Here’s One Of My Top Secrets To Living A Truly Amazing Life
When I was young, I was pretty decent at golf. I lived right across the street from a driving range and got my first set of clubs when I was 13 years old. I got to play golf literally all the time when I wasn’t in school.
But when I turned about 17-years old, I developed something called a slice where the ball really curves to the right, and I couldn’t correct it, so I started getting less involved in golf. Once I got out of school life took over, and I didn’t play for years and years.
I got back into it about 20 years ago, but I haven’t been nearly as good as when I was 13. So no, not everything is like “riding a bike”. I’ve taken lessons, I’ve gotten better, more expensive clubs, but I still end up slicing every time.
Why am I bringing this up? Well, I just came from hitting some golf balls on the range, and I started slicing again. It was not very pretty, and in retrospect, I couldn’t believe how down on myself I was getting about it.
Me! Mr. Personal Development…the guy who knows better than to let something like that matter because, hell, by most measures, I feel great about myself, my business, my relationships, my mission and purpose. Life is good!
But I want to drive a point home here about money and success, something that you already know but I’m going to say anyway: money does not solve all your problems, especially in determining how you feel about yourself, whether you’re rich or poor, an achiever or not. It’s not about the money. It’s not about achievement.
It’s about that thing we can never really get rid of, but we have to keep reminding ourselves about all the time: that little gnawing creature called doubt.
“Why can’t I do this better? I should be able to do this! I should be able to be a good golfer. I play quite a bit. I’m successful at so many things, why not this?”
It’s like you know you shouldn’t attach your self-worth to anything as dumb as that, but we do anyway, yes or yes? Some people make a habit of it, and if you’ve seen any of my stuff before, you know how I feel about the power of habits.
The lesson for me now that I’d like to share with you is that even at this stage in my life, I have to practice not attaching my worthiness or esteem to the outcome of whatever I’m doing. I have to practice keeping doubt at bay, and the way to do that is to not be so attached to any of your outcomes.
I know that sounds counter-intuitive, right? “Harv, how can you not care about the outcomes? How else can you be successful?”
There’s a difference between not caring about outcomes and not being attached to them. Not caring is about ambivalence, laziness, selfishness, or plain ole fear.
Non-attachment, on the other hand, is the highest spiritual state you can attain, the closest we can ever get to inner peace with ourselves. Non-attachment is our best defense against doubt and fear.
Remember, we’re not talking about not caring about being successful with business, money or relationships. We’re talking about doing what we’re gonna do with some thought, practice, education if necessary, skill and attention for anything you want to succeed at, and seeing what happens.
It’s the classic Zen paradox: to truly be successful, you can’t attach how you feel with how successful you are.
Esteem is in being able to look at yourself and know that rich or poor, win or lose, you live with integrity. In knowing that nobody’s perfect, but you are doing what you promised yourself you would do regardless of the results.
It’s in knowing that you can trust yourself, and that other people who are relying on you can trust you, too.
It’s not about doing these things 100% of the time. Esteem is an inner confidence, a peace of mind in gratitude for the good that is in your life right here and now; in faith that doesn’t need guarantees of success; in the self that–as best it can–remains unattached to outcomes so it can enjoy the here and now for what it is, but with an eye on an even more prosperous future.
What attachments in your life drive you crazy and how do you get over them? Share with us! We want to hear from you!