Okay, picture this. You’re sitting in a coffee shop across the table from your prospect. You tell her “Hey I’m excited out of my mind about this new business I started. The products are fantastic and the opportunity is once-in-a-lifetime. I know you’re going to join me or at least become a customer.” After your […]
You’re standing in the checkout line. As usual, the line is too long. On both sides of you all you can see are empty registers.
The shopper behind you heaves a sigh. You think to yourself “she gets it.” So you strike up a conversation that goes something like:
“I should have known better than to come here. They never have enough registers open”
“Oh my gosh! Yes! I was thinking the same thing.”
“They know how busy it gets around this time. Why don’t they open another register now?
“That’s messed-up, right?”
“I know, right?”
Your little rant didn’t make the line shorter, but it did accomplish its purpose…it made you feel better.
Complaining is like that. We get to give a voice to our frustrations and if we find another who understands…even better.
But I learned from David Allen, author of Getting Things Done that a complaint is nothing more than an acknowledgement that something could be different and should be different, but you’re not involved in making it so.
That really changed my mind about complaining. I didn’t stop complaining and I’m not saying you should either. If you see something that’s wrong or should be changed—yes, you should speak up about it. There’s no benefit in going into denial and pretending you don’t see what you see.
But I am saying you should challenge the belief that the only thing you can do is complain—that you can’t change it—that you can’t make a difference.
Every time you see something that could be different and should be different, think “What could I do to change it—to improve it—to fix it?” You don’t have to go around righting all wrongs. That would be exhausting. But if you start believing you can make a difference, you’ve actually got a shot at making a difference.
But you can’t do it alone.
Every change in the world requires people—many people—to act differently. The change may start with you, but eventually you will need the cooperation of others. Even the members of “The Justice League” realize “You can’t save the world alone.”
These are individuals with power—the kind of power you only see in comic books. So for us mere mortals…if superheroes have to band together and form something called “The Justice League” to save the world, then we humans are going to have to band together too.
So when it comes to complaining, I urge you to do three things.
- Recognize that your complaints are really an expression of your vision for a better world.
- Realize that you can do something to create your vision.
- Seek to connect with other world-changers because you understand you can’t save the world alone.
Several years ago, I was as far from believing I could do anything to change the world as I could be. I was sitting across the table from a career counselor complaining about all the things I felt powerless to do anything about.
He looked at me and said…
“I know what you’re missing. You’re missing self-actualization.”
At the time, I didn’t know what “self-actualization” meant. Since then, I’ve come to see it as that feeling you get when you’re doing all you can to be your best and you see your efforts benefit others.
It’s the opposite of what Jimmy Stewart’s character, George Bailey felt in the 1946 movie, “It’s a Wonderful Life”. He almost ended it all because he felt his life wasn’t making any positive difference. Through a miraculous turn of events, he gets to see how the world would have been different without him, and realizes he was having a positive impact all along.
The truth of that story is we all make a difference in the world by virtue of being here. Self-actualization happens when we are aware and intentional about the difference we make.
I got my first taste of that feeling when I went with a team to Guatemala to build bottle schools. I was overwhelmed at the realization that I was shoulder-to-shoulder with world-changers. And that made me a world-changer too. This picture sums up how I felt:
It all started with people seeing a problem, deciding to do something about it, and sharing the vision with others.
And now I no longer see myself as just a helpless cog in a machine. I see myself more like a brontosaurus. I see possibilities from a higher perspective. I’m someone who shakes things up without permission. And like in “Jurassic Park” I travel in herds.
So, the next time you catch yourself complaining, don’t just settle for that “I know, right?” feeling. Remember you’re just a world-changer expressing your vision of a better future.
And to help you get in touch with your world-changing superpower, I have a FREE 3 day video challenge I put together for you. Just follow the link and enter your email address. I’ll send you a video each day for the next three days taking you through a step-by-step process to identify your unique superpower.
Okay, picture this.
You’re sitting in a coffee shop across the table from your prospect. You tell her “Hey I’m excited out of my mind about this new business I started. The products are fantastic and the opportunity is once-in-a-lifetime. I know you’re going to join me or at least become a customer.”
After your very best presentation you look at her with a big grin on your face and you say “You’re in, right?”
And then she hits you right in the chest with her words “I don’t want anything to do with this business you’re doing. I think it’s a scam. I think you’re a scam, and even if it were legit you’d fail anyway. You should just give up now.”
