Most all of us procrastinate about something, including things we know need to be done. Count me in — especially about filing and keeping my office organized. So I really enjoyed Robert Middleton’s post, Bet Your Car. He coaches people to work toward their goals, and when they seem to get stuck doing what it would take to meet a goal, he uses his “bet the car” strategy. It works like this:
(Middleton) “You’ve said you’d do this for several weeks and you haven’t. I realize you’re stuck. But I also know you know what to do. So I’d like to make a bet with you. I’d like you to bet your car that you’ll get this done this week. Are you willing to bet your car?”
(Client) “You mean, if I didn’t get it done, you’d get my car?”
[Realize that a dozen or more other participants were listening in on the conference call at the time.]
(Middleton) “Yes. I’d get your car. Are you up to it?”
(Client) “Well, yeah, I guess I am. I’ll do it. I’ll bet my car that it will get done!”
Well, guess what — it always got done! His point is, “When you make a promise with real consequences, something changes. Reality sets in. The mind’s homing mechanism goes into action. Since there’s no way they’re going to give away their car, they find a way to get it done.”
One way Middleton recommends you stay on track, and this is one that works for me, is: Make a public promise. That’s right, tell your plan for meeting your goal to people you know will ask you about it.
Middleton’s site, Action Plan Marketing, is aimed at independent professionals, but many of his insights apply to any small business owner.