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Efforts to “get out the vote” are repeated without fail come election time.
However, according to the New York Times, most “get out the vote” efforts often fail…
Basic efforts to get out the vote often fail because they focus on awareness as their primary objective…
In other words, the assumption – if we make people aware of the importance of voting, they’ll vote – is flawed logic.
Research on successful strategies for getting out the vote indicate that the strategies that work are those that require accountability, cognitive planning and logistics, not just motivation.
Voting For Your Life
Each day we make choices that are essentially votes for our own happiness, health, wealth, fulfillment, etc.
We are aware, generally, that eating too much sugar is bad for us… Or that alcohol and drugs can destroy our lives… Or that our bank accounts are telling us a story that is irrefutable evidence for our financial sustainability.
The numbers tell us “I’m in debt” or “I don’t have enough to retire on” or “I’m in the hole each month and I need to earn more”.
Yet this information alone is not enough for us to get what we want.
We say to ourselves that we wouldn’t want to vote for a drug addict or alcoholic or a poor or grossly overweight or unhealthy person as our candidate of choice…
We dislike the bad candidates.
But because we have no plan for getting what we actually want… We often vote against our self-interests.
The truth is that a voting for your life is a lot like planning to get to the polls around election time.
If we want the good candidate to win it requires a clear plan for what we want to be and why:
- A life well-lived requires a grasp of ethics, standards and values which form a foundation for our philosophy on living… This is our why.
- On this foundation of why we should have a plan for getting where we want to go… Including the logistics of how we will get there. This is our how.
- And an accountability partner or partners, like a navigation system, to help keep us on track. With a goal in mind. This is our what.
Like voting in elections, being aware of what we want isn’t enough.
When we don’t do understand our foundation (our why) and plan what needs to happen (our how), and what we ultimately want to have happen (our what) we’re failing (to manage) ourselves.
And then, when we end up with the bad candidate, we’re left wondering why our lives aren’t going as planned.