Friday Review: Ambition

Friday Review: Ambition

How ambitious are you? Here are a few ambition-related posts you may have missed.

 

“The will to win, the desire to succeed, the urge to reach your full potential… these are the keys that will unlock the door to personal excellence.”

 

 

 

“We remain young to the degree that our ambitions are greater than our memories.”

 

 

 

“Don’t aim for consistently heroic efforts. Aim for being heroic at consistency.”

 

 

 

 

“Condense it and Present it.”

“Condense it and Present it.”

—Author Unknown

Whether we like it or not, our attention spans are shrinking.

My first attempts at blogging – around nine years ago – met with very modest success. I even found it difficult to attract the eyeballs and minds of family and friends on a consistent basis.

The people closest to me simply told me that my post took them a few minutes to read and their time was in short supply — OUCH!

When I took a close look at what I tended to read and make time for, I too found that a shorter, tighter, get-to-the-point format fit with my “snacking” approach to consuming certain forms of information.

It turned out that in some situations the “sound bite” garnered greater attention and often stuck with people. That became the foundation of The Quotable Coach: Thought-provoking ideas presented as a Quote, a Commentary and an Exercise you can explore in about a minute.

EXERCISE:

Where in your personal and professional communication efforts would a Condense It and Present It approach work best?

“If you add a little to a little, and then do it again, soon that little shall be much.”

“If you add a little to a little, and then do it again, soon that little shall be much.”

—Hesiod, ancient Greek poet

I recently reviewed Stillness is the Key by Ryan Holiday. During the COVID-19 stay-at-home orders, I wanted to feel that doing what appeared to be little or even nothing might prove beneficial beyond saving myself or others from exposure to the virus.

Ryan recommends little steps of stillness related to the domains of body, mind, and spirit. His examples include the story of Winston Churchill taking up bricklaying during a very demanding time of intense work and stress. The slow process of mixing mortar and stacking bricks was just the thing he needed to keep his body busy while allowing his mind to unwind.

EXERCISE:

Where might the process of introducing small mind, body, or spiritual activities/rituals to your day result in much more than you might expect?

Feel free to reply to this post with the practices that work best for you.

“Govern thy life and thy thoughts as if the whole world were to see the one and read the other.”

“Govern thy life and thy thoughts as if the whole world were to see the one and read the other.”

—Thomas Fuller, 17th Century English Churchman/Historian

Image from Unsplash by Deniz Göçmen

What have you been doing these days? What have you been thinking about over the past few months? How pleased are you by what you and the world are seeing in your efforts and overall character?

Comparing oneself to others can be a slippery slope with a considerable down side. But examining the best qualities of others can be an excellent form of coaching by the example certain individuals set for us to emulate.

Look for the qualities of generosity, compassion, empathy, kindness, and courage as these individuals navigate their days to serve their communities while – hopefully – taking care of their own well being.

EXERCISE:

When you look in the mirror tonight, observe how pleased you feel about how you spent your day. What tweaks or significant adjustments to your actions and thinking will generate greater satisfaction when you look in the mirror tomorrow?

Friday Review: Action

FRIDAY REVIEW: ACTION

What prompts you to take action? Here are a few action-related posts you may have missed.

 

“Our doubts are traitors and make us lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt.”

 

 

 

“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds you plant.”

 

 

 

“The problem with doing nothing is not knowing when you are finished.”

 

 

 

“The oldest, shortest words – Yes and No – are those which require the most thought.”

“The oldest, shortest words – Yes and No – are those which require the most thought.”

—Pythagoras, ancient Greek philosopher

We can learn a lot from babies and toddlers as they begin taking in the world through their senses. They begin their ability to use language even before their first Yes or No. Their cries and coos let us know what they do and don’t want in their lives.

As we age, our Yes’s and No’s are two of the most critical influences on how we spend our lives and who we spend them with. This is especially so when we are launched into the world beyond parental and social influences such as school.

EXERCISE:

How much thought do you give your current Yes’s and No’s? What criteria or inner compass do you use to influence and guide these life-altering choices?

How can and will you be even more discerning with these two little words, now and in the future?

“Be brave enough to start a conversation that matters.”

“Be brave enough to start a conversation that matters.”

—Author Unknown

Image from Unsplash by Fran Hogan

In times of considerable uncertainty, I have noticed tremendous bravery in people.

We expect bravery in our armed services men and women, our police force, firefighters, Emergency Medical personnel, and other first responders.

These days medical professions and the array of other “essential” workers that support them are also putting themselves on the line.

What brave conversations must be had to mobilize the dramatic decisions and bold actions taken to protect and serve one another and all of our communities?

EXERCISE:

What conversations in your personal or professional community are to be had that will make the difference you wish to make?

Select one such conversation in which you will summon the necessary level of bravery today.

“Life is actually an essay, not a series of responses to someone else’s agenda.”

“Life is actually an essay, not a series of responses to someone else’s agenda.”

—Seth Godin, American Author

Image from Unsplash by Thought Catalog

In order to flatten the curve of the COVID-19 pandemic, most schools and other learning institutions closed for the year.

Once the initial “extended summer vacation” excitement wore off and the reality set in, we were given an extremely important assignment.

Our homework is to write and experience the next chapters of our life stories. Some of us might look to the limitations and constraints. But we can also see new levels of creativity, innovation, and freedom to express ourselves through the amazing examples set by others in our various communities.

EXERCISE:

What will you include in your Hero’s Journey essay? How can you continue to influence your communities, expand your capabilities, and make an even more purposeful difference in the world?

What would happen if more of us put down the remote and picked up our pens to pursue our personal agenda?

“Nothing has more strength than dire necessity.”

“Nothing has more strength than dire necessity.”

—Euripides, classic Greek tragedian

Image from Unsplash by Vicky Sim

It is so sad that in order to see man at his best we often need a crisis to occur.

When lives are on the line, new levels of extraordinary courage and strength are found and mobilized.

Almost every newscast ends on positive notes of heroism, acknowledging this capacity in select individuals, hopefully to engender this quality within us all. In this way, our own strength and inner heroes are aroused to come to the rescue of those in our personal and professional communities who are in need.

What will happen when the dust settles on the pandemic and we get back to whatever “normal” may look like mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and economically?

How might we maintain our individual and collective strength when things are a bit less dire?

EXERCISE:

What new or greater capacities have you discovered in yourself and within your communities?

How can and will you expand and build on these to proactively better your individual and our collective world in the good and not so good times ahead?

Friday Review: Acceptance

FRIDAY REVIEW: ACCEPTANCE

What is the hardest part of acceptance for you? Here are a few posts related to acceptance you may have missed.

 

“Accept this moment as if you had chosen it.”

 

 

 

 

“Refusing to ask for help when you need it is refusing someone the chance to be helpful.”

 

 

 

“Patience is the calm acceptance that things can happen in a different order than the one you have in mind.”