Rollover Minutes: Lessons from Groundhog Day (Part 1)
by Josh Waggoner.
"Okay Campers, Rise and Shine! And don't forget your booties because it's COOOOLD out there..."
For the last few years, my family and I will sit down and watch the movie Groundhog Day on Groundhog Day. (a new family tradition perhaps?) Groundhog Day was Directed by Harold Ramis, and stars Bill Murray as Phil, a sarcastic weatherman who finds himself living the same day over and over again. (The tagline: “He’s having the worst day of his life… over, and over again.”)
I'm a big fan of the movie. It’s smart, clever, and takes you to some interesting places and ideas. And of course, Bill Murray’s witty sarcasm is icing on the cake. (As Woody Harrelson would say, “Bill-effing-Murray!”.) Ever since I've started RenaissanceManLife, and have had the desire of wanting to develop all aspects of myself, while helping others do the same, I tend to view things through the lense of a RenaissanceLife and think, “Okay, what can I learn from this?” and “What are the takeaways?”. With that in mind, Groundhog Day has sparked a few insights that I would like to share to you, and get your feedback on. (Really Josh? you’re going to give us life lessons from a movie? a comedy to boot? Short answer: Absolutely. You can learn a lot from a movie sometimes, you just have to listen to what it’s trying to say. There’s some gems here, stick with me.)
Part 1: Rollover Minutes
In the movie, Phil’s day keeps on repeating over and over and over again. No matter what happens to him, he wakes up right where he was yesterday. Same old same old, EXCEPT for one distinction, he still has the memory of what happened. Now, one way you could see this as you can do whatever you want with no consequences (party!). (Ha which Phil definitely takes advantage of.) Another way of seeing this is that there are consequences for your actions, in fact, what you learn from one day rolls over to the next iteration. If you think about it, you could seriously use this to your advantage. You would be able to learn, without the constraints and opportunity costs of time. (I know I would. I would read EVERYTHING. learn EVERY instrument. Master multiple skills. …Nerd *cough cough*) There’s a scene where Phil decides to take a piano lesson. He’s never played the piano before in his life and has no idea what he’s doing, but a few scenes later, he’s a pro. He used the looping to his advantage, practicing day after day until he was proficient.
So what does that mean for us?
If done correctly, Every day can build on itself.
We may be on a more linear time stream compared to Phil’s, but that doesn't mean we can't take advantage of Daily Investments.
By investing in one daily action, however small, each day’s investment builds on the previous, until one day, all of those small actions add up to a much larger whole.
“Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.” - Robert Collier -
Day after day, by investing in something worth investing, a small hill can become the Rocky Mountains.
If you invest in writing every day, even if it’s just a small amount, you get better each day, until one day you're proficient, and you become the new Hemingway, Austen, or Vonnegut.
Or, on the other hand, if we are not careful, neglecting something can turn a small crack into the Grand Canyon.
Maybe you don't pay attention to your health, or you neglect a relationship. Day after day. Then one day you wake up and you realize you've gained a few extra pounds, and you're not how you view yourself in your head, or your relationship feels distant and out of reach.
We intuitively know this to be true, but it’s not really something most of us consider or think about.
Think about it, if you started something today that you've always wanted to do / be, say maybe it's learning how to play an instrument, and you invest your time in some small way, every day, what would your life look like? What would you be able to do in 30 days? How about 60 days? A year? This may sound like a large investment that needs some serious commitment and discipline to do, but remember, all you really have to focus on is doing something small towards your goals and dreams Today.
"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit." - Aristotle -
Also keep in mind that Consistency is key. Without Consistency, you're just randomly doing things, and won't gain as much traction and success as you would if you worked toward what you want every day. Remember, you ARE what you DO.
“Glorify who you are today, do not condemn who you were yesterday, and dream of who you can be tomorrow.” - Neale Donald Walsch -
Time may not be on our side, but that just means we have to be more focused on what we want to do and achieve. Think of your time as water you pour into different cups. each cup is an area of your life. You have a cup for Relationships, Yourself, School, Career, Play, a Hobby… etc. Too many cups means only a small amount of water for each. We become overwhelmed and stressed, losing our shirt, and time loses it’s value and meaning. Too few cups and your life may seem boring and unfulfilling. And no cups at all means you’re just pouring your time on the ground, and not really paying attention to how you use it. But if we balance our time within each category that is important to us, we will see improvement and wholeness. (This may sound lame, but you get the idea. Cups getter done... ugh)
“Time is our most valuable asset, yet we tend to waste it, kill it, and spend it rather than invest it.” - Jim Rohn -
Focus on what's most important to you, every day.
You get a little better each and every day. You invest a small amount of time, knowing that, even if you completely suck right now, these small actions will add up and pay off one day. We might make mistakes, but that’s how we learn. Mistakes make us unique, and obstacles make us stronger. If we take each day one at a time, we can build and build, until one amazing day where we find ourselves being the person we've always wanted to be.
Reminder #012 : Invest your time in something that's important to you. Every day builds on itself. Therefore, if we take one daily step towards a goal / dream, no matter how small, our Daily Investments will rollover into the next, and add up into something much bigger. Take one day at a time. Build, and build. You will reach greatness, and excellence. You will become the person you want to be.
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