Drawing by Kitty Wong, an illustrator and fashion designer living in Hong Kong. Follow her blog here, her lovely tumblr here, and shop these prints in her Society6 shop. And if you like this, there’s more to come.
THIS WEEK’S PRINT AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE HERE.
A few weeks ago, my father graced my inbox with a list he’s talked about for years: Zig Ziglar’s list of 100 things he learned on his way to the top. See my intro blog post to the illustration series here. And if you’re interested in seeing the list, just email me: bri.garcia7 @ gmail-dot-com. It’s worth keeping around.
Ironically, as I write this, I am a week late in posting my usual weekly Zig Ziglar collaboration post. Why? Because I’m learning what it means to be busy…REALLY, truly busy doing real work. For all the times I was “soooooo busy” in the past, I’m discovering that business itself – meetings, emails, tasks, errands – can happen to all of us, but “busy” with purpose – learning on the job, working towards a big goal by making many small ones and managing them closely – is entirely exhilarating and altogether exhausting. Much respect to those who have families and careers they care deeply about, and still manage to keep ahold of their sanity.
This week’s pick from Zig Ziglar’s list is #25: “Direction literally creates time.” When Kitty sent this illustration over, she mentioned she was eager to see what I end up writing, since this one seemed a little vague.
Please interpret as you will, but to me, this means that when we have a singular vision and focus, and devote ourselves to it unwaveringly, time will make itself available to us. It might not be time in a way we’re comfortable with – say, 5:00am on a day stacked with meetings – but windows of time reveal themselves to us, and it’s up to us to exploit them.
There exist entire sections of sites (check out Lifehacker’s extensive list) and genres of books focused specifically on time management, but ultimately, we know when, how and where we get distracted, and the fanciest apps, tools and reminders still depend on us caring enough about our goals/focus/vision to NOT answer the emails in our bloated inboxes, keep our phones face down on our desks, and not let Twitter FOMO lure us into its depths.
If we approach our lives with the attitude of “time is money”, this could end badly, with us treating life’s precious moments like something we must quantify. However, when it comes to our life’s work, I do believe we should treat our time like we would our $, and spend it wisely.
This post by Jeremiah Owyang is short, sweet and to the point (no doubt because he recognizes the importance of our time reading his words):
Time is a limited resource. Unlike money, you can’t use money to make more money…
Everyone wants a piece of it. Like money, everyone wants time…
So plan your day(s) as you do money. Here’s four simple ways to move forward: 1) Write —not a digital device— a list each day on a moleskin of what you want to accomplish. Even if it’s the same list from yesterday, the act of writing this down makes you process the upcoming. 2) Prioritize the lists, find items that can be done in sequence or things that can be replicated. 3) Items that stay on your lists for weeks may just have to come off 4) Check the items off as you do them, and review at end of day.
When we’re dedicated to our direction, we’re wiser about our time, and exploit the pockets of time we’d typically spend otherwise. Yes, sometimes this means obnoxiously early mornings or precious Sundays. But Zig didn’t explain this time as comfortable or cushy, he just said “time”. It’s out there, we just have to grab it and hold it close to our chests.