A GSD means always maximizing your forward motion while minimizing your drag coefficient. Here are 10 steps to build your momentum.
1. Rock responsibility.?Say bye-bye to blaming others because your life isn’t working or you don’t have what you want. Ditto for complaining, which is blame disguised. You’re no one’s victim. Everything in our lives, good or bad, is the result of our actions or thoughts. When we take 100 percent responsibility for our lives we’re acknowledging this, which then enables us to improve our situation. Responsibility is an active pursuit. What would happen if you took just 5 percent more responsibilities in your life? You’ll be amazed by the results!
2. Get visual.?Having set goals is vitally important and deserves a long look, and since you’ll want to set specific goals, visualize them being achieved, and act on making them happen. Your goals should include what specifically you want in order to achieve and when specifically you want to achieve them. For instance, you could create a promotion plan and ask your boss if you achieve X, Y, Z goals would that warrant a promotion and pay raise of [fill in the blank] percent? Keep track of how you’re progressing. It will work wonders in focusing yourself and keeping you on track.
3. Solicit superb support.?A supportive tribe is necessary to a GSD. I’ve found two hugely effective ways to do that: an accountability partner and a mastermind group. An accountability partner is a friend or colleague who will help you stay accountable to your commitments. A mastermind group is a group of like-minded people who help further one another’s goals on a group basis. See the resources available in the Cool Tools section of http://www.RulesForRenegades.com for info on how to establish accountability partners and mastermind groups.
4. Toss toxicity.?You probably have some toxic people in your life right now. They’re the folks who seem to want to hold you back or bring you down. Know anyone who actively hampers your ability to advance? Creates fires you have to waste time stamping out? Tells you that you can’t do what you’re doing? They’re deflators—Dr. Judith Orloff calls them “energy vampires.” You can choose to avoid them or let their negativity bounce off of you. If you’re not sure if someone is toxic, just monitor how you feel after spending time with that person. Feel furious? Exhausted? Despondent? You’ve got a live one: get out the isolation suit!
5. Pump up the positive.?Use only positives when you talk to yourself about your goals. Negative self-talk fosters a negative self-image, which results in negative behaviors. We sabotage ourselves far more than anyone sabotages us (“See? I knew they wouldn’t hire me/ask me out/give me the sales award”). List your strengths. Don’t list your shortcomings; instead, reframe them as strengths you want to develop. Be honest if you have no interest in improving in a certain area and be okay with it. I, for instance, have zero desire to become a terrific organizer. So I hire someone who is. Another way to accentuate the positive is to read and reread inspiring books. Listen to uplifting, motivating CDs or podcasts. Surround yourself with upbeat energy.
6. Log on to the Law of Attraction.?You won’t find it in Newtonian physics, but I live by a very cool rule in the universe called the Law of Attraction. You’ve heard the saying “What you focus on, you become.” That’s the idea of the Law of Attraction. When you develop a clear idea of what you want, focus on it, and feel good about it, your mind will consider your wishes to be marching orders. The universe will conspire to help to make your dreams come true. This is why you have to know what you want, look at images of what you want, imagine yourself already having it, and do the required work to make your dreams come true. As Norman Vincent Peale put it, “Formulate and stamp indelibly on your mind a mental picture of yourself as succeeding. Hold this picture tenaciously. Never permit it to fade. Your mind will seek to develop the picture.”
7. Persevere.?You’re probably going to have a healthy number of so-called failures and rejections in your career and life. The key is how you view them and whether you let them hold you back. I think of failures as “learning adventures” to reduce their negative impact. As Henry Ford said, “Failure gives us the opportunity to begin again more intelligently.” It’s okay to be afraid, and it’s certainly okay to fail, and everybody gets rejected. Prepare for these inevitable knocks. They’re character builders and inspiration, if you can allow them to be.
8. Pay attention.?One of the fundamental attitudes you need to cultivate is constantly paying attention to what’s going on around you. That may seem obvious, but it’s not just about focusing closely on what you’re doing. Sometimes when you’re concentrating on what you’re doing, you miss the important stuff. While you’re concentrating on the cracks in the sidewalk, you miss the rainbow. We all are oblivious at times but the more you increase your attention to life, the more present you are, the more you’ll notice opportunities. Cultivate the ability to laser focus and scan your surroundings.
9. Continuously course-correct.?We all make mistakes, but the big idea is that the more honest we are, the more likely we’ll avoid mistakes or recognize them immediately and be able to clean them up quickly. The more we clean up our messes, the less guilt, regret, or baggage we have, the lighter our load is (reducing our drag coefficient), the easier it becomes to rise above petty issues and see more clearly. Clearer vision results in better decisions.
10. Celebrate success.?You took the risk; now give yourself the reward. What’s a compelling way to reward yourself? One of my friends is a sales rep and eBay fashion fan. He loves shopping online and getting good deals on designer duds. For a few hundred bucks he can buy a gorgeous designer suit. So for each sale he closes, he allots himself $100 toward an online shopping spree. That’s motivation. On the days when he doesn’t feel like prospecting (he hates cold calling), he’ll look at his “watch list” of auction items in eBay for a few minutes of visual encouragement. That’s enough to get him dialing again. He knows the celebration will make the work worth it.