I have a question for you. How do your personal actions affect your career? This week’s podcast is with New York Times best selling author Larry Winget. He has a new book out in paperback called "It’s Called Work For A Reason! – Your Success Is Your Own Damn Fault”. I will preface my interview with the reality that for some of you Larry’s style may not endear you. The truth sometimes hurts! Larry is an author, speaker and known as "The pit bull of self development". He also has a very popular show on A&E called The Big Spender. You see, some people see their success as a result of a booming economy, the product they are working on or the boss they work for. How many times have you heard, "They were at the right place at the right time"? Their success seemingly was related to external circumstances. On the other side of the coin, some people see their failure as related to globalization, interest rate policy, the market or their boss. Both perspectives are incorrect. While yes, you may benefit or be negatively impacted by external elements, what role did your actions play in determining that success or failure? How we define success and failure in our careers can also be related to our expectations. "I hate what I do for a living. I travel 250 days a year to do my 100 hours. I love my 100 hours, I hate my travel, I have no control over my trips, it is abuse from the time I leave my house till I return, however, I love the 100 hours so that is worth the trade". Larry understands that there is a certain reality in our work life and that you have to perform a certain amount of grunt work to be successful in anything that you do. You need to ask yourself, “Is the rewards/grunt ratio working for me?” If your expectations are too high, you will never see work in a successful way. It will always be failure for you. What is your success pattern? What is your failure pattern? What are your expectations? One of the keys to success is to take responsibility for both your successes and your failures. Larry’s mantra in life is, "Understand your responsibilities and your rights". When you do this, it brings a true sense of personal control over outcomes. If you feel stuck in your current situation, I am going to suggest that it is related to your own inner sense of what role you are playing. When you are clear about what you do well and what you have control over, you can then work on the elements that you have control over and take positive action toward something better. If you feel your success is a result of circumstances, then you are unlikely to want to change those circumstances. You can feel trapped in success and yet not be happy. If you feel trapped in failure, then you may become bitter and angry with those around you. Both are not constructive. They both are routed in not recognizing and taking action over the things that you have control over. 1. Take ownership of your success and failure. 2. Look at what you do and don’t have control over. 3. Take positive action with the things you have control over. 4. Set realistic expectations. When you do these four things, your situation will improve. It may take lots of action or a little action, but one thing I can guarantee is that improvement will require action. Either you take action or the market will take action upon you, i.e. a layoff or demotion or some other challenging circumstance. It is always better to act than react. "The critical element people leave out of becoming successful is action. Get busy even if you are doing the wrong thing and you will find out sooner", said Larry. People who are successful in their careers take action with the things they have control over and accept the things that are not in their control. There are a lot of books about attitude. I think we need positive action; positive action will change your career and your life. Positive attitude doesn’t necessarily change anything. I would call action "the discipline of intent". Real change only comes when a plan is put into action. What are your thoughts? Continue the conversation on my blog, Control or don’t have control. You need to have a positive action more than a positive attitude. You choose.
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