Embracing Your Inner Otter

Life affords each of us an opportunity for adventure every day. Often, it is simply a matter of embracing the opportunity to advance a goal.

Here’s an example of what I mean …

For years, I traveled through the entire state of Florida by car for business. As you can imagine, driving to appointments became less than fun. So when one of my clients asked me to attend a meeting that would require a three-hour drive (one way), I almost said no. After all, I am very selective in the way I choose to spend my time and energies.

However, I have an alternate mode of transportation — my single-engine airplane. “Wow!” I thought, “By flying there, maybe I can make attending this meeting both productive and fun!”

Think about it. There is nothing worse than going into a meeting tired and crotchety. I would rather not go at all. But instead of stressing myself out over having to drive for six hours or say no to the opportunity, I took a “mental step” back and reassessed my options.

Since that first time, I’ve flown my airplane to many business appointments. And I’ve been able to take on clients in Lake City, Gainesville, New Port Richey — each one a long drive from my home in Orlando.

I save hours of boring driving. I arrive at my destination rested and eager to become involved in the work. I know I will have plenty of time to visit with the client and go to lunch in a nice restaurant to further our relationship.

Flying to appointments also advances my personal goal of increasing the number of hours in my log book. Best of all, I enjoy it!

The first time I realized I could fly to a faraway meeting, I found a way to save time, reduce stress, achieve a business goal — and have a great time doing it.

Contrast that with the way beavers work. They’re always busy, gnawing down small trees and digging canals to transport the material they’ve gathered. Building their homes of sticks and mud (with ramps, no less). Building dams to maintain the water level of a stream or deepen a pond.

Like the beaver, I’m productive by nature. And, like the beaver, I used to be relentless in the pursuit of my goals. I would go in earlier and stay later — whatever it took to get the mission accomplished. If it meant driving 10 hours to meet a new client, I would do it.

Not anymore!

It’s great to be an achiever. And I still believe in a “whatever it takes” approach. However, ONLY on rare occasions and ONLY in a limited timeframe.

If, for example, your annual business conference starts next week, then, sure, you’ve got to embrace your “inner beaver” and focus solely on gathering the troops and making it happen. An all-hands-on-deck mentality is necessary. But if opening day is three months away, there is no need to be in hyper-mode. With proper planning (and a dash of faith), all should come together on time and on target.

Under ordinary circumstances, I find that it’s much better to embrace my “inner otter” as I go along my goal journey. Otters know how to have fun and seek out adventure! They “play” more than almost any other wild animal.

When I complete one of my weekly Power Surge messages for the Total Success Achievement program, I often reward myself with a glass of wine on the porch. My wife Karin, who assists me with the messages, joins me.

You can do something similar. Next time you sit down to write an article for your online business website, why not take your laptop outside? It will clear your head and allow you to enjoy your surroundings while you work. Or when your team at work is staying late to complete a project, why not take a half-hour break to play a quick game of touch football in the parking lot? Exercise is a great stress reliever.

What I’m getting at is this: Play more and you can bring renewed vitality and enthusiasm to the achievement of your goals.

In other words, take yourself lightly — even while taking your work seriously. Don’t be so completely focused on your work that you eliminate other activities that can add value to your life.

Here’s how to do it …

  • Make a list of your scheduled activities for next week.
  • For each one, ask yourself, “How can I make this fun?”
  • Write down your answer. And write the word FUN next to it to imprint your new perspective on your brain.

Start TODAY to incorporate this success practice into your weekly routine.

Make your new motto “Let the adventure begin!”

[Ed. Note: Improving your life starts from the inside out. Yes, you need to take action in order to move yourself forward to success. But sometimes you need a little push to get yourself going … and some simple techniques to help you accomplish your dreams. Discover 189 ways to get everything you want out of life.]