Your Most Valuable Asset
There are 1,440 minutes in a day and how you use those determines your day, your week, your month, and inevitably, your life. I’ve often said to people, “write down your daily schedule, and that will tell me everything I need to know.”
I’ve said it before, time is your most valuable asset. Time can’t be taken back, refunded, or told to “wait a second”. Time keep going, whether you’re on board or not.
Now I’m not saying you have to work 24/7, because that will lead to burnout; but I am saying that how you use it is most key to self development and peace. Not just for you, but others as well.
It’s funny how on mornings I have to be out of the house, I become a multi juggler of all things. Whether it’s putting make-up on while blow drying someone’s hair, or eating toast while finding my clothes, I manage to make it out of that house on time. (or at least not too late) Why is that? Well, for starters, I can’t inspire people to be on time, if I’m not. Secondly, because my time is limited and I know it. Even though I’m managing lunch money, where keys are, and getting myself ready; my brain is still intently focused on what time it is. As soon as I placed a limit on my most valuable asset, accomplishing things became my sole mission.
Today I’m going to ask you to give away your most valuable asset, in spite of whatever craziness you have going on in your life. I’m also going to ask you to make it into a habit, or it won’t actually work.
Two excuses I hear most often are, “I don’t have the time” or “I don’t have the money”, and in this article I’m going to call your bluff, at least on one these.
You have one thousand, four hundred and forty minutes a day and because we know limitations work, I’m going to ask that you give away two minutes out of your one thousand, four hundred and forty.
Now that we’ve addressed the “I don’t have time” excuse, let’s get to work.
Spend 2 Minutes Validating Another Person Every Day
I want you to give your most valuable asset (time), and your most precious gift(your heart) to another person for 2 minutes everyday. For many of you, that 2 minutes needs to be spent in the mirror with yourself. Maybe you need to look yourself in the eyes and tell yourself you are worthy, that your strong, that you are capable.
Beyond that, how often do we really spend holding our children’s hands, looking into their beautiful eyes and telling them why they are amazing? When did you do that last?
There is no better way to spend your time that in the service of others, and the best way to serve is to love. It has to start at home, with you, and it has to start now.
How much time do we have left? Have you considered that? Hasn’t this year gone by faster than last, and don’t you still have a million things to do? Add up all the nagging you do with your partner in a day, and how minutes a day is that? Think about all the times you were too busy to talk, and then the day slipped away from you, leaving you wishing you could go back.
Time keeps going. Don’t waste it on busy-ness, or, as someone way smarter than me said, “Don’t throw your pearls to pigs.” Don’t give your best to that which will trample it, while your children eat crumbs from under your table.
We don’t even have 1,440 minutes, we only think we do. All that we have is now. The people in your life need to hear you say you love them, they need to know that you care. They need your most valuable asset and your most precious gift in order to grow, and only you can plant those seeds in others.
We each have the power to change the world through the seeds that we plant in others.
It’s not some “ripple effect”, it’s a harvest.
I’m challenging you to spend 2 minutes everyday validating someone in your life. Give those around you your most valuable asset and your most precious gift: your time and your love.
This teacher is a great example of what just 2 minutes a day can do to change the world.
Click to watch below.
Bend & Bloom
We had a bad wind storm this summer, which was really a terrible hurricane in other parts of the state, and it left it’s mark on our backyard with broken limbs and foliage everywhere.
After the storm had subsided, I walked the back property along the fence line, surveying any potential damage. The sun was shining and the clouds above were moving at a rapid pace; still remnants from the passing hurricane. The grass swooshed under my sneakers as I walked, with only occasional sticks or puddles to slow me down. To the right of my house we have a metal bench swing about a foot from the fence, I was pleased to see it had been unharmed.
Yet, only 5 feet next to it, a large 12-15 foot bushy tree had fallen completely over. As I stood there dazed (and confused) I thought it looked like a giant foot had stepped on the tree, flattening it to the ground. The fence and surrounding plants were all untouched. Although it had been blown over, none of the limbs were broken, but instead simply bent down leaving the roots of the tree completely exposed, and the top of the tree laying on the ground in front of it.
I started to walk around it and marveled at how in the world only one tree could be affected when everything else stood as it always had. Just another thing to clean up, I thought, and continued on with the inspection.
Apart from random sticks and limbs in the yard and the fallen tree (which we later realized had been struck by lightening), all was fine.
We decided that we would try to lift the tree back up and maybe tie it to the fence, (if the tree or the fence would actually hold). Armed with rope and gloves, my husband and I march outside to fix the bent tree. I held the rope secure while he wrapped it around the tree's middle. I actually felt like a caveman with our pulley system, while simultaneously wishing I had paid more attention in 3rd grade physical science class.
Marc wraps his hands around the tree branches and I pull the rope, but the tree will not budge. It stays firmly on the ground as if it was always there, as if it had never been upright to begin with. We give it a few more tries, failing each time, then deciding it wasn’t worth pulling our backs out for.
We moved on, and piled up the rest of the debris, then went inside.
We spoke about having to have the tree cut down, it clearly would never stand upright again after the storm, but neither of us ever called a tree service that weekend.
