Monday, June 22
The Importance of Focus and Clarity
When we try to take on too many responsibilities, mediocrity is usually the result.
Here's a great example: two weeks ago I had to complete 41 mystery shops in two days, then travel to Birmingham to lay vinyl plank flooring in my empty property, then to Nashville for a hospitality job. We left Nashville, arriving home with 25 hours to spare before our flight to Las Vegas for another hospitality job. I managed to do it all, and am proud of the accomplishment. But there were costs: because I did not effectively plan my mystery shopping, I had to purchase 4 gas containers (in addition to the many I already own) to hold all the gas. That was an $80 expense, which I could have avoided if I spread out those jobs when I scheduled them. Then while we were doing the flooring at the rental property, I didn't spend enough time preparing the subfloor. A couple of places did not take the flooring properly, and I know it's going to come up and have to be reapplied. Once we made it to Nashville, I was so exhausted from all this that, while I did give 100% to the work, I was too tired at night to enjoy our time there. I never recovered, and in Las Vegas we did nothing but work and sleep all but the last day we were there.
I slept late this morning because there were severe thunderstorms in the area. Otherwise I would be out doing my gas station route right now. The extra sleep was the boost I needed, as I am sitting here questioning the utility of doing too much.
Fortunately, the month of July is a slow one in the hospitality and mystery shopping industry. It's going to give me time to remodel our kitchen, declutter this house, and work on my finances. A few months ago I started saying "no" to most of the low-paying shops I used to accept when there wasn't much work available. I realize now that tying myself up for a $10 shop means I am interrupting what could otherwise be more productive time spent on what really matters.
So, my goal for July is to focus. I have a solid three weeks with very few commitments. It's enough time to move the needle on this kitchen project.