If you've been tracking with me through this series, well done, and welcome back! Today I'm talking about acceptance. The "A" in building a MOAT around our most important goals is about learning to Accept Small Disasters.
Accepting Small Disasters is about reframing this thing that will undoubtedly happen when we are committed to big goals.
M: Manage Expectations
O: Own Your Calendar
A: Accept Small Disasters
T: Tell Everyone
Small Disasters will happen. This is the flip side of last weeks' blog about Owning Your Calendar. You remember the 10lb bag of potatoes, that simply will NOT fit in the itty-bitty sack, right? You also remember that every YES in life implies a corresponding NO?
Accepting Small Disasters is about the potatoes that don't fit.
Sometimes the things that get left out of our calendars create challenging outcomes. Every week, there are tasks that would have been good to fit into my week...but simply wouldn't fit. Sometimes someone else really wanted them in my week.
And...I made a different choice.
When we are committed to our big goals, when we are Owning Our Calendars and building them around the most critical priorities in our lives, small disasters will happen. My insurance broker is going to have to nag me 3 times before I call him back. I might not meet a last minute request from a client. A student might not get my full attention on something they need help with.
Truth be told, I don't like any of these outcomes. I am someone who wants to always deliver on someone else's expectations. Always.
In a world that often seems full of unmet expectations, I want to be the one who delivers! I want a reputation of reliability! I am only ever as good as my last client's experience! I don't like any small disasters.
And. I have learned that I must take a deep breath, and accept them. Because...
If I want to make significant progress on significant things, small disasters are necessary.
Small disasters are a side effect, a symptom, of making significant progress on significant things.
The next time you go beating yourself up over a small disaster, remind yourself that this small disaster was necessary.
Your small disasters enabled your significant progress.
So acknowledge them, thank them, (do the apologizing if necessary...) and slot them in where they belong. They do not define you, and they are not an indicator of poor performance. They are, in fact, an indicator of focused, committed performance.