The Performance Curve: Where Do You Fall? (take the quiz now!)

We all want to perform at our best, at work and in life. However, peak performance can be difficult to achieve and we can often find ourselves sliding towards over or under-performance instead. Underperforming leaves you feeling dissatisfied and as if you’re not reaching your potential. Overperforming leads to burnout, fatigue, and diminished returns. Surprisingly, the general feeling you may get from over and underperforming can be very similar, so it is important to first identify which side of the curve you are leaning into.

We’ve developed a short quiz to help you identify how you’re performing right now. Get your results and then read on to dive deeper:


Signs of Underperforming

When you are underperforming, you may feel bored, apathetic, or disengaged. You are getting things done but operating below your abilities. Common signs of underperformance include a loss of motivation, a feeling of disconnect between efforts and rewards, and no sense of growth or progress. The work lacks meaning or purpose beyond a paycheck.

Dangers of Underperforming

The main risk of underperformance is wasted potential. When you operate below your abilities for too long, you stagnate. Skills degrade as you lose the drive for self-improvement []. Creativity diminishes as you settle into a routine. Promotions and rewards seem unlikely, leaving you feeling stuck. Persistent boredom and lack of fulfillment often lead to depression and anxiety. Breaking this cycle requires consciously raising the bar and challenging yourself.

Signs of Overperforming

Overperforming is equally problematic, often driven by the desire for validation, success, or status. Typical signs include working excessive hours, never saying no to requests, micromanaging instead of delegating, and perfectionism. Negative effects appear in the form of burnout, diminished health, and strained relationships. Overperformers have difficulty sustaining such relentless pace and intensity.

Dangers of Overperforming

Pushing yourself too hard may produce short-term gains, but long-term consequences outweigh the benefits. Fatigue leads to poorer performance and attention lapses. Never refueling drains your mental, emotional, and physical energy. Such chronic stress weakens the immune system and leads to illness. Your singular focus causes relationships and obligations outside work to suffer. Ultimately, you will find yourself facing burnout, unable to perform at all.

Achieving Peak Performance

Peak performance lies between the extremes of underperforming and overperforming. You leverage strengths without overexerting yourself. With conscious effort, you can find and operate within your optimal performance zone more consistently. Assess where you currently fall on the performance spectrum and make small adjustments toward peak performance. You’ll be amazed by the transformation in results and well-being. To dive deeper on how to harness your own mental toughness and resilience to elevate your performance to new heights, check out our program, Turbocharge Your Performance: Secrets of High Achievers.”