Gary Ryan Blair
In creating the 100 Day Challenge…it was my intention to develop the world’s best strategy and execution framework for driving radical results fast.
It was my great desire to design a program based on timeless, proven principles of human performance, and which could be applied by anyone, anywhere to achieve any goal they desire.
When faithfully applied, the strategies and beliefs baked into the 100 Day Challenge will provide you with immediate and profound results…so I’ll begin by sharing my five core beliefs and explaining why the program works.
I believe…that you have no legal or moral obligation or, for that matter, logical reason to settle for small, marginal…incremental growth.
I believe…that you have the ability to multiply your performance quickly, and achieve goals on a scale that in the past seemed impossible.
I believe…that it is your right and responsibility to unleash your greatness, and enforce your will over any obstacle or resistance force.
I believe…that the single best strategy for achieving your goals with speed and precision is to play a strong, relentless offense.
I also believe…that in order for you to create a performance explosion…you’ll need to give up a few things to include….false assumptions about how fast you change your life…self-limiting beliefs that undermine your progress…and the comfort zone that holds you back from unleashing your greatness.
It is my intention to transfer these beliefs to you and to infuse you with the idea that the best days of your life are about to unfold.
As to why the program works…the 100 Day Challenge is based on the twin pillars of Cause and Effect, and Compound Effort.
Together, these foundational, bedrock principles conspire to dramatically increase both the size and pace of your overall results.
You see…accelerating the relationship between cause and effect is what drives the speed of your results.
The faster the cause, the faster the effect…and that is precisely why each and every day must be viewed as an ongoing series of opportunities to…accelerate your performance.
Extreme results will only come from extreme execution skills and that’s why you want to bookend your days with fast starts and strong finishes.
The size of your performance gains on the other hand are the direct result of your compounded daily efforts.
Implementing the right offensive strategies, the right way, and for the right reasons…each and every day will compound and snowball in size.
The Principle of Compounded Effort delivers an ongoing series of explosive jumps, controlled explosions in your personal performance that puts you far beyond the next logical step.
You might want to compare it to multiplication instead of addition—it means a geometric, and if performed consistently a perpetual, mind blowing progression in your overall results.
True, there are limits, but you do not need to worry about them. Your real limits are far beyond your artificial boundaries. The real limits won’t box you in, but the false ones you’re carrying around in your mind are a self-imposed prison.
You may be quite skeptical right now, but let’s be honest, if merely doing what you do best were enough to produce a series of performance explosions, you would already be making them regularly.
Now that you understand the bedrock principles of the 100 Day Challenge and why they work, let’s turn our attention to my goal setting methodology…
I have a romantic relationship with goals and the process of goal setting. I believe that a goal achieved with honor is a glorious celebration of all that is good and virtuous about the human condition.
Now before you think I’ve been off sniffing glue…allow me to explain where I’m coming from as I believe that your ability to achieve a goal is largely character based and I’d like to use the next minute or two to explain why.
The process begins by asking a few questions…
1. What is the difference between setting and achieving a goal?
2. What unique disciplines are required to set a goal versus actually achieving it?
The fact is setting a goal requires two disciplines…just two. Decisiveness and motive.
Another way of saying it is that you must identify WHAT you want and WHY you want it…and that’s where the problem starts.
In a world filled with virtually unlimited options…far too many people simply do not know WHAT THEY WANT, and even if they do, they immediately run into the next obstacle which is not having a strong enough reason WHY.
They simply lack the required motivation in order to get started much less to keep the fire burning.
Every goal poses a simple question: How badly do you want it?
Your why provides the heat, energy and the psychological mojo you need in order to start, the strength, will and fortitude to overcome obstacles and setbacks…as well as the sustaining power to stay hungry and to see it through to the end.
It’s impossible to imagine that you can achieve anything of significance without some seriously strong motivation, without an intense why that points the way.
And just in case you doubt the validity of that statement…try making a phone call with no juice in your phone…or attempt to drive to work with a dead battery. No Cause = No Effect.
