Find Some Discipline
The only way to get things done, is to have some discipline. Have you ever paid attention to the amount of time you might be wasting watching a TV show that you're not really into or reading mindless stuff on Facebook? And then you feel like you don't have enough time to get the things that really matter done, right? It's super simple and yet not so much. All I needed to do was find some discipline.
Sometimes the answers are really simple and yet we can't seem to see them. That happens to me all the time. Last Friday I started reading Chris Brogan's book The Freaks Shall Inherit The Earth: Entrepreneurship for Weirdos, Misfits and World Dominators and I since then I can barely put it down. Immediately I started finding (and using) the ideas in this book. The concepts in the book are brilliant in their simplicity and reading it has been a huge breakthrough for me. This isn't a 'read and think' kind of book -- it's more like a 'get up off your ass and do something' book.
The first thing that struck a chord with me in the book was the concept of discipline. Being a freelancer, I have a lot of freedom and my schedule is super flexible. But is that a bad thing? Kind of. I took a close look at my schedule and realized that while my mornings were quite structured (coffee, walk Bear, breakfast for both of us, client work) my afternoons were this nebulous time suck where nothing much seemed to happen. And it wasn't for lack of having things to do!
Brogan suggests that you choose one thing and do it consistently for sixty days, then you add another and so forth. So I decided to give it a try. I have begun what I am calling my Motivation and Gratitude Walks (see the photos on my Instagram account). Every day, around noon, I go out for a walk in the sunshine. I have added it to my calendar which reminds me ten minutes before the scheduled time. [A quick side-note: I have been using my online calendar a lot more lately and I'm finding that's really helpful for my productivity as well.]
In order to be able to walk and not have to stop every five steps I leave Mr. Bear at home. Not to worry, he gets two walks a day that are just for him. I spend 20-25 minutes just walking in my neighborhood and enjoying the sun. Looking at the houses is my motivation because it is my ultimate goal to live in a house. I also find things to be grateful for while walking and I find something to photograph to commemorate the success. Today was day five and it's been awesome so far.
Having the discipline to do this has motivated me to do more with my days and to be mindful of the activities that are a waste of time. Accomplishing this simple little task every day is a big motivator and having the discipline to stick to it makes me feel really good. There was no "trick" to acquiring the discipline - there's no shortcut - you just have to decide to do it. The one thing I think helped is that I chose something that is not only good for me but that I enjoy. I'm not sure how well I would have done if I had decided to take on an activity that I dislike doing.
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