left Xtraordinary Living At Its Best: Commitment Brings Freedom

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

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Commitment Brings Freedom

I got my haircut today and before I left my hairdresser's salon, I booked all of my haircuts for 2007. Since I get my haircut every 4 weeks, that was 13 appointments. This is the second consecutive year I've done this. The reason this is interesting is that I used to be a person who wouldn't schedule things too far in advance because of the "it's too far into the future and I don't know what I will be doing" mentality. I also didn't want to make commitments because I didn't want the stress I associated with making commitments and I wanted to preserve "my freedom.".

Well the exact opposite was true. Take my haircuts for example, I used to only book my next appointment after finishing my haircut. The problem with this, was that both my hairdresser's and my availability were severely reduced. We would go back and forth and when we finally selected a date/time, we would often end up squeezing it in during less than ideal times. I would also have to re-schedule a good number of these appointments because something "came up." All of this added stress and a feeling that getting a haircut was really a major hassle. This year, I only re-scheduled once and getting my haircut has stopped being a hassle. As far as freedom goes, there is a feeling of freedom knowing that I don't have to worry about my haircuts for another year.

What is fascinating is that by scheduling and committing to things in advance, I have the freedom to schedule around it. Granted, there are times when I need to re-schedule. But these are so few and far between, that it is much easier to deal with those than wait until I'm certain that nothing else is in the way.

The next time you think something along the lines of "I don't want to commit because I don't know what I'll be doing then", you may want to re-frame it and think: "I don't know WHAT ELSE I will be doing then, but at least I KNOW I will be doing this." There is a lot of freedom in that!

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Diana Dron said...

Hi Rick!

I like having appointments scheduled out in the future for me. I don't schedule out my hair appointments a full year in advance, but since I get my hair cut or cut/permed every four weeks, Lina keeps me scheduled for at least the next three appointments. (She uses a paper calendar with a column for each day of the week.) We may have to tweek the schedule every now and then, but it makes it easier for me to schedule around it.

I wish that my doctors would schedule appointments in advance instead of sending out those reminder postcards that I set aside or lose. I then don't get around to scheduling the appointment until three or four months after I should have been there, if I remember to do it at all. I have been told, more than once, that "the system" (computer) won't allow them to schedule that far in advance.

On the other hand, my dentist schedules the next appointment (every six months) when I am in the office and I have always remembered them and usually have been able to schedule around them. Interesting that they also use a paper calendar that has columns for each day of the week.

Sometimes, the old way is better.


Rick Itzkowich said...

Diana, I don't think it is a matter of the old way (I'm assuming you mean paper calendars vs. electronic ones) being better. It has to do with the mindset and not the technology. The computer can do almost ANYTHING you program it to do. However it is the doctors you are referring to that would need to change their mindset before they can have a system that would allow this. I also schedule my dental appointments every 6 months and my dentist uses a computer. Thanks for posting.

Tanya Scott said...

I thought this was such a great idea that I asked my hairdresser to schedule a year of appointments for me! Guess what? She didn't want to do it! This is someone I have been "coaching" regarding her income and how see could consider other options to expand her business. I couldn't believe that she wouldn't want to have a client who would commit to a hair appointment every 5 weeks!! I finally convinced her to do 6 months!! It just opens my eyes (once again!) to how our thinking really can either limit or expand our results. :-)