A classic sign of addictive behavior is when

“A classic sign of addictive behavior is when something not human starts to supplant human relationships.”

—Arthur C. Brooks, faculty member of the Harvard Business School

Image from Unsplash by Unsplash

Over the 4th of July holiday we attended a family pool party. The weather and water temperature were perfect. It was extra special because everyone focused on each other the entire day without a cell phone in sight — except for one individual.

When not swimming or eating, this person was head down in his device, even when his bathing-suit-clad children were seeking his attention to talk or play.

EXERCISE:

Where do you or others in your life prioritize things over people? What addictive behaviors need some adjustment to demonstrate that the best things in life are not things?

We take care of the future best by taking care of the present now

“We take care of the future best by taking care of the present now.”

Jon Kabat-Zinn, Mindfulness Meditation

Image from Amazon

I am currently reading The Carbon Almanac, edited by Seth Godin, who also wrote the Forward. It is a 300+ page book of facts about climate change.

Representing the global efforts of more than three hundred volunteers in over 40 countries, it is the most up to date and well-vetted resource that presents where we are and how we got here, in language that we can all understand.

This book is a call to action to have all people, organizations, and governments come together to meet this moment in time to take care of our world and each other.

EXERCISE:

Please order, read, and discuss this important book with others in your various communities.

Encourage others to actively participate in this urgent global effort.

We can choose to be courageous whether we are ready or not

We can choose to be courageous whether we are ready or not.

—Calm App Reflection

Image from Freeclassicimages.com

Today’s thought reminds me of Hugh Laurie’s quote, “There is no such thing as ready. There is only now.”

How much of the time do you find yourself in a state of preparation before you shoot, ship, or act? When we wait to actually feel ready and 100% confident on our success, we are probably too late.

We recently saw and enjoyed the new Elvis movie. I was surprised to learn about how nervous and fearful Elvis was before getting on stage to shake things up in his unique and controversial style.

EXERCISE:

In what parts of your life are you waiting to be ready?

Where is it time to shake things up?

How would choosing to be more courageous help you realize more of your full potential?

It may be Now or Never.

Friday Review: Conscience

Friday Review: Conscience

How strong is the voice of your conscience? Here are a few related posts you may have missed.

 

“The ultimate test of a man’s conscience may be his willingness to sacrifice something today for future generations whose words of thanks will not be heard.”

 

 

 

“When a man is wrapped up in himself, he makes a pretty small package.”

 

 

 

“Labor to keep alive in your breast that little spark of celestial fire called conscience.”

 

 

 

The forced separation from ordinary ambitions

“The forced separation from ordinary ambitions temporarily right sizes one’s life.”

—Arthur C. Brooks, faculty member of the Harvard Business School

Image from Pixels by Lukáš Vaňátko

How often do you wake up in the morning with a strong sense of peace and calm?

What percent of the time do your thoughts spring into action with all the to-dos for the day, before your feet even hit the floor?

When do you first check your phone for texts or emails that have piled up overnight?

How many truly important messages do you receive each day, and how many do you consider clutter of junk?

Although we are now well into summer, there is always time to do a bit of spring cleaning.

How would some forced separation from your ordinary ambitions that clutter your various inboxes help you right size your life?

EXERCISE:

Where would unsubscribing and removing various barriers to your aliveness make the biggest difference?

Where can and will you begin today?

If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one quality

“If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one quality or ability, what would it be?”

—Arthur Aron — A More Beautiful Question

Image from Unsplash by Kenny Eliason

We are all works in progress if we choose to be.

From the day we are born, we have the capacity to take in all types of inputs and mix them with our previous experiences. This ongoing journey helps us become a better version of ourselves.

When it comes to our prized abilities and qualities, we all likely have some level of competency.

EXERCISE:

What qualities and personal characteristics do you value most?

How would you rate yourself in these areas?

Where can and will you choose to focus your attention and efforts today?

You have to wait for the falling tide

“You have to wait for the falling tide.”

—Arthur C. Brooks, faculty member of the Harvard Business School

Image from Unsplash by Aidan Hodel

As a young boy, Arthur Brooks was fishing along the shore without success. After a while an elderly fisherman from the area came along, and noticed his frustration that nothing was biting.

Today’s quote was the wisdom offered, indicating that when the tide recedes is when all the plankton and bait fish gets stirred up, making the game fish crazy and willing to bite at everything.

How might this idea relate to your life?

Where do the tides in your personal and professional worlds seem to be headed out to sea?

How could this be a time where things are getting stirred up with new possibilities to catch a big one?

EXERCISE:

Where in your life are the falling tides offer you some new fertile opportunities?

How can you avoid the mistake of not having your line in the water?

 Become one with your point of focus and fall into flow

Become one with your point of focus and fall into flow.

—Tamara Levitt, Calm App Reflection

Image from Unsplash by Ravi Perchik

Our grandson Weston has been taking swimming lessons at a local aquatic club since last fall. Over the past few months, we’ve noticed a plateauing effect on his progress. His weekly 30-minute classes have a single instructor and three other students, thus limiting his individualized attention.

With the warmer weather, he now swims outside on a regular basis with the family and gets many more hours of personal attention and wrinkled fingers. To our delight, his progress has taken a giant leap and he is quickly moving from a guppy to a dolphin in his abilities.

EXERCISE:

Where do you demonstrate the greatest level of focus?

How does your single-minded attention impact your experience of these events and your ability to perform at your best?

Friday Review: Commitment

Friday Review: Commitment

How committed are you to your commitments? Here are a few related posts you may have missed.

 

“Stay committed to your decisions but stay flexible in your approach.”

 

 

 

“Apologizing doesn’t always mean you’re wrong, and the other person is right. It means you value your relationship more than your ego.”

 

 

“When we do what we have to do we are compliant. When we do what we choose to do we are committed.”

 

 

 

Make it fun if you want it done

“Make it fun if you want it done.”

Jon Acuff, New York Times Bestselling Author

Image from Amazon

What are your definitions of work and play? Consider examining the numerous activities throughout your day to determine the ratio of one to the other.

Which of your efforts are both enjoyable and productive? What duties do you dread and often avoid altogether for more pleasant pursuits?

My grandson Weston loves to play, and within minutes no one would ever recognize that the house was cleaned moments earlier. Getting him to clean up and put things back where they belong is no fun for him or mom and dad.  Making clean up a game where numbers, colors, shapes, and toy categories are identifiers helps immensely, especially when his efforts are timed.

EXERCISE:

How can you gamify and add a bunch more fun to some of your more challenging or distasteful tasks? Consider reading Brian Tracy’s book, Eat That Frog for more ideas on getting things done.