Sunday, August 31, 2014
Well here we are at the end of 31 days of my personal challenge. For those just tuning in, I am off work recovering from a surgical procedure on my shoulder. I have no competition for my time while I recover and decided to challenge myself to see what I can do in 30 days if I had NO interference from life and the stresses that go with it.
Two Primary Observations:
1) Sleep and stress-
The biggest benefit has been sleep and stress. Without question this has been the most noticeable benefit of stepping away briefly from the insanity that is called life. I never realized how burnt out I was until I had those stresses removed. I now have ambition again and feel re-energized. It wasn't until I had the stresses removed that I began to realize how detrimental stress is. When I get back to the real world, I am going to make it a point to draw lines and safeguard myself. I need to recognize that because I work a non-traditional schedule, I need to be even more careful of my time, my life, and those things I allow myself to take on. I am not super-human, I cannot save the world, and I am not going to throw myself under the bus to do it.
As much as I hate to admit it, the daily circus of life forces a certain amount of structure into my life where if I want to accomplish anything, I had better use my time wisely because there is not much of it. I must take advantage of openings and opportunities that present themselves. I have always day dreamed of what I could do if I did not have this *$@#% job to keep screwing up my life. Well I have my opportunity and so far I have been astounded as to how little I have actually done. I can almost say that I have gotten more done when under the pressure of daily living than when I had my freedom. After having lived on both sides of the fence, I think I can safely say that it is a cop-out to blame circumstances or your work schedule on your inability to make strides forward. I have learned that it can be done and the responsibility falls square on our own shoulders. If you and I haven't worked out for a week or ate poorly, more than likely it is because we chose to and chose to not make it a priority.
Any one that knows me, can attest to my sense of self discipline and motivation. I lack neither and have done some pretty epic stuff. I can say honestly that even the most die-hard individual, when given total freedom in their time and life, will have to make a focused, determined effort to make their time count.
After this, I believe that in the end, success does not depend on circumstance, it depends on a daily commitment make forward progress. To always maintain an awareness the clock is ticking and if you ever want to see your objective go from dream to reality, you have to keep your focus, renew that focus daily, and make it a point to live in that reality.
Removing the time based obstacles did not make much of a difference in my personal accomplishments. What made the difference was that in my busy life, I hit the opportunities presented with fervor because inside I knew my opportunities were limited. It seems like humans, in general, act differently when presented with a "blank check". For me, the intensity and sense of urgency lessened when the pressure of life was removed. After all, why hit it hard today if I don't feel like it when there is always tomorrow and the pages on my planner are blank?
I guess in short, success is not dependent on the absence of obstacles, it is dependent on what we choose in the face of such obstacles and how effective we are with the opportunities afforded to every one of us.
I do have an opportunity to continue on with this for another 30 days due to therapy so lets see what the next 30 days brings.