Another adventure. This one is very recent. It also happens to be very life-changing. At least it has so far. I want to fill you in.
I wanted to talk about motivation in this post today, and in thinking about content I kept coming back to Bruce Lee. See, Mr. Lee is a personal hero of mine. I love his acting, like many others, but I also love him as a motivator and hold him in high regard for his work ethic. I always wanted to be that way, like Bruce, who was never satisfied with his effort on or off camera, but it just wasn't hard wired in me. This is one of the causes that has kept me floundering in college, bored with jobs, and lazy in my personal life.
In February of this year, I suffered two herniated discs in my lower back. It caused problems at work, at home, and financially. While dealing with this I had a lot of free time to reflect on where I was in life. My sister who is 5 years younger, was on the verge of graduating from college, while I had still four more semesters of classes before I could do so. This prospect wasn't getting any better, as a year before I had dropped out (again) for (another) shitty retail job. This was just another entry on my list of recent failures. I had been kicked out of a band, I took myself off of a webcomic because I couldn't get any fucking thing completed, and I had been passed over for a promotion at work.
I wasn't proud of anything I was doing, and thus worked in a manner fitting the feeling... i.e. shittily.
Like it says under the title of my blog up there, I didn't have my shit together. I still don't, but it's getting WAY better. I'll tell you why.
In late April this year, I had just had enough of being mediocre. I was not satisfied, and I knew that I was capable of being way better than I was allowing myself to be. When I awoke that morning I looked right at my picture of Bruce Lee that I have hanging on the wall adjacent my door. I looked for a long time, and made up my mind. I gathered up every last ounce of guts I could find in my belly, and went into work. I didn't go past the front registers. I called the Manager to the front, gave him my keys and a sincere apology, and I quit.
I'm pretty sure I will remember that moment when I walked out until the day I die. It was the first time I was standing up to myself... for myself.
I went home and changed, and walked over to the college. I never left the town after I dropped out, so it was a short distance to campus. I petitioned for re-enrollment, made some calls and appointments, and a week later I had a letter in my hand stating that I was a student once more.
I'd be lying if I said that I wasn't afraid in some small way of falling back into my old lazy habits, but I am sure as hell more confident that I won't. That I can do this. I want to do this. I'm here not for anyone else but me and my future. Like Bruce, I finally have courage, and am taking pride in just being alive.
|Like a Big Boss.|
I'm not waiting for classes to start to assume control. I've implemented an exercise routine that I do first thing every morning. I've changed my diet. I go to bed at a reasonable hour, and get up early. I clean my house daily. I'm reading and writing again. I spend less time on the computer and with video games. I'm selling things I don't need.
Bruce has a great quote, "Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is specifically your own."
That particular quote has struck me in this journey. I'm interpreting it the way that best fits my life, and so far the results have been liberating. I'm more focused on creating than owning. If I don't need something, it goes to someone who does. Before I purchase anything, I ask myself "Will it be useful?" If the answer is no, I pass it up.
I made an agreement with my good friend Chris to hold each other accountable for at least one productive thing every day via text, facebook, twitter or whatever. It usually ends up that we discuss our individual workouts, but it has also helped keep me on track.
Another interesting side effect is that I no longer fear failure. I'm ready to learn if I do. Fear doesn't drive me anymore. It's... awesome.
Have you always been a doer of things? Do you want to be? Maybe your motivation is out there. Keep looking, and whatever you do... give it everything you've got.
I'm sure this will be an ongoing change, and it will be interesting to see how I adapt when school starts, but I am sure excited by the prospect.
I'm finally feeling a little like Bruce.
Until next time.
Bruce Lee official site
The Bruce Lee Foundation