Success Stories --
Reliving The Past Helps You Build The Future
One of the exercises that I have many clients do is list
out all the successes they've had in life. I ask them to start
with early childhood and list everything they can remember
being successful at. One of my clients recently gave the assignment
to his girlfriend. She asked me afterwards what the point
was. She hadn't found it very useful.
What I told her is that that I've found that this exercise
serves two important services. First, it's a self esteem booster.
Most people don't realize how many successes they've had in
their lives until they write them down. Some express surprise
and sometimes some modesty when sharing their successes. I'd
recommend this exercise just for this boost alone, but the
second reason for doing this is even more valuable. Success
leaves clues behind.
When I ask a client to list their successes, it's usually
because they are stuck in some area of their business. They've
tried several strategies to get unstuck and nothing has worked.
When we take some of their major successes and analyze them,
we find patterns. I ask them how they accomplished major tasks.
What methodology did they use?
What we typically find is that they have a natural success
style. For some people this is setting a goal and creating
a detailed plan to meet that goal. For others it's just jumping
in and doing whatever it takes to make it work. Others might
just go with the flow and do what appears easy or exciting.
One client set a small goal and met it. Then he set higher
and higher goals meeting each one before he moved on to the
next. It ended with four consecutive world championships.
So if you are finding yourself stuck in trying to accomplish
a task in your business, stop right now and list out your
successes. Start from being born--it's not easy to get out
and start breathing. Move through your entire life and write
down every success you can remember. You might have things
like starring in a school play, completing a century on your
bicycle, getting an A in a difficult subject. Make sure you
cover graduations, college degrees, advanced trainings. Don't
limit it to just work related or school related successes.
Make sure you include the things you most enjoyed succeeding
Once you have the list, go through and pick two or three major
ones and analyze them. What did you do to succeed? How did
you feel? Were you afraid beforehand? If you were, how did
you cope with or minimize the fear? Did you do a lot of planning?
Did you jump right in? Were you alone or did you have help?
Find the reasons you succeeded.
Now look for a pattern. I did this recently because I was
really struggling to get my business going strongly. The exercise
revealed that many of my successes came when I had a structured
environment with a lot of creative activities. I realized
that I needed more structure in my business. I had plenty
of creative time. So I found a friend that I can do weekly
check-ins with that holds me accountable for my actions. Each
week I share with him my goals or homework for the next week.
Then when we meet I share how well I met the goal. This is
making a huge difference in the success of my business. Try
mapping your past successes and watch as it makes a huge difference
in your current success.
Business expert Michael Clark has been helping businesses
including Fortune 500 companies such as IBM and Cellular One
succeed for over 20 years. Michael is an authority on getting
business owners out of overwhelm and getting the most out
of their businesses. Get more business success ideas at biznbeyond.com.
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