Flappy Birds and Dirty Words
If you’re anything like me, there’s always a call that needs returned or an email waiting for a reply. There are literally dozens of things at any given time that demand our attention. But when all you do is what’s urgent, that’s all you’ll ever do. You’ll spend all of your time doing little more than putting out fires. Because when we don’t give our attention to important things, they will all eventually become crises as well.
A few weeks back during a very busy day at work, I received a call from a frantic seven-year old because she lost her log-in and password to an interactive site sponsored by American Girl Doll. I spent more than an hour searching old emails and on a phone call requiring numerous transfers and copious wait times before heroically getting her back online.
I didn’t do this for Mayumi because I spoil her and we both talked about this. Rather I saw it as an opportunity to show her that if she ever needs me, I will be available. That relationships come before my work. That if something is important to her, it’s important to me as well. Because if I can’t show her I care enough to make time for such an easy problem, she may think twice before bringing me a difficult one.
1. Know the difference between what’s urgent and what’s important.
2. Do what’s important.
Last night it felt very satisfying to put off dozens of emails and voice mails, to work with Mayumi on her 2nd grade homework. We cooked and ate dinner together. And we played Flappy Bird where I quite possibly might have taught her a few new swear words in the process.