Here’s a simple brain hack you can do today, right now, sitting at your desk and reading this post. And the potential yield is a newfound sense of direction which brings with it a new well of energy you can draw from at your leisure.
When you’re feeling borderline overwhelmed, just a wee bit too frazzled, overcommitted, thinking more and more often that you’re giving into distraction too often, take out your tasks list and ask yourself one simple question about each and every item on it:
Does this get me closer to my goals?
The Possible Answers
If the answer is “yes,” then keep it. If the answer is “no,” then have the courage to strike it off and don’t look back. (Exception: when you’re committing to something for spiritual reasons or because it’s important to someone you love. And be really careful with these.)
And if the answer is “I’m not sure,” or “maybe but I don’t see how,” then you’ll need to do a little more detective work, but give it some effort. The payoff is worth the time it takes to figure out the answer to that question.
Why It’s Important to Ask the Question
It’s a given that the vast majority of us say “yes” to requests and obligations far too easily and often. Sometimes, we also baptize certain ideas as “Commitments” without really asking ourselves whether we’re ready to commit to this thing.
Make the Question a Habit
If you can spare a few minutes to engage in this process, and make it a habit going forward to ask yourself the question before you commit to a new obligation, you’ll find a whole new untapped reservoir of integrity and energy.