Many possess skills, talents and attributes that come easier to them than others. This stuff doesn’t feel like work, and it’s fun.
For some it is writing, rain making, negotiating, playing sports, singing, public speaking or even solving problems.
Many believe people who have these traits are considered naturals. They think gifts are included in the DNA, and are passed down when they got their set of genes. Or they are just lucky.
That may be true in a few rare cases. But I’m of the opinion there are no gifts of talent, and luck is extremely over rated, too. Gifts and luck happen, when you really love something, are passionate, invest in practicing a craft and continuously developing “the whatever”, they become a very natural, effortless act.
The origin of the gifts is really not so important. What you do with them is.
Here is the big, bad habit that will steal from your bank account every day if you let it.
Under valuing stuff you do that is easy.
- Discounting the value of your skills, attributes and traits, because it is not hard work.
- Don’t charge enough if you are in business or ask for enough when you work for someone else.
- Or you don’t get your fair share in a collaborative deal.
The value of your skills, talents and abilities and what they will earn you is partly up to the market. Will they pay and what will they pay? But, even more important is what you believe you and your stuff are worth as you control this part of the equation that often ends up in your bank account.
Don’t be guilty of under valuing stuff that comes easy to you. Be grateful it’s fun and do enjoy the experience.
Don’t short change your worth, your bank account or your future.
For years appearing in the Wall Street Journal has been a dream of mine. The Wall Street Journal is my all-time favorite publication to read. To me it is the “businessperson’s must read” to be in the know of what ’s going is in the world and in business.
The dream came true this week! I was quoted on a front page story in the Wall Street Journal about Naked Communities Seeking Corporate Sponsors and they mentioned my book title, Brand Turnaround: How Brands Gone Bad Returned to Glory and the 7 Game Changers that Made the Difference, too!
I have been fortunate, in the past 12 years of being a branding writer, speaker and consultant, I have appeared in over 300 news outlets around the world from the New York Times to Forbes to Bloomberg TV to Fox News, and now the Wall Street Journal. So does this media ink and exposure really impact the bottom line? And how can you get your “piece of the press mention pie“?
Does media exposure impact the bottom line?
For me it does. Publicity has aided me in earning thousands of dollars and many opportunities. And it comes from these 5 distinct marketing objectives.
Media exposure adds evidence of 3rd party credibility. This helps to position the brand, in this case me, The Branding Diva®, as an authority in my field.
Media exposure puts the brand name in front of potential buyers. The Wall Street Journal alone has a global audience of over 3.5 million daily readers.
Long-term SER (search engine results)
Publicity is indexed in all of the major search engines. One great article has lasting positive influence on a brand’s organic results.
Every time I’m featured in the news, and they mention one of my books, I get a sales bump.
Throughout the years, some of my biggest speaking gigs have come from buyers seeing me in the news.
How do you get your share of media exposure?
1) Position your brand as an authority.
You should have opinions, share success cases about your topics, write books, reports and articles.
2) Be easy to find.
Most reporters find their sources from internet searches around the subject they are covering. Invest in search engine results by optimizing your online content, having an active social media footprint and securing credible links back to your sites. For the past couple years, I’ve ranked on page one under branding expert and branding speaking. This is the result of strategic blog writing, content seeding and key word research.
3) When you get called, be an amazing resource.
When reporters or producers are working on a story they are usually on tight deadline. So, when they reach out, reply ASAP. I was in a conference when the WSJ reporter contacted me. Within minutes I acknowledged her email and made it fast and easy to schedule a time to chat. I also listened to her goals before I started ranting on about my views. In most cases, I’ll ask for questions before I do an interview so I can do my homework. Being helpful will build a long-term relationship with a reporter, so they will call you back for other stories. They will share your name with their colleagues. Beyond my commentary, I will also go out of my way to provide them with other resources to make their job easier. Think sound bites! Before I do an interview I prepare an index card with simple message points and short phrases.
4) Understand the game.
Publicity is not like paid advertising. You can not read it before it runs. You do not get to control the story. You may spend hours talking to a reporter then get cut out of the final piece or they may misquote you or even spell your name wrong. That’s show business. You can do to reduce your odds of these things happening by being a smart resource and by providing interesting commentary. Try to send your points in writing as this can reduce any misinterpretation and always provide an email of your preferred title. There is no guarantee here, but I have found providing clear information usually gets better results.
