I want to talk about practice. Not the game, not the game we all love but practice.
Practice can be anything preparing us for the “game”. Thinking, reading, studying, and testing.
Trying to imagine situations and getting ahead of them.
In practice, we break down a specific area and piece them together. We work on one aspect hard and then move on to another. There are also times when practice becomes a simulation of sorts. A run-through of an event that hasn’t taken place.
In the game, far too often we “wing it”. We show up unprepared for the conversations or the action we need to perform.
We think that just being there is enough. It’s not.
Being thoughtful about where we want to go can be the guidebook to prepare us for that journey. It can influence the things we do leading up to and during any situation.
But we have to be willing to put in the work. That’s how we make things feel fluid and easy. It’s all the hours of preparation prior to the game.
That preparation sets us up for success. That leads us to make better decisions at the moment.
Because we’ve already been preparing long before the moment arrived.
We’re Talking About PracticeBrian Ondrako2022-10-16T17:00:38-04:00
The best relationships in life have one clear thing in common.
There is a complimentary toolset that each person brings on the journey.
No one person is better than the other. Sometimes the tools one person has will be used and other times it’ll be the opposite. Oftentimes, the tools will work together to create something useful and generous.
If we think about relationships this way and work to keep them balanced then we’ll be better served as we deepen the connection and forge ahead.
We can certainly take our toolset and go along the journey alone but that doesn’t appear to make for the most fun and exciting adventure.
Those moments need to be shared and we should strive often to seek out those people to share them with.
We’ve all had more “failed” relationships than we can count.
Friendships are no longer intact.
Business partnerships split.
Divorce and Break-ups.
It’s happened throughout our lives and emotionally those take a toll on us.
But, there is a silver lining to all of it.
If we are willing we can gain a positive perspective and take away gifts.
Although those relationships have soured, the gifts that have come out of them might make a world of difference in our future.
We are more thoughtful about what we want and don’t settle for mediocrity any longer.
We are more decisive about our actions and don’t waiver.
We are more grateful for the opportunities that arose out of the ashes.
I’ve had many gifts that have come out of relationships that haven’t worked out.
What is it that makes us feel so sure about some people while others are hard to figure out and they make it difficult for us to bring them into our circle?
It’s about showing up.
It’s showing up with energy and attention.
It’s showing up when they know we need them.
It’s showing up when it’s not convenient.
It’s showing up with acceptance and an open mind.
It’s sometimes showing up and being silent.
It’s trust and respect at its core.
It’s understanding that it’s mutually beneficial for both parties.
It can’t always be one-sided.
Potential– The inherent ability or capacity for growth, development, or future success.
When we were told as kids, “You have potential”, it meant that we had a lot of opportunities to grow into something more than we were at that time.
However, I wish we interpreted it as the ability to step outside of the box we were in, shake it up a bit, turn it upside down, and then see what happens. I wish we were told that we control our “potential” by prodding and poking our belief systems.
We develop beliefs about all types of things from the time we are young but if we are not careful we start to become those beliefs, even if they are peppered with unfounded information and half-truths.
We have to battle-test our own beliefs and make sure they are not claims we’ve just gone with because they’ve been with us for so long. Because they feel comfortable and make sense to us.
We have to have the courage to at least try. Otherwise, we’ll only be able to stretch as far as those beliefs allow us to go.
We thought differently back then. We observed differently. Our environment was different.
So why hang on to the old belief systems?
We have the potential to change our beliefs if we give ourselves the opportunity to get outside that box that society likes to put us in.
The one that we have kindly accepted all of these years without question.
Have you ever looked at a 10-year olds room? Do you remember yours at that age?
It’s messy. It’s sloppy. It’s disorganized. It can be disgusting.
Because they are 10. They have bigger priorities than keeping their room tidy.
As we age, we can become very buttoned up. We make sure we are clean and orderly. We want to look the part to the world. Heck, some of us even clean their house prior to a cleaning company coming in to do it.
