This is a guest post by Johan D’Haeseleer. His passion lies helping others grow in personal effectiveness by maximizing your time and maximizing your life. You can connect with him on his website here or on Twitter @johandhaeseleer.
Have you ever been asked the question “If you could start over—knowing what you know now—what would you do differently?”
Quite the question isn’t it.
Would you do everything over again, or would you take a different fork in the road?
When I hear people say, “I would do the same all over again.” I am often surprised. Haven’t they made any mistakes? Or do they want to make the same mistakes all over again?
In most cases, I have to face some lessons multiple times before I understand them correctly and before I implement those lessons into my life.
A Different Approach
One thing I would wish for is deeper insight in the area of personal effectiveness. How I use limited resources to achieve my goals remains a continuous task for me.
To become more effective, I test different approaches to find a shorter path often helps me change behavior. One form of procrastination which often feels noble is thinking that I need to know more. Most of the time knowledge—for me—is not the best approach.
Rather, it is in doing things differently and embracing change that I get different results.
It’s Time to Start Something New
Think about it: who has ever taught us to start well? No one.
If we want to start, we usually have to clean up the mistakes of our past. It always seems as if the past catches up with us or weighs us down.
Remember when you subscribed to that one magazine? You read it for a couple of months, and then you lost your interest in the topic. But at the end of your subscription, you have a new balance to pay.
This is a simple way you can restart now. You know you want to change, and simple decisions will help you build confidence to make the big decisions. Just cancel that subscription and move on to something else that interests you.
Starting With A Clean Slate
There is a lot of power when you have a fresh start. Not just a reboot or picking back up, but to start all over again. Start again from scratch.
With each new start, you have the opportunity to build a better version of yourself. And your past serves as the foundation.
Look around and see where you encounter this principle in your world in different ways.
Have you changed employers? Not just another job with the same employer, but when you go to work for a new employer and you can start with a clean slate.
When a football game starts, there are two zeros on the scoreboard. The results of the previous game have no importance anymore. With every new game, every team starts at the same starting point.
Create Your Ideal Week
Each week I start with a blank page to prepare my ideal week and I fill it with the priorities for the coming week.
But just taking this step of crafting my week is an absolute game changer.
When something does not line up with my week, I move it to the “incubation list.” This specific list is filled with things I’d like to do at some point in the future.
The truth is there are some activities that simply won’t fit in your life at this moment. But they can fit later.
This step makes my to-do list much more effective and gives me a chance to win.
I know I will lose if I try to do too much.
Do you give yourself a weekly chance to win your to-do list?
No? Then take a long look at your todo list.
Clear everything off that is not really important to you.
Go create a new one.
Give yourself a fresh start.
Do you have any suggestions for how you give yourself a fresh start? Please share in the comments.