Having a schedule makes life so much easier and better. Living an extraordinary life, doing extraordinary things, is not about killing yourself. Part of changing the game is learning to love and take care of yourself, defining your joy, and discovering the things you like as well as building habits that will make goal-setting and goal-seeking second nature, driving you towards your dream life. Discover how utilizing structure (the game changing structure) gives your life reason, meaning, and purpose every moment of every day, how to build a life and a lifestyle you don’t want a vacation from, how adopting routines, rituals, and schedules build a structure that amplifies your daily efforts, and how simply setting a preliminary structure in place will make you productive, organized, and far ahead of the pack.
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Utilizing Structure And Maximizing Schedule To Create An Excellent Lifestyle
We’re going to talk about utilizing structure and maximizing schedule to make an excellent lifestyle. How many of you love working with a schedule? For those of you that do, that’s great, I commend you. For those of you that don’t, I understand you as well. Being someone who did not like to use a schedule, I do understand that having a schedule now has made my life much better. I remember back when I didn’t want to use a schedule, I hated it. I realized how much structure that brings to my life and having structure in my life has been rewarding, has been a game changer. We’re going to talk about how that can be a game changer in your life because I realized that not everyone likes structure. Not everyone likes having a schedule, sticking to that, and filling it up. Some people don’t even want to fill the thing up, put the things in it that they need to or put things that pop up that they know they need to complete. Putting that into schedule sometimes is a daunting task and it seems benign and people don’t want to do it.
We’re going to talk about how that can help you and how that can help you live an extraordinary life without killing yourself. Understanding that to be a game changer, you have to take care of yourself. You have to define your joy, you have to discover the things you like, and you have to build habits around that. Make goal setting and goal seeking second nature. When we do that, that drives us to our goals. It drives us towards our dreams. It’s not like we can’t get to our dream, it’s the process of getting there and doing the things that’s going to allow us to get us there. I believe having a structure, setting a structure in place, having a calendar, all things that will help you get to your goals, help you get to your dreams.
I want to show you how to put a game changing structure in place that will give your life reason, give it meaning, and give it purpose every single day. We generally feel sometimes that we have a purpose. We generally feel like we know what life means but it’s at a 50,000-foot level or sometimes 100,000-foot level. I want to bring it down to the daily process, the day-to-day activity. How can you give your life meaning day-to-day? Every day when you wake up in the morning, you have meaning for today, for that day. You can carry that with you throughout the day.
We’re going to jump in to a particular topic that has been working for me for several years. It is simple. I call it the critical six. The reason why I call it the critical six because I believe that if you can get six things that you need to do, six things that you need to check off in a day, you can check those things off, and I’m talking about major things. I’m not talking about little things. I’m talking about things that are critical, that have to happen. That’s why I call it the critical six things that have to happen. It’s the priority that you get it done for that day. What if you were to structure that for today? What if you were to structure that are around your day and what if it started the day before?
You have so much going on in our lives. We all are very busy. Sometimes we can be busy that we have trouble sleeping. We find it hard to get rest because we want to get it all done. Perhaps we’re overwhelmed. There’s so much to do, so much little time to do it, and we’re trying to figure out how am I going to get all this stuff done. We have kids, we have jobs, we have all of these other things that need to be done that we would like to do. Life gets busy, and our belief that we can break that down into small pieces, into our priorities, and then we can put it in a process, put it in a plan or structure or a list or whatever works for you to allow us to conquer that, to take on the task of getting things done. That’s why I love calling this the critical six of what I do.
At night, before you go to bed, take 30 minutes. What if you could take 30 minutes? Not long at all. Sit down and think about what are the most critical things that I need to get done the next day? You write those things down and this becomes your critical six. You wake up in the morning, you know exactly what it is that you have to do, there’s no question. You write those six things down and you go to sleep. You’re not worried about what you’re going to do tomorrow. You can get some rest. You don’t have to spend all night thinking about it. You’ve taken the time to think and sort out the most important things that I need to accomplish the next day, the critical six. You write those down, you go to sleep, you’re not wondering. You sleep well. Let your mind stop racing. When you wake up, you know exactly what it is that you have to do.
