Life to the Max!

“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a well-preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, wine in the other, body thoroughly worn out, and screaming, ‘Woo hoo, what a ride!’” Plaque in the window of Found Objects, McMinnville, Oregon.

When I coach teams and individuals, I encourage them to fail, because that’s the only way to learn and grow. That’s the only way to live life fully. Tony Robbins has said that there is no such thing as failure. You try something, you get a result. If you don’t like the result, you can change one of the input parameters and try again, and get another result. Or you can decide that you have learned enough and walk away. In either case, you haven’t “failed”. You have conducted an experiment and seen the result. Martin Luther, who created Protestantism, agreed when he told people “Go and sin boldly!” He knew that we can’t grow, we can’t make a difference, until we are willing to “fail”.

We, as individuals and as groups, are more powerful than we want to admit. Because if we admit to our power, we feel compelled to start using it. It is much easier, and much safer, to arrive at the grave in a well-preserved body. But that is not our purpose. If we do that, we have arrived at the grave emotionally, psychologically, and spiritually long before our body finally ceases breathing. A ship is much safer in the harbor – but that’s not its purpose.

My colleague Mike Burr asks a really excellent question: “What are you tolerating?” And that begs the follow-up question, “Why?”

What are you tolerating? And why? And what would your life be like if you stopped tolerating whatever it is, claimed your power, and changed something?

Gary Langenwalter

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