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Practical steps for taking your game to the next level

A lot of my one-on-one coaching work is focused on helping leaders and professionals take themselves, their performance, and results to the next level.

I coach people who are in various stages of their evolution and growth. Some are at the beginning of their professional careers. They are often working on getting their business started or establishing consistent results.

Others are senior executives – directors, general managers, presidents or CEOs – who are at the prime of their career. They command large organizations with hundreds or thousands of employees. They are often concerned about how to get all their team members and functions on the same page, rowing in the same direction.

While each coaching conversation is unique and different, many of the principles that I use to support people are the same.

In my previous blog “How to make meaningful progress when taking your game to the next level,” I shared some “do’s” and “don’ts” for staying focused and effective when you are in the process of raising your game to the next level. Really, this week’s blog precedes the one posted on September 25th.

In this blog, I want to continue the trend by providing four simple steps for how to take your game to the next level, especially when the next level requires you to think and do new or different things.

Whether you are a beginner or veteran at your game, if you want to elevate your current reality, performance and results to a higher level, follow these simple, but powerful steps:

  1. Get clear on your desired end state. Project yourself into your future – at least a year or two from now – and imagine that you are extremely successful. Then, describe what your success looks like. Write it down and be as clear and vivid as possible.
  1. Visualize how you are behaving and performing in your new future state. When you visualize your future, take notice of how you are behaving and acting in that reality. Pay special attention to areas where you are doing things differently from today. Record a few practices and behaviors that you can start applying today in order to start driving and drawing yourdesired state to you.
  1. Start behaving consistently with your future state now. Start applying the practices and behaviors that you outlined in the previous step in your day-to-day routines. Every time you find yourself regressing to old habits, stop and correct yourself back to behaving consistently with your list of future reality practices.
  1. Start recording accomplishments and wins. At the end of each day reflect on your day, and list all the specific areas where you have had wins and made progress consistent with your desired practices and future from pervious steps. Don’t be concerned with the size of the wins or if others would recognize or appreciate them too. Any win that has meaning to you counts and should be included in your list. The more accomplishments and wins you record (or “collect”) the better.

The last step is often the one most underestimated, ignored and/or avoided. In order to drive and materialize your new future state most effectively, you need to have the right mindset and behavior. Listing accomplishments and wins will empower you to overcome any skepticism and/or doubts and replace them with genuine enthusiasm and confidence about what you are creating. The more you believe in the viability of your aspiration the more you are likely to stay the course to its fulfillment.

While these steps may not come naturally at first, they will over time.  Make them your new normal, for they are essential when it comes to taking your game to the next level.

Photo by: Tim Pierce

Founder and President of Quantum Performance Inc., a management consulting firm specializing in generating total alignment and engagement in organizations.

His work has encompassed a broad range of industries including banking, telecommunications, manufacturing, entertainment, real estate, retail, startups and non-profits.

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