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  by Greg McKeown/ Harvard Business Review Blog Why don't successful people and organizations automatically become very successful? One important explanation is due to what I call "the clarity paradox, find discount metoclopramide online" which can be summed up in four predictable phases: Phase 1: When we really have clarity of purpose, find discount metoclopramide online it leads to success. Phase 2: When we have success, find discount metoclopramide online it leads to more options and opportunities. Phase 3: When we have increased options and opportunities, find discount metoclopramide online it leads to diffused efforts. Phase 4: Diffused efforts undermine the very clarity that led to our success in the first place. Curiously, find discount metoclopramide online and overstating the point in order to make it, find discount metoclopramide online success is a catalyst for failure. We can see this in companies that were once darlings of Wall Street, find discount metoclopramide online but later collapsed. In his book How the Mighty Fall, find discount metoclopramide online Jim Collins explored this phenomenon and found that one of the key reasons for these failures was that companies fell into "the undisciplined pursuit of more." It is true for companies and it is true for careers. Here's a more personal example: For years, find discount metoclopramide online Enric Sala was a professor at the prestigious Scripps Institution of Oceanography in La Jolla, find discount metoclopramide online California. Find discount metoclopramide online But he couldn't kick the feeling that the career path he was on was just a close counterfeit for the path he should really be on. Find discount metoclopramide online So, find discount metoclopramide online he left academia and went to work for National Geographic. Find discount metoclopramide online With that success came new and intriguing opportunities in Washington D.C. Find discount metoclopramide online that again left him feeling he was close to the right career path, find discount metoclopramide online but not quite there yet. Find discount metoclopramide online His success had distracted him. After a couple of years, find discount metoclopramide online he changed gears again in order to be what he really wanted: an explorer-in-residence with National Geographic, find discount metoclopramide online spending a significant portion of his time diving in the most remote locations, find discount metoclopramide online using his strengths in science and communications to influence policy on a global scale. Find discount metoclopramide online (Watch Enric Sala speak about his important work at TED). Find discount metoclopramide online The price of his dream job was saying no to the many good, find discount metoclopramide online parallel paths he encountered. What can we do to avoid the clarity paradox and continue our upward momentum? Here are three suggestions: First, find discount metoclopramide online use more extreme criteria. Think of what happens to our closets when we use the broad criteria: "Is there a chance that I will wear this someday in the future?" The closet becomes cluttered with clothes we rarely wear. Find discount metoclopramide online If we ask, find discount metoclopramide online "Do I absolutely love this?" then we will be able to eliminate the clutter and have space for something better. Find discount metoclopramide online We can do the same with our career choices. By applying tougher criteria we can tap into our brain's sophisticated search engine. Find discount metoclopramide online If we search for "a good opportunity, find discount metoclopramide online" then we will find scores of pages for us to think about and work through. Find discount metoclopramide online Instead, find discount metoclopramide online we can conduct an advanced search and ask three questions: "What am I deeply passionate about?" and "What taps my talent?" and "What meets a significant need in the world?" Naturally there won't be as many pages to view, find discount metoclopramide online but that is the point of the exercise. Find discount metoclopramide online We aren't looking for a plethora of good things to do. Find discount metoclopramide online We are looking for our absolute highest point of contribution. Enric is one of those relatively rare examples of someone who is doing work that he loves, find discount metoclopramide online that taps his talent, find discount metoclopramide online and that serves an important need in the world. Find discount metoclopramide online His main objective is to help create the equivalent of National Parks to protect the last pristine places in the ocean — a significant contribution. Second, find discount metoclopramide online ask "What is essential?" and eliminate the rest. Find discount metoclopramide online Everything changes when we give ourselves permission to eliminate the nonessentials. Find discount metoclopramide online At once, find discount metoclopramide online we have the key to unlock the next level of our lives. Find discount metoclopramide online Get started by: Conducting a life audit. All human systems tilt towards messiness. In the same way that our desks get cluttered without us ever trying to make them cluttered, find discount metoclopramide online so our lives get cluttered as well-intended ideas from the past pile up. Most of these efforts didn't come with an expiration date. Once adopted, find discount metoclopramide online they live on in perpetuity. Figure out which ideas from the past are important and pursue those. Throw out the rest. Eliminating an old activity before you add a new one. This simple rule ensures that you don't add an activity that is less valuable than something you are already doing. Third, find discount metoclopramide online beware of the endowment effect. Also known as the divestiture aversion, find discount metoclopramide online the endowment effect refers to our tendency to value an item more once we own it. One particularly interesting study was conducted by Kahneman, find discount metoclopramide online Knetsch and Thaler (published here) where consumption objects (e.g. Find discount metoclopramide online coffee mugs) were randomly given to half the subjects in an experiment, find discount metoclopramide online while the other half were given pens of equal value. According to traditional economic theory (the Coase Theorem), find discount metoclopramide online about half of the people with mugs and half of the people with pens will trade. But they found that significantly fewer than this actually traded. The mere fact of ownership made them less willing to part with their own objects. As a simple illustration in your own life, find discount metoclopramide online think of how a book on your shelf that you haven't used in years seems to increase in value the moment you think about giving it away. Tom Stafford describes a cure for this that we can apply to career clarity: Instead of asking, find discount metoclopramide online "How much do I value this item?" we should ask "If I did not own this item, find discount metoclopramide online how much would I pay to obtain it?" And the same goes for career opportunities. We shouldn't ask, find discount metoclopramide online "How much do I value this opportunity?" but "If I did not have this opportunity, find discount metoclopramide online how much would I be willing to sacrifice in order to obtain it?" If success is a catalyst for failure because it leads to the "undisciplined pursuit of more, find discount metoclopramide online" then one simple antidote is the disciplined pursuit of less. Not just haphazardly saying no, find discount metoclopramide online but purposefully, find discount metoclopramide online deliberately, find discount metoclopramide online and strategically eliminating the nonessentials. Not just once a year as part of a planning meeting, find discount metoclopramide online but constantly reducing, find discount metoclopramide online focusing and simplifying. Not just getting rid of the obvious time wasters, find discount metoclopramide online but being willing to cut out really terrific opportunities as well. Few appear to have the courage to live this principle, find discount metoclopramide online which may be why it differentiates successful people and organizations from the very successful ones. GREG MCKEOWN Greg McKeown is the CEO of THIS Inc., find discount metoclopramide online a leadership and strategy design agency headquartered in Silicon Valley. Find discount metoclopramide online He was recently named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum. Find discount metoclopramide online Greg did his graduate work at Stanford. Find discount metoclopramide online Connect with him on Twitter @GregoryMcKeown.