Variability is are a real asset to creativity. In contrast, pursuing a life of consistency and good habits is a worthwhile endeavor. In fact, you could argue, it’s necessary to produce consistent results. Constantly attacking your consistency, variability comes in many forms. The planned – my wife is on a trip oversees for the week , the unplanned – I’ve been presented an opportunity, the catastrophic – life or death kind of stuff. How you respond to this variability will determine the outcome, not the variability itself. As challenging as it is, we can develop a foundation devoid of any self-pity. Think about it, even in the most extreme of circumstances, how can self-pity help? Rising above the external and using all variability as a catalyst is a requirement for success as variability is the only constant in life. Wisdom acquisition is a moral duty to derive flexibility when facing a unforeseen challenge.
Working each day after you incorporate the new priorities becomes a real challenge. After the newness wears off, you face the real task of staying the course. We must use a defense to combat this. We are weak without a plan.
Wisdom acquisition is a moral duty
Waking up each morning, we make a million decisions that ultimately become out day. Those little decisions end up defining our existence. Even when we’ve defined big picture , and done the hard work of laying out the plan, the plan doesn’t matter if we don’t make little decisions to execute it. Left to our own devices, we’ll always find our way to instant gratification. It’s so easy to wake up early, grab your phone, and browse away. Before you know it, 35 minutes have gone by and the opportunity execute is gone. Those small failures, added up, define us. It’s only through wisdom that we can begin to realize a way to move past this mediocrity. When we can banish these little failures and find a way to continue to learn, that’s when we win.
My Perfect day
I’ve been developing a couple checklists to use in order to help me work past myself. Romans 13:14 speaks to moving away from the desires of the flesh, instead putting on the Lord Jesus Christ. This reminds me constantly how I can’t trust my own instincts or natural self. In Warren Buffets 2015 letter to Berkshire shareholders he addresses a like concept.
“The probability of such mass destruction in any given year is likely very small. It’s been more than 70 years since I delivered a Washington Post newspaper headlining the fact that the United States had dropped the first atomic bomb. Subsequently, we’ve had a few close calls but avoided catastrophic destruction. We can thank our government – and luck! – for this result. Nevertheless, what’s a small probability in a short period approaches certainty in the longer run. (If there is only one chance in thirty of an event occurring in a given year, the likelihood of it occurring at least once in a century is 96.6%.)”
The likelihood of catastrophe is essentially nothing each year but inevitable over time. The exact same thing goes for the millions of decisions we make every day. In isolation, temptation is easy to abandon, in aggregate its impossible. One way we can combat this is to make fewer decisions. It’s really simple statistics. If there is a 3% chance of something happening and its only give it one chance, you stay at 3%. The second you give it another shot, the odds just moved up to ~5.91%. So I worked out a high level plan on my perfect day. It limits the decisions and gives me a framework.
- Wake Up: 4:30am – 5:00am
- Out of bed, log weight, get dressed
- 10-minute meditation
- Read + Capture Leadership Devotional
- Shower – Kids – Wife – Breakfast
- 90-120 min of top priority work
- Meetings/To-do list
- Out the door before 5:00pm
- Dinner as a family
- Play w/ kid Clean/Reset the houseTV/Chores/ConnectRead/Talk
- Bed 9:30pm – 10:00pm
Here are the literal next actions I used to walk through this process. I’d be interested to know how it goes for you.
- Review your purpose, vision, goals, and areas of focus.
- Evaluate how you spend your time every day. Write down all the things you do
- Sort your list to things you want to stop doing and things you want to keep doing
- Pull in any new habits or items you want to incorporate (This was meditation for me)
- Write out the framework for your perfect day