Righteous Persistence Brings Rewards

RightRoad_LIIn the I Ching (pronounced Yee Jing – an ancient Chinese text written over 3,000 years ago) we are counseled that “Righteous Persistence Brings Reward”. The operative word here is ‘Righteous’. If we are constantly beating our head against the wall, becoming frustrated that our exhausting efforts are not producing the desired results, we should pause for a moment and reflect on whether our persistence is indeed ‘righteous’.

In fact, if our persistence is not righteous, we may indeed be guilty of insanity! Albert Einstein famously proclaimed that to do the same task over and over and expect different results is the very essence of insanity.

So how do we ensure that our persistence is righteous? We need to examine the motivating factors for our persistence. What is driving us to continue to pursue a particular goal or vision? Is it greed or vanity or self-preservation or fear? These are characteristics associated with the Ego, and while the Ego has an important role in our personalities, allowing Ego driven motivations most often leads ultimately to disappointment, feelings of guilt and failure.

If our goals and desires are instead driven by our core values, by the core beliefs we have about the world and what is right and what is wrong – and if these core beliefs and ideals are connected to reality – then our persistence will be rewarded, not only when the goal is achieved, but in every step along the way, every drop of blood, every drop of sweat, every tear that is spilt in pursuit of the goal.

The sense of fulfillment and joy that is experienced as we pursue our goal using righteous persistence will far outweigh any pain or discomfort that we will certainly endure along the path.

So exam your core values, the beliefs you hold at the center of your being. Hold fast to those that are good and helpful, discard or transmute those that may be harmful and stifling.

Let Righteous Persistence be your driving force and there will be nothing that can stop you from achieving your goals.

Purposeful Nature

The Nature of Purpose

Stunning Silence. Soul-filling, peace-giving silence. Stunning because the tree frogs and the bugs slept in late today. Even the birds noticed. Their songs were more like Mom humming in the kitchen on a Sunday afternoon, and their conversations were held in their most respectful library voices.

With the bustle of Labor Day behind us, the trees seem to be in a hurry to leave a hot and humid summer Autumn-Nature-Purposebehind as well, their leaves beginning to blaze with the colors that will return them to the earth, so they can prepare once again to create their verdant coat in the spring.

I can’t help but see that the “purpose driven life”: that goal centered activity; that unstoppable passion exists all around us in Nature.

We don’t find many things in Nature that don’t have a clear purpose, based on their most basic values. Most of Nature knows the things it must do to fulfill its purpose, and will do those things faithfully. We don’t see squirrels wasting their time trying to be frogs, or birds trying to be dogs.

The exception of course is Human Nature. We must often search to find our values-based purpose and we must fight against many distracting or opposing forces, to determine the actions needed to get us there.

Since the Human Species has been able to have thoughts and express them with language, we have created stories, plays, and books that are intended to help others along in this journey.

The Achievement Protocol is such a book and I hope that you will find it of value, so that, in other moments of Stunning Silence, others will observe you and marvel at the simplicity of the way you follow a purpose driven Achievement Protocol.

Peace

Nothing Succeeds Like Success!

ZZ_MotivationMotivation is the fuel in the engine that moves us forward toward our goals.

In the late 60’s Dr. Edwin Locke wrote a pioneering work called “Toward a Theory of Task Motivation and Incentives”.

This paper represented the beginning of what would become known as Locke’s Goal Setting Theory.

Now, over 50 years later, most of us cannot imagine a time when Goal Setting Theory (and the use of S.M.A.R.T. Goals) was not part of standard management practices.

A key principle of Goal Setting Theory has to do with feedback. Positive feedback, such as that received when a goal is achieved, provides further internal incentive to achieve the next goal.

If we can break our goals down into bite sized chunks that can be accomplished daily or even multiple times throughout the day, then we keep our motivation fresh and are better able to maintain forward momentum. This is true as long as the goals are specific, measureable, attainable (while somewhat challenging), realistic and time-relevant.

For example, having goals of making 6 sales calls before lunch and 4 sales calls after lunch, is much better than the goal of making as many sales calls as possible.

