Posts tagged priorities

In Memory of Personal Development Legend Scott Dinsmore

Life is crazy, and it’s short, but it can be shorter, and we just don’t know what’s ahead.

Today I found out that a personal development blogger, TEDx Talk speaker, and founder of Live Your Legend, Scott Dinsmore, was killed by some falling rocks while climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania on September 12, 2015. His wife Chelsea was with him, and she survived and made it back to the US.

Almost two years ago, I interviewed 10 personal development bloggers to ask them the “tough questions”, and Scott was one of them. One of the questions I asked was, “What personality traits best aid people in improving their lives?” This was Scott’s answer:

“Compassion, understanding, empathy and social awareness. These all come together to allow someone to genuinely connect, help and understand the people around them. Environment is everything. We have to surround ourselves with the people who inspire possibility. And in turn inspire that possibility in others. That’s when things start to get interesting. Do whatever you can to feel what another person’s feeling and to see a window into their world – then do all you can to leverage your talents, strengths and passions to help them in a meaningful way. The rest will take care of itself.” – Scott Dinsmore

Here is the blog post that the Live Your Legend community posted just after Scott’s death, in memory of him.

They have continued to make a few tributes as well, here and here.

Ironically, Scott’s last blog post on Live Your Legend (posted on Sept 4, 2015) was titled I’m Going Off the Grid: Therapy for an Addicted & Over-Connected World and it was about disconnecting (unplugging), spending more time with loved ones, and taking adventures.

He says, “But before I go off the grid, I’d like to explain why it’s so important (for all of us)”.

And I completely agree, which is why I try to spend most of my time in my present reality, here and now. This is why I don’t make a lot of phone calls (besides my phone anxiety of course), and why I don’t spend a lot of time emailing, texting, or facebooking, or on the computer at all. Even though my career takes place online, I’ve figured out a way to streamline my business so that I spend as little time on “work” as possible, so I have more time to live in the now and actually… well… live. Not live other people’s lives, or live the life other people think I should live, but live the life God made for me to live.

I even wrote a blog post about it, and it’s the reason why I stopped doing a lot of what I was doing just over a year ago. I even stopped working on and growing UpGusto because I wasn’t “walking my talk” the way I was currently living, how I was spending my time, and my priorities were all out of wack. I’m still not completely on track, but I’m much more aware of it now and try my best, and I’m getting better and better as time goes on.

And this blog post gives you my grown perspective just 5 months after initially simplifying my life.

Since then, my perspective has been growing even more. Some things I have realized is that acceptance is the answer to all my problems, and that taking personal responsibility for my part in everything that has happened and that I have allowed in my life is actually very empowering. Rather than being the victim or martyr that I have for some reason always enjoyed, I am at least partially or wholly responsible, and with that comes the realization that I actually have choices and the ability to make the changes in my life that are necessary for me to have serenity. Being the victim/martyr and holding onto resentments to excuse any of my behavior does not help me, it actually hinders me from living a full life, free of that weight.

Something I wrote a while back:

“We always feel that so many things are important, but only a few things actually are. I read a post on Myrko Thum’s blog where he explains that many times we put urgent things (things we think are important right now) above important things (things which are actually intrinsically important to us for life), which slows us down from accomplishing our goals and feeling fulfilled on a daily basis. If we were to try to lessen the urgent matters in our life and concentrate only on what’s important to us, then we would be able to accomplish our goals and feel happier overall.”

So I’d like to ask you, what’s really important to you? And my next question is, does the way you spend your time reflect that?

What’s important to me is my serenity and my relationship with God. Does the way I spend my time reflect that? Maybe not completely, but much much more so than two years ago, and I’m consciously working on aligning my priorities with my actions on a daily basis.

I struggle to live in the present moment, as I’m sure most of you do as well. So I’m working on that, being mindful, aware of my true surroundings, staying in the present, and staying in connection with God. Anxiety has gotten the best of me, and still does from time to time, and anxiety is the opposite of serenity, and the opposite of what God wants for us, so that is why I am putting so much effort into keeping my mind in the right place.

