If you don’t learn from your past experience you’re bound to repeat them. There are many Eastern traditions and philosophies that say the lesson will repeat itself until the student learns the lesson, and if you are someone in life that has experienced something multiple times in your life, whether it’s getting in a relationship with somebody that had red flags, whether it’s engaging with risky or impulsive behavior despite knowing the consequences, whether it’s taking highly addictive and powerful substances to regulate your emotions, if you don’t learn the lesson it will repeat itself, and then you have to ask yourself the following question. Do I want my past to continue in my future? If the answer is No, reflect on your experiences and do something about it. If you don’t care and you want to live same s___, different year, and you want that Groundhogs Day effect and you want tomorrow to look like yesterday, and next year to look like last year, and next decade to look like last decade, by all means keep doing your thing. It’ll happen for you.
1. Take Responsibility for your Growth
By default you must take responsibility for this thing called growth. We have to, we must and a time comes when you need to stop waiting for the man or woman you want to become and start being the man and woman you want to be. So there’s a time in your life – it’s going to come – I don’t know when that is – it might be in this very moment right now, it might be down the line, but there is a moment in your life that you’re going to look at yourself and you’re going to say, “I can’t wait anymore to become the person it is that I know I want to become.” The time is now. I hope that moment comes for you so much. I really hope that you get struck by that moment and guess what, that moment that we realize that this isn’t it, and I want to become something more.
Starting to take responsibility usually comes from:
#1, The Gift of Desperation
#2, The Gift of Inspiration
Desperation is painful, it’s dark, backs against the wall. We do some good work there. Inspiration is a little bit more mellow, cool, calm, collected.
The now is all we ever have so I tell people the future don’t even exist, and they say, “dude, you’re crazy, what do you mean it doesn’t exist?” I’m like alright, let’s do an experiment. When is it right now? They’re like, “September 23rd 9:46 a.m.” I’m like, “alright cool, now what’s this future you’re talking about? They’re like “alright what about Friday? Next Saturday is the future.” I’m like, “yeah so when it’s next Saturday and I ask them what time is it now?” They say, “Well it’s September 30th.” And it’s now.
You see, the future is just a bunch of Nows that accumulate together and they create this thing called tomorrow, next week, next month, next year, because when those times come they’re not the future, they’re the now again. So by living the now in the best possible way, headed in the right direction towards our goals, dreams, ambitions, not headed in a certain direction of things that hinder us, when the future arrives it’s going to work out somewhere relatively close to what we want. Rarely ever is it exact. If you’re expecting perfection it’s not going to happen but it comes out very, very similar. There’s a really cool clock that is out there and on every hour of it so where it says one, two, three, four, five, six, all the way through it just says now, now, now, now, now. So it’s like what time is it? It’s now.
2. Buy into the Hot Poker Principle
The hot poker principle says make sure that you look around and carefully assess your closest associates or the closest people you hang out with or the closest connections you have in life and why is it important to do so? Because that is exactly the direction you are headed. So see who you hang out with, what you expose your mind to, what you put into your body, what you do X Y and Z. Look at your environment, do a whole 360 analysis, do a PET scan, CAT scan, CT scan, all that kind of stuff. Do the most deep dive you can and once you gather that data just know that’s where you’re headed.
If you are like me you want to head to places that you want to go, places that you want to get to. I listen to great audiobooks and podcasts and I watch really good things that stimulate my mind on television, usually in documentary form, educational variety. I like to go to great places and I like to go see great things, and I like to surround myself with greatness. It’s not that I want to become X Y and Z but if I do so I head in that direction and become my version of whatever that life is going to be like. But it’s inspired through that, so the hot poker is like we get as hot as our environment allows us to get, and by the way on the flip side of it, if you are constantly hanging out with people who are toxic, cold, distant, shut off, argumentative, they complain a lot, what do you think’s going to happen to you? You think you’re going to thrive in that environment? You think you’re going to accomplish all your goals, dreams, ambitions, take responsibility for your growth?
3. Determine which Areas in your Life you need to Grow
You don’t need me or a high level psychologist or a very profound deep analytical thinker to tell you what areas in your life you need to grow. Take a look at your life, take a look at all the different areas, total well-being, mind, body, spirit, relationships, and then just ask yourself, “am I satisfied with who and what I am right now?” If the answer is yes you’re probably doing something fairly well for yourself. If the answer is no, you say, “okay then who and what do I want to be in all these areas: mind, body, spirit, soul, emotions, relationships?”
Vision Gap is the gap from where you are to where you want to be.
Growth allows you to go from here to there, but remember in order to do so you can’t cruise or coast or everyone will do it. You must climb and once you develop it it’s on you. Your responsibility, your life, your choices. This post, by the way, was inspired by a guy named John Maxwell who is way more popular and famous in the world of personal development than most people. But it’s someone that I look to for inspiration and I’ve learned a lot from him for leadership to run a business, to treat employees, also to apply in personal recovery. So the beauty of these personal development talks when we do them is not just that they apply to life of recovery. They also apply to life. I want everybody watching this to be able to say, “Hey, last year when I heard that talk on growth till this year, I’ve actually made some growth in my life”
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