1: Getting better at getting better is what RiseWithDrew is all about.

Monday through Thursday, we explore ideas from authors, thought leaders, and exemplary organizations. On Friday, I share something about myself or what we are working on at PCI.

Twenty-five years ago, driving to and from work, I listened to a set of cassettes I had purchased from the Strategic Coach, the world’s #1 entrepreneurial coaching program founded by Dan Sullivan.

One of the ideas Dan talked about on those cassettes was the GAP and the GAIN. Today, Dan considers this framework “one of the most important, transformational, and enduring concepts in the Strategic Coach program,” Dan and Ben Hardy write in their New York Times best-selling book The Gap and The Gain.

All these years later, I still remember it because it was so straightforward. 

There are two ways we can measure our progress.

The first way is to compare where we are now against our ideal. 

The only problem with our ideals? 

They are like “a horizon in the desert,” Dan and Ben write. “No matter how many steps we take forward, the horizon continues to move out of reach.” 

When we measure our progress this way, we are living in what Dan calls “the GAP.”

There is, however, a different way of measuring our progress. When we measure where we are now versus where we started, we are living in the “GAIN.”

2: The ideal is any form of a hope or expectation. The ideal is where we wish we were. Many times it’s a comparison with something or someone else. 

Like: “Her raise was bigger than my raise.”

Why is this a problem? Because being in the GAP prevents us from living within our own experience. It stops us from valuing where we are now. It stops us from being happy.

The other problem with the GAP? It’s often our default mode. “It’s human nature to be in the GAP,” Dan and Ben note.

Let’s say my wife Carey and I are going to a concert. We’ve been anticipating this night. Really looking forward to it.

But we’re running ten minutes late. 

If we are frustrated and focus on the fact we are late, then we are in the GAP.

We are measuring ourselves against our ideal.

We aren’t living in the moment.

3: Can we escape the GAP?

Yes. We can simply choose to focus on the fact we are about to have a great night. Then, the entire experience is a GAIN.

When we are in the GAIN, we measure our success backward against where we started.

When we focus on the GAIN, we are happy.

In every situation, we are either in the GAP or the GAIN. We can’t be in both at the same time.

And we can choose to be in the GAIN right now. In this moment.

More next week!


Reflection: How do I typically measure my progress? Do I measure where I am against my ideal? Or backward from where I started?

Action: Share the GAP and the GAIN with someone I love and care about.

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