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Monday, May 13, 2013

START punching fear in the Face and escape average @jonacuff



I'm wrestling with a book right now. Andre the Giant and Hulk Hogan, old fashioned smack down wrestling. I heard Jon Acuff  this past week and picked up his new book Start: Punch Fear in the Face, Escape Average and Do Work that Matters. The questions in the back and questions on every page have me a bit uncomfortable but in a way that I need.
How do you focus your time?
How do you work on what matters?
How do you overcome your fears?
This is all in +Jon Acuff 's
book "START" which I highly recommend.

I have a lot of purpose in my life - I'm a teacher, after all. But fears, like the mermaids & kelp around Harry Potter's legs as he dove into the lake to save his friend, those fears can pull me down.

Punch fear in the face.

Fears that have told me to please people so maybe, they'll like me. Fears that grew out of quite a few years of childhood when no one wanted to be my friend. When I became more attractive, people wanted to be my friend. Brains didn't matter, attractiveness was all that did. Now that I'm getting older, I'm finding those fears returning,
"You're not beautiful any more, no one will like you." -or-
"If you can't look like a model, no one is going to want you to speak for them anymore." 
The desire to please people and be liked is a dangerous path to self-hatred because there are some people who will never like you or me. They will not be happy until we self destruct or die and do we really want to go to that length to please them?

Critics Math

Jon makes the point in the book to beware of critics math: 1 criticism + 1,000 compliments = 1 criticism. Most of us, all we see is the criticism and that is unhealthy.

Escape Average.

It is the end of the school year.

Hyperventilation hyperdrive - if you could picture a woman in a space suit trying to dock a space ship with 1,000 screaming children on board while coming out of light speed and hyperventilating at the same time -- that is what the end of the school year is like.

I've let my weight slide right back on up. Sure, I've got an exceptionally hard work load, but I do have a life to live. I'm settling in too many places in my life in the land of average and it is time to pack my bags and go. To do this, I have to deal with my fears of not being liked. Learn to say no, and edit my life to include the most impactful areas... and START on the journey.

I don't want to stay or be average in any area of my life but wallow there far too long. I love the activities at the end of the book that help you work through this.

Do work that matters.

So much matters to teachers. Every single precious baby matters. Every child. Every parent. They are human beings and they are IMPORTANT. I want to teach the children and encourage the parents to parent well and love their kids even when those kids aren't perfect. These are important things.

But for me, the question is -- what is the work that matters that I was made to do? Can I cull out things that don't matter so much or work that isn't adjacent to the land of purpose for me?

Can I actually learn to say no?

Questions & Actions

The most purposeful people don't get there by accident. They question everything. They question their lives and find answers. They take time for introspection. They self-examine.

But the purposeful people I know also act upon these answers. They START.

I highly recommend this book if you're ready to get serious about living your life with purpose. If you're wanting meaning and to get back 'on track' pick it up and START.

I wish I'd had this book when I first started blogging or at the beginning of my career. It would have saved a lot of heartache. Great book for graduates and Jon is awesome to hear in person.

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