Imagine a huge leap forward in your life and new experiences of happiness and success. I’ll now share “the Door to true improvements in your life.” We’ll use the R.E.A.L. process:
R – reflect
E – embrace
A – act
L – listen
What’s not working in your life? Focus on this question: “What truth must I face?” Take a couple of moments right now with a sheet of paper and note some difficulties This is about “the truth must you face.” The idea is to focus on “what I would prefer to be different.”
I use the word “prefer” with care. Some things are a process. I may prefer that everything happen quickly (right now!) with my graphic novels Jack AngelSword (which will become a series of feature films or a TV series). But it takes time, effort and revisions to make something on a high level of excellence.
I describe this question What truth must I face? as “the Door to true improvements in your life.” Why? Because your answers, subsequent plan and improved actions can get you what you really want. As an Executive Coach, I help clients achieve what they really want. At points in our sessions, I ask powerful questions including:
- What truth must you face?
- What are you not telling me?
- What are you not telling yourself?
Often, as I support my client in expressing his or her truth, the client makes a breakthrough. My coaching involves “insight-intuition-action.” Here’s something important: Many of us fail to face the truth and therefore fail to understand what is really necessary to make improvements. For example, a new business owner needs to face details that arise from questions like “How many marketing calls do you make each day? How many hours per week are you actively seeking new business? How many hours a week are you directly talking with someone who can buy your product or service? Do you need to rehearse (with your coach) answering tough questions of prospective buyers so you really become a better presenter?”
The truth is: When you want massive improvement, measure your current actions. Such measurements need to meaningful and simple. Examples include: 17 phone marketing calls a week, 30 minutes a day connecting with people through Linkedin, and 15 minutes a day sending out emails that build relationships and handwritten thank-you cards. Monitor your current activities, and set targets to improve your daily actions.
Keep a Progress Log and you’ll get more done. My phrase is: Keep Score and Achieve More.
For example, it once took me a daily 30-minute session for 14 days in a row to type up material (and rewrite it as I went along) from a 2-CD set I had recorded. This effort plus some more work culminated in my book Darkest Secrets of Making a Pitch to the Film and Television Industry: How You Can Get a Studio Executive, Producer, Name Actor or Private Investor to Say “Yes” to Your Project (Free Chapter when you CLICK HERE )
When you reflect and make yourself aware of something that you want to change, settle in to working on it a bit – everyday.
Embrace yourself as a human being with some tendencies you don’t like. For example, I simply would prefer to write a new book than to do some marketing tasks. I love “making things.” And still, I embrace my foibles and hire contractors to do some things. I also use a day planner to track my marketing efforts and appointments. I do what is necessary.
Consider getting someone who is better at some task (perhaps, a tax preparer) than you are to do the task. For example, I have a friend who hired a gardener for $35.00 per month to keep the green areas around his home presentable. This was a good idea because my friend could devote his attention to other areas where his skills and talents were better used.
Act. Don’t wait to “feel like it.” I make a distinction between “want to do” and “feel like it.” For example, I often want to complete writing a book–but I may not feel like it. As a professional writer, I have the discipline to sit down and write, regardless of how I’m feeling. I do not wait for inspiration. Inspiration happens while I’m writing.
Once you get a message about what truth you must face, you need to do something unusual: Listen. I’m not saying agree immediately. This is about being coachable. If you won’t let any new information in, you cannot improve the situation.
It’s amazing sometimes how many friends and family members have advice for us. But here’s the truth: You have the answer you need. Start by asking the empowering questions:
1. What truth must I face?
2. How can I make incremental progress?
3. How can I clear something from my life and create breathing room for myself?
Then answer yourself. Listen to the truth that arises from your heart. Bring your answers to your calendar, PDA, or day planner: Schedule your tasks.
As an Executive Coach, I support my client in facing the truth. Also, I deeply reflect on important elements of business or personal development that the client can use to make a big leap forward. Often I’ve said to clients, “I’m working on your business while you’re sleeping.” I’ll get inspired and write down ideas/strategies/action plans for my client at midnight or even 4 AM in the morning–whenever inspiration arises. As I read 81 books a year, I’m writing down notes of how my clients can improve their lives and business. Then I bring up ideas during a coaching session, and we check in to see which ideas resonate with the client’s heartfelt focus and intuition. I help my client find his or her “Big Energy.” Then the client takes consistent action.
Real improvement begins with facing the truth, which is a crucial step for real success and fulfillment.