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A Culture of Discipline for your Second Half Success



Today. I want to talk about another concept from Jim Collins's book "Good to Great." And this one is on a culture of discipline and it's applicable to creating a life a second half of life that greater than the first and that goes from mediocre to magnificent. And one of the things that you're going to need in order for that to happen is to develop some discipline. Because culture will eat strategy for breakfast.


One of the concepts I thought was most telling is the idea that these companies most disciplined within in the realm of their Hedgehog concept. The Hedgehog concept was the intersection of three circles: what they could be the best in the world at, what drove their economic engine and what they're deeply passionate about.


And so for you as an individual, you could reframe it to be: what are you really good at? What are you really passionate about? And maybe what's something that really would be the key driver, either economically, physically, spiritually, mentally for success in a given area.


And the culture of discipline that these companies were able to demonstrate was they were fanatically consistent to doing things and engaging in things that only fit within the hedgehog concept or within those three circles. If it didn't fit, they left it alone.


And one of the things they would do is something called a "stop doing" list. Everyone's done to-do list before. You've created lists to get certain things done, to make certain achievements happen, to hit certain goals. But rarely, and not often enough, do we create list of the things that we need to stop doing things. That we no longer need to spend our time energy, money efforts on.


A lot of times you can make progress through the elimination of things. I heard a recent definition of perfection this week that I thought was very good. It said, perfection is not achieved when you reach a point where you can add nothing else. Rather perfection is achieved when you get to a point where you can no longer take anything away. Where you've reduced it down to what is absolutely essential, what is absolutely critical for its success. That's when you've reached a level of simplicity and perfection.


So, a stop doing list can get you to that point where you're getting rid of all the fluff, all the extraneous things, all the things that don't need to be there. What are the things that you need to stop doing when it comes to your finances? What are the things you need to stop doing when it comes to your health, your spiritual life, your relationships? There are probably some things that you're doing that you don't need to. And when you remove those things, you then leave room for the things that truly matter. And then those things can expand and grow.


The other concept in here that in this chapter is the purpose of budgeting. And he talks about how these companies allocated funds for the things that the company wanted to do. Jim Collins says the actual purpose of budgeting is not to decide how much money each activity gets. Rather, the purpose of budgeting is to decide which areas best fit with the Hedgehog concept. Those should be fully funded and everything else should not funded at all.


This goes in tandem with the stop doing list: You get rid of things that you need to stop doing, that you no longer need to budget any time or energy or effort in. Then everything else that remains you can fully fund. you can fully dedicate your time, your energy to those endeavors.


The final idea was to have discipline within a framework. It was discipline within some guardrails, with some boundaries and which allowed for a certain level of freedom. I think Jocko Willick is famous for saying discipline equals freedom.


If you think about your children and you live in a house. And let's say you've got a backyard. And let's say you've got two different houses, two different backyards, maybe one backyard has a fenced in area.


As a parent, you can say "Ok, kids. Go out in the backyard and play." If you backyard is fenced in, you can send them out to play and not have to supervise their play and their actions, cause there are boundaries beyond which they cannot go, and everything within the boundaries are safe.


However, if you backyard is not fenced in and it just opens up to the neighbors yard or the woods or an open field or a street, then there's no limit to what they can do or where they can go. You would have to oversee their play to ensure their safety. They aren't as free, as a result.


Stay within the Hedgehog concept. Start a stop doing list. Give full mental, physical, emotional and financial funding to those things that remain. Create a framework within which you can move around freely. These are the concepts that you want to start to integrate into your second half of life.


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