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Is It Time To Ditch Your Goals?

Everybody knows you’ve got to set goals and stay acutely focused on those goals if you want to achieve anything in life. But what if “everybody” is wrong?

Is It Time To Ditch Your Goals?

Let’s say you’re a coach and your goal is to win the championship. How do you do that? By focusing on all the things your team needs to do to get good enough to win. Daydreaming about winning isn’t going to be enough. You’ve got to practice, practice, practice.

Or you’re a sales person and your goal is to earn $200,000 this year in commissions, twice what you earned last year. How do you do that? By focusing on calling a certain number of good prospects every single day without fail. Otherwise you’ll continue to work like you have in the past, and the goal will likely be just one more thing you didn’t achieve.

Or you’re a writer and your goal is to write a 240 page book in the next 60 days. How do you do that? By sitting down and writing 4 pages per day. If you don’t focus on the process of writing those 4 pages a day, you’ll never achieve the goal.

Or maybe you’re in Internet Marketing. Wait – if you’re reading this you ARE an online marketer. So let’s say your goal is to earn $10,000 a month. How do you do that: By focusing on the goal? Or by focusing on your sales and marketing process? Of course it’s the day to day process that will eventually get you to your goal. Otherwise it’s all just pie in the sky and wishful thinking.

Obviously goals and your day-to-day focus can go hand in hand. But when you focus on the goal you naturally reduce your current happiness. You’re basically deciding that when you reach your goal, then you’ll be happy and successful. But not now. Not yet.

Conversely when you focus on the system that will get you to the goal, you’re focused on what you need to do right now. You can feel happy and successful each day that you focused on your system, whether that’s writing 4 pages for your book or contacting 15 potential affiliates.

You also have a weird thing happen if and when you achieve your goal if you’re not focused on the process – you tend to stop what you’re doing that got you there in the first place. If you focus on writing 4 pages a day, then you’ll have a new 240 page book every 2 months, or 6 per year. But if you focus only on the goal of having the book written, then once you complete it you’ll stop writing.

So how do you make the switch from goal setting to focusing on the systems that will get you the goals? Identify what needs to be done to reach your goal, and then spend your time doing those things. This way your goal will take care of itself and you’ll feel successful everyday, not just the day you reach your goal.

One more thing: They say you’re supposed to make your goal specific, measurable and time-bound. But if all we’re focused on is the goal, we can end up cheating ourselves to achieve it. Consider the salesman who was so desperate to meet his sales goal, he stole a major client from a fellow sales person at his company. Yes, he achieved his goal, but the victory was hollow and his reputation in the office was shot to pieces.

Conversely, sometimes when we simply allow ourselves to focus on the day to day process and systems that take us to our goals, we find we’ve reached an even better goal we hadn’t initially thought of. Consider another salesman who didn’t stress about the big goal, but instead he simply made sure he emailed 50 prospects a day, called 15 prospects and spoke with 10 prospects. This is what he did day in and day out. Yes, he met his goal, but in fact he exceeded it by all expectations and was hired away by another company to become their new sales manager.

Two sales people with the same goal but two different focuses – which would you choose? Personally I find that a big goal can stress me out, sometimes to the point of almost feeling paralyzed. But knowing that I have a system to focus on that makes everything simple and completely manageable lets me relax and get busy. And I usually achieve my goals well ahead of schedule, without the stress and with a continuing sense of accomplishment and happiness.

Try it – just for one month focus on the day to day process instead of the big hairy goal and see if it doesn’t make a difference for you, too.

Using Twitter to Find the Best Headlines

At the risk of stating the obvious, the better your headlines grab eyeballs, the more money you can make. In fact, even a small improvement can add significant money if your sales funnel is set up with a high priced product or two. For example, getting 5% more people to opt into your list or open an email or buy a $7 product could result in another 1/2 to 1 percent buying your more expensive and profitable product. Over the course of a year that could easily add thousands to your bottom line.

Using Twitter to Find the Best Headlines

One way marketers used to test headlines was through Adwords, back in the day when they were super cheap. A marketer would try out 2 or more headlines and see which one pulled the best. Seasoned marketers still test headlines with Google and Facebook ads, but if you’re on a small budget there is a less expensive way.

These days Twitter is the easiest and cheapest method for testing headlines, so long as you have a following. Simply choose what you think are your two best headlines, tweet them both and track the results.

First, the tweeting: To be fair you’d want to tweet both simultaneously, but that’s probably not the best way. Instead, tweet them both in the morning and again in the afternoon, about 20 to 30 minutes apart. So for example in the morning you might tweet headline A at 9:00 and headline B at 9:30. Then do the same in the afternoon but reverse the order.

Track your results with a good click tracking software like Click Magick or your own favorite tracker. When you’ve got a winner, test it against another headline, and so forth.

Now then… why use this method instead of split testing? Frankly, I prefer split testing when it comes to something like a squeeze page or a sales letter, but there are times when this Twitter method comes in especially handy.

