Changing Habits for Explosive Growth
The first two components are needed to establish a desire for change. Nothing happens without a strong desire. Different results require different actions. Learning isn’t easy. Plus, just because you’ve learned the steps it doesn’t mean your proficient. It might take lots of practice and feedback to become proficient. Change is difficult. Time, energy, money, effort and more are necessary often necessary to accomplish change.
Coaching clients must be highly motivated. If not they probably won’t be clients for long. As much as they desire things to be different, it’s still not easy. It’s hard work to step out of a comfort zone. It’s oh so easy to slide back into the familiar. In a golf analogy, it’s very difficult to shoot under par but it’s all so easy to give it all back with one bad shot. This happens is all types of scenarios. Work hard for the date or the appointment and then say the wrong thing and its back to square one.
The new results must be worth the sacrifice it takes to change and it really is a sacrifice. You must be willing to give something up, or do less of something, in order to start doing something new. Therefore whatever the something new, it better be worth more than the traded item plus the effort and money it takes to learn the new behavior.
If you’re ready for change follow these simple (not to be confused with easy) straightforward steps:
· Identify the desired results (The Goal).
· Determine your starting point (Baseline).
· Identify your options.
· Build an action plan to get from the starting point to the desired results. (Nothing happens until something moves ~Albert Einstein).
Building a plan might not be all that all difficult. Plans can be purchased. If you want to lose weight eat fewer calories. Change what and how much youeat… Right, the plan is easy. Give up chocolate for tomatoes. I can do that. Can I? Execution is where the rubber meets the road. Learning new habits and skills are not always so easy. Time and thinking are required to build the plan and resources like books, workshops, internet, consultants and coaches can help us with our thinking. How many have had a good idea and a good plan yet failed to implement? Planning does not require behavioral change. Planning is only thinking about change. Actual change is different. Behavioral change requires a much larger, ongoing investment. In addition, we make mistakes when we learn something new. Mistakes are feedback. We must learn from our mistakes. Trial and error is the oldest learning tool in history. Course correct the plan based on the measured results, trust me on this… plans will need updates. Building a process for plan and schedule management is a piece of the change management process.
Why is changing so darn difficult? Habits! We are creatures of habit. We act, look, work and think in ways that generate results. Results that at some point we wanted. The sum total of our actions creates the results we receive today. Many habits are unconscious. Our minds and bodies develop routines that simplify everyday life. Different results however, require different actions. If we employ different results we’ll lose some of our previous results and it might take time to gain the skills and proficiency to achieve the new results. We might need a short term sacrifice for future gains.
A golf coach might suggest a swing adjustment that will eventually allow you to control or manage the ball flight more effectively and improve your scores. Your mind and body however, are geared to the old patterns. The new ideas and concepts will take practice before they become unconscious. In the beginning you will likely experience a negative impact to scoring. You will be sacrificing your previous scoring results in your efforts to practice the new. Your old swing will not retire easily. It will be a slow transition 90% old swing 10% new swing, 80/20, 70/30 Etc, until it swings the other way and you are close to 100% new swing all the time. The scoring challenge occurs when parts of both swings show up in the same swing. We’ll see some odd results. In any case our scores will likely go up before they go down during the implementation process. In the long run they will be lower than the previous low.
You’re a busy professional or business owner. Working hard and putting in lots of hours are not an issue. Your days are filled with activities that are needed to maintain or generate current results. How can you do something different, particularly something that takes time to implement and not sacrifice current results? The golden planning rule is to allocate time for learning and growth in each day or weeks activity. Just as clean-up time is allotted in wood shop, learning and growth is a critical function in the daily schedule of our activities. It’s not just the learning piece it’s also practice. Practice is where the growth occurs. Practice is the time needed to become proficient. Failure to allocate a learning and growth time slot into our standard day results in a much larger investment when change is required.
Imagine that you spend your day earning $800. All of your time each day is spent earning $800. Now imagine that you have, as many others have, elected to commit that $800 to other activities. Any reduction in the $800 is a direct impact on the other activities for which you have allocated the money. Every waking moment then is spent earning the $800 of which you have committed.. There isn’t enough time in the day, except to do exactly what you have been doing every other day to earn $800. In addition the $800 is committed. There is no capital to do anything other than what is already committed. Any change in actions will impact results in an unpleasant consequence. The result is a scarcity mindset. The scarcity mindset is a psychological malady that has been proven to produce a reduction in IQ. Our ability to think and process becomes significantly affected.
How then can we adjust or move away from this debilitating model? Start with the goal. Invest a small amount of time asking “How can I” questions. We might start by asking the question “How can I earn $800 in less time? If I could earn $800 in less time I could spend the extra time learning how to make $1000. Time is the bane and boon of our existence. Time is the great equalizer. Some may have more money but no one has more time. How you allocate your time is the single most important activity in achieving your goals. The first step then is to allocate some time to the thinking process. If every minute is accounted for in earning our $800 and we elect to invest time in another fashion our results will be different. This is the heart of the investment. A decision is made to sacrifice current results for future gain. Revenues drop below the baseline of $800. The good news is that it may only be a short term sacrifice. Once we have identified the solution to earning $1000 each day we can bring it back. This length of time is the time horizon to break even.
Under this scenario, time being the most valuable commodity, it is in our best interest to identify the least time consuming investment necessary to achieving our goal. Often though, this comes at a financial price. The least consuming financial price is the most consuming personal price. Do it yourself takes longer. It is however, very possible. Thousands of others have managed to get it done. We have the internet and libraries to thank for the greatest content explosion the world has ever seen. It’s all out there for the taking. You can learn anything. In a do it yourself (DIY) scenario, you are responsible for finding and implementing the right thing in the right order. It’s possible! There are of course faster opportunities at a cost. You can elect to make a greater sacrifice to learn faster. Increase the initial investment. Achieve the gains faster. We could evaluate the additional investment, identify the break-even point and forecast out the gains over a period of time. A faster gain equals a higher rate of return.
Let’s assume that it will take you one hour per day for six months to create build and learn a new revenue system. The weekly investment is $500 at a rate of $100/Hr., $2000/month and $12,000 after 6 months. Increasing the hourly rate from $100 - $110 results in $80 more per day, $320/week, $1,280 per month. Remember though that it is $1280 more per month forever. A little more than nine months after the six month learning curve you will have recovered your initial investment of $12,000. Breakeven in this scenario is 15 months. At the end of year two you would be ahead $11,520. Additional years increase the number by $15,360/yr. Your five year return on investment is $57,600 for a whopping 5 year ROI of 480% on your original $12,000 investment. Now that’s explosive. Where else could you possibly get that type of return? Contrast this investment with the Stock market at 12% per year and it’s easy to see that investing in yourself and your team has a much greater opportunity for explosive growth. Now imagine that you could accomplish the same goal in less time with an extra investment. Now think, would it be worth it to spend $100 more per week to accomplish the goal in half the time? We could run the analysis and compare options.
ROI is the motivator. ROI describes accurately the level of effort and the return expected. This short simple example identifies why professional development is so valuable. You get to keep it for the rest of your life. How then can you identify the easiest, best, fastest, opportunities for improvement? Give us a call. We’ll help you work through the options and the call is free.
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