You can call me "unsympathetic" or tell me that I "lack empathy". Both are true. One reason (not excuse but reason) is that I have heard or experienced enough in life to no longer "feel" much. The fact is that life sucks a lot of the time for everyone. You aren't special for going through trials and troubles. We are often disappointed and frustrated by unmet expectations and we unfortunately find ourselves on the wrong side of success. When we realize that our failures and challenges that we face do not define us but how we respond to those negative situations is what our life is actually about, we will experience more joy and we will also move closer to reaching our potential. "Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again." Nelson Mandela
Benefit of the Doubt!
You have heard someone say it before but where does it come from and what does it truly mean. The origin is unclear. Some say it relates to the legal notion of "reasonable doubt", which in legal terms it means that a person is assumed to be innocent, until they can be proven otherwise. This is a foundation of our current legal system. Unfortunately, it is not a foundation of our everyday life. Most of us will tend to assume the worst in others instead of assuming the best in them. Being burned can harden a person and cause us to be jaded, reluctant and cautious. We tend to take that to the extreme, which negatively impacts our relationship with those around us and our ability to help them to be their best, while also preventing us to be our best. "When you expect the best from people, you will often see more in them than they see in themselves.” Mark Miller
It Ain't Free!
"I know the price of success: dedication, hard work, and an unremitting devotion to the things you want to see happen." Frank Lloyd Wright
Sponges and Slugs!
Slugs have a bad publicist. Slugs are actually fairly tough, unless you put salt on them which dehydrates them and kills them. Unfortunately, slugs are slow and that is how we see them. No one wants to be labeled as a slug (Besides UC-Santa Cruz, no one sees a slug as a viable mascot that will inflict fear in their opponents.) Sponges don't have as much of a negative reputation as the slugs but they are equally misunderstood. Sponges are also fairly tough. Sponges also require water to survive. In fact, you can squeeze a sponge and it will always retain 20% of it's capacity. This is how sponges protect themselves and keep them alive. The same is true of a household sponge. Squeeze and squeeze and squeeze and 20% of the water that the sponge absorbed will remain in the sponge (until you leave it out for a long time and the water evaporates.) We are unfortunately similar to both the slug and the sponge. Like the slug, we are tough but we are also often slow. Slow to change. Slow to take advice that is helpful. Slow to ask for help. Slow to take action. Like the sponge, when we "work hard" and think we have done "everything we can", we actually only do about 80%, at most. It is our body's way of keeping us alive. Rarely do we tap into that last 20% that helps us to reach our full potential. 110% doesn't exist (it is a motivational tool used by many to encourage you to do more. For most of us, 90% doesn't even exist. In order to reach into that last 20%, we must be willing to take risks and make sacrifices and embrace being uncomfortable. Only then will we come closer to reaching our full potential. "If you only ever give 90% in training then you will only ever give 90% when it matters." Arthur C. Clarke
It took decades for someone to finally break the 4 minute mile (Roger Bannister 1954). It took 46 days for the next person to not only break the 4 minute mile but to run faster than the previous mark. Within a year, three people broke the 4 minute mile in one race. Within the next 50 years, over a thousand people broke the previously "impossible" 4 minute mile. We all set limits on ourselves and deem it impossible to accomplish certain tasks. Two solutions: first, look to others who have accomplished the task before and realize that the task is indeed possible, and/or take a risk and realize that failure from attempting is much better than living your life in fear of failure and never giving yourself an opportunity to accomplish what you desire. "The only way of discovering the limits of the possible is to venture a little way past them into the impossible.” Arthur C. Clarke
Fear Of Bugs!
I have never fully understand the human inclination to fear bugs. Sure, they are creepy and some are poisonous. But let's face it, WE ARE VASTLY SUPERIOR IN SIZE AND INTELLECT!. A bug may be quick and elusive but we can squash it pretty quickly. The same is true of most of our fears. Most fears are irrational or at least overblown by our own emotions or lack of confidence. We can squash them pretty quickly. A tough class, a conflict in a relationship, or the challenges or inconveniences of COVID-19. We have more control over the outcome and our ability to improve our situation than we originally think. "Stand up to your obstacles and do something about them. You will find that they haven't half the strength you think they have." Norman Vincent Peale
Aspiration is defined as "a hope or ambition of achieving something." It is difficult to achieve much in life if you don't know what you want to achieve. For some, aspiring for more is as common as breathing. We want to be more. We want to be better. We want to be something that we aren't currently. Unfortunately, aspiration is not a default setting in all humans. Some may want more but they don't know how to achieve it. If you do aspire for more, that is the first step to achieving your goals. If you don't feel that you are very aspirational, then being intentional about aspiring to be more is the first step. Once that aspiration exists, the real difficult work begins. "The distance between who I am and who I want to be is separated only by my actions and words." Unknown
COACH. FATHER. HUSBAND. SON OF THE KING. WHITWORTH UNIVERSITY.