What Tony Robbins and Sudoku Taught Me About Success

Are you familiar with the numbers puzzle called "Sudoku"? Literally, the name, from Japanese, means "numbers poison," though it could also be translated as "Number Addiction." The games are computer generated, usually, and the basic idea is pretty simple. You need to fill in the missing numbers, between one and nine, so that each 3x3 grid has all 9 digits, and each vertical and horizontal row has all 9 digits, without repeating. And the thing is, all correctly made Sudoku puzzles are solvable!

There is only one solution, but there is a solution. As I was doing my brain calisthenics with Sudoku last week, I realized that I didn't give up. I kept trying to find the answer. The reason? Because I knew there was a solution. This reminded me of the speech I heard from Anthony Robbins, when he was talking about giving up, or not. I paraphrase, but the point was that it is most difficult to keep going, to keep trying for what we want because we are not sure of the outcome!

Think about the last time you started a project or even embarked on a new hobby. If you were SURE you could play the guitar expertly after 2 years, how much longer would you keep at it? If you were certain that your new business proposal would bring in an extra $20,000 to the bottom line, how much harder would you work on it? It's only when the result is in doubt that we start to question our own motivation. Once we start doubting the result, it's not a far journey before we start doubting why we are doing what we are doing, and even, eventually, doubting ourselves.

Puzzles like Sudoku are great for keeping your mind nimble and in shape, but also for teaching stick-to-it-ivenes and perseverance. So the next time you find yourself flagging, doubting whether to continue on something that you were enthusiastic about previously, imagine that it's like a Sudoku puzzle: the answer, the result you want is guaranteed. It's just waiting for you to uncover it.

No comments: