How often have you heard the phrases “I don’t have time” or “I have to make time”? Perhaps you’re thinking, “Hey, I just said that today!” We’ve all heard these words so often that we forget to listen to what they mean and never question their accuracy. Instead, we buy into the belief that we just don’t have enough time.

The truth is, we all have the same amount of time—and no one can make or manage time. According to Webster’s Dictionary, to manage something is to “handle, direct or alter something for a purpose.” You cannot manage time because you cannot handle, direct or alter it for any purpose.

You cannot speed time up or slow it down. You can only control and manage the events that you personally carry out in the time that already exists. There is no such thing as “time management.” Event management is the only way to successfully pretend that you are actually managing your time. For example, tracking your daily events in segments of fifteen minutes or less throughout the whole day will give you the perception that you are actually capturing and slowing time down.

Uncovering the Hidden Principle of Success

We all know a myriad of success principles that, when followed diligently, yield great success in any area of our lives. Yet why is it that many people who have achieved obvious and significant success in one area lack significant success in others? If we truly knew how we became successful in one particular area, why wouldn’t we want to apply those same principles everywhere else?

It’s safe to assume that if we are successful in one area and unsuccessful in other areas, then we either:

a) don’t care about being successful in these other areas;

b) have accepted the myth that in order to achieve significant success in one aspect of our lives, we must sacrifice in all other areas; or

c) don’t know exactly how we became successful in that one area.

Regarding that third reason, we may clearly recognize certain obvious factors in our success, such as passion, determination, perseverance, focus and consistent effort. But there may be other success principles working behind the scenes, principles of which we simply are not aware. And if we don’t see them, we may not realize it when we fail to put them into practice.

Let’s take a look at what these hidden principles might be.

Events and Results

We all engage in two types of events or activities every day: present-based events and future-based events.

Present-based events allow us to maintain a certain level of comfort and happiness in our lives. However, no matter how much time and dedication we put into these events, they will not cause any significant change in our present lifestyle. Present-based events alone will not create a future significantly different from what we are currently experiencing.

For example, no matter how much time we put into cleaning our house, the house-cleaning event will not move us to a nicer home in the future. It will only keep our present home clean. Reading positive mental attitude books will almost always makes us feel good about the possibilities of a better future, but no matter how much we read, our future will never differ from our present until we apply what we’ve learned from our reading. Reading and feeling good about possibilities are a present-based event. Actually doing something that will directly create a different future is a future-based event.

Future-based events are the source of change in our lives; they create a new and better future. However, unless we know exactly why we are engaged in this type of event, we can easily get discouraged, even to the point of quitting. When we engage in future-based events, the results are often invisible, because the results of future-based events show up only in the future.

For example, in order to feel and look fit, you know you need to watch your diet and build lean muscle mass through exercise. Changing your eating habits is a present-based event because you feel better as you improve your diet, but without the exercise you will not look fit. Exercising and weight training are future-based events, because they do not make you feel and look great the same day you work out. It takes time for the results to show.

Let’s take another example related to your business.

Network marketing leaders often teach that in order to build a successful networking business, one should listen to CDs, read books, attend seminars, make prospecting calls and make business presentations. Of these five activities, making prospecting calls is the only future-based event. Without doing it, we cannot achieve success. Being a future-based event, however, it does not yield immediate results. Prospecting is a numbers game: you have to talk to a lot of people to eventually book enough presentations that will lead to a successful business.

If we busy ourselves all day long with only present-based events, we are guaranteeing that our future lifestyle will be exactly like the one we currently have. The key to success lies in understanding the difference between present-based and future-based events.

Until we identify the significant future-based events in each area of our lives and understand their true power and value in changing our present life and lifestyle, we will continue to fill our days with events that hinder our future and cause no change in our present lives. Like most people, we will wonder why our lives are not changing despite all our hard work.

Always do first what will create your future: your future-based events.


TERRY GOGNA is a motivational speaker who works with sales
leaders and their teams to maximize profitability and customer retention.
His passion is to share his unique Priority Event Management System with
success-oriented people around the world, showing them how to achieve success
in all areas of life at the same time. Terry is the author of
How Can I
Get Myself to Do What I Need to Do?