Everything. Anything. YOUR Thing...
This short blog post may appear far too simple. Perhaps it is. But consider the simple act of walking. Placing one foot in front of the other requires an amazingly complex set of coordinated events among your thoughts, muscles, tendons, bones, and the earth.
Believe it or not, liquid flowing within your ears actually helps maintain your sense of balance as you walk, totally unaware of the complexity of something most of us do every single day. Of course, after the age of two, we think of walking as something that's very “simple.”
Yet, simple things aren’t necessarily easy.
For example, consider the act of deciding what to do next…
Despite the best plans, perfect processes, and proper priorities, we simply can’t do everything. Oh sure… technology has certainly evolved to help us do more.
In fact, in today’s technologically integrated world, many things happen almost instantaneously.
We click a button and thousands of miles away someone receives an electronic letter, a picture, or a plan for a new process. Through the invention of cell phones, we can now call anyone from almost anywhere.
And because of the availability of today’s fabulous electronic gadgetry, we can do almost anything, anywhere.
Of course, that last statement isn’t true at all.
We simply can’t do almost anything… anywhere.
In fact, in some aspects of our lives, technology has actually reduced our ability to get things done. Computers, cell phones (which are actually little computers), music devices (more little computers), and various other attention-getters can actually decrease our ability to consider, develop, and improve upon our ideal landscape.
Instead of doing almost anything anywhere, many of us are trying to do everything everyday. And because we think it’s ok to try to do everything, we seem to be willing to do anything to get “it” done.
Making matters worse… because we are so accustomed to answering this, watching that, clicking here, switching there… some people actually feel disengaged from our world when their inbox is empty; when their “reality” shows are not really on; or when their cell phones are not ringing, chiming, or mesmerizing!
How did this happen?
How did we independently become so dependent on the interdependence of our dependencies? How did we lose sight of the significant importance of our independence?
How did all of this technology make us so interconnected while mitigating and marginalizing our significant sense of self… ultimately making us seem significantly insignificant in a world far more connected than ever before?
How did we get to the point where we know so much about technology, and yet we know so little about ourselves?
It’s time for a change.
Beginning today, forget “everything.”
And before you do anything… simply invest 30 quick minutes and think about YOUR thing.
What is it that YOU want to do… next?
Why is this time of thought regarding next important?
Let’s review the obvious facts:
1. You can’t do everything.
2. You can do almost anything.
3. You must choose your thing… or have it chosen for you.
To try to do everything is literally impossible.
And since it’s impossible to do everything, we should shift our focus and choose to do a smaller set of everything. The hundred-thousand-dollar question is:
Which things should you choose to do?
From what part of everything can you choose?
For many people, the list of possible lifestyles is endless.
From apple farmer to zookeeper… from archer to Zoroastrian… many people are physically unlimited in their ability to choose and achieve certain occupations and professions in life.
However, (dare I say) all of us are physically, mentally, emotionally, or (some other) resource-challenged and simply cannot do some of the things that others can do.
Quadriplegics don’t usually physically run with their legs; but some can blaze trails around you and me spiritually and intellectually. Blind people don’t usually read with their eyes; but they can often “see” much more of the richness of life than the wealthiest of the wealthy.
And YOU don’t usually (insert your real or perceived limitation here). But you know you can (insert your real or perceived superpower here).
Perhaps the list of things that people can’t do is immeasurably long.
Perhaps you feel (or know) there are significant an limitations on what you can personally do.
Aside from your long list of limitations, if you really think about it… you can probably still do just about anything.
In other words, stop reviewing the reasons why you think you can’t do something… and build upon the one good reason why you know it can be done.
You definitely have a gift; that’s YOUR thing.
The people with whom you live, work, and play (also) have a unique set of values, ideas, and solutions, and they can offer tremendous insight as you develop the specifics of your next step.
Those connections are important.
But you and your individual thoughts… those are what matter most, dear neighbor.
What’s YOUR thing?
Remember: The points in this short blog post might appear amazingly simple. I’m okay with that. In the grand scheme of things, we are born; we eat; we meet; we live; and we die.
Perhaps all of it is just… that… simple.
And even if we try to complicate this thing called life, it all starts the same…
Indeed, an exceedingly long, convoluted journey and a short jaunt from here to there both start with the exact same thing: the next, first step.
It’s simple, right?
Simple things aren’t necessarily easy.
This series is designed to make finding your ideal life a tad bit easier.
Next week: Ones and Zeros
HERE’S THE IDEA:
In reality, your list of limitations pales when compared to the universe of things you can do.
HERE’S THE DEAL:
Once you accept the fact that you can’t do everything, you will more clearly understand and see what you can do. You can do almost anything. The big question is, “What do you really want to do?” Answer that question, and you are well on your way to living The Ideal life.
Accept. Adapt. Achieve. ®
What do YOU want to achieve?
This is Part 1 of a 30-part series on how to achieve The Ideal Life.
Think about the word IDEAL. It is actually a conglomeration of several smaller words, specifically:
~ I ~ ID ~ IDEA ~ DEAL ~ IDEAL ~
In the final analysis, if you can learn to master your Id (as in the ego, id, and superego), you can do some rather amazing things.
© 2011-2016 John H. Clark III
Parts excerpted from
The Ideal: Your Guide to An Ideal Life
(220 pages, BFG Press, 11/11/11)
Inspiring a worldwide community of optimistic realists.