Yesterday morning, I sat down at my desk in my office to make some cold calls. My Spotify was playing my favorite cold calling music (EDM/Hip-Hop), I had a hot cup of coffee and was in a damn good mood. I started dialing.
62 cold calls later, I realized I had not spoken to one human being. It was one of those days: voicemails, voicemails, voicemails. Not one dollar was made. Not one appointment was scheduled. Not one deal was closed. Literally nothing happened.
There's this thing that I call 'The System' - for lack of a better name. 'The System' is that thing, that intangible monster responsible for cold streaks, ruts and dry spells. 'The System' unapologetically manufactures and distributes bad days, bad weeks, bad months and sometimes, bad years to both good people and bad people. It doesn't care who you are, what color your skin is or what type of karma you have coming your way.
'The System' kicked my ass yesterday. There's almost nothing worse than sitting in a chair for 6 hours leaving voicemails for people who will never call you back. Unless you've developed some thick skin or have been in the game for a while, things like this will throw you off.
When you first start in sales or business, your tolerance to the abuse randomly passed out by 'The System' is low. I've seen green sales people get up to 'use the bathroom' never to return to their desk after only a few hours of fighting 'The System'.
I started my sales career by going door to door in my hometown of Milwaukee, selling alarm systems. Day after day, I would get dropped off on a corner in a neighborhood and knock doors until the sun went down. 15 days went by and I had nothing to show for the work I had put it. No sales. No money. No commission. I had finally reached my breaking point. I was heart broken.
Luckily for me, my mom was no stranger to 'The System'. She told me to show up to work just one more day and keep knocking. On the 16th day, I got my first sale and then three more the day after. I had beat 'The System'.
Since beating 'The System' black and blue in those Milwaukee streets, I've encountered this beast over and over throughout my life. Unfortunately, 'The System' has gotten older, smarter, bigger, meaner, hungrier and tougher. I've involuntarily had to fight massive battles with 'The System'. Some battles last hours, some last weeks - some have lasted years.
Here's what I've learned about 'The System':
'The System' doesn't take any days off or need time to recover. When it is engaged in battle with you, it shows up every single day to devour your spirit and beat you down into submission from every possible angle until you succumb, give up and beg for mercy from your knees.
But you won't give up. While grimacing with pain, you'll spit out some blood and look up. You understand that although you are at your weakest, so is the system. Understand this: 'The System' is at its weakest and most vulnerable point when you are.
The only way to beat it, is to keep fighting. You don't have to fight well, you just have to fight hard. You don't have to land every punch, you just have to keep throwing them. If you stop, you lose.
Because 'The System' is YOU.
Every time you make the decision to improve, to grow or accomplish something new, 'The System' makes a decision to keep it from you. 'The System's' capacity to fight you is equally proportionate to your goal.
Example: if you're making $75,000/year right now, and make the decision to make $80,000 next year - you can expect 'The System' to bother you the few mornings during the week when you wake up earlier so you can get into the office sooner than usual. But that's about it.
But, if you're making $75,000/year right now, and make the decision to make $1,000,000 next year - you can expect 'The System' to begin fighting you with the force of a large army. It will first serve you with a heavy dose of doubt with the intention to make you believe you can't do it. Like a Blue Coral Snake, 'The System' will inject its venom into you and leave you paralyzed with fear when you realize you'll have to quit your current job, maybe move cities, maybe live off your savings while you start a business from scratch and lose all your friends.
'The System' won't begin to really turn your friends against you until it has to. 'The System' won't drain your savings account or sue you, unless it has to. And it will.
If these battles and experiences seem too intense or painful, that's okay. There is a way to avoid 'The System': keep doing what you are doing. Never do anything new. Stop dreaming. Stop making plans and goals. Just do nothing and 'The System' will leave you alone.
But if you've already experienced the rush that follows knocking 'The System' on its ass - then you know the battles are worth it. And before too long, fighting 'The System' becomes a game.
That's why I don't care about a bad day on the phones. That's why going 0-62 on a Wednesday doesn't bother me. It's part of my game. Today I scheduled 2 big appointments with clients. I did that in my first 3 phone calls before lunch.
And I hope you can make it game too. Love the game and you'll love the battles.
When you learn to love the battles, you'll learn to love the spoils.
'To the victor belong the spoils.'
I always tell others, 'You will ALWAYS get paid for the work you put in.' Because you will always cash out after beating 'The System'. I promise.
Keep growing. Keep fighting. Keep reaching.
Don't get weak.