While Jedi Master Yoda of the Star Wars movie franchise was not a sales trainer per se, he was definitely a teacher. And one instruction he gives Luke Skywalker is particularly powerful.

The lesson occurs in Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back, during the same scene I discussed in my previous two posts. Yoda attempts to persuade a skeptical Luke that he can use The Force to lift his spaceship out of the swamp just as he’d been using it to lift stones and other small objects. Luke argues, “Master, moving stones around is one thing. This is totally different!” To which Yoda replies, “No! No different! Only different in your mind. You must unlearn what you have learned.”

This is a concept I have encountered in my aikido classes, in sales, and in my work as a professional speaker and trainer. Many of the beliefs and habits we acquire from our parents, our schooling, our friends and other sources are actually counterproductive to our success. Achieving our goals often means unlearning those things that are holding us back.

That’s why it’s essential to always be reading books and magazines, getting coaching, and attending training seminars. Different perspectives give us different insights and ideas. We must always be open to new and better ways of doing things. Otherwise we stagnate and fall behind.

So here’s an important question: In order for you to increase your sales, what do you need to unlearn?

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