How do you stay true to yourself day to day? Have you ever felt, in your heart, something is off balance? Did that have anything to do with choices you made? The F5 is my framework to make decisions. Decisions with intention. It guides me to maintain balance in my life. The F5 represents Faith, Family, Fitness, Friends, and Finance. I introduce it in that order because that is my order (and everyone’s may differ).
Faith Over Finance, In Practice
Do you want to hear a story of how the F5 made an otherwise hard decision choice, easy?
This summer I was asked and verbally committed to volunteer on a Thursday a couple weeks out from the ask date. The details were not set in stone, but the date was. I live by my calendar. And for whatever reason, this commitment didn’t end up in there. Over the next couple of weeks I went on to book a number of sales calls and client check-ins on that exact day. I made finance commitments on top of faith commitments. The day before, my wife reminded me of the volunteering commitment and my default reaction was "oh but I have all these calls." Of course she is understanding and tells me it's ok if I can't make it. We hang up the phone and that's that...if I did not have the F5. I reflected on my initial reaction in relation to my F5 - I was choosing finance over faith, and that didn’t sit right with me. I cancelled the meetings and made it to volunteering
Moving items on my calendar feels like moving mountains - I take no pleasure in cancelling meetings. And the F5 has turned an otherwise hard decision into an easy one. Easy because it was so clear that I was not operating in alignment with my F5. Faith is #1, Finance is #5. No brainer! This short example is replicated throughout my daily decisions making.
My F5 Is Not Always Aligned 1,2,3,4,5
I am not always making decisions that put my F5 in my ideal order. The difference between having the F5 and not, is that I know it. For instance, during tax season, Finance (my #5) overrides many of my other F5s and is where I spend a disproportionate amount of time. However, I recognize that and make sure that I do spend time on my other F5s and not let Finance take over 100% of my day. I can work with intention to bring faith in during this time through a 5 minute reflection/meditation period in the day. I still make sure fitness is part of my morning before my work day begins. I have dinner with my family, no cell phones, no work.
The Best of Both Worlds
The best moments are when I can combine multiple F5s. Go on a bike ride with a friend, volunteer with for Hoppe Tax, or go to church as a family. It is easy to bring several F5s together. Combining is often seamless and has the multiplier effect of feeling even better.
I am lucky to have heard about the F5. And running with the concept has transformed my business and life. Making hard decisions easy and default decisions harder. Do you know your ideal F5 order? The ideal order is the one you want, not necessarily, the one you have. Go ahead, write down your ideal order. Then think back over the last couple months and ask yourself, "based on the actual decisions I've made, what is my order?". Do your decisions reflect your ideal?