#151-You’re Aiming For The Wrong Goal
John (Intro): I have been on a quest to learn everything I can about leadership obsessed with what makes the best leaders so good. After running companies small and large for the last 20 years, today I speak on stages all across the world to audiences who are interested in that same question. My name is John Laurito and I’m your host. I invite you to join me on this journey as we explore this topic: What makes the best leaders so good? Welcome to Tomorrow’s Leader.
John: All right, welcome to today’s episode of Tomorrow’s Leader, where we dive deep on all things leader-related, related to lean yourself and leading others. I’m John Laurito, your host. Today and tomorrow and every day thereafter. I am not going to lie. I’m feeling a little under the weather. I just did my second Covid vaccination, which I’m excited about, but it is
taking its toll on my body and my voice, as you can hear. So bear with me. But I want to talk today about a situation that I think a lot of people find themselves in. And I’ll start it with a story.
John: I was at the gym and I saw this person that was working out and really going through like this, these exercises with the worst form possible. I mean, just absolutely bad form. And, you know, I mean, just every machine. It was one of these things where you look and say, what exercise are they doing? I don’t even understand it. What muscle group are they trying to work? And I guarantee if I’d asked this person, which I didn’t, I probably should have. But I guarantee if I asked this person, hey, listen, what is your goal here? What are you trying to actually do? The answer probably would have been, I want to get in better shape. And my goal is to build muscle and I want to feel better and this and that. For most of the people that are in the gym, that’s their common goal.
John: But this person’s goal wasn’t to just sling weight around in the highest amount of weight, I don’t think, because even if that was their goal, they really weren’t doing it technically properly. So it’s not like you could claim that. Yeah, I did these big weights on these machines and free weights and all this kind of stuff, because technically you weren’t even doing the exercise right now, even if that was somebody’s goal, again, they’re not doing the right process to be able to claim that they accomplish that goal. But my point is the fact that this person was causing themselves unnecessary risk, because when you’re working out and you use really, really bad form nine times out of ten, at some point you are going to get hurt. No doubt about it.
John: You’re going to pull a muscle. You’re going to do something that’s going to ultimately keep you out of working out for a period of time. There may be a long-term type of injury, but secondly, they were really probably only getting 10% to 20% of the effectiveness from this workout. They probably were only, in other words, to put this to numbers, it would probably take them five to maybe ten workouts. In that fashion, to really equal one workout with really good form, and I truly mean that. So you’re just not hitting the muscle properly, you’re just not developing, you’re not doing anything other than hurting your joints and everything like that. The way this person in you goes to a gym, for those of you go to a gym, you see people using bad form all the time. So the reason I bring this up is oftentimes we find people and sometimes ourselves where we’re kind of chasing the wrong goal.
John: So in other words, in this case, I’ve seen people do this and it is an ego thing. They’re just trying to lift the most amount of weight possible. But is that really your goal or is it your goal that you want to build muscle and you want to feel better, you want to look better? If that’s the case, then you’re really aiming for the wrong goal because your exercise style is aiming toward a whole different goal. And that’s just to claim that you lifted the most amount of weight possible. I don’t know if that’s making sense. I hope it is. But I just saw this and I’ll give you a couple of other examples. I see this in business a lot of times when I was an adviser, a new advisor, financial adviser, I remember my goal every single week was to set ten appointments no matter what, come hell or high water. I was going to set ten appointments. It didn’t matter if I was there till Saturday at 2:00 in the afternoon, dialing on Friday night at eight o’clock at night, I was one way or the other going to set my ten appointments.
John: I was so maniacally focused on that that I forgot that the real goal that I had was I needed to bring on one client a week because unless I brought on a client a week, I was going to be out of business. Now, the cause ultimately to the effect is, OK, I’ve got to do
enough activity, front-end activity. And if I trust those numbers over the long term, then that will equal the result. But my goal was so I was so maniacally focused on this, I had my blinders on, totally focused on setting made appointments that I would unjustly give myself too much credit when I said the ten appointments, because ultimately what happened, it just became it turned into just setting any kind of appointment. I didn’t care what it was. I didn’t care. Even appointments that I knew would not hold. I would hang up that phone and I’d say there is 0%.
John: At that point, the person is going to hold that meeting, a 0% chance I knew it. So it was a total waste and it was a fictitious appointment, but it counted technically because I set an appointment. So it was closer to me sending my ten appointments a week. But in reality, what does it matter if I set ten crappy appointments a week and all ten of them cancel or two of them show up and they’re not qualified, people? What does it matter? I could say ten every single week. I can’t go to the food store and buy my food and groceries and go to the cashier and say, hey, I don’t have any money, but I’ve set ten appointments last week. You know, they’re going to look at me like, what are you talking about? We don’t work that way.
