How To Quadruple Your Business Success
I have a challenge for you at the end, so join in and embrace the results in your business success and personal life. We run our lives by habit for the vast majority of our day. Consequently, it makes sense to be aware of the repeated behaviours we do every day. Furthermore, to diligently focus on creating helpful habits to ensure a higher level of business success. Your habits either help and support you or stall and sabotage your success.
To check your habits are serving you, take a close look at how you spend your day Click To Tweet. What do you really spend your day doing at work? Do you get distracted and procrastinate?
Are you someone who wastes valuable time on interesting yet unimportant information? Do you diligently plan your day carefully or leave it to chance? Research indicates that in an average eight hour most people are productive for only two to three hours. I will share a strategy, which will help you gently and effortlessly create better habits. Whether it’s for business or personal, the positive effects will ripple into all areas of your life as well as business success.
Your habits lie beneath your conscious awareness which makes them difficult to change
The truth is your habits are run in your subconscious mind, below your conscious awareness. What this means is you are probably not aware of many of them. Furthermore, habits are often hard to change and time-consuming to create, yet they are the key to improving your results and overall business success.
Over the past decade, I have worked with hundreds of people to help them change challenging behaviours and create healthy habits. I know that forming lasting habits takes time and often longer than we anticipate. However, the end result can be both transformational and life-changing. Consistency, an essential key, is the part where many people fall down. When a new behaviour feels hard and progress is slow, it’s easy to give up and fall back into customary ways of doing things.
‘We first make our habits and then our habits make us.’ John Dryden
Here’s why creating successful business habits is hard
First, let’s have a quick look at why we frequently fail at creating lasting habits and fall short of our desired business success and personal goals:
- Your brain is hard-wired for safety and danger. Creating new habits require change which signals danger to the brain.
- Because you are a creature of habit, you have a type of inner thermostat set at your current habit. Most attempts to change habits are way outside your comfort zone which means the inner thermostat works even harder to return it back to current ‘normal.’
- The majority of New Year’s Resolutions fizzle out. As many as ninety-three percent. For example, committing to going the gym four times a week from a base of zero, is like opening the door on a forty degrees day when you have the aircon set at twenty-one degrees. As the hot air floods the room and warms it up, the thermostat works overtime to bring the temperature back to its current setting.
- Our brains are hard-wired to move away from pain and towards pleasure, which is why when you tire, you fall back into your default behaviours. Selecting easy tasks such as scrolling through social media posts instead of completing a tedious report. Or, talking to colleagues instead of focusing on marketing. Not the best recipe for business success or creating healthy habits in our personal life.
We tend to overestimate what we can do in the short term
- We usually overestimate what we can do in the short term and underestimate what we can do in the long term. This in itself is a mindset that sets yourself up for failure. We want instant gratification rather than long-term reward.
- Ultimately you are an emotional being who is driven by how you feel. Consequently, if something feels hard, you will default to the simpler option.
How can we overcome our propensity to fall back into our comfortable ways?
The solution is to change your expectations, extend your time-frame and shift your focus towards small daily actions that move you slowly towards your goal. Past research leads us to believe that you can create a new habit in twenty-one days. However, there isn’t actually any empirical evidence to prove this. Furthermore, I know it often takes longer. You are unique which means one size doesn’t fit all. It can take one person a week to commit and another six months, one year or longer. I recently worked with a client who achieved transformational results. However, he had unsuccessfully tried to master his habit of getting up early, consistently, for five years before we worked together. Furthermore, it took us the best part of nine months to truly lock it in. However, once nailed, it was a game-changer. It was the turning point in taking his business to the next level.
It will take you as long as the equivalent effort, desire, mindset, focus and commitment you put in.
Thirty-day challenges, while a great way to get started, don’t always create winning results or better business success. I know many people who have returned to their original slothful exercising habits once the challenge has ended. Their inner thermostat pulled them back to what was comfortable.
