We all know that the end of one month and the beginning of another is an arbitrary landmark created by the creation of the calendar. But as February 29 brings to an end an exciting month for so many readers who committed to lifting and struggling their way out of mediocrity and misery, it is time to reflect. Where has the month lead? Did you smile more often? Laugh spontaneously? Share your heart with a friend?
Was a goal reached? Did you build on something important and start something BIG?
How many new people did you meet and how many old friends did you reach out to?
What will March bring? In most places, in the north, spring is either in full force or on its way. Is there a sense of creation and regrowth bubbling in you? Have you planted enough seeds of opportunity or do you need to get sowing?
Remember to breathe new life into each day. Remember to practice appreciation and be kind. Remember to practice self care, get into nature, share a burden, and do something for someone else. Do something for the first time and then try doing it a different way.
I hope and pray that you will be everything that you sense you can be. Someone stringer and more confident and definitely more fun. As the old saying goes ” Always be yourself. unless you can be a pirate and then be a pirate. Aargh.”
Every four years we get a mulligan; an extra day in February. Tomorrow ids that day. February 29, 2016 is declared a ‘Do Over Day’. If you have had a bad day, a horrible day, a stress filled day in February then tomorrow is your opportunity to pick up your ball and take another swing. You have 24 hours to ‘make it right’ and now you have 24 hours to plan just how you are going to do that.
Aim higher than you ever have, swing stronger than you thought possible, make the most of this chance because another one isn’t until 2020.
Make Tomorrow Remarkable, by planning today,
Following up on Seth’s short post from yesterday, you can begin using your sophisticated pattern matching as early as this morning. I love that intuition isn’t taking a wild stab in the dark but rather based on best data and past experience it rises naturally to help form a decision.
I consider myself a pretty intuitive guy and make lots of choices and adapt processes without crafting a decision tree or logic model (at least formally).
Saturday is a great day to test out your intuitive skills. As your day begins, commit to listening to the voice you may not understand initially. Practice hearing and acting on the information for the next 24 hours. It may help if you record your practice and observations so that on Sunday you get to reflect for 20 minutes on how well you listened.
Take Today and Make it Remarkable,
Don’t hesitate. Don’t wait. Tomorrow may not be a better time to start. Tomorrow may not be.
Start something ‘BIG” today. Something Brave, something Important, something Generous. You are brave, important and generous and have so many BIG things that you are able and capable of doing.
It requires bravery to do something no one else around you is doing.
~ Amber Heard
Bravery isn’t the absence of fear, it is an acknowledgement that we can overcome fear. If you fear heights – you don’t need to scale Everest to be brave, just climb high enough for the anxiousness to rise up and the two more steps. If you fear being seen as ridiculous (as so many I meet seem to be) the opposite approach might work, Do something so audacious that it wakes up the neighbours and then everything else will be easier. I don’t know what your brave act for today looks like but it likely should involve something that includes other people if it is to be generous too.
Contrary to one of the lies of the 1990’s not everything we consider or do is important so it takes some discernment figure out what brave and important act to undertake. Like bravery and generousity, important isn’t an order of magnitude. Something can be important and seemingly easy and seemingly small. If the impact felt by you and others is trans formative or paradigm shifting – it is important to do. Think about the goals you have set and ask ” is this important to getting there?”
Generosity is not giving me that which I need more than you do, but it is giving me that which you need more than I do.
Small kindnesses can have enormous impact on how others feel. Instead of limiting your outreach to special times of year like holidays or birthdays, reach out to family, friends, or even strangers randomly to let them know you are thinking of them and are sending love their way. It might be just a quick text or voice mail. It might be a card or the gift of a visit. Perhaps it is the gift of a smile; I am amazed at how my day changes when I smile and speak to strangers
Make Today Remarkable by starting something BIG,
Three weeks ago you weren’t ready to hear the secret about happiness but as you have worked through breathe, appreciate, kindness, to useful you are now ready to hear it.
” Happiness, like almost everything, is a choice”. There are days when I find the secret hard to believe and I have been practicing and living it for 10 years. On those days the reminder is important. I can choose to be happy or choose to be miserable. People, circumstances, health, money have nothing to do with the choice. In fact the opposite might be truer. Happy people find themselves surrounded by happy people. Happy people discover all new forms of providence in their circumstances. Happy people are healthier. Happy people have more opportunity to acquire whatever they need through their initiative and efforts.
