You are proud and confident. Everything you touch seems to turn to gold. Every deal you do is big! It’s magical! Time after time, you step up to the plate, you knock the cover off the ball. You are hitting it out of the park. Before long, people are calling you a Heavy Hitter.
After a while, all the talk starts to go to your head. You think that you are invincible. You start taking things for granted. You decide to give yourself a little downtime as a reward. You justify it by saying, you earned it, after all you’ve been working hard. You start your day a little later and leave a little earlier. A half day here, and bonus day there.
Then it’s time to get back in the sales batters box. Time to step up to the plate. All eyes are on you and people are counting on you. Only this time, instead of hitting it out of the park, you strike out!
At first it just a couple of times at the plate, Swing and a miss. Swing and a miss.
You say to yourself, it’s only one sale, no big deal. Then one sales becomes two. Then three, four, and five. Time after time, one after another. Swing and a miss. Swing and a miss.
You start wondering, worrying, questioning yourself. You ask yourself, what the hell happened? What once was magic is now misery. Swing and a miss, Swing and a miss.
The truth is, everyone goes into a slump at sometime or another. Everyone! It’s not unique to sales. In economics it is called a correction or a recession. In poker it is a bad run. In life it is a “rough patch” or a rut. Slumps are humiliating, humbling and hurtful, a blow to the psyche of sorts.
So how do you turn things around?
Do what the big boys do, start with a reset. Rather than let the pressure of getting out of the slump diminish your motivation, give yourself a reset. Big league hitting instructors recommend stepping back and clearing the mind. More often than not, it is more mental than mechanical, identify the problem, go back to the basics and seek the simplest solution.
Start with the little things. Learn from your past success. Look at what you were doing when things were going well and start doing them again. Take baby steps, and look for positive progress. Getting out of that slump and hitting the ball again requires strong fundamentals, patience and confidence.
Take the advice from “Hammerin Hank” Aaron, who was one of the best hitters to ever play the game. He had this to say about a slump:
“My motto was always to Keep Swinging. Whether I was in a slump or feeling badly or having trouble off the field, the only thing to do was Keep Swinging.”
This is the epitome of keeping it simple. Take Hank’s approach when you find yourself in a slump.