Five Tips on How to be Totally Miserable as a Sales Professional

I recently read a book called, “How to be Totally Miserable,” by John Bytheway.  It’s a fantastic book that gets people to think about the things they do to make themselves miserable – and worse, make themselves stay miserable. Of course, I finished reading and thought about how I could apply the principles found in this book to those who have made sales their living, like myself. (Does anyone else suffer from this? Reading something and immediately starting to apply it to sales?)

Here are some of his more salient points of how to be totally and completely miserable in sales:

1.  Use your Imagination to Worry

How often have salespeople sabotaged themselves by imagining the most elaborate ways for a project or proposal to fail? Personally, I’ve worried so much about deals that I could picture the signed contracts burning up in a fiery crash on I-80 because the UPS truck veered off the interstate when the driver fell asleep. Not only that, but I also created an entire back story to this scenario as to why the driver was sleepy.

The take-away? Don’t waste your creative faculties on the wasteful obsession we call worrying. Use that creativity to spark interest and create sales!

2.  Believe Things Will Never Change

Humanity is made up of people driven by belief. What we believe can happen often drives our actions. If we ponder on how things will never change we become less inclined to do anything – I know at least from people I’ve interacted with this is true. This makes it extremely likely that things either won’t change, or they’ll take a turn for the worse. Spend your time and energy being an agent of sales change. If you want things to be better, go make them better. Things can change, but only will if you take the appropriate action.

3.  Don’t Do Anything

If you want to feel uninspired, worthless, and tired then don’t do anything. Doing nothing, literally, will not only guarantee you don’t sell, it will also guarantee you fail. I don’t know anything more miserable than failure! If you don’t feel like doing anything try making a call. It’s amazing how talking with a prospect, or getting a mentor on the phone, can help you get a fresh perspective you need to keep moving.

4.  Blame Everyone and Everything

Regardless of our political leanings, anyone who has paid attention to the news over the last four years can agree that President Obama blaming President Bush and Republicans blaming President Obama has been a major reason for the rise in political apathy over the past few years. Why? Because most people don’t like to hear excuses. It gets exhausting. Pointing the finger doesn’t help individuals to move forward. It doesn’t help nations advance. It certainly won’t help salespeople make sales. Skip the blame game altogether and work toward your success!

5.  Be a Breath of Stale Air

I’ll bet you know someone who spends the majority of their waking hours complaining. In fact, they probably dream in negative tones and use that as an excuse to be miserable throughout their day. These types of people refuse to let people cheer them up and are content in their misery. Does anyone like to be around this type of person? I know I don’t.  So, don’t be one of those people. You don’t have to be the life of the pity-party (though it’s great fun). You need to be someone who encourages others and shines through example.

In sales, as in life, we can bring about negative outcomes. Ultimately, you and I are responsible for our own success. Avoid these steps to being miserable in sales and watch your sales grow!

What other tips have you seen that can increase sales performance? Let me know in the comment box, below.

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