Kindness Speaks Loudly

“Your actions speak so loudly, I can not hear what you are saying.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Ditto with kindness.

Kindness expands and, like light from the sun, warms everyone it greets.

Nothing says I love you like a kind act or genuinely kind words.

Do something kind for someone you love today.

Do something kind for someone you don’t know too.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing — Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1527

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Originality is a Process

Creative work doesn’t become great automatically. It takes intentionality and persistence energy to make something really good.

Most of the time we are just iterating, and it doesn’t feel like we are creating something meaningful. Piece by piece. 500 words. A few dozen brush strokes. A day’s worth of code.

However, iteration has another form—refinement.

Refinement takes high-quality focus (and usually a lot of time to get right. Not always, but usually.)

Derivative is on the lower end of the spectrum, with iteration in the middle and refinement on high end.

Iteration is typically an addition—adding more work to something. And refinement is usually a subtraction—finding the essence of an idea.

Sometimes we have to move through derivative days to get too refined days.

The Derivatives days are my least favorite, naturally, but sometimes these low moments show us what’s real and what matters.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing — Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1527

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The Impact of an Idea

Ideas are a type of currency. Or maybe I should say that money tends to be a byproduct of great ideas.(Not that every idea is about making money.)

The more impactful the idea, the more people gravitate to it.

Ideas are change-makers. Even a small idea that personally changes your life for the better is a powerful thing.

Ideas are also force-multipliers. Meaning, ideas inspire other ideas. Your ideas potentially inspire my ideas (and others.)

One idea that changes your life has the potential to influencemany lives.

Of course, the big difference between money and ideas is you can save and invest your money, and money compounds, but you can’t necessarily save your ideas.

We can sit on them, but not forever. We can give them, use them or lose them.

The longer we carry an idea, the harder it is for us to do it.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing — Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1526

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Your Art Needs Space

“Art is never finished, only abandoned.” Leonardo da Vinci

A deadline is one way to give a project finality and urgency. That goes for not just work and school but also our personal projects.

If we don’t have our ideas goals and plans to reach those goals, we’ll likely never finish them.

The universe expands. Work expands.

We also fill out our spaces by the size and type of environment we live in.

Physical and mental spaces.

Consider physical spaces.

If you are used to traveling around the world with just a suitcase and a backpack, you naturally limit what you carry and get rid of everything else. An extra pound is nothing after 30 minutes, but a burden after a couple of days.

Most of the time we sidestep this when we travel because we have a destination, a hotel, an Airbnb, a friend’s place, somewhere to place and keep our belongings.

Imagine it, there you are with your two suitcases, backpack, Fanny pack, and a paper bag your uneaten sandwich, touring a city, lugging your baggage around (literally) focused on protecting your possessions versus enjoying where you are.

What would you do if the stuff you took with you had to be on your person the entire time?

Our environment, the city, and the culture we live in have a dramatic effect on our lives.

But it’s not just the big spaces we live in that pull us in different directions. The small spaces change us too.

Physical space, size, and shape have a strong determination of what we put in it and therefore can have a dramatic effect on our lives.

If you have a giant empty house, you’re going to naturally want to fill it with things. If you have a tiny apartment if the smallest case of disorganization makes your place look like it was hit by a tornado.

This is something I find wildly soothing and gives me peace of mind. I think it’s because it’s a small sign that we’re not always naturally crazy.

What we are talking about here is boundaries.

We are constantly being pushed and pulled, poked, and proved to do things and to be convinced to do things by everything around us. This is also a space we haven’t given ourselves boundaries in.

It’s also something we can use and hone to our advantage.

I built a giant bookshelf so that I would have the desire to fill it up with books. Books to learn and improve. Books to challenge and explore. Books to be better and teach me how to be wise.

Want to be really good at something? Create the space for that something to exist and thrive.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing — Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1525

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Push Your Limits

Limitations should be respected.

To know our limits, we must push your limits. This pushes us beyond what we think is possible.

But to push your limits, there’s always the risk of going too far over the edge.

Whether that’s physical (unintentionally) injuring ourselves or mentally stretching ourselves so thin we no longer enjoy what we are doing.

For me, I have a hard time knowing when I’ve gone over the edge until it’s too late.

