zoltan-tasi-319208-1080x675 1 Small Shift for 3 Competitive Advantages - Dirk Swart | Life and Talent Strategist

It’s that time of the year again where one of my pet peeves starts rearing it’s ugly head. Pretty soon you’ll hear people say things like: “I know we’re all tired this time of the year, but let’s keep working hard”. You’ve probably already heard it in some form. This is a mentality and that’s all it is. Before you know it, you are repeating these words with the majority of people, convincing yourself that the year has been long and that you are tired.

As much as I am annoyed by these statements, I also recognize the opportunity and great competitive advantage of this.

While most people start sinking into their peaceful slumber or decide to simply cruise out the remainder of the year, I am going to refocus all my energy and work even harder. Like one of my mentors always say: “This isn’t the time to retire, but to ‘refire’. I will be running while most other people will be strolling.

Now, am I writing this to tell you how awesome I am? Not at all. I wouldn’t be writing this if I wasn’t trying to give someone a wake up call or to persuade some of you to use this competitive advantage.

There’s really not much difference between this time of the year and January. If you don’t agree, that’s simply proof that you’ve bought into this lie. If you have been following some of the basic principles of rest like working in some daily relaxation time, sleeping proper hours and resting one day of the week as prescribed by God Himself, there is no reason for you to be tired.

Slowing down now would be like reducing your 100 meter sprint to a walk at the 80 meter mark. The race is not over. Don’t stop now!

…You will be sprinting, while others are strolling

Even if you might find yourself in an industry where things will be slowing way down towards the end of the year, you can use the extra time to do things that will set you apart from your competition. Read some books, do extra market research or practice an important skill. There is always something you can do. An important time management principle is to spend the great majority of your time doing things that are important, but not urgent.

…You’ll be working on conditioning, while others are still trying to get fit

There’s another reason to make the last part of 2017 the most productive of the year. The way you end this year will directly determine the way you will start 2018. Returning to the 100 meter sprint allegory, you can choose to have a running start. Yes, you can start the race in the traditional, ordinary way: on your knees…(and I’m not referring to praying). You can, however, also choose to do the extraordinary thing and start 2018 already running hard. That’s another competitive advantage.

…You will have a running start, while others are standing still

So, what’s the one small shift?

Make up your mind not to stop or slow down now.

“And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.” – Galatians 6:9

This is a great time to put in your very best work. There is still time to achieve that one thing you set out to do at the beginning of the year. You can still have your best month yet. You can still finish that book. You can loose that weight or improve on your musical skill. The year is not over by far. Hustle while the world is falling asleep.

“Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it.” – 1 Corinthians 9:24

Enjoy your competitive edge!

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