Why Going The Extra Mile Is EASY


Hey, how's it going? It’s Ollie here. So in today's episode of the eCommerce Freedom podcast, I want us to talk about something kind of to do with your attitude and your mindset and how this really creates the difference between people who get extraordinary results in whatever field they're focusing on, and people who really get underwhelming results and don't go very far - and it's the process of going the extra mile.


Now this is actually a very, very simple concept, really. And today we're going to talk about why going the extra mile is actually easier than doing the bare minimum or not going the extra mile, and why going the extra mile can actually make you more motivated.


Because quite often, we think that you need to be motivated in order to put in extra work and in order to do more work. But actually, funny thing is, it works out the other way around. In fact, motivation gets created by action, and this is what we're going to talk about today.


So - quick update on my situation. Obviously, as you probably know, I'm based in Sweden, and it's really crazy ‘cause right now there's no lockdown here in Sweden so a lot of people are able to just go out and just, you know, do whatever they want and just continue with their normal lives.


So it’s really bizarre because obviously I'm staying indoors ‘cause I think it's safer, right? I think it makes sense to self-isolate and just stay away from people just while this whole thing's going on. But if I wanted to, I could go out and sit in a bar or cafe and hang out there and a lot of people are doing that. But no, I'm choosing to self-isolate. And I think at the moment it's making me focus a lot more and it has eliminated a lot of distractions.


And although my hair is growing at an alarming rate, and I think by the time I am willing to go and get a haircut I mean the hairdresser is going to be shocked, you know? Other than that, life's pretty much just continuing as normal. I mean, I'm just extra focused on my business.


So while I've been indoors and while I've been self-isolating and just focusing on work, like I'm sure you are, if you're listening to this, I've had a lot of time to sort of think, really, and think about how to help you get better results.


So last week I did the episode on why some people succeed and fail, and we talked about what type of people in certain situations succeed and fail. And today is almost like a continuation from last week's episode.


Last week were talking about the six success indicators to know before you even start, whether you'll get results or not. And that is one of the most accurate podcasts I think I've ever made. It's so brutally honest and you might even listen to that and be like, okay, now's not the time for me to start a business. I know, that's fine. That's totally fine. But I'd recommend doing that if you haven't listened to last week's episode. Definitely go listen to that.


This week we're going to be continuing on from that and talking about what to do, you know, if you realize, yeah, now is the time for me to start a business. How am I going to maximize the chances of me getting results if I am likely to get results? And that's what we're going to be talking about today.


So, going the extra mile. We're going to start off today by talking about how most people in any field don't go the extra mile. Most people don't go the extra mile. Most people in most fields, doesn't really matter what it is - whether it's a job, whether it's at the gym, whether it's with your diet, whether it's with, I don’t know, doing a hobby, even like playing video games or  whatever it is - they don't go the extra mile.


In fact, most people do the bare minimum. If you go into a gym right now, I know they’re obviously all closed in the UK, but in Sweden, they're open. If I walked into a gym right now, I guarantee 80% of the people in that gym would be doing the bare minimum with their exercises. They show up to the gym, they do the stuff that they're supposed to do. But the aim, really - success to them is just getting it done to the specifications that they were told. Right?


So for example, let's say there's a workout plan that says you're supposed to go to the gym three times a week and you're supposed to - let's keep it simple - run for 30 minutes on each of those three times per week.


I think most people would carry out that plan maybe over a couple of months, right? And they probably would go to the gym three times a week, but I think most people would have weeks where they skipped one of those days because they get busy. Life gets in the way, right? Life gets in the way. And there would be one week throughout that three-month period where they miss one of those workouts.


Also, I think, you know, you might run for half an hour, but I think sometimes a lot of people who do the workout would get to say 26 minutes and be like, you know what, I'm really tired today, I'm going to call it quits at 26 minutes; I'm going to call it quits at 26 minutes and I'm going to leave it. And I think that's what most people do in most areas of life, especially when you're doing things like starting a business.


