Habit 2: Begin with the End in mind {aka work smarter not harder}

Continuing last week’s affirmation that I will share the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People with you, here’s habit 2: Begin with the end in mind.  This is a concept that I also learned from the Baby Whisperer Book way back when.  I also learned it at West Point in our cadet mantra “work smarter, not harder.”  This just means that one should not cut corners to finish a task now, only to have to do the work all over again at a later time.  I equate it to one of my favorite sayings–a true classic–an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Here’s the snapshot from our genius friend/teacher/sensei (taken from here). I’ve added my comments like {this} in black.

So, what do you want to be when you grow up? That question may appear a little trite, but think about it for a moment. Are you–right now–who you want to be, what you dreamed you’d be, doing what you always wanted to do? Be honest. {Nope, still figuring all that out–but I am a wife & mom, both of which I knew I wanted to be} Sometimes people find themselves achieving victories that are empty–successes that have come at the expense of things that were far more valuable to them. If your ladder is not leaning against the right wall, every step you take gets you to the wrong place faster. {Amen, brother.  How did you get so darn wise!?}

Habit 2 is based on imagination–the ability to envision in your mind what you cannot at present see with your eyes. It is based on the principle that all things are created twice. There is a mental (first) creation, and a physical (second) creation. {I do this same type of visualizing before photo sessions, and races.  It definitely works!  My proof is here (marathon) and here (triathlon)…I should probably apply this to everything in life since it obviously works!}  The physical creation follows the mental, just as a building follows a blueprint. If you don’t make a conscious effort to visualize who you are and what you want in life, then you empower other people and circumstances to shape you and your life by default. It’s about connecting again with your own uniqueness and then defining the personal, moral, and ethical guidelines within which you can most happily express and fulfill yourself. Begin with the End in Mind means to begin each day, task, or project with a clear vision of your desired direction and destination, and then continue by flexing your proactive muscles to make things happen. {bold added by me–love this}

One of the best ways to incorporate Habit 2 into your life is to develop a Personal Mission Statement. It focuses on what you want to be and do. It is your plan for success. It reaffirms who you are, puts your goals in focus, and moves your ideas into the real world. Your mission statement makes you the leader of your own life. You create your own destiny and secure the future you envision.

I don’t have my mission statement with me (it’s in my workbook at work)–and not sure I am open enough to share it.  It’s a work in progress right now.  But I do think it’s important, so I will unveil it soon, if not to all of you, then at least write it really big and post it somewhere I can see it daily.  Kinda reminds me of the Purpose Driven Life, which like many books, I got 10-20% thru it, and it fizzled out for me.  Probably the same premise, I surmise.

Quick Gabriel update–repeating everything (today’s words that he got from Momma: draft, beatdown (and the 2nd time, beatDOWN! lol), and he’s doing great identifying all sorts of animals, foods (remembered cucumber tonight) and loves to sing Twinkle, Twinkle (but still sounds like Crinkle, Crinkle–haha).  We had an awesome outing at the park yesterday, where Gabe tired out his mom & dad as much as he did himself.  Gabe also knows his own name now when you ask him.  He’ll say “Gabe” in his cuter-than-cute little voice.  The voice only becomes un-cute when he says “Elmo, Elmo, Where’s Elmo, Find Elmo!” over 1,000 times when we watch Sesame Street in the evenings.

Life is good–staying healthy {mostly}, busy {sometime too much}, and happy {lots of time with family–missing friends from far away!} 🙂  Have a great week!  Pics from yesterday:

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