Vigilance, but like, more than that.

I’m engaging in some false advertising with this brand. It’s not really about staying vigilant. I mean, staying vigilant is part of it, but it goes beyond that. The real philosophy behind Stay Vigilant is about goals, and not just keeping a watchful eye on them, but acting on them. You have to be ready to act on what your instincts tell you is coming or what you’re going towards.

In my world there are sheep goals and there are wolf goals. Sheep goals aren’t being paid attention to. They’re passive. They’re out in a field, chewing grass with the herd, getting led around by a sheep dog. That doggo is such a good doggo but he’s not working in the best interests of your sheep goals. His objective is to just to keep your sheep goals moving around in circles all day, every day, and then get em all back to the pen at night. They’re going nowhere quickly and eventually they’ll be attacked and killed by others’ wolf goals.

Wolf goals, on the other hand, are the persuers. They’re active. Wolf goals have their eye on their objectives and they figure out how to bite into them and acheive them. If enough thought and strategy has been invested in each wolf goal, then they can been attacked one-by-one. You can adapt your strategies to changing circumstances while your eye is always on the prize.

You always want to be the wolf in any situation. You always need to be ready to pounce on your goals when the time is right. Some wolf goals are nearby your den, and don’t require many steps to achieve, while other wolf goals require a trek across valleys, rivers, and mountains and substatial planning is needed if you want to have any chance of catching them. The great part is, when you break any goal down into enough steps and substeps, the path toward that goal gets clearer and clearer.

In the coming months I’ll continue to lay out the details my methodology so that you can be the wolf of your goals.

Always Be Learning

When most people think about being vigilant, it’s related to external dangers. The wolf hiding in the bushes.

The truth is, in order to protect yourself in the world, you need to prepare yourself and preparation in the first world doesn’t require a sharp spear, it requires a sharp mind, a mind always learning and adapting to what’s going on around it.

On that note, The Mission has a great post on the importance of ongoing learning by way of reading.

5-Hour Rule: If you’re not spending 5 hours per week learning, you’re being irresponsible:

People at the bottom of the economic ladder are being squeezed more and compensated less, while those at the top have more opportunities and are paid more than ever before. The irony is that the problem isn’t a lack of jobs. Rather, it’s a lack of people with the right skills and knowledge to fill the jobs.

An Atlantic article captures the paradox: “Employers across industries and regions have complained for years about a lack of skilled workers, and their complaints are borne out in U.S. employment data. In July [2015], the number of job postings reached its highest level ever, at 5.8 million, and the unemployment rate was comfortably below the post-World War II average. But, at the same time, over 17 million Americans are either unemployed, not working but interested in finding work, or doing part-time work but aspiring to full-time work.”

Last year I set a goal on Goodreads to read 24 books. I read 26 books. This year I upped my goal to 32 books and so far I’m 4 books ahead of schedule at 24 books read.

Know the Ledge.