The question that I would like to ask this month is “How do we maximize our results in a challenging economy?”  As we watch the news and see the results of this economy, many are wondering how to survive. I would like to share with you a three-step process that I have used to build businesses over the last 30 years.

First, I believe that we have to create a personal vision that is both vivid and passionate. There are three elements in creating a vision.

1. Develop a dream. I find that most people have lost the ability to dream. When we were young and asked what we wanted to be when we grew up, we had no problem in saying we wanted to be a fireman, astronaut, or President of the United States. As we get older, we may have challenges in even dreaming about where we would like to take a vacation. To stimulate your ability to dream again ask yourself the following questions:

* What do I want to do?
* What do I want to give?
* What do I want to have?
* What do I want to be?
* Where do I want to go?

These five questions will jump start your dreaming ability.

2. Create one of your dreams into a goal by setting a date of accomplishment of that dream. This can be unsettling because you are now risking the possibility of not reaching that goal.

3. Now comes the fun part, creating the vision. To do this you must create a picture in your mind that is so real that you can taste it, feel it, and see it. By focusing on this picture you will be drawn to the Vision.

Second, you have to find a way to elevate and separate yourself from the competition. You have to be seen in a unique way. People are being exposed to a lot of information every day. So, how do I present myself in a way that I will be seen differently? One way is to create a distinctive branding of your product or service. This can be accomplished with a catchphrase, logo, or the way you deliver your product or service to the end user.

Third, take the leap!!! In times of uncertainty we experience a higher sense of fear. Have courage. My definition of courage is “Courage is not the absence of fear but action in the presence of fear.” Keep moving towards your vision remembering that “God can’t steer a parked car”.

If you will implement these three steps, not only will you prosper in the challenging times, you will experience faster growth when the economy does improve.

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