This is Success

When you arrive at the end of your life and look back, what do you want to see?

Who do you want to have been?

What do you want to have done?

In essence, “What is success?”

This question was actually the opening line of my high school graduation speech. As I stood in front of those blazing lights, each word echoed through the stadium. I stepped out of that stadium to continue my quest of discovery.

I spent a couple decades on this quest– learning in college, attending a leadership internship in one state followed by a fellowship in another, working at a church then a non-profit, graduating with a masters from seminary and then serving patients recovering from brain injury as I gained my license as a professional counselor.

Lately, I have continued my quest nurturing and educating my kids for success in the next generation and serving you through Think Time.  As it turns out, I have been thinking about this and gathering great stuff for quite a long time…24 years!  I only wish I could find a copy of that speech!!! I would love to know what I came up with at 17!

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THREE QUALITIES OF SUCCESS YOU CAN’T AFFORD TO MISS

Today, I want to talk about three aspects of success that my planners and courses at Think Time are designed to support–qualities you can’t afford to miss in your life!

I’ll be talking about these for the next few weeks. It is my belief that each of these qualities is necessary to live a full and meaningful life–to truly succeed.

Results.

You may have judged success in the past based on what you did. Let me turn that on its head, and ask instead, not “What did you do?” but “What were your results?” You know from experience that it is possible to work hard from dawn until dusk and accomplish next to nothing–exhausting yourself and never making headway on your important goals. Sure, you were busy. You “got a lot done.” But, did you get results? Getting results is what moves the needle toward your dreams and goals.

Relationships.

It is simply not enough to “get things done” while your relationships remain on the back burner. You are not a machine. You are a human BEing designed to DO important things. Having great results without great relationships OR great relationships without great results is never enough. You have to have both to succeed. I believe that being connected to God, to others, and to your purpose are central to success. Relationships fuel your life.

Resilience.

Resilience keeps you in the game for the long haul. Anyone can sprint and have the appearance of success while things quietly crumble under the surface. Time tells the whole story. When you have the quality of resilience, you have the energy and the mindset to bounce back when set backs happen. You continue to create great work over the long haul.

The truly successful person consistently achieves great results and maintains great relationships over the long haul — continuously maintaining energy and focus for what matters most.

Over the next few weeks, I will discuss one quality a week to deep dive into the importance of each of these qualities in a little more depth.

I DON’T HAVE THAT KIND OF TIME.

As you read, you may nod your head in agreement while deep down you don’t believe you could ever have time to achieve that degree of success–you don’t even have time to think! In your life, there are simply not enough hours in the day.

Wow, I get it. Life is moving so faster than ever, and the distractions are endless! It can feel overwhelming to think about reaching for the stars.

However, what if I suggested that that you don’t have enough time NOT to pursue true success in your life? Would you agree that by not taking time to ensure that you are getting great results, building great relationships, and investing in your resilience, you don’t risk just losing hours…you could lose entire decades of your life! 

You don’t just risk losing hours…you could lose entire decades of your life.

Christine Wilson, LPC

If you don’t have a vision and strategy for getting results, you could spend your golden years working a dead-end job–just to pay the bills.

If you don’t have a vision and a strategy for your relationships, your kids’ childhood may be over before you have learned how to be present with them.

If you don’t have a vision for your health, you could achieve all of the above success but lose out on decades of your life to enjoy your success.

Please hear me. This is important.

The truth is you don’t have time to not to take time to clarify your vision and create a strategy for these three areas of success. 

And, remember, you don’t have to spend decades learning what you need to know to achieve this type of success. I have already done the work for you!

In my next Think Time Thursday e-mail, I will deep dive into getting results and share with you the approach I personally use to do less while achieving more. So, keep your eye out for that post. It will simply be called “how I do less to achieve more…”

In the mean time would you please take a moment to share your thoughts and comment on this blog?

The Approach I Personally Use to Be More “Disciplined”

“I want whatever the person who wakes up early in the morning and works out has.”

As a person with ADHD, have you ever felt this way?

You want to wake up early to write that novel, launch that course, or lose the weight, but somehow it just doesn’t happen.

Have you wanted to be disciplined but felt somehow it eluded you?

If so, today’s blog is for you.

In this short blog, I will quickly pull back the curtain and show you a secret to being “disciplined” I don’t hear anyone else talking about.

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Let’s start by breaking down discipline for what it is.

