Want to fit more into your life but believe that you need to sacrifice something before you can have success?
You don't have to do that...
Don't have time for all the things you want to do because there are too many things you need to get done?
You can do it all...
Last weekend, my life was a prime example. I have always resented the comment people would say to me about my life... "you're so busy, I don't know how you do it..."
But I've now come to acknowledge it, respect it, and be thankful that I have found a way to live a life where I love every minute. I'm still learning how to utilise this attitude to help get everything done each day, but I'm getting there!
In just 60 hours; I have been to 18 locations, connected with 63 people, and completed 27 different activities, each with multiple tasks that I was able to check off my to-do list. I feel more alive than ever and more ready to grow the level of "busy" to a whole new level in the coming weeks. First, I'd love to share my weekend with you.
Starting on Friday morning -
6am - Communication with the world - 30mins for Email x4, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn.
6:30am - Preparing for client sessions today
8am - Exercise... a 10km run from home to Cronulla Point and back
9am - Self care and preparing for the weekend ahead, plus a load of washing
10am - filmed a "how to" video for my Girl Guide unit on "building a bedroll for under-the-stars sleeping"
10:30am - Returning calls/emails from clients and partners
1pm - family & children client session, home visit
3pm - driving to Taronga Zoo early to miss the traffic
4pm - content and marketing material creation sitting in the car overlooking the harbour
6pm - arrive at Taronga Zoo ready to look after eight 10-13 year old girls among 1200 other girl guides who collectively raised $25,000 for environment conservation and preservation of the Bilby.
7pm - had the girls settled into our patch of grass with the other leaders before doing a media interview promoting Girl Guides to future generations of young women and girls
8pm - Phone calls to team members to complete “Feel Good Friday” culture
Dinner, Disco, Movie, catching up with old friends from other units, Bedrolls, SLEEP by 10:30pm...
6am - breakfast, doing up bedrolls, entertaining the girls until activities began
8am - FREE BEING ME activities to teach young girls they can be proud of their thoughts, opinions and decisions.
9:30am - the Zoo opens and "counting to eight" becomes my new favourite activity...we managed to keep eight girls safe and entertained -
Promise ceremony for one of our newest members
Cable car ride
Redoing bedrolls before trekking up the hill
3pm - Rushing to the top gates to meet the parents who will drive the girls back home. Really, this was more about motivating tired 10 years to carry their bedrolls and backpacks up the 3km steep hill inside the zoo.
4pm - Finally got out for a Row in my single scull on Iron Cove. After a few weeks, it was the best feeling to be out on the water, putting my body through a few fast laps.
5:30pm - Driving to Gladesville to see a sports client
6:15pm - Core activation and postural stability training session, helping 2 athletes to improve their coordination, body awareness and concentration.
7:30pm - Driving home
8:30pm - Dinner while watching a movie with my parents
Conversation with a friend who was visiting Sydney
9pm - walk to Nan's house to help her take off her Compression Stockings
10pm - bedtime!
6am - Woke up without an alarm clock!
6:30am - arrived at the Georges River for a rowing race
7am - On the water as a coxswain/coach for my 70+ year old men's crew. These guys are amazing, they train hard, appreciate their health and the are prime examples of how teamwork can get help achieve results.
8:30am - Racing is underway...for 40mins, over 9.3km the guys pushed themselves both physically and mentally. My part was to steer, motivate and provide the tactics to navigate the turning tides and river corners.
9:30am - driving to the city
10:30am - blog post writing for the Early Links website
12pm - meeting number one with Fiona - while sitting in the powerhouse cafe
1:30pm - meeting number two with Liz - while sitting in another cafe
4pm - catch up with friends at The Entourage, Entrepreneur Development Centre
4:30pm - CAaPS Breathing reset session with Fiona in the park
4:30pm - meeting number three with Fiona - while driving home from the city
5:30pm - home for family dinner for my brother's birthday
8pm - phone call with a friend who's business is growing rapidly
9pm - complete content writing from earlier this weekend
10pm - bedtime
Now to share my learnings with you -
1. Being "busy" is an observation not an attitude
Previously, I thought that being busy was a bad thing. I believed that "being busy" was the same as "being too busy" which was an excuse for not getting the important and meaningful things done within the day. Or it was the phrase we all used when we were expected to do something we didn't really want to get done and therefore procrastination had set in.
Having shifted my thinking, being busy is an observation. It's about recognising that life is hectic and it can be a challenge to fit everything into one day. For everyone, this observation of being busy will look different, feel different and sound different. Be aware of this. But don't judge others on your observation of their level of "busy". This is when the attitude of being "too busy" can turn around and bite you, slow you down, make you feel unable to match other and ultimately, doubt yourself. Don't get caught up in this attitude... Completing a time-audit over a short period of time will help your to clearly see just how busy you are choosing to see yourself. I like being "busy" therefore my time-audit from the weekend is fairly detailed, but you might group your activities more broadly...and that's perfectly ok!!
