The System Was Broken

When I was in Direct Marketing I never missed a monthly rally.

Afternoon session, then dinner. The evening session would commence with “recognition” where all the Pin-Winners got standing ovations and thunderous rounds of applause.

My insides ached as I sat there envious of the achievers. I almost never hit any goal I ever set. Ever.

I would vow to myself:


I … MUST … TRY … H A R D E R

I   M U S T


I would repeat this to myself over and over again.

In six years it never worked. In fact all it did was drain my bank account and nearly give me a nervous breakdown.


Because “The System” as they called it was broken. It didn’t work even 5% as well as they said, and all the mantras and will power in the world could not change that. All I accomplished was prove, in every possible way, that the System was broken.

A certain intuition would come to me over and over again. It went like this:

“Someday, you’re going to wake up as though from a dream. You’ll realize that all this time you’ve been face down on the floor. That brick wall you are pounding on right now, it’s not a brick wall. It’s carpet. You’re going to stop trying to pound your way through that carpet and get up off the floor. Then you’re going to run and run and run and never stop.”

But I didn’t understand it. I didn’t know what “wake up as though from a dream” actually meant. I assumed it meant I was going to stop doing whatever idiotic thing that was keeping me from “Going Diamond.”

Eventually I found out: You’re going to QUIT trying to “Go Diamond” entirely, and just go do something else.

I couldn’t imagine that at the time, because “QUIT” was a four-letter word.

Here’s what I learned:

” I … MUST … TRY … H A R D E R ” is not a plan, it’s not a strategy, it’s not a system.

Yes, for some people it IS the answer. Some have barely tried at all. But for most people – especially Planet Perry people, who are almost always industrious, hard-working folks – it gets you only more of the same.

If ” I … MUST … TRY … H A R D E R ” is your New Years Resolution – if being 10% better in five different areas is your plan – stop deceiving yourself. You think you’re pounding on a brick wall, but it’s really just tacky green polyester carpet.

Today is January 15, the spot where most people redouble their efforts after slipping one or two times. But it’s time to recognize that WILL POWER is not the problem and it’s rarely a solution.

The solution is: What are you actually focusing on and what 1% of your world are you going to SYSTEMATICALLY focus 500% extra effort on, compared to last year?

And what are you going to QUIT doing entirely?

That’s Force Multiplication.

Perry Marshall

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