The Humpty Dumpty Effect
How to put your focus back together again
The story of Humpty Dumpty was first printed in 1810 and became famous through Lewis Carroll’s book, ‘Alice Through the Looking Glass’.
It’s one of those unforgettable nursery rhymes, and perhaps the best known in the English Language.
I trust the following sounds familiar…
Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall
All the king’s horses and all the king’s men
Couldn’t put Humpty together again.
Have you ever wondered what makes this children’s rhyme so unforgettable?
Don’t worry, I did the heavy lifting for you on this one.
It’s unforgettable for this reason…it’s a quatrain, a four-line stanza with repeating external rhymes. This is a common and highly-effective technique used predominantly in nursery rhymes, poems and songs.
WHY IT MATTERS TO YOU
In my ongoing efforts to provide you with creative ideas for fast-tracking your goals, and putting your focus back together again…
I’m going to use this lesson to share with you an eight-word rhyming strategy, a single quatrain with repeating external rhymes that achieves the twin objectives of being both highly-effective and unforgettable.
Here it comes…
Allow me to unpack this strategy and break it down into four interdependent steps.
STEP ONE: THINK IT
All physical goals or outcomes are birthed by thought and have some kind of a mental equivalent.
What this means is that everything you want to be, have or do initially exists as nothing more than vapor, and that by setting a goal, you are actually tasking yourself with CREATING SOMETHING OUT OF NOTHING.
That’s why I love this subject as I’ve always looked at goal setting as a magical process, whereby you get to go to amazing places inside your mind, to think as big and bold as your imagination allows, and to dream about all the wonderful things you want to do with your life.
The first step is to imagine what is possible, then have the faith to believe that what is possible is possible for you. That’s why we must engage in the the discipline of thinking before inking, and especially thinking before taking action.
STEP TWO: INK IT
Your mind while blessed with permanent memory is cursed with lousy recall. Written goals are catalysts; they serve as transforming agents for success and achievement.
That is precisely why I urge you to write them down at the beginning of each day, and then place them in a location or series of locations of high visibility to ensure focus, reinforcement and accountability.
From eureka to achievement, the evolution of a goal begins in the mind and immediately takes shape when pen is put to paper.
The goal progresses from thought to sketch, from sketch to action, and finally from action to achievement in real time.
Goals and plans kept only in your mind have an uncanny way of remaining figments of your imagination…as once they are out of sight, they quickly go out of mind.
Therefore, be sure to Ink It after you Think It by committing all plans to paper or computer.
STEP THREE: DO IT
A flawed premise of success is that the goal is the most important ingredient in the stew of success, and that you win or lose based on the merits or worthiness of the goal.
How wrong and casualty-creating that premise is as the best goal or idea, no matter how well thought out and documented cannot survive inferior execution.
Goals never fail…ONLY implementation does, and unless you execute properly and remain focused until completion, the goal — and that means ANY goal — is irrelevant.
The difference between those who have goals and plans but don’t succeed and those that do succeed is simple…Those that succeed are able to execute well and follow through until completion. It’s that simple…once you think it, and ink it, you need to do it until the end.
STEP FOUR: REVIEW IT
Just as DNA’S coding is built into every cell of your body, the combination for achieving any goal requires the inspection of expectations.
This is why I continually reinforce the importance of an After Action Review (AAR).
No plan has held up against the weight of opposition, change, and adversity. The shelf life of any goal or plan EXPIRES QUICKLY if not reviewed, updated and acted upon.
Good intentions, while honorable are of little use when you let months, quarters, and years of potential and possibility slip by unexpected.
An AAR is a rigorous assessment which should be conducted after a project, period of time, or major activity that allows you to discover what happened and why. It is based on four questions:
- What exactly did you set out to accomplish?
- What actually happened, what were the results?
- What worked and why?
- What did not work and why?
- What do you need to change, eliminate or amplify?
You must tattoo this next idea to your forehead…
What gets reviewed, gets improved.
What gets reviewed consistently, improves consistently.
What gets reviewed consistently, and which is tied to compensation and celebration improves immediately and enthusiastically.
The purpose of setting a goal is to ACHIEVE IT, and the AAR ensures that the goals you set, are the goals you get.
The bottom line is that consistent performance review is an invaluable exercise as this ongoing discipline is aimed squarely at driving a persistent improvement in skill, execution, knowledge and results.
Let’s Wrap This Puppy Up
In my mind, the best messages are ones that are easy to understand, easy to apply and get results from, easy to share and teach to others, and most important…hard to forget (unforgettable).
I certainly hope that the simplicity of this Think It, Ink It, Do It, Review It message has made an indelible impression upon you, and that you’ll use it to drive impressive and consistent results.
I promise you’ll be glad…no, make that ecstatic that you did.
Gary Ryan Blair is creator of the 100 Day Challenge…a radical approach to goal achievement that shows people how to accelerate their results, achieve 10X size goals and transform every area of their life and career — FAST.