My great mentor and friend, Reggie A. Irving, gave me the book, If it Ain't Broke. . . Break It!: And Other Unconventional Wisdom for Changing Business World by Robert J. Kriegel & Louis Palter. I didn't actually read it until 20 years later after my great coach and friend, Ben Bergeron, brought up a topic about the endless pursuit of excellence that I remembered receiving the book inspiring me find it in my basement to read it. The book is filled with excellent information and tips about working towards your goals.
Participating in the exercise found in the book prompted me to launch my "inspire happy project." I encourage you to participate in the exercise from the book as I did and see where it leads you.
Happiness Begins Here:
"Take a moment to answer each of the following questions. Let your imagination soar. No holds barred. Don’t try to make sense of be realistic. Think about what you really want, what adds meaning and purpose and passion to your life. Just thinking about it starts the journey. Write down your responses and read them to yourself out loud.
1. Someday I'd like to
2. I’ve always wanted to
3. I’d really love to
4. Wouldn’t it be great if I could
5. If it were a perfect world, I would
Close your eyes and imagine you’re in your home watching a videotape. As the tape begins, you see your own name on the screen and it is dated five years from now. You have accomplished everything you set out to do and are in an ideal situation, living out your dream.
Just watch the tape run. As you view it, don’t edit or firehose anything. Let the tape play itself out unencumbered by your rational mind. Don’t analyze it or think about it or firehose it. Where are you? What are you doing? How does it feel?
After you have viewed your video, while it is still fresh in your mind, write down a few key words that capture the essence of how you felt watching it, not what you were doing on the tape. Thees “seed” words are the point of departure. Some typical examples are “proud,” “independent,” “courageous,” and “creative.” Keep a card on your desk with the seed words on to trigger your memory of the video and to remind you of your dream.
Imagine you are 85 and looking back over the years. You have lived an active and fulfilling life. You realize that you have gone far beyond what you ever expected you would do or be. As you look back from age 85, ask yourself these questions:
Imagine yourself as Time magazine’s Man or Woman of the Year five years form now. What did you accomplish that got you on the cover? Write out the quotes of the people describing you on the cover. What are some of the key adjectives they use? How many of these key qualities have you already developed?
Find three adjectives Time used to describe you. Write them down, then think about what you will have to do to make those teams accuracy describe you now."
Congratulations for going through this sole searching exercise. Take a moment to really capture and reflect on your answers. We are about to start a new year so this is an excellent time to think about what is important to you and what your priorities and goals are for the future.
In the upcoming weeks we will focus on goals, how to make them and how to stick to them.
These are the unedited notes I scratched in the margins of the book as I did this exercise myself that motivated me to begin this project: (I got to this part of the book and wanted to stop right here. Big wake up call for me.)
1. Someday I’d like to raise a happy, healthy family.
2. I’ve always wanted to inspire my family to be good humans.
3. I’d really love to change peoples lives for the better.
4. Wouldn’t it be great if I could develop something that would help people everywhere realize their potential for happiness and help show them ways to finding it in themselves.
5. If it were a perfect world, I would have a business that would provide ongoing uplifting information and inspiration, gifts and items that support happiness, and class or counseling options to educate people how they could embrace and achieve happiness."
If it Ain't Broke...Break It!: And Other Unconventional Wisdom for a Changing Business World Paperback – March 1, 1992 pp. 46-49.
by Robert J. Kriegel (Author), Louis Palter (Author) Warner Business Books, Inc, 1992
Follow this link to learn more about this book: https://www.amazon.com/If-Aint-Broke-Break-Unconventional/dp/0446393592
Last year I picked up the book, You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life, by Jen Sincero, while at the Logan airport waiting to get on a flight to a family vacation. The title drew me in and we had not even started taxiing down the runway and I was completely hooked into Sincero's humorous, call-you-out writing style. She highlights many of the excuses people use for not being as happy as they could be, or in the job they wanted, going for the new experience, etc. She builds the reader back up and points out that each individual has control about his or her life, the way we approach it, with whom we spend it, and how much we get from it. Be honest with yourself. What do you want? What makes you happy? Choose to do these things. Start. Today. Now. No excuses. Go get what you deserve.
Below are some of my favorite quotes from Sincero's book.
“If you’re serious about changing your life, you’ll find a way. If you’re not, you’ll find an excuse.”
"This is about getting mighty clear about what makes you happy and what makes you feel the most alive, and then creating it instead of pretending you can’t have it."
"Shift from wanting to change your life to deciding to change your life.
"Growth isn't for weenies, but it is not near as painful as living the life you are now if you are not really going for it."
"Change is not a matter of ability, it is a matter of drive."
"You are loved. Massively. Ferociously. Unconditionally. The Universe is totally freaking out about how awesome you are. It’s got you wrapped in a warm gorilla hug of adoration. It wants to give you everything you desire. It wants you to be happy. It wants you to see what it sees in you.”
"You are responsible for what you say and do. You are not responsible for whether or not people freak out about it.”
“You can hear something over and over and over and over and over and still not really hear it. It does not click. No lo comprendo. Until you're ready to hear it. And then it is defeaning.”
“maybe, if you put your disbelief aside, roll up your sleeves, take some risks, and totally go for it, you’ll wake up one day and realize you’re living the kind of life you used to be jealous”
"It never ceases to amaze me the precious time we spend chasing the squirrels around our brains, playing out our dramas, worrying about unwanted facial hair, seeking adoration, justifying our actions, complaining about slow Internet connections, dissecting the lives of idiots, when we are sitting in the middle of a full-blown miracle that is happening right here, right now."
“Nobody who ever accomplished anything big or new or worth raising a celebratory fist in the air did it from their comfort zone. They risked ridicule and failure and sometimes even death.”
"Your life depends on it."
This is a link to the book.