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The Whiteboard

Right, then…

Unlike The Most Interesting Man in the World (or MIMW1) that does not experience self-doubt, I have to be talked off the ledge every now and then.  It’s not that I’m white-knuckling through life, but sometimes my mind has its way with me.  To contend with that, I’ve started capturing various thoughts and whatnot on my whiteboard – something for me to reference in order to maintain perspective.  This is nothing too deep – no need to break out the SCUBA gear, or anything, a snorkel, mask and fins should suffice. So, in no particular order:

  • See?  It all works out. 
    •  This is in reference to something that I was told about a year ago.  In short, this is referring to the fact that most problems get sorted one way or the other and you continue on with life.  You might walk away a little bruised or scraped up, but you’re still alive and – hopefully – a little smarter because of it.
  • You have more time than you think.
    • I credit Adam Savage (of Mythbusters) for this.  I saw him and Jaime give a lecture a couple of years ago, and someone from the audience asked him for words of wisdom.  This addresses the arbitrary time limit we put on ourselves and our goals:  I must be making $150,000/year by 24, I must own a home by 30, I must run a marathon by 40, I must lose 25 lbs by my High School reunion next month, etc…  This saying reminds us that the timetables we set are, for the most part, bollocks.  Furthermore, we probably lose more of our life worrying and trying to hit said arbitrary deadlines, than if we relaxed and let things happen in a more organic fashion.
  • This is all in your head.
    • At times, my mind likes to build up these huge failure scenarios about things going wrong and people being pissed off and things being noted on my “permanent record” and such (I really need to return that library book).  Of course, when it comes to pass, nothing ever happens as there was noting perceived to be wrong in the first place.  
  • It’s never as bad as you feared.
    • Every now and again, there’s a little trouble, despite what I’ve written above.  When the chickens come home to roost (or whatever that phrase is), the aforementioned failure scenarios that I’ve been torturing myself with were exponentially worse than what happened in real life.  The Moral:  You can wind up punishing yourself far worse than others would, if you’re not careful.
  • In order to be filled, the vessel must be empty.
    • This is a Chinese proverb, I believe.  I’ve heard it before, but more recently, it came to mind as I was awakening from a bad dream, so I thought it was worth noting.  But it rings true in that sometimes we have to let go of our beliefs, wants and suppositions in order to truly learn whatever message is being sent to us – either by others or God or The Universe or whom/whatever.

So, there you go. 


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