Seek Clarity

The Thrive Code

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.

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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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Correcting Course

Do you need to make a course correction or a course change?“How did I end up here?,” my client asked.  He told me that for so long, he thought he was headed in the right direction.  Now, he thinks maybe it was the entirely wrong direction.

I asked him, “Did you course correct along the way?”  He looked at me rather quizzically.  So, I elaborated, “If you are sailing, you point the boat toward some object in the distance, in the direction you want to sail.  You sail toward it.  But the winds push, the current pushes, and you end up a little off-course.  So, you course correct.”

But then, I added: “Sometimes, you realize that where you thought you wanted to go is not really where you want to go… or maybe it isn’t safe to go.  Maybe a storm or something else.  But you have to go somewhere else.  So, you change course.”

And I continued, “Then there are the times when you don’t course-correct as you go, and the small space of being off-course begins to broaden as you go.  What might have been just a course correction at the beginning is now a course change.”

Then I returned to our dialogue and asked, “So, did you course correct… or is this a course change?”

Just to be clear:  either is fine.  We all have the option of course changes in life.  Sometimes, it is just a course correction.  But it is okay if you need a course change.

It’s a part of life.

In this episode of the Thriveology Podcast, I explore the difference between a course correction and a course change.  What does it look like, and when is it time for a change?

Listen below.

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5 Lessons from 55 Trips Around the Sun

5 lessons I’ve learned from my 55 years on earth. Another year has passed.  I added a year to when I answer, “How old are you?”  Well, at least in theory.  I am an unreliable narrator for reporting my age.  By accident.  But on a repeated basis.

That said, as I recorded this episode of the podcast, and write these words, I am celebrating 55 trips around the sun (and I complain I don’t get to travel much!).

I’m not sure about claiming wisdom, but I do claim some lessons from those years.  Lessons I keep learning and relearning.  Lessons I must remind myself about.  But lessons that matter to my life.

While there are quite a few, 5 seemed to be appropriate for 55 years.  5 lessons from 55 years on this earth!

I’d love to hear the lessons you’ve learned!  And I’d love to hear any questions or thoughts you might have about thriving.  But until then, listen in on the 5 lessons I have learned (and keep learning), and let me know if they are lessons you share.

Listen below.

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Success and Significance

We all face obstacles in our lives.  No matter how successful, no matter how determined we are, we will have tough moments.  Soul moments.  Times when we have to stop, collect ourselves, let go of who we have been, and step into a new space.

Sometimes, those moments are full of tragedy.

Aaron Walker is the author of View From The TopThat was the case for my guest on this episode of Thriveology Podcast.  Aaron Walker, author of View From The Top, was successful… multiple times.  After growing up poor, Aaron decided to make himself successful.

He started working young, finished high school early, and launched his first business.  He sold that and started another.  Followed by another.

And then, one day… tragedy.  Big enough that Aaron tried to hide from life.  (Aaron tells the story, himself, during our talk.) But life wasn’t quite done yet.  Aaron made a shift from success to significance.

In our discussion, Aaron reveals the cornerstones of building a life of integrity and significance.  Listen in to learn more.

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Playing Life For Real

David Wood, Playing Life For Real, playforreal.lifeHow’s your life going? The way you want?  Or not quite?  Do you want to “level up” and play a bigger game?  Have a bigger life?

In this episode of the Thriveology Podcast, I chat with David Wood, successful-entrepreneur-turned-life-coach.  Nope, not a business coach (although he does some of that), but a life coach.  Helping successful people “level up” to more success.

While David had been successful in his work, something was missing — connection.  Tied to an early childhood trauma (we talk about it), David decided to “play it safe” with relationships… and then realized that “playing it safe” kept him disconnected and distant.

How?

Playing bigger.  Taking risks.  Daring.  And Caring.

David starts with a question, “What if we are living in a maze, running it every day?  We can keep doing that, or we can step back and decide to play it bigger.”

Using his 3 Pillars and 4 Point Plan, David points the way to anyone wanting to play on a bigger field.  To play “full out” in the game of life — which David notes is a very important game!

Listen below.

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Young(er) At Any Age

Dr. Ron Kaiser, author of Re-juvenaging.

My friend tells me, “Aging ain’t for sissy’s, but I ain’t ready for the alternative!”

It happens to every single one of us who are fortunate enough for it to happen.  We get older.  Moment by moment, day by day, year by year… and hopefully, decade by decade.

