When the ember rose up, it fell toward a small area behind a mini-bookcase in Sam’s living room. Sam, a friend of mine, had simply blown out a scented candle that his wife had left burning. Still, he was surprised when a bit of the candle wick (the ember) flew up.
Sam’s wife said, “The ember went out.”
Still concerned, Sam quickly grabbed the fire extinguisher that they stored in another room.
He remained in the living room (with the now extinguished candle) and repeatedly checked to see whether or not the little ember had found dust to ignite.
Fortunately, no errant spark nor fire was ignited.
This story inspired me to identify three following elements. When I speak on the topic “Get Real or Get Hurt: Get False Stuff Out of Your Way and Succeed,” I begin with a “myth.”
Myth: You can get by when you only seek ways to be comfortable.
A Way You Can Get Hurt: A small problem may grow bigger and smother the goodness in your life.
Get Real Principle: Keep vigilant. Ask yourself, “What reality do I need to face?”
Have you or someone near you said, “I knew I should have done something about that a while ago”?
That “something” is an ember that can start a raging fire—given time and fuel. Many problems just get bigger with the passage of time.
I was talking with my own coach and I voiced a question (since I’m an Executive Coach myself). My question was: “What reality do I need to face?”
At the time, I realized that I need two opposing methods to insure both my continued efforts AND to keep up my own morale.
For my own business, I needed to increase the number of marketing phone calls that I made in a day. Prior to this, I had shied away from holding myself to a “quota of calls.”
Then I came up with a process that I call “Both Ends Power.”
Picture a ruler. On the left end is marked “Quota” and on the right end is marked “Daily Journal of Victories and Blessings.”
During the day, you make efforts toward your quota—for example 10 marketing calls.
At the end of the day you write down your personal victory “completed 8 marketing phone calls.” The idea is to look upon the 8 calls as a Victory to note in your Daily Journal of Victories and Blessings.
Yes—I realize that one did not hit the ideal of 10 calls. Still, it’s helpful for celebrate the 8 phone calls completed.
We’re talking about a psychological truth backed by research: only punishing oneself does NOT ensure consistent, positive behavior.
Instead, we need to measure our behavior AND we need to pay attention to the “little wins.”
Now it’s your turn.
What can you measure? That’s part of “what reality do you need to face?”
How will you note your “little wins” or victories? Will you consider noting each victory in a Daily Journal of Victories and Blessings?
With clients and audiences, I emphasize this idea: “Better than zero.” If you are in the process of changing your behavior and placing new things into your routine, make sure that you pay attention to your incremental progress.
Research reveals that it takes at least 10 seconds of paying attention to a positive detail to get that detail into our long term memory. I advise writing in a Daily Journal of Victories and Blessings.
That’s a great way to end your day. And that’s the second part of the two sides of the metaphorical ruler—when we use the process of “Both Ends Power.”
The best to you.
P.S. For more inspiration, see my new book The Hidden Power of the AND-Universe: Abundance, Happiness, Prosperity – Along Your Spiritual Path. (Look inside the book when you CLICK HERE).
CEO (leading teams in United Kingdom, India and USA)