Author Ryan Holiday was talking with Tim Ferriss on The Tim Ferriss Show and he said, “To be or to do? This is a key question that comes to us from the great strategist John Boyd who, as he mentored young men and women in the Pentagon, would see that you kind of can go down two paths in life. There’s the person who wants to look important, that wants to achieve a high rank, that wants to be in the newspapers or on TV. Then there’s the person who wants to quietly get things done. I think it was Truman who said, ‘It’s amazing how much you can accomplish if you don’t care about who gets the credit.’
To be or to do is largely about credit. Do you care about accomplishments, or do you care about impact? Do you care about credit, or do you care about getting things done? You have to ask yourself, ‘Am I trying to be an important person? Am I trying to accomplish important things?’ And this question is critical, ‘To be or to do?’ How are you measuring your life?
Hillel said, ‘If I am not for me, who is?’ And then he said, ‘If I am only for me, who am I?’ This, I think, is related to the idea of to be or to do.” Continue reading
I was reading When Things Fall Apart by Pema Chodron and she writes, “We are killing the moment by controlling our experience. Doing this is setting ourselves up for failure, because sooner or later, we’re going to have an experience we can’t control: our house is going to burn down, someone we love is going to die, we’re going to find out we have cancer, a brick is going to fall out of the sky and hit us on the head, somebody’s going to spill tomato juice all over our white suit, or we’re going to arrive at our favourite restaurant and discover that no one ordered produce and seven hundred people are coming for lunch. The essence of life is that it’s challenging. Sometimes it is sweet, and sometimes it is bitter. Sometimes your body tenses, and sometimes it relaxes or opens. Sometimes you have a headache, and sometimes you feel 100 per cent healthy. From an awakened perspective, trying to tie up all the loose ends and finally get it together is death, because it involves rejecting a lot of your basic experience. There is something aggressive about that approach to life, trying to flatten out all the rough spots and imperfections into a nice smooth ride. To be fully alive, fully human, and completely awake is to be continually thrown out of the nest. To live fully is to be always in no-man’s-land, to experience each moment as completely new and fresh. To live is to be willing to die over and over again. From the awakened point of view, that’s life.” Continue reading
There is a little town in Illinois called Santa Claus. Years ago, the town was called Santa Fe. But when the town tried to register a post office, the name Santa Fe was taken. So they called themselves Santa Claus.
They receive thousands of letters to Santa from all over the world each year. One of them included a key and the young letter-writer explained that they didn’t have a chimney so Santa would need to come in the front door on Christmas Eve. Continue reading
I was listening to Dr. Gabor Maté, a Hungarian-Canadian physician specializing in childhood trauma, on The Tim Ferriss Show. He shared a quote that was powerful. Dr. Gabor Maté said…
“It’s from one of my favourite teachers. And his name is AH Olness. And he says, ‘Your conflicts, all the difficult things, the problematic situations in your life are not chance or haphazard, they’re actually yours. They’re specifically yours designed specifically for you by a part of you that loves you more than anything else. That part of you that loves you more than anything else has created roadblocks to lead you to yourself. You’re not going to go in the right direction, unless there’s something pricking you in the side telling you look here, this way. That part of you loves you so much that it doesn’t want you to lose the chance. It will go to extreme measures to wake you up. It will make you suffer greatly if you don’t listen. What else can it do? That’s its purpose.’ And I found this to be true of physical illness and mental problems and everything. You’ve got to see what is the teaching here.” Continue reading
I was listening to Sharon Salzberg, best-selling author and world-renowned Buddhist meditation teacher, on The Tim Ferriss Show. She said something profound. She said, “Do the good that’s in front of you, even if it feels very small.”
Sometimes life can feel overwhelming. Out of control. We have so many balls up in the air that our arms can’t possibly keep juggling. But we are in such a frenzy that we keep going until something drops. The ball or us. Continue reading
When my now 16-year-old middle child was just 7 weeks, I joined an adult Irish dance team for some exercise and adult time. Little did I know that such a small decision would change the trajectory of our lives.
Our adult team ended up competing numerous times at the Eastern Canadian Championships and even placed second at the North American Championships. I met some lovely women and realized I could do things I never thought I could do before.
And because of this journey, I ended up registering my first-born son, and then his brother and then their sister to take Irish dance. It may not have been on my radar if I wasn’t already immersed in that world. One beginner class led to years competing nationally and internationally. Continue reading
Dr. Martine Rothblatt started a company called United Therapeutics to save the life of one of her daughters who had a rare disease. Before that she founded and led Sirius XM radio which has over 34 million subscribers and she is also a leader in transgender rights. When I listened to her recently on The Tim Ferriss Show, my eyes were opened in so many ways. Continue reading
Who knows what will happen tomorrow? I mean, just a year ago we were doing wild things when greeting others including shaking hands and hugging. How things have changed.
I was listening to Dan Harris, author and past news anchor, on The Tim Ferriss Show. He spoke about having a panic attack on-air on Good Morning America in 2004 and how that changed his path and helped him find meditation and life balance. He grew up living with a mantra that his father taught him which was, “The price of security is insecurity.” So, he believed that you had to be stressed to climb to the top of the mountain. That was the price. Continue reading
I had some time off work last week and I spent it by water with loved ones while reading and listening to podcasts. I recently learned through the VIA Character Strength Survey that one of my character strengths is love of learning and this is how I fuel my well-being. I enjoy thinking about ideas, connecting the dots from different lanes and wrapping my mind around something new. This is bliss to me. Continue reading