Muscle Memory

Muscle Memory
July 30, 2017 Gary Shotton

Many decisions in business need an answer without a mistake and need little deliberation. Experience gained from proper practice will help. By Gary Shotton #000116

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Muscle Memory

By Gary Shotton

Hello, my name is Gary Shotton and I’m here with you as a part of Inspiring Better Business and today we’re going to talk about “Muscle Memory”, “Muscle Memory”.  And you know, that’s not a common term that you’re going to use in most business terms.  And I use it as an analogy to some sports that are pretty common around the world and I think you can identify even if you’re not active in these sports.

Let’s take the sport of gymnastics. You know, these small gymnasts work hour after hour, day after day, year after year.  They sometimes report to work 6 & 8 hours a day on certain routines and what it seems that they do, although I’m not a gymnast, is that they create just what we would call and they call muscle memory. They’re not thinking about every move. They’re not thinking about every detail of every move because actually they’ve rehearsed it so many times, over and over again that it becomes somewhat natural. Now, something can happen and they have to make adjustments but they’re adjusting small things when the bulk of the routine is already been memorized or it’s in place or their muscles are used to reacting to that.

One that’s a little closer to me in the sporting world is the sport of golf. Now, I brought with me a driver and a putter and a chipping iron and a little white ball.   But you’d think okay there’s all you got to do is hit this little white ball with any one of these clubs into a little hole that’s four inches in diameter.  Sounds pretty easy, doesn’t it?  Wait till you try it.  Wait till you try it the first time. Wait till you try over and over again and find out how hard that is. And what they tell me in the golf arena, and what I’ve heard of about that again is that the professionals, those that are making their living at it or even at a an enjoyable level, they work on the swing. They work on repeat swing. The swing must have all the same ingredients whether it’s their arm, their wrists their head can’t bop up and down, go up and down, their shoulders have to rotate in a certain way.

And if you keep practicing that over and over and over again you’ll create again muscle memory. Now, I’ll just throw in a bit.  I didn’t start golfing till I was in my mid-50s and my best attempt is to somehow become respectable.  So I’m not a great example of a golfer or am I a gymnast but I’m using it as an analogy to something that’s in the business world. You see, I’ve been around many years now and I hear a lot of more people that haven’t been in business before and they seem to just want to jump right in. They seem to want to for sure that get really started if they have the money first.

Well, I’m not an advocate of that.  If you listen to me for very long you’ll know that I’m an advocate of really starting small and growing step by step and just may be another way of saying that same thing is it you’re developing muscle memory.   You’re learning how to react to situations with some thought, of course, but it’s almost automatic. You almost know what to do because you have been in these situations over and over and over again. You’ve practiced these situations in a way that you’ve learned prior to your ownership. You see, I’m pretty strong advocate until you learn to work for someone else and you’ve been successful in working with and for someone else that maybe you haven’t qualified yourself quite yet to own your own business.

Because you haven’t, it isn’t that we’re dragging you up through the ranks. It isn’t that we’re trying to hold you back It’s just that you haven’t learned some things and if while you’re on a current job wherever you’re working and be sure and get a job and be working actively while you’re wanting to own your own business because God will take you through some steps.   Step by step you’re going to learn to deal with some very difficult co-workers.  You’re going to have to face some issues where there’s maybe some lack of integrity. There’s going to be face some issues when you have an unruly customer and the customers just being absolutely ridiculous in their demands. You’re going to have to learn how to do accounting. You’re going to have to learn how to do a team building and leadership.

And you know one of the best ways to do that is when you’re working for somebody else. Now, in my particular case I was a farm kid. I came off the farm and ranch. We had cattle. We had a wheat operation.  We had, I drove tractor, but my first job out of college was with a big oil company. And this big oil company was in the process and my job was as a mining and minerals engineer was to process a mineral up in the state of Wyoming, and I learned a ton of stuff.    I thought I got out of college with a little bit of knowledge. Nope. I just started, that just gave me the job. That just gave me the opportunity to have this job. And I then started learning.  And by the way, It’s lifelong learning if you’re into this world at all. And so consequently I learned all some really difficult situations. I had a situation where I was convinced that the concrete company was shorting us. In other words, cheating us, on the amount of concrete that they were delivering to us, and I approached my boss back in in Texas and I told him about that and we set up a situation. That was tough. That wasn’t something I wanted to do. That’s something that brought some things out of me. I had some led construction crew. These guys are not whips and they’re not little sissy kind of guys.   They’re kind of challenging especially in the state of Wyoming because they’re rugged guys and so I had learned to kind of man up a little bit and be a little stronger and a little bit not forceful, but be able to be respected in that scenario.

I had welders and I had a big crane that we’re responsible for. I didn’t want anybody be hurt and I had to make decisions, But the key is, I was working for someone else. I learned so many things and I have to advise you that boy before you jump into some ownership that you need to develop some muscle memories.  What are you going to do in a potential unethical situation? Are you going to fold? Are you going to be unethical?   Are you going to lie? You’re going to determine those things early on. You got to be determine who you are early on and when those things face themselves, then you’re going to have to come almost automatically and say, “No that’s not what we do.” That’s not what I do or on a positive note when you have an opportunity and you have learned to maybe spots some deals or some opportunities or have a situation. You’re going to be able to step up to the plate and say yes we’re going to do that. Yes, we’re going to go this direction. Yes, I need this done.

Yes. And so this is a process that we’re trying to encourage those that are listening that maybe have never owned a business Or you have a small business you want to take another leap of faith or another size that you can develop what we call repeat ability, It’s muscle memory. You’re going to remember the things you did and again It’s not like it’s just you don’t think about it no. But you don’t you’re not tempted to waver over what you’ve known work.  You see, that golfer if they were to swing and I my little grandson by the way is a is a World-Class Golfer and he’s only seven now.  He was started in his first world championship in golf when he was five.

And I’ve watched him. His dad works with him and he has this ball, the ball is in the sand and he has a sand wedge and they just line up ball after ball after ball, and he swings at his dad’s coaching. Oh, by the way in this your memory.   You don’t want to learn wrong. You don’t want to have to redo it. That’s part of my problem. I didn’t have a coach. I thought this is going to be easy. And I just jumped out there and just said hey, I’ll just go without lessons and start playing golf. I picked up bad habits.  Now I have to unlearn those habits before I can get back to the right muscle memory for my golf swing.  Same thing is true with many of you. You’ve jumped out and you’ve done something.  You didn’t know what you were doing. Now, you got to unlearn some bad habits. You’ve got to come back and make this work. Well, I hope this is helpful.  I enjoy teaching this. I just excited to be a part of your business career and in this series called Inspiring Better Business. Please share these. We appreciate your willingness to be a part of the team in that way. Thank you.


8:30 and 1,624 words



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