Extraordinary results are about creating “the domino effect” in your life.
A domino can topple another domino that topples another domino and so on. Success works the same way. The key then is to identify the first ‘domino’ every day, and focus all your energy on it until it ‘falls’.
How do we do that?
Focusing question. The quality of questions we ask determines the quality of our life. Great questions lead to really great answers.
What is one thing I can do? Such that by doing it? Everything else will be easier or unnecessary?
The question may seem simple, but like most things, it is easier said than done.
The first part “What is one thing I can do?” Notice, it is just one thing. It is not a list. Only one thing helping us to become laser-focused on our actions.
The Second part is, such that by doing it. Indicates we are about to apply measures to our answer.
The third part is everything else will be easier or unnecessary? This part of the question helps us find the most leverage. Think to yourself. There is something I can do that will make everything else easier or unnecessary.”
Get to that answer. Knowing the power of that one thing and topple a whole bunch of other dominos.
Go Big and Act Small
Now, the power of the focusing question is that helps us identify the first and most highly leveraged ‘domino’ of the day, and it can help us identify the ‘Big Dominos’ of our life as well. The secret to achieving extraordinary results is ‘go big and act small’. Apply the focusing question on the big picture in your life. Use the question to create a clear vision for your life in the future. The big picture is our starting point. Now it’s time to go small.
How it works. Choose one area of your life: work, fitness, relationships, etc. Use the focusing question to state your ‘big goal.’
What one thing I can do someday (in an area). If I do that one thing, everything will be easier or unnecessary? Continue to ask yourself the focusing question until you get to today.
Based on that someday goal, what one thing I can do in the next five years?
Based on my five-year goal, what one thing I can do in the next year? Based on my one-year goal, what thing can I do in the next month? Next week? Today?
Finally, based on my goal for today, what one thing can do right now?
Here’s how the exercise might look when I applied it to fitness goals.
Someday Goal: Supple joints and strong muscles for my age and weight, stamina so that I can run a mile on the trails.
Five Year Goal: Compete in a competition that requires me to be supple, strong and have stamina. Cross-fit? Spartan? Powerlifting?
One Year Goal: Hit at least the medium strength category for my weight.
Monthly Goal: 1:1 coaching in proper technique for strength training.
Weekly Goal: Learn the fundamentals of strength training this week.
Daily Goal: Get to the gym at least 30 minutes early to warm up. Go through the exercise routine.
Right now: Print out the specific strength goals for my weight.
You get the idea. Give it a try.
Protect Your Time
The next step after identifying your one thing for the day is to protect your time fiercely. We do this by blocking out a specific time of the day to work solely on our one thing until completion. Block it out on the calendar and protect it. Give yourself that focused time.
Using the focusing question in our life is an incredibly powerful tool that can create extraordinary results on every front.
So ask yourself, what is my big one thing in my life? What makes me come alive? Extraordinary answers require extraordinary questions.