For a complete guide on how to earn press and publicity to help your brand, check out my Publicity Ta-Do List.
Now that I’ve got your attention, I love metaphors and feeling naked is a common one for entrepreneurs and small businesses.
The naked pitch and how to appear fully garbed.
Since the early days of my professional career I’ve been naked and unequipped many times with industry knowledge, experience and even skill sets, but that did not stop me from scoring new business and ultimately contributing to a client’s success.
In fact, the first piece of business I landed over 30 years ago that launched my career in marketing and branding was when I was totally naked of qualifications, credentials or formal education.
That’s right, I was hired over several other individuals who had a history of not only marketing and branding expertise, but they had specific business sector experience too. I did this by shifting the focus of the presentation to what I did have and not what I lacked.
Five specific tips for winning business when you are competing against bigger and more experienced firms or professionals.
1) Project professionalism on all touch points.
Looking professional frames your value as thorough, thoughtful and competent. All details matter, from how you dress to what your business card, web presence and even social media content and photo look like.
2) Demonstrate evidence of success.
This means leverage every opportunity where third parties confirm that you know your stuff and can be counted on. This can range from highlighting media coverage to posting testimonials from industry peers and customers on your marketing materials and social media profiles.
3) Attitude aces everything.
Communicating a can do mind-set with confidence and a peaceful composure are critical to any relationship building process. Most business decisions have a risk evaluation factor in the decision formula. If a prospect really likes you, trusts you and believes you won’t make them look bad, you’ll earn points that weigh in more than specific experience. Posture, choice of active words, (like I recommend, I believe and I am confident that) and a firm handshake can make a big difference in how the prospect perceives you.
4) Highlight strengths.
Being resourceful, organized and creative are a few of my top strengths. When I’m pitching anything, I cite examples where these attributes have brought other clients faster and better results.
5) Draw comparisons.
Tell prospects about other projects that had similar challenges to theirs and how you cracked the code and produced results. Common points of pain, customer profiles or even channels used can help reduce a prospect’s doubt concerning your abilities to get the job done.
Another side of naked.
Ian Percy, http://ianpercy.com a fellow business speaker recently shared “Why we like to get naked”.
Researchers at Harvard have gotten to the bottom of why so many of us are compelled to share our every thought, movement, like and want through media such as Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare, Instagram and Pinterest.
In a series of experiments, the researchers found that the act of disclosing information about oneself activates the same sensation of pleasure in the brain that we get from eating food, getting money, or having sex. It’s all a matter of degrees, of course (talking about yourself isn’t quite as pleasurable as sex for most of us), but the science makes it clear that our brain considers self-disclosure to be a rewarding experience.
Of course what your self-disclosing nakedness does for the onlooker is a totally different issue!
Either way being a bit naked or exchanging news about your every move can be a rewarding experience.
Need more naked? Just stumbled upon a good article to help earn SEO by being naked with Google too.
Creativity is the fuel for all progress in life and business. And the good news, CREATIVITY is within everyone’s reach. While some people are born with a stronger creative twist to their thinking, creativity is a skill that can be learned.
Developing a deeper creative mind is one of my favorite passions in life. I’m always looking for new resources and thought leaders that can help me produce more creative juice so I can enjoy my journey and achieve my goals.
Here are three books on the subject of creative thinking and enhancement methods that have helped me be more creative thus adding more value to what I offer the world, my clients, followers and friends.
If you are looking to boost your creative power, I highly-recommend you check these out.
Steal Like an Artist, 10 things nobody told you about being creative by Austin Keleon.
You can read this book in an hour. It’s quick, fun, entertaining and very inspirational. The author, Austin Kleon, shares a snarky, yet practical approach to improving your creative output. He cites many creative masterminds and exposes simple, immediate actions to open the flood gates of ideas from your mind. The book is small in size and good to carry on the go for when your brain gets stuck. Austin is also from Austin, TX, the land of many brilliant ideas.
Imagine, How creativity works by Jonah Lehrer
Jonah Lehrer is a modern day rock star/scientist when it comes to writing and thinking about creativity. He is a regular contributor to the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and many other international pubs, which is how I discovered this profound and interesting thought leader. Lehrer contends that creativity is not limited to the chosen few, but is waiting for those who embrace the rut, think like children and love to daydream and grab it. He also unveils why traditional thinking about creativity, criticism, collaboration and brainstorming need to be trashed. Backed by science and presented in an easy to consume style, Lehrer’s book is a critical read for anyone in business.
