Rethinking Life

I’m tired, I can’t write today.
I don’t feel like pushing the envelope right now.
I don’t think what I have to say matters.
What if I make a fool out of myself?
Oh but I know he’ll dismiss what I write.
I’m not important.
I’m really in over my head here…

All examples of statements that could be followed-up with a statement like “I have nothing to say.”

But the only way to stand out and make something that matters is to take a chance and speak up. Sure we might be wrong, there might be a backlash, there could be critics. Isn’t it funny though, how the naysayers are usually the ones who stand back, the ones who stay in the stands, the armchair coaches who decide to play it safe?

That doesn’t mean what you put out there is flawless, but it does mean that taking a chance is the only way to make something that matters.

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Generally, there are two ways to look at events and incidents. You can be gracious and grateful it happened or you can be bitter and angry.

Sometimes it’s black and white; it’s easier to be one than the other. It’s easy to be grateful with a promotion. It’s easy to be angry after being mugged. But other times, it’s unclear. A type of grey zone. The emotions creep in, slowly, unnoticed and I think that’s when they’re at their most dangerous.

You owe it to yourself to be on the lookout for the reactions that quietly drip in. Especially the negative. Walking around with the burden of resentment limits your creativity, your generosity and what you offer to the world.

Take the time to work on grace and being grateful, it will deliver and make all the difference.

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Of course you can. You can teach anyone anything as long as they’re willing to learn.

And that’s exactly the point. Seek out the curious ones, the ones who want to learn, the ones who, regardless of age, status, location or situation are open to new ideas and new ways of doing.

I think our responsibility is to keep sharing, keep being generous and staying patient. Those that matter will come around.

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“I’m pretty certain that I can’t do this. There’s no real script to follow. I have to map it put myself and what if I map it out wrong?

Everyone else knows exactly what they’re doing. They have their shit together. But I don’t. I’m a fraud. How I got this far, I don’t know.”

That’s the type of self doubt we’re taught to master.

“But come to think of it, if I did get this far it’s that I must be doing something right.

Fact is I did help increase sales, make the team more efficient, empower my colleagues. And that wasn’t a fluke. And if I’ve done it once, I’ll do it again.

Except this time will be better. I’ve grown, I’m wiser, I’m better, I’ve learned.

Fuck it. Let’s do this.”

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Sure on the surface it’s scary. So many things can go wrong. I’m unprepared, unqualified, not ready. I know where I want to go, but what if I can’t make it? What of they disapprove? What of they get upset and say no?

Maybe it’s just better to stay put. Something better and safer will come along. Maybe Oprah or the local news station will find me, interview me and I’ll be famous. Then things will be easy.

Right, better stay put. Let’s not risk it.

But what of Oprah doesn’t show up? What if I am stuck? What if this is it? What if I do play it safe and they still get upset and say no? What will I do then?

Maybe there is more choice or opportunity than I think. Maybe it is worth a shot. Things might not work out either way.

Might as well go for it.

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I haven’t written in what feels like a lifetime. Actuality that’s not true, I’ve been writing quite a bit, just not something publishable.

Daily practice, whether its for pleasure, work, public or private will yield more than grand, one-off actions.

Whether you’re looking to stay fit, read more, write more often, get more done, deliver better results: small consistent, incremental actions have more chance to yield exponential results than a big act.

Go write, read, do, and do it daily.

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There’s a commonly held belief that you can make it happen. If you push hard enough, consistently enough, often enough, it will happen regardless of obstacles. That only the truly exceptional can make it happen. It’s a meritocratic system. One that favors persistence over connection.

In a way, it’s a tempting way to think and act. It shelters us from ever trying.

Now, while it is true that pushing through the resistance and barriers is the only way to make your art happen, we are, afterall, in a connection economy. There are different people around you. There are those that weigh and drag you down and there are those that lift you up and thrust you forward.

So to create your art. To live your purpose. Your duty is really to shed, avoid and exclude all those who prevent you from making a difference while seeking out and embracing those that want to see you succeed. They are the ones that will help you fight the resistance.

Success come to those that realize this formula and relentlessly seek to make it happen.

(Photo credit: al (rino) del vecchio)

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A machine cog is a tooth on a gear that engages similar teeth to transmit or receive motion. Each cog makes the machine run. The system only works if all the cogs are inline. Of course one broken cog might not do much damage, maybe some inefficiency… Until the cog is replaced by an identical one that is.

It used to be that only a few would be able to afford these machines, relegating the rest of us to the status of cog. Necessary, but largely unimportant.

Turns out the digital age has gotten rid of most cogs by driving down the price of that proverbial machine. The result? We are all owners. We’ve broken the cogs, we can make a difference.

There are no more prescribed right answers, no more gears. No path to follow. We are no longer simply part of the system, we create it. One post, one project, one picture at a time.

The system no longer needs passive cogs. Realize they have been broken, go make a difference.

(Photo credit: Nick Watson)

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The moments that stick. The days we remember. Our stories we tell over and over. They all share something in common: A touch of disbelief, a smidgen of wonder, a moment of magic. Were, sometimes for only a split second, everything we knew and held to be true was thrown away and replaced with something bigger, better and more amazing. All of a sudden something that inspired, something that made us laugh, something that made us aspire to more, became real. And what’s more? It became possible.

We all look for magic. Young or old, tall or small – we look for a more inspiring world. A place where the scripts and limits are quieted.

What if we spent just a little more time creating magic for others…making the impossibly beautiful come true.

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The hard part isn’t writing. It isn’t coming up with the plan or lacing your runners. Actually, it isn’t even presenting the plan or heading out for a run.

The hard part is clicking publish. The really difficult thing is implementing the plan, dealing with the bumps and roadblocks, the naysayers and the critics. The truly difficult part is running consistently enough – building strength, endurance and stamina – to run the race.

Publishing, implementing, racing are difficult because they demand openness and vulnerability. We might fail. The post might not be read or shared. The plan might flop. You might lose the race. And what’s even harder is that although there are very few thrusters and lifters, there are more than enough drags and weights – critics that will jump on any mishap to tell you they were right: “I told you you would fail.”

That’s why there are so few remarkable projects. It’s too hard.

Implement. Race. Click publish.

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