My dear wife got a Fitbit Charge HR from my parents as a present some time this year but she has stopped wearing it recently for whatever reason. I just couldn’t stand seeing something like that going to waste so although I am already sporting a Garmin Fenix 3HR on my left wrist, I’ve decided to overkill it by wearing the Fitbit on my right wrist. In my defence, there will be times during the day when I’m not wearing my Garmin due to its size, like during sleep for example. Anyway, this blog isn’t about how to accessorise yourself the fitness way. What got me writing today is from what I read on my Fitbit this morning.
As I woke up and looked at my Fitbit, there was a scrolling message which said TODAY IS THE DAY. I know it is cheering me on to get my 10,000 steps as I’ve been very close to achieving it since I started wearing it last Saturday. Nevertheless, if you look at that phrase closely, it’s not just for those steps. It’s life in general. We all have wishes, goals and targets. Are we doing something to achieve it? Have we even begun? Are we halfway there? Are we getting distracted? Are we diverting from the original goal or target? And if we are close to achieving it, what’s next? Are we going to raise the bar higher? Or are we going to set a totally new goal and shift the paradigm? That’s a lot of questions to answer but valid ones nevertheless. If anything, today is the day to answer one of them, if not all. Today is the day to call for action. CARPE DIEM.
I’ve been watching a lot of videos on YouTube lately on productivity. Some spoke about time management and some spoke about how making a to-do list is a waste of time. The time management videos taught many ways but the one which I took away is time blocking. I’ve been practicing that ever since. I feel that if you time block your work, you are more focused. We all grew up under plenty of time pressure situations in terms of tests and exams. We know how to get into that state of mental focus and gun for it. It shouldn’t stop when we leave school. It can be carried forward into adulthood but in the form of time blocking. True fact - if you were to collect all the sporadic work you do in a day, it’ll probably equate to approximately two productive hours and most of the time we still leave things pending due to distractions. So why not focus these works into blocks of 45 minutes. I personally set three 45-minute blocks a day for productive work. Writing this blog is one of them. Set a timer and go. And absolutely no distractions. Silent your phone. Shut everyone out. You’ll be surprised how much you get shit done. And if you don’t, spill it into the next block but do take a break for a few minutes.
I do disagree with the notion that a to-do list is a waste of time. I feel we as humans are forgetful and if we don’t write down every single thing we are supposed to do, we’ll forget. Dump everything we need to do on a list then prioritise it. Do what is important first. What’s important is subjective. It will not be the same for everyone. I do agree on one thing that was taught which is if the task in question only takes five minutes or less to complete then do it immediately. It’s not worthy of being on the list.
As a CPPS coach, we generally regard Paul Reddick as our business guru. Although I cannot regard him as my mentor yet (simply because I haven’t asked him to be one), I do take a lot of his advice to practice and one of them is to prepare an Optimum Function weekly plan. This is basically a scoring plan where you check off all the things you are meant to do on a daily basis. For example, if I wish to wake up at 5am every day and go for a morning walk straight after, I shall put those on the list and check them off every time I do it. By the end of the week, I get to see how optimum my week has been in terms of performing everything I intend to do. Without this list, it is very easy to stray and be inconsistent with your habits. And if your actions are inconsistent they will never become habits. Again, everyone list will look different but try to get as detailed as possible from the moment you wake up to the time you hit the sack.
Another method of hitting your goals or objectives is the method taught by Bangkok’s Haus No 3. Again I admire the founder, Henrik Olofsson and he is someone I can claim to know personally when I went for my FMS certification last July. Their method is known as Move The Needle. With this, the practice is to physically move the needles from one side of the pad to the completed side as and when you do it. If performed habitually, you would have achieved your goal and probably turned it into the habit. The slight shortfall of this method is you can only dedicate the needles/pad to one goal at a time. Then again this is better than nothing.
All these said are basically pointing to two things. First, once a goal is set, we will always be on course to achieving it. Second, for those who complain that they can never find time to workout, sorting your day out with an Optimum Function plan will entail you to hit every single act on a daily basis and they will soon realise it isn’t time that is the problem but organisation of one’s day. Just remember, being busy doesn’t mean you have plenty on your plate. It simply means you’re not approaching each task methodically.
Till next time, persevere and stay determined.