Leadership: Think

Rodin Thinker Statue

When was the last time that you did nothing but think?  Not some five or ten minute break, but sixty minutes of nothing but thinking.  Take one hour of your time and think about one idea or goal.  Taking a piece of blank paper and writing what you want to think about at the top.  Then draw a line down the middle to divide it into two columns.  At the top of one column write pluses (advantages), at the top of the other write minuses (disadvantages).  Then think about that topic for an hour and write down everything that you can think about.  That will give you a huge advantage over your competition.  I would add a couple of modern day additions to this.  Turn off cell phones, email, tv, radio and any other distractions.  Keep a small pad of paper to write down things that come up like pickup dry cleaning, stop at the store for milk, etc.  Write them down quickly then get back to thinking about your main topic.  Do this exercise regularly, maybe even once a week.  Another thing that really helps is creating a routine around this thinking.  Maybe get your coffee, play some instrumental background music to mask outside sounds.  Go buy a really good pen or mechanical pencil that becomes your “idea pen”. Don’t use it for anything else.  Get a good notebook (like a Moleskin® or other high end writing pad).  Use these tools just for thinking.  Over time, the act of going thru the rituals of shutting phones off, turning on music and using your “idea” pen and pad will kick start your brain into a more creative mode.  This will become habit over time and it will be easier to do.  The first few minutes will always be a challenge since you will have thoughts of all kinds crowding out what you really want to think about.  That’s ok, write them down and move on. Think.

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