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By the time our 20s and 30s are behind us, much of our success will have been achieved because of our strengths. This is the perfect opportunity to shift our focus from that which has served us well and learn to leverage our weaknesses. Although the task of tackling our weaknesses seems daunting, the feeling of staying stuck is even worse. We fail to realize that often times a weakness is simply a strength taken to the extreme. For instance, to believe in justice and fair play is an admirable trait. However, a person with an exaggerated need for justice and fair play might demonstrate it in a negative way by becoming a busy body that no one wants to be around.

Time marches inexorably on. Ten years from now, whatever you decide to do, you will be ten years older. Why not use that time to move forward instead of being stuck in a state of remorse, disappointment, and doubt? Why not leverage your weaknesses to improve your potential gain? Don’t make the mistake of waiting until you feel ready to change completely. When people identify a weakness that they want to transform, many become overwhelmed by the daunting task ahead, and seeing no end in sight, abandon all efforts. This is where the 1% Solution comes into effect. By consistently working to improve only 1% per week on any challenge, and using the law of compounding interest, at the end of one year you will have improved by 68%.

Review the checklist below and claim any of the common weaknesses that sabotage success, and then plan to change the attributes that do not serve you into strengths, 1% at a time.

When confronted, I justify and defend my behaviors and myself.
I have poor questioning skills.
I have poor listening skills.
I am a perfectionist, forgetting that perfectionism is a crime against success.
I am inconsistent with time management.
I am moody and prone to pity myself. In the process, I resent others.
I want to increase my sales, yet I avoid cold calling and prospecting.
I am uncomfortable with silence and talk too much.
I am not able to express myself in writing.
I am a people-pleaser. I need to be liked, and so to avoid confrontation I over promise.
I do not follow up and therefore lose opportunities.
I am unable to communicate clearly my intentions, ideas, and direction to my team, clients, and myself.
I am terrified of public speaking; my presentation skills are less than professional.
I am unable to be assertive and ask for that which I want.

Resolve to start today, transforming each weakness into a strength. Many people are surprised at the power of compounding results: If I were to offer you a penny a day and promised to double that penny each day, would you work for me? Most people would say no because they do not understand the potential of a penny doubling and compounding even over a month. Allowing yourself to improve 1% a week has the same potential, whether applied to your earning power or to life in general. After one month, on the 31st day, you would have earned $10,737,418.24. Everyone has weaknesses. Those who are smart learn to put a plan of action in place to offset those weaknesses and transform them into strengths, 1% at a time, and one week at a time. This is the 1% Solution.


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Sara Haynes, P. Eng.
President
Sigma Solutions

“I took advantage of Alice Wheaton’s offer for a free 30-minute consultation…but we chatted for almost an hour, during which I had several epiphanies that have inspired and motivated me to move forward. These were ideas that I could immediately start working on to help me get new clients and increase recurring revenues. This is what I call Value on Steroids!”


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