What is more important, process or outcome?

What is more important, process or outcome?

Obviously we all want positive outcomes. We want to win. We want to get a new or better  job. We want to trade or invest successfully. We want more sales. We want our business or other ventures to succeed. We want positive relationships. We want to reach any goal we set for ourselves.

It is easy to measure the outcomes of any process, just look at the results. It is also easy to blame ourselves or others when we fail to reach a successful outcome.  As a matter of fact, we often go beyond blame and attach our self worth to the outcome. “I’m a failure” or “I’m not good enough, smart enough, strong enough, etc”.  When we start to define our self worth by our outcomes, we will likely stop before we even get started. We actually  imprint limiting beliefs upon ourselves.  Instead, consider focusing on the process. If you don’t like your outcome change your process. 

Process is a system and every system is perfectly designed to get the results it gets.

Examine your process and develop evidence based best practices (rules) that represents your efforts to systematize your approach and to improve your efforts.  

When we begin to define our self worth by the sincere efforts we make and how well we followed our system, then the the process itself becomes satisfying and rewarding– no matter the outcome. In fact, we need not even concern ourselves much with the individual outcome. While we of course have goals, and certainly want to achieve our goals (winning), we are not focusing on the future end goal. Instead, we are focusing on the present moment. We are putting complete and total effort into the the present moment in time, executing the process, which in turn will define the outcome.

Your process is what will define your outcome.

Consider Coach Bill Belichick and Tom Brady of the New England Patriots. The story is often told of the enormous effort in practice and the boardroom perfecting each component of the game. No other team comes close to the development of a rules based systematized approach. Every play of every down is a process to be executed and perfected. The resulting outcome (winning) is defined by their process.

Check out this article on a guy who played a million hands of poker and consider how important the process is to him. “Are you trying to play great?  Or are you hoping to get lucky?”  

It’s useful and interesting.

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