Recently, I came across a book by entrepreneur and business coach Dan Sullivan called “The Gap and the Gain”. It was written in conjunction with organisational psychologist Dr Benjamin Hardy and is a great read for professionals and business owners alike. In fact, the theory could really apply to people from any walk of life.
The premise is that everyone creates an “ideal” of what they want to achieve or where they want to be. The problem is that the “ideal” is a moving target influenced by external factors and therefore may be unachievable. When you measure success of a goal against that ideal, you are identifying “gaps” in your progression, which may leave you feeling unhappy and as though you’ve failed.
If, however, success is measured from where you’ve come from, you would see the “gain”. The “gain” identifies the progression made and the success you feel is based on what matters most to you, not others.
Being in the “gain” can have positive effects such as increased motivation, confidence and a mindset that allows for greater success in the future.
Take a retailer for example who, at the start of the year, set a target to expand by opening an additional 5 stores. Due to lockdowns, rental agreements not being reached or other external factors, they could only open another 3 stores.
The “gap” mindset would see that result as a failure. The “gain” mindset would acknowledge the progression made through the 3 additional stores, identifying where the business is now and where they have come from.
A great quote from the book to help switch your mindset is:
“Once you get in the habit of looking for wins, you expand your understanding of what can be a win”.
Click here for the book summary. It’s certainly worth a look if you feel like you’re getting nowhere with plans or goals you’ve been trying to achieve.