I am the me I choose to be

“I am the me I choose to be.”

—Sidney Pottier, first black male to win the Best Actor Academy Award

Image from Unsplash by Pierre Bamin

Today’s quote seems like a modern version of Shakespeare’s famous line, To thine own self be true.

To what degree are you the “thee” you choose to be?

With all the pushing and pulling on us by outside forces, many of us have exchanged followers and likes for a bit of our souls.

Being a chameleon and constantly trying to please others almost always moves us away from our authentic selves.

In what ways have you or others close to you given away the power to choose and lost your way?

EXERCISE:

On what issues is it time to more courageously choose your most genuine self to receive the only essential “like” worth pursuing?

“The sooner you make a choice, the sooner you can make an adjustment.”

“The sooner you make a choice, the sooner you can make an adjustment.”

—James Clear, America author, entrepreneur, and photographer

Image from Unsplash by Brendan Church

Consider these activities:

Rifle Shooting Archery Golf
Bowling Billiards / Pool Soccer
Drone Flying Darts Basketball

How many have you tried over the years, and how masterful were you, at your best?

How many shots were required to hit your target or better yet, the bullseye?

How did a ready, shoot, adjust, repeat process increase your eventual accuracy?

EXERCISE:

Where are you waiting to launch into action for fear of missing your target?

How would taking far more courageous shots at your personal and professional goals, making the necessary adjustments, help any misses become great hits in the future?

“The proper work of the mind is the exercise of choice, refusal, yearnings, repulsion, preparation, purpose, and assent.”

“The proper work of the mind is the exercise of choice, refusal, yearnings, repulsion, preparation, purpose, and assent.”

—Epictetus, Discourses

Image from Unsplash by Robina Weermeijer

In today’s quote, Epictetus suggests there are seven clear functions of the mind.

Ryan Holiday and Stephen Hanselman break each of them down in the following manner in their book, The Daily Stoic:

Choice: to do and think right
Refusal: of temptation
Yearning: to be better
Repulsion: of negativity, of bad influences, and what isn’t true
Preparation: for what lies ahead or whatever might happen
Purpose: our guiding principles and highest priorities
Assent: to be free of deception about what is inside and outside our control (and be ready to accept the latter)

EXERCISE:

Consider printing this post out to work on and think through one of these functions of the mind each day. This exercise could be a crash course in Stoicism in itself.

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

“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?

EXERCISE:

What people and events are occurring in your life in which acceptance would provide you the greatest value?

Play the Tiles You Get

“Play the tiles you get.”

—Grandma Nelly

Image of a Scrabble tile holder

Image from Flickr by Joe King

In her book, 365 Days of Wonder, R.J. Palacio shares a charming story of her grandparents. Both avid Scrabble players, they played every day for more than 50 years.

Her grandfather, known as being the “intellectual,” almost always lost to his wife, who was primarily a homemaker, not the lawyer who graduated from Columbia.

Grandma Nelly was quite smart in her own right. She loved crossword puzzles. She had a miraculous ability to make the most of the tiles she was given rather than waiting to use the highest value tiles on double or triple word spaces. That was grandpa’s strategy.

EXERCISE:

In what areas of life are you waiting to get better tiles? What would be the value and benefit of learning to play the ones you currently have, and those you receive each day?

When You Run Away

“It’s when you run away that you’re most liable to stumble.”

—Casey Robinson, Screenwriter/Producer

Image from findapsychologist

I’m not completely sure if today’s quote is always true, but watching action films and TV shows, I see the main characters often fall when they run away from their pursuers. Perhaps in film and TV land this is to create more suspense. Invariably, though, they stop, turn around, and summons the courage to take on the bad guys and win the day.

EXERCISE:

Where are you currently in retreat mode? What is causing you to stumble? What attitude shift or other resources are required to turn things around so you can move forward professionally or personally?

 

Remove a Mountain

“The person who removes a mountain begins by carrying away small stones.”

-Chinese Proverb

Image of a boy carrying stones

Image from Flickr

Where are you today in regard to some of your most ambitious personal or professional goals for the new year? Are you in full stride, ahead of schedule?

Perhaps you are stalled, have lowered your sights considerably, or have stopped completely.

Today’s quote points to the small, consistent efforts we can all make on a daily basis to begin again, make progress, and eventually move mountains.

EXERCISE:

What are the “small stones” you will move today, to make progress toward your most desired personal or professional objectives?

The Best of My Life

“I choose to make the rest of my life the best of my life.”

-Louise Hay, American Motivational Author

Image from acelebrationofwomen.org

Image from acelebrationofwomen.org

 

Louise Hay is an American Motivational Author and the founder of Hay House. Through her healing techniques and positive philosophy, millions have learned to create more of what they want in their lives.

Hay House has published about 300 books and 350 audio programs by authors who align with Louise’s positive self-help perspective, and are supportive of healing our planet.

EXERCISE:

What actions will you choose to take today, and in the future, to make the rest of your life the best of your life?

How can you support and inspire others in your personal and professional communities to do the same?

As a small gesture, please consider forwarding this post to at least one person who would most appreciate its message.

Move On

“Everything will change when your desire to move on exceeds your desire to hold on.”

—Alan Cohen, Author of Daily Dose of Sanity

Image from Joomlaworks.net

Image from Joomlaworks.net

The ancient Greek mathematician Archimedes once said that if he were given a lever long enough and a fulcrum on which to place it, he could move the world.

Consider, today, your most deeply held commitments for a better future as your long lever, and your most important and foundational values as the fulcrum on which to place them.

One of my other favorite quotes is, your commitment supersedes your comfort.

EXERCISE:

How and in what ways can you experience the world-moving changes you desire by living each day more consistently with your most cherished commitments and values?

 

Create What you Want

“Sometimes you gotta create what you want to be part of.”

-Geri Weitzman, PhD, California Psychologist

BDC Facebook Banner 2015

Doing work I love is one of the greatest joys I know. Who wouldn’t want to wake up each day – especially Mondays – to a vocation or career that utilizes their strengths and unique abilities? Who wouldn’t want a career that makes a meaningful difference in the lives of others and the world around them?

I was inspired by the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games to start my career as a coach. In that ten-day span, 5,000 athletes worked with about 2,000 coaches, producing gold medal performances. I thought I’d bring this idea to the business world to help people pursue even greater levels of performance in their professional and personal lives.

The challenge was that business coaching wasn’t considered a “profession” at that time. Still, the idea seemed to be such a great fit for me, and I had gained a great deal from studying the few people who were beginning to be known as coaches. I resigned from my 12-year career as a pharmaceutical industry sales and marketing professional, and created a coaching career for myself. That was 24 years ago – and the best career decision I ever made!

EXERCISE:

Where in either your personal or professional worlds do you need to create something for yourself so that you can be a part of it?