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The Right Path
by Michael Beck

By taking the time to gain new insights into ourselves and our business, we create an opportunity to see things in a different light -- to truly see things as they are. Once we do that, we can much better determine whether we need to take a new and better approach to building our business or instead, choose a new path for ourselves. You may find that you're running hard down the wrong path altogether . . .

If you decide that you're on the wrong path, it's OK. It is VERY common for that to be the case. In truth, many people suspect they're on the wrong path but don't acknowledge it. They end up spending a lifetime being unhappy and/or dissatisfied with their life. Take stock of the things you enjoy doing and where your true talents lie, and then go about identifying new and different opportunities in which to apply them. Once you're in an occupation that you enjoy, life really becomes enjoyable and satisfying. You'll end up working less (mostly because what you'll be doing you won't consider to be work), and you'll achieve a much greater level of success.

If instead, you decide that you ARE on the right path, then good for you! But you have a different challenge ahead of you. Remember that old saying about the definition of "insanity"? It goes like this: "The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results!"

If you aren't at the level of success you want to be and you've determined that you ARE in the right kind of occupation, then it probably is time to do something different. Stop conducting "business as usual". You need to become more open-minded about how to get the job done. Here's how I see it: You can insist on doing things the way you've always done them, or you can choose to reinvent yourself and your business, and start doing things differently. Even if you've been in this business a while, be open to taking advice from others. Even newer people can have good, fresh ideas. Things that didn't work years ago may now be effective - given changes in society, and given your present level of expertise and experience. Commit to investing in yourself and your development. Start reading on a regular basis. Start attending or acquiring educational programs. Even ONE new idea can take your business to a whole new level.

One of the problems we have is that we often get completely caught up in our day-to-day routine. This prevents us from stepping back from our work, reflecting on our lives and our business, and reevaluating what we really want to do. My suggestion is to do just that. It is CRITICAL to your success and your happiness to take the time to reflect. When you get away from your office you gain new perspectives.

Re-evaluate yourself and your business. Gain clarity as to whether you should continue to build the business you're in or change occupations. If staying where you are is right, then commit to changing and growing. Be open to new ideas, even if the "new" ideas are ones you tried years ago without success. Remember, times have changed and you have changed. We are not the same people we were 10 or even 5 years ago. As our experience grows, so does our ability to succeed where we once faltered.

OK, now go get a cup of coffee . . .

Written by Michael Beck, an executive coach, speaker & trainer. He is the nation's leading expert on recruiting independent sales representatives, and helps executives and managers build and lead productive sales teams. For more information, and to receive his program:"Smart Recruiting Strategies in a Tough Market!" for FREE, please visit: © 2008 Exceptional Leadership, Inc. Michael Beck may be contacted at or


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