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Sept. 26, 2022

Using the power of The ONE Thing to supercharge your goals

Using the power of The ONE Thing to supercharge your goals

This is a book club edition episode and we are talking about The ONE thing by Gary Keller.

The ONE thing uses a very focused question of what is the ONE thing I can do such that by doing it everything else would be easier or unnecessary?

We dive into the 6 lies between you and success. Which are:
1- Everything matters equally
2- multitasking
3- A disciplined Life
4- Will power is always on will-call
5- A balanced Life
6- Big is bad

We talk about how you can use the focusing question in different parts of your life to narrow down goals into a single item thus making it much more realistically obtained.

We get into the 4 thieves of productivity and how you can influence your environment to set you up for success.

This episode is packed full with lots of insights and tools to help you craft realistic goals so you can start to see some major success in your life. 

I so appreciate you listening to the show!

If you wouldn’t mind leaving a rating and review I would really appreciate it!!

To get in touch with Alison with questions or potential topics or guests please email


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[00:00:00] Hello, and welcome to today's show. We are gonna hop right on into it. We're talking about the book called the one thing by Gary Keller. And there's one of the things that I really liked about this book is there's all these really awesome quotes. I don't know if you, I, I just think that sometimes when you hear something condensed down, really simply, it makes a lot of sense.

[00:00:18] So there's gonna be a lot of quotes in today's show. And so the first one is if you chase two rabbits, you will not catch either. That's a Russian proverb and then be like a postage stamp, stick to one thing until you get there. And that was by Josh billings. So that's kind of the heart of the one thing.

[00:00:38] Right. So if you've been listening to the show, You know that I'm a big fan of personal development, right? We all know how challenging life life in general can be made even more so by complications of military life. Right. So I've said it before and I'm gonna keep doing it in that anything that we can do to help our mental game is only gonna do just that it's gonna help our mental game.

[00:01:02] So today's book the one. , it's not anything like earth shattering, but it's really brilliant in its simplicity. And it's essentially, if you can focus on one thing, that's the kicker. One thing you can create in extraordinary life. So here's the basic sum of it. Ask yourself this question. What is the one thing that I can do such that by doing it, everything else would be easier or unnecessary.

[00:01:31] Okay. That's called the focusing question. We'll get into that a little bit later, but that's essentially, the basic gist of it. Right? So when you look at The most successful people on the planet. Right. They have one thing in common typically, and that's that they got really good and really focused on one specific thing.

[00:01:53] Right? One of the examples they give in the book is apple. They have really drilled down. I mean, they had a ton of different products out and then. In what was it? I can't remember what the year it was, but they switched their focus and they went straight to the iPhone and the other stuff didn't go away, but their main focus was the iPhone and it absolutely blew up apple as a business in general.

[00:02:16] Right. So where they have, you know, these, these people and these companies that are very successful, where they have huge success is when they've really narrowed their concentration to one thing. Right. And when they have, when their success, they aren't as successful, it's usually because their focus is kind of all over the place as well.

[00:02:37] So when you want the absolute best chance to succeed at anything that you want, your approach should always be the same. And that is to go small. So going small is ignoring all of the things that you could do and doing what you should do. Right. It's recognizing that, not all things matter equally and finding the things that matter most.

[00:03:02] And I think that this is. , this is the hardest part of this concept because, you know, speaking for myself, I have so many, I feel like one of those like circus performers that has all of the sticks with spinning plates on them. and they're all over the place, right? Like I've got the mom hat and I've got the wife hat and I've got the.

[00:03:31] You know, the parent, the PTA parent, and I've got the podcast host and I've got the strength and conditioning coach and I've got the, you know, there's like all of these things. and so you feel like you're being pulled in all of these different directions and it just feels very chaotic and it's like, you look back over the last year and you're like, well, what have I done?

[00:03:52] Like everybody's alive. So there's that that's a win, but you know what I mean? Like there's no. There there, and there might be for you, but for me, there's, it's just kind of like more of the same. There's not really a big jump and growth or or movement towards goals or you know, it's just kind of been staying and I, and I don't think that most of us want that.

[00:04:15] Right. We wanna make. We want our lives to be significant and we want to make a difference and we want, we have goals that we wanna reach. And so this book is really trying to help you kind of niche down. I don't wanna say niche. That's probably not the right word, but just how to like ratchet down. And really get like laser focused on what it is that you want, what is that goal?

[00:04:40] And then how can we figure out the one thing, right. Make it really super small. What's one thing that we can do that will keep us moving forward. It's really, and, and the big crux of the book is that, you know, really big results are directly determined by how narrow you can make your focus.

