“Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”― Howard Thurman
I bet the morning commute would be way easier if people were heading to a job that filled them with passion and joy. Are you doing what makes you come alive or are you doing what you think needs to be done? It’s scary to ask the question because if you ask, you might not get the answer you want.
If money didn’t matter, where would you be spending your time? Removing money from the equation eliminates the fear of scarcity and gives you clarity. I suspect most people know the answer to the question; it’s just hard saying it out loud because then you have to admit you are doing something out of fear.
People say they want to change things, but what they mean is that they want things to change.
If you want to learn something new, then start.
Want to learn to surf? Drive to the beach, borrow a wetsuit and a surfboard, and get wet. On some days you’ll get out of the water, and your hands will be so cold that you won’t be able to unzip your suit or hold your keys. Everyone sitting on their boards just beyond the shore break did the same thing at some point. You won’t learn by watching Instagram videos of big wave surfing. The answer is in the water.
Want to learn to write? Start writing, publish something every day. Get used to feedback, good and bad. The stuff will only start to resonate when you turn up in your writing. People can spot authenticity a mile away, and they’ll connect with you through your book.
Don’t take the act of starting something for granted. Most people give up before they even begin. If you’ve started and come back the next day, then you are in the one percent already.
If you want to change something, then you’ve got to change yourself.
Sometimes the best way to start writing the next chapter of a book is to sit down and write. That sounds obvious, but it’s scarier to do when nothing is waiting to pour out on the page. Sitting down, creating space and time is sometimes the only activation energy required to break through the writer’s block.
It’s the same with exercise or getting some long overdue work project completed. Upfront activation energy is sometimes all you need to break through. A run around the block turns into a couple of blocks. Composing a response to one email you’ve been ignoring frees up energy for other things that need your attention.
Listen, be still. We all have enough
Work hard every day. Turn up and go deep on stuff, but don’t ignore what brings you joy and what you are proficient in. Listen for feedback. Do people want to work with you again, is it satisfying, is it valued, are you proud of the product?
Double down where your proficiency and joy intersect. There’s no point working away at something in a mediocre way that makes you miserable.
Use what talents you possess, the woods will be very silent if no birds sang there except those who sang best – Henry Van Dyke
The most important two steps to a successful career is to make sure you choose the right parents and country of birth!
I love working with people who acknowledge timing and luck as part of their story. They are the first people to pull others up and take a chance on someone who doesn’t have the pedigree or connections.
Toe breathing? Yup, your toes breath if you concentrate on them. Ready to try?
Okay. Take a pause. Relax your shoulders, eyes, and jaw. Feel the ground on your feet and wiggle your toes, so you know they are there. Take a deep breath through your nose and feel the air enter your body. Imagine the same fresh air coming your lungs, tummy, legs, feet and finally your toes. Feel the body expanding. It’s like blowing up a balloon. Imagine the clean oxygenated air reaching the very tips of your toes and that everything it touches on the way down is cleansed.
Now exhale slowly. As you exhale, imagine your body deflating slowing and breathing out the stale air. All of the aches, pains, anxiety leave the body with that exhalation.
Is like rinse and repeat. Try it 3 times. Concentrating on the toes will make you breath deeper and slow down the exercise. Remember to the breath through your nose and relax the shoulders and face.
Stay grounded today and enjoy.
We only experience right now as Emily Dickinson explains below:
Forever — is composed of Nows
by Emily Dickinson
Forever — is composed of Nows —
‘Tis not a different time —
Except for Infiniteness —
And Latitude of Home —
From this — experienced Here —
Remove the Dates — to These —
Let Months dissolve in further Months —
And Years — exhale in Years —
Without Debate — or Pause —
Or Celebrated Days —
No different Our Years would be
From Anno Domini’s —
I was chatting to an old grey hair friend the other day and he shared his rule for working with people:
When he meets with new clients, one of his questions is whether or not they have pets. It gives him a good idea about what they are like to work with. His theory is that pet owners are more comfortable with the imperfections of life and mostly roll with it. Animals vomit on that special carpet or scratch that fancy chair. Their hairs get everywhere. Dogs bark at inconvenient times like when the baby is sleeping, and cats don’t come when you call them. Living with animals is a practice of love and patience.
Animals teach us to throw our hands up in the air and say shit happens! We get exasperated and angry but give the dog a cuddle anyway.
Be okay with surrendering control. Life won’t follow your script. Animals are great teachers.
Humility is the key to new ideas. Smart humble people change their minds all the time. Being smart is not enough if pride is a blocker.