Time Passes Anyway

Businessman running after clock in silhouetteWhy spend days or years doing things you don't want to do?

By Bill Reeb

“Time passes anyway” is a phrase commonly tossed around at my mentor John’s martial arts school. It is the reminder that change comes from doing the work and therefore we need to make every workout count.

MORE: For CPAs: The Road to Wisdom Is Paved with Failure | Guilt vs. Duty | Being Judgmental Is Self-Destructive | 3 ‘Letting Go’ Actions to Help You Get Unstuck | Get Better, Work Better, Right Now | Constantly Build on the Basics | From Martial Arts to Business: 5 Steps of Evolution | Expect and Embrace Failure Anytime You Do New Work | Determining Your Desires Should Be an Active Process
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Days will pass – 30, 60, 90 – in what feels like the blink of an eye, and when you make every day count, before you know it, you will be a lot better. Whether you use your days well or simply throw them away, know that time passes anyway and that time can never be reclaimed!
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For CPAs: The Road to Wisdom Is Paved with Failure

Man with head down on laptop keyboard... but we need it to grow.

By Bill Reeb

Besides guilt, overachievers seem to have a real problem with the idea of failure, which is why it comes up in so many different forms throughout my book.

MORE: Guilt vs. Duty | Duty: A Tough Hurdle to Overcome | You Are Right Where You Are Supposed to Be | Become Your Mind’s Lead Programmer | Stay in the Present | You Might Be Your Biggest Obstacle | What to Stop May Be More Important Than What to Do | Stop Wishing Your Life Away | Don’t Let Inertia Determine Your Direction
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How does this attitude toward failure manifest itself? Well, in business, as with life, we are taught by society that to be considered a worthy and successful human being, we must “grab for the brass ring” or buy into the idea that “winning is everything.” And clichés like “anything other than first doesn’t count” are used to motivate people into obtaining “the right perspective.” This has created some self-destructive and dysfunctional attitudes toward winning.
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CPA Careers Driven by Duty, Sabotaged by Guilt

Businessmen miserable over errorGuilt is one of the most damaging emotional obstacles you throw in front of yourself.

By Bill Reeb, CPA

When I talk about guilt and duty, the examples I share can sound similar. However, the distinction to me is that duty is what you feel before you make a decision or take an action, and guilt is what you feel afterward.

MORE: Duty: A Tough Hurdle to Overcome | Fear Stifles You in Every Way | Change the Way You Think | Let Go to Get Unstuck | Investing in Loss | You Might Be Your Biggest Obstacle | What to Stop May Be More Important Than What to Do | Stop Wishing Your Life Away | Don’t Let Inertia Determine Your Direction
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For example, I feel a sense of duty to protect my daughter, and I would feel guilty if she were hurt badly because I would imagine everything I should have done to better protect her (even if what I imagined would be unreasonable to expect).
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Duty: A Tough Hurdle to Overcome

Businessman crossing finish line after leaping hurdlesOnce again, you may be your own biggest obstacle.

By Bill Reeb

In my opinion, most people are rarely driven by just their own desires. Rather, they are influenced heavily by the desires and expectations of those around them as well as by the roles they fill.

MORE: Fear Stifles You in Every Way | Being Judgmental Is Self-Destructive | 3 ‘Letting Go’ Actions to Help You Get Unstuck | Get Better, Work Better, Right Now | Constantly Build on the Basics | From Martial Arts to Business: 5 Steps of Evolution | Expect and Embrace Failure Anytime You Do New Work
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Duty is synonymous with words like responsibility and obligation – and the thesaurus offers the phrase “what you have to do.” Duty has intellectual and emotional ties to your value systems, too. Therefore, to defy one’s duty is to default on one’s values.
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Fear Stifles You in Every Way

Young businessman standing on edge of rock mountain and looking across"It is as though fear is a virus, constantly coursing through our veins and waiting for the first sign of weakness so that it can instantly activate and take over."

By Bill Reeb

Fear is an important topic to me. I believe fear is often one of the greatest offenders interfering with behavior, skill development, success, satisfaction with yourself, and happiness in your life.

MORE: Being Judgmental Is Self-Destructive | You Are Right Where You Are Supposed to Be | Become Your Mind’s Lead Programmer | Stay in the Present | How ‘Take What’s Given’ Works in Business | Learn to Work ‘Better’ Instead of ‘Harder’ | Be Realistic Regarding Expectations
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I am not just talking about fear as it would manifest in feelings of terror, but rather the entire range of fear, from being afraid of dying on one extreme through a simple negative thought wafting through your brain on the other.
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Being Judgmental Is Self-Destructive

Businessman with head in handsAre you right where you are supposed to be?

By Bill Reeb

A big step in the right direction to regain momentum occurs when you start cutting yourself some slack.

