Are you overwhelmed by thoughts of success? Do you hope for better for yourself and family? Have you made plans, but yet felt scattered and stretched?
I would be the first to answer yes, yes, and heck yes!!!
This summer I faced a cruel reality. Although it was the truth, I felt disappointment, defeated, and deflated. There I was... working on a million things and sharing my excitement and plans with a close friend. Interrupted mid-sentence, I was asked, "What have you finished?" I know it was 4 short, simple words, but they crushed my heart like a 2-ton Mack truck! I was stumped, perplexed, and honestly embarrassed. My brain raced from thought to thought, but I couldn't definitively spout out answers 1, 2, and 3. I was literally dumbfounded. After all of my hard work and time spent ripping and running, I didn't have a list of accomplishments for the first 8 months of the year to show for it! Absolutely nothing!
It wasn't that I was being lazy and not trying, but what I was doing didn't align to a VISION. I was doing good things that weren't mapped to my purpose. I said "yes" to be helpful and nice to others. Meanwhile, I was sinking my own ship with no regard or notice. Conversely, I rested well each night "thinking" I was making great strides toward success.
As a previous runner, I compared this scenario to running a race. While in the race, you're headed in 1 direction and you remain in 1 lane. You never turn around during the race and go in the opposite direction. You would never leave your lane until you've finished the race. So why was I doing those dreadful things in my professional life? Because I lacked VISION! Plain and simple. No sugar-coating. I had hurried to make plans and take action [which are great to do], but I never created an overarching vision to govern those plans or actions.
After picking my bottom lip off the floor, I repurposed the feelings of disappointment, defeat, and deflation into the following 6 musts to create VISION!
V - View broadly. Take 20 steps back and decide what you want for yourself. This is the high-level overview that keeps the lower-level detail aligned. Result: I rebranded myself!
I - Invest in you. Take time for independent research AND pay to learn from others that have already achieved success in the area you desire success. Result: I consumed valuable information from the internet/webinars and also participated in 2 (paid) online training programs!
S - Strategize your plan. It's not enough to know what you're going to do this week. Devise a plan that includes prioritization for the month, quarter, and year. Consciously decide what must wait until it fits within your available time AND your broad view. Result: I created specific goals for the month, quarter, and year!
I - Innovate your success. Stop, sit, think, and create. In that order. *smiling as I snap my finger* Allow your passion AND learning to engineer the product, service, or next step you should do to get to the next phase. Result: I finished my first book and launch my first online course!
O - Own your destiny. Don't wait for someone to tell you what's next, but chart your course. Truly believe in your heart AND align your actions to support your broad view. You must also accept AND resolve your areas of opportunity. Result: I've completed the goals I set for the 3rd and 4th quarters of 2015, and I've also improved in noted areas!
N - No, no, no. Practice saying no in the mirror so that it becomes easier to tell others "no" when you're asked to do something that doesn't ALIGN with your VISION. Result: I've shaved the excess! I'm running in 1 direction and in 1 lane!
Finish 2015 strong, and start 2016 with your VISION!
Have you created a vision? Are there other steps that guide you to success? I'd love to hear from you.
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