As it turns out, writing an article every day is a much harder challenge than I expected.
I was distracted most of the weekend (Friday included) and yesterday was a fluke that I was able to find time to do any writing at all. Even this journal entry is a day behind.
Granted, I’m travelling and on the road and there’s been a handful of extenuating circumstances. But the truth of the matter is that I’ve just not been that committed to the process.
My other priorities get in the way of me moving forward with this challenge. And this is what I’d like to spend some time talking about tonight.
You cannot create a new priority without eliminating a former priority.
This maybe intuitive for some and maybe a lesson I should have learned years ago, but this week I realized that every time I commit to something new, I also have to commit to giving up something.
Most people have an assumption that they aren’t successful because they have not spent enough time pursuing their goals. And I think that’s partially correct.
What many of us don’t realize is that all of our time is occupied every single day. Whether we are actively occupying it or passively, it is always being used up. No matter what decision we make on our time usage, it continues to pass us by.
Now the want-to-be-successful person takes the approach of I need to spend more of my hours on work and that’ll help me reach my goals. So, their allocation of hours spent on work increases. And work-life balance goes out the window.
30 years later you get to be rich, middle-aged, with two kids and a divorce because you were never home.
Don’t let this be your life story. Work-a-holics slowly become alcoholics because of this scenario.
Good news, my friends. There’s a better way.
What we need to realize is that not all our time is created equal. First off, there are certain times of the day where we are more functional and have higher productivity. Typically, this is in the morning hours (8-11am range).
My hyper-focus window is 8:30am – 10:30am. If you give me a balanced breakfast and a cup of OJ right before, I’ll be in the zone for those two hours.
Figure out how to get in the zone and use this time to get things done.
Secondly, understand that everything in life is a trade. So, if you want to work on a website every night, you might have to give up 1 hour of watching Walking Dead…
So, my practice is printing off an empty schedule for the week and taking inventory of what I do each hour of the day. This is my current schedule working, sleeping, being lazy, being loving, and everything in between.
I also take inventory of what I want to accomplish and how long each of these tasks will take for me to do. Is it a daily task or a one-off? What’s the time frame for these activities and what is the value it’ll create for me?
Yes, I’m a productivity nerd and actually assign a “business value” to each of these activities in terms of how much it’ll contribute to my happiness. I have a 1 to 100 scale that I use for weighting. You can use your own values, the scale isn’t important as long as you’re consistent. My ranking formula for new priorities looks like this:
“Business Value” / (Minutes * (Days/7)) = Happiness ROI
Then I look for opportunities to trade my time doing one activity for another of higher value to me. I start with only time that is being spent on active tasks to be more efficient with my time. Then I being to review some of my passive time, like time spent playing games on my phone or surfing the web or watching TV.
Some of this is OK because we need our rest, and games can help with creativity and reduce stress. And if we work hard, its important for our body and mind to have a chance to recuperate.
So, I haven’t been trading my time effectively. I tried to just cram a new priority into my schedule without truly trading it for something in my current calendar.
That’s my excuse take it or leave it.
Truth be told, I’ve been working on other projects which have been much more successful lately and that’s where my time and energy has been spent. While this site and create more useful content is one of my long-term goals, its not high on the priority list.
Right now, my biggest priority it creating an online business that can be complete self-sustaining and I’ve been able to model one from an existing entrepreneur. After testing his strategy and quickly gaining traction, I’ve been investing more of my time and energy into this little project.
As it takes off, I’ll share some updates on it and also the process so that others can attempt it, too. If you are so interested.
Well, that’s all for me this night. I’m hoping to be back to my regular schedule of posting on Monday nights, but with so many changes to work and life and other business things I have to be flexible.
Thanks for tuning in!
P.S. You might have guessed already, but I’m going to pause the 30 days of posting. More profitable activities lie ahead. Good luck and God Bless!