If you don’t chunk your time and take control of your calendar then you’re always going to feel like you’re on somebody else’s agenda. If you’re not already block booking your cal, or you don’t actively make ‘appointments with yourself’ where you work on your priorities (time which you should be protecting as fiercely as your most important client meeting), then start doing this immediately.
If you are chunking your time and you still feel out of control then you’re probably wondering why. It’s because you’ve left yourself on one setting throughout the day, you’re sticking to your defaults.
You’re a drill sergeant reading their kid a deafening bedtime story, a sprinter helping an old person across the road at 10 metres per second. You’re a monster truck driver trying to parallel park.
You’ve probably noticed that working this way is ineffective and dysfunctional. To get the best of each situation you’re going to need to start taking a more active approach. The excellent coach Brendon Burchard has a great phrase;
“Release your tension and set your intention”
He suggests stopping yourself before a situation, taking a few deep breaths and focusing on who you intend to be in that moment, such as:
To be the best leader for your team in a difficult meeting
To be the best mother\father\husband\wife
To be composed and authoritative on that critical phone call
But we don’t do it. Instead we feel too busy. Too busy to ask ourselves the most important double barrelled question:
“What is the outcome I want here AND how to I want to behave to make that happen.”
The reality is you’re not too busy, you can take control. To do that I suggest you follow these simple steps:
Assess your cal for the day and think about your intention in one or two situations that day.
Set yourself a reminder before those situation of the outcome you want AND how you need to behave to make that happen.
Give yourself two minutes beforehand to take a few breaths, reset yourself and set your intention.
Be that person, and pull yourself back to your intention if you feel yourself slipping.
Like anything meaningful this is not going to be an instant change. If you’re reading this then you’re likely to already be a high achiever and those people are inherently busy with multiple plates to spin. But like everything we talk about, you can habitualise these processes and eventually move them to your subconscious so it becomes automatic.
You’ll develop your thinking to reach a point where you will catch yourself mid-situation (“hang on, I’m not being the person this situation needs me to be”) and that’s truly Superhuman thinking. You’ll get a rush from it. Try it this week and you’ll see what I mean.
You won’t always get what you want from a situation because there are too many external factors. However, setting your intention beforehand does mean that you are in control and therefore giving yourself the best shot at an outcome.
Set your intention or stay in the washing machine.
Make your choice.