Semler Revisited

Last week I wrote about the Tim Ferriss podcast where I listened to Ferriss interview Ricardo Semler, Brazilian entrepreneur. Yesterday I had a lengthy car ride to and from the few schools I needed to visit so I finished the podcast interview.

Semler brought up the ever so common topic of living each day as it were your last.  We all know this is much easier said then done.  If we truly knew it were our last day we would act much different than theoretically living as if it were our last day.  If tomorrow were truly my last day, I think I’d want to get an RV with all the people (and pets) I cared about and just drive.  A last chance to see and experience as much as possible.  I’d cash out all investments and spend every last saved dollar.  In reality if I did this every day, myself and my family would be homeless and poor.

Semler brought up the notion that every week, Monday and Thursday, he has a completely open schedule to work on whatever he wants.  Bucket list days per se.  He uses these days to accomplish things most people say some day.  Semler is CEO of multiple companies (if I understood correctly).  It is easy for people in his position to say, someday I’ll learn to play piano, write that novel/play, learn to fly, etc.  So instead of putting it off, Semler puts time in his schedule to work on these things over time.  He uses his weekends to spend time and focus on family, Tuesday/Wednesday/Friday are his work days, and Monday/Thursday are bucket list days.

I think there are a couple things everyone can learn from this.  First is we probably could spend less time on “work” if we learned to work more efficiently.  One of my personal challenges is I feel if I am not spending every minute I can on work it will all fall apart.  What I should do, is take a month off and work remotely to change the way my brain is wired to think about running my business.  Can I hire someone to do small tasks? Do I really need to drive there to completed A,B, or C? Obviously in my current position working remotely full-time is not realistic, but I think taking a month hiatus to change my thought process would benefit me in the long run allowing me to grow.

Second thing we learn from Semler, is don’t put it off.  If there is something you want to do, just do it.  Most people would say, “Yea it’s really easy for a million business owner to take two days off a week, but I can’t afford that.”  And this is very true.  He is resource rich so he has greater luxuries.  But being CEO of multiple business his work time has a much greater responsibility level than the average person.  But even if you can’t take complete days off to focus on something, you do have time.  Instead of watching the latest episode of Teen Mom 2, take that hour to schedule a piano lesson, to write a few pages of your novel, or whatever your dream is.  Over time the little investments will pay dividends.  The key is patience and consistency.  If it is truly important to you, you will dedicate the time.

This blog is one of my buckets items.  I write on a public forum for anyone to read, but I write for myself.  I write for my legacy.  How amazing is it that I can put my own words and thoughts out there for my future generations to read.  My great-great grandchildren may be able to get some insight it who I was and may see a little of me in them.  I don’t consider myself a great writer by any means.  I just type.  I don’t re-read.  I don’t edit.  I just type.  Typos, misspellings, and grammatical errors will forever exist.  This isn’t art.  It’s simply thoughts, ideas, and daily life in written form.

Now what else should I start committing myself to do on a regular basis??

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