I love a DO list. NOT a "to do" list – a DO list. There's a big difference.
I always say: Think it, Write it, Share it, DO it. There's a process to getting things done. Like running the bases in baseball, or closing a sale, you have to move through each step. Establish a formula, a system, then practice it over and over again until you become confident that it's going to work.
But what happens if it doesn't? Or worse, you realize that you DON'T want it to get done? Sometimes, it's not about the DO – it's about the DON'T.
How do we deal with things we don't want to do, unpleasant situations we'd rather not face? Those can easily fall through the cracks or get pushed aside. Despite our best intentions, the things we DON'T want to do, don't make it onto our DO list.
Can you feel me? Avoidance, anyone?
This happened to me recently, when I neglected to make time for something I promised I'd do. Months ago, a colleague had asked me to assist with their new project, something I was excited about. Unfortunately, when the time came to actually produce, I found myself deeply committed to personal matters and couldn't prioritize the project. I tried to help, a little, but really what I was avoiding was the HARD talk that I was out. Telling people what they DON'T want to hear is one of the hardest things to DO.
I knew I needed to call my colleague and get this unpleasant task out of the way immediately. Did I? Sadly, no. And my oversight impacted my colleague, who had been counting on my involvement.
For someone like me, this kind of situation is scarier than a Stephen King movie (and I'm a major fraidycat). My work as a coach is everything to me. I'm in the business of helping people make choices to navigate toward their goals in a way they can feel good about. But when it comes to saying NO, so many of us fail. I failed.
So, going forward, I am going to try and DO better. I'm standing firm in NO. I will not take on anything that isn't 100% aligned with my goals.
I'm a lifelong proponent of journaling, and I've kept all my journals dating back to the fourth grade: that's literally dozens of boxes of notebooks, every page of them filled cover-to-cover. Now, to prevent another undone DO, I'll be dedicating a journal page to my seasonal mission. From now to the New Year, if a task/ask/possibility doesn't move me toward the mission stated on that page, I'm committed to NOT DOing whatever IT is.
NO excuses. NO apologies. Saying NO is a skill we all need to get comfortable with – if we DO it with certainty and confidence, with respect and good reason, then it's going to be OK.
Speaking of journaling and paper, my favorite notebook was a gift from a dear friend and colleague. It's made by Levenger and is even engraved with my initials, KDG, for a personal touch. I love it.
So just keep DOing what you're doing ... or DON'T. And if you're not sure, let's talk.
Stop to think. Ask yourself if what you are doing is moving you in the direction you want to go, and make note of the answer. Then consider sharing it on Instagram and tagging me @kristenglosserman. I'd love to hear!