Coach Kevin\’s Blog

Get What You Really Want. NOW.

How to Lead a Horse to Water — and Make Him Drink

Some people say that we can’t change, that we will always be as we are. I don’t believe that’s true. I see people change everyday. But in order for people to change, they need motivation to change – usually pain of some sort. We need to find a way to use their salt.

I recommend using salt… yes, salt? People also say you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink. However, you can feed him a little extra salt.

Salt can get results in other ways. The best motivation I’ve seen is like salt in a wound: Fear, pain, or frustration. Over the years I’ve seen CEOs reach out to coaches when their level of pain or frustration is too great.  They realize they don’t get to spend enough time with their family. Or the stress level in their company is wearing them down. They get burned out with their business, and can’t see a way to make it work anymore. They can’t solve their problems with the same tools, because the same issues keep coming back again and again.

In those cases the salt is already there, making them really thirsty for change. Even when people just want to make their business life better, there has to be salt in the wound, there has to be some sort of dissatisfaction. Without it, people won’t change.

I’ve seen three things people need to make meaningful change:

  1. They have to want it.
  2. Second, they have to need it, meaning there’s an obvious gap.
  3. Finally, they have to be willing to pay for change. This cost is more than just financial. It’s a willingness to do the work.

With those three ingredients, magic can happen – because there is serious commitment to move ahead to a better place.

The real challenge is for people to be able to make these changes before the pain reaches crisis levels… or worse, when it’s too late.  You can look for ways to add salt to the current situation and create a desire to change today—but make sure you add enough to get results you’re after.

Coach Kevin’s Challenge

  • What change do you want to make that you’re not motivated enough to do?
  • What’s the salt you could add into the mix that would lead you into action?

June 4, 2009 - Posted by | Business, concepts, General, Life, Strategies

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