Eliminating Shortcuts to Reach as High as I Can

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Note: I found this hovering in my drafts. I either forgot to publish it or failed to do it correctly. While the inspiration has come and gone, the root is still valid.

“Raise your hand as high as you can go. Now, go a bit further. Reach!

“How many of you went further? Almost all of you. I originally asked you to raise your hand as far as you can go. Why didn’t you go for the stars then?”

This past weekend, I attended the District 96 Toastmasters Spring Conference 2016 in Burnaby, BC. The first night’s key speakers was Distinguished Toastmaster and International Director Margaret Page.  The above quote was part of her speech to help us raise the bar in life and the Toastmasters journey. 

Her demonstration highlighted something I have been struggling with lately.

Around the beginning of the year, I received a FitBit. The tiny device I wear on my wrist counts my daily step total and levels of activity. In order for my step count to grow with my daily chores, I found less time efficient ways of executing my to-do list. Instead of stacking the dirty dinner dishes, I would carry a couple at a time from the table to the sink. When folding clothes, I put a garment on a hanger and escorted it individually across the room to the closet before going back for another.

In essence, I was eliminating the shortcuts to stretch my step count.

I started looking at life to see where I may have created shortcuts that may have been eliminating steps needed for growth or to take my life to the next level. Where am I not reaching as far as I could? How could I stretch what I do on a daily basis to up my count in an area or department?  Where do I have to be told to go a bit further?

Surprisingly, I have found I shortcut my down time. What?

I mortgage out my downtime to the usual evils, Facebook and surfing. However, I don’t give myself time to daydream, reflect or ideating (my latest word obsession). When I have downtime during the day, I feel that just sitting there is unproductive.

But put a touch screen device in my hand, and it’s okay? My tablet makes it okay?

I have started unplugging and just being. This started slowly in the morning. I don’t check emails or Facebook before breakfast. I start my day with my agenda and focused on bettering myself, such as writing and getting a jump start on my step count for the day.

I have more work to do . . . But it’s a reach in the right direction.

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