Is it really a big deal to “put things off” until tomorrow? Absolutely it is! Here’s the problem. When you push important tasks into the next day; you don’t just innocently push one or two things forward. You push “the entire chain of events” between you and your goals, between you and what you said you want, further back. And then you wonder why progress is slow. Sound familiar? Here’s how to permanently change this…
THE TIME DELAY BETWEEN YOU AND YOUR GOALS
Hi folks, how you doing? Billy Farrell here. Okay, I want to share something with you that hit me like a ton of bricks tonight and it’s something that most folk do, and its one of the main reasons why people never truly achieve their goals. Now, I’m going to relate this to a business context but this can be related to life, it could be related to employment, it can be related to fitness, health, whatever you want to call it. This is something that most people do, and it’s absolutely holding you back. So let me explain. Right now it is almost 1 in the morning, I have promised my team that I would record a podcast, that’s what I’m doing right now, one of these videos. This video gets sent to the team, the team set it up for LinkedIn, Youtube, Facebook, IGTV. It’s cut into shorter clips and put on Twitter, put back on LInkedIn as a shorter clip, on Instagram, on Instagram stories. It’s transcribed and turned into an article. There’s quotes taken from it to share images online. I mean, there’s so many things happen as a result of this video.
The reason I’m telling you this is because there are many things that have to happen as a result of this video and there’s a team of people siting there who are waiting on me to get this content to them. And I’m sitting here, looking at the clock thinking it’s almost 1 in the morning, I promised I would have this content before they start work tomorrow, and I’ve got no inspiration. There’s nothing coming to me tonight. I don’t know what to share, and I always make it a point never to share unless I’ve got something to say. Share when you’re inspired, because that’s when you’re going to truly connect with people, but I’m sitting there tonight thinking I don’t know what to talk about. I sent a message to someone, and I said give me an idea, this is the situation, and he said, “Why don’t you share a little talk about that very topic? About the idea of pushing through when you don’t feel like it and the negative effects of not pushing through and the positive effects of actually doing what you said you were going to do.”
FALLING SHORT ON OUR PROMISES
Because, here’s the challenge, here’s the reality. When you push off a task, when you push back something that you said you were going to do, you let it slip to the next day. First of all, the chances are that’s not a one-off. That’s a habit. That’s something you do regularly. But if you push something off to the next day, not only you’re breaking your word to yourself, not only you’re fulfilling that habit, but you are pushing back the entire chain of events, the entire chain of things that have to happen between you and what you said you want to happen, your goal, your target, your deadline. You’re pushing back the entire chain of events between you and what you said you want to happen. That’s a massive problem, because that is what most folk do.
We fall short on our promises to ourselves. First of all, most folk don’t even have a sensible plan for what it is they want to achieve. They don’t look down the line and say, I’ve got 6 weeks to do this, what has to happen each week in order for me to stay on track to that 6-week goal? Then based on that, what has to happen this week in order for me to achieve this week’s goal for every other week to flow smoothly? But most folk don’t think like that. Let’s say you’re smart enough that you do things like that, and you have staged out different projects that you’re working on. Great, here’s the challenge. When the going gets tough, when everything gets a bit full-on, when you have a tough moment, when life gets in the way, what do we do? We look at what we’ve got to do that day and we say, well, do you know what? It’s been a long day. I’m going to take a break. I’m going to watch the telly. I’m going to relax. I’m going to take a breather. I’ve done a hard shift. My mental energy is gone. I’m going to do this tomorrow. I’ll push it back to tomorrow.
STAYING ON TRACK
Here’s the problem – when you get to tomorrow, you’ve already got a whole bunch of tasks to do tomorrow and you’ve just added to it. Now what happens at the end of tomorrow when you’re absolutely burst and there’s more still to be done? Well the same thing repeats itself. See, if we do adequate planning in advance and we know what’s got to happen, then as long as we just stay true to what we said we were going to do, then things will tick along nicely and you will stay on track with what we said we wanted to do. Guys, here’s the thing about business. I’m going to speak to the business folk here. When the boss is watching, you have to perform, but when you are the boss, let’s be honest, most self-employed people and most business owners should fire themselves. We should fire ourselves.