[00:05:02] Okay. So one of the analogies that they use in the book is a line is dominoes like right. A line and dominoes. So it only takes a tiny little movement to move a mass quantity of things, right. You, I mean, you can see domino things for miles and miles and miles and miles. or setups rather. But so in 1983 in the American journal of physics, and this makes my husband really happy because he he's a physics major, which is just crazy to me.

[00:05:24] Anyhow. So Lauren Whitehead discovered that domino falls could not only topple many things, but they could also topple bigger things and he described how a single domino is capable of bringing down another domino. That's actually 50%. Larger. So looking at a geometric progression, the first domino is only two inches tall, right?

[00:05:47] The 18th domino. If it's growing by 50%, each time the 18th domino would be as tall as landing tower of pizza. The 23rd would be as tall as the Eiffel tower. The 31st would be 3000 feet taller than Everest. And the 57th is almost the distance to the moon. All of those can be knocked over and it started with one, two inch domino.

[00:06:14] Right? So that's kind of the analogy to keep in your mind is if you start small, you can do something small. It will create this cascade effect or this domino effect that will help you just not goal after goal after goal after goal, but you have to figure out what that little two inch domino is first.

[00:06:29] Okay. So the, the big, a huge chunk of the book, and this is kind of where I spent the most of my time were the six lies. that are between you and success. Okay. So the six months, so I'll, I'll read 'em off to you. So the first one is that everything matters equally. Number two is multitasking. Number three is a disciplined life.

[00:06:52] Number four is willpower is always on will. Call five is a balanced life and six is big, is bad. So these are, those are six things that kind of will stop you on your path to success. Right. So we're gonna get into each one of those each one of those just a little bit. So if everything matters equally, right. So how do you decide when you have a lot to get done in a day? How do you decide what to do first? Right. So as kids, most of the things that we need to do most of the things that we needed to do.

[00:07:23] When it, and there was this like a specific time to do them, right? So it's breakfast time. It's time to go to school. It's time to get your homework done. It's time to do your chores. It's back time. It's bedtime. Right? And then as we get older, there's a little measure of discretion in there. Right? You can go out and play as long as you get your homework done before dinner.

[00:07:40] Right. And then later on, as adults, everything becomes discretionary and it all becomes our choice. Right. And when our lives are defined by our choices, The question is how do we make good ones? Right. So complicating all of these, all of this is that the older we get it's, there's just seems like there's more and more and more pilot onto our plates, right.

[00:08:02] Of things that, that we feel have to get done. Right. So we're all overbooked over extended overcommitted in the weeds, overwhelmed. Like it's just, it's just, that's our, like our collective condition. Right. And so. When everything feels urgent and important, everything feels equal that that's not, that's not the case.

[00:08:25] Right. So we become so active and so busy, but this doesn't actually move us any closer to success. Right. And that's kind of the rabbit or the the, the wheel, right. That I feel like a lot of us live on. Right. And that activity. Is actually unrelated or often unrelated to productivity, right. And being busy busyness, it rarely will move you towards those substantial goals.

[00:08:53] . So how many of you like myself live? buy a to-do list.

[00:08:59] Like I love a good list. I really do, but here's the thing with todo lists. So there are usually just a list of unimportant stuff that we feel obligated to get done because it's on your list. Right. And the things that are most important, don't always scream the loudest. Right. And so what he kind of likens it to is that people who are achievers, they don't operate from that simple to do list.

[00:09:31] Right. They have an eye for the essential items and achievers work from a very clear sense of priority. so a to-do list can lead you like way astray, right? So it's a two to-do list is simply the things that you need to do. Right. And inevitably, the first thing on your list is the first thing that you thought of, right?

[00:09:53] So it's like, you're doing your brain dump and it's like all the random stuff that you have thought that you need to get done. And so they really lack the intent of success. Right? So his. His idea here is that instead of a to-do list, we wanna create a success list. And it's a list that is purposely created around reaching the results that you want.

[00:10:16] With so many things that we could do, right. How do we decide what matters most at any given time in the day? And it's go small, right?

[00:10:27] That's kind of the, the motto of the book go small. Don't focus on being busy, focus on being productive and allow what matters most to drive your day, not checking stuff off of the list. Right? So go extreme with that. Once you figured out what actually matters, we're gonna get into how you can do that too.

[00:10:46] Keep asking what matters most until there's only one. Left. Right. And that core activity is what goes to the top of your success list, not your to-do list. Right. And then you're gonna have to learn how to say no. whether you say later or never, the point is to say not now to anything else. That you could do until your most important work is done.

