A Path to Excellence
Tony Jeton Selimi
Balboa Press – The Division of Hay House, 2022
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For a generation searching for growth, success, and self-discovery, ‘A Path to Excellence’ is a valuable guide taking the reader on a transformative journey to unlock their highest potential. This book provides a comprehensive personal and professional development roadmap, challenging convention and inspiring innovation. The author draws from his wealth of experience and compounds it with universal principles and inspiring anecdotes. Each chapter delves deep into understanding one’s strengths and weaknesses, setting clear goals, cultivating resilience, and relentlessly pursuing excellence. This book is a must-read for anyone searching for strategies to elevate their performance, productivity, and overall satisfaction in life. It makes a compelling and scientific case for pursuing growth, excellence, and success at home and work.
Tony J. Selimi is a globally known award-winning and #1 internationally best-selling author of several books, motivational speaker, transformational life coach, and business growth strategist specialising in human behaviour and maximising human potential. He works virtually and in-person with clients all over the globe, facilitating the realisation and accomplishment of personal, relationship, professional, financial, leadership, and business goals and creating life-changing breakthroughs and growth and accelerating people’s journey to greater levels of fulfilment, wealth, and success. Many awards and accolades have recognized Tony’s work, including the Quilly®, The EXPY®, NYC, Book Excellence, Reader’s Favorite, and the Literary Titan Golden Book Award. He has been featured in major media outlets, including Thrive Global, The Huffington Post, and Psychologies. He has been a guest on numerous TV, radio, and podcast interviews, including BBC, SKY, ABC, NBC, CBS, and FOX, reaching over 100 million people worldwide. You can find more information about Tony here. For bookings and interview requests, please email email@example.com.
From the moment you were born, your destiny awaits you; it’s yours for the taking. The opportunity for it exists as long as you do, and the only thing that can stop you from achieving it is yourself. Achieving excellence is something often sought as unattainable, sometimes even impractical. Often, we are so bogged down by our consistent habits and routines that they become the norm for our day-to-day lives. Doing something “out of the ordinary” becomes nothing short of a test. In doing so, we confine ourselves and restrict our full potential without even getting anywhere close to it.
Many of us, either conditioned by society or otherwise, believe that our lives correspond to these actions: get an education, get a job, work for 2/3rd of your life, and that’s it. Yet, time and time again, there have been many individuals who have broken this norm and reached greatness; true pioneers of their respective fields – starting from where you did. What if I told you, “You were destined for excellence.” Reading this right now in the initial stages of this book might sound rather far-fetched, but I assure you, when you finish reading this book, remember to revisit this very segment to remind yourself that, “Yes! I AM destined for excellence, and I CAN achieve it.”
This feeling is something you will cultivate throughout the course of this book. It will be something you will take with you on your journey in life. This innate desire is present in all of us, but life bogs us down. Be it work, school, personal life, or otherwise, we all have multiple responsibilities to cater to. In the process of doing so, we lose sight of this innate greatness and diverge from this path. It goes without saying, nearly all of you reading this (even me, several decades ago) simply gave up on this journey because we:
Were told we couldn’t.
Did not know what we truly want.
Felt powerless, stupid, and unworthy.
Feared and didn’t believe we could.
Had no ways of knowing how to do it.
Couldn’t dedicate ourselves to it.
Kept making excuses.
Did not have a clear plan.
Now, after over 30 years of studying, bridging together science, psychology, technology, universal laws, engineering, and assisting thousands of clients, I have deduced the perfect blueprint to reaching your greatest potential and an eight-step method to guide you on your path to excellence. Let us commence our journey and dive straight into just why you are destined for excellence.
Achieving The Impossible Becomes Possible When You Have a Big Why
An often-forgotten facet of life is whenever we consider any successful individual; we put them on this “pedestal.” We assume that since they’ve achieved global recognition and accolades, they are a step beyond us. However, this is far from the truth. Nearly all of the notable, successful entities in the world that have contributed significantly to humanity as a whole arose from relatively humble beginnings. Many of those individuals have changed the world’s very shape and nature as we know it today.
