Thinking Win-Win Vs.Beginning with the End In Mind

In Celebration of my VERY first posted comment, I am writing a SECOND post that compliments both Thinking Win-Win and Beginning with the End in Mind. 

Mrs. Szynal wrote:

I completely agree with intentions outweighing abilities! I am constantly over-committing myself. Just yesterday, after a full evening of dinner and shopping, I came home and went to the gym (because that is a commitment I want/need to keep), and then after getting home at 8:45, made a lasagna for a coworker who had taken time off (because they needed food and no one else was volunteering), made 10 origami flowers out of dollar bills (because it is a coworker's birthday today and we all wanted a fun way to deliver cash and I'm "better at those creative things" so I was elected to do it), and made a salad for her birthday lunch. Nothing too crazy, and all things I had great intentions for, but I did not have the time or mental or physical energy to do, especially with other things I needed to get done. I don't want to stop being kind and helpful but I want some of my own time back. How can I keep being kind without being burned out? I want my coworkers to say I am helpful and kind, so how can I keep that but without sacrificing my own well being? :) 


In my post about Beginning with the End in Mind, I listed 3 things that I thought about when I found myself burning back out. The first was obviously the main idea of the entire message. I began to think of my purpose for doing what I was doing. What did I want others to think of me as? It sounds like that was your main goal here was to let others know that you care about them. I am sure you achieved that goal. You are OBVIOUSLY a thoughtful, kind-hearted person who is willing to take time away from your own wants/needs (i.e. family, schoolwork, etc.) to support someone who needs it. 

With that said, I would have to ask you: Do you think your friend who needed dinner would have felt less appreciative if you would have taken them a meal from KFC or some other yummy restaurant in your town? And your friend who was having a birthday. Could you have thought of a way to work smarter on making it creative? Maybe having a student take her money every hour all day with quotes that were printed and wrapped around it about how AWESOME he/she is? All that would have taken was a few clicks, some tape, and willing kiddos who would have loved to make a teacher smile down the hall on their birthday. 

Opportunity cost is when you sacrifice something for the sake of something else. For example, if I was trying to save money for vacation, I wouldn't go out to eat as much for the weeks/months leading up to that vacation, because I want to keep that extra money for vacation. 

When you decided to sacrifice your time for the good of friends, you did 2 things:

1. You saved money. But was it worth the potential $20.00 saved? I mean really, you probably spent about $10.00 on all of the materials for the lasagna at some point. You just had them at your house already. 

2. You made the situation a Win-Lose, at your own cost. Your friends gained a great dinner and a thoughtful birthday gift, but you lost an evening. Could you have worked smarter instead of harder in these situations? Time really is a commodity. 

Let me ask you another question. You go work out after work most days, it sounds like. I don't know much about your mornings, but have you considered transitioning to morning workouts instead of afternoon? I would advise you to really think about every second that you spend driving to the gym, getting dressed, how long you work out, hang out a little after, drive home, shower, etc. Seriously. Set a timer tomorrow from the time you start either getting dressed/driving to the gym after work to when you are out of the shower at home (pending you shower right when you walk in the door). What would your OPPORTUNITY COST be if you would work out in your own home or at the gym in the morning before work? There are actually a lot of studies that say working out in the morning makes for a better day anyway. Plus, you would save money too, should you choose to work out at home. BONUS! ;)

I hope this helps, Mrs. Szynal. Best of luck to you. Burn on, my friend!