In the Matrix Reloaded, the Merovingian, aka The Frenchman poses the question; “Who has time? But then if we never *take* time, how can we have time?”
This question really is the key to achieving our goals, to being successful and the motivation behind todays post. Most of us have goals, whether they are as big as maneuvering a career change, to as small as getting off the couch and putting on pants. Today is Thanksgiving Monday, so there are no doubt many a Canadian, who may consider this more than just a small goal.
My personal goals include learning and exploring the world of copywriting, learning how to play the bagpipes, writing a blog post at least once a week, continuing to train for a marathon at the end of the month, finally completing the novel I began many years ago and of course, working off this weekends double turkey dinner, as I eat my way through the leftovers without finding myself curled up in the fetal position on the kitchen floor covered in gravy and stuffing. Not to mention, I work a full-time job, have a dog that needs walking, a wife that needs wifing, I cook and I have many things to do in Azeroth. Azeroth is the fictional world in which World of Warcraft takes place, for those of you who didn’t give in to the Mr. T Night Elf commercials from long ago suggesting you try World of Warcraft free for 2 weeks. Yes, this is how it went down. I didn’t want to be a pitied fool.
Whether your goals are small or large, simple or complex, we cannot expect to meet our goals if we don’t take time to complete them. Aside from having kids, which I don’t, who no doubt can take up much of a parents time, there are many other distractions in our daily life to thwart our attempts at reaching our goals. In todays information age (do we still use that term?), there is no shortage of information for us to get lost in; smartphones and tablets can be the gateway to the land of lost time. One has to think that a significant amount of productivity is lost each and every day, thanks to the likes of social media and Netflix.
So, to the Merovingian’s question. If we never take time, how can we have time? Being successful in reaching our goals means we actually need to set aside time to work towards them; we need to take the time, to have the time. Start small, take 10 minutes out of your day to work towards a goal. Schedule that 10 minutes to occur at some point in your day, put in in your calendar (there’s an app for that!) and remind yourself throughout the day that you are going to use those 10 minutes to work on a specific goal oriented task. Whether those 10 minutes take place before you eat dinner, after you’ve slipped the kids some night time cough syrup, “because they may or may not be coming down with something” (I don’t judge) or before hunkering down for the night in your pillowfort with Netflix and a glass of wine, you’ve worked your way 10 minutes closer to completing your goals. More often than not, those 10 minutes will grow longer as we become submersed in the task at hand. I take 20 minutes, every other day, after supper, to play the practice chanter (used to learn to play the bagpipes). For the third week in a row, I have used the last day before returning to work, in which to write. As for the marathon training, I am in the gym Mondays and Wednesday mornings at 6:30am, do speed work Tuesday mornings, a long run Friday morning before work and depending on my legs, will do a light run, one evening after dinner. As for the copywriting quest, after I have spent some time each day completing 4 world quests in Azeroth, I read a chapter of a book on copywriting I am using a my guide (https://akiltedscott.com/copywriting), before getting back to the grind of more world quests. Slowly but surely, I will reach my goals, even if it is only 20 minutes closer each time.
Many of us get caught thinking we have so much to do and little time in which to do it. Granted, many of us do have much to do, but the problem with that statement is that a great deal of our time is wasted, we don’t make effective use of the time given to us each day. Wake up 20 minutes earlier, go to bed 20 minutes later if you need to, there is always time for us to find, if we make an honest effort to look for and take it. How bad do you want to achieve success in your goals? If you want them bad enough, you will make the time and reap the rewards that follow. Take the time to be successful.
Disclaimer: I do not own any of these images.