BY: HUZEFA JABBAR
Anyone who comes from an athletic background knows that most of your energy is exerted when you have the least… at the end. The final stretch. That last run where you can see the finish line, the trophy, the medal…you’re in the fourth quarter!
What has always fascinated me is that fourth quarter portal you’re taken into that transcends any physical sensation. You’re overtaken by willpower and your mental desire to conquer. You don’t feel the sweat on your body. You don’t feel your muscles ache. You don’t feel anything except the adrenaline feeding your brain the intelligence it needs to keep on going. It’s like hearing about those crazy stories of mothers who lift cars to save their babies. Did they even stretch? Did they strain?! Or was it just willpower?
Imagine if we could train ourselves to always be in that state. We would live a life of an endless sprint and who would want to stop. Anything you put your mind to would be accomplished. You would feel no physical resistance and the only force stopping you would be your own mind.
“I had to refine a body that”canoverpower my physical self: my mind.”
Despite beginning at a newly developing pharmacy school, the entrepreneur in me made me look at the positive potential of blue waters and unclaimed territory. A campus where I can walk and easily stick a stake with my name on it. What more could an entrepreneur ask for? I knew that if I wanted to emerge I needed to commit to an endless sprint. So just as you imagined, I was drinking more coffee, more energy drinks, taking in more caffeine, cutting sleep and eating healthier. But I was feeding my physical self! My physical self will get tired, my muscles will ache, I will crave sleep and I will get hungry in another few hours. I had to refine a body that can overpower my physical self: my mind. I needed to increase its strength and nurture it.
When we have a productive day we feel great because we’ve accomplished so much. We feel on top of the world, we are our own CEOs and there is nothing that can bring us down. Yet to achieve that in this day and age is incredibly difficult. Someone always wants something from you and we have too many distractions all around us. But those distractions won’t be distractions if we are aiming properly; if we are aiming to achieve that satisfactory productive feeling.
In order to achieve this, I created a method that would make me feel productive every day and that would feed my mind and make me forget about any physical resistance.
I call it the Fourth Quarter Method. Take a piece of paper and divide into the four quarters.
1) What did you do today?
2) What will you do tomorrow?
3) What slowed you down or stopped you from achieving your goals?
4) What helped you/positively reinforced you to achieve your goals?
It’s as simple as that yet the impact is astronomical.
1. WHAT DID YOU DO TODAY?
It is important you reflect every day and give yourself that time to critique yourself, but also build yourself up. As you progress with this method you will see the “what did you do today” section line up with yesterday’s “what will you do tomorrow” section. And that is beautiful. That is success and achieving your desired level of productivity.
2. WHAT WILL YOU DO TOMORROW?
This is you finding a target. Yes, it is a to-do list, but it is not supposed to be your ordinary to do list. The to-do list everyone has is the list of EVERYTHING you need to do; it is lengthy, unorganized and honestly overwhelming. Don’t feed yourself that negativity. Figure out what needs to happen tomorrow for you to continue moving forward. This is a concise and precise to do list. This is you perfecting your aim. You see the medal, the trophy and that’s all you see.
3. WHAT SLOWED YOU DOWN OR STOPPED YOU FROM ACHIEVING YOUR GOALS?
This is where you have to dig deep. Why were you not as productive? Why aren’t you satisfied with your day? Identify the culprit! Discover your weaknesses and improve upon them. Take hold of the fact that you have complete control over your own outcome and if you are not getting the outcome you desired, understand why and grow.
4. WHAT YOU HELPED YOU OR POSITIVELY REINFORCED YOU TO ACHIEVE YOUR GOALS?
What gave you the extra boost? What can you recreate? Was it a passionfruit smoothie in the morning? Was it your favorite song in the shower that just put you in the right mood? Was it the gym? A nice walk? What keeps you going??? Because if it is fueling the engine that is your mind then do not stop the flow! Keep it up and let it support your uptrend growth.
This is what you are feeding your mind. After a while I found myself paying more attention to my mental satisfaction rather than my physical exhaustion. I was absolutely addicted to feeling so accomplished on a daily basis. Before I went to bed I did my four quarters and was thrilled I accomplished what I needed to and I was excited to get the same feeling again tomorrow. I woke up absolutely craving the satisfaction of productivity. I had my eyes straight on the target and nothing was going to stop me. I am confident this method will reproduce the same effect for you. With a wholehearted commitment to your four quarters, you too will feel the addicting satisfaction of your daily accomplishments.