You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You’re on your own, and you know what you know. And you are the guy who’ll decide where to go. ~ Dr Seuss
The mire and muck of mediocrity and misery has depressive and draining side effects. One of the consequences of being stuck in the mud too long is that you become less useful than yesterday and eventually useless. Your lack of motivation is smothered by the ache of all the yesterdays and you become rooted in place. In a world that is on a path of skyrocketing change, you are left behind in weeks and knowing that it adds to the lethargy. The only way out is to become useful again.
Utility is incremental. It begins with 3 steps in succession. Take 3 small steps towards usefulness – 1 Do one thing better than you have done it before (or at least better than the past month) 2) Do something outside the bare necessities – if you need to wipe down 10 tables, do it and wipe 10 chairs as well 3) Have a small celebration (to yourself) that you did better and did more.
Rinse and repeat tomorrow. After a week the muck will loosen around your knees and the stranglehold of misery will begin to release you.
As always, utility isn’t a single act that will change everything – keep breathing, appreciating, practicing self care and being kind as well as the other 13 steps we have taken this month.
Tomorrow – Happiness
The past might suck and the future is unknown but we can modify the present simply by being present. We have today and can make the best of each moment.
Henrik Edberg wrote in the Positivity Blog in 2008 ” 7 Awesome Reasons to Be Present, and How to Do It” that greater appreciation and social skills arise from being in the moment (in the conversation).Our creativity and health also improve.
He offers 3 simple steps to practice.
Focus on your breath.
By now, you should be getting really comfortable with breathing exercises and have learned a technique and rhythm that works for you.
Focus on what’s right in front of you.
Or around you. Or on you. Use your senses. Just look at what’s right in front of you right now. Listen to the sounds around you. Feel the fabric of your clothes and focus on how they feel. You can for instance use the summer sun or rain and how it feels on your skin to connect with the present.
Pick up the vibe from present people.
If you know someone that is more present than most people then you can pick his/her vibe of presence (just like you can pick up positivity or enthusiasm from people). If you don’t know someone like that I recommend listening to/watching cds/dvds by Eckhart Tolle like Stillness Speaks or The Flowering of Consciousness. His books work too. But cds/dvds are better than books for picking up someone’s vibe since the biggest part of communication is voice tonality and body language.
Make Today Remarkable, by being present,
It doesn’t get any easier. When you have been mired in the muck of mediocrity and misery for a season or two it erodes the ability and willingness to trust ourselves, others and the goodness around us.
All sacred text speak about the power of a little bit of trust. “Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” ~ Matthew 17:20
I don’t know if trust can move mountains but it can surely move hearts; ours and others. Broken or damaged trust, in others or ourselves, can be repaired with honesty and time. When you learn to trust your feelings and trust your inner wisdom , then you become trustworthy of yourself. You don’t ignore your instincts, and start listening to what you know in your heart and soul.
To have trust you need to choose to trust. In order to be trusted you need to become trustworthy. Fortunately, both those choices are in your hands.
Make Today Remarkable, by trusting yourself and someone else,
For the past 17 days I have been asking you to do something. Breathe, appreciate, be kind, take care … Today I am suggesting you stop something.
Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
~ Albert Einstein
I’m not sure what you are doing again and again that isn’t getting you the results you desire but you know. Just as you end that last sentence a flash occurred and you saw the one ‘big’ thing that is the bane of your existence. Today, tomorrow and the next tomorrow – stop doing it. Don’t do anything else in this arena for three days. Let the cloud of the obsession begin to lift so you can get a glimpse of something else. Lust stop today, that’s it.
When I am 100%, completely sure about anything, I realize I have just closed my mind to other possibilities. I probably require some degree of surety and a modicum of certainty but not at the expense of my curiousity. When I settle into the safety zone of knowing, I might be missing an opportunity to understand. I shouldn’t make definitive statements but I hear myself at least once a day speaking in absolutes. Most of the time it is likely inconsequential like ” Hello Betty has the best fish and chips” but when I say something that enshrines a value or belief with the expectation that someone else (everyone) should fall in line and believe it with me, I might be over the line.
Do you hold some strong opinions? Great. Do you love to debate? Awesome. Have you stopped listening to other ideas? Sad. Are you curious to understand or curious to win?
Take some time today and listen to yourself.
Make Today Remarkable,