I think a lot of people do the bare minimum. If I say to a client, for example, do 15 minutes of product research every day - weekdays, for example. I think many people will do about 15 minutes on most days. Some days they'll skip the day altogether, and other days they might do, say, 10 minutes, or they might do 15 minutes. But if they're being honest, the work was kind of sloppy.


So what I'm saying is that most people do the bare minimum most of the time. And I'd like to ask you to ask yourself, do you do the bare minimum? Most of the time if I ask myself, the answer's yes. And in a lot of cases, right?


One of the things I'm doing right now, because I do have more time, I have less distractions, I'm trying to learn Swedish a bit better. I can speak basic Swedish, I can go to, like, a shop and I can interact with the person on the till and I can buy stuff and I can order things in Swedish. I can order coffee. You know, I can do very basic transactional things, but having a conversation, no, I can't do that. I can't string together like really complicated sentences.


I can pick out words. If someone says a sentence to me in Swedish, usually I kind of get the gist of what they're saying, but my grammar’s not that great. So I'm trying to brush up on it and over the weekend, you know, I prioritize other things. I prioritize relaxing.


I didn't really practice Swedish over the weekend. I did it every day on the week last week. But I kind of skipped the weekend. So, you know, I'm kind of doing the bare minimum when it comes to learning Swedish, really. And I think in a lot of areas of life that's what we do. We do the bare minimum. We do just enough.


So you can ask yourself, why do we do this? Why do human beings have a tendency to do the bare minimum most of the time? What is it that drives us to do this? Well, that's a big philosophical question and I don't know if I have the answer, but my theory is, it's down to survival. Our survival instincts.


I mean, our survival instincts pretty much have programmed us not to push the boat out, really. Not to go too deep into anything. In fact, if we were to follow our survival instincts 100%, we would have stayed in the cave where it's safe, where there's no monsters, no creatures out there to hurt us. And as long as we have enough food, sleep, water, et cetera, then that would be it.


We would just be eating, drinking water, and sleeping, maybe doing a few little creative things just to keep us entertained, but nothing really that pushes the boat. Nothing that really pushes us because we don't need to do that stuff in order to survive, right?


Nobody needs to go on stage and deliver a speech to a thousand people and do some public speaking in order to survive. Doing that goes against all of your survival instincts, right? That's why actually a lot of people are terrified of public speaking.


Well, if we go back to when we used to live in tribes, I mean, if you got rejected by your tribe, it would mean death, right? If you got kicked out of the tribe, now you wouldn't have access to consistent food, consistent water, safety in numbers… and the chances are, you'd even starve, catch some disease, or you'd get killed by another tribe because people were very scared of each other. Based on what we know, the tribes weren't exactly friendly.


So back in the day, rejection - any kind of rejection - would mean death. That's why now we're so terrified of doing things like speaking in front of people. Because back in the day, we would have died if we did a speech to the tribe and then they rejected us and didn't like us anymore, kicked us out of the tribe, we would die.


That's why we're so scared of that kind of thing nowadays. Even though really, what's the worst that can happen if you kind of mess up a speech, you'll just get a bit embarrassed.


It's not really the end of the world, but the point is we were not innately programmed to do these things to enable us to push ourselves. That's why we do the bare minimum.


The fact that somebody's on a treadmill at all, it's actually very commendable because you know, in terms of survival, you don't need to run on a treadmill to survive. Not really. You need to eat and drink water to survive, but you don't really need to run on a treadmill.


Even doing the bare minimum is a bit of a push for human beings. That's why I think everybody does the bare minimum. But today we're going to talk about how to not just do the bare minimum anymore. Like, how do you get away from doing the bare minimum and how do you consistently overachieve and consistently go the extra mile and do more work than you should, and why does this actually make it easier than doing the bare minimum?


So here's the thing about doing the bare minimum. Everyone does it all the time. Most people. There's a few, kind of, overachiever people - we're going to talk about how you can become one of them today. But most people don't. Most people do the bare minimum.


