Most of us have heard the saying widely attributed to Albert Einstein, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.” And while most of us wouldn’t consider ourselves unhinged in any significant way, we have to admit that we are creatures of habit. And to some degree, it makes sense, right? Doing what we’ve done has gotten us this far. Why stop now?

Well, here’s the truth: if you want different results, then you have to try a different approach. If you’re truly determined to take your career to the next level in the remainder of this year, then here are a few things that you can begin to stop doing today. Consider this a mid-year tune-up!

1) Stop dreaming just at night. Dreams are good. As a country, we celebrate a very famous dreamer in January every year who did tremendous work to progress our society on behalf of those facing discrimination and racism. But there’d be little interest in honoring the remarkable Dr. Martin Luther King Jr if the sum total of his life was just having a dream. You have to move from counting sheep at night to counting steps in the daylight towards your goals. Every day you wake up, start materializing that dream by taking practical steps to pursue what makes you most fulfilled.

2) Stop pretending you know it all. The greatest teacher in life is experience. So have you had every experience in life? We didn’t think so! None of us have. One of the main reasons MNTR exists is to provide practical professional guidance proven to convert potential into high performance so you can grow your career. We know that we all can benefit from guidance and insight from a knowledgeable community. To make the most out of what’s left of this year, stop pretending that you have all of the answers and learn something new this year. You’ll look back in 6 months and be amazed at how much better positioned you are to win.

3) Stop drinking coffee in the least first. We love coffee. One of the greatest joys of the day is a nice warm cup of coffee to help wrap the mind around what’s ahead. However, Science tells us that water as the first drink in the morning is actually much more beneficial. Drinking water first helps rehydrate your body, increase your level of alertness, fuel the brain, fight sicknesses, and jump-start your metabolism. So before you reach for that K-cup in the morning, you’d be better served by grabbing a glass of water first.

4) Stop avoiding risk. In business, we all know what it means to reduce adverse effects or mitigate risk. And while that’s still sound advice, you never want to lose the excitement of adventure that got you into the business in the first place. If your dream isn’t scaring you, then get a bigger dream! Nothing grows in the comfort zone. Matter of fact, your comfort zone will ultimately kill you. Sticking to the same routine will have the routine sticking to you. The complacency leads to discontentment and disillusionment. And before you know it, you’re burnt out left wondering where’d it all go wrong. Avoid this fate by getting comfortable with being uncomfortable.

5) Stop looking your phone! So tech addiction is a real thing. And while the term ‘addiction’ might feel loaded, the uncontrollable overuse of technological devices is something that’s rampant in our digital age. This is exacerbated in the business world where you’re always trying to get ahead by replying to one more email, opening one more spreadsheet, and distributing just one more report. There are tons of reasons to stop looking at your smartphone. It’s bad for sleep, damages your neck and eyes, as well as carries a bunch of bacteria. Most telling, however, is that it’s proving to alter our brains and make us more stressed. Studies show that high mobile phone use was directly correlated to increased reports of depression in both men and women. And another study shows that it's limiting our brains’ gray matter. This is the part of the brain that is responsible for setting goals and following through. Yikes. So uh….yeah, stop looking at your phone all the time.

This year has been unlike any we’ve seen in our lifetimes. Most of us had plans that have been altered or cancelled due to the global pandemic. We hope you’ve been able to pivot and find some ways to reestablish your growth this year. See if you can rekindle some of that fresh optimism with which you started the year. With this list of things to stop doing, you can help ensure that your remainder of 2020 will be better than it’s beginning.