You ever have something either good or bad just all of a sudden occurs right out of the blue? All of a sudden, out of nowhere, the phone rings and it’s a person at a large organization who is going to take retirement and he wants to talk to you and so do ten of his friends.
It might seem like these events happen at random and out of the blue. However, there is no out of the blue. There is only the tipping point which is the point at which your ongoing choices create a result.
You Are What You Repeatedly Do! Aristotle said that!
You are the sum of your choices. The problem is that it’s just as easy to make a bad choice today, to chase immediate gratification, then it is to make a more positive choice. You can make a bad choice today and you will be fine tomorrow.
You can over eat today and tomorrow you won’t be extra heavy. You can put off making your prospecting calls today and tomorrow you won’t have a financial catastrophe. You can skip your workout today and tomorrow you’ll be just fine.
However, the law of accumulation states that these choices will accumulate and at some point in time something significant will happen. If the sum of your previous choices is positive then you have seeded the blue and at some point in time in the future something very positive will happen. It will have the appearance that it came out of nowhere but it came from the long-term effect of your positive choices.
There is no “Out of the Blue!” There is only seeding the blue, either positive or negative.
Take a look at your lifestyle and routine. Is your lifestyle an asset or a liability? What you can control you must control. You can control your lifestyle. You can control what time you go to bed, the type of foods that you eat, whether you exercise or not. You can control your preparation. You can control your marketing and making sure that you execute the basics of what you know you need to do to be successful in this business.
Many top performers make sure that they are precisely planned by Sunday evening for the next seven days. That’s what I’d like to see you do. Take the time necessary on Sunday to go over your calendar from Monday to Sunday. Plan what activities you will accomplish and when you will execute them. Be as precise as you can.
Next you need a platform for making commitments and having accountability. I’d suggest that you make a seven day behavioral contract. What are your specific commitments for the next seven days? What are the consequences if you don’t take the promised actions? How will those consequences be enforced?
If you do this for your health, business and personal life you will get more done then if you don’t have this type of planning.
The basic motivational force operating in all of our lives is that we are genetically wired to avoid pain and to seek comfort.
We are wired to avoid the highest level of perceived pain. You are competing with your genetic coding to avoid activities that you have linked to pain. That includes just about everything that you need to do to reach your goals from diet and exercise to prospecting.
The natural wired in process is to avoid (a cortical limbic loop) and then justify the avoidance with rationalization. This is an unconscious process. The conscious application of this is the perception that we are just too busy. It is this same process for everyone. All of us.
Without an intervention we will continue to be at the mercy of our neurological patterns of pain avoidance and the psychological dimension of rationalization. This means we will continue to be in reference to our obstacles, priorities, circumstances, and simply just believe that the truth is we were just too busy to do what we wanted to do.
I make a point to say that we can’t trust our own interpretation of our circumstances. Take a look at the square illusion below. Here it is:
Is A the same shade as square B?
Doesn’t it look like square A is darker than Square B? Wouldn’t you put money on how certain you are that it is a darker shade? Don’t do it. You will lose that bet! It’s an illusion. If you cut out square B and slide it up above square A you will see it seem to change colors as you move it. This is not a magic trick. It is due to the changing references between the darker shaded squares.
This is an example that you can not trust your own limited senses. You can not trust your interpretation of what is going on around you. Most people are in reference to their obstacles, priorities, interruptions, circumstances and they come to the conclusion that they are just too busy to take all of the actions that they wanted to take. Don’t trust that interpretation!
There needs to be a change in your reference point. That change is accomplished through behavioral contracting. By making a specific commitment with a specific consequence for non performance you are now shifting your reference point from your obstacles and limitations to the opportunities to take the actions that you are being held accountable to accomplish.
Here is what happens when she reads this. Immediately there is an electrical circuit that will fire in her cortex that will travel down the axon to the limbic system of the brain. This simultaneously sends an action potential to the hippocampus, the area of the brain that forms memories. An electrical current also happens in an area of the brain called the reticular activating system which directly influences what you pay attention to.
Too much science? Who cares? Ok, let me simplify. Because Julie made this commitment she will see the opportunity to workout 5 times. If she wasn’t being held accountable to this specific task it is likely she might have been too busy to actually workout 5 times but will get to it next week.
She is now tapping into human natures’ natural avoidance mechanism, avoiding the highest level of perceived pain, the $100 to all of you. She can avoid that liability by “doing what she said she would do”.
Start small when using behavioral contracting. Come up with just one item, one action that you are capable of accomplishing but most likely would not do over the next seven days. Then place a consequence on non performance with another person to enforce. Now the magic begins.
It’s the small changes that make a significant difference. The average baseball player hits 250, which is 3 hits every 12 time at bat, and makes about one million dollars a season. The super star hits 333. This is significantly higher but how did the super star get there. He had one more hit every 12 times at bat. The average salary for the superstar is 24 million. Is the super star significantly better than the average? No, the super star is a little bit better. One small difference leads to such a significant result.
Rather than dismiss behavioral contracting, why not make one small commitment this week with a bit of a consequence for non performance. Watch what happens. Then again next week, one more small commitment. Now the law of accumulative effect takes hold and you are doing what referred to as “seeding the blue”. Before you know it, something significant happens to you right out of the blue. It’s not out of the blue. It’s the sum of the small choices you made on a weekly basis.
I’m here for you. I host a free telephone conference coaching call every month. You are invited to sit in. It’s usually the first Tuesday of the month and that jumps around because of my speaking schedule. It’s always at 4:00 pm Pacific Time and for one hour.
Remember; control what you can control, use behavioral contracting, embrace accountability and precise preparation for success!