Seek Clarity

If you want to thrive in life, seek clarity in what is important and what creates fulfillment for you.Did you ever have one of those Magic 8-Balls when you were growing up?  I never had one, but a friend down the street did.  You were supposed to ask Yes/No questions of the ball, then turn it over and a die would float to the surface, revealing your answer.

For whatever reason, we could spend lots of time asking a question, shaking and flipping the 8-Ball, and study our answer.  Of course, if we didn’t like the answer, we would just shake it again and get another answer.

On a side note, I always wondered why an 8 ball from billiards was ever supposed to be “magical” in answering questions.  I recently read that Brunswick Billiards bought the rights to the toy as some point.  So, no, nothing magical about an 8 ball, except for the billiards company being involved!

Anyway, there was this one answer that always left me frustrated:  Reply hazy, try again.

Naturally, I would.  I’d just shake again and try for another answer.  But I remember this one time… I just kept getting the same answer — Reply hazy, try again.  So, I kept trying again.  And I didn’t get anywhere!

Well, life can be that way.  When things aren’t clear, it can be frustrating and paralyzing.  If we don’t have clarity about some decisions, sometimes we do nothing.

It turns out that having some clarity helps to make life easier. It helps us to thrive.

But, and this is important, seeking clarity is quite a help in thriving.  In fact, when we seek clarity, we tend to find enough of it to move forward.  And sense clarity changes over time, you do have to keep seeking it.  What was clear… what made sense… at one point or stage in life, may no longer make sense at another point.  So, we have to keep seeking clarity — and finding it along the way.

This is the code.  The Thrive Code.

Listen for more about seeking clarity below.

RELATED RESOURCES
Challenge
Control
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Create
Curiosity
Lee’s Books

Be Curious

The next part of the thrive code;  being curious.  Why is it important and how does it help you to thrive?  I cover it this episode of the podcast.  Curious?As we continue exploring your thrive code, the next topic is… are you curious?

OK, that is actually the topic:  being curious.

I’ve come to regard curiosity as one of the main paths to thriving.  In fact, in the absence of curiosity, we will have a hard time thriving.

All learning comes from curiosity.

All change comes from curiosity.

New experiences come from curiosity.

And growth comes from curiosity.

I am a curious person.  And I work to stay curious, to build on curiosity.

Learn why curiosity is part of the Thrive Code in this episode of the Thriveology Podcast.

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Challenge
Control
Community
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Create
Lee’s Books

 

Create!

Part of the Thrive Code is to CREATE. That is what humans do. And yes, you are creative. Time to embrace it.I must admit, I have said it myself, “I am just not creative.” But that isn’t true. Not for me, and not for you. Perhaps you had some art teacher tell you that at one point. Or perhaps you were looking at the creative work of someone else. And perhaps you aren’t creative in that particular medium (although it may just be you haven’t put effort into that medium).

But you ARE creative. And so am I.

How do I know?

Because we are human. And being human is being creative. We create thoughts all the time. Most of the time, jobs are creative in nature. When we are doing some hobby, it is likely to be creative. Yep, even if it is a sport.

When I am rolling in jiu jitsu, I may think that I am just repeating some move I have learned. But in reality, I am trying to creatively respond to the actions of someone else. They move, and I respond, to which they respond, to which I respond. At every step, it is a creative response.

Or when I am trying to work a problem on the climbing wall, I have to make a creative choice on how I will make it to the top. I have to be creative in the choices I make, positioning I take, and the route I follow.

The fact is, creativity is in our DNA. Humans are probably more creative than any other creature. It only takes a quick look around to see how creative elements surround us with just a quick look around.

One part of the Thrive Code is seeing your creativity, and consciously practicing it. I cover it on this episode of the Thriveology Podcast.  You can listen below.

 

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Challenge
Control
Community
Contribution
Lee’s Books

Contribution

What are you giving (versus what you are getting)?  And why contributing to leave the world better leads to thriving.When I talk about Thriveology, many people say, “Oh, that is more of that ‘being happy’ stuff, isn’t it?”

My response:  No. Well, not just that.  Sure, being happy is fine.  No need to avoid being happy! But that is only one dimension of life.

It IS the dimension of life that hedonism celebrates and pursues.  If it feels good, do it.  Enjoy life.  Have a good time.  Seek out pleasure and avoid pain.

Except that doesn’t lead much to thriving. It posits your satisfaction with life externally to you.  It is THAT thing that makes you happy, brings you pleasure, makes life worthwhile.

Eudaimonia was the counterpoint in greek thought.  This is the pursuit of life satisfaction by what things mean to you internally. It is how you bring meaning, enjoyment, and satisfaction into your life from within.

And there is a cornerstone of that:  Contribution.  What we GIVE to the world, versus what we GET from the world. Giving versus Taking.

Research has long pointed out the power of giving and contributing to the mental health, wellbeing, meaning/purpose, and satisfaction of people to their lives.  Which is why it is part of The Thrive Code.

Listen below to learn why contribution matters and some principles of doing it.

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Challenge
Control
Community
Lee’s Books

Community and Connection

We all need connection and community in our lives. Where is your connection? Where is your community?It’s in our DNA.  We have a need to connect with others, to have connections and relationships.  We express that in close relationships and larger groups.

And unfortunately, lately, we have often allowed tribalism into our connections.  When we slip into our tribal thinking, we work from a place of exclusion.  This leads to a greater illusion of connection.  In reality, that connection is based in being the same as others in the tribe.

Community, on the other hand, allows others to include themselves.  It is not about differences.  Lines are not drawn to separate.  Differences have room for inclusion. And true connection can grow.

