Did you know that if you focus on your effort rather than paying attention to your results, you can get better results faster?
One of the most common ways my clients sabotage themselves is by putting too much focus on the results they get as they work on their new skills.
A typical situation is someone who wants to improve their social skills. For example, their goal might be to make more friends or create relationships with attractive strangers.
They might understand that this is a step-by-step process. And they might even decide that all they’re doing is, for example, to learn how to start a conversation. But many of them will still end up frustrated if it takes them longer to make friends or meet a partner than they had fantasized about. They’re focused on results and not effort, and as a result, they get into trouble.
“But TJ,” they complain. “I’ve talked to at least twenty strangers in the last week. And none of the conversations lasted for more than a minute!”
“Remind me what your task was, again?” I ask, usually sheepishly since I know very well what it was. And they go on to tell me that it was to practice starting a conversation. Or maybe create some positive tension. Or perhaps to work on eye-contact.
While their task wasn’t about getting a result – their mind keeps wanting them to focus on one.
And this is normal for all of us when we’re not paying attention. We forget that, above all, improving and learning is a step-by-step process that will take time. That – at least in the beginning – results don’t matter as much as the effort we put in.
This is true for anything that we’re working to improve. A salesperson won’t close more sales the first day they try a new sales technique. An athlete won’t master a new technique to beat his opponent the first time he tries it. A person at the gym won’t get those big muscles after the first work-through of his new exercise routine.
But if they put continued correct effort into mastering the techniques, and work on them over and over again without getting frustrated by not immediately seeing new results – the results will come.
And since we always do a better job when we’re not frustrated with ourselves or the thing we’re working on, those results tend to come faster and easier than ever before.
What’s an area of your life where you might be too focused on your results?
Take a step back and focus on your effort in that area of your life, and you’ll soon start to see progress.
And if you need my help to make sure you’re making the correct effort to move towards your goals, reach out to me and let me know what your goal is and I’ll be happy to help!