Consistency: the unsung hero of success

Consistency is a very undervalued trait. It’s less glorified than taking big risks, or cleaning up some major problem that likely could have been avoided in the first place. It’s a trait that’s not sexy, it’s expected and it’s sometimes invisible.

I really value consistency and aspire to be better at being consistent myself. It doesn’t come naturally to me, I have to work at it and often have to ‘freshen up’ my strategies to keep being consistent.

Some of the reasons I really value consistency are:

1. It takes more time than people appreciate, even if the thing that you do is 5 minutes a day, if you do it every day of the week that adds up to a lot of time.

2. Most people get tired and give up on something, especially when others seem like they aren’t paying attention (just look at all those abandoned podcasts and blogs!)

3. Consistency rarely gets attention, it’s not flashy, it’s often invisible. You’re rarely saving the day with your consistency. Typically you’re preventing drama or problems by being consistency

4. It shows grit and mental strength. There are days where you don’t want to persist because you don’t feel like doing something and it’s easy to not do it because others won’t notice.

5. Consistency is not low hanging fruit.

6. Consistency shows that you value and are willing to work on the thing you want to be consistent about.

With my engineering teams my goal is to make sure that all of their consistent efforts are not invisible. I do my do my best to let the team know that what they’re doing is impressive and it matters.

Unsung hero’s are often consistently working away in the background. We all have these people in our lives:

  1. Someone who has dedicated time to coach a junior sports team year after year.
  2. Someone who always has a smile on their face when you see them
  3. Someone who always volunteers
  4. Somebody who sends a report every day
  5. A friend who is always makes time to talk to you when you need it
  6. Someone who’s always on time
  7. Someone who remembers to update training material or documentation when it gets stale
  8. Someone who always remembers your birthday
  9. Someone who remembers what you order every time you come in
  10. Someone who is consistently good at their job and doesn’t mind not being employee of the month or being the best at one thing.
  11. Someone who is always good on the sporting field.

We should all make a bigger deal of consistency. Who in your network can you thank for something that they are doing because it’s become invisible to everyone else? How can you reward someone else’s consistency and encourage it? How can you help make consistency valued and visible?

Success doesn’t come from what you do occasionally, it comes from what you do consistently. — Marie Forleo

I’m a work in progress with consistency. But I’m going to keep trying at it :)

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