Machen MacDonald: PIT stops win the race |

Machen MacDonald: PIT stops win the race


Successful people know the secret of slowing down to speed up. It’s about simplification and elimination. Finding ways to lighten the load, stay focused on the destination and doing what must get done to complete the journey.

In auto racing pit stops are a necessity to complete the race. Replenishing fuel, changing tires as they wear down and become unsafe, cleaning windshields, and making minor adjustments or repairs are all part of the successful pit stop. Even though when a car pulls into the pits, the pack of cars it was once ahead of pass on by, the car is doing the best thing for its chance to win. The other cars will need to pit as well at some point providing our car the chance to leap ahead. If the other cars don’t pit they run the risk of running out of fuel or worse … crashing and not finishing the race because of a worn tire that blows out or mechanical failure.

However, in business, we often make the mistake of trying to power through the day, week, even the month without taking care of ourselves and getting what we need to cross the finish line in a good way.

We need the right fuel. Fuel is energy to keep on keeping’ on. It’s comprised on healthy foods and exercise, healthy thoughts, healthy relationships, etc. We need to see clearly where we are headed. Having a compelling vision is paramount to provide us the motivation, confidence and impulses to navigate accordingly. The right tools are imperative to keeping the car on the track. What are yours to keep you in the race? Make the list and get what you need to win.

Build PIT Stops into your daily, weekly, and monthly routine so you can recharge, rejuvenate, calibrate, and activate for the next segment of the journey.

Here are four elements you can focus on for a proper and productive PIT Stop:


Take the time to plan your months, weeks, and days. Time exists so you don’t have to do everything all at once. Based on your long-term goals, what are the short-term projects that will lead to the achievement of the goal? What are the action items and tasks that need to be executed to make progress with the projects? Are those tasks on your calendar when you need to see them so you can do something toward their completion when needed?


As you segment your month into weeks, and your weeks into days, be sure to segment each day into its own sections of inspiring intentions. This may look like four quarters of the game called “today,” and being mindful of what you want to accomplish each quarter. Perhaps it looks like each client meeting, networking event, staff meeting, and phone prospecting session is treated as its own segment of the day. What does a successful segment look like for you? How do you want to show up and perform for each? What do you want to learn or contribute to each segment? What tools and resources do you need to make the necessary progress and have a good showing in that segment?


Progress equals happiness. At the end of each segment track and celebrate or calibrate what you did. Double down on what’s working. Limit or eliminate what’s not. Keeping track of these things leads to continual improvement.


Stop doing, thinking and looking. Stop doing the things that don’t get you the results you want. Stop thinking the thoughts that hold you back. Stop looking for reasons why it’s hard or won’t work.

Be willing to take PIT Stops as often as you need them so you can accelerate your success today and every day.

Make it up, make it fun, and get it done!

Machen P. MacDonald, CPCC, CCSC is a certified life and business coach with ProBrilliance Leadership Institute in Grass Valley, CA. He helps business people gain more confidence and clarity to live their ideal life. He can be reached at and 530-273-8000

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