Persistence – A Business Super Power

Being persistent can produce amazing results, but it also takes dedication and patience. From my perspective, this is one of the greatest traits a business person can possess.

Some professions require greater amounts of persistence to obtain the experience or education to reach the top level in their field

Most people generally feel satisfied when they reach their goal.

What they all have in common is their internal drive or persistence.

Is being persistent an inherent trait, or can it be learned, perhaps by modeling the behavior of others?

Of course, there are varying degrees of persistence, but the most common level is one that allows a person to remain hyper focused on reaching their goal.

So how does one go about staying focused?

Some folks who have trouble getting focused rely on medication for help.

Others have used meditation, yoga, cardio workouts, or even diets that include nutritious food and elimination of sugar and highly-processed foods.

Whichever method works to help become more focused and then, eventually, more persistent is up to the individual.

The key to being persistent is also to surround yourself with people who can and will support you in the quest to reach your goals. Negative Nellies need not apply.

Identifying positive, can-do, people may be a challenge for some.  The easiest way to find optimists is to do some exploratory work.  Here are a few to get you started:

  • Would you describe yourself as a positive person? NOTE: This is to determine if they are capable of being supportive. If they are of the negative persuasion, chances are they will see all glasses as half full. Time to keep searching.

 

  • What helps you to focus and be persistent?

 

  • How did you pace yourself when you had a long journey ahead to reach your goal? Could you remain persistent for a sustained period of time?  What were your tricks?

 

  • Do you know anyone who has already achieved the goal(s) I am determined to reach?

 

  • Would you be willing to help/guide/support me during a certain identified time period?

For some folks, like me, it’s helpful to create a vision of the goal – one to keep in mind throughout the quest.

I have been writing professionally for years for technology-oriented companies, as well as numerous other firms in a variety of industries.  When I found out one of my articles was going to be published in Money Magazine, I recognized it as an acknowledgement by a publication I respected. One that reciprocated their respect for my business knowledge. I did not have a particular topic in mind when I started writing business articles, but instead envisioned reaching an audience that could relate to what I had to share.

Reaching this level of professional acknowledgement has taken me years. I had been persistently pursuing this goal for about a year. Prior to setting the goal to have my writing appear in a professional business publication, my dream was just that.  But as the saying goes, a dream without a goal is just a wish.

Thanks to my persistence, I have earned the recognition that comes after working for years in what could be referred to as the professional trenches. The fact my article debuted on Halloween was a real treat!

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Strategist and CMO of Market Me TooMarket Me Too has expertise in bridging marketing and sales teams and providing organizations techniques to accelerate their market growth and revenue numbers, regardless of the industry they are in, or the business stage they are presently at. We also work with individuals from students to executives and business and sports teams to coach them to learn how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Contact Kathleen at kathymurphy@me.com.

Announcement: My first business book called Wisdom Whisperer, is now available via Amazon. Pick one up, or get one for your friend or colleague. I’ve been told this is a great gift for upcoming college graduates, but it is also highly suitable for people in all stages of their life and careers, as the book format is like a buffet, and you can choose to read or not read the topics which suit you best. In support of gift giving, for a limited time, Wisdom Whisperer’s price has been reduced to $16.99.

(5) Ways to Step Out of Your Comfort Zone. Yes, I’m talking to you.

By Kathleen E. R. Murphy

Someone once said that success begins at the end of your comfort zone. Do you believe that’s true?  Once most people finish something, they generally will take a break from whatever it was they accomplished. This is perfectly understandable and acceptable. However, successful people are always learning new things and challenging themselves.

You do not have to be competitive by nature to want to expand your mind and abilities. Learning should not be parked at the door once we graduate from a program, but many people accept their accomplishment as permission to hit the snooze button on life.

Why do people fall into the trap of becoming too comfortable? Part of it has to do with the fact that they may not be naturally enamored by success. I suppose in some respects, I am fortunate, because I am a goal oriented person.  Every company for which I have ever worked, has always had goals associated with the work I was tasked to perform.

Truthfully, I cannot imagine working without having goals, but I am constantly amazed when I learn about people who do not have strategic markers to achieve. Actually, I am not sure how anything gets done, or that the right items are focused on without having targets in place for everyone.

So, what if you are working at a company that does not set goals?

Start by asking your boss to schedule a meeting to develop your goals.  Ask how performance is measured.

Yes, there are some positions where it may, in fact, not make sense to have traditional goals, but there are a variety of different types. Goals that measure customer satisfaction, goals to measure the results of the work you have been performing and overall project results. Marketing and sales teams typically have quarterly goals, so people in these roles are accustomed to having to reach milestones, but this does not mean they are still challenging themselves beyond the benchmarks being set for them.

If you are in a position, or at a company that sets goals, consider yourself fortunate. However, the goals being set for you do not have to be the only ones you should be achieve. In fact, you should have your own set of personal goals. They could be career-oriented, or personal (e.g., saving for a vacation, hitting a personal best record at your, volunteering a certain number of hours per month). The point is, you have more time than you think you have to fit in doing things that are part of helping you to reach your goals. You simply need to reprioritize how you allocate your time.

