I was sitting with a friend listening to him prattle on about his overly hostile relationship with his wife. My mind wandered all over the place. I struggled to even care about anything being said, so listening was an even greater challenge. I have heard this same story from him over and over again.
All of the sudden I was struck by the idea that I was clueless to what his intention and what my intention was at that very moment. I ask him, “What is your intention in telling me all of this?” He looked at me puzzled. “I don’t really know,” he replied.
So I began rapidly spitting questions at him:
- Is your intention to vent?
- Is your intention to seek my opinion?
- Is your intention to seek commiseration?
- Is your intention to gain sympathy?
- Is your intention to find solutions?
- Do you have any intention of doing something about your marriage?
I could see the strain of thought as he processed my inquisition.
My mind had been wandering and quite frankly a was annoyed because, I had no idea what my intention was in listening to him. I didn’t know what to focus on.
I needed to know his intentions in order to understand what my intention should be. He finally shared that what he really wanted to do was vent but maybe he should change his intention. This was the epiphany.
In order to obtain Excellence, you have to get intentional about EVERYTHING!
I started to ask myself in everything I did, “What is my intention here?”
- When I sat down in front of the TV, I asked, “What is my intention?”
- When I sat at my desk preparing for the following day, I asked, “What is my intention?”
- When I walked into the room where my kids were, I asked, “What is my intention?”
All of the sudden I’m getting far more intentional with everything I’m doing. I’m also moving more quickly toward Excellence than ever before. Go be intentional! I would love to hear your thoughts.
So picture you have been sent back in time for a specific mission. A wonderful time early in the century. Your mission is to board an iconic cruise ship and enjoy every luxury. As you board this ship with all the pomp and circumstance, you see the ship’s name emblazoned on a life preserver, RMS Titanic.
This describes the story of my search for Excellence in love. The first woman I ever loved told me she had never loved someone more than me. I responded with all my heart, those coveted words, “I love you.” She left that very day, and I never spoke to her again.
The second woman I told those words cornered me in a moment of weakness. She said those words and after over a year of dating, I felt I had to say it back. It would take me on a long twenty year journey of struggles.
The third woman I told those words, cringed like she had just witnessed a fatal accident. The results of this endeavor is still pending.
What do you do when you’re madly in love with a woman who probably doesn’t love you back? What do you do when you’re head over heals in love with a woman who probably loves another man? How do you keep pursing the woman you love when she can’t even tell you she cares for you? How do you pursue Excellence in love when love seems to escape you at every turn?
I think Excellence in love is a better topic for future date. I would appreciate your thoughts.
I have been focusing on Excellence for two months. It is exhilarating, but I’ve had many setbacks. Life also gets in the way of Excellence. Focusing on the process of Excellence takes cutting out all the noise to get to the core of its existence. The steps are simple, but the accomplishment is difficult.
Excellence starts with a good plan. It doesn’t have to be great, but it needs to be well thought out and easily understood.
You need discipline to stick to the plan and discipline to execute the plan. You need something that acts as a constant reminder to the plan. You need a symbol that helps you overcome the constant battle of discipline.
Then you execute the plan. This is not easy and without constant discipline then the plan is tossed out frequently. When your lack of discipline infiltrates your focus, you need the grit to get back to the plan as quickly as possible.
Flexibility to Revise the Plan
Once you are in the battle of the plan, you must stay flexible enough to change when the plan is not working. Too much rigidity prevents you from overcoming the lost battles of discipline.
These thoughts may seem simple, but I will be exploring these throughout the rest of this year. I would love your thoughts.
“The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” Mark Twain
The Preface to next year’s saga will be posted TOMORROW!