4 Ways Why “Wing It” Preparation is the Key to High Performance


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How about you wing it more?

I’m not joking…

Your lack of preparation and planning is a big reason you might not be as successful as you want to be.

So, “winging it” you say?

Isn’t that the exact opposite of planning and preparation?

If you were to ask most people, they would tell you that “winging it” means you making it up as you go.  No preparation — a devil-may-care, unprepared half-hearted attempt at success.

Contraire, my friend

The first time the phrase “winging it” was used in print was 1933 — in a theater studies handbook written by Philip Godfrey.  And it was actually a good thing.  He noted that:

The best performers would head into a wing of the stage and deliberately rehearse their lines and the act that they were about to put on…  They would “wing it”.

And that little extra bit of mental focus and preparation is what made them the best.

“Winging it” was the difference.

Here’s a question for you: “Are you practicing enough?”

Where’s your preparation?  Are you getting up early and going to bed late JUST to practice?  Not to do anything new.  Just to invest deliberate practice in your upcoming activities.

This nonsense about how “sales people are born” is ridiculous.  It’s the ultimate in self-limiting behavior.

No other job in the world celebrates how someone is “born”.  Not even Tiger Woods who was hitting golf balls as three year old gets treatment like that.  You have to invest mind-blowing amounts of time in the the theater of your life performance.

And it takes time.  And, NO, not millions of hours in a row.  That’s a recipe for acute burn-out.

It’s actually a little more difficult than that.  The best practice is:

  1. Deliberate — You don’t just run through the process like a third grade piano lesson that’s holding you back from playground time.  You are focused and intense.  You feel it in your soul.  You hear the words you are saying.  You shed a tear because of the emotion.
  2. Short – Cap it at 20-30 minutes per session.  Even with a Buddhist-like focus and insatiable thirst for excellence, your body and mind starts taking shortcuts after an intense 20-30 minutes of rehearsal.
  3. Iterative — You break up the entire goal and practice each small section piece by piece.  You take the puzzle, throw the pieces on the floor and put it back together.  And piece by piece you get better and faster at success.
  4. Consistent – Many times per day.  Per week.  Per month.  You make a daily pattern of practicing.  You get in the habit of rehearsing.  You don’t try it once and then shrug it off because it didn’t work fast enough.

And when you do this, your turn the corner.

You stop being a loser.  You dramatically increase your odds for success.  You become a high performer.

Not performing high enough?

Maybe you’re not practicing enough.

Maybe you need to head Stage Right and crack out your notes for a few minutes.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Dan Waldschmidt
Speaker, author, strategist, Dan Waldschmidt is a conversation changer. Dan and his team help people arrive at business-changing breakthrough ideas by moving past outdated conventional wisdom, social peer pressure, and the selfish behaviors that stop them from being high performers. The Wall Street Journal calls his blog, Edge of Explosion, one of the Top 7 blogs sales blogs anywhere on the internet and hundreds of his articles on unconventional sales tactics have been published.


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