by George Hedley
We use large 100 ton cranes in our construction business to lift concrete tilt-up wall panels and erect the building's structure. It's very important to calculate each wall panel weight prior to lifting it onto the foundation. A conservative safety factor is used to determine the maximum load allowable and account for unforeseen circumstances. While lifting the panels into place, we also continually check the crane's load gauge to avoid 'crane overload' so the crane will not tip over.
When you continually add weight to your personal and business life without a safety factor, it becomes difficult to carry the load and maintain balance. One of life's tendencies is to add more stuff and lots of it. Do you have too many things in your life?
__ Things you never use
__ Commitments you can't keep
__ Goals you'll never hit
__ Bigger cars than you need
__ Larger homes than you really need
__ Activities you have to do
__ Responsibilities you don't want
__ Committees you don't like
__ Purchases you shouldn't have made
__ Debt you can't get rid of
__ More stuff than you can ever use
You probably have more stuff in your personal and business life than you need or can handle. When you are maxed out and exceed your balanced limits, I call it: "Stuff Overload."
Do you have a commitment crunch?
Do friends and business associates continually ask you to go places with them, get involved with their causes, join a committee for one of their organizations, or commit your time to one of their activities? You reluctantly answer: "I'm too busy." They look at you with disbelief as unfriendly or uncaring. Other people think there's always more time in your life to help them in theirs. They say "Just get your priorities in order, get involved in my stuff, and just make it happen." Other people often try to make their priorities, yours! In reality, you do too many things that are not 'On-Purpose' and 'On-Target' for you and your life. Remember that 'Off-Purpose' activities drain you while 'On-Purpose' activities energize you. Choose commitments carefully within the framework of what you want to do with your time and aligned towards your balanced life.
"If in doubt, don't! If in doubt, throw it out!"
Today, you have at least fives times more things to do and stuff and than your parents and grandparents ever did. A young couple now tries to accumulate as much or more things in three years than their parents did in 30 years. With all the wealth, modern conveniences, and technology, shouldn't there also be more extra time, peace, satisfaction, and fulfillment?
Do You Have 'Stuff' Overload?
Check off the stuff that you often are overloaded with and need to cut back on:
__ Activities __ Books to read
__ Career commitments __ Cars
__ Civic responsibilities __ Clothes
__ Collections __ Commitments
__ Committees __ Competitions
__ Educational opportunities __ Family obligations
__ Financial obligations __ Hobbies
__ Information __ Ministry
__ Church activities __ Music
__ Noise __ Possessions
__ Professional activities __ Recreation commitments
__ Responsibilities __ Sports activities
__ Subscriptions __ Things to do
__ Toys __ Traffic
__ Television shows to watch __ Other:
Work Harder or Smarter?
If you were on a cross-country car trip from New York to Los Angeles and found yourself 'lost in Bonkers,' what would you do? Most likely you would stop, consult the map, and get back on the right road. In life, it's hard to slow down when you are "maxed-out" traveling fast with a heavy load. You don't have any extra time to stop, pull out your road map and reflect on your destination. In the race for "more and better" food, clothing, shelter, business commitments, customers and stuff, you'll get lost, forget where you were going and often lose direction and focus.
Time management experts tell you to work harder, smarter, faster, and more efficiently and then you'll eventually gain control of your life. By trial and error, you've learned this approach doesn't work. To gain control of your life and business priorities, you must know the right direction to go and have a map or plan to get where you want to go. Speed is not an issue-only progress and balance are important.
I often hear: "There just isn't enough of me to go around. I try to set clear goals and act in an organized manner, but things keep happening and getting in the way." When you "max out" your business and personal commitments- physical, emotional, mental, spiritual, and financial - there's no time to live life 'On-Purpose.On-Target.' There's only time to react to the stress and strain of your ever growing 'to do' list. The standard question you often get is "Are you busy?" In today's "hurry up" society, "busy" means successful, important, making progress, healthy, and valuable. Do you think busy people are productive and happy?
