How pure drive can prevent us from accomplishing our goal.
Lessons from “getting it done” this weekend, mowing, & life.
I set my alarm for 6:30 a.m. on Saturday morning. I had just tackled my Friday off getting everything done on my to do list and was going to do it again. I was utterly determined that when my husband came back from a trip I would show him how much I could accomplish. I was going to have the house clean, bills paid, laundry caught up, and the yard mowed.
I felt a renewed energy for life. A drive to get things done that couldn’t be stopped. A drive I had when I was younger that had been buried for a while.
Kind of like a woman who is mad. She has pent up energy and doesn’t know what to do with it. She sees a board laying on the ground with six large sturdy nails sticking out. Her OCD gets her riled up. How come no one has hammered those nails down? A fever begins to ensue and ravish her mind and body. I must hammer those nails in. I must. She finds a large hammer and begins to hammer the first nail in. That doesn’t satisfy her so she goes to the second.
She pounds harder and faster, but still in a controlled fashion. Her eyes start to widen as she feels a twisted satisfaction in releasing her intense energy. She goes to the third and hammers wildly. Stuff is getting done now! She swipes her hair out of her face re-grips the hammer and pushes the fourth nail down in one swipe. Ahhhh! SATISFACTION. She goes for the fifth nail in the same fashion, but it resists. She has hit it crooked and it will not relent. It will not go into the board. She cannot go onto the sixth because doing so would be out of order and being out of order is the cardinal sin to getting things done. We must go step by step. She realizes she has created a problem, but stopping her drive is like holding back the tide. It’s like being on the verge of an orgasm and then having to hold it back.
I got the mower out knowing that the yard was too wet to cut. I had things to do! The sun will come out and burn off the dew in a half hour. I can get some rows done in half ass fashion until then. As I steered the zero turn around a small tree I could not maneuver as I needed to. I could feel my unbridled anger wanting to pop out, but I was mature now. I wasn’t that young girl who went on a tangent. Calm yourself I said. Breathe. Refocus and turn. The mower wouldn’t relent. It dawned on me to look down. The back tire came off the rim. In my haste to turn the corner in the wet yard I uncovered dirt and unhinged the tire from it’s rim. My energy and drive to “get it done” had caused a problem.
Getting it done.
We need drive and passion to get things done. Even mowing the yard on a busy Saturday. Our drive can prevent us from getting things done right if we aren’t aware of a few things.
1. Getting it done doesn’t work well with getting it done right. There are some basic steps we need to follow, safety precautions we may need to take, and just some common sense that we need to throw in. Maybe my husband doesn’t mow when the grass is wet because the yard looks like crap later and you end up unearthing it more than cutting it. The tire repair cost us $69.00 and a three hour delay. Had I followed some common sense rules I could have gotten the yard done quicker and cheaper.
2. Drive doesn’t think. Drive is pure energy. It doesn’t take time to process, gather information, gain wisdom, or solidify. It sees the goal and it goes after it like a mad woman hitting nails on a board. She didn’t even know why she was doing it. She just wanted to finish the job. The problem is it wasn’t her job to do in the first place. She didn’t take the time to ask herself if she should hammer the nails. She didn’t think. Drive needs temperament, care, and boundaries.
3. Drive doesn’t care. Not pure drive. I had pure drive once. The opportunity to drive an organization as I saw fit. I had some oversight, but that group could not match my energy, or determination. They sat and watched in awe. Drive doesn’t always take into consideration others feelings, goals, plans, understanding, or knowledge. Drive must be released and must conquer. It doesn’t care who it hurts to do that.
4. Drive causes more problems than it solves. Drive alone can cause problems. Time seasons our life with things that give it flavor. Sometimes waiting is a good thing. What if I had gotten up at 6:30 a.m. and gotten some things done inside of the house. I could have had a nice cup of coffee, got the bills paid, some laundry started, and felt much more relaxed. Instead I was a mad woman on a mower waking up my neighbors and ended up at the mower repair shop early on a Saturday morning. Waiting for the sun to dry off the grass would have provided an environment where I could safely and efficiently cut the grass. I would have gotten the job done right and would be $69.00 richer.
Pair your drive with a well thought out plan with input from others. Concern yourself with getting things done right. Take the time to think. Is this my board? Am I the one that needs to hammer in these nails? Do the nails need to all be driven in right now? What would waiting do at this point? Do I care more about getting it done, or about others?