How To Choose Action In The Moment

How To Choose Action In The Moment

Here is the complete transcript of the podcast

Welcome back! Happy Wednesday morning to you. Today’s podcast episode is not going to be that different than what I had been driving here for the last few months now, which is structure your day structure time structure activities, prioritize them, go after them, accomplish them feel good about yourself, more or less. That’s the structure of this podcast for the last few weeks, for sure, a few months, in fact, so it’s not gonna be different. But then what I want to do is I’m going to share a story with you. And from the story, I will explain what are the things that I found out, and from there, immortal, that I read many years prior to that. And I saw this model play out as a part of the story. So let’s get into the story. First, the story goes like this. This was a few years ago, I think this was 2014 or so I locked my house. And I was going to go for a two-hour in-person meeting, I was driving on the freeway, and 20 minutes into the drive. I get a call, saying that the meeting has been canceled indefinitely. So I was in a situation where I was not sure what to do with the two hours. And while usually every time I have a gap like that in between my activities, I used them to read a book or watch a video training video or create a podcast episode back in the day a blog post, something like that. But then I was not sure what I would do. Now the initial reaction is, ah, you know, such a good meeting. And now it’s canceled. And then I don’t know what to do and a little bit of disappointment. Now, in the moment of disappointment, something magical happened. Now I was near an exit. If you take that exit, you would go to a peak, like a mountain, say not a mountain, it’s a hill, you people go there to hike that hill. So I was right there. And I looked at the exit. And without even blinking a second I took that exit. And I went all the way to the Foothill literally and parked my car. And I started hiking. Now, as I got out of the car, I realized that I’m not dressed up for this. You know, when you go hiking, there is an attire. You should be prepared. Physically, I was not. Now mentally also, I was not. There was no energy in me to go hike. And, again, this was an activity to be done in two hours mentally, right? This was because that’s the only time I had I said, Okay, fine. So I’m in my formals. I’m going to just go see how far can I go? And, you know, it’s okay. Right, my shoes won’t support this, my clothes won’t support this. Let me try this. If I can go fine. And let me use the time. So I started hiking up, the thing that was playing in my mind was okay, if I become start sweating, and I’m going to you know my shoes, they will become uncomfortable, then I’ll come back. And I kept on going 20 minutes, 30 minutes, and all the way for about an hour and 15 minutes, which was the peak like you take an hour and 15 minutes to go up maybe 45 minutes to come down. And that would fill the two-hour time gap. So went up, came down, felt good about me. Notice segment, no anger, because the meeting got canceled. And I went home. Now why I’m telling you the story is because prior to that, I read an incredible book within which this specific activity like this specific model was described. Now let’s first analyze this whole thing. So I was going from my house to a meeting. So there was a gap time gap. That means I was able to do this because there was some available time suddenly time became available. Now the context is incorrect, honestly, because I was not prepared. I didn’t have the tools to prepare myself to go up and do a hike. But because it’s not the right context, but then still, I was able to attach a context to the time that was available to me.

Now in terms of energy, even though I was not really in my pre-frame was not to go and hike because people have this framing that a lot of framing goes into any activity. My framing was for this meeting, but then somehow, whatever turns out that I’ve, indeed had some energy in me. So I was able to go up and come down. And then, even though this was not a priority, but hiking was a priority, it was somewhere there, you know, way below because, at that time, I was preparing to go to mountains and all that. So these are the four things that played out. years prior to that, I got the book called Getting Things Done. Incredible book. And this book is written by David Allen, this book came out in 2001, I believe, and I read this book multiple times, I have this book and you know, gave away this book multiple times to multiple people. This is an absolute must-read if I’m coaching someone if I’m mentoring someone. And then the second book that I read subsequent to this one, was putting it all together, incredible authored incredible books on this book, this book, the book that I have with me, I’m not sure this is not a hardbound one. But on page 192. David Allen talks about the concept called the four criteria model for choosing action at the moment. So at the moment, you choose to take any action, it talks about four criteria, the first criterion is available time, so you have a task that you completed, you have some time before you go into the next task. And it could be 10 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, whatever time you have, can you bring? And can you do something else? And can you accomplish something else? He talks about that. Then he says, you also got to look at the context. So first is available time.

The second is context. Now I’m here, right in my car? What can I do? I’m driving, what can I do? Well, in this case, I happen to see the exit to the mount to the hill. So I just took the exit and went up the hill. But for others, it could be making phone calls or getting stuck in the traffic and trying to reach some people or whatever, or listening to an audio or listening or something like that, right. So where you are, and what tools you have, may decide the activity that you need to pick and accomplish. Remember, David Allen’s talking about creating lists and getting things done. So these items that you would otherwise you’d be doing. They are list items. So hiking was on my list, that is why I was I was immediately able to relate instantly, in a moment able to relate and said, yeah, let me go get this done. Then he talks about energy availability, sometimes you have more energy in you. At the end of the day, let’s say you have done a lot of things, and then you have some energy left in your body. And then you say, Okay, I still feel active, why can’t I go run for a half a mile or something like that, oh, God, why don’t I clean the room, I have energy in me.

So he makes a point, he says vitality defines productivity. So there are some incredible principles he talks about in this specific context. And then let’s say, you know, you suddenly are in the moment you decide that I need to get some things done, you can also always go back to your to-do list and pick up the one that has some priority. Okay, just whatever priority, you know, it has, maybe it was prioritized to be the last one. But then you can do it because you now have time or you have the energy or you have the context. So for example, let’s say that working out is the last priority you have in my case, that was the case. last priority workout, let’s say you want to do some workout tomorrow. It’s not on today’s to-do list, but it’s there on tomorrow’s to-do list. Again, this was the case in my case. Also. I was not supposed to go and hike that day. I was supposed to do that the next day. But then suddenly, some time was available. I had some energy in me because I was driving. And then even though the context was weak. I did not have the right tools, but I still went up. Okay. So not a priority, but still I could fit it in. Here is the case in all these points. The case is that I want you to understand that you don’t need to be exact, or to the point with your to-do list. You’re doing some things and then maybe the first task is completed much faster than you thought.

Now you have time What can you do with the time, then the second case, at this point is this model, I want you to go get the book, Getting Things Done by David Allen, and read this specific model on page 192. I want you to do that. And then knowing what you know, from this podcast episode, at least, I think in the last 10 minutes, I just whatever I explained here, and the way I said it, look into all the leaks that you have got going. In whatever you’re doing, you have activities that you are, let’s say, you do work off of a to-do list. And as you are working, you are unknowingly doing this, maybe I had read this book, much before than this, then this event happened. But when this event happened, and when I went back to the book, that’s when I realized, oh, okay, so this is what happened, the only time became valuable. And you know, even though it was not a priority, I had some energy in me, even though the context was weak. I got it done. Now, David Allen talks about it. See, so maybe you’re doing some things like this, maybe you’re wasting time in between tasks, maybe you should bring in some things and get them done. Right.

So hopefully, this gives you some ideas, certainly get the book, read the book. And the bottom line is this you want to become effective, you want to become productive. And you want to close as many loose ends as possible. And an approach a structured approach like this allows you to get control of all the activities that are happening now and that is being stacked up for a later in time. So this gives you control. And by the way, there are so many such models. I just happened to be sharing one, because this book is awesome. And I went through a real-time scenario like this. Hopefully, this is helpful. If days. You know what to do. Write a review, read the podcast, and you have a question for me. You know how to reach me. That’s all for now. I’ll catch up with you tomorrow, hopefully with another incredible book, an incredible author who knows. Stay tuned.

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