When you want to create progress on your new goal or skill, take those 15 minutes and schedule them into the calendar as a recurring daily event. Consistency compounds and those 15 minutes will go a long way if you use them wisely.
It’s not always about the quantity of time spent on a task but quality. If you know you only have 15 minutes, you will put in all your effort. Also, that amount of time isn’t mentally taxing. If I told you to put aside 2 hours, I’ve already lost you because it feels like too much of a sacrifice. 15 minutes is palatable and if used correctly, can yield tremendous progress.
Once you have mastered the habit of showing up to the 15-minute slot, you can then make a decision on when and if you are going to expand it. Chances are when you begin to see the progress and results from your effort, you will want to increase it. And if not, then at least you are making space for your personal development.
Principle 6: Dedicate The Task To Someone
“Lead a life of your own design, on your own terms. Not one that others or the environment have scripted for you.” – Tony Robbins
Sometimes even your future self is not enough to catapult you into action. Maybe you are drained by the year’s challenges or your future self seems too far away to make an effort for. What about dedicating the activity/skill/habit to someone else?
My kids started riding bicycles last year and asked me if I could start riding with them. I wasn’t thrilled about the idea of mountain biking – mainly because I was terrified of hurting myself. I dedicated the hobby to them because I knew how amazing it would be when I could take them riding and spend quality time with them away from a screen.
I dreaded every lesson and eventually embraced the discomfort of being a beginner. I persevered week after week and I came to love it. I had no idea how much I would enjoy it and how it is a way to really discover who you are.
The gremlins of perfectionism, fear, and self-doubt reared their ugly heads but my coach seemed to believe I could do all sorts of crazy steep hills so I proved to myself I could do it. Every lesson was an opportunity to make the choice between fear or courage and I built huge confidence and resilience which played out in other areas of my life.
We aren’t always going to push ourselves past the comfort zone into our courage zone so dedicate the task to someone who will motivate you to become an even better version of yourself than you could imagine.
Principle 7: What Are Your Periphery Activities?
“Don’t pursue happiness; pursue a lifestyle that gives happiness!” – Dandapani
People often ask if 10 minutes of meditation a day will improve their stress levels. My answer is what are you doing for the other 23 hours and 50 minutes?
If you meditate in the morning but spend the rest of the day in panic mode, take no breaks, eat toxic foods and sleep 5 hours a night – then no. It will not make any difference to your stress levels.
It’s like exercising an hour in the morning and then eating pizza for lunch and dinner. Again, it isn’t going to yield the results you want.
What are your periphery activities to enhance the good work you are doing?
What periphery activities can you build into your day to advance your main goal? Once your lifestyle supports your goal, you will no longer be the victim of your environment but the architect of it.