[00:11:13] And that one is so hard. It's so hard because we are pulled again in so many different directions. And if we allow that to rule our day, we're not going to find the success that we want. Right. So we don't wanna get trapped in that checkoff game. Right. We don't want to believe, or we need to stop believing that.

[00:11:38] Everything matters equally, right? We, there are things that when we have goals and, and dreams that we're going for, we've gotta make those a priority. We just have to make those a priority. Okay. So the, so that was kind of diving in a little bit into that first lie. So the second lie. Is multitasking.

[00:11:56] This , this one was really interesting because he gives a lot of science to this and I've talked about it before. I'm a science person. I wanna know the research. I want it in a peer review journal. I want, you know what I mean? Like, I, I want the, I want the real science, not the pseudoscience. 

[00:12:12] So in the summer of 2009, Clifford NAS, who's a professor at Stanford university. Set out to find how so called multitaskers multi-task. Okay. So his team of researchers gave 262 students questionnaires to determine how often they multitask. They divided their test subjects into two groups of high and low multitaskers, and began with the presumption, right.

[00:12:39] That the frequent multitaskers would perform better. Right. They do it all the time. They should be better at it. You would think. They were wrong. so NAS was sure that the multitaskers had some secret ability. But it turns out that they were outperformed on every measure.

[00:12:56] Right. So although they could convince themselves in the world that they're great at multitasking, there's just one problem. And that's multitaskers, we're lousy at everything. Nearly everyone accepts it as an effective thing to do. Like, it's a, it's a thing it's on applications.

[00:13:11] It's on, it's something that we brow, oh, I'm a great multitasker. Right? It's become so mainstream that people, we, we think it's something that we should do or strive for. ? When you try to do two things at once, you either can't or won't do either of them. Well, okay. So as author, Steve Azel states, multitasking is merely the opportunity to screw up more than one thing at a.

[00:13:33] right. So the concept of humans doing more than one thing at a time has been studied by psychologists since the 1920s, but the term multitasking didn't arrive on the scene until the 1960s. And it was used to describe computers, not people. Okay. So back then the 10 megahertz was apparently so mind boggling, fast that a whole new.

[00:13:57] Word was needed to describe a computer's ability to quickly perform many tasks. Okay. So multitasking is about multiple tasks. Alternatively sharing one resource, the CPU, but in time the context was flipped and it became, interpreted to mean. That multiple tasks were being done simultaneously by one resource or person.

[00:14:21] Okay. So it's kind of a clever turn of phrase, but it's very misleading because even computers can only process one bit of code at a time when they quote unquote multitask, they're switching back and forth. Right alternating their attention until both tasks are done. But the speed at which computers tackle multiple tasks may kind of feeds the illusion that everything happens at the TA same time.

[00:14:46] So obviously comparing humans to computers. It's confusing. Okay. And, and, and here's the thing. People can actually do two or more things at one time. Right. You can walk and talk. You can chew gum and read a map, but like computers, we can, we can't focus, focus on two things at one time, our attention bounces back and forth.

[00:15:13] So what happens when we're actually doing two things at once?

[00:15:16] Right? So it's simple. We've separated them, right? Our brain has channels. And as a result, we're able to process different kinds of data in different parts of the brain. Right. That's why you can talk and walk at the same time. There's no channel interference, right. But here's the. You're not really focused on both activities.

[00:15:35] One is happening in the foreground and the other is happening in the background. Right. But if you were trying to talk a passenger through landing a DC 10. You'd stop walking. Right. And likewise, if you're you were asked to walk across a Gorge on a rope bridge.

[00:15:52] You're probably gonna stop talking. Right? You can do two things at once, but you can't focus effectively. On two things at once. Okay. So every time we try to do two or more things at one time, we're simply dividing our focus and dumbing down all of the outcomes in the process. So to sum of this section, don't feel bad when you get distracted.

[00:16:12] Everybody gets distractions, but distractions lead to poor choices and painful mistakes and unnecessary, unnecessary stress. Okay. When you try to do too much at one. You pretty much end up doing nothing. Well so again, we wanna figure out what matters most in the moment and then give that your undivided attention.

[00:16:32] So then we're gonna move on to. The third lie, which is self discipline. Okay. So.

[00:16:40] One of the most prevalent myths of our culture is self-discipline. Okay. So there's this pervasive idea that a successful person is the quote unquote disciplined one or one who leaves a disciplined life and it's just not, not true. So the truth is, is that we don't need any more discipline than we already have.

[00:16:58] Success is actually a short race, a sprint that is fueled by discipline just long enough for a habit to kick in and take over. . So if we're trying to get something done and it's just not currently getting done, we're we, you know, oftentimes we'll be like, I just, I've gotta be more disciplined.

