“Scheming and dreaming will fill your mind; taking action will fill your life.”
As a couple approaching middle age, we’ve had our fair share of successes and setbacks. Throughout them all – marriage, divorce, remarriage, cross-country moves, career ups and downs, and finally traveling the world with just a backpack – we’ve come to 5 consistent truths:
1. Eliminating the negative and focusing on what feeds your spirit every single day will change your life far more dramatically than achieving one big goal.
This is when you’ll have the space, energy and perspective to see opportunities in front of you. In choosing to not engage with the whiners at work, we performed better and made more money. In taking a walk every day, we reduced our stress, helped our hearts, and lost weight. In experiencing more small joys we increased our overall happiness.
2. Possessions limit experiences.
There is a cost to ownership, even if the items came to you for free. When your house is overloaded with stuff, you are less likely to invite friends and family over for dinner. When you stretch your resources – time, money, and attention – to maintain what you own, you have less left over for new experiences and relationships. You can treasure both what you own and the freedom gained from what you don’t own.
3. Good health is worth more than any amount of money or recognition.
It’s easy to overlook this in your 20s and 30s, but it starts catching up in your 40s and beyond. When you fail your body on a daily basis with poor nutrition, no exercise, extreme stress, and lack of sleep, it will eventually fail you. As your mind and soul becomes wiser, it’s a shame to let your body become less able to maximize those gifts.
4. The people you surround yourself with determine the direction of your life.
By reaching out to positive, generous, action-oriented people, groups, and organizations, you will greatly increase your own odds of success in your personal and business life. You up your own game when you’re surrounded by people who are playing at a higher level.
5. Doing the work every day is what leads to overnight success.
It isn’t the showy part of your life that matters, the “highlight reel,” so to speak. It is the work you do every day behind the scenes, when no one is looking, that determines your overall success in life. Just showing up when you say you will – to work, to help, to exercise, to learn – builds your credibility over time and eventually gives you the “overnight success” everyone else sees.
When you focus on these 5 truths, your life will take a dramatic upswing no matter what your overall goals. These are the foundational principles to guide you through life so that you enjoy every single moment of it.