Being busy is not my objective. Making active and balanced progress towards my life purpose is my benchmark. Being balanced does not mean being busy and doing something in every area of my life every day. It does, however, mean that I am making progress and moving towards a balanced life - being interrelated, fully integrated and entwined in all areas. A balanced life is the sum of the whole life working as a unit and rolling along smoothly towards your targets.
The World's Formula Translation
Food Upscale or fast
+ Clothing Expensive and trendy
+ Shelter Big home in right neighborhood
+ Modern conveniences Everything
+ Education Expensive private college
+ Hard work Overwork
+ Lots of stuff Debt is normal
+ Important career Over committed
+ Bigger business Out of control
+ Involved in everything Other people's priorities
= Peace and happiness Superficial power & prestige
Clear your plate! Eliminate!
As your 'On-Purpose.On-Target' life and business evolves, you begin to realize that more is NOT better. Less is better. Get Simple! "Stuff overload" causes too many distractions. Learn to say "Yes" to activities, commitments, and causes aligned with your priorities and purpose. Learn to just say "No!" to activities not aligned with your priorities. It's much easier to discern what you want to do, purchase, and get involved with when you know where you are going and why.
Living life 'On-Purpose.On-Target' according to your priorities is a cleansing and freeing process. Right now, list some activities and things that you can eliminate from your personal and business life that hold you back, distract you, and divert you from keeping on track with your targets and goals.
Live life's 6 F's!
Several years ago, I went to a goals seminar to get control of my business and personal life. The following Monday morning, I got to work early and made a list of things to do. Then after a full day putting out fires, several panic phone calls, faxes, e-mails, interruptions, and an emergency conference with a job site superintendent, I hadn't done one thing on my hot list! At 4:00 p.m. my best customer called and invited me to play golf the next morning and discuss signing a big construction contract. I didn't have time to play golf with my best customer! I had forgotten my focus. I couldn't even remember my priorities!
A business that works always is 'On-Purpose' and 'On-Target' according to your priorities. It gives you what you want! What will make your business 'On-Purpose' for you? I want my business to always make a profit, create repeat loyal customers, be 100% run by my management team, grow my equity, create wealth, and allow me the freedom to enjoy the 6 F's:
Do what you want!
Mike is a friend who of mine who owns a steel manufacturing company. He attended one of my Profit-Builder Circle boot camps for business owners. Afterwards, he asked if we could meet to discuss his management style. He told me he wasn't reaching his personal goals and wanted to have more time off from work. After we discussed this goal, I asked him to be more specific. He admitted, "I would just love it if I could have at least four hours off on Sundays!"
Everyone is in a different place. But to get what you want, start by being specific about how you will balance your business and personal goals! Make a commitment and say, "I will leave the office at 5:00 p.m." "I will not check my e-mails or voice mail from 5pm until 7 a.m." "I will not get involved in decisions my managers or key employees are authorized to make." "I will take a three or four day weekend off every month." Be ruthless. Stick to your priorities and get what you want out of your business to enhance your life. Resolve every day to:
- Read and focus on your personal and business priorities.
- Make progress towards achieving your balanced life goals.
- Not postpone your life and family for business pressures.
- Live your priorities to get what you want.
Live life's 3 R's!
Putting your priorities first is tough. Each day of your life involves difficult demands and tradeoffs. To be 'On-Purpose.On-Target!' you must be ruthless about your decisions, choices, commitments and priorities.
Successful people say: Losers say:
"I can do that!" "I could never do that!"
"I'll do that!" "I'll try that!"
"No" "Yes" to other people's piorities
What's the best time to try new ideas and work different? (Hint: It's not "ASAP.") The best time is now! Trying new ideas and doing new and different things daily is hard to accomplish. But, forgetting old ideas and comfortable ways of acting and doing is even harder! Putting your priorities first is tough. Each day of your life involves difficult demands and tradeoffs. To be 'On-Purpose.On-Target' you must be ruthless about your decisions, choices, commitments and priorities.
The following responses to circumstances have become the norm in today's society: "It's not my fault." "It's just not fair." "It's not my job." When business owners, entrepreneurs, and winners take on a job they get it done. Period. No excuses. No rules. No reasons why not. Need I say more?
