who's your daddy!?
going the distance
When it comes to progress, positive change, and being a better person, a lot of distance can exist between where I want to be and where I actually am—or, better yet, between where I think I am and where I actually am.
Discovering where we actually are on the journey towards where we want to be is difficult, especially considering that personal progress is a never-ending journey.
For starters, it’s important to know our actual goal is identification — being able to identify progress and chart real change, good or bad. This gives us the ability to know when we’re moving forward, closing the distance between where we want to be and where we actually are.
So how do you know if you’re moving forward?
defined, measurable disciplines
What cannot be counted, cannot be measured, and what cannot be measured cannot progress.
Discipline, by definition, is the practice of training in order to adhere to a certain behavior. Discipline comes in varying shapes and sizes. However, I believe one discipline is more important than all the other disciplines combined: a scheduled schedule. I say “scheduled schedule” because too often our daily routine (schedule) is scheduled, but it’s not scheduled by us.
"who’s your daddy!?"
The phrase, “Who’s your daddy?” was used for the first time in 1968. It was a lyric from the song, A Time of Our Lives by The Zombies. Since then, it’s been heard in various movies, recited by actors such as Denzel Washington in Remember The Titans. The phrase is meant to be an expression of dominance, communicating a sense of ownership.
When I think of my schedule, this is one of the first phrases that comes to mind: “Who’s your daddy?!” Who or what is dominating my time, determining how I spend my days as I intentionally pursue getting from where I am to where I want to be?
Is it me? Am I intentional with what I do and how I spend my time? Am I able to say “no" so that I can do the things I have identified as being important to my progress and development?
who or what is dictating what you do?
My experience tells me that how I spend my time is typically determined by one of three task masters:
(1) My Responsibilities
(2) My Opportunities or
(3) My Scheduled Schedule
If my schedule is determined by number 1 or 2, I’ll never accomplish what I could accomplish if my answer was number 3.
My Responsibilities - Being responsible with my responsibilities requires discipline. Too often, I allow my responsibilities to begin to dictate what I do and when I do it. This is especially true if you’re an overachiever. Scheduling my schedule (versus responding to that which seems to need the most attention) allows me to say no, which is a big part of being and staying responsible. Progress requires a pre-established weekly schedule. No exceptions.
My Opportunities - The more organized I am, the more successful I can become. However, the more successful I become, the more likely I am to become unorganized and undisciplined, resulting in poorer time management.
Fact: The more successful I am, the less available I will be. This is one reason why “a scheduled schedule” is so important. Trust me, it's very easy to let the tail start wagging the dog when it comes to success. Before you know it, 50% of your day is spent having conversations with people who want your time but have nothing to do with what needs to be done for the day.
My Scheduled Schedule - A scheduled schedule keeps you on point. People who want your time have to get on your schedule, and appointments last only 45 minutes or less. A scheduled schedule is thought through and planned out before each week begins. A scheduled schedule is purpose-driven versus problem-driven; it's designed with the end in mind. It keeps us from having ineffective meetings and spur of the moment appointments.
A scheduled schedule is a part of a bigger system that gets and keeps us headed in the right direction. It’s a process that breaks our year into quarters, months, and even weeks, if necessary. It’s a systemized approach that allows us to set a big goal for the year and then work backwards in order to measure progress and ultimately achieve it.
Here is a picture of my "scheduled schedule" from 15 years ago. I still do the same kind of thing - now it's digital.
Listen, the Calvary isn’t coming. You are your greatest hope for positive change and progress. No one else can do it for you. Don’t allow your responsibilities or opportunities to start telling you who’s in charge. Schedule your schedule or it will schedule you, and then you’ll hear it softly whisper, “Who’s your daddy?!”
Let me know if or how I can help you.
P.S. - If you’ve met with me recently, you know that I use http://youcanbook.me. I love it! This site allows those who would like to meet with me to go straight to my blog and request an appointment for themselves based on previously established times that work with my scheduled schedule. If you’re looking for something like this, I highly recommend it.