[00:17:16] Right. But we actually need the habit of doing it and we just need enough discipline to build the habit. Okay. You can become successful with less discipline than you think for one reason. And that is success is about doing. The right thing. Not about doing everything right. Okay. And the trick to success is to choose the right habit and then bring just enough discipline to establish it.

[00:17:44] And that's it. Okay. So how long do you have to maintain discipline? In 2009 researchers at the university college of London asked, how long does it take to establish a new. okay. They were looking for the moment when new behavior becomes automatic or ingrained. The point of, of automation comes when participants were able to were 95% successful through through a power curve and the effort that was needed to sustain it was as low as it would get.

[00:18:15] Okay. So they asked students to take on exercise and ALS for a period of time and monitored. Progress. The result suggests that it takes an average of 66 days to acquire a new habit. The full range was 18 to 254 days. Okay. But 66 represented that kind of sweet spot with easier behaviors taking on fewer days.

[00:18:39] And then. On average and then harder ones taking longer, obviously. So I, I don't know if you've heard this before, but in a lot of self-help circles, it tends to be preached that 21 days it's 21 days to make a change. Right. But modern science is not backing that up. It takes time to develop the right habit.

[00:18:56] So don't give up too soon. So 66 days on average. So we've gotta give our. A little bit more credit when things are hard. Okay. So be a person of powerful habits and use that selected discipline to help develop, them. Okay. 

[00:19:14] And we'll kind of get into this a little bit towards the end, but it's like, how do we apply this to our life? Right. Because again, you know, speaking for myself, I have a lot of goals and a lot of different areas. Right. So how do you, I have a health goal. I have. Relationship goals. I have financial goals.

[00:19:34] I have career goals. How do you figure out which one of those you do first and you know, what is most important? So as we continue to talk about this, we'll we will kind of get into that a little bit more. Okay. So the fourth lie that Gary talks about it, that's holding you back from success is willpower.

[00:19:55] And he says he calls it. He says willpower. Is on will call. So that's it. And it's kind of similar to the discipline part of it. And that it's not that you're not disciplined. It's just that we don't have, it's a finite resource, just like willpower is a finite resource and we have to use it strategically and.

[00:20:15] And it's not disciplined. It's making habits to help yourself be successful and being really disciplined about those habits, not being disciplined the whole time. So it's kind of the same principle about willpower, right? Like I've just gotta, I'm I'm not gonna, I, you know, I have this health goal. I'm not gonna have any candy or chocolate or alcohol or whatever the case might be and I just gotta gut it out.

[00:20:41] And then Annette, when we inevitably. Slip, we beat ourselves up, right. Because it's like, oh, I need to, I just have to have more willpower to, to get this done. Right. And, and, and, and the big lie is that, you know, we think that we can access it whenever we want. Right. So, he gives this analogy of think of your willpower, like the battery life on your cell phone.

[00:21:08] Right? So every morning you had your phone on charge overnight. It's got a full charge when you wake up, right. And then as the day goes on, every time you use it, every time you draw on it, you're using up that power. So as you're you're little green, green bar, your shrinks down. So does your resolve, if you're thinking about it as willpower, and then eventually it's going to go red or down to that 10% or less.

[00:21:32] Okay. So because you have a limited supply, each act of will creates a win lose scenario, right? Where winning in an immediate situation through willpower makes you more likely to lose later. Because you've, you've used it up, right? It's a finite resource. So to, you know, make it through a tough day and you're in the trenches and, and you've, you know, you've got the, the kids are going here and, and this is happening at work and you gotta go to the story, blah, blah, blah, all these things.

[00:22:00] Right. And then you come home and you are just so worn down from your day, you go to the pantry and you start, eating all the things. Right. And then there goes, your, there goes your. So there's a, a Stanford university professor. His name was Baba. She, and he did research on on undergraduate students and in willpower.

[00:22:22] Okay. So what he did is he divided 165 undergraduate students into two groups and he asked them to memorize either a two digit or a seven digit number. Right. So both of those are well within the average person. You know, cognitive capabilities, right. And the, and the the students were allowed to take as much time as they needed to remember these numbers.

[00:22:43] Okay. And then when they were ready, students would go to another room where they would recall that number. And along the way, they were offered a snack for participating in the study. Okay. The two choices were chocolate cake or a bowl of fruit. So here's the kicker. The students that were asked to memorize the seven digit number were nearly twice as likely to choose cake.

[00:23:09] Okay. So this tiny, extra cognitive load was just enough to push them to the unhealthy choice. Right? So the more we use our minds, the less minding power or willpower we have.

