3 New Lessons For My Daughters

Reading Time: 3 minutes

lessons for my daughters

A couple of years ago, I wrote the book “Fan of Happy” as a way to communicate life lessons for my daughters.  The lessons developed into a book that I am proud to share.  But since the book was published, I continue to grow and evolve.  I continue to learn.  And so I have come across some new lessons I would like to share with my daughters…and you.  So here are a few new “lessons for my daughters.”

It Might Be a Sign

When you are chasing a new goal or a new dream, it will be hard.  Anyone that tells you differently is selling something.  So often today, we are filled with memes and platitudes that tell us that “when we find the right path” things will get easy.  Or you have heard “when you find what you love you will never work another day in your life.”

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but those are not true.

When you are doing something new, or creating a new path, there will be challenges.  You will be stretched.  This is not, as some would have you believe, a sign that you should stop.  It’s not a sign that you are not supposed to chase that dream.  As a matter of fact, it can be the opposite.  It is often a sign you are on the right track.

For example, when you go to the gym (or workout in any way), you are pushing your body out of its comfort zone.  You break down your muscle, so it can rebuild itself…stronger.  The next day (and particularly two days later) you are sore.  But you don’t view that discomfort as a sign that you are not on the right path.  It’s a sign you are doing the right thing!  Discomfort is a part of the journey.  Embrace it as a sign you need to keep pushing.

Jealousy versus Admiration

When you see someone else having some level of success in life, especially if that success comes in the form of something you want, it’s natural to be a bit jealous.  They have what you want.  You are working hard to chase a dream, and it seems like it’s coming easy to them.  They are ahead of you on the path.  It’s natural to ask “why not me?”

It’s also incredibly unproductive.

When faced with a situation like this, re-direct your focus from jealousy to admiration.  Jealousy is a negative emotion that shuts down your creative brain.  Admiration still shows you the gap between what you want, and what you have.  But that change gives your brain the space to not only admire them, but learn from them.  What are they doing that you are not?  Who do they know?  What training have they done?  What can you learn from them.

When you admire someone, you can learn from them.

Start Your Day with Gratitude

You cannot be negative and grateful at the same time.  Though I have said that before, I learned a new trick this year that helps me frame my day in the first 60 seconds.  When I am feeling overwhelmed with life, my first thoughts of the day have to do with what happened yesterday.  What did I mess up?  Why did they say that to me?  Or I might think about the things I am dreading coming up today.

Either way, I am not living in the present.

When the alarm goes off and my mind begins to race, my new practice is to take just one minute to think about the things in my life that I am grateful for.  It’s a simple exercise that takes me out of an immediate state of stress.  It also reminds me, on a day when I need to work hard, why I am working hard in the first place!

If you are interested in more lessons like this, you can check out my book Fan of Happy on Amazon here.  Oh, and if you want to make sure you never miss an update, sign up to become a VIP here.

But You Asked Me!

Reading Time: 2 minutes

 My friend was frustrated with me.  And I didn’t blame him.  It was my fault.  Let me explain. I had reached out to a friend in my industry.  He was successful.  He had some of the results I wanted.  So I took the leap and reached out to him to ask him some advice.  As is so often the case in these situations, these successful people are happy to help.  They WANT others to succeed.  So he took the time to answer my questions. But then something weird happened.  I argued with him.   Don’t get me wrong.  I didn’t call him names.  I just didn’t listen.  I spent the time telling him “why that would not work for me.”   Finally, with a sigh, he just said, “I don’t know what to tell you.  That’s just how I do it.”   What he didn’t say, because he was too gracious was, “But you asked me, asshole.” We do that a lot don’t we?  As we are working to climb the ladder of success, we want shortcuts.  We want to tap into the wisdom of others, but we don’t always want to put in the work.   We spend a lot of time in our own heads, explaining why that would not work for us. “Sure that works for them, but they are rich.”  But were they always? “I could not do that because…” “I don’t have time to do it that way…” “Yeah but…” “My customers would never pay for that…” Regardless of the excuse, it’s exactly what they are.  That’s why, I think, we struggle to take the advice of those we ask.  It just seems too damn simple!  We want there to be a magic formula that will guide us to success.  But as I often say, simple is NOT the same as easy.   It’s not about the idea.  It’s about the execution.  It’s about putting in the work. So the next time you ask a mentor, buy a book, or listen to a podcast for advice…take it.  Don’t argue with it.  Don’t make excuses.  Get out of your head and do the work. Make sure you never miss an update!  It’s time to sign up for the VIP newsletter.  You can do that here.  We send out a weekly recap of our content in one email.  And of course, if you want to look for some great gifts, check out our website here.