I’ve been investigating some business ideas. And I’ve been enjoying a little downtime.
One new learning has emerged very quickly — the biggest challenge to making things happen is yourself.
When I had a regular job it was easy to stay disciplined. I had to be at work at 8:30am each day. I had one-on-on meetings with my direct reports. People had expectations of me.
I wake up now and each day is a blank slate. It’s easy to goof off, to surf the internet, to read a novel. It’s easy to waste time. Boy is it easy.
Once I realized this last week I took some time to think about and write down some long term goals. Starting a business was one goal but there were also personal goals such as learning to scuba dive and to visit Australia.
When I had my goals written, I asked myself “What habitual actions do I need to take every day to achieve these goals?” To support my “starting a business” goal, I wrote down “brainstorm and research business ideas.” Then I wrote down habitual or discrete actions for each of my goals.
Like John C. Maxwell says, “Success is not made in a day. Success is made every day.” I realized I needed to structure my time every day. So I scheduled time for regular activities that support my goals in Google Calendar. For example, from 9-11am each day I “Research Business Ideas.” I have a separate list on specific research topics.
I still find it challenging to follow the schedule because there’s no one around to put pressure on me if I don’t follow it.
I have met the enemy, and he is us.