You pick up your list and then these things are prioritized. You start with the first thing on the list. That is what you’re going to tackle for the day. In my mind, you have so much power because you have the structure in place. You have the structure that can carry you throughout the day. You know what it is you’re going to be doing. I know distractions and things can come up. What you have is a foundation to get your day completed in a powerful way because you have these six things that you have to knock down for the day. You go through them and you don’t go to the next one until the first one or the prior one is completed. You go through step-by-step, one-by-one, checking it off until it’s all done.
That’s your critical six. When you’ve gotten those critical six things done, if you have time to take on more, great. I would advise you not to, unless it’s critical. If you have time, great, but be leery of whenever you get these six things done and you get in the habit of taking on more, you’re filling up that space with more task and perhaps you’ve been productive enough for today. There are other things in your life that needs attention, not just work, not just completing tasks like your health, your family, yourself. Sometimes we are focused or goal-oriented that we forget to take care of ourselves. Whenever we do find free time, hence you complete the things on your list, we want to fill that up with more things on the list.
Instead of transitioning to, “I’ve performed what I was supposed to perform today. I’m going to move on to self-care. I’m going to move on to family. I’m going to move on to something else in my life” sometimes we’re so driven that we fill it up and other parts of our lives suffer. Keep in mind that you can make the critical six. You can make that list spread out towards other areas of your life. It doesn’t have to be things that are driven towards your goal. Perhaps you have multiple goals and this list or the six things are going to carry you towards one or two goals, even three goals. You pick a priority action from one goal or more. Maybe they are two goals. You pick apart actions and that becomes part of the list.
The whole idea is to make things simple for you. Make it simple because sometimes we overcomplicate and we overfill our lives with stuff because there’s so much coming at us, but what we have to do is we have to sit down and we have to figure out what are the most important things that I need to do. That’s what the critical six list is all about. It’s about taking the time at night before you go to bed. Instead of waking up and waiting until the morning to figure out, “What am I going to do today?” think about that. Is there power in it? It’s not power when you wake up and you have to decide, you have to take time to think about what it is you’re going to do. In my mind, you’re wasting time. That’s not powerful, but the night before, if you can sit down and think about the critical things that you need to do, when you wake up, you don’t have to put any thought towards what it is you’re going to set out to accomplish for the day. It has already been established for you.
The beauty of that is whenever you are sleeping, even though you’ve written it down and you went to sleep, you’re consciously going to sleep, but your subconscious mind is going to go to work on those things. It’s going to go to work figuring out how to get some of those things accomplished. Don’t be surprised if you wake up in the morning and you already know exactly how you’re going to get one or two of those items completed on the list. You’ve got this renowned information about how to get it done. You don’t even know where it comes from or where it came from. It landed in your mind and you’re not going to sit out. You’re going to do that. If you didn’t write that down, then you don’t give yourself that opportunity for that to happen. You’re trying to rack your brain the same day in the morning, you’re trying to complete the task and then you have to figure out, “What task am I going to complete?” Then go complete the task. I’m trying to give you a head start on completing tasks and adding structure to your life. I believe by writing things down the night before, the critical six things that you can do, will give you a head start.
The next thing I want you to do is create buckets for your life. We have multiple facets of areas that we have to be successful at, that we have to perform at, that we have to give attention to in our lives. For example, we have the professional duties. Whatever you do, whatever your job is, however you earn your money, that’s important. It’s your livelihood. There’s family and then there’s your fitness. There are your kids, if you have kids. There are other areas. I don’t know what areas you have in your life, but we all have these buckets. What we have to do is you have to prioritize and plan how are we going to touch these buckets in our lives.
How are we going to do that? Sometimes we have no clue. We go along with the day and whatever happens, happens. There’s no structure to it. What I want to advise you to do is sit down and create a plan on how you are going to touch these different buckets in your life. If you want something new in your life, you have to create space for that. You have to create space for something new. We have to create space for yourself. You have to create space for even understanding what it is that you want to accomplish in life and how are you going to go about accomplishing it in life. That’s where your structure comes into place.
A lot of times, we don’t have structure. We go out and whatever comes up, that’s what we do. I call those things distractions. The strategy for handling distractions is the wind strategy. I love the wind strategy because when you have your critical six and have your structure on how you’re going to go about your day, what things you’re going to focus on and maybe you won’t focus on things every single day. Maybe you have certain days that you focus on this, certain days that you focus on that. It’s like a workout schedule. You work out three days a week, but you may not workout consecutively. You may workout Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Maybe you take one or two days out of the month. You call it your self-care day, where you do your spa, you do whatever makes you feel good. That’s structure.