Thinkertoys, the handbook for creativity by Michael Michalko
This book is my bible when it comes to creativity. I discovered Michalko’s work over ten years ago and it is my number one resource for exercises and tips to keep my brain creating at peak state. Need to light up your team, solve a big challenge or just better understand how the mind works? This is an amazing book. I especially like the way it is organized. All chapters are summarized by a blueprint and big takeaways, so you can quickly access methods and apply them to your situation.
Need more? You may also want to check out my A to Z Creativity eBook. It’s packed with 26 daily actions that I live by.
“Creativity is contagious. Pass it on!” Albert Einstein.
You’ve experienced a brand earthquake. A recession hit. Your once-successful retail company was forced to declare bankruptcy. Everything around you has crumbled, your credit has been destroyed and all that was once working for you and familiar to you is now gone, including most of your customers.
But suddenly, after a year of reorganization, legal battles and a production freeze, you have new investors. And you’re in charge of leading the brand turnaround—introducing the new face to a 30-year-old store brand.
For a shaken brand that has lost its core buyers, the goal is to find the new and former buyers who will forgive and forget past missteps and love the brand like it was loved once before.
To bring your brand back to its glory days, you’ll need to create new brand momentum, excitement and desire. All while resources are still tight and you have the giant task of changing tarnished perceptions about the old brand.
In my recent book, Brand Turnaround, I take readers through the journeys of more than 75 brands, exploring how they managed to bounce back from blunders and turn themselves around. Along the way, I identify what I call Game Changers—seven key concepts to brand transformation. Staying relevant is one of these Game Changers.
Staying relevant means to:
- Solve complex problems with simple answers.
- Keep eyes and ears on the market, watch trends, converse and listen.
- Walk in the shoes of stakeholders, whether customers, employees, investors, vendors or even critics.
- Understand the buyers’ value system.
- Identify strong segments of the top buyers’ base.
- Don’t want to or attempt to please everyone.
- Be fluid and flexible.
- Be able to detach to the past if it’s not working today.
Especially, when a brand is emerging from a dark space, it’s temping to want everyone to love you. No retailer or any business wants to miss a sale, but that’s the kiss of death in brand turnaround. If you try to be everything to everyone, you will end up being nothing to a lot of people.
As a brand leader you must focus on the most meaningful aspects of your brand—the ones that make buyers loyal, make them love the brand and want to tell their friends about it.
The very essence of brand relevance is
- The magnet that attracts new buyers and attention.
- The connection to common values and concerns.
- A relationship to exchange shared interests.
- A two-way dialogue that demonstrates that you care (you can do this by educating buyers, treating them well and never forgetting them).
- The application of your brand to their world and its needs.
- A clear message that convincingly tells buyers what’s “in it for them.”
Follow these steps, and you’re on your way to being a relevant, turnaround brand of choice.
1) Gain insight.
Identify and understand who your top customers are
This may require conducting research. In the long run, it will be a worthy investment. Your goal is to identify the customers who have the most influence with others like them, who will recommend you often, who will be repeat spenders and whose lifetime value to the business is the greatest.
You can’t please everyone. Go for your core buyers, those who matter most. I’m a strong believer that 80% of your best business comes from 20% of your market. Use segmented, strategic communications and relationship-building programs to get your core target buyers back on board with your brand.
Next you must understand what matters to these top customers and prospects, not what matters to you or your marketing department
To do this you must study buying trends, ask questions, identify common values that provide emotional satisfaction and also set up multiple dialogue channels for two-way conversations about your store, its products and the buying experience.
2) Innovate—with new solutions, recycled ideas, a mix of both.
Providing buyers with first and fresh answers to their needs and challenges not only positions you as a problem solver and savior, but it opens up many opportunities for brand exposure in the media, word of mouth and social networks.
3) Add extra value to your offerings.
Increasing the value you offer can be the difference in a buyer selecting you over one of competitors. Whether this is a tangible or intangible item, improving with more and relevant offerings count.
4) Deliver an amazing experience.
