Don’t mean to brag, but …I’m in sales. I’m a sales guy. I sell stuff. I have quotas and budgets and I pretty much blow my numbers away. I get mad props from my bosses. It’s how I afford my Buick. Cloth seats, bruh. I say things like, “stackin’ ’em up and knockin’ ’em down,” and, “I could sell snow to an Eskimo,” and I talk loud at the bar and regularly check the time on my digital Casio watch so everyone can see how I decorate my wrist – this watch has six alarms, bruh.
Obviously, if you know me, you know none of that actually happens. Yes, I’m in sales. I do OK. I make a living and provide for my family. It’s a living. I like my job. I only bring up my sales job because sales success is measured by monthly, quarterly, and annual performance. Each month, quarter, and year I look back on the previous month, quarter, and year and assess and plan.
Same with my life.
Here we all are, the first week of October, and we’re all kicking off our Q4. Time to assess where we are compared to our annual and quarterly goals, to course correct, and make a plan to finish the year strong.
What? You didn’t make a plan for the year, each month, and each quarter. Me neither, but if you remember what I said about Day-1, no time like the present to make a plan (I really like what Matthew Dicks does).
It ain’t how you start, but how you finish. Actually, that’s not true. First, you need to “start” and starting strong and with a plan gets everything in motion. Writing things down (and you don’t necessarily need a Blog for that …but that public motivation might help certain people). Writing things down always helps …it’s a scientific fact. It takes the stress and confusion from inside your brain and puts it down on paper and then, voila, you’ll never have that “I feel like I’m forgetting something” moment. That’s all stress is …the brain trying to remember the entire list above and the brain can’t do it. If you’re my age, you probably marvel that at one time in your life you knew everyone’s phone numbers by heart. Of course we did. Phone numbers were seven digits. We can remember 7-digit sequences pretty easily. Well, we actually don’t remember the 7-digits …we remember a group of three numbers and a group a four numbers and we remember they go together. It’s true, outside of numbers, if you think of thoughts like spinning plates, most experts agree we can only remember four things at a time. So when you have 12 things to-do at work, and maybe you’re planning something at home, and maybe you’re working on another project in addition to those things, and maybe you’re helping your kids with their stuff …you have way, way, way too much stuff on your mind. If you don’t write these things down, all the various thoughts and ideas and to-do’s come racing into and out of your consciousness and you tell people, “I have a lot on my mind,” and you wonder, “why is my mind racing?”
It’s really as simple as that. Write. Things. Down. Like I did in this Blog. Imagine if I just sat cross legged on the floor, took some deep breaths, and meditated on all that I’ve done, what I’ve failed to do, and then what I wanted to do before the end of the year. Look at the list above. In order, without a list, by the time I got to “Journal for 15-minutes every day” under the Q3 goals, I would’ve already forgotten my top annual goal of writing/finishing my book. In fact, while writing this sentence I had to scroll up and remind myself what my top goal was.
All this is to point out how important it is to write things down. Have goals. Have many goals. Goals give your days and your life meaning. And if you have goals and dreams and don’t build in a regular check-in and analysis, you could be doing better …but how would you know.
Finally, because one of my goals is to “Blog Every Day” …for the dozen readers I have, it will give me something to write about during the first week of November, December, the end of the year, and the beginning of 2022. That’s another lesson, I guess . . . just like we find obstacles in our way, we should build in some boosts and speed-ups (think of life like mid-90s Mario Kart).
Good luck to you in Q4.