Take Care of What’s Yours

HEALTH Starts and Ends with You

Your health is your responsibility.

As much as I️ would love to just be able to give my health problems to someone else to take care of for me, that’s not how I­t­ works. (Jane, you’re in charge of exercising my muscles. Steve, you’re in charge of meditating, meanwhile, I’m going to lay on this couch and watch YouTube. Alright, ready…go!)

I grew up not knowing that food not only affects how you look but also how you feel.

Most of my “education” early on was just marketing. “Milk builds strong bones”. Sure sure. But what about kale and spinach? And that quality counts.

Our circumstances might not have been ideal, but that doesn’t change the fact that we can do something about it now. We can do better today.

Or am I️ just going to give up? Lay in bed for the rest of my life, never write a book, release a music album, travel the world? Hell No.

This is my responsibility.

The only person who can care 150% about your wellbeing is yourself.

Others can care, but you should care even more. Some doctors care, but there’s only so much they can do with a 20-minute consultation. Plus if a doctor cares more about your health than you do, then something needs to be changed. You are the one who has the power in your hands to change your life trajectory.

I’m not a doctor (nor do I️ play one on the Internet), I’m not telling you to do something stupid. I’m telling you to do the opposite — be smart about your health. Your health directly affects everything you do, including your creativity and success. If you want to be a high performer in what you do, you’ve got to go beyond the basics and learn to take control of what ails you.

You must be the one to take charge, gain knowledge, and master health and wellness.

Somewhere out there, there is someone who has been through what we’re going through. It’s up to us to learn from them and smartly experiment with what works for ourselves.

You’re health — and ultimately your life — is in your hands.

A greater understanding of health is a certain roadmap to a better all-around YOU.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing— Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1849

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Something is Better Than Nothing

Starting is the most important thing we can do when we feel stuck by fear or uncertainty. Motion. Forward momentum.

Otherwise, all we are is talk. And we all know talk is cheap. Action is authentic.

Starting creates momentum. There’s always going to be uncertainty, fear, and failure. That shouldn’t stop us from living.

So what if we fail.

So what if we look dumb.

At least we did something, unlike 98% of the world.

There will be a thousand important things we need (should / could) do and a thousand more after that, but without that first step, none of those things matter.

The first step doesn’t have to *right* either. So what if we fail immediately. At least we are falling towards something versus being sucked into the quicksand from standing still.

We need to be bold (or naive) enough to try.

Obviously, I’d rather do it ‘right’ (whatever that means) and do everything I can to ensure my ideas will succeed, but success isn’t assured (nor inevitable, just because I want it). A lot of people have ideas.

What’s the probability of success? What can I do to make it more likely to succeed?

Start now. Start before you are ready. Start anyway.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing— Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1848

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Passion Comes Second

Finding your passion(s) isn’t about knowing, it’s about trying.

Curiosity comes first. Passion comes second.

It’s giving a bunch of things a go and seeing what brings you joy and challenges you.

I think the big problem people struggle with is the put too much pressure on themselves to find something they love while also allowing them to make a living. Or finding something they love that they are good at.

It’s like betting the farm in a game of poker when you don’t even know how to play.

How can you be passionate about something you haven’t tried or know anything about?

It’s better to always be trying new things for the sheer fun of it, with little or no expectations of money or reward.

Approaching something with no expectations usually makes the experience more enjoyable. Think about the last time you went to the movie theaters (remember those?). Maybe you had low expectations for the movie because an online review said it wasn’t great, and they were right, but after watching it you ended up having a great time. What gives? Was the movie bad or good? The movie was bad, but what changed was your expectations. On the other hand, if you had gone in with massive expectations and it ended up being bad, you’d be disappointed.

Piling the fate of the universe on finding your passion will just overwhelm you from ever finding or choosing it. Better to approach things with wonder and playfulness than come from a place of pressure and worry.

Seeing Progress

I recently found my old sketchbooks from middle school and high school. Back then, I remember thinking my art was pretty good. I would get compliments on them too (and not just from my mom.)

Looking at them now, I see how raw my skills were, how little I knew. Rough sketches of keyboards, characters from my favorite shows, still life sketches, all drawn with a heavy hand. Not to belittle my younger inexperienced self. I don’t see his (my) work as terrible or cringe-worthy. It’s more nostalgic than anything.

A big part of creative work, be it art, film, music, or writing… is progressing to new levels of understanding and seeing.

At each stage, we use the knowledge and experience we’ve got to work with. It’s only until we reach a new level of understanding that we glimpse the flaws in our previous work. No—not flaws. It’s more like we go from standard definition to high definition, and then from HD to 4K, and so on.

SD only looks blurry and muddy in retrospect. At the time, it was sharp to our inexperienced eyes.

When you look at your previous work and see the flaws and what you would do differently, then you are in a good place. Because you’re able to observe what you couldn’t before shows how much progress you’ve made.

