Share Your World
Go now, and live.
Experience. Dream. Risk. Close your eyes and jump. Enjoy the freefall. Choose exhilaration over comfort. Choose magic over predictability. Choose potential over safety. Wake up to the magic of everyday life. Make friends with your intuition. Trust your gut. Discover the beauty of uncertainty. Know yourself fully before you make promises to another. Make millions of mistakes so that you will know how to choose what you really need. Know when to hold on and when to let go. Love hard and often and without reservation. Seek knowledge. Open yourself to possibility. Keep your heart open, your head high and your spirit free. Embrace your darkness along with your light. Be wrong every once in a while, and don't be afraid to admit it. Awaken to the brilliance in ordinary moments. Tell the truth about yourself no matter what the cost. Own your reality without apology. See goodness in the world. Be Bold. Be Fierce. Be Grateful. Be Wild, Crazy and Gloriously Free. Be You.
Go now, and live.
Go now, and live.
Go now, and live.
Here are some ideas for making it happen:
1. Every morning ask: “Is this what I want for myself?”
Whenever the answer has been “no” for too many mornings in a row, you know it’s time to make a change. If you follow this principle a lot of life’s big decisions are actually pretty simple.
Long-term happiness is the settling of your soul into its most appropriate spot. This spot contains the ideas, passions, people, and places that move you.
Accept responsibility for making these things possible in your life. Know that it is you who will get you where you want to go, no one else. Be honest with yourself. If you catch yourself following the crowd on automatic pilot simply because it’s the easiest option, it’s time to pause and reflect.
2. Turn your dream into actionable steps and execute.
Action breeds results. Slice your big-picture dream into a set of small goals and meet them.
Execute, execute, execute. You are responsible for getting things done. It always comes down to your actions. You choose: either action and results or inaction and excuses. You can’t have both.
The pain of discipline is far less than the pain of regret. Do what you have to do – 100% of it. No one has ever given a dream their best shot and regretted it.
3. Take a few small steps every single day.
Don’t build mountains in your mind. Don’t try to conquer it all at once. Take everything in stride, one step at a time.
When you seek instant gratification you make life unnecessarily painful and frustrating. When you choose instead to treat each moment as an opportunity to make a small, positive, long-term investment in your future, the rewards come naturally.
Although each individual effort may seem to have no effect when you make it, at some point you’ll look back and realize the momentous impact your efforts created once they were added together. By moving at this sustainable pace, you’ll be able to continue moving forward for as long as it takes to get precisely where you want to go.
4. Exercise rock solid self-control.
Your ability to restrain an impulse by cross-referencing your moral values and goals creates the essence of your long-term happiness and success.
You are never going to get what you want until you learn how to do what’s right even when it feels wrong. Every time you do what’s right by a decision of your will using discipline and self control to go beyond momentary feelings of weakness, you get that much closer to what you want.
5. Practice until you’re an expert, and keep practicing.
In all walks of life, achieving greatness is a choice. Practice makes it possible. You are what you practice most.
Whatever you decide to do, do it well. Do it so well that when others see you do it, they enjoy it so much that they want to come back and see you do it again, and they also want to bring their friends along so they can show them how incredible you are at doing what you do.
6. Mind your thoughts and your words.
Understand the power of your thoughts, and guard them more closely. Understand the power of your words, and prefer silence to anything negative. Through your thoughts and words you create your own weaknesses and strengths. Your limitations begin in your mind where you can always replace negative with positive.
So stop worrying about negative scenarios that are merely figments of your imagination. Allow your thoughts to encourage you rather than hinder you. Focus on the moment in front of you. Free yourself to deal effectively and successfully with what is real and what is now.
7. Surround yourself with people who lift you higher.
You are the average of the people you spend the most time with. The great danger of being around negative people is that you start to become like them without even knowing it.
Relationships must be chosen wisely. Bad company corrupts good morals and human potential. There’s no need to rush into a relationship you are unsure of, or associate with those who hold you back.