When you are thinking about how you can really challenge yourself, below are five points to ponder. Your responses will help move you out of your comfort zone, and on your way to accomplishing more than you imagined was possible.

  1. Stop procrastinating. Limit social media interactions and gaming or whatever it is that consumes hours of your time and results in nothing tangible or even intangible.

 

  1. Make a list of what you want to accomplish in the next year, then break those goals into the months you plan to complete them.

 

  1. Work backwards from the goals you set and list the steps needed to reach them.

 

  1. Are the goals you set realistic? Don’t create too many and set yourself up for failure, but do look to push yourself beyond what you think you can achieve. Make sure you keep tabs on how you are doing each month and how close you are to reaching your milestones and eventually your destination.

 

  1. Establish a reward system for reaching each step along the path. Most humans are intrinsically driven by rewards, so make sure you build some treats into your system. Once you achieve your goal(s), set new ones, and look forward to achieving them. After going through this process for about three to six months, the process of working on and achieving goals will come naturally.

These are just a few ideas that will serve as a strong foundation to help you to stretch and begin accomplishing more than you ever imagined.

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Strategist and CMO of Market Me TooMarket Me Too has expertise in bridging marketing and sales teams and providing organizations techniques to accelerate their market growth and revenue numbers, regardless of the industry they are in, or the business stage they are presently at. We also work with individuals from students to executives and business and sports teams to coach them to learn how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Contact Kathleen at kathymurphy@me.com.

Announcement: As of this morning, my first business book called Wisdom Whisperer, is now available via Amazon. Pick one up, or get one for your friend or colleague.

 

 

 

(5) Ways to Maximize Your Time

Time: Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, today is a gift.  That’s why we call it the present.

Everyone has the same amount of time to work with on a daily basis, but some use it better than others. Why? Have some people figured out how to better optimize their work hours with advanced time management skills? Are they more cognizant of how precious time is, or are they like the majority of people who may not give the concept more than a fleeting thought?

There have been many books written on time management and how to become more productive. Even if you have not read them, you likely have a general sense of what they are going to teach.

Instead of focusing on how to maximize the hours in your day, let’s looks at some reasons people do not leverage and use their time well or constructively.

Below is my take on the top five time management inhibitors. A few of the ideas may not be new to you, but others may provide insight into why, if you are in the majority, you do not recognize time as a precious gift.

  1. The perception of time is skewed and not realistic because of the limiting belief that there is an unlimited supply.
  2. Many people just go about their day, even when they have a schedule, with a relaxed sense of having more time than they actually do.
  3. Not having a command of time management practices, either because they have not developed any, or because they have not considered this an essential life skill to master.
  4. Having no internal drive. Having any sense of motivation can significantly heighten a sense of the importance of maximizing time.
  5. Awareness of time, and how quickly it can pass when you do not manage your day. Of course, building time into your schedule to relax and sleep are naturally factored into your time each day, but some people may be more prone to doing or needing more of these two activities than others.

Now, here are five simple ways to maximize your time.

  1. Create a weekly schedule. It does not have to be detailed. Be sure to factor in activities such as exercise, preparation of healthy meals, and mini mental health breaks.

 

  1. At the end of each month, create a list of goals you want to accomplish either professionally or personally the next month. The list does not have to be outrageous or unattainable, but you could include some that are longer-term mixed in with short-term goals.

 

  1. Take a few minutes to think about how you are currently using your time. Are you simply going through the motions of waking up, going to work, coming home, and hitting repeat? If this is the case, think about incorporating some activities into your day that you can eagerly anticipate. Having something to look forward to either each day, or multiple days of the week, is highly motivating.

 

  1. Break your day into segments. I’m a morning person, so when I know I have to get something done which is not a thing I either like to do, or need to have intense concentration on. I plan to get it finished ASAP. Granted, you do not always have control over the ideal time to get things done, but if you can divide each day into planned segments you will find you will get more accomplished.

 

  1. Build rewards into your schedule. Make sure your day is broken up with items such as taking a walk, getting a cup of coffee, spending a limited time on social media to catch up on current events. Include time to interact socially with either co-workers or friends. Or perhaps a mix of the two – who knows what will happen.

Our minds work better, and we tend to have increased energy and the ability to concentrate, when we have a command of our time.

None of us can save time in a bottle, but these points to ponder should help you consider how you spend your time. Ideally, you’ll become more productive and have a heightened sense of how precious time really is.

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Strategist and CMO of Market Me TooMarket Me Too has expertise in bridging marketing and sales teams and providing organizations techniques to accelerate their market growth and revenue numbers, regardless of the industry they are in, or the business stage they are presently at. We also work with individuals from students to executives and business and sports teams to coach them to learn how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Contact Kathleen at kathymurphy@me.com.

Announcement: I will be publishing my first business book this month. If you would like more details about my book, please send me an email at kathymurphy@me.com . Thank you. – Kathy