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Day One...

I've been doing so much for so long doing too much seems almost like not enough...


If that makes sense to you, you're in too deep and in as much trouble as I generally am, trouble that probably stems from being 'Recognition Dependent' and never really being able to say, No!


If you think I'm kidding ask your analyst... No, really, I'm not going to force you schedule an appointment. Instead, I'll offer my own definition.


In its simplest form, "Recognition Dependent" just means caring too much about being recognized - how you are thought of or esteemed by others - particularly, those whose opinions are meaningful to you. Because you want people to think highly of you, because you want people to like you... You are likely to do whatever they ask you to do, whatever you think they want, need or expect from you.


My experience has taught me most 'good' shop owners are "Recognition Dependent." They care and act accordingly as the result of that caring. They bend over backwards to satisfy their clients, at least in part because they want their clients to 'like' them.


Most of us are "Recognition Dependent" to one degree or another if you think about it and that's OK. The wheels start to come off, however, when you're trying to please too many different people or groups of people, especially when there are conflicting agendas.


I'm no stranger when it comes to being over committed. I've been working at the shop, writing to the Automotive Aftermarket, presenting seminars and delivering speeches for more than twenty five years. That's a long time and a lot of balls in the air. It's a lot of conversations that end with, "Sure, I'll do it!"

If you don't believe me you can ask Lesley, my wife! Our conversations generally either start or end with Lesley asking, "When were you going to tell me you were going out of town? The night before..." And, me responding with, "I'm almost sure we talked about this when it came up a few months ago..."


The biggest problem with being over committed, at least for me is fighting fires: putting out the hottest and most pressing fires before they singe the door and burn everything in your front yard to the ground. You do that a lot when you have lots of fires and lots of deadlines and you're trying to juggle them all without searing your toes. Oddly enough, I've gotten pretty good at managing the chaos and frankly, I must like it because I'm stilling doing it!




The bad news is, I fall apart when the fire is out and I have to figure out where I was and what's left to do on all the other projects that were abandoned when the alarm bells began to ring and I went diving for that shiny brass pole in the center of that big hole in the middle of the floor.


I mean, where do you start?


The answer came from a blog I read yesterday morning, a blog by Chris Brogan, a web marketing expert, auther, speaker and all around good guy...


The blog was titled, What Does Day One Look Like, and it really struck a nerve. Strange how something like that can turn your world upside down...


What I got out of the blog was elegantly simple... when things fall apart and it's time to clean up and get started again, instead of looking at whatever it was you were involved in from the beginning, pick it up from where you left off as if where you left off was the beginning. In other words, as if it was Day One...


Hurt your back and quit going to the gym, but you're feeling better now: Day One...


Got distracted by a wedding and watched the Marketing Plan you were working on grind to a halt, but the wedding is over now and the kids are back from their honeymoon, so there is no reason not to start working on it all over again... No problem: Day One...


Way behind on writing assignments or the presentation looming up in your rear view mirror because you were working on everything else... Fugheddaboudit! Day One...


The coolest part about it is I have great hope it just might work! OK... So, it's early and I've only tried it twice and it is only the first day! But... so far it's two for two. In fact, I'm convinced it's going to work.


Of course, it wouldn't hurt anything if I could just learn to say, No! a little more forcefully and a little more often!


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