Category: Blog

What Stops You From Making *Your* Extraordinary Real?

Please take five minutes, watch this video and join me on the page below after.

A very powerful video huh?

Well, maybe.

It’s only powerful if it changes something.

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Ric talks about three things he learned about himself that day: 1) it all can all change in an instant; 2) he wasted time on things that didn’t matter, with people that did matter and 3) as the plane approached the water (and potentially breaking up (and everyone surely dying)) he realized just how badly he wanted to see his kids grow up.

In regards to #1: What are you putting off until tomorrow? What do you want to do? Who do you want to forgive? Who do you want to apologize to? Who do you want to reconnect with? Take a step now. As Ric so wisely exhorts us: don’t postpone anything, move with purpose and urgency.

In regards to #2, Where are you letting your Ego get in the way? Decide, as Ric did, to eliminate negative energy from your life (namely attachment, a key aspect of the Ego): choose to be happy, not right (always keeping in mind that it’s a process and a journey – get a little better every day… ).

In regards to #3: what is your Top Priority? For Ric it was being the absolute best Dad he could be. Knowing that life has many aspects and that we have multiple priorities, what is your #1, Top, Do-Whatever-it-Takes Priority? How can you live in integrity with that? What can you do a little better, each day, to make a difference in that area?

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I’ve often wondered what it is about certain profound experiences that change people. You know, someone has a heart attack and they change how they eat and move (for good… ). Someone loses a loved one and they readjust how they live, and love.

More importantly, I’ve wondered how can we access that emotional leverage, without the profound or the tragic?

If you’ve watched and read carefully you’re wondering the same thing. I’m going to offer something so simple and instant that you probably won’t believe it. You’ll likely think I’m silly for even suggesting something so basic.

But it won’t change the truth or power of the suggestion.

Change. How. You. Think.

When you choose better thoughts, you’ll feel better emotions and you’ll make better choices.

Don’t believe me?

Tell me then, where do your emotions, and the actions that follow, come from?

Exactly.

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I will grant that it’s easy to say “Change your thoughts, so you’ll feel better emotions and make better choices,” but hard – sometimes very hard – to do. This is exactly what I work with my clients on. It’s the exact high-leverage work that yields tremendous and lasting results. For those that will do the work, the rewards are many.

Let’s talk about what the work would be like, for you: click here.

The Difference Between Afraid and Recognizing Danger

Fear’s useless. Either something bad happens or it doesn’t: If it doesn’t, you’ve wasted time being afraid, and if it does, you’ve wasted time that you could have spent sharpening your weapons. – Sarah Brennan

There’s a difference between fear/being-scared and recognizing danger.

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What’s more, in a meta sense, the ability to notice and accurately make distinctions, such as the difference between being scared and recognizing actual danger, is one of the skills of living – truly – well.

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Being afraid or scared is creating the emotional state of things not going well, or things going badly (depending… ) in advance and not acting.

Recognizing danger is accurately assessing conditions and identifying real risks, whether in an instant or after some contemplation.

The former is a waste of resources and keeps you from doing what you want, often from doing anything.

The latter is intelligent and necessary to both survival and achieving one’s goals, and even excellence.

Knowing the difference between what you’re merely afraid of and what is actually dangerous is so very, very important.

And, as Ms. Brennan points out above, time spent on fear/being-afraid is time wasted – and time wasted is never recovered.

An Alternative to Denial

Not facing a fire doesn’t put it out. Tennessee Williams

The Japanese word Kaizen means (small and continuous) improvement.

The making better of things, over time.

Rather than confronting issues, problems and long-festering wounds “head-on” with a Hollywood-action-movie-like-grandiosity, what if you identified a particular component of an issue or problem or long-festering wound and took small steps to heal/solve/make-it-irrelevant?

This week’s Action Exercise doesn’t come from one of last week’s posts, it comes from a quote I found today.

I would like you to examine your life and pick something that you’ve long wanted to change.

Something that matters to you, and that for whatever reason, isn’t getting better – and in your mind needs to get better.

Got it? Good. Here’s what I want you to do:

Sit in a quiet place, close your eyes and breathe full, healthy breaths, allow any tension and expectation to fall away.

Think of that that “thing” you want to improve. Notice any tension that comes up and let it go. Allow your breath to breathe it away.

Next, pick a part of this “thing,” a small, manageable part, and ask yourself: “What’s one small way I can make a positive change in how I think and/or act here?”

Keep breathing and let the question breathe.

Allow for your innate wisdom to respond to the question. Make a mental note of what “comes up.”

Once you’ve opened your eyes, formulate a small action you can take, either the same action repeated, or a tiny project with tinier steps, to slowly improve that aspect of the issue, problem or long-festering wound.

Do that, every day for at least a week, and notice both your view of the problem/issue/long-festering-wound changes and how “it” actually changes.*

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* The problem/… might not change right away (likely not as it was probably long-in-the-making and will take time to actually resolve), but your view of it will most definitely change – and when you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.

All You Have Is What You Do

My actions are my only true belongings. – Thich Nhat Hanh

Your legacy, what you truly leave behind, is what you’ve done.

All your possessions are fleeting and can be lost in an instant — and will fade and decay anyway.

What endures are the choices you made, the work you’ve done and lives you’ve touched.

Concern yourself less with “stuff” and more – much more – with what you do.

A Beautiful Fiction

I had a thought while listening to a wonderful song by Colin Hay:

If endeavoring to believe that the World is a beautiful place, replete with amazing happenings both minor and major, where everything that happens is an opportunity – for learning and growth at least – is a fiction, then oh what a beautiful and worthy fiction it is.