“Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.” | T.S. Eliot
Life is a pretty grand journey when you think about it. But there’s something in those moments when you really start to test yourself – stretch yourself – go a little beyond your comfort zone. Those moments, awaken something deep inside of you. Sometimes it’s masked as anxiety, but when that settles down, you end up realizing that you are traveling through undiscovered waters. I love Eliot’s quote here because it describes just that. Sometimes you have to pull your boots tight and see just how far you can go – fear in hand – ready for adventure.
“Be the change you wish to see in the world.” | Mahatma Gandhi
Probably one of the most quoted sentences there is out there. This one always stuck with me for a few reasons. We can either spend our entire lives complaining about what is or isn’t in this world of ours, or we can start bringing new things into it. Dreams are incredibly powerful things. In fact, those who have dreamed in the past have created much of our present. Many things have been deemed impossible throughout history and yet they were accomplished. So if you want something to be a certain way, maybe you are the exact person to bring it to life.
“Find something worth dying for then live for it.” | Unknown
For about 5 years I have had this quote posted on my cork board in my room. I’ve asked myself over and over again, “What would you die for?” That answer to that question eluded me for a long long time until my purpose bubbled up from the depths. I think, in encouraging others and giving people a reason to really love deeply – whatever type of relationship that is manifested through (personal, private, family etc) I really have found something that makes my life feel fulfilling.
“Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love. It will not lead you astray.” | Rumi
Something interesting starts happening when you start listening to that inner wisdom. It’s not the type of wisdom that comes from your thoughts or emotions necessarily, but a deeper type of energy that runs through you. When you can start tapping into that, those whispers drawing you to something really never lead you in a bad direction. I’ve gone through this a few times myself in the past and it continues to hold true. Trust yourself and what your gut is telling you.
“Always believe something wonderful is about to happen.” | Unknown
It’s not really a surprise that we live in a pretty chaotic world. There are a lot of things going on around us all the time – a great deal of them are absolutely horrific. We are also constantly force fed negativity and it does have a pretty significant effect on our mental state. I think it’s incredibly important to be aware of all of the things happening out there – both good and bad – and keep a mindset of what we can all offer to the world…what can we bring to the table today? There’s a whole lot of take these days…what can we offer? That all starts with a positive mind.
“Only the gentle are ever really strong.” | James Dean
The journey I started with The Better Man Project took me down some pretty interesting pathways throughout the past 4 years. What I’ve found though, is that it’s incredibly easy to pretend to be strong, confident, wise, etc. It’s easy to also put these traits forward and be way “out there” in peoples faces with it. But there’s something about the strength in gentle people. Not timid…but gentle. There’s so much overt strength going on today, so when you come across someone who is completely centered and confident in themselves, and yet they speak softly, it is a pretty big eye opening experience. Sometimes a situation doesn’t call for massive action. Sometimes, it calls for a gentle hand.
“When sleeping women wake, mountains will move.” | Chinese Proverb
I’ve been fortunate enough to be raised by two incredibly strong women – my mother and my sister – and have also surrounded myself with strong women in my social circle. It’s amazing to me as a man just how much women have to deal today. They are fed so many conflicting messages that it’s a miracle they can even figure anything out. I’ve seen first hand what happens when a woman awakens to her deepest desires and like the proverb says…mountains can move. Women can teach you so much about life and what it really means to live. I am lucky to be surrounded my so many incredible women who have taught me more things than I could possibly even write down here.
“It wasn’t a waste of time if you learned something.” | Unknown
Writing for 4 years has definitely taught me this lesson well. There’s always something that you can pull from the day – a lesson, a little piece of wisdom, a thought. My best days are the ones where I’ve actually had the worst time getting through everything, and yet somehow I came out on the other side with a positive outlook on the whole thing. This isn’t really that easy…you have to really work at it. We can’t go through life avoiding living – what’s the point of that? Not everything is going to work out…but the things that do, well, they make everything else worth it completely.
“Be a proliferator of good ass vibes.” | Unknown
I think this one speaks for itself.
“If your dreams don’t scare you, they aren’t big enough.” | Unknown
You can’t play it safe with dreams. You either give it everything you have or don’t even go after it at all. Sure, you may learn something if you give it a half-assed effort, but you will never actually achieve what you are looking to achieve. They should be a bit scary – those dreams of yours. They should challenge you to grow, to reach beyond your edge, and to strive for something just beyond yourself. Challenge yourself like crazy and life will reward you.
“Kindness. It doesn’t cost a damn thing. Sprinkle that shit everywhere.” | Unknown
I don’t know if it’s just me, but this whole kindness concept seems to be pretty underrated these days. I don’t know if it’s always been like that, but it seems that we are getting more and more disconnected in a world where we are so overly connected. It’s amazing the looks on peoples faces when you perform some act of kindness for them…it’s almost as if they just witnessed a miracle. Yeah…be kind…it really does work wonders.
“Be somebody who makes everybody feel like somebody.” | Unknown
When it comes down to it, people really just want to feel like they are important. If you can make people feel like they mater – and I’m talking authentically here – then you will have so many amazing people in your life. Connect with others on a deeper level. Sure, all of the surface level conversation is great, but take a minute to go beyond that and really begin to understand what matters to another person. It’s amazing how much you can learn about another person.
“Don’t be afraid to fail. Be afraid not to try.” | Unknown
Sometimes, you really just have to go for it. You really have to put it all on the line and challenge yourself.