Plan for the future. LIVE Today.

I love planning… I mean REALLY love it! I love envisioning new systems, I love crunching numbers and running through various scenarios, I love monitoring results and adjusting the plan as we go, I love getting feedback… I love everything about planning.

But I have come to understand that the idea of living in the present moment is not merely some hippy bullshit. In approximately year 5 of our farm (2015), I became aware of how much anxiety I was harbouring regarding the future. Specifically whether we were going to be able to buy a farm on the time frame I had in mind… I had planned it all out and we were on track as far as the plan was concerned…. but I realised that the more I focused on the future and whether or not we were going to be able to find a farm that suited our needs and be able to afford it, the more I was paralyzed by fear in my daily life.

It was actually getting in the way of me doing the things I needed to be doing!

So plan for the future but live today! Planning is essential, but getting emotionally investing in your plan is optional (and painful). There is a certain form of faith which is required so as to simultaneously be 100% committed and invested in your vision and at the very same time be 100% detached from the outcome and confident in the flow of life and our innate ability to adapt and thrive.

So lets hold these 2 seemingly paradoxical mantras at the same time:

“If you fail to plan… you plan to fail”

“One Day at a Time!”

 

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PS: I have recently totally redone the main section of the website. Take a minute to check it out.

www.organicfarmercoach.com

7 tools to make the most out of every precious day!!

Time is fleeting and sooner or later each of us is going to leave this physical body through the process of death…. so let’s make every day count!

Here are 7 concepts and tools that I have found most useful in managing my time on a daily basis

  1. Plan your day from a space of clarity and focus: As discussed in last week’s blog, it is critical to be calm and centred on who you are fundamentally and what your mission is before planning out the day.
  2. Consider your various roles: This will flow naturally from the morning routine proposed last week. My roles are: father, husband, son, brother, farmer, life and business coach, Yogi/spiritual seeker, athlete, dancer, visionary leader. I need to be sure that each week I am nurturing each of those roles through ACTIONS here in physical reality.
  3. Urgent vs. Important: Originally developed by Stephen Covey in “7 habits of highly effective people” (put it on your required reading list), this concept was a game changer for me
  4. 80/20 principle (Pareto Principle): 80% of your outcome is coming from 20% of your effort. 80% of your profits are coming from 20% of your clients. 80% of your headaches are coming from 20% of your crops. Figure out what actions are going to produce the greater leverage today and make them your top priority.
  5. 3/10/20 daily time management method
    1. 3 major actions: 1 MIA (Most Important Action) plus two priority actions: These are those high leverage actions that get you the greatest results in terms of your goals. These get do in the day NO MATTER WHAT HAPPENS!
    2. 10 other “minor” actions
    3. Portion out your time in 20 minute bubbles…. 15-20 time bubbles per day. Major actions take more than 1 time bubble and minor actions can be accomplished in less than 20 minutes. Plan on using a number of time bubbles that is both realistic and a slight stretch at the same time. It is such a relief to realise that so often we are simply planning too much (or too little) stuff for our day.
  6. O.P.A. is a quick little tool from Tony Robbins that I find quite useful.
    1. Outcome: What do I want to achieve with this day/week/year/decade.
    2. Purpose: Why!!! Having a clear why is essential is keeping us connected to our vision and to provide us with the energy and courage to power though those inevitable moments of trial and doubt.
    3. Action: The proof is in the pudding; so let’s dive into the pudding.
  7. Measure your time: What we don’t measure, we can’t manage. Look back on your day and reflect on how much time you are spending in each of the 4 quadrants.

Most importantly, we must stay grounded in our dreams and visions though out the day. Remember that every little action is a building block for our vision.

When ever we are agitated or doubtful, let’s pause and bring ourselves back to that mental space of clarity, focus, ease, and grace that we had during our morning routine.

To infinity and beyond (one day at a time)!

 

Morning Routine for Clarity and Focus

A key element of living and working with intention, is keeping those intentions and goals pertinent and active in our daily lives. The clarity and the passion associated to the goals is of supreme importance, but that energy is lost if on a daily basis we do not take authentic actions towards out goals.

The morning routine serves just that purpose. Called by some the Boot-Up Sequence, the morning routine is a practice that is common to most high performing individuals (be it in business, the arts, athletics, the military, etc). Through the practice of a morning routine, we are able to start off our day on the right track… to center ourselves and reconnect with who we truly are and what we truly want.

I encourage you to find a routine that works for you. The idea here is to start your day off with clarity and focus, rather than jumping right into the To-Do list…. and FOR GOODNESS SAKES, do not check your social media or emails before having finished your morning routine!!

Personally, my morning routine includes:

  • Wake up an hour before the rest of my family.
  • 15 minutes of yoga.
  • 15 minutes of meditation.
  • 15 minutes inspirational reading.
  • Then (with a cup of rooibos tea) I set about gaining a clear vision of my day. Like a captain of a ship, I seek to clear away the fog and see the path forward with clarity and focus.
  • I choose what qualities of being I am willing to call forth and contribute to this day. Who am I willing to be in order to produce an extraordinary result out of this interaction?
  • I read over my personal mission statement and the list of medium and long term goals that I am striving to manifest in my life.
  • Once my mind is clear, and I am grounded in who I am and where I seek to go, I can now go about the business of planning my day.
  • I plan out my day using the 3-10-20 method (to be discussed further in a future blog post.)
    • 3 major actions (these are high leverage actions that I am committed to competing no matter what happens in my day)
    • 10 minor actions (less than 20 minutes each)
    • Time is allocated to the different actions in 20 minute time bubbles (15-20 time bubbles per day max).

