Setting your Foundation

Besides a cup of coffee and a short breakfast (hopefully), what else do you do before you start your day?  What do you do before you really are awake and moving like normal?

For most people, their morning routine revolves around rushing around the house as quickly as they can, preparing their clothes, their bodies and their loved ones however they can.  Rarely does someone actually take the time to sit down, enjoy some coffee, relax and prepare for what they are about to face.   And life LOVES to throw it at you.   Deadlines, discouragements, frustrated people, customers, kids… you name it.  We live our lives oftentimes reacting to the events that surround us.  So how can you be proactive to the events in your life?   By Setting your Foundation!

What do I mean, “Setting your Foundation”?

Setting your foundation is simply done by creating“truth statements” that you want to live by and reminding yourself of these before you start your day.   These statements may be actual truths, faith based statements, or goals that you may have set.  For example, I am continuing to focus on my health and losing weight, therefore a “truth statement” of mine is:  I will reach my fitness goal by staying true to my nutrition plan and maintaining an active lifestyle.  

So what does this do for me?   It sets the foundation for my thinking for the day.  When I make choices on what to eat, or when my normal workout schedule is interrupted, I can act proactively to these events by having a foundation for this part of my life.  Already,  I have narrowed my possible outcomes by focusing on my goal.   I know what I need and must do to achieve this goal, so my choice is easy and normally the correct choice is my first thought.

Another example of a “truth statement” that really helps to guide my daily spiritual life is: No matter what I face today, I know that God is for me and nothing can separate me from Him.    What a strong statement to make in the morning that helps to solidify my actions throughout the day!   Relying on this truth provides the basis for me to overcome many of the struggles and stresses that life throws at me.  As a Christian, I know that God is for me and won’t let me down.   I can face what life throws at me each day due to this truth.

So my suggestion?   Write down 3-5 “truth statements” for yourself.  Stick them somewhere you’ll see every day.   The mirror in the bathroom, your nightstand, next to the coffee pot… just somewhere you’ll be reminded of these truths.  Next, simply make sure you read them and remind yourself of them every morning.  This will provide you with the foundation to react to the events of life with significantly better attitudes and decisiveness, helping you to be proactive in facing the struggles of life.

Please feel free to leave some of your “Truth Statements” in the comments!

Outcomes > Activities

First, I want you to think about this question…

How often do you find yourself working hard, staying so busy doing the activities that you think you should be doing, just to realize that you aren’t any closer to your desired outcome than when you started?

I feel like all of us have been here and believe me, I have been there far too many times…(AND sometimes FARTHER away!)  

So you must ask yourself, “Why did I work so hard to still be so far away?”   Sadly, oftentimes hard work alone isn’t the answer to achieve your goal, as the quote says “Direction is so much more important than speed. Many are going nowhere fast.”  The outcome of your action is far more important than the activity it takes to complete it.

So what’s an example of this?  Just look at the fitness industry, it is a $20 billion a year industry. Why?  Simple, most of us need to get more fit, lose our excess fat, or we are trying to shape our bodies to look like the latest celebrity or supermodel.  No matter the reason, we oftentimes simply walk into the gym and do “something”.  When we focus on the activities of exercising, we just go do some action.  We go to the gym, work out for an hour and then head home, thinking we did some work today with a treadmill saying we burned 400 calories.  While this sounds good and you may get some results, you’ll never meet your goal by being busy in activity.  We try and burn out, start again and burn out. We never see the end goal like we wanted, and the fitness industry keeps selling you on the next hot activity to keep you busy.    Instead, we must “train” (As many in the fitness industry like to say), which means to have a plan.  So what does a plan focus on?  The Outcome! When we see and work towards the outcome, we simply do the work to get there.  We can work with direction and speed.  We can push out the wasteful movements and gain so much more time to move in the right direction.

While it takes hard work to get the outcome we desire,  focusing on the outcome and striving to make the outcome real is the true way to succeed.  Measure yourself on the outcomes of your actions, not the fact you did some activity.

Do what it takes to make your sales quota, not count the number of calls you have to make.

Do what it takes to lose some weight. not check off that you went to the gym.

Do what it takes to build your relationship with your significant other, not just hang out and hope it’ll change.

Do what it takes to get the outcome you desire, not just keep yourself busy hoping that you one day might achieve something.