The customer experience is a three-point opportunity to be relevant. Consider the touch points before they buy, at the time of transaction and after the purchase. Include visuals whose look and feel go along with operational ones.
5) Listen and communicate.
Building brands is no longer a one-way monologue from the company. Today all brands, especially those in turnaround mode, must listen a lot and then communicate in ways that your buyers prefer. Two of the most powerful tools available to big and small companies are social media and live observations with customers. This means get social, participate in high-traffic social networks in a conversational way and pay close attention to what happens with customers and your team in the store and in other venues.
6) Stay flexible and current with economic and societal changes. This means embracing change.
Maybe you were a niche retailer at your peak. No one else offered merchandise with quite the same essence as you. But during your time out of production, other companies popped up and attempted to cash in on your niche market. You’re no longer as unique as you were before. What now?
Finding relevance doesn’t automatically guarantee sustaining relevance. At any moment, your brand could begin to lose it.
These things often happen:
- Brands grow, and with that comes bigger marketing departments, more audiences to cater to and larger committees to appease. Suddenly brand relevance is so watered down that it’s not serving the brand base or producing the outcome that everyone wants.
- Brand leaders can’t see the big picture because they are caught up in the details. They don’t recognize the problem because they are relying on old ways of researching and thinking.
- Brand leaders are reluctant to push out into new categories that they create, can own and rule for fear of failure.
At the end of the day, ask yourself: is your brand relevant? Is it clear on what’s in it for the customer and does it bring a high level of emotional satisfaction?
This article is based on content from Karen Post’s latest book Brand Turnaround (McGraw-Hill 2011).
My friends and business colleagues often ask me, “How do you constantly produce so much stuff, ideas, stories, images, books, products and speeches?!”. The answer is simple. I consume this delicious cocktail, straight up daily, which let’s me get more done and have more fun!
Start with ample sleep, for me it’s 8 hours.
Eat often, at least five small meals with protein daily.
Set accountable goals, daily (one or two is fine).
Meditate and do deep breathing, even if it’s 5 minutes.
Pay attention to what you experience.
Hang out with people smarter than you.
Exercise, for me it’s tennis.
Read, books, labels, faces, bumper stickers, the WSJ.
Journal good ideas.
Ask questions that feel stupid.
Whip through magazines, daily (notice headlines, photos and ads).
Limit hard problem solving to two-hour sessions at a time, break for food, fun or exploring.
Watch spectacular performances.
Observe super successful people.
Push yourself 20% more than your comfort zone welcomes.
Enjoy the fruits of your production.
Time to reinvent? Jumpstart your business or your career with this simple, easy to follow Reinventing you Ta-Do list.
No, I didn’t. And because I’ve bought so many of those silly $100 replacement cables and lost them too, I was not about to hit the road without it. So I quickly phoned up my driver to see if he could run back to my place, get it and bring it to me before my flight left. Like a champ, he said no problem.
So how does a list-obsessed traveler like me forget stuff like this? By moving too fast.
My trip to Chicago was fabulous. I spent three days at the restaurant show, did a lot of marketing for my new restaurant product, filmed a 6-minute live segment for FOX News that aired nationally, attended a series of excellent focus studies for one of my Chicago clients, met a bunch of great new business contacts and experienced a city that I adore.
Wednesday morning I’m up early to catch a flight back to Tampa. I’m showered and dressed and looking for my make-up and hair care stuff. It is nowhere in the room. I call the desk and ask if they have a gift shop where I can buy the basics, the store does not open until 8AM, my driver is picking me up at 7AM.
(To my guy readers, not having make-up is equivalent to not having pants on and going to a meeting.)
I have no make-up, no hair brush and no patience. I also have a business meeting as soon as I get off the plane in Tampa. I’m starting to stress.
I improvise. I find a fork in the kitchenette and do the best I can with my hair, thinking I’ll get to the airport and they will have a store to buy a brush and make-up.
With my sunglasses on, I race to O’Hare, get to my gate and look for a store. There are none other than food and magazine shops. I calmly walk to the plane quietly thinking I need to be rich enough to afford a make-up artist to travel with me, then this would never be a problem. I also thought having my own jet would be a lot better than standing in line with a bunch of screaming kids. I definitely need to work smarter or start buying more lottery tickets.
