It’s been a few weeks since I’ve published anything completely unrelated to training, nutrition, or fitness in general.
Since Friday marked the end of my 32nd trip around the Sun since exiting my mother’s womb, I figured I’d share with you 32 thoughts, ideas, lessons, concepts, and questions that have come to play a significant role in how I go about making the most of my short time on this rock.
Before digging in, I should make it clear that the ideas I’m going to share in this post are not intended to tell anybody how to live their life.
This is not a “how to” guide, and many of these concepts may not jive with you or your values.
That’s totally cool!
You do you.
If, however, one of these concepts does happen to resonate with you, provide a bit of clarity, or result in one more smile or one less tear, I’ll consider this post to be a success.
Otherwise, I’ll reiterate that these thoughts and ideas are written as if I were speaking to myself as a reminder.
Oh, and none of these have anything to do with nutrition or training.
After all, what good are protein, carbs, fat, sets, and reps if not contributing to a larger effort to squeeze as much juice as possible out of this fruit called “life”?
Without further ado, here we go:
- Your existence is a precious gift, regardless of whether it was given by a higher power or randomly generated by chance reactions of energy and elements. It’s up to you whether you choose to hoard this gift for yourself or share it with the world.
- The earth was once flat and all things were made of air, earth, fire, and water. Keep that in mind whenever you’re “sure” of something.
- 99% of people out there – myself included – don’t really know what they’re talking about. Those who most freely and openly admit when they’re wrong are the ones most worth listening to. So-called “flip floppers” are, in some contexts, the most trustworthy people on the planet.
- If you’re focused only on “what” without any regard for the “how” or the “why”, just how sound are your thoughts, beliefs, and actions?
- “Please” and “thank you” are some of the most powerful words in the English language.
- The more often I use the word, “no”, the higher I find to be my quality of life.
- Some people suck, but most are simply unaware of the impact of their actions on the lives of others. There’s much truth behind the old saying, “never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.”
- We’re all coping with or compensating for something. When somebody isn’t being so cool, ask yourself what kind of pain or insecurities are driving their actions. With some exceptions, compassion is most often a more effective response than offense.
- We all started life small, fragile, and covered in goo, and we’ll all end up dry, cold, and rotting. The numbers on our bank statements, widgets in our homes, and the letters behind our names make us no more or less human than anybody else, and won’t be of much use from inside a casket.
- We’re all just trying to make it to sunset. You never know when you might make or break somebody else’s day, so you might as well just be cool.
- Smiling and being in a good mood are a two way street – sometimes, you might need to fake it ’til you make it.
- Start and end each day with gratitude. Not everybody who went to bed the night before woke up, and not everybody who woke up that morning made it to bed. No matter what’s going on in your life, there are likely billions of people who would kill to have your problems.
- “Enjoy the process” doesn’t mean forcing ourselves to enjoy something we hate. Rather, it means we should focus on the efforts that we enjoy, even if those efforts don’t yield the outcomes we expect.
- You’re stuck with “you” for the rest of your life. Work tirelessly to know – and love – this person.
- Authenticity attracts the people and opportunities that align with your values and repels the people and opportunities that don’t. Inauthenticity attracts nothing but distrust, discontent, and disappointment.
- “Teaching” and “learning” crush “winning” and “losing”.
- Your circumstances are largely outside of your control, but how you respond to and feel about them is not. Make time to be alone with you thoughts and emotions, learn to acknowledge and let go of those that aren’t serving you.
- Unhappiness is a response to the difference between your expectations and reality. Take note of which factors in this equation you can control.
- Life is not fair – neither in opportunity nor outcome. Do the best you can with what you have and don’t keep anybody else from doing the same.
- “Balance” is a myth, and multi-tasking – in any area of life – is a fast-track to mediocrity and dissatisfaction. Identify the things that you (and nobody else) find to be important and pursue them with passion.
- Is it so crazy to think that you should place your own expectations for yourself before those of others?
- The mistakes and triumphs of yesterday and tomorrow exist only as electrical signals and chemicals in a mass of fat inside your head. They do not define you. Who you are is only defined by what you do and say right now.
- Legality and morality are not synonymous. Just because something is legal or illegal does not necessarily mean it is right or wrong. Furthermore, just because you personally believe something is right or wrong doesn’t necessarily mean it should be legal or illegal.
- There are billions of people on this planet, and just as many views on religion, politics, relationships, and morality. Are you so sure yours are right?
- Some situations are worth escalating, but not all of them. The small stuff is rarely worth sweating, unless that small stuff represents more meaningful underlying principles. This is especially true when it comes to others imposing their own preferences and world-views on others’ freedoms. Sometimes, it’s worth taking a stand over something small now to preserve future liberties.
- Time can’t be managed. You don’t know how much you have, and you’re not in control of how quickly it passes. Your energy, however, can be managed. Identify which pursuits are worth your effort, and which aren’t, understanding that time is fleeting.
- Regularly assess your possessions, commitments, and relationships, and ask, “does this add value to my life?”. If the answer isn’t, “hell yes”, it’s “no”. Let it go.
- If a headline or sound byte leaves you feeling informed or inspired, it’s probably news. If it leaves you feeling afraid, outraged, disenfranchised, or powerless, there’s a good chance it’s propaganda.
- It’s okay to disagree. If somebody has different views than you, it’s not a reflection on either of you as human beings, or the validity of either of your points of view. We’ve all had different experiences from which we’ve formed our world views.
- Different perspectives are often pieces of a puzzle that all fit together to form a larger, more accurate, picture of what actually “is”. Seek out as many pieces as you can find.
- All sensations and emotions, even those often considered to be negative – fear, stress, grief, and pain – are simply signals. Rather than letting these feelings and emotions preclude you from taking action, I like to consider how they might steer my actions so as to make such feelings and emotions are less frequent – for myself and for others.
- Life is short, and each year seems to pass faster than the one before. While we all have our beliefs about what may or may not lie on the other side, none of us know for sure. How would you spend these years if you knew nothing were to follow?
Well, I suppose that just about does it!
I won’t bog these thoughts down with any anti-climatic attempt at a meaningful conclusion, so I’ll leave you with this:
Have a most excellent day 🙂