Honestly, it’s all about systems


Happy Easter everyone! I’m writing this as I’m sitting on my friend Estefy’s couch, each one working on her craft. Moments like this make me feel kind of adult-ish.

I wanted to discuss the topic of systems but didn’t know if I should wait until my blog grew a bit so I could get more street credit before giving advice. Modesty aside, one thing I like about myself is that I’m a person that achieves everything that I set my mind to. Well, maybe not everything, but a lot. Ok, more like a 60%-40% ratio, which still is pretty cool.

And even though the process of achieving things can be VERY stressful for me (SHOCKING), I feel like there’s something I do that works for me every time: I create and maintain systems.

I broke down the process for you guys, and in general, it goes like this:


1. Think about the end goal

Start by thinking about what you want at the end of the tunnel. Be very specific about it. Don’t diminish what you want just because it looks too daunting, or because you don’t have the skill-set to get it YET.

2. Reverse-engineer your goal

Once you know your end goal, simply identify the steps needed to get there. With Living Grit, for example, I knew that I wanted to launch a blog, a creative outlet that would foster a community. I started doing heavy research on what successful blogs had in common, what things they did every day to get there (like engaging in social media, taking blog pictures, etc.), and created a plan from there. One thing I knew I had (and still have) to improve for sure was my photography skills.

3. Now just put together the system

Think of it like an everyday checklist. Things you just have to do to get to where you want to be. Make sure to include a moment to reevaluate and recalculate, but don’t get obsessed with changing your direction every single day. Don’t obsess over stats, your daily bank activity, or a school quiz you failed. Trust yourself, trust your gut. I promise you made the right choice.

4. Be like a horse; put your blinders on

Do you know those things that people put on horses’ heads so they don’t get distracted and derailed? Well, buy yourself an imaginary set of blinders and focus on your thing, on your end goal.

When you are working towards something, especially when it’s a long-term thing, it’s super easy to get caught up in daily distractions or problems. Also, understand that it’s normal to have bumps on the road and that there are parts of the journey that you’re not going to like.

That’s when your little blinders come in handy. They help you stay focused, to understand that at times you are going to have to say “no” in order to achieve a bigger goal, and that also you’re probably going to miss other experiences and have to work extra hard.

5. Rinse and repeat

Be consistent, you are the only one that knows exactly where you’re going, so don’t let your fear of failure or someone else’s perspective about what you should be doing derail you. Nobody is a $100 bill to be loved by everyone, so even if you have to face rejection, slow growth, or whatever it is, continue.

As my friend Victor Manuelle would say: “it’s not about speed, but resistance”.

Well, I hope this was a little bit helpful to some of you that may be feeling stuck or just don’t know where to start. I’m off to Easter Mass, and even if you’re not Catholic, I hope you feel inspired for new beginnings!