Injury, burnout, pain… unnecessary problems that could be avoided. But then again maybe not.

It’s hard to know what’s your limit until you go over the edge.

Which is a lesson most of us need to learn ourselves… the hard way. Be honest with yourself—would you really have stopped if someone told you otherwise?

Perhaps if someone explained it well, in a nonjudgmental way.

Some limits are meant to be broken and trained to be improved. Some, however, need to be respected.

Sleep, exercise, diet, purpose, time. all needed to be respected with mindfulness and care, otherwise you end up in situations you don’t want to be in (or where actually trying to avoid).

Otherwise, we are causing more harm than good… Eventually.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing — Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1524

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Standing Out

Is it possible for someone to read every book that’s been written?

Or watch every movie? Every YouTube video? Listen to every podcast?

According to a very quick and lazy Google search, there are 130 million books (and counting). And 97 million songs out there.

There are so many creative voices, all seeking connections to be heard and seen—including you and me.

As creators, we aren’t just competing for others’ interests with just all the amazing artists and creatives today — we are competing with everyone in the past who managed to make something great and that has stood the test of time.

How does someone compete with that?

By doing it for the right reasons.

First. You’ve got to create for the sheer love of the craft.

Second Compete against yourself.

It’s never you versus them. Everyone can create, but compare your flaws to someone else and you’ve already lost.

And Third: Stay bold. Keep pursuing your craft. Go past failure and fear. Build something valuable.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing — Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1523

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How to Fail Enthusiastically

A lot of times, the only thing standing in the way of someone who succeeds versus someone who fails is the willingness to try.

I’m sure, like me, you’ve heard that a thousand times.

And yet we still give in to our fears. We overprepare or overthink ourselves out of doing it.

Or we give up after we try the tiniest amount and do poorly, so we quit.

But the only thing we are quitting is opportunity when we stop or not try.

Even if we go after something and fail, we can still take our hard lessons learned and apply them to the next idea we have.

Failure shouldn’t decrease our enthusiasm, only change it’s direction.

Not seeing our ideas through is much worse than failing and looking bad.

“Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.” Winston Churchill

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing — Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1522

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Collective Creativity

Creativity doesn’t exist in silos. It’s informed by opinion, competition, culture, history, influence, and thousands of other things around us.

Our ideas are our own, but they were influenced by all the invisible strings that hum the key of humanity.

I’ve been reading a lot of Hafiz and Rumi, so naturally, my writing is more (unintentional) poetic right now.

When you are out of ideas, you need to seek out good stories. Stories from books, music, other works of art, and personal experiences.

Not to copy verbatim what you see, but to let other creative ideas spark your own.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing — Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1522

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Habits Set The Tone of Your Day

Every morning I get up and go through a routine. It’s a routine I’ve crafted and honed over many days (years even).

It’s certainly not perfect and always a work in progress, but it sets a tone for the rest of the day.

I make my bed. I get some sunlight. I do some yoga. Mediation. Shower. Etc.

The details don’t necessarily matter.

What matters is how we feel during and afterward. During, we might feel challenged. Or for something small like brushing our teeth, we might not feel much at all beyond the physical sensation. But afterward, we should feel good, lifted, and ready to go on with our day.

If you get up and you’re stressed getting ready and rushing off to work, then you’ll most likely still be in that mod all day. Or at least more agitated than you normally are.

This goes for not just mornings but all times of our day.

A solid bedtime routine sets the tone of your morning.

Daily habits, and habits in general, add up to a *story. Whether that story is something you *want is another thing entirely.

Actions direct habits, habits direct our lives.

Where are your habits leading you?

What does the sum of your habits say about you and what you represent?

Having a solid direction of where we want to go, can refine our daily habits and clarify our direction.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing — Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1521

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What are you Obsessed with?

The best way to master any skill is to obsess over it. When every detail matters to you, no obstacle, setback, competition, or problem will stop you.

An obsession is:

  • Loving the craft for the sake of the craft, with no need of external reward. (This may time to get feel this way.)
  • Staying up until 3 AM to keep working on it just a little more.
  • Losing track of time.
  • Being able to describe in detail the ends and outs of your work with enthusiasm.
  • Desire to soak up every detail you can.
  • Talking about it constantly (to the likely annoyance of everyone around you).

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing — Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1520

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