Sitting and waiting for "it" to change is counterproductive to living 'On-Purpose.On-Target!' Accept your current situation as it is. You can't change the past! However, YOU can change your future - starting now! Get on with it. Go for it. Make the best of what you've got and make tomorrow even better. Start making those slow but steady changes in how you manage your life. You can do it!
Most successful businesses were started by individuals with a clearly defined vision, purpose and goals. The definition of an entrepreneur is one who "assumes the risk" in a business in expectation of gaining a profit. Step up and step out in both your professional and personal life. Take a stand. Take a risk and act like an entrepreneur. Expect the best to become the best! Take that first step to get what you want. Yes, the first step is often the hardest. I encourage people in this predicament to ask: "What are you waiting for? What's the worst that can happen?" If you never try, you'll never achieve.
Failure Is The Key To Success!
As a youngster, my dad often took me snow skiing to the local mountains. I'll never forget his instructions as I watched the expert skiers racing quickly down the slopes with perfect parallel turns. He'd say, "You'll never better standing there watching and wishing you could ski like they can." With that I would take off and swish down the mountain as fast as I could. My goal was to fall down on every run. This way I knew I was pushing it to the max. You don't get better if you don't fall down often. You get better and when you try new tricks and techniques. What new tricks have you tried in your business lately to make it better, to make more profit, or start hitting you long term goals?
Have you ever noticed in life successful people always get up when they fall down. And the really successful ones fall down a lot! Stay alert. Watch for opportunities. Be quick to change. Make your own luck. Always be ready and well prepared. Know where you want to go and let others know where you want to go too. Ask others how they did it. Seek advice. Stay informed. Keep improving. Stay on top of your field. And always go for it!
"Give to the world the best you have and the best will come back to you."
Have you ever noticed that successful people who have their lives in order are also more active, involved, and generous with charity, church, and volunteer organizations? They find time to make giving a top priority in their lives. The fact is your success is an outcome of how much you do for others. Your deeds have lasting impact, not your stuff, power, position or busy schedule. Successful people make more time to serve others. Becoming a success is directly proportional to what you give. It's a fine line-some people give to get-but that won't work for most.
What you get is a RESULT of what you give!
I receive an overwhelming return on my investment every time I give my time, talent, and money. Giving is the outward expression of your inner commitment, character, and dedication. There is a direct conduit between your heart and your wallet. A banker once told me that the first line he looks at on a loan applicant's tax return is "contributions." He tells me he can usually judge a person's true integrity and sincerity by looking at that one single entry. People who donate money generously and on a regular basis can be trusted. People who don't find time or money to give to others are self centered and can't get everything in life they want. People who don't give are the only ones who complain about giving. Give giving a try. I guarantee you will get more in return than you ever give.
Albert Einstein said, "Only a life lived for others is worthwhile." I built my business with the slogan: "Do a good job for the customer and the money will come." Putting others first always works in both business and life. So go out and give, get, and enjoy what you've got!
Entrepreneur, best selling author, and professional speaker George Hedley helps business owners and contractors build businesses that work. He is the author of the "The Business Success Blueprint Series" available in 8-workbook & audio CD sets. Contact him to speak to your organization on his proven system to build profits, people, customers and wealth. Construction company owners are invited to attend his 2-day 'Profit-Builder Circle' boot camps. E-mail George at firstname.lastname@example.org to receive a free copy of his book "Everything Contractors Know About Making A Profit" or signup for his free monthly e-newsletter. Visit his website and on-line bookstore at www.hardhatpresentations.com.
3300 Irvine Avenue #135
Newport Beach, CA 92660
Phone (949) 852-2005
Fax (949) 852-3002
Email: email@example.com website: www.hardhatpresentations.com
George Hedley owns a $75 million construction and development company and
Hardhat Presentations. He speaks to companies on building profitable businesses,
leadership, and loyal customers. He holds 3-day in-depth "Profit-Builder
Circles" open to construction company owners in an interactive roundtable
format every 3 months. His "Profit-Builder System" includes proven
tools to always make a profit, build equity, create wealth, win profitable
jobs, motivate your people, and enjoy the benefits of owning a profitable company.