October 28, 2015

Whatever Works For You

Earlier this week, I read a great article from Ramit Sethi – Being Weird and Okay With It. Specifically, I loved this quote:

“One of the other panelists said something that did NOT go over well. I found it fascinating. This guy is a successful entrepreneur. He was talking about how, as he’s gotten busier, he’s had to change how he maintains his relationships. He’s realized he’d rather nurture his existing relationships than take random coffee meetings or meet with random people.

…So he finally figured out what works for him: He created a “Top 50 Favorites” list of contacts on his phone. He prioritizes them when it comes to hanging out. When he has a free minute, he calls/texts the people on his Top 50 list. Then he told us, at the end of the year, he re-evaluates who should be on the list and shuffles/deletes/adds to it. It can only be 50 people, so every year, he makes the tough decisions as to who’s on his Top 50.”

I am a total rule-loving, spreadsheet-making weirdo, and I thought this was the best idea ever. Why don’t I have a Top 50 Favorites?! (In fact, I had a similar idea a few years ago, that every day I’d contact one person on my list, but then I didn’t really develop a system and so I sucked at the follow-through.) I do not have the time to put together such a system right now, but I should. Let’s add that to my “someday” to-do list!

More than just the system, though, I love that this guy was so honest about his system and makes no apologies for it. While Ramit thinks that he’ll change his story over the years as he gets beaten down by naysayers, I hope he continues to not care what other people think – this is a system that works for him.

Over the last year or so, I’ve written a lot about how happy I am. Sure, life still has its ups and downs, but overall it’s been infinitely more positive since I picked up and moved to Colorado in 2014.

These views may have a lot to do with it.

Adam and I have talked a lot about this, and I think that Colorado is a big part of my happiness. But, I think the larger catalyst is that I’m finally feeling bold enough to do what’s right for me, and care less about what other people think of it. Moving from my family and friends in New York was hard, but it was also totally worth it.  It’s not just because Colorado has turned out to be my “Place”, but also because the process of moving and starting over has forced me to make fresh choices instead of going with the status quo. That, in turn, has encouraged me to reevaluate what makes me happy instead of trying to live up to someone else’s standard of success.

Taking that leap to move to Colorado has transformed my mindset so that I’m being more honest about who I am in other aspects of my life. With my friends, I’ve learned started learning to cherish our time together but also set boundaries for times when I need a break. At work, I’ve been fairly honest with my bosses that I’m not in a rush to get promoted this year, and oddly enough, that’s helped me land cool gigs like Discover and dream projects like my current one – and doing what I love to do is a much better motivator for me to try my hardest at my job. As a result, seeking out opportunities that I think are awesome and interesting has been a lot more rewarding than accepting projects/roles because they’ll look good on my year end review or be a “shortcut to promotion.” Go figure!

Another thing that I’m honest about? The fact that my perfect Saturday night is doing something tame at happy hour time and then going to bed by 9pm. THE. BEST.

And as for spreadsheets? Well, I’m not making a “Top 50 Favorites” list yet – but I’m dusting off my annual Thanksgiving Excel to help me put together an epic Halloween party menu for this weekend. My friends and family have teased me about my Excel nerdiness  for years, but they can laugh all they want – it helps me stay organized and sane.

Anyone else out there have something that works for them, but is deemed crazy by others?


2 thoughts on “Whatever Works For You”

  1. Heaving heard about the infamous Thanksgiving day excel for many many years past, I can’t to see it in action!! (read: can’t want to bug the crap out of you throwing off all of the timing 🙂

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