been hearing people tell me is "You're too young/inexperienced to do this."
"This" being anything from giving a talk, to writing a book, to working on game, etc.
And what with many of us being so driven, we are going to be setting goals that may be cut down or criticized by others.
Even if you aren't "too young" there will be other judgements that people apply to you, whether it be telling you that you're "too old" or that you "don't live in the right city/country."
On the surface, those things may be true.
You may be younger/older than most of your peers, or you may live in a go-nowhere town.
For example, I actually am younger than most of my peers, which sometimes gives the illusion of being less experienced, or a being a cheaper option.
And I do come from an incredibly poor go-nowhere town.
So I've been wondering lately… why then do some people rise up so quickly despite their "disadvantages?"
And on the flip side, why are there so many people with tons of experience floundering in their careers? Or their health? Or their relationships?
I've found that this faster-than-average rise has come from being hugely intentional about everything.
In my case, I decide what I want my outcomes to be in every situation.
If I'm just waking up, I take a breath and decide what I want my morning to be and feel like.
When sitting down to work, I choose what I want that session to be and feel like.
Writing this post, I chose what I want that whole process to be and feel like.
I could choose to let my book writing process (yes, I'm writing a book for a large worldwide publisher… I'll tell you more about that later) to be a hugely unpleasant slog.
Instead, before I sit down to write, I close my eyes, and ask myself "what would this process look and feel like if it were easy?"
I then go into that process with a mindset geared more toward ease and fun, instead of dread and boredom.
This intention has allowed me to supplant a lot of the experience that most people say I need before I do anything.
But before I go on, I do need to point out that yes, experience is incredibly important.
I'm not saying you should just stop practicing altogether.
But I don't want you to wait around for gatekeepers to tell you you're ready.
Being extremely clear about my choices and goals, and then designing my own curriculum and process to complete them is what has made my career (and those of my most successful peers) blossom.
Yes, without a ton of speaking experience, it took a lot more work and convincing to do 2 TEDx talks.
Not having a ton of writing experience, writing a book for a large publisher (as I am now) is a bit scary.
And having Hyper Light Drifter and Destiny be my first big projects was incredibly daunting.
But I'm still accomplishing goals, purely because my choices on how these things will pan out are clear.
Being intentional in what you do just requires more conscious choices. About everything. Here are some examples:
What have you been doing to get more gigs? Why has or hasn't this process been working for you?
How are you going to turn your current number of hard-earned dollars into more? What process are you going to use?
What self-imposed deadlines have you set for yourself to master a new skill?
How are you using your time in your morning? The afternoon? The evening?
How do you want others to feel after you interact with them?
How do you want your clients to feel when you deliver assets to them?
When are you going to take a guilt-free break today?
Asking yourself questions like this - and finding the answers - will play a huge role into how quickly you rise up. You'll be able to dodge a bunch of time-wasting activities that everyone else gets drawn into.
Most importantly, you'll be able to lessen the amount of time that you just go through the motions.
Yes, experience matters.
And intention is a multiplier. The more of it you have, the faster everything will come to you.
Where have you been just going through the motions?
Where in your life can you make choices to be more, do more, and act with more intention?
What choices are you going to make to help you rise up faster?
Think about this as you set your goals. You'll be able to stick with and accomplish them far faster when you're clear about your outcomes.