Work Till You're Done
Lessons from Ronald Reagan Part VI
Today is a continuation in the series of Lessons from the Life of Ronald Reagan.
I mentioned in one of the previous lessons (of which all the lessons are listed at the bottom), that Nancy Reagan was reported as being upset that her husband was being worked too hard.
He was working until 2:30 a.m. in the morning - I would be upset too! I don't like to go to bed without my husband.
But President Regan knew that it was important to work until he got everything done.
One day reporters were allowed to follow the Reagan administration and film a lot of what went on during the day. On this day, the President was rushing from meeting to meeting, and he was asked if all days were like this.
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President Reagan replied, that, no, all days were not packed with meetings like today. In fact, he didn't like days like today because the paperwork stacked up on his desk. He mentioned to the reporters that they had seen the stacks of paperwork on his desk. He didn't like it to build up.
But President Reagan knew that to accomplish big things in life, you had to block off time to do things according to their importance and to block them off together.
For instance, one night he sat and called like 23 members of the house, or something, to gain support of his bill.
The reporters followed him around on a day packed full of meetings.
President Reagan didn't make one phone call, rush to one meeting, do a stack of paperwork, then maybe call another member of the house. He blocked off chunks of time to be able to focus on one thing at a time and get the most from it.
It's so easy for us to get distracted with the "urgent" things that are around us. The noses that need to be wiped, the dishes that need to be done so that we can eat dinner, the laundry that needs to be done right now for the kids to go to soccer tonight (hey, these are examples from my life!).
But, although these things have to be done, they are not the things that are going to work toward any of the goals that we have toward out life.
I'm not saying they aren't important, they are; but to get toward a goal in your life, you have to daily add something that is "not urgent" but is "important".
For instance, if you're goal is to read through the Bible in a year, then you must have a plan. You decide how much you need to read per week or per day in order to meet your goal. So, on Monday, it's not "urgent" that you read 3 chapters; but it is "important" to do to work toward your goal.
The steps toward reaching any goal will never fall in the "urgent" category. There are too many aspects of life that automatically come up to deal with that.
Can you imagine how easy it would have been for President Reagan to run around like a chicken with it's head cut off? Phone calls....letters....military intelligence coming in....people wanting to give briefings....committees to meet...papers to sign. He could very easily have run from one "urgent" thing to the next and never accomplished any of the great goals that he had.
I think he learned his lessons of doing something "important" every day during his 1st term as governor. When he went to run for re-election, he didn't really have anything to show that he accomplished. But when he was re-elected, he changed his actions and got things done as governor.
No matter what you do in life, make sure that you do something "important" each day. The easiest way to do that is to take a few minutes at the beginning of each day, make a rough outline (at a bare minimum) of what you will do with your time, and make sure that you include on "important" thing to do.
Even if you do just one tiny baby step a day, you'll have gone a long way at the end of the year!
P.S. People don't reach goals in one day. They reach goals by doing something everyday, no matter how small, no matter how busy they are, until they're done.
Here are the other Lessons from the Life of Reagan:
The Power of Journal Writing Lessons from Ronald Reagan Part V
The Importance of Communication Lessons from Ronald Reagan Part IV
You're Too Old to Be President Lessons from Ronald Reagan Part III
Pass it On Down The Line Lessons from Ronald Reagan Part II
Knowing Where You Want to Go Lessons from Ronald Reagan Part I
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Laura Bankston is author of Internationally selling Cooking with Kids Curriculum: ï¿œHomeschool Cooking in a Boxï¿œ and the ï¿œHomeschool Cookbookï¿œ. She currently home schools her three children, maintains home school support websites, and manages their family-owned service business. For information on her curriculum and free home school support services, please visit http://www.homeschoolcookbook.com
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