This is the second article in our Finish Stronger than You Started series. The goal is to help you get to completion of your essential, critical goals that you have set for yourself this year.
I can’t tell you how many times I go into people’s offices, I meet with clients, I talk with friends and there’s just a continual frustration that seems to be building everywhere. Everyone these days talks about how busy they are and what they’re trying to achieve, but the “badge of busyness” doesn’t get you anything. It doesn’t get you anything anymore to say ‘I’m really busy and you’re really busy.’
What is the Badge of Busyness?
First off, it’s a term that I coined to describe how people use their “being busy” as either a modern-day cultural achievement factor or as a way to rationalize their victim mentality towards information overload and missed opportunities.
People start measuring how busy they are, meanwhile there’s a small group of people that often go the other way and they’re not worrying about being busy. They know they’re busy, they’ve always got lots of things to do but they’re the ones that are actually accomplishing things and getting a lot of things done. Not to mention, they’re getting it done with a great level of peace, comfort and just generally less stress. We’re going to talk about how you can walk away from the badge of busyness and move with the crowd of Quiet Achievers.
The Quiet Achievers are those people who don’t make a lot of noise, are rarely seen in public or in the media, yet are masters of driving change, leading great careers and creators of massive value in society.
Do you want to wear the badge of busyness or be a Quiet Achiever?
Your answer will determine whether you finish strong this year or not.
Ready to go?
Achievement Myth Exposed
There’s an age old myth that getting better results comes down to working smarter. That’s not the case anymore. You are reading this right now because you are an intellectually smart person. I know this about you because over 60% of my clients are business owners. You cannot run a successful business without being a very intelligent, passionate and driven person.
The key to getting better results with less effort is increasing your Productive Ability™.
Your productive ability is like a quotient. It’s a skill that a lot of people don’t think about. You might think about your personal capabilities when you say, “I’m really good at math…. I’m really good at artistic or creative endeavors…. I’m great at marketing”, but nobody thinks about their productive ability.
Your productive ability is the ability to take quick, calculated action on opportunities that are always around you.
This is where the innovation piece of Samurai Innovation comes into play. Whether it’s career innovation or business innovation, all of us have opportunities around us that we aren’t taking advantage of and turning into real results. I would actually argue that the major challenge today is that you have too many opportunities.
In my business travels, I often hear people talking about growing their careers. Often times they say something along the lines of, “I could become the director of marketing or go become the director of research and development. I could become a unit manager, but I have all these options so which career path should I take? And what training programs should I take to get me there?”
Do you see how it’s so easy to get overwhelmed thinking about all of this stuff? It’s a big issue for people today.
That’s where people get stuck and say, “I’m going to go eat a donut and have a coffee because it’s just too much.” Or, “I’m just going to check some email and feel like I’m being productive because that’s a big headache.” You have opportunities around you right now.
Major Unique Quality of Quiet Achiever’s
Do the difficult things that others don’t want to do.
When you do these difficult things, you take it head on and get those things done in a timely fashion. This is what makes people take notice of you. Your ability to deal with a tough client, vendor, or boss will surely add value to the business or people you serve. You stand out as the “go to person” or as we call it, the Quiet Achiever.
Guess what happens to the Quiet Achiever in every business or economy?
- You are recession proof
- You are the last to get laid off
- You’re the first to get promoted
- You earn a bonus or get a pay raise when salaries are frozen
- You’re the first person your clients call or refer to others
- You can sell your business anytime without hassle for top dollar
- You have more control, power and flexibility in planning and living life on your terms
In addition to reaping the rewards of being a Quiet Achiever, you will need to develop 4 Assets of Achievement in order to increase your productive ability. Based on a recent survey of over 500 hundred of our Samurai Innovation Dojo Members, it is clear that there are four key things that are perplexing you these days and might be keeping you up at night. These same four problems can be easily turned around to become your secret weapons that will boost your career and business results the fastest.
4 Assets of Achievement
We have honed these 4 Assets of Achievement so that you too can profit from these and finish stronger than you started.
