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Sharing powerful Ideas, thought-provoking stories, and other musings from a striving Up & Comer
“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
“A goal is an objective, a purpose. A goal is more than a dream; it’s a dream being acted upon.” — David Schwartz
When we get out of bed we have two choices to make: 1) either make life happen, or 2) let life happen to us. Each day we have the opportunity to discover, understand, and remind ourselves of the point of our life and what we are living for. Not taking advantage of this opportunity will be the default choice if you do not intentionally or consciously make one. This is one of the greatest maladies, highlighted by Frankl’s psychotherapy, that continues to plague our existence, adding to the rise in depression, anxiety, and suicide.
While phones are an easy scapegoat (and rightfully so), I believe this is a surface wound and not the root. At it’s core, it is a loss of purpose; a loss of clarity in direction and pursuit; a misconstrued focus on image vs. relationship; an emphasis on self fulfillment through pleasure instead of meaning.
The beauty in this is that each day we have a choice. Every human has the ability to wake up on mission. Each individual has the capacity to set a trajectory for their life and pursue it. Each person can intentionally live with a daily drive for a higher purpose — for something bigger than themselves.
“Some things have to be believed to be seen.” — Madeleine L’Engle
“Capacity is a state of mind. How much we can do depends on how much we think we can do.” — David Schwartz
“So you’re saying there’s a chance!”
If you’re from the same era as me and are at all familiar with the Jim Carrey of old, this phrase brings one particular scene to mind — Lloyd Christmas asking Mary Swanson what his odds are for ending up with her. Standing there in the hotel lobby after a long, arduous, and near-to-frozen trip to Aspen, Lloyd represents a picture of hope in the middle of what seems to be hopelessness, the one-in-a-million chance of (in Lloyd’s words): “a guy like you and a girl like me ending up together” … this is the power of possibility, and the beauty of hope.
“The man who moves a mountain begins by carrying away small stones.”
“The most important shot in golf is the next one.” — Ben Hogan
From Belief To Action
The first part of this mini-series on hope was all about the foundational hope of knowing we are never finished in life — or stated affirmatively: we are always in-process. Which means, our current place in life is more descriptive than it is definitive. It means that growth is possible, whether or not it looks like the picture of growth we imagined.
In this second installment of the mini-series, my goal is to discuss what our focus in that process should be — how we can leverage hope to our advantage and add fuel to fan the flame of that hope to higher and higher realms.
If knowing that growth is always possible is the first step to living a hope-filled life, then the second step is to believe that hope and take steps forward to prove that belief.
“Life shrinks or expands in proportion to ones courage." — Anais Nin
“The good life is a process, not a state of being. It is a direction not a destination.” — Carl Rogers
Benjamin Franklin is said to have coined the infamous saying about the only two things that are guaranteed in life: ____ & ____.
Unless you’ve been living underground, I’m fairly certain you passed the quiz with flying colors. 1) Death and 2) Taxes seem to be the only guarantees we have in life.
Of course there can always be other arguments that are made. If you do a simple google search for “guarantees in life,” you will find endless articles on various opinions of what should be inserted in addition to death and taxes, but the original deduction by Franklin carries with it the right balance of brevity and truth that makes it a fair analysis of the human condition.
Part of the truth that this cliche conveys is that life is filled with movement, dynamism, and change.
“It is better to fail at your own life than to succeed at someone else’s.” — Andre Gide
“Your calling is found where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.” —Frederick Beuchner
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to “take that leap of faith”? To go out on your own and pave the path for your own career and destiny?
In the day and age we live in, this thought occurs more than it ever has before in history, because the opportunities are virtually endless (specifically in the Western world, especially for much of the U.S.).
But is it as glamorous as it sounds? Does it produce the life you always wanted to have? Will it meet all your hopes and dreams?
It’s not as easy as a yes or a no…
“When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.” — Lao Tzu
This year has undoubtedly been a year of more change than any other in my entire life. From top to bottom, everything has shifted and been made new. Much of it has felt like starting from scratch, yet, undoubtedly, there was a firm foundation already laid upon which I could build.
(“Build” was my 2018 Word of the Year - you can read more about that HERE.)
“In the hopes of reaching the moon man fails to see the flowers that blossom at their feet.”
— Albert Schweitzer
Lately there has been a lot of talk around the reality of being a human being, not a human doing. The question is: why? And is this helpful? And what should our response or takeaway be?
To begin, let’s examine a baseline question:
Are we defined by who we are or what we do?
And are those two aspects necessarily mutually exclusive?
“Good timber does not grow with ease: The stronger wind, the stronger trees; The further sky, the greater length; The more the storm, the more the strength. By sun and cold, by rain and snow, In trees and men good timbers grow.” —Douglas Malloch
When was the last time you saw a tree?
No, really. When was the last time you actually took notice of a tree — seeing it with the childlike eyes of awe and wonder? Hopefully you will take a moment to pause and re-see a tree after reading this post, because there are more life lessons to be found in trees than anything you may be perusing on the six-inch screen in front of you.
"God will not have his work made manifest by cowards.” —Ralph Waldo Emerson
What happens when your alarm goes off in the morning?
If you’re like the majority of people, your first thoughts aren’t usually of the inspired kind. More often than not we wake up with a certain level of animosity aimed towards both the noise that woke you up and the responsibilities that require you to get out of bed.
But what if you woke up with an unquenchable fire that could never be extinguished (even if it does dim to a flicker at times)? What if you woke up like royalty? Marcus Aurelius, who was royalty (the emperor of Rome), recognized the power of this mindset:
“When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive - to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.”
“Part of being wise in this world is learning to accept that we have only very limited access to the big picture.” - David Gibson
“Persisting in one way is not a guarantee of victory. But persistence blended with experimentation does guarantee success.” - David Schwartz
“Great opportunities never have 'great opportunity’ in the subject line.” - Scott Belsky
"What looks inevitable in hindsight is often invisible with foresight." - Steven Kotler
… your life, that is. Well, at least it seems that way. It definitely feels that way. But you are still breathing. You are still consciously aware of these thoughts. Yet, somehow, it all seems surreal, almost as if real life isn’t that real, or at least not nearly as real as you once thought.
How did you get to here? How did you manage to come to this dead-end? And why? Why did you work so hard, fight for so long, and sacrifice so much only to wind up at a place you never wished to be?
Taking the professional athlete’s mindset to everyday people in everyday life.
What that really means:
Playing professional golf for over three years taught me how to maximize personal potential. From creating discipline, to increasing productivity, to understanding the impact of sleep+exercise+diet, to improving focus and mental fortitude, and implementing accountability. Just as golf taught me, I am committed to helping you surpass your personal goals and the self-created perception of what you’re truly capable of, all to promote human flourishing in life.
the End Goal:
To inspire observers, collaborators, and friends to be their best for the ultimate good of the world.