The giver and the giver

I had a friend whose mother packed her lunch every day for school when she was in first grade. It was later discovered that the child had been giving away half of her food each afternoon to another first grader whose parents couldn’t afford packed lunches.

Instead of berating the child for sharing her only sustenance, her mother began sending her to school with two lunches—one for her, and one for her classmate.

This is the essence of how reciprocity works: as the child shared what she had, she eventually received even more of it to give. In other words, reciprocity is between the giver and the giver, not the giver and the receiver.

Light

dear sugar

Cheryl Strayed Dear Sugar

Sunday morning.
The sun peeps through clouds.
I am dreaming of another time, another place, another life.
I look around and imagine life behind another’s closed doors.

I think of Dear Sugar, of Cheryl Strayed.
What a powerhouse.
A heart as big as houses.
As dense, mysterious and spacious as that corner one over there, with the high-reaching trees that guard it.

I think of the vulnerability of humans.
How we seek help from strangers, without filter, without fear.
Parental issues, a miscarriage, an affair, coming out, etc.
Here we are asking each other to hold our hand, to be there as we walk through a dark patch.
Cheryl, Dear sugar, is a real Street Level Miracle.
Radically empathetic.

Take a listen or read the book some time.

embrace the struggle

happy birthday george clooney

George Clooney was so broke during his struggling days as an actor that he stayed in his friend’s closet in Los Angeles.

The singer Jewel briefly lived out of her car as she played smaller gigs.

Jon Hamm, of Mad Men, once worked as a soft-core porn movie set designer.

Tina Fey worked the front desk at a suburban Chicago YMCA during the day while doing standup in small coffee shops at night.

Movie mogul Tyler Perry lived on the streets of Atlanta and was perpetually broke when writing his first plays.

The most creative people often have a backstory riddled with struggle, hardship, and uncertainty. The irony is when they finally “make it big,” that’s all anyone wants to hear about—What was it like to struggle? How did you find the courage to keep going?

I believe we’ve got struggling all wrong. Struggling doesn’t mean we’re misaligned with our passion, or that we haven’t discovered the right life hack. Rather, struggling is a legitimate part of our refining and maturation process.

We could even argue that struggling helps us evolve more than success. And that, at the very least, it can be a test to see just how badly we want what we claim is in our heart.

One day, a long time from now, the stories of your “success” are going to be sourced from whatever struggles you’re currently experiencing. You will use those stories to show how far you came. And in the process, you will help and inspire a lot of people to keep going. This is why it’s important to view your entire journey—the successes and the hardships—as perfect.

Happy birthday, George.

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Light Watkins

let the plates fall

We have trained ourselves to be so afraid of possibly doing something the “wrong way.” We actually think it’s death to ourselves if something doesn’t go the way our mind hopes or expects it should go.

The real problem is not that we can’t get our circumstances to go the right way… it’s that we think there IS a right way, or that there is anything we can actually lose.

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Kyle Cease

who are we seeking to become?

We get what we invest in. The time we spend comes back, with interest.

If you practice five minutes of new, difficult banjo music every day, you’ll become a better banjo player. If you spend a little bit more time each day whining or feeling ashamed, that behavior will become part of you. The words you type, the people you hang with, the media you consume…

The difference between who you are now and who you were five years ago is largely due to how you’ve spent your time along the way.

The habits we groove become who we are, one minute at a time. A small thing, repeated, is not a small thing.

[And the same thing is true for brands, organizations and movements.]

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Seth Godin

egg, or full pink moon

april full moon

What is April’s Full Moon?

This name came from the herb moss pink, or wild ground phlox, which is one of the earliest widespread flowers of the spring. Other names for this month’s celestial body include the Full Sprouting Grass Moon, the Egg Moon, and among coastal tribes the Full Fish Moon, because this was the time that the shad swam upstream to spawn.

Here are my Egg Moon offerings:

I let go of getting it all done.

I let go gripping the path.

I let go wrinkled shirts that need to be ironed.

I cultivate trust.

I cultivate honoring ebb and flow.

I cultivate creative magnets.

Your turn.
Liza Fernandez