There are very many motivational injunctions plastered all over social media these days that it takes careful judgement to select one or two that are more than just platitudes.
Indeed one of the most relevant that I know I leaned many years ago probably while I was still at school and strangely I haven’t seen it on Twitter or Facebook.
“Good, Better, Best
I will never rest
Till my Good is Better
And my Better, Best”
It is axiomatic that what we are always seeking from our people and indeed ourselves is a commitment to self improvement.
We can do something about ourselves but as far as our people are concerned the best that we can do is to create an environment in which anyone can strive to go down the Good, Better, Best route.
Should we try to achieve any improvement by some dramatic change? It takes a step change in thinking to visualise a different path and it may be beyond the abilities of many of us, not least me.
US Vistage speaker and very wise sage, Lee Thayer, says that change needs to be dramatic to have any impact and that may well be the case. It all depends on the individual’s desire to improve and the environment that encourages it.
However I also like the concept of kai-zen or incremental improvement as long as the sense of purpose is strong. If the individual can measure the results and see the improvement then the eventual outcome can be dramatic.
I remember hearing Joe Simpson, the renowned mountaineer, tell the story of climbing in the Andes and breaking his leg on a crevasse. His companion, as previously arranged and understood, cut him loose and he fell into a snow drift.
He decided that he was going to get back to base camp somehow and started to crawl. However, rather than setting an objective that was almost unimaginable, he gave himself short steps such as getting to a large boulder in a determined time and then on to another small step (or crawl).
Amazingly he succeeded and arrived back at base camp just before they left.
Talk to any athlete and they know precisely what their measured achievements have been and what they have in their mind as the next great outcome.
They all know their own PB, Personal Best, and that becomes the focus for improvement.
Many times you will hear them say that whatever the results of a race or field event, they feel really good because they now have a new PB.
The question then to ask is do you have a PB? How do you measure it and what can you do to exceed it?
Most importantly when you have exceeded it, what is the next objective?
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