17
Sep
12

The personal cost of success

As leaders and entrepreneurs, we have an insatiable desire to experience what the view is like at the next rung on the success ladder. And it never fails, the moment we establish our footing, we look up and begin wondering about getting to that next rung. It’s our personal quest to achieve our full potential. We may – and in all probability will – have failures along the way or drop a few rungs, but we always get up and get back in the game. It’s who we are and how we’re wired.

But it’s that, “Who we are and how we’re wired,” factor that leaders and entrepreneurs need a deeper understanding of. This is the area where personal sacrifice, at the expense of success, takes its toll physically and mentally, on personal relationships and family. It’s why finding “life balance” receives a lot of lip service but, like everything else personal, it too takes a back seat to career and business. I remember all those baseball games my son played that I had to leave after a few innings to catch a plane to some speaking gig. I remember the vacations we didn’t take and all those, “We’ll do it next year” good intentions.

In just two brief paragraphs, I probably ruined your Monday morning. Sorry, but if I did, you needed today’s Monday Morning Wake Up more then you’re willing to admit. So, here are some no-compromise strategies to help you manage what your success will cost you:

  • Betting the ranch: You believe in your dreams and yourself too much. You can come up with a thousand reasons why you should bet your home and other assets on your business ideas and dreams. I’ve done it and almost lost my home once. What about those “Bank of Tony Soprano” credit cards that you fill up when cash runs out? If you’re already in debt up to your eyeballs, you need help – not more financing and debt. It’s time to hire a consultant to help you plan your way back to financial health. Debt is fine until it gets out of control. That’s when it piles on the stress and sleepless nights.
  • Processor overload: The human brain is an amazing form of computer. It reasons, learns, predicts and strategizes. But it has its limits and can break down when pushed, overloaded and exhausted. When your brain is toast, you make bad decisions and your communication skills go Neanderthal. Your mind needs time to reenergize. Give it time by taking command of your time. Make appointments with yourself for quiet time to walk or just get away from work for 30 minutes. NO, you can’t break these appointments with yourself. I said, “Take command of your time.” No compromise.
  • Tune and lube: If you’re taking better care of your car than you body, than you just found another definition for insanity. I ride my road bike. What do you do? There is no better cure for business stress than a good cardio workout – five or six times a week. I for one intend to outlive my car. No compromise.
  • Unplug: My iPhone is always with me. My iPad is typically within reach. Get the picture? I’m working on this one too. Unplugging these days with all our techno gadgets is seriously hard. It is now “normal” to be responding to emails and text messages day and night – at home and at work. Our amazing gadgets made us accessible 24/7. I really need to try harder and discipline myself to unplug. (Don’t you just love the WIFI on Delta Airlines?)
  • Play smart: A multi-millionaire once said, “I made my fortune working part time – I only worked twelve hours a day.” For leaders, time worked rarely equals productivity and delivering results. Leaders are magnets for problems, interruptions and distractions. Likewise, leaders are master procrastinators. High productivity usually occurs in those moments leading up to a drop-dead deadline. Playing smart means self-discipline and accountability. It also means delegation and not meddling in the work you entrust to others. Imagine getting all your work done in four hours a day instead of twelve? It is not outside the realm of possibility – if you practice no-compromise leadership.
  • It’s OK: Some people just aren’t cut out to be top-of-the-ladder leaders or entrepreneurs. Some want the glory and success but just don’t want to do the work. Others regard just about every conversation as a “confrontation” and avoid them at all costs. They agonize over their inability to lead and get results. It’s OK to recognize that your calling is something else other than leadership. It’s OK to reach a point in your career where you can finally say, “I want off this train.” To my core, I believe in pushing myself to succeed. But I won’t push myself into areas that don’t play to my strengths.

– – – – – – – – –

Please share your thoughts with me about today’s Monday Morning Wake-Up. Click above to comment.

Pass this e-mail on to your business colleagues, managers and friends. They’ll appreciate it.

Advertisements

0 Responses to “The personal cost of success”



  1. Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


Bookmark and Share

Archives

September 2012
M T W T F S S
« Aug   Oct »
 12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930

Twitter Updates

Blog Stats

  • 41,189 hits

%d bloggers like this: