The Big Idea
When you make room for what’s important to you, you are really allowing yourself to value your priorities and yourself.
Questions I Answer
- How can I get started on my dreams or goals?
- How can I feel like I have more time?
- How do I prioritize my goals?
- How can I feel more productive with my goals?
Actions to Take
- Take a moment right now and list out all the things that you’ve saved for someday. You have the ability to give yourself that permission to change, to start, to do the things you need to do, to move towards the life you really want. When you think about your ideal life, what does that look like? How do you move closer to the life you want every day, rather than someday? Because someday is now. Start moving towards those somedays.
Key Topics in the Show
3 roadblocks of Someday Syndrome and how you can address them
Giving yourself permission to pursue what matters most to you
How you can make someday a reality through intention and planning
Evaluating your somedays in order to determine how they fit into your life
Resources and Links
- Catch up on any TanyaTV episodes you might have missed!
Welcome to season eight of Productivity Paradox with Tanya Dalton. A podcast focused on using productivity not just to do more, but to achieve what’s most important to you. Join Tanya this season as she focuses on planning for success using proven productivity strategies. To get her free checklist, Five Minutes To Peak Productivity, simply go to inkWELLpress.com/podcast. To get her free checklist, Five Minutes To Peak Productivity, simply go to inkWELLpress.com/podcast.
And now here’s your host Tanya Dalton.
Hello, hello, everyone. Welcome to Productivity Paradox. I’m your Host, Tanya Dalton, and this is episode 97.
We’ve been talking all season long about how planning for success can help us make progress towards our goals. And lately, I’ve heard some feedback from many of you saying, “You’re so focused on making your way through the days and the weeks and it’s really hard to think about the future. You’re not able to think about what’s to come in the future.” We have to stop delaying our happiness. And that’s what I’d like to focus on, on this podcast; Your Someday.
How many times have you said that you’d do whatever it is you want to do, “Someday?” Someday, this indefinite time in the future. We know that indefinite means it’s not clearly expressed or really defined. So let’s start there.
Why are there things in our lives that are not clearly expressed, or even clearly defined? You know maybe that you want to travel more, or try out a new hobby, someday. You might whisper to yourself or even say it out loud to your loved ones in passing, “Someday I’ll …” These are your somedays. I found that we say someday because we don’t feel the immediacy of making time for these things right now, in the present, in the here and now. And there’s a term for this. It’s called Someday Syndrome.
Someday Syndrome is defined as, not doing what you want because either, one, you don’t know what it is. Two, you’re procrastinating about it. Or, three, there’s just too much in your way. So I want to address each of those three roadblocks first. And then I want to talk about some actionable ways we can move past these and move closer to your someday.
So let’s start with that first roadblock; you don’t know what it is. So let’s start with this first step, which is, ensuring that our goals are clearly expressed and defined. What is your it? Maybe it’s, “I want to start a business.” I hear this from so many of you. So let’s start with this as an example.
So ask yourself, “What kind of business is it I’d like to start?” It’s not just any kind of business, right? You have passions, and pursuits, and things that interest you.
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Begin with doing a brain dump of these things. Define what this looks like to you. How will you start? In each state, there are requirements for starting businesses. What kind of documents will you need? How do you file them? How much does it cost?
When we chart a path towards this unknown, it’s important to find answers to the things that we can, since so many things are uncertain. So establish some containers of time for the energy that you want to put into this project. Maybe it’s, “I will work on my business development each morning from 5:30 to 6:30 a.m.” That’s pretty early, right? I know, but I have found that carving out time early in the day allows you to really focus on what’s important to you.
And then, because you’ve started your day with something that is important to you, the rest of the day feels like a big win. Because if you put it off, the time that you need, will end up being taken by something else. So if this is a priority item, tackle it first. Get up a little bit earlier, make a commitment to it, and really spend time on it first thing. Setting aside this commitment to yourself and to your someday is really important. It really takes dedication to know your why, and that’s why you’ll need to remain really focused on this journey.
I understand the reluctance you might be feeling. Knowing what it is, is very overwhelming. And when you start to pile in all the other unknowns, those questions, it can make anyone want to throw in the towel. And trust me, I definitely understand this. Most of you know through the podcast that inkWELL Press is not my first business. My first real business was a jewelry company and it was kind of a unique business. What I would do is, I would take photographs that people gave me, and I would set them into heirloom-quality jewelry, but I didn’t start there.
When I first started, I had 50 bucks and zero knowledge. The fact that the 50 bucks was way more than the amount of knowledge I had, maybe it should have scared me. But it didn’t. When I started, I just started small. When I first started, I used Scrabble tiles, and I would use a coating on them. That didn’t hold up, which really wasn’t what I wanted. I didn’t like that. So I decided to discover what would hold up.
I wanted to create these heirloom pieces, and that was really important to me, but I had no idea how to do it. And you might feel that way about your dream or your goal. You don’t know how to do it. So what I did, is I started researching. And that brought me to discovering different coatings and resins. A topic that, at the time, I knew absolutely nothing about.
So as a lifelong learner, I started researching. I learned all about resins and all about coatings. I talked to people who put coatings on surfboards. I spoke with people who knew about dental resins and UV resins. I chatted with scientists, who used really big words that I couldn’t pronounce, and they didn’t seem to care. They liked that I asked a lot of questions, lots, and lots of questions.
You see, I gave myself permission to explore and to discover and then I started testing them, just like the scientists. You know, minus the fancy degree. But I spent three months testing adhesives, and coatings, and metals, and then I would set them
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outside in the elements to see how they held up, through rain, and snow, and blistering sun. And eventually, I found what worked for us.
It took a lot of trial and error but I developed a coating that was so unique, it was considered a trade secret. I was the only person to make jewelry that was guaranteed never to yellow or cloud and I became a leader in my industry, but that never would have happened if I hadn’t given myself the grace to admit that there was an awful lot that I didn’t know.
And that’s the thing here, trial and error is key. Not just in an instance like this, in the big picture, too. You see, I found, eventually, as you probably know that, that business wasn’t really my passion. And ultimately, I chose to change gears and pursue what really mattered to me. And what I learned during the process of that first jewelry business, is what I applied with inkWELL Press. That’s what really allowed me to grow, the clarity I got from that pivot is what I needed to make me successful today. And it’s so important to have clarity about our somedays, so they’re no longer these lofty, unattainable, undefined goals. Defining our it makes it more real and that moves us closer to making action. And I think that’s really most important here.
So let’s get to that second roadblock; you’re procrastinating about it. We put things off because we think we have more time. Or, that someday we’ll be in a better place to start. And thinking this way is, well, it’s unrealistic. Time really is one commodity we can’t get more of. No matter how hard we try, or what we do, no one can get more time. That illusion of someday is very real, though, and it’s not wrong to have something to look forward to, to plan for in the future, what’s problematic is if some day never comes.
What if you work your whole life for a someday that doesn’t happen? I find that this mindset robs us of the present. It robs us of the joy of what we’re doing in our everyday life. And we, as humans, we spend so much time reflecting on the past, and wishing on our future. We say things like, “Oh, if I only …” Or, “Oh, I’ll be happy when …” “When I lose 10 pounds I’ll be happier.”
“Once I get the promotion, I’ll spend more time with my family.” “If only I had more money, I’d be able to do the things I really want to do.” Some days, life is not meant to be endured. It’s meant to be enjoyed. Enduring the present, while hoping and waiting for something better, isn’t really living. We convince ourselves it’ll be easier, or better at some point in the future, so we just put things off.
Now researchers at USC have found that, if people frame things in the future, in the form of days rather than weeks or months, we would act on them sooner. The best way to do that is to connect to your future self. And if you recall, we did a whole episode on future self a while back, and I’ll make sure to link to that in the show notes. But I want you to think about how you’ll feel when you achieve your someday. When you do this, you can reclaim your power. You can stop that cycle of letting the past steal your joy and letting the future steal your present.
