We of the millennial generation face more clutter and shiny distractions than any generation before us. We have things like television, radio, ads, email, social media, texting, and more—all at our fingertips, vying for our attention every single day. Things get complicated fast.
We’re in the habit of keeping up with everything—and not because we have to, but because we can. Entertainment and information are everywhere all the time, so why not? We’re used to living with so much mental clutter, we sometimes don’t even recognize how it’s causing us to suffer.
When I look around at people I admire, a certain word comes to mind: powerful. These are great people: influencers, leaders; people worthy of respect. These are the people I aspire to be like, and so I started pondering the question: “What makes someone truly powerful?”
When I say “power”, I’m not talking about authority or force, but strength. Impact. Security. The people I admire most have a sense of personal identity and strength of character that makes them stand out, and today I want to talk about six habits I’ve noticed that all these great influencers have in common.
We live in a world that is constantly pushing for more—for us to do more, give more, or be more. As high achievers, this is a natural tendency, and a great trait. Aspiring to do and achieve your best is not something to be ashamed of, but today I want to talk about one little word that’s sometimes so hard for us to say: No.
In 2016, my focus was on generosity. I wanted to give more freely to more people. Now don’t get me wrong—generosity is a phenomenal trait with many benefits, and one I think we should all learn to cultivate. However, I made one mistake: I never said no.
Has anyone told you? You are a creative person. A thousand ideas live inside you like diamonds waiting to be unearthed, cut, and set. The act of creating; of exploration and curiosity is the essence of what it means to be human.
The thirst for wonder is engrained deeply within our souls from birth: curiosity at the wide world. And Wonder is the father of all great ideas. In spite of all this, however, we do something crazy. In spite of our innate connection to Wonder, we often feel the need for permission to create.
Creative people are sometimes accused of living in a fantasy world, far out of reach of reality. Perhaps you’re one of them. Maybe you’ve been told your imagination is too big for your own good, and you should stop dreaming before you fall too far down the rabbit hole.
As an entrepreneur, blogger, and author, I’ve often been chastised for not choosing a “real career”; for thinking outside the box and making the decision to enter the Perilous Realm. I’ve been looked down on for pouring myself into writing instead of “doing life”. But what if these things—the fanciful and the practical don’t have to be at war with each other?
What do you think about changing the world? Making a difference in the lives of those around you? Living boldly, vibrantly, unbound. You’re here because you want to do great things—and more than that, you’re here because you already have greatness inside you, but something’s holding you back.
As young people, we fall prey to three major lies. These lies seep into our minds, creating shadows of doubt, whispers of insecurity, and sometimes, crippling fear. Perhaps you long for greatness, but you feel trapped, believing you can do nothing. It’s time to change that.
“Reading is an act of resistance in a landscape of distraction.” That’s how author David L. Ulin put it, and I quite agree. In our culture, distractions hold a tyrannical reign, and unless we learn to resist them, they will devour our time.
There’s something special about reading—something you can’t achieve by watching a movie or listening to an audiobook. Reading a magic all its own. It draws your mind to focus; challenges your imagination to spin into gear. If you aren’t making time to read, you’re missing a lot of extraordinary benefits.