How do you get better at chess? Learn. Apply. Reflect. Repeat.
How do you get better at business? Learn. Apply. Reflect. Repeat.
Never Stop Learning and Testing!
I have gotten way off track by not integrating these components together. Sure, I will learn some stuff and then learn some more stuff and then apply it. Then learn some more stuff and apply it.
But where I would always fall short was repeating the process without cross checking if it was valid or not. In other words, I didn’t ask myself should I repeat this process again? I didn’t get the results I wanted. I didn’t learn. I didn’t improve.
The gurus will tell you to hustle, to put forth action, to hit the pavement hard. No time for thinking. No time for contemplation. No time for “not applying.” Such advice lead me into depression, burnout, consistent failure.
The hamster wheel of action.
Reflect from the application of your learning for improvement. How did I miss this? Was it the advice I followed from my friend who has never started a business? Was it that article I read about working harder and more hours during the day? Or was it my own strong ambitious drive for forward momentum and not looking back because I was afraid I lost sight of where I was going and from where I started?
The secret to is evolve. To learn then apply then improve from the reflection of your learning and application.
Learn from mentors and others who have traveled the path of learning, applying and reflecting.
Application is the name of the game. Strategic application in alignment with effectiveness is the short-cut path.
So here is the formula…
Learn. Apply. Reflect. Repeat.
Learn from mentors and trainers who a) have the life you are striving to achieve, b) are without a doubt knowledgeable on areas you are not, c) are not emotionally invested in your success or failure, d) any combination thereof.
Apply the actions needed to move forward including but not limited to educational training, blueprints, advice, templates, systems, consults, frameworks, strategies, tactics, mindset shifts, etc. Applying something that leads to a mistake or failure is often times more important than not applying anything at all.
Reflect and contemplate on what you learned after you implemented NOT before. It is a trap to stay in contemplation about the potential results of your potential action and the potential results. Get objective data from your experiment and assess the validity so you can move forward.
Repeat the process all over again but this time make sure you have grown, evolved, and expanded your understanding and awareness from the previous learning, applying, and data.
Let us take the example of marketing, prospecting, and identifying our messaging to niches (market needs):
- Research (learn) our target market’s needs, desires, wants, problems, pains, languaging, perspective, struggles, irrational emotions, etc.
- Create (apply) goodwill value by creating free solutions to their needs,
- Observe insights (reflect) on response, engagement, consumption, conversion and assess validity of the value-market-match (contemplate),
- Expand initial value by creating more indepth transformations in different mediums and marketing channels (repeat the process).