This post is dedicated to Instagramer nickythefish395.
Say No more. It gets sticky when other people press their urgent issues onto my plate. I need to remind myself to choose words carefully. I don’t have time for that sounds like I’m too busy when, in-fact, it simply means it’s not a priority at this moment. We all have someone (or maybe we are the someone) pushing priorities onto other people with the expectation those priorities will take precedence. Say no. Explain why. Move on. We all love to say yes (including me) but you must master the power of no.
I’m too busy is an excuse. It’s a cop-out. It’s weak. It’s settling. We all have 168-hours in a week. Why does it seem some people accomplish so much while others struggle to accomplish the basics of adult life? The answer? Start with looking in the mirror and admitting “I need to be better”. That’s not easy to do but damn necessary. The next time you hear someone at work say “I’m too busy” – stop them. I’m too busy means I know shit isn’t getting done and I’m just going to sit here and make excuses. Just stop it. Sure it might get a little awkward. They probably don’t expect direct and honest feedback but in time they’ll come to appreciate it. All it takes (most of the time) is setting a clear expectation that we will not allow busy-ness to lower standards. Quality will not suffer because we’re busy.
Do less better. People are getting in over their heads. They focus on quantity more than quality. Lots of reasons. Inexperience. Over-confidence. Competition. Lack of focus. There’s a simple fix: do less stuff, focus on quality. You don’t need to do what everyone else is doing – just focus on what you do well. What can you be the best in the world at? Be that. I’m serious. That’s how you need to think. You can’t possibly specialize in 10 things. It’s not possible. Do less better.
Work smarter & HARDER. I don’t know if we’re getting lazy, complacent, or if we’ve just fallen off the path. I’m not a betting man but if I were I’d say (sitting here tonight) it’s a combination of all three. Hard work seems to have fallen out of favor to shortcut seeking, tech driven, success-hacking gimmicks. As I shared earlier I do not believe anyone fails on purpose. In this particular instance I believe we’re not getting anything better from certain generations because we haven’t shown those generations anything better ourselves. We’ve created our own problem. I am always trying to work smarter because I believe it will result in efficiency which will result in time savings. Time is money. But damnit I also know regardless of how dang smart I work, if I am unable or willing to work hard, the impact of my effort will never reach its fullest potential. You can’t replace effort with an app.
Put in the time. Here’s a new angle. Maybe you’re too busy because you don’t put in enough time. Let that settle in for a minute. How successful do you want to be? Ok, got it? Answer some questions… will you do anything to make it happen? Will you work nights? Will you work 7-6, go home for dinner, put the kids to bed, and go back out to a meeting? Will you work weekends? Will you outwork everyone? Will you accept full responsibility for everything that happens even when it goes wrong? Will you surrender the idea traditional idea of days off? Will you do all of this without complaining? Will you pay the cost of admission to success?