Passion Project…”Life” or why live it?

The journey is not work, unless you are on the wrong path. Course correct and leave the work behind.

I am on Medium today and in the midst of a 24-minute read when this quote appears before me…

“Crave the result so intensely that the work is irrelevant.”

Michael Jordan’s performance coach, Tim Grover

…and in that moment I have a visceral response. YES!!! This is exactly what is it all about, everything in life, is summed up right here.

Overreaction on my part, some might say, but so be it because I live in a society that points out the “work” in everything we do. Marriage is work. School is work. Yards are work. Houses are work. Friendships are work.

Flip the script I say! Now reframe:

  • My 26/yr (Happy Anniversary…yesterday) marriage has not been “work” it has been the craving of a partnership so intense that nothing can stand in its path. Easy one to reframe you might say, let’s try again.
  • Losing 140/lbs was as intense as any effort I have ever made yet it was never about the work and always about the reward of the result which spanned far beyond weight loss and forged paths into confidence, worth, and recognizing my value is more important than anyone else’s appraisal of me.
  • Spending 30/years in hospitality has been about passion for an industry that inspires me, challenges me, and keeps me on my toes every single day. There have been many paths forged along the way and a few roads less traveled. Ultimately whenever it felt like “work” I chose a new path that kept me “craving” with an “intensity” that has resulted in a career I could not have imagined 30 years earlier.

I can show examples of this again and again because when you stop focusing on the work you find the passion in why you do what you do. To “crave the result so intensely” is to have passion that drives you beyond what “work” would require.

Apply this quote to anything you are calling “work” in your life and you will be forced to evaluate why you do what you do and who you do it with. Life is short, do what inspires you, get passionate and stay passionate.

Life as I live it – L.

What if you do not have a MESS to be your MESSage? What will drive you?

I have always prided myself in the fact that I came from a less than charmed life and have created the life I always wanted…or so I thought. I have been lingering on this thought, every single point, for some time now debating on whether the life I created came from having less than a charmed life…or if it really matters. Our childhood is typically all that we know as life and only realize different when we are old enough to compare and contrast. The life we believe we want is something we emulate from what we see or perceive, but never having that life before how can we know it is what we want. I have always thought that I worked harder at creating this life because of where I started. My “mess” has been my “message” for years. Working a minimum wage job, standing in a food stamp line, having a child at 18 years old and living on my own in an a tough neighborhood was my “mess” and how I climbed out of that and persevered has been my message. But what if there were no mess…what would have driven me? What drives you?

Does it take a mess to create a drive? Is that really what pushes us? Surely not, otherwise we would see the fall from grace as profoundly as we see the rise from the ashes. Neither are prevalent but both are worthy. I was never going to be stuck in that “mess”. It is as simple as that…I was never meant to be in a “mess”. And the reality is that I have always had the message, it is who I am outspoken, sharing and wanting to lead and inspire others.

The original thought about what drives us without the “mess” came to me when I was thinking about my own children. What would drive them without a “mess” to overcome? My kids depending on what order they were born in (HA!) had a somewhat charmed life. They had both parents living at home, happily married in a world of single parents. They had gifts under the tree at Christmas and always had a birthday party with a house full of friends and family. What would they strive for if they have no mess? What would be their message? Why would they push harder?

As I marinated on this overnight I came to realize that it is about passion. What drives us is passion, internal flame, fire, if you will. What drives me is indeed to have a better life but I am not replacing one for the other because when I look back on those times, now described as my “mess”, there was a lot of beauty in it. My wants have changed over the years and indeed a “want” to not struggle and be independent in every way did drive me to push harder but the reality is that I was born to push and I would have regardless. My passion and love for what I do, who I am and want to be is because I value becoming an expert and student of those things that interest and pushes me to do more and be better. When I look back on why my children push and will continue to it is not about a mess or a message but instead a passion and drive that exists within them despite their past, current or future. We are an “all-in” kind of family. 🙂

My message to you today is that “who cares about where you came from”, it does not determine where you are going. Tony Robbins says that you have to “burn the boats to own the island”. Stop holding on to those things that no longer serve you and do what you love, what fires you up, what inspires you! If you are not doing exactly THAT every single day you are simply doing it wrong. Every one of us can employ this despite where we are in our career, lifetime or situation. Stop right now and remind yourself what you are passionate about and do it MORE! If you are among the living dead with no passion or fire FIND IT today! If you are among the passionate and putting all of your eggs in one basket; find more places to spread that fire and DO MORE.

You were born to bring something to this life…do you know what that is? Have you already done it? I am exploring this every single day despite having conquered many FINISH LINES along the way. I am starting to realize that those FINISH LINES were more relays where I would pass that baton on to someone else for I no longer needed it and was on to a new leg holding on to that new baton until I found the speed and endurance to finish it and find the next baton to grab. This is my life, it is a journey, it is a race at times and a water stop at others…but the fact remains that there is always a fire burning. This flame is mine and not to be extinguished until the very end. My mess will always be my message but it is not the “why” anymore and now I realize it may never have been; I was always meant to have this life…for it is charmed in more ways than can be defined.

Living life as I see it – L.