8. Give back.
The great Zig Ziglar once said, “You can get everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want.”
For it is in giving that we receive. In other words, what goes around comes around in this world. As we work to create light for others, we naturally light our own way.
9. Create balance.
Be diligent and committed to your work, but also make sure you leave time for pleasure and exploration. It is not enough to succeed at one specific goal; you also have to take part in the different dimensions of your life – while you can, while there’s time.
Lift your head up from your work every now and then and take a long walk, hold hands with your beloved, go fishing, spend time with your friends, swim, bask in the sunlight, try something new, meditate, breathe deep, or sit quietly for a while and contemplate the goodness around you.
In other words, balance yourself – work diligently, but don’t ignore every other aspect of your life. Keep your mind fresh, your body active and alive, and your relationships nurtured. Do so, and the things you want most in life will come more naturally.
- Commit yourself to making lots of mistakes. – Mistakes teach you important lessons. The biggest mistake you can make is doing nothing because you’re too scared to make a mistake. So don’t hesitate – don’t doubt yourself. In life, it’s rarely about getting a chance; it’s about taking a chance. You’ll never be 100% sure it will work, but you can always be 100% sure doing nothing won’t work. Most of the time you just have to go for it! And no matter how it turns out, it always ends up just the way it should be. Either you succeed or you learn something. Win-Win. Remember, if you never act, you will never know for sure, and you will be left standing in the same spot forever.
- Find hard work you love doing. – If I could offer my 18-year-old self some real career advice, I’d tell myself not to base my career choice on other people’s ideas, goals and recommendations. I’d tell myself not to pick a major because it’s popular, or statistically creates graduates who make the most money. I’d tell myself that the right career choice is based on one key point: Finding hard work you love doing. As long as you remain true to yourself, and follow your own interests and values, you can find success through passion. Perhaps more importantly, you won’t wake up several years later working in a career field you despise, wondering “How the heck am I going to do this for the next 30 years?” So if you catch yourself working hard and loving every minute of it, don’t stop. You’re on to something big. Because hard work ain’t hard when you concentrate on your passions.
- Invest time, energy and money in yourself every day. – When you invest in yourself, you can never lose, and over time you will change the trajectory of your life. You are simply the product of what you know. The more time, energy and money you spend acquiring pertinent knowledge, the more control you have over your life.
- Explore new ideas and opportunities often. – Your natural human fears of failure and embarrassment will sometimes stop you from trying new things. But you must rise above these fears, for your life’s story is simply the culmination of many small, unique experiences. And the more unique experiences you have, the more interesting your story gets. So seek as many new life experiences as possible and be sure to share them with the people you care about. Not doing so is not living.
- When sharpening your career skills, focus more on less. – Think in terms of Karate: A black belt seems far more impressive than a brown belt. But does a brown belt really seem any more impressive than a red belt? Probably not to most people. Remember that society elevates experts high onto a pedestal. Hard work matters, but not if it’s scattered in diverse directions. So narrow your focus on learning fewer career related skills and master them all.
- People are not mind readers. Tell them what you’re thinking. – People will never know how you feel unless you tell them. Your boss? Yeah, he doesn’t know you’re hoping for a promotion because you haven’t told him yet. That cute girl you haven’t talked to because you’re too shy? Yeah, you guessed it; she hasn’t given you the time of day simply because you haven’t given her the time of day either. In life, you have to communicate with others. And often, you have to open your vocal chords and speak the first words. You have to tell people what you’re thinking. It’s as simple as that.
- Make swift decisions and take immediate action. – Either you’re going to take action and seize new opportunities, or someone else will first. You can’t change anything or make any sort of progress by sitting back and thinking about it. Remember, there’s a huge difference between knowing how to do something and actually doing it. Knowledge is basically useless without action.