Maybe you have a certain day that you work with your kids. Maybe you have a certain day that you work on your financial goals and you spend more time on your financial goals. If you have that in place, it takes a lot of discipline to stick to that and I know life comes up, things happen, but what I want you to think about when things happen is the wind strategy. When you’re going along and you’re doing your thing, you’re executing your plan and then something comes up. I want you to execute the wind strategy by asking, “What’s important now?” A lot of times, we get off track and we execute things that are not that important. Is it more important than the plan that we’ve put in place? This plan is important for you because that’s your plan.
That’s your guide map. It’s your roadmap to success and that’s what we’re talking about when we’re talking about structure. We’re talking about schedule. If something is going to come up and take you off that roadmap to success, it better be important. A lot of times, it’s not. We don’t have the discipline or sometimes we don’t say no. We don’t say no and there’s power in saying no. A lot of times, we let our emotions get the best of us because we don’t want to say no. It may be perceived a certain way if we say no, but you’ve got to take your life by the horns sometimes.
Sometimes you’ve got to put your life in a place where it takes something important for you to get off that path because that’s your purpose. Sometimes whenever you’re off that path or something knocks you off that path, it truly eats your lunch. It takes up your time. It takes up your mental strength, it takes up your energy, and sometimes it can last for more than a second. Sometimes it can last for weeks and we’re off. Sometimes it’s hard.
I know you guys can understand. Sometimes it’s hard to even get on a plan. Sometimes it’s hard to even get on a schedule. When you’re on it, you’re on it. We all know the little thing can come through and knock us off that plan and it’s hard. It’s easy to get off and it’s hard to get back on. It’s important that we sustain that level of execution, that we sustain that level of focus, and that we put the effort into it to stay on that journey, to stay on that path. Where does that put you if you don’t maintain that structure? I’m not saying that you’re not flexible, we all have to be flexible. Life happens. I get it, but we flex when we have to. We flex when it’s important. Whenever we apply the wind strategy and we see that this is important enough for me to step off the path, realizing that we got that, we’re going to have to get back on that path, that may take some effort.
If you know that it’s going to take some effort that it throws you off your game, you have to protect that space and there’s nothing wrong with that. It’s not the role of protecting that space because you know yourself. You know what it takes to get back on course. You know how much effort you have to put back into it. You know whether or not it breaks your focus. I understand that you can get better at that and that’s a skill that’s to be learned. Getting back on focus whenever someone breaks your focus, or something breaks your focus, and being able to do that quickly, it’s a learned skill. It can be done but if you’re not mature in that area and you’re starting out on this journey, it’s critical that you stay on.
Perhaps you have some goals to reach, you have to take whatever comes up through this wind strategy because that is going to check to see if it’s worth it instead of jumping off. Ask yourself, “Is it worth it?” As you go and build your schedule, as you’re building structure around your life, you’re taking the time to understand how much time in a week you want to spend towards your goals, how much time in a week or how many days a week you want to spend towards your relationship. Spending time with your significant other, your quality time, how much time do you want to spend working on your craft? How many hours a week are you going to spend working on your craft? How many days a week are you going to spend working on your craft? Really sit down and map that out.
You have what we’ve talked about, the daily structure, which is the critical six. This is what you write down. Everything that you’re going to do the night before to plan your day, to live a powerful day, a purposeful day, a meaningful day. At the end of the day, you can go back and look at how many things on your list were you able to check, how much of your priorities did you get done. You can also create the map of how you are going to spend your week, how are you going to divide up your time and touch the different buckets in your life, whether you’re going to spend two days a week, three days a week, one day a week. Then after you’ve done that and you’ve mapped that out, this is how you’re going to do it every single week.
This is how I’m going to do it every day. These are the priorities. You can understand per month what are you doing and look at and budgeting. What is my time spent on this? What is my time spent on that? We all know if you’re not putting the time in to the areas that you want to excel in, to the areas that you want to perform, you won’t be excellent. You want to get something out of it. You’ve got to put the time in. You can’t expect anything out if you’re not putting the right amount of time, the right amount of focus and putting the structure in place that makes it possible, that makes it doable. It gives you the outline or the roadmap, the GPS, to allow you to live your life powerfully. Here’s a little tip that I want to give you. As you’re building the structure, I want you to think about your life.
