I was walking around our home the last few days looking at this huge load of work I want to get done. There’s a driveway that needs repaving, a bathroom that needs gutting, an attic loft that needs trim finished, painting…renos galore. Then, there is the half-acre yard which has not yet been put to bed for the winter. There are articles to write, music to finish, karate to re-engage in, friends to reach out to, a dog to walk, and then of course there are all of the things I want to accomplish work wise. I was feeling overwhelmed. Then I remembered, look after the little things. So I started working on some little things. I got a few finished but realized that there are many BIG things on this list. What to do?
As I was walking our Chocolate Lab Jazz, a thought came to me. It was not a new idea but something I had thought about a year ago and promptly forgot to write about:
What can I do with one hour?
I want a beautiful yard with great flower beds, nicely pruned trees and shrubs, a pond, a shaded sitting area and perhaps a few pathways on a half-acre. That’s the “vision” and it sounds like a ton of work, right? But what if I “committed” one hour every day of focused time towards that vision? Rather than thinking about it as a huge job, what would happen if I approached it in 60 minute increments? Have you ever done the math on this?
(1 hour a day) times (365 days) divided by (a 40 hour work week) equals 9.13 weeks.
Yep, that’s right, over a one-year period, a one-hour-a day commitment gives you a little over nine work weeks! I could get a LOT of yard work done in nine weeks.
What about 15 minutes? What could I do in 15 minutes? Well, I could practice a certain technique on my guitar or maybe work on a kata for karate. That would yield the equivalent of two and and a half work weeks of practice which would have a profound impact on my playing or my kata.
Interesting, don’t you think? If you have a vision, and you commit focused time to it on a daily basis, you will see that vision become a reality. Deepak Chopra gives us another way to think about this when he suggests that we take control by “putting our attention on our intention.”
We reap what we sow!
This is really not a new idea, mind you. Many people have written about this, and if you look at people who have accomplished great things, they all had a vision and committed focused time towards the realization of that vision; often, one small piece at a time. I believe that if we have well-defined and realistic visions, the only things that will prevent us from reaching them are a lack of commitment and focus on our part or the chaotic nature of the universe throwing us a curve ball. We have no control over the latter. If it happens, we get back up on our feet and start over.
So with all of that said, I will re-frame the question:
What will you do with one hour? Or 15 minutes?
If you can’t think of anything, give me a call. I have lots of yard work to do 😉
Image from the Microsoft Clip Art Collection
First posted at synaptici.com – Dec 18, 2010
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