Now is the time to lose sight of the shore and discover what lies ahead.
You cannot discover new oceans unless you have the courage to lose sight of the shore. –Andre Gide
Summer is a time of energy and excitement. It is also a time of vacation and relaxation, the perfect balance to let yourself loose—to test the waters, to push your comfort zone, to lose yourself in something that scares you and to find a piece of yourself that you never knew existed.
Below are a few ways, from some of my favorite words of wisdom about self-discovery, to navigate the unknown seas this summer and come out a new you.
Lose yourself to find yourself
“To know yourself, you have to lose yourself.” –George Mumford (“The Mindful Athlete”)
George Mumford is a mindfulness and performance coach to elite athletes. He is also the author of the book “The Mindful Athlete: Secrets to Pure Performance.” He had the privilege of working with eight NBA Championship teams under Phil Jackson, coaching players like Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, Shaq, Scottie Pippen and many others. He says that to know yourself, you have to lose yourself. You have to lose the idea you have about who you are and go on a journey of self-discovery. Every piece of ourselves that we hold onto limits us from discovering another part. We have to be willing to let go of what we know to discover what we can become.
Move forward toward change
“I’m a different creature now then I was five minutes ago.” –Ray Lewis
Ray Lewis is one of the greatest defensive football players of all time. He once gave a motivational talk to a college team where he said: “I am a different creature now than I was five minutes ago.” This is true for all of us. Whether you choose to move forward or not, there is no such thing as staying still. Each and every experience shapes who you are. Therefore, sitting and doing nothing is an experience that will shape you just as much as getting out there and taking action. How will you change in the next five minutes?
“Be average and pay attention.” – Patricia Ryan Madsen (“Improv Wisdom”)
In her book “Improv Wisdom,” Patricia Ryan Madsen tells readers to succeed by being average and paying attention. Often, we let perfection get in the way of taking action. Instead of making our way forward, we are paralyzed by inaction until we can achieve perfection. Instead, we should shoot to be average. Take action even when you are average and pay attention. When you pay attention, you can learn from your actions. You can learn from your mistakes and missteps so you can move faster in the future. This summer, don’t pursue perfection, relentlessly pursue getting better.
The summer is full of energy. It’s fun. It’s exciting. Don’t waste that energy holding on to what is. Learn to navigate the energy and use it to take you where you want to go. If you follow the guidance above, you will discover parts of yourself you never knew were there. And remember…
“You must be jumping off the cliff and developing your wings on the way down.” –Kurt Vonnegut Jr.
Photo credit: ziche77, Thinkstock