Raise standards. Say no to anything less than great.

by Love M. Powers
www.DareTruthLove.com

After reading Derek Sivers most recent blog post (which I posted here on my site as well, so if you haven’t read it, click here to open it in a new window so you can read it) I am so glad that he has reminded me about raising my standards…

#3. Raise standards. Say no to anything less than great.

Every person that doesn’t rejuvenate me and make me feel better, say no. Blacklist them. Banned. Not allowed in, not even for a minute. No explanation needed. No compromise. No favors. Done. Gone.

More fountains, less drains.

Every thing I’m doing that isn’t good for me. Every thing I’m eating or drinking that isn’t making me more healthy. Stop. Say no.

This even means saying no to half-ass conversations that are not whole-hearted and unconflicted. People that are “fine” and I “kill time” with, but don’t actually love and actively enjoy? Nope. Not good enough.

Doing this gave me a huge feeling of self-worth. Setting the bar really high for something to take my time.

It means more empty time, but that leaves room for POSSIBILITY!

Empty time has the POTENTIAL to be filled with nourishing and awesome new actions and people, whereas filling it with half-ass things and people kills all that potential and possibility.

I am recommitting to staying focused on saying no to anything less than great! Anything less is simply not a very good use of my time and is not taking me to where I want to go fast enough. Not that I’m in a super big hurry, but I’m certainly ready to make some great things happen.

Derek’s article made me think about some very recent times I sat and listened to less than inspiring talk from negative people instead of just saying, “You know, I just don’t have time for this negativity.”

I guess I just wanna be nice. But being that kind of nice is wasting my time when I could be spending that time working toward my business and personal goals or hanging out with inspiring, successful mentors or people I love and enjoy.

Speaking of people I love and enjoy, I’ve had an online dating profile up for a while to find a guy I’d enjoy spending time with. But no luck so far. As of today, I’ve decided to remove my profile and stay focused on my business goals and let love find me. No more online dating to distract me.

A thought that comes to my mind is “Why am I spending time with the kind of people who do not inspire me?” The answer is “I need to find more inspiring, positive, successful people to hang out with because I don’t have enough of them in my life.”

So I’m taking action to connect with the kind of people who will motivate me.

I found an ad on Craiglist placed by a young, successful entrepreneur for a personal assistant to help him for 3 hours a week. I figure that this works well for me because it’s minimal time commitment from me working on his stuff so I can focus most of my time working on my stuff.

I got the job! Because I’m different, he said. I liked hearing that.

The really cool thing about this guy is that he wants to help his assistant with their personal goals so he can help them be successful and not have to work for him anymore. There are not too many business people out there like that.

And…he wants to hang out, when we have free time, outside of work to cultivate the relationship into something stronger than just a business acquaintance type of relationship. That is also a rarity.

Most business people are not that interested in helping the people who work for them personally (they’re usually just looking at how that person can serve their business needs), let alone want to spend time with them outside of work to get to know them on a more personal level.

I like that. And I know some of you might be thinking, “Yeah, that guy probably has ulterior motives.” But actually we are both artists and genuinely like to help people. We have quite a few things in common. And he, like me, wants to cultivate more meaningful relationships, whether they’re business or personal.

These days with Facebook, Twitter and other social media, people don’t have to make much effort to connect with people. I’m finding very few people want to have real conversations anymore, and rarely in person. So I welcome it when someone I respect and admire wants to spend some one-on-one time with me.

Derek Sivers’ blog post is well timed. I’m already on my way to taking action on raising my standards and saying no to anything less than great. Reminds me of his “No more yes. It’s HELL YEAH! or no,” blog post that I absolutely loved. If you haven’t read it, check it out. It’ll change what you say yes to.

Getting Out of a Bad Place [by Derek Sivers]

This was actually a private email to a good friend. But he loved it and forwarded it to some people, and they all suggested I should post it on my site.


Hey B –

A few months ago I was in a really bad place.

Really upset ALL the time about the whole situation.

Couldn’t think straight. Very reactionary.

Wanting to make some big drastic change, just to ease the discomfort of uncertainty — that pain of living with an unknown future.

You’re definitely in that place now. So here’s how I got out. Maybe it helps.

 

#1. Ask myself “What’s wrong RIGHT NOW?” — this very second. Am I in physical pain or danger?

No.

I’ve got mental pain, but that’s just me imagining things, or remembering things. None of it is real.

If I put aside the mental torture I’m giving myself, the only thing that’s real is this physical moment. Is it so bad?

Hm. No.

Look around.

Nice day. Nice place. Nice food. Nice people. Nice work.

Of course the mental anguish is still there, but it’s a nice reminder that it’s all in my head.

 

#2. Observe now. Act later.

When I’m feeling so cloudy, my decisions and actions will be cloudy too.

So I wait a few days before acting on anything.

Just watch the emotions pass by like a thunderstorm.

And the longer I wait, the smarter I get.

 

#3. Raise standards. Say no to anything less than great.

Every person that doesn’t rejuvenate me and make me feel better, say no. Blacklist them. Banned. Not allowed in, not even for a minute. No explanation needed. No compromise. No favors. Done. Gone.

More fountains, less drains.

Every thing I’m doing that isn’t good for me. Every thing I’m eating or drinking that isn’t making me more healthy. Stop. Say no.

This even means saying no to half-ass conversations that are not whole-hearted and unconflicted. People that are “fine” and I “kill time” with, but don’t actually love and actively enjoy? Nope. Not good enough.

Doing this gave me a huge feeling of self-worth. Setting the bar really high for something to take my time.

It means more empty time, but that leaves room for POSSIBILITY!

Empty time has the POTENTIAL to be filled with nourishing and awesome new actions and people, whereas filling it with half-ass things and people kills all that potential and possibility.

 

#4. Focus on my goal/mission/path

The empty space created by #3 — no longer chasing distractions — helped me remember what I’m really doing with my life.

Creating, learning, improving, whatever. For me, it’s writing, parenting, and health. For you, it’s something else. It’s the 10-year-plan type stuff.

Clearing the clutter helps you see the horizon.

It’s a HUGE energy-filled feeling of “Oh yeah! That’s where I’m going! I had forgotten! I can see it now! Let’s go!”

It really helps make the “say no” thing stick, because once you’re heading towards a spot on the horizon, you just don’t let any crap get in your way.

 

#5. Do ALL the daily mundane stuff

This sounds silly, simple, and shallow, but it’s surprisingly effective:

When I’m upset, I don’t feel like doing anything but wallowing in it.

But despite feeling that way, I brush, floss, go to the gym, make healthy meals, take the kid out to play, do the dishes, clean the house, pick up clutter, vacuum, pay my bills, answer my emails, take my vitamins, do the laundry, play with the kid some more, brush and floss again, turn off the computer early, turn off the phone, and get to bed early.

It’s so mundane, but it really helps to feel on top of things. Things in life well-sorted so I don’t need to worry about them.

(And when I ask, “What’s wrong right now?” — it really helps me say “nothing!” when I look around and see this clean house, paid bills, happy child, and have a good night’s sleep.)

It’s really peaceful to go through the motions, even though I don’t really feel like it. It’s more time to think and process.

It’s a great reminder that I have to eat, even if I’m not feeling hungry. I have to clean the house, even if my mind is a mess. I have to sleep, no matter what!

Like #1, above, it separates the mental anguish from the physical reality. Keeps me focused on what’s real versus what I’m just imagining.


There’s more to it than that. Lots of diary time, friends, reading healthy new thoughts/philosophies, etc. But those are the big 5.

I hope it helps.

– Derek

Source: http://sivers.org/bad