I was chatting with a friend the other day who was talking about, what I thought was a really cool idea. He was telling me that he’d read somewhere about this principle of measuring the quality of your day against the activities you do.
How much time do you spend doing different activities or in other words, keep a time diary. It’s something I get many of my clients to do on a regular basis as it often shown up 2 things:
- How disorganised and cluttered their lives are
- How reactive their lives are to the events and people that surround them
It often also shown up how little time they spend doing the things they truly enjoy.
The thing my friend said was this: How much time do you spend EVERYDAY doing something that you LOVE?
Think about that for a second: LOVE, not because you should do it or because it’s a habit but because you WANT to do it, because it makes you feel good.
We talked about what that might mean for him. He’s going to spend some time every day setting up a time lapse camera looking out of his office window. He’s going to set this up so that it records the movement of the stars overnight… just because he can.
When he said this to me I had a bit of a “hand to forehead slap” moment. In fact I might have even said something along the lines of “aghhhhh! that’s fu&*%^g genius!”
Let me tell you why…
You see, a time lapse video shows us the progress that things make that we can’t normally see.
We don’t see the sun moving across the sky (ok, us revolving around the sun) but we know it happens.
We don’t see plants grow but they do; although I’m convinced the Triffid like weeds in my garden sprout overnight.
We don’t see our children actually grow but we know they do (there is a reason they need new shoes every bloody September).
The thing is that it’s the same with our businesses. We don’t necessarily see the little growth we make everyday. We may see the jumps or growth spurts (like with our children) but we don’t see the little success everyday that culminate in those jumps.
Worse still is that we’re inclined and indoctrinated into looking for the big leaps of success and massive progress.
We’re rewarded for the BIG success we have through awards.
We pat each other on the back when we land a major customer or make a big sale.
We’re encouraged to achieve super success through big investments against massive return; “lose 15 stone in 3 weeks with our super slide down your throat real easy supplement pill for only £65/day” or “earn £90,000 in 4 days using our high tech accelerator product that you’ll never understand”
Don’t get me wrong, thinking big is a good thing, taking risks can be a good thing, investing in your marketing is a good thing BUT slow and steady progress wins. You need the foundations, you need to make progress EVERYDAY and then gamble or take the risks.
What would your business look like if you put it through a time lapse video I wonder?