Written by
Arkadiusz Kumpin

Arkadiusz Kumpin

Why training, wise books and podcasts are a waste of time, unless …

Judging by the number of articles that I see around me with titles like ‘10 habits that lead you to a great success’, and titles of books on the bestseller lists, the topic of how to improve your life is still relevant. I myself started fighting for the so-called self-development a few years ago. It all started innocently…

Two books by Chris Lowney: ‘Heroic Living’ (PL, ENG) and ‘Heroic Leadership’ (PL, ENG) had a great impact on me. With every page, I knew that if I only applied in my life, what the author writes about, I could change the world. With time, other virtual mentors started appearing, like Stephen Covey, Tony Robins, Tim Ferris, Lewis Howes and some others. Books, articles, podcasts. The amount of knowledge I consumed would surprise the teachers, who still remember me.

Reading ‘Seven Habits of Highly Effective People’ , I realized that I am wasting my time …

It took me several years until finally, reading ‘Seven Habits of Highly Effective People’ (I know it is a classic book, but it came to me quite late), I realized that I am wasting my time. Precisely. And it’s not that I don’t appreciate this book. On the contrary, I believe it has the potential to change human lives. There is only one simple ‘but’. In the middle of the book, I realized that two or three weeks after I finish it, most of the issues raised there will disappear from my mind. And the ones, which will stay, will not transform my life. In the best case, it will allow me to carry out a casual conversation about the book, during a meeting with my friends.

Today, I have a theory, which I’m trying to test in my life: ‘life is simple’. You do not need 150 books and 200 podcasts. Instead of reading and listening about changes, you need to introduce them in your life.

This is (in my humble opinion) a real and only key to success.

I know it sounds trivial, but I have a feeling that I’m not the only person, who got stuck with multitude of excellent knowledge, but omitted effective implementation of this knowledge in your life. This is the reason why I believe that books, courses, articles, and podcasts are a waste of time, unless you have worked out a system to make changes in your life. This is (in my humble opinion) a real and only key to success.

I am really touched by the title of the book by Marshall Goldsmith ‘What Got You Here Won’t Get You There’ (ENG).  The book itself is addressed to managers and applies to changes in a slightly different context, but this one sentence perfectly captures my approach to life. If you expect different results (changes in your work, in your relationship, in relations with your family …) you need to change yourself. This means that the knowledge you acquired must be used.

The change requires a proven system and a lot of work.

Unfortunately, a change of an adult person’s behaviour is not easy (as opposed to reading and being continuously in the world of dreams). The change requires a proven system and a lot of work. These concepts are not trendy nowadays. Today, the world is trying to convince us that everything should be available on the spot. Today’s world perfectly harmonizes with our subconscious desire to receive immediate gratification, instead of a much larger prize in a distant time.

However, I decided to keep trying.

My system has been created.

My system has been created. It is based on the guidelines of the 16th century saint, production management system, Marshall Goldsmith’s tips (amazing coach) and some minor tips from experts in various fields. It is also a reflection of who I think that I am and how I think that my mind is working.

Does it brings effects? Yes. Is it already finished? No (I need to make small modifications all the time). Will I describe it? Soon. Will it work for you? I don’t know, but I know that you need to try it to answer this question yourself.

What is it about?

I hope you already know what I want to tell you. Knowledge that is not implemented in your life is like knowing the left and right tributaries of the Vistula River (unless it happens that it is useful in your life). At the same time, without a good plan and, above all, good tools, it is very hard to change something in your life. I will be happy to share my experience, tools and conclusions with you. Perhaps they help you, or perhaps will guide you to what will work for you. In spite of everything, I wish you good luck, because it is not as easy as it seems.

This article (and article describing my System) was originally published on Medium
If you like this article, please visit me on my blog


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2 thoughts in Comments

  1. Peter Brookes-Smith

    I couldn’t agree more!

    I’ve known people in my life who voraciously consume many books on management and self improvement but fail to progress significantly in either. Sometimes I see them in the mirror!

    I’ve found that self development is definitely a hard thing and it’s easy to forget the lessons we’ve learned.

    Good luck with your new system and I look forward to hearing more about it.

    1. Arkadiusz Kumpin Post author

      Thank you Peter.

      In this case, I believe, that you should share this article with your friends and keep your eye on this blog since there will be continuation with details of system that ‘works for me’ (and was designed around XVIth century)


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