Saturday, May 25, 2013

Making Things Better

In the speeches I give, I often tell this story:

For years, my mother, with three young daughters, convinced herself to stay with our father in a not-so-great situation because, ‘things could be worse’… and ‘we’re lucky to have what we do’.  To a degree, she was right, and grattitude is an important characteristic to have, no matter what your circumstances.

However, it got to a point, where she said, ‘I can’t take it anymore’, and finally she decided, that just because things could be worse, it doesn’t mean you can’t and shouldn’t try to make them better.  She left our father, became a single mom, made it through, and we turned out great.  It was best for everyone, including our father - all are great now.

There is a line in Sheryl Sandberg's book, Lean In – “Just because things could be worse, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to make them better.”  To me, this is SUCH an important line that underscores the message she trying to convey – it applies to personal and career decisions.  You just have to know your own appetite for ‘better’ or ‘more’ and know your own tolerance for the effort and challenge it may take to get there. 

Don't settle - and don't convince or allow yourself or you company to sit idle, just becuause thinks are stable and predictable or could be worse. You'll miss out on great things if you do that. Your family and your business or company deserve to grow and improve and help others do the same.

4 comments:

  1. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful.

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  2. When there is a will there is a way, however, there is a point when one is just tired and needs to sit at a stable and predictable place while pondering his next steps. Everyone, at some point, will find it right to move to a better/greater place but some don't just jump in. You are obviously an adrenaline junkie as I am and when you add anchors to your ship it makes it a bit slower to change course.

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  3. thanks for the comments!

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  4. I think this message is paramount for everybody who's down and out to really hear over and again. Life is short. And oftentimes those who are down and out get the short end of opportunities.

    This outlines matters pretty clearly.
    Status and Stress - The poor and powerless are at greater risk of early death.
    http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/07/27/status-and-stress/

    It takes a special and sustained level of self awareness to lift yourself out of a sustained stressful bad situation. And messages like yours and all who believe in making the world a better place than they found it need to get amplified at every opportunity. It is the prudent thing to do, to help lift all boats, and what makes us most human.

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