Tag Archives: Life

When is an achievement not an achievement

Recently I’ve found myself wondering if some of the work I do is really worth it. And I’m not talking about civilization level cancer research type is it worth it, but is it worth it just on my level, for me.

Sure we have to do those small annoying menial tasks both in our jobs, or even at home. I know I know, you really really enjoy hanging up the washing or cleaning the toilet, but for the rest of us, it isn’t something we can’t sleep the night before in anticipation of doing. It just isn’t.

Completing a large work goal, yes it helps them the company, and you might feel great about it. Will you be remembered for it? Will you yourself even remember it in a few weeks? What about a few months? Ten years time? Or will it help you get to where you are going? Do you even know where you are going? More importantly, do you know where you want to be going?

Lots has been said on the fact that you should design your own career or someone else will, and I think that equally applies to life. Life is more than your job, or at least it should be. Work to live, don’t live to work as they say.

Find some balance, unless it is your baby

And yes I truly believe that. If your work is your own, your own company, your own creation, your own goals, then yes, go all in. If it means the world to you then give it the world. It’d be almost irresponsible not to. That isn’t to say you should over commit or forget about the rest of your life. After a long day (or week) of work, being able to switch off for a while isn’t cheating. It isn’t ignoring your goals. It isn’t you being lazy.

Many highly successful people carve out time blocks, sometimes as frequent as each day, and during this time, nothing work related exists. Come hell or high water, they are taking this time as their own and everything else can wait. For anyone working in computing, you probably already know of the benefit of downing tools and walking away when faced with a problem. Your mind can solve it even when you aren’t thinking about it. Over thinking is real!

The flipside

In Your Money or Your Life, the authors talk, quite literally, about how life is money and the true cost of working. Best way to explain it is what it costs for you to work, everything from the time travelling to and from work, to your lunches, to your work clothes. It all adds up and is rarely taken into account.

Perhaps you are building your own company and it has goals you believe it, or perhaps you think you do love your job, maybe you even do, but when its all gone, and inevitability it will be someday, will you look back and think, yeh, I did good, or will it fade away into the blur?

Now don’t get me wrong, working towards goals is good. I’d recommend settings lots and lots of goals to help you on the path, it is how I operate. Big goals are difficult to achieve, but break them down to small steps and each one is easy to do. Lots of these goals won’t match up when viewed from the proverbial deathbed either, that’s ok. A building is built brick by brick, and few bricks are as memorable as the end piece, but forgot that first brick and it could all fall down.

Is there a point to any of this?

I guess my overall point is that taking time out to create the map, even if it means you miss your achievement or goal, isn’t really time wasted. 10 Miles in the wrong direction is still 10 Miles in the wrong direction.Getting started is important, but so is knowing where you are going. Knowing where you want to end up lets you know if this really is something you should be doing, or just noise along the way.

I can’t do that…yet

He who thinks he can, and he who thinks he can’t, are both usually right.

Most people laugh at that quote, but honestly, it is in my mind a lot. Whether it is a new problem or task that has come up, or talking to someone who is stuck at an impasse, it describes things beautifully. The mindset really does impact the outcome.

I know with any technology problems (outside of electronics, that stuff is my kryptonite!) it is simply a question of how long, not if. Yes there are problems which aren’t technically solvable, YET, but we can build the best solution now and be ready when things catch up. And this equally applies to thing that I don’t know how to do, YET.

That is one thing Google is great for. Your problem is unique. One of a kind. A perfect little snow flake. But then Google let’s you find the others who have been there, done that, and provided the steps to build upon.

If you think you can move mountains, if you really really believe, then you aren’t crazy, others just don’t see that the mountain isn’t going to move…

I know, I know. Someone who thinks they can will a mountain to move probably is crazy, but the mountain is a metaphor. The thing to realise is you rarely have to move the mountain. There is always is another way. Some may be longer, more painful, or downright scary, but they are options. If you think you can’t, or think it’s too difficult, then you will never see these.

The mind is amazing, and I really know relatively little about it. But I know for fact that given the right motivation, your mind can make you do almost super human feats. We’ve all heard the story of the mother who lifts the car to save her baby, so imagine channelling just 1% of that each and every day, into the same task. Things don’t seem so impossible any more do they?

Remember then, anything is possible, its just a case of do you want it. I can’t do that can easily turn into, I can’t do that, YET…

Just think of the possibilities.

The Comfort Zone

Sometimes you read some that moves you. It hits you and you realise something you always knew.

Reading a blog post from Seth Godin gave me just one of those moments. His post, the worst moments are your best opportunity just clicked.

The Comfort Zone

Lately I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about my comfort zone. Be that in how I work, how I train, or even how I relax. What has been occurring to me is that the scared feeling of leaving my confort zone is normal. Being worried about doing something because you aren’t sure of the outcome, everyone gets it.

But at the same time, why do we always aim to push beyond that zone, if even just small steps?

A Realisation

While Seths blog does focus on marketing, life involves marketing in more areas than I originally let myself believe. On a day to day basis you have to market yourself. And while I’ve never really cared what others thought, even to my own detriment, I’ve always tried to go beyond what I knew I could do.

You are presumed to be showing us your real self when you are on a deadline,
have a headache,  haven't had a good night's sleep, are irritable, have the
opportunity to extract  revenge, are losing a competition or are truly

Last year I completed La Marmotte, one of the hardest single day amateur cycling events there is. It was made worse by the heat, 40C at the bottom Alp d’Huez. But I achieved it, and achieved more than I had thought possible. I did what I had joked about wanted to do – A Gold Time. And don’t get me wrong, I had dreamed it, but I really didn’t think it was possible. Even on the training trips before hand, it looked like I wouldn’t make it.

A Single Minded Purpose

While I look back on that and worry that I’m not doing enough this year (which I’m not), I no longer feel all that bad. My priorities have changed is all. Last year I went with a single minded purpose for that event. Everything else came second to it, almost 😉 This year I’ve readjusted my priorities to tick off some longer standing goals, little big ones. For anything is possible if you set your mind to it and want it badly enough.

To View Oneself

Back to Seths post, it hit home that (for me) it is most important how you see yourself, and just like others, you will see through the lies and excuses. Honest actions win out. Leave your comfort zone and you no longer have time to keep up appearances, the real you will show through.

Hopefully you like what you see.