No matter what you do in life, doing it well IS the great reward. Whether this applies to your work or your health, your relationships or your personal goals, making a commitment to personal excellence in whatever you do virtually guarantees the foundation to a life of fulfillment, success and passion.
Been quite awhile since In Search of Excellence was important…right?
Does “excellence” even matter anymore…really?
As with most things in life, the results we experience tend to be in proportion with the quality and intensity of effort we put forth. If we don’t go for it, we experience minimal results. If we give our absolute best, we increase our chances of getting results (even if they aren’t what we initially intended). Sometimes the results are BETTER than we expected.
The Law of Diminishing Returns
PAUSE: Let’s get some quick clarity. For a long time I’ve talked about the Law of Diminishing Returns. And I want to do that once again before we move along…
You can cut your 1/2 acre lawn in about 90 minutes and do an “A-” job, getting 99% of the grass cut and miss a little under the steps of the deck or whatever.
Or you can cut your 1/2 acre lawn in 3 hours and do an A+ job, getting 100% of the grass cut and miss nothing.
Me, I’ll take the 99% in most things in life. I work hard for the 99%.
There are very few things which REQUIRE perfection.
But MOST THINGS require being awesome and awesome is not perfection.
People who require perfection of themselves or others are very likely to not succeed in most of their ventures. Perfection becomes procrastination in many cases. It becomes an excuse for accomplishment. It becomes a factor in delay.
In almost all fields, perfectionists are mediocre performers.
Sound like a paradox?
DO NOT CONFUSE PERFECTION WITH EXCELLENCE.
(I don’t need my airline pilot to land PERFECTLY, just PERFECTLY SAFE!!!)
When you are a Professional Speaker, you can’t be perfect because there is no rule book that tells you what “perfect” is. Does perfect mean you make EVERYONE laugh. (That’s not going to happen) Does perfect mean that EVERYONE likes you (that’s not going to happen)
No, but you MUST be awesome.
You have to be filled with energy so that you light up the bulbs in everyone’s minds. So you turn ON everyone’s thinking apparatus. You want to stimulate your audience for emotional impact and give them take-aways that they can use in real life. And balance it as well as is possible.
And there is ONLY EXCELLENCE as a pinnacle in performance. There is no perfection in speaking or writing…thank goodness….
If there was, there would be no creativity, no desire, no excitement, no love, no lust, no happiness…just perfection.
Believing You Are Capable of More
One common reason people don’t give their best effort is because they don’t believe they are capable of more. That you?
- Do you consistently avoid working any harder than you have to?
- Do you believe that massive success is only for the truly talented and lucky, so there’s no point in giving your best?
If you’re like the average person, you are probably capable of 100 times more than you have achieved so far. (really much more…)
Did you get that feeling in your gut that’s confirming that for you?
If you really don’t believe you are capable of more, then you are already working at your peak. Period.
But as Dr. Carolyn Dweck has found, people perform better when they believe they can perform better and when they believe they are in control of their performance.
Fact is, if you are willing to just CONSIDER that you’re capable of more, you are in the right mind-set to change everything.
First, take a moment to think about your accomplishments thus far, and be straight with yourself about the things you could have done better. Perhaps you shied away from increased responsibility at your job and got passed over for a promotion, or you gave up on making your dream a reality because it seemed too difficult.
In order to bring out your personal excellence, you need to first acknowledge that your present circumstances are typically due to the actions you’ve taken so far, and more importantly the QUALITY and INTENSITY of effort you’ve put forth.
Imagine you’re in a shopping mall, standing before one of those maps that state, “You are here.” If you know where you are, you can easily map out a route to get somewhere else.
It’s important not to JUDGE yourself guilty for your lack of accomplishment to this date. Feeling disappointed about yourself CAN cause you to move more decisively and take measured and focused action. But for many it accomplishes nothing.
The point is to gain a clear understanding of where you are, and figure out where you want to go. Acknowledge that you did the best you could with the resources you had, but now you are ready to do better and BE more.
Excellence is not so much about WHAT you do, but how you do it. The more time you spend doing things that really matter to you, the more naturally you will bring out your inner excellence.
- What is important to you?
- What do you live for?
- What have you always wanted to do?
Answering these questions will start you on an amazing journey of self-discovery and growth.
Once you know the activities that make your heart sing, the point is then to do them often, and do them WELL. Master them like you’ve never mastered anything before. Throw yourself into them and become consumed by them.
When you do something you feel extremely passionate about, you automatically give the best of your self to the task.
When we are passionate about what we do, we end up enjoying ourselves to the fullest possible extent. And we also lend that much more power to the end result. Half-hearted effort leads to lukewarm results, but focused, passionate action brings forth powerful results.