A week later we found ourselves in the yard again staring at this sad bent tree. The full branches with it’s leaves reach my waist and I run my hands through them, amazed that they are all still green. It felt like a sin to chop this tree down, after all, if it had survived this great impact, who were we to cut it down? So we both decided to just leave it be where it was, fallen and bent, laying in the yard. When you’ve been in my line of work as long as I have, compassion extends far beyond creatures with heartbeats, and I couldn’t kill what so clearly wanted to live.
Many weeks passed and, as expected, the debris piles turned brown and wilted. But, the fallen tree thrived in it’s awkward state. I giggle thinking it could almost pass as a large shrub if the trunk wasn’t so long, and I’m glad I didn’t kill it.
As autumn arrived, it brought with it windier, cooler weather, brown leaves on the grass and best of all, the ability to be outside without sweating or being stung by something.
One Monday morning, while on a break from the office, I decided to take a quick walk outside in the backyard. The best thing about our yard is the trees, to be precise: the pine trees; tall, skinny things that make that comforting woosh sound when the wind blows through them. It was cool that Monday, for Florida standards, and I savored every moment as I walked listening to the trees and wind sing together.
Turning a corner, I saw our pile of old foliage; all brown and probably rotting by the looks of it. The leaves were crumply and most of the sticks and matter had matted together from rain over the past 2-3 months. What a storm, I thought. Then I glanced over and noticed our bent tree.
Still laid on the ground, it’s leaves still a bright green, it had bloomed.
Bright yellow blooms covered the limbs of our tree, making it feel like a bright spring day. Bees buzzed to and from the flowers, gathering pollen. I marveled at life’s beauty in the bent trees.
It’s only natural to cut off that which offends you, that which scares you, that which is broken or bent. But in so doing, we kill it. Like our debris piles, you wither away your chances, your opportunity for growth or life; it just dies.
And isn’t it also true that we survive storms? Don’t we all get knocked down, beaten to the floor, and bent? So should we then also cut ourselves down and allow ourselves to wither because a storm affected us? What if there isn’t a fence to tether yourself to? What if you’re so damaged you can never stand up again? Should you be thrown into the debris pile?
We must learn to be like the tree, which bends and blooms with the storms. We must learn to bend, not break.
Write down 3 things in your life that are “Bent and Blooming”, and add in some nurturing encouraging notes to yourself. Then, hide it from yourself in a book, in your underwear drawer, the garage (ok, maybe not the garage!) or anywhere else you won’t see it for a while.
By doing so, you are validating that imperfection is perfect. You are helping yourself to blossom now, while planting seeds for your future self to read.
When you feel broken, remember you’re just bent, and you can still bloom.
Touch Your Inspiration
Many of us aren’t living our dreams, we are living our fears. Our actions are more attuned with our fears and self imposed limitations than our ability to dream and create.
But it doesn’t have to be that way. There are no real limitations in life, only “rules”, but no one said we have to follow them.
Even though this article is entitled “touch your inspirations," none of us can do that without first accepting fear and not allowing it to control our lives. In short, get out of your own way.
Have you ever heard someone on television that really spoke to your heart? Ever been in a room and seen someone whom you knew you’d like to meet? Maybe you’ve read a book and the author changed your life; perhaps it’s someone you personally know that inspires you. Everyone of us has been next to a person that inspired them, whether from afar, or in the same room. They incorporate everything we are striving to be, or wish to be. They’ve been where you are and made it out. They succeeded.
Becoming who we are purposed to be, (not “supposed” to be”) is a long journey, and none of us, no matter how stubborn, can do it on our own. ”But it’s scary out there” I hear some of you saying, and that’s all the more reason you need to reach up and out to those who’ve walked it before you.
”I don’t want to be that weird guy who walks up to a complete stranger.”
“There’s no point in me emailing them, no one will ever read it.”
“I don’t even know what I’d say anyway.”
And that’s the problem You are responding by fear, not by your dreams. Let’s translate that. “I’m afraid they will not accept me.” “I’m scared that I will be disappointed so I would rather not try.” Lastly, “I’m worried that I’m not ‘up to par". That is fear talking. In order to touch inspiration, we must be willing to step outside of the “rules” and decide to make choices based on our dreams.
Find that person that inspires you, and tell them so. See a mom of 4 in the grocery store juggling a list, two toddlers and a teenager- tell her she inspires you. If someone has changed your life by putting themselves out in the arena -contact them and tell them so. Sure, you might not know what to say; maybe no one ever reads the email, maybe you’ll sound like a complete nutter…maybe. Or maybe, when you break the the conventional rules and touch your inspiration, it will touch you right back.
This exercise is more for you, than it is your inspiration, because it puts you in a state of gratitude. When you flood your brain with questions like, “Who would be my inspiration?” you are asking your brain to search for that which you are grateful for, those people who helped make what you are today and drive you to be better tomorrow. You become grateful in that very moment, wherever you are. And when you act upon those thoughts of “Who do I want to become?” you are living your dreams, not living your fears.
Find someone who inspires you. Touching the person who has made the impossible possible helps you realize that your ideas are also possible and inspires you to keeping going.
Linda Lavender writes articles to help folks with Auto Immune Disease, Depression, Anxiety and other health related illnesses.