No. I'm Not Like That.

We hate to be misunderstood. Better yet, we can't stand over-hearing (in someone else's casual conversation) that our motives or intention suck.

How many times have you been in a conversation with a bunch of people when you thought you heard your name spaced too close to an insult or some other negative nonsense?

Maybe a little something like this:

Crowd: That Dan guy....  <faded mumbles>...  what a moron!  I would never do something like that.....  idiot.... you're telling me...  what a loser!

You: Hey, you guys talk'n to me?

Better yet (what you really want to say): "You guys talking about me?"

You've been there, haven't you?  I know I have.

And for a guy who trained for an Ultimate Fighting competition, it can be hard to bite your lip and leave the area before it becomes the scene of a crime (that would be a bad intention).

Here's the kicker:

Usually it's our fault people challenge our intention....

Oh, sure, I know that really we can't help what other people think or do.  We all get that.

What most of us still don't understand is the idea of rephrasing our discussions around clearly stating our intention.

Get what I am saying?

Instead of explaining the 6 things that we are going to do; and then justifying the 19 sub-reasons why doing those things is the best way to accomplish our goal, many times it simply easier to state our intention.

Follow me?

Replace "I am going to....." with "I intend to......"

Now don't start throwing things at your computer screen (yet...).  You're right.  It is a subtle shift.  It's a small deal.  But it has strong psychological power...

People will take "pot-shots" at your actions all day long.  Frankly, it's pretty easy to do.  Still further, you'll find people who take what you think is a success and turn it into a "major failure".  They'll lambast your 1st Prize ribbon as self-serving and selfishly ego-maniacal luck.  They'll call you all manner of sophisticated names and even use religion, race, or pedigree as a platform for mis-characterizing your activity.

If you happen to eavesdrop long enough you'll find out that you might have even murdered the queen of England...

It's fairly ridiculous behavior.  Right?

Here's an observation for you:  These same people back down when you say VERY clearly what you are "intending"...

When you say "I intend to make that happen", they say "Go to it...".  But when you say "I am going to do that", they say "Over my dead body"

While we are jealous and petty people at times, we find ourselves reluctant to challenge inanimate intention...  When a motive is clearly stated, we tend to accept it.  Start stating yours...

Don't take this lightly.  Here some things to consider:

  1. Be smart about the abuse you decide to take -- Life is short but it certainly comes at you hard.  It's a non-stop game of survivor.  Be careful about how much effort you place in convincing people of your point of view.  Leave the politics around tactics to someone else and state your motives right up front.  It will take a lot of guts for someone to challenge you.  Some still will.  And, maybe, you do need to be challenged.  You will find, though, that the mindless jibber-jabber fades into the background when you are clear about your intention.
  2. Create your own drama to boost your productivity -- Great politics is great PR.  You certainly don't want to launch a full scale ad campaign every time you want to get something done, but it doesn't hurt though to tell your side of the story first.  Create the narrative before people start imagining.  There is a reason we call the imagination "wild" -- because it is.  Stating your intention early and often keeps all of us sane and motivated.  The more you remind people of the goals from the beginning, the less you will find yourself "challenged" as you attempt to navigate an every changing tactical landscape.
  3. Make doubters look like idiots, debating themselves -- Make your activities a by-product of your intention and strategical downplay your exact movements...  Let's talk turkey here.  You don't always know how you are exactly going to get something done.  Right?  You might have a ton of experience in a specific area, but that doesn't mean that this challenge is exactly like all the rest.  You might want to tell us more about the destination than the journey.  Ask the doubters what tactics they would like to employ to get your goal accomplished.  One of two things will happen -- your goal will get done or you will silence your critics.  Either way, I am sure you'll be happy.

Let me show you how this works:

I intend to change the world of high-performance...

That's my motivation.  That's what I am "up to".

And, no, in case you overheard the same thing I did, I'm not like "that".  Just a guy with a different perspective trying to help you be more effective and unstoppable.

What do you intend to do?