I was recently listening to a CD by LIFE founder Chris Brady. One of the things he discussed was the Productive Loop. This really resonated well with me as I have recently found myself going through this loop. Just about every area of our lives takes us through this loop. Whenever we encounter something new, we go through this loop. You have to be mentally tough to go through these areas and achieve success. The areas are as follows:
Ignorance—we simply do not know what we do not know. We are ignorant to what we are embarking upon. We do not know what is lurking behind door number one and that is a bit scary for us.
Skepticism—when a new or foreign concept is introduced to us, we become skeptical. This is a normal and acceptable course of action, just as long as you do not allow it to spill over into cynicism. Cynicism will cause blockages in your psyche. It will take you over and begin to spill over into other important area of your life. You have undoubtedly met cynical people. They are not the most fun people to hang around. They tend to take lemonade and turn it into sour lemons. You get the picture. Skepticism is cool just fight cynicism with every fiber of your being.
Curiosity—this is an area that starts to get the blood moving. You begin to wonder if you really can achieve. As you get more curious, your interest is sparked and you begin to learn. During my senior year of college, I got recruited by a bank. I had no idea what being a commercial banker would entail—I was ignorant to the field. But I got curious enough to do the proper research from the proper people. My point is that when you research a topic; ensure you are searching in the proper areas. When you begin to search, you move into learning.
Learning—nothing awakens an adult like learning. Excitement begins to build from within and enthusiasm is kindled as the adult begins to learn. He begins to get that spark back in his eye, as his mind is engaged again. Once again, I speak from recent experience. For nearly two and a half years, I had been virtually sleep-walking through life. I had nearly given up on my vision, until I began learning about a new opportunity. I revisited my former goals and dreams. Now I feel more alive than I have in many, many years. Not only am I dreaming again, but I am taking action towards achieving those dreams.
Action—when one begins to learn, the next natural step is to take action. In order to achieve a goal, you must take action towards it. Perfection is not important, taking action is.
Progress—what is important here is that you are moving forward in a positive direction. You are making progress. Now, as you make progress, you want to make constant checks to ensure that you on course. If not, then make the proper course corrections (remember my post on Course Corrections a few weeks ago?). Make as many as possible and as often as possible. This way, you will discover what works and what does not work. This discovery leads to success.
Success—most people need to redefine what success is. There is only one “best” at anything. Let us look at sports for a moment. During the 2011 NFL season, the Minnesota Vikings went 3-13 and finished dead last in the NFC North Division. An epic fail by anyone’s standard. In 2012, it went 10-6 and finished second in the division and went to the playoffs. My beloved Packers trounced the Vikings in the first round of the playoffs. I cannot be convinced that their season was not a success. My new definition of success is putting forth your very best effort every day.
I hope that this post has helped you, challenged you or otherwise caused you to think critically. I welcome your comments.
Until next time, transform your mind for a new you.