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Desire, Decisions, Determination and Discipline

Desire, Decisions, Determination and Discipline

The art and science of goal achievement are driven by your desire, your decisions, your determination, and discipline. Let’s dig in.

Tony Robbins said it best:

“Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible.”

And Price Pritchett, the author of “You2” wrote it best:

“You don’t have to know how you’re going to get there, but you do need to know where you want to go!”

There is magic in operating with a sharply defined mental image of the outcome you seek.

Visualize your arrival.

When you visualize, it is like a magnet to the ways and means and the methods to get there. The solutions begin to appear, and the answers come to you.

#1 Desire

A young man asked Socrates the secret to success. Socrates told the young man to meet near the river the next morning.

The next morning, they met. Socrates asked the young man to walk with him toward the river. When the water got up to their neck, Socrates took the young man by surprise and ducked him into the water. The boy struggled to get out, yet Socrates was strong and kept him there until the boy started turning blue. Socrates pulled his head out of the water, and the first thing the young man did was to gasp and take a deep breath of air.

Socrates asked, ‘What did you want the most when you were there?” The boy replied, “Air.” Socrates said, “That is the secret to success. When you want success as badly as you wanted the air, then you will get it.” There is no other secret.

Just like a small fire cannot give much heat, a weak desire cannot produce an excellent result. A burning desire is the starting point of all accomplishments.  If you genuinely want to achieve your stated goal, the first step is desire. You must want it badly enough to make an unshakeable commitment and to be willing to make sacrifices.

#2 Decision

I have found from my own experience that I was getting in my way. Can you relate? You know the doubts, anxieties, ego, fear, and those never-ending critical inner voices. The very things that keep us from taking action. And not taking action is a decision in and of itself, yes?

And thus, the second D is Decision. Getting out of my way meant becoming more self-aware of those thoughts that held me back and the courage and mental toughness to step forward.

Some time ago, I was worried about whether or not I should take on a new consulting assignment. By this time, I was learning how I could get out of my way, so I stopped for a moment of reflection and gratitude. That time allowed me to be curious rather than being consumed by fear and worry. I reflected on the meaning I was attaching to things associated with this new assignment. The shift drove my thoughts away from the distractions and simply allowed me to be present and aware. By doing so, I was free to find clarity and to make a more rational decision about this new assignment. Fear and worry became optional for me, and the clarity to make a decision and move forward powerfully became easier.

Are you ready, right now, to decide to do whatever is necessary, to be willing to pay any price, go any distance, to achieve your goal?

#3 Determination

The third D, Determination.

  • Richard Branson has dyslexia;
  • Walt Disney spoke with nearly 300 possible investors before anyone took interest;
  • Bill Gates’ whose first business failed;
  • Albert Einstein did not speak until he was four;
  • Jim Carrey was homeless, and
  • Stephen King, the first novel was rejected 30 times.

So, what is more, significant in your life right now. Excuses as to why you are not achieving as much as you want? Or mega doses of determination to get what you want?

I have learned that determination is a function of three factors: a goal, a commitment, and a focus.

Let’s BREAK that down:

Goals – Goals are like magnets that attract us to higher ground and new horizons. They give our eyes a focus, our mind an aim, and our strength a purpose. Without their pull, we would remain forever stationary, incapable of moving forward.

A goal is a possibility that fulfills a dream.

You know the importance of setting goals, so why is it so hard to keep and reach them?

We have all felt the excitement that comes with setting a new goal, but then, as time progresses, excitement can morph into anxiety. Is this because we are facing the reality that we are so far from our goal, and we have no framework or strategy of how to get there. Let’s start with the three types of goals:

          Outcome Goals An outcome goal is one that is not really under your control. Instead, it is based on outside circumstances. For example, your goal is to the #1 selling agent in your market. Great goal, you just don’t have any control over what other agents will do.

         Performance Goals 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 record of 21 homes sold in a year.”

         Process Goals Process goals are entirely under your control and are composed of the things you do daily, 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 90 minutes prospecting daily” or “call 30 FSBO’s every Monday.”

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.

Commitment – The Scottish mountaineer, William Hutchison Murray, wrote about commitment in his book, “The Scottish Himalayan Expedition.” He wrote: “Until one is committed there is hesitancy…the moment one definitely commits oneself, then providence moves in. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred.”

Finally, Focus – Dr. Allen Zimmerman wrote about focus this way. It is merely another way of saying you have got to keep your eye on the goal.

One of my three boys learned just that. As they were playing in the deep snow, a neighbor asked them if they wanted to race. He said he would give a prize to the winner.

