May 18, 2021

Making Other Plans

One of my all-time favorite artists is John Lennon. His musical legacy is legendary; his views on politics and peace are well-documented. And he was aptly quoted once saying; "Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans." And it's so true. 

We are on the second lap of the calendar on this global pandemic. The end might be in sight but we actually have absolutely no idea when that will arrive. I have had my first of two vaccine shots and my second isn't until August. You may still be waiting for your first. Multiply that by seven billion humans and this thing is going to take a while. Please keep wearing your mask!

What is normal?

During the last year or so, I've noticed several trends. There are friends and colleagues who are out of work waiting for the company to call them back. Others are getting adjusted to a life of working from home and having to stay home around the clock. And others are making plans for what happens in their lives. I walked away from a situation that wasn't serving me, and near the end, some may have thought I wasn't serving it. And that is life. 

But the point for me was that I had to make other plans for my life. Whatever bucket you find yourself in right this minute, it isn't easy. My folks always encouraged me to try things as I grew up. If I had told them I wanted to be a clown in the circus, they would have told me to be the best clown that ever existed. But it's not up to others to break down those barriers to our plans. It's up to us. Others can help, but we have to write the book or build the wall or paint the canvas ourselves. 

We are not born with fear

Fear is something we learn over a lifetime of shortfalls and mistakes. We think it protects and guides us but all it does is stop us. I have an Olympic gold medal in fear. It's easier to blame circumstances or age or finances or a myriad other reasons as to why we don't follow our gut to reach our dream. 

If you have a seed of an idea, share it with someone you trust and ask for feedback. If the idea is taking shape, reach out and ask for help. If you have never truly asked for help - I can promise you two things. It will be scary at first and you will get better at it. 

 Life happens whether we make plans or not. 

May 4, 2021

Is Patience a Virtue?

It may be true that waiting is admirable but how often does it fit into our business goals and plans? We want the new idea started - NOW! We want the results - NOW! We want the changes we suggested implemented - NOW! But we know deep down that patience still rules the day.

I once had a boss who proclaimed that everything he did was "ready shoot aim". So he thought of an idea, fired it against the wall, cleaned up the mess, and examined what was left. In my opinion, the "ready aim shoot" approach is well-tested and the better strategy. We often aim too long and don't execute anything. Paralysis by analysis as many have called it. Maybe my old boss was right; stop overthinking and take the shot.

C'mon I Don't Have All Minute!

I think I was about 12 when I walked into the kitchen and my dad was standing in front of the microwave waiting for his warmed up coffee. He looked agitated. I thought, wow he can't wait 37 seconds for hot coffee? That image has stuck with me all the years since.

We do it all the time. We think we are being patient when inside our impatience is running a muck. We're looking at the clock, calendar, phone, or website, and wondering why the answer, result, or solution isn't there instantaneously.

Calm Down

Another cliché - never in the history of humankind has anyone calmed down by being told to calm down. It incenses us when we're uptight and someone tells us to chill. It's not that the guidance isn't based in reality or caring, but our emergency needs to be the world's priority - NOW!

I'm working on a project right now that has taken far longer than I originally anticipated. It's not the project's fault or those involved; it's my expectations that are faulty. I know this takes time and I'm battling excitement and perhaps a dash of panic to get it done. We don't want to calm down but if we do, it may make the inevitable waiting more bearable. And how often have you thought about a better idea while you are impatiently stewing over the current results?

The solution may lie in our patience after all. __________________________________________________________________

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