December 26, 2017
“Things which matter most must never be at the mercy of things which matter least.”
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
We had a great time with our family yesterday as we celebrated the Christmas holiday. This morning I slept in a little and now must start a day full of errands, I won’t even have time to go to the gym for a morning workout. I hope you don’t mind that I am sending you a past daily from years back. This one’s message still has value.
Ray’s Daily first published on December 26, 2012
Christmas is now behind us and I hope yours was as good as ours was. Now we are in the final days of another year, a good time to reflect on the last twelve months, put them behind us and get ready for a great 2013. We have a choice, we can go with the flow in 2013 and continue as we have or we can decide now is a great time to reward ourselves by doing what we have put off doing for too long. I have found that it is much better to be remembered for what we have done, even with the missteps, than it is to either be remembered for what we did not do or even worse not be remembered at all.
Unfortunately too many of us find it easy to excuse ourselves from doing much of significance. We feel that we just can’t take on any more, we just don’t have time. In reality most of us have forgotten how to set priorities and spend so much time on things that are not really important that we have little time left for what is important.
Marc and Angel Hack recently offered a realistic analysis of why so many of us just never reach our potential. Here is what they wrote:
Here are eight reasons so many of us miss out on life as it’s happening.
The fear of missing out. – If you feel anxious because you constantly feel like you’re missing out on something happening somewhere else, you’re not alone. We all feel this way sometimes. But let me assure you, you could run around trying to do everything, and travel around the world, and always stay connected, and work and party all night long without sleep, but you could never do it all. You will always be missing something. So let it go, and realize you have everything right now. The best in life isn’t somewhere else; it’s right where you are, at this moment. Celebrate the perhaps not altogether insignificant fact that you are alive right now. This moment, and who you are, is absolutely perfect.
Avoiding pain and defeat. – Not to spoil the ending for you, but everything is going to be OK – you just need to learn a lesson or two first. Don’t run from the realities of the present moment. The pain and defeat contained within is necessary to your long-term growth. Remember, there is a difference between encountering defeats and being defeated. Nothing ever goes away until it teaches you what you need to know, so you can move on to the next step.
Holding on to what’s no longer there. – Some of us spend the vast majority of our lives recounting past memories, and letting them steer the course of the present. Don’t waste your time trying to live in another time and place. Let the past, go. You must accept the end of something in order to begin to build something new. So close some old doors today. Not because of pride, inability or egotism, but simply because you’ve entered each one of them in the past and realize that they lead to nowhere.
Retelling a self-defeating story. – If we continue to repeat a story in our head, we eventually believe that story and embrace it – whether it empowers us or not. So the question is: Does your story empower you? Don’t place your mistakes on your mind, their weight may crush your current potential. Instead, place them under your feet and use them as a platform to view the horizon. Remember, all things are difficult before they are easy. What matters the most is what you start doing now.
Attempting to fit in by becoming someone else. – The hardest battle you’re ever going to fight is the battle to be you, just the way you are in this moment. We cannot find ourselves if we are always searching for, or morphing into, someone else. In this crazy world that’s trying to make you like everyone else, find the courage to keep being your awesome self. Be your own kind of beautiful right now, in the way only you know how.
The picture in your head of how it’s supposed to be. – What often screws us up the most in life is the picture in our head of how it’s supposed to be. Although every good thing has an end, in life every ending is just a new beginning. Life goes on – not always the way we had envisioned it would be, but always the way it’s supposed to be. Remember, we usually can’t choose the music life plays for us, but we can choose how we dance to it.
Berating yourself for not being perfect. – Don’t be too hard on yourself. There are plenty of people willing to do that for you. Do your best and surrender the rest. Tell yourself, “I am doing the best I can with what I have in this moment. And that is all I can expect of anyone, including me.”
Waiting, and then waiting some more. – Stop waiting for tomorrow; you will never get today back. It doesn’t matter what you’ve done in the past. It doesn’t matter how low or unworthy you feel right now. The simple fact that you’re alive makes you worthy. Life is too short for excuses. Stop settling. Stop procrastinating. Start today by taking one courageous step forward. If you are not sure exactly which way to go, it is always wise to follow your heart.
“The life you have left is a gift. Cherish it. Enjoy it now, to the fullest. Do what matters, now.”
The church was celebrating Communion. During the “children’s sermon,” the minister was talking about Communion and what it is all about. “The Bible talks of Holy Communion being a ‘joyful feast’. What does that mean? Well, ‘joyful’ means happy, right? And a feast is a meal. So a ‘joyful feast’ is a happy meal. And what are the three things we need for a happy meal?”
Little Johnny put up his hand and said, “Hamburger, fries, and a regular soft drink?”
It is impossible for an optimist to be pleasantly surprised.
Four members of the clergy had a theological argument, with the three male ministers siding against the female minister.
The woman prayed, “Lord, I know I’m right. Please send us a divine sign to prove it.” A big storm cloud materialized, and there was a clap of thunder, “See,” said the woman. “It’s a sign from above.”
The three clergymen disagreed, saying thunder is a common phenomenon.
“Dear Lord,” the woman prayed, “I need a bigger sign.” This time a bolt of lightning slammed into a tree. “See! I told you I was right,” the woman said.
But the men insisted nothing had happened that couldn’t be explained by natural causes.
“Help me, Lord,” the woman implored. And a deep voice came from the heavens: “SSSHHHEEE’S RRRIIIGGGHHHTTT!!!” The woman turned to the three clergymen and asked, “Well?”
“So, okay,” they said. “Now it’s three against two.”
You can’t turn back the clock, but you can wind it up again.
The Smith’s were proud of their family tradition. Their ancestors had come to America on the Mayflower. Their line had included Senators and Wall Street wizards. Now they decided to compile a family history, a legacy for the children. They hired a fine author. Only one problem arose — how to handle that great-uncle who was executed in the electric chair.
The author said he could handle that chapter of history tactfully.
The book appeared. It said that “Great-uncle George occupied a chair of applied electronics at an important government institution, was attached to his position by the strongest of ties and his death came as a real shock.”
“A simple life is not seeing how little we can get by with—that’s poverty—but how efficiently we can put first things first. . . . When you’re clear about your purpose and your priorities, you can painlessly discard whatever does not support these, whether it’s clutter in your cabinets or commitments on your calendar.”
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies. The editor is somewhat senile.
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