Don’t Give Away Your Power


“Pragmatic Sales Psychology” short episode series, writing #14”

This is the second in a series of writings tying back Amy Morin’s principles in her book “13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do” to our honorable profession.    

Depending on circumstances and other factors, your professional frame of mind can cause you to forfeit your selling power. Confidence in yourself and your process must be viciously defended from the world’s onslaught of distractions and irritants. Prospects, co-workers, bosses, family members and random unexpected idiots can interfere with your goals and bust your selling groove. In fact, the world’s current events and anything that gets in the way of your task to find people to serve (qualifying and disqualifying as you go) can symbolize emotional and mental quicksand. To avoid causing paralysis, these things should be placed in immediate context as soon as they are identified as an invader of your honorable mission to serve others, subsequently your family and loved ones. 

“Paralysis by analysis” of irrelevant subject matter is the greatest and most rapid way to forfeit the many skills and positive contributions you can make to your profession. It has happened to all of us but much like a musician who plays a wrong note or a basketball player who bricks a shot, the next note, the next shot is key to getting back on track and to productivity. Obsessing on anomalies and distractions that we have no control over can lead us down a dangerous rabbit hole that its hard to find a way out of. The best policy is to identify these circumstances, categorize them properly and move right back into the activities we know from experience to be successful. If you need an adult beverage at the end of the day to re-live some of your stranger or more challenging experiences, so be it, but inside the work day when productivity is essential, there is no time to be knocked off the train tracks.

I mention the quicksand. Why? I mention it because I’ve seen sales professionals give up their considerable power of serving and convincing folks to do things that are in their best (the prospects) interest by becoming emotionally ensconced in things that have no bearing in the long run. It is truly a time management tragedy which occurs every second to some unguarded soul, just trying to make a living. It is one of those things whose acknowledgment of its existence is critical because like the Boogeyman in a Stephen King novel, unless you look it in the eye, it will continue to exist and come back to bite you in the ass time and time again. The moment you stare it down and say, “No sir, not me, not today”…POOF, it goes away. 

The quicksand is:

When you don’t set professional emotional boundaries, you give up your power.

You become a victim of your circumstances.

You don’t stand up for yourself as you are able by placing things in context.   

You become a passenger, not the driver.

Your self-worth is compromised until you get back to normal. You don’t want to be dependent on how others’, usually unreasonable and unsubstantiated, feelings are.  Your’s should drive, not theirs.

I’ll end with two statements to bring this all home. The first by the writer of the book, Amy Morin, “There are few things in life you have to do, but often we convince ourselves we don’t have a choice. Simply reminding yourself that you have a choice in everything you do, think, and feel can be very freeing.”

And finally I’ll end this with the quote from Dale Carnegie that Amy Morin began this chapter with, ”When we hate our enemies, we are giving them power over us: power over sleep, our appetites, our blood pressure, our health, and our happiness.”

Jack Klinefelter
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