. It’s easy to feel as though you are struggling with the highs and lows of field sales, as though the weight of the world were on your shoulders. This is one of those rarely voiced issues that every salesperson confronts sooner or later. Unless you figure out how to manage those emotions and keep yourself motivated, youll have a difficult time succeeding. This is particularly true right now. As I write this, the economy is in recession, and shows little sign of improving. Unemployment is higher than it has been for years. Many companies are cutting back, there are fewer jobs available, and pressures to perform are greater than ever. Not a pretty picture. However, even though the world around us may be dreary and depressing, that in no way reduces our personal need to do the best we are able.
The foundational principle here is: You must believe that you can do better, and that it is your responsibility to do so. So, the first principle really is foundational. Do you really believe that you can do better? Here are some time-tested ways to motivate yourself.
1. Get a purpose, larger than yourself, to work for.
If you keep your world is limited to yourself, you find it just as easy to rationalize your mediocre results as it is to extend yourself to achieve superior results. One of the most motivating things in the world is the need to provide for a family. That will get you out there on the dreariest days, under the worst of conditions. Love is perhaps the greatest motivation in the world. When combined with the responsibility for the economic well-being of those you love, it can be an incredibly powerful motivator for the long term.
Likewise, creating a tangible, worthwhile, exciting goal runs a close second for a way to motivate yourself. Thats why spending once a year in a personal strategic planning retreat in which you create motivating goals for the coming year is a discipline with powerful results.
2. Surround yourself with positive thoughts and energy.
We must determine to take control of your thoughts. Search out, and write down on a set of 3 X 5 cards, all the positive saying and quotes you could find. I remember one in particular, from the Bible, If God is for us, who can be against us? (Romans 8:31). Earlier in my career I had about a 45 minute drive from my home into my territory every morning. So, Id hold those cards between my hands on the steering wheel, and flip them over and over, reading them to myself on the way in. While I wouldnt recommend that driving technique, it did wonders for my attitude. I began to become more positive, to look for opportunities, to feel more confident. (Today I’d recommend that you record yourself reading the quotes, and play them in your car as you drive.) Within a short space of time, a discernable change had taken place for the better. This is a proven technique to bring about positive change in one’s life and career.
3. Don’t forget past successes
Write and maintain a journal or scrap book of your past successes. Note that appointment that you finally obtained with the hard-to-get to prospect. Keep a record of that big sale that you worked so hard to get. And note the details of that great presentation that you made.
Keep the awards youve earned, the congratulatory emails from your management, the photos of that trip that you won. From time to time, review your file. Youll find yourself becoming confident and motivated. If you have done these good things once, you can surely do them again.
You can do more, achieve more, earn more and become more. It is your responsibility to become the best that you can be. Implementing any one or all three of these proven practices will help you consistently operate at levels higher than before.