For Self-Improvement to Work, You Have to Do the Hard Things

Win the war for talent with our FREE best practices guide exclusively for hiring managers!

For Self-Improvement to Work, You Have to Do the Hard Things

self-improvementConscious, continuous self-improvement is one of the toughest challenges many people face as they get lost in the day-to-day grind of work.  Sometimes it’s hard to remember to continuously ask yourself– what can I be doing better?

I struggle with this very same problem and find myself needing to remind myself what I’m working towards, and what I’m doing to get there.   An activity I’ve come to enjoy doing is reading and learning about various strategies that have proven for people to be successful on a day-to-day basis across any/all industries.

Many of them include a list of tasks that can make all the difference in the world if you stop to ensure you make them happen.  For example 6 things successful people do before work may include: reading the news, making sure you have breakfast, exercise etc.   But all productive systems, if implemented correctly, will enable you to be more successful.

I recently started reading a blog by Dan Waldschmidt and earlier this year he had a similar message on improving your chances of being successful.  The theme was – you have to do the hard things.  The hard things are the easiest to avoid and ignore, but this is what sets you apart from your competition and your own complacency.  It does not mean you need to work more frantically and take on more projects.  It means do not accept the status quo, ever, don’t make excuses, and make it happen. Here are a few of my favorite and most applicable tips for self-improvement.

  • You have to make the call you’re afraid to make.
  • You have to get up earlier than you want to get up.
  • You have to feel unsure and insecure when playing it safe seems smarter.
  • You have to lead when no one else is following you yet.
  • You have to grind out the details when it’s easier to shrug them off.
  • You have to search for your own explanations even when you’re told to accept the “facts”
  • You have to deliver results when making excuses is an option.
  • You have to be accountable for your actions even when things go wrong.

I’ve put this in up my cubicle at work as a constant reminder to myself. If you want to do anything, if you want to grow and develop your career further, it’s not going to be by doing the easy things. Make an investment in yourself and continue to strive to get better every day without accepting business as usual.