- Accept and embrace change. – However good or bad a situation is now, it will change. That’s the one thing you can count on. So embrace change, and realize that change happens for a reason. It won’t always be easy or obvious at first, but in the end it will be worth it.
- Don’t worry too much about what other people think about you. – For the most part, what other people think and say about you doesn’t matter. When I was 18, I let the opinions of my high school and early college peers influence my decisions. And, at times, they steered me away from ideas and goals I strongly believed in. I realize now, ten years later, that this was a foolish way to live, especially when I consider that nearly all of these people whose opinions I cared so much about are no longer a part of my life. Unless you’re trying to make a great first impression (job interview, first date, etc.), don’t let the opinions of others stand in your way. What they think and say about you isn’t important. What is important is how you feel about yourself.
- Always be honest with yourself and others. – Living a life of honesty creates peace of mind, and peace of mind is priceless. Period.
- Talk to lots of people in college and early on in your career. – Bosses. Colleagues. Professors. Classmates. Social club members. Other students outside of your major or social circle. Teaching assistants. Career advisors. College deans. Friends of friends. Everyone! Why? Professional networking. I have worked for three employers since I graduated from college (I left my first two employers by choice on good terms), but I only interviewed with the first employer. The other two employers offered me a job before I even had a formal interview, based strictly on the recommendation of a hiring manager (someone I had networked with over the years). When employers look to fill a position, the first thing they do is ask the people they know and trust if they know someone who would do well in the position. If you start building your professional network early, you’ll be set. Over time, you’ll continue talking to new people you meet through your current network and your network’s reach and the associated opportunities will continue to snowball for the duration of your career.
- Sit alone in silence for at least ten minutes every day. – Use this time to think, plan, reflect, and dream. Creative and productive thinking flourish in solitude and silence. With quiet, you can hear your thoughts, you can reach deep within yourself, and you can focus on mapping out the next logical, productive step in your life.
- Ask lots of questions. – The greatest ‘adventure’ is the ability to inquire, to ask questions. Sometimes in the process of inquiry, the search is more significant than the answers. Answers come from other people, from the universe of knowledge and history, and from the intuition and deep wisdom inside yourself. These answers will never surface if you never ask the right questions. Thus, the simple act of asking the right questions is the answer.
- Exploit the resources you do have access to. – The average person is usually astonished when they see a physically handicap person show intense signs of emotional happiness. How could someone in such a restricted physical state be so happy? The answer rests in how they use the resources they do have. Stevie Wonder couldn’t see, so he exploited his sense of hearing into a passion for music, and he now has 25 Grammy Awards to prove it.
- Live below your means. – Live a comfortable life, not a wasteful one. Do not spend to impress others. Do not live life trying to fool yourself into thinking wealth is measured in material objects. Manage your money wisely so your money does not manage you. Always live well below your means.
- Be respectful of others and make them feel good. – In life and business, it’s not so much what you say that counts, it’ how you make people feel. So respect your elders, minors, and everyone in between. There are no boundaries or classes that define a group of people that deserve to be respected. Treat everyone with the same level of respect you would give to your grandfather and the same level of patience you would have with your baby brother. Supporting, guiding, and making contributions to other people is one of life’s greatest rewards. In order to get, you have to give.
- Excel at what you do. – There’s no point in doing something if you aren’t going to do it right. Excel at your work and excel at your hobbies. Develop a reputation for yourself, a reputation for consistent excellence.
- Be who you were born to be. – You must follow your heart, and be who you were born to be. Some of us were born to be musicians – to communicate intricate thoughts and rousing feelings with the strings of a guitar. Some of us were born to be poets – to touch people’s hearts with exquisite prose. Some of us were born to be entrepreneurs – to create growth and opportunity where others saw rubbish. And still, some of us were born to be or do whatever it is, specifically, that moves you. Regardless of what you decide to do in your lifetime, you better feel it in every fiber of your being. You better be born to do it! Don’t waste your life fulfilling someone else’s dreams and desires.