Rory Vaden's Take the Stairs is a short, captivating, kick-in-the-butt read. The entire concept, and the source of the book's title, is that most people today "take the elevator" in life. They take the easy way and don't want to put in the work that it takes for success. Rory refers to this as the "elevator attitude". However, in order to get success, a person has to put in the work and "take the stairs".
In his book, Rory discusses the Pain Paradox, which states that we can choose the short term easy way and live with the long term hard way or choose the short term difficult way for the long term easy way. He also introduces the idea of "double time part time for full time free time" which states, in an easy way, that we can work super hard and really go for it for a short while and reap the rewards for the long term. This is definitely the attitude of those who "take the stairs".
He also presents the idea that the "emotional energy of making a decision is greater than the physical energy of executing that decision". Have you ever thought about that? When I read that, it resonated. I realized how much time I spend agonizing or resisting decisions instead of actually doing the work. The actual decision making process gets built up to the point of being excessive, distracting, and unnecessary.
One of the most impactful ideas that Rory gave me in his book was that of changing my thoughts from "should I?" or "can I?" to "How will I?" To be honest, I say "How will I?" to myself on a daily basis. More than anything else, this has stuck with me and has changed the way I view my challenges. Instead of coming from a place of doubt, I come from a place of power and a knowledge that I can create any result that I want. This is incredibly empowering and enabling. I tell my subconscious that I know it's a problem that can be solved and also that I can figure it out. Belief trumps doubt.
Here are a few of my favorite quotes from the book:
"Success is the aggregate sum total of small, seemingly insignificant choices that when compounded over time create the trajectory of our lives."
"Create a clear picture of what you want in the long run and you will find that your endurance for pain and strife, discipline and hard work will naturally increase to levels you never thought you had. A new world will open up for you - a world where you can have anything you want... as long as you commit."
"Procrastination seductively destroys our dreams more than any other controllable force."
"Action validates our words; it erases our setbacks and cures our fears."