Dare to live without limits Week of 7/1/19

Bryan Golden

Just one more degree makes all the difference

Water boils and creates steam at 212 degrees Fahrenheit. Water at 211 degrees is just really hot. The fact that it’s almost boiling doesn’t matter. Getting close isn’t good enough. A steam engine is useless without steam; it won’t work with hot water.
Picture a giant steam locomotive with a raging fire under the boiler that only raised the water temperature to 211 degrees. Although it was billowing lots of smoke and using a great deal of firewood, the locomotive wouldn’t be able to move even an inch. That one extra degree makes the difference between something happening, versus nothing happening.
The same principle applies to life. An individual may be working furiously for many hours a week, for many weeks, and yet not producing any positive results. If they are just one degree short of where they need to be, nothing will happen until they add the last bit of energy.
Falling short of success by just a small amount is a common phenomenon. It results in dismay and frustration, along with the urge to give up. Many people who do give up do so while being closer to their goals than they realize. Adding just a little bit extra would have propelled them to success.
Here's another way of looking at this concept: Putting in a small amount of extra effort produces results far in excess of the effort required. It's always worth doing a little bit more rather than trying to skate by with as little as possible.
Those who try to get by with minimum effort are putting limits on how much they will accomplish. For example, an employee who does just enough to keep from getting fired will have a much different future than the exceptional employee who consistently does more than is required.
At your job, take initiative. Look for things which need to be done before being asked. Have a standard of excellence. Don't allow good to be good enough. Doing things right the first time prevents having to do them over again.
If you want a promotion, put in the same effort you would as if you were already in that position. A motivated, self-starter, is a valuable asset to any organization. Conversely, people who wait to get promoted before working harder rarely get chosen for advancement.
The same approach also boosts your chances of getting hired in the first place. Dressing to impress, researching the business you want to work for and arriving early, along with making a great impression, will make you one of the top candidates.
College students also benefit from this concept. The difference between being an "A" student and a "B" student is less effort than most people realize. Just like the fact that there's only one degree between hot water and steam, there’s only one point between an 89 and a 90. Attending class regularly, completing all assignments on time, keeping up with the reading, and studying for tests will make you a top student.
Top students learn more, have better skills, and are more impressive to prospective employers. They have a proven work ethic which makes them a highly desired employee. Their engrained work ethic affects every aspect of their lives. They have a wide array of career options, earn more money, and experience greater satisfaction.
Always seek out ways you can apply the extra degree of effort. Consistently doing a little more produces better results compared to doing a little less. Making this a habit accelerates your progress. Doing the unexpected, by going above and beyond, generates an amazingly positive energy which attracts what you want and need.

NOW AVAILABLE: "Dare to Live Without Limits," the book. Visit www.BryanGolden.com or your bookstore. Bryan is a management consultant, motivational speaker, author, and adjunct professor. E-mail Bryan at bryan@columnist.com or write him c/o this paper.  2019 Bryan Golden


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