I’m at least a couple of weeks behind schedule with the blog. And the gap widens when it comes to the podcast, which hasn’t had a single upload since October 2020, where I promised to show up every weekend.
Life happened. And I failed to keep my priorities straight. While I aim to get on track by the middle of the next week, it’s incredible how catching up to a certain standard can teach you valuable life lessons. Including the following observations:
- Showing up every single day is easier said than done. And it’s hard for someone like me whose natural strength isn’t discipline. Yes, I have routines and practices, but those don’t correlate with disciplining as a strength. Of late, I’ve realised that I mainly use routines and rituals to solve problems and make space to learn.
- The quality and outcome of your routines are governed by your energy systems. You can’t will your way to wake up at 3:30 am if you ate (and drank) like a hog last night. Eating processed foods or non-vegetarian food and not giving your body enough time to process (at least 3-4 hours) is as bad.
- Instead of setting morning routines and following them to the letter, try building systems. Aiming to wake up between 3:30 and 5 am is far better than waking up to a soul-shattering alarm at 5 am every single day. And then there will be days when your body’s damn tired to get up early.
- Determine the things you want to do before you get started with the day. Stick with those 2-3 (or more, in my case) things no matter when you wake up. For me, that’s: wake up, meditate (in bed), have tea/coffee, power on the laptop, write, read, head for training, shower, get started with the workday. This might not work for you, but I can follow this 90% of the time.
- What about the remaining 10%? You can’t ignore it, or else you will end up doing what I am right now — catching up. I let the 10% grow way out of control. All because I’d failed to prioritise my system. I had let my daily grind and other people’s agenda push me off the track.
- One of the challenges with a daily blog or daily anything about sharing information, insights, or analysis is to show up and have something you say. You’ve got to make time to read, watch, and explore areas that go beyond your interest. Remember, you are a curator who creates valuable content and experiences for your audience.
- Showing up every day doesn’t have to be literal. There will be days when you cannot show up due to other priorities, illness, or the sheer realisation that you’re not Seth Godin. That’s okay. When you do show up and have the time, create more. For example, I don’t have the pressure to check and respond to emails or work on weekends. Instead of writing one post, I can aim for two or three. Or at least create an outline for the next idea I can be elaborating or writing about, which is super helpful for the days you will miss in the future — believe me, you will.
I’ve come to believe that being consistent isn’t literal but conceptual. Particularly for plain folks like me with a day job, a dozen side projects, a family, and serious passions (Jiu-Jitsu) to juggle with on a day-to-day basis.
The key is to make the most of the time you have and work on creating some buffer, allowing the time and space to breathe and take it easy when life throws you a curveball.