Every new level of understanding is a new level of seeing.

Accepting The Path

“The only way out is through.”

I’ve heard that phrase here and there (—heck I’ve probably said it a couple of times too) but I don’t think I understood what it meant until recently.

I assumed it meant tough it out. Keep pushing. Grit your teeth and make it happen. Don’t give up. Don’t back down. Anything that resembled the country musician Rodney Atkins’s lyrics “If you are going through hell keep going.”

But I don’t think that’s the true meaning, or at least not the whole story.

Realizing that “the only way out is through” is actually about acceptance.

Acceptance feels like a word that means giving up, but the opposite is true. It’s standing up for yourself by giving in to your problems and circumstances and letting go of the outcome. Again, which to some people might sound like a failure, but really its success wrapped in confidence.

When you accept where you are, you can find progress forward. The process isn’t the goal, but a byproduct of accepting whatever life throws at you.

You get sick, and that becomes part of your story.

You lose your job, and that becomes a stepping stone on the life you were meant to live.

It leads you to not only sympathize with others like you, but allows you to impact others with your personal story. It leads you down a path you wouldn’t have taken.

When you accept the path you must take, suddenly opportunities start springing up everywhere you look.

– Bad + Good

It’s good to pause every so often and look at the whole playing field of your good habits and bad habits you currently have. Our bad habits are often hampering or subtracting our good habits, leaving us feeling like they aren’t helping us, or that we aren’t making any progress.

For example, having a good habit of doing great work at your job, but having a bad habit of mis-communicating or even not communicating what you are doing and why. Nothing kills a project like forgetting to stay in touch with the client and updating them on your progress.

Again—But This Time with Style!

We have learned how to do a lot of things. We must try to relearn why.

Flora Lewis

One important aspect of learning is relearning. As you go about improving in a skill, it’s good to go back and refresh yourself on the fundamentals.

When you started, you were a different person than you are now. But as you improve, you gain clarity and strength in your skills.

Things might have seemed new, challenging, and perhaps even a little hard to fully grasp. You’ve changed. You’ve improved, however so slightly that may be. Relearning allows you to go deeper. Relearning the fundamentals allows you to solidify your foundational knowledge and go beyond your current level of skill.

By re-approaching the basics—or what you (think you) know—you can compare your more developed mind and skill to where you started with a different perspective.

Perspective is everything, and will improve your skills even more. Of course you don’t want to let your relearning distract you from taking action.

The goal is to remind yourself

• where you started and how much you’ve learned.

• see what gaps you’ve been overlooking.

• why you decided to learn it in the first place.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing— Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1843

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True Impact

Sweeping grand gestures are great, but it’s the little things that add up to create real change.

What’s more special: one person giving a million dollars to charity, or a million people giving twenty-five dollars to charity? The solo millionaire couldn’t possibly keep up with the mass amount of goodwill.

Sometimes I feel really small. I’m just one random person out there trying to figure out life. I struggle with work and money and balancing my time with what matters. I think a lot of people think this way. They think, ‘how could I possibly make a difference? I can barely do X … or I can’t even do Y, how could I possibly help?’

I’m not so sure having X or doing Y matters. What matters is you’re going through things and life, and other people are experiencing things like you too. Sharing your experiences and truth could have a massive impact on someone’s life. One little act is nothing much to look at. Nice, cute, but not very substantial. But one act every day for years? Multiple little gestures every single day over a lifetime? That is true impact.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing— Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1842

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The things we are most passionate about tend to be the things we spend the least time doing.

What kind of bs is that?

To end up doing everything except what you want to do, and to live a life without doing what makes you feel alive.

But How? you ask. How do we pursue our hearts while still making ends meat (or ‘ends veggies’ for all you vegans out there)?

By doing both.

By providing for yourself and yours the essentials of living, while providing your soul and sanity the essentials for being ALIVE.

Learn, work, master, connect, market, share, contribute, pour until you flip the tables and no longer need both in order to live.

Will it be hard? Absolutely.

Possible? Of course.

Worth it? Every ounce.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing— Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1841

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Out of Love

To be good at what you do, you’ve gotta do it for the love of it.

Money, fame, power, connections… these are all just side effects — possibly even distractions — to your creative work.

Not that these things are bad, they aren’t — if you know how to use them.

I say this knowing first hand how difficult it is to start something when you don’t money. Money is a creative lubricate, but it won’t make you a better painter or writer or even marketer.

You are not stuck if you don’t have things like money or connections. You just need to think of clever ways around them.

How would you do it with little to know money?

Who can I get to know that I admire who has a lot of connections?

Everything you think you need to start, you don’t need. It’ll help you jump the line, but if you don’t have the skills to back it up it won’t matter.

Work hard. Hone your skills every day.

Create because you can’t not do it.

The side effects will come.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing— Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1840

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