To the outside world, we have it all together.
But, inside we can be messy, sloppy, and disorganized. We can be dealing with a lot of things that we are afraid to share with the world. We can be making decisions that are leading us down the wrong path.
We have to pause and reflect.
Why are we neglecting ourselves in order to be perceived a certain way?
Why are we unwilling to realize we have some shit going on that we have to deal with?
When are we going to realize we have to clean up our room?
We may have taken it for granted in the past but now it must become our #1 priority.
Life has many small forks in the path. We never can know which direction will lead to which future state so we have to rely on the energy we feel, the knowledge we have, and the intuition that has guided us before.
We have to rely on our “in the moment” decision-making and not hesitate when the answer is clearly in front of us.
We have to have confidence and conviction that this is the right thing to do even when the butterflies are sending our body into an unknown spiral of emotions.
That’s the feeling we want to have.
It helps us know it’s the right one.
It helps us trust the direction the compass is steering us.
The decision isn’t that hard anymore.
The fork in the road becomes much clearer to navigate.
We can’t see the forest through the trees. We also don’t know how big it is. Are we standing in someone’s one-acre backyard or in the Amazon rainforest?
Oftentimes, our problems can get pushed to the side and avoided for a short time but if they go unresolved they can resurface and weigh us down creating a bigger burden than if we addressed them head-on.
When problems or feelings arise, zoom out. Look at the big picture. Look at it from different angles. Look at what happens if we solve it now versus pushing it off.
We have to have the courage to get out of the shadows and expose ourselves to what’s happening.
It might be one of the only ways we can free ourselves.
Most of life’s pain comes from how we thought it should be or that it didn’t work out as planned.
But what if it actually did?
Sometimes we can be the worst judge of a situation when we are in the moment but when we step back away from it, as time goes on, we begin to realize it was a moment that changed us for the better.
We become grateful for the uncomfortable and painful moments because they are actually what we needed to grow.
It’s all a shift in mindset. It’s not easy. Of course, it’s not easy.
But our mindset controls everything. We have a positive mindset when things are going our way, so why can’t we take that same perspective when they aren’t?
I know why. Because it battles every part of our being that was instilled as a child. We have to be upset, get emotional, or feel depressed when anything goes against what we thought should happen. We witnessed this countless times in our life. It has been programmed. It’s on autopilot now.
But that’s not how it has to be.
We have one life. One very complex weird ever-changing life where we happened to get into this body. We are conscious beings and one of the downsides of that can be that we feel deep emotions, attachments, memories, or aspirations. It can work in our favor or not. We choose.
We can remember the past and project into the future.
But all that matters is now. All that matters is how we handle the situation we are in now. The future will take care of itself when we get there.
So, for now, instead of losing our shit in one situation or another it might be helpful to remember that we’ve been wrong a lot about bad moments. Out of that despair came a new opportunity, a new relationship, and new learning. All positives are on the backside of a bad situation.
It happens to us countless times but our old way of thinking forgets. It only remembers that bad moment’s equal depression and struggle. It rarely remembers that there is hope and opportunity from all of it.
That’s the mindset we need to take into it.
Is it going to be hard? You bet.
Is it going to be painful? You’re damn right.
Is it going to test us? Fuck yea.
But our positive perspective will dig us out of it much faster and with newfound hope for tomorrow.
It’s not about being easy, life isn’t easy.
It’s about being hard, and managing our way to a better spot.
Are we willing to call ourselves out first before blaming someone or something?
It’s always easier to blame others, and sometimes they are at fault, but what have we done to cause the situation? How have we contributed?
And, more valuable to consider, is this even worth getting upset over?
Most things that happen are so insignificant that the best option becomes not saying anything at all. We can tap down the ego with a dose of humility.
Have we ever made a mistake before?
Have we dropped the food right before serving it?
Have we cut someone off in traffic?
