Your Goals are Team Effort

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All great individuals have teams behind them. In fact when it comes to this, there are no great individuals at all, they are all part of the team.

To me this has taken almost three decades to realize and see, and to start grasping the true meaning of a team.

In western culture the individual seems to get attention in media for example and this creates false sense of what really made this possible. However, there are good examples too: credits of the movies for example or the acknowledgements in books, these both are eye opening to the number of people involved and gives slight hint of how much work and thought is behind a complete product.

In scientific research these are the references. We all are standing on the shoulders of the giants.

Whatever worthwhile you want to achieve, i.e. your purpose, your goals etc. You need a team. Whatever worthwhile you achieve is because of the team.

Be grateful.

Have a great day!

Janne

Set Exciting and Empowering Goals

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Did you know it takes just about the same effort to be mediocre and awesome? Well I hadn’t thought about it that much, until now I realized this through listening Success Through Positive Mental Attitude by Napoleon Hill.

Let’s say remaining mediocre means you can remain in your comfort zone and does not require much mental effort. In real effort through, which does feel better: accomplishing mediocre goals or accomplishing awesome goals?

Set goals that empower and make you feel excited about life. Do not think in terms of what you can or cannot, instead set the goal first and let the excitement fill you. Good goals should energize you each day.

Keep the goal in mind and start thinking how you could do it. Your subconscious starts to work on that. Keep the goal visible, so that you can each morning ask yourself how I can do it, what can I do for today?

Setting exciting and empowering goals, will energize you to think different and in the end make you achieve those goals.

Today utopia, tomorrow flesh and blood as Victor Hugo said.

If you want to dive deeper into energizing goal setting I recommend listening Awaken the Giant Within Abridged edition by Tony Robbins. It’s just 1h and 30 minutes and you will get to set four of your major life goals in a guided manner.

Does Your Decisions Increase Well-being of Others?

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When your thoughts match your words, and your words match your actions, you are what we could call happiness.

This sounds easier than it is, however with practice and effort it is achievable state of being.

Any mismatch here causes anxiety. Anxiety is not a state of wellbeing to ourselves or others.

We make decisions at thought level. Therefore a good question to ask yourself, does this increase the well-being of myself and others? Well-being that we manage to create for others always returns to ourselves, we only get that well-being what we have managed to create into our environment.

Life is Less About the Individual and More About the Collective Achievement

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Anything great or worthwhile, is not an individual effort. Anything worthwhile isn’t certainly worthwhile to be doing alone. Anything important, is not worth doing alone.

I’ve lived a long time under the illusion of individualism. Although I thought I saw some of the connections, too little on much of it.

On 2015 when I began reading systematically more books, I paid attention more to the  acknowledgements parts of the books. What kept amazing me was that there were so many people who these authors thanked and for great reasons.

Same goes for movie credits, and that often just begins to reference to the original story which then again has come alive through ideas which come from relationships. Collective effort.

It’s therefore unskillful to think that individual does anything in this world.

Humans are hyper social beings, we are born and alive thanks to the collective effort and thus all of our achievements are in part thanks to those who came before us.

We Get Small Part of What We Give

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We ought to live virtuous life. The more good we do and more value we add the more we receive. Yet the good we receive is always but a fraction of all good value we create.

When we combine the living virtuous life with selfless service we do in fact good without any expectance of return and through that we get unexpected benefits of seeing many good things happen when they need to.

We should look to do more good, to increase the value.

Difficult here is to contemplate on the right values, what is good? I.e. your own beliefs and values might collide with someone else’s. You mustn’t negotiate about anything worthwhile.

Instead we should work from what we believe and then create and give away value from there.

With less attachment we are able to, the more we feel like having. The more we give, the more generous and having we feel.

When we give, the motive isn’t merely to and expect return, but rather to do good without expectation. Doing good things to others makes us feel generous, and world will find a reprocicate.

Attention Makes Us Thrive

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Attention is the currency of love and power.

As humans we literally crave for attention. Lack of attention is worse than negative attention.

Attention to people doesn’t cost any money, yet this is one of the most easily overlooked sides of leadership. Attention does take time and caring effort.

It’s not money, luxuries or drugs we care, it’s attention and caring.

It’s hard for us to admit it, however it is so.

I think the way to give the attention is the caring way. It’s at least better than the denying angry or upset way. Because in the end all of us crave for the attention at least the caring way is a  very nice to give the attention.

