What do great days and a plate of chocolate chip cookies have in common? Probably more than you think. Read on and you’ll see where I’m going with this.
Most of my blog posts are focusing on the business side of things. Today, I want to share a tool with you that is a little more personal and that I think is beneficial to everyone. Whether you’re a CEO, Manager, stock person, student, stay-at-home parent, or something else. These same principles can be applied to your work life, of course. The Great Day Continuance (TGDC) is one of the more powerful tools of the 110 Philosophy, which we talk about on pages 89-87 of the book. It’s about setting yourself up to be having great days on a regular basis. It all starts with checking in and reflecting on your day and then being honest with yourself. Was it a bad day… an OK day, was it awesome?
We are so often surrounded by negativity when we aren’t even realizing it. It can be in your newsfeed on the TV, the radio, or elsewhere. With so many avenues and devices for untethered negativity to be pouring in, it’s easy to lose sight of the positive. It’s even easier to get down on yourself when something isn’t going right or when you aren’t reaching a goal fast enough. It’s easy to look back and say, “I failed because I didn’t do this…” or “I didn’t make it because I wasn’t good enough at that…” So many of us have a hard time focusing on the positive or finding those moments when we did things right. That’s where The Great Day Continuance really shows its power. We need to look back at those positive moments and harness them. We need to take lessons from ourselves - from the good - and replicate those things that lead up to those moments. Yes, we need to learn from our mistakes, but we don’t need to laser focus on them to the point that we forget we still did well!
Let’s take the cookie exercise, for example, a lesson in self-discipline and focusing on the positive in order to have a better experience the next time. If your goal is to get into your favorite pair of skinny jeans then you can’t eat a whole plate of cookies at night. If you’re sitting there watching TV after dinner and you see that plate of cookies and you go ahead and have a couple, then you have a couple more, and then you eat the whole plate, the next day you’re going to wake up and probably feel terrible. Not just because you ate a whole plate of cookies, but because you knew you shouldn’t and now you have missed your goal of not eating a plate of cookies. The next night let’s say you have an extra glass of water and then eat half of the cookies. You wake up again feeling a little bit terrible, and saying to yourself “oh man I really shouldn’t have eaten all of those cookies. I failed.” But you shouldn’t feel bad! You DID accomplish something! Instead, what you should be saying is “I did eat too many, but I only ate half of what I did last time, go me!” Don’t feel negative about yourself, let that go and focus on the positive. It is so important to have a dose of positivity to neutralize the negative. No, you probably shouldn’t have had the whole plate if you’re trying to fit into those jeans (negative), yes, you did awesome only eating 50% of what you did last time (positive).
Look back and feel proud that you did accomplish something, you are halfway to your goal of not eating a plate of cookies. Next, look for the how… ask yourself how was I able to not eat the whole plate? Was it the extra glass of water at dinner? That’s something that you can replicate… Have another glass of water with dinner the next night and try to eat two fewer cookies.
For myself, I know the things I need to do to set myself up for a great day and I make sure to check in often so that I stay on a positive path (I still have a long way to go to reach 110, and I am determined that my years will be positive!). Since I practice TGDC on a regular basis, I know that I need to eat well, sleep well, and exercise to feel my best. I also know that life still happens - it's outside of my control. BUT I feel positive knowing that no matter what life throws at me, I’ve done my best to do my part to have a great day and I can let the negative go. I don’t have to stress about things that are out of my control. Is my life perfect? No way. Show me someones whose is! But, do I love my life? YOU BET! Do I give it my 110%? YES! Here’s a real-life example. Recently, I was filming a training series about chronic pain for a client. I did everything I could to be prepared. I was doing my check-ins, I excised, ate well, got my rest, and the morning of filming I ended up with a rosacea breakout (thanks for nothing, autoimmune disease). Did I feel bad? Sure. Did I pout, cry or focus on the negative? Nope. Did I feel self-conscious? Not really because the positivity and confidence I felt knowing that I did everything I could to make my day great, overcame the negative feelings I was having. And, you know what, the lighting ended up being just right so that my skin actually looked fantastic! Which of course I didn’t know until after we were done filming. Imagine if I had a bad attitude - if I didn’t have my confidence behind me, and didn’t feel like I had done everything I could in my power to make things perfect. I might not have delivered my best during the filming. And I might not have ended up looking as healthy as I did!
There is true power in letting go of what you can’t control and focusing on what you can do to make your day great.
For the next 10 days, I challenge you to take a few minutes at 1:10 PM every day to ask yourself these 3 questions
Am I having a good day?
What's making my day good?
How can I repeat it tomorrow?
You’ve already read about visuals (and if you missed that blog post, click here) and this is a great opportunity to utilize them. I use a clock set at 1:10 PM to remind me to take a 1:10 Philosophy Moment. We all have pain in life, and we all have the opportunity to focus on the positive to overcome these pains. I’m not saying that pain isn’t real. If you’ve read my book, you know that I live with chronic pain and have endured cancer, illness, emotional trauma, and multiple surgeries… I promise you, the advice I offer comes from my PROVEN methods. My experiences, and my collaboration with other experts. I offer you my support and a commitment to always be giving it 110%. Let me know how you’re doing, I’d love to hear how the 110 Philosophy has become part of your day!