Clear the Decks
Close the Current Chapter
Before starting out a new year or program, or even a phase of your life, it is important to close the current on. Many of us keep old issues, partly completed tasks or even things we never started. Our brain uses valuable energy and time storing, processing and managing these ‘open loops’.
Imagine you are reading a book. You are about to take a break. The normal practice is to, “Just finish this page/chapter.” You can then close your book, begin cooking dinner, having a shower or going to sleep. The simple act of turning the page so it is hidden from your vision tells your brain, “It’s ok, I know where to start next time I pick up the book.
We learn this lesson very young. Just try to stop a child playing a game on their tablet or phone! Their brain is not yet trained to close the chapter. As they mature, this no longer remains a problem. They learn that the act of stopping a game is not final. They can return to it as a future time. Many quickly learn how to pause and save the game to resume later. They develop the art of closing the chapter.
Why do we forget to use this skill?
It appears the most common reason for stopping the use of closing the chapter is being too busy. We don’t take the time to stop, review and close the chapter. We think this saves us time. In reality, it simply stops us from entering the new phase with more energy and clarity.
Use the free review questions to quickly and effectively close the loops which are open. Stop the brain drain with a proven effective system.
Start a New Phase With Clear Focus
We all know the feeling. Whether it is cleaning up a bedroom for a child or a garage as an adult. Putting away and cleaning up the things your great grandmother bequeathed you. Or simply emptying your desk of files that you are not even sure what they are about.
Be warned. The first or most messy time you do this, it will take longer than you think. This is why we have created a system called Clear the Decks for you to follow. It has places you can take a break. There is a consideration for you everlasting attachment to a 45-year-old volleyball medal or riding saddle that has not been used this century.
But be kind and gentle to yourself. Work at your own pace. Use the Clear the Decks system as it helps remove the emotion from the process.
What’s so Important About a Calendar?
A calendar is like your bank balance. If you don’t tell your bank account what to do with your money, your money just goes. Where it goes, no one really knows. It just does. A calendar is the place where you store your time.
Research from Harvard University, which has been repeated by several other prestigous institutions shows the value of telling your time where to go. In a study on goal setting, people who wrote down what they wanted to achieve in a year were 90% more likely to attain those goals. Strangely, even when participants didn’t focus on, or review their goals, their outcomes were better than people who did not write them down.
When we begin to fill our annual calendar with major tasks or goals we need to allocate them in a systemic manner. It may seem counter-intuitive, but fun things like holidays should be allocated time first.
We’ve created a system for you, simply download or print it and get started. It is designed to be used at the start of the year, but will have significant benefits whenever it is used.