At the end of the seminars, I give a final but incredibly important warning to participants.
Even if some of the earlier challenges don’t affect you personally, this one will; without fail. You will undoubtedly fall off this process.
It seems to often happen around 3 or 4 weeks after the initial session. It might be in an increase in workload, a spell of sickness or some other unexpected change in your flow.
I’m delighted that in nearly all cases, participants leave the sessions enthused to start their “new system” with a genuine belief that they can make a real change. And I’m equally encouraged that the vast majority do.
However, for this approach to make a real difference, they need to be able to keep it going; embedding these habits into their daily schedule, and it takes time for this to become their natural way of working.
Research shows that it can take up to two years to learn this or indeed any new skill. It’s not that it will take two years to benefit from it’s implementation; you should gain benefits immediately. But it takes two years for it to become second nature; and even then we can still fall off.
I wished somebody had warned me when I was starting this process and approach. You see the key isn’t to stay on the bike. In fact if you aren’t falling off the bike regularly, you are likely doing something wrong; if you’ll permit me to mix metaphors – you can’t make an omelette without breaking a few eggs. My experience is that the only way to always feel totally in control and never feel any stress whatsoever, is likely to mean a life lacking in adventure and somewhat dull.
The key isn’t to stay on the bike; it’s to know how to get back on the bike when you fall off. So you should take comfort in these two basic facts:
1) when you fall off this process, your in good company and
2) just as it’s easy to fall off, it’s really easy to get back going again. Don’t let this be the end of your new processes.
Come on, nothing in the course was difficult! All you need to do is begin any one of these stages again. Possibly try the capturing phase again, re-invigorating your tools or getting some new ones.
Actually, an excellent starting point if you have fallen off the bike is to to do a review (stage 4 of Workflow). Just going through the 3 stages, “Catch It”, “Update It” and “Inspire It” will help you find the initial enthusiasm again. Doing a one off weekly review will immediately remind you of the effectiveness of the approach.
So don’t lose heart, I fall off the process regularly as well, just drop the guilt, dust yourself off, and get going once again.