People hear what we say but they see what we do and seeing is believing

“People hear what we say but they see what we do and seeing is believing.”

—Author Unknown

Image from Amazon

The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz is one of my favorite books. I’ve read it many times over the years and very much enjoyed the audio book read by Peter Coyote.

Among the four agreements, being impeccable with your word stands out for me.

In a world where there are countless examples of folks who are all talk and little action, I crave associating with people who walk their talk.

Examine the people in your life who demonstrate the character traits you most admire. How do their actions — and not just their words — inspire you to be a better version of yourself?

EXERCISE:

What do people hear and see when they observe your words and actions?

Where might an upgrade of impeccability with your word be in order to make more believers of the people in your life?

Unspoken expectations are premeditated resentments

“Unspoken expectations are premeditated resentments.”

Neil Strauss, American author, journalist and ghostwriter.

Image from Amazon

Where in your life do you harbor resentments towards others?

Who are the people that make your blood boil — or just annoy you — because they let you down or fall short of your expectations?

In arguments with our significant others, it is not uncommon to hear the phrase “I’m not a mind reader” used to express our frustrations.

To avoid or lessen the occurrence of such interactions preempt them by speaking up early with direct and specific requests. If accepted, you have a clear promise — and if denied, you can always try negotiating an alternative path forward.

EXERCISE:

Where in your life are you silent about your expectations of others?

How has any underlying or overt resentment affected your relationship?

Consider reading Fierce Conversations by Susan Scott for many productive ways to speak up and listen better to improve your future interactions.

Talent and potential mean nothing if you can’t

“Talent and potential mean nothing if you can’t consistently do things when you don’t feel like doing them.”

Shane Parish, Athens, Georgia based guitarist

Image from Unsplash by Rachel Sanner

Consistency is a superpower.

Putting in your steps when the weather is mild and sunny is easy. Doing so when the skies are grey and there is a chilly wind in your face is another story.

What percent of your talent and potential have you realized?

How does it correlate with your attitude and willingness to push through the challenging “I don’t want to’s” in your life?

What habits have you developed that channel the discipline to push through the resistance that often blocks your way?

EXERCISE:

Consider reading and applying the many nuggets of wisdom from James Clear’s book Atomic Habits. Over 120,000 5- and 4-star reviews are on to something!

Beautiful things come together a stitch at a time

Beautiful things come together a stitch at a time. Pace your efforts and watch the tapestry of your life unfold.

—Calm App Reflection

Image from Unsplash by Barbara Krysztofiak

Where do you find yourself rushing through your days, or adding a level of urgency to areas of life that are clearly unimportant?

Where did all this striving to keep up or get ahead originate?

Where do the concepts of peer pressure — or the fear of missing out — have you trying to pack twenty pounds of potatoes into a ten-pound bag?

Years ago, my wife belonged to a needle craft club where she created various works of art a stitch at a time.

Sometimes a two-hour session would result in only a few square inches of her evolving masterpiece. Years later, these pieces have become increasingly meaningful because of how her meticulous efforts led to a one-and-only creation.

EXERCISE:

Where in your world would a slower pace help you seek, find, and stitch together a more beautiful and meaningful life?

Friday Review: Self-Image

FRIDAY REVIEW: Self-Image

How has your self-image shifted over the last year? Here are a few related posts you may have missed.

“When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.”

 

 

 

 

“When science discovers the center of the universe, a lot of people will be disappointed to find they are not it.”

 

 

 

 

“If you run out of kind words for yourself stop talking.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You might as well fall flat on your face as lean over too far backward

“You might as well fall flat on your face as lean over too far backward.”

James Thurber, 20th century American cartoonist, humorist, and playwright

Image from Unsplash by Vitolda Klein

Today’s quote offers us alternative ways to fall flat in life.

The first choice involves being a leader in our own life and charting our own course through the world.

The second involves the impossible task of always trying to please others.

In the first case we get to pick ourselves up and start over whenever we wish. In the second, our backs never seem to straighten and it can eventually break you.

EXERCISE:

How often do you find yourself bending backwards to please others?

Where would listening to your inner voice and forging forward be a better approach for successful living no matter how many times you fall?

To achieve great things, two things are needed

“To achieve great things, two things are needed: A plan, and not quite enough time.”

Leonard Bernstein, 20th century American conductor, composer, and author

Image from Unsplash by Alvaro Reyes

What significant tasks or projects have you always wanted to tackle?

How often do you use the lack of time as the reason for putting them off?

How often do you see an empty calendar when all the stars align for you to begin?

When such rare days appear, how frequently are you diverted into some other far more pleasant venture?

What would happen if we simply used the small blocks of time we do have to first plan our efforts and then nibble away at our elephants, one bite at a time?

EXERCISE:

Schedule 5 to 15 minutes today to create a plan for a small or modest size project.

Allocate 5 to 15 minutes each day this week to execute the items in your plan. Take note of the momentum created by just being in action.

Using this approach, what will it take to create something great?

You can spend a lifetime prioritizing safety and security, but the world

“You can spend a lifetime prioritizing safety and security, but the world comes alive when you consciously and selectively loosen your grip on the two.”

Stephen St. Amant, author of the Savenwood blog

Image from Unsplash by National Cancer Institute

A few weeks ago, my granddaughter had an accident at her playground. During a trip down the slide she bumped her mouth and lost one of her front baby teeth.

Following a visit to the ER, the dentist, and some time to let everyone’s emotions settle, she is back to her usual playful self.

Although parents and grandparents want to keep their little ones safe at all times, this may not always be the best way to help them venture out and grow.

EXERCISE:

Where in your life have you prioritized safety and security?

Where might loosening your grip on the two offer you far more rewards well worth the possible bumps along the way?

Where is it time to zoom in on the details or zoom out on the big picture

Where is it time to zoom in on the details or zoom out on the big picture? What type of focus is required in your current situation?

—Calm App Reflection

Image from Unsplash by Aaron Burden

Last month, many of us in the United States had the opportunity to see the solar eclipse. A family we know traveled 1500 miles from their home to see this event in San Antonio with their two young boys.

Road trips like these are an integral part of their home-schooling efforts and they took plenty of side trips along the way to zoom in and out to capture many other sights and wonders.

EXERCISE:

Where and how would your life improve with greater focus on more of the details of your world?

How might zooming out to a bigger, broader view of things offer you greater perspective and insight about the world?

Friday Review: Renewal

Friday Review: Renewal

What do you do to renew and rejuvenate yourself? Here are a few related posts you may have missed.

When we feel burned out and depleted sometimes we need to plug into a new source of energy that renews and restores. Resting is only one available option.

 

 

 

“Never go to sleep without a request to your subconscious.”

 

 

 

 

“Exhaustion is not a status symbol.”