So the first step is to stop pushing things aside, because when we do this, it often means we haven’t clearly established our priorities. And it can also mean, we
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just really haven’t made space for those priorities in our daily life. So I want you to think of it that way.
The third roadblock that I talked about is; well, there’s just too much in the way. The things that you’ll say you’ll do someday, reveal who you really are and what you really want to do. And it’s not having that list that’s the problem, it’s having a list that things go on, and then we never prioritize them, or find ways to include them into our lives. We have to stop living like there are eight days in the week. Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Someday. Because let’s be honest, if someday did exist, it would be the busiest day of the week. Am I right?
We’re using someday as this catchall for all the things that we don’t really have the bandwidth to address in the present. And as a result, someday has become synonymous with postponing joy. And as we get older, well, we have more obligations, right? In turn, we get better at using time, attention, and energy, as our excuses. And that’s what we use to say, “Oh, we can’t do something.” We’ve accumulated these obligations and expectations; our own, and those of other people, as well.
So I want you to give yourself permission to pursue what matters. Here’s the thing, we’ve been conditioned through our whole lives to seek permission. It starts as children, we need to ask our parents, or our teachers, or other elders if we can do things. We may have rebelled against some of the structure, but it did become ingrained in our psyche. And as we grow older, we still seek that permission and that validation from maybe even still our parents or our boss. And oftentimes, our peers. And this translates into being afraid to go after those big goals.
The permission that you need comes from within. You are in charge of your life. So give yourself permission to do it, regardless of the outcome. In our society, we’ve become so focused on success and what that looks like. And as a result, the fear of failure is what keeps so many of us from even starting. You have the power to give yourself permission to take a chance, even if the outcome isn’t ideal. But because you have this power to define success, we can get caught up in the idea of what everybody else is doing, and what defines success. We think it’s money, we maybe think it’s title. We don’t realize that success is really defined by our own happiness.
The truth is, whether you succeed or fail, you did something that mattered to you. And that’s all that matters here. Let me say that again because I think it’s really important here. Whether you succeed or fail, you did something that mattered to you. And here’s the trick, all failures can be springboards. Think about how I talked about that first business that I had, and I ended up closing it down, right? That could be considered by some people to be a failure, but it’s not. You know why? Because even though that wasn’t what ultimately made me happy my whole lifelong, that gave me so much knowledge to be able to do the job that I do today, which is what makes me so incredibly happy. It’s a springboard.
When you make room for what’s important to you, you are really allowing yourself to value your priorities and yourself. So I want you to think of it that way. I want you to think about you being in charge of you and you deciding what that
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success looks like. So I want you to think about the things that you say that you want to do someday. Let’s call this our Someday List.
So take a moment right now and list out all the things that you’ve saved for someday. Feel free to pause the podcast and write out a list. Or, okay. If you’re driving or working out, maybe you can’t stop and write the list. But take a minute or two to think through what would be on that list. Don’t worry, I’ll wait. Go ahead and pause, and then when you’ve thought through that list, hit play again.
Okay, did you pause and make your list? Or, did you cheat? I’m hoping that you paused and made your list. Because now, I want to share a hard truth with you. You haven’t done those things on your Someday List because it’s not a priority. That’s the thing about priorities, they really are what matters most to you. And if it matters to you, you need to put a specific timeline in place. And if you’re not doing that, you’re saying that these are not your priorities. Start giving yourself some action items to really start moving towards this someday.
Let’s say, you’ve always wanted to go to Italy. Then, maybe start doing some research. What region of Italy do you want to go to? You’ll need a passport. You got to figure out what to do to get that. And start making the steps to get a passport. Then, maybe you’ll set up a special savings account, where you put money that’s earmarked for your Italy trip. You can research flights and accommodations. It’s a process, but by taking small steps over time, you’re doing what it takes to make your someday a reality, and you’re setting it up as a priority.
