Being exceptional requires pushing beyond the expected. Reaching a level of extraordinary comes from the dedication to stretch beyond the normal. If I want to have the level of success that I desire in my writing then I have to be willing to go beyond what I am doing at this moment.
Choose to Raise the Bar
• No more waiting. Projects come to my desk and are scheduled on the white board before being filed away. I can raise the bar to excellence if I choose to do the projects as they arrive on my desk instead of putting them off until they are due.
• Do more than expected. Many of my regular clients know that I will meet their project parameters – including word count and deadline. I can raise the bar to excellence by giving them a little more than the expected without expectation of something in return other than a satisfied client.
• Write now. “It is too pretty to be inside writing.” “Today is a snow day.” “The Olympics are on.” “It is too early (or late) to write.” “The kids will not cooperate." I can find a reason not to write until I have a reason to write. When a deadline looms, I find the time. I can raise the bar to excellence in my writing if I choose to write consistently and complete the projects that I start.
• Today is the time to pursue the dream. Several weeks back I was encouraged to pursue an opportunity to write a bible study but I kept thinking I would do it tomorrow. Tomorrow never comes. There is only today. Raising the bar to excellence means that I must choose to do today those things that I know need to be done to reach my goals.
• Practice saying no. The little jobs and projects that pay pennies can end up getting in the way of the opportunity (or the willingness) to go for the big jobs. Raising the bar to excellence means reaching for and expecting to land the big jobs and saying no to those jobs that get in the way of my push to success.
• Ask for the opportunity. There has to be a little boldness and confidence in anyone that pursues excellence. Raising the bar to excellence in my freelance writing means asking for the chance to write for the magazine, paper or website and having the words to back up the request.
If I always do what I have always done then I will always get what I have always got.
I want more! My plan for a successful freelance writing career includes books, speaking and regular columns or articles in publications. Raising my bar of excellence to that point will mean doing more, being consistent and laying it all on the line.
What are you willing to do to raise your bar to excellence?