I used to sell broadband, life insurance, sofas, all sorts of stuff, but I remember when I sold life insurance on the phone. It was cold-calling. It was outbound and it was on automated dialler, meaning, when one person hung up and told you to go and kill yourself, yep, the next call come through within 3 seconds, so you had no choice but to stick with it and keep on pushing. Now, after about half an hour, most people were totally soul-destroyed, and going out for their first fag break. I actually got quite good at the job, and became one of the best people there, but if I was working for myself, and I was selling life insurance through cold calling people, here’s the truth, I would not be sitting there phoning the next person within 3 seconds of the last one hanging up and saying something offensive to me, not a chance.
In fact, I would spend the whole morning watching Tony Robbins videos trying to pump myself up before getting on the first phone call. I would then get to lunch time and think, well, do you know what, I’ll have some lunch and then I’ll get back to it. Then lunch would pass and I’d say Okay, I’m going to go for a walk with the dog, get some fresh air, get inspired. This afternoon, I’m going to write all the objections that I might face and then tomorrow, I’m going to start fresh.
FOCUSING ON THE BIG THINGS
Then the bullshit pattern repeats itself because we are masters of putting things off, we are masters, listen carefully to this, of taking the small things and focusing on the small things to make way for the big things, and those big things never really get done, do they? They get put off, and put off, and very rarely do we actually get them done. Whereas if you want to be smart about it, what you should be doing is focusing on the big things and letting the little things fill in the gaps in between and later on. That’s the way we should be doing things. Focus on the needle moving tasks, but we don’t do that. Generally, the things that get put off are the big tasks, the most important things, the things we generally don’t want to do but we have to do, and every time we put them off, we push back that entire chain of events. So, as we wrap up here, I’m going to encourage you. Create a new habit. A new habit of getting things done. My uncle Colin is a master at this. Colin, normal guy, manages a pub. Here’s what Colin does, right? When Colin comes back from work, if he walks in the garden and looks at the grass, and it’s long, most folk would look at the grass and say, the grass needs cut, then they’d walk inside and do nothing. Next day, they’d walk by, the grass needs cut, and then they do nothing. Next day, the grass needs cut. What does Colin do? Colin walks in, looks at the grass and says, the grass needs cut, puts his bag down, gets the lawnmower and cuts the grass. Who would have thought it? He just gets it done.
That sticks in my mind because it’s always been something that reminds me that when something needs done, rather than thinking about it, over-planning it, procrastinating on it, coming up with all these different ideas around it, just do it. Just get it done. It’s the same as when people tell me, “Oh, I’ve got a phone call booked for 12 o’clock tomorrow”. What the fuck? Just pick up the phone and make the call just now. Why wait until tomorrow? Why put it off? Why make it an appointment when it can be something that’s done on the go? Let’s focus on the big rocks, the big tasks, the big things that need to be done, and let’s stay committed to the things that we said we would do today. Are there things today as you’re watching this, that you said you were going to do that you’re putting off, that you’re making excuses about, that you’re justifying, playing down and passing off until tomorrow? Because remember, everything that you put off today, and put back to tomorrow, you’re pushing back the entire chain of events between you and your goal. Simple. Think about it. So, push through, get shit done. It’s 1 in the morning, I’ve just wrapped this up, I’m glad for this quick last-minute save, because I said that I would do this, and I have done it, and now I’m going to go and send it to the team, get to my bed, and then get up early and crack on with the next day. Guys, hope you enjoyed this. Connect with me followbilly.com, go and catch up with me, subscribe to the podcast if you like this kind of chat, and I’ll see you later.
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