Under Achieve to Succeed

Doing less can give you more

It’s been a crazy week and a half.  I have been getting ready for a very important event at work and a lot of time and energy has been devoted to it.  This has meant that only the most important things in my life have been worked on and everything else has been left.  No, I haven’t updated my status here at the blog, but I have been learning Samoan.  Despite my really busy schedule and preoccupied mind, I learned and perfected my abilities to speak and understand Samoan.

How might you ask I was able to accomplish this?  I under achieved.

How Can One Under Achieve to Succeed?

I know you might be asking yourself some thing like, “How can one succeed if you do less than all you have? ” or “I thought I was supposed to give 110 percent?”  Yes this is all true, but what I am talking about is not in effort or desire.  I am talking about time.  It’s the thing we all have Equal amounts of and the thing we always mismanage.

I am sure you have recently recommitted yourself to a goal of learning a new language.  Maybe you have committed to spending 30 minutes a day or something like that, in language learning activities.  You may even be doing well on that so far.  But there is one problem, it wont last.

Sometime, you will eventually have the world go against you and you wont be able to do 30 minutes of studying.  We all have bad days right?  Sure!  So you go back to your life and things seem good, and then you have two bad days in a row.  Then another one a day after.  Next thing you know you have done less learning that week than you have anything else.  Not just that, you can’t seem to recommit yourself to get it back in your schedule.  You have lost!

Our problem is that we commit to something based on what we can do on the good days.  We like to be optimistic with who we are and what we are doing.  That’s good, but we also have to be practical or we danger upon hurting that optimism.

What to do

Plan on doing less than you think you can.  If you think you can do 30 mins a day than plan to do 15.  Maybe you think you can read a unit a day, so plan on taking two days to do it.  If you do more, than that is gravy on top.  Otherwise, it is still a successful day.  You will be grateful for this lower expectation on those bad days and despite your “under achievement,” you will still succeed.

6 Comments

Filed under How to learn

6 responses to “Under Achieve to Succeed

  1. Mae

    That’s a good idea to plan in some buffer time!!! I never did that for languages before…

  2. Pingback: Robert JR Graham » Learning How Attitude Changes Our Experience

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