My dad and I played 1:1 basketball most nights in my high school and college Indiana summers. We lived in a small town, Preble Indiana, maybe 100 people, so there wasn't a lot to do but let my dad thrash me nightly. No joke: I estimate I lost over 1,000 games in a row.
The game: one basket one point, make it to 11, win by two. Every night, until we couldn't go any more. Every night, I'd lose them all. Every single game. At 85 years old, my dad is still unbeatable.
If I even got close to winning, say I was up 7 to 5, he had this inhuman level he'd go to. Faster. Focused. Unstoppable.
And every night, dripping with sweat, we'd end the same way.
Physically beaten and mentally beaten down, I'd hear him say:
OK, let's quit on a make.
Sometimes I could barely walk, but we'd stay out there until we both -- with good form -- would make a shot.
Quit on a make.
I still remember it clearly. Quitting on a make cemented success. Even though I'd lose the day, I'd have that little victory in the end. It's what lingered. (The science: Recency Effect. This is one reason our GrowBIG Training teaches to end meetings with a recap, next steps and a smile.)
Endings are more important than middles.
We can quit on a make in business too.
- We can end a meeting with a laugh and celebration of all we accomplished.
- We can end a week with a 5-minute journal entry, documenting what we got done.
And my new favorite:
- We can end each day with a quick email to someone meaningful to us, telling them how thankful we are for them.
I've been doing that last one for 2 weeks, and man, has it brightened my days.
I thanked one person I haven't talked to in a while, just to tell them what a special person they are.
I thanked a mentor, someone who paved a way for my future success.
And I thanked a family member for a job well done.
It only takes 5 minutes, and it gives me a triple win:
- I feel great when I hit send.
- The feeling lingers into the night as I transition from work.
- I feel great when the person replies, sometimes days later.
I'm sure it feels great being the recipient of thanks.
But I think I'm the real winner.
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"What if you ended each day sending a note to someone, thanking them? How would it help the recipient? And...how would it help you? Quit on a make!"