I was approached by a guy on LinkedIn last week, who wanted to set up a call with me to discuss a joint venture idea to do with transformational change. He’d seen some of the impact that I was making and was interested in the idea of working with me.
I thought I’d give him some time so that we could explore the idea.
What ended up happening was a very clear reminder to us all about the importance of focusing on awareness, and giving value to others first, rather than taking for yourself.
If you try to approach situations wanting to “take” or “get” something from others (even if your intentions are good), then you’ll likely wind up short every time.
Ever known that someone was only trying to “take” from you?
You see, after 10 minutes of speaking he realized that SFM (A business that I work closely with) already has some of the leading mindset development and transformational change experts in the world mentoring within the community. SFM and these mentors offer a lot of the things that he did and far more.
His response was to immediately ask if we could stop the call there and part ways, because he thought that he wasn’t going to be able to sell his services into the people who follow me and are part of the same community that I am.
What’s wrong with that you might ask? Surely he’s just focusing on the result that he wants, and he doesn’t want to waste time right? Well let me give you an analogy…
This relates to you too
Imagine that you like rabbits, and you want to help rabbits survive the winter. You’ve noticed that the rabbits are often getting sick, and so you want to give the rabbits a quick injection to help protect them from diseases.
So out you go into the fields, and you decide that the best way to find rabbits, is to look down rabbit holes. You focus on finding those rabbit holes so that you can catch the rabbits and give them a quick injection.
You check the first hole, and you find no rabbits. Second hole; again no rabbits. Third; no rabbits. The suddenly, you find a hole with a rabbit! So you trap it, and drag it out kicking and screaming, give it the injection, and go onto the next hole.
Great work! You’ve given a rabbit an injection and maybe saved its life!
After doing this all day, you might have given a few rabbits injections.
What’s happening here is an example of tunnel vision. You’ve decided on a plan that you think is best, and you work on that plan to achieve the result that you want. Anything that takes you away from the desired outcome is a distraction, and through grinding it out you might hit your goal.
A far better way…
But going back to the rabbit example, let’s imagine that instead of focusing with a closed mind on nothing more than the outcome that you want through the plan you’ve put together, you decided to go into the exercise with some awareness.
After the second hole you stop, look around you, and then you spot that the rabbits aren’t in the holes because they’re hanging around on one of the only bits of field that have grass left. You notice that some of the rabbits are very skinny and there’s not much left for them to eat, which may well be why they’re getting sick.
So you focus on how you can bring more value to the rabbits, and decide to get a whole load of rabbit food for them because they’re obviously hungry.
You put the food inside a big cage in the middle of the field, the rabbits find the food, all crowd into the cage, and you trigger the door to shut. Then one by one you can pick the rabbits out the cage after they’ve eaten their fill, give them an injection, and set them free.
You’re left with healthy, fed, disease-free rabbits, and it took less time and effort because you focused on how you could help them first.
Way better result right? But what’s the difference? The difference is that you’ve had the awareness to observe what’s around you, keep an open mind to the fact that your own plan might not be the best way of going about things, and then you’ve focused on how to provide value to the other party (rabbits) first, and then get what you want second.
By providing value first, everyone wins and things are a hell of a lot easier in the process.
So let’s go back to the real life example of the guy who reached out to me on LinkedIn.
How this relates to the real world
By focusing on only what he wanted to take from me (Which was selling his services to you and other people who follow me), as soon as he saw he wasn’t going to get that exact thing, he shut off and wanted to go off to find the next “rabbit hole”.
Instead if he’d focused instead on how he might have been able to use his skills to help me and others, he might have discovered that SFM (Which has a community of literally thousands of people) is growing ridiculously fast and is currently looking for even more coaches to joint venture with on a high level.
The opportunity to him would have been WAY bigger than me alone. By focusing on how he could bring value to me, he would have uncovered that there are many others like me who he could have helped as well, which may in turn have opened the doors into speaking to the top mentors within the SFM community.
But unfortunately to offer any kind of mentoring on behalf of SFM, you have to have proved yourself in many different ways first (mindset, awareness, results, proven skill sets, and so on), and the way that he handled the call meant that he qualified himself out as not having the awareness, from the word go.
Also the entire SFM philosophy is about providing value first, and with his approach he showed that it’s very unlikely he would have been right for mentoring for the company.
A final twist
So, as a final twist worth mentioning. He went into the call wanting to take something from me, and got nothing. I went into the call with an open mind happy to see if I could help him too, and I got a great life lesson reminder that I can now share with you as well.
This helps me, helps you, and helps many others who follow me, to hopefully not replicate the same mistakes.
This email was a lot longer than usual, so if you’re still reading then thank you for sticking around until the end! Hope you enjoyed it and I hope it was valuable.
By the way… If it was, fancy giving my Facebook page a quick like? You’ll get much more content like this. Hey, I focused on giving value first, right? 😉
Speak to you soon,
Dan Holloway - Founder of Scrap the 9 to 5 Ltd
SFM Elite & DEA Black Member of the SFM/DEA