Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Showing up!

"80% of success is just showing up to play the game."

Although remaining 20% determines who wins or where we may be placed among everyone who have shown up, first 80%. where 80% of the competition vanishes.

But, importance of hauling ourselves to show up to play, in the first place, can not be downplayed.

How often we see people with far less capabilities having all the success? We only feel envious at such people. This feeling of envy is directly proportional to how unprepared we were not to show up when these lesser mortals (as we thought, incorrectly, of them) went to on play and won.

80% importance is placed on showing up for a reason. It is much harder to motivate ourselves to get started than to maintain the momentum once started. We all know about inertia. The term  inertia which once was limited to physics has now come to all areas. Organizational inertia, individual inertia etc. Object in motion continues to be in motion unless there is something to stop it. In ideal world, it continues perpetually.

Remaining 20% decides our success and to what extent we succeed. But, as we can recall from many of our experiences, we normally do an outstanding job of leaving no stone unturned in this 20% once we get started. We are motivated to do our best as soon as we pass 50% mark of 80%. Sheer momentum keeps us going.

Not motivating ourselves to show up has serious consequences. How often we have commented about someone else that they are not making best use of their potential. We have to be careful with passing such  judgments because some people may not aspire for things that we think they should. But,when we find people who are plain lazy, complacent, full of negative energy, we are saddened to see such a great potential going down the drain.

It is not easy to motivate ourselves to show up to play. This is especially hard after we have experienced some setbacks and disappointments. Those people are truly blessed who are able to pick themselves up over and over again as though nothing has happened. For normal people, some downtime is expected and it reasonable that we take some to recharge. But, spending rest of our life not trying anything just because we may fail is sheer wastage of God given potential.

"Past only bothers to the extent we have NOT learnt from it." "People who do not learn from the past are dammed to repeat it." Let's learn from our past experiences, do a thorough and honest post-mortem and move on.

As said before, it certainly is not easy to recover from a setback especially if it is a big one and has caused significant grief (financial or other). We have to walk when we can not run and we have to crawl when we can not even walk. One step at a time. Even if  we have to take a break after every step, as long as we remember to take the next step, it's only a matter of time that we are cruising at our full capacity.

Taking next step in our endeavors amounts to doing the next logical task. When our mind is clouded by a recent defeat, determining what is the next step itself can be a big problem. Easiest thing  to overcome such lethargy is to develop a habit of constantly asking 'what is next?'. David Allen's "Getting things done" is great book not only to improve  productivity but also to get out of inertia. It's a great book and certainly recommend for reading over and over again.

Good luck in motivating to show up. Remember by just showing up you have eliminated the good chunk competition (i.e. all those who did not choose to show up). Now it is time to play our best game and leave the rest to God. If it is good, we will get it. If we don't get it, it was not meant to be.

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