The Slight Edge

This can be the year of your dreams, the year of great accomplishment, the year you realize and utilize your untapped potential; the year you achieve long sought after goals in all areas of your life. This year will be exciting and rewarding only if you make it so.  You ask how can I determine to make it such a year?  The year will hold accomplishment, realization and achievement only if you expect it to happen; only if you enter and live each day with an understanding of the slight edge. Let me explain.

For ten years, I worked with Success Motivation Institute selling their motivational programs.  The strength and essence of their program philosophy was that we learn best through repetition (daily small steps). That sounded great for the programs we sold, we offered a package of printed, recorded material and even had a daily action plan. But I never recognized or connected that philosophy to my own sales activity.

Don’t get me wrong – the Company expected us to turn in our weekly work sheet with the number of prospects, calls, appointments and even how many times we asked for the order as well as new prospects/referrals. It wasn’t always easy to call in those numbers especially when they fell short.

My wake-up call came a few years into the business when I attended one of the SMI sales trainings. The President, Paul J. Meyer spoke about the Slight Edge – you know like Phil Michelson winning the Golf Masters by 1 and ½ strokes per day over his opponent. Or more recently Michael Phelps in the 2016 Olympics. He was after his 8th gold medal in order to beat Mark Spitz’s 36-year record of 7 medals. Phelps was swimming the 100-meter butterfly, when it came down to the final stroke, it looked like he was going to fall just a few inches short. After touching the wall, everyone was stunned, the clock showed Phelps had edged out his closest opponent Cavic by 1/100th of a second. Phelps’ daily practice got him that Gold Medal.

During Meyers talk I came to realize that the Slight Edge he was talking about for sales success was the same philosophy as the spaced repetition we were selling people about why our success programs worked to help them change their lives. We learn best through repetition, small daily steps or learnings. So, what exactly is the “slight edge” and how can it help you? A couple of months ago, I came across a book called the Slight Edge by Jeff Olson.

According to Olson, “The Slight Edge is a philosophy. It’s having faith in the process of simple, positive actions repeated over time, the faith that miracles do happen—if you know when to trust the process and keep churning the cream.”

In other words, no matter how many books you read, CDs you listen to, or seminars you attend, if you don’t absorb this idea of simple steps and their compounded effect over time, you won’t successfully apply those things you learn, to create the results you want.

The challenge for you to feel the greatness of your accomplishments depends upon your awareness and application of the principle of focused small steps even though you may not see immediate results. The long-term effect of your everyday habits of thought and action are your ultimate keys to success.

The Challenge: Review what steps have worked for you, then repeat them over and over again with a good attitude, eventually the compound effect will kick in.