I flipped through a few more dog adoption videos and looked up. How was it 7:26 am?? I had pulled into the parking lot at 7:10 am. The thought of I’ll check my email quickly turned into Facebook scrolling, which turned into dog adoption videos, which resulted in fifteen minutes of wasted time.
This isn’t a rare occurrence and it isn’t just when I go into work. Sometimes, when I arrive home from the gym, I find myself scrolling my phone before I go into the house. Other times, when I about to make my bed, I find myself picking up phone just to check it. Or before I cook dinner, I spend thirty minutes looking for a new recipe, only to make something I’ve made a hundred times.
You’re probably thinking that the time I spend on my cellphone is the problem. And, part of it is, but it isn’t the only issue. I struggle with what Brendon Burchard calls transitions in his book High Performance Habits. A transition is the period of time that exists between places, activities or roles. It is, for example, going from sleeping to getting out of bed, from home to work, or from cleaning to exercising.
What we do in these transitions matters. They can be a waste of time or they can set us up for the next activity. Transitions can refocus our actions and give us a boost of energy.
Burchard gives the advice of asking yourself a question during the transition period. When going into work this morning I asked myself, “How can I act so that my patients think I am the best PT?” Well, I realized that I wouldn’t watch dog adoption videos for fifteen minutes.
The question centered my focus and made me intentional about walking through the door into work. When I got home from work, I sat in the car and asked myself, “What would the best version of me want to accomplish tonight?” The answer was not watch Netflix and scroll through my phone. And, asking the question allowed me to avoid both of those things.
What will you ask yourself during the next transition?