I find my seat and I’m now really concerned that if I show up to my 2:30 meeting looking like this, (no make-up on) my client will not only not recognize me, but they will be frightened.
My seatmate looks like a million bucks. She’s well dressed, her make-up is perfect and she’s relaxed. I compliment her and tell her my story of the missing make-up bag.
Then like an angel from the sky, my new friend Denise Sowder tells me she’s a beauty consultant and works for Mary Kay. She also said she had a suit case full of make-up products and samples. OMG. As soon as we landed, she saved the day. We found the nearest ladies room, I got a make-up lesson and all the products I needed.
What are the odds of that happening? A million to one.
- Slow down. Speed will not necessarily get you to the goal faster.
- Always carry toiletries in your carry-on bags. Not in a separate bag that you can leave somewhere. Turns out I left it at a research facility.
- Keep an extra set of power cords in your suitcase.
- Pay it forward. Keep your Karma bank account full. I’m placing a Mary Kay order with my new friend Denise. That plane trip and her kindness will not soon be forgotten.
For more on trips to Chicago, view:
5 inspirational ideas and 2 revelations from an adventure to Chicago
Have you called yourself recently? On all of your phones? If not, it’s a fast find and fix to improving your brand impression.
How do I know this? Because I was grossly guilty of phone message neglect.
Fortunately, I have good friends who tell me the truth. Here’s a recent call I received.
“Hey Karen, Ms. Branding Diva your phone message stinks. It’s too long, you sound like you are in a tunnel under ground and teetering on having a bad day.”
She was right. This was a big disconnect from who I am and what my brand stands for. Here’s the really sad part, it’s been like that for a year, YIKES!
Five simple tips to a better telephone branded signal.
1) Be clear – Always state your full name.
2) Be brief – In our fast paced and busy world, short and to the point are best.
2) Have tone – Include some branded attitude, for me it’s energy and confidence.
3) Be current and relevant – Keep things fresh, consider changing your message with the seasons, the months or for no reason at all.
4) Provide a clear call to action – What do you want the caller to do? Leave their name and what they need? Or even better their American Express number?
5) Manage expectations – If you can’t check messages for along period of time, provide a timely route to you, request a text message or email from the caller.
Don’t ever, ever use the default, computer message. That clearly communicates nothing except you are unprofessional or so unorganized you can’t find the time to set up.
Bottom line, your phone message is often the first impression a new contact has with you. Make it a great one. And it does not hurt to make sure your visible phone and accessories are on board with your brand too. It’s all part of the personal branding package.
Still don’t have a smart phone? It’s 2012. Plus, being a tech dinosaur is no marketing edge.
And if bold styling is part of your image, consider a retro hand set (like pictured above) to plug into your iPad, iPhone or other smart phones and a cool, matching phone protector. I’ve usually sport the Branding Diva® red set —phone case, handset and fire engine hot lipstick. It’s an excellent conversation starter at coffee shops and airport lounges, after all that’s where new business often starts.
Got to go catch a call! Talk soon! Brand on!
Last week I had drinks with a retired colonel from MacDill Air Force Base. This guy had been to 2 wars zones, Iraq and Afghanistan, three times. He had been inches away from grenades exploding and been literally shot at from 10 feet away. Fortunately, the bullets missed him. Many in his platoon were not that lucky.
He knew I was an entrepreneur. He’d been to my websites. This is what he said to me.
“Karen, you are so brave and courageous. I admire that so much. I don’t know that I could do that, be a front line entrepreneur like you. You’ve got to hustle business every day, be such a self-starter and operate with so much uncertainty”.
WOW, here’s a soldier who risked his life for our country, thinking I’m the tough one. At first I thought he was just flirting, but then I thought about it, and I suppose to many being an entrepreneur is pretty darn scary.
I’ve never seen it that way. Because of the way I’m wired and because of the values I formed from my life experiences.
The fact is we are both warriors, the military and the troops of entrepreneurs all across the world.
This was the theme of my program I presented today to Southeastern Entrepreneurship Conference. It was my second year to participate and like last year the energy I got from the young entrepreneurs was amazing and inspirational.
My message to the audience was direct. There is no place like entrepreneur land. Owning your own business and being your own boss. Sure it’s tough, risky and uncertain, but then again so is walking down the street.
My bigger point to the group was, it’s not what hits you, but what you do next that counts.
