I’m “all In”!


If I had a dollar for every time I heard someone say, “when I do something I go all in or not at all”, I’d be a VERY rich man.  I swear I must hear that statement 2-3 times everyday.  Since it seems to be such a common thing to say, I thought I would take a look at how having an “all or nothing” is actually quite harmful and can stop progress in it’s tracks.

I’m all in! At first glance that sounds like a statement from a committed person, right?  Actually my personal and professional experience tells me that the exact opposite is true.  In fact, when I hear someone utter those words, I cringe.

What I have found is that when you take on anything new, in addition too or are attempting to change old habits, going “all in”, is nearly impossible.  In fact, I believe that when someone makes that statement, they are actually saying it so they can leave themselves an excuse if things don’t work out and they want to quit.

Here are a couple examples.


“I will begin my diet on Monday.  I will go all in.  I will stop eating all junk food and never eat at a drive through again”  I’ve made this statement to myself many times.  For the first few days or weeks I would do it.  I would successfully maintain the “new” me.  Then inevitably, I would find myself in a position where fast food or party food was my only option.  I would order, eat and regret.  Then almost immediately I would feel guilty and as though I failed myself and my goal, I had an excuse to quit.  Since I was no longer successfully “all in” I was immediately “all out” which ultimately ended up worse for my diet than if I had never started in the first place.

Career / Income

You proclaim, “I am going to start a new side business.  I will go “all in”!  I will make 10-20 sales calls per day and in 12 months I will be able to quite my full time job!”  Then 10-20 sales calls per day turns into 1-2 per day and suddenly you feel as though you have failed your goals. Instead of adjusting the time table that it would take for you to quite your full time job, the “I don’t have the time to do this” excuse is made and you quite all together.

In both of these examples, being “all in” was detrimental to the overall outcome. Therefore I would like to offer a suggestion.  In order to truly defeat mediocrity, stop going “all in”! Instead, allow yourself to make changes incrementally and consistently.

From this day forward, I promise to never go “all in” again.  Rather, I will take a new approach that consists of incremental and consistent steps taken daily. Because my decision can no longer be “all or nothing” it will always have to be “something” and therefore I no longer have an excuse to quit.  I hope that you will join me.

Have a great day!


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