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Achieve faster, with greater ease. How do we do that?

Achieve faster, with greater ease. How do we do that?

First, Believe you can and you can… true or false?


Believe you can’t and you won’t, that much I can tell you for sure. Researchers have discovered that people will not put in the effort, or even unconsciously sabotage themselves if they don’t believe something can come true or be done. They miss opportunities, people they can ask for help or mentorship, and new solutions from surfacing.

Now, there are people who think, ‘I’m going to visualize myself in alignment with what I want.’ It doesn’t matter how long you visualize running a 5K. If you don’t go and do some running, then your body is not going to be trained to complete the race. You can sit in meditation and visualize playing the piano with ease, grace, and finesse, but if you never take a lesson, the chances are slim.

High self-efficacy is essential to our ability to achieve faster and with greater ease. Self-efficacy is your belief about your ability to accomplish a goal or achievement. 

Enough self-efficacy is essential to success because we need to be certain that something is possible to excel with greater ease. Warning sign though: just as too little self-efficacy will lead to poor results or failure, too much self-efficacy can too. 

A surplus of confidence could prevent you from putting in the attention, time, and work into achieving mastery in the areas you require to succeed. 

I always advise coaching clients to feel the elevated feelings of succeeding at the desired goal every day. The shadow side of this can be that if you feel those feelings now, then what is motivating you toward the goal? If you aren’t working hard to feel different, better, and MORE, then where is the motivation fuel coming from?

“If you’re so busy trying to prove yourself to others, you may ignore the need to prove yourself to yourself,” is a quote by Dr. Robbert Woody that I love in this context.

If you swivel the focus of the ego, abundance, or social rewards of achieving what you want to one of internal strength, character, and mastery, everything changes. 

It becomes about the journey, and every single step toward a goal, more than the final moment of attainment. Your focus becomes on who you are right now, as you show up to do what you’ve promised yourself you would do. That could mean sitting at the piano, cooking in the kitchen, learning graphic design, or writing and putting in the time every day for the amount of time you’ve promised yourself to commit, no matter what.

The second ingredient to showing up and putting in the time is going from novice to mastery through repetition, improvement, attention, and simulation of the final performance. 

According to Dr. Woody, all new skills start at the ‘cognitive state’ where we need to execute the new skill or retain the knowledge with effort and self-monitor the results of our efforts. 

At some point, after putting in the time and hard work, we start to move into the ‘autonomous stage’ where we no longer need to be deliberate and methodical. We are getting more fluid, faster, and better, while still creating strategies to correct the errors we detect in what we are doing. Mastery comes when we can execute the skill, knowledge, or activity on auto-pilot. It is literally within us and comes without conscious effort.

Final Stage

The final stage is to simulate the real-life environment in which you will perform. A cook could cater a dinner party, the 5k runner simulates the race where it will take place, the new yoga instructor teaches a live class to friends and family, and the entrepreneur makes her sales presentation to potential investors prior to the shark she prepares to pitch.

So yes, believe you can, and you can- but within context. Stop visualizing the end result alone and add in the days, one blending into the other, where you show up, no matter if you feel like it or not, and in the effort to go from the cognitive to autonomous, to mastery.

And remember that life isn’t a hard crueling straightforward climb. More often than not, it’s a J curve, if you let it. You struggle, work, improve, correct, work, day after day, and swoop, up you go all at once. Surprise! Yes, you can skip the steps! 

Stay open, be curious about the potential, and give your heart to the process, and not the result.

After all, we are who we are based on what we do every day, and what we believe to be true.

Wishing you radiant health, joy, and love, Heather

  1. Hope Perlman, 2017. Self-Efficacy and Success.

  2. Piers Steel Ph.D. 2014. Self-Efficacy and Success: Is There Any Relationship?

  3. Banik, A., Schwarzer, R., Knoll, N., Czekierda, K., & Luszczynska, A. (2018). Self-efficacy and quality of life among people with cardiovascular diseases: A meta-analysis. Rehabilitation Psychology, 63(2), 295-312. doi:10.1037/rep0000199

  4. Schwarzer, R., & Jerusalem, M. (1995). Generalized Self-Efficacy Scale. In J. Weinman, S. Wright, & M. Johnston, Measures in health psychology: A user’s portfolioCausal and control beliefs (pp. 35-37). Windsor, UK: NFER-NELSON.

  5. Zimmerman, B. J. (2000). Self-Efficacy: An essential motive to learn. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 25, 82-91. 

  6. Robert H. Woody Ph.D. 2018. To Thine Own Self-Efficacy Be True.

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