If the Wright brothers weren’t as tenacious and resilient when it came to their first aircraft, we might have never taken to the skies. In fact, the very aircraft control system they devised for their airplane over a century ago is still used in aircraft today (modified to meet modern-day demands, but the same fundamental idea still persists). Two brothers who didn’t even have a proper high school diploma set the foundation of modern-day aviation! Imagine that!
Similarly, if it weren’t for Bill Gates, a college dropout, to develop the operating system (that is now used by over a billion people worldwide) solely based on a big why and a goal he set, I would probably be using a typewriter to write this book! Be it the Wright Brothers, Nicola Tesla, Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill, Nelson Mandela, Bill Gates, Oprah Winfrey, Barack Obama, Usain Bolt, Elon Musk, or any other person who has changed the world in their way, did so because they all had one thing in common: They lived by certain principles, had clear-cut goals driven by a big why and aspirations which they had planned to the dot.
Being raised in “average” circumstances does not restrict you from achieving the “above average.” I am living proof that anything you set your mind to is achievable. As a child, I was subjected to sexual abuse. As a teenager, I was being bullied and forced to fight in a civil war I despised. And, as an adult, I faced homelessness, discrimination, and inequalities that crippled my being. Little I knew back then that every adversity I faced would help me clarify why I do what I do.
Today, my why is to use all I have learned to change positively, impact, and transform the lives of one billion people. I’ve used the very same principles of personal excellence you are about to learn to align my actions, behaviors, and plans with my big why. It is why I travel globally to coach and assist countless entrepreneurs, business owners, and celebrities in creating personal, professional, and business breakthroughs. And what I realized is that most of them achieved their success because they did five things:
They somehow managed to turn their pain into a purposeful vision that inspires them.
They envisioned their success and worked day and night to achieve it.
They worked by a set of values and principles aligned with their astronomical vision driven by a big why.
They had established systematic plans to achieve their success.
They invested in working consistently with a coach who would clarify their vision, next steps and keep them accountable and focused.
Truth be told, many of you are not prepared for life’s greatest adversity or be equipped with the knowledge from an early age how pain can be a brilliant catalyst for excellence. If you don’t have an end in mind, how on earth will you know you arrived where you want to be? Suppose you are not living in harmony with a set of personal excellence principles that can get you to your desired destiny. In that case, you will remain stuck in paradigms designed to keep you imprisoned in the illusion created by you or other people’s expectations of you.
A lack of planning for anything creates havoc and discord in one’s life. You don’t plan a vacation without “some” sort of plan; why would you not do the same for your life? Not knowing how to overcome challenges that cause us pain, lack of planning, not seeking help, or simply losing hope and giving up are the five fundamental causes of failure.
Don’t be fooled. Challenges do not end, nor do they get easier. However, you can get stronger, smarter, and soulful to face them head-on. You can utilize the challenges you face as stepping-stones to achieve greatness. Planning, using a set of principles for personal excellence, and facing adversities are going to be something you’re going to look forward to!
The Comfort Zone “Quicksand”
To achieve greatness is to venture into uncharted avenues of life – the terra incognita. Throughout history, those who have made a significant difference for society’s betterment have done so by completely altering and reshaping the existing conceptions that prevailed at the given time.
As such, for many people, escaping the “comfort zone” deems to be the most challenging hurdle to overcome. Responsibilities bind most people, and they simply cannot take the risk to venture out of their comfort zone. They believe that trying out or even considering new avenues could result in something detrimental. What people often fail to recognize are the endless possibilities that lie right outside the comfort zone!
It’s best to jot down whatever restraints you have when it comes to leaving your comfort zone. Much like the heading suggests, it is quite like quicksand. The more you convolute yourself in self-doubt and continuously question yourself, the deeper you will “sink.” Coincidentally, just like quicksand, the most effective way to “break free” is to one, streamlined method to “pull yourself out.” To break free of your comfort zone is to create a huge why that will make you get comfortable with discomfort. The further you venture from the safety nets you have put up, the more you will discover. Ultimately, things that you would once consider “out of your comfort zone” would become a fundamental part of it! In this pursuit for excellence, you need to remember the journey begins from the very first step you take outside of your comfort zone.
Why This Book
Once you’ve read this far, you must be wondering what exactly you plan to gain from this book. With this book, I plan to not only encapsulate my decades of teachings into an easy-to-follow method, but it will be a “one-stop guide” with a set of principles to any troubles you are currently facing concerning your life.
