Thinking Time

Published: March 31, 2020

“I insist on a lot of time being spent thinking, almost every day…to just sit and think. I make less impulse decisions than most people in business. I do it because I like this kind of life.”

Warren Buffett

In light of today’s circumstances, I’ve found that many in our Metrix Community have found their personal worlds (and schedules) change a great deal these past few weeks.  As disruptive as this may be, it has also provided many of us an opportunity to spend time doing new and different things.    

We recently shared a book, The Road Less Stupid, that inspired me to practice more “thinking time”.  What does this mean?! All I am really talking about is setting aside a specific amount of time and/or blocking a certain period of time in your calendar to do nothing more than THINK – contemplate powerful questions, analyze past decisions, forecast future moves, and solve complex challenges.  

I believe, like the book’s author, Keith Cunningham, that a great “thinking time” session starts with a great question, to get the juices flowing.  Today I’d like to share the questions that I’ve been asking myself around my real estate business…some of these questions may work for you, and some may prompt you to think of an even better question better fit for your circumstances.  

Some questions I am thinking around:

  • What is the one issue in my business that, if I could solve over the next week/month, would lead to greater profit without increased activity/work?
  • What is the best thing that has happened in my business over the past 12 months, and how do I get more experiences like it?
  • What are the 3 biggest insights I’ve had since I’ve moved to a more “virtually run” business?
  • What new habits are starting to emerge?  Do I like these habits?  
  • What have I discovered about my thinking as of late?  What do I know? What do I not know?
  • When I return to my “normal” way of doing business, where do I think the greatest opportunities will lie?
  • What have I learned about my business when its systems/methods, etc. had to abruptly change over these past few weeks?  What obstacles did I have to overcome (or are still overcoming), what threats were exposed, and what opportunities came about?
  • What’s the most difficult or challenging decision I’ve recently had to make?  Why was it so challenging? Is there anything that I could have done in the past to make this decision simpler than it was?
  • If I could go back in time, knowing what I know today, what would I have done differently in my business?

The above questions are just a start!  But give them a try. Block 30-60 minutes, sit in a quiet space (or go for a walk, like I do), and ask yourself one of the questions above.  Take notes if you’d like. See what you come up with!  

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