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Sticking with What and Whom You Like: The Secret to Success

“When you find something you like, stick with it.” This is what an inspirational older man told me the other day, when I asked him how he was able to work for the same two companies for 50 years and stay married for 35 years. Seems simple enough, right? You like your job? Stick with it. You like your spouse? Stick with him/her. But, to me, that seemed outlandish at the time. Today, in many industries, people hop from job to job every five years, and even spouses and partners. I used to joke that when you meet someone new, you create a “lease” with him that will expire after five years. If you want to renew it, you can. But, otherwise, you’re good. Move on.

I think I’ve developed this sort of transient mentality over the years, having changed careers and cities many times. I’m also divorced. I did have long term relationships (8 years, 7 years, 5 years), but none that have lasted 35 years. Well, I mean, I would have been dating someone at age 10 if that were the case. Interesting to note: my boyfriend now is someone I met when I was 10. Hm… is this a sign?

Anyhow, I got to thinking that this man’s statement about sticking with things you like is simple, yet very complex. For some of us, it’s not so easy. Tenacity and perseverance are not necessarily attributes consistent with today’s fast-paced culture. Our attention spans are limited, we use technology to elicit immediate results, and we strive for more, more, more. Sticking with something seems lackluster, or not ambitious–complacent.

BUT, there is merit to it, I think, and something to aspire to. “Wherever you go, there you are.” That’s another saying. No matter where you move, what new job you start, what relationship you begin, you are still YOU (well, unless you undergo dramatic changes with therapy). I have learned this. Thing is, I’m essentially the same person I was when I was, like, 28. Oh, how I long to be 28 physically as well! But, yeah, I’m the same old, same old; and, now, just old.

I am going to take note from this man. From now on, I am STICKING WITH IT, IF I LIKE IT! YES! No need to think of bigger and better. Just BE.

Sounds easy enough, but can we do it? I hope to.

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When Enough is Enough

When is enough actually enough? I was walking down Main Street yesterday and saw one of those personalized, wooden, oblong signs that hangs from nautical rope that read: Whatever You Accomplished Today Is Enough.

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It struck me, because I had just been thinking that I had not done nearly enough to consider myself productive, and the hours in the day had slipped away. Evening was encroaching, and I had not written one word for my book, and I had yet to buy any gifts for my son’s birthday, which is tomorrow. I also hadn’t gone for a run, and my refrigerator was bare. My health insurance issues weren’t resolved, and I forgot to buy a new sprinkler.

So what the hell had I been doing? 

Well, I got up with my kids, and I played a round of Barbies with one and Adopt Me on Roblox with another. I also walked the dogs, cleaned the house, and made lunch. That was all before 1:00 p.m.

So was that enough? I mean, I guess it was?

I also often wonder AM I ENOUGH?

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Well, there’s the argument that I am sometimes too much, but that’s a whole different topic. When I consider if I am enough, I am more asking myself the question if I could be more intelligent, prettier, in better shape, wealthier, more successful, more accomplished, etc. Blah, blah, the list goes on…

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It seems very counterproductive to wonder these things, and I think, yes, I am enough most of the time. But sometimes those doubts creep back in, and that’s when it’s good to have another one of those wooden, oblong signs around to read: You are Enough.

It’s funny how no matter how much you have, the human condition makes us want more. It’s oddly greedy and unkind. It’s important to be kind to yourself, as well as to others. One of the best pieces advice I got once was to stop beating myself up. And sometimes that means not getting a whole lot done. Give yourself a break. Whatever you accomplished today was Enough.