My life as an entrepreneur has been an exciting and scary as hell roller coaster ride for nearly 30 years. Would I trade those experiences in for a 9-5 gig? No way. Cause at the end of the day, I’m driving the car. To me that’s the best way to go through life.
Bad and challenging stuff happens to the best of us. And if you’ve got your eye on a big prize, I guarantee you, your share will not be small. Most highly successful people actually encounter more bumps than those who achieve average results. There is a correlation between the volume of failure and magnitude of success.
And then comes my favorite saying: “What does not kill you, makes you stronger”.
Now for any of you who think I just write about this stuff and maybe have not had actual bouts with big boy challenges, here are just a few of my most memorable high stress, danger zones I’ve experienced first hand.
A 4 month tax audit, an investment in a venture that crashed and burned, an employee with a drinking problem, loss of a big client, three key employees quitting at once, a big company filed a trademark infringement that cost over $50,000 and me filing a time and money sucking law suit against an international celebrity to collect owed money. This is the short list. My point is any of these situations could have sent me to the 9-5 world, but they did not and I won the battle.
Here are 5 moves that keep me and my entrepreneurial dream alive.
1) Work from a plan. Even if it’s one page long.
I support this move by writing daily goals before I go to sleep at night for the next day.
I also track my time. This puts light on my waste so I can focus on result producing tasks..
I do daily rituals, every single day.
2) Master mental resiliency.
This is a work in progress, but I have gotten thicker skin through all of my life experiences.
Don’t hang on to screw ups, disappointments and failures. I shake things off like my black lab used to do when she got wet.
Learn the art of re-framing yucky situations into the good stepping stones that get you closer to what you want.
Know how to reboot and create your own momentum.
Be fit, mentally and physically.
3) Network up.
Hang out with people that are challenging you, not saying what you want to hear and sucking up to your mediocre bar.
Be a lifetime learner with folks that are smarter-than you.
Cut the dead wood off your growing dream. This means sometimes you’ll grow out of relationships.
5) Brand you and your business
They are both important and can contribute to your success.
Pick a lane. Decide what you are, do it well and in a unique fashion.
Resonate your identity on all of your touch points to your market (how you dress, act and communicate).
And in closing, I reminded the audience of the number one, most important thing an entrepreneur needs to succeed.
Full body confidence.
Stand tall, shoulders back and believe in yourself. You are your number one and most important fan! Breakthrough business stories have leveraged this powerful weapon for centuries. It is such a game changer.
Without a positive self image you may as well be burnt toast. So work on this daily. For me, I go for stuff that seems impossible. Walking on fire was a real booster for me. I also read my affirmations daily (you must write these before you can read them). I keep a victory folder (containing things that make me feel good, from notes, to press clips, to deposit receipts) and I monitor and read about people who inspire me and remind myself how human they are too.
You got the gear and the intelligence. Man up, even if you are a female.
My military friend may have had a valid point when he said that being an entrepreneur was such an admirable feat for the brave and courageous few.
I reminded him and the SEEC attendees that it’s all about the angle that you choose to look at the enemy and the prize.
Risk scares many, but to an entrepreneur it is the needed fuel for the greatest rewards.
Most think danger should be avoided, but to an entrepreneur it is a welcome and exciting adventure.
Being on your own appears to be such hard work and so difficult, not for an entrepreneur who chooses something they love to do.
As free Americans who live in a capitalist society the power to transform uncertainty into clarity is in our reach.
Entrepreneurs make your move.
The past few months I’ve really amped up my commitment to my tennis game. I play 4 or 5 times a week, take lessons and participate in cardio drills.
The results have been GREAT. I’ve lost 5 pounds and buffed up quite a bit. And I’ve had a surprising number of wins when I was really behind. I’m talking down by two sets, against a 26 year old or in a deep hole with scores like 5,0 and 5,1 and I’ve come back.
I’ve been thinking about this phenomenon, how it happens and how it applies to life and business too.
For me it’s about a few big emotions: frustration, annoyance, disappointment and how to manage them.
I know feeling frustrated is a big fat waste of energy. It keeps you in a spin, not moving anywhere. While I work on eliminating this emotion from my life, I’d be lying if I said I never feel it. I do, and many times it’s on the court, especially when I keep on losing the same points in the same way.
