Isn’t it incredible how so many people think they have set a good goal, think they are trying their best to achieve it, work all the hours sent, yet never achieve what they set out to do. Whether it’s on a daily, weekly, monthly or even annual basis.

If you find yourself in that position, time to play your trump card… this is the ACE in your hand. It’s a way of asking yourself “How truly serious am I about achieving x…?”

A is for Attitude.

This is your whole thinking, your beliefs, your perceptions, your conscious and subconscious reactions and your whole approach to your business, to your working environment, to your goals, to your life. As displayed in the words you use, the way you behave, the way you think, your physiology.

Attitude is passion, excitement, enthusiasm, cheerfulness, happiness, personal and business zest. Are you upbeat and positive? Many people say things which indicate that they aren’t positive, such as, “I try to be a positive person, but…”

You can choose your attitude, you can develop your faith (like a muscle), and you can cultivate self-belief.

Napoleon famously used to ask “Est-il hereux?” when choosing Officers to hold senior positions in his army. The translation is, “Is he lucky?” With “hereux” also meaning “happy”, it also translates as “Is he happy?” Perhaps that’s where the phrase “happy-go-lucky” comes from. It’s amazing how, simply by changing your attitude, you can often create a whole new result!

C is for Commitment.

This is about making a deliberate Choice. It’s about decisions and a desire to do it differently.

Before setting off on a new path to achieving new goals and new levels of success, it is critical to identify the investment you are prepared to make. Note, I don’t say “the price to pay”. There is only a price to pay in failure. For success, it’s an investment.

Step1 is committing to writing out goals which are consistent with your values. Step 2 is committing to the investment. If you have not written goals and built your vision, set aside time and energy to do it. Either, rule out some time in your diary over the next 48 hours (this is not a 5 minute exercise in setting targets so you need to set aside enough time). Or, if you won’t allocate time in the day, stay up all night and do it. No one ever died of lack of sleep, but many people fail to live because of their lack of goals and commitment.

Time to get off the hamsters wheel.

Commitment is about identifying the investment and resolving that you still want to do it. It’s about saying “Enough’s enough. Time to change.” And then putting a line in the sand from that point.

Whilst “involvement” can be accidental, Commitment is always deliberate.

It’s better to be committed to a few things, than involved in lots of things. This is especially important when we come to E (below), because success is about how you devote the resources you have got to the most important opportunities. Better to deliberately devote and commit your resources to what’s important in terms of your values and goals, than involve your resources in many far flung and disparate issues.

Commitment is black and white. It’s absolute. It’s about being able to say without wavering “Yes, I’m very serious about achieving x”. Not “I’ll try to”, or “I’ll do my best, but I can’t promise anything.” It’s about being definite with yourself and others, with every part of your heart, soul, and mind.

E is for Energy.

This is Action, focus, physical application, the stark reality of doing it… making it happen day-to-day, every day, step-by-step until you have reached it or achieved it… and then setting new horizons. It’s about keeping going, whatever it takes, with vigour, vitality, versatility (even when one route is closed, being able to find another without losing sight of the long term goal).

It’s about putting energy in at every stage… into setting the goals, into producing a strategy/ plan, into developing a regime and disciplines to get you there. And it’s about having energy in the moment… to perform effectively, to your absolute best, when most needed. It’s about just pure productive Action. Never giving up, always learning, always improving and perfecting, and always ready to go that extra mile which others don’t go. The Energy you put in is the outward manifestation of your true Attitude and your true Commitment.

Until next time, have an ACE week.