[00:23:24] So, if you want to get the most out of your day and do your most important work, your one thing needs to be done early before that willpower is drawn down.

[00:23:35] Okay. All right. So line number five is a balanced life. Is a lie. And this one was interesting because I think we hear that's, it's kind of a buzzword, right? That work life balance. And, you know, I'm, I, I wanna have a balanced life, but here's the, the, the kicker of that is that what he's saying is that, you know, really successful people have focused down on one thing and become really good at one thing.

[00:24:06] And laser focused on one goal. Pushing everything else to the side. Right. And that's where I think we really struggle as people is that we. We feel like we have all these things that need to get done. And so we're kind of juggling all these balls in the air, spinning all of those plates and you're really not making success and moving forward.

[00:24:30] So what he's saying is that, . he says we really should be striving more towards counterbalancing than living in balance because he makes a point that you're, you know, the, the vast majority of success, it doesn't happen in the middle. It doesn't happen at that balance point. It happens at the extremes, right?

[00:24:51] It happens when you go all in on one thing. So if you're gonna do that, you're gonna go all in on one thing. Inevitably, some other things are going to fall by the wayside for a little bit. But the, but the whole point of it is, is that, you know, the magic, it happens at the extremes. It doesn't happen in the middle.

[00:25:11] So we have to kind of change that mindset and get okay with being a little bit out of balance while we're working towards this big goal. And then you kind of go back in and, and we can reassess and see how we can bring some other things back. But. Counterbalance. Right. And so when we're counterbalancing, it kind of gives the illusion of balance.

[00:25:30] Right. But. We've gotta be more. We ha just kind of have to get okay. With being a little out of balance at times when we're really striving for those big goals. Okay. All right. And then the last lie that he talks about between you and success is that big is bad. And I can really relate to this one.

[00:25:52] Right? Because for some reason there's this fear, right? That big success brings crushing pressure and stress and that the pursuit of it is just gonna, you know, you're gonna lose all of your free time with family and friends and your Health's gonna go down the crapper. Right. And we just have the, and you might not right.

[00:26:09] But I know that I do. like, oh gosh, do I really wanna do that? Am I gonna be able to, I already have so many things on my plate. Am I gonna. Am I gonna be able to, to take on all these other things, because if you really wanna do something, you've gotta go all in and you've gotta, you know, you've gotta make all these sacrifices and it's gonna take all this and it doesn't have to be that way.

[00:26:27] Right. And what a lot of really successful people have found is that when you find that one thing and you get really good at that one thing, and you drill down on this success, it's just like the initial thing says is that the focusing question is. It will make everything else easier or unnecessary.

[00:26:46] Right? So when you take that one thing and you focus on that one thing, it's going to make everything else easier or unnecessary. So by living out of balance for just a little bit and going big, going all in on one big goal, you're gonna be knocking a bunch of stuff, just like your domino line, right.

[00:27:05] You're gonna be knocking a bunch of stuff off of your list. 

[00:27:08] To kind of sum up the section is think big, right? Avoid that small incremental thinking of, you know, what do I, what do I do next? And instead ask bigger questions, right? And then like 10 X, those that's another book. That's another book, actually. It's a really good book. The 10 X rule, but the, you know, like if, for example, if your goal is I wanna get 10 new clients in the, in the next year, then.

[00:27:32] Change that goal to you? How can I reach 20? Right. So you set a goal that is so far above what you want, that you're, when you are working on your plan, you're guaranteed to reach that original goal, right? Because you're going for 20 you're you're definitely gonna get 10. Right. So think outside of the box.

[00:27:51] Dream big shoot for the stars, all of those fun things. Right. 

[00:27:54] And once you've asked a big question, we want to pause and imagine what life would look like with the answer. So if you still can't imagine it go and find people that have done it. Right. So he's saying that, you know, success leaves clues, right? So find those successes. Follow their lead. Right? Look for mentors.

[00:28:13] Look for coaches, look for that help so that you can, you can you know, follow in their lead, you know, probably have heard you don't have to reinvent the wheel. Right. There's people that have done probably what you're, what you're trying to do, what your big goal is. There's usually someone that's already done it.

[00:28:31] So, you know, you don't have. reinvent the wheel, go follow their lead, figure out what they did, and then you can emulate that. Okay. And then finally is don't fear, failure use that growth mindset and you know, it's, it's safe to say that we fail our way to success and when we fail. we should stop and ask, what do we need to do to succeed and then learn from those mistakes and grow.

