Make the Jump from Good to Great

The mindset that separates the best from the rest

Photo by bruce mars on Unsplash

The single most common complaint about life is “I don’t have enough time.”

When you say this phrase, you are taking the blame and responsibility off of yourself and placing it instead on reality itself.

Time is at fault here, not the individual.

Really think about that for a moment. Now, think of the people that you know who say this phrase.

The people who say this are usually people who in fact do have time to do whatever it is that they have failed to do. But instead of doing their job or handling their responsibilities, they procrastinated or got distracted or got lazy.

It becomes exceedingly convenient when we can blame reality itself for our shortcomings, rather than taking responsibility for our actions (or lack thereof).

You certainly will not hear the very driven, hyper-ambitious types say this phrase.

Successful people make the time. They do not wait for things to happen, they prioritize things and proceed accordingly.

Most of us are really not as busy as we say we are. We simply waste away our days on social media or television (or Medium), leaving our responsibilities on the back-burner.

This is how we end up saying “I don’t have enough time.”

For example, I can guarantee that you and I and everyone we know personally are not even 1% as busy as Elon Musk.

Musk likely has one of the most overflowing day-to-day schedules in the history of humanity. I can also guarantee you that he is one of the most productive individuals to ever walk the Earth.

Do you really think you would hear Elon Musk complain about not being able to accomplish something because he did not have the time?

If it really mattered to Elon Musk, I promise you that he would prioritize it, make the time, and accomplish his task.

He puts people in Space and has invented a ridiculously fast, cool, and high-tech electric sports car. If he can do all that and then some within his 24-hour days, do you really think you have room to complain that you do not have enough time?

We all have the exact same amount of hours in each day. How we utilize those hours is what separates the good from the great, and the great from the best.

Re-think your priorities

Ultimately it comes down to prioritizing the things you wish to accomplish.

For many of us, when we write down our to-do list, it is constituted of a list of items.

This is all well and good, but is it really a true priority list if it has eight or ten items? This makes for a good starting point to narrow down your priorities even further.

Make a list, then cut it in half.

Then cut it in half again.

Those last one or two or three items is now your list.

By minimizing your priorities, you can focus on the absolute essentials needed to win the day.

It is not always about how much time you have in each day — we all have the same hours in the day and same days in the week.

It is about how you choose to go about those hours and days, how you choose to refine your priorities, focus your intentions, and make your time worthwhile.

Phil Rosen is a travel writer and journalist. His new book is available on Amazon.

If you want to see more of his ideas, check out his travel and lifestyle blog and Instagram.

A similar post first appeared in one of Phil’s Quora answers in August 2020.

Written by

Bestselling travel writer. Columnist. Author. USC Annenberg School of Journalism.

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