The Difference Between Trying and Success

Over the years I have read many different organizational and motivational books and engaged several different Business Coaches aiming to become more effective and successful. Approximately 99% of the organization books and most of the coaching sessions have directed me to more methods, but never to the psychology of how to become more organized, more focused and more effective.

“Getting Things Done,” by David Allen delves into the deeper aspects of how to capture, categorize and review everything that needs to be done. Even though, I don’t follow it 100% all of the time, I really find that breaking things down into “next action”, “projects” and “someday” items really helps me keep my mind clear (even during overcast and foggy days in Vancouver). The method that you use to do this is all up to you – paper, PDA, etc.

What tools do I use? I found SMEAD products to be the best for filing and capturing things in paper format; I prefer Outlook and my Blackberry for all those task lists and capturing thoughts. Categorize using tags that you comprehend; have as few or as many as you want.

Now, do you have anything that you are dreading to do? If it takes two minutes, do it. Otherwise, delegate or delete it. We have all heard physical activity makes the mind sharper, but as an entrepreneur do you still keep putting off your exercise time because “other stuff” keeps coming up? I find that there is always work related stuff that needs be done.

What is your emotional connection to your physical activity program? Are you really committed to it? Are you as passionate about it as your business? Is your self-talk around it positive or negative? Do you feel confident when you are engaged in the activity?

Why do some athletes/teams become champions and others just don’t seem to make it? Dr. Saul Miller’s book, “Why Teams Win” answers many of these questions. It also has several tools to develop your own mental fortitude for winning. Yes, you can win in an ethical way.

I recently found something I am committed to becoming the best at in Vancouver in my age group – the Grouse Grind. I will do what is necessary to win. I have the talent, I was a Nationally ranked by Bi-athlete for several years – but during that time I had low-self confidence, which I contribute to me not making it to the World Cup level. (I am still going to the Olympics as a volunteer). As a Kinesiologist, I also have the knowledge to develop my own training program (I also know what my body is capable of, e.g. where my physical edge is). If you don’t have the knowledge, seek the help of a well-educated Kinesiologist or Personal Trainer.

My schedule changes on a daily basis, but I know that during my training per week I need to complete my intense intervals, plyometrics and the Grouse Grind. I am ready to push and feel the discomfort as I go to my physical limits. As an entrepreneur, how do I manage my time around this? My training session is sacred, but the time during the day is flexible.

This weekend I was unable to go on my usual Friday, so I was going to go up the Grouse Grind® Sunday. Then my meeting changed to Sunday. Saturday morning I went through the routine that I know makes me successful – stretching, hydration, positive talk, rehearsing the techniques and mantras I need to get sub-45 minutes, enjoyment and encouraging others on the way up. After an intense push to the top, I finished in 44:32 min, – 1:12min, in the top 54 of nearly 800 in my age group.

After two weeks of dedicated intense training, I am already feeling more grounded and I am getting things done. I have been fitter in my life when I was competing in Biathlon. Some may say I am crazy to think that I can hit the 35 minute mark by Sept 20th when the BMO Grouse Mountain® run event is. Sven Winter and Maragret Benson, two athletes who Lifemoves sponsor, know no boundaries; they have accomplished so much already. I also believe that the human body and spirit are capable of amazing things; we just have to try.

The difference between trying and success is a little more “UMPH!

This confidence flows into business meetings, relationships and client sessions. My next steps are to use some of the questionnaires from Dr. Saul Miller’s “Why Teams Win: 9 Keys to Success in Business, Sport and Beyond” to gain insight into how I can develop strategies for myself, my business and inspire my Lifemoves Team to become winners more often and more capable of getting things done.

How are you going to add more “UMPH” to your day?

Follow me on twitter @AlfredCEBall, @lifemovesca, @getmoving4life


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