Having small successes throughout the day and the week can provide us a constant drip of motivation, keeping performance up and moving us ever more effectively toward our Big Goals. And as Sir Arthur Helps said in 1868, “Nothing Succeeds like Success”.

UPDATE:
 

Enthusiasm and Passion – Part 2

mmmm Focaccia!
Focaccia preparing to ship!

In Part 1 we looked at the origin of the word passion and saw that the root of the word passion is patior, which alludes to the suffering that may be encountered when you are committed to a passion, as opposed to simply being hopeful about attaining a dream.

Similarly, enthusiasm is much more than simply being excited about something. Enthusiasm comes from the Greek en + theos. Literally these words mean God-infused. But the original word for enthusiasm actually was understood to mean God-possessed. Possession carries with it a much more dynamic and active dimension than a simple interpretation infusion would allow.

To be enthusiastic is to be driven, to be not merely excited, but to be propelled deliberately toward some end. To be enthusiastic is to plunge headlong into an effort at top speed, unconcerned about possible failures or potential problems. Not because you are in denial about possible problems that may arise but because you are confident that your enthusiasm and the resources available to you will be sufficient to carry you through to the other side of those problems.

So we see that enthusiasm and passion are examples of two fairly common words that are far more important to the idea of achieving success and living a fulfilled life than might be assumed at first.

When you approach your passion with enthusiasm, your eventual success is all but guaranteed.

When Is Rational Self-Interest not Selfish?

Rational Self-Interest

I was sitting on a tarmac recently (I was actually in a plane), attentively listening to the flight attendants as they mimed the safety protocols in sync with the disembodied voice vibrating through the plane. They ended the ‘Sudden Loss of Cabin Pressure‘ section as they always do, “If you are travelling with children, secure your oxygen mask first, then assist your child.”

I’ve been flying commercial flights for 35 years and I’m quite sure that I’ve heard some variation of those words on every flight that I’ve been on. Of course it’s logical and makes common sense: you need to put your mask on first so you don’t pass out while you’re fumbling around trying to help your child. Once your mask is secure, you’ll be in a far better position to help your child and anyone else that needs it.

This act of helping your self first is not, as it may seem at first, selfish. Rather, it is actually an example of a form of Rational Self-Interest, originally identified as such by Ayn Rand.

This applies to many areas of our lives. I’ve seen many examples of people who give so much of themselves to others that they neglect their own needs, and become sick, or stressed out, or cynical,

It is important to remember, especially if we are the type that is inclined to help others without regard to our selves, that by taking care of ourselves, we will have much more to give to others and will ultimately last longer, achieve more, and be of greater service to others.

The attached video link is an entertaining presentation of the airline safety protocols that includes the appeal to Rational Self Interest near the end.

#AynRand #RationalSelfInterest #Achievement Protocol

Enthusiasm and Passion: Part 1

Hooray for Pain!!!

I’ve always loved words. In fact, one of the first classes I took when I was accepted into college in the 70’s was Latin. Not because I had to, not because I wanted to speak to ancient romans, not even because I wanted to read Latin texts.

I took Latin because, having taken Spanish in middle school, I recognized how many English words had Latin roots. And like I said, I’ve always loved words. And I’ve always loved journeying into a dictionary (one of those big, 12 pounders) to explore in depth the origin and original meaning of a word.

But studying Latin is not the pain that I alluded to in the lede.

If you’ve never searched for the etymological origin of the word passion, you might be surprised to learn that it is not based on a word for Love, or for Dream, or for Desire. In fact, you may be shocked to learn that it comes from the Latin word patior, a word for suffering or pain. It was used in the 12th century to describe the suffering of Jesus during the crucifixion.

Languages, and the words within them, change and evolve. So it doesn’t always make sense to look at the origin for a ‘true’ definition of the current usage.

But sometimes it can offer some useful insight. How does a passion differ from a dream or a desire? A dream or desire represents something that we would like to have or be. And while a desire may reach the strong state of a passion, it may also be a weak ‘inclination’. A desire or a dream may in fact be unserious or wistful, while a passion is always strong, forceful (ie Full of FORCE) and not easily dismissed.

