“I know that if I’m consistent in my habits and core activities, the resulting goals become more or less automatic. The key is consistency.” – Scott Ingram in today’s Tip 364
What works for you?
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Scott Ingram: You’re listening to the Daily Sales Tips podcast and I’m your host, Scott Ingram. According to Strava who has a TON of athlete data, including a lot of my own, January 19th is “Quitter’s Day.” That’s the day that the largest number of people break their New Year’s Resolutions. 19 days… Last I checked a year is 365 days long, then 2020 is actually 366 days long because this is a leap year. This reminds me a lot of some really bad races I’ve run. I started out way to fast and totally flamed out. The whole rest of the race ended up being one big struggle. Seems like the same thing is going on here, and I’ve certainly been guilty of this. Whether it’s been the start of a new year or starting a new role, I’ve busted out sprinting at an unsustainable pace. The solution to all of this is another racing strategy called the negative split. Wikipedia describes the negative split as a racing strategy that involves completing the second half of a race faster than the first half. It is defined by the intentional setting of a slower initial pace, followed by a gradual or sudden increase of speed towards the end of the race. The same article suggests that the advantages of this strategy are that it helps build discipline, subverting the natural instinct to begin running as fast as possible.
Progressively increasing speed in any race allows the runner to focus on passing each person running directly ahead. In every race that I’ve personally done well in, and felt good about, this is why it went well. I started out conservatively and was able to continually build speed and momentum throughout, and with any luck still had enough for a solid sprint at the finish.
So think about how this might apply to your year. I don’t remember if I’ve talked about this publicly or not, but most of what I do can be better described as habit setting rather than goal-setting. I know that if I’m consistent in my habits and core activities, the resulting goals become more or less automatic. The key is consistency. It’s pointless setting up activity goals that are only sustainable for a short period of time. Instead, I personally think it makes more sense to start at a pace that’s slower than what you know you can maintain. Then slowly, incrementally and methodically continue to build and build until you’re just a monster of execution.
I believe that is a far more sustainable strategy. That will keep you from giving up on your new personal strategy after just 19 days, and instead put you on a track to keep it going for 190 days and beyond, and not just keep it going, but continuing to build. Building your endurance, your stamina, your confidence, and if you do all of that. It’s almost impossible to achieve the results you desire.
Maybe you’ve already fallen off yourself. It happens to all of us. Don’t feel like you’re done for the year and give up. That’s nuts. January 1st is totally artificial. Look at your own planned actions and do a reset. Or maybe you’re still on track, but you know your on a collision course with burnout or another issue. Re-evaluate those goals and give some thought to potentially backing off a bit for now and giving yourself some room to grow.
There’s just something psychologically gratifying about achieving consistently and at ever-increasing rates. It builds a ton of confidence, which becomes a powerful positive feedback loop that keeps you going. Instead of putting yourself in a position where after just a couple of weeks you feel like a failure and feel like you’ve messed up yet again, which is a downward negative spiral that you definitely don’t want to associate with.
Anyway, that’s what works for me and what I have to constantly remind myself of. What works for you? I always love hearing from you. Feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn and send a note, or just email me at [email protected] or you can always comment on these tips and you’ll find this one at DailySales.Tips/364
Then be sure to come back tomorrow for another great sales tip!