A few years ago I had the opportunity to attend a presentation by Anthony Robbins. The event was comprised of a full day of speakers and, as someone who enjoys speaking; I was thrilled to watch some true professionals at work.
I have listened to hundreds of speakers over the years, and to watch Anthony Robbins was like nothing I had ever witnessed. He brought such raw energy to the stage that I could instantly see how he has been able to create a huge business around his personal energy.
More than his presence, what caught me was the unique way in which he engaged and challenged the audience. He asked the audience to consider what was holding them back from achieving their goals. A woman in the front row volunteered her story about how the responsibility of taking care of her children had made it impossible to achieve her goals. As the woman explained her situation, every person in the audience felt empathy and understood her difficult position.
Anthony Robbins’ reaction surprised me. He suggested to her to consider that within the realm of possibilities there was a way to manage her responsibilities as a parent and achieve her goals.
That no matter how hard, how difficult, how much of a burden she carried, that if her dreams meant enough to her she would find a way to reach them and still take care of her children. He confronted her with the idea that she had been actually using her children as an excuse not to move forward. Frankly, it was an awkward moment to witness but the woman admitted the truth in his statement.
I think everyone in the audience felt a shared sense of guilt about not realizing their own dreams.
We all have dreams! We want to be the best salesperson or grow our business or make our start-up into something real. These are great goals but without plans and without the commitment to do whatever it takes, those dreams will never be realized.
We live in a society that tells us that we can have it all: a great career and business, and plenty of time to enjoy the fruits of success with our families and loved ones. This is a lie. Great success requires great sacrifice.
Most successful salespeople spend evenings preparing quotes and Sunday nights planning the upcoming week. Many company owners spend sunny weekends in the office doing paperwork. Drive through any business park on a sunny, summer afternoon and you will see single luxury cars in front of warehouses and factories – owners and managers at work.
I think that many of us are guilty of thinking that we are prepared to do whatever it takes to reach our dreams as long as “whatever it takes” fits neatly into a 9-5 schedule.
Professional athletes give up their childhoods in a quest for success. You may want to ask yourself what you are prepared to give up to achieve your dreams. If you are prepared to do “whatever it takes” then what about your team? Have you surrounded yourself with like-minded people?
Winning requires a lot of us. Most of us have what it takes – we are just not willing to do what it takes!