Whether your goals for the 100 Day Challenge have to do with increasing your income, decreasing your debt, writing a manuscript, improving your health, learning a language, or even raising healthy, self-confident children…your passionate why, that white hot flame burning in your belly is the ONLY thing that will get you started and keep you committed to success.
The more passionate the desire, the more emotionally committed you are…the faster will be your results as intense passion IS the ignition switch, the emotional trigger for unleashing the performance explosion you are looking for.
Now, before we focus on what it takes to actually achieve a goal…let’s pause and talk about you, your goals on WHAT it is you want to achieve.
The fact is…you signed up for the 100 Day Challenge to learn how to fast track your goals, and I want to assure you that I can help you to quickly ACHIEVE anything that you want to be, have or do…however it is your responsibility to decide WHAT you want and WHY you want it.
To confirm…during this orientation, on-boarding process, you need to identify the 1 – 3 goals that you absolutely positively must achieve or make a huge dent in within the next 100 days…and then you must get emotionally engaged by identifying why you want them.
THE ANATOMY OF A GOAL
The Anatomy of a Goal consists of three interdependent, interconnected, and fluidly contingent parts…they are the What, Why and How…or if you prefer, the Head, Heart and Hand.
We have addressed the first two parts which focus on the setting of the goal. Now we’ll focus on the goal achievement part, the HOW which is an entirely different beast… requiring an entirely different set of skills.
The single best strategy for creating radical results fast is to…consistently deploy a strong, smart, relentless offense.
Why? Because a consistently strong, smart relentless offense is one that extols, advocates, and champions every best practice and noble virtue known to mankind.
This means the ongoing enforcement of commitment, focus, discipline, boldness, speed, perseverance, willpower and integrity…to name just a few of the attributes of successful execution.
CLOSING THE KNOWING – DOING GAP
While this may seem like common sense, I assure you that it is not common practice as perhaps the greatest conflict of interest in people’s lives…the Great Wall of China from a performance standpoint lies in the gap between knowing and doing.
The fact is, KNOWING what you need to do in order to achieve your goals is no guarantee that you will actually do it. Just look at your own behavior for incriminating evidence.
Knowing is not enough…it never has, nor will it ever be enough. I assure that if it was…everybody would be skinny, happy and rich.
Confucius was absolutely right when he said over 2000 years ago…”To know, and not to do, is still not to know.”
That’s why perhaps the greatest challenge you will ever face in your lifetime is to close the gap between knowing and doing. The faster you do it, the more deliberate your intent…the sooner you capture the prize…and showing you HOW to close that gap quickly is the reason why I created the 100 Day Challenge.
GOAL SETTING = CHARACTER
Earlier I said that I believe that a goal achieved with honor is a glorious celebration of all that is good and virtuous about the human condition…and that your ability to achieve a goal is largely character based…well if you reflect on the skill sets and best practices just mentioned you’ll come to the same understanding.
When it comes to achieving your goals…there is always going to be a demand placed for commitment, sacrifice, discipline and focus along with a number of other performance demands.
And, your ability to rise up and supply the required behaviors and character traits needed to meet the demand is what the HOW, the goal achievement process is all about.
If you look at successful people in any field, you’ll find that they’re not necessarily the brightest, best looking, fastest nor the strongest of the bunch.
But…what you will find is that they understand that all great accomplishment is preceded by great execution skills….ones that demonstrate to the world the strength of their character and commitment.
They know that the pain and discomfort that they feel because of today’s demands and sacrifices will be the strength and success they will feel and supply again tomorrow.
They long ago accepted the reality that if they’re not actively improving their game …strengthening their resolve and improving HOW they execute… that there will be someone out there… somewhere with equal ability who is.
The primary reason why goals are not achieved, and why the knowing-doing gap exists…can be tied directly to character deficiencies and compromised belief systems.
When people do not believe in themselves nor in their ability to actually achieve a goal…they will express that disbelief in self-destructive behavior to include procrastination, excuse making, responsibility dodging and other creative forms of mental and physical resistance.
These unforced errors in thinking and behavior undermine progress and negatively impact the goal achievement process.
