In five weeks, we’ll be deluged with New Year’s resolutions, “Get back to the gym!” provocations and countless stories of encouragement of how to start out our year “on the right foot.” As if starting out on the left foot was such a bad thing. Poor attempt at humor, I know! Usually at this time of year, we’re just about ready for new beginnings.
But in order to start anew, we need to finish the job and close out what we’ve already started.
Whatever you’re working on, you’ve assigned a particular value to that use of your time. Likely, for good reason. You may have begun taking courses for your nursing degree. Perhaps you’ve just started writing here on Medium. You could be studying for a certification exam, developing a new app or learning a new language. Here’s my advice: make that your obsession. …
People often say that this or that person has not yet found himself. But the self is not something one finds, it is something one creates. — Thomas Szasz
I knew something was off. Caught in the midst of a busy job, family responsibilities and “life happening,” I was drifting away from the man I had become. Gone was the joy, the laughs and the smiles. Everything felt too corporate. I was making good money, driving a Lexus and eating at nice restaurants.
But I didn’t have so many of the things that make my heart sing:
Do you want to know the surest way to fail? It’s to begin doing something, think you’re not succeeding, then give up and blame other people or reasons for why you haven’t become an “industry leader” or “expert.”
The biggest excuse I find from people who launch a business or new venture is this:
“There are too many other people better at doing what I do.”
There it is. Take that, print it out, place it on your mirror, or on your iPhone Notes and look at that quote every day.
It does have some value. Because very often, it’s true. Yes, there are many other people better at doing what you do. …
What is your first thought when you see this quote?
“There is no innovation and creativity without failure. Period.” — Dr. Brene Brown
For me, it’s a lifetime defining quote. It’s counter-intuitive to the “old” way of thinking that seemed to eschew failure or losing as a teaching tool, instead thinking of it as a sign of weakness. There’s one word that especially jumps out when I read this quote:
Here’s one more:
Owning and embracing your failures is the ultimate sign of maturity and emotional intelligence. Taking ownership is what successful people do. That means taking accountability and responsibility for your words and actions. …
When we see one of our peers excelling, the first thing that comes to our mind is usually: How did they do that? The best of us admire their accomplishments, but we also crave to get insights into how they did it. We want to know if we can blaze that same trail, and even get their quicker.
Through my years of academic research, working in business and coaching high-achievers, I’ve found that in virtually all circumstances emotional intelligence is the key differentiator for success. Here is some research to back that point up:
We never know when amazing opportunities are going to come our way. We don’t always know why they do, either. Sometimes, they’re truly gifts the universe bestows upon us. We need to have faith and keep doing our thing.
Nearly one year ago, Stephen F. Austin University pulled off one of the biggest upsets in college basketball in the past 20 years. They travelled to Durham, North Carolina, and beat the #1 ranked Duke University basketball team on their home court.
In truly stunning fashion.
It was a monumental upset for the ages. It was everything that makes college basketball spectacular, riveting and special. …
“Human progress is neither automatic nor inevitable… Every step toward the goal of justice requires sacrifice, suffering, and struggle; the tireless exertions and passionate concern of dedicated individuals.” — Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Far too often in advance of our personal journey, we’re sold a script that if we simply take the first step, everything will fall in place, as if we’re all living out some fairy-tale version of the movie, Frozen or (fill in your favorite Disney movie here) ________. Mine happens to be, Aladdin, if you’re keeping score at home.
Taking the first step is essential.
Expecting there won’t be adversity, setbacks, and suffering along the way? Now that’s completely unrealistic. …
Jeff Bezos’ story is one of persistence. It’s amazing to think the world’s richest man was strongly advised against ever starting on Amazon. His story is testament to following your heart and pursuing your goals, no matter what anyone thinks — even those closest to you.
Like Steve Jobs at Apple, Bezos was a brilliant man gifted at making money and connecting ideas to marketable products. During the massive tech boom of the 1990s, Bezos, like Jobs, capitalized on finding a market where it previously didn’t exist.
You see, prior to Amazon, everyone bought books in brick-and-mortar bookstores like Barnes & Noble and Borders. Some went to smaller bookstores or their local library. Jeff Bezos was here to deliver your reading experience in the palm of your hand — all by mail in just a few days. …
In 1985, less than 10 years after he founded Apple, Steve Jobs was (essentially) fired.
He was out.
At age 30, his life was flipped upside-down and he needed to move on from the only business he’d ever known. Jobs was forced to resign when CEO, Jon Sculley, felt Apple needed to reorganize and shift gears. He didn’t see Jobs in the tech company’s future plans.
So, he was gone. Famously gone.
It would take nearly 12 years before Jobs came back to the company that he started. Shortly after returning in 1997, Jobs took Apple into the stratosphere and completely revolutionized personal computers, handheld technology and the way we consume information. …
The Socratic method of asking questions is what leads you to learn and experience powerful personal growth. The man himself is famous for saying, “The highest form of human excellence is to question oneself and others.” The goal of this questioning is to get to the core of who you truly are, why that matters and what you can do with that new information.
Throughout my adult life, I’ve continued asking myself the philosophical questions that have led me to become a full-time entrepreneur, bestselling author, keynote speaker, husband and father of three. …