Tag: life advice

Choose your words wisely

Every day, I am setting goals as well as personal mantras to live by. I’ve come to the realization that the way I word my goals affects my ability to complete them. I have found that I am much more successful when I write my goals and values as verbs instead of nouns. For example, I can tell myself to have integrity when dealing with clients but it is hard to follow because it is not something that is tangible. Instead, a better value proposition might be to put “Do the right thing.” This is much easier to follow. Instead of be productive, put read 100 pages or answer 50 math questions, etc. Verbs are more effective because they are action plans and provide something that is clear to follow.

Language may have an impact on our own lives, but it has an even greater affect on others. Here are some subjective words I’ve found useful to avoid in conversation.

  • Obviously and clearly.
    • Many things in this world are not obvious and even fewer things are clear. Instead of saying “clearly it’s x” or “obviously it’s y” it may be better to use “it appears that x is based on y and z.”
  • Never and always.
    • Never and always are not precise and statistically improbable. Usually used as an exaggeration. Instead of “never” or “always,” give a definitive number or use “seldom” and “frequently.”
  • Actually.
    • In cases of Correction, actually signifies that the speaker is very certain the other person is wrong before an explanation is even offered. Meeting with a possible and so is not a good way to get results. Instead of saying “actually,” a better start could be, “I don’t believe…”
  • It goes without saying…
    • If something is important, then it definitely goes WITH saying. This is probably something to avoid using altogether.

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Just wake up

4AM. The magic hour. Night owls have gone to bed, the morning joggers have not yet woken up. It’s a serene period and as cars drive by, you wonder, why are they awake? I have always valued time and the need to be productive but I have never been able to become the 4AM man. I appreciate the few times I am awake at this time because it feels like a scene from the twilight zone. If you want to feel like a different person, start waking up at this time. I have realized that to make my own life work, I will have to start my day at this time. I have always had goals and when the dead line approaches, my actual accomplishments often fall a little short of my set goals. Although I’ve become a better person in reaching for my goals, there is much more to be done. The one constant in life is change. Who you are is transient. 1 year, 5 years, 10 years from now, you won’t be who you are at this moment. In fact, the present doesn’t even exist – only the past and the future. When you finish processing a thought or event, it has already occurred and passed. When you are looking at something, the time it took the light to hit your eye, the object is now a little bit different than when you perceive it. Changes made now will compound into differences in the future. Like the butterfly effect, the flap of a butterflies’ wings can cause tsunamis on the other side of the world, the small act of waking up a little bit earlier will reap compounding differences in your overall being.

“I’ve always figured out that there 24 hours a day. You sleep six hours and have 18 hours left. Now, I know there are some of you out there that say well, wait a minute, I sleep eight hours or nine hours. Well, then, just sleep faster, I would recommend.” -Arnold Schwarzenegger

 

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