[00:29:01] And I think that this is, you know, it's something of that. I've been saying a lot to my girls and that's. You know, you're not always going to do the right thing and you're not always gonna make the right choice. And you're not always gonna get the right answer, but it's okay to not do those things. It's okay to fail.

[00:29:21] It's okay to be wrong. It's okay. To make a mistake because you learn from them. As you as you're learning from them. Right. And we just need to keep that in mind as adults. Okay. All right. So we've covered the six lies that we tell ourselves about, about success. So how can we move forward? Okay. So we move forward using the focusing question.

[00:29:44] Okay. So what's the one thing that I can. Such that by doing it, everything else would be easier or unnecessary. Okay. So here's another great quote from mark Twain. And he said that the secret of getting ahead is getting started and the secret to getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks.

[00:30:07] So let's kind of break down the focusing question, right?

[00:30:10] So what is the one thing that I can do such that by doing it, everything else will be easier or unnecessary. That is the big question. That of the book. Right. We talked about this at the front. That is it. That's the question. So let's break that focusing question down a little bit more. Okay. So the first part of it is what is the one thing that I can do?

[00:30:38] okay. And that in and of itself sparks focused attention. The one thing, right? It tells you that the answer's gonna be one thing versus a bunch, and it forces you towards something specific. You're allowed to pick one thing, only one thing. Right. And then the last part of that is, can do, and that is an embedded command.

[00:30:59] Okay. Directing you to take action. That is possible. It takes that coulda should have woulda out of it. And it's an. the action is what you can do. Okay. So then the next part of the sentence is such by doing it. tells you that there's a criteria that you have to meet, right. It lets you know that you're gonna be digging deep because when you do this one thing, something else is going to happen.

[00:31:21] Okay. And then that final part of the question is everything else will be easier or unnecessary. Okay. So it says that when you do this one thing, everything else that you could, you could do to accomplish your goal will now be easier. And doable with less effort or no longer even necessary. Right. So most people struggle to comprehend how many things don't need to be done.

[00:31:45] Okay. If they would just start by doing the right thing. So in effect is it's a qualifier, right. And it helps you to kind of declutter and take, you know, and asking you to put on blinders. Like what, what, how can I be laser focused on this one thing? Right. And take those distractions. so the focusing question asks you to find that first domino and then focus it on and focus on it exclusively until you knock it over.

[00:32:12] Okay. So there's a lot of directions that you can take the focusing question. All right. And, and put it into different areas of your life. Okay. So let's just go into a couple of those, cuz because it, initially it can be like, hold on a second. I don't know. This doesn't really make sense. Right. So what's one thing I can do in my.

[00:32:31] What's the one thing I can do to help others. What's the one thing I can do to ensure that I exercise. What's the one thing I can do to help relieve stress. What's the one thing I can do to improve my relationship with my spouse or partner. What's the one thing I can do to make my family stronger.

[00:32:50] What's the one thing I can do to improve my. What's the one thing I can do to further my career. What's the one thing I can do to increase my network. Do you, do you kind of see how that goes? Like you take that question and you put it towards the different areas of your life and you just drill down and drill down and drill down and drill down.

[00:33:10] So the drilling down of these things is where the magic really happens. Right. So if you can ask yourself what. Is the one thing that I can do right now, so that I'm on track to achieve my someday goal. It doesn't really work. Right. So that moment it's just, it's too far away for you to clearly see that priority.

[00:33:30] So, and he talks about here again, I'm not gonna get in all this stuff because we're already running long for this episode. But he talks about how human, how humans in general. Like we would rather take a hundred dollars today than have $200 next year. Right. Because it's, we like that immediate and that instant gratification.

[00:33:50] So to use the one thing and to make it work, you really have to take it down to what can I do right now? Right. So it goes a little, something like this. Right. So what is one thing that I want to do someday? Okay. So this is like just keeping it kind of generic. And then based on my someday goal, what is the one thing I can do in the next five?

[00:34:10] Okay then based on my five year goal, what's the one thing I can do this year. . Based on my one year goal, what's the one thing I can do this month. based on my monthly goal. What is the one thing I can do this week? Based on my weekly goal, what is the one thing I can do today? Based on my daily goal, what is the one thing I can do right now?

[00:34:33] So do you see how you have to like really drill down and drill down right. So it takes some time to think about your goals and. You can separate them out into different areas of your life that are important to you. And then keep asking those questions to find your one thing to do and do it right now.

[00:34:50] And then here's the other thing, write it down. 

[00:34:53] In 2008, Dr. Gail Matthews of the Dominican. University of California recruited 267 participants from a variety of different professional fields from lawyers, accountants, marketers, and from a variety of different countries. And what she found is that those who wrote down their goals were 39 and a half percent more likely to accomplish them.