It sounded good to the boys, so they gathered around the man to learn more. He told them the winner would not be the one who ran the fastest but the one who ran the straightest line. He said he would go to the other end of the field, give a signal, and have them race to him.

The boys took off. The first one looked at his feet as he ran to make sure they were pointing straight ahead. The second boy wondered how straight the boys on either side of him were running and tried to line himself up with them. The third boy just kept his eyes fixed on the man at the end of the field. He kept his sights set on the goal. And, of course, he won the race. His line was by far the straightest.

Two of them lost their focus. They got distracted from the goal. They made the two most common mistakes people make when trying to achieve their goals.

The first boy became self-conscious. He spent too much time worrying about the possible mistakes he was making.

The second boy spent too much time wondering how his competitors were doing.

Do not make those mistakes. You will not only lose the race, but you’ will also lose your determination for other races in life.

#4 Discipline

The fourth D. You know what you need or desire to do, yet you derail yourself with unaligned behaviors! Can you relate?

Typically, those that succeed in goal achievement follow a pattern.

A pattern of having a compelling reason why they want to accomplish the goal; they develop an unwavering commitment and accountability; that create rewards and penalties; they develop personal standards, and they gamify or create a competitive environment.

Those that succeed in goal achievement know that we are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.

In “The Power of Habit,” Charles Duhigg said it best. In the book, he delivers a framework for understanding how habits work and a guide to experimenting with how they might change. That framework is:

Triggers: the event that starts the habit

Routines: the behavior you perform (and how you can switch that if it does not serve you)

Rewards: the benefit that is associated with the behavior

Once we understand our triggers, our routines, and our rewards, we can proactively make the change. Switching out poor routines with more empowering routines and thus create disciplined behaviors that are more aligned with the goals.

Primarily, this all comes down to making simple agreements with yourself. Agreements about what you will and will not accept are the cornerstone of discipline. It then requires holding yourself accountable for following through with these agreements.

All of this boils down to regulating and correcting your behavior whenever you get off track.

Excuses are like noses. We have all got one, and they smell.

Are you going to continue to settle for safe or take a different direction?

Some practical steps to consider this week:

 

What Would Happen: If you NEVER Tolerated Inaction?

What Would Happen: If you NEVER Tolerated Inaction?

This week I had the opportunity to speak with several real estate agents about their upcoming 2020 New Years’ resolutions. Research has shown that about half of all adults make New Year’s resolutions. However, fewer than 10% manage to keep them for more than a few months. Like me, does this statistic make you wonder why? What’s the solution? Consider this:

What would happen if starting today, you never tolerated inaction in yourself? Think about that for a moment again, what would happen if starting today 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 error 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 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 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 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 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 the motion doesn’t lead to results, why do we do it?

Sometimes we do it because we 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 right 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 be planning merely. You want to be practicing.

TRYceratops VS DOceratops

Some ideas to get out of motion and into action:

  1. Work expands to the time you give it: Set a specific time for each task.
  2. Set a schedule for your actions: Basic time blocking.
  3. Pick a date to shift you from motion to action: set hard deadlines.
  4. 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 need 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 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 lack is clarity.

A straightforward 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 apparent 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: 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 only #failure can teach. Failure is not the problem… inaction is… procrastination is.

Let’s commit this week to move from motion to action.

#WinTheDay

5 Ways Not To Be Broke On January 1

5 Ways Not To Be Broke On January 1

There are 84 days left in 2019 and 60 productive working days, depending on how many days you work, how many holidays you celebrate, and so on. Regardless you have about 84 days to wrap up 2019. 84 days!

What will your bank account look like on January 1 of 2020? Is it your desire to have a more significant bank account or a smaller one? Whatever your goal is, NOW is the time to make that happen.

The next 60 days will be critical for setting yourself up for strong close to 2019 and a fast start to 2020. What you do in the next few days and weeks will determine the size of your bank account on January 1 and your momentum for the first quarter of 2020.

CHALLENGE 1: What would happen to your business if, for the next 20 working days, you made one new appointment each day?

Let’s face there are two types of agents today: hobbyists and CEO’s. This article is not for hobbyists, those part-time agents who dabble. For those of you that run your business like a business, those of you that know your daily number and know what it takes to generate one sale, then this article is for you.

CHALLENGE 2: Get clear about the next 84 days:

  • Write down the number of sales you’ve made so far this year.
  • Write down the source of those sales.
  • How many listings will you earn between now and the end of the year?
  • How many additional families or investors do you want to serve between now and the end of the year?
  • How many contacts do you need to make to drive that number
    • One rule of thumb is 40 contacts to 1 sale.
    • Who are they, and how will you go about connecting with them?
  • What systems do you have in place to create the result you desire?

