“Life doesn’t get easier or more forgiving, we get stronger and more resilient.” ― Steve Maraboli
Resiliency is defined as: “an object’s ability to return to its original shape or position”. Another definition of resiliency is: “the ability to remain competent under stress.” Successful people are peak performers. One of the key factors in “peak performance”, which is the ability to perform at our best all of the time, is resiliency. Top athletes are peak performers. They stay “game ready” all of the time. Athletes bounce back after losses. They keep their head in the game, and they stay in shape. They take advantage of opportunities as they arise. Success of any kind requires us to be “game ready” all of the time.
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“The same wind that blows us off course can turn and carry us home.” – Tiffany Reisz
Did you know that sailboats and airplanes are off course approximately 99% of the time? Because of the way a sailboat must work with wind to move, it is impossible for a sailboat to sail in a straight line. A sailboat moves through a process called “tacking”. Tacking is a process of deliberately over shooting a target in one direction, then “coming about” to over shoot it the target in the other direction, then coming about again. The sailboat reaches its destination through a process of zig zaging its way towards its destination. Something similar is true for airplanes. Both sailboats and airplanes are off course most of the time, yet they manage to reach their destinations through thousands of mini adjustments.
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“Man often becomes what he believes himself to be. If I keep on saying to myself that I cannot do a certain thing, it is possible that I may end by really becoming incapable of doing it. On the contrary, if I have the belief that I can do it, I shall surely acquire the capacity to do it even if I may not have it at the beginning.”
― Mahatma Gandhi
Spencer West was born with a disease in his legs that resulted in both his legs being amputated just below the pelvis. His parents were told Spencer would never sit up by himself or be a contributing member of society.
Over his life, Spencer was told a lot of “wouldn’ts”, “couldn’ts”, and “not possibles”. Fortunately, neither Spencer, nor his parents, paid attention to the limitations other people put on Spencer. They approached life from a place of discovering for themselves what Spencer could do.
In June 2012, Spencer West, together with his two best friends, climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa. Spencer did over 80% of the climb on his hands. (Let’s face it, there are lots of people with legs who never climb to the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro.)
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“No one can go to the highest level and remain a generalist.” – John C. Maxwell
Despite what you may have heard, there actually IS a time and place to say, “I can’t.” The truth is, it is not actually possible to do everything. As soon as we choose one thing, we give up something else. For example, if I wear my red dress, I can’t wear the blue one at the same time. I can’t be at the grocery store and the book store at the same time. If I’m writing my next blog article, I can’t be doing something fun at the same time….Oh, wait, that last example doesn’t work. Writing my blog is TOTALLY fun!! I can’t be on Facebook and writing my article at the same time. OK, that works.
The point is, life often forces us to make a choice. What matters is that in the process of choosing, we choose what will take us to where we want to go. “Can’t” can sometimes play a role in success!
Below are the 5 “Can’ts” successful people adopt. Read the rest of this entry
“Those who say life is knocking them down and giving them a tough time are usually the first to beat themselves up. Be on your own side.” ― Rasheed Ogunlaru
I bet the title REALLY got your attention! In a recent offering of my “Your Best Year Yet” Workshop, my friend and colleague, Betsi, shared with our group that she constantly guards against what she calls “Betsi’s Five F’s”. These five F’s usually go hand-in-hand with self –criticism. The five F’s demonstrate where we are beating ourselves up, and always show us where we are “fighting” against life (rather than living in the flow of Life—Flow is an F of a different kind! )
Successful people have very low levels of self-reproach. They learn from challenges and mistakes, forgive themselves (another F) and move on. They don’t waste their precious energy and resources on beating themselves up.
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“In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, in the expert’s mind there are few.” – Shunryu Suzuki
The human mind is amazing. It is set up for speed and efficiency. This is so we can recognize and respond to danger quickly. However, one of the problems with our biological derivative for fast processing, is that in efforts to create speed, our mind will often seek out patterns and create generalizations. In the process of doing this, the mind often leaps to conclusions about the nature of something. Now, this has many advantages. It makes it much easier and faster to process the 2 million bits of information per second that our five senses receive. However, it causes an equally large challenge. Once the mind has locked into a pattern, (for example: it swims, it has feathers, it quacks, it lays eggs, therefore it must be a duck), the mind “dismisses” the pattern as known. At that point, we actually stop looking, exploring, and seeking understanding. Once we “KNOW” something, once the dismissal happens, there is little room for learning. (for example: It might be a goose, swan, or even a heron). Read the rest of this entry
“Action expresses priorities.” ― Mahatma Gandhi
The Parable of the Professor and the Rocks. – Author Unknown
The professor was standing behind his desk in the lecture hall as I came in. That was odd because he usually dashed in just as class was supposed to start.
He didn’t say anything as he looked out at us—also odd—and everyone took a seat quickly. He reached under the desk and took out a clear glass jar, the gigantic kind that cafeterias get mayonnaise or pickles in. He set the jar on the desk and then reached under again and took out a box. Read the rest of this entry
Let’s face it, the world is shiny and interesting! There are thousands (well, millions, actually) of interesting things that can catch our attention, distract us, and pull us off course. It is easy spend time doing things that are fun and interesting, but have nothing to add to our goal or dream. While some pure leisure and fun are needed in every life, successful people have an incredible ability to focus on the tasks that will bring them closest to their dreams. Successful people don’t waste time on anything that will take them away from their dreams. That’s why they accomplish so many of them.
Many years ago, while reading a wonderful motivational book (I can no longer remember which one) the author shared a trick he used. On his wall, or somewhere where he could see it several times a day, he had a picture of his dream or goal. While that is not unusual, what he wrote on it was. With a large black marker, he wrote on the picture, “Does it get me closer to THIS?” Every time he had a negative thought, started a new activity, or was thinking of saying yes to a request, he would look at this picture and ask himself, “Does it get me closer to this?” If whatever he was doing, thinking, or considering would NOT take him closer to his dream, he would decline the request, or change his thoughts and actions. Read the rest of this entry
“Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other.” -John F. Kennedy
One of the traits of successful people is that they are constantly learning. In fact, a great deal of their Success Contemplation time (see the About Tab) is spent integrating and applying what they have learned.
Living organisms are either growing or dying. Cells are either regenerating themselves and multiplying, or they are decreasing in number. A decrease in the number of cells is called atrophy. Atrophy is a form of dying. It’s similar to what happens to sharks. Read the rest of this entry
“A superior man is modest in his speech, but exceeds in his actions.” – Confucius
Sir Isaac Newton (1642-1747) was a mathematician and physicist. He was so notable in his discoveries that many of the laws of physics we follow today were his. (Yes, most of our understanding of the world is based on ideas by a guy who has been dead for 300 years). That being said, much of Newton’s work is still very valid.
What does physics have to do with success? Newton’s first law of motion states that “An object at rest stays at rest, and an object in motion stays in motion with the same speed and in the same direction unless acted upon by an unbalanced force.” Basically, objects tend to “keep on doing what they’re doing” unless something happens to make them change. Read the rest of this entry