This is your lifestyle that you’re building. Incorporate things in here that you love, not the work. I understand being a go-getter, I commend you for that. I’m a go-getter. Be a go-getter. There’s nothing wrong with that. Put things in here that’s going to allow you to love your life because being a go-getter is great. My concern is if you go and you never take time for yourself, you never take time to have fun, spend time with your family. Do fun things, exciting things. It’s like, “I need a vacation,” because we get burnt out.
That’s what that is all about, is burn out. What we want to do is implement that. Include that in your plan, include the time off in your plan, include the vacation, if you will, include the downtime to pleasurable time. You’re building a lifestyle and when you build a lifestyle that you love, it’s the lifestyle that you don’t want to take a vacation from. For example, every three months you go do something that’s amazing, like sky diving, scuba diving or skiing. Whatever you enjoy, you build that into the schedule. These are things that you can build into your budget as well because your budget is also part of your scheduling.
How much money are you saving? If there are things that you enjoy like clothes or vacations, perhaps there’s something that you want to buy that’s nice for yourself. You should be putting money towards that. Every single time you have money coming in, there should be money that’s going towards that particular bucket, and that’s what you call putting structure in place towards your finances. A lot of times, we have money coming in, and then it flows out. It flows out without filtering through a structure as bills, expenses that you have to pay. I got all of that. What about putting a structure in place around your bills and around the things that you want in life, the goals, the dreams?
Even the expenses, we can monitor that. We can put a structure in that. Instead of saying, “Whatever I eat this month is going to be what I eat,” I’m not going to monitor how much I spend around it. I’m not going to monitor how much gas I spend. I’m not going to monitor how I spend my money, but if you could put structure around your expenses, put structure around the things that you want, that’s called budgeting. You discipline yourself and stick to that and that will allow you to start building a nest. It’ll allow you to start saving towards whatever it is that you have on your list that you want to do every three months, every four months. Perhaps there’s something you want to do every month. Maybe you want to go out to eat every month and this is your budget for that. What I’m saying is this is what allows you to live a life that you love.
This is what allows you to live an extraordinary life without killing yourself. You can’t figure out where your money is going. You can’t figure out when am I going to have time to do something that I love? How many of us have had those situations where you can’t figure that out? It seems like for month, the week, I can’t do anything fun or I feel like I’m struggling. I feel like I’m swimming. All I do is go to work and come home. There is no structure there. You have to build that stuff. You have to be conscious of what it is that you want and then you have to make time for it. You have to make space for that. If you’re not sitting down and say, “This is when I want to go do this; this is the time I’m going to spend towards that.”
You discipline yourself around that and then you make space for that. That’s what you’re doing. You live your life based on that schedule. That’s where the power of the schedule comes in. That’s where being game changers, we change our perspective towards things and we live a game changing life because we have a game changing mentality. That is a game changing mentality where you’re thinking about how you are spending your time.
You have the same amount of time as everyone else. We all get 24 hours a day. The key is how you spend that 24 hours. How are you dividing your time up? You divide the time up by including things that you want and this may be a case where you have to exclude things that you don’t like. It could be that you’re spending too much time doing pleasurable things and not enough time doing things that’s going to give you what you really want.
This is where you have to sit down and do an assessment of yourself. Take a look where you’ve been spending your time. What are your actuals? What is the actual time spent in pleasure? What is the actual time spent working on your financial goals? What is the actual time spent working on your income? What is the actual time spent working on your health and your wellbeing? What is the actual time spent working on your relationship? Audit your time.
When you audit your time and you’ve seen that you’ve been spending too much time over here, create something different. Put in a new structure where, “I haven’t been spending enough time with my spouse. I haven’t been spending enough time with my kids. I haven’t been spending enough time monitoring my finances. I haven’t missed spending enough time working on my body.”
You create a structure that will allow you to do that. It is that simple. You don’t have to kill yourself doing this. If you want to start out small, you can start working out three days a week. You’re going to take a look at your finances, maybe a half hour a day just to monitor things, make sure things are in the right place and that you’re spending your money properly. That you’re not overspending in certain areas. Perhaps you want to spend a certain amount of hours with your kids every single day, reading to them or throwing balls with them, whatever it is that you do.
