If you are a fan of the New England Patriots you are probably familiar with this instruction from the coach. Since I first heard it years ago I have resonated with this advice as it reminds me to let go of trying to do things that are not in my purview, and focus on my stuff.
Even as a kid my parents called me “Little Miss Responsible” because I was concerned about making sure that everything around me was going smoothly, in addition to my work. This attitude and the associated actions sound noble, but in reality they…
- keep me from doing my best work (and give me an excuse)
- have me working on things that are not my expertise
- annoy others–no matter how gracious I am in “helping” them
As I have grown older and more self-aware I see the downsides and am letting go of the super responsible side of me. This advice coming from a professional coach (who is very successful) helped me to take it to the next level.
Then, last Sunday evening listening to Devin McCourty, the Patriots defensive team captain, I expanded my awareness (and hopefully actions–or lack thereof) even further. He talked about the benefits of each player focusing on their specific job, which makes it easier to strive for excellence. In addition, Mr. McCourty came at this concept from an additional direction. He talked about doing your job to the best of your ability, every day, all year long.
He shared how every effort adds up to excellent execution when it’s needed and when it counts. His example of running hill sprints in April supporting excellent performance the following January is inspiring to me. It’s a reminder that EVERYTHING we do, think, and say are a part of who we are.
Plus, everything we do, every day, whether for work, home, or play is of our choosing. When do do choose it, then we should do it to the best of our ability–every time. Or not do it at all.
There are lots of benefits to this much focus–doing a better job, feeling more satisfied and less scattered.
For me, the main benefit is that the sum of this focus, work, and effort adds up to us being the best and deepest version of myself.
How do you “do your job”? What motivations and practices do you use? Please comment!
My best wishes for an amazing day and week. See you next Wednesday!