Transcript: What I wanted to share with you today is that no matter what’s going on in your life, no matter what challenge you might be facing or decision that you’re trying to come to, try to relax a little bit. Try to trust yourself, because you’re going to be able to figure it out.
Based on my experience, you already know everything it is that you need to know. You just might not yet know that you know it but the light is going to go on when it’s time for the light to go on.
This has happened to me – I don’t how many times – and I’m going give you an example today.
Back in 2007, I wrote a song called “No Schedule Man.” The lyrics just kind of showed up in my consciousness and I wrote them down. I’ve since turned it into a CD and have adopted it as kind of a personal brand when I know that’s probably a marketing mistake (I’d probably be better off to go with something really clear cut like, “The Positive Thought Guy Who Also Writes Songs”).
What I didn’t know at the time was that I was three years away from some really big challenges
Anyway, I prefer No Schedule Man, and part of the reason why is that it’s an example that I knew what I needed to know even though I didn’t know it yet. See, I wrote down the words but I didn’t even “get” what they were about. I’ll give you some context.
In 2007, I came up with this song. When I looked at it, I kinda chuckled and I thought, “Well, I’ve written about a character, kind of like the episode of ‘Seinfeld’ when George Costanza decides to do the opposite of all of his natural instincts and then when he does that, everything starts going well for him.” I would have been well-served by doing that with the song I wrote because what I didn’t know at the time was that I was three years away from some really big challenges: My health pretty much collapsing, a business that I had helped create starting to crumble, my marriage dissolving.
Those were all really difficult things and that led to a process of kind of forced reflection and evolution that when I look back now, I’m really really grateful for. I don’t know if I could have learned some of those lessons any other way but back at that time, if I had just done what I was saying in the song, maybe that ride would have been a little bit smoother.
I knew what I needed to know. I just didn’t know that I knew it yet. The light hadn’t gone on.
I’ll give you some examples. Here are the lyrics to the song, No Schedule Man.
It says, “I am a no schedule man. No plan is all part of the plan.”
You’ll arrive eventually but sometimes you need to just let go.
Now, that’s not saying to just do nothing, sit back with your feet up and let life pass you by. No, it’s saying, have a plan, set a destination, put a little pin on the chart so you know which way to steer the boat, but having no plan is all part of the bigger plan. You can go sailing across the ocean and you know that you want to get “here” but once the wind and the waves start flaring up, you can either tense against that and take a real beating or you can go with the flow, let go a little bit, adjust your route and learn something along the way. You’ll arrive eventually but sometimes you need to just let go. That’s what I see in that is letting go.
In the bridge to the song, it says, “I am the waves and tide and wind ’cause I roll in and then out again, passing with nomadic chagrin to the next great adventure … if I get there at all.”
I read that now and I think, ‘He’s talking about presence and impermanence and being present now because things come and they go. Nothing lasts forever.’
I’m like the waves and the tide and the wind. I come, then I go, and I enjoy being here and now I’m going to set out and be there and I’ll enjoy being there … if I ever get there! And it doesn’t matter if I get there or not because I’m enjoying being here.
I knew what I needed to know. I just didn’t know that I knew it yet.
And then it says, in the third verse, “I am a no schedule dude. And I don’t mean to intrude on your political feud or your rigid, ragged mood. Because life’s too short and then I’ll be gone. And you will too as time moves on.”
I’m just not interested in the gossip, in the rumors, in the negativity. I want positivity. I’ve only got so much time left.
When I look at that now, I think that’s all about choosing positivity and moving away from those limiting beliefs, that little voice in the back of your head that says, “You can’t, you’re not good enough or this isn’t going happen for you.” Once you identify that, you can choose not to listen to it and then this whole, “I don’t mean to intrude on your political feud” – does that resonate with what’s going on particularly in the United States right now?
You have the choice of whether you want to pay attention to that or not and feed your awareness and your spirit full of that negativity or just do what I’ve been doing for the last little while. I’m just not interested in the gossip, in the rumors, in the negativity. I want positivity. I’ve only got so much time left. None of us knows what that is. “I’ll get there when I get there if I get there at all.” I want to go “there” with a smile and feeling good.
I was in for some of the biggest challenges of my life when I wrote this and I’ve since come through that and I look back at this now and it reads with a completely different context than when I originally conceived of it.
So what do we do from here? I’d be really interested to know: what’s an example that you can think of from a time when the light went on for you? It could be something like a book that someone suggested to you or an activity or even a thought of your own. Maybe you wrote it down in a journal or on a Post-it note or something like that, and it was weeks, months, years ago and then all of a sudden, “Bing!” – the light went on: “Aha! I see how this is right for me!” And then you started to apply it.
What was it? I’d love to know. Maybe it’s something that the rest of us can look at in our own lives as well.