Highway WON Series…

May 5, 2021
May 5, 2021 Jack

Hello Awesome WON!

If you missed last week’s life update, you can find that here. And as a reminder, this weekly nugget is part of my WON YEAR project to hopefully drop a love and wisdom bomb on you WON-ce a week for a year. I can’t even think about doing this for a year right now or I get overwhelmed, so back to just this week! 🙂

When you are talented – Yes, YOU!
When you are smart – Hello Brainiac!
And should we add good looking too? Love what you are wearing today!

Then you often know what you want and you know when you want it done. You want it done now! DONE YESTERDAY! Is it done yet? This task, this conversation, this approval, this PANDEMIC!!! I want it done now!

So you work fast. So you try to build momentum. So you look for ways to make efficiencies. You don’t want to waste time – yours or anybody’s. Your mantra is “Don’t waste my time!” or you’re quick to judge, “This is a waste of my time!” without really knowing if it’s true or not. And if you’re like me, you might even start getting frustrated and trying even harder to make it go faster which leads to what I call “the suck spiral of speed”! My results suck, my attitude sucks and I begin to think that I suck all in record time… not good!

The problem is that in hurrying and our never ending ‘Need for Speed’ and convenience, we often end up causing delays worse than if we’d taken it slow – or at least at a more controlled pace. One of my favorite project management sayings is that no matter how bad you want a baby, you can’t put 9 women in a room and have a baby in a month! It just doesn’t work! There are too many places in life that we try to ‘fix’ by throwing more time, money or resources (sometimes all three) at the problem when all that does is exacerbate (can’t believe I got to use that word – it’s a fav!) the problem because now you’ve spent more and perhaps even achieved less.

And more importantly, we miss the details in life that hold significant joy. We walk around looking for places to cut/hack/minimize rather than to grow/invest/maximize. With our ‘don’t waste my time’ mentality, we miss the human interactions with our family members that give us space to listen and understand what makes us a family. At work, we minimize our meeting times and also minimize the people we work with and their value to the business and as our colleagues. And perhaps the most devastating impact is when we rush from person to person and task to task, we lose the opportunity to listen and understand ourselves and minimize our own value by tying our worth to our accomplishments, completed to-do lists or life-hacks implemented rather than the amazing human beings we are – smart, talented, good-looking… remember?

I understand that speed can absolutely be an advantage and that it is absolutely necessary at times . Look, I love to go fast too! SHAKE AND BAKE BABY!

But there is a time and place to do that and a time and place where it is just flat out reckless and counter-productive. Speed without control is disaster.

So this email is kicking off a series where we’ll discuss some different driving strategies for life.

  • Places to go fast: the interstate highways of your life and
  • Places where that’s not such a wise idea like the twisty, hilly and unpredictable roads that you’re sure to need to navigate.

Lessons taught and remembered when I made the decision to exit Interstate 5 and explore Highway WON down the California Coast.

Until then, and to throw in a basketball reference – because you know that if I can, I will! In the words of the amazing and incredibly successful UCLA Basketball Coach and the “Wizard of Westwood”, John Wooden

Be Quick, but don’t you hurry…

You have to know what to do, but you have to be quick to do it or you might not get to do it at all.
I think that’s important in most everything. Don’t hurry. You make mistakes when you hurry.
Be under control. I want quickness under control.
Otherwise, you’ll have activity without achievement. I don’t care for activity without achievement.

I’d love to hear any feedback you have on the post. Your WON QUESTION to consider and share about…

Where is your life suffering due to speed and/or where might it be wise for you to slow down?


Comments (6)

  1. Joanne

    I was laid off last summer, which turned out to be a blessing. Now I am forced to slow down and see life a little more through my kids eyes. Kids, if nothing else, teach you patience! 🙂 Now the pandemic has me dreaming about “living life to it’s fullest” (I’ve been reading books about people going on big sailing trips), but even with that I need to slow down and realize that doesn’t necessarily mean chasing big dreams; I need to fully enjoy the short sailing trips/camping/hiking with my family and friends! Great post Jack!

    • Hello Joanne! Thanks for a great comment! I have to keep reminding myself that the biggest of dreams happen in the smallest and most consistent of steps. The consistent part is the biggest trick – at least for me. But I’m also beginning to see where all of the seemingly small steps over the last several years are adding up to big changes. Call it the flywheel effect or the beauty of compound interest but the trend line is heading in the right direction and at a faster pace – speed with control. 🙂 Best to you and the family!

  2. Dave

    Thanks for sharing Jack. LOL, this relates to a degree for what I’m trying to teach my oldest son on his chores. He is in a rush to get chores done so he can get back to socializing with friends or playing video games. In his rush he’s not completing things correctly and then I have him do it again to get it right, which frustrates him. I try to teach him doing things a little slower and getting it right may take a little longer but getting it right the first time allows you to save time by not repeating a task and it gives a better sense of accomplishment (and less ‘nagging’ from dad). I like the basketball quote and will share that with him as it may give a different perspective on it that may resonate more than how I’m stating it.

    • Dave! Thanks so much for sharing that! So many things to think about in your comment! As a crossfit person, there are so many things that I suck at in the workout and have to do slow to LEARN them. But as I learn the move/task, I’m also looking for ways to get better. Maybe you use some of that with your son. How can you LEARN to get faster by doing the same quality of work in a shorter amount of time. Always getting a little better and a little faster. Thanks again for sharing and please let me know how the quote goes over!

  3. Shelley

    Lately I’ve been feeling like I’m going slow on the interstate….. so I’m looking forward to your next installments in this series! xoxo

    • Thank you so much for the support and encouragement. Looking forward to hearing your thoughts!

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