What would happen if you never tolerated inaction in yourself? Think about that for a moment, what would happen if you never tolerated inaction in yourself?
From the book, Atomic Habits, there is a common mistake that often happens to too many of us. The mistake has to do with the difference between being in motion and taking action. They sound similar, but they’re not the same.
When you’re in motion, you’re planning and strategizing and learning. Those are all good things, but they don’t produce a result. Action, on the other hand, is the type of behavior that will deliver an outcome.
Here’s a couple of practical examples:
- If I outline 20 ideas for articles I want to write, that’s motion. If I actually write and publish an article, that’s action.
- If I email 10 new leads for my business and start conversations with them, that’s motion. When I actually set an appointment that’s action.
- If I search for a better diet plan and read a few books on the topic, that’s motion. If I actually eat a healthy meal, that’s action.
Sometimes motion is useful, yet it will never produce an outcome by itself. It doesn’t matter how many times you go talk to the personal trainer, that motion will never get you in shape. Only the action of working out will get the result you’re looking to achieve.
If motion doesn’t lead to results, why do we do it?
Sometimes we do it because we actually need to plan or learn more. But more often than not, we do it because motion allows us to feel like we’re making progress without running the risk of failure. Most of us are experts at avoiding criticism. It doesn’t feel good to fail or to be judged publicly, so we tend to avoid situations where that might happen. And that’s the biggest reason why you slip into motion rather than taking action: you want to delay failure.
It’s easy to be in motion and convince yourself that you’re still making progress. You think, “I’ve got conversations going with four potential clients right now. This is good. We’re moving in the right direction.” Motion makes you feel like you’re getting things done. But really, you’re just preparing to get something done. When preparation becomes a form of procrastination, you need to change something. You don’t want to merely be planning. You want to be practicing.
Some ideas to get out of motion and into action:
- Work expands to the time you give it: Set a specific time for each task.
- Set a schedule for your actions: Basic time blocking.
- Pick a date to shift you from motion to action: set hard deadlines.
- Ignore, switch your feelings: “I don’t feel like it” to “Let’s get this done!”
For some goals, setting a daily or weekly schedule doesn’t work as well. This is the case if you’re doing something that is only going to happen once: studying for your broker exam or getting your GRI. These things require some planning upfront (motion). They also require plenty of action to complete them. For example, you could set a schedule each week to study. In a situation like this, research shows it’s best to simply pick a date. Put something on the calendar – like the test date. Make it public. This is when X is happening. In other words, set a HARD DEADLINE.
Research shows that people who make a specific plan for when and where they will perform a new habit are more likely to follow through. Too many people try to change their habits without these basic details figured out. We tell ourselves, “I’m going to eat healthier” or “I’m going to write more,” but we never say when and where these habits are going to happen. We leave it up to chance and hope that we will “just remember to do it” or feel motivated at the right time.
Hope is not a strategy!
An implementation intention sweeps away foggy notions like “I want to work out more” or “I want to be more productive” or “I should vote” and transforms them into a concrete plan of action.
Many people think they lack motivation when what they really lack is clarity.
One simple way to apply this strategy to your habits is to fill out this sentence:
I will [BEHAVIOR] at [TIME] in [LOCATION]
- I will follow up with 4 leads a day for 30 minutes at 9 a.m. in my office.
- I will complete part 1 of my project investing twenty minutes at 10 a.m. in my office.
- I will exercise for one hour at 5 p.m. at my gym.
- I will make my wife a cup of tea at 7 a.m. each morning in the kitchen.
Give your habits time and space. The goal is to make the time and location so obvious that, with enough repetition, you get an urge to do the right thing at the right time, even if you can’t say why.
To put it simply: planning out when and where you will perform a specific behavior turns your environment into a trigger for action. The time and place trigger your behavior, not your level of motivation.
Motivation is short-lived and doesn’t lead to consistent action. If you want to achieve your goals, then you need a plan for exactly when and how you’re going to execute on them regardless of how you feel.
There are some lessons that the only #failure can teach. Failure is not the problem… inaction is… procrastination is.
Let’s commit this week to move from motion to action.
I love this time of year… a time of reflection and redirection. A time where everyone is just a little bit kinder, gentler and more giving. As we enter the last 2 weeks of the year, I trust your kindness will be known to all. That others will pay it forward to you and you will pay it forward to others.
