Some days I try to inspire you to make you feel like success is within reach (it is). Other days I tell you to just do something, anything, every day. I go on about showing up, and adding one stroke to your gallery, even when it’s hard, even when the stroke sucks.

That emotional oomph that fills your chest and makes your mind race with possibility isn’t enough. If the oomph is all you have then you’re bound to fail.

That euphoric feeling you have just after being inspired is a window of opportunity that’s valuable but brief. You can’t possibly start that company, quit your job, lose the weight, gain the weight, or meet The One™ during that brief high of inspiration. If you try, you’ll lose steam very shortly and you’ll end up with no business, a job you hate, too fat, too skinny, and alone. That sucks.

Here’s the trick: the window is just long enough to establish a new ritual.

To create meaningful, lasting change you must create rituals. That doesn’t necessarily mean doing the same things all the time, but it does mean having a certain time for doing a type of thing.

If you want to lose weight, you know you need to walk on that treadmill for 30 minutes every day, and you’ll damn well do it too, because that’s your ritual. It’s just what you do. You do it when you’re busy. You do it in the hospital. You do it unless you’re dead. You just do it, until it’s done.

And when you’re all done just doing your ritual, then you win. You make the change you want, you get the result you want.

So think about why you read my blog. You want something. You want to change something about your life. What is it?

Now ask yourself: what ritual do you have in place, right now, today, that is bringing you closer to the change you want?

(Hint: if you don’t have even one ritual, then you’re just jerking off. What are you going to do about it?)