There are so many moments in our lives where we would succeed if we had just managed to be consistent in the level of effort we had applied. Consistency is the key to success, in everything. When I was writing consistently, I was constantly improving, ideas flowed, and I ended up with work that impacted people like this “Why Vulnerability Is Your Strength, Not Your Weakness” instead of struggling to find my flow on a daily basis. In serving, consistently giving great service ingrains it as a habit so that when you end up in a situation you’re not thrilled with or the customer is abrasive and rude you still give great service because it’s drilled into who you are as a server.
Consistency with anything is the key to success. I ran track in high school, and the people that were the best were the ones that trained day in and day out. In my welding jobs, the reason I learned quickly and got to be in charge of products is because I consistently pushed for perfect work and to learn more in my down time. Consistency is the art of showing up again and again even when things aren’t going your way.
Consistency IS Growth
I believe wholeheartedly in fitness and the way that it reflects your life. When you’re consistently pushing yourself to be healthy in the gym, the rest of your life reflects it. The willingness to put your all into work that most people don’t see and won’t appreciate is the key to gaining strength just like it’s the key to gaining success. Every day, you have thought leaders telling you to put your head down and get to work and they say that because that’s ultimately the key to success. You can have flashes of brilliance and succeed in the short term, to succeed in the long term you need to put your head down and just grind it out.
Serving is the same way. It’s full of a variety of people, those that will work, those that do their job perfunctorily and those that will come up with any excuse to fail. I’ve worked with numerous people that will say things like “the table is (insert whatever demographic you want here) so they won’t tip well” and yet it turns out that those of us that consistently put in effort have never had that complaint. The people that make excuses are generally the people that make 12–15% tips, while those of us that work to give great service and help our customers out make 18–20% tips.
There’s a formula for growth: find out what successful people have done, replicate it, and be consistent. That’s it. If you want to be Gary Vee, find out what he did and replicate it. When he goes out and buys things at garage sales then resells them on ebay, do that, learn how he sells because he will tell you and show you. When Grant Cardone says you need to make 10x efforts and have 10x though patterns, work at developing those every day, and when you get to 10x where you were you start over again from where you’re at and continue to grow.
Consistent effort builds it’s own momentum. Pick one area of your life, it doesn’t matter what it is, and work at it consistently. Once you’ve started improving there you will, without conscious effort, start being more consistent in every other area of your life.
It’s one of those things where we all know what we need to do, but we don’t push for it and we don’t strive because we haven’t built that momentum so it seems unbearably difficult. Working 16 hours a day is insane when you’re starting from 1 hour a day. Working out every day is insane when you work out once a month.
Start small, pick one habit you want to build and just do it twice as often as you are now. If you go to the gym once a week but want to be more in shape, go twice a week. If you want to grow your business and only work on it one hour a day, find a way to make it two. Yes, there are costs in time, and that’s something you’re going to have to get used to is trading time for your goals, trading time for your priorities. The thing with consistency though, is it gives back. Once you get to a point where you’ve built up your business, it will push ahead with half the effort. Once you’ve reached your ideal body physically, it’s no longer about massive effort to reshape, it’s about maintenance work which takes less time.
Once you have built consistent habits, you will notice in the long run how much time it saves you after the initial investment. Being consistent allows you to plan out your time more freely. It allows you to find new goals and learn new things rapidly because you’ve already built that habit and it’s now ingrained in you. It’s like the difference between a server that greets a table and takes 5 trips to get drinks, appetizers and food orders, and a server that does it in two trips. You learn how to save time because you’ve done it a thousand times and learned how the process works and how to refine it to work best for you.