Here's the thing about it. Actually doing the bare minimum requires loads more effort and willpower versus going the extra mile. And this is the weird paradoxical thing about it. It does require a lot more emotional and physical energy. Why? Well, here's the thing. When you do the bare minimum, the activity that you're doing kind of feels like a chore.


So let's say, I say to you, go ahead and do 15 minutes of product research every day. If you do the bare minimum and you only do those 15 minutes and then, say, one out of every five days you do less, and then every two weeks you skip a day. It's going to feel like a chore. Why? Well, because I've told you to do the 15 minutes today and you're doing slightly less and it feels like you're just doing it because I've told you to.


It's kind of like when your parents used to tell you to clean your room and you do like, a half-ass job and you'd be like done. It feels like a chore because you're not the one in control of wanting to keep your room tidy. It's someone else saying, hey, go clean your room. And you're just doing it really to keep them happy. You're not doing it for your own purposes and for your own reasons.


So if you consistently have that attitude with different areas of your life, it can feel very bothersome and it can feel like everything you're doing is kind of like a chore – you’re just keeping other people happy because you're not really in control of the thing you do.


Let's flip it on its head. Let's say I said you spend 15 minutes every day doing product research. Say that was the task I gave you. Rather than doing the bare minimum, let's say you went the extra mile and you committed and you said to yourself, Ollie’s told me to do 15 minutes of product research every day, but I'm going to do 45 minutes every day. I would do an extra five minutes on Saturday and an extra five minutes on Sunday.


So you've gone over and beyond, you've gone the extra mile, and you've actually done more than I said you should do. Now who's in control of this process? Now who set the standard? And now who has told you to do this? It's not me that's nagging you to do that, right? To make me happy, right? It's you that's taken the initiative and you've set yourself a standard and now you're the one who wants to do that. All right?


The motivation behind actually getting this stuff done has come from a completely different place. Now it's not going to feel like a chore. Now you are doing it for you. And just by committing to overachieving and doing more than what is required, it kind of lightens the load ‘cause it feels like now you're the one in control and you can set the boundaries to do everything and now it's got nothing to do with me.


So here's the thing I want you to understand. Every single successful person out there on the planet goes the extra mile. This is just the way it is. Everyone who's got a really, really successful business, or who is an athlete or who is, maybe, a scientist, or in any other field where you know you can achieve great success - they go the extra mile.


Take Michael Phelps for example. I can't remember how many medals he's actually won in his life, but I think it's more medals than anybody else. I think Michael Phelps has actually beat some of the Greek Olympians - and some of their records were considered to be unbeatable.


If you look at the statistics on Michael Phelps’ career and everything and how he was just absolutely beating people who were even 10 years younger than him at the sport, you've got to ask yourself, what was he doing differently to everybody else?


Now, yes, you can say, okay, he's got freakish genetics. He's a swimmer. He's very, very tall. He's got giant feet, which are pretty much purpose built for swimming. And that definitely helps.


However, if you look at the way he trains, you'll see that without a shadow of a doubt, Michael Phelps truly went the extra mile in every conceivable sense. If you ever studied the way Michael Phelps trained, there was a five-year period where he trained every single day without fail.


Think about that for a second. Every single day for five years in a row. Could you imagine being that committed to something? Even the best athletes in the world train for five or six days in a row and then they'll have a rest day.


Even the best athletes in the world probably take a Christmas Day off, a New Year's day off. That's a normal thing to do. Michael Phelps, however, went the extra mile and rather than taking these days off and having rest days, he trained every single day. Some days he would train twice a day.


It really just goes to prove that going the extra mile is the only way if you want to be super successful, because anytime you want to be successful, it’s pretty obvious - you just look at the best in the world, see what they're doing and you copy it. Quite often if you fall into the trap of trying to do what the average person does in order to get successful, then you fall very, very, very short.


This is why I'm so against looking at forums. In fact, on Amazon, if you log into Amazon Seller Central, there's a little panel on the left hand side of the Amazon Seller Central panel, and every single day updates with new forum posts on there. And every single one of these posts that I've seen, I don't think I've ever seen one that has been positive.


