The greatest writers on time management all agree – plan weekly, adapt daily. I subscribe to that ideal and do my planning on each Friday, but don’t worry – this post isn’t about time management. (That’s my other blog at https://policetimemanagement.com )
No, this blog being about The Three Resolutions, my focus this morning is about how ‘weekly’ doesn’t cut it for so many of us. A weekly review of our commitments and plans isn’t enough if, like me, you’re not as disciplined as you’d like to be. Recommitment every Sunday morning isn’t enough for us just as much as it isn’t (really) enough for churchgoers who are all pious from 11am to midday, and then go for a beer and heavy Sunday dinner in a pub.
Nope. I’m afraid for those of us still striving to become what we have concluded is ‘our best’ once a week may not be sufficient for our needs. We need to remind ourselves on a daily basis what it is we are about, what we are for. For those of us who really struggle, we may have to recommit every time we pass a temptation – like the fridge.
Having your values/mission/plan as a handy reference is, well, handy. In fact, having it to hand can be a literal requirement. An ‘in-yer-face’ representation and reminder could be key to keeping you on your set path. It’s not absolutely reliable – it takes personal proactivity to actually comply – but having the reminder present is certainly helpful. It reminds you of the guilt you’re going to feel when you don’t act in accordance with the values you set yourself.
In my ‘other’ book, ‘The Way: Integrity on Purpose’, I promote the analysis of personal values and the creation of a personal mission statement in much greater depth than revealed in The Three Resolutions book. I also discuss iconography. (See also Dan Brown and his ‘Robert Langdon’ novels.)
What’s that got to do with the price of eggs?
I’m a bit OTT. I have my ‘mission compliance reminders’ on the screensaver of my mobile phone and in the front of my planning system, but I’ve also had badges made, badges that I wear on at least one piece of clothing (coat or hat) that remind me I’m a frequent failure. 😊 Surprisingly cheap to obtain, given they’re custom designed. (£14 for 14 2 ½ inch metal badges from Awesome Merchandise, free plug).
You see, I’m trying to create a kind of obligation to act in accordance with the motto/philosophy that these badges represent. You might think that’s a bit weird, but there you sit in your football club’s shirt, or a branded shirt that just advertises someone else’s mission. Think about that. You paid more for your shirt than I paid for my badges, and you’re reinforcing and funding someone else’s mission. Duh!
Have you explored your personal values? Have you a personal mission statement or stated, written ‘constitution’? If so, great. If not, do the exercises that create them.
Then think of a way to reinforce your integrity, and if that means designing your own logo, get to it and get compliant. Identify with and confess to the meaning behind your logo – it is your personal brand iconogrified (new word © ).
Then look at it every time you fancy another emergency pasty, and see if that makes you skinny.
(Click on the links in the article to see the books that give rise to and expand upon this wisdom.)