We all know physical activity is important in life, and that very often our best ideas come to us during or after a round of physical activity – but this is not what I want to talk about this month (nor is it my area of expertise!).
I also don’t want to talk about the strategy behind Michael Jackson’s famous white socks. OK, I need to share this one, because it’s amazingly clever! Did you know that Michael Jackson intentionally wore white socks as a marketing strategy and not for style? The reason behind the white socks was to create a contrast between his dark pants and dark shoes so we’d pay particular attention and focus on his feet – and, therefore, on his moves. Chances are that if he’d worn black socks, it wouldn’t have been such an attention grabber and the epic moonwalk wouldn’t have been such an iconic move. Brilliant!
Coming back to my point on walking and your success…
If you are reading this, it’s probably because you’re an ambitious person, you want more – more success, more money, more influence, more of something, right?
When we are seekers, looking for ideas or solutions, we sometimes get lost in the land of learning or in the ditch of ineffectiveness – where we go through all kinds of actions in all different directions. Can you relate?
And this is why I want to talk to you about walking your way to success.
Several years ago, someone told me, “Slow down, you’ll go faster.” What?! I must admit I didn’t understand what he was saying – it just didn’t make sense to me. How could slowing down help me achieve more? And so, I continued full speed ahead on the treadmill of entrepreneurship while trying to go in many different directions.
Then I learned the science of a breakthrough…
Did you know that Darwin had a quarter-mile walking path called the Sandwalk, and it was his place for thinking and solving problems? He even described the complexity of a problem by the numbers of loops it took him to solve it! Dickens took three-hour walks daily, Beethoven took lengthy walks after lunch every day, and the list goes on and on. Every thought leader in history took long walks to find ideas, clarify thoughts or solve a problem, and that’s still true today. This is where their Eureka moment came from, and the same can happen for you.
The next time you have the next great idea or have a problem to solve, go for a walk – but not just aimlessly. There’s a framework to get the most out of it:
No.1: Set an intention
What solution are you looking for? What question do you need to be answered? When you give your brain a question, it can only focus on that. When you give your brain a statement, your internal dialogue will kick in with judgment, self-criticism and the like. So, state the question you want answered, and state it in the positive, for example:
- How can I get the best out of my team? (Instead of “What’s wrong with my team?”)
- What’s my ultimate goal behind this new business idea? (Instead of “Why am I doing this?”)
- What will be the impact of this idea on my business and life? (Instead of “Should I do this project?”)
Select a positive and empowering question. You know the saying: Ask and you shall receive. Be mindful of what you ask.
No.2: Decide where to walk
Ideally, go for a walk in nature, as this is where breakthroughs tend to happen most often. If you can’t, don’t worry about it; walking in the city or walking indoors is also effective.
No.3: Decide on a duration
How long will you walk for? Until you find the solution or the answer? For a specific set time? In personal effectiveness and productivity, there’s a concept I love sharing with my coaching clients and it’s called the Parkinson’s Law, which states that “Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion.” Meaning, if you give yourself one hour to complete a task, it will take you one hour to complete it. And, if you give yourself 30 minutes to complete the same task, you will complete it in that amount of time. Sometimes, less is more.
There you have it, probably the most simplistic and effective breakthrough strategy you will ever have. Walking is a game-changer in your business and in your life.
Now, put on your shoes and walk yourself to success, and let me know about your own Eureka moments!
To your success!
P.S. When you’re ready, here are some ways I can help you design your success