One of the most worthless piece of advice I’ve ever gotten is this — “lower your expectations.” Or perhaps a variant of “don’t get too attached to your expectations.” I say “worthless” because our expectations is what makes or breaks us. Imagine a life without expectations…
Nothing, right? It’s like a blank page! That’s precisely why I think that line of thinking is highly limiting. Besides, there’s nothing exciting about lowering your expectations. It kills off any desire for accomplishment! How is that even healthy?
The alternative is to keep expecting but detaching yourself from the outcome. It allows one to freely explore, experiment, and take risks because the end result isn’t as important as your commitment to the process. If something positive happens, great! If not, well, you tweak things as appropriate and carry on!
Let’s say you’re into sales. It’s common knowledge that cold calling sucks but there’s no way you can avoid it. Also, the key reason why people hate it because nobody likes to get rejected. Not once, twice, thrice, but hundreds of time before you hit the quota. And then you start all over again.
But what if you were to reverse engineer the whole thing? Assuming you need to make 100 calls to get 5 appointments — why not just focus on making those 100 calls? It doesn’t matter if you get those appointments or not. Tomorrow, you’re gonna try making those 100 calls again. Rinse and repeat. All of a sudden, you switched from getting appointments to making 100 calls each working day. In other words, you focused your energies to do what’s in your control (making those calls) instead of what’s not (getting appointments).
Of course, I know it’s easier said than done. But the whole point is to operate from a space of freedom instead of fear. Once you detach yourself from the outcome, things get pretty interesting. Your tone, pitch, demeanor, and overall performance have a way of resetting itself to adjust to the new realities. The result is that your performance can’t help but go up simply because you’re consistent with the numbers. And the law of averages will do the rest.
The key is to not get caught up in the process. Commit to it, of course, but don’t overanalyse the details, variables, and aspects that aren’t in your control. You goal is to get to work and get moving until you reach your goal. And if you stack up a few appointments, more power to you. If not, take notes, tweak your plan as appropriate, and repeat the whole thing tomorrow.
Don’t be surprised to see your pipeline stacked (maybe even overflowing) with qualified prospects in a matter of days! And if you stay disciplined and committed to the process overtime you can achieve the rockstar salesperson status. Guaranteed!
Of course, this isn’t for everyone. We’re too attached to both our expectations and the outcome. My experience tells me that an attachment to the latter is a recipe for disappointment. And the only way to set yourself free is to detach from it without throwing your expectations under the bus.
All it takes is a little doing. Are you up for it?
P.S. The title of this post is actually a quote by Carrie Cambell.