We’ve just finished our first month of the year and as of last night; some of us watched an amazing finish to the Super Bowl. My question for you is have you learned anything about yourself this year?
A few weeks ago I had the privilege of leading a vision board workshop for students and instead of doing so much talking, I just decided to be present in the space and work. I started by deliberately selecting words that had an impact on where I wanted my thoughts to be centered this year. Some students had other methods of establishing their vision, but in the end everyone got what they needed from the activity because they were actively present.
The finish to the big game and the experience that took place during the workshop was the same. Stay in the moment. There was still time on the clock and one of those teams remained locked in and present play after play. They understood that making a 25 point comeback wouldn’t happen on a single play; it could only be done one play at a time. Their opponents didn’t realize that they too had to maintain their lead one play at a time, but they potentially looked at the clock and began counting down to the end while they were still “in” the game.
Are some of us counting down to the celebration instead of being present in the work? The victors of the game had been there before and understood the importance of slowing down the moment. The present is all we have. How are you going to change your behavior when you get to the big game if you haven’t committed yourself to this moment right now?
Take a moment and think about who you said you would be this year and give yourself a grade. How many days did you lean into your vision and how many days did you regress. On those days that you didn’t meet your own expectations, what could you have done to pull yourself together? Could you have prayed, watched a motivational video clip, or listened to your favorite song?
There will be days that you want to fast forward to the end or celebrate what you could become, but if you do not focus on this moment and find something to work on, you will not have the confetti fall and hold the trophy. That vision board will become harder and harder to look at and you will revert to looking to others to validate your progress.
Try and focus on the next hour of your day or night and complete something. It shouldn’t be the easiest thing, but the thing you’ve been avoiding today. Were you supposed to send an email, write a paper, call someone, do the laundry, or confront a friend? Get to it. The anxiety of what the outcome will be can be paralyzing. Production is a remedy to some of that anxious energy. After the call, after the paper, after the confrontation, you’ve proven to yourself that you were able to get it done.
We have to try and hold ourselves accountable to the things that move us forward and not just keep us in place. The losers of the 25 point lead didn’t play to move forward, they played to stay in the place they were in. The team that was down couldn’t go through the motions if they wanted to win, they had to move forward.
I hope you learned enough about yourself in the first month of the year to stay on track.