They're always people bitching and complaining about how it is to sell on Amazon about how the sales are going slow, about how things aren't working out, about how they know everything about this policy, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. I very strongly say, get rid of that panel. You can close that panel and you never have to see any of that stuff.


Because those forums, they represent the average Amazon seller who just complains about everything. The average Amazon seller who's doing the bare minimum, the average Amazon seller whose business is falling apart. We want to stay away from that and move more towards the best entrepreneurs on the planet, and look at what they're doing because it's always going to be more powerful.


I might have sold on that, yes, going the extra mile is better and that it's worth doing, but does it seem like it's going to be quite a lot of work going the extra mile? Does it seem like you might not have what it takes to go the extra mile? I had a feeling that you might feel that way. Right? And it's understandable because you're thinking, well, do I have to be some kind of freak like Michael Phelps in order to actually go the extra mile and get more work done than everybody else?


I would say the answer's no. I say the answer's no. Here's the thing. Once you realize the unbelievable benefits of going the extra mile in what you do, I don't think there's any other option. Let's go through some of these benefits and we'll see if you agree.


First of all, if you could just put in a little bit extra effort, just a little bit extra effort, over time you will be shocked at how that little extra effort actually compounds over time.


So, for example, let's say the average Amazon seller works, I don't know, eight hours a day on the Amazon business over the year - they usually don't. A lot of Amazon sellers work two hours a day, three hours a day. Let's just take that example though. Eight hours a day into their business. If you just do one hour extra per week, one hour extra per week compared to all the other Amazon sellers, you get an extra 52 hours per year in additional work done compared to all the other Amazon sellers on the planet.


That means you get an extra entire week worth of work done every single year, and that's unbelievably powerful. You have such an edge because now your year is longer than everybody else on the planet just by doing one extra hour per week, which really isn't very difficult actually. By just doing a tiny little bit extra than everyone else, tiny little bit extra than what is recommended, the benefits over time are huge. But that's just the start of it.


Here's the real benefit of going the extra mile. The self-esteem boost you're going to get beats every other benefit. If you take it upon yourself to do more than you're meant to do, and you take it upon yourself to not do the bare minimum but do more than the bare minimum and go the extra mile, and put in more time than what's suggested, and really commit to overachieving, and you stick with it, something incredible happens.


I've done this so many times in different fields, different areas. For example, January this year, I committed to doing a video every single day for 30 days. Just felt like it would be good for me to practice delivering content, to put out loads of different videos on different topics. You can see all of them on the YouTube channel.


I did this. But I said to myself, I'm not just going to do a video everyday and then you know, Sunday I’ll feel a little bit tired so I'm just going to skip it or just record a slightly bad video one day. I want to go the extra mile. So I recorded a video everyday and about five of those days, during that 30 day period, I didn't do one video - I did two videos. So I went the extra mile.


What started to happen is my self-esteem in general, my level of confidence about my own abilities, started to skyrocket. And I realized that in other areas of the business and with other things that I was doing, my level of confidence just really started to grow because I knew that now I was capable of this kind of thing. Or I knew it anyway, but this was like a reminder, like a real reminder that you know, I really am capable of doing this stuff.


This self-esteem boost is going to give you that hidden magic that some super successful people seem to have - you know there's people, everything they touch to seems to work? This is how you get it - through having that self-esteem boost. Self-esteem breeds confidence, which makes you more effective even if you might not have the skills and abilities.


Confidence can really work wonders. And that in turn can make you want to accelerate things even more. Here's the thing from all this confidence, you're going to get extra motivation. So you're gonna get extra motivation by going the extra mile, you're going to get that extra self-esteem, and also you'll get that extra accumulated time and energy that you've put in compared to everyone else.


So this extra motivation starts to become addictive. Believe it or not, it starts to become addictive. And then what you'll find is you want to take it even further. So rather than doing an extra hour a week, you want to do an extra two hours a week. Because you're thinking, all right, well one hour extra week now is easy. It actually becomes easy because it's normal.


