Striving for Excellence or Settling for Stagnation

I am here in Toronto at our NLP Practitioner Training. While Nicholas (our other trainer at The Empowerment Partnership) is on stage, I had an idea for a blog post. I see so many students on their paths. Some know how to take it to the next level, while others do not.

 

You see, Nicholas is about to teach strategies. A strategy that I have is that I constantly improve every area of my life. I am not sure if this strategy came from doing NLP at such an early age or if it came from modeling so many excellent teachers over the years. Maybe it came from my mother and father. Regardless of where it came from, I have seen this same desire and motivation in most of the successful people I know.

 

Now keep in mind, I am in an amazing relationship. Also, I am enjoying success in my career and I am very happy with my health and fitness. Why improve? Why not go into “maintenance mode”?

 

Well, what does maintenance lead to? In my humble opinion, maintenance can lead to stagnation if unchecked. I am sure that we can all think of situations where maintenance is fine. And for the majority of the areas in our life, maintenance may not be the best thing.

 

For example if a business goes into maintenance mode, they can miss trends and opportunities. At our company we saw the internet coming. We realized that this may be a major opportunity, and we shifted our approach to include an online presence. Had we just “maintained” our success, would we be where we are now? Most likely not.

 

Look at what happened to Encyclopedia Britannica. Do you even remember using them? They lost their firm grip on the market because they refused to consider computers and the internet as an opportunity. They allowed stagnation to occur.

 

Now, I think people understand this in business. In my Master’s in Business, I learned that a business has to have a monitoring system in place to keep track of market shifts and/or changes in internal conditions. At the least, this requires a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analysis!

 

Well, what about relationships? My wife and I have a great relationship! Why bother to strive for things to be better?

 

First, let explain how we met. We both met in our early twenties. We were just friends for the first eight years. We had very different career paths and we both were in other relationships.

 

When we got together, our relationship and careers continued to evolve. At first, we had no child together. But we got married and we had our daughter. I became a doctor. I took over the lead role in training within our company.

 

In short, we are no longer the same people we were.

 

It always amuses me when someone says, “You aren’t the same person I married!” Yeah, I’m not. Thank goodness for that!

 

You see, we are not the same people. We are different. We have grown and we have evolved. So there needs to be something in place that pushes us to want to be closer, to improve our connection and to empower our relationship.

 

So rather than asking, “Why make things better?” I ask myself, “How can I make things better when things are already so good?”

 

Our goals as individuals and as a couple have changed over the last ten years that we have been married. And if we don’t actively review and improve them, we will become stagnant and possibly grow apart.

 

So what can we do with this information?

 

1. Take an honest and serious look at the areas of your life and see if you even have an active goal.

 

2. Decide where you want to be in a year. What do you want to achieve by the end of 2013?

 

3. Re-write and/or modify the goal to push yourself to that new level. Set that target and begin to discover the path you need to go down. And if you know about SMART goals, make sure you practice that when you write the goal.

 

4. Finally, take action. Once you write that goal, do something to help bring that energy into the physical!

 

Mahalo,
Dr.Matt

 

Photo by aussiegall

 

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