If you’re reading this, chances are you have asked yourself: How do I achieve more? I see you; you want to achieve more, be the best of the best, do more… super achievers. I know the feeling. I’ve got big dreams, you’ve got big dreams and we can’t tell them to small people because they can’t handle it.
So we ask ourselves, how do I achieve more? First, why are we asking that question? I’ll tell you why… It’s because we aren’t achieving what we want, we are not hitting the mark, we are not closing the gap. We are not closing the gap the way we want to close the gap. I recently read a book by Dan Sullivan and Dr. Benjamin Hardy called The Gap. I’m a huge fanboy of these guys… Dan’s been in the game, strategic coaching, his company for over 30 years and his coaching business has changed hundreds, maybe thousands of lives and businesses! SO HE’S AMAZING! And then Dr. Ben has come alongside him and together they wrote this book.
Many of you have heard me talking about Who Not How… which if you have not read that book, YOU NEED TO GET IT. And if you like audio books, these ones come with extra content interviews between the authors. There’s another question that fits into how do I achieve more and that is how am I going to get all this done. Change that question to who can get this done, who can do this better than me, who can help me, who can make my life better and easier and help me with all the things that I’ve always wanted to do. I think the subtitle of one of their books is How High Achievers Achieve Happiness and Fulfillment in Their Life. And I will tell you that every person that I’ve shared concepts from this book, the people I share it with know that they are those achievers because I hang out with a lot of high achievers. But even high achievers can fall into this trap of HOW DO I ACHIEVE MORE?
Let’s put a little visual to this, I am going to give full credit to Dan Sullivan and Benjamin Hardy and I’m just going to share with you what I’ve learned. We all have that ideal that we desire to achieve or a goal or an outcome. And then we look at what we have achieved… and the focus on the gap. The gap is that space in between what we desire and what we have achieved that we haven’t hit. Society tells us to focus on that, we focus on that as a high performer, a high achiever, a perfectionist.
And because of that we don’t celebrate what we have achieved, so we live in the gap where we are constantly discouraged. Frustrated. You can’t be grateful because you’re always looking and saying, BUT I HAVEN’T ACHIEVED THAT GOAL. What if you did something different? What if you said, where did I start? You’re high achievers.
You’re crushing it.
You have made so many gains.
You have made so much progress.
You set goals and accomplish them.
You’re constantly learning, it is never ending improvement for you.
I SEE YOU.
And despite all of that, you are living in the gap because you haven’t met your ideal. What if instead of living in the gap you focused on the gains? That is where you want to live because when you live in the gains… your heart is filled with gratitude.
It’s funny, I had one call with a client who owns a couple multimillion dollar companies and he tells me he doesn’t do all that touchy, feely, warm and fuzzy stuff… he just wants results. So when I say something, your heart is going to be filled with gratitude. So I thought back to that call and I can see the dominant emotional patterns are going to determine the quality of your life. So if your dominant emotional patterns keep you in the gap, you are going to be frustrated, discouraged, filled with regret because that is where your patterns are and your quality of life is going to be low. BUT if you look at where you started, look at your progress, focus on the wins… your emotional dominant patterns are going to give you a much higher quality of life.
WHEN YOU LIVE IN THE GAINS, YOU ARE MORE LIKELY TO CLOSE THE GAP.
When you live in the gap, you are going to make less progress. One of the studies they shared said that happier people are more likely to live 10 years longer on an average which happens to be impacted by your dominant emotional patterns. Also I love that when you are living in the gains, you’re so grateful and your confidence grows! It grows on the foundation of what you have already done, what you have already accomplished! So you should live in the gains so you’re filled with gratitude celebrating the milestones and progress… all of a sudden you come to a place where you are satisfied.
And WHOA, I’m not using satisfaction as a place of stopping progress. I am using it as a place where you feel satisfied acknowledging the progress that you have made. Content is another way to describe it. I know many of you are those high achievers and you are the ones who always want more. I see you, and I’m telling you if you live more in the gains, you don’t have to hit on the idea and you might still want to hit it but it isn’t a necessity for your happiness.
I realized this morning, while walking through an exercise that I was pursuing that aim from a gap mentality. I was in that place in order to prove something or before I could celebrate… I was delaying my happiness. We can’t live there in that place where if only we hit the goal we can be happy… NO. You can be happy today when you live in the gains.
So I made that flip today in just a couple of pages in my journal. And it started by writing about where I started and I started listing and recounting all my gains. I wrote them all down, nothing fancy. The more I wrote, the more I realized: I am impacting lots of people, lives, businesses and the impact of generosity. I was so full from the gains that something flipped. I realized I’d been going after that next milestone like I needed it to be able to acknowledge and celebrate my progress. Don’t get me wrong… I still am working towards my next milestone but in the process I am not living in the gap and there’s so much power in that.
All the studies back it up, read the book or listen to the book. When we live from the gains, we are more powerful, more fulfilled, and happier. We are grateful and who doesn’t want to be around someone like that? How many of you have achieved things you never thought you could achieve. Things that were just a dream a year or two or five years ago? And you are still going after the ideal like you need it and you don’t actually need it. You are enough, you can be grateful and happy with what you have already achieved. And THEN YOU’RE GOING TO CLOSE THAT GAP A WHOLE LOT EASIER!
So my challenge to you is that you take some time on your own and pick an area of your life (i.e. marriage, business, health, etc). I have a friend that focuses on his health. He has a tendency to fall back into that gap in that area because he hasn’t dropped the last 20 pounds … HE SHOULD BE LIVING IN THE GAINS THOUGH… He has already dropped 150 pounds, that’s a whole person. Living in the gains will shed that last 20 pounds. So pick an area of your life and start listing out the gains, all the progress, all the wins, and all the milestones that you’ve completed and celebrate them. And maybe you will have an epiphany moment like I did.
I’m not saying I have arrived, I’m just doing the work to get there. And if I can give you this gift of this experience, that’s a pretty great gift! So do the work and see what epiphany you get. If you are committed to doing the work so that you can see all the gains… THEN SAY YES!! And this is where you should go out there and give your greatness to the world because somebody needs what is on the inside of you!