"The Man, The Mission, The Passion" Husband, Father, Attorney, CPA, Steward Leader, Entrepreneur, MBA, Author, Builder, HBS OPM 25 Class, Mentor, Teacher

In Search of Courage to Face the Ordinary Day

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In times of crisis we are often energized. Our skills are called upon and we respond to the clear and present danger. The need is certain and we are focused, connected, and engaged. Everyday life presents a different challenge. Life still has whatever meaning and purpose we have chosen to give it but it is often more subtle, possibly less invigorating, perhaps less clear. Important yes, but no longer important AND urgent.

Without the loud clarion call of crisis demanding a response (i.e. external motivation), it falls upon us to find the internal motivation that will keep us moving forward on a daily basis. The best motivation comes from within and while internal motivation flourishes best if nurtured and refreshed regularly, in the final analysis it must come from within. Others can provide the spark, the inspiration (literally “to put spirit in”) but YOU must tend the fire, feed the fire.

Life is an ongoing mix of the mundane and the sacred, the humdrum and the holy. As the Zen proverb goes “Before enlightenment, chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment, chop wood, carry water.” We are on stage 24/7, constantly broadcasting our true values. Our lives are our message to the world and we never know when we might touch a life or have an opportunity to help a fellow traveler along their way.

Closing Quotes:

“What I need courage for is the ordinary, the daily every-dayness of life.” Tish Harrison Warren

“Everyone wants a revolution. No one wants to do the dishes.” – New Monasticism Community saying (“And yet the dishes need to be done.” – NSC)

“People who are unable to motivate themselves must be content with mediocrity, no matter how impressive their other talents.”  – Andrew Carnegie, 1835-1919, Scottish-American industrialist who led expansion of American steel industry  

As always, I share what I most want/need to learn. – Nathan S. Collier

Daily Decisions

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We are smart. Boy, are we smart. We generally know what to do; what actions will move us forward.

We are dumb. Boy, are we dumb. Often there is a significant gap between what we know we should do and what we actually do.

We do not do as well as we know. We procrastinate, we avoid doing a task that needs to be accomplished.

Why do we procrastinate? Well, if procrastination is the practice of doing more pleasurable things in place of less pleasurable then one answer is to look for ways to re-frame the “smart” choice as the more pleasurable choice.

How to re-frame “smart” choices as more pleasurable? One key is that the more we do a task in the right frame of mind i.e. positive and the more skilled we get at it, the easier and more enjoyable it becomes. Another key is visualization: See yourself powering through it, visualize yourself enjoying it, visualize the benefits, picture the new, better you.

Not saying it’s easy (if it were easy, you probably would’ve done it already!) just that it can be done and that others have done it and you can too. Your life, your choices but you are only issued one life and you are unlikely to change your life until you change something you do daily.

Closing Quote:

“The secret of your future is buried in your daily routine.” – Mike Murdock

As always, I share what I most want/need to learn. – Nathan S. Collier

5 Ways to Love Yourself Better

Love yourself

1) Become Your Own BFF: Get on over on your own side and stay there! Hush up that inner critic! Objective observation, clear-eyed evaluation, solution-oriented analysis, relevant feedback, constructive advice delivered diplomatically and at appropriate time, volume, and intensity without agenda other than to help: all good. Judgement and criticism: toxic! Build yourself up, don’t beat yourself up!

2) Accept Yourself, Negatives and All: You are a Child of the Universe, a work in progress, you don’t have to be perfect to be perfectly okay. Be gentle, kind, and patient with yourself.

3) Take Care of Yourself: Embrace wholesome discipline, hold yourself accountable. At times this can mean practicing Tough Love with yourself, by releasing bad habits and replacing with habits that serve you such as healthy eating, vigorous exercise, and keeping a reasonable amount of energizing challenge and invigorating growth in your life. You ask how does this reconcile with accepting yourself? Accepting where you are in your path does not mean you accept that you will never progress forward; it simply means internalizing the truth that beating yourself up is not a long term effective means of motivation. It may get you a short spurt of energy but it is generally comes with a long term cost that exceeds any short term benefit. The secret of your future is buried in your daily routine.

4) Surround Yourself with Support and Positivity: It has been said that you are the sum of the five people you spend the most time with. Pick companions for your journey through life that will pull you forward, inspire you, and accept nothing less from you than your best.

5) Be Kind to Your Mind: Find a source of inspiration, of intellectual stimulation, and return to it regularly, as often as you bathe or brush your teeth. Your mental health is as vital as your physical, they are intricately intertwined.

Closing Quotes;

“You have been criticizing yourself for years, and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens.” – Louise L. Hay

“A man cannot be comfortable without his own approval.” – Mark Twain

“The most powerful relationship you will ever have is the relationship with yourself.” – Steve Maraboli, Life, the Truth & Being Free

As always, I share what I most want/need to learn. – Nathan S. Collier