Do you have big plans and aspirations for the future? Do you act on those plans and aspirations each day? Exciting goals are easy to imagine. They even feel good. But putting them into action is another story. Too many people live their lives in a way that only preserves the status quo. There is status quo and then there is a type of Groundhogs Day Life! Ground Hogs day as in the movie starring Bill Murray. In the movie, he woke up every day to live the same day. On awaking the ‘following’ day he discovers that it’s Groundhog Day again, and again, and again. He lived the same day for what seemed like years. Seeing the same people at the same places and ending the day with like fashion, exactly like all other days. He was stuck and didn’t know what to do. Many of you reading this are also stuck. Stuck in a rut. Stuck in a funk. Stuck in a dead-end job. Whatever the case, breathe…. Smile… you are not alone. So many people live the “Groundhog Day kind of Life” They just happen to think it’s normal. I can’t help but think that we were created for more than the same ole same ole. Am I speaking to you? Do you feel like life has to be more than the nine to five and living for weekend?
So how do we break out of Ground Hog Day? What did Bill Murray’s character (Phil) do? He started trying new things. He started pushing himself to learn new skills, learn new languages and try new things. Here are few suggestions to help you breakout of your routine
Live each day in a way that changes your future:
- Imagine your average weekday. Use yesterday as an example, unless something unusual happened.
- Consider what you ate and drank.
- How much exercise did you get?
- What did you do with your social life? Did you spend time with anyone else socially?
- Did you call any friends?
- If you’re married, what did you do to enhance your relationship?
- Did you do anything to increase your income or advance your career?
- Did you learn anything new that would be useful in the future?
- Consider your average weekend. Ask yourself the same questions.
- Imagine living those same days over and over for the next 10 years. Where would you end up? Based on your food intake and exercise output, where would you expect your health and body composition to look like in 10 years?
- Do the same with your finances, social life, marriage, and career. After 10 years of living your average day, what is your prediction?
Let’s use a hypothetical example, Billy Bob.
Billy Bob is in his 40’s. He’s divorced and works as a low-level manager at a large corporation. He’s not in horrible shape, but could stand to lose 20 pounds. He’s saved some money, but he doesn’t save regularly.
Consider Billy Bob’s average day:
On Monday, Billy Bob stops at the local coffee shop on the way to work for a café latte and a muffin. Breakfast sets him back $9 and 1,400 calories, but he has a decent job, so he doesn’t worry about it too much. He figures he deserves it anyway.
He arrives to work somewhere between exactly on time to 15 minutes late. Not late enough to get into any trouble, but a little late is the norm, so people notice. He’s not setting the world on fire at work, but he does enough to keep his job secure. Like most people, he avoids work if he can get away with it. He figures he deserves to be paid more if they want more work.
He eats lunch out of the snack machine and drinks a bottle of water. Water is good for you, he thinks, so it’s not a horrible lunch.
He drives home at 5:00 and watches the news while his frozen dinner is cooking. The meal isn’t healthy, but it’s not too bad either. He eats dinner and surfs the latest dating websites looking for the gal of his dreams. He finds one woman that appeals to him and he pastes the same introduction email he’s sent to 100 women before.
He watches a little more TV and then reads 20 pages from a science fiction novel. He’s feeling industrious, so he washes all the dishes and pays some bills before getting ready for bed. In bed, he plays on his phone and texts his high school friends.
Monday through Friday are similar days. (Groundhog Day)
Where can Billy Bob realistically expect to be in 10 years?
Is your average day remarkably more meaningful and productive? Where will you be in 10 years? Are you living a day that will lead to positive changes in your life? Or are you simply passing the time with short-term comfort in mind?
As you live your day, ask yourself what the long-term implications of your current task are. Does that task matter?
Andy Stanley, a pastor in Atlanta GA has a book entitled The Principle of the Path. In the book, he has a saying that has stuck with me over the years. He writes, “Your direction determines your destination.” I live in North Carolina. If my goal is to drive to Florida, I should not be on Interstate 95 Heading north. Why? It’s simply the wrong direction. I can proclaim and decree my goal of getting to Florida all day long. I can shout it till I’m blue in the face but that fact remains – direction determines destination. It applicable to driving but it’s just as applicable to life. So… What direction are you heading? I that what you wanted in life? If not…. It’s time to change course. Hope this helps J
Grace & Peace, Jeff Hoglen