Potential: we all have it. Some pursue their potential, and others are content with simply getting by. Some think they are as good as they’ll ever be, and others keep striving to get better.
Are you committed to pursuing your true potential?
Our research shows that 58% of people have a commitment to getting better, but only 38% have a specific plan.
That kind of commitment is more like wishful thinking.
In my book, The Potential Principle, I explain four breakthrough techniques for getting better and four areas for improvement. The latter I call the Potential Matrix. This grid identifies four aspects of life that are crucial to your journey toward improvement: the performing quadrant, the learning quadrant, the thinking quadrant, and the reflecting quadrant. Each represents potential areas of growth, and they all complement each other. Growth in one area can be used to foster growth in the others, leading to greater progress overall.
How can you best use this improvement map? Begin by deciding what you want to improve: a project, a performance, a relationship or anything that really matters to you. Then use all four quadrants to help you get there.
One of the most common uses of the matrix—and the most helpful—is to start in the thinking quadrant. Determine what needs to be done and move into the learning quadrant to learn the needed skills. Then you apply those skills in the performing quadrant and afterwards reflect on the insights you gained. Then you can go back into the thinking quadrant to rethink for even more improvement.
We all have one “preferred zone” where we are most comfortable and enjoy operating, often to the exclusion of the other zones. If you really want to be the best you can be, you’ll have to go exploring outside your comfort zone. It’s in those uncomfortable areas where you’ll grow the most.
Maybe you’re more at home in the inner world of thoughts and ideas than in the outer world of words and action. That can be awesome, but there’s a danger that you might think a lot without doing much. Or maybe the opposite is true, and you like being highly productive. Again, that’s great, but you might be doing a lot without thinking much!
Take Action: focus on getting better in each and using all four quadrants of the Potential Matrix.
About the Author: Mark SANBORN, CSP, CPAE, Monthly Mentor, is president of Sanborn & Associates, Inc., an idea studio dedicated to developing leaders in business and in life. Mark is an international bestselling author and noted expert on leadership, team building, customer service and change. Mark holds the Certified Speaking Professional designation from the National Speakers Association (NSA) and is a member of the Speaker Hall of Fame. He was honored with the Cavett Award, the highest honor the NSA bestows on its members, in recognition of his outstanding contributions to the speaking profession. Mark is also a member of the exclusive Speakers Roundtable, made up of 20 of the top speakers in America. He is also the author of eight books, including the bestseller The Fred Factor: How Passion In Your Work and Life Can Turn the Ordinary Into the Extraordinary which has sold more than 1.6 million copies internationally. Read More…