Opportunity Doesn't Knock Once... It Knocks All The Time
Years ago I offered a Time Management class to a group of maintenance generalists. These are the maintenance and repair people who work behind the scenes keeping buildings running. This was a jovial crowd and the class was full of their jokes and one-liners. We laughed a lot but I remember thinking, "Am I making an impact here? Are they actually getting something useful from this material??"
At the end of class, I asked if anyone would be willing to share their takeaway. One man in his mid-twenties looked awfully serious and said, "I need to unplug more."
I wasn't really sure what he meant but he said, "When I come home, I get dinner and then I play my video games... sometimes til 2 or 3 in the morning. I need to unplug more."
I was floored. Apparently that section on Metacognition and Mindfulness really hit home for him and he realized that if he didn't take advantage of the daily opportunity to do something different with his evening hours, autopilot was choosing for him.
Move your life in a new direction
My sister-in-law Rebecca accomplishes big projects in her life (like completing her Ph.D, creating a course in Life Design and learning German) by following this simple rule:
Do something related to it every day.
Sometimes she only "touches it" for a fraction of time but it's a daily commitment that:
- ensures forward movement (and progress) and
- keeps the project alive in her psyche.
The longer I don't do something, the harder it is for me to start again. Then it starts to feel like a monumental burden. If it's slightly complicated, I might also run the risk of forgetting how to do it.
I know I've really hit an impasse when I hear myself saying "Next week, I'll spend an afternoon on this and catch up." (Yea right.)
This idea of "touching" a project daily is how I managed to reorganize all my camping gear (there's a ton) and finished reading a book about focus called Deep Work (the irony of this doesn't escape me). It's also how I keep these monthly newsletters going and stay on top of my marketing.
Opportunity knocks all the time: Seize that opportunity by capturing it in small increments of time.
Spend 10 minutes a day and you will:
What would you like to do more of?
If you'd like a deeper dive into this concept, check out Atomic Habits by James Clear. It's packed with great insight about how to create good habits, stick with them, and change the trajectory of your life.
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