Are you sending out an important email or series of emails for a big promotion? Are you getting ready to launch a product and want to have a good idea in advance which headline will work best? Using Twitter to test your subject lines up front can put you ahead of the game and into profit faster.

Don’t be a Quitter – Be a Failure Instead

We’re taught from early on that success is everything. Win the game or ace the test and you get the grown-up’s approval. Then we get older and succeeding becomes even more important. You got into a hot shot college? Congrats! You won the contract? Great! You built a multi-million dollar business? Super!

Don't be a Quitter – Be a Failure Instead

But here’s what nobody tells you – before you can win you’ve almost always got to lose, and lose big, and lose often. You’ve heard the expression, “Nothing ventured, nothing gained,” right? Well, when you venture you don’t always gain. Many times you lose, and you lose big.

And when that happens, your confidence takes a nose dive. The next time out you hedge your bets, you pull your punches and you don’t try as hard. Why? Because that way if you fail again, you can tell yourself that you didn’t lose as big. It’s funny, but it’s also human nature.

People fail a time or two and then what do they do? Sadly, many quit. They just give up. Failure hurts too much. It’s humiliating and embarrassing and they’d rather play it “safe.” Which actually means they don’t want to play at all, they just want to sit in their cozy cotton lined box and never venture outside into the cruel world again.

Here’s what those people don’t know: The ONLY way to truly, absolutely, permanently fail is to quit. Everything else is simply a step on the way to success.

Did you know…

– The average millionaire goes bankrupt 3.5 times.

– There is a new millionaire created every 58 hours.

– The average millionaire doesn’t realize their dream until age 45 and becomes a millionaire at 54.

– The average millionaire dabbles in 17 different businesses, concepts, schemes and enterprises but doesn’t hit it big until the 18th try.

Entrepreneurship is the quickest way to become a millionaire. 74% of all millionaires in America became millionaires through entrepreneurship.

The average millionaire goes bankrupt and what does s/he do? Dusts themselves off and tries again. And again. And again. Failure is a temporary detour, not a roadblock. I absolutely promise you, if you’re still breathing then you can still succeed and succeed BIG, regardless of how many times you’ve failed in the past.

Remember those Chicken Soup for the Soul guys, Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen? Their manuscript got rejected 140 times by 140 different publishers. Most people would have quit after the 10th or 20th rejection, but they just kept sending out that manuscript until the 141st publisher took a chance. Result? Both of them are millionaires many times over.

Winston Churchill failed the sixth grade and he was defeated in every public office role he ran for. Then he became the British Prime Minister at the age of 62 and led his country to victory in WWII.

Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm. – Winston Churchill

R. H. Macy had a long and undistinguished history of failing businesses, including the first Macy’s in NYC. No one would have bet on him, but he went on to create the biggest department store in the world.

Marilyn Monroe’s first contract with Columbia Pictures expired because they decided she wasn’t pretty or talented enough to be an actress. But Monroe kept plugging away, and even today’s audiences know and love her decades after her untimely death.

Toyota passed over Soichiro Honda for an engineering job. He could have quit on his dreams. Instead, he went on to make motorcycles and cars and becoming a billionaire in the process.

Thomas Edison’s teachers told him he was “too stupid to learn anything.” Imagine how that could impact a child, hearing from the ‘experts’ that you’re too stupid to learn. Most kids would stop trying. Not Edison.

Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time. – Thomas Edison

Vera Wang failed to make the U.S. Olympic figure-skating team. Then she got passed over for the editor-in-chief position at Vogue. Time to realize she was a failure, right? Wrong. At age 40 she began designing wedding gowns and today she’s one of the hottest designers in the business and a self-made billionaire.

You’ve probably heard that Walt Disney was fired by a newspaper editor because he “lacked imagination and had no good ideas.” But did you know that he had several failed businesses before the premiere of Snow White?

The difference in winning and losing is most often…not quitting. – Walt Disney

Albert Einstein’s teachers labeled him “slow” and “mentally handicapped.” What if Einstein had actually believed the people who made these proclamations? For one thing he never would have won the Nobel prize in physics.

Henry Ford’s first auto company went out of business. He abandoned a second because of a fight and lost a third to declining sales. Yet he went on to become one of the greatest American entrepreneurs ever.

If you think you can do a thing or think you can’t do a thing, you’re right. – Henry Ford

J. K. Rowling was unemployed and living on social security while writing her first Harry Potter novel. It was rejected by 12 different publishers and finally picked up with a paltry advance of just 1,500 pounds, but now she became the first person to become a billionaire through writing.

For every failure to success example I’ve given here, there are literally hundreds of thousands of others out there. And the only thing stopping you from becoming the next failure to success story is you. So what are you waiting for?

Hurry up and get your failures out of the way so you can go on to create big success for yourself too. And maybe someday your story will be featured right along with Einstein’s, Ford’s, Disney’s and all the other great people who refused to let a little thing like failure get in their way.

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