them to do it right the first time!” I’ll never forget it. It was unarguably correct.
If you do it right the first time, there’s no one to blame, not you or other people, conditions, or circumstances. You can’t even blame the weather! You think in advance about what will produce the results you want. You don’t think about what’s expedient, you think through the right course of action. You don’t blame others for how hard it is to achieve what you want.
You come quickly to an understanding that there’s no power in blame; there is, however, plenty of power in doing things right.
Today, I was thinking about what’s required to decide to do whatever is needed so that you can do it right the first time. I’m not talking about the need to be right, but thinking about the correct way to achieve anything that assures success. I know that breakdowns happen; however, ask yourself if the ones you’re experiencing today are because you’re neglecting to do things right in the first place.
If your answer is yes, maybe, or probably, then follow my 5-step foolproof system for doing it right the first time. There are three do’s and two don’ts:
1) Do everything you say you will do. It amazes me how easily some people break their agreements. They don’t show up where they said they would be. No matter how many people are counting on them to be their word, they make something else more important than doing it right the first time and every time. Instead of managing your time, manage your conversations! Your commitments are in direct relationship to the promises you make. When you realize that your yes is a promise, you don’t say yes lightly. It took me a while to learn the depth of this critical step. It required more thoughtful planning. Now I just do what I say. It’s simple and reduces stress. People can count on me to be where I say I’m going to be.
2) Do plan ahead. If you’re not one of those structured people where planning is second nature, sit down and map out what you’re going to do, and when you’re going to do it. Just a little preparation goes a long way to achieve successful results. If you’re committing with other people, ask more questions up front, so you’re not surprised at how much time, training, or resources it takes to accomplish what you set out to do. If you’re consistently surprised, slow down saying yes until you’re clear you’re ready, willing, and able.
3) Visualize the goal. See yourself as successful in whatever you’re planning to do. If you don’t see yourself as successful, you may give up along the way. Once you’re in action, you’ll be able to see any steps you’ve missed, and can add those to your plan. Success will come when you keep playing and see yourself winning the game.
4) Don’t over commit. Too many commitments can distract you from giving yourself entirely to what you want to achieve. When you’re first engaging, ask yourself if what you’re saying yes to matters to you. There may be areas where you want to commit, but if you do, it will put your other obligations at risk. You may have to say no, for now, to get done what you’ve already promised!
5) Don’t waiver. Be quick to decide and slow to back out. At first, this seemed counter-intuitive to me, but then I realized how easy it is to undo a decision based on circumstances or lack of self-management or control. You quickly decide to improve your diet or lose weight, and then as soon as there’s cake in the lunchroom at work, you un-decide! Stick to your decisions. There’s power available to you that you’ll find in taking the right action that you won’t find in waiting for the right moment.
Have fun with doing things right the first time. I used this as I was unpacking boxes from my move. Instead of just sticking things somewhere, I stopped and decided where each item went and put it there. It was most fulfilling, and I only had to do it once!
Let me know how this works for you.
May your day be peaceful and productive.
Paulette Sun Davis