I believe in a new simpler, more realistic approach. Recent research suggests that to create lasting habits, whether to improve business success, health or personal skills takes anything from sixty-six to three hundred and sixty-five days. Yes, that’s right. Up to a year. While that may disappoint you, it also explains why so few people achieve the things they set out to do. They don’t stick with it long enough.
Here is your new solution for creating habits for business success and life goals
- What you are tolerating in your business or life? Is there one thing that if you changed could be a game-changer?
- And what benefits will this give you?
- What is the cost of not changing it and what will it continue to cost you? Write it down.
- Why do you want to create this new habit? Ask yourself ‘why’ four times until you connect with a positive feeling.
- Decide on one tiny behaviour you take to get going. What is the first small step you can take? If it feels too easy, that is perfect.
- Next, see how you can tack this tiny behaviour onto something you already do? This is key. It helps avoid overwhelming and feeling like you have yet another thing to do. Both of these are contributors to giving up.
- Imagine how you will feel when you have made this new behaviour part of your day.
- Do this small behaviour daily for sixty-six days.
- Tick off your wins daily and celebrate.
- Don’t miss a day. And if you do, one is acceptable, but never two. Don’t break the chain.
Ultimately you are proving to yourself that you can do the things you say you will
Ultimately, you are trying to prove to yourself that you can be the sort of person who can do this. A key to all business success. Once mastered, simply increase intensity and frequency. Focus on the small daily action step rather than the outcome.
- If you want to become a master planner in your business, commit to two minutes when you sit down at your desk.
- To create a habit of exercise, start small. Commit to two times a week for ten minutes. Anything extra is a bonus.
- Get up earlier? Set your alarm just five or ten minutes earlier to start with.
To reduce stress at work stop and breathe consciously
- Reduce stress at work? Breathe for one minute every two hours. Repeat a calming mantra such as ‘I breathe in calm, I breathe out stress.’
- Eat healthier? Use a smaller plate three times a week. Once you get used to the smaller plate, you can reduce the amount of food.
So, here is my challenge, what’s yours?
I detest cold showers and swimming in the ocean when the water is cold
So, now it’s time to be honest and share my challenge. I hate cold water. Especially cold showers and getting in the ocean in winter, even though I love swimming. Even when I was a competitive triathlete I shivered at the thought of it. I loathe cold showers, even in the hot Queensland summer. This sort of bugs me, as I don’t like to be limited by my seemingly convenient story I have made around it. When I asked myself what am I tolerating, this one popped up. Changing the things we tolerate can open up a massive, unseen potential in every area of our lives.
So, every day I will turn on the cold water at the end of my shower for a few seconds. To get accustomed to cold showers, to ‘normalise’ them, I will start with only a few seconds. As I get used to the cold water I will increase the duration. This is a better way to lock in a permanent habit. The reason I want to do this is the proven health benefits, and health has always been one of my top values. Furthermore, I know the positive benefits will ripple out into every area of my life, including my business success. Mental toughness, grit and adaptability are all essential ingredients in the business world.
Now, over to your challenge.
What behaviour would you like to make a normal part of your business or personal life?
What behaviour will you now make part of your day? Decide, start small and do it every day. Don’t break the chain and tick off your wins. In conclusion, it’s a simple methodology that is relatively easy and won’t add too much more to your already big to-do list.
To join in with this, and to benefit from support and accountability, I invite you to join my FREE Sixty-six day challenge starting on 01 September 2019, on my Facebook Group, Winning Mindsets.
About the Author
- If you are looking to discover how to do the things you know you should but don’t, grab a copy of my free PDF guide Your Winning Mindset
- To boost your productivity and learn powerful Mindset strategies for focus and success, check out the new online supported program, Get Breakthrough Results
- For online programs and FREE Mindset Tips check out the Mindset for Success Academy
- To be consistent in the area of food and eating, or even shedding a few kilos, I have researched and written a short report on three ways to free yourself from the agony of dieting.