Today’s post is the monthly reflection from the August 2007 issue of The Front Porch Newsletter. If you would like to automatically receive The Front Porch e-newsletter on the last Thursday of each month just click here to sign-up for your complimentary subscription.
I was simply seated in the waiting room of the doctor’s office when a medical sales rep came rushing in to leave his sample wares with the receptionist who seemed to run the office. It was apparent that he was on his “regular route” and that this was one of his routine stops. They appeared to have become somewhat acquainted through his short stops in the office. They were comparing notes on their busy schedule. And then he paused to what I assume was to pay attention to the silent alarm that was going off within him. And then he said it — “I can’t remember the last time I woke up and simply had nothing to do”. I thought it was just a passing observation on his part, but then I could tell he stopped everything and you could see him painfully searching back in his mind for a credible memory of a morning he had nothing that he had to do. He seriously pondered this for at least 10 to 15 seconds and then he shared his estimated calculation — “I think it was at least a year and a half ago.” Since I was just sitting waiting, I couldn’t resist the temptation to make my own calculation. I couldn’t remember. It was like a calculator that flashes an “E” when you have created an “error” by putting in too many numbers for the calculator to calculate. I honestly couldn’t remember. And you may not remember either. The point is that you may never have that moment again. There will always be something that needs to get done. And so goes the lesson in the silence: There is no front porch … unless, of course, you build one. Your to-do list will likely never be empty again. So get busy building your mental front porch and be proactive in building your strategic plan for reflection. I had a feeling, as the medical rep, wrapped up his stuff and their conversation and went rushing out that he had simply hit the snooze on that thought and just kept on going. Bummer.