For those who have read my previous post, I highly recommend that you watch ‘The Opus’ yourself to fully embrace the concepts of living to your fullest potential. In the previous post I discussed the first two important steps, Vision and Plan and as a follow on from this I will summarise my thoughts on what the movie discussed about action and performance.
The downfall for many of us after clarifying our vision, setting our intention and formulating a plan is that most people don’t take action. What this is saying to us is that we really aren’t committed. To be successful we need a dream, a plan and then we need to go for it. If we believe in something fully we will take action – as Jack Canfield says, the last part of the word attraction is action so we need to start taking inspired action that will lead us to exactly where we need to be. No matter how long this takes – each step is getting us closer.
While it may be our vision, our plan and our effort required to take this action, we don’t have to fly solo – in fact we need to surround ourselves with people who will support us in your goal and not undermine us with the countermeasures that many family and friends can often present to test our commitment. We can model other successful people as long as it fits with our vision and values. Mixing it up often works by choosing components of others success plans that will work for us.
Along our path there will be times when we will be confronted with adversity. This can take many forms, some obvious and some subtle. Embrace it and learn from it. Focus on the things that you can change and not the things you can’t. In these situations we need to find it within ourselves to pull ourselves up and create something amazing. Its OK to get down, its not OK to stay down.
Everybody experiences failure – and if we haven’t its because we haven’t done anything. Most things follow the J curve. We need to go down while we are learning to build knowledge and capacity and only then do we start to gain the traction we need to get to where we need to go at an accelerated pace. It is passion and commitment to the game plan that will give us the energy to get through these periods of adversity.
Many see adversity as a set back. It is only a setback if we don’t stop and ask how this can serve us and ask ‘how will this give me an advantage or what can I learn?’ Joe Vitale says that setbacks are the tuition we pay for the education we get. An obstacle is only an obstacle if you choose to see the drawbacks without the opportunities.
What is failure? Not getting in the game – not trying. Any engineer will tell you that when firing a missile, it needs a series of errors to get to its target and after each error is detected it corrects – it would never be able to reach the target without these small regular errors and corrections. Most of us hit the first obstacle and give up. Successful people hit the first obstacle and adjust then keep moving forward.
In society we focus a lot on obstacles and challenges and these things paralyse us. We see everything as a problem rather than a puzzle. There is always a solution to a puzzle – and the opportunity to solve it offers an opportunity to grow.
Once we reach a goal we tend to bask in the success, often only momentarily. What we discover over time is that what really matters is that we have made a difference and who we have become in that process of achieving that goal. When the game of life is over we can’t take anything with us so all we can do is create a bucket load of memories and experiences that are worthy of us.
Our performance in life boils down to the habits we are choosing each day. Each decision we make in each moment is determining the habits that we will have today and the next day and the outcomes we will have in life. If we want a happy life, we need to choose the habits of happy people.
Henry James said “there is nothing in the senses that will satisfy the soul the only thing that satisfies the soul is gratitude and love” We each have an innate need to assist others, we are all here to interact, to create and to love. These are all giving things. When we understand that the purpose of the universe is to expand we can also begin to see that this is also our purpose. Anything we do to help people or the world to expand is in line with the purpose of the universe while anything we do that causes contraction is working against the universe. When we stop to consider our happiest moments we are likely to find that they are normally about helping others, sharing something of ourselves and making a difference – all of which are forms of expansion.
Dr Benjamin Mays said “It must be born in mind that the tragedy in life does not lie in not reaching your goals. The tragedy in life lies on not having a goal to reach for. It is not a calamity in life to die with your dreams unfulfilled but it is a calamity not to dream. It is not a disaster to not be able to capture your ideals but it is a disaster to have no ideals to capture. It is not a disgrace not to reach the stars but it is a disgrace to have no stars to reach for. Not failure but low aim is sin.”
To expand we have got to dream, make a difference and leave a legacy – our reason for coming to this planet.
We are all special, we all have unique qualities, special gifts. As we find them and become passionate about them we can move forward and take action. In doing this we are all creating our own opus and when we come to the end of our lives we will know that we have lived from the inspiration of our hearts.
The joy, passion and success in our lives will come when we are brave enough to say “this is me” and then go and be that person.
My opus will be the person I become in pursuit of my goals and the legacy Iwill leave in another. What will your opus be?