Just by casual observation, if I were writing the definition, I would include something to the effect of delaying short-term gratification for your long term goal–on a regular basis. You pass on immediate rewards for long-term gain.

But, when you tend to be impulsive or procrastinate because you almost always choose short-term rewards over long-term gain, how can you possibly be disciplined?

Sssh, don’t tell anyone!

I believe there is a “back door” to discipline for the ADHD brain. That is, by using the strengths of your self-motivated, hyperfocusing, visual mind, I believe you can boost your discipline.

Here are the three steps I personally use to be more disciplined:

  1. Identify what matters most to you. The key to developing discipline for the ADHD mind is by first identifying what you really want. It takes a little time, but just like a good investment, it pays off! By becoming mindful of your deepest values and desires, you can use your double strengths of self-motivated action and hyperfocusing to achieve what you want. Use the More of-Less of tool and the Think Zones in your Think Time Planner to identify what matters most to you.
  2. Nurture your love toward it. Next, engage your emotions. Nurture your love toward your deepest values and desires by clearly envisioning them coming to fruition. Use the Five Sensing tool in your Think Time Planner to engage your five senses as you visualize. This is best way to prime your mind to focus on what matters most in a distracting world according to neuroscience so you can bring your dreams to life.
  3. Move your dreams into your routines. If your dreams and goals are not in your routine, chances are, they are not in your life. It is true. Once, you “get” this, everything will change. Instead of making lists and individual goals, make a strategic plan via a Dream Routine that includes your highest values. Cultivate your love for what matters most as you work from your Routine Worksheet and paint your plans with your Think Time Planner.

Let me be clear–I am still the same person. I still prefer immediate gratification; however, with this process I stay in the driver’s seat and CULTIVATE MY DREAMS & DESIRES so I actually WANT NOW what moves me toward my long term goals more than whatever shiny object is in front of me. Make sense?

Continuously renewing your motivation toward your dreams and goals engages the ADHD strengths of self-motivation and hyper-focusing and using a Dream Routines adds the “regularity” you need to be–or appear– disciplined.

What techniques do you use to be more disciplined so you can achieve your dreams and goals?

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Is Time Slipping Through Your Fingers?

Here are three ways you can make it concrete.

One of the struggles of people with ADHD is not “feeling“ the passing of time as other people do.

Time feels much more interconnected and complex. It’s not just the passing of minutes and hours; it is the complex interconnection of emotions, relationships, and accomplishments.

Even though time feels like a complex thing that is hard to grasp, what you feel is actually more simple.

As a person with ADHD, you probably feel time in two categories – “now” and “not now.”

This can lead to excessive impulsivity and/or excessive procrastination—making prioritizing and achieving tasks in real time more difficult.

But there is hope!

One thing that can help you better manage your time, and your life, is to externalize time in a concrete format.

Your goal is to make time less like oil and water flowing through your hands—hard to define and grasp and more like Lego bricks with purposes, and concrete beginnings and ends.

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To do this, I recommend engaging the visual-thinking part of your brain.
Here are three ways you can use visual thinking to make time more tangible.

  1. Use a Time Timer. Decide ahead of time what time you want to finish a task, walk out the door, finish a speech, etc. Set your Time Timer for that time. The diminishing color communicates more effectively to the ADHD mind than an analog timer. It’s really effective.
  2. Time Block Your Routines. Practice timing your regular activities and keep track of how long things actually take in a chart on a Free Space page in your Think Time Planner. Once you have a pretty good idea of how long these activities take, time block and color your routine activities into your Routine Worksheet. You may prevent problems as you discover that your 30 minute workout actually requires an hour with prep time and a shower afterward.
  3. Sort your To Dos. Once you have selected your most important tasks, separate them into the three categories in the Decide Phase of your Think Time Planner: immediate, short term, and long-term. But don’t stop there. Color the immediate column red, the short term column yellow and the long term column green. By visually separating these into these three categories – you can “see” what you need to attend to immediately, what helps you make tomorrow smoother, and what will help you toward your long term goals.

Don’t fall victim to impulsivity or procrastination ever again!

Use color as you plan to help your brain process and prioritize important tasks so you can feel the confidence you are getting the right things done.

adhd attention chaos clarity confidence creativeproductivity creative thinking creativity drawing dream phase dreams and goals energy energy management envision fatigue focus goal achievement goals intention mindfulness overcome obstacles overwhelm planners planning productivity purpose real life relationships routines stress success thinking skills THINK ZONES time management workingfromhome