Have you engaged in some self-evaluation over the past week? I have. The start of a new year has a funny way of forcing us to take stock of what we have, how we look, the state of our careers, our relationships and the effects of our bad habits. Then, once a year, we take actions to course correct. But this once-a-year-course-correction approach is severely flawed. Almost as flawed as my ability to properly fold fitted sheets.
Life is a highway
Imagine your ideal life as a road. All you have to do is drive on it. Now, imagine you find yourself veering ever-so-slightly towards the ditch, or oncoming traffic. When should you make a course correction? As soon you recognize you are veering! But what if you don’t? What if you only steer once a year?
The problem with annual corrections
If you only make a course correction once a year, you will only ever make a maximum of 100 adjustments (and that’s making some generous assumptions about your longevity and the age at which you scribbled your first New Year’s resolution).
At just 100 adjustments over a lifetime, one of two things happens. You either veer far off course each year, or you travel really, really, really slowly to prevent winding up in the ditch before the end of the year. Either way, 100 lifetime corrections severely limits your ability to travel your ideal path.
Driver Safety Quiz
Question: How often do you need to make subtle adjustments when you are driving an actual car on an actual road?
Answer: Every few seconds.
What should you do instead?
It’s simple math. An annual evaluation and course correction will allow you 100 chances to follow your true path. A monthly correction will provide you with 1200 chances. Weekly evaluations provide 5200 lifetime adjustments. While a daily course correction will provide you with 36,500 chances to travel your true path (plus roughly 25 leap days which you can use as you please).
I’m not saying you need to course correct every day. I’m also not saying you shouldn’t. But a weekly or monthly inventory check will dramatically improve your odds of attaining your goals and living into the life of your design.
So don’t wait until the end of the year. Start by re-evaluating your course today, one week into the new year. If you are not heading towards your own true north, make the necessary adjustments now. Keep recalibrating. And steer yourself exactly where you want to go.
*If you want to read a post from this blog more than once per year please subscribe to receive about two posts per week via email.