When you are passionate about something, when the desire is so strong that it seems to burn within your very being, when you are willing to pursue your dream to the end, despite what you know will be periods of pain and suffering, then you are in fact, following a passion.

So as you go through the process of thinking about desires and determining whether they are your passions, think about how much pain or inconvenience your are willing to suffer in order to make your dream become reality. The greater the pain you are willing to endure, the greater the passion.

We’ll look at Enthusiasm in the next post.

It’s Available NOW!

The Achievement Protocol (#AchievementProtocol) is now available in paperback! It is active on Amazon.com and through the author’s Amazon E-Store.

The Achievement Protocol
The Achievement Protocol

For a limited time, I am offering a limited number of copies at an amazing 45% discount off of the regular price of $14.99, which means you can purchase it now for a mere $8.24 – but there are two conditions:

1) If you have not already provided me with your e-mail address, you need to sign up here and enter the word ACHIEVE in the comments to get the discount code, and

2) You need to order through this link to the e-store instead of the main Amazon.com website.

After you’ve read the book, I would also like you to seriously consider going to Amazon.com and writing a review of the book. A quality review and appropriate star rating will help other potential readers know what to expect, and it will also help me to better understand what affects my readers.

The initial release pricing will end at 11:59 pm PST on February 13th, or after the initial release quantity has been exhausted, whichever comes first.

Please share this post on your Facebook page and let your let your friends know that they will have to sign up here and enter the word ACHIEVE in order to get the discount code.

Have a fantastically productive Wednesday!

The Achievement Protocol Release

On February 4th, The Achievement Protocol will be released in paperback. Initially it will be available through Amazon.com and through the author’s Amazon E-Store.

The Achievement Protocol
The Achievement Protocol

The Achievement Protocol is a practical step by step guide that provides a clear methodology for defining and achieving your life’s purpose.

It is different from other similarly themed self-help books in that rather than rely strictly on metaphysical practices, it provides an easy to use process that takes the most essential elements of Strategic Management, Project Management and Time Management and brings them together in a way that can be followed by virtually anyone at any stage of live to achieve their life’s goal, whatever that may be.

For a limited time, I am offering a limited number of copies at an amazing 45% discount off of the regular price of $14.99, which means you can purchase it for a mere $8.24 but there are two conditions:

1) You need to sign up here and enter the word ACHIEVE in the comments to get the discount code, and

2) You need to order through this link to the e-store instead of the main Amazon.com website.

After you’ve read the book, I would also like you to seriously consider going to Amazon.com and writing a review of the book. A quality review and appropriate star rating will help other potential readers know what to expect, and it will also help me to better understand what affects my readers.

The initial release pricing will end at 11:59 pm PST on February 13th, or after the initial release quantity has been exhausted, whichever comes first.

Please share this post on your Facebook page and let your let your friends know that they will have to sign up here and enter the word ACHIEVE in order to get the discount code.

 

 

How did YOU discover YOUR passion?

We all have a Passion – maybe more than one. We don’t always discover it at the same point in our lives, though.

Sometimes we have to encounter a variety of experiences before something ‘clicks’ for us. We may drift from one college major to another, or from one type of job to another, and not really feel like we are part of something bigger.

Sometimes our Passion tries to present itself to us, repeatedly, only to have us push it back down and suppress it because we don’t yet understand it’s importance or it’s relevance to us.

Sometimes we allow others to impress THEIR Passion upon us. We choose our career based on what someone else has told us we should do. Unfortunately, OPP (Other People’s Passion) is rarely aligned with our own personal Passion and no matter what amount of success we achieve with OPP, we will not feel fulfilled or satisfied with our lives.

The most fortunate among us discover our Passion early and allow it serve as a beacon for our lives. A light that we use to guide our decisions and our choices.

Have you discovered your unique Passion yet? Are you vigorously pursuing it? If not, why not?

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