Maybe you want to spend a certain amount of time on your business or looking for a new job, getting an education. How much time do you want to spend on that? Building your rewards, perhaps you want to go somewhere? You want to go do something that’s nice. Maybe it’s fishing, maybe it’s scuba diving, whatever it is but you schedule that in. You give yourself something to look forward to. You take time for yourself every single day, even if it’s just to go for a walk. Even if it’s just to read, it’s to do something that you enjoy doing. It doesn’t have to take long.
What you’re doing is setting up a life that you love, a lifestyle that you love, and then make these things a habit. Get into the routine of doing these things. Make them rituals for you. This is what’s going to amplify you. This is what’s going to make you feel good about yourself and feel good about your life. A lot of people that don’t feel good about their life, it’s because they haven’t built things that make them feel good about it. All they’re focused on are things that don’t work, but they’re not doing the things that make it work. They’re miserable because they’re not figuring out is the things that you’re doing is making your life suck. If you’re tired of having a sucky life, you have to do something different.
You can have a great light every day, all day, one that you can feel good about. It’s all about the habits. It’s all about the routines. It’s the things that you do on a daily, consistent basis. Setting up a preliminary structure, putting that in place, something that’s going to make you productive, something that’s going to keep you organized. That’s going to put you ahead of 80%, if not 90%, of the population because people don’t do that. People don’t want structure. People don’t want schedule. They want a happy life, but they don’t want to do the things that will allow them to be happy. They don’t want to do the thing that’s going to allow them to live a powerful life.
That’s what I want to give you. I want to give you and I want to show you how you can set this up for yourself with the critical six, starting with the critical six. You can implement this today, tonight, before you lay your head down, think about tomorrow. What is it that you want to accomplish tomorrow? What are the most important things that you want to accomplish tomorrow? Write those down on a pad. Put it in your phone in the notes section of your phone. Text it to yourself, email it to yourself, whatever you have to do so that when you wake up the next morning, you can go to that note and you can take a look at, “This is my roadmap for today.”
You haven’t completed your journey for that date until those six things are done. Implement the wind strategy. Someone comes and tries to knock you off the things that you’re supposed to be doing up there, life happens. Something pops up, whatever it is, run it through the wind strategy. What’s important now? Before you act, before you respond to whatever the situation is, is it important now? Is it something that can wait? Is it something that can be done later? It may become a priority on your list at some other time, but if it’s going to knock you off what it is that you’re doing, one of your priorities, it better be important. You have to feel that way about it.
Start building a strategy for your week. Take a look at the different buckets in your life that you want to spend more time. This may require you to audit where you’ve been spending your time. What changes do you want to meet? Are you getting the results that you want to get? Put a structure in place that’s going to allow you to take a look at your health, your wellbeing, your budget, your finances. Where are you spending your time? Think about putting things in place that will allow you to touch these different areas in your life. Maybe it’s one day a week, two days a week, three days a week, four days a week. However, it is important to you. Set that up, incorporate pleasure into this plan that will make your life outstanding. That would make your life fun.
Create your budget around it, put your budget around it. If there’s something in here that you love to do, perhaps go get a massage. Align that with your budget so you can get those things done. Maybe it’s every three months, maybe you go on a little get away every three months, and then you go on a large vacation twice a year. Whatever it is for you, but you have to work that out and you have to align it with your budget and then make this a habit. Make it a habit. If you make it a habit, I guarantee you, you will be happy that you did. You will be well above the pack and you will be living a game changing life. One that is extraordinary, one that you love, and one that you don’t want to take a vacation from because it’s designed that way and it’s done on purpose and you will, at that time, be living an excellent lifestyle.
That’s how you do it. That’s how utilizing structure and maximizing your schedule will allow you to live an excellent lifestyle. Put preliminary structures in place that’s going to make you productive, make you organized, and far ahead of the pack. Start with the critical six and you will be well on your way. I would love to hear from you. If you have any questions about this particular episode, please send them to me. You can reach me at Rodney@RodneyFlowers.com and I would love to have you in the Game Changer community. The title of the group is the Game Changer Transformation Community on Facebook. Check us out. We would love to have you there. Thank you for listening to another episode of the Game Changer Mentality podcast. I am your host, Rodney Flowers. I will see you on another episode of the Game Changer Mentality. Thank you. We’ll see you next time.
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