The most significant barrier to producing the results you want stares back at you from your mirror when you are brushing your teeth.
Because we are running headlong into a new decade, my focus is on the next ten years. It will be ten years ago on December 28th that I decided to write and post daily here. I had every intention of creating specific results in my life, and I began the serious work of pursuing my written goals. Because most people fail to succeed in achieving their New Year’s Resolutions, I never start anything on January 1st.
I have used the following device in prior work here, some you may have read, others may have escaped your attention. But it does such a good job shifting your focus and providing clarity, we need it here.
Future You is the person you want to be, say, ten years from now. It’s the version of you that you are becoming, and every decision you take between now and ten years from now is going to determine who you are when this time has passed. The best way to think about what you must do now is to look back from the view of Future You. Future You provides better guidance on the decisions you make than Present You.
Present You wants to hit the snooze button three times when your alarm alerts you that it’s time to get up and get moving. Present You seeks comfort. Future You wants you to exercise the self-discipline to get up and start your day in a way that prepares you to be productive with your time.
Present You seeks the novelty and escapism you find on the social sites, the screens, and your smartphone (an inaccurate description of the device). Future You believes you should be working on the most important outcomes you want in your life. Future You thinks, as focused as you are on your work, you need to be even more intentional about your relationships outside of work, the ones that matter most.
Present Me wanted to watch college football all day. Present Me loves college football. Future Me compromised and allowed me to watch one game with Cher before we went to dinner. Future Me was uncompromising as it pertained to my writing, ensuring that I wrote just over 3,000 words of what will be book number four.
The Next Decade
Yesterday, people on Facebook were posting a picture of themselves from ten years ago and today as part of some kind “challenge” (a challenge that is probably training Facebook’s algorithm to recognize faces over time). As you might imagine, the subjects of these pictures have changed over the last decade. The physical changes are visible, but what and how the person changed on the inside is invisible.
The next ten years are going to pass faster than you would want them to, and at some point, you are going to meet Future You. What is the Future You going to look like? In what ways will you have grown? What will you have accomplished over that decade? What will your life look like ten years from now?
Let other people make New Year’s Resolutions. Let others allow Present Them to break their resolutions on January 4th. You spend time with Future You writing down and making plans for who you are going to become and what you are going to accomplish over the next decade.
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Filed under: Success