“And finally brothers (and sisters), whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” – Philippians 4:8

Thanks to Scott Dinsmore for his contribution to the world, helping so many people live their legends out! And may his wife and family find peace during this time, remembering the precious times they were able to spend with him.

What’s Really Important to You?

Values_615x305

I ended up taking this Values Test the other day, and it took me about 4 hours to do, which was a little too much time to spend on it, but I just couldn’t narrow down what was most important to me. I always feel that most things are important to me, which can actually be a problem. This is probably why I always feel like I have too many interests, too many things on my to-do list. Things I want to do, and so much I feel I need to do.

By taking this values test, however, I did realize what I really feel is important in life, and I realized that some of the things I thought were important, weren’t really that important to me after all.

There is a list of about 400-500 words (some are very similar) and you’re supposed to select the words (the meaning of the words) that you feel are most important to you. Then you’re supposed to narrow down the ones you originally picked to about 20 max. Well, that is the preferred amount, but I couldn’t narrow it down to less than 38.

The third step is to compare two of your chosen values at a time, and there were about 630 “votes” I had to make, comparing every single word to every single other word, choosing which word of every pair that popped up that was the most important to me compared to the other word. So that was very time consuming. I should have narrowed it down more on the second step!

Realizing that a lot of things aren’t actually that important was one of the main lessons I learned from this. Learning to prioritize appropriately. The other thing I realized is that I don’t have to take everything so seriously. Not everything is life or death. I need to learn to let go in order to live a peaceful life.

I used to think that trying to be perfect, making things perfect, or living a perfect life was very important. But after comparing that to all my other values, that ended up being something that wasn’t that important to me deep down.

I seek balance in life, and one of the ways I can gain balance is to let go of these things I hold so dear. Trying to be perfect, trying to make everything around me perfect. It doesn’t have to be. And that is very freeing.

So here are my 38 things that I thought were important to me, with the number of votes each value received from me. After doing all the voting, it ended up being that only the top half of my list is relatively important to me and the bottom half of my list is not as important to me as I thought.

The main thing I realized was that, for me, if I am content and grateful, I don’t really need anything else in life at all! I should probably say here that contentment may be the most important thing to me, but it doesn’t mean I have mastered it quite yet.

1. Contentment (35 votes)
2. Gratitude (33 votes)
3. Wisdom (32 votes)
4. Trustworthiness (31 votes)
5. Faith (30 votes)
6. Loyalty (29 votes)
7. Peace (29 votes)
8. Comfort (27 votes)
9. Reliability (27 votes)
10. Relaxation (27 votes)
11. Affection (25 votes)
12. Resourcefulness (24 votes)
13. Freedom (22 votes)
14. Independence (22 votes)
15. Stability (20 votes)
16. Practicality (19 votes)
17. Logic (19 votes)
18. Balance (18 votes)
19. Efficiency (17 votes)
20. Simplicity (16 votes)
21. Exploration (15 votes)
22. Variety (14 votes)
23. Wealth (14 votes)
24. Motivation (13 votes)
25. Reasonableness (12 votes)
26. Order (10 votes)
27. Resolve (9 votes)
28. Energy (8 votes)
29. Proactivity (8 votes)
30. Satisfaction (8 votes)
31. Harmony (6 votes)
32. Passion (5 votes)
33. Respect (3 votes)
34. Prudence (1 votes)
35. Speed (1 votes)
36. Perfection (1 votes)

Steve Pavlina outlines how to live out your values Here and Here.

Click here if you want to take the Values Test. It can be very eye-opening. But don’t spend 4 hours on it like I did, lol!

Once you take the test, let me know how you did, what your results were, and what you learned from it. Leave a comment!

Also, stop by my friend Brendan Baker’s blog to see his most recent post on how you can actually easily become a millionaire in your lifetime by making tiny little sacrifices, or tiny quick smart decisions all along the way. It’s really brilliant, so I wanted to share it with you.