And then you say “but…Mom!”
Okay, actually that’s not what she said. She really said something like “I don’t have the money right now”, or “I’m not interested” or “I have to talk to Dad about it”. The point is, the rejection stings just the same.
If you’re expecting me to tell you the magic comeback or objection-handling incantation to avoid that kind of rejection, I’ve got bad news. I don’t have it. It doesn’t exist. You’re going to experience it.
The only question is…what do you do when it happens?
The answer to that question is the same as the answer to all situations in life. Chip Heath and Dan Heath, authors of Made to Stick, say that your decisions always answer three questions:
- Who am I?
- What kind of situation is this?
- What would a person like me do in a situation like this?
In other words, the way you show up in all of life comes down to who you believe you are.
Now, if I were to ask you who you are, you’d probably answer with where you were born, where you went to school, what you do for a living, what your hobbies are…
But the narrative you recite only describes who you think you are. How you show up—what you do—faithfully testifies to who you believe you are.
If you want a shot at succeeding in business, you have to believe you are the kind of person who can get past rejection. Likewise, if you recruit people into your business, only those who believe they can get past rejection will stay. The rest will quit.
The good news is, the belief of who you are—your self image—is not fixed in concrete. It can change. It can be developed.
The bad news is, you’ve been rehearsing your self-image your whole life. Every experience you’ve ever had has gone into making up your self-image, so deconstructing and reconstructing that self-image is a huge undertaking. It’s the kind of the thing they do in military boot camp—break you down into your base elements and then build you back up.
Well, a business is a volunteer army and if you try to run a military-style boot camp you’ll probably get sued or arrested. At the very least, your recruits would go AWOL.
But there is an answer.
There is a way you can help a person hack their self-image to the point they can withstand and endure and persevere through the kinds of obstacles that inevitably come when you’re running a business.
To see this self-image hack in action we have to look no further than the movie “Balto”.
Balto wants nothing more than to be a sled dog on a champion team. The only problem is, Balto is not just an ordinary dog—he’s half wolf. No matter how hard he tries, he is never accepted onto anyone’s sled dog team.
When a deadly diphtheria epidemic breaks out at the same time as a blizzard, the only way to deliver life-saving medicine is by sled. When the team gets lost, Balto and his friends venture out to find them. One of Balto’s friends gets injured, so his friends turn back and Balto continues alone.
But, right before they leave, his best friend Boris, a goose with a Russian accent, says to Balto “A dog cannot make this journey alone. But…maybe a wolf can.”
You see, all his life, Balto rehearsed the self-image of a half-dog trying to be accepted in a dog’s world. For the first time, Balto was given an alternate self-image to consider when Boris said to him “maybe a wolf can”.
So when it comes to finding the strength to push past discouragement and rejection in business, you can do what Boris did for Balto. Find the aspects of yourself that maybe you’ve ignored. See the positive side of those attributes. Finally, anchor those attributes to a form different from yourself. It could be a wolf, it could be a bear, a lion, or any other kind of Beast you can imagine.
And when you’re sure you can’t go on. You can’t take another step. You can’t face one more rejection. When you believe you can’t, all you have to believe is…maybe a Beast can.
And to help you find out just what kind of Beast you are, I’ve got a three-day video challenge. Follow the link, enter your email address, and each day for three days I’ll send you a video and walk you through a step-by-step process to identify your inner beast.
I can’t wait to help you on your entrepreneurial journey.
Well if there’s any one rule to remember about being a Beast and unlocking your true Beast and your full potential it’s this…
Do what you love… and don’t chase money.
In his book, Instinct by T.D. Jakes, he goes on to talk about how your highest success is what you’ll achieve if you follow the instincts that are just a part of who you are—those natural hunches, those tendencies that are just a part of who you are. And if you learn to tap into that and learn to listen to that you will achieve any level of success that you want to achieve.
I mean after all, it’s not hard for an eagle to fly—it’s just what eagles do—or for a cheetah to run, or for any type of animal to just do what it does.
I mean, success and succeeding…that’s what Beasts do. And if you just follow those inner cues, like a compass, it’s going to direct you in the right path. You just have to tap into it, you just have to trust it, and just kind of to an extent, you know, go with the flow.
So with that said, this is not a very long video, just want to urge you to listen to your Beast instincts and keep being a Beast.