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Moving the Ball


In the game of football (the heathen North American game, played with a rugby ball … not the real football) teams move the ball down the field in the hope of scoring a touchdown.  They might move that ball a long way in a given “play” or they might move it just a yard or two, but the goal is to keep “moving the ball” forward.

In the “game” of life its really not that different … there is a “ball” for almost every aspect of the “game”, and we need to move that ball forward in order to reach our goal.

In your relationships we “move the ball” to meet goals, whether stated or just “there” … it might be about reaching various stages in that relationship; moving from acquaintance to friend; to good friend; to close friend; to trusted advisor; etc.   This happens by building on that relationship, investing time and energy, thought and emotion in that relationship; we are moving the ball along a continuum … but there is no “touchline”, because it keeps moving as the next goal comes into focus.

When you stop moving that ball your relationship is in jeopardy.

If you are a salesperson pursuing a sale then you need to “move the ball” through a sales cycle, that can be very short or very long and complex, depending upon what you are selling.  In a complex sale there are many different “buyers” and “influencers” and in order to reach your goal (the touchdown .. or sale!) you need to keep moving the ball through that sales cycle (down the pitch) … which means you need to move that ball a lot more than for a less complex sale.  But in every case that ball needs to move.

When you stop moving the ball through the sales cycle you are either in trouble, or maybe you have won that specific deal … at which point the next goal (touchdown) is in sight and its time to get that ball moving again.

Life is full of “goals” whether we write them down and have a defined plan to get there ; OR we fly by the seat of our pants and hope we get there.  If we are always “moving the ball down the field” towards the goal, then we have a chance at success … stopping, forgetting the goal, ignoring the goal or just plain laziness will likely cause us to not get there … or best case take a lot longer to get there.

Are you moving the ball … in your career, in your relationships, with your health?

Are you consciously moving those balls, or are you moving them on autopilot?

Do you have a plan to get the ball down the field as fast as possible … or are you making it up as you go?

It would be remiss of me to use a football analogy without a couple more Vince Lombardi quotes:

“Inches make champions.”

“Success is like anything worthwhile. It has a price. You have to pay the price to win and you have to pay the price to get to the point where success is possible. Most important, you must pay the price to stay there.”