This is Your Sign
David Freund, Chief Leadership Officer
Since March 17th, I have been working from my office at home. My home office is very nice, and it is fully equipped with everything I need to fulfill my responsibilities. Yes, there are times when I need a book that is on my bookshelf at MACNY, but for the most part, I’m all set. Another positive is that I am not tempted to go out for lunch, and that’s saving me a lot of money and keeping me from eating things that I shouldn’t. Now comes the downside, I am sitting in one place for hours at a time, and boy can I feel it. Taking a cue from my friend and mentor John Maxwell, I decided to walk each morning and, except for a few days surrounding my visit to an oral surgeon, I have been remarkably consistent.
My wife and I live on Onondaga Hill, and the views I see when I walk are spectacular. I get to look across Tanner Valley and South Onondaga toward Beak and Skiff Apple Orchards. I have seen fog laying in the valley and the early sunrise on the eastern facing pastures. My walk takes me to the end of our street, around a sharp corner and up a rather steep hill. One morning last week I wasn’t sure I could make it up that hill. It was one of my first days back after my “dental pause,” my heart was pounding, I was breathing heavier, and I just wanted to quit, but then I saw it. That bright yellow sign, only a quarter mile up the hill, standing out against the dense fog. The sign which marks the spot where I make my turn and head back down the hill. How could I give up now? Was I going to stop and be a quitter for the rest of the day? If I quit then, would I even try the next morning? As I stared at the sign, it almost pulled me up the hill. With each step, I moved closer to my goal. With each step, I felt more encouraged to press on. And then it hit me, an amazing learning moment: the power of making your goals visual.
There isn’t anything magical about that sign. It’s a typical yellow road sign. I’m not even sure what is on it. Perhaps it’s warning of a turn in the road. What makes it special is that it tells me where my goal is. It tells me that when I get to that specific point on the road, I did it. I made it to the point on the hill where I achieved my daily objective, and I can turn around and begin my descent back down to level ground.
Do you have goals that you aren’t achieving? Are there things that you know you need to do, but they just aren’t getting done? Perhaps you need my yellow sign. Well, I guess it’s not mine, and I suppose the Town of Onondaga wouldn’t want you digging it up. Seriously though, you might just need to make it more visible. Get it out there in front of you each morning, and I bet it will begin to pull you forward.
If you would like to hear more about making goals visible and why it works, please join Marisa Norcross and me for Episode 164 of The Next Page podcast as we take a deeper dive into this powerful tactic.