Have we held up a checkout line with a lot of items?
Have we parked poorly between the lines?
Have we messed up an order?
Have we had one of the days where we just struggled?
So do other people.
Before causing a scene or yelling at someone or getting angry we need to be willing to look at that “mirror” and tell ourselves that we are in control.
Our actions, right now, define us.
These are the traits we want others to exude when we mess up or are having a bad day.
We need to take that into consideration next time we are in that situation.
We can get it in our heads that if we’re not moving forward, fast and furious, then we will be left behind.
This is one of the self-limiting beliefs I had for many years. The notion that there is some race.
What I’ve come to realize is that we can all move forward, extremely fast, but it comes at a big cost. We rush projects, we rush parenting, we rush our partners. We are so worried about the days ahead that we forget the moment we are in right now.
We can all go fast.
But it’s the ones who can be still that achieve the most happiness.
They gain perspective on the world around them. They ponder decisions. They develop new routines by analyzing current ones. They open their eyes to new possibilities. They think.
This can’t be done when we are moving a mile a minute. It’s impossible.
The only way to speed up is to slow down. Retool the engine. Refine the skills. Be thoughtful about the next course of action.
With that, we can have the opportunity to move at a greater clip while recognizing that it’s important for intermittent stops.
What can be seen as a negative can also be seen as a positive?
“Ugh, the elevator is broken, now I have to climb six flights of stairs” can be flipped around just as easily to “Hey, the elevator is broken, I’ll at least get a little workout in as I climb these six flights of stairs.”
The way we perceive our situation and the world around us influences how we think. If we want to complain, there are many things to complain about. If we want to be grateful, there are the same amount of opportunities for that as well.
Crafting well-meaning and articulate messages can take a lot of time to learn.
And that’s the rub of it.
We have to write thousands of bad messages in order to refine our skills, shorten the message, and get specific on the value.
That rationale can apply to many things we do in life. We must be comfortable being bad at something in the early stages in order to hurdle that gap from not knowing to knowing. From novice to proficient.
Once we start to “get it” and are feeling comfortable then we know we’ve acquired the correct knowledge, mostly through consistency and practice.
That’s when it might be time to look at new ways to be bad again.
To become a beginner learner in a new area.
To once again scale another mountain for growth opportunities that we haven’t yet considered.
We can either control the tempo of the game or always be back-peddling on our heels and retreating.
So, It’s important to play offense as much as possible (be optimistic, think positively, show gratitude) versus playing defense (putting up walls, negative self-talk, and letting others control what we do).
The only way to live a happier life is to do it on our own terms, pursuing the things that brighten our day and expose us to new growth opportunities.
To do this effectively, we must have the ball in our hands as much as possible. We must be in control of our thoughts and actions.
Some days we don’t have it all together. We are stressed and anxious and have a ton of responsibility to attend to.
Getting through those days seems like an endless chore. It’s tough to prioritize for the long term when we are putting out fires all over the place.
This is why our preparation becomes so vital to our long-term goals, attitude, and happiness. When we create systems for our good habits it helps us accomplish them even on the roughest days and in the most adverse conditions.
It’s not that we can’t miss every now and then but when we get away from our good habits for an extended period of time they become distant to us. We are out of rhythm. We can get lost and have a hard time finding that equilibrium again.
We need to start putting those in place now.
We schedule our work meetings, kids’ soccer games, dentist appointments, etc. Why not everything else critical to our mental and physical health?
It should all go on the calendar if we need it to. Then we can take a wide lens look at our day or week and work around it.
It’s not that things won’t come up and we have to alter our plans every now and then. It’s when it’s never a priority in the first place it falls through the cracks time and time again.
If we believe in something wholeheartedly then we should have no fear in pursuing it to the max.
No fear of failure. Of rejection. Of loss.
If we feel it deep down in our core then we have to see it through one way or another.
In fact, we can’t lose either way.
