At Southwestern Consulting I have the complete honor and joy of working with some of the most amazing and talented Top Producers in the sales industry! I recently asked one of my business partners Nate Zinn to share the following post on my blog…
When working day and night to hit sales quotas, living pieces of their lives through pictures designed to be reminders of the people they care for most. Often feelings of guilt replace any happy memories that once may have been present. To continue to work on and justify it to yourself, your family, your boss and your customers that this is your Month…
I am going to land that client.
I am going to breakthrough to that bonus.
I am going to earn the incentive trip.
I am going to get it going again.
These statements that seems all too familiar to those around you. With so many things pulling on your time and energy, how is it possible to stay in the moment? To be present when not working and find ways to be healthy and unwind? What about finding time for family and friends.
If you can’t sit for a moment without thinking of an email you should get to, or a report you need to finish. What kind of life is that? Where do you find time for having those conversations with yourself and stop pretending that everything is going to be fine, it’s under control or just going through a busy time of the year. If you’re successful in business, won’t you always be busy? On the other hand, what if you’re failing to meet deadlines, or quotas. When you haven’t sold anything in days, weeks or months. When you simply can’t get yourself going when your family needs you most.
Statements as to why things aren’t going right become familiar, “it’s the Competition, our prices are too high, our Company is so behind the curve, we just can’t compete anymore!” Other thoughts race through your mind like the Daytona 500, “Why should I even waste my time calling them back, they’re not going to want to place an order, they aren’t really my type of customer, I need to find someone who is a better fit!” Although, each and every one of these statements could be true, isn’t having a successful life about how your ability to get yourself going and stay going? Finding out what pushes you forward to live your life, the life you were created to live, a life where you’re willing to endure and embrace your situation.
This isn’t about balance. What then? There are a lot of words and phrases that get thrown around in the business world that sound flashy, make us feel good, but find a way to go in one ear and out the other.
Doing what you say you’re going to do, because you said you would, is a pretty simple definition of Integrity. When we look at commitments we make, or promises to get to it when we get a minute, what are we really saying? What excuses do we come up with when we don’t follow through? Why does this matter anyway? What if our ability to be trusted with much, was based on what we do with the seemingly insignificant? Hmmm, sounds good but what does any of that have to do with selling stuff?
Empty promises can build up and cause tremendous strain and stress on everyone involved. Yeah, thanks for the reminder! Creating on the job pressure by promising to hit quotas, monthly goals, telling your customers that you will be there for them 24/7 and somehow not listening to their voicemails when things don’t go smoothly. Sound familiar?
Building Integrity is finding a way to work through those mental dark-sides, and come out on the other side, engaged and striving, loving life and enjoying the time you have with your family and friends. Creating successful relationships with coworkers and building trust within yourself that you are a person of integrity. You are willing to follow through and do the things that you say you are going to do, simply because you said you were doing to do it. The faster we can accept this truth the easier life becomes and the better we feel about ourselves and our world. Waiting for the right time or opportunity doesn’t get you anything and rarely results in success.
Can we admit that peace and self-confidence comes from harmony inside your own heart and mind? There needs to be congruence with what is outwardly projected and inwardly felt. Being willing to take a hard look at where you’re at and that current state is step #1 accepting your situation and what you can control is the simplest, yet hardest thing you can do. Being willing to let go of anything that is out of your control, including people around you will liberate you and is a huge step towards feeling great about who you are and what you do. We all find that it’s not going to be the easy road that leads to Success and happiness. It’s going to be the one littered with failures, frustrations, heartaches, disappointments and everything in-between.
By changing our approach to what we are willing to do to become happy and successful in our each individualized ways we can start to accept that fact that our own journey is waiting for us. It becomes a choice, not a chance that we end up finding the breakthroughs along the way.
When looking at this idea of Integrity, it’s interesting to think that the only one that really knows what you are feeling/doing is yourself, and God. It’s hard for most of us to admit that we are not perfect, and we are not really living up to our potential. It’s easy to find a comfortable groove and stick to it.
Habit/routine take over after a couple of months/years and we do what we do mostly without realizing it. This is one of the greatest secrets of all. Looking at our lives we can think through our routines and predict what will happen based on our habits and it’s safe to say they don’t always have our best interest at heart. Just what we have done over and over again. Take smoking for example… I can admit to never smoking a cigarette in my life, but people that have dealt with smoking know how hard it can be to quit and when you finally start to kick the habit you still have a craving to put things in your mouth.
Habit? So my point is by looking at our habits, rituals, routine whatever you call it, we can then assess the activities we are doing on a daily basis and begin to ask ourselves, is that activity helping me or hurting me? This is may sound overly simplified but that is the point, changing our lives isn’t easy, but it doesn’t have to be complicated. If there is one habit that isn’t congruent with how you want to see yourself, or others to see, or know about then that is a good one to start with.
We all have skeletons in the closets. Many of us holding on to activities for years for no real good reason other than they have become habit. 6 o’clock news, or hitting snooze before getting out of bed, to buying Coke or Pepsi. Habits that stem from childhood, others from college dorm life, and people that spend the most time with. We can look at ourselves ask, why am I doing that unproductive activity. We know from psychology that we do what we do because of what happens to us when we do it. Again, maybe overly simplified but helps to look at each activity and ask why, and when did I start doing it that way. By going through this assessment process we can start to identify the habits that are helping us or hurting us.
The point of creating new habits in our lives is not just for the sake of doing something different, it’s really about aligning ourselves with who we really are and what we value most in our lives. Everything starts with looking at what we are doing on a daily basis and asking, “why am I doing that?”, “what would happen if I stopped, or started doing more of that particular activity?” Whatever it maybe, it’s important to accept the fact that changes won’t be easy. It’s a matter of determination and will power at first, but the good news is the more times we engage in that new activity the easier it becomes.