“Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself.” ~Rumi
If you’re reading this blog, chances are pretty high that you have big goals in your practice, business and your life. You are committed to making a difference with your clients, have a certain quality of life, create a certain culture at the law firm, increase revenue by 30%, or some other goal. But sometimes things happen and what we worked so hard for, ends up coming up short instead. When we’re playing a big game, we will always have breakdowns. What defines us is how we deal with those breakdowns. You see it’s not about perfection, if it was, there would be no growth or development available. What defines us is how we deal with those breakdowns. In fact, many times those breakdowns could provide us with more wisdom and growth, which transfer to other areas of the practice or life.
Let’s look at how we identify opportunities, and what’s missing from accomplishing your goals, reaching a new level of success or overcoming a plateau in your businesses.
The first step is to acknowledge that we all have “blind spots” that prevent us from seeing how our current habits, performance and systems are getting in the way of the goals we’ve outlined and the success we feel we deserve, envision and crave.
Second ask yourself these 4 questions:
- Was this a breakdown in a system or a breakdown in performance? This is critical – what was the system or plan you used to achieve your goal? If you had no system, start there… Create one! If you had a system, what aspect didn’t work? What can be revised so that you’re empowered to keep going? Or did the system work and you have a breakdown in your performance? If so, look closely at what you did/didn’t do.
- What can I learn from the breakdown? Consider that you can view the breakdown as an opportunity, then really be honest with yourself about what didn’t work so you can create newly, rather than “doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result.”
- Am I putting unnecessary pressure on myself? Don’t forget to look backward at what you’ve accomplished. Sometimes we’re too busy looking forward at we haven’t done that we don’t celebrate our victories.
- What new actions can I take today? After asking yourself what you can learn from the breakdown, you may see brand new actions that you can take to accomplish your goals faster. Then take actions that will move you closer to your goal today! They don’t have to be big actions, even small tasks will move you forward and reduce pressure and stress.
You see, the old tried and true model of doing more, trying harder and accomplishing more is bankrupt. You may even be working 50-60+ hours a week and feel like you haven’t hit your stride of “potential.” I’ve felt the same obstacles in my own life, how do I get enough hours in the day, energy, support and time it perfectly to have the breakthroughs and success in my career, family and personal life to make it all happen.
Your life and business doesn’t have to live or die by that cycle. There may even be some fear blinding you from seeing what is really in your realm of control. Yes, it’s true, we cannot 100% control results, but we can play the game full out and take the appropriate actions without fear of failure or at least the courage to face our fears.
Practice Leadership Coach
American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc.
9444 Balboa Avenue, Suite 300
San Diego, California 92123
Phone: (800) 846-1555
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