Everyone is "busy", even you... This exercise is all about recognising and observing what "busy" looks like for you and breaking away from the attitude of comparing yourself to others. This is the first step in being able to add more productivity into your day without adding more "busy" into your life.
2. Living with your "values" in thought does help
From the minute I (finally) realised my personal values and how they applied to each area of my life, my capacity to be productive has skyrocketed. My ability to make clear decisions has jumped and my willingness to get the important, yet not overly exciting things done, has taken a leap forward.
So, my personal values - Mentoring, Teaching, Inspired, Exploring
Mentoring - asking the right question, at the right time, to help the right person find the right answer to their question
Teaching - learning knowledge that's worth sharing
Inspired - recognising the past and present experiences that help me grow
Exploring - challenging my limits physically, mentally and emotionally to find myself
Putting these values into practice, testing them one by one has allowed me to grow parts of my business more organically, return to competitive rowing training with a more simple plan, and strengthen personal relationships. I started this process in December 2014 on a trip to Thailand, listening to the influential Jack Delosa talk about vision and finding life purpose and it will continue to evolve for years to come as I refine the way I implement the values into my day to day and the circles of influence I choose to live in.
Ok, so the way I got to realise my personal values was through a lot of journaling, a lot of thinking and by giving myself time to put these values to the test. But...all this has allowed me to reflect on the shortcut, which I can share with you!
3. Regretting your choices only slows you down
There is a difference between a "fail-safe system" and "safe-fail support".
The first, is a way to avoid failure, avoid getting it wrong, and save yourself the experience of challenging the way you think. The second, provides you with the tools you need to feel safe within an experience of failure. It's my opinion that making mistakes is a vital part of learning and without this experience, we coast through life without truly knowing what it means to expand our thinking and develop more productivity in our day. One quote that I have loved and live by since reading it is “...be big enough to admit mistakes, smart enough to profit from them, and strong enough to correct them.” John C Maxwell.
I often think that it would be so easy to plan to do less each day and spend longer planning how to complete each action. But each time I do this, I end up feeling less productive and achieving far less in the day. I have spent time over the years developing a mind-set where experiencing “failure” is just another reflection on ways to improve for the next attempt. This mind-set is the ‘safety’ aspect of making mistakes and it comes from having wonderful people surround me and a method of debriefing/reflecting which helps to turn “failure” into “learning”. It’s not that I don’t care if I get something wrong (in fact, the opposite is true if you talk to my colleagues/friends), but it just doesn’t play on my mind, doesn’t make me sad, doesn’t take my energy for the other activities I know I have planned for the day.
4. Reflect on the changes you make each day
This section has been influenced by Stewart Cook and Andrew Morello, two men who I have had the pleasure of meeting and in my opinion, represent what it is to be an entrepreneur. Andrew Morello takes well over 100 flights per year and mixes charity work with multiple business endeavours. Stewart has been the CEO of Zambrano's over the last 4 years and was instrumental in taking this company global. Both very "busy" men who, when talking to them, I believe, know their personal values, embrace "safe-fail" supports and both speak actively about the benefits of self-reflection in building yourself and the life you want to live.
I have been more active in the reflection process this year. It's been a confronting, challenging, eye-opening, worthwhile experience without a doubt. I have reflected on different aspects of my life; both personal growth and business development. Some nightly, or weekly, others more formally each month. The things I reflect in each night, help me to "pause" the entrepreneurial-thinking so I can actually fall asleep. The weekly reflections help me to appreciate and celebrate the changes I have made happen in the last 7-days, while also preparing myself for upcoming challenges. The other reflections each month are an hour long, dedicated to "brain-dumping" on whatever my thinking sticks on, it’s essentially a ramble of thought that eventually finds an ah-ha moment of clarity. Then there is the business related reflections each week/month/quarter that help acknowledge the successes, changes and challenges.
The questions I ask myself at each of these reflections are critical to helping draw out the knowledge that ultimately strengthens my productivity within my "busy" life.
The real learning I have come to understand about “Being Busy” throughout the process of writing this Blog post, is that TIME is the only thing on Earth we cannot replace once used. There is no more TIME to “find”, but rather we must “find” what is most important to us in each moment of each day... and do that.
The challenge that I am setting you today is to; complete each of the four (4) worksheets in the "Being Busy is Easy" package, send me the results then, book a FREE 30min catch up slot to really get the most out of your Busy-Life!!
It only takes one click to get started...
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