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Make It A Game, Not A Contest

Make-it-a-game-300x200Let’s say you want something.  You get 89% of what you asked for.  How would you feel?

Pleased?  Upset?  Which would you focus on?  The 89% you gained or the 11% you came up short?

I know it depends on the circumstances and how attached you are to reaching your original goal.

In my case, I was very attached.  I wanted to lose weight … 83 pounds to be exact.

I set my goal in September 2011 with my coach.  We held the vision, created action plans, and I worked diligently.  I carried on through the inevitable obstacles that come up when you’re up to something big!  And I did well.

Fast forward to March 22, 2014.  After having unprecedented success in the last six months, I’m now literally inches from my goal.  I’m down 74 pounds, lots of inches, and the goal I created 2 1/2 years ago is in sight!

I could see it, feel it, and almost taste it!  I knew what I had to do to make it happen, and I was prepared to follow through.  There wasn’t a doubt in my mind I could do it.

And, I failed!

I came up nine pounds short of my goal on the last round of my protocol, and now I have to take a break for awhile.

And there I am … dreadfully unhappy.

Am I focused on the 74 pounds I’ve lost in the last eight months?  No! All I can see is the nine pounds.

Am I focused on how my body has gone from an XXL to a small or medium.  Nope.

Am I focused on how great I feel … how my knees don’t hurt and that I look pretty darned good?  Nope.

Unmet expectations can make you very sad … and cranky.

Sure, I finally came to my senses, but here I was behaving in a way that made no sense. Heck, if a client came to me moaning about coming up nine pounds short after having lost 74, I’d suggest s/he might not be seeing the big picture and might want to celebrate.

So, why am I telling you this?  What does it have to do with your business?

Most of us set goals in business.  It’s great to set big audacious goals. But say you set a goal to make $250K this year, double what you did last year, and you make $200K.

Have you failed? Of course not.  Then why does it feel like it to some of us?  Why do we get so upset?

Because rather than make it a game and a challenge that’s fun and exciting, it becomes a measure of our self-worth.

Well, having just lived through it, I’m here to tell you, that’s just nutty.

Losing those 74 pounds … making that $200K … those are achievements to be reveled in and celebrated enthusiastically?

Why?  Because we deserve it dang it.  Those things didn’t happen by accident, and nothing is promised to us in this world.  Celebrate all good things. Celebrate achievement, and that includes making progress toward your goal.

Why? Because success and celebration lead to more success and celebration. It’s habit forming.  And it just feels good.

Self-criticism and that disappointment vibe lead absolutely nowhere.

This was an important learning for me.  I don’t want my experience of life to be about what I coulda or woulda accomplished had I only done that much more.  I want it to be about what I did and how much fun I had doing it.  I want to make it a game, not a contest.

And you know what?  That’s the very thing that allows you to do more and be more successful in your life and business than you even thought possible. Because there’s no struggle involved.  No resistance.  Just the joy of doing something, because you love it and it’s fun.

Less push.  More flow.

Ironic, isn’t it?


 Screen Shot 2014-01-09 at 5.21.32 PMDenise After

Meet Denise: Denise Hedges is a Business Development Coach and Speaker Coach for small business owners who want to be more comfortable, confident, and successful with their sales and marketing efforts. She specializes in helping them use speaking as a way to dramatically improve their results!