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.

Let’s say our goal is 30.

We start at 1. Now, we are at 22.

If we measure ourselves against our goal of 30, we are eight short. 

However, if we measure backward from where we started, we see we’ve moved up 21 spots. 

Both are true. We are both eight short of our goal. And we’ve moved up 21 spots.

If we choose to focus on the fact we are eight short, we are living in the GAP, Dan Sullivan and Ben Hardy write in their book The Gap and The Gain

If we measure our progress backward from where we started, we are in the GAIN. 

This simple framework has enormous psychological implications.

2: Dan is the founder of the Strategic Coach, the world’s #1 entrepreneurial coaching program. 

In the early ’90s, Dan noticed how prevalent GAP thinking was with his highly successful clients. 

And with people generally. 

Dan “exposed the GAP as a toxic mindset that stopped people from being happy and appreciating their lives,” they write. “He knew that until people got out of the GAP, they’d never be as happy or successful as they could be.” 

We can be in the GAP “in both mundane and monumental experiences,” the authors write. 

We can “be in the GAP about getting the smaller half of a cookie. Or we can be in the GAP about our entire past—wishing our lives had been something different or better.”

3: I first learned about the GAP and the GAIN 25 years ago. Understanding this framework has had a significant impact on my life.

That said, it’s still easy for me to fall into the GAP. 

Including last year when we ran into a serious business challenge.

The prior four years, we’d experienced tremendous success with introducing a new offering called the Oral History Project. To date, we’ve collected more than 2 million stories from alumni and donors. 

But after a period of rapid growth, we hit a plateau, and our costs quickly got out of line. It was very difficult. And easy to fall into a pity party about what had gone wrong.

In the midst of that situation, I was reminded of the GAP and the GAIN. 

We had started at 1. We clearly weren’t at our goal of 30. But we had moved up 21 spots. 

I chose to measure backward from where we started. I decided to focus on the GAIN. And to be inspired by the progress we would make again in the future.  

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. 

What did you think of this post?

Write A Comment