I used to pose this question to my anatomy students the first day of the semester. After taking roll I would instruct the students, “Raise your hand if you consider yourself to be average”. Out of an entire class of 40-60 students I might see a random hand or two raised. “Excellent”, I would proclaim! “Then I expect at our first midterm I will not see any C’s”. It was amusing to look around the room at their faces after this proclamation. The truth is you can take 1000 geniuses and put them in a room but according to the Laws of probability and something known as the Bell Curve 70% of these geniuses will be average. The funny thing is I noticed most average people claim to want to get better but never seem to take the steps to actually improve themselves.
What is your passion? Do you go the extra mile? Can you put in a little extra effort and get better at what you do? Do you even want to get better? If you are truly excited and passionate about your job, your hobby or maybe your family take a minute and ask yourself these questions. What can you do to be 1% better today than you were yesterday? Just think…..if you can improve 1% a day you will be 365% better by the end of next year!
Can I work out a little harder? Can I have more patience with my wife, husband or children? Can I apply myself at work more? Can I finally finish one of those projects at my home this week? These are all just examples of being 1% better today than yesterday.
How do I apply this? This morning after my work out and run I read an article published by a running coach on beginning runners and running form. It reviewed the current research on the topic and probably took me 20 minutes. I increased my knowledge 1% adding to my mental database regarding beginning runners and running form as it relates to running injuries. Since I am in the business of diagnosing, treating and fixing running injuries this article only added to my 18 years of experience and made me a better doctor with the ability to offer injured runners another viewpoint.
Too many people go to work and punch the clock, doing the bare minimum. This is 70% of the workers in your company. Are you one of them? Sadly people do this with the husbands, wives and children as well. Often I see people actually put more effort into their hobby (in this case running) than they do into their work or personal relationships which they tend to take for granted. Give this a try. Tomorrow (or right after reading this) try giving just 1% more effort into your job or personal relationships and observe the reaction or result…. it won’t cost you anything and you might even be surprised at the results.