The Importance Matrix

Tools To Thrive Series

The Importance MatrixDo you find yourself chasing after all of those “urgent” tasks, only to discover that they really don’t matter?

President Dwight Eisenhower said, “I have to kinds of problems.  The urgent and the important.  The urgent are not important and the important are never urgent.”

Sometimes, the urgent things ARE important.  They probably get done right then and there.  But then the urgent (but not important) tend to crowd out the important (but not urgent).  For example, those meetings and tasks at work that you take on can seem urgent.  But they might not be important.  On the other hand, relationships with a spouse or children can get pushed to the side because they are not urgent.  Yet they are important.

The sad part is when the important (but not urgent) get shuffled off to the side for so long that they become no longer important.  Broken relationships, hurting spouses — they drift away.

The Eisenhower Box is named for President Eisenhower.  It is a powerful tool in your Thriving Toolbox, as you work to get priorities clarified.

Listen in to learn how to use it in your life.

Tools of Thriving Series
Introduction
Thought Awareness
Only Control What You Can

The Responsibility Formula
The Perspective Shift
Your Built-In Importance Indicator

Your Built-In Importance Indicator

Tools To Thrive Series

Your Built-In Importance IndicatorWouldn’t it be nice if you had a built-in detector that let you know when something is important?  Kind of like a treasure detector to point out when to pay attention and dig in?

Guess what?

You do!

But you probably aren’t using it the way it was designed.  Most people aren’t.  In fact, most people use this indicator as an Avoidance Indicator — using it to AVOID things, even important things.

Used correctly, this built-in indicator will help you decide what is important and what is trivial.  It will also guide your choices.  Used incorrectly, and it will keep you stuck, small, and missing opportunities.

Ready to learn how to use it?  Listen below. . .

 

Tools of Thriving Series
Introduction
Thought Awareness
Only Control What You Can

The Responsibility Formula
The Perspective Shift

The Responsibility Formula

Tools To Thrive Series

Being 100% Responsible:  The Responsibility Formula

E + R = O

It’s one of my favorite formulas.  And it isn’t even math!

Well, it kinda is.  It is the Responsibility Formula Dr. Robert Resnick developed, and Jack Canfield popularized.

And it is powerful.

Like most formulas, all the parts must be present.

Many times, people assume that what happens around them determines what happens to them.  They miss a piece of the formula.

Sometimes, people assume they have full control of life, that they can choose their path, without outside interference.  They also miss a piece of the formula.

Master this formula and you will have a grasp on responsibility in your life — and how to work the formula in your favor.

Tools of Thriving Series
Introduction
Thought Awareness
Only Control What You Can

Only Control What You Can

Tools To Thrive Series

Control what you can.Isn’t it interesting how much time people spend trying to control what they can’t control, and how little time we spend trying to control what we can control?

Imagine what would happen if we could flip that.  What if we spent our time trying to control what we CAN control.  And what if we released the rest?

There are really only 3 things that you can truly control.  After that, you are wasting your time and energy.  And you will likely frustrate yourself and others.

This week, as we add another tool to the toolbox, let’s look at the 3 A’s you can control.

Tools of Thriving Series
Introduction
Thought Awareness

How To Accept AND Excel

How to accept what is and start growing toward what could be.In my latest book, Thrive Principles, one of my strategies is Accepting What Is.  Which has caused some readers to wonder how that fits into my ideas about constantly growing and changing.

They are not mutually opposed.  Accepting What Is creates a beginning point, a starting line.  From there, you can move toward who you want to be.  You can build a life of meaning and purpose.

Many people struggle with where they are.  But where we are is just that, our current spot.  Not a permanent place, but a starting point.

This week, I discuss how to both Accept What Is AND plot a growth course to become the person you want to be.  Make your impact with both sides of the equation.

3 Ways You Complicate Your Life

3 ways we complicate our life.Wouldn’t it make sense if we just made things easy, direct, and effective?

We don’t.  We tend to complicate things.  Repeatedly.

Life is already a challenge many days.  So why do we make it harder on ourselves?  Sometimes, it is mental blocks.  Sometimes, it is reaction.  Sometimes, we let our emotions run the show.

This week, I discuss 3 ways you likely complicate your life.  I know, because I fall into those same traps many times.

