“Is this necessary?”
—Marcus Aurelius, Roman emperor from 161 to 180
How often do you feel or hear yourself telling others that you are busy, slammed, and overwhelmed with all the demands of life? How often do you ever get to the bottom of your to-do list with energy left over to spend as you wish?
We all crave some wiggle room and respite in our days to recharge, renew, and even play. Many don’t let themselves play until all the work is done — and it rarely is.
Write the question, “Is this necessary?” on a few post-it notes places in strategic spots at home and at work. Now capture all those past to-do items that end up your ‘to-don’t-do” list. Share this list with others to support your new intentions and accountability.
It’s been over nine years and 2,200 posts – I am motivated by your continued readership and grateful for your comments.
Over the years, we’ve looked at motivational quotes covering nearly 200 categories or topics. Take a look at the right sidebar, scroll down till you see “categories” and take your pick!
May your days be filled with Thanks-Giving.
“You don’t have to be sick to get better.”
—Hale Irwin, American professional golfer
Image from Unsplash by Morgan David de Lossy
Golf has become one of the go-to sports given COVID-19 and our need for social distancing. Being in the fresh air and walking or riding in a golf cart solo allows players to enjoy natural beauty, be with friends, and engage in a game that can never quite be mastered.
I recently heard the story of a fan watching legendary golfer Hale Irwin practicing on the range following one of his many career wins, where he shared today’s quote. Clearly he was driven by the desire within most of us for the goal of continuous improvement and personal mastery.
Where can and will you continue to practice and apply your most committed efforts to take an aspect of your life from good to great?
Please share this intention with a coach or two who would be delighted to support your efforts to get better.
“Don’t go to war to maintain the past.”
—Seth Godin, American Author
Have you seen Hamilton? If not, you are in luck—Disney just paid a fortune for the rights to the show. It is now available on its streaming platform with the original cast.
Beneath the wonderful music, staging, and the extraordinary performances is the powerful story of the beginnings of our nation and how we went to war to become free and chart our own future.
The comical King George in the production went to war to hold on to the past, and obviously lost.
Where are you and others in your personal and professional communities still engaged in a war to maintain the past? What revolutionary ideas, efforts, and opportunities are worth fighting for to create your new future?
“How will you put your mind and your time to good use?”
Image from Amazon.com
“Good Question!” is a fairly frequent response I receive from the people I coach.
It says, to me, that we have hit on an area where looking more carefully or digging deeper would prove useful or interesting.
Warren Berger’s book, A More Beautiful Question: the power of inquiry to spark breakthrough ideas is one of my favorites on this topic.
Breakthroughs in our mind and our use of time may be two useful places to start.
For the next week, be your own coach. Ask and answer questions like the one that is today’s quote. Consider exploring your answers with others in your personal and professional communities. Consider capturing this heavy lifting in a journal or note book.
Please reply to this post and let me know how you put your mind and your time to good use.
“If you mess up, fess up.”
—Kevin Kelly, founding executive editor of Wired magazine
Image from Unsplash by Sarah Killian
It Takes Two to Tango.
Take a moment to look at the health and work-ability of your closest and most important relationships.
Examine how things are going with your spouse, partner, children, siblings, and friends. How about your connections with colleagues, customers, and others at work?
Virtually all of my coaching clients place communications and improving relationships at or near the very top of their most important and urgent priorities. Among the tips and techniques offered in countless books, workshops, and seminars is the good old-fashioned sincere apology.
Where and with whom have you stepped on a toe or two recently?
What role and what level of responsibility do you have in what is and isn’t working?
Where would fessing up to a mess you made or helped create make the biggest difference?
When will you take the necessary action to clean things up?
Please reply to this post and let me know how things go.
“The years teach much which the days never know.”
—Ralph Waldo Emerson, 19th Century American essayist, philosopher, poet
Image from Unsplash by Christopher Burns
If you take a close look at our beautiful Earth and have done some traveling, you will have likely enjoyed Mother Nature’s magnificence.
Consider the sculpting power of wind, water, ice, the tectonic forces below us, and how they have all shaped our world for 4.5 billion years.
Occasionally, and perhaps a bit more often these days, we see dramatic examples of Mother Nature’s power. However, it may be her patience and ongoing work over years, decades, centuries, and millennium in which we can most fully appreciate her masterpiece.
How can you more fully appreciate your own daily efforts as the sculpting tools they represent in designing and crafting the future you desire?
“Opportunities are seldom labeled.”
—John A. Shedd, 19th Century American author and professor
For most of my life, I have been fascinated by the subject of personal and professional success.
I’ve read hundreds of books, attended dozens of seminars and conferences, and can hardly count the number of blog posts, podcasts, and TED talks I’ve explored.
In his book, Barking Up the Wrong Tree, Eric Barker digs into the science of success, to mess a bit with the conventional and unconventional wisdom on this subject.
One seemingly universal tenet of success does, however, point to the idea of taking massive action and trying many things along the way to stir up far more possibilities and opportunities to pursue.
To what degree are you waiting or being too passive, hoping for an opportunity to reveal itself?
Where would taking far more action and trying many more things help you bark up and climb the right trees for you?
“Electricity is really just organized lightning.”
—George Carlin, 20th Century American comedian
Image from Unsplash by Lucien Kolly
Imagine early man looking to the night sky during a storm, with all those thunderous bursts of lightning. What wondrous, frightening, and awesome source could generate such power?
As time progressed, great thinkers and scientists saw the potential to harness this power for the benefit of man.
Consider that you, too, are a source of lightning, given your numerous gifts, talents, ideas, and the contributions you’ve made at various points in your life.
How consistently or inconsistently do you experience the flow of energetic expressions of yourself?
In what ways can you more fully harness and express your energy and brilliance, to lead a more powerful and electrifying life?
“Accept this moment as if you had chosen it.”
—Eckart Tolle, Author of The Power of Now
Image from Unsplash by Luke Chesser
What percentage of your day do you find yourself irritated, upset, or even angry about how things are going?
Consider your thwarted intentions and unfulfilled expectations as precursors to such feelings.
What benefit might you experience if you stopped resisting how things are and chose instead to accept and allow them to be as they are?
What people and events are occurring in your life in which acceptance would provide you the greatest value?