Not Making Progress? This Might Be Why.

Have you ever heard of Pareto’s Principle?

If not, I’m sure you’ve heard of the 80/20 rule. 

Basically, 80% of your results can come from 20% of your efforts.

The most effective anything will produce 80% of what you want with about a 20% input. It’s pretty crazy when you think about it. But, it works.

The best way I’ve ever heard this principle described is to not major in the minors.

Or, don’t do the things that require 80% of your effort and only produce 20% of the results. Max effort, minimal results. No bueno. 

And yet, this misdirected focus is one of the biggest reasons I see wonderful people struggling and preventing them from making the progress they want. 

That’s right. The 80/20 rule can just as easily work against you.

That’s good news though. 

If you’re doing something that is requiring an incredible amount of effort but doesn’t seem to be producing the best results, you can safely assume there is a more efficient option. For all intents and purposes, that max effort with minimal result approach doesn't work for you.

If you've read any of my other work you'll know my entire approach centers on doing more of what works and less of what doesn't.

You see, the key to not majoring in the minors though is remembering not to sweat the small stuff.

Really.

Let’s say you’re making some lifestyle changes and one of your goals is to build some muscle and maybe shed some fat.

Majoring in the minors is worrying about small fluctuations on the scale. It's worrying about "the best" workout for fat loss. It's worrying about what supplements you should be taking when you're not yet eating in a way that supports your goals.

This is the minutia. This is the stuff you can focus on later (though don't be surprised if you never find "the best" - more on that later).

These are the things that take your focus away from what's important. Instead of trying to drive a square peg through a round hole, get a different peg.

To do this, focus on the fundamentals. Focus on finding what works for you and ways to do more of that. After all, the fundamentals are what leads us to a level of proficiency. For most of us, that's good enough.  Even if you're a professional athlete whose job it is to find that slight edge, you still have to master the fundamentals (which you likely have if you've made it to that level).

Most of us are not professional athletes. And that's fine. But why do we feel like we need to eat and train like one? 

We are, however, athletes in the game of life. Which usually means we want to:

-be comfortable and confident in how we look

-feel vibrant and energetic

-perform well with this magnificent body we've been given.

And that usually doesn't include worrying about every little detail. You have other stuff to do - your faith, your family, your friends, your career. 

Focus on the things that produce the best results. Let the other stuff go. Do more of what works, less of what doesn't.

On your side,

Ev