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Small Investment, Big Impact: How $10 Can Change the Trajectory of Your Life

Recently, I was speaking to a group of leaders about the Five Capitals, which is a key framework in our coaching program. One of the capitals is ‘Physical Capital’, measured in time and energy.

At this event was a room of 25 executives who ran their own company or an executive at a company. Basically, a room full of hard-charging individuals.

After explaining the Physical Capital to them and how they can increase or decrease their energy with schedule management, exercise, sleep, etc. I asked them to rank themselves 0-10 on the “physical capital.”

0 meaning they are doing awful with Physical Capital. They are low on energy, tired, out of shape, and have no margin in their life. Or up to a 10, which is they are thriving. Sleeping well, they control their schedule instead of it controlling them.

Of course, there is no right or wrong answer, this exercise is strictly for self-reflection.

Usually, I don’t ask the room for their number, however, to my surprise, a CEO in the room blurted out his number.

“I’m a 3. And I have come to an understanding, and acceptance that for the next 10 years I’m just going to have to deal with being tired.”

As I heard the sound of defeat in his voice, I wanted to be tactful, but challenge his response. I thanked him for his transparency.

“What would be one step you can take tomorrow, to get you to 4?”

Seeing he felt stuck on my question, I followed up.

“What time do you go to bed?” The leader replied, “10:30 P.M.”

I followed up again by asking what time he stopped looking at his phone.

“10:30 P.M.”

A chuckle rang all throughout the room, no doubt in relatability.

I then challenged him to do something that would change the trajectory of his entire day.

I encouraged him to charge his phone in the kitchen every night, instead of next to his bedside. When we get in bed, we can often fall into the rabbit hole of scrolling social media, checking stocks, or reading our emails. Whatever information you take in right before you sleep can linger, firing you up. You start writing an email response in your head while you are lying in bed, or strategizing. Thus causing you to prolong falling into a deep sleep.

His response? “That all sounds great, but, I use my phone as my alarm clock…”

This didn’t come as a surprise to me. When I had this issue, I also used my phone for an alarm clock, almost using that as an excuse. So I encouraged him to spend $10 and get an alarm clock. After all, how much money do we spend on coffee a week? Or a beer?

So now I challenge you!

Go to bed with your phone in the kitchen and watch how you win the next day, by choices you make the night before. Because not only do we improve our sleep, but now, the first thing you look at won’t be your phone, which I can expand on the benefits in a future blog!

Thankfully this CEO followed up with me and told me that he bought his alarm clock shortly after!

By the way, here is a link to a cheap alarm clock.


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