Ask yourself why you want to increase your performance, whether it’s at home at the office, in your relationships, in your bank account, wherever you want to increase your performance, ask yourself why? Why do you want to have marked improvement in the area at hand (there may be many areas where you might desire to experience a marked improvement but focus on which area feels the most pressing, right now). Once you define your why (which may change along the way) you have the base of your motivation to change.
You need to create an image of you achieving your highest and best in this area of your life. What does the endgame look like if you could have anything the way you want it to be, all you dreams realized, the absolute best result or outcome; what would that look like? In your mind create the absolute best result in full color, what would it look like, feel like, smell like. Notice key markers, find visual representations of these key markers and find images that represent them. Images you can cut out of magazines, or print out, and tape it somewhere you can see it. Put it on your bathroom mirror, your refrigerator, your workstation, etc… Nobody else needs to know that that image represents, it’s just for you to act as a reminder that you know what “better than this” would look like in your wildest dreams.
3. Play Hide and Seek
Start looking for opportunities that will move you closer to where you want to be (and alternatively further away from what you don’t want). An amazing thing happens, once you are aware of your “Why” (#1) and you’ve seen in your mind’s eye how much better it could be, if you start looking for opportunities to advance or change, suddenly you start to see them appear. It doesn’t take long, and you will notice these opportunities were always there, only you couldn’t see them because they were hidden from view. Not so much hidden, as your beliefs or a lack of self worthiness obscured them from your awareness. Something has been calling you to a higher state, a better life, a more fulfilling way of living with increased satisfaction and love, but because of your reticence, you were unable to see it or didn’t believe you were worthy of having it better. Keep seeking and you will find ways to close the gap from where you are and where you want to be.
4. Make a Plan
A plan is like a map that can get you from here to there. You need to know where you are and where you’re going. Just as a map has markers between here and there, like you know if you’re travelling from one city to another, there are going to be towns you will have to pass between here and there. Knowing you’ve passed on of those key checkpoints ensures you are making progress (you might even stop to have a coffee or piece of pie – like little rewards or celebrations – along the way, but don’t tarry, keep moving). Thinks of ways you can start to assure you’re moving and making measureable progress. Make a schedule, prioritize activities and constantly check in with your internal GPS to evaluate your progress. Above all, stay on course and keep moving in the direction of where you want to be.
5. Avoid Distraction
Invariably, when you start to make significant advancements in your life, you will face opposition, both from external sources, like other people (including people you love becoming more needy, requiring more or your attention) and circumstances that will appear as to be thwarting your efforts to push through to the nest level, as well as internal sources, like your lack of belief in yourself, or negative self talk, all designed to distract you and throw you off course. And if that wasn’t enough to distract you, you will notice the media, and your personal devices will increasingly be finding was to keep you from achieving your highest and best. Learn to say, “No,” to distractions and resume you’re looking for opportunities to move closer to what you want.
6. Educate and Correct
Read books, blogs, and when you are able, get an accountability partner or coach. When you start making the move from a comfortable (or tolerable) way of living to a completely new plateau, it’s good to have ideas on how to make the journey. You can get these ideas by reading about who others have made the transition. An accountability partner or coach is like having a co-pilot or being able to check in with the weather service and tower (as if you were flying a plane and wanted to know how the weather might affect your flight and making certain the flight path was clear). Having another set of eyes vested in seeing your dream come true can help immensely, when your vision is limited to the view from your cockpit, allowing you to make important corrections along the way.
7. Question and Listen
Being in a constant state of openness can be highly beneficial. Don’t excommunicate others who might have a valuable tidbit that might be helpful for your journey. Don’t eliminate the possibility of learning from someone else (what to do, or not to do) by immediately discarding someone else’s point of view. Ask questions along the way, and wait for the answers, always being open to hear the input of someone else. Realize that whoever is giving you advice may not have the best answer. Even though they are adamant and passionate, don’t judge them, if their advice does not resonate with you. Realize they are only doing the best they can with what they have. (That person, who may sound like a kook today, may be highly valuable to your journey in the future.)
8. Honor and Gratitude
Honor those who have supported and helped you along the way, with the highest respect and gratitude. For if it were not for them (whether their influence was good, or bad), you would not be on the path that you are on today, and you would not be making the progress you are making to achieve your highest and best. Be gracious, seeing the good in all things (even if they look bad at the time) because they are moving you closer and preparing you for what lies ahead. Give thanks in all things, because this is the journey that gives your life meaning and a reason to live a life better lived.
9. Maintain Your Resources
Keep an adequate awareness about your personal resources which you have for your journey, don’t lost them. You’re going to need them. This includes your own personal health and wellness. Take time out to enjoy the journey, to relax and refuel along the way, because the last thing you want to do is to run out of gas along the way. Do not neglect your body, the vehicle without which you would not have the ability to make the journey at all. Think about keeping it in tip top condition – at least the best condition possible – for your journey. Good health will make the journey so much more enjoyable and satisfying.
10. Give It All You’ve Got
Pursue your goals with passion and heart-felt admiration and love. The more you put in, the more rewarding the payoff, as well as all the milestones between here and there. The less you hold-back, the greater the gain. Be willing to push through when the getting gets rough (as you are likely to meet resistance along the way) and have an exciting story of perseverance when you have made it through.
Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to traverse this path, follow it through to its logical conclusion and to be a light to others in search of taking on the task of daring to live a better life.