Holy Crap Batman! This is cause for celebration …
… I’m sitting here writing the 100th edition of Sunday Post. Can you believe it? One hundred weeks of blood, sweat, and tears to bring you a new business building, sales exploding morsel of inspiration.
Is it a pain in the ass coming up with something new to say each week? For YOU, no way! We wouldn’t miss it for the world.
Now let’s get down to biz.
This week I’ve been struggling to keep my head on straight …
It’s part of the human condition to look around you and be influenced in ways that are often counterproductive. We’re sympathetic creatures. We naturally model the world around us.
And if the world around you is full of stinkin’ thinkin’, it can rub off. Sometimes you get ground down and your attitude suffers. It happens to all of us. Optimizing your attitude takes discipline and constant vigilance.
No matter how successful you are, unless you’re constantly struggling and pushing yourself for more, you’re sliding. It’s a law of life. And therefore, attitude management NEVER ceases to be an issue.
Every day I struggle to keep my head on straight. And you should too, because there’s no standing still in this world. You’re either moving forward or falling back.
Beware of the backsliders …
… You know I make it a point to read as much of the casual correspondence that comes into my office as I possibly can. I look at it as free market research. And I can tell (just from reading) which direction the person writing is likely to be headed. How do I know?
Successful people — and those destined for more success — by their words (and actions), demonstrate their willingness to take responsibility for their destiny.
They know they can’t control what happens to them. But they know they CAN control their reaction to what happens to them. It is a challenge sometimes to stay 100% constructive in that reaction, but they are vigilant. And the more vigilant they are, the more successful they become.
My research tells me, however, that there is an alarming number of people who refuse to accept this rather obvious truth.
I call them backsliders. Here’s how they think …
“It’s not my fault. Everything is a scam. It won’t work for me because ______, and _______, and ________. It’s up to you to prove it to me by letting me try it for free.”
So what happens?
Smart marketers create sales copy that taps into this core complex. They write sales letters that demonstrate how easy it is to accomplish something … tell people it’s not their fault they’ve been previously frustrated … how everyone else out there is trying to scam them … and to sign up for a 30-day free trial.
And the backsliders buy! Doing so is emotionally gratifying to them. It’s a quick, easy way to feel they’re actually doing something to better themselves.
But when the information product they’ve bought fails to sprout arms, legs and a mind of its own — AND DO THE WORK FOR THEM — they feel they’ve been scammed!
They cast blame on the person who was trying to help them. And the whole process inevitably repeats itself, again and again and again.
Successful people are buyers too. But they take responsibility for their own success. They realize there’s no magical creature that’s going to fly down out of the sky and do the thinking and the working and the struggling for them.
They realize it’s up to them to synthesize and apply information from hundreds, maybe even thousands of different sources into a unique system that works for them.
Walk into the office of such a person or peruse their hard drive, and you can’t help but recognize their kind. Books, binders, CDs everywhere … file folders organized with reams of information … and still more file folders with notes and detailed, written plans of ACTION!
They’re readers. They’re writers. And they’re doers. But most of all, they know how to keep their head on straight. This doesn’t just happen. It’s a discipline.
A few ideas I’ve found helpful …
Head on Straight Discipline #1, The 5am Club – I first heard this phrase from TJ Rohleder. And the idea behind the 5am Club, at least as TJ describes it, is to take some time, maybe an hour or so each morning, to reflect dispassionately on your business.
Now it doesn’t have to be 5am. It can be at any time. The important thing is it’s a time of day when a) you’re not likely to be bothered, and b) you’ve just risen from sleep. For many people, that just happens to be 5am.
For me, the 5am Club is my sacred time to reflect on my business assets and devise ways to make the most of them. It’s very easy to overlook the untapped value that exists within your business when you’re busy running your business.
You can’t see the forest for the trees. And so you miss countless ways to increase sales and profits that are sitting right under your nose. You fail to appreciate and fully utilize your business assets.
This quiet time each morning allows me to renew my gratitude for what I have and devise new ways of putting it to the highest and best use. That spirit of gratitude and appreciation sets a pattern for the rest of the day and helps me to see the many problems that are sure to arise as opportunities rather than obstacles.
Head-on-Straight Discipline #2, Listen To Your Self-Talk – This is easier said than done. Obviously, a great deal of our internal dialogue is subconscious, below our level of awareness. And that’s exactly why it’s critical to be mindful of it.
That’s why I take a few moments each day to just stop and reflect on what I’ve been saying to myself in the heat of battle.
If you’ve ever tried this, then you know that a few of the things you hear are somewhat less than empowering. This is natural, especially if you’re challenging yourself to new heights of achievement and stepping out of your comfort zone.
Confront that little voice in your head when you catch it whispering limiting beliefs in your ear. When you hear them, anchor them to positive affirmations that empower you, and repeat those affirmations whenever you have a quiet moment.
Your subconscious mind simply acts on input. If you allow garbage in unchallenged, your subconscious mind will program your behavior to be consistent with that garbage. The same is true of positive inputs. What the mind conceives, the mind achieves.
Head-on-Straight Discipline #3, Have Written Goals, Review Daily – Having written goals gives you a barometer for all of the activities you engage in throughout the workday. You can ask yourself “Is this thing I’m doing right now taking me toward my goals or away from them?”
Each morning at 5am Club, you can take stock of your progress, decide what needs to be done to stay on course, and revise your game plan.
I like to break goals into long-term, short-term, and daily. Long and short-term goals feed long and short-term plans, and daily goals make to-do lists.
Being a copywriter, I want to prime my subconscious mind to solve creative problems while I sleep. So I make my to-do lists just before going to bed. And then I write as soon as I get up.
Each morning I roll out of bed and immediately write feverishly for an hour or so, then I do the 5am Club thing and try to remain watchful of my self-talk a few times throughout the day.
I find these disciplines keep my mind sharp and my attitude keen. Perhaps you will too.
Until next time, Good Selling!