Dying A Little Each Day

As the world is still mourning the passing of Steve Jobs, I began to read about the quotes and wise words this truly remarkable man spoke towards the end of his life. At the end of the day, what truly mattered to this great American visionary wasn’t the billions he’d made, the innovations he’d brought to the marketplace nor the great company he’d built to this day. What truly mattered to him is found in these two quotes:

“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important thing I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything – all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.” ~ Steve Jobs

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Take Responsibility For Your Life

Last weekend, I searched through my list of old DVDs to see which movie to pop into the player while I was doing something else, and out came Rocky Balboa (2006). The first time I watched it, I didn’t get pass the first half of the film due to interruptions. I had been procrastinating to watch the second half of the movie for a quite a long while!

I was actually multi-tasking when watching Rocky Balboa this time, but a scene captured me. It was the scene where Rocky and his junior was talking and then his son said he’s ashamed of what the dad was doing by coming out of retirement to box. Rocky Junior was ashamed of what people might say while his dad was chasing after his dream of making an unlikely comeback. What Rocky said to his son shook me on the inside.

never give up

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The Paradoxical Commandments

I came across The Paradoxical Commandments by Dr. Kent M. Keith a few years ago and was struck and greatly encouraged by it. The Paradoxical Commandments were written by Kent M. Keith in 1968 as part of a booklet for student leaders.

Also known as The Anyway Challenge – Do It Anyway, it had been adopted by many well-known leaders like Mother Teresa in the past. I felt inspired because many times I felt like I’ve been going against the flow and I just needed some assurance that I’m doing the right thing, and no matter what I feel sometimes, I should just do what I’ve been doing anyway.

The Paradoxical Commandments have touched the hearts of millions of people around the world. I hope that the Paradoxical Commandments will touch your heart too.

 

The Paradoxical Commandments
by Dr. Kent M. Keith

People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.

If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.
Do good anyway.

If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies.
Succeed anyway.

The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.

Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway.

The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds.
Think big anyway.

People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs.
Fight for a few underdogs anyway.

What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
Build anyway.

People really need help but may attack you if you do help them.
Help people anyway.

Give the world the best you have and you’ll get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you have anyway.

The Power of Identity (Part 1)

In my previous post “Who You Choose To Be?”, I wrote that Po, the main hero in Kung Fu Panda 2, needed a shift at his self-identity before his total transformation of “awesomeness” was complete.

It’s the same with us. Our true potential can only be realized and real lasting change takes place when we do not just make a change at the cognitive, emotional or behavioral level, but all the way at the self-identity level. It’s like a paradigm shift.

What’s a paradigm shift? There are quite a number of explanations, but the one I like best is like this: Imagine you’re given a map to travel a long distance from point A to B. You can make changes and improvements along your journey in many ways: You can walk faster, you can run, you can take fewer breaks and rests in between, or you can hire a vehicle. You can work harder and smarter, but none of these is as big a change as a paradigm shift. A paradigm shift is like exchanging an old (wrong) map with a new (accurate) one.

A paradigm shift changes everything. A change at the level of self-identity is like that.

 

paradigm shift

The shift happens when self-identity changes

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Choosing The Path of Personal Power (Part 4) – “Who You Choose To be?”

I watched Kung Fu Panda 2 earlier this week and thoroughly enjoyed it. In the midst fun-filled, fast-paced action animation, there are heart-warming lessons to inspire both children and adults alike too.

At the start of Kung Fu Panda 2, Po was living his dream of fighting alongside the famous Furious Five, legendary kung fu masters. As the The Dragon Warrior, Po was protecting the Valley of Peace daily against the bad guys. But Po’s new life of awesomeness was threatened by the emergence of a new formidable villain, who planned to use a secret, unstoppable weapon to conquer China and destroy kung fu forever. Po must look to his past and uncover the secrets of his mysterious origins; only then would he be able to unlock the strength he needs to succeed. Ultimately, Po had to deal with his self-identity, and the person who he’d choose to be.

Awesome Po

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