Speaking of connection… we need connection in life to thrive.  Those who are caught in isolation suffer, both emotionally and in their health.  It is also deeply wired into our DNA.

Where is YOUR community?

Where is YOUR connection?

Listen to this episode of Thriveology Podcast for why community and connection are so important.

RELATED RESOURCES
Challenge:  Thrive Code #1
Control:  Thrive Code #2

Controlling What You Can

Control what you can in order to thrive.  The Thrive Code.Many people make the Control Error — they attempt to control what they cannot control, while also failing to control what they can.

Why?

Because they don’t know what they can’t control and they don’t know what they can control.

Humans have a desire to feel like they are “in control” of their lives. Most people hate feeling out of control. And yet, by making the Control Error, they constantly feel out of control (and work harder to control… what they cannot control).

Thriving is tough when you feel out of control. And it is even more difficult when you are not controlling the areas you can control.

There is a code to thriving. Think of it as the computer code behind all the things your computer programs can do. The basic assumptions and directions come from the underlying code. It allows the tasks to happen.

Similarly, there is an underlying code to thriving. If the code is working, daily tasks and living go much better. You thrive in your life.

One element of that Thrive Code, we discussed in the last episode:  Challenge. In this episode,we take on the second element of the Thrive Code: Control. More importantly, it is about controlling what you can control, while releasing yourself from what you cannot control.

Listen to the episode below.

RELATED RESOURCES:
Thrive Code 1: Challenge
Your Circle of Control
Solving the Control Paradox
Lee’s Books

It’s A Challenge!

Life is a challenge, isn’t it? I don’t think I am saying anything that is a surprise these days. We’ve been dealing with a pandemic now for over 2 years. For many people, that has led to many challenges throughout life.

Which brings me to my word for 2022. Each year, my family chooses one word to live into for the year. And this year, my word is Challenge. Not just to acknowledge the challenge of these days, but to claim that I am going to live into and lean into the challenge!

Even without a pandemic, life would still be a challenge. Why?

Challenge is my word for 2022. Life’s a challenge. Challenge Accepted.Because that is the nature of life. Life challenges us.

We can see it as an obstacle. We can even stomp our feet and proclaim that “it shouldn’t be this hard.” But that won’t change the fact that life is just a challenge. So, philosophically, I just acknowledge and accept that it is a challenge. Not an obstacle; a challenge.

Also, I need a challenge. If I don’t have something to take on, some challenge to work toward, I tend to get stagnant. I’ve learned this several times over this past year. Looking back, I see the challenges along the way. I see how they have helped me to grow and expand. A challenge is part of my growth.

But guess what? That is true for all of us. Our bodies and minds have evolved to be at their best when under a challenge. Too little challenge, and the body weakens. So does our brain. So does our mind.

Which is why I will also be doing more challenges (of myself and of clients) in the coming year.

What is YOUR challenge? (Listen to the podcast below for more on why we need a challenge, and how to take one on.)

 

RELATED RESOURCES:
Thrive Principles book
Podcast Episode: What’s YOUR Challenge?
Immutable Law episode: Life Has Challenges

Redux: Merry Stressness!

Merry Stress-ness and Happy Holi-daze! Dealing with holiday stress this Christmas season.And just like that, the Holiday season is upon us! All the hustle and bustle. All the events. All the demands… in the midst of a time that you want to be enjoyable, meaningful, and manageable!

Why the stress?

In a repeat of last year’s podcast (since we still have that holiday stress!), I discuss the causes of holiday stress. But more importantly, I cover the ways to cope with holiday stress.

Don’t let stress rob you of the deeper meanings and connections of this holiday season.

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Why We Stress
5 Ways to Shift from Stressful to Restful
Deepening the  Holidays
Book: Thrive Principles

Stuck in When/Then?

TheWhenThenTrapIt’s a trap.  And we all fall into it.

Sadly, we set it up on ourselves, then step right into it.

WHACK!  We are stuck… waiting.  And that’s the trap — the wait.  Life can’t begin until….

What’s the trap?  The “When/Then Trap.”  You know, that time when you say, “When ____ happens, then I will ______.”  When you finally get that great job, get that perfect spouse, make $$’s, win the lottery, etc.  THEN, life can finally get started.  THEN you can be happy, help others, find meaning, do… well, you get the point.

It just seems that something has to change, (right?) before you can get to something else.  And so, we get stuck… waiting for that something to change.  Not realizing that there may be other ways to get there… or even other places to get to!

There are alternatives to being stuck in the “When/Then Trap.”  In this episode of the Thriveology Podcast, we explore why and how we get stuck.  And how to get out of that trap.  Listen below.

GRAB MY BOOKS ON THRIVING:
Thrive Principles
The Immutable Laws of Living

What Is Stress?

WhyWeStressI bet you hear it as much as I do.  You may even say it.  “I’m so stressed!”  The malady of the modern age.  Stressed out, exhausted, and frustrated.

But what IS stress?

As much as we toss that term around, sometimes almost as a badge of honor, you may not think about what that term is REALLY about.

These days, I tend to push my body, physically.  I take a good long walk in the morning, usually do a workout after that, then go to jiu jitsu 3 to 5 evenings per week.  My body can, indeed, get stressed.

When we talk about “stress,” in everyday life, we are more talking about psychological stress.  Which is really just a term for something else.  Something we’d rather not claim.

But once we recognize what it really is, we can do something about it.  So, let’s figure out why we stress… and what we can do about it.

Listen below to this episode of the Thriveology Podcast.

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We ALL Have Fears
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Thrive Principles Book