Speaking with so many of you, your business plans are ready… you are reflecting on what worked, what didn’t and the adjustments you will make in the New Year. Here is what I know from working with agents, teams, and brokerage business plans over the last 7 years. 6 mistakes you can avoid, 6 things you should double check on your 2019 plan:
One – Most of us are not thinking BIG enough, if your plan is too comfortable it’s probably too small. Everyone reading this – and has the desire – can DOUBLE their business in 2019.
Two – Not being very clear on where the business is coming from today – and how you will continue or expand that – AND the few TESTS you will do each 90 days to create new sources of business in the new year.
Three – Doing more of the same thing and expecting a different result.
Four – Not breaking down the details to a DAILY ACTION
Five – Not having the leading and lagging indicators UP and VISUAL
Six – Not being clear on the benefits – the why – and what happens when you do or don’t achieve the outcome.
Creating a 90-Day Hustle
The point of a 90-day hustle is that it stops you from focusing on all your goals for the year. Instead, the 90-day hustle allows you to take your goals for the year and then break them down into 90-day stretches, 30-day stretches, 2-week sprints and finally DAILY ACTIVITIES.
STEP 1: Review your goals
Research shows your goals should be no more than 3 (major ones) for an entire 12-month period, and then you’ll break down those goals into all the steps needed to achieve them… those become part of your 90-day stretches.
Take your business plan, look at what your main goals are for the next 12 months and then think about how you’re going to break them down into smaller chunks, so achieving them is just a little easier.
This would be a good time to review the difference between outcome, performance, and process goals.
STEP 2: Review your business plan
Make sure your plan is consistent with your goals and avoids the 6 biggest mistakes outlined earlier.
If you need help coming up with a more concrete plan or aren’t really too sure what you want to focus on, then I’d recommend using this workbook by Amber McCue. It costs a few bucks yet well worth it… it’s called “Fresh Start” and many people call it a secret weapon for planning out the year.
STEP 3: Put it all together into a 90-day hustle!
Once you’ve reviewed your goals and your strategic plan, think about the first three months of 2019 and what you want to focus on to achieve your 2-3 main overarching goals.
Pick 1-3 steps to focus on for the next 90 days. Don’t try to do it all. Less is MORE.
In fact, research shows you shouldn’t be doing any more than 3 main things over the next 90 days. Less is more and proven.
Break these down further into daily, 2 week and 30-day stretches. You should end up with 30 day, 60 day and then 90 day’s worth of goals. Consider using an APP like PRODUCTIVITY to get accountability on daily actions.
Include all the nitty-gritty details in your 90-day hustle. Work backward… start with your overall goal for the next 90 days and then break this down into all the steps you need to take to achieve it. Don’t forget to schedule in your downtime, family time and charity obligations. Then SCHEDULE IT. You can then create all your to-do tasks as well and add them to your Google Calendar.
So there you have it, 6 checkpoints to validate your business plan and a format for a 90 day hustle.
I’m often asked, Mark what should I add to my business? Consider this: always be testing… pick 1 promising idea (grove it) and then considering adding another promising idea every 90 days.
Have you considered testing:
• A consistent process to re-working previous leads from ALL sources?
• More Personalization in everything you do? (We are in a relationship business, yes?!)
• More use of VIDEO? (Community and local business highlights)
• Leveraging BUYSIDE or Home Value models?
• Building your out of market referral network?
• Driving curious neighbors to open houses?
• On-line lead generation you control – FB, LinkedIn, Insta?
• Is this the year to wear a name badge or other branded swag?
• Leveraging or building your consumer REVIEWS?
• Becoming the HUB of all things in your area?
So, what is YOUR 90-day hustle going to look like?
This week Amy Minor from Austin, TX is my guest on Success From Scratch.
Minor just came back from France and is a self proclaimed Mindset, Personal Growth and Development junky. She grew up in Germany and was big into the theater before getting into Real Estate three years ago.
Watch today’s episode and learn more about making Success come from Scratch!
“I found women that were successful, or business owners, or CEOs and I was like, ‘well they’re going to have friends that are like them,’ so I was reaching out to friends of friends essentially and one of them was a real estate agent […] at the end she was like, oh you have to go into real estate, you would be amazing! […] I truly started from scratch.” – Amy Minor, JP and Associates REALTORS®
I spent some time this week in our Austin, Texas market where one of our REALTOR® team leaders is also a “coxswain” and a rowing coach. He was telling me a story about a new rower, who was placed on a boat with 8 others… he noticed she appeared to be working very hard and sweating profusely, yet her technique was so off it wasn’t helping the team.
