This Daily Habit Is How Elite Decision Makers Prioritize Their Day
It’s impossible to keep everything we need in our heads and choosing what to prioritize each day determines our results.
From our lists of things to get done, high value deep work and creative output that requires most of our horse power, and of course, the high stakes decisions that affects our firms results.
This is why we must bring our best to the table every day and why priming ourselves, the identities we want to bring forward every morning is so critical.
Think of priming as programming yourself to be who you want to be that day, to act how you want to act. It’s a self image exercise that every elite performer on the planet does whether they know it or not.
This does two core things among a myriad positive side effects:
- Puts you in the right emotional state to rise to your idealized identity’s occasion.
- The meditative reflection gives your internal creative mechanism the space to realize what your highest priorities are, and connect them with other past, present and future priorities.
This is why Martin Luther said:
“I have so much to do I’ll need to spend three hours in prayer to get it all done.”
Whether it’s prayer, working out or meditation — our mornings (or nights) are the best time to suggest to our subconscious drivers.
You have an endless number of things to do and decisions to make for your financial future, your colleagues and investors.
What the late psychologist, Dr. William Malton called “rehearsal practice” — is a must, especially as we try and show up to work with effortless ease of a peak state that’s studiously practicing, which is the secret to performing our best when it’s time to rise to the occasion when 9am hits.
And the more high stakes your decisions become, the more time you need to yourself to allow for decisions to be made effortlessly, because the more we force consciously, the less we allow our natural creative source to reveal itself unconsciously — and that’s where the magic happens.
A study done by L. V. Clark of Wayne State University on visualization used free-throw performance of basketball players.
First the athletes tested to determine their free-throw proficiency.
Next they were randomly assigned to one of three experimental groups.
The first went to the gym daily and practiced live free throws.
The second group went to the gym but didn’t shoot, and visualized successfully shooting free throws.
The third group did nothing.
The results 30 days later showed improvement rates of exactly 23% and 24% of the exclusive visualizers and live free throw shooters who practiced!
Naturally the people who didn’t practice stayed the same and declined.
So what does that tell you about the power of visualizing in terms of the context of your day and prioritization of it?
A killer combination to show up to work well prioritized, well practiced and in your highest state.
So every morning, before you set your agenda for the day, preferably well before when you’ve arrived at the office, sit down and meditate, reflecting and proactively try not to think by focusing on your breath.
Your mind naturally will think, and just watch it wander from task to task, context to context and get things done in your mind. See them happening successfully in real time.
For example, this Saturday morning, right before writing this post (and what inspired it in fact). I was about 20 minutes into meditation and realized I had a call coming up with my PR person to do a press release.
I realized this press release was for TV and that I needed to practice my pitch in the one on one interview context so I naturally first began practicing it with my imagination and then did it live out loud.
Had I not taken that time (my PR stuff is a bit down the line) to meditate, this realization that lead to learning and practice in that context wouldn’t have happened.
Keep in mind, my PR work is not coming up for a little while, so it wasn’t an immediate item I needed to bring to my attention, but given I recalled it, I’ll take that as a signal that it’s time to begin thinking about it. Attuned intuition at work.
The greatest capability we have as human beings is the ability to take in data, distil it and choose where we focus our attention.
This is what gave us the edge whether it was in the Savannah hunting or being hunted long ago, or as internet wielding super humans taking in endless amounts of data making decisions that impact many many people.
As data becomes more and more abundant with more and more mediums and more and more noise to filter through. Our challenge will always be what to cut, not what to add — adding is easy, cutting and prioritizing is hard and takes discipline.
Which knowledge sources are an absolute must read and which?
With an endless list of things to do, and a finite amount of focus and energy available to us, it’s the performer who shows up with devastating focus, devastating prioritization and a devastatingly short list of highest value items to take on. Realizing what those highest value priorities with a morning routine of meditative reflection is how it get’s done.
The one’s who habitually do it each day are the ones who are looking for the inches.
The one’s who habitually look for the inches each day compound over time to crush the competition.
Those inches lead to the highest priority work being worked on in the highest priority state with devastating focus and effectiveness.
The great in their fields know they need to work on this stuff, the elite just do it daily and never look back.
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