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Practice Makes Improvement!

Nov 22, 2007
You've heard the saying, "Practice makes perfect!" But does practice really make perfect? In reality, practice makes improvement. It is how you improve through the practice of taking action that will help you to reach your desired success.

A few years ago, when my twin boys were in Kindergarten, I had something happen that seemed all too familiar with what we experience in network marketing. As always, the first thing we do when the boys get home from school is go over their folder of work for the day. The folder contains homework for the next day and also results of test and other homework assignments done previously. The boys usually get very good results on their tests and they expect good results too.

One day they came in from school and Matthew, the oldest of the twins, was upset. When his mother began to review the results of an assignment he had the day before, he started to shed tears. Boy did he shed the tears! And he expressed a lot of frustration.

Matthew was furious because he got an 'N' on his assignment for writing his name and his brother Ben got an 'S'. [The kindergarten teacher used an 'O' for outstanding, an 'S' for satisfactory, and an 'N' for needs improvement]. The boys rarely got an 'N' on any of their work.

Matthew was crying and repeatedly kept saying, "this is unfair." He felt it was unfair that the teacher had given him an 'N' rather than an 'S', which is what he felt he deserved. We explained that 'practice makes improvement' and that all he has to do is to practice writing his name more and he will improve in his writing skills.

However, Matthew still continued to focus on the fact he got an 'N'. He pointed out that he got three things circled and Ben got three things circle, yet Ben got an "S" and he got an 'N'. Matt felt it was totally unfair!

Matt seemed to express he felt the teacher cheated him by giving him a "N" on his paper. He then explain, "This is unfair and Mrs. S. doesn't know what she is talking about. She is NOT fair. I'm gonna tell her about it too and make her change it to an 'S'." Then Ben chimed in and said, "No Matt! I have a better idea. Go to the principle and tell her about it. She will take care of it!"

We explained to Matthew that he has other things in his folder where he has done better than Ben, as well as, they are both doing better than when they began kindergarten. We further explained they are both learning and improving everyday. Plus, we talked about the fact that the mistakes are good because that is how we learn and that you can't learn if you make no mistakes.

Shirley and I had a good little chuckle over this situation. The situation reminds me a lot about network marketers. It reminds me of how many times we are quick to justify the results we have by blaming others. If things don't go our way or if we disagree with something, we will just head to the person at the top and they will take care of it. We also tend to believe we must be perfect in all we do.

The truth is that we do not need to be perfect. Perfection causes stress, anger, and fear. Rather than focus toward perfection, focus toward improvement. Keep in mind, you control the majority of what happens in your life. In fact, 95% of what happens in your life is a direct result of how you react to a given situation.

TIP - Think in terms of improvement not perfection. When you think in terms of improvement, you will reduce the stress and fear in the actions you take. Sure you will make mistakes, but don't we all?

Over time you will consistently improve in your actions and your results will improve too. Improve the results you get by taking action. Practice the habit of taking action and remember that practice makes improvement NOT perfection!
About the Author
Jeff Zalewski is a Certified Training Consultant & CEO of Direct Selling Academy, Inc., your training & performance improvement resource. Jeff intertwines his knowledge & in-the-field experience throughout his training and performance improvement resources. Subscribe FREE to his Direct Selling Pro eNewsletter at http://www.directsellingacademy.com
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