Forget about making a New Year’s Resolution. They don’t work! If something is worth doing, it’s worth making the change right now. Are you looking to improve? I sure am. After some personal soul searching, there are 3 things I’m going to work on, starting today to become a better Ira. If you’re like me, you should consider incorporating all of these into your life too.
Eating to Live, Not Living to Eat
As a 40 something married male living in America, I have some bad habits that negatively affect my waistline. They affect my weight and also my mood, energy level and how I interact with everyone else. We all know that eating right is smart and we should do it. A quick glance around most rooms will tell you that too many of us don’t actually care. Our society is full of overweight and out of shape citizens. I am guilty of spending too much time behind the wheel of a car in traffic and my desk. Once upon a time, I was in great shape, an athletic kid who grew up playing sports. Those days are long gone. A workout now isn’t a tenth of what it once was and I feel it for days which is hardly motivating me to repeat the process.
What I need is a good slap in the face. Heart disease, stroke, diabetes and more are all things that could easily set in on me if I don’t make rethink my priorities and poor choices. I know eating right will help me have more energy. Even working into the wee hours of the morning instead of sleeping contributes to my demise.
So there it is. I have to chart a better course. My new regime isn’t fully developed. I will work on an exercise routine, eating better and getting more sleep. These improvements will help me be a better person, have more energy and impact others. If you need to make similar improvements, you’re not alone. The change might be hard, but sweat, blood, and tears, the rewards will be worth it. We only get one go around. Let’s not waste it being mediocre.
If It’s Not Scheduled, It Doesn’t Happen
Do you fly by the seat of their pants? Do you wake up each day and get a ton done without having an established to-do list? For me, if it isn’t scheduled, I won’t do it. I have so many things that I need to do every day, with my work, my philanthropy, my family and my devotional time. I have been skipping a lot of sleep by catching just a precious few hours a night and I’m still behind. Now I can’t even do that anymore, thanks to my new lifestyle commitment.
The new and improved Ira is going to work off a master priority list each day. I have done this for work for years, but now I will expand it out to all aspects of my life. This list will include: working out, eating, reading, spending time with my kids, dates with my wife and sleeping. If it’s not on the list, odds are it won’t get done. That might seem like a rigid and unhelpful thing, but I believe it will help me be more efficient. Things that are a priority will make the list and the fluff won’t. I wonder why I didn’t make this change sooner? Who says you can’t teach an old dog new tricks?
How about you? Are you having trouble getting things done consistently? If so, join me and try working off a master schedule. You are in charge of setting it. Make sure you plan well and make the most of your time without burning out.
Leaders are Readers
John C Maxwell says “Not all readers are leaders, but all leaders are readers.” The older I get, the more I understand his position. Being well-read helps leaders with a diversity of things. I never used to want to read, as I actually can’t stand bad writing. As I’ve grown in experience, I have found I actually enjoy reading, non-fictional, well-written books. Sports, politics, history, religion, philosophy are the topics I tend to read when I make time to do it. Lately, I’ve been so busy doing things for others, that I haven’t invested time in ingesting wisdom.
I wonder how much more I could help job seekers and those looking for advice on how to deal with the modern AI/ATS landscape if I was better to read? Perhaps building rapport with my print prospects would be easier if I was up on the latest book releases? Reading not only gives us information, it provides our brain an opportunity to process other data as we relax. There is a multitude of benefits gained by reading a book. I like to read hard copy books. I still use old fashioned bookmarks and have a real library in my office with hundreds of books.
When’s the last time you sat down and read for pleasure? For me, it’s been a few months. I read my Bible daily but beyond that not much. I have read some things for reference and for a church ministry class, but nothing lately simply for me. So here and now, I’m adding it to my list. The sheer joy of consuming new thoughts and data is something I look forward to doing. Perhaps I will start with “The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership,” By John C. Maxwell.
Time Waits for No One
As 2018 starts to slip into the rearview, 2019 is in full view of the proverbial windshield. What changes will you make to improve? Are you on the road to heart attacks, strokes, and diabetes like I was? If so, I implore you to consider making some course corrections. Decide enough is enough. We all need to consider the long term effects of our daily choices. I want to be better. You can be better too. We’re not competing with each other here. If you determine to work on becoming more disciplined and improve where you fall short, I will cheer you on. I hope you’ll do the same for me. We can all do better, by sticking to a well thought out, to-do list that includes working on our physical and mental health. 2019 can be great. We can do this!