The Wrong Side of the Bed

Steve Jobs famously wore the same outfit:

  • Black, long-sleeved turtleneck
  • Dad jeans
  • New Balance sneakers 

EVERY DAY… for YEARS. Why?
 
Because, it was one less decision to make.
Lord knows he had much bigger things to think about than, “what shirt should I wear today?” And like one of my favorite memes says: Ain’t nobody got time for that!

Some real-life examples you may relate to...
 
My parents, who have been married for nearly 30 years, don’t sit at the same place at their dinner table each night. They literally change seats regularly.
 
When I’ve asked them about it, they said they don’t really think about it, they just sit.  Rest assured, when I come to town, no one sits in MY seat! I face the wine cabinet. Always have, always will. And you will be in trouble if you’re sitting in my seat.
 
Then there is Patrick.
 
He doesn’t care which side of the bed he’s on, as long as he’s in a bed. I sleep on the right side of the bed. I have to.  If I’m on the left side, I CANNOT sleep. Sometimes I’ll come upstairs and see that Patrick is napping on MY SIDE of the bed.
 
Me: What are you doing?
P: Napping.
Me: On MY side of the bed???
P: Oh, are you going to nap too? I can move.
Me: No…..but you’re on MY SIDE.
P: What does it matter if you’re not going to be in it?
Me: It matters. It just matters. What kind of sociopath changes sides of the bed???
 
So, is there something wrong with ME? Or something wrong with them?
I choose to believe it’s them. ;-)
 
I share these real-life examples to underscore a real-life condition that often bubbles up with many of my coaching clients… Decision Fatigue.
 
I GET IT.
I don’t want to decide which dinner chair I’m going to sit in.
I don’t want to guess which side of the bed will be open after a long day.
I want some decisions to be made in advance, so I don't need to put energy into making them again, and again, and again.
 
The idea of Decision Fatigue is real. Every single day we are faced with hundreds—probably thousands—of tiny decisions. (I’ve never been good with numbers).
 
To snooze or not to snooze? What will I wear today? What will I have for breakfast? Should I let the dog out now or do it after I’ve showered? And on and on…
 
Each one of these tiny decisions wears down our grit. So, by the end of the evening we just cannot make even ONE more decision.
 
Taking a poll here:
Whether it’s your spouse or your kids, what is your reaction to the question, “what’s for dinner?”
 
How often (in your head or maybe even out loud) does your response start with a heavy sigh and an, “I don’t know!”? Sound familiar???
 
You. Are. Exhausted.
From making countless decisions in the business, at your job. Your mind just wants a break.
 
So how do we circumvent this?
We create R-O-U-T-I-N-E-S.
 
Every time we do a certain routine, our brain solidifies our neural pathways until it becomes an involuntary action – like breathing. Think about when you do start something new. It’s difficult at first, then after a few tries, it becomes second nature. After a few weeks or months, it’s like you’ve been doing it your whole life.
 
Take your drive to work (if you still have one). Your first week or two at this new job, you probably paid close attention to road signs. You took the turns reeeeaaaallly slowly and took in all the new sights. Now after a few months/years, you get to work some days and don’t even remember the drive! Scary but true - right?!?
 
It becomes routine (in the positive connotation).
 
So how can you implement this into your life?
 
You don’t need to wear the same outfit every day. That seems a little extreme to me, but you can decide to build your goals into a daily routine.

  • Want to get more clients this year? Figure out the small practice you need to do daily to make that a reality. Make it a routine.
  • Want to lose 10 lbs this year? Take a walk over lunch every day. Make it routine.
  • Want to be a morning person? Set your alarm every day for your goal time and GET UP, no snooze, every single day. Make it your routine. 

You start doing these things with consistency and, after a few weeks, it’ll be your new norm. You won’t remember what life was like before you did these things. AND, if you accidentally miss doing that habit one day, YOU’LL FEEL OFF ALL DAY!!!
 
It works. Try it.
 
As for the weirdos in our lives like my parents and Patrick…I guess we just need to deal with them. And, more importantly, be thankful they deal with those of us that LOVE routines.
 
Want to figure out how to create the routines in your daily life that will lead to success in reaching your goals? Think this type of coaching will be helpful for your daily life?
 
Schedule a free 1-1 session with me. Together we can make it happen!

 

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Cheyenne Bennett is a Senior Business Advisor at Compass Point, with a focus on Leadership & Talent. Cheyenne developed the Leadership Lab 20/20 curriculum to help leaders focus on self-awareness, communication and healthy conflict. These are skill sets needed to cultivate high-performance leaders and teams within the family business.  Along with being a Certified High Performance Coach, Cheyenne is also DiSC Certified, experienced with Myers-Briggs as well as Gallup StrengthsFinder. Learn more about Leadership Lab 20/20.



Wondering if Executive Coaching is a better fit for you? Check out our High Performance Executive Coaching program.

 



Contact Cheyenne at cbennett@compasspt.com to discuss your vision of leadership.

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