And so then you want to put in an extra two hours per week because this starts to feel really, really good. All right? That's where the super crazy results start to come in. That's when things start to go crazy. ‘Cause if you're trying to compete with yourself now, then that's when things start to go crazy.


Most people on the planet compete with each other. You see the average Amazon seller they’d be peering over their shoulder, looking at the person next to them, seeing how many sales they're doing, and trying to beat him. But what you'll be doing is you'll be trying to beat yourself.


This is like like Tiger Woods. When he was on top of his game winning championships, he decided to change his swing halfway through a championship, which is, I know nothing about golf, but I know that that's something you should just never do. If he was winning, if what he was doing was working, then why would he bother changing his swing halfway through a championship?


Well, because he wanted to beat himself. He knew that he could do better than what he was doing. This is why he was so unbelievably unbeatable. This is what makes that extra bit of difference when you see people who are absolutely crushing it.


And so by doing all this stuff - going the extra mile, getting that extra accumulated time, getting that self-esteem boost which makes you feel really good about yourself and gives you the confidence and gives you the motivation to step things up even more - this is what creates overachievers. This is how it starts. You start to become addicted to this lifestyle of overachieving and going the extra mile. All right? This is how it starts.


Before you know it, people are calling you a workaholic. And by the way, why do people use the term workaholic? Why is it so? It's almost like an insult nowadays if somebody works all the time. Why is that an insult? Well, I think it's because a lot of people are lazy and they're just projecting onto these people that work really hard. They want to do something to tear them down.


It's like, you know, if Michael Phelps was going to swim every single day, rather than going, wow, he's really, really doing something incredible, he's really proving what is possible, you know, and that makes me look at my life and think of what things can I improve… it's much easier for people to just go, oh, here's the mental dude who's going to the swimming pool again, who's always here, what a crazy workaholic, right?


It's easier just to tear people down than it is to look at yourself and go, well, yeah, maybe he's proof that I'm not really living up to my potential. So this is how you become an overachiever.


So what I wanted to do today was tell you a little bit about my philosophy on this stuff. This is how I've really been able to grow my businesses to really quite decent levels in a very short space of time. I think this is how I definitely.. how I got my first year up to 300K in revenue when a lot of people in their first year, they don't even make five grand.


I think it's because of all this stuff and this snowball effect of going the extra mile in every single sense and how it compounds and it just leads to just unbelievable results and you feel great about it and the work doesn't feel like a chore.


So what I want you to do is, I want you to not take my word for it that this is the truth. In fact, I want you to be very skeptical and think, you know what, Ollie, you might just be bullshitting. And what I'd like you to do is just try it. Just try going the extra mile for 30 days and just see how it feels.


Try it for 30 days. If 30 days sounds like too much right now, then try it for five days. Try it for this week. Just go the extra mile this week. And I guarantee if you do it right, whatever you're supposed to be doing this week, add a little bit onto it, and take it upon yourself to do more than what you were you were going to do. I guarantee if you do it and you stick to it and you commit to overachieving this week, you're not going to want to go back next week.


You've got to want to keep doing it because it feels incredibly good. And sometimes it takes a while for you to almost believe that it is a permanent thing and not just one of those phases that we like to fall into. Sometimes it can take a while, but try it for a short amount of time and see how it feels. I think there's a really good chance that you might never go back.


Alright, hope today's episode was helpful as always. If you want to have a chat about how to hit your goals by building an Amazon business, then go to ecommercefreedom.com. Click on Amazon Accelerator Call link at the top of the page. You can fill in a form, we can have a chat. And other than that, hope you have an incredible week and we'll speak very soon. Take care. Keep believing and I'll catch you in the next episode. 

Oliver Denyer About Ollie

Ollie is an ecommerce and lifestyle business enthusiast.
He's sold tens of thousands of products he's never had to touch, pack or ship himself.
A persistent disdain towards feeling like he's in a "job" has inspired him to create businesses that are FUN to run.
This means leveraging big companies to ship products, outsourcing laborious tasks to a team of VA's and running everything from a laptop.
He's passionate about sharing his knowledge with the world and helping people find more freedom through business.

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