Every Day, Take Action

Relationship Design, Simplicity

Kissing-CoupleMarriage isn’t always rainbows and butterflies.
But what do you do when married life hands you a load of junk?
Start with a deep breath … own your own junk, then find a suitable sized box to pack up the rest.

Married life isn’t always sunny

Last year, within a few short days, my married life went from rocking along to complete upheaval.
Turns out, lying to your wife can lead to great distress for all involved (another big duh statement). During the same timeframe, a couple of clients canceled early and the plug was pulled on a big project.
Translation: The sky is falling. And I have to work my butt off to turn things around because that’s too many bad things occurring at the same time.
My reaction – I freaked and was pretty depressed about it all. The feeling of everything’s falling apart really sucks. Seeing a spouse pull back drastically and the business bank account heading south is never easy. But depression doesn’t really fix anything.
Here’s the best description of the plan I used to start packing for something better.

  1. Get in the right mindset and gain the proper perspective.
  2. Own my own junk (lying to my wife), then pack up the other stuff.
  3. Take ACTION EVERY DAY to live according to what I hold dear.

Let’s break this down a little more.
The correct mindset is vital (think, marriage is designed to help us grow up). It sets your path and provides direction. So does perspective.
It’s easy to see things as me against my spouse – but often it’s not. Married life has rough patches for a reason. <— Click to Tweet
And when these patches are the result of my choices, I must own my junk before I can move forward. Actually, before the marriage can even move forward. So in essence, I can hold my spouse hostage with my junk.
Only after stepping up and taking responsibility for myself and my choices can I then take action every day.
Let’s talk a bit more about this last part.
No matter the issue, take an action every day. Frame it, decide what to do, and take an action.
Here’s a totally unrelated example: I wanted to do more push-ups. A few weeks ago, I could do 20-30 (not in a row), no real issue, but that was it. Then I was told, just try doing 25 or so every single day. Or, if you can’t even do one, do some negatives (start up and slowly let your body down).
So that’s what I did:

  1. Every day, committed to 25 push-ups. They don’t have to be in a row, just get 25 done.
  2. I did this every day for 10 days.
  3. Now, I can do 30 or so in a row, and I can do a couple of sets.

Everything can work like that.
Here’s the steps:

  1. Observe your challenge and name it directly – be sure your challenge is something you are responsible for. My wife forgiving me is beyond my control. I can ask for it, but it’s up to her.
  2. Create a simple plan and tactics.
  3. Execute on that plan daily. You may want to make one to three processes that will help you act upon your commitment.
  4. Keep doing #3, no matter what.

This one change in my efforts, taking an action every day on that which I hold most dear, is changing my world in big ways.
It’s keeping my focus on what’s most important.

*Post adapted from Chris Brogan