A former colleague used to always promote the idea of making decisions as if time and money didn’t matter. What would you do if you could do anything? After all, he’d say, money and time are just hurdles to work through – they are just problems to solve but they shouldn’t get in your way. That strategy never felt completely comfortable to me. After all, why would you solve problems without considering your constraints?
As I watch my kids grow up and learn to make decisions, they ignore money and time. I’m not sold on the idea that their decisions are any more grounded but I’m not certain it’s a completely flawed approach either. We are all saddled with the past and bogged down by decisions of the days before. If you could clear your mind of all the past and start over today, what would you do differently? After you get to that decision, make a list of the obstacles and begin to negotiate a solution.
The end of a calendar year is always a convenient place to evaluate the year and make plans for a more successful one to follow. For my new year, I’m not going to be a part of the 45 percent of Americans that make resolutions or the 25 percent that fail. I’m not resolving anything. I’m going to instead have a couple of themes or concepts to test.
The first, I’m going to step up my ongoing pursuit of phasing out the word “no” and replacing it with “how.” That will start with the question of: “What if money, time and past decisions didn’t matter? What if the slate were clear?” The second, I’m going to approach the months ahead more like a journey where I’m the captain of a ship. I’ll revisit improvements regularly and steer the ship on its course. There is no autopilot for life, I’m responsible for mine.