On one hand, if we achieve what we wanted in the first place then we can reflect on the process it took to get there and the impact this will have on our lives going forward.
On the other, if it doesn’t work out, at least we know. I think “not knowing” is one of the things that hold us up from letting go of this idea. That thought of “can I really achieve this?”, “do they really want to be with me?, “can I overcome this obstacle?”
It eats at us.
So, at least if we know then we can change our mindset and alter our thinking. We don’t have to hold onto this idea any longer.
We can move on and move forward.
We can believe that there are better things up ahead for us.
We’ll always have fear if we don’t understand something.
If we are struggling with moving forward because of fear, curiosity might be the helper we need to call on.
Why is this fear present?
What past “information” has led us to this conclusion?
Could there be more information we haven’t considered?
Would we be willing to accept it if it is different from our current beliefs?
I remember when I used to be terrified of flying. From the night before the flight until we landed, I was a mess. Fearful with every bump. Gripping tightly. Counting every second until we landed safely.
Until I decided to overcome that fear.
To do that I gained knowledge. I asked questions like…
How do planes work?
How are pilots trained?
How safe are planes?
Why does the flight crew choose this as a career?
Once I became curious, it opened up my mind to learn. Once I learned, the fear subsided. Then, to fully overcome the fear I had to face my past beliefs head-on.
As I took my next few flights, every time there was a bump or rattle or weird noise, I would ask myself if this was a part of my past belief or a part of what I have newly learned. What seemed more logical?
In time, my fear went away.
There is no more anxiety before flights. I enjoy takeoffs now. Every once in a while a big “bump” in the sky will get my attention but I think it’s my past fears waving to me and letting me know they miss me. It is normally short-lived.
I overcame my fear of flying by being curious. That curiosity led me to knowledge that led me to a different belief.
I’m not saying it’ll be easy but if we want to give ourselves the opportunity to change then we might think about questioning our old beliefs.
They hold many unfounded “truths” that may be best to leave in the past.
We lost the great John Madden at the end of 2021 and it made me reflect on the impact we can all make, not by being an “influencer” or by showing off but just by living life to the fullest and respecting those around us.
John Madden, from what it appeared, was beloved by many because of how gracious he was with his time, how much passion he put into his work and the people he was around, and how he enjoyed it all.
Life can get overcomplicated and we can overwhelm ourselves with things that don’t end up mattering at all. We add unnecessary stress and anxiety where it’s not needed.
Do what John Madden might have done.
Go to the chalkboard.
Go back to the Xs and Os and the foundation of it all.
Keep it simple.
Be kind to people.
Make the most of each moment and each encounter.
Create a positive outlook on life as things could be much worse than they are.
Push yourself to try new things and tackle new obstacles.
Live your happiness, not anyone else’s.
We can’t forget about the goals we’ve set for ourselves.
We may will stumble.
We may will get passed by others.
We may will have to veer off-course.
But don’t forget about our goal.
When it feels like we are slugging along, we must keep moving.
When we feel like we are the only ones running uphill, we must keep moving.
When we feel like we are questioning our every decision, we must keep moving.
If the journey is worth it then so is enduring some pain to get there.
While we are focused forward there may be others behind us, using our guidance and direction as a beacon of light, maybe one of hope, helping them along when they feel defeated and weak.
We have to believe we can be a light in the darkness.
How many times would we sit idle in class when the teacher asked if there were any questions only because we didn’t want to be the one who looked like we didn’t understand?
We assumed if nobody else raised their hands then we were the only incompetent ones.
Our conditioning at the time blinded our thinking.
Don’t show weakness.
Stand your ground.
Don’t let them see you sweat.
These phrases were ever-present in our adolescent years and they brought anxiety and fear into our decisions.
Better say nothing at all than be the laughing stock for the day.
We all now realize that was a fallacy.
Vulnerability is not a weakness.
Emotions are not a weakness.
Asking for help is not a weakness.