MORE: You Are Right Where You Are Supposed to Be | Change the Way You Think | Let Go to Get Unstuck | Investing in Loss | You Might Be Your Biggest Obstacle | What to Stop May Be More Important Than What to Do
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After you decide that you are going to make a change in your plans or objectives, it is common human behavior to beat yourself up for not arriving at that same decision earlier. On top of that, I often see people shining an intense spotlight on themselves, scrutinizing every step in their progress as they start down any new path.
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You Are Right Where You Are Supposed to Be

Man walking boardwalk forest trail in early morningYou could be further on X, but then Y would have suffered.

By Bill Reeb

At this point in the Process, you have already identified a Desire (including a plan, tactics, timeline and expectations) and have been following that plan doing the Work. However, for you to be at this juncture, you had to kick out of the Try (Work)-Evaluate loop because you were feeling unsuccessful or unhappy about your progress or priorities. When this negative evaluation occurs, you are either starting to get stuck or you are already stuck.

MORE: Change the Way You Think | 3 ‘Letting Go’ Actions to Help You Get Unstuck | Get Better, Work Better, Right Now | Constantly Build on the Basics | From Martial Arts to Business: 5 Steps of Evolution | Expect and Embrace Failure Anytime You Do New Work | Determining Your Desires Should Be an Active Process
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As I have observed in my experience with clients, martial arts students and my own life, identifying a solution to get you back on track occurs by working through one of two paths. The first path is for you to consider “what you are thinking,” with the second path reflecting on “what you are doing.” As you consider the variety of techniques focused on what to let go of so that you can start regaining momentum, your action choices will come down to replanning, reprioritizing or reaffirming your Desire, or some combination of these. With this in mind, let’s consider some techniques to help you reassess what you are thinking.
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Change the Way You Think

Portrait of a young pensive businesswoman in officeThe 4th of 4 steps.

By Bill Reeb

The realization that all we have to do to be different is to allow ourselves to think differently is very powerful. The great news is ... it’s often not that hard, and sometimes it is downright easy, once you focus your attention on the right places.

MORE: 3 ‘Letting Go’ Actions to Help You Get Unstuck | Become Your Mind’s Lead Programmer | Stay in the Present | How ‘Take What’s Given’ Works in Business | Expect and Embrace Failure Anytime You Do New Work | Determining Your Desires Should Be an Active Process | Know Where You Are Running To
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Before I went through the cathartic steps of working with my mentor John to come up with this process and refining my thoughts on this topic, I would occasionally go through some multiday bouts with gloom. I don’t want to say that I would get depressed because that would be too harsh of a descriptor.
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3 ‘Letting Go’ Actions to Help You Get Unstuck

It's not the same as giving up.

By Bill Reeb

While I've discussed "letting go" actions before, it is time to get a little better understanding of how to leverage them.

MORE: Become Your Mind’s Lead Programmer | Let Go to Get Unstuck | Investing in Loss | You Might Be Your Biggest Obstacle | What to Stop May Be More Important Than What to Do | Stop Wishing Your Life Away | Don’t Let Inertia Determine Your Direction | What Does ‘Getting Stuck’ or ‘Being Stuck’ Mean? | 3 Ways to Get ‘Unstuck’
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At any point in time, when you realize you are dissatisfied with your level of success or happiness, once you have decided what to let go of that was the source of the negative emotions you are feeling, you will end up making at least one – if not two or all three – of these choices.
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Become Your Mind’s Lead Programmer

Calm balanced businessman sitting outdoors on bench in Yoga lotus pose meditating, with office building and blue sky in backgroundMeditation is one way, but there are others.

By Bill Reeb

Your mind is the most powerful resource available to you. It is easy to think of it as a supercomputer, running your physical being: constantly compiling data, processing complex transactions, creating internally revealed reports and so on.

MORE: Let Go to Get Unstuck | Get Better, Work Better, Right Now | Constantly Build on the Basics | From Martial Arts to Business: 5 Steps of Evolution | Expect and Embrace Failure Anytime You Do New Work | Determining Your Desires Should Be an Active Process
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We know through research that most of us barely tap into our brain’s full capability, so it is also not hard to get complacent and deem the brain to be some magical organ that we just hope keeps running properly. As well, it is easy for us to get comfortable interacting with our minds as if we were only data entry operators rather than the brain’s lead programmer.
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Let Go to Get Unstuck

Trapeze artist about to grab partner's handsWhat beliefs no longer serve you?

By Bill Reeb

If you have identified a desire, created a plan and are working your plan to your satisfaction, you are in what I refer to as the “Try (Work)-Evaluate” loop that continues until you accomplish whatever you want to achieve. As long as you recognize the early warning signals and respond to them in a timely way, you will remain unstuck, continuing to work better and achieve more.

MORE: Get Better, Work Better, Right Now | Stay in the Present | How ‘Take What’s Given’ Works in Business | Learn to Work ‘Better’ Instead of ‘Harder’ | Be Realistic Regarding Expectations | A Clear Direction Provides You a Sanity Check
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However, most of us are not that fortunate. We start getting stuck and rather than respond to the early warning signals, we either ignore them, hoping they will go away, or try to power through them.
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