This is something that we experience a lot in our lives but most times never focus on it. A DJ makes a living mastering sequence. The more you are excited by the sequence of music he plays, the more you think he is very good. To get a driver’s license for the first time you have to go to class, then go for a permit, then take a test, and then get your license.
For those that bake, sequence is a regular part of your life. You follow a recipe to get the cake baked. Planning a trip? Sequence is very important as well. Where will you visit first? What will you do first?
When you think of sequence – think of steps. Not one but many steps.
Sequence provides a lot of value to things we do in life. The more sophisticated word used to describe sequence is process. What are the process and the individual steps to do something?
Sequence helps us be more effective at reaching our goals or outcomes. What I mean by this is that if I want to bake a cake, I have a better chance eating the cake I am about to make if I follow the recipe. It always turns out good when I follow the recipe. This is an example of a sequence with a reliable outcome.
We are so impatient with getting to an outcome or goal that we fail to consider using a sequence (of steps) to get there. There is no time? Sit in a chair, by yourself without the TV,iPod or book for two hours and see how long that feels. (Do not get up at all during those two hours.) I bet it will feel longer than you think.
We always have more time to accomplish what we want to than we think. Always.
Discovering sequences to get you to a goal or outcome is extremely productive and one of the most reliable ways to get where you want to go.
Most times we don’t fail because of our abilities but rather we fail for not recognizing or following the steps within a sequence that will more reliably get us “there”.
A type of creativity that always seems magical occurs when we see an unthinkable outcome (a surprise result that appears useful or practical). This type of creativity circles around the hard work put in up front (with fascination and intense curiosity) to either discover the steps that will reliably get us to an unthinkable outcome or to focus on re-arranging or grouping different steps together in different ways into new sequences of steps exposing us to new outcomes we ourselves could never imagine (when the new sequence is followed).
We also trip up, especially at work, because when things don’t go right we focus on personalities rather than sequence. While personalities could contribute to your dysfunction look first to the sequence to see why it doesn’t deliver reliable outcomes. Did someone skip some steps because they were in a hurry? Are there steps missing in the sequence that will keep someone from ever doing “it” right every time? I have been surprised how many times sequences or steps were damaged, skipped or missing in a sequence leading to poor results.
Simple outcomes in our lives also are many times dictated by how much we focus on the sequence we must follow to get to where we want to go. If I just finished high school and want to work in an air-conditioned office I probably need more school (another step) before I can get there. If I want to retire at 50, now that I am 22 and just beginning to work full time I need to save so much money every week and not spend money so that I will have enough to retire at 50.
Don’t follow the steps needed? Don’t reach the goal!
It’s as simple as that. See how powerful sequences really are?
There are many sequences that could help us in life if only we think them through and follow them. Sequences are not sexy. Quite honestly they are somewhat boring in and of themselves. But they are so necessary, so valuable, and so effective they are worth focusing on them.
Instead of sequence being invisible like the air we breath, make it your sail that fills with the breath of your heart and soul that you can see, focus, and direct in ways that will bring you (with more certainty of achieving it) to the next goal or outcome that seemed so difficult just a short time ago.