Tag Archives: thought for the day

Too Much of a Good Thing

This past week was an amazing week for me. It was jam packed with conferences, events and other things.

I went to another DevTO session.

I attended a conference for the Canadian Marketing Association – I had a great time, laughed a fair bit, and learned quite a lot. I left with a lot of ideas for work and my writing in general.

I also crossed an item off my bucket list with my first TED Talk session. It was a TedxToronto Salon session and I really had a fantastic time.

Thursday and Friday I rushed around, trying to catch up on all the things I normally do in full days in 2 of them. It was a bit exhausting, but totally worth it. That said, I want a quieter week this coming week – something where I get a chance to catch up with myself and get things done again!

So, celebrate the good things in life, but all things in moderation – including excess!

Thought for the Day: Building a Foundation

Building a Foundation

My thought of the day is based on a conversation I had with someone over the weekend. When you’re down in the dumps and feeling in a rut, that’s the hardest time to think about your future – but it’s the best time. I think of it like creating a building. You dig the hole to place the foundation. The deeper the foundation, the stronger the building.

So, while you might not NEED to feel bad to build a foundation for the future, if you’re down in a hole, you might as well get started on laying a foundation for a bigger, brighter, taller future.

While I’m not in a big hole, lately I’ve been in a bit of a pot hole. I’ve decided to make the most of it and am taking serious steps to make for a better future. As a side benefit, building that foundation for a better future does wonders for helping to lift you out of that hole.

Thought of the Day: What makes us feel good at work

I’ll be honest, I thought about calling this the happy thought of the day. It doesn’t seem like an idea that is just 100% happy, but I believe that all self-discovery is good in one way or another, so I’ll call it positive.

As with many of my deep thoughts, this one started with a TED Talk. This particular one was by Dan Ariely, and he talks about the things that make us feel good at work.

As part of his talk, Dan mentions an experiment involving origami birds, and how people who make the birds when they don’t have clear instructions are more attached to the birds they have created.

While I’m sure this wasn’t his intention, this sparked off an interesting realization in my mind. Could this be why people often stay in bad jobs? If someone builds something at a company out of nothing, such as developing a sales training manual where one didn’t exist, does that make them attached to their work even if the job is bad? It seems that many people I know who are given little guidance or help (ie. have their origami instructions hidden) seem attached to their jobs for what they create even if the situation is bad.

That realization aside, the rest of the talk was pretty educational as well. It really gets you thinking about what you like about your job and digs into the heart of what motivates you to go to work every day.

Take a look at it if you’re interested!

Thought for the Day on Happiness and Feeling Good

I had a theory when I started this website about the relationship between my physical condition and my level of mental fitness. That’s one of the reasons that I experiment so much with things that increase my energy and physical fitness.

Today was a great example of that for me. Mentally, I felt great, but I felt sub-par physically. And, while it didn’t happen immediately, the physical state gradually started to outweigh my mental state until I felt less than great overall.

I find thoughts like this fascinating, as I frequently suffer from VERY mild weather headaches, ones that I hardly notice, but they just impact my focus slightly. I often ignore these minor physical aches and pains, but I wonder how much they impact my sense of well-being and my decision-making ability. I know that a stabbing back ache impacts me seriously, but how much does a minor soreness impact my ability to function at my best?

This line of thinking is leading me to ponder redesigning my experiments. I design them at a week each, but I’m finding that those experiments don’t lead to me fundamentally changing my life. I’m wondering about strategies that would lead to longer-term changes, and a better sense of physical well being.

How much do you find small aches and pains impacting your ability to function in day-to-day life?

Life Lessons from Flo Rida

There was no post yesterday because I was lucky enough to win tickets to the launch party for Blackberry 10 (and a pretty sweet new phone). It was a fun night, and there are lots of happy thoughts to be found in it about reconnecting with friends and such. There were also lots of crazy fun things that happened.

The craziest part of the night was that I learned a life lesson from the musical guest, Flo Rida.

(If you don’t know who Flo Rida is, here’s his Wikipedia page)

Flo Rida was the surprise musical guest of the night. So, none of the people in the room really knew he was coming. I imagine this is quite different from a standard contest, where everyone has purchased a ticked specifically to see him.

So, Flo Rida entered. The room wasn’t hostile, but it wasn’t terribly excited. There were a LOT of people holding up phones and videotaping the show, but they weren’t dancing or shouting and singing along. It would have been easy for Flo Rida to put forth a mediocre performance for a mediocre crowd. But instead, he gave it 100% energy. It was obvious that he was singing, dancing and performing his heart out up on that stage. He even got out into the audience and started dancing with people. He and his performing group worked up quite the sweat.

