You’re Already Good Enough

What are your goals for the next year of your life? What about five years from today?

With goals for our future, we’re better equipped to avoid the minor distractions of daily life and ignore what isn’t important or doesn’t provide our lives with some kind of value. Goals fill us with a sense of purpose and intention, and they help guide our decisions, actions, and behaviors. For these reasons, setting and achieving goals is a powerful way to improve our lives.

“Without goals, you are living reactively, letting life push you around. With goals, you can live a proactive life, steering toward a destination. You know where your path is supposed to lead.” ~ J.D. Roth

Continue reading at Pick the Brain…

…the World Needs You!

Often I’ll hear someone talking about how they wish they could solve the many problems in this world.  Their concerns sound genuine and heartfelt; “It’s so terrible what’s happening in Africa!  Those poor children, I wish there was something I could do.”

They wish there was something they could do, but…

…the money, the time, my family…job, house, school.  It isn’t our fault we can’t save the world…just look at our list of responsibilities!  They’re the reason!!!   We scroll through the archive in our mind, finding countless reasons why we can’t, each a reminder that we have other priorities and obligations that need to be met.  We convince ourselves that it just isn’t possible to escape the commitments.  It doesn’t take long before we’re using our excuses as a waiver of liability. 

Even though we want to help, somehow we’re comforted in knowing that we can’t.  It was a nice thought, anyway.

Have you ever thought to ask yourself whether or not that long list of “responsibilities” isn’t really just a fairy tale?  A bunch of lies that you tell yourself so you’ll never need to deviate from the routine or step outside your comfort zone?  Let me ask you this: if you’re afraid to expand your horizons and challenge yourself to move beyond your comfort zone, are you really living…or simply existing?

When I hear people trying to justify why they can’t [whatever], I think about the people who can, who are and who did.  What if Martin Luther King, Jr had said “I have a dream, but…”, or if Gandhi never was the change he wished to see in the world?  What if all the people who ever changed the world, hadn’t?

All around us are everyday people doing extraordinary things.  Maybe you’ve heard of Albert Lexie, or maybe you haven’t.  He earns $10 an hour shining shoes.  Since 1982, Albert has donated all of his tip money to the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburg…more than $150,000.  Albert is only one example of countless people across the world whose actions could inspire a nation.  Each day people are being the change.  They, too, have a dream…

How would your life change if you were to quit making excuses?

Instead of just wishing there was something you could do to help the people of the world, without any excuses holding you back you are free to dig wells in Africa so the people can have access to clean drinking water.  If Africa isn’t your thing, you can volunteer at a soup kitchen in your own city and help feed the hungry.  Get involved!  Don’t waste another moment wishing you could help.

It’s time to quit making excuses, not only for yourself but for the world.  We need you!

The Secret to Happiness

What’s the secret to happiness?

A million dollars?  Maybe a house on an exotic island deep in the South Pacific?  A new wardrobe?  A better job or more recognition at the one you already have?  Maybe you’d be happy if things just weren’t how they are now

Happiness can be hard to find.  As a matter of fact, our founding fathers only ever guaranteed us the right to pursue happiness, not to actually be happy.  And so we seek our happiness in many ways.

Some people find their “happiness” in shopping.  Others find it in a substance.  One person might discover that the “secret” to their happiness lies in the heart of another person while others never find exactly what it is they’re looking for.  Indeed, happiness is elusive to those who seek it.

It’s hard to find because we’re looking in all the wrong places.  Happiness isn’t something we’ve lost.  You see, the secret to happiness isn’t that it’s somewhere “out there” for us to find…it’s already inside of us.

Of course, accepting that happiness can’t be bought, snorted or borrowed from another is confusing to understand in a society that subliminally punishes us for our flaws, quirks and shortcomings.  It’s easy to feel insecure, weak and to doubt ourselves in a multitude of ways.  We feel ugly, fat, stupid.  Our complexion is nothing like the models in Vogue Magazine.  We have pimples on our cheeks and freckles on our nose.

And we dream of all the ways our lives could be better, so that someday we might be happy…

We dream of having fast cars, big houses, a successful career, lots of money, a sexy wife, smooth skin and a tight ass.  Suddenly, our dreams have replaced our happiness.  All the while we’re thinking about how much better our lives will be, someday, we fail to appreciate all that we’ve been given today.  Rather than appreciating life for the blessing it is, we critique and criticize what isn’t “perfect”.

So in our dreams we delay our happiness, telling ourselves that once we reach this milestone or that once we graduate and find the perfect job, that’s when we can finally be happy.  Maybe happiness will happen to us when we meet the man of our dreams or buy a big, beautiful house…Yes!  Then we’ll be happy!  But all these dreams we believe will someday make us happy actually won’t make us happy.  Not really…not in a way which is meaningful.

“Lies!  Of course I’ll be happy when I’m rich and driving my BMW to my amazing job where I make lots of money!!!”

Let me tell you a secret about finding happiness in material possessions; it doesn’t happen.  There will always be something more that you don’t have, can’t afford or wish you had.  An even faster car, a house on the lake and a boat to go sailing on the weekends.  Botox injections, Gucci purses, Prada shoes.  So long as you seek happiness externally, there will always be something else and thus another reason why you can’t be satisfied with your life.

Pure, authentic happiness isn’t found by buying Stuff or reaching a certain milestone.  Happiness comes naturally only once you’re able to realize that everything you could ever need, you already have.  It comes in accepting the things that are less than perfect and appreciating all that you have, right now.

That is where you will find your happiness.