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Don’t Postpone Your Life

Don’t Postpone Your Life Again This Year!

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Allow me, please, to share a simple system that works. I know it works because I’ve used it and I’ve helped many clients, pals, partners and students use it.

In the early 80’s, Nancy and I led complex and overscheduled lives in New York. With a son in junior high school, incredibly demanding careers (Nancy was a NBC TODAY SHOW correspondent, and I was a corporate executive with offices on both coasts), we found ourselves attempting to balance relentless career and family demands. Maintenance soon pushed out meaning, and we were often swamped navigating the logistics of car pooling to football and music practices, dog grooming appointments, home shopping and repairs and hours of daily commuting. We were grateful for our gifts but we were also deeply exhausted. What, we too often wondered, happened to delight . . . to fun? Is this what we worked for?

Nancy was a life-long student of achievement systems and she had interviewed literally hundreds of experts over a decade. I also taught part time at NYU and UCLA, so I had up-close exposure to some of the best and smartest CEO’s, psychologists and researchers on psycho-cybernetics, neuropsychology and, what we called thirty-years ago, “brain science.” In 1985, Nancy shared her life lessons in a wise book titled “BOUND FOR SUCCESS” (sadly, the book is now out of print) . We decided to put our lessons into practice in an attempt to break old patterns and rise above the “noise” of busy, overscheduled lives. We created our own laboratory. Our collaboration resulted in a simple chart that yielded incredible results.

Every December we’d get large white pads from an office supply store and we’d separately list the 2-6 individual goals we wanted to realize in the coming year. This took some tough self-talk. We quickly discovered that in order for the process to have authenticity we needed to, ironically, start with those things we had deferred or edited away from previous lists out of fear or self-doubt.

We agreed to cluster our goals into three categories: selfimprovement (lose that 10 pounds, finish the book, begin to learn yoga); wealth creation (save a certain amount, begin a family budget, pay off all debts); and finally (the one that initially gave us the most discomfort), new experiences to share which often seemed outrageous and self-indulgent (travel to Paris, a weekend at Canyon Ranch Spa, dance classes together).


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