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StrategyApr 03, 2012

Why Do So Many of Us Settle?

Matt Levy

Why do so many of us settle? Life is too short. A human life in context of “forever” is like a small dot on a piece of string that has filled up a football stadium. I’ve got one shot; I really don’t want to waste it.

Refusing to settle for what our culture tells us is appropriate is hard. Pushing back against steady cultural influence is a daily challenge. I’d like to share with you a little bit about what that might look like. It is a three-part strategy.

 

Sketch art courtesy of Floodgate Creative. Thanks guys!

Number 1. Loving what you do

This is your craft. This is the work that you enjoy pouring energy, time and thought into. You are better at this than most people. And, when you execute well your craft makes a significant positive contribution. It is fun to work on something and have it make a difference/impact. I love marketing. From my perspective marketing is the amplifier of truth. Truth in my business is great work. I love to use the marketing amplifier to help others see the great work that has been accomplished, the great people who did it and how it has ultimately helped others. When others see or hear the amplified sound of great work they want more of it. When they want more of it our firm grows. As our firm grows we build into more leaders and are able to be more generous with our resources. As we build into more leaders and are more generous the world changes. Truth permeates. Lives change.

Number 2. Loving who you do it with

This is pretty straightforward but incredibly important. Loving who you do it with has a double meaning. I love the people I get to work with. I really do love them. Sometimes I even tell them that. I know that may sound a little strange, but it is true and they need to know it. Everyone needs to know they are loved. They are incredibly smart, diligent, hard working and honorable people. Those I interact with have something unique and great to offer. Excellence inspires. The second element of loving my friends at work is the act of caring for them. I greatly enjoy opportunities to help using whatever resources we have to meet a legitimate need. This is fulfilling and I love it. Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t love people perfectly and have to ask for forgiveness often … but I really do love my friends here and they are gracious enough to forgive me when I mess up.

Number 3. Loving who you go home to

Again pretty straightforward, but also has a double meaning. My wife and kids are awesome. Everyone should have someone that is a friend to them like my wife is to me. She loves me in an unfair way, even with all of my issues. I love her too, a lot. Our kids are pre-adolescent and have maintained an innocence that is sweet, charming and whimsical. They inspire me to want to be great so they can have someone to look up to and emulate. On my best days they know the depth of my love and concern for them and do want to emulate me. On my worst days I am asking for forgiveness and experiencing grace. What a great group of people. I love them deeply.

Right now, I feel like I am exactly where I am supposed to be, doing exactly what I am supposed to be doing.  Life is short. Don’t waste it.