Greater Success Equals Greater Pressure.

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By avoiding pressure you may be limiting your ability to be successful in small business.


I discovered something about myself recently that helped me understand why I am not achieving a greater level of success. Don’t get me wrong… I consider myself to be very successful in my life by looking at my results and accomplishments to date. Yet there is much more I choose to be, to do and to have, so I have not achieved the level of success I desire. And interestingly enough, the more I achieve the more I want to achieve.

When I look at my business growth, customer growth, team growth, revenue growth, income growth, asset growth and personal growth over the last year, I have seen solid and consistent increases in all areas of my life, so I am feeling more successful today than I did twelve months ago. While solid consistent growth is ok, or even good, why did I not achieve more? Well one big reason was because my family also grew with the birth of my son – I also consider this as a successful achievement. Another reason was because I was hospitalized with gall stones and my gall bladder had to be removed. They are both reasons. In fact, there are a few more reasons (or excuses) I can come up with, or so I thought.

As I examined my motives for not achieving a greater level of success over the last 12 months in the context of what I desire to achieve, it all came back to one key consideration… I was avoiding pressure. As I apply this theory to my past wins that met or exceeded my expectations, those that took longer than I anticipated, or where I did not win as I had expected to, it all came back to this one consideration… my speed to success (or any result or outcome) is directly tied to the amount of pressure that I choose to accept or avoid.

What do I mean by accepting pressure? To me, this means accepting a greater level of responsibility. The level of success I have achieved to date is directly tied to the amount of responsibility I have chosen to accept. And to achieve a greater level of success, I must accept a greater level of responsibility. And with added responsibility comes added pressure. However, there are different kinds of pressure. I’m not talking about the negative pressure that comes from responding to crises or feeling overworked. I’m talking about positive pressure, like the kind an athlete feels when he or she is training to win a championship.

The alternative is also true. Where I have not achieved the level of success I desire or within my desired timeframe, it is because there are responsibilities that I have chosen to avoid. Here’s the kicker. If I desire the outcome, I have no choice but to accept the responsibility that goes along with it. And procrastinating only delays the inevitable. If I’m going to have the outcome, I’m going to have to do what it takes which means I might as well just accept the responsibility that goes with achieving a higher level of success and get it done. Or, decide that the outcome is not that important to me and change my focus if I’m not going to accept the required level of responsibility and stop kidding myself that I’m ever going to achieve that particular goal, or complaining because I’m not achieving it.

If you were already accepting the responsibilities and the associated pressure necessary to achieve your goals, then you would have already achieved them, or be well on the path to achieving them. If you’re not, perhaps you’re making the same decision that I made to avoid pressure. If that’s the case, perhaps it’s time to make a different choice.

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