Because everything is praise and success for Tesla and Spacex right now, it would be easy to underrate Elon Musk’s pain behind his bold life. Just a few years ago, he had mammoth failures and crushing criticism from everywhere, even from his heroes.
The following quote captures a day in the life…
In 2018, I can use Elon Musk’s reminder that giving up and living small is not the option I want to take.
The first step I must take in order to become the very best version of myself is to pay attention to my thoughts and words. Besides catching myself saying negative things, I also review my conversations to catch the times I exaggerated, wasn’t completely honest, or talked too much.
When I take the time to really hear myself, it is sometimes painful, yet, that pain gives me more incentive to grow and change.
Although, I ignored my “Control Center Alert” instructions for years, due to time spent in deep, dark pits, I now pay attention.
IN CASE OF:
“…think about these things…whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable, excellent, or praiseworthy…”
Dwelling on what is scary, dreary, horrid, painful, wrong, and depressing never worked.
Even though it seemed counter-intuitive and too simple, soaking my brain in beauty did. I now use books and the internet to refuel on success stories, overcoming obstacles, recovery-after-tragedy, unexpected-redemption-in-dark-places, love, loyalty, art, nature, animals, and role-models. The change I feel inside is immediate.
Pain to progress. Darkness to light.
…I pinpoint the one thing that has improved my relationships more than anything else. It is the realization that people don’t need to hear what I have to say nearly as much as they need me to hear what they have to say; my presence much more than my advice, and my acceptance much more than my analysis.
In fact, this one insight has saved me from multiplying my regrettable errors. Duh. Yet, yet, yet, I still forget and think it is about me being heard.
Thanks to those of you who were patient with my words in 2017.
“You learn something new every day.”
That’s easy to say, but, can we prove it?
There are many “knowers” in the world. Fewer learners.
Real learning involves using information.
So, a New Year’s Challenge to myself and whoever wants to take on a 2018 adventure:
Record What We Learn Everyday and How the New Information Will Be Used
Try it for a week. In a journal, notebook, Word doc, OneNote, or, even on your calendar. Make a point to record what you learned. (I’ve been doing this and it is harder than I thought it would be, but, wow! it has been worth it.)
Jan 1: I read a Brene Brown quote: “We orphan all the parts of us that don’t meet up to the ideal.”
My application: Use the quote this week to remind me not to be so hard on myself.
Happy New Learning Year to all!
Right before bed, I had a very troubling phone conversation.
My first thought was, “I won’t be able to sleep.”
My second thought was, “If I manage to get to sleep, I will have terrible, turbulent dreams.”
My third thought was, “My life is a speck on a speck that will be over in a flash. Worrying about a speck in the life of a speck on a speck in a galaxy that is a speck in the universe is insane!”
I smiled at myself for trying to control another speck on a speck, turned off my thoughts, and went right to sleep.
When I woke up blissfully rested, I thought, “Not so bad for a speck on a speck. I think I’ll try that again tonight.”
Reading Julie Lythcott-Haims memoir, Real American has skillfully prodded me toward important awareness of:
- my inadequacy to see the world from others’ points of view
- how many moments I have wasted in self-absorption instead of seeing others and their obstacles
- how long it takes in a lifetime to really understand that compassion toward others is everything
- the importance and long-term impact of all people (especially people we discount)
- the terrible pain people of color have endured due to the callousness and ignorance of others