Personally, I am planning on being around for a long time.  I’m already in what I refer to as “Bonus Time,” after a health scare over 15 years ago.

One of my things to do is look for “aging mentors.”  These are people who are older than me, at varying levels, who seem to be doing it right.  Not so much in the fact that they are still alive, as in how they live.

Ron Kaiser is one of those guys.  81 years old, still a full time psychologist, still doing yoga and exercising, still engaged in learning… still engaged in living.

Recently, I had the good fortune of interviewing Ron.  He and I met at a conference and I said, “I have to get you on Thriveology.  Your information is important at any age!”  And now, I have.

Be sure and listen in to the interview below.

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Never Too Late (until it’s too late)

An Interview with Lorraine Hoving

Lorraine Hoving - It's never too late to changeIt’s never too late!  Until it’s too late!

We all have an expiration date!  But up until then… there is time.  But don’t take up too much time not getting there.  The sooner you do, the better your life will be, for as long as it goes on.

Isn’t that a dichotomy?  It’s never too late to make a change.  But don’t put it off!

Here’s the thing.  If there are things you have wanted to do, but haven’t… you can really be hard on yourself.  You can chastise and shame yourself for not having taken action.  All the while, you are putting it off even longer.

OR, you can decide that the moment for change is NOW.  Not “someday.”  Not “maybe tomorrow.”  Today.

On her 60th birthday, with a full day of celebration planned, Lorraine Hoving woke up in a panic.  It occured to her that if she was fortunate enough to live to 90, she was 2/3rds of the way through life.  And that was assuming she was headed for 90!

That very day, Lorraine thought about all the goals, hopes, and dreams she had… and had not yet hit.  At that point, she was overweight and hiding from life.  And on that day, she decided things had to change.

Lorraine says she took “100% responsibility for how” her life went.  She forgave herself.  She forgave others.  And she took control of her life.

Now, she is on a mission to help others build their life… they way THEY want it.  Starting now.  It’s never too late… until it’s too late.

Listen in as Lorraine Hoving and I discuss how she took control of her life and made it a life she loves.

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Taking The Leap To Transformation

An Interview with Marie-Elizabeth Mali

Marie-Elizabeth Mali, Midlife Transformation SpecialistWhat happens when you do all the right things:  get the degrees, marry the “right person,” and think you are living your dream… only to discover it is someone else’s dream?

You may just push on.  You may just run away.  Or you may stop and realize that YOU are the one who needs to change… to transform.

Many times, that happens at midlife.  Call it a “crisis.”  Or call it an “opportunity for transformation.”

Marie-Elizabeth Mali decided it was time for transformation.  Having taken on what Marie-Elizabeth refers to as an “inherited identity” (the one others want for you), she realized that she was not living her authentic self.

So, she made a LEAP (which is also the acronym of her approach) to transformation.

Listen in as Marie-Elizabeth and I discuss her LEAP approach to making transformations.

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MORE Life Lessons from Jiu Jitsu

On multiple days each week, my wife and I play a game.  She points to a bruise and asks, “How’d that happen?”

Fair question.  But I don’t have a specific question.  All I can say is, “Rolling at jiu jitsu.”  Yep, my 52 year old body has to tolerate my decision to take up jiu jitsu last January.

A few months after I started going to jiu jitsu, I posted a podcast episode on Lessons I Learned At Jiu Jitsu.

MoreLessonsJiuJitsuWell, here we are, some 11 months later.  And I have learned a few more lessons.

Since I posted the first episode, I have continued going to class throughout the week.  And with continuing to go, I also progressed.  In the Gracie Academy framework, I earned my Combatives Belt back in November.  That means that… well… I am still a white belt.  Just an advanced white belt!

Which means that I am now allowed in the advanced class, the Blue Belt Cycle.

Which meant that everything I had learned up until then was met with a block or defense when I tried it on a higher ranked belt.  It had worked fine before!  But now, I was back to square one.

As I have told a few people, it is kind of like when you are in the last year of middle school.  You think you are “top dog,” and strut around a little, pretending to own that school.  Then, you go to high school.  And you discover you are at the bottom of the ladder.  Back to beginner.  That would be me.  Back to beginner.

Humbling?  A little.  But more of a reminder that progress includes lots of new beginning points.  So now, when I can’t make a move (or more likely, when I get submitted and have to tap), I just have to laugh… then learn.

Listen in to this week’s episode for 4 more life lessons I have (re)learned from jiu jitsu.

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Book:  The Immutable Laws Of Living
Book:  Thrive Principles