Lesson here. Do things differently. If you do things the way you’ve been doing them, you will likely get the same results.
Annoyance is another evil emotion. In my view it’s a weakness and it translates into letting the other person get to me over and over again. I often feel defeated even before the game is over. I get very annoyed when my opponent in tennis does something pesty, like continuous short drop shots, and return shots with an extreme spin that makes the ball go in totally weird places after it bounces.
Lesson here. Instead of using your energy to beat up yourself more, re-frame the emotion from annoyance to excitement, replace those annoying things your opponent is doing with actions to stop them and deliberate moves that activate excitement.
Some contend that disappointment is a legitimate feeling especially when expectations are set. I’m often torn with this concept, because I try very hard to practice an “in the moment” way of living. But I’m also very goal-focused and I believe one must have standards set to bench-mark stuff and know when to activate the delete button; when things just don’t meet your needs.
Lesson here. I acknowledge the state of disappointment like I do failure. Both are temporary events. Feel them in proportion to the big scheme of things, not for one second more.
Such as: minor disappointments like losing a non professional tennis match, or when some random person not even in your close world is being rude or mean or like when you buy a piece of fruit and it ends up bad and tart when you were craving a sweet plum. For me, I ask myself, does it really matter? Then I shake it off right away or in a few minutes.
Or a bigger disappointment like when a professional setback occurs that impacts many things, or a person I value who is not acting the way I want them to or when I make a bad investment that shows up as a big number on my balance sheet. For me- I try to find some good in the bad event, then I shake it off in a few hours or at the most a few days.
Hanging on to disappointments is no better than torching all your clothes, your car and yourself. Not only will it prevent future joy, it produces other negative effects like toxic pollution which touches others too.
The real key to this story is not the emotion, but the turning point. This is the point when the discomfort from frustration, annoyance and disappointment become unbearable. It’s the point that one must choose to change things because they’ve had enough. And when they are done right, theses changes result in a magical force called momentum.
Momentum is how I came back to win those games. Momentum can change your game too, in sports, business and in life. Whether you are vacillating in a bad relationship, in a stagnate career or struggling to hit a home run with start-up.
Momentum has the power of a big wind storm. Momentum can set you free and produce many amazing rewards.
Finding your momentum is about choice.
You’ve got to want it.
And then you’ve got to create it.
Here’s how it happens – How to create your momentum.
Tony Robbins first taught me these ways to make momentum when I attended his “Unleash the Power within Workshop” a few years ago. Since then I practice it often and added some steps to make the process work for me. And it has. When I make momentum big stuff happens, stuff that seemed impossible manifests.
1) Get in a peak state. It creates momentum.
This means get your head, your heart and the physiology body in extreme focused, high-performance state. It helps me to remember another event when I was in a peak state. Like for me in tennis, I imagine a past comeback victory. I visualize that place and how it made me feel higher than high, an adrenaline rush, total bliss!! I go there again. Or in business, I remember a big new business score, a standing ovation or a time a client raved about my work.
2) Find your passion. It creates momentum.
This means reminding yourself of your values. What do you love? I love to compete!! What do you really want? For me, in tennis, it’s adding another win to my scorecard.
3) Decide, commit and resolve. It creates momentum.
This means no waffling, no tentativeness and no doubts. When I’m on the court I recite positive mantras too, OK some are sprinkled with a little snarkiness too.
Go after everything.
Nadal, Federer, Post
Ms. Opponent, you think you like steak, try chewing on this tennis ball.
Finish the shot.
Yes, I can!!!
4) Take urgent, immediate, consistent and massive action. It creates momentum.
It means as Nike says: Just do it!! And I say: Do it now!!
A sense of urgency has to kick in. A “take no prisoners” mindset has to be center stage.
5) Be flexible and honest with yourself.
Ask yourself: Are the changes working? Do I need to modify some more? Maybe take on a new action?
Feel the emotion of your achievement, the big and small ones count. Remind yourself who led the movement, YOU! And remind yourself of the formula that was needed, so you can do it again.
In closing, the super cool thing about momentum is it’s a very present, powerful force, like a huge gust of wind. Your competitors will fear it, your team and peers will embrace it and it can serve as fuel in your tank for the next battle, on the courts, in the boardroom or in a life environment.
Go make some momentum!!