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For every great achievement, there is a series of powerful moments fueling that journey toward our goal.
The sixth week of U.S. Navy SEAL training is lovingly referred to as “Hell Week”, especially by the instructors who seemed to take great pleasure in separating the wheat from the chaff in the most brutal fashion imaginable. It is a merciless rite of passage. Prior to Hell Week, we were treated to a “pep talk” from a Navy SEAL who described his experience and how he got through it – he focused on how he would get to the next moment. That phrase… “get to the next moment.” It stood out to me; like it was audibly highlighted in yellow. Now, that’s advice I can use, I thought.
Hell Week came, and as expected, every training exercise was cranked up on the dial to an 11. Laying in the freezing ocean holding a log over my head, getting crushed again and again by waves, I mentally searched for anything that would help me make it through. First, I tried to think about the next meal. Soon, I started fading again. So, I thought about the next 60 seconds—surely, I can do anything for 60 seconds . . . until I couldn’t. Then it came to me, the advice from the pep talk: get to the next moment. Maybe the next moment was a wave; maybe the next moment was switching out the log over my head; maybe the next moment was moving to the next exercise. Finally, the adding up of those moments amounted to being done (for now) and mealtime.
Life is remembered in moments, not minutes. It’s rare we focus on the minutes or the hours of our lives; unless a significant moment is happening. In some ways, moments are timeless anchors we can use to look toward an achievement; or to recall as a way of motivation. And the rhythmic accumulation of moments builds our futures as well as achieves our dreams.
Moments are powerful forces that happen in a short amount of time, though they seem almost timeless. Many of us aren’t aware of when a moment begins or when it ends, yet they serve as anchors along our timelines.
When recalled in applicable situations, moments when you or your team achieved a goal, or experienced a breakthrough, can be used as motivation. This motivation can be used to keep going, to stay true to a decision, or even make a better call in the here and now.
Imagining a moment in the future – such as completing a task, meeting a team goal, or completing a client project – can serve to pull you and your team forward through tough decisions or complex problems.
What moments can you remind your team of? Moments that will help them with where they are at today? To inspire them to greater accomplishments, personally or professionally? What moments in the future can you vision-cast to your team to refocus their efforts and move them past challenges?
Whether we’re conscious of them or not, every achievement comes at the end of a chain of smaller accomplishments, or moments. Can moments be planned? I think so. We can plan to create anchors along the timeline of a project, or even the development of a relationship, that can accumulate to your ultimate finish line. Those anchors are their own milestone goals.
Would you like to have a loving, respectful, friendly relationship with your children when they become adults? All parents do! And there are moments you can create over the years that will help get your family to that point.
Would you like to see your team exceed its sales goals over the next two years? Of course! Barring circumstances outside of your control, there are moments you can create for the development of your team, as well as the development of the individuals on your team, all aimed at getting you there.
What moments can you plan for yourself and your team that will help you meet your goals? How can those moments build on each other? These are important questions to ask an answer to help make and plan for moment-by-moment progress.
When I began to understand that I could intentionally create moments for myself and for others, and when I saw the power that collective moments have, I began to realize that moments can be organized and even set to a rhythm. Whether the rhythm is daily, weekly or monthly, setting up our lives for regular moments of insight, inspiration, breakthrough or accomplishment can make a sizeable impact on the goals we achieve including the level of leadership we grow toward.
Now, the key to creating moments like this, or even happening upon moments like this, is opening yourself up to being in the moment. Being present as moments are happening, even the moments you’re creating, drives the anchor deeper. This makes a more lasting impression and highlights its significance.
As you look at your calendar, can you set up your week to include a moment of insight, inspiration, breakthrough or accomplishment? Decide what you want that moment to look like, sound like, or feel like. How can you create a moment that will serve as an anchor along your leadership journey?
We often think of moments as small, or being a solo happenstance in our journey. But if we pay attention, the power of moments can be harnessed. They can motivate us forward, they can accumulate in our achievements, they can be crafted into a rhythm that continues our path of growth. Moments don’t always happen by chance. Moments can be created for yourself, your family, your team and your company. Take the next step and make moments that matter in order to make a difference.
At Team Performance Institute, we believe in the power of moments. And we believe you are poised in this moment in time to make a difference. If you’re ready to bring your team to the next level, now is your moment. Contact us, and ask about our executive performance coaching and virtual services.