Whether we are consciously aware of them or not, we all have reference points. These points dictate what we do in our life and who we become. We have reference points for every area of our existence. They are what we look up to and what guides us. These reference points are what shape our path towards fulfilling our own destiny.
I remember a moment in college where after getting the results of an exam, I was sitting around comparing notes with some friends. One of them was a very good student with grades usually above 95%. Another friend made a comment, saying to this good student, “How do you do this? Do you spend all your free time studying?” He answered, “Look, I just have a different standard than you. You study simply to pass. I study to get 100%. This is why I come closer to it than you.” His standard, or reference point, is what made the entire difference. He wasn’t a genius or smarter than anyone else. However, his reference point was greater and thus was the reason why he experienced greater results.
Ever came across someone who is ridiculously in shape? You wonder how in the world can this person have perfect abs like that! It’s simple. This person’s reference point for abs and fitness is greater than your own. While you are comfortable with your shape, this person thrives to be like Arnold in his heyday! This person will do everything in their power to be in that shape. They will do things and commit themselves in ways that is foreign to you. This is why they experience greater results.
When Michael Jackson created Thriller, he wanted to create the biggest selling album of all time. He wrote it on his mirror and reminded himself constantly. He wasn’t just trying to make an album to make some money and pay some bills. He wanted to make history. His reference point was so high, that he achieved something incredible. Most artists today only create albums to make some money, they do not look to create the best of the best. This is why they usually do not. Your reference point makes all the difference in the world!
The key to increasing your performance, in whatever area it might be, is to alter your reference points. You want better grades in school? Don’t study for a C+ or a B, study for an A. You want to be in better shape? Work out to have the best body, not just enough to get by. You see, most people simply want to “get by”. This is why they struggle along that line. For example, people that make an insane amount of money have a vastly different reference point than people just getting by when it comes to money. Success is all about having greater reference points. There is a big difference between someone that just wants a job to make some money and someone that wants to be rich. The point of reference is what can help you unravel this enigma.
If you want to create massive changes within your life, you have to change what is acceptable to you. Increase the threshold to a level where you will experience massive improvements. Alter what is considered OK for you and aim higher. People that lose weight or stop smoking dramatically are people that have drastically changed their reference points. No longer is it acceptable for them to be out of shape and in poor health. They now have a point of reference that challenges them to be that much better. It is via changing what you are comfortable with and what is acceptable to you that you will achieve significant milestones within your existence.
What are your reference points?