The 1-Hour Challenge

I often get asked the question by otherwise successful leaders why they can’t seem to move any further forward. Almost inevitably I find that they’ve been in the same position, doing essentially the same job for at least 5-Years, usually more. They may even have started the business they’re in and so are enormously emotionally attached to the business or project that they find it difficult (impossible) to let go.

These are smart people but somehow strategically lost, how does this happen? And more importantly what can they do about finding themselves again?

It’s really not difficult to see how they find themselves lost. They’ve become engrossed in their organisation or project, they are perpetually distracted by e.mail, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Tumblr… the list is almost endless. They are not alone, and they never will be. I’m even willing to bet that some of them dream about their phones!

So I’m faced with a stressed, distracted but non-the-less very capable person in need of help to find their strategic focus.

It’s a fact that if you take someone away from visual reference points and dim the lights then ask them to walk in a straight line that they walk in a circle. They naturally pull to their stronger side be that left or right. This is a physical phenomenon and we will all do it without knowing that actually we are going in meaningless circles. The same is true in our business lives, our social lives and in our family life; if of course we allow it to happen by not having a point of focus.


FINNA is clear, stay focused on the point at which we would like to reach, keep a light shining on your path and you will reach your goal eventually.

But… you must exercise urgency. It’s no good trying at a slow pace, the 5-years will come and go and you won’t have moved much further forward. 5-Years is just about as long as you should remain in any one position (apply this to your work and career only, this is not advice for marriage or parenting, they need the long-term commitment only emotional ties can bring). You’ll probably have used-up all your good ideas in those first 5-Years and so you should make way for the new. In doing so seek out the fresh and new challenges whilst keeping your goals in mind, these are not for negotiation.


  1. Find a place of peace; go for a walk in the country, get away from the frenetic pace of life or learn to meditate, find a quiet place that’s private
  2. Ask yourself; if you just had 1-Month left to live what would I do? Wright the answer down
  3. Same question for 1-Year
  4. Same question for 5-Years
  5. The final question you ask yourself is what if I had only 1-Life to live, what then would I do with it?
  6. The final part of this exercise is to then (re)design your life and daily routines that meet the demands that fall out of the answers of these questions.

The whole process should take no more than 1-Hour.

Opportunity is around every corner, the thing is that we have to find the right opportunities to take, the right ones to say yes to.

FINNA says design your life to take best advantage of these opportunities, to decide what is essential, what really matters.

Thanks for reading.


The 6-Part process is adapted from ideas by Greg McKeown

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