Hey hey! Welcome back to The Bullpen Sessions! I’m really excited about this episode today. We’re going to talk about the most important rule for your career: the 80/20 rule. 

You may be sitting there thinking, “I’m just as talented as my competition, so why am I not producing the results I deserve?” I thought the same thing for most of my career. For the life of me, I couldn’t understand why my peers consistently outperformed me, even though we had equal skill. I felt stalled, left-behind, and frustrated at myself and my career. If you resonate with this, keep reading, because this episode is going to turn that around for you. 

I’m going to show you where you might be focusing on the wrong areas and teach you to focus on what matters most. This 80/20 rule is the most important rule of your career. It’s going to help you boost your career to the next level, and if you’re already having success, it’s going to double that, if not triple it. 

The 80/20 rule comes all from the Complete Game Mastermind, and if you’re a producer, sales professional, or business owner who really wants to take your success to the next level, then we’ll help you get there. Do yourself a favor and check out the Complete Game Mastermind now and start filling out that application. And if you have any questions or are unsure, I’d be happy to jump on a call with you to talk it through! Just send me a DM! 

And now, let’s get started talking about what the 80/20 rule really means and how you can begin applying it in your career today.

What Is the 80/20 Rule? 

When I say the 80/20 rule, what am I talking about? Before I answer that, let’s take a step back. Who am I writing to today? Are you disappointed with the decline of your success since COVID-19 hit? Has your business growth started to decline? Are you looking around at your peers who are seemingly thriving, and you have no idea how? If any of these situations sound like you, then it’s time you learned about the 80/20 rule. 

A lot of us have heard about Pareto’s Principle — the fact that 80% of your results come from 20% of the actions you take. That statistic holds true in so many areas of life, right? When it comes to dieting, if you stick to the diet 80% of the time, and cheat 20% of the time, you’ll have decent success! When you look at the sales numbers within an organization, you’ll see that around 20% of the producers create 80% of the sales. This rule applies in most areas of our lives, but it’s not really where I’m going to go with the 80/20 rule today. Instead, I’m going to give it a special twist. 

I want you to spend 80% of your time devoted to mastering your mindset and 20% of your time dedicated to skill. When trying to further their career, most people focus primarily on skill, and mindset is slowly shoved to the side. Let me give you a personal experience from my perspective.

Let’s go back to my short tenure in professional baseball. To play professional baseball, you’ve got to have the skill to get drafted — no question about that. When I got to the Helena Brewers, it was immediately apparent that everyone around me had immense skill, but something I noticed pretty quickly was that I could fit in. I could play with these guys. While we had different collegiate backgrounds, I felt like our skill levels were equal!

But my career lasted only a couple of years when some of them spent a few more years in minor league baseball. Some of them even made it all the way to the major leagues. So what made me different? What kept me from succeeding like they did? 

Mindset. Hands down. Mindset is what separated me from those other players who went on to achieve massive success. If you talk to any professional athlete right now and ask them what it takes to be successful, they’ll tell you that it’s 80% mindset and 20% skill. And what’s interesting is that people usually spend the entirety of practice working on skill and mindset gets forgotten in sports. At that time, I wasn’t prioritizing my mindset, and it’s what kept me behind while others moved ahead.

The same is true in business! If you spend all your time on fostering new skills and taking courses but forget to spend time on your mindset, you’ll find that you’ll eventually hit a wall in your career. It’s true that the COVID-19 quarantine slowed down sales and business growth everywhere, but it’s also true that some people are having tremendous success right now. How? I’m telling you — it’s all about your mindset. 

Invest in Resources That Grow Your Mindset 

I’ve spent most of my career in the health insurance industry, and some will argue that the profession is mostly skill-based, not mindset-based. So what happens is that salespeople, agents, and brokers spend the majority of their time trying to acquire new skills, products, and strategies. They’re chasing that silver bullet that is supposedly going to change the trajectory of their agency. But they’re failing to work on mindset, and it shows. 

Their entire environment is all about skill insurance. They consume content directly tied to the healthcare system and insurance industry. They don’t put in the work on their minds because they’re so busy trying to acquire new skills. When they find themselves in a sales rut, this obsession only grows. More conferences. More webinars. Newer products. But six months down the road, they’re still not having success. Does this sound like you?

Trust me, I’ve been there. I used to be all about knowledge. And of course, education and skills are essential parts of growing your business. But at the end of the day, the majority of your success is going to come from your mindset. So if you’re not happy, if you’ve watched your sales slowdown, I want to encourage you to pause and start working on your mindset. Start reading the books and listening to the podcasts that cultivate your mind. You’ll be amazed at the results.

I know I was. My career changed when I stopped being so damn focused on acquiring that new product or searching for that new strategy. Finally, I realized that the space between my ears was the problem. I had all the skills. I had all the talent I needed, but when I went into sales meetings, I constantly stressed about the fact that I might fail. I was focusing on the worst possible scenario, and it affected my performance. 

Don’t focus on the fear of losing. Focus on the opportunity of gain. Focus on victory. Focus on your mindset. If there is ever a time in our life where we need to focus more on our mindsets, it’s now, right? There is so much negativity in the world right now that can easily impact your career if you let it. Now is the time to correct your course and start focusing on your mindset to achieve massive success. 

Practical Ways You Can Start Working on Your Mindset Today 

So, how can you do it? What are some things you can start doing today to change your future for the better? I’ve got two major tips for you that are going to help you do just that. 

Mindset Tip #1: Take control of your mornings. Instead of jumping to your phone first thing after waking up, maybe begin by reading a book about controlling your emotions and focusing on positivity. Try meditation — I know that might sound a little too “woo woo” for you, and that’s fine, but try it. Meditating can be nothing more than five minutes of closing your eyes and visualizing your perfect day. You could even take it a step further and journal what that perfect day would look like. This visualization is the first step to manifesting the reality you want!

Mindset Tip #2: Don’t fall into negativity. As your day progresses, you’re going to deal with some fires. A coworker may get on your nerves or maybe it’s an angry client. You may have a business proposal in the afternoon, and you feel the anxiety building up in your stomach. How can you put your mindset in a positive state? Gratitude is the answer. Celebrate every victory in your day, even if it’s a small one. Don’t internalize the negativity. Instead, at the end of day, focus on what went right and how you crushed it. 

Why You Should Listen to This Episode Right Now…

Guys, I promise you — if you can spend 80% of your time focused on your mindset and 20% dedicated to cultivating skill, then your career is going to soar. It’s important to sign up for courses, go to conferences and look for new strategies, but do yourself a favor by devoting 80% of your time to self-development. 

It’s what Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, and LeBron James all did. Any successful athlete who succeeds at the highest level spends the majority of their time on your mindset. If you do the same, success, skills, and happiness will follow. 

Hey man, thanks for taking the time to read this Friday Bullpen Session post, and don’t forget to listen to the podcast as well. If you could do me a favor — go over to Apple Podcasts, subscribe, and give me a 5-star rating. I’d be so grateful. Share this episode with a family member, friend, or coworker who needs to hear it, and tag me @andy_neary with a screenshot of your greatest takeaway on Instagram!

And remember, keep on working on that mindset — don’t underestimate the power of positive thinking. It will change your life. 

Until next time, folks!