SYSTEMS – THE COOKBOOK – RECIPE
Now that we have discussed the Anatomy of a Goal and the difference between setting and achieving a goal, let’s turn our attention to what you can do to positively impact the goal achievement process.
In the work that I do for a living, I am always testing ideas, assumptions, and strategies, always looking for ways to leverage time, to be more productive and to fast track my results.
One of my favorite strategies is to focus on what I call models of perfection. I look for, or work to develop systems that can be flawlessly executed, and which deliver consistently successful outcomes.
And, when it comes to goal setting, the best system in the world that anyone anywhere can model…can be found in your kitchen.
A Cookbook contains a series of recipes…each consisting of a set of instructions, a detailed map as to how to create a particular meal.
Whether you choose to call it a formula, a prescription, a map, or simply directions…a recipe is the perfect goal setting metaphor.
Why? Because once validated and documented, a recipe is a flawlessly repeatable process that delivers a flawlessly repeatable result.
Study a recipe, any recipe and you’ll see that it contains five unique attributes, the exact same attributes needed for the successful achievement of any goal.
In order they are…
1. A beautiful, high-quality PICTURE that visually represents the end result you are working towards.
The purpose of the picture is to stimulate the senses, and to show you exactly what success looks like in advance. It’s a future picture of the outcome you desire.
When it comes to rapid goal achievement…you need an equally beautiful, high-quality picture of the future. This eye candy is the coming attraction of your life and will serve to motivate, inspire and drive you to take the actions needed in order to achieve success.
2. A PRECISE set of ingredients needed to successfully create the desired result. The list of ingredients in every recipe are never left to chance or interpretation. Each is explicitly documented.
The same principle applies to your goals as vagueness and ambiguity have no place in the goal achievement process. You must be precise…as your objective is to send a message to your brain that you mean business, and identifying the bullseye is the way that that message gets delivered.
We live in a world that demands precise instructions…and in return, it provides us with a flawlessly repeatable result.
You will find proof of that every time you go to get money from an ATM, whenever you dial a phone number and each and every time you send an email.
If you are serious about fast tracking your goals…state them precisely as well as the deadline as your mind operates best with exact instructions. This is a rule without an exception.
3. A SEQUENCE of steps by which each ingredient needs to executed…leads to a delicious end.
Study any recipe and you’ll see a common pattern. A step-by-plan to follow that clearly demonstrates a beginning, middle and end. Each step is important, each step counts, and if you monkey with the sequence in any way…you will NOT get the flawlessly repeatable result you are after.
Why is sequencing important in the goal achievement process? The answer is quite simple…Sequencing works….and it works 100% of the time.
Achieving a goal is like opening a combination lock. You need the precise numbers in the precise right, left, right sequence.
If you have the numbers, but not the sequence…you are left with trial and error, nothing more than guess work and luck…certainly not flawless execution.
Using the examples provided a moment ago…let’s look at them through the lens of sequencing.
Getting money from an ATM requires precise numbers in a precise sequence. If you have the numbers, but not the sequence…you’re out of luck.
The same principle applies for dialing any phone or sending a simple email. Without the correct sequence of numbers, digits or steps you’ll find yourself frustrated and wasting a lot of time.
Every system and every goal or plan can and must be put into a series of precise, sequential steps. By doing so…you will have developed a flawlessly repeatable process that delivers a flawlessly repeatable result.
4. A precise MEASUREMENT of each ingredient as proper measuring is a mandatory requirement for cooking up a consistently delicious meal.
Food can be greatly affected by too much or too little of certain ingredients, such as salt, sugar, butter, baking soda, and even hot or spicy ingredients to name just a few. Therefore, care and attention must be given to the proper measurement of all ingredients…all of the time.
When it comes to accelerating your performance and overall results throughout the 100 Day Challenge…you must be mindful that performance that gets measured…gets improved, and performance that gets measured consistently…improves consistently.
In its purest form…keeping score and measuring performance is a behavior modification system which allows you to inspect your performance or actual results over a predetermined amount of time.
When measuring performance…you will always find yourself in one of three positions:
WINNING – Ahead of your predetermined goals and milestones.
