Why are you making your life so difficult? Don’t you know that life is better when the essentials are easy?
What is essential?
You don’t know, do you? Because right now, you’re so caught up in the swirl of what’s right in front of you that you haven’t even made time to stand back and look at your life today. And you’re not alone. Because most men who, like you, are smart and creative, are caught up in the chaos of having way too much imagination — and way too little discipline. In fact, there is a laziness that comes with creativity. So you end up chasing shiny objects, with little regard for whether they’re essential or not. And on a good day, it’s a joyous ride. But on a bad day — and you’ve had too many of those lately — it feels bad and overwhelming. And the stress is is growing.
Look at your life.
But the good news is, it’s not too late. Moreover, just because you’ve been caught up in the whirlpool lately (which is currently sucking you down into the abyss) doesn’t mean you have to keep swimming in that same old pool. So take a second right now to listen to the ancient words of Socrates, who was himself, like you, a man who had way too much imagination. (But who, unlike you, was also blessed with more discipline than you currently have). Because he said this: “The unexamined life is not worth living.”
But what does that mean?
And that sounds pretty lofty, right? “The unexamined life is not worth living.” But what does it mean? First of all, it means is that everything in your life does not have equal value. And it also means that unless you take time to consciously stand back and look at your life, you’ll wake up one day with one hell of a regret hangover. Because your life will have passed you by without your permission. And you life will also have passed you by without your volition (which means the carefully thinking about something and then acting upon what you know to be the right course of action).
So take one small step right now.
Every journey begins with a single step. And this is one small step that isn’t difficult. And, in fact, it will give you a free and easy feeling. It’s just this: close your eyes and ask yourself a simple question. “What is essential in my life today?” Go ahead. Close your eyes and ask yourself that simple question. I’ll still be here when you get back.
What did you come up with?
Chances are that when you first did that, you didn’t come up with much, because your brain is still in a fog. So don’t worry if you don’t have anything yet. There is a certain amount of shame that comes with the freefall that you’ve been living in lately. Partly, because you feel like you should have your shit together better. And if you did come up with something essential, that’s good, too. In either case, remember the experience you just had, and plan to repeat it again soon. This simple exercise is at the heart of what Socrates was talking about when he encouraged his listeners to “examine their life.”
Everything essential must be easy.
And here’s what to do with what you found or with what you will find when you ask yourself that question. Because once you know what is essential, you’re going to want to make it easy to get to again and again. One small example in my own life writing. Because writing is essential to me. Writing helps me think clearly. And I love thinking clearly. And it also gives me a sense of control, which I crave. So imagine how silly it would be if I were to make writing difficult. So what do I do? I make writing — which is essential to me — easy. I have effective writing tools at my fingertips at all times, so I can write easily whenever the urge grabs me.
Want more help?
You have several options for your next step. You could read more about this topic. Or you could contact me and describe what you're going through. And I'll be in touch with suggestions. Or you can book a free session to make a time to get together and talk it over by phone. Either way, I'm here to help you focus, overcome resistance, and get moving again.