Don’t let facts get in the way of your narrative
You can shoehorn facts to fit your story. You can omit what is inconvenient and cleverly twist the truth. You can engineer whatever you want into your narrative.
The problem is that scripting your story makes you confront ignorance, awareness and honesty. The ignorance of possibly not knowing the fuller truth, the awareness of having the desire to see the larger reality, the honesty of being able to look at yourself in the mirror.
Life gets easier when you reframe choices as experiments, when you release the pressure to be perfect and resist the temptation to overthink failure.
Give yourself permission to experiment.
Refuse to live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat. (paraphrased from Teddy Roosevelt)
Every day we choose. Will we engage in the struggle to create meaning and value? Will we reject ignoble ease, and pursue the more difficult path? Will we make a difference?
Words, so plentiful and cheap, won’t suffice. No one cares about what we say. They care about what we do, what we achieve, how we make a difference.
Participation trophies don’t count
Nope. It’s not only a lie, it’s a dangerous message.
Everything you get, everything that’s meaningful in life, is earned. You have to do more than just show up.
Loss is part of the cycle to get to winning. There is no shame in losing.
You don’t have to win at every turn. You don’t have to keep score. The real winner learns from defeat and gets back in the arena. The real winner knows that everything you get you have to earn.
What if the experts are wrong?
You, to the expert: “What time is it?”
The expert: “Can I borrow your watch?”
Filter what you hear through what you know, what you can find out. Experts are as plentiful as table salt. Everyone has an opinion.
When you live according to the so-called experts, you cede control of your critical thinking, your instincts, your need to make your own choices.
Think critically. Do your homework. Trust your gut.
Anyone can hold a grudge
Too few can let go.
Grudges, vendettas and the desire for revenge exact a price. Life becomes smaller, becomes defined by anger, hurt and pain.
Learn to forgive. Depending on the circumstance, learn to wipe the slate clean, learn to exercise forbearance, learn to release the burden of bad feelings.
Forgiving is not necessarily forgetting, but it does open possibilities for a better life.
What happens when we keep complaining?
We keep blaming. We keep making excuses. We keep losing.
We can let go of the past, we can make changes, and we can get on with our better life. Or we can choose to stay stuck.
How to avoid criticism
When you choose to avoid criticism, you become small, inauthentic and distant. You fail to grow.
Engage your world with truth and honesty – even when it’s not so easy, not so comfortable.
When you don’t ask, the answer is always no.
Entitlement won’t get you there. Wishful thinking won’t get you there.
Want yes? Then step up and ask.
The sun will rise tomorrow. Another day to engage in the arena. Another day to feel and express gratitude.
When the world seems like it’s crashing in, when you feel overwhelmed and unfocused – remind yourself.