Amy Rees Anderson

Our direction is set by the little day-to-day choices we make

“The course of our lives is not determined by great, awesome decisions. Our direction is set by the little day-to-day choices which chart the track on which we run.” – Gordon B. Hinckley

Everyone who knows me knows that I am all about setting goals and moving in the direction of those goals. So when I read the first sentence of that quote I immediately thought he was talking about goals and I was thrown by it, but then when I read the second sentence I got it…and I totally agree with it. His point was that the little day to day choices we make are what either keep us moving forward on the right track toward our goals or they veer us off track and away from our achieving our goals.  While we absolutely need goals to help us figure out what track we want to be on in the first place, what really determines our success or failure is the little decisions we make each day and whether they are taking us where we really want to go or not.

Back at my old company we often ourselves the question “Is what I am doing right now getting me closer to achieving my goal?”  If it wasn’t then we would self-correct and figure out what we ought to be doing in that moment to get us where we wanted to be.

That same trick works really well in everyday life as well.  Throughout the day ask yourself, “Is what I am doing right now in this moment getting me closer to achieving my goal?” If your goal is to have a better relationship with your children and right now you are watching a television show or surfing the internet then what you are doing in that moment probably isn’t helping you achieve that goal. If you goal is to be more balanced in your life and you are at work way past your normal hours then what you are doing right now isn’t helping you achieve your goal. If your goal is to have a better relationship with your girlfriend or boyfriend or a happier marriage to your spouse and you are playing video games by yourself for hours on end or constantly on your phone looking at social media sites then what you are doing right now isn’t likely to be helping you achieve your goal….make sense?

Life is full of distractions and the number of distractions isn’t decreasing, it is increasing as technology expands. There are literally a million things you can do any given day that distract you from getting the things you really want in your life. To combat that it takes a genuinely focused effort and a constant self-check throughout each day to make sure you are staying on track toward achieving your goals. The best way I have found to stay on track is to ask myself that question several times throughout each day “Is what I am doing right now getting me closer to achieving my goals?”  If it’s not then do something that is!

Have an amazing day everyone!

~Amy Rees Anderson


  • Jane says:

    This is exactly what I needed somebody else to say. I used to tell my kids, whence they started blaming the refs when their team lost a game, the games are not win or lost at the end. They are won or lost by the quality of each play along the way. I’m getting lax about the quality of my plays along the way. Thank you Amy.

  • Mark Feferman says:

    This is really true and great advice that I can implement immediately.

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