There Is Nothing Outside Of Yourself That Can Ever Enable You To Get Better

There is nothing outside of yourself that can ever enable you to get better
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“There is nothing outside of yourself that can ever enable you to get better, stronger, richer, quicker, or smarter. Everything is within. Everything exists. Seek nothing outside of yourself.”Miyamoto Musashi

Miyamoto Musashi (1584-1645) was a Japanese warrior and considered to be the greatest swordsman of his era – famed for being undefeated in 61 duels. He was a rōnin – which is a name given to a samurai who had become masterless – due to the death of his Master. However the title of rōnin was a dishonorable one, as a samurai was expected to commit seppuku upon the loss of his Master. The rōnin thus became a kind of wandering warrior, often either becoming a mercenary or criminal.

Curiously, in addition to his life as a wandering fighter, Musashi was also highly regarded as a philosopher. His text “The Book Of Five Rings” is still widely read and he is considered by many to be one of the essential authors on the topics of strategy, stoicism and self-reliance. Our chosen quote illustrates well these qualities, encouraging the person seeking self-improvement to look within. In the modern era this kind of thinking is rather popular and comes under the self-help category of “shifting your mindset”.

In the words of Yogi Bhajan, “You are very powerful, provided you know how powerful you are.” A person who looks within herself and takes on the task of knowing herself fully is a force to be reckoned with. We all want to be that person yet we’re too afraid to be courageous. Without courage to try the impossible, our self-confidence stagnates.

From the Latin word “fidere” which means “to trust,” self-confidence is the antithesis of self-doubt. A person with self-doubt thinks that she is too small for her big dreams, and she ends up being exactly what she thinks she is-a failure. As she goes through life dodging opportunities and challenges, she will never know what she’s really capable of.

We may think that we’re looking within ourselves but what we’re really concerned of are the opinions of people. The fear of failure stems from our need to look “respectable,” a trait we develop as we transition from childhood. Because we fear how people see us, how the people we admire would react if we fail, we hide from our true selves. Instead of looking within and knowing ourselves better, we cower in fear at how people look at us.

You Have The Power To Change Your Life

You have the power to change your life
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“You have the power to change your life at any given moment. Never forget that.”

We all dream of getting rid of bad habits and forming new ones. However, the idea of changing our lives for the better is only exciting at first. As days go by, the excitement fades as reality hits us in the head. We imagine ourselves living a different life the very next day but the truth is, real positive change takes time to materialize. The point being that it’s possible to change as long as we persevere with the process.

Social scientist and behaviour researcher B.J. Fogg, PhD started the project Tiny Habits to demonstrate through first-hand experience the importance of taking one step each day towards habit creation. Tiny Habits is an ongoing online program and over 3,000 “Habiteers” have tried the program since its kicked off last December 2011. The main task is pretty simple: start with a small act (one push-up, flossing just one tooth), find yourself a crisp anchor, and always acknowledge your progress through celebration.

Dr. Fogg reiterated that his goal is to help people learn how habits work. In our fast-paced era, we’ve formed the assumption that everything has to happen fast. Unfortunately, things that matter most in life, such as habits, relationships, and success, take more than a blink. Changing our life forever starts in small acts that we gradually embed in our subconscious.

Real change occurs over time. To quote Olympic silver medallist Jim Ryun: “Motivation is what keeps you started. Habit is what keeps you going.”

Work for a Cause, Not for Applause

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“Work for a cause, not for applause. Live to express, not to impress. Don’t strive to make your presence noted, just make your absence felt.”

It’s a human need to feel loved, valued, and appreciated. Our self-esteem soars whenever we gain recognition, driving us to work harder and be even more recognized. Yet lurking beneath this need is the tendency to be a recognition addict, a person who does things for the hunger of being noticed. Although it may be beneficial in the workplace, it could easily turn us into insincere, attention-hungry individuals who are willing to cheat or lie just to feel special.

In his compelling article “We Must Stop Being Recognition Addicts in the Workplace,” Glenn Llopis writes about the danger of seeking recognition instead of respect in the workplace. “The great difference between the recognized man and the respected man is the difference of the head and heart. The recognized man appeals to the head where things are easily forgotten. The respected man captivates the heart. And the heart does not forget.”

Recognition is not synonymous to respect.
While an employer can gain recognition for his performance, it doesn’t necessarily suggest that people like working with him. In a workplace, there’ll be people who insist to do things their way in order to be recognized solely for a job well done. We may succeed on our own but it won’t be as rewarding as sharing it with other people. And when we do fail, we fail without a comrade to have beer with.