We've rolled out quite a bit this week thus far; thanks for strolling along with me!

Owning who you are is the tough First Step but learning to control what you can control can be even more difficult for 2 reasons:

a. A lot of people are control freaks; wanting to control as much as possible. And ..
b. Learning to discern just how far your Spheres of Influence go can be a ton of mental work & self-conviction.

The good news is: when people realize just how little they can control, then life actually becomes less stressful and less emotional. We end up saving a bunch of our resources of time, energy and emotions.

I often mention getting out of bed and owning it. Let’s use that as an example.

If you get out of bed, then there are a ton of options and variables that would look like a complex math problem if you wrote them down but if you decided to stay in bed, that becomes almost nothing. And yet people who had chosen to stay in bed will contemplate & worry about the world outside as if they had actually gotten out of bed!

Live in the moment, make reasonable plans for the future - days to weeks out being more detailed with further out being broader - and then chip away at them .. these are the Small Victories.

Life throws a lot of curve balls at people = traffic, weather, the economy, deaths, cancellations and postponements of all kinds - SO many things that you have absolutely nothing to do with. So allow for it, accept it and move on.

Small victories are defined as the manageable components of the bigger goal .. for example: losing weight or saving money. It’s much more seeable, do-able and manageable to lose a pound a week or save a dollar a day than to try and achieve goals boldly written or declared on some random New Years Eve of “Lose 100 pounds!” or “Save $10k this year”.

There’s a lot more to the control issue, as you can imagine. Suffice it to say that: try imagining the conversations ahead of time and running them down to their logical conclusions WITHOUT speculation! For example: asking a person out on a date: they can say yes or no. If they say yes, what will you say/do? And if they say no .. and so on. All the way to the point of no further possibilities. At that point? Let it all go. You're done. File it away for later reference.

Control the variables by eliminating potential interference and noise like, in this dating example: do it in person to avoid the “noise” or interference of voicemail, ghosting etc. If in person, get some privacy and/or time it when you can have the moment without distractions or interruptions. Plus, you also gain all of the first-hand information (body language, facial expression, tone etc) as a bonus.

These are informed, well contemplated, reasoned endeavors versus the oft ad-libbed, spontaneous, hap hazard attempts we try every day. You cannot control how they respond but you CAN control the environment in which the situation presents itself. You CAN control the words you use, the plan you make, your half of the equation! So do so.

Stack as many odds as you can into your favor!

People think I’m pretty quick and “good on my feet” .. there’s a bit of that, but most of what I say/do that looks “natural” is actually thought out repeatedly prior. Like writing, things are put out there, looked at, thought about, edited and re-edited and THEN presented. If you do THAT, then of course everything looks great or comes across as pretty darn smooth.

Baby steps in planning and then chipping away at big goals .. that’s controlling what you can and achieving small victories. Next thing you know, you are all over it and people are wondering how you do it all? How do you manage it all? How are you SO “together" Because you’ve learned control, you own your decisions, you prepared for the worst and you are knocking down life chores DAILY.

It’s cumulative. It’s a lot of work but it truly pays off in the Long Run.

The big payoff comes next - always be interviewing no matter what!

We'll see you here, tomorrow (Thursday 9/28) for Part 04.

- McDermott

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