My simple tried and tested method for keeping me on track.
I’ve been doing it every week since May 2013.
It’s my best ‘app’ for tracking those experiences that get me fired-up, so I have a clearer sense of who I am, what I stand for and what makes me tick. It’s the perfect way of reflecting on my life — both family and professional — and checking-in on how I’m doing.
This ‘app’ doesn’t require a subscription. It doesn’t run on my phone. It doesn’t need wifi.
All you need is a notepad or pen.
It’s my Good Times list. A simple numbered list in my notepad. Each list runs Monday to Sunday. Some weeks the list runs to sixty items, other weeks it’s closer to thirty.
A lazy Friday lunch with a friend. Flying back from a business trip to Munich, G&T in front of me, scribbling ideas down. Taking the slow route to a conference, walking through the autumnal leaves in Regent’s Park.
The first coffee of the day. Walking my son to school. That sense of freedom when I plunge underwater, swimming in the estuary near my home. The first laughs in a workshop I’m running for the BBC.
You get the picture. In my Good Times list there is no separation between work and family, it’s all bundled together.
When I’ve had a crap day, or I feel poorly, I don’t write the bad experiences down. I just capture the good stuff.
What has this taught me? The importance of living in the moment. The importance of noticing. Of appreciating how lucky I am to live the life I do.
I’ve also learned that it’s those little everyday things that really fuel me, those are the parts in my daily routine that are really important: the walk to school, sitting in a coffee shop getting some work done, laughing out loud at something, reading an article or a chapter of a book.
But what my Good Times has also given me is a metric for success. Because I don’t measure my success by how much money I have billed or how many five star Amazon reviews my books have. I now have a better way of measuring where I’m at in my life — and what lies in each list are the experiences that really make me feel me, those things that keep me headed towards Ian.
It’s my simple daily ritual to ensure I stay focused on what’s important.
Give it a try. Let me know how you get on…