Our life can feel stagnant. Like a corpse.
We go through our routines day after day. Maybe we’ve identified our personal vision and mission. We’ve even taken the time to outline our goals.
But after a few days of excitement, we settle into the mind numbing monotony of life as usual.
I’m going to share some tips and tricks to help you change your energy, so that you can go from feeling like a corpse to moving around like a newly energized person.
When you feel stagnant, it’s tough to muster up the energy to do this. But you have to!
You need to take an inventory of your time, your talents, and your resources.
[ Make sure that you’ve outlined your personal mission statement and your personal vision. These will provide the WHY against which to evaluate the WHAT (the best use of your talents, time, and resources)]
Day. noun. A period of twenty four hours, mostly misspent. Ambrose Bierce
Time is one of our most valuable resources! Here’s what I am going to do, and what I want you to do. Starting on a Sunday, start recording every single time activity. You can use 15 minute, 30 minute, or 1 hour increments to keep track. I have a 15 minute increment appointment calendar I’m going to use.
Tracking your time will open your eyes to pockets of time you can put to better use in pursuit of your most important goals.
Your talents are those activities you perform well, are passionate about, and perform differently/better than others.
Here are a couple of resources for you to start reflecting on your differentiated, motivated abilities:
b) Strengths Finder 2.0. I’ve written about this resource at length. Yes, I’m an affiliate. Yes, I’ve bought it and used it. And yes, I recommend it to you as a low cost way to find out what your strengths are 🙂
Your resources include the people you know, your specific experiences in life, and your money.
You have more resources than you may think. Jay Abraham, one of my favorite business authors, shows you just how many assets you possess in his book, Getting All You Can Out Of All You’ve Got. Read this book to discover all the assets already have.
But getting down to money. You’re going to want to know your financial state in order to know how much money you can afford to invest in some of your most important personal goals.
Take time to write down your net worth, your personal debts, your bank account balances, and your retirement account balances.
Here are sites I totally recommend, having used them extensively myself:
c) David Ramsey
d) If you find yourself in personal debt that you’re truly overwhelmed by, consider the Better Business Bureau approved American Consumer Credit Counseling center nearest to you (if you are in the United States).
Celestine Chua highlights the life wheel as a great way to assess your life. She divides the life wheel into 11 segments. I personally like to use my life roles as a way to divide the life wheel. You can also use the concept of your life buckets. However you choose to do it, evaluate how you feel you are performing in each area of you life.
Here’s a life wheel worksheet from MindTools to help you assess the areas of your life.
Rate yourself on each of your life areas. Reflect on what each results area means to you. I go through this exercise every single year as part of Changing My Life. One year, for example, I found that my relationships were rated a lot lower than my career. After reflecting, I realized that, at the end of my life, relationships will be much more important than any career accomplishments. So I made the appropriate changes.
The Trade-off Matrix is a tool for helping us better understand what we should stop and start doing: where, and when. It offers a simple means of assessing the strategic trade-0ffs necessary to create a more effective strategy. –John Horwath, Strategy for You
Here’s an example of a trade-off matrix activities I came up with:
|Checking e-mail at homeTime-killing television||Time spent with each individual member of my familyTime spent reading good books|
|Lack of focus at workAttending meetings at work||Monthly family outingHaving friends over to the home once per quarter|
Now it’s your turn. See what you can cut, decrease, increase, and create to produce greater results in your life.
a) Take a time inventory this week. Carefully track where your time is going. At the end of the week, look at it critically, consider the trade-off matrix, and decide whether you want to change what activities you spend your time in.
b) Take some time to catalog your talents. Don’t be shy. But also be realistic by inviting others’ input.
c) Figure out your net worth. Also take 30 days to track your financial spending habits. Check out the sites I’ve listed above for more help in this area. Don’t spend money mindlessly.
d) Take an hour this week to reflect on your life wheel. After you have plotted where you are in each area on a scale of 1-10 in terms of your effectiveness and satisfaction, consider where you want to be. Then use the trade-off matrix to set some goals to improve your effectiveness and satisfaction in that particular area.
e) Fill out the trade-off matrix. Just writing out some ideas will change your energy.
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photo credit: janie.hernandez55