Too much. Too little. The internet has both. We are drowning in an explosion of information and data creation that is (almost) outpacing our ability to store it, manage it, and our ability to sift through it to find the few pieces that are important to us individually.
Walking on the streets at night
dimly light by lamp post lights.
Ten till midnight, by my count
with not another soul in sight.
Green leaves upon the summer trees
gently waving summer breeze.
Tis a vibrant park outside the home,
a hundred vets, yet he's all alone.
Oh surely friends will wave and smile
though blind, they are, to the fear/denial.
Tis safer that it's kept this way,
for the bench is where he came to stay.
Every day at half passed one,
the healing warmth of Florida's sun.
All is well till his face droops down
to see the leaves his eyes have found.
Multiple Exposures: I was naive to think I was going to be able to embody The Four Agreements with mental focus alone. I simply am not disciplined enough! So after I realized I wasn't really making much progress on the first agreement, I decided to make it like a daily vitamin; taking a dose right before breakfast. You've probably guessed the punchline—it worked. By reading it first thing every single day, it really allowed me to set the stage a lot better. But more importantly were the memories that this stirred up in reviewing my previous day. Yes I'm now to the point where I can re-read the entire chapter for agreement 1 (being impeccable with one's word) in less than 10 minutes. And I even know where all the punch lines are, so there is no intellectual surprise. No, now the magic is not in the words but in my performance. And the text gives me tangible examples to compare myself to; not in a judgmental way, but more as a gentle reminder, learning from the wisdom of those who went down this path before me.
It's very easy for us to get caught up in life's "Emergencies" to the point that we forget to take care of the important things. After all, the world is full of an endless array of distractions, all pulling for our ever diminishing time and attention. But if our attention gets lost among piles of todo lists and obligations, we can quickly find ourselves frantically moving, and yet getting no where. I find myself really liking Seth Godin's definition of busy-ness, where we mistakenly substitute action for progress. One can answer emails and phones all day long and yet not make any substantial move forward on the true goal at hand. We are lost in the trenches of the battle and unaware of what is happening beyond what we can see in this very moment.
If you have trouble setting goals and bring your ideas into reality, then you'll definitely want to check out The Magic of Believing by Claude Bristol. Matt Furey, a motivational speaker and a man of whom I hold a lot of respect, credited several of the techniques discussed in the book as having helped him on his way to winning a national title in wrestling. For me personally, learning the index card technique alone was worth the $6.99 I paid for the book.
If there was an alcoholic's anonymous equivalent for obsessively success driven people, I would probably require a lifetime membership. To be fair to myself, I wasn't always that way. Growing up I was far more focused on varsity sports,video games, and going fishing with my brother at the local farms and along the side of the Mohawk River. It was a time where I allowed myself the time and space to play.