LIVE LIFE IN STRAIGHT LINES
NOT THE ZIG ZAGGY LIFE TO NOWHERE
The point here is to determine what is not on the straight line - and to stop doing those. Remember that stopping doing something that is unproductive is the quickest and one of the greatest (if not the greatest) time saver there is!
This is one of the most powerful principles in being productive in regards to producing a great life. The Law Of The Straight Line: The shortest path is a straight line. (Duh!)
Although it isn't true of hardly anyone that they will "go nowhere", to the extent they live a zig zaggy life they will not reach their objectives in life (whether identified or implicit). [This is a concept that is a cousin to the idea of "missing a piece" of the line, so that one is stuck based on a piece of missing information. See Mastery Learning - Not Allowing Cumulative Misunderstandings, Misknowings & Missings.]
Of course, there will be lots of lines, some will involve changing the direction by choice, especially when you realize you are not going the best way to the destination and/or when you decide on a new destination.
THE ZIGS ARE...
The zigs are distractions, diversions, items not on point (not on the path), following irrelevancies, not following the rules that work, not taking care of oneself, having lots of incompletions....
And the zags, to get back on the line, are costly in that we often have to repair the result of the zig and/or have to spend some effort getting back to the line - which all takes away from the time on the line where we would have made progress. We sacrifice that time, for no real gain. The "cost of a lost opportunity" is discussed in Time Planning For The Happiest Life - Vital To Creating A Happy Life! - we must consider the sometimes invisible cost of opportunity. The classic major practice that makes a huge difference in people's lives is to quickly correct the deviations from one's high functioning balance, as it whacks out the systems from functioning well plus it diverts lots of energy. Be sure to manage your Homeostasis, as one of the most important things you can do to have a good life.
OBVIOUSLY, A LINE TO THE WRONG DESTINATION IS...
One of the things that produces one of the biggest and longest zigs (which requires a huge zag to get back to the right line) is to not have determined where the endpoint of the line is. (Duh!) But few people really give this it's due.
A LISTING OF SOME OF THE ZIGS
Anything "off purpose" (it won't really get me anything, it is not what I am aiming for,
Shiny Objects Syndrome - Anything that "catches our eye", of "interest" but not really
of true interest (relevance), attractive but off the point of life. Flaky.
An attractive person where there will be no followup
Rubbernecking at accidents
Looking at other people walking by (instead of 100% attention on the person who is
talking to you!)
Trying to pay attention to a number of things at one time.
Multitasking (which has a cost of at least 30% inefficiency all by itself)
Little things of interest add up to a costly diversion (My realization of this for me lead
Not keeping your focus on the task at hand. (As in Living In 90 Minute Segments, focus on one thing, writing down anything that is attractive to do instead, on a list for later.)
Coming back to restart a project takes set up time, reorientation, lots of lost energy
What are some zigs for you???
The zags are the road back to where I was before I zigged.
The zags are not as long a road back if you stop your zigs earlier on. Stop them the minute you see them!
But people "fool themselves" about what will get them back to the zone or the path. They drink coffee to wake up, but then throw themselves off the other way, killing their energy and body functioning and long term health eventually. Or they try to relieve their stress by watching TV, whereas a quicker road back is to just take a nap or do some movement (as in Instant Energy From Something Good). Going into "suspended animation" gets no one any progress - it just burns time so that you have less of it left to get more of what you want!
Alot of this site is about zags to get back to where you would have been without going off path, but after that it is mostly about staying on the path and getting back on it before straying too much.
Just do the zag as fast as possible! Don't let it get too far out of hand or so far it requires more energy and time. If you do this you'll be living closer to Living Life As A Life Champion.