It goes without saying just how stagnant everyday life has become due to the COVID-19 global pandemic. A majority of the world’s population has had enough, some have lost their jobs, and others are struggling to make ends meet. For many of them, their years of hard work have seemingly come to a halt. In these trying times, I wish to utilize my knowledge and use this book as a means to spread hope, knowledge accrued, and inspiration – that even despite all odds, there are still ways you can put yourself onto the path leading towards excellence.
This book is relevant for anyone who picks it up. If you’re a student looking for a job, currently employed, entrepreneur, or even a CEO, continuous improvement is at the forefront in the road to excellence, and this is what I aim to teach everyone. It is never too late to make amends, nor is it ever too late to grow from where you already stand. Don’t think of this as a miracle “cure-all” drug! I will simply provide you with the necessary tools, a set of personal excellence principles to face your challenges and fears and tackle them accordingly. By using a blend of scientific and spiritual teachings, you will get the best of both worlds! You know what they say, “Give a man a fish, and he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish, and he eats for a lifetime.”
In the next chapter, you will learn why it takes guts to climb greater heights and move forward on your specific path to excellence. Remember, the only thing that differentiates you from any one of the aforementioned successful entities is the willingness to do the work it takes to make a difference and commit to excellence. By the time you complete this book, you will have already set foot in the forefront of change – eliminating barriers created by what society mirrors at you or by yourself.
By using a set of personal excellence principles that we can upgrade our mind’s operating system, change our response to stimuli and find the perfect equilibrium. That we can evolve our mindset, alter our behaviors, and balance our perceptions.
On my continuous and ever-evolving personal excellence journey, I realized that things that matter the most must never be at the mercy of the things that matter the least. And, to climb greater heights, we need to have a set of principles of personal excellence by which we can determine, examine, and modify our actions, behaviors, focus, and thoughts. It is why I synthesized years of learning into The Octagon of Excellence® method you will be learning more about in the follow-up chapters, so you have a center point. It consists of eight powerful principles of personal excellence that, when used regularly, can help you build a resilient mental framework and an easy-to-follow step-by-step plan to face any adversity life throws at you as you climb greater heights. Each principle will guide you to meet any challenge head-on, adapt, behave and act in ways that are best suited for the path of excellence you envision for your life.
The energy, the language, the meaning, and the power of each of the principles of personal excellence will become the foundation of any individual, professional, financial, or business transformation you seek and help you successfully deliver any task at hand.
Unleashing the true power of The Octagon of Excellence®’s principles requires you to acknowledge the importance you play in the bigger scheme of life. The kind of thoughts you think and the type of language you use influence the kind of role the interconnectedness of all life plays in the experiences you create in life.
What you will learn from this book will become your “bread and butter.” This will be a book you’re going to read more than once and would probably have multiple bookmarks throughout!
It Takes Guts to Climb Greater Heights
Life is nothing short of a culmination of challenges. You have been faced with challenges from the moment you were born. Yes, even as a baby, you faced challenges that you overcame, from learning how to talk, crawl and walk. One might go as far as thinking that challenges are simply something only us humans face – the truth is far from it. For the gazelles in the Serengeti, their challenge is learning how to walk within minutes of being born. Their challenge is to gain enough nutrients suspended in the water from the ocean currents for the sea’s microscopic plankton. Whatever the case may be, challenges are a natural part of life for every living creature on our planet.
Most of us are fortunate enough not to worry about survival per se. We are born with a roof over our heads, food to eat, access to education, and so on. Yet, there are still a considerable number of humans who lack even these basic necessities. Before we discuss the concept of challenges and how to face them, remember that the definition of a challenge varies from person to person. For some people, learning how to drive might be a challenge. For others, it’s routine. However, this does not take away from the fact that it is a challenge in itself for them.
Without even realizing it, we are faced with challenges every day; a test in school, an important work project, resolving disputes between friends or family – the list is endless. Yet, most of us prefer to adopt avoidance when it comes to these challenges; study for the test later, reassign the project, even ignore the dispute till things fizzle out. We are all guilty of this. Accepting where we falter is the first step to understanding the importance of challenges.