Why do most salespeople, entrepreneurs, and small-business owners settle for mediocrity while deep down they desire more?
The answer is, because of the comfort zone.
We all want to feel some sense of safety and security. Our ego, which simply exists so our mind can feel protected, gives us a sense of safety and security. So when we’re in our “comfort zone”—that is—the place that is familiar to us, where we are familiar with the actions and generally speaking the results we’ll get from those actions—we feel safe.
The moment we leave our comfort zone we enter unchartered waters. We execute actions that we haven’t mastered. Now there’s fear. Fear of failure. Fear of judgment. Fear of looking bad. And let’s face it: failing, being judged and looking bad really suck.
Mediocrity is the result of staying safe and familiar. It means we’ve given into the fears of failure, judgment, and looking bad.
Because there is a sense of warmth amidst familiar actions and results, it’s easier to stay warm than to step out into the cold darkness of unfamiliarity. It makes perfect sense. The only problem is we get addicted to the warmth, to the familiarity. Thus, familiarity breeds mediocrity.
Mediocrity becomes a drug that is harder to kick than crack. When you try and kick it, the withdrawal symptoms snap you back in the form of self-doubt and justify why you shouldn’t leave your safe, familiar, “comfort zone.”
You’ve got to get out, and the only way to do it is like kicking any other addiction: cold turkey.
Ask any recovering alcoholic or drug addict who’s been sober for years what it was like beating their addiction and at the heart of each response you’ll get a common answer: work. It takes work. Everyday. No, every moment, at least to start.
So, beyond the obvious reason that booze and hard drugs will kill you, why do people choose to kick their addictions? Like anything in which we put effort into, there’s a positive payoff.
For substance addicts, the payoff is freedom. Freedom from being run by a god damn pill or a drink. Freedom is power. It’s empowering to know that we’re in control of our selves, and someone or something else is not in control of us.
Kicking the mediocrity addiction is very similar to beating drugs: it takes some work but the payoff brings freedom.
For business people, this freedom manifests itself in the form of increased cash flow, leverage, extra time, peacefulness.
How do you break the mediocrity addiction and gain this sweet freedom? The answer is to become a specialist, or expert, in your professional. It’s becoming the specialist that takes work—freedom is the byproduct.
There’s a lot to becoming a specialist. For now, start by taking two actions:
Step 1: Click here to get your free online, secure, journal.
Step 2: Record the answers to these two questions in your journal:
What am I most passionate about? List everything that comes to mind.
Does my current financial vehicle allow me to express and live my passion(s) everyday? Why or why not?
Stay tuned for the next blog post about how to become a specialist. (Coming very soon!)