Last week, at our IPS team meeting an interesting thought popped into my mind. In between the jokes that made us laugh so hard we could barely breathe, and the operations discussion, we had the “where are we headed” talk. I am sure you have had that one before! The comment that caught my attention though, was when Eric Pringle, our CEO, told us about a lesson he taught his son when he was learning to mountain bike. “ You go where you look.” As we joked about how his son would repeat that over and over again each time he rode, I had one of those “ah hah” moments. What an obvious thing to apply to not only your daily life but to your career and business as well. Could it really be that simple? Well… no, if it was we would all be exactly where we want to be, and probably wouldn’t be reading this! But it’s a starting point.
How many times do you set a goal for yourself, but instead of focusing on what you want to happen, you focus on everything that could go wrong? You’ve already set yourself up for disaster. Imagine if you were on a bike, only focused on that giant cliff to your left. Within seconds, you would probably be laid out on the ground from falling over the edge. Not to mention all your friends would most likely be laughing (pending you are ok) and loading the whole event onto YouTube. Don’t be that person!
Don’t get me wrong, turning your focus away from your fears and negative thinking is going to take practice! Many of us, me included, have been headed towards those cliffs for a long time. But the key is to start small. Instead of attempting to meet the goals you have set for the far-off future, figure out where you want to be right now, tomorrow, or even next week and work on accomplishing that. This will in the end help you accomplish those long-term goals. Focusing on your mountain biking trip next year, isn’t going to keep you from going off the side now. But focusing on the path currently in front of you will! Of course, fantasizing about the future is exciting, but it won’t get you where you want to be in this moment and if you can’t meet your current goals, the future ones will seem even further away.
This concept, can and should be applied to all aspects of your life. As a leader in your company it is your responsibility to make sure it is headed in the right direction. Are you concentrated on the strategic moves you need to make today, to help you get where you want to be in the future? Or are you so worried about failing and what could go wrong, that you’re headed directly towards the edge of that cliff? I know this concept is easier said than done! But as difficult as it seems, just keep reminding yourself that if you don’t aim where you want to go now, its unlikely you will ever get anywhere.
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