When I began my speaking career over 20 years ago, one of the first topics I spoke on was goal setting. I was extremely passionate about the subject matter.
Learning how to effectively set goals took me from a place of barely having a roof over my head, no solid direction and a life filled with frustration to one of gratitude, abundance and purpose.
In the past I merely showed up and “hoped” for things to work out. Life dramatically changed when I decided not to simply drift from day to day, but rather have a clear vision of what I wanted my life to represent.
This didn’t happen by chance. I believe it happened by Divine Intervention. On a particularly frustrating day in 1975, I happened upon a garage sale. I was drawn to a pile of books with a big sign reading, “Great prices” strategically placed in front of the books.
magicMy eyes fell upon one that I just “knew” I had to have. The Magic of Believing by Claude Bristol seemed to be waiting for me. Reaching into my pocket, I pulled out what little change I had.
“This is a powerful book,” the woman smiled as I almost reluctantly handed her a few pennies, a nickel and a dime. “It will transform your life.”
Part of me was so afraid to give up what I felt was all the money I had. Another part of me knew my life WAS about to change.
The Magic of Believing was the first of many books I would consume over the next 40 years on the topic of visualization, intention and manifestation.
Fast forward to 2015. What was once a foreign concept to me is now part of my every day activity. Not only do I visualize what I want and set the intention of what I desire, I also write down my goals.
It’s amazing how powerful the simple act of writing down what we desire can do. Along with writing our goals down, it’s essential to take daily action. Left to our own devices, we may say we desire something and yet, we are likely to get caught up and sidetracked.
A way to avoid this is have some type of accountability measures in place. It could be an accountability partner, a mentor, coach or mastermind group. When we have others we are accountable to it’s not as easy to hide out and let our dreams fall by the wayside.
Case in point; a few months ago I set the intention to participate in a marathon. One of the first things I did was pay the entry fee to take part in the Eugene Marathon. The process of sending in the entry fee money got me one step closer to what I wanted. I now had “skin in the game.”
Making this kind of commitment assured I would likely take the next step; educating myself as much as possible.
I bought several books about marathons, specifically power-walking. Again, this action got me closer to my end result. The next step was to read the books.
Although the content was exactly what I needed, I knew if I was to have the greatest chance of a positive outcome I would be wise to hire a coach.
I hired a woman who is close to my age, has participated in dozens of marathons and even participated in a triathlon. She also owns a fitness facility. Perfect!
I wanted someone who knew exactly what I would be going through as a “mature” woman to get from being a novice to someone who had a great chance of crossing the finish line on the big day. Being 60 years old to begin training for my first ever full marathon required a special kind of coach.
It is extremely important for me not to compare myself as a novice to those who have been involved in marathons for years. To make this kind of comparison would surely set me up for frustration and the possibility of thinking something must be wrong with me to not be able to perform like someone with years, even decades of experience. This kind of comparison is what makes people quit before they’ve given themselves a fair chance for success.
14_week_trainingMy coach immediately gave me a training schedule. What started as minimal distance has turned into very intense training days. Starting at 2 – 3 miles per day has built into 5 – 6 miles on low days and as much as 18 – 20 miles on the longer days.
Each day I put a check mark next to what I’ve accomplished. This allows me to track my progress.
It didn’t take long to learn when my peak time for training is; early morning.
I know if I don’t set the training as a priority in the early morning I will do it later, but I also know my energy is not its best in the late afternoon. Thus, I struggle to get through what could have otherwise been much easier. By knowing what works best and what sets me up for failure, it’s up to me to make the right choice for the best outcome.
It’s simply a matter of finding what works, putting a plan in place, having a strategy and increasing the complexity of what I am doing in order to have the greatest outcome possible.
I would be foolish to do otherwise. Yet, I see this happen in business all the time. Rather than developing a plan that allows for steady growth, with increasingly complex yet manageable strategies, many entrepreneurs start with a bang, have a sporadic approach to what they are doing and then wonder why things are not working out. It is not uncommon for someone new to any area of business to look at a seasoned expert and wonder why they aren’t getting the kind of result the more experienced person is getting.
Take speaking. When I started out as a speaker I was nowhere near as good as I am today. Nor did I have the kind of opportunity I have today.
After over 20 years of platform experience I have thousands of hours of practice, I’ve experienced some of the most unthinkable things that are bound to happen to any speaker, I have a level of confidence that comes only with time invested, and rather than worry about what the audience thinks, I know I am a vessel for a message to be delivered.
I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve had someone say, “You’re so lucky Kathleen. You were obviously born with the gift of speaking.”
Nothing could be further from the truth. The “gift” is something I’ve invested time, money and effort into developing.
With the marathon, when I cross the finish line on May 10th it won’t be luck that did it. It will be the hundreds of hours of training, the dozens of books I read, the coach I invested in, the supplements I have been taking, the shoes, clothing and equipment I use.
It has been said, “Luck is when opportunity and preparedness meet.” Are you prepared for your lucky breaks?
Is being paid as a speaker one of your goals? Have you been wanting to shine on the platform and make great money in the process? Not sure where to start?
Join in on Speak, Sell, Profit – Make Six Figures A Year through Speaking. www.speaksellprofit.com
With over two decades of experience getting paid to speak, hosting my own events, and making great money from speaking, I can show you how to do the same. www.speaksellprofit.com