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Risk has a person-specific definition

This past week I had a conversation that resulted in new clarity about the fact that each of us has our own person-specific definition of risk.

I spent several days doing the exact same activities as my traveling companion.  However as we spoke about these experiences and activities, I noted that I had stretched my comfort zone and done some things I thought were “risky”; while my companion hadn’t had felt either stretched or that anything had been particularly “risky”.

How we each define risk for ourselves and others is based on many different factors, things like our personalities, our previous experiences, our imaginations and abilities to visualize something that has not happened, and likely many more things.

The learning from this, was the reminder that we need to careful not to assume that everyone feels the same way about something as we do.  We need to be kind, as we interact with people who may not be as comfortable with a situation as we are.  We need to show grace and understanding, just as at times we need to be shown grace and understanding.

I was blessed this week to be traveling with someone who was understanding and supportive as I stretched myself to do some things I felt were a bit “risky” (or the at least had the potential to end in less than ideal outcomes).   I was glad we had the chance to talk about our personal definitions of what we think of as “risky” situations.

We don’t all need to be the same, or think the same, or feel the same.  We just need to be kind to each other as we navigate this world together.

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Insight vs Action

When some comes to you with a problem or a situation, do you offer insight or do you encourage action?

Earlier today I read the following statement: “Inciting action is often better than contributing insight.”

I love looking for insight.  I love finding insight.  I love sharing insight.

And while insight is good and can be helpful.  It is often through finding our own insight that we learn and grow (and ultimately change).  Someone else’s insight rarely has the same effect.  The act of having to figure it our ourselves is generally more helpful and useful than hearing someone else’s good advice.

The next time someone shares their current challenge or problem, take a moment to consider how you could inspire them to take action and experience or find their own insight.  At least, that’s what I’m going to try and do, I’ll leave it to you to take whatever action you want from this insight.

 

snowed in…

There is something to be said being “snowed in”.   In this day and age, weather is really the only reason that many of us find ourselves at home for a full 24-48 hours.  For many of us in Southwestern Ontario this past weekend, and into today, the nasty weather kept us home for a few days.  And whatever you might think about the actual weather, the weather gave us a gift.

It gave us the gift of time.

Activities and events were cancelled, and suddenly we found ourselves with unexpected time.  Time to do things we love, but that don’t always happen.  Time to slow down, and not free quite so rushed through the list of things we wanted/needed to do.  Time to be with the people we share are homes with.

I’m not sure what each of you did this weekend with your “snowed in” time, but I hope you enjoyed this wonderful unexpected gift.

what is and what might be

Disclaimer – the vast majority of the content of this blog post is not mine own, but rather a slightly modify version of a Seth Godin blog post. 

What is (i.e., our current life) and What might be (our future life)…. they have much less in common than you might initially think.

Our current reality can be very different from our future.  Creating a different, a better future means not focusing on the decisions, grievances and false starts or failures of the past.  It means being open, or continuing to be open, to something different, to be willing to keep making different choices.

“The future won’t be perfect. We won’t be perfect. But we can be kind. We can listen. We can give opportunity the benefit of the doubt.”

“The future won’t always work. We won’t always succeed. But we can be alert and seek out the possible instead of the predicted.”

“The future won’t always be fair. But we can try. We can care. We can choose to connect.”

“It can be better if we let it.”

What is and what might be – they don’t have to look the same as each other.

life truth….

“The truth is, sometimes life sucks, and the healthiest thing you can do is admit it.” – Mark Manson

Lately I’ve been reading and talking a lot about the way social media can skew our sense of what life is all about and about the negative impacts of comparing ourselves to others.  Lately, there have also been things happening in my life and the lives of people close to me that aren’t so great.

Through all this reading and talking and experiencing and experiencing with others, I’ve been comforted by the reminder that “sometimes life sucks”.  It’s not good or healthy or wise to think that this isn’t true.  Accepting this truth does not minimize the emotions we feel or the horrible impacts on ourselves and others when life sucks.  But maybe it does help us stop beating ourselves up when our lives don’t appear to be a good as the images that others are posting on social media.  And maybe it helps us to be reminded that everyone has problems and moments when life sucks.  And maybe it helps us to be okay with not trying to pretend that in this moment or for this period, life doesn’t suck.

Sometimes life sucks.  Sometimes it doesn’t.  Both situations are true.  Both situations are okay.  This is one of life’s truths.

show up…

Show Up.

Keep Coming Back.

Be Present.

 

Do these things on the good days and laugh and celebrate with the people around you.

Do these things on the bad days and support (whatever that might look like) the people around you.

 

A few simple words.  Some pretty straightforward instructions. And yet sometimes very challenging things to do.  And then do it again tomorrow.

deeper and wider

For the last while, I’ve been thinking (and let’s be honest, talking) a lot about friendship and connection.  In so many ways, I’m being challenged by how I can both deepen and widen my connections with people.

Deep…

I’d like to feel more connection to the people who are important to me.  Those people who have been my friends (and family) for years, but perhaps somewhere along the way we stopped (or never started) really talking about what matters in life, stopping sharing our struggles and joys, stopped going beyond the surface stuff.  I’d like to be more intentional about how often I spend time with these people and what that time together looks like.

Wide...

I’d like to feel more connection to the people who I know, but who I don’t really know.  The people I see regularly, but often don’t take the time to talk to beyond a “hi” or talking about the weather.  These people may not end up on the list of people who are important to me, but they are people with interesting stories and different perspectives to share.  I’d like to be more intentional about the conversation I have with people and get to know them a bit better.

 

I generally consider myself an introvert.  I generally consider myself someone who likes control and predictability.  Both these ideas and desires scare me.  Acting on them mean I need to stretch myself beyond what is comfortable.  Doing something different includes risk – there are so many changes that could result from exploring these changes in my life.

I don’t know what this is going to look like.  I’m not even sure I’ll actually take action.  I wonder if anyone else thinks about these things.