[00:35:17] 39 and a half percent more likely to accomplish 'em just by writing them down. Okay. So we've gotta be intentional and we have to be specific and we have to write it down. Okay. So. a lot of people's pushback to goal setting is time. Right. I'm doing everything I can already, I don't have time to do more.

[00:35:36] You know, it's, I, I, I just, how, how am I supposed to be more productive with the time that I do have, right. So productivity, it's not about being a workhorse or keeping busy burning the midnight oil, right? It's about priorities planning. And then. Like fiercely protective of your time. So productive people get more done, they achieve better results and they earn far more in their hours than the rest.

[00:36:01] And they do that because they devote the maximum time to being productive on their top priority or their one thing. Okay. They time block. This is one of his big things, use a time block. They're one thing and protect and they protect their time blocks with a vengeance, right? So most people think that there's never enough time to be successful, but there is when you block it out.

[00:36:26] So time blocking is a very results oriented way of viewing and using your time. It's a way of making sure that what has to get done actually. Gets done. . So it go to your calendar and block off all the time that you need to accomplish your one thing.

[00:36:44] So if it's a one time, one thing block off the appropriate hours and days, if it's a regular thing, brought block off the appropriate time each day, so that it becomes a habit. And then for everything else, like projects and paperwork and emails and meetings and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. All the other stuff can wait.

[00:37:01] That is the priority. Get that done first. So his recomme. Is that you put your time block at the very first part of your day. So it gets done first, right? When you're willpower, when you have that willpower, when you have that, you've already kind of set yourself up for success with taking care of yourself with, you know, meditation and exercise and things like that.

[00:37:22] And when you are at your best is usually first thing in the morning. Before the day gets hijacked by all of the other things that might need to get done. Take that time, block it off and, and protect it fiercely so that you make sure that you are making your. Making that goal a priority for yourself, right?

[00:37:44] Because, so he had a, a visual in the book where he has a pie chart. Right. And for most people the pie chart, like it's the, the full circle. And there's like a little slice of pie that's for your one thing. Right. And then if you have a pie chart for people that are like high achievers, Half their pie is focused on their one thing.

[00:38:05] So we really need to, if we wanna be super, super successful, if we wanna, you know, reach those goals, we've got to spend concentrated time on knocking that it's not just, it's not just figuring out what your one thing is. It's making a sacred space in your calendar to get that stuff done. Right. All right. So he spends a whole section on the different tools and reasons why we typically fail at being productive, you know, making that time block and, and getting in there. And it's, it's worth a read cuz there's really, there's some good you know, insights and tools into, You know, finding coaches and mentors and he gives, you know, some different examples and resources behind that.

[00:38:45] People that are really successful have mentors, they have coaches using an accountability to partner to help you you know, make sure that you're getting towards your goals. And he talks about. The four thieves of productivity is what he calls it. And it's the inability to say no fear of chaos, poor health habits, and then your environment doesn't support your goals.

[00:39:08] Right? So remember that saying yes to your one thing is the top priority, right? And then as long as you can keep that in perspective, saying no to anything else that keeps you from your time block. Is not something that you're gonna be okay with. Right? So some pushback that you might have for that is like, well, you know, what do I do if I'm a single parent with kids?

[00:39:30] What if I have , elderly parents that constantly depend on me? What if I have a spouse who's deployed or who's gone all the time, right. I have obligations. I have to take care of what do I do? Right. So depending on your situation, your time block might look a little different from others, cuz everybody's situations are unique, right?

[00:39:48] But depending on where you are in your life, you might not be able to immediately block off. Everything for the first, you know, first part of the morning. So he goes, there's science behind it, and I'm not gonna get into it again here in the, in the in the essence of time. But he recommends four hours of a time block to work towards your goal, which is just like, holy cow.

[00:40:10] That seems crazy. But when he breaks it down, scientifically you're like, oh, okay. So it's not just like an arbitrary number that he picked. There's like it's, it's like 10,000 hours. Of practice yields mastery of something. And then if you break that down, it's like three hours a day, 365 days, and it just breaks it down to, and so that's where they get the four hours from.

[00:40:34] , you know, if you've got. An elderly parent you're taking care of, you got a kid in tow. Your time block might be at daycare, might be some other place you have to be, you know, your alone time might have to be at a different time of the day for a while. Right. And this is where he talks about having an accountability, accountability partner.

[00:40:52] Right. So if you have. You know, maybe you have a friend or something and you guys have both decided, Hey, we really want to chase down these big goals. You can help each other, like, Hey, I'm gonna make sure that the kids are picked up or at this practice that they need to be at or whatever, while you work on your thing.

