Just dig in and begin!

That is the point today and tomorrow. In my social media classes that I teach for community education I tell my class that what do you have to lose by just doing it. For some reason it is the cobbler’s kid’s shoes. You see in the story of the cobbler he makes the best shoes around for everyone, but himself and his children. Too often we do this in our own lives. We forgot to do things for ourselves that truly matter in the lives of those around us, but also in our own business as well. I find that I am constantly telling others to make the changes in their marketing or do this or that because it is too easy to tell others to make the changes for themselves and not look at the changes we need to make. I have however been giving this a lot of thought recently, I have been reading, and also listening to some amazing thought leaders and have come to understand that urgency has to be stopped.

We get sucked into urgency as it is easy. We feel like others are asking of us something important and it must be done to keep the client, to make the sale, to keep moving, to complete the task. What however I have been really looking at is what if I as a cobbler started by making my shoes first? What would happen to my life if I began to make the priorities my own instead of others? What if I stopped putting others first and began the process of setting my process and goals in place first and placing others into these times?

The reality is that we place time priorities as if the day has to be filled with the emergencies and urgencies of others, but there has been study after study from productivity experts that push us to delegate, to prioritize differently, to automate, and in the end just put our priorities first that have shown to be far better productively.

It is important to note here that I am not talking about making your life only about you. What I am talking about is the opportunity to start with your why. Start with your why and make it become important to you and begin to make your why a reality.

A why is a tricky thing because it is a very scary thing. It involves taking a look, as Michael Hyatt and Daniel Harkavy talk about in their new book Living Forward, at writing an obituary at the end of your life. Not in a morbid way, but in a way that you want to be honored by. What do your family, friends, kids, community, or others say about you? What does that look like and then taking that and creating a life plan around it.

What if you stopped living your life in the chaos and urgencies of others, but began to live it for yourself? I would hope that those around you see how much better you are living your life and would support you. I know for me this has been a process I have struggled with and know I will struggle for the rest of my life. I do know that as a part of this process though my wife is a part of my why and we will be doing this together, and hopefully in time we will so become in tune with what each other wants that we will help keep each other on track.

That is my reality. Each week I am living for me which means my clients/customers will be treated better and get better results because I am living my life for the things that matter the most which is God, family, and those that I surround myself with. For me digging in is living my why and not living the why of others. For me digging in looks like the work that I have been doing in the last week of making a difference in others’ lives and beginning the process of telling my own story within this.

Just dig in and begin.

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Past, Present, and the Future

The Past, The Present, The Future

Actions of our past do not make us who we are today. This is what I believe.

I do a lot of work in the start up field and when you look at what the successful startups are doing it is rapid prototyping and shipping products quickly. The quickly shipping products however is where the problems can be. Sometimes pride get’s in the way and the mistake of the past becomes the present. How we deal with this makes a mark on who we are and our long term code of ethics. We see a lot of companies make a choice to take the past and make it better. This choice leads to better businesses. When we make a personal mistake in life with those that love us we can do the same thing by owning up to it and trying to make it better.

If we are to be looked at who we are today then we need to take a look at the past and not dwell in it. Personal reflection is the mark of successful people. The personal introspection though can lead to self doubt and that is where the present comes in. This present is what we make of it today. Does this past create the reality of what a new future looks like, or do we choose to relive the errors of the past? It has often been said the definition of insanity is doing something over and over again and expecting a different result. In order to change this we must realize that our future is predicated on choosing to change today and make a difference in tomorrow.

All of this is predicated on our priorities and our core values. What are your core values? Sometimes the value in the today is the moment and the stillness of the now. My own experience was helping my wife when her son was in the hospital recently with viral pneumonia. The drive for the future was suspended by the now and that is ok. My wife and “bonus son” needed me. My wife needed someone to make sure that she was getting what she needed as she took care of her son. What this says is my family is worth it and for all of us this should truly be the case. I feel life really is to short and that the stress of life gets in the way of the love of life. The experience of the day and those that love us that are around us.

Our future therefore is unwritten. We get to make a choice in how we make it better. Our values dictate something about those choices. I know for me I am choosing the ones around me that care about me.

This is even true in business as Rabbi Lapin puts it, every dollar you earn is a “certificate of appreciation” from your customers. Take a look at your business and if you are to serve instead of receive how would your business change? I guaranty customer service becomes priority number one and you get rewarded for it.

By looking and learning from the past, stepping out of the present, and serving for the future we will have a better life in business and personally.

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