The Audacity of White Sheeting … or how to use a blank sheet of white paper to solve problems and make your life better

WhiteSheetsYou like that title don’t you? Sucked you in and got you to read this.

Since you clicked on that catchy title, I’m going to share one of my secrets with you. After I tell you, you’re going to think, “that’s no secret” or “Andy is talking crazy again.”

It’s not really a secret, but it might as well be because not enough people do what I’m about to tell you to do.

And it’s not as much a secret as it is a method I use to help me deal with people, problems and planning. It’s funny how things always sound better in threes and with the same letter for each of them.

So, here’s my advice. The next time you have a problem or know something is looming, go to your printer or your copier and pull out a standard 8.5 X 11-inch blank sheet of white paper. Next, you have to find a pen or whatever you like to write with. That’s the easy part.

Here’s where people get scared. You have to actually think and write down your thoughts and ideas. I know it’s going to hurt your head to do this, but try it. It will get easier the more you do this. I do it every week. I’ve got white sheets at home, in my office and probably in my car. It’s helped me so many times you wouldn’t believe it.

Guys, do this every morning for a week and let me know if you get positive results from it. Leave me comments at the bottom of this blog. I want to know if it helps.

Write down what you are going to do that day, write what you are not going to do that day and write down three people you need to be around that day and three people you will not waste your time on that day.

You can do this exercise for anything. I mean anything. I keep a stack of white sheets handy wherever I go because it’s my favorite kind of paper to take notes on. When I can’t find a white sheet, I yell at Chris Reavis because he knows to have some with him just in case I want one.

Maybe you want to quit your job? Write down how you are going to do that. You might want to write down what you are going to do to make money if you are considering leaving that job too.

Want to be more productive? Write down ways you can do that. You know you better than anybody else and if you are writing down what to do it means more than if I tell you to do something or a friend tells you to do something.

You can do this with anything, ANYTHING, in the world. You are really just brainstorming on paper, but “white sheeting” sounds cooler. The act of actually writing it down makes it more powerful and it forces your brain to think not somebody else’s.

So, here’s how you do the quit my job thing. Start with how many hours you work, how much you make an hour and what your expenses are. Look at the whole picture – good and bad. Do that and you’ve already got a white sheet going.

Do one on association. Write down three people that drain you or bring you down and explain how they do that. Write a note that says, “I will not meet, talk or email this person from now on!” You probably like this person, but they just don’t add value to what you are working toward. It’s OK to be their friend, just don’t waste your VALUABLE time on them.

Now, think about three people you absolutely need to be around. Write down why you need to be around them and figure out a way to make it happen. Are they worth a drive, a call or an email? If they are of high importance, you need to probably drive or fly to see them if they will meet with you.

Even if it takes money, time, effort, etc. you must get around these people because you think they will help you. That should be a high priority for you. Guys, it’s a strategic approach. Find ways to cross paths with people as much as possible if you need to be around them. Get all the one-on-one time you can if at all possible.

If they like sports, take them to a ballgame. If you can’t get face time, call them, write them, do whatever you can. Sometimes, it’s going to involve spending money – maybe a lot of money – to get around certain people.

Just doing an association white sheet can improve your performance and get you in the right mindset.

Do a white sheet on time wasters while you are at it. Teach yourself how to ignore certain phone calls that you shouldn’t take. Learn to disassociate from friends that aren’t helping you be the best person you can be. Find people that will help you reach your potential.

Keep doing white sheets. Get a three-ring binder of them going and put it where you can reference it all the time. You might even want to name it something like the audacity of white sheets! Be creative.

Few people know to do what I just told you about, so I’ve just given you a secret that has helped me too many times to even count. I’m serious.

It’s too simple to be good, right? Wrong!

IT WORKS!!! I do it every week and you should start doing it too.

51 thoughts on “The Audacity of White Sheeting … or how to use a blank sheet of white paper to solve problems and make your life better

  1. Anthony Nguyen

    After reading the suggestions a second time, I realized this is something I would like to try. I know the most successful I have been at times in my life was when I was thoughtful with my time, money, and resources. My to do list.

    thnx andy.

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