Bamboo power

Apr 01, 2022

This week I have been thinking a lot about ambition.  You know, the thing that "powers our dreams" ( or so they say).  Is tons of ambition always a good thing?  Is the answer to successful business life just lots and lots of ambition to accomplish the goals and desires you have?  As with pretty much everything in life, even a good thing can be overused.  Somewhere I read this tricky quote: "Balance in all things, especially the pursuit of balance."  For me, this means that if get too serious and crazy about chasing the all too-allusive "balance" in our lives between work, family, hobbies, and such, we can actually create more imbalance!  Tricky right?  I have struggled with this principle in my life A LOT.  I love to go all-in on things and really get intense about things.   Growing up, my dad worked all the time.  I have this really intense desire to not repeat that pattern with my family and kids.  Sometimes I get so worked up about it that I find myself burning out in my pursuits of perfect balance.  The results of that burnout are feelings of exhaustion, overwhelm, and some despair.  The battle is still worth fighting.  (Heck, the easy thing to do is just stop trying for balance and just work all the time.). What I am suggesting is to use a more 'lose grip' approach to creating balance.  After all, life is way too complex to try and control everything.  We need to have the ability to be resilient and bend a bit with life and how we go about achieving our goals.  Yes, bend a bit.  'Bending' is not a form of weakness, it's a form of strength. 

"The bamboo that bends is stronger than the oak that resists"- Chinese Proverb 

In your life, what can you loosen up about?  Think about what is causing you to get worked up, angry, or anxious? We all have things on our to-do list today that trigger unpleasant feelings or create an intensity that ripples stress throughout our lives.  Stop trying to control it all and realize that you can just 'not care' a little more.  Bend a little more.  Stop being so rigid about the way you feel about that 'thing' that is triggering stress in your life.  If we are too serious about our goals, it actually can be negative.  Being too rigid can cause us to be more fragile and breakable.  In the business realm, I believe that is burnout.  I believe that stepping back and working on our mindset and overall mental fitness can allow us to effectively handle the many stressors that our business lives will always be full of.  Working to strengthen ourselves is a more effective way to thrive than trying to control all the stressors themselves. 

Finding that inner peace, that inner calm is crucial.  I have come to learn that successful, driven people struggle with this the most and it can be a VERY lonely place.  I encourage you to find someone to talk to ( like really open up and honestly discuss your struggles with).  If you don't have someone already, I would be honored to be that sounding board for you. 

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