I personally believe that repetition is a key to success in most areas. As a life coach and career coach in NYC, I can tell you that many of the individuals and professionals who I coach have benefitted from this simple principle in some amazing ways.
For example, have you ever tried to reach a goal, fallen short, and decided to just move on to something else? This is a mistake, because it’s in the repetition of trying to reach certain goals that allows you to learn from failure, experience new insights, and in many cases emerge triumphant. It may take longer than you expect to get where you want to go. But by failing to give up and trying again through repetition, you’ll have a much better chance of eventual victory.
Here are some ideas that I share with my coaching clients about how to make the principle of repetition work for you in different areas of your life:
Forming Healthy Habits
There’s a science to habit formation that helps show the value of repetition. New York Times business writer Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit, says that all habits begin with a three-part process called a “habit loop.”
This is a psychological pattern that involves a cue or trigger that gives your brain the go-ahead to go on automatic pilot, followed by a routine behavior, followed by a reward that helps your brain remember the loop the next time around. So if you want to form a healthy habit, this is the kind of repetition that’s required.
To show you what I mean, take the example of wanting to form a new habit at work of actually taking a lunch break instead of working through your lunch hour. It’s going to take some repetition through creation of a new habit loop to make this happen.
Start by coming up with a “trigger” for your new habit-your trigger might be bringing your lunch to work, and setting your lunch bag on your desk around noon to remind you that you’re going to take a break soon. Next, follow through with your habit by developing a new routine actually eating your lunch rather than working through without stopping. The reward you get might be feeling more refreshed and recharged after your lunch break, which will encourage you to want to repeat the process the next day.
Failing to Give Up
It’s hard to soldier on in the face of something that you perceive as failure. Maybe you tried to land a new account, but the client chose another agency. Maybe you’ve hoped to start exercising regularly to lose weight, but keep finding yourself at the end of the day back on the couch.
The fact is, just because you didn’t achieve your goals today doesn’t mean you won’t tomorrow if you repeat your intention to try again. If you didn’t win the new business from a particular client, get back on the horse and pitch a different client, perhaps modifying your method with something you learned from the last pitch.
If you don’t like the numbers on the scale, get up tomorrow and go to the gym and repeat the process the next day, again and again, until your weight is where you want it to be.
Over and Over
The take-away message I hope you remember is this: keep practicing, keep playing, keep doing what you know you need to do to reach your goals.
Mark Strong is a Life Coach, Career Coach, and Executive Coach based in NYC. You can find more information at www.markstrongcoaching.com.