Mission Critical. It’s the way you move. The daily decisions you make. The actions your take. It’s an all-encompassing approach to goal-setting that drives the grind to transforming your dreams into reality. And it’s about to blow your mind, or at least it did mine.
I must note, I cannot take credit for this idea. This discovery was made during a morning commute a few months ago when I was deep down the podcast rabbit hole when I came across Ruben Chavez Think.Grow.Prosper. interview with Steve Mehr – chairman of Jacob & Meyers, CEO of Webshark360, and start-up expert – titled “Skills for success they don’t teach you in school.” Throughout his interview, Steve shares the importance of clear goals, how to choose a mentor, effectiveness habits for success, and the necessary sacrifices we must make to achieve our BHAGs (Big, Hairy, Audacious, Goals).
We all have some type of goals – daily, weekly, short-term, or long-term. I find it hard to believe people wake up each day without a mission – yes, that includes making through the work day – but it’s the big ones that require more purposeful planning. There’s no doubt Steve Mehr is one of those unique people who has success running through his veins. From a young age he harnessed his entrepreneurial skills and quickly established himself as a top businessman in his early 20’s. He’s never worked for anyone else but himself. But aside from his natural hustle ambition, one of the main things that sets him apart from most is his ability to not just set goals, but obsess over them. In his interview with Ruben Chavez, Mehr mentions the number of daily goals he would write, work through, rewrite and continue to rework every. single. day. early in his career to stay on track. But these weren’t adulting, managerial tasks, they were specific, mission critical actions necessary to achieve his bigger goals.
So what exactly constitutes as mission critical tasks? As Mehr describes, it’s the difference between being effective vs productive. Being productive boils down to getting things done (i.e. attending meetings, answering e-mails, finishing project plans, etc) while being effective requires “obsessively focusing on high-leverage critical tasks. Tasks that bring you closer to your goals, tasks that bring maximum amount of impact to help you achieve professional and/or personal goals.”It means asking yourself, “Does me taking this next action (meeting, phone call, email), is this going to bring me closer to one of these goals. If the answer is no you must exercise selective ignorance in order to be effective. You must selectively ignore large chunks of data hitting you every day and not become reactive. You have to stay focused.”Take a moment to think about your day. How many many of your daily tasks fall into the “productive”category while serving no end-goal outside of punching your time-card and collecting a paycheck? How much time do you spend responding to every email or group chat, or engaging in every water-cooler conversations throughout your day that does not directly relate to getting you closer to your goals? I’ll tell you my answer, wayyyyy too much.
I understand we all have responsibility but in order to accomplish those passion goals, the ones you visualize as your perfect day, we must be precise and calculated in our actions. That means saying no anything that drains you and are not aligned with your goals. Social events, late-nights at the bar, toxic relationships, and unimportant activities that do not contribute to mission critical must be sacrificed in the pursuit of your BHAGs.
This is a concept I’ve had a hard time balancing for many reasons. Moving to a new city buzzing with energy – hellooo Summer Time Chi – meeting new people and FOMO not only clashes with my values but more importantly, my goals. As much as I’d love to chase Happy Hours and the brunch scene, my commitment to my brand, Fit & Full, is so much more fulfilling. Don’t get me wrong, I let loose from time to time like but from the moment I wake up I identify mission critical tasks – personal and professional – to guide my steps throughout the day. At any moment I feel stagnant or need a burst of energy, I turn to these mission critical points and redirect my focus and propel me goers. Like Grant Cardone said, “no one is going to make your house and make your dreams come true.” You must do it yourself. Every day.
For whatever reason, go-getter’s have developed a bad rep. Their busy schedules and perceived out-of-order priorities have cost them “friendships” – quotes because real friends understand and support your dreams – celebrations, and life-events most people live for BUT they’re also the ones who see their vision come to fruition and can sit back knowing all of the sacrifices were beyond worth it.
“Respect yourself, respect your time. Don’t be shy about giving yourself time to achieve your dreams.”