“…but Tom, you just don’t understand…I have no more band width. I want to create a plan to be the best I can be in my F5 (Faith, Family, Friends, Fitness and Finance)…I want to take time every day to focus on being the best I can be…I want to have an awesome life, but I’m maxed out.” And so it goes…a life that every minute actually starts to lose purpose…a body and soul which when is not stretched and used does not stay the same, but actually minute by minute starts to crumble and deteriorate. It is so sad to see…people dying right in front of you. It’s a disease…it’s not cancer, heart disease, or some other one we hear about all of the time. I’m not even sure what to call it…maybe the purposeless epidemic. And the purposeless epidemic is what leads to all of the diseases we hear about all of the time. The purposeless epidemic is the #1 killer in the world!!!!
Do you ever look around and see those people who just look like they have given in? I am at that funny age (50…soon to be 51) where it’s like we are at that tipping point…where everything is magnified and starts to show, good or bad. You know what I am talking about…you know the kind of people I am talking about…heck; you may be one of them. They just don’t seem to care about much of anything anymore…they certainly don’t care about themselves anymore…they just say to themselves “screw it”…they let gravity take control mentally and physically. It’s like they are getting sucked into their grave a tiny bit every day. You can see it in their eyes…their posture, with their shoulders slumped forward over their belly…their skin starts to get this dull color…the way they dress…the way they take care of themselves…the way they talk. Their smile has turned into a frown…they just act and look like they have given in and aren’t going for it anymore. On the other hand, there are those few who are also at that tipping point, but when you see them, they inspire you. You know the ones…every time you are around them they put a smile on your face…they almost seem to be like an electrical outlet you can plug into and get charged up…they have that glow, they are fired up and loving life…the ones that are going for it and make the right turn at the Y’s in their life.
I often talk about how life is a continuous series of Y’s in the road…the key is when you get to the Y’s, 99% of the time you don’t want to go with the flow…you don’t want to follow the pack because they will lead you right off the cliff…you need to break away and go the hard way, up the mountain…in the end it is where all of the rewards are. Unfortunately, because most people don’t ever have a breakthrough and take the right turn at the “Y” is why I think so many people struggle with one or more of their F5.
Here are a few ideas to consider implementing this week:
- You aren’t going to find more time in one big chunk…you need to find all of the little places you can save time. Let me share a story about when I was working out during lunch years ago. I was a member of 24 Hour Fitness which was about a 7 minute drive from my office, but I worked out at this little, dark, old gym we called “The Stinky Shoe”. It was right around the corner from my office. Everyone always asked “why don’t you just drive the extra 5 minutes to 24 Hour Fitness? …It is so much nicer.” Here was my rational: I was working out 5 times a week and it took me an extra 5 minutes each way if I went to 24 Hour Fitness, which was 10 minutes a day…doesn’t sound like much, does it? Well 10 minutes a day = 50 minutes a week = 43 hours a year. Basically those 5 extra minutes each way equaled a week per year. How many “Stinky Shoes” do you have in your life? Find all of your “Stinky Shoes”…I will bet you have at least half a dozen of them every day…there is at least an extra hour.
- Another easy one to do is spend a few hours and clean up your personal spaces that clutter your mind, distract you, drain you and take your time. Those personal spaces are your bedroom and bathroom (including closets and drawers), your car and your office at home or your place of employment. What do your personal spaces say about you?
- Write down everything…get it out of your head. People spend too much time every day taking time trying to figure out what to do next. Have a list or journal where you write things down and keep a schedule…then put everything in them. Once you start doing this, all you have to do is take action and create efficiencies in everything you do.
- Take action…don’t procrastinate. Assess the situation, make a decision and take action. If you make a mistake, fix it quickly and move on…speed is the key. You are better off making 10 decisions and only getting 7 or 8 of them right than taking that same amount of time to make 1 or 2 decisions you know are right. You will make 6 or 7 more right decisions in the same amount of time. Procrastination is probably one of the biggest time killers. Take action…massive action all of the time!!!!
- Speed up…walk 10% faster. As crazy as it sounds, it will rub off on everything you do and you will find you are doing everything 10% faster.
- Don’t just make small changes…make Radical Changes. Dr. Dean Ornish, a professor of medicine at the University of California at S.F. and founder of the Preventative Medicine Research Institute found that radical, sweeping changes are often easier for people than small incremental ones. For example, he says that people who make moderate changes in their diets get the worst of both worlds: They feel deprived and hungry because they aren’t eating everything they want, but they aren’t making big enough changes to quickly see an improvement in how they feel, or in measurements such as weight, blood pressure, and cholesterol.
- Another thing Dr. Ornish discovered is that joy is a more powerful motivator than fear. So, you need to focus on being joyful and feeling good, which is the reason we are doing all of this “stuff” to begin with. The better you feel, the more attractive you are and feel…the more attractive you are and feel, the more productive you are…the more productive you are, the better your results…the better your results, the better you feel. Not sure what to call it, but let’s call it the success cycle.
The funny thing is all this stuff we are doing to have a better life, even though it takes time, gives us more energy, makes us feel better and gives us clarity which makes us more effective, efficient and positive…which gives us more time. So, make the commitment to give a little time to making an awesome life and watch how much time it makes.