5 Key Qualities of Playing the Long Game: and Why it Really Matters.
Lately, on the interweb it’s been a lot of “just follow these steps and you will become an overnight success.” First of all, I don’t believe that is such a thing. But, if someone found themselves with such fortune, well then, lucky them…or is it really?
Plain and simple: the good stuff takes effort. Think of anything you have done that really gave you joy deep down. It took some work to make that happen, didn’t it?
Well, I know for me it certainly did.
Things that are not done with a deeper intention and purpose just don’t give you the same feeling of reward.
Don’t get me wrong. I am not opposed to having good fortune. Nor am I opposed to having guidance that shortens the learning curve. But, building something from the ground up and committing for the long run is where the yumminess happens — and it’s where you have the opportunity to find your bigger why.
Your why will help get you excited and give you the motivation you need to get up in the morning. It will also give you the drive to turn challenges into opportunities. Ultimately, you will more fully experience the joys of your work and set yourself up for greater success.
For me, important aspects of the long game means taking care of my clients and my team like they are friends and family. It means doing what’s right even when it’s difficult. It means planning ahead to make the right decisions in the short and long-term. Then, because of the planning, you are better positioned to respond to unprecedented situations. Doing all of these things creates a foundation for a solid future. It builds community. It establishes trust. It defines your character and your brand.
So, when all this effort is made in playing the long game, something magical can happen like it did for me. A few years ago, somebody suggested I surround myself with other entrepreneurs, so I took a class to further my knowledge in marketing and gain more inspiration. While I did attain what I expected from this class, the more important reward was what I had not expected to receive.
In this experience, I learned that even I can “give back” to my community through my work. I know this might sounds pretty straight forward, but I never considered it possible, as I was a younger company with fewer resources. I thought only bigger, more established companies could do those things. I was wrong.
With a flip of a switch, I found my bigger purpose (my why), and figured out how I could make it happen! I no longer work “only” to help our clients knock it out of the park, or “only” to provide for myself and my team. I also get to impact someone else’s life who might not have been as fortunate as I have.
Today, we proudly support BoshBosh.org, an organization who educates girls through learning business and fashion design, which gives them important skill sets to ensure a brighter future. To give, with no expectations, small or big, is one of the most beautiful things I think one can do.
Before, it was only a distant dream that I didn’t know how I would accomplish. Now, with every client project, we are able to sponsor one child’s education. Even a small investment can go a long way when done consistently over a long period of time (my financial clients would be proud).
So how did I do that and how do I play the long game? Watch this video and check out the 5 cornerstones outlined below.
Here are 5 essential qualities that I consider important in playing the long game (yes, I’m still working on all of them too):
Number 01. have grit
As Angela Lee Duckworth speaks about in her Ted Talk, it’s having passion and perseverance for very long-term goals. Grit means having stamina. Grit means sticking with your future plans and aspirations. Grit means living life like it’s a marathon, not a sprint.
Number 02. enjoy the process
When I was playing golf at a high level, I could stand and hit the same shot over and over and over again until I got it. And I loved every minute of it.
Number 03. create habits
Create those beneficial habits that fuel you…that keep your body fit and your mind strong. Or, entrepreneurship will get you very quickly.
Number 04. CURIOSITY
Try new things and have a deep desire to learn more.
Number 05. TAKE OWNERSHIP
Do things you say you are going to do. This is not an easy one and I constantly struggle with things that are a bit outside my comfort zone. And this is precisely where it’s good to remind yourself why you are doing it. And when it’s something that really resonates with you, it’s much easier to do the things that might not always be the most fun.