How often do you start your day backwards? You know, by checking email, or phone messages, or reading the news?
Do any of those things directly impact the project you’re working on, or the brand you’re creating, or the book you’re writing?
Do any of them impact the rest of your day at all?
My guess is that if you didn’t check email or read the news, you’d be just fine. Life would go on without a hiccup.
These things don’t impact your day because they are easy, trivial activities.
And that’s precisely why we start our days with them.
It’s easier to do trivial things that are urgent than it is to do important things that are not urgent – like thinking – and it’s also easier to do little things we know we can do, than to start on big things that we’re not so sure about. – John Cleese
The problem isn’t that we check email, or send text messages, or read the news, it’s that we don’t use our time the way we ought to (if you care about drawing your own map, that is).
This lack of action compounds over time.
The minutes we spend checking email, sending texts, and reading the news eventually adds up to a day…and then a week…and then a year…
And in ten years, we still haven’t written that novel, or built that business, or bought that investment property.
Right now a still, small voice is piping up, telling you as it has ten thousand times before, the calling that is yours and yours alone. You know it. No one has to tell you. And unless I’m crazy, you’re no closer to taking action on it than you were yesterday or you will be tomorrow. You think Resistance isn’t real? Resistance will bury you. – Steven Pressfield
When we waste the beginning of our day on something impactless (yes, I made that word up), we are giving up precious hours we could devote to something important.
Instead of using daily action to propel us toward the realization of our goals, we slowly kill off any chance of doing something remarkable.
Cutting out time during the day to do the work is the first step.
Figure out what time you can carve out, what time you can steal, and stick to your routine. Do the work every day, no matter what. No holidays, no sick days. Don’t stop. – Austin Kleon
The next step – the one that requires us to take an even harder look at ourselves – is to determine if what we’re actually creating is any GOOD.
Life’s not about getting stuff done, it’s about getting the right stuff done. It doesn’t matter how productive you are if the ideas you’re building on don’t represent the best you have to offer. And the best you have to offer rarely ever comes when you’re filling every nook and cranny of mind-space, every waking moment of every day. – Jonathan Fields
Once you’re able to form a habit around doing important, GOOD work every day, you’re on the path to creating something remarkable, and therefore being remarkable.
Whatever you do, don’t stop.
Do the work (the important work) and do it every day.