LOSING – Behind your predetermined goals and milestones.
TIED – On target with your predetermined goals and milestones.
You must know how you are performing the “must do” actions necessary to achieve your goals, and keeping score and inspecting performance is the only discipline which allows you to do it.
We get what we inspect, what we measure, not just what we expect. Knowing the score as often as possible is the key to improving performance and productivity.
It’s for that reason why built into the 100 Day Challenge is an After Action Review process which takes place every seven days…like clockwork.
At the end of each week for all 14 weeks…you will be going through a detailed review and measurement process to ensure that the goals you set are the goals you get.
This might be a good place to issue a warning…as the cold, hard, finger in the eye truth is this, if you’re not keeping score, if you’re not consistently measuring your performance you’re competitive roadkill.
You’re going to get beat, you’re going to underperform, and you’re going to waste a lot of precious time.
We live in a world that measures just about everything to include a scale for measuring weight, a clock for time, a radar gun for speeding, reports cards for academic competency, and a thermometer for measuring temperature…and in return…those measurements lead the way to improved performance, greater discipline and superior results.
5. The fifth and final attribute common to both a recipe as well any goal is the proper use of TIME.
The purpose of following a recipe’s cooking time and temperature…is to enjoy a perfectly cooked meal every time. When cooking time is not followed, the end result will be an under-cooked or overcooked meal.
Likewise, when attempting to achieve a goal you must use time wisely…and the wisest decision you can make is to enforce deadlines on every activity.
Why? Because any task or goal will take as much time as you allow for it to take…and when you set a firm deadline, and don’t allow much time to get the results you expect…it won’t take much time for you to fast track any result.
How you treat deadlines, speaks volumes about you, your belief system, your reputation …your results and your future.
A huge factor resulting in under-performance has to do with missed deadlines, with deadlines that were never set, along with the non-enforcement of stiff, behavior changing consequences.
If you’re guilty of missing deadlines, or of not taking them seriously…it’s time to lay down the law and implement some tough love.
A deadline is the ultimate form of inspiration, it’s a time commitment by which your tasks, goals and projects must be achieved…and they present themselves in two forms: internally and externally enforced.
Externally enforced deadlines are the ones we pay most attention to. They are represented by credit card companies, student loan providers, mortgage lenders, banks for car payments, and a large sphere of outside, external parties.
Miss a payment deadline or two, and they will implement some swift justice. As a result, many have a tendency to loath, yet honor externally enforced deadlines.
Internally enforced deadlines on the other hand are the ones you impose upon yourself. These have to do with your hopes, dreams, goals…the things you want to be, have and do.
Look closely and you’ll see the critical distinction between the two.
Most, if not all of your external commitments and obligations incorporate inflexible deadlines and real consequences, yet when it comes to your own life, the only deadlines and consequences are the ones that are self-imposed, and that’s where the train begins to come off the rails.
It’s non-negotiable; you will ALWAYS work best under a self-determined or externally fixed deadline for achieving your goals.
By consciously choosing to enforce deadlines and accountability into each activity and goal…you will immediately begin to compress time and fast track your results.
The net effect of enforcing deadlines is that they challenge you to perform, to step up your game, to honor your commitments…and to deliver.
WRAP UP – CALL TO ACTION
The purpose of setting a goal is to achieve it…and the purpose of the 100 Day Challenge is to show you how to achieve it faster than you ever thought possible.
So…what do you say we put the ideas we just discussed to good use by identifying the 1 to 3 goals that you absolutely, positively must achieve…or make a huge dent in within the next 100 days.
As to what happens next…over the course of the next 100 days, I’ll provide you with an actionable strategy on what you must do to accelerate the pace and compound the size of your results.
In the same way that you would follow a recipe to enjoy a perfectly cooked meal…I urge you to follow and implement this goal setting system that I have just presented to you…and you’ll be amazed as to where you’ll wind up 100 days from today. Let’s get after it.
Gary Ryan Blair is creator of the 100 Day Challenge…a radical approach to goal achievement that shows you how to 10X your goals by applying the strategies of growth hacking.
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