Are you an underachiever?
Do you know that you’re destined for more incredible things but struggle to follow through on your big dreams with action?
Here’s the truth.
It isn’t easy to overcome an underachiever mindset.
But it’s totally possible.
Perhaps Laksh Kishore said it best:
“It is better to be a failed happy person than to be a successful underachiever.”
Read on to learn five tips to help you stop being an underachiever today.
1. Start By Setting Some Goals
Unlike underachievers, achievers set short, medium, and long-term goals for themselves.
On the other hand, underachievers tend to live in the moment, at the whim of their feelings. They react to the universe as life unfolds around them instead of creating the destiny they desire for themselves.
This is really a game of intentionality.
And it comes down to a straightforward question.
Are you living a purpose-oriented life?
If not, then why?
See, we’re all headed somewhere. But only people who set goals get to choose where they go in life.
Sure, unexpected things happen. But the more effort we put into pursuing our goals, the closer we will come to hitting the mark we’re aiming for.
Setting Goals Takes Time
Before deciding what you want and need out of your life, spend some time thinking about what you’re passionate about.
Asking yourself this question may help:
What big problem do you want to help solve in the world?
If you’re still not sure, start thinking about what topics light you up and excite you whenever you get a chance to talk about them.
That’ll probably give you a good indication of which direction you should travel in.
You might enjoy: 5 Types of Mentors Everyone Should Find
2. Start Making Daily To-Do Lists
Setting goals is a great place to start.
But once you get some goals written down, start making a daily plan to figure out what needs to get done daily. This helps you reach those goals sooner.
Setting goals is the ‘planning’ stage. But following through and working to accomplish your goals is the ‘action’ stage.
This takes work. And one of the best ways to stay motivated, and to continue to achieve productive milestones, is to make yourself a daily to-do list.
It doesn’t have to be fancy. You can write it out on a notepad, create it on a document on your computer, or write it in a journal.
The point, though, is to figure out what you need to do today to stay on track to reach your longer-term, overarching goals.
Are You Lazy? Or Are You Just Unmotivated?
There is a saying that goes: there’s no such thing as lazy people. There are only ‘unmotivated’ people.
What does this mean?
This means that you’re probably not lazy.
If you’re an underachiever, it may be because you just haven’t found the type of ‘work’ that excites you and motivates you yet.
But here’s the thing.
Finding that work, and getting started on it, is YOUR responsibility!
3. Stop Spending as Much Time With Other Underachievers
The catalyst that changes an underachiever into an achiever is action.
But action takes serious, focused work.
It’s not always fun to do, and you’ll want to skip it.
This is why it’s so important to stop spending time around people who often choose to skip out on that hard work.
Spending time with other underachievers puts you into their mindset. Like them, you’ll start to settle for doing less and accomplishing less.
Instead, consider going out and meeting people who are getting a lot more accomplished than you.
Try to make friends with people who have better jobs, make more money, and create more success in their lives than you.
At first, this may make you feel self-conscious. But it’s only a matter of time before you start to adopt some of their good habits. And soon, you’ll start taking on some of those ‘success’ traits as well.
As Jim Rohn says: “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”
4. Study Great Men And Women Who Have Accomplished What You Want To Accomplish
Take a look at your goal list, and figure out who is best at what you want to accomplish in the world.
Are you trying to build a tech company? Then, Elon Musk may be the guy to study.
Do you want to be president of the United States? Barack Obama may be an excellent thought mentor to study, to learn what it takes to succeed at that level.
Here’s the thing: thought mentors matter.
If there’s something that you want to accomplish, it’s important to study great men and women who have done what you want to do.
And as you study them and gain valuable insight, you’ll gain inspiration to follow in their footsteps. You’ll choose to achieve instead of allowing your life to pass you by without taking action to create your destiny.
5. Follow Through On A Daily Basis
This is the hard part.
See, success isn’t something you accomplish in one day.
Overcoming your tendency to be an underachiever will require you to work every day for the rest of your life.
You’re going to need to change bad habits by living the achiever lifestyle on a day-to-day basis.
That’s where the work comes in.
It isn’t glamorous. At first, you’ll wonder, “what am I doing? Is this even worth it?”
But it is.
Achieving things is what gives our lives meaning and purpose.
And the best part about it is that if you set your own goals and make your to-do lists, you get to choose what that purpose is.
Follow these five tips to be an achiever instead of an underachiever.
All that’s left now is to get up, get out there, and get to work.
Set your goals, and work to accomplish them.
There’s nowhere to go but up.
Shoot for the stars, and put in the work.
It’s worth it.
Adam Marshall is a freelance writer who specializes in all things apartment organization, real estate, and college advice. He currently works with Copper Beech at Ames to help them with their online marketing.