The first step is understanding the traps.  The second step is avoiding those traps.

Listen in to discover 3 ways you complicate your life. . . and how to avoid those traps.

Are You a WHY or a HOW Person?

Are You A How Or Why Person?I was madly taking notes at a conference a couple of months back.  This guy beside me was taking no notes.  I was impressed with someone who could remember all the details needed.  The conference was about setting up social media, blogs, and other technical elements of launching a program.

At the break, I turned to him and chatted.  I asked him what he did, and what he was hoping to get out of the conference.  He shared.  I asked him how it was going so far.  For the rest of the break, he told me “WHY this won’t work for me.”

Huh.  I was spending the conference asking “HOW can I get this implemented as quickly as possible?”  I was puzzled.  Why was he doubting, seeing WHY it would not work, and I was scrambling to figure out HOW to do it.

And I paused.  Because I have done the exact same thing as my seat neighbor.  Plenty of times, I was hearing great ideas, but only fixated on why it would NOT work.  In fact, my wife called me on being a NO person years ago.  And I am trying to reform.

In many areas, hopefully more and more, I am a HOW person.  What about you?  Where are you a WHY person?  Where could you be more of a HOW person?

Listen to the podcast below for more on what I mean and how to do it.

Revolutionary Habits, Evolutionary Habits

Thriving Habits Series

Over the last few weeks, we’ve focused on habits as a path to your thriving life.  If you missed any of the weeks, the links are noted below.

Your revolutionary habits and your evolutionary habits.Today, we wrap up the series by noting the difference between two types of habits:  revolutionary habits and evolutionary habits.

Let’s say you are currently not exercising, but decide to start.  You decide to take up jogging.  That is revolutionary.  You are making a 180 degree turn and doing something completely different.

But let’s say you have been jogging for awhile — long enough to call it “running.”  And you decide to add in some resistance training (you might call it “weight lifting”).  That is an evolutionary habit.  You are pivoting your exercise habit to a wider array.

Big changes come from revolutionary habits.  But they tend to be spread out.  You can’t take on a new revolutionary habit every week.  Evolutionary habits are more about fine-tuning and constantly improving.  You may be shifting habits in evolutionary ways day after day.

What are the Revolutionary Habits you need to make?  What are the Evolutionary Habits you need to shift?

Listen to the podcast below for more understanding and clarity — and how to do it!

Habit Series:
You Become Your Habits
Habit Sticking
Habiting Your Goals
LinchPin Habits
Thought Habits

Thought Habits

Thriving Habits Series

For the last few weeks, we’ve been talking habits.  What they are, how they form who you are, how you make them stick, how to turn your goals into habits, and finding your “linchpin habits.”

Your thoughts are habits.This week, I want to draw your attention to your thoughts.  Really, I want to draw attention to the fact that your thinking is also habitual.  Not all of your thoughts.  But how you think and many of the thoughts are really habits.

Those thought habits can either keep you stuck or push you along, depending on the habits.

Do you notice that you think the same way, over and over? Or perhaps you notice you think the same thoughts over and over.  Those are thought habits.

Once those habits start, they become invisible.  Your thoughts keep following the same pathway (in fact, the same neuronal pathway).

Thought habits only change when they are seen as habits.  Let’s make those thoughts thriving thoughts!

Listen below for how your thoughts are habits and what to do.

Habit Series:
You Become Your Habits
Habit Sticking
Habiting Your Goals
LinchPin Habits

You Become Your Habits

Thriving Habit Series

You become your habits.For a long time, habits seemed to be a useless topic to me.  Got a bad habit?  Change it.  Need a good habit?  Build it.

But the more I reflect, the more I realize how much of life is really about habits.  More than that, I have noticed how hard those bad habits are to break.  And how hard those good habits are to build.

So I started paying more attention to my habits.  I started studying habits.

My first observation:  the vast majority of daily life runs on habits.  Habits of what you do to get ready in the morning, habits of how you get to work and where you park, habits of how you work, what you do after work, bedtime, etc.  Sure, there are choices all day long.  But in the background:  habits.

Some habits just help you run your day.  Some help your life.  Others get in the way.  And in the end, you become your habits.  For good AND bad.

This week, we start a new series on habits:  what they are, how we form them, how we make them stick, and how we build them out.

This week, let’s talk about habiting.