Al Lee Creative Performance ConsultingI’m always intrigued when the play-by-play announcer states that an athlete has just achieved a “personal best.” What a great feeling to know that all of the training and practice has finally paid off. But you can use the same techniques athletes use to achieve your own “personal best.”

Athletes are programmed to push the limits, to constantly expand their skills and performance. It is what they do. It is the nature of competition. And it is in the name of competition that every aspect of their performance is tracked. For those hoping to go pro, those statistics will likely determine their career possibilities and future earning potential.

By the Numbers

Like athletes, many businesses collect similar metrics, tracking all aspects of their financial and operational performance in order to identify what exactly is moving them toward their goals – and what is holding them back. That allows them to exploit their strengths and strengthen their weaknesses.

Most people (in my experience) don’t think about their lives and their goals in those terms. But doing so can dramatically accelerate your progress toward your goals by making sure that you stay focused on the things in your life that are most important to you, and by helping to filter out the seemingly ever-present white noise of modern living that can suck up significant amounts of your precious time and energy.

If you want to improve, expand, and test the limits of what is possible for you – if you want to set a new personal best – you need to  have the same information that athletes and businesses use to monitor and improve performance. It turns out to be easier than you might think. You just need to have a couple of things in place.


Everybody knows this. But not everyone knows that the act of reviewing and revising those goals will keep them fresh in your mind and on the front burner of your subconscious mind. I recently purchased a new Ford Escape. Suddenly I notice every other Escape on the road when previously, they were invisible in a sea of seemingly identical crossover vehicles. But now my brain is programmed to see them. Similarly, when your goals are top of mind, you start seeing the possibilities everywhere!


“If it is worth doing, it is worth tracking,” says small business consultant Mark LeBlanc. Not only does tracking give you a clear picture of the areas where you are excelling, but helps you see the areas where you are not. It shows you where to put your focus. It also serves the purpose of keeping your goals fresh in your mind. Start by tracking your 2-3 most important success factors. Once you get into it, you may want to track everything that is important to your health, success, and wellbeing.

Improvement plan

What are the 2-3 things that you can do that will have the most impact on your success and move you more quickly to your goal? Create a plan to improve your skills in those areas. Make sure you are getting better at the things that determine your success. Set time aside each week to sharpen your skills, to learn new techniques, and become stronger at your most important skills.

Even if you don’t have a coach to help you improve your performance and reach your goals, you can use these simple techniques to put you on the path to record a new “personal best!”