You are not a robot. So why do we keep acting like them?

“Something beats nothing by an infinite amount.”Angela Duckworth on the No Stupid Questions Podcast. I wrote this quote down (I love it) while listening to the podcast and walking my dog on the trails behind my home. Coming home with a tired puppy and a phone full of notes is not an unusual occurrence in my world. Why? Because this daily slice of time is where I invest in what I need to know to be a better Future Me. It’s R&D (research and development) for my mind. Boudica (the dog) gets to go on an adventure; I get to spend some time in nature, you get a better future product. We all win.

I share this because I’ve been having lots of conversations with people about their time. How much time they’re spending dealing with the immediate needs of what’s right in front of them, how much time they’re spending thinking about what six months from now might look like, and how much time they’re investing in the Future Them. I’ve written about this idea before. Click on the link, and you’ll learn a whole construct on how to think about your Now Time, Near Time, and Future Time and how both you and your boss should be clear on how much time you spend in each.

“It’s my opinion that we’re brainwashed to believe that our value is based on our ability to cross items off the “to do” list. Our ability to say “yes” to everything is seen as the goal and creating a world where a “no” is just not done. “

Now Work – indicates your skills and what you can do.
Near Work – messages your ability to think critically.
Future Work – illustrates your potential, both to you and the people choosing you.

If you’re only focusing on crossing things off your list and doing Now Work; you’re expressing your value on what you can do; you’re sending a message that your worth is your productivity. Do you want that? I doubt it. You’re not a machine. And a reminder – you’re hired, promoted, given the opportunities based on someone’s belief in your potential to do something in the future.

If you agree with me, even a tiny bit, then why not take Duckworth’s advice and do something, even if it’s to click on the article and learn more.

Now I’m done nagging. I thought I’d also share some more things that I’ve learned this week on the trails with Bodi. Here’s a peek into how I use my Future Joanna investment time.

– What is an NFT, and why should I care about them? Take a listen to the A16Z podcast. I went from confused to imagining NFTs in my work on this hike.
– Scott Barry Kaufman – a humanistic psychologist, gives the most straightforward answer to “How do I find my purpose?” in this fascinating interview about picking up where Maslow (of the hierarchy of needs fame) left off.
– Do you learn better with a visual format? Kaufman’s interview had me down a rabbit hole on the concept of the “Slow Hunch.” You can learn about it here. Where do I get my ideas? I can honestly say they’ve manifested from a slow hunch.
Have you heard of a Chief Heart Officer? Vandermedia just created one. If you click on the link, you’ll find I, and many others, had all sorts of thoughts about this idea. Fluff or substance? What do you think?
– I also spent an hour with the brilliant Story-Hunter, Lizi Hamer. We talked about someone’s 20 Second Story, and if we brought our minds together, could we create something cool with it.

If I total up all the time spent exploring the ideas above, I spent less than 2% of my week investing in the Future Me. I’ve seen an exponential return on investment of this time. I’ll be honest, my “Future Me” numbers are closer to 10% of my time, but those are the numbers that work for me.
So what can you invest in the Future You?

PS. Shameless plug. Suppose you want to start small. Give me an hour of your time and join me on one of my Live Shows. We’re going to be talking about your numbers and the Future You. It’s going to be a good one.

Here’s what one of our audience members had to say recently:

“You were the first speaker that really spoke to me. I want to thank you for bringing me out of my headspace. The exercises you’ve been giving out during our sessions are for my personality type extremely helpful.”