My schedule is fuller these days, making me feel like I’m falling behind and won’t get anything done. I’m starting to feel like no matter how hard I try, some things do not change. I wanted to share my feelings if anybody was feeling similarly to see if my experiences might help.
I’m surprised by how long it took me to realize what I was doing this time because I have been practicing letting go of the past for a long time. But it creeps in, and sometimes we do not notice. The more we are present, the more potent we are and the happier we will be.
We spend most of the day at work, solving problems on a daily basis. What we often forget is that many of the tools for problem solving that we use at work can be very useful for our personal lives as well.
Problem solving for life follows a similar process to that in business. Our personal and professional lives are always busy, and sometimes we don’t give our personal difficulties the same type of attentiveness we give to our business problems. It is in the personal sphere, though, where we can have the most impact in our lives overall, freeing more time and space to be more creative and feel fulfilled.
I am convinced that one of the biggest threats to the adult mind is the amount of everyday information we store in it. All day, our brains are sifting through thousands of to-dos and incomplete items:
You forgot to return your client’s call.
The proposal has not gone out yet.
Taxes are going to be due soon, and you have not prepared the documentation.
The printer is acting up and will have to be repaired.
You need to start hiring for a new marketing position.
It is relentless. The reminders do not stop until we complete the tasks. The brain’s goal is to make sure we survive, and this is one of the ways it helps us. And your brain is right: the information is useful and important.
Even with processes up and running in your business, you will still sometimes run into problems. Perhaps a newsletter did not go out on the date it was supposed to, or a report has missing information. It is impossible to foresee and document every single possibility in your processes.
So, what do you do when you find a gap in the way something needs to be done? You have one of two choices: you can temporarily patch it up, or you can prevent the problem from ever happening again. It pays to take the time to figure out what happened and solve the issue for the future.
I just finished reading Ray Dalio’s book Principles: Life and Work, which was released in September 2017. Ray Dalio is the founder of Bridgewater Associates, the world’s largest hedge fund, and his book was highly anticipated due to the scale of his renown and success. His work is about the principles he developed to guide him both personally and professionally. Dalio has chosen to share these principles so others can benefit from the wisdom and experiences he and his company have accumulated over the years.
Despite his unusual approaches, Dalio’s book carries tremendous wisdom and practical insight. I highly recommend reading Principles: Life and Work because his principles apply to everybody who has goals, and his ideas provide an extremely valuable way of looking at the world. In case you haven’t had a chance to read it, here are some of the points that I found most impactful in “Part I: Where I am Coming From” and “Part II: Life Principles.” I will continue next week with my analysis of “Part III: Work Principles.”