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Workbook #3: It takes time

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I wrote about how time is your most valuable asset hereIn that article I looked at time from a perspective of performance, as a tool you might say, a means to an end. Recent events have changed my view on how I used to approach time and how I want to approach time. Still a work in progress, here are some of my thoughts.

It takes time…..

Almost to a default I have been spreading my attention over a number of responsibilities, interests and other stuff I like to do. In a conscience effort to keep all the balls in the air, I have chosen quantity over (real) quality many times, only to see time pass by really fast, without achieving or making significant progress towards my goals.

For example this little thing: Setup To Win

This being only my 10th (small article) I wrote for Setup To Win. I could not have known how this little something I like to do, would have such an impact on me personally so soon. However small, or even insignificant these first 10 articles are in the grander scheme of things. It is still a start, steps in a process, produced material, from thinking to doing. Creating something. Making progress.

What I appreciate the most…

Actually putting it out there (here) for you to read. All the fear, dislikes, opinions and imposter-syndrome type dreams or thoughts aside, I am proud of it. Producing a weekly article is a challenge – being consistent is a challenge -, to keep focusing on something that is not going anywhere just yet, is a challenge. The appreciation I have for everybody else that is trying to DO versus just TALK, has increased immensely.

It takes time…

But most of all, it takes time for my perception of time to change to benefit my journey towards my goals. Once you stop talking and start doing, you will appreciate the time you spend working on ‘X’ a lot better. You will start to understand that just thinking about an idea, or plan is not actually making the progress. When you do get there though, and you expose yourself to criticism by putting something out there, take these three things into account:

Extend your time working on ‘X’

The saying goes: creating something new is a marathon, not a sprint. Look at your progress through the lens of a journey, not a race. it is a part of a larger plan, give it the attention and time that it needs/deserves. Measuring your progress? I am all for it, but if you want to measure in weeks, than do it in months. Measuring you progress monthly? Why not do it on a yearly basis? Give yourself the realistic amount of time to work-grow-repeat to get closer towards your goals.

Focus on one, not many

Once you are giving yourself more time to work on and grow at X, rigorously cut down on the other things that you focus on. You will never know, but by choosing to spread your focus, you take away time which you can use to build X. That time used elsewhere is lost, or at the very least it will take you longer to achieve X.

Review and reflect, realistically.

Sorry, but you are not going to figure all that stuff out in a day, week or month. If it was that easy, everybody would be doing it. One guy once said to me after a negative experience: ‘have you REALLY done everything that you could have done?’ Take the time you need to do everything you can, then review, adjust and change directions if you need to. Find that second wind.

Give it a shot: take the test

Pick up something that has been on your list or mind for a very long time and let this be the one thing you focus on next to work or other mandatory things that you have to do for the next 4-6 weeks. Then measure your progress. Did you make steps? Have you made progress? What impact did it have on you or your surroundings?

You will experience a funny thing when you look back after the (f)act. However small a step might be, it is valuable, because it is one step closer towards your goal, if you stay in your head, you’re dead.