The Mindset You Need to Make 2017 a Success
Legs shaking, body tense and fighting through the pain; it’s an incredibly satisfying feeling to push yourself to your limit. In fact, it’s rare that people explore the edges of their capabilities. When was the last time you found your breaking point and celebrated it?
Each week at school, my daughter’s 7th-grade fitness class had a different challenge to test their endurance. One week, the twenty boys and girls in her class had to stand against a wall and hold a squat for as long as possible.
60 seconds – 5 kids dropped.
2 minutes – 7 more, done.
3 minutes – 4 gave up.
5 minutes – 2 bit the dust
7 minutes – One boy, one girl. Everyone gathered around.
7 minutes and 15 seconds – One remained, my daughter.
8 minutes and 38 seconds – My daughter sat down and celebrated her effort.
When she told me about her result, I asked her why she kept going when everyone else was done?
She said that at first, she wanted to be the winner and get the highest score.
Then when she was the best, why did she keep on going?
It was a no-brainer for her. She wanted to do her personal best and see how far she could push herself.
Mindset matters. Set a low bar or a high one – up to you.
As leaders, parents and small business owners we’re often obsessed with one-upping the competition and ignore the inner game completely.
- You consistently found your edges and pushed yourself to expand.
- You made a commitment to your personal best instead of just enough to beat anyone else.
- You competed against yourself and with each challenge you improved.
I’m not saying that you should ignore the competition or pretend that they don’t exist, but you should think twice about where you’re putting your focus and your energy.
Essentially, here’s the choice:
You can beat the competition or you can rock your world, create, challenge, imagine, hustle, and push yourself to swim in the uncharted waters and leave the competition behind. (By the way, if you’re interested in making the competition irrelevant, make sure that Blue Ocean Strategy is on your reading list.)
You can beat the competition by inches or miles – your choice.
The Mindset You Need to Make 2017 a Success
It’s your personal best that matters more than keeping an eye on the competition. Feel your heart beating, your legs shaking, your brain telling you that it’s okay to stop and keep going anyway.
The comfort zone is important for rest and recovery, but the only person who can explore the edges of what’s possible and blow them away is you.
Make 2017 the year you be and do your personal best no matter the competition is doing. Leave behind the days of doing just enough and see how far you can go.
Nobody ever changed the world by doing the minimum.
If you don’t know what your personal best looks like or it’s been a long time since you’ve flexed those muscles, now is the time. Put your back against the wall and discover what you can do.
If you want a loving push, let’s talk.
What mindset do you have now and what are you committed to in 2017?
I Have A Brand And It Haunts Me
I was talking to my pal “Jonas” who recently decided to freelance (vs building a multi-consultant business) when he left a bigger firm to do his own thing.
Jonas is a global talent guy who works across the planet for some of the world’s most well known companies. He decided his best play—the one that would allow him to focus on what he loves most and live the life he’s planned—is to freelance for other firms.
His plan got off to a bit of a rocky start because—get this—none of the firms he approached believed he’d actually want to “just” freelance. He’d earned his rep by steadily building deep, brand name client relationships, practices and business, not by going off by himself as a solo.
Or as he put it “I have a brand and it haunts me.”
We both had a good belly laugh because he was already rolling in new projects, thrilled with his choice to freelance.
And yet, isn’t that the truth?
Good, bad, indifferent—our brands DO haunt us.
They whisper messages to those in our circle “trust him, he’s the bomb”, “hire her for anything creative as long as your deadline isn’t critical”, “steer clear—he talks a good game but doesn’t deliver”.
And thanks to social media, those messages—good and bad—can accelerate faster than you can imagine. One client, one reader, one buyer can be the pivot point that takes your consulting business to new territory.
So how do you deal with it?
Yep—you go for more of what comes naturally. In Jonas’ case, he stuck with what he’s known for—his work, his relationships, his track record for integrity—and won over any lingering skepticism about his move.
We weather the bumps in the road by staying true to who we are at our core.
So when a potential client says “Sorry, you’re just too expensive for me”, you don’t run out and change your prices. Instead, you listen carefully and realize they aren’t the right fit for your particular brand of expertise and service.
When a social media troll chooses you to lash out at, you ignore them and stay with your true audience—your sweet-spot clients and buyers.
And when your most challenging client tells you it’s time to change your business model to serve them better, you listen closely (there may be some learning here) and—if it doesn’t suit your strengths—you kiss them good-bye.
If your brand isn’t haunting you, is it really much of a brand?
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