Quietly

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Leading, We=All Who Matter, Will=Our inner game
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Here’s an unusual but powerful way to add value: when the rest of the world (or at least the rest of the people in the meeting) are flying off the handle, we can remain calm. We need not say anything. We only need to stay present, breathing. They may not acknowledge or even recognize what we’re doing. But the impact can be profound.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: CarbonNYC [in SF!] Good Lucifer: My Friend Michael via photopin (license)

Escaping the Productivity Pendulum

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Uncategorized
Reading time: 2 min.

Our motivation to get stuff done is like a pendulum. When we swing to one side, we push ourselves to do more. When we swing to the other side, we avoid doing more.

Each side reacts to and causes the other. We push ourselves because we don’t want to be idle. We avoid doing more because pushing is so life draining. Though we may tend toward one side or the other, we all normally find ourselves swinging back and forth.

Which is better? Neither side is better. Both come from unspoken regrets about the past, worries of the future, and fears (which are lies, really) about being incomplete, inadequate, or unacceptable.

To stop the pendulum, we choose to be present. Undistracted and in this delicious moment, we get to look out and choose what we want to do next. Sure we look to the past for insight and to the future with excitement. But being present, we neither push nor avoid. Then we get more done and feel great about it.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: There are several ways to learn to be present. Spend 5 minutes just noticing things around the room, house, office, or outdoors; set aside any judgments about how good or bad each thing is. Or spend 5 minutes noticing your breathing. Or spend 5 minutes using any of the buzz-raising tools such as This Is Me.

 

Today’s photo credit: Cole Henley cc

Life Becomes Easier, That’s Why

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Will=Our inner game
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Let’s be present. Presence means neither regretting the past nor worrying about the future. It means not trying to control things. It means accepting what’s true now, declaring what (if anything) we want to be true, being open insights and inspirations, then acting with appropriate speed on those insights and inspirations.

But why bother? Learning to do this is really hard. Our habits are so well ingrained.

Because life becomes easier the more we are present. Regret, worry, and control demand lots of energy that we could better use for achieving what we want.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: Yes, this even works if your habit or preference has been to jump right into action.

 

Today’s photo credit: Vincent Luk cc

looking forward

The Past Means Nothing

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Will=Our inner game
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Our past has nothing to do with what our present is and our future will be.

Unless we let it.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: Nothing at all.

PPS: Though it was that way before, we have all the power we need to choose anew now.

PPPS: This means we can change everything. Yes, even with that guy over in accounting.

 

Today’s photo credit: Jessica Lucia cc

now

What Do They Mean, “Now”?

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

The sages tell us to be present, live in the now. They all swear by it. They say it’s where we are most powerful. And they share their heartiest, “It’s the grooviest, man,” “You gotta dig it,” and similar endorsements whenever the topic comes up.

But what do they mean really? And what about history? What about planning? Are they saying we can’t learn from the past or plan for the future?

What they mean is that we waste tons of time and energy regretting the past and worrying about the future. Since we can only ever think or act right now (just try thinking something tomorrow or yesterday), regret and worrying offer us no help. None. Period. So why do it?

Learning from the past and planning for the future are fine so long as it feels good to do so. Beating ourselves up about the past and fretfully or angrily trying to arrange the future feel really bad. Accepting the past and painting a picture of what we want to see happen feel good. Imagining how good it will be when that picture comes true feels great.

Let’s do that…now.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: Far out, eh?

 

Today’s photo credit: kevin dooley via photopin cc

Where?

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Will=Our inner game
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There is an important place I encourage you to visit often. Where is it? Well…

  • When you have guilt about the past or worry about the future, you are shunting your power away from this, the place where it can do you and the rest of us any good.
  • When you anticipate something going poorly–or having the chance to go poorly–you tense up. Physically, mentally, and emotionally you prepare to defend yourself in case you get hurt, derailed, criticized, or rejected. Far better to acknowledge that you can handle anything that comes to meet you in this, the one and only place that you can encounter it.
  • When you take time to feel good before you get into action, you are going to this same place.

What place is this? It is now, it is this very moment, it is the present.

Meet you there!

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: A bit poetic/esoteric today, eh? Yes and this topic is probably important enough to warrant just a bit of it. What do you think?