Many times I find myself jumping into projects, relationships or conversations without having a clear intention of why I chose to do so. When I do that, I typically end up with one of these outcomes: a) the project, relationship or conversation has no focus or point and dissolves to nothing, b) I don’t get results like I’d want to and feel disappointed, c) I pour energy into something without considering why and am left feeling like I wasted my time. Sometimes I get all of the above.
Aiming to streamline my life and my business so I can maximize my time to squeeze the most out of Life, I am becoming more conscious of what I choose to do with my time/energy and why. Taking note of why we do things – our purpose – sounds simple, but how many times do we jump into things without thinking about why?
I have a little process I’ve started using to help me with this, and I thought I’d share.
Before I do anything (go into a meeting, have an important call, start a new website, consider a new project, etc.) I go through a 5-step process. It takes about 10-15 minutes and, for the time spent, it’s offered some of the greatest return on investment. I either feel better about doing something, or I decide I’d be better off not doing it and feel good that I didn’t waste time. Here are those steps.
I ask myself the following:
1. What’s the purpose of this? Why am I doing this? What is the purpose I am trying to accomplish?
2. What’s the importance of this? What difference will this make?
3. What’s the ideal outcome?
4. What’s the worst that could happen, if I really blew it?
5. What’s the best that could happen, if I did the best job ever?
Considering the above really helps you to get clear on your personal motivations for things. It causes you to evaluate how you spend your life energy and consciously choose what you do instead of “going with the flow” and hoping it all works out somehow. With clarity and intention, you have a map to follow. If you are faced with the option to navigate into the unknown without a map or with a map, which would you choose?