How To Master Mental Compartmentalizing And Avoid Deadly Time Gaps

To some of you, my advice today will provide a huge sigh of relief because you’ll “get it” and move on to higher profits and prosperity.

To others, it will become a harsh reality of much needed improvement you’ll need to implement in your life. Why? Simply because you’ll fall into 98% of the general population that doesn’t have a handle on this invaluable skill called “Mental Compartmentalizing.”

Read on to find out what mental compartmentalizing will do for you and your business. It’s a life-changing skill everyone should master. Once you put it into practice, you’ll experience the following benefits:

Tripled Productivity, Improved Focus, and Better Marketing Skills.

While talking with a good friend on the phone not long ago–a self-made multi-millionaire by age 28–we discussed the importance of being able to compartmentalize every aspect of our lives. Our conversation was profound, and I want to share with you what I believe separates the top 2% from the other 98% of top marketers and income earners…mental compartmentalizing.

What is mental compartmentalizing? Here is the clearest definition I can give to you. Mental compartmentalizing is the ability to place current events, experiences, tasks, problems, etc., in compartments within your mind without affecting your life and productivity. Let me give you a quick example of someone who has NOT mastered this skill before I explain how my method will change the way you do business and live your life.

EXAMPLE: It’s Monday, and John just found out his cousin has cancer. Tuesday John gets in a terrible fight with his wife. After the fight with his wife he also realizes he hasn’t spent any quality time with his 7-year-old son in a year, which brings on tremendous guilt. On Thursday John also finds out his 13-year-old daughter’s cell phone bill is a whopping $786.00!

Let me stop there. These issues are enough to break John’s focus for at least two to three weeks. Now, we’re going to assume John is like 98% of the world’s population and will need to go through a certain mental process to deal with all of these problems, thus causing enormous time gaps, killing productivity and creativity. Be like John, and these time gaps will result in you getting hammered by your competition.

Trust me; if you haven’t mastered this skill, you’ll lose and experience a slow business death. Not only that, you owe it to your customers and family to master this skill so you can avoid these issues. The good news is that mental compartmentalization is a learned skill. How do I know? Because I’ve learned it. I haven’t always been this way.

I want to show you how I compartmentalize and how you can discover how to do it as well. Allow me to share a very simple way of putting life’s issues into their respective boxes. It’s simple: Give every life event the same amount of mind play.

Most people place an enormous amount of importance on CERTAIN events in their life. This causes great instability and eventually causes even greater imbalance in their lives. You’ve dealt with these people before. They are extremely happy as long as everything is going well in their lives. They are happy ONLY if everything falls flawlessly into place. This is the worst way to deal with life. You’ll never win.

I understand that trials and tribulations happen—sometimes to a traumatic degree. However, there’s nothing you can do about them. The key is to compartmentalize, and it’s not as difficult as it seems. What makes this process easy for me? I do a few specific things to run my life clean, which enhances my mental compartmentalization.

Here are a few examples.

1. My wife and I stay completely debt free. I believe with all my heart the borrower is slave to the lender, and I don’t play the math game with the credit card agencies and lenders. We grow at the pace our cash allows us to grow, and we borrow for nothing. You would be absolutely amazed what being debt free will do to your life. The peace is amazing, and you WILL make different decisions when you don’t have debt in your life. I promise.

2. When bad things happen in my life–even what some people would call huge events–I give myself no more than two hours to think about it and place it in the correct place within my mind. No, this doesn’t mean I tuck it away and push it so far down that I temporarily forget about it, only to explode at everybody later. It simply means that I put thought into the event, talk to my wife or pastor about it if I need to, and then I give it to God. I realize there is absolutely nothing I can do with most situations, and I like it that way. But with most situations, I don’t’ spend more than 10 minutes evaluating the problem/scenario and then I move on quickly.

3. I keep excellent balance in my life. Time is all we have when you get down to it. Everything in your life will require time. If you neglect certain things in your life—especially your spouse and kids–it will cloud your judgment, and you will feel guilt whether you like it or not. If you don’t feel guilty, you have no heart. When I work, I work HARD. When I’m play with my kids, I play HARD. When I’m in bed with my wife, I…well, you get it. J

These are just a few examples of what I mean by “run my life clean.” We, as businesspeople and entrepreneurs, often have a hard time with these issues because we’re natural workaholics, and we want to succeed on a level most don’t. Don’t beat yourself up too badly if your life isn’t balanced just the way you want it right now.

When I started our hairstyling business with my wife, I would get home from work from the Air Force and then work on the Internet business until midnight. I did this at least six nights per week. I actually worked so much I became sick at one point in 2004. At that time, it was just me, my wife, and my daughter in our little 750 square foot apartment in Hampton, VA.

Getting sick made me reevaluate my priorities and take a step back. Sadly, about a week later, I started back into the same work schedule. It didn’t really sink in until my best friend Pastor Mike came over one day, looked at me, and said, “Ricky, it’s going to be sad if Nya [my daughter] grows up, and all she remembers you for is your back being towards her, and you looking at the computer screen.” Talk about a wake-up call! There were two books that further opened my eyes that I want to share with you today. These two books really helped me shift my mindset tremendously, and you should pick them up now:

The Magic of Thinking Big by David Schwartz

Psycho-Cybernetics by Maxwell Maltz

Now, with a clean life and a focused mindset, my re-coup time for life’s issues is next to nothing. That’s right. I lose zero time dealing with unimportant issues. And the important issues that do come up, I handle quickly and move on. To wrap this up, I want you to do a quick exercise for practice. The next time something happens to you or around you that makes you THINK about that situation for more than 10 minutes, ask yourself these questions.

Why am I still thinking about this?

If I keep thinking about this situation, how will it improve my life?

How much more effective could I be if this problem weren’t on my mind?

Am I losing productivity and creativity because I’m still thinking about this issue?

Am I becoming bitter or unforgiving by re-playing this situation in my head and thinking about it?

These are just a few questions you’ll need to ask yourself.

It will be eye-opening. I promise. Life’s events will happen. How you deal with them is totally up to you.

Take responsibility for your thoughts and don’t blame hers… ever. And more importantly, once you “get” this, you’ll have so much more productive time in your life that I guarantee your income will increase because your mind will finally be free to attract wealth.


  1. says

    Hey Ricky, great post. In fact, I’d have to say the ability to master this skill would be a huge breakthrough for 99% of the population.

    Ladst week, my back blew out on me. I’ve had a herniated disc in my spine for years as the result of a bicycle racing accident. I’ve kept it from affecting my life for a long time… but it hit me like a ton of bricks just last week.


    Well I’ll tell you I’ve let the balance aspect of my life get out of whack.

    Not with my kids, not with my wife… but with myself. I’ve been so immersed in growong my business, I forgot about me.

    Your post here reenforces that. I feel pretty confident about my mental compartmentalization skills, but when it came to that aspect of my life, I never put it into that category.

    Thanks for the wake up call Ricky. Now I can attack it head on.

    Michael Morgan

  2. June says

    This is a great post and i have to say that i have always asked those questions and get the right answers but get extremely overwhelmed to the extent of not being able to move or stop thinking about it. I think the missing part is how to actually stop dwelling. When you get the answers what do you do, maybe write down the possible solutions or next actions to address the issue and then move on?


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