I saw a great note on Facebook yesterday: Stop drifting. Start Rowing.
People who are rowing are on the road to success. That road may have bumps and switchbacks along the way, but if you keep moving forward you’ll get there.
If you feel like you’re drifting, you might be caught up in the web of the status quo. The status quo doesn’t have to be a bad thing. The status quo is comfortable; the status quo is safe; the status quo is predictable. If creating success isn’t a priority for you right now, it’s an OK place to sit.
Stay in that place for too long, though, and you start to stagnate and develop daily habits and business processes designed to keep you stuck right where you are. After awhile you’ll feel like you’re spinning your wheels working hard but not getting anywhere, and then you’ll begin to drift backwards.
Maintaining forward momentum and breaking free from the status quo, either in your professional or personal life, requires change – change not only in what you do, but more importantly change in how you think. Here are three ways you can begin to change the way you think to keep you moving forward on the road to success:
1. Set Big Goals…really, really BIG GOALS
Or as Brendon Burchard, NY Times bestselling author, says in his video blog post titled How NOT to Set Goals, stop setting SMART goals and start setting DUMB goals. I love Brendon’s work, and I hope this video will inspire you to not only reach and dream bigger, but also to design actions towards those bigger goals.
2. Think Strategically
As I said in my post Three Key Elements to Strategic Thinking, thinking strategically starts with having a clear definition of success and then using that vision as an anchor.
As you travel along, you’ll come to crossroads and obstacles that will require you to make decisions, compromises and trade offs. If you don’t have a crystal clear definition of what you’re aiming for – that anchor – you run the risk of making decisions that take you off course or cause you to not release something that doesn’t serve you anymore like an old habit, outdated process or energy vampire friend.
Thinking strategically is looking wide, seeing the big picture, understanding inter-relationships, connecting the dots and always knowing where you want to go.
3. Change Your Role and Elevate Yourself Up a Level
I speak with so many clients who are hesitant to delegate. They’ll work longer hours than any of their staff because they don’t share the workload. Reasons vary from not trusting that things will be done to their standards to not wanting to burden their staff with more work.
When you don’t delegate, you not only keep yourself stuck where you are, but you also deny others the opportunity to learn and grow. And who knows, someone else might find a better way to do things or produce a better result because they’re seeing with fresh eyes. Be an effective delegator and you not only create an environment where your team will thrive, but you’ll free up both your time and brainpower to think at a more strategic level.
In my last corporate job I retained the responsibility for making multiple regular executive presentations on our program. I didn’t want to burden my staff with preparing presentation decks that rehashed information they were already publishing, hours booked to attend meetings with varied agendas, and the de-motivation of being grilled or presenting to a distracted executive. After about a year they pointed out that I was denying them the opportunity to develop that skill. We made a change and everyone benefited. They got the exposure and the opportunity to learn and grow, and I got recognized for having such a great team.
Here’s an assignment for this week:
- Watch Brendon’s viedo and set a big DUMB personal or professional goal.
- Develop a really clear vision of what success will look like for that goal.
- Identify resources you can use to help make that vision a reality.
- Take the first action to start down the road to success.
I can’t wait to hear your success story.
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Pam Norton, Career Success Coach and founder of TransitionSpark Coaching, helps individuals and teams get more success and fulfillment from their careers by identifying and leveraging their strengths.