John: But bottom line is, I see many people that are focused on the wrong goal. It’s OK to be activity-driven, but ultimately results are what matter. And if your activity if you’re not getting the results, you have to look at the activity. And by doing the right type of activity, am I doing the right amount of the activity? So as an example, you know, if I’m trying to lose weight, I use this example all the time. If I’m not losing weight, which is a result, I’ve got to look at my behavior. So I ate too much. Am I eating the wrong foods? So is my drinking too much? Am I getting enough sleep? I’m drinking enough water, am I exercising enough? All those things are the activities. But if I am just using an activity that’s really not so. This person that’s lifting these weights like crazy could be saying, hey, I’m going to the gym every day.
John: But are they really giving themselves a good workout? No. A year ago people will be like, you don’t look any different. And they haven’t. I’ve seen them. And the reason is they’re just not doing it right. They’re not focused on the right goal, quality workout. You know, there’s a period of time where I’m going to cover this and probably another episode about a
different concept. But I remember my son one time made a comment to me when we’re getting frozen yogurt. And he said, Dad, you know what? Your belly’s getting big. I’m like, what? This was a few years ago. And I’m like, are you really? I’m looking fat? And he’s like, are you belly bigger than I’ve seen in a long, long time? I’m like, and he probably was not quite as nice. He was younger and more just direct. So as kids always are.
John: And I’m like, wow, OK, I’m not going to be that guy. So I proceeded. At that point, I made a decision in my mind that I was going to see how many days in a row I could work out, how many consecutive days in a row I could go to the gym. And it started that day, it
was December 26, it was before the end of the year, I think it was the day after Christmas and it started and I did it for seven days in a row, seven days turned into thirty days in a row, 30 days in a row of going to the gym. And I’m like, wow, you know what? If I did it for 30 days in a row, I can’t break my streak now. I mean, I’ve got to keep this going, and let me see how long I can do this. Well, 30 days turned into two months and I kept going. Two months turned into three months, three months every single day of going to the gym, not skipping a day. I had to now qualify this by it had to be at least 30 minutes now. And I also said it didn’t have to be the gym. It could be a home workout.
John: But I had to sweat. It had to be at least 30 minutes of intense workout. But I had to exercise. I was technically at exercise every day in a row, three months. I’m like, OK, well, I can’t stop now. This is kind of like this addictive thing. Let me do four months. I did that. I was five, then it was six, then it was seven. And I kept going. I did a year and seven months of going to the gym or exercising every single day. It did not matter where I was, what time. And there were some times I remember going to Costa Rica with the kids. We had to leave it like crazy early. I worked out at 3:00 in the morning. I remember working out in a blackout. There were no lights. I remember working out at a conference. I went at 11:00 at night after the conference.
John: Once I did those things, I realized, you know what? Nothing’s going to stop me, because once I did those, those were the hardest times. And if I did it, then nothing’s going to stop me. But here’s what I found. The good in the bad. The good is when you put yourself to task and say, all right, I’m going to do something. I’m to do it every single day. For those of you who have that personality like I do, where it’s usually all or nothing, I kept going and it worked. But here’s what I found. The quality of my workouts dropped significantly. They dropped significantly. And ultimately I became more focused on checking the box, getting my thirty minutes done, regardless of whether it was a good workout or not.
John: I just wanted to check a box and it became laborious, monotonous, painful, and something that I loved became something I hated. I dread it. So I stopped because it wasn’t what I wanted anymore. I’d done what I wanted to do. I wanted to get back to working out with a purpose, not just to check a box and create a streak, but to work out for the right reasons. And that was to feel good, to enjoy the feeling of working out and building your muscle and getting in better shape and looking better not to set a world record on how many days in a row I can go.
John: So any event, some great learnings from that. But the question I would leave you today, are you focused on the right goals? Think about it, is what you’re doing lined up with what you’re trying to accomplish? If not, change direction, change your goal, refocus,
reestablish your goal, but ask yourself, okay, yeah, I’m doing the things that are getting me closer to where I want to be personally, business-wise, financially, health-wise, spiritually, whatever am I doing the things that are helping me make progress and get closer to my ideal self and closer to where I want to be if I am great.
John: It’s all about progress, not perfection, but progress. If I am not despite the activity I’m putting in, it’s just not working. Maybe I’m convincing myself I’m putting in more activity than I am. Bottom line, if it’s not working, it’s not working. Time to reassess. Am I focused on the right things? Am I doing the right activity, the right amount, the right type, all that kind of stuff? OK, hope this helped today. It’s been a pleasure as always. Like, subscribe, comment, share, go down below, give a five-star review and I’ll look forward to seeing you next time. Thanks.
John (Closing): Thanks for joining us on today’s episode of Tomorrow’s Leader. For suggestions, or inquiries, about having me at your next event, or personal coaching, reach me at email@example.com Once again, that’s firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks! Lead on!