1. Focus Power
What I commonly hear are statements such as, “I know how to set goals and I know how to do all of that stuff, but I really have trouble focusing.” So how does one strengthen the ability to focus? Your focus power strengthens when you get better at planning and prioritization that goes hand in hand with goal-setting. But more importantly, it is really about overcoming distractions and procrastination. At the bottom of this article, we will give you a few links to some of our best focus resources that will help you make a big shift this week.
2. Be a Goal Getter
There is a small percentage of the population that actually sets goals. Any individual who practices goal-setting is definitely somebody who is a high-achiever, but not necessarily a Goal Getter. Goal Getter’s are the influencers who want to make a difference in their corner of the world and they want to find out how they can do it better, faster and easier. Goal Getters focus on leveraging their resources and opportunities to the fullest extent possible.
The big challenge, however, is that they don’t need to know how to set goals. They’ve already learned that and there are a lot of great resources out there, but it’s the completion of the goals, the follow-through that falls short. Have you felt this way this recently?
- Why can’t I get the results that I want?
- Why don’t things work out for me?
- How can I get it all done?
- How do I capture those million dollar ideas and put them to work?
- What’s the fastest way to achieve ______________ (fill in the blank with your goal)?
We’ve all been to seminars, training classes and conferences where we’ve written down twenty or thirty great ideas that could really propel our career or business ahead, but then we get back to that real world and the proverbial door slams shut. It feels cold, lonely and such a struggle. It becomes hard and we soon forget about all those great ideas. The Goal Getters fight this negative downward spiral like a salmon swimming upstream against the current. It is often simple, but not easy.
3. Manage Your Relationship with Time
The third key is time—or rather how to get control of your time. The big challenge here is that time just kind of moves on and it’s no slave to anybody. It’s the master. In trying to figure out how to gain control of time, some people have even gone as far as asking me, “Do you know of any good cloning technology that could clone me because that would be my solution!”
Well, although I don’t know the secrets to cloning, I do know some other tips and secrets that can really help. It comes down to how you view your relationship with time.
Is time your partner or something you try and manage or control?
I’ve discovered that you can accomplish and realize your major goals within an hour a day of solid focus. I can show people how to get that hour a day to get those things done, without making any sacrifice. You’re not going to have to give up a lot of stuff and go without. You’re not going to have to give up Little League or spending time with your kids or your wife or your husband. You can do all that within reasonable times.
4. Be 3D Organized
Finally, the fourth key is an area where a lot of people stumble and they’re really challenged by what I call “3D organization”. We have a lot of stuff— you know, the physical stuff that’s easy to see. It’s the pile of paper in the corner, it’s the briefcase that’s overflowing with papers, and the filing cabinet that’s stuffed full.
What about the other two elements?
This is the stuff that’s in your head and all the things that are rolling around in there worrying you and causing you to feel overwhelmed and frustrated. In our digital age, email, text messages, alerts, Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus and a whole myriad of media attacks you every day like a roaring lion ready to devour you. This is the stuff that nobody went to school to learn how to manage. There has never been a course in grade school that teaches how to manage, file and sort all of this digital information.
Email, in particular, has been a real challenge to organize and stay on top of. Gaining control over email chaos is something that I’ve been able to help a lot of my clients with. When you tame the paper, mental and digital realms of your life, you will feel much more focused and in control of your life. And that’s an awesome place to be.
Eddie’s Inbox story
I was working with a young, sharp corporate manager one day. We were in his office working on some stuff and he said, “My email and my computer is just not running really well today.” I looked at his email program, and found that he had 7,736 emails in his inbox. I said, “Eddie, there’s the reason why the program’s not running. Your computer is just overloaded.” Inboxes are not meant to have 7,000 emails sitting in them because your inbox gets categorized and continuously sorted and updated by the computer software, and it pulls a lot of resources from the computer. I showed Eddie a quick solution, and in 15 minutes got it working a lot better. He was feeling a lot better, too, and more importantly, he was able to move on. Check out Eddie’s solution.
So those are the 4 Assets of Achievement— focus power, be a Goal Getter, manage your relationship with time and be 3D organized. Let me know how you deal with each asset in the comments below.
Samurai Focus Resources:
We have compiled a great set of resource articles to help you sharpen your focus power this week.