What are you brushing off?
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While I do own a brush, I prefer not to use it. Instead, I typically just run my fingers through the hair until it doesn’t call attention to itself. But for the past couple of weeks the hair has been attracting too much attention and I’ve had to starting using the brush. This can only mean one thing: it’s time for a haircut. But it’s been two weeks since the first warning signs and I’ve yet to get a haircut. What gives?
Is my schedule overbooked?
Does the barber have too many appointments already?
Have I run out of money?
Any one of these reasons could cause the predicament I’m in, yet none are accurate. The real reason is far simpler: I haven’t gotten a haircut because I haven’t scheduled an appointment yet.
Every day for two weeks I have been reminded at least once a day that an appointment needs to be made to see Emily, the East Side Barberess, yet these reminders always come when I already know what I’m supposed to do next, because the day has already been scheduled. And so, I simply say to myself, that I’ll make the appointment later—yet later (so far) has meant never.
I’ve come into the habit of planning my daily labor ahead of time, breaking big projects into manageable tasks that can be accomplished over the course of several days. These tasks become committed to the daily schedule. On any given day, I know what needs to be accomplished to stay on track. What this means, is whatever makes it to the list will always get done, one way or another. The key is to get the right things onto the list, and this requires time for reflection.
Although I’ve built reflection into the scheduling process, in practice it seldom actually happens. Instead, I simply tend to move onto the next project. But this practice of brushing off reflection isn’t sustainable. Though results require action, it’s only when we engage in the right actions that worthy performance can be achieved. That, and if I took even just five minutes to reflect at the end of the day, maybe I would have finally scheduled that appointment to see Emily and I could finally put the brush away.
If lately you’ve found yourself engaged in constant activity while brushing off reflection, perhaps you can use this as a reminder to find a practice that works for you to build reflection into your day to ensure you’re engaging in the right activities.
As for me, it’s time to stop brushing it off. I have an appointment to make.
Jonas Cain is an educator, facilitator, and coach for Hashtag Positivity, helping emerging leaders and their influencers experience joy in their life, work, and relationships. Schedule a strategy session with him today to discuss your challenges, goals, and obstacles.
Jonas Cain is an educator, facilitator, and coach, working to engage, empower, and encourage leaders and the people they serve to experience joy.