Can you relate to a time where you’ve been working hard and not getting the result you intended?
A rowing team – and your business – needs more than just quality, skilled resources. You also need all your resources in the right seats, doing the right things.
Here’s the thing I learned about rowing: in an eight-person boat, each rower has one oar—four on port and four on starboard. If one side pulls harder that the other side, the boat turns. If one side’s oars are raised higher than the other side, the boat tips. In order to find the set and create swing, everyone must work together to balance the boat and have exact timing. Your hands must be at exactly the right height as you slide up to the catch. Every oar has to drop into the water at the exact same time. Everyone needs to pull at equal pressure. All the blades need to come out of the water and release in unison. Any deviation disrupts the boat.
So, what can we learn?
First, have a clear direction, but an easy hand on the steering
The “coxswain” job is to keep the boat on course and steer the straightest line possible. Steering too much means zig-zagging over the course and rowing far more than 2,000 meters, which adds to time. The trick is to keep the end in sight and steer to a center point far down course, not trying to keep coming back to the center every stroke. To do this, the coxswain calls out increased pressure for a few strokes on one side of the boat or the other to correct the course rather than use the rudder, which slows down the boat.
Learning: High-performance teams always keep the end in sight and know the ultimate objectives of their work. Without a clear picture of the goal, teams thrash with process and fail to achieve proper alignment in their activities. Going in the wrong direction as fast as you can doesn’t get you any closer to the finish.
Second, it’s not how hard you work, it’s how hard you work together
It turns out that pulling as hard as you can, without pulling together, actually slows the boat down. Imbalanced power will veer the boat one direction and throw off the timing of the catch and the release. Uncontrolled straining at the oar can tip your weight left or right and toss the boat side to side. A successful team pulls in perfect balance and with perfect timing.
Learning: Successful teams know that performance is a function of collaboration and coordination, not a sum of individual effort. Knowing how your contribution is affecting the final outcome and staying highly aware of what others are doing while staying in sync is critical to delivering results. Reacting quickly, deliberately and in a coordinated fashion allows teams to adapt to changes, handle new information, and stay on target.
Make it a powerful week and looking forward to hearing your success stories.
PS: Are you looking for a playbook that is guaranteed to help up your personal mastery, business mastery or marketing mastery? If so reach out to us at [email protected]
Need a one on one coach? See if coaching is right for you, schedule a complimentary consult at www.jparcoaching.net
A few weeks from now, you might be asked, “So, how are those New Year’s resolutions working out for you? The dream is that our goals and resolutions lead us to a higher ground, to new horizons. They can give our eyes a focus, our mind an aim, and our strength a purpose. Without the positive pull forward of a goal, we could risk remaining forever stagnant, or even worse sucked into a backward spiral.
So why is it so hard to keep and reach some resolutions, some goals?
We have all felt the excitement that comes with setting a new goal, but then, as time progresses, excitement can morph into anxiety. This is because we are facing the reality that we are so far from our goal and have no framework or strategy of how to get there.
So how do you overcome life’s hurdles and personal mental roadblocks to reach your BIG goals?
Well, first, a blinding flash of the obvious: When you set goals for yourself, it is important that they motivate you: this means making sure that they are important to you, and that there is value in achieving them. Motivation is key to achieving goals. Set goals that relate to the high priorities in your life. If the goal is truly not important to you and you can’t tie it back to why it’s meaningful, your chances of success diminish. Yet wait, there’s more:
The reality is, there’s a SCIENCE to goal setting
In over 650 studies completed with over 50,000 participants, scientists analyzed what worked best when goal setting. Overall, individuals who focused on Process Goals had more success in reaching their goals than those who simply set Performance or Outcome Goals.
So, what is the difference between an outcome goal, a performance goal, and a process goal?
An outcome goal is one that isn’t really under your control. Instead, it’s based on outside circumstances. For example, if your goal is to the #1 selling agent in your market, that’s a goal that’s not only based on your numbers but also the numbers from other agents in your market too.
Performance goals are personal achievement goals. They are the building blocks that help you reach your outcome goal. A good performance goal example is to “beat my personal record of 21 homes sold in a year.
