Numerous comparisons are made between amateurs and professionals. Here’s a few of my favorite:
“Amateurs practice until they get it right; professionals practice until they can’t get it wrong.”
“Amateurs show up inconsistently; professionals show up every day.”
“Amateurs do what they love; professionals love what they do.”
In fact, my most favorite is the last quote attributed to author Seth Godin.
If we want success, we must be a pro. We all get that. A professional is someone that is engaged in an activity that is of the highest quality and has high monetary value.
What does it take to BE a professional?
In the Super Bowl this past week, the Kansas City Chiefs were down by 10 points at halftime. In the 2nd half, they scored on each offensive possession and won the game by 3 points.
There was a noticeable difference in the Chiefs’ offensive performance between the 1st and 2nd halves. Naturally, in the post game press conference, reporters asked what the team discussed during halftime to spur such a dramatic performance change.
Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes responded by saying, “We didn’t play with joy in the first half, we talked about playing all out for each other.”
Consider that. The difference between a sluggish performance and a triumphant performance was the absence of and the presumed addition of joy. By loving what they were doing, the team played more freely, quicker, stronger.
Find what you love in what you do
In a group mastermind that I lead for the Xperiential MBA program, one of the participants talked about how a simple, yet profound perspective shift led to huge success.
He started a real estate wholesale business. Success in that business comes with being able to acquire properties directly from owners. He started cold calling owners to see if selling quickly to him made sense.
By his admission, he was not a fan of those conversations. Frankly, he’s still not. Yet, he flipped his perspective on making the calls. He finds joy in competition. So, he looks at this activity like a hunt. He loves the hunt. He’s motivated to get up each day and “hunt” for opportunities. His business is successful. He is also happy & fulfilled by it, too.
Note that the actual activities don’t always change. He still does the cold calls. The Chiefs were still playing arguably the best all-around defense in the NFL in a career defining & life changing environment.
They both succeed through finding love in what they do.
How to love what you do
The mindset of a professional is simple. Love what you do.
The “how” is also more simple than you might think. It’s aligning your key actions & activities for success with your values.
I do this with private clients that coach with me. We find their values, which is in our deepest level unconscious programming. Once we bring their values to light, we tailor activities to align with their values.
A client valued creating a legacy and building relationships in business among other things. They completely shifted from the grind of sales to the joy of forging deep relationships and the legacy of changing lives. The energy shift led to doubling of their key activities. Plus, they are happier now than they’ve ever been in business. Not to mention, out-pacing the start to last year by almost triple.
Whether it’s playing on the biggest stages or doing the work behind closed doors, loving what you do will keep you pushing yourself beyond the limits. You’ll have the capacity to show up everyday and practice until you can’t get it wrong.
That’s the mindset of a professional.