My company uses a service called KnowYourCompany, that sends three emails each week to the entire staff. Each email asks a question that the staff can either respond to publicly, or just to the company leadership team.
The questions follow a formula.
On Monday, we get an email asking what we are working on. This allows us to see what everyone is doing, and in theory, makes offering your skills easier to do because you can see what you might be able to help with.
On Wednesday, the question is something about the company or our interaction with the company. One week this question was as simple as “Are there any company policies that aren’t completely clear?”
On Friday, the question is more personal. It’s a getting-to-know-each-other question. Last Friday’s question was “What’s something you want to do in the next year that you’ve never done before?”
I found that I don’t have an answer.
Right now, I don’t have any long-term goals. Recently, my personal life has been complicated enough that the idea of planning for later this year–much less the next 5 or 10 years–is more than I can deal with.
My side hustle goals are focused entirely on what needs to happen in the next week. Work goals are only a month out. My personal goals involve making it through the next few days without letting anything collapse.
Sometimes, life kicks you in the crotch so hard, you have to let the future worry about itself while you focus on what’s happening right now. Without a functional present, the future doesn’t matter. You have to focus on the Now first, or everything else evaporates.
It’s not a great situation, but it is an interesting perspective. I’ve spent so much of the last decade focusing on what comes next that what’s happening right now has suffered.
Focus on Now. Sometimes, What’s Next can take care of itself for a while.