waiting

Most People

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Strategy, Will=Our inner game
Reading time: 1 min.

Most people come to know only one corner of their room, one spot near the window, one narrow strip on which they keep walking back and forth.

– Ranier Maria Rilke

And life waits patiently outside their door, wagging its tail, excited to show them all the delights and possibilities. If only they would be so bold as to step outside their narrow, little corner.

Let’s not be these people.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: Ann Fisher cc

infinity

Infinite Success

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Success
Reading time: 2 min.

To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
And eternity in an hour.

from ‘Auguries of Innocence’ by William Blake

Infinity, rightly, freaks us out. For instance, there are infinitely more points between the ends of any line you can draw on your palm than there are nanometers on a line from here to the end of an infinite universe. There are infinitely more tasks that we could do or decisions we could make than we ever will have time for.  And there are infinitely more opportunities for fun and success coming our way that we could ever imagine taking advantage of.

Faced with all this infinity, we might be tempted to curl up and hide, feeling insignificant. Or we attempt to do it all. Or try to be the big cheese of own little cheese market.

But there’s a better way. We can accept infinity as the way the world works. We can revel in it all. We can delight in choosing this versus that. And in getting to choose again and again. We can use infinity as our palate, fuel source, and all-round great place to live this life.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: Ram Viswanathan cc

exhilarating

Exhilarating

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Will=Our inner game
Reading time: 1 min.

We all have the means, right, and deep desire to live an exhilarating career and life. We’ve just got used to thinking that the opposite is truer. We’ve come to think the opposite is safer.

Nope.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: scyrene cc

sunshine

Don’t Be Seduced By The Cruel

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in We=All Who Matter
Reading time: 1 min.

No matter what you hear or read in the news, the world is getting better and better.

But, you might ask, aren’t there atrocities? Isn’t there great suffering? What about all the destruction? Isn’t there war, corruption, malfeasance, murder, and mayhem? And what about my own struggles? Doesn’t all this horribleness count?

Yes. And none of it is to be tolerated. But there is much less than there used to be and much, much less than we all fear. Don’t be seduced by the cruel.

Take time today to notice, consider, and appreciate how much is going well in our lives and in the world. For every horror story we hear, recall all the happy stories we don’t hear. It feels good when we do.

Thus, dear leader, we live better lives and have much more energy and smarts available to give help where it is still needed.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: Monteregina (Nicole) cc

deep

Go Ahead, Look Deeper

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Career, Success
Reading time: 2 min.

Why are you doing what you are doing in your work and life?

If we scratch just beneath the surface of our answers to this question, we see something remarkable if not a bit unnerving. Many of our reasons for why we do what we do are imported. We have adopted our answers to the question, “Why?” from our parents, peers, and the public-at-large.

Of course, there’s nothing wrong with being inspired by or taking our motivation cues from others. It’s when we do so unwittingly or exclusively that we run into trouble.

You see, we each have a mind and heart that knows what’s really meaningful to us. From within come our own passions, talents, desires, and our hopes for the world. If we look just past our inherited reasons why, we will find and embrace these creative, delicious, and fulfilling sources of meaning.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: Have no fear to go deeper. Some worry that learning what really makes us tick will mean we have to give up some parts of our lives that we love. Nope. Not these days, anyway; we are long past the time when a life of meaning meant sacrifice. As we look deeper, we will likely see that our families, our friends, our position, our house, car, and other trappings take on even richer meanings. Go ahead and look.

Today’s photo credit: Mark Strozier via photopin cc

win

We Win Either Way

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Will=Our inner game
Reading time: 1 min.

We tend to see life as a series of ups and downs, of struggles and plateaus, of things that happen to us and our reactions. But what if we’re wrong? What if life, work, school, and family unfold more as we see it all than as stuff that happens to us?

That would mean that we’d do well to see life as a feel-good adventure. We would focus on what we want, being guided by the feeling of it, and feeling what it would feel like to have it. Ultimately, after all, we want to feel good.

