You are currently browsing the monthly archive for June 2018.

You can’t be half pregnant.

You can’t half start a business.

A cafe isn’t half open.

Swimming halfway across the English Channel isn’t memorable.

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Like many other teenage boys, my 13-year-old, is absurdly forgetful.

Before we leave for school every morning, there is a checklist to go through.

“Do you have your bag?”  “Yep.”

“Do you have your laptop?”  “Yep.”

“Do you have your blazer?”  “Yep.”

“Do you have your sports uniform?”  “Oh.” Followed by the sound of footsteps to his bedroom.

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“What have I got to be grateful for?” the grouch mumbles under his breath.

He looks and waits for everything to go perfectly so that he has a reason to be happy and then perhaps he will be grateful.

But it doesn’t work that way.

Instead of waiting for something to make you happy so that you can be grateful, be grateful first.

Even on the worst of days, I can list a handful of things that make me smile and that allow me to look to the heavens with thanks.

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I don’t know what you were born to do.

I don’t know what you are passionate about.

I don’t know what comes easily for you.

I don’t know what you seem destined for greatness in.

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When you fall down… get up and go again.

When you make a mistake… learn from it and go again.

When an idea doesn’t quite work… keep tweaking it and go again.

When you feel like giving up… keep persisting and go again.

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Professor Clay Christensen once said, “A good life is not one that is free from struggle, but one in which people have the tools to overcome what life throws at them.”

He said this in the context of parents who mistakenly protect their kids from life’s inevitable difficulties, but it has obvious wider permutations.

The reality is that there are struggles in life, so we must aim to overcome them, not avoid them.

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It’s winter now here in Melbourne and that means the fireplace starts to get a serious workout.

Most days at this time of year, I put fresh firewood in and start another fire to keep our house nice and warm.

I wish that yesterday’s wood would get the job done, but it’s gone now and has to be replaced.

It’s similar to our motivation levels.

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Of course, if you spend more time on that project, it could be better.

You can go through the draft one more time and find more to correct.

You can go through your routine a few more times before it’s ready for the public.

You can delay your performance for another week until you get it just right.

But are you really trying to make it perfect, or are you procrastinating?

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We outsource a range of tasks in our household.

We have a cleaner who comes in once a fortnight to clean up the mess that our three kids and two dogs make.

We outsource the education of our kids by paying for a school to give them a quality education that is aligned with our values.

We outsource coaches to teach our kids how to improve at football, basketball, netball, gymnastics, piano, athletics and cross-country running.

But we can’t outsource the important task of parenting.

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The great German poet, Johann Goethe once said,

“I am more and more convinced that whenever one has to vent an opinion on the actions or on the writings of others, unless this be done from a certain one-sided enthusiasm, or from a loving interest in the person and the work, the result is hardly worth gathering up…

All else is vanity.”

We live in a cynical world.

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