They tend to be the opposite. Having the courage to show up this way means that we have gotten comfortable with who we are as a person and the scrutiny and judgment don’t affect us as much, if at all, anymore.
That’s a sweet spot to be in. That is when courage builds into confidence.
That’s when we get to the point where we raise our hands from the back of the class. Not only because we are curious about the answer but because we know many others are as well.
We might not all be great fiction writers but we certainly have the capacity to make up many stories, in our heads, of events that haven’t happened yet.
We can create some amazing stories on where things might go with a particular situation, what other people do or think, and what happens next based on that.
We spend sleepless nights working through the scenarios. But in our “choose your own adventure” story, how many times does it really come true? How many times do we get the outcome we’ve spent time worrying about?
We get sucked into these rabbit holes for many reasons but one critical factor we often miss is the gap in information.
We fail to ask questions to inform us. The questions might be too difficult or awkward so we avoid them.
Instead of knowing the answers upfront, we defer to waiting, hoping, and fantasizing.
We go into story mode.
That’s easier than the alternative. But harder on us, mentally.
Remove the worrying. Remove the doubt. Remove the 20 questions inside our heads.
Ask that upfront. Be direct. Be transparent.
Whatever is going to happen is going to happen anyway.
Instead of waiting until the cliffhanger at the end of this story, we might as well change the narrative starting out.
We have to recognize that, at times, other people will be an impairment to our positive psyche. We yearn so much for their approval and want to be looked at as worthy in their eyes.
Whether they are stories we make up in our heads or actual feedback, we care what others think of us and we let it affect our mood and shape our reactions.
This is where having a core group of trusted peers and mentors becomes monumental. They become our sounding board for ideas, inspiration, and direction. This allows us to block out the other noise and focus on the opinions of those we trust, respect, and care about.
Progress can happen when we trust our judgement with the path we want to venture down but have trusted guides for when we happen to veer off it. When we stay focused on the steps ahead, the noise of the naysayers becomes muted.
The path forward becomes much clearer and quieter.
Decisions are made through a mix of past experiences, current conditions, others’ judgment, fear, etc.
Being decisive is a key element to knowing if we are on the right path toward understanding who we are and what makes us happy.
Because indecision comes from our inability to make clear choices.
We want everything.
We feel we are missing out if we choose one thing over another.
We get stuck.
When we continually question ourselves and our decisions it shows a lack of focus on a vision for our future. We have no idea what we actually want and therefore will get paralyzed with fear and anxiety when having to make decisions, especially ones that appear difficult.
We can’t let ourselves go down this path. We have to be willing to stand our ground and be comfortable and confident with who we are and what we believe in. If we aren’t there yet then we have to be willing to put in the work to understand why.
It’s okay if we are different from everyone else in the room.
Have we ever considered, that maybe we are in the wrong room?
Be okay with making the decision to walk out and find a better one that fits the life we want.
Cats and Dogs rarely play with the same toy again and again. Sure, they have their favorites they’ll pick up every now and then but they will typically bounce around to different ones or lose interest all together.
However, what do they yearn for? Sleep, Exercise, Companionship, and Belonging.
Somehow, they’ve figured out that, “Whoever dies with the most toys doesn’t win.”
Although we might be the “smartest” species in the room, we could learn something from them if we were open to it.
The Truth About Cats And DogsBrian Ondrako2022-05-02T08:43:51-04:00
A big difference between kids and adults is that kids are willing to be silly and carefree with a very short view into the future. They aren’t thinking too far ahead which allows them to live in the moment.
Adults are always looking around and wondering who is watching before they can normally let go and be themselves. We get crippled by a cloud of fear that we create over ourselves.
Instead of telling our kids what to do maybe, we should take a page out of their playbook and just throw the whole playbook out.
I remember walking my son to kindergarten and being amazed at how much he’d grown and how fast those first few years of his life went by.
