Non-negotiables are a powerful force for personal growth. The idea of having something that is non-negotiable in your world -- something that is a personal discipline for you -- will help you create consistency and persistence, and those two things are the path to success. When you have something that you will live by, stick to, that you hold true, no matter what, will help you get to where you want to go more than anything else. When something is absolutely non-negotiable, you never change it. You're not in it for a little while. You're in it forever.
It's hard to change everything. When we take on too much, we fall back into our old habits and old ways of doing things and old ways of thinking and behaving. So the idea of non-negotiables is having one thing that is completely non-negotiable in your world.
Let me give you some examples. For me, a non-negotiable is to be on time. I would rather be 30 minutes early than be 30 seconds late. It's because I have this belief that the greatest disrespect to another human being is to let them think that your time is more important than theirs. I hate to keep people waiting. I just think it's absolutely rude, disrespectful, and wrong.
For me, "never be late" is an absolute non-negotiable. It's about me. It's not about the other person. This is a critical thing about non-negotiables. You can't have a non-negotiable for which you make somebody else responsible. A non-negotiable is something that you do, for yourself. It's something that you live by.
Other non-negotiables might be: exercise once a week, no matter what. It could be you exercise every Friday, without fail. Or you could write for 30 minutes every Monday morning. Before they do anything else, they have to sit down and write for 30 minutes.
I love this concept because it creates discipline and it creates consistency.
You can't say, "My non-negotiable is that I don't eat chocolate. I'm not eating chocolate anymore. I don't eat chocolate anymore." But the first mini crisis that happens, like the dog chews up one of your shoes, you reach for a block of chocolate.
It's entirely up to you, but once you get disciplined enough to create a non-negotiable that you never break, you'll build confidence, you'll build integrity and respect with your peers and the employees you manage. Part of your world becomes predictable and persistent. I know that we don't want all of our world to be predictable and consistent, but the path to success is having the critical parts of our world predictable and consistent.
When you've got that first non-negotiable locked down, and you're doing it without fail on a regular basis, you'll undoubtedly create another one and then you'll create another one. That concept of stacking one success on top of another is the thing that helps you get more done, helps you show up as a better human being and helps you achieve more, be more, and do more than you ever thought possible, and for all of us, that should be non negotiable.
Rowdy Mclean is an international keynote speaker, author, motivator, leadership and business consultant. Mclean provides clients with the inspiration, insights, systems, and strategies to Play a Bigger Game -- how to achieve more, be more, do more, and have more than they ever thought possible. He has presented to over 250,000 people across the globe. His latest book, Play a Bigger Game!, has been published in seven countries. He is an entrepreneur and adventurer that likes to shake up the status quo and is obsessed with success. Do you have what it takes to Play a Bigger Game? Take the checklist at rowdymclean.com