Let’s say you wanted to put a nail into a wall. Do you think you could do it? Sure you could… if you had the right tool.

Now, let’s say — because I really like you, I really believe in you, and I really want you to succeed — because of all these reasons, I went out and (with great expense and careful thought) got you a very expensive, brand new, shiny red…Chainsaw.

Go ahead and put that nail in the wall.

“Okaaaaaaay,” you’re thinking to yourself. “He’s successful, so I guess he must know what he’s doing.”

You start hacking away with your shiny new chainsaw.

How’s it going?, I ask.

“Ummm, not so good,” you reply, trying to hide the big gashes you just made in the wall.
What’s the matter, I ask you.

You mumble something about how you’re having a tough time and struggling. So I exhort you and tell you what you should be doing to get that nail in the wall. After all, I was able to do it!

So I give you lots of “helpful” advice, like…

Set your goals!
Visualize it!
Believe in yourself!
Work smarter, not harder!
You can do it!

How’s it going now?

Pretty much the same result.

Notice that I am being “nice”. I’m believing in you. I’m telling you things that should work. Now, what if I can see that even after all my wonderful advice, you’re STILL not getting the nail in the wall.

Okay, tell you what, I say. You can have any chainsaw you want!

I point you to a whole rack of chainsaws — green ones, blue ones, big ones, small ones. Pick any chainsaw you want!

So you reluctantly try the green one because, well maybe that will do the trick. Then the big one. Then the small one.

What happens? Same result.

But how are you FEELING right now? Are you motivated, excited, pumped up, and psyched to put that nail in the wall? Uh, not exactly. You’re probably saying to yourself, “I’m never gonna get this stupid nail in the wall!”

And even if you do somehow manage to get ONE nail in, how much time, effort and energy did it take? Aren’t you feeling depressed, frustrated, angry, resentful, annoyed, irritated, exasperated, and stressed out?

You probably want to do as little of this putting-the-nail-in-the-wall activity as you can.

Don’t your outward ACTIONS look something like this?

- You complain to others about how tough putting nails in walls is.
- You badmouth me, your nail-putting-in manager, behind my back.
- You make any excuse to not put nails in walls.
- You take it out on your kids or your spouse when you get home.
- Your mental and emotional health is suffering.
- You look for ways to medicate or “veg out” like watching TV or surfing the Internet, just to
relieve the stress of putting nails in walls.
- You’re always looking for someplace else, someplace better to work, because “work” is so

The real problem is NOT that you can’t do the job.

The real problem is that you are beating yourself up for not being able to do a job…When you have been given a tool that is COMPLETELY WRONG for the job you’re trying to do.

The only solutions you have been offered are simply the same tools with different packaging!

So even though it would appear that putting a nail into a wall is an easy job, if you have never been given the right tool, it will continue to be very, very difficult.

Now, is there anything wrong with a chainsaw? Of course not! Chainsaws are very useful tools… when you want to cut down a tree. But when you want to put a nail in a wall, they’re not very useful at all.

How many times have you seen the equivalent of what I’ve just shown you in your life, career or company?

When I ask that question in my seminars, nearly every hand goes up. We’ve all seen examples of people who had all the talent, intelligence and motivation in the world, who were asked to “put nails in walls” and given a chainsaw.

The problem is not “bad hires”, “stress” or “over-consumption”. The problem is that we’ve been searching for “the hammer” to put that nail in the wall…but all we’ve been given are chainsaws.

Author's Bio: 

Noah St. John, #1 bestselling author of 6 books such as The Secret Code of Success, The Book of Affirmations & Permission to Succeed, CEO & Founder of http://www.SuccessClinic.com, in over 3,000 media outlets like CNN, ABC, NBC, & Washington Post.