It reminded me of when I was in kindergarten, over 30 years ago, and how quickly the time seemed to pass. I still remember the fifth-grade classes being on the third floor and thinking, “I’m never going to get up to fifth grade. It’s going to take so long. I have so many years ahead of me.”
As I write this, my son isn’t in Kindergarten anymore. He will be heading into fifth grade next fall.
How quickly time passes us by.
How precious our time is.
How easily we dismiss it.
The game clock is continually running and there are no timeouts. This moment is fleeing just like the last.
We are either a part of that change or we are fighting against it.
Our body changes as we age but if we’ve been focusing on fitness and healthy eating, that change is quite delayed. If we haven’t, we start to feel those effects compound over time. Building healthy habits early on and sticking with them help form a foundation for us to live each day by.
When we go through a breakup or loss, that change is hard, but if we’ve been focusing on our self-reflection inward then we gain a different perspective on the situation. We start to be comfortable with who we are and that others compliment us. They do not define us. It doesn’t mean it doesn’t suck. It can just suck much less.
When we lose a job, the same thing happens. If we rely on this job so much to keep up our lifestyle and identity then when it ends we are broken. It’s because we haven’t put in the work to recognize our strengths and give ourselves room to maneuver if need be.
We may not always be in control. We can’t control aging, we can’t control if someone breaks up with us, and we can’t control a job loss or a myriad of other life events.
But we can control if we are prepared for them.
We can control if we’ve taken proper measures to mitigate increased risk or pain.
We can control if we are willing to learn from each experience.
It starts by gaining better self-awareness. It starts by asking ourselves simple questions.
What really makes us happy?
Is this the right “fit”?
Do we need that new “toy”?
Are we okay if this doesn’t go our way?
Do we feel we have a great support system?
Asking simple questions about the foundations of our life offers a glimpse into the crystal ball and whether those will crack under more pressure or hold us upright to weather the storm.
Strong foundations lay the groundwork to build upon and allow us to take chances and be okay if it doesn’t work out.
We need to ask ourselves, today, what is our foundation built on, and are we confident it can hold up to the fiercest storm we might encounter?
A coffee cup can be used for:
Tea and other drinks
As a measuring cup
To rinse your mouth while brushing
To hold pens and pencils
To trace a circle
To fill with loose change
We can keep going but the point is that just because a tool was intended for one purpose it doesn’t mean it can’t be used for many others.
Before we go and buy the latest widget to solve a problem we should look around and see if we can create a solution. We get to use our creativity and imagination like we’re kids again. We get to solve a puzzle.
It pushes us a bit outside our comfort zone and we get to take agency over the decision. It could be small but it will help us grow. It helps us think outside the box. It lets us question what can be possible if this is possible.
Sometimes a coffee cup is for coffee. Until it’s not.
One of the more interesting things about social media is that we can get judged very often, both directly and indirectly. Comments and likes and DMs and even a “non-response” could be perceived a certain way.
But then there’s the “unfollow”. Someone took the time to follow and look at your stuff and then at some point realized it’s not for them.
We have to get comfortable with this. Rejection is a part of life. People will come and go. This happens on social media and in “real life” outside of it.
People don’t respond. People ghost us. People don’t make the effort. As Abraham Lincoln quote says, “You can please some of the people some of the time, all of the people some of the time, some of the people all of the time, but you can never please all of the people all of the time.”
Not everyone will like us. In fact, most won’t.
The ones who do are in it with us.
Those people. Those are our tribe.
Those are the ones we need to cherish and take time for. Those are the ones we need to recognize and reciprocate.
It can’t be one-sided. A relationship works both ways. We need to give more than we take. We need to be empathetic. We need to be encouraging.
Otherwise, we might just get another “unfollow” and this time it might hurt a little bit more.
It takes us until we become adults to realize just how hard it is to be a kid.
Kids rarely have free choice.
They have to go to school.
They have a specific bedtime.
They may have to eat their veggies.
They may have to play a sport they don’t like.
