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Notes & Thoughts - Issue #8 - The Time Will Pass Anyway.

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January 7 · Issue #8 · View online
Notes & Thoughts
Hello!
Welcome to the 8th Issue of Notes & Thoughts! We are delighted to have you with us. You can read the other issues here.
First of all, happy new year! 2021 brings with it a lot of cautious promise and hope from 2020, a year that was incredibly tough and complex to navigate. Here’s hoping that 2021 is better on many levels!
Second, a couple of updates:
  1. The Notes & Thoughts Newsletter will be shifting from a weekly newsletter to a bi-monthly newsletter. The Red Notebook is diversifying its content this year to include more video content - conversations and interviews with founders, entrepreneurs and professionals. Because of the workload involved, we’ll reduce the frequency so we can improve the value offered in our Notes& Thoughts.
  2. The 5 AM Club is shaping up nicely. We had our first group call this week to discuss and brainstorm how to improve accountability and intentionality for the 5 AM Club. We will share an update on this later. In the meantime, if you want to be part of the 5AM Club, join us on the Telegram Group.
  3. Video Content! Starting next week, the Red Notebook will begin posting (more) video content, primarily on our YouTube channel (please subscribe!), and also on our Instagram, Twitter and Facebook accounts.
Third, it’s a brand new year, and that normally brings a lot of introspection, goal setting and planning, and I’d like, in this issue, to explore the choices and decisions we make when setting goals, and how those choices affect us in the long term. I hope this edition of the newsletter brings some insights to help you plan better for the new year.
Also, share this with your friends and ask them to sign up so they can get this newsletter directly.
And finally, a special shoutout to our content sponsor Eversend, an application that enables you to quickly and affordably send money across Africa. Get Eversend from the Apple Store and Android App Store.
And now, enjoy the newsletter!
Solomon King
Founder - Fundi Bots and Curator - The Red Notebook.

The Time Will Pass Anyway
“Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.
— Earl Nightingale
All of us have, at some point in our lives, dreamed of a goal and then quickly given up because we balked at the amount of time it would take to achieve that goal. You have dreams of going back to school, learning a new language or mastering a new skill, but you realize it will take you a few years to succeed, and suddenly you’re deflated and discouraged.
Earl Nightingale’s quote is a strong and very stark reminder that whether or not you start that journey today, the time will pass anyway. It will be three years in three years and it will be five years in five years, regardless of how you feel or the effort you put in. You will wake up one day and think to yourself, “Huh. I would be done with that course by now.” or “I would be a good artist by now, if only I had started.”
Regret is a tough teacher that stays with us each day as we continue looking backwards knowing we could have been so much better off financially, physically and mentally if we had only started the journey.
The idea of exercising and dieting is not really the problem. The problem is that you read - or were told - that it takes three months for you to see significant change, and you feel like you don’t want to wait three months. You want to see the change now. Or next week, at least. But the three months will pass anyway, whether you exercise or not.
Yes, it will take ten or twenty years for your savings to become substantial enough to buy that house you want, but it just seems like such a long time to spend waiting for the reward. But, the time will pass anyway. And as I’ve shared before about money and savings, the earlier you start, the bigger and more valuable the reward.
Patience and Discipline for Long Journeys
One thing I’ve been trying to cultivate more intentionally over the past few years is the patience and discipline for long life journeys, whether in my personal and leadership growth, or building my art and engineering skills. Growing older comes with the realization that everything takes time, especially the difficult, but important and rewarding things that your Future Self will be eternally grateful for.
And like we’ve shared in previous articles and newsletters, time and effort compound in ways that we can only appreciate when we look backwards. In the same way looking forwards encourages us when we focus on the achievement and discourages us when we focus on the time it will take, looking backwards can bring with it pride for the goals we have achieved or regret for the time we have wasted.
Especially because we know, and can see that the time passed anyway.
 “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbour. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain
Habits & Systems for Long Journeys
One useful strategy for focusing on the goal, and not the time, is to create systems that become subconsciously executed, and understand how habits compound and affect your ability to achieve goals. James Clear focuses on this process in his book “Atomic Habits.”
The process of building a habit can be divided into four simple steps: cue, craving, response, and reward. Breaking it down into these fundamental parts can help us understand what a habit is, how it works, and how to improve it.
The Four Stages of Habit - James Clear
The Four Stages of Habit - James Clear
This four-step pattern is the backbone of every habit, and your brain runs through these steps in the same order each time.
Habit Loop - James Clear
Habit Loop - James Clear
In summary, the cue triggers a craving, which motivates a response, which provides a reward, which satisfies the craving and, ultimately, becomes associated with the cue. Together, these four steps form a neurological feedback loop—cue, craving, response, reward; cue, craving, response, reward—that ultimately allows you to create automatic habits.
You can read this extract from his book here.
Purely focusing on the time it will take to achieve a goal can be detrimental to achieving the goal. We are hard-wired to crave instant gratification, and the current culture of micro-consumerism coupled with instant desire for reward has created a society that’s strongly addicted to short, fleeting, exciting journeys.
On the other hand, long journeys require patience, time, commitment and focus, but they are the journeys that build solid foundations and a lifetime of skill, experience, gratitude and happiness.
2020 will no doubt have its own challenges, some of which will be unprecedented, but I hope you will find the courage to start a long journey of personal, professional, financial or spiritual growth. And when you face challenges, and your focus wavers towards the time that journey is taking, push on regardless, because you know that the time will pass anyway.
Read This: Visions for the Next Decade
As you set out to plan your year and set/review/refine your short-term and long-term goals, always keep in mind that time is a constant that marches on relentlessly in one direction. There’s no reset or restart when it comes to time; we can only move forward from now.
In one of our morning reads this week, we shared a very insightful article from Joseph Wells titled “Visions for the Next Decade”. It’s a insight into how he’s breaking down decade-long goals on finance, physical health and wealth into small chunks that then compound for significant growth.
Additionally, this short, but brilliant article “The Surprising Power of The Long Game” can provide some clarity for long journeys.
Listen to This: Tiny Habits for Behavior Change with BJ Fogg
BJ Fogg teaches innovators about human behavior. In this episode, he discusses his new book, Tiny Habits: The Small Changes that Change Everything. If you have any changes you want to make, any habits you’d like to start in your life, this episode could be a game-changer for you.
Listen to the episode at the link below.
Sponsor Segment
Don’t forget to check out our content sponsor, Eversend. Their mobile platform enables rapid and affordable financial transactions across Africa.
And their partnership with the Red Notebook enables us to create great content for you to grow your leadership and management skills and help nurture stronger and more resilient organizations and businesses.
Get Eversend from the Apple Store and Android App Store.
Connect and Share with us!
The Red Notebook is building a community of African entrepreneurs and business professionals, and we leverage social media heavily, so please take a minute to connect and follow us on the following platforms: Our website - Twitter - Facebook - Instagram - YouTube - LinkedIn and Telegram
And lastly, if you believe there’s someone who could greatly benefit from this, share with them this newsletter!
Thank you, and see you next week!
Solomon King Benge
Founder - Fundi Bots and Curator - The Red Notebook.
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