Ralph Waldo Emerson, the great American essayist and poet of the nineteenth century wrote, “What lies behind us and what lies in front of us pales in significance when compared to what lies within us.” How remarkably profound!
That quote from Emerson was the genesis of the theme “Light the Fire Within” of the 2002 Winter Olympics held is Salt Lake City, Utah. What is the power that lies within each of us? How do we kindle that fire? Imagine what we could do with our lives if we could envision even a spark of our internal flame. What are you capable of achieving as a salesperson and how will you achieve your personal best?
Salespeople, just as in any other profession, are restrained to some degree by barriers, both real and perceived. One of the most insidious barriers faced by salespeople is negative thinking. Its ramifications impact all the positive actions that might have been. Henry Ford, undoubtedly one of the greatest industrialists in American history said, “If you think you can or think you can’t, you are right.”
Another barrier to achieving your personal best is fear. Many salespeople are paralyzed by fear, causing them to doubt their ability. In his play, Measure for Measure, Shakespeare wrote, “Our doubts are traitors and make us lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt.” Edmund Burke, a famous British statesman said of fear, “No passion so effectively robs the mind of all its powers of acting and reasoning as fear.”
An additional barrier to salespeople achieving their personal best is found in traditions. These people fail because they allow themselves to be controlled by their past. Ignorance, or just not knowing what they are capable of achieving, is a major barrier experienced by salespeople. Most people have never stretched far enough or dug deep enough within themselves, to fully comprehend the power that lies within. Very often, salespeople overestimate the abilities of others while underestimating their own strengths.
Dennis Waitley, a modern teacher of the principles of personal improvement, referring to the law of prosperity and success said, “If you think in positive terms, you will achieve positive results.” In very simple terms, a salesperson’s attitude about sales success, not aptitude, may be the determining factor between failure and success. A salesperson’s ability to achieve their personal best is revealed by their actions, their beliefs and their attitude. All of the barriers to achieving your personal best can be conquered by simply taking action and doing those things that need to be done. In order to take action, however, you need to alter your beliefs and adjust your attitude. Becoming your personal best will always be achieved first in your mind and second, by your actions. Once you have gained a glimpse of the power within, you will be unstoppable in your quest to “be all that you can be.” Don’t be constrained in your pursuit of excellence. Every barrier to achieving your personal best can be conquered in your mind. If you will only believe, then use that belief to take action. Your actions will kindle the fire within. You can achieve the seemingly impossible when you finally understand “what lies within.”