A week is both longer and shorter than you think.
If you’re anything like me, you might set out on a Monday to do a laundry list of things, thinking that by Friday you’ll surely have time to complete them. Come Friday, you review the list and ugh! At least half of it remains.
As I was considering this sad state of affairs this past weekend, I noticed something interesting. While many boxes on my to-do list weren’t checked off, during the week I’d had a collection of small, interesting encounters. These encounters had started to shift things in my larger world. In fact, some challenged I’d have expected to work on for the rest of the year now had solutions right around the corner.
Which led me to ask myself: Is my to-do list full of the wrong things?
If PEOPLE can cause challenges to untangle, maybe I should spend more time making myself available. Maybe all that time spent on sorting, handling, drafting, researching, planning … maybe it could all be a little less important, if I only made myself more available.
Now, I’m sure that aimless availability wouldn’t have been helpful. But, since I’d spent a good amount of time in December thinking about my big-picture goals, this week, I was primed to pay attention to those things which might make the most big-picture difference.
Here’s a recipe for making progress that I plan to explore. I’ll let you know how it goes.
- Review my goals on Friday, note any progress over the week.
- Identify the chief obstacles. Right now, what’s immediately in the way? What do I need next?
- In relation to those needs and obstacles, think about the people around me. Consider the resources available through friends, co-workers, newcomers who have been suggested to me or who have just crossed my path. Or even online experts–bloggers, podcasters, and more.
- Decide: Who might I reach out to this week? Where might I go this week to encounter someone who just may have a new idea or solution for me?
When I go somewhere new or discuss a problem with a new person, I often find that creative doors and windows are thrown open. Solutions I didn’t expect alight on my shoulders with hardly any effort on my part. It almost feels like cheating. Except, it isn’t. I’m getting out of my own way, looking past my all important to-do list, and realizing that most of the time, the solution is closer than we think. All we have to do is ask.
So, that’s what I’m going to do. A whole lot more asking. Because I may not be able to check off all those to-dos in a week, but if I can ask the right question and toss most of those boxes off my list … well, I’d do that in a heartbeat!
How about you?