After completing the quick exercise above, here are 5 actions you can take so you’re not broke on January 1:

  • Decide Now. Decide now how many days you will work, how many days you will be off, and how many “flex days” you’ll have between now and the end of the year. Decide what direct response marketing campaigns you will run. For example, if you will create an investor campaign to take advantage of year-end investment buyers.
  • Up your CRM game. There is no excuse for not having your CRM updated and working for you. It takes discipline; yet once you realize your CRM is the engine that drives your train, that task becomes less negotiable.
  • Delegate. Is it time to find some help? An office or virtual assistant. Your highest and best use is prospecting.; lead generation; going on appointments and negotiating contracts. Everything else delegate. Scared? Get resourceful, many new agents I know are sharing a fractional assistant to split cost yet keep them fully employed.
  • Diversify your lead generation sources. Too many struggling agents rely on ONE, maybe TWO lead sources. FOUR sources of business – split between influence strategies and control strategies – provides diversity and stability to your real estate practice. Note, don’t add four sources all at once. Start with one new source, get it working and stable then add another until you reach four sources.
  • Target Market Clarity? Any market rewards the hyperlocal expert. Are you an expert in a community? Are you an expert in a profession like Nurses, FBI agents, CPA’s? It’s probably time to get hyperlocal and specialize.

So, I’ll leave you today with three final things to consider: 

  1. Knowing what you know now, what immediate adjustments do you need to make?
  2. Cash is king. Are you building your cash reserves? Are you reducing bad debt? Investing in marketing? (Hint: You can do all 3.)
  3. Have you started a small weekly accountability group with like-minded, goal-oriented CEO’s like yourself? If not, what’s holding you back? 

Small Shifts Magnify Outcomes

Small Shifts Magnify Outcomes

I was recently reflecting on some coaching conversations and thinking about vectors. Let me explain:

In math and physics, a vector is a quantity having direction as well as magnitude, especially as determining the position of one point in space relative to another.

If a pilot makes the slightest one-degree error in the aircraft’s flight path, after traveling one mile the plane will be off the course by 92 feet. And after going 60 miles, that error adds up to being a mile off the path.

A minor off course adjustment over time and distance magnifies the error. If a pilot were flying from New York to L.A. a one-degree shift in the flight path over the entire course would put the plane 40 miles to the South in Orange County at SNA not Los Angeles at LAX.

“The secret of your success is found in your daily routine. You alone are responsible for what you do, don’t do, or how you respond to what’s done to you.” Darren Hardy, The Compound Effect

I work with a lot of entrepreneurs, and many times they call with a complete overall idea – overwhelmed and burned out – yet many times it’s just the 1-degree change that compounds over time. Yes? Who can relate?

The compound effect, it works both ways. What small course correction can you make this week?

 

What Would Happen If You Never Tolerated Inaction In Yourself?

What Would Happen If You Never Tolerated Inaction In Yourself?

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.

TRYceratops VS DOceratops

Some ideas to get out of motion and into action:

  1. Work expands to the time you give it: Set a specific time for each task.
  2. Set a schedule for your actions: Basic time blocking.
  3. Pick a date to shift you from motion to action: set hard deadlines.
  4. 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.

#WinTheDay

 

So How Consistent Are You Right Now?

So How Consistent Are You Right Now?

When you are inconsistent, nothing works. Here’s what I know: agents who are consistently setting and going on appointments are producing more results, period. These agents are consistent and disciplined in their daily routine of prospecting and marketing.

Consistency… social media does not work if you are not consistent; geographic farming does not work if you are not consistent; repeat and referral do not work if you are not consistent; open houses do not work if you are inconsistent; online leads do not work if you are not consistent.

Show me something in your life or business that works when you are inconsistent. Anything you are going to do, the more consistent you are with your mindset, your attitude, your approach, your expectation, your strategy and your tactics the more predictable the result. Bottom line: when you are consistent everything works… when you are inconsistent nothing works.

So my question is, what have you been inconsistent with? What has that inconsistency cost you financially, cost you emotionally, cost you physically?

I’d submit the action –  we can all be more consistent in setting and going on more appointments.

We CANNOT control the market.

We CAN control ourselves, our thoughts and our actions.

Next Steps:

1. Make an appointment setting goal for the next 2 weeks and share it with an accountability partner.

2. Gather your past client list, all of your past leads, open house registers and people you know and start making appointments today.

3. Be CONSISTENT… list the 1, 2 or 3 things that you must do on a consistent basis that will propel your business forward.

#WinTheDay

 

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