Get Out of Inertia and Enhance Your Trajectory

Ryan Gottfredson

by Ryan Gottfredson

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Inertia 1

Have you ever heard the word inertia? Do you know what it means?

Here is a definition: The idea that a property of matter will continue in its existing state until changed.

Most people and organizations are stuck in inertia.

In fact, most people develop habits and most organizations develop policies to keep the train moving along in inertia.

But here is the problem: as the external world changes, and as our habits and policies stay in inertia, our inertia takes us on the course of “slow death.” Over time, our habits and policies fail to meet the demands of our external environment.

This is what happened to Toys”R”Us. As they initially grew, they developed strategies, policies, and procedures to help the organization run smoothly. But, as the external environment changed with changing customer demands and increased competition (ah hem… Amazon), Toys”R”Us’s strategies, policies, and procedures increasingly failed to meet the needs of their customers. They were on the path to slow death, which eventually led to their demise.

What they needed, and what their inertia needed, was an inflection point: deep change. (And, much sooner than they realized.)

What about yourself? What is your trajectory? Is your life going to be the same, a little better, or much better five or ten years from now? Are you learning, growing, and adapting to meet the demands of the future? Or, are you stuck in inertia, seeking to be comfortable rather than push yourself to learn new skills and/or adapt to new technology? Are you on the path to slow death?

Regardless of your current trajectory and state of inertia, if you want to enhance your trajectory and reach greater levels of success, you need an inflection point.

At their foundation, inflection points of deep change require you to see and think about your world differently than you have in the past. In other words, inflection points require a change in mindsets.

I have identified four sets of mindsets that range from negative to positive:

For each of these sets, your mindsets fall somewhere along the continuum. To help you identify where along the continuum your mindsets fall, I have created a free personal mindset assessment.

Let me invite you to take the assessment as a way to identify what mindsets stand in greatest need of an inflection point.

Also, let me recommend a book that is all about creating an inflection point in your life. It is written by Whitney Johnson. She calls this process of creating an inflection point in your life “disrupting yourself.” Hence the title of her book: Disrupt Yourself: Putting the Power of Disruptive Innovation to Work.

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