Have you made busyness your default state of being?
Anyone who is honest when they look back on their life will say they have made countless mistakes and even repeated them to be sure!
An old saying is that mistakes are a learning curve and there is no need to repeat the lesson…that is unless you didn’t learn it on the first go. I have had the opportunity to repeat some of my mistakes and then became frustrated with myself for flunking that class! For a long time, I didn’t know how to change the mistake repetitions. When I realized the truth about mistake-making, the answers seem to be ludicrously easy to follow.
I recall having the opinion that I didn’t have enough time for all this ‘personal development stuff’. When my coach suggested I read the book “Magic of Thinking Big” I so clearly remember telling her I didn’t believe in “magic” — success was all about hard work, discipline and being busy.
I had no idea about the ‘laws of success’ that work for you or against you. Not believing or being ignorant of the law didn’t negate the law. Gravity works whether you believe in it or not. It just is. The laws work for everyone regardless of your country of birth, your religion, your gender, your age or your education. If you don’t want to get hit by the falling brick — move!
The law is that we all have 24 hours in a day. It is whether we ‘spend’ the 24 hours or ‘invest’ them. That was such a new concept to me. Investing time? Investing in me? My coach said to me the best investment would be in myself. She said, “Everyone on the planet has the same 24 hours in a day—the decision is yours what you do in these hours”. Why do the rich get richer and the poor get poorer? Because of the way they spend or invest their time. Why do some people achieve greatness and others don’t? Because of the way they spend or invest their time.
These days you meet someone and ask how are they going? They reply to you with a sigh of exasperation, “Busy — flat out like a lizard drinking.” They act as though it is a ‘badge of honour’ to be keeping up with the Joneses on the treadmill that goes nowhere. It would seem it is more expedient and impressive to say “I don’t have the time” rather than being truthful and saying “I don’t want to use my time on it.”
Years ago I heard an unusual definition of ‘Busy’ — ‘anxiety, anger, painful constriction, to press or squeeze into a mold’. Sounds a bit like a rut, doesn’t it? In the first example above you haven’t taken the title deed to your time — you don’t own it — someone else has ownership of your time. Someone else has you pressed into their mold and you are constricted. You have chosen to allow yourself to be a slave to time itself — to be constricted — and, in all honesty, it creates anxiety, anger and frustration. There is nothing empowering about being in the rut.
In the second expression we are assuming full responsibility and placing a high value on our time. When you say to someone who asks you to do something for them, “I don’t want to use my time on it” you can get some interesting reactions. Some people may be a little more than upset. What they may hear you saying is they are not important to you, rather than their suggested activity doesn’t hold any value to you. When you are truthful in the first place, you don’t need to think up excuses later to justify why you couldn’t fulfil your obligation or to get yourself off the hook when you don’t want to prioritize their activity. Being honest with yourself and them can, in reality, empower you both and save valuable time.
When you come to the place where you can speak your truth about your time choices, you release yourself from the rut. You will attract people into your life who live by the same values. It gets comfortable telling people the truth about your time values and, over time, you soon will see the rewards. The other reason I kept making so many mistakes and felt the constant frustration is my time didn’t have a value because I didn’t have any personal dreams. When I wrote down my dreams and created a plan to achieve them, my time priorities changed. I no longer needed to be involved in making everyone else’s dreams come true, but could start working on my own list. So, to get control of your time, make a list of what you want to accomplish in your life during the next five years.
- Identify your deepest desires and write them down
- Visualize your life dreams as achieved
Writing down your dreams is the beginning of all your dreams coming true and creating time priorities in your life. Set a plan for how you are going to achieve your dreams and transfer it to paper. We get caught up in life if we don’t have that plan in writing so we can monitor how we are going. Prior planning prevents poor performance. People fail in business and life because they never create the written dream and then the blueprint that makes it happen. Without a plan you are planning to fail…and keep making those mistakes. Eliminate the ‘busy’ and the ensuing mistakes and become productive with putting your valuable time and attention on daily goals that will take you to your dream.