[00:41:06] And then you're gonna do the same thing for me while I work on my thing. And then you kind of. You know, help each other, stay on track with your time blocks and support each other in that. Right. So, but he's saying just, you know, you have to be creative and, and don't be a victim of your circumstances.

[00:41:22] Right. Don't sacrifice your time blocks saying, you know, oh, I just can't make it work. Right. Because the thing is, is when you argue for your limitations, you get to keep them right. So we don't, we don't wanna argue for our limitations. We wanna grow. We wanna be. all right. So this is where taking care of yourself is really important, right.

[00:41:42] Because, you know, I don't know if you've heard it before. I'm sure you probably have, but if you don't take care of your body where you're gonna live, right. So you have to take care of yourself. You have to take care of your mental health, right. So how can we do this? So you can meditate or. Daily for spiritual energy eat right exercise, sleep sufficiently for physical energy hug, kiss, laugh with your family for emotional.

[00:42:05] set goals, plan, calendar for mental energy and time block your one thing for business energy. Okay. So the secret to this plan is to get done the first thing, right? And then when you spend the early hours energizing yourself and you, then you essentially, it pulls you through the rest of your day. Okay.

[00:42:23] And then the final thief of productivity is your environment. Your environment has to support your goals, right? So no one lives or works in isolation and every day, Throughout your day, you're gonna come in contact with others and be influenced by them. So unquestionably, these individuals impact your attitude, your health, and ultimately your performance.

[00:42:41] So you again, have to be fiercely protective of your time block, but you also have to be fiercely protective of your energy. And that can be challenging in different situations. But, you know, he gave some examples in the book, like, you know this person was working on this work goal and they were trying to get, you know, da, da, da, da, da, and we talked.

[00:42:59] Previously, I gave you this statistic that on average, in a typical work environment, every 11 minutes you are interrupted. And then it takes a third of your day to recover from those interruptions. So this one person was chasing down this big goal and she had these things that she needed to get done.

[00:43:16] So she would literally go and lock herself. She booked a conference room and she would lock herself in the conference room. So people couldn't drive by her office and keep asking her questions and eventually. People would just leave. Oh, this is that time. And they, she would get left alone and then she ended up like doubling her, like her numbers for the, for the quarter or whatever, you know what I mean?

[00:43:36] So you just, you've gotta, you have to just protect those things. Right. 

[00:43:41] , if anything that we've talked about so far has kind of lit you up, or you. Giving you some was giving you pause or giving you thought I encourage you to pick up the book or download the audio book and really dive into the principles behind the one thing.

[00:43:55] Okay. But if you're sitting there and you're energized and you're encouraged, but you're also like, oh my God, how do I start? Right. Start by just taking a little bit of time and thinking about what's important to you in your life right now. Right? What, what is it? What, what is it. That you're feeling that you really wanna focus on or that you're really pulled towards, right?

[00:44:15] It, it might not be your job. It might be your kids. It might be your spouse. It might be your physical health, right. Whatever it is for you identify what that is. And then start to drill down on whatever goal it is that you decide on until you come up with your one thing. Right? So just like Gary said, without proper action, it's not gonna work.

[00:44:35] And we have to be single minded in our goal and don't stop until you reach. So this ended up being a lot longer than I wanted it to be. And it took me forever to do, oh my gosh, you guys I've spent hours and hours and hours on this episode. But I think again, I think it's important. I think that we really have to focus on on our mental game.

[00:44:57] Right. And, and I think as, as military spouses, as. I really like, you know, a lot of times we're, we're the afterthought. , we're the we get put on the back burner and we put everybody's needs and wants and everything in front of ourselves. And I think that this is. This whole concept and philosophy of the one thing was one thing that we can focus on that will help move us towards our own personal goal.

[00:45:24] And again, it might not be a employment thing. It might be, or a job related. It might be, it might be personal. It might be your health. It might be your relationships with your, you know, your kids or your spouse or whatever your family. And just taking that time and it doesn't have to be four hours, right.

[00:45:41] Maybe if cold doesn't need four hours, but just, it it's just the intention, right? Like we need to, if, if we wanna grow and I think we all do and, and strive and succeed and really be successful. We've gotta be, we have to be really intentional with our time. We have to be really specific. And like he's saying, you've gotta go really small, like, like super duper, duper small, and just find that first domino and knock it over.

[00:46:07] And then everything, it just, it's a domino effect. Right. It just gets bigger, bigger, bigger, bigger, bigger, and keeps growing. All right. That's it for today? Love you guys. Talk to you soon.