Does Your Rut Runneth Over?

It’s tough to get the momentum to get things done. It’s difficult to develop the day in and day out habits that will enable us to meet high goals. I get asked a lot about what our mission is, what our goals are and what will enable us to reach them. I’ve filled out strategic plans and mission statements ad nauseum. Do any of these actually help? I know it’s important to know where you’re going because otherwise you don’t know where you’ll end up, but I’ve got a sneaking suspicion that most folks know exactly what they’d like to change in their lives and where they’d like to be in five minutes, five months or five years.

My father used to say to me, “You know why most men fail in life? Most men fail not because they failed; most men fail simply because they never got started.” When I look at what drags me down, the root source is always my inactivity in that particular area. Are new customers lagging? How many new leads have I contacted this past week? Am I still carrying around twenty extra pounds? How many times have I been to the gym in the last month? Am I feeling lost and sad? How many hours have I spent reading inspiring words and teachings from those who succeeded magnificently at what I’m trying to do? Why does everyone in my mastermind group, including me, keep bringing up the same issues over and over again? Shouldn’t we be moving on to bigger and better challenges? Why does the pastor have to keep pushing us on the importance of tithing? Don’t I really know that none of it’s mine to keep and the more I can give now the more I’ll receive?

There’s a marketing and sales book I heard about several years ago by Rick Page that had a great title. It’s Hope Is Not A Strategy. That title says it all and sticks with me. I remember the sales force of a previous employer never being allowed to use the word hope when they brief their sales forecasts.  Yoda also carried this powerful point home with his memorable quote, “Do or do not….there is no try.” Don’t hope, don’t try…just do!

One of my favorite quotes of all time is by Herb Kelleher, former CEO of Southwest Airlines. He said, “We have a ‘strategicplan. It’s called doing things.” I have had the amazing blessing of getting to listen to and personally interact with some of the most successful men and women of the past fifty years. I doubt any of them had on their strategic plan to hope and try to be successful. They were tenacious and fearless in everything they did. They did the things that others, because they were tired, or scared, or just not willing to be creative, would not. My father would get downright mad when folks would ask him how he got so successful. He’d quip back that when he did achieve success, he’d let them know. His whole life, spiritually, professionally and personally, was focused on doing things: activity with a purpose.

So at the start of each day I’ll look myself in the mirror and tell myself what action I am going to do today that will put me further towards the path of fulfilling my strategic goals in all areas of my life. I will do this every day until one day I will look myself in the mirror and congratulate myself on achieving a particular goal. Life is all about the execution of every second to its fullest potential. May I learn this so deeply I don’t have another wasted, remorseful, or fearful moment.

6 Responses to “Does Your Rut Runneth Over?”

  1. August 23, 2010 at 11:15 am

    Hi Tracey!

    I whole-heartedly agree with what you wrote here. Thanks.

    Have fun … Tony.

  2. August 23, 2010 at 11:43 am

    Thanks very much Tony! Hope you are having a great start to your week:-)

  3. 5 Joe
    August 23, 2010 at 9:25 pm


    I used to work with someone that used the phrase “Hope is not a strategy” and it was my mantra during the last Presidential election. I love that expression! If you haven’t read it already … Tom Peters’ “The Little BIG Things” addresses “the heart of business strategy” … this section includes a reference to your favorite Herb Kelleher quotation.
    A nice piece …

    All the best,


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Tremendous Tracey

CEO Tremendous Life Books. Book Evangelist

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August 2010

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