Those who know me are aware that I like to speak in public. It is gratifying to know that when one opens one’s mouth, people listen. If you don't mind church preaching, you can hear me online.
Having said that, I am no motivational speaker in the traditional sense of the term. A whole lot of hype about a better you and a better planet has never been my way. If anything, I like to think I find the side door to encouraging others, connecting with their struggle more than their sunny days.
But this morning, I intend to motivate you. That’s right, Tony Robbins, step aside. Joel Osteen, you have been served. In a few short paragraphs I am going to put my readers on the path from gloom to glory! When we’re done here, you will be able to walk on hot coals, bite bullets in half and tell the mountain to move.
So, first, here’s the tools you’ll need to prepare for your Race of Destiny:
an honest list of what sucks in your life
an equally honest list of what you’re good at (skills, experience, ways of thinking, feeling, etc.)
an unprecedentedly honest list of what you want to accomplish in the days ahead
Take your three lists and pile them neatly on top of each other.
Carefully fold them into quarters.
Place the folded stack onto your BBQ grill.
With your lighter, set them on fire.
Return to your house and pour yourself a cold one to celebrate your life-changing achievement.
Why would I recommend burning such lists? Is this not the behaviour of a person eager on achieving greatness in life? Isn’t an ounce of preparation worth a pound of cure?
The reason I make this extreme recommendation is that I believe that the majority of you are not in need of another list. Making lists are easy. If you’re in doubt, just think New Years. We can make them all day long and achieve nothing.
If I could take you on a guided tour of my hard drive and my many cloud accounts, I could show you lists that, if printed on paper and lined up vertically, would take you from here to Mars with a little left over for use in the bathroom.
Making lists is generally not what people need to accomplish their goals and dreams.
Simply put, they need to run.
By run, I mean DO. Take action. Get up off your backside and put yourself in motion. If you have a short list of six things you want to accomplish today, the ONLY way that list is worth anything is if you actually get up and do them.
So, yes, I am making a case for action being the active ingredient in your efforts to win at life. I am not saying that lists are inherently bad. I just want you to realize how easy it is to make a list and how hard it is to do the things needed to follow your list.
So, to conclude, I offer three things that you can do to help you do:
DO something: This is naturally the first place to start. A mass in motion builds momentum. Inertia starts to take over, and soon that moving mass is going places. Granted, without direction, it’s moving aimlessly, but I maintain that the hardest part of doing anything is the getting up and going. What should you do? For this step, the only advice I am offering is to do something. Anything that gets you up from your inert state and puts you in motion. Make a sandwich. Take the garbage out. Call a friend (yes, a real voice call). Motion trumps stillness.
DO something with purpose: This is where a goal, an aim, or a purpose can come into play. Try getting up and doing something because you determined it in advance. If you want to clean your bathroom (dull but necessary), then bloody well do it. If you had said that you would write a poem, then stop telling yourself lies and write a poem, even if it is the worst poem you have ever written. Now your motion has focus and direction.
DO something rewarding: Perhaps the most important part about doing is the payoff. The bigger the payoff, the greater your satisfaction in achieving it. It will make you want to do it again! Your rewarding goal may require significant planning if you are to achieve it. This is where I might recommend to not reach for the lighter; while making the list is not difficult and in and of itself achieves nothing, it is still a tool you’ll need to guide your actions.
Yes, I know this list is simplistic and common sense. I also know that it lacks a lot of particulars about the kinds of goals you should set for yourself. I will be speaking to those in the weeks ahead. But be honest; you have a long list of goals already. Even if you haven’t written them down, most people have a strong sense of what they want to achieve. Perhaps you haven’t written them down because you instinctively believe that you’ll never accomplish them. Perhaps failure is a major fear for you. I get that...more than you know. The point is that you have great goals. In order to achieve them, you’ll need to become a pro at doing things.
The truth is that a person in motion will ALWAYS stand a better chance at achieving the desires of their heart than the one who remains inert. So, I will leave the list-making to you and offer you a loving, swift kick in the gluteus maximus.
Start. Doing. Things.
A dreamer in motion is a dangerous and powerful force.