As satisfying as it feels to successfully cross finish lines throughout our life, it’s actually counterproductive to give them too much attention. It’s important to focus on the action rather than the result.
My client called me, sounding all stressed out. She said she keeps a to-do list but as you can imagine, there are still things left over that go uncompleted at the end of each day. She felt a sense of achievement only when she was able cross of an item on her to-do list.
“I love that feeling of crossing something off on my list,” she declared.
“What about the process?” I asked.
“What about it?” she responded. “If I cross something off, I know I’m being productive.”
“Do you feel that way during the process?” I inquired.
She did not.
“Take an activity you engage in every day. It could be cold calling, selling or even going to the gym. So, when you go to the gym, once you’ve reached your ideal weight or your ideal sense of well being, do you stop going?”
What if you focused more on the process and the activities that your engaging in on a daily basis. After all isn’t that ultimately what defines you and your lifestyle. What you do each day? Consider this:
Let the action be the reward and not just the end result. This will enable you to become more process driven rather than result driven. Results are based on action not the other way around.
Evolution is fluid. Time is fluid. It’s not meant to have a stopping point. Yet we put superficial expectations around our life on ourselves and on others, which builds a wall between where we are now and what we need to break through to get to where we truly want to be; preventing us from engaging in the moment, enjoying the present and mastering each moment in time.
Watch Out for the Hook
Rather than having the result be your reward, let the action be your reward. Here’s why. Once you have outlined a path and a success formula to follow (For example if you are a salesperson: X # of calls produces X # of prospects which produces X # of sales), allow the doing or the process to be the reward and where the pleasure resides, not just the end result. This way, you can be responsible for your future goals without having to worry about them.
If you continue your quest with your eyes focused on the finish line, you’ll miss out on the journey. Therefore, be careful not to hook yourself onto the future so that you can enjoy the process of reaching your goals today. Knowing when enough is enough each day and the specific activities you need to engage in provides you with the freedom to trust the process you’ve put in place.
After all, there’s always more to do. There’s always more that can be done at the office, at your home or in your life; another call that can be made or another email that can be read. Exceeding your monthly sales quota and maximizing the potential of your team will be the result of the cumulative efforts you make and the activities you engage in every day.
When you’re mindful of the process, you now have the opportunity to recognize and celebrate your accomplishments on a daily basis (even the little ones) rather than pushing for or waiting until the “End.” (And when does that happen?)
Photo credit: Microsoft Office Images