What ties it all together?

October 18, 2018 by Joshua
in Habits

People comment that I do things in many areas. A reader asked what ties them together. Since I get the question a lot, I thought I’d answer for easy access.Fountain Pen

He asked

You mention that you write about leadership, education, learning leadership, fitness, personal growth, the environment, and a few related topics.

What is the overarching theme that brings all of these topics together?

I responded.

I’m glad you asked because it made me think.

My first thought of what tied them together was that I have experience in them, which isn’t that meaningful to others.

I don’t think I’m flattering myself to say that I have challenged myself to live by values in those areas that nearly everyone shares, but that the overwhelming majority choose comfort and convenience over, and that I believe that I can make a difference helping people act on those values.

Expanding in this blog on what I wrote him: I didn’t plan my range of activities. As I’ve matured I’ve become more sensitive to what I care about and found acting on those things more rewarding, which motivates me to do them more.

I think my values are common: a clean environment, reciprocity, and so on. The difference people see is my actions, not my values or my level of consciousness. Everyone is aware that flying pollutes. The behavior is the difference. Anyone can do what I do. Not getting in a plane or picking up trash every day. The difference is doing them.

Let me unpack three terms to clarify.

Maturation comes partly through time, but more from taking responsibility, choosing accountability, challenging myself, and other forms of acting, which I distinguish from thinking, analyzing, and talking.

By becoming more sensitive, I mean like an engineer describing a measuring device. My threshold for sensing my emotions lowers with use, meaning I can sense things inside me I couldn’t before. Also with acting on what I care about—that is, allowing myself to be vulnerable—and learning that I don’t die. On the contrary, I learn and grow.

Rewarding means I feel I achieved my goal and want to repeat my challenge.

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