Each Day Sellers Wage a Battle Between the Fantasy of Deals to Come and Reality
One of the most important sales every sales person faces each day out in the field is not with customers and prospects, but with themselves. "The odds are that you are currently selling exactly what you unconsciously believe you should be selling," says Jim Cathcart. You attract into your sphere of influence what you feel inside. If you feel you deserve $10,000 a day, you attract $10,000 a day customers. Like attracts like.
Sales people are no different than anyone else, they unwittingly seek out circumstances, customers, rejection and outcomes to reinforce and support their own hangups. They unfortunately have a tendency to disproportionately attract situations and customers that replay their fears and insecurities as opposed to their hopes and their strengths.
Unfortunately, it is easier for most of us to listen to the internal voice of fear, distrust, negativity and insecurity, than it is to listen to the voice of reason, optimism and trust. Most of us spend too much of our days in the former and it ultimately has a negative impact on our productivity and results. What you emotionally respond to, either positively or negatively, you strengthen in yourself as a sales person.
Sales people do not have a problem with rejection, they have a problem with ego. They do not have a problem with lack of confidence, they have a problem with ego. They do not have a problem with frustration, they have a problem with ego. When you feel rejected, frustrated or any other negative state you are simply shifting responsibility elsewhere.
The same principle applies to your reactions to your customers; if you react to your customer's negativity you become negative. And on and on. So be very aware of how you respond to your customers and how you internalize your own reaction. As a decision-maker you need to be aware that not only do you have a choice in deciding how you will respond to anything regardless of its severity, you also have the choice to decide to take personal responsibility.
The good news and the bad news are your reactions and your frustrations have nothing to do with anyone else but yourself. "Whatever you expect from someone (fairness, validation, responsiveness) that they can't or won't give you is a direct reflection of what you need to give to yourself," says Paul Ferrini. It is all about taking personal responsibility. When you buy into that, life and career become a lot easier.
Managing your self-esteem in selling is all about striking a balance. Too often success lolls us into a false sense of security, and failure lolls us into a false sense of insecurity. When you get off the emotional roller coaster you are not so tightly invested in your deals, you lighten up, and you tend to be more authentic and less "salesy." Unfortunately, sales people fall into the trap where each day they wage a private battle between the grand fantasies of deals to come and what actually happens.
Change and growth usually do not happen as much when things are going well. Growth and improvement tend to present themselves when business is bad and at an impasse. So try not to be fearful when bad times present themselves. This is where you will have the greatest opportunity to really change and turn things around. Keep a balanced perspective because it is difficult to grow, change and improve when you are looking at everything through a filter of resentment and resistance. Without the weight of resentment and blame, options and answers are so much easier to spontaneously tap into.
"People too often have a misplaced heartfelt belief that their life (sales career) will be perfect when they really finally achieve success. Until they rise above this belief they'll continue to judge themselves unworthy. Until they rid themselves of this chip on their shoulder they'll continue to have a need to point their finger at others, indict and blame for their plight," says Paul Ferrini.
Using hard work and sacrifice to make you feel good about yourself is what keeps you from realizing you are already worth it. Work hard, be disciplined and make sacrifice for your sales goals, just do not delude yourself into the slippery slope of believing it will do anything to change your own priceless self-worth.
Whether it is in your life or your day to day selling activities, the more we seek outside ourselves for gratification, the less we will find gratification inside ourselves.
Beware there is a negative flip slide to goals. The more you really want something, the stronger the emotion you will experience of not having it. The negative void of this feeling can play havoc on your self-esteem. This negative void can motivate you to achieve your goal, however the nagging feeling of lack of self-worth never goes away. It either goes to the suppressed unconscious, or it manifests itself elsewhere in your life in a totally different and unrecognizable area.
Goals without question can be very effective in achieving your dreams. I would never argue against this. However, keep in mind, if it is balance you are seeking, do not delude yourself that reaching your external goal will really do anything to change your internal self-concept. It will undoubtedly do wonders for your external confidence and self-esteem.
I think a very healthy balance is to have purposeful goals, or better yet a vision of what you want to achieve, then work hard to achieve it, but at the same time not to be emotionally invested in the outcome. It is the emotional investment in the outcome that wears on your self-esteem, not the actual negative event itself.