Rarely can they buy things that make them happy without approval.
The list goes on.
It should make us wonder then, why we complain so much as adults.
We can choose where we work and what we do
We can determine who we want to be around
We can choose the activities that excite us
We can choose what we eat and when we eat it.
We can choose a lot of things. We can choose to complain or choose to be happy.
It doesn’t switch overnight but we can make decisions to lead us in either direction.
The significant part about being an adult is that we have the choice.
We all have things in the category of “easy to do” but we choose not to do them. It’s not that we don’t want to do them, what it comes down to is the priority assignment we put on that thing to actually do it.
Whether that is to take 10 minutes to go for a walk, read a book, meditate, sit in thought, etc, or other things like; sitting and talking with your spouse in the morning, reading a book to your child before bed, sending a note to a friend you haven’t spoken to in a while, etc.
It’s not that it isn’t easy. It is extremely easy. What is difficult is putting it ahead of other “time wasters” that are urgent but not important. What is difficult is creating a daily habit. What is difficult is changing who we are now with who we want to become.
Those are the things that are difficult.
If we can put all the things we do up for debate on their priority level we might be able to better filter out the urgent and not important and sprinkle in the more fulfilling and long-lasting.
It might not be easy but we can be damn sure it is worth it.
If you’ve come across this blog then chances are with all the hardships in life yours isn’t that bad.
Chances are you have access to high-speed internet or 5G.
Chances are your phone was made sometime in the last handful of years and would be considered “smart”.
Chances are you have warm clothes on if there is a hint of a crisp morning outside.
Chances are when you arrive at work today it’ll be in the car you drove in or just a short few steps away from where you rolled out of bed.
Chances are, if you have kids, when you drop them off at school you are almost certain without worry you’ll pick them up safe and sound in the afternoon.
There is a good chance that your life (and mine) is a heck of a lot easier and more comfortable than a large majority of the world’s population. Probably 99% of it.
Yet, with that comfort also comes a barrier.
A barrier to let things go, seemingly meaningless things, that have almost zero effect on our lives.
A barrier to be patient and wait our turn instead of getting frustrated and causing a scene.
A barrier to thinking about how lucky we are to be in this position in the first place and cherish the hand we were dealt.
A barrier to enduring discomfort. Something the majority of the world has to live with every day.
We are fortunate for the opportunities we have and it’s important from time to time to call those out, head-on, in order to help us lead lives worth meaning and purpose instead of complaining and finger-pointing.
There are greater tragedies in life and many of them we are grateful to never have to think about.
Water is just water. Until it gets hot enough and starts to boil. It’s still water but now it’s boiling hot and creating a new, gaseous state that wasn’t there before.
We don’t know exactly when because there are many factors to get it to the exact temperature. It depends on the amount of water, the consistency of the heat applied, and outside factors (like salt).
But, at some point, when the conditions are right, it boils.
The same can be true for the work we want to put out in the world. It never gets noticed, picked up, or becomes helpful to us or others until we actually create it, consistently, over time and put energy or “heat” into the process.
We have to be willing to endure the long arduous process of creating with nothing happening. Sometimes, it can be like watching water boil.
But, like the water, we have to be willing to stay consistent and wait it out. We have to be willing to believe that the generous work we are giving to the world will be noticed and appreciated.
When the conditions are right, our time will come.
We may not know the exact time but we’ll be ready.
Failing takes up such a small finite space in time. It exists only to be a placeholder for the next achievement, one that wouldn’t have been possible had it not been for the failure that preceded it.
It begs to reason, then, that we should welcome failure with warmth and kindness.
“Playing it safe” actually becomes a fools’ errand. It makes us believe that we are working in our best interest to protect ourselves from harm. In reality, we are starving ourselves of exactly what we need to achieve greater happiness; facing failure head-on and coming out stronger.
Like a long-lost friend that showed up unexpectedly, we should welcome the failures with open arms.