When It Just Has to Be Done
As important as it is to follow your passions, we all have things that simply must be done. We’ve got jobs, family responsibilities, mundane chores, and all types of obligations.
It’s easy to slip into a mind-set of drudgery and do these things with half butt effort, and much of the time people do just that. But what would happen if people began giving them our full effort and attention?
First, you’d find your self feeling more proud of yourself and frankly… about these unpleasant tasks. Rather than feeling annoyed or weary about them, you’d feel good about them. Sounds odd, but it’s right. I hate mechanical work but I go for it when I can avoid cessation of my life. And…the accomplishment often feels quite good…
Then, you’d start focusing more on the BENEFITS created by the work you do, rather than the work itself.
Then…you would gain a sense of personal mastery over just about everything you do. From errands to interpersonal relationships, each activity would feel like its own reward. The results gained from these activities would simply be a nice bonus – better organization, greater fulfillment, deeper relationships, and more powerful results from projects.
In general, personal excellence creates a sense of inner pride about who we are and what we do. It makes us feel more confident, happier, and focused.
Committment to Excellence
Here’s the deal…
The important thing is to COMMIT to excellence with whatever you do. Don’t clean out the garage because you “have to”. Clean out the garage as if it were the most important thing you were doing that day. Clean it out as if a neat garage was of utmost importance in the grand scheme of things. Clean it out as if you would rather be doing nothing else in the world.
Why? What does your attitude matter when cleaning out the garage? If you approach any task with a sense of boredom or grudging obligation, a few things will happen.
- First, you won’t enjoy the process at all. Your mind will be focusing only on “getting it done” and you won’t be giving your full attention to what you’re doing. Consequently, you end up missing out on the enjoyment of the process. WORSE: You will be teaching your brain to become familiar with not going for it in things you don’t like to do. Predisaster 101.
- Second, since you didn’t pay full attention to what you were doing, your results will be less than stellar. The garage might look “okay” and you might be fine with that. But wouldn’t “good” be better than “okay”? The garage doesn’t need to be surgical perfect…it needs to be really good….
- Finally, with a ho-hum attitude, you will also miss out on that great sense of accomplishment and satisfaction that comes from a job you do right.
Perhaps you think it doesn’t matter, that doing a job for its own sake is fine and dandy. Sometimes that might be true. However, if you want to experience greater fulfillment in your life, it makes sense that you’d want to enjoy the things you do, AND experience better results from them.
KEYPOINT: The only way to do that is to COMMIT fully to everything you do. Focus your full attention to it and allow yourself to be immersed in the process. Give it your absolute best and watch how it dramatically enhances the result!
Program Your Brain For Success
The Three Disciplines
by Kevin Hogan, Psy.D.
Discipline: “training, activity or regimen that develops or improves a skill”.
- Personal Mastery: Programming Your Mind for The Distinction of Achievement and Success (2 CDs)
- Charisma: Increasing your Personal Magnetism and Leadership Abilities (2 CDs)
- Self-Discipline: Wiring the Core Skill of Achievement Permanently into Your Mind with Self Hypnosis.(2CDs)
There are many levels of excellence in life. Personal Mastery is a discipline that is developed over time and with experience; and with the help of the skill of Self-Discipline. The two work together to bring you to a level of excellence. Charisma and personal magnetism allow you to interact with others at a level of excellence and influential elegance that makes you the “go-to” person, the expert, the one in demand. For the first time, the Three Disciplines are offered as a package. 2 high quality digital audio CDs are dedicated to each area, for a total of 6 CDs plus a complete manual to accompany you on your journey:
Personal Mastery: It’s the single trait they all look for. It’s the characteristic women say they most want in a man. It’s the difference between being the best and being everyone else. It’s the trait corporate head hunter’s look for first and most.
Personal Mastery is what differentiates the individual who is truly focused and in charge of their life vs. the person who is pulled and pushed by life’s tides.
Everyone gravitates to the person with self-mastery because they exude certainty and success. They have a plan, a next step and they seamlessly execute their plan. They have the flexibility to change anything in life at any moment. They are the envy of everyone else. They are the go-to person. The person with self-mastery is the person who encompasses the phrase, “personal initiative.” Most importantly, they get results because they make things happen day in and day out.
You feel secure and safe around the person with self-mastery…and now that person can consistently be you or the person you are coaching.
The ability to recognize your strengths and weaknesses is a key characteristic of someone who possesses Personal Mastery. I have identified two broad categories, and 12 key components to Personal Mastery. These will be revealed in this program.