The idea of Behavioral Congruency is not a new one but it is one that is based on sound logical principles.
In mathematics the word congruent means something that is exactly the same size and shape. Therefore in terms of behavior, congruency means acting in exactly the way necessary to achieve a desired outcome. So, in other words if you can align your behavior with those who have already achieved your desired result or outcome (and are still achieving it) then you too can obtain the same result.
Let me give you an example with your karate practice that will illustrate this concept more clearly. Probably over 90% of people who start karate would answer “Yes” to the question,
“Do you want to become a Black Belt?”
However we all know that nowhere near 90% of students actually make it to the black belt. The number is actually quite low. So how can we increase the number of students who make it to the black belt? Well we can start by looking at behavior.
So what did black belts do before they were black belts and what are they still doing now that defines their success in karate?
Well the good news is that black belts don’t really do anything that is extremely difficult or radically different to the average student. I think I can boil down their behavior to three simple things:
1. They come to class regularly and consistently. I personally recommend twice a week.
2. They always give their best effort during class.
3. They stay focused on their goal until they achieve it.
Obviously there are other things you can do too to make sure you become a black belt such as practicing at home and reading and studying about karate from books, magazines, DVDs and the Internet. However the three crucial behaviors are to come to class regularly, to train hard and to stay focused on your goal.
If you are someone who “wants to be a Black Belt,” I suggest that you ask yourself honestly if your current behavior, in terms of your karate practice, is congruent with the behavior that I just described.
If it is, then you are well on your way to becoming a black belt, if not then it’s not too late to change!
The same simple question can also be asked about other important aspects of your life…