100% Jodi: The Dip
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Hello everyone and thank you for joining me. I feel like it has been a while since I have personally said hello to you. I was horribly ill at the beginning of April and that messed up my production schedule a bit but I am back in full health once again and doing burpees like crazy.
In the “March update on goals” episode I mentioned that I would be talking about The Dip by Seth Godin next and I think this is perfect timing. You’ll have to let me know if this topic resonates with you right now or not but it definitely resonates with me.
“The Dip” Seth Godin explains is a natural phenomenon that occurs when you set out to achieve a goal. At the beginning it’s exciting and interesting so you have a lot of energy and it’s easy to stay engaged.
Then The Dip happens. Seth Godin describes it as “the long slog between beginning and mastery.”
The Dip is what separates the half-hearted from the committed. It is the naturally occurring obstacles (bureaucracy, administrative work, study and practice) that are not enjoyable but required to achieve the goal.
Depending on the goal some dips are longer than others. Think about med school or the career track to becoming the CEO of a Fortune 500 company. Typically the bigger the goal the bigger the dip and that’s why so few people emerge on the other end and ultimately achieve that particular goal.
If something is worth doing you will usually find a dip
Podcasting is one of those things with a relatively big dip and it’s the reason most podcasts fade after a couple of years. It takes doing a lot of work for a long time week in and week out to grow a loyal audience.
Many people go into podcasting to make money but they quickly realize it’s a marathon and not sprint and they give up before the podcast has a chance to pay off.
Seth Godin also puts forth that that successful people don’t put up with The Dip they actually seek it out and lean into it.
This has been true for me and podcasting as well. I’ve leaned into the work and as a result I’ve grown my network exponentially, I’ve become a better communicator, coach, and human being. I’ve definitely been in The Dip with Women Taking the Lead but by no means has it been wasted time.
According to Seth Godin If you’re not willing to work through the dip you’re better off not investing the time and energy to even start. You are better off investing your time and energy in something you are willing to get so good at you see a return on your investment.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve started and stopped learning a second language because I love the idea of being fluent in another language. I spent countless hours to not even become mediocre because I didn’t have the staying power and the perceived benefits were not enough to get through the dip.
I now take that time and invest it in my podcast and becoming a better host, coach and community leader.
Are you in a dead end?
In his book The Dip Seth Godin also talks about another situation that can look like a dip but is actually a dead end. This is a situation where you work and work and work and not much changes; it doesn’t get better or worse. Think dead end jobs and dead end relationships.
It’s important to recognize if you are in a dead end situation so you can get out of it fast because the dead end will keep you from doing something else that would provide better opportunities and results.
There’s a stigma against quitting but the reality is successful people quit all the time; but it’s important to know when to quit. Strategic quitting can actually make you more successful (i.e. letting go of commitments that are distractions to your goals). While reactive or serial quitting can work against you.
Quitting is difficult because it’s hard to admit you’re not going to be that good at something or you’ll never have the opportunities that you hoped for.
Never stay in a dead end because you don’t like the short-term stress. Not quitting when it would be hard to quit is a bad decision.
I’ve seen this with relationships, jobs, investments, team members, marketing plans, etc. If it’s hard to quit or pivot people tend to keep on doing what they are doing even though they are not happy.
If something is not working and it’s not getting better with increased efforts deal with the short-term stress and cut your losses.
You can’t do The Dip halfheartedly
If that’s your plan you’re better off not getting started. If you want success you have to:
(1) Recognize if you are in a dip or a dead end. Are you moving forward and making progress?
(2) Having recognized you’re in a dip you have to give it your all especially when it gets stressful because that’s when the transformation takes place.
Quitting in the midst of a true dip is a waste of time and energy and is very foolish. Do the work, push through The Dip and reap the rewards and long-term benefits of sticking with it and giving it your all.
Never quit something with great long-term potential because you don’t like the short-term stress.
Next week I’m going to be giving a progress report on my goals and with each one I’m going to cover if I’m experiencing The Dip in any of them or if a goal is appearing to be a dead end.
As always I hope this was helpful to you and here’s to your success!
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