Process goals are completely under your control and are composed of the things you do on a daily basis like habits and routines. Think of these as the small steps you take to get to your performance and outcome goals every single day. An example of a process goal would be to “spend 60 minutes prospecting daily” or “40 minutes of cardio work.”
So, there you have it, the science behind more effective goal setting. Create a goal that is important to you and one you can be reminded frequently as to why you are pursuing it. Then, break those outcome goals down to the daily activities, the daily processes. Now your likelihood of achievement is dramatically improved.
Interested in coaching? See if it’s right for you: www.jparcoaching.com
Like many of you, I’m coming off a major Thanksgiving holiday. Full of friends, family and the food coma. A study from 2007 found that eating a meal with a high glycemic index shortened the time it took for people to fall asleep by about 50% when compared to those fed a low glycemic index meal.
But there’s likely more than one reason a Thanksgiving feast can end in sleepiness. A study from 2009 suggests that cross-talk between the gut and the brain after a meal activates the hypothalamus, which indirectly stimulates regions responsible for sleep while simultaneously suppressing regions responsible for wakefulness.
In last week’s blog, I wrote about the Mindset, Attitude, Actions, and Results circle. That’s kind of like the cross talk between your gut and the brain after a big meal, yes!? Here is what we know, the difference between mindset and attitude are clear: mindset is a way of thinking; that in turn drives your attitude which shows up in how you approach things, your language tone and posture. That in turns drives your actions and your behavior which ultimately delivers an outcome or a result.
So, IF your business is in a food coma, or you are being proactive to avoid the holiday business coma, here’s 2 steps to consider.
1. Improve your posture and increase your daily physical activity over the next 4 weeks.
2. Make sure your business plan is relevant and up to date by 12/1. And in that process ensure you:
a. Define YOUR unique value
b. Trouble shoot any issue holding you back
c. Be clear and FOCUS on a clearly defined target market
d. Get in a small group
Move your body MORE
Tony Robbins, consultant and coach to CEO’s and self-help guru believes that what the body does, the mind follows. Wake up your body and your mind is awoken.
Example: what is your posture at this moment? When was the last time you went on brisk walk? How do you carry yourself? How do you dress yourself? How does your face look at this exact moment? Change your physical state: Take a daily walk, sit up straighter, put a smile on your face, dress the part for your industry and see if that doesn’t have an immediate effect on your mindset.
If you’re interested, look into the book “Presence” where author Amy Cuddy explains the science behind all of this and even shows you a couple of power poses. Here is a link to her amazing Ted Talk.
Is Your Business Plan Relevant?
Define your value and remember it’s NOT all about you! Be TOTALLY clear about how choosing you as a real estate agent benefits your prospect. When someone asks you what you do, it can be tempting to list your awards and accomplishments. Try to be mindful about naming specific ways your services benefit sellers, buyers or investors. Benefit-focused value statements resonate with prospects in a meaningful way. For example:
I specialize in helping empty nesters find the luxury downtown condo that’s just right for them.
I am a ninja negotiator with a track record of selling homes at an average of 2 percent over list.
Want to sell fast? Then I’m your real estate agent, as my listings sell in 26 days on average, 13 days faster than the norm.
Troubleshoot any issue holding you back. Unless you are a hobbyist in real estate, you’ll need systems for:
Consistent quality – for you, your clients and your partners.
Simplifying your workload – like a checklist for a pilot before takeoff
Saving time – less time wondering what to do next and more time doing it
Highlighting and eliminating inefficiencies
Growing your business – serve more people, make more money
Do you have a clear TARGET?
When we see agents and teams struggling, too often their target market is just not specific enough. Many agents and teams may have several different types of target markets. Yet, for the purposes of marketing your business, you want to start with a laser focus on sellers and buyers. Your target market profile should be specific enough to answer basic questions like:
Where can you find sufficient numbers of them in groups?
What media do they consume? (How to reach them)
What blog sites, websites, forums do they frequent?
How engaged are they on social media and which platform?
What associations do they belong to?
The power of a small group. If your business is struggling – or you want to avoid the holiday coma – as the business owner, it can be tough to see the forest between the trees. It’s easy to get in overdrive mode putting in more hours working in the business with little or no time left to work on the business. This is where it would be wise to seek expert from like-minded individuals, a business coach or BOTH.
What action will you take to get out of OR avoid a business holiday coma?