Like many people, I often think - what if I knew what I know now when I was a teen? Then I realize it's an impossible question to answer that leads to ruminating about the past and what could have been. Then I shift to asking - what life concepts are important to share with my children and others to help them on their life journey?
Below is an adaptation of a letter I wrote this week for my sons for inspiration as they are on the eve of starting a new academic year as early teens. I am sharing this more widely with the hope that it can help more teens and adults.
To My Sons,
This week you will be starting another school year. While you are at school, you are in my thoughts everyday and I am always here for you as your father, a friend, a coach, a teacher, and advocate.
As you embark on your journey this academic year I encourage you to focus each day on 5 powerful thoughts and ideas which when applied can help you develop personal strength to achieve your goals and happiness today, tomorrow, and throughout your life journey.
5 Powerful CONCEPTS TO PRACTICE EACH DAY
- The Obstacle Is The Way - Turn challenges into opportunities. See your next difficult school project as gift to learn something new and to sharpen your skills.
- Love What Is - Seek out the good in every situation and accept what is. When faced with a class you don't like, accept that you are meant to be there and see it as a path to new learning and choose to let go of the resistance in your mind and choose to enjoy (love) the experience.
- Always Do Your Best - Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstances, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgement, self-abuse, and regret. (The Four Agreements, by don Miguel Ruiz)
- Don't Take Anything Personally - Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won't be the victim of needless suffering. (The Four Agreements, by don Miguel Ruiz)
- Be Present - Live fully in the current moment in whatever you are doing, focusing 100% of your attention, capabilities, strength to whatever it is you are doing each moment of each day. Do not be bogged down by the past, future, fear, or distractions.
These are powerful concepts which take years to fully understand and mastery is an ongoing path of diving deeper into each concept and practicing them daily. To dive deeper click through the links above read about authors and their books who effectively teach these concepts.
I wish I knew these things in my early teen years, but I am grateful for knowing them now and to be able to share with you. Remember I am here for you to support your journey.
Here are two videos related to these concepts to help in your understanding, as you go through life you will stumble upon examples and teachings that will reinforce these concepts if you are aware of them, if your not aware of these concepts the ability to see these things in action disappears.
BE THE HERO OF YOUR OWN MOVIE
If your life was a movie and it started now, what would the hero of your life's movie do right now? Do those things and #GetOnnit. https://www.onnit.com/joe-rogan Original Music by: Novak Attack http://novakattack.bandcamp.com
EDUCATIONAL ANIMATION ON THE OBSTACLE IS THE WAY:
Get the book: http://amzn.to/1PU8Udc You can get 2 FREE audiobooks here: http://amzn.to/1TfWgGw THE OBSTACLE IS THE WAY BY RYAN HOLIDAY - ANIMATED To keep in touch and get extras, you can like FightMediocrity on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FightMediocrity To interact in the easiest and most personal way, you can follow FightMediocrity on Twitter: https://twitter.com/fghtmediocrity
I hope you find this helpful and inspiring. I wish you all the best for a great school year ahead - choose to make everyday great no matter what.
Feel free to share share this and to use as a template to help make your own version.