We have a choice: Dive right into action like a chicken with it’s head cut off, or soar into our day with clarity and focus like an eagle on the wind.

You choose….what’s it gonna be?

Suit up and Show up!

Yup.. no ideas right now… Well, not that’s not even true. That’s  just some monkey mind excuse for not showing up… which actually it totally related to what I do have to say.

A while back, I attended a fantastic coaching training in Sacramento, California. Part of the training involved learning certain passages by memory. When the instructor asked for a volunteer to recite the first of four questions from memory, no one volunteered.  What holds us back from putting up our hand? What would it be like to show up to life without these mental barriers?

For many, the answers to that question revolves around the fear of not doing a good job and of leaving the opportunity to other students to participate. Personally, in this situation, my reason was that I was waiting so I could show off by reciting the second and more challenging question that I knew was coming.

I see how this is a way of being has been present through out my life. What would it be like if I could just live without being so preoccupied about what others think? I realise how much of my energy is wasted either worrying about impressing someone or about not offending someone.

I’m not saying I want to live in an inconsiderate manner… This is not even remotely possible for someone like me. I am saying this: I am a hero, whole and complete, on an incredible journey, seeking to contribute all I have to offer. To do so, it is so much more powerful to show up to the present moment unburdened by mental fuckery and limiting narratives… To take that risk, dive off the deep end, raise my hand. To embrace the present and trust in my goodness!

So come on, join me on this amazing journey to make a meaningful contribution to this world. Trust in our authentic selves and let’s stop worrying so much about what others are thinking. (Because 99% of the time they aren’t thinking anything about us anyways)!

Success is 10% knowledge and 90% attitude.

Intelligence is about what you know. Wisdom is about what you choose to do with that knowledge.

While the importance of knowledge and technical skills is not to be underestimated, success can only occur when we put that knowledge into action (at the right time and for the right reasons). We all know that we need to cultivate our fields when the weeds are at the white thread or cotyledon stage, and yet how often do we fail to take action at the key moment because…. (insert reason here)?

In that moment, when we fail to make that action which we know we need and want to take, what is happening? For me, what prevented me was not lack of knowledge or the absence of the correct tool… it was because I wasn’t in the right mind set (Be it time management issues, prioritization, efficiency, procrastination (which is just a long way of spelling FEAR), low energy)… these are direct results of my attitude, my mind set, and my beliefs.

It is our attitude, or mindset, that is key in determining our capacity to implement those strategies which know are best and have decided to use.

And yet, we hardly heard this discussed in agricultural circles. We love to geek out about the latest variety of vegetable, the better piece of equipment, the precise way to celebrate a seeder…. but we so often overlook the the fact that we as individuals need to be in an optimal state of being to be able to skillfully implement the given technique.

Confirmation Bias

Through our actions and observations, we essentially seek to confirm what we already believe about a certain element. Rather than gathering evidence and developing theories based on that data, we actually form a theory of how something is , or how it works… and then go about gathering evidence to support this vision of the world… even going so far as to generating that evidence ourselves through our actions.

It is of critical importance to be aware of what we believe to be true, because what we believe determines how we show up in our lives, what actions we take, and ultimately the outcome. It’s a self perpetuating cycle. Belief -> Action -> Outcome -> Belief. Let us be very clear with ourselves here regarding the proverbial chicken and the egg… the belief comes first, the observed “reality” comes second.

Herein lies the power of paradigms. Paradigms are the lens with which we see our world. The len we use determines how we see the world. Our vision of the world dictates how we interact with it and what actions we take. And the outcomes of those actions reinforce the use of the given lens.

If you’re looking for better answers in your life… it’s time to ask better quality questions!

 

Hello world!

What is the point of this blog?

In less melodramatic terms: What is my vision for this blog, who is it addressed to, what impact do I seek by it’s existence?

Hey! That sound a lot like what I learned in Seth Godin’s Marketing Seminar… and I didn’t even plan it that way. I’m pleased to see that I indeed integrated the course material.

Seth Godin speaks of the marketing trifecta (lets apply it to this blog):

Who do I seek to change?

Passionate organic vegetable farming nerds who are committed to either : peak performance, or, an extraordinary quality of life…. or both.

… does that sound like you?

What change do I seek to bring about?

I seek to share ideas, concepts, and methods that have helped me live a more intentional life (to be more intentional about how I spend my time and energy).

I seek to empower you to be your best self and kick ass. (Be all you can be). I seek to support you in your journey to reach your goals… in fact, to far surpass your goals… to blow the roof off what you think is possible….

… are you ready?

What is my promise?

I promise you that the time you commit to reading my weekly blog will be time well invested.

I promise to seek out and synthesize ideas from across a broad range of domains, to expose you new ways of seeing things. I promise that these new frameworks will be applicable to your daily life.

I promise to be honest, transparent, passionate, and committed to excellence!

… are you with me?