Meaning of Work in Relation to Life

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 What is the meaning of work in regards to life? Work is literally the meaning: by work I mean the verb of working. By work I mean the elaborate use of the word meaning literally all activity involving mental or physical effort done in order to achieve a result.

As I was reading Bhagavad Gita today on the commute, I understood that too often we attach our minds too much to the end results: the rewards, fruits of labor.

Meaning of work is not the reward on contrary despite all we do and say, but the liberation to give and do without asking. By this statement I do not encourage slave labor, but to find ways to work without the expectation and attachment to the rewards.

Working is part of our nature. In Gita this is described as yoga in practice, however I found the awfully similar idea in Meditations by Marcus Aurelius where he says that it is man’s true nature to work.

Finding ways to work and serve others without any expectation of rewards brings surprising benefits that no fruit or coin can purchase.

Giving Up Desires is a Piece of Bliss

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I’ve found refuge in the thoughts of karma:

Now as a man is like this or like that,
according as he acts and according as he behaves, so will he be;
a man of good acts will become good, a man of bad acts, bad;
he becomes pure by pure deeds, bad by bad deeds;

And here they say that a person consists of desires,
and as is his desire, so is his will;
and as is his will, so is his deed;
and whatever deed he does, that he will reap.

— Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, 7th Century BCE

One is like is his desires. In the end if we live up to our best, in the end we will be well.

Another train of thought, I like to entertain is that of philosopher (stoic). With few desires there needs are easily fulfilled and life is lived happy.

Avoiding desire is difficult and requires effort. It also involves dealing with thoughts such as:

I am not my grades

I am not my past

I am not my thoughts

I am not my salary

I am not my net worth

Most of these I’ve found to be incredibly helpful thought, each one has been kind of like a breakthrough, giving up a desire is acquiring a piece of bliss.

Summary of Seth Godin’s Linchpin

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Today I decided to revisit my highlights of the Linchpin. It is the book that literally made me to write every day again and I hold it in high regard. Although I had tried with my previous blog writing everyday for month, I didn’t stick with it. And even this time I had from different sources and different reasons to stick with this (Steve Pavlina and Neil Pasricha), Linchpin despite was the book that convinced me to start again.

“Stop asking what’s in it for you and start giving gifts that change people.”

Quite simply and shortly put the Linchpin is a book about being you, and stop hitting your head to the wall. It’s about creating the art (what ever you want to do) that is meaningful.

I’ve found my most meaningful time of the day to be thinking and clarifying my thinking as a text. While the medium might and change from person to person, you should put the effort there. Seth’s advice is to put the hour to your art no matter what. Do not mind the defects, as art is never defect free anyway.

The lesson is to commit to an hour a day to the art and then deliver.

“In everything you do, it’s possible to be an artist, at least a little bit.”

Life is not about the dull work, it’s about the wonderful art. Seth spends quite a lot of time and space in the book to talk about what are the common causes that people do not follow this advice: fear and resistance rise up, which I can totally relate. He had inspirational lines like “I realized that my lizard brain was afraid of this book, which is the best reason I can think of to write it.”

Creating art does require courage and less resistance.

“You become a winner because you’re good at losing.”

To conclude, the key is about creative action that is not just any action, but work that brings meaning to the peoples’ lives. Such action is called art, and almost any action can be art if it’s done with creativity and sense of purpose, not with just the bored everyday routines. What does prevent us from doing to ordinary extraordinarily well is our lizard brain that is afraid of failure. The way to overcome this is through the practice of delivering and doing it because it is meaningful and it deserves to be done and delivered.

First Steps in Getting to Where You Want to Be

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Obvious place to start, where ever you are going to is where you are. Are you sure, you know exactly where you are?

In life, I often meet people who describe their efforts or the results of the effort with words such as “little”, “a lot”, “plenty”… This is not very accurate thinking at all. If you do something, you should quantify that. I.e. in my professional work, where we meet people “I met three people today”, it’s much more accurate than “I met a few people.”

In the end the entropy called laziness will find a comfort zone and then the decay of efforts and results begins.

Start with accurate thinking, where are you now? What is the effort towards your goal as action? How much of that action you willing to take taking a day / a week / a month / a year?

This will create more accurate expectations for yourself and in the big picture does help you measure real progress as well.