Now if you don’t have the space to even think about your someday right now, your life is too crowded. How can you consciously make time every day to carve out for your someday? Think about this. The somedays in our lives don’t become a reality without intention and planning. And that’s really all it takes, is some intention and some planning.
Take a look at your list. I want to encourage you to make someday today. Let’s say, you’ve always wanted to learn how to make pottery. Guess what? You can. Find the list course for your local community college. That’s a great place to find some continuing education classes. Sign-up for that class. It’s the first step. Or, for bigger items, make a plan and a list of the things that you’ll do to move towards that goal. Write them down into those bite-sized pieces we’ve talked about in the past. Maybe your someday is that you want to live at the beach.
Well, start by listing out your top three choices. You can compare them based on some key factors, like location, and cost, and so on. This will probably take some research and some information gathering. Then when you have a better understanding of what it will take to make this someday yours, you can really continue moving forward. You’ve gotten the momentum started.
So let’s start with the cost because money is so often a roadblock for all of us. Unfortunately, most of us are on a budget, right? And that can be a really big roadblock when we’re pursuing our someday. So maybe you find that there are some immediate costs, but there’s also some upkeep. Taking care of a beach home, well,
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that’s important. And that includes things like maintenance because of the saltwater, and impending threats of hurricanes, and things like that.
So you can ask yourself, “Is this something you really want to put your time and energy into?” This is a very real question to ask yourself. And these questions will come up in the pursuit of our somedays. Well, then let’s see. There’s also insurance. Maybe after all this research, you decide, “You know what? I don’t really know if I want to own a beach home. Maybe I’d rather just spend a week there every summer.” That’s okay. Sometimes we find that our somedays sound a lot better than they really are. And that’s all right. It’s okay if that changes. It’s okay if it adjusts.
Maybe you could take those top three beach destinations that you found and start looking into rental properties. Or, you could plan a weekend getaway. I want you to pick something that’s feasible now. And if that means, you just check out a book from the library that has a beach setting, hey, that’s the first step.
And that’s all that matters, is we take that first step. Because once you take that first step, the second step will follow, and then the third, and the fourth. And then, we start moving ourselves closer to that someday. It’s not this undefined, unrealistic thing that’s in our future. It becomes something that becomes so much more real to us.
This season, we’re focusing on planning for success, but you also have to plan for this someday, for your someday. The system’s not about making time for your somedays, it’s also about taking the time to reflect on them. When you take the time to evaluate your somedays, or to reevaluate them, and that happens, you are mindful of how your somedays fit you.
I think that’s really important here. You need to recognize that just because it was once a goal or a dream, doesn’t mean it has to be your dream forever. We change and we grow as individuals, right? As time passes, we learn new things about ourselves. And that dream may change, that someday may change, and that’s okay. Part of that growth is acknowledging things that no longer serve us.
So even if we’re already started on our journey towards a goal, we can always chart a new path. Give yourself permission to do that. Remember, the permission is within you. You have the ability to give yourself that permission to change, to start, to do the things you need to do, to move towards the life you really want. And when you think about your ideal life, what does that look like? How do you move closer to the life you want every day, rather than someday? Because someday is now. And that’s what I want you to remember. Start moving towards those somedays.
All right. I hope that this episode has really helped you think about the life that you really want, the someday you have in your future, and to get you started making those steps. Now for those of us in America, this is a holiday week for us. So this is a great time to catch up on some of those Tanya TV episodes. And you can watch those at inkWELL.com/youtube. I’m also going to be sending out an email this week, with a list of some of my favorite podcast episodes. So I’ll be sending out a special email about that this week.
For those of you who are going to be traveling in the car, it’s a great time to catch up or to binge some of my favorite episodes while driving in the car. And next week, we’re continuing talking about planning for success by talking about deciding your destination, starting with the end in mind. So I hope to see you next week. And until then, have a beautiful and productive week.
Thanks for listening to Productivity Paradox. To get free access to Tanya’s valuable checklist, Five Minutes To Peak Productivity, simply go to inkWELLpress.com/podcast.