Reading gives us some place to go

“Reading gives us some place to go when we have to stay where we are.”

—Mason Cooley, Late American Aphorist

Image of a man reading at a bus stop

Photo by Laëtitia Buscaylet on Unsplash

My mother, Rose, was the most avid reader I’ve ever known. As a boy, I would frequently go with her to the library where, every three weeks, she would pick a new batch of 12 books. She devoured them every evening after dinner.

I recall her frustration on one occasion, in that she could not find, in our small local library, enough books of interest that she had not already read.

Although she was never a world traveler or college graduate, she took countless trips with her vivid imagination – wherever her written portals to adventure would take her.

EXERCISE:

Consider visiting your local library or bookstore to pick up a book that will take you on a great adventure, from the comfort of your favorite chair.

Misuse of Imagination

“Worry is a misuse of the imagination.”

-Dan Zadra, Founder/Editorial Director of Compendium, Inc.

Image of entrance to Imagination Pavilion

Image from WDWlive

IMAGINATION is a pavilion on the western side of Epcot’s “Future World.”

At one time, a playful purple dragon named Figment was the IMAGINATION host, taking visitors on a happy and whimsical ride.

What if there were a “Worry Pavilion”? What would you name the host character?  What might the ride through that pavilion entail?  Unfortunately, many of us take a ride through the Worry Pavilion every day, living lives that are anything but whimsical.

EXERCISE:

How can and will you channel your imagination muscle to have a far more joyful ride?

“Never judge a book by its movie.”

“Never judge a book by its movie.”

—Don DeLillo, American novelist

image from icezen.com

image from icezen.com

Reading a book takes effort. Watching a movie, not so much. More often than not, many if not most movies fall short of their books.

Tens or hundreds of millions of dollars are invested in movies based on books because the characters and stories amaze readers. It is in these stories and characters that our visions of these works of art are envisioned and portrayed by producers and directors. Unfortunately, even with brilliant actors and special effects, the images on screen rarely capture what our own creativity and imagination can create from the words of a masterful storyteller.

Books allow us to pace ourselves and literally savor each bit of dialogue or image painted, if we choose to do the work the writer intended. Phrases like “I couldn’t put it down,” or “page turner” are familiar to all of us who have been fortunate to get our hands on great books.

These works also tend to have a lasting impact in that their messages and images penetrate deeply, due to the active role the reader must play.

Perhaps a picture does not always paint 1,000 words, and the words found in books allow us to paint more masterful pictures in our hearts and minds.

EXERCISE

Consider reading the book upon which a current film has been made, either before or after attending a screening.

Determine which you enjoyed the most, or felt had the greatest impact.

“Imagination is a quality given to man to compensate him for what he is not and a sense of humor was provided to console him for what he is.”

“Imagination is a quality given to man to compensate him for what he is not and a sense of humor was provided to console him for what he is.”

– Oscar Wilde, writer and poet

The development of self-awareness and the ability to adapt to life’s circumstances are critical skills developed and enhanced during a coaching relationship.

Quite often, I discover many people I work with have strong “inner critics” and tend to emphasize their own perceived shortcomings. At the same time, many of these same individuals take themselves and life far too seriously, which often diminishes their pleasure and enjoyment of life.

Exercise:

Try on “Wilde coaching” by exercising both your imagination and sense of humor to bring greater fulfillment and satisfaction to your days.

Let your friends, mentors and coaches in your life know that you intend to make these efforts so that they can help you improve your likelihood of success.

#67: “Whatever you vividly imagine, ardently desire…”

“…sincerely believe and enthusiastically act upon must inevitably come to pass.”

– Paul J. Meyer

How many blogs, newsletters, and books have you seen that tout the “X steps to success” and then go about taking up a few hundred pages to describe them?

Meyer’s quote contains four simple steps:

  • imagine = dreams = vision
  • desire = passion = purpose
  • belief = core values = authenticity
  • action = results = achievement

Exercise:

Select one area of your personal or professional life and go through these steps.

Repeat as often as you wish.

Quotes are posted on The Quotable Coach a week after being sent out by email. To get the latest quotes straight to your inbox, pop your details in the sidebar to the right.