And if we’re wrong about being wrong–if life is only about stuff that happens to us–then we’d still be okay. We’d be happy, focused, and effective in the face of all the stuff life throws at us.

We win either way.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: harold.lloyd via photopin cc

Can We Have Everything?

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Success, Sweetspot, What=Compelling Focus
Reading time: 2 min.

The cars, the houses, the career, the family, the vacations, the meaningful experiences, the titles, the accolades, the bucket list, the prestige, the money, the cottage, the degrees and certifications, the friends, the love, the fame, the good life, the perfect swing, the next iPhone? (I could go on.)

Can we have everything? No. There is simply too much. As the comedian, Stephen Wright, says, “You can’t have everything. Where would you put it?”

And having everything is so not the point. Life constantly presents us with rich possibilities…so many that we could never possibly choose them all. Our job is to choose then pursue the options that honestly feel best. And, though we may seek guidance and insight from others, only we can ever know what’s best for us to choose for ourselves.

Then we have a very full, meaningful life. All the satisfaction we want is in this choosing.

In your corner,

Mike

PS: Of course, knowing what feels good is the trick. We feel it in our bodies. We know when something truly feels good vs. when we merely think it should. We each have one or two feelings that tell us we are on the right track. For me, it’s a tingling up my back and neck.

PPS: We can even choose to have all those things listed above or not, as long as it feels good.

PPPS: Two useful, related measures of success in life: 1) What percentage of my life is chosen?  2) Is that percentage increasing over time?

rue de notre dame

What Does Your Personal Indicator Say?

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Success, Will=Our inner game
Reading time: 2 min.

Pause a moment. What physical sensations do you notice in response to this question: “If you could live the life and career of your dreams, what would it feel like?”

Common feelings people report here include a buzz, tingling, warmth, lightness, or sensations of relief, release, or calm. They notice these sensations in their chest, belly, or pelvis, down their arms or legs, up their back, neck, or head, across their shoulders, or into their fingers and toes.

Whatever you feel is your personal indicator–like a GPS–telling that you are on track. When you feel this feeling of yours, you are thinking and heading in the right direction.

What’s really amazing is that you can turn it around. If you pause to generate this feeling, you shift your thinking then your actions back in the direction of your dreams.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: How can you generate this feeling? Simple: go back and ask yourself that question again.

PPS: “Nothing” or bad feelings like tension or weight are other common feelings people report. This is our personal indicator that we are bumping into a habit of thought about how impossible it is to live a dream life or career. Try writing down even a few elements of what would be your dream. Then ask yourself that question again.

PPPS: You may have noticed: living a dream life or career may or may not be possible. It’s not the point, really. The point is all the joy and success that are available to us now and every instant along the way.

 

Today’s photo credit: caribb via photopin cc

yes exit

Hell Is Not Other People

Posted on 2 CommentsPosted in Will=Our inner game
Reading time: 1 min.

Jean-Paul Sartre famously wrote (and others infamously misinterpreted), “Hell is other people.” He meant that it’s awful to restrict our understanding of ourselves to what others think of us.

Actually, any restricted perception is awful. Thus hell includes our restricted perception of the world as harsh, ugly, unknowable, dangerous, lonely, uncaring, and riddled with scarcity.

Yuck. Let’s agree to perceive differently.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: Have a “heavenly” day.

Today’s photo credit: Matthew T Rader via photopin cc

The Magic and the Mundane

Posted on 2 CommentsPosted in What=Compelling Focus
Reading time: 1 min.

Like a well-trimmed sailboat, we best balance on the edge between all magic and all mundane.

Seeking to be all magic defeats the purpose of this game we call life. It’s like getting the cheat codes. No challenge. No growth. No fun.

Seeking to be all mundane invites lots of (oh, so much!) struggle.

Blending magic and the mundane helps us play this game in a really fun and light and interesting way.

Let’s play.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: Balance is not a goal. It is not a noun. When we speak of it here, it’s a verb.

PPS: Kids embody this blend of challenge and magic. Adults can, too.

PPPS: You get to define magic however you want to.