Focus on Results, Not on Excuses
Once again, this weekly writing exercise is proving to be more beneficial than I ever imagined. In a sense, writing and posting my thoughts for the world to read is life-changing. It is a catalyst for tangible transformation of my habits and routines.
I’m happy to report that I am mostly back on the wagon and the wagon is gaining speed. Not every day is 100 percent, but I’ve certainly picked up things more quickly than if left to my own contemplations. As I mentioned in my last column, once I’m off the wagon, it is easy to stay there.
In addition to the personal accountability that writing provides, I’ve also been reminded of the point of keeping score and performance statistics. Especially in sports, we have to keep score to differentiate between the victor and the defeated. On the other hand, keeping score allows the team, and anyone connected, to easily identify where the team performed well and where they didn’t.
Winners pay attention to what worked and what didn’t. They pay attention to their actions, behaviors, choices, attitudes, and a handful of things they can control. The defeated normally spend their energy focusing on the environment or circumstances, placing blame on things they don’t control.
One of my favorite leadership and personal development all-stars is Darren Hardy. He says it perfectly: “Winners deliver results. Losers deliver excuses.”
This encourages me to stay the course. It reminds me that losing, failing, or falling off the wagon isn’t the end of the world as long as I don’t let it be! This puts me in control of the actions and the attitudes I employ.
Life is full of setbacks and challenges that may slow me down for a period, but they don’t have to derail my life.
In his book, “The Compound Effect,” Hardy talks about the “weekly rhythm register.” It is a personal scorecard for his own performance in areas he has identified as important. I’ve used this tool off and on for a couple years. However, I’ve been consistently tracking my daily habits and keeping score with this weekly rhythm register for three months now.
Utilizing a scorecard allows me to see exactly what being “off the wagon” means for me. Which also means it’s an easy way to know where I can improve my score and overall personal performance.
When I don’t pay attention to details, I often feel buried under a ton of bricks that are labeled as mistakes, failures, or setbacks. But when I measure the behaviors and habits that are important to me, I can identify each brick and remove its superficial pressure by correcting one area at a time.
My personal scores were below average toward the end of September. The benefit of my weekly rhythm register is knowing where I’m missing the mark, and where I can make improvements.
Often, it is easier to take one day, one project, one habit at a time and work for a better score. With this in mind, I can focus on one action to ensure that my October scores outdo September’s. I can also focus on results instead of excuses.
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