By the end of the show, the crowd weren’t all rabid Flo Rida fans, but they were definitely warmer. A number of people had started dancing and singing along too.

So, by giving his performance a full and honest effort, Flo Rida might not have won over the entire room, but he did get a lot of respect and he made a few extra fans.

That was my life lesson and it was my thought for the day: even if you might not win, give it your all anyway. Winning isn’t always a either/or situation. Sometimes you can have a host of small wins that add up to bigger ones in the future. Those fans that Flo Rida made might show up at another of his shows in the future, helping turn the small victory into a bigger one.

Are you giving mediocre performances to the mediocre crowds in your life? Is there anyone you could dazzle by exceeding their expectations?

Also, I’ve been reading a bit more on yoga these days. I think I might head back to practicing more regularly. Here is a thought from my friend Cheryl on one of her favourite yoga mantras – Aham Prema.

Thought of the Day for Work: Planting Seeds

Today, I was a bit inspired by a guest post on Modest Money called Little Acorns can Grow into Giant Oaks.

I agree with the idea of persistence in investing, but I would apply it even more generally to life as a whole. I’ve never thought of it in the context of oaks, but I always think of the work I do as planting seeds. In any type of workplace, there are “big kill” people, the sales people or marketers who work to make massive deals happen, similar to hunters stalking and killing a giant animal for food. Then, there are people who build systems and processes… they plant seeds.

Thought for the Day of Work

Planting seeds is less glamorous, and it can require a LOT of patience, but it it leads to more reliable results. It’s a strategy that doesn’t depend on a single person.

So, try to plant more seeds and go on fewer hunts. While a windfall of money, a surprise sale, or some other “big kill” can certainly be exciting, it is the patient and persistent planting of seeds that makes fundamental changes in your world.

What can you do in your life to take out the risk and start setting yourself up for victories of patience and persistence?

Thought of the Day – Everything in Moderation

It’s realizations like this that help reinforce my belief that the universe has a highly developed sense of irony.

For the last week or so I’ve been really enjoying the fact that I’m busy and productively occupied.

However, it seems that when I get busy, I forget to balance it out by taking care of myself. This week was no exception. I was busy writing and working, swimming in a sea of incredible opportunities while eating poorly and getting nowhere near enough healthy sleep and exercise.

Yup, ignore your body enough and it punishes you.

So, this weekend I’ve been working harder to take care of myself again.

Next week I’ll even go back to my happiness experiments. I’m planning on a combination experiment involving 2 previously successful ones to see if the benefits scale up appropriately.

So, it’s a bit of a tough realization to get hit with the fact that I can undermine my own success through neglecting my own health like this, but hopefully it’s a realization that will lead me to change!

Thought of the Day: Be a Moving Target

Think back to your days of youth playing dodgeball. Is it easier to hit a person who was standing still, or one that’s moving?

The person who was moving was ALWAYS harder to hit.

So, you need to ask yourself, in a crazy world where things can be flipped on their head on a daily basis, what are you doing to stay ahead of the curve and to keep moving?

Thought for the Day: Know Thyself

Well, to start with, I do confess that I’ve been a bit of a lazy blogger, but all for the best of causes. A long weekend.

I didn’t post on the blog yesterday, but I was busy enjoying the last full weekend of the summer.

I had to ask myself yesterday: what’s more important for me?

It comes down to a question, and that’s a question that you can answer only by knowing yourself.

It’s amazing how many choices in life come down to self-knowledge. We live within our own bodies, so we know who we are, but we let everything else get in the way.

One one side, we have our self-knowledge. On the other side, we have thoughts, our expectations, the expectations of other people, societal conditioning, all the marketing campaigns and advertising that bombard us, and so much more.

Is it a wonder that we get so confused sometimes?

So, as the thought for the day says, know thyself. Stick up for yourself, be assertive, and live with your instincts.

Just remember, that part of you that wants a chocolate chip cookie… that’s not an instinct. I know, it’s sad.

Thought of the Day: What would you say if the world was listening?

Have you ever heard of the listserve?

It’s something that’s been amazing me recently. A lot of people got together and are all on the same list. Every day, someone gets the chance to send an email out to the entire list, which is currently over 21,000 people.

Okay, 21,000 people isn’t the whole world, but it’s an impressive number all the same.

So, the thought of the day is, what would you say to 21,000 people?

I haven’t been chosen to send an email yet, but I have had a chance to witness some amazing things. Some people share things that make you laugh, others share things that overwhelm you or inspire you. Sometimes, it’s just a shared recipe.

A part of me is excited to think that I might be randomly chosen one day to write to all those people, and another part of me is terrified.

We shall have to see what the future holds!