As our meeting wrapped up, I volunteered to send a recap to everyone, particularly for the benefit of the committee member who wasn't able to attend. I walked out to my car, put the key in the ignition to head home, and then stopped myself. "Wait, I just committed to sending a recap. Why don't I do it now?"
I sat there, dictated an email into my phone recapping our 3 action items, and 5 minutes later was on my way. Voila! Mission accomplished! Check mark!
If I had waited, a few minutes before I pulled into the driveway, I would have thought, "I'll send that email right away." Then I would have walked in and gotten distracted by whatever the kids were doing. A few hours later I'd start something else and then interrupt myself to write the recap and then I would be interrupted by my husband, kids or myself. I would have gone to bed that night thinking, "Oh shoot! I forgot to send that email" and then started the whole process over the next morning by not remembering until I was in a spot that was completely inconvenient to write that email. Then a day or two later I would finally send an email; I would now have to include an apology for the delay and no doubt I would have forgotten one of the details as well. Sigh.
Look at the pain and time I saved myself but just doing it right away!
Many of my friends and family members have been talking about how busy this time of year is. It feels as if the to-do list gets longer and the ta-da list gets shorter. One way to combat that is to strike while the iron is hot. Use technology to your advantage. Need to send an email? Write it now. Need to buy something? Grab your phone and put it in your Amazon cart or on your shopping list. Need to reschedule your haircut? Make the call now.
Too often I hear people "shoulding" on themselves. "I should look into that." "I should send her a text." "I should buy that card while I'm here; nah, I